That is a pretty freakin' cool sphere!

This is pretty awesome… A real hovering ball that seems to defy gravity and do some other neat tricks too. Yeah, we have seen some cool hovering toys these last few years, but this little doozy goes well past just hovering. Not only does it hover, but it is able to jet  of in any direction lickity split, and its gyroscopes (along with its auto pilot mode) give it the ability to stay in hover state no matter how hard you try to push it down. Just when you think you got your bearing with this thing it shows off a few more tricks as it dives to the floor, rolls over better than your dog skip, andtake right back off again. It seems to master land and air, and is made by the Japan’s ministry of defense.

Team City Monitor (with coverage history) for GAE

Per my last post about the splendor of GAE, below is one example of a tool I built for us at Socialize to keep an eye on code coverage and lets the group know if a build is broken (if our tests have failed.) This script is built to run on Google AppEngine, checks against a TeamCity Server install, and expects that each project in team city has code coverage outputted to its artifacts folder.

What is C.I. Server and why is it important?

C.I. stand for Continuous Integration, and is a system used to constantly/”continuously” checks to see if a code base is “working” or not. Team City (by JetBrains) is a product made for that process. Usually it is used to run tests against a code base to make sure it is working as expected, as a part of the QA life cycle. These tests are made up of “unit tests” that are created by the developers whom write code to test the code they are writing. It can be a bit odd for those that have not ever done so, but it is quite important when trying to deliver stable code. In short, and in its simplest form, this whole system makes sure new code/changes doesn’t break old code already in place. You can read more about these processes and purposes here: Unit Testing & Integration Testing.

What is code coverage, and why is it important?

Code coverage examines how much of your code is being tested. For instance, you may have a C.I. system in place, and a unit test frame work running within it, but if the tests only test/”cover” 1% of all of the code you aren’t really delivering a level of confidence you should be. In this tool we track the coverage percentage over time. Seeing it as a graph helps recognize dips in coverage easily.


Download Team City Monitor for GAE


Or fork and contribute on GitHub

What do you and Sonic the Hedgehog have in common?

Sonic and his rings
Sonic and his rings

Have you ever played Sonic the hedgehog? Man, what a classic! The objective: Get your hedgehog, named Sonic, to jump, run and even roll through a stage, avoiding the array of animal-ish enemies, only to reach a guarded exit, protected by your arch nemesis, Dr. Evil. Beat him and the entrance to the next level is opened. Keep this up, level after level, enemy after enemy, and you will win the game. — But wait there’s more! If you are attacked without a collection of magical “rings” in your possession, you will die. With one or more rings you can narrowly avoid death by attack.

So which was more important, getting to the next level, or acquiring the rings? Well, any kid would tell you: Duh, both! Obvi. If you only collect the rings you may never get to the end of the level. Alternatively, if you only try to get to the end of the level, rendering yourself ringless, you dramatically decrease your chances of survival.

Of course, one could play the perfect game, dodging all would be attackers, and avoiding falling off cliffs to a spikey-floored doom. By doing so you would indeed win the game, just as anyone else. But who could make it through all those levels without one misstep, one slipped finger, or distracted moment when your Mom calls you down for dinner? I’m going to take a stab at it and say — not a single person. So, thanks to those gracious creators at Sega, you were given those wonderfully magic rings, giving you a fighting chance. You and everyone else jumped at the opportunity, capturing as many rings as you could. You mitigated risk, balanced your options, and grabbed on to what ever you could, outside of the clearly laid goal of completing the level, to of course do just that, complete the level and win the game; achieve success.

That is not a theme reserved for just hedgehogs named Sonic, or any game for that matter. Success is a goal some of us can see, and once we see it, we direct our focus directly at achieving it. But it is often that deterministic direction that creates a far more subtle misdirection.

Nine out of ten startups fail, right? I bet most of them are hard workers and/or have great ideas and/or have a focus and/or goals. A major hurdle to overcome, one that is far less obvious then the cliche advice to work harder/smarter, and the basis for why so many startup fall victim to those one-in-ten odds, is that it is the very focus on the goal that can cause the unbalance in your business, and ironically dooms your chances in achieving it.

Success may live on a straight-line, but the line seen is not necessarily the path to take. The best path is almost always one that dances around the line formed. Looking away, towards an entirely different direction, can reveal a path with far less hurdles when the focus is returned to the goals directive. You must let something go in order to truly have it — a cliché theme that works in almost any environment, and often takes a lifetime to master. Simply put, our “rings” come in the form of friendships, support systems, a passion for what you do, mistakes that need to be made, failures to learn from, vacations to escape to, and random ideas that inspire. When we remember to grab onto those rings when the opportunity to do so arises, or even sometimes when it doesn’t seem like it can, we will be far more able to last the “attacks” the startup game will inevitably throw our way.

So my fellow hedgehogs, should you grab at all the rings you can, even if at times by doing so you are unable to race towards the goal? Most definitely! Any kid who had a sega will tell you: you have to do both. Duh! Obvi.

"And", and how it can kill your business

Focus is extremely important when starting a company. It is easy to think that the best thing to offer your customers is everything they need. I mean wouldn’t you want to be the one stop shop for someone’s needs so they can keep wanting to come back for more? Unfortunately, that always sounds great in theory, but in reality it’s a concept that kills. McDonald’s does burgers, and even though now they have a fish fillet and a McRib now and again, they are a burger joint and when they started and took off they did burgers better then anyone in the biz. After a while they added more products to stay current and further saturate their market but they had to start somewhere, and dig into the dirt. Creating a business on the sidelines often gives people a chance to improve on a big company’s ideas, but they neglect to realize how long it took for the company to get there and build their brand off of doing one thing great.

The mishap is much like a sub shop that notices that people on their lunch break often needs copies made, so they become a sub shop and copy center. Would you eat at a sub shop that does copies when you want subs and vice versa? The problem is everytime you add an “and” to a sentence about what you do when you are a growing company you are devaluing each individual thing in that claim by half. I mean if one person is great at flipping burgers and they put all their time into that skill what happens when that same person makes shakes? Well you can hire another person for the shakes, but the problems still trickles up — now the manager must be great at spending half his time on managing burger flippers and half of his time on shake makers. Make your core your focus and do that one thing better than anyone in the world. If you find yourself using the “and” in your value prop raise a red flag.

Another way to think about it is that often times you try to increase value with increasing your offerings. So you say we are a company that focuses on the very best linens (but then you think how do I get the linens to the customer so you continue on) … and we deliver the linens to your door. What just happened there is once you started thinking about alternative ways to increase the value of your company you have inadvertently admitted that the “fine linens” part of your company’s offerings isn’t good enough to stand on its own. I have the finest linens – [period]. I am so focused and great at making fine linens you will want them – [period]. It rings stronger and internally, in every conversation and meeting that comes up if the discussion doesn’t ultimately improve the quality of your fine linens don’t waste your time talking about it. Every new offering (if you want it done well) deserves all the attention it needs and will suck attention from another offering unless you have the brand, management, money, exposure, customer base to help carry you onto something else.

You just can’t avoid it no matter how smart or hard working you are you will give your customers mixed signals, employees diffused objectives and passion, and a mitigated product that can’t compete with a rival that could spring up and do everything they can to be better at one thing than you. Information gets around quickly and people know how to manage multiple systems, if they can save time by finding someone who does something important better than anyone they will use them in no time.

Note: I should make one more point. This doesn’t mean that you can’t have new ideas, just recognize that the new idea will need focus and attention and if you think your original idea/business isn’t good enough to stand on its own you should decide whether to keep the old business or shift focus completely to the new one.

“And” and How it Can Kill Your Business

images (1)Focus is extremely important, especially in the early days of a startup or idea. It is easy to fall into the trap of thinking that the best thing to offer your customers is everything they need. I mean why wouldn’t you want to be the one stop shop for a user’s needs? Then you can be sure they’ll keep coming back for more, right? Unfortunately, it may sound good in theory, but in reality it’s a concept that kills.

The problem is, everytime you add an “and” to a to what you offer you risk proportionally devaluing each other thing you claim to be the best at; which I call value dilution.

Say we are a company that focuses on the very best linens (but then you think: how do I get the linens to the customer – so you continue on) … and we will deliver the very best linens to your door in under an hour. What just happened there is once you started thinking about alternative ways to increase the value of your company you have inadvertently admitted that the “fine linens” part of your company’s offerings isn’t good enough to stand on its own. I have the finest linens – [period]. I am so focused and great at making fine linens you will want them – [period].

Internally, (and here is a point of import) in every conversation and meeting that comes up, if the discussion doesn’t ultimately improve the quality of your fine linens don’t waste your time talking about it until you have the very best linens. Every new offering (if you want it done well) deserves all the attention it needs and will suck attention from another offering unless you have the brand, management, money, exposure, head count, or customer base to help carry your company into a new offering.

No idea is too small to warrant focus. You will be amazed at how deep you can dive into any one concept. The improvements you can bring to a single idea are infinite. There is always as much depth available in any one subject as there is breadth to the number of subjects available to explore.

A side benefit of going deep in one area, as opposed to picking many things to get involved in, is with each iteration of depth you find on any one subject the differentiating knowledge and expertise you gain will grow exponentially.  As a budding startup this exponential gain in knowledge through focus is the far better bang for your buck than compared to the costs of having to learn unrelated points of information when creating new products in new directions.

People try to avoid this law all the time. I’ve heard, “our team is special – we can do it (without more talent or time)” or “why can’t you move all your chess pieces at once?” or “it’s not technically a different focus and blah blah.” Sorry, you can’t avoid this law no matter how smart or hard working you are.  In order to provide the amount of time and energy needed on a each core value  you will need more people, a larger budget and more time (at all levels of the company.) Without it you will give your customers mixed signals, employees contradicting objectives , and a product that can’t compete with a rival that has chosen to focus all its time on one of your things.

When can you add an “and”? I’d say a good rule of thumb is, you can add an “and” when the “and” is not novelle/unique/innovative. Though, often if you are and’ing something that is not innovative then you probably don’t need to “and” it at all. It can come into play when your offering is a novelle way to offer an aggregate of many non-novelle things — but you had better be the best damn aggregator out there and make sure your team works toward that focused goal.

Note: I should make one more point. This doesn’t mean that you can’t have new ideas, just recognize that the new idea will need focus and attention and if you think your original idea/business isn’t good enough to stand on its own then it may be time to decide whether to keep the old business or shift focus completely to the new one. There is a time and place for R&D, and there is a time and place to grow your offering, but without total market fit your “and” should not be added to your core. There is also a difference between supporting features and additional cores that people get confused about a lot – I’ll save that for another post.

Points of Life

pointsoflife
Visual
Life has two very distinct points. Birth and death. You cannot escape these points and the run in only a single suggestion. As you may know the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. COnversly the only way you can increase the distance between two very static points points is to focus less on the fairly impossible task of moving sad points but the extremenl easy tasks of increasing the diversions and curvatures of the path itself.

I. Life has two very distinct points — birth and death. You cannot escape these points, and the path always runs in a single direction.

II. As you may know the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. You cannot increase the distance between these two points because they are static. Often times people focus on the fairly impossible task of changing the final point, death. It is far easier to increase the quantity of diversions/curvatures of the path itself. You cannot control the points, but you CAN control the path.

III. I think that’s why we all know instinctualy that increasing our experiences, taking chances, and traveling “off the beaten path” is so very important to living life. It is the only way you can “extend” your life.

Do not plan for death and do not take the next obvious step so quickly when given a path. Live the longest richest life possible by pulling yourself out of any path plainly laid out, for a a clear path is a short one with one very obvious conclusion.

Some Thoughts on Entrepreneurship

I was recently asked to put together some quick points around entrepreneurship. Points became paragraphs and since I rarely get a chance to blog I figured I would kill two birds with one stone….

You have the x-factor
Try to listen, question, get help and delve into guidance and advice that makes sense or intrigues YOU, not just what people tell you makes sense or what is the current common thought. If you are special enough to be successful, it’s because you have your own mind and perspective that’s different and it’s the advice YOU consider and hold onto that matters (if you simply just listen to experts and do what they say because they are soooo smart then you should work for them and not yourself).

Experts eh?
If two experts disagree in a room on something then no one really knows the right answer – take a step back, it’s time to find your own path.

Do what you love
Do what you love — I know it’s cliché but truly getting that point is harder then it seems. You are an instant success if you’re doing what you love because otherwise you’re working hard at something you don’t love just to pay for the things you do love. Just cut out the middleman! If you accept the love-of-doing more then the love-of-having life gets so much simpler (sounds kind of hippie , I know). For example, If you love Ferrari’s then you should work around, on, or with them at any capacity you can (instant success). Don’t work your way up at some random office or profession that you don’t love just to buy a Ferrari some day. Seems like alot of wasted time just to experience some distant moment of possession.

Focus
Focus hard and focus on your core. Most anyone can make any one thing great if they focused on it and dedicated their life to it. If all you did was think about how to make one specific thing awesome every day I think you would succeed. P.S. Focusing on two things has half that chance of success or less and so on.

Blank pages suck!
Blank pages suck! Conceptualizing abstractly too long can kill an idea. Create, draw, promote, attempt, try, share, and do as much as possible even if it seems unneeded or premature. Don’t let technical know-how stop you. A movie can be cartooned without a camera, a car body can be made with clay, and a site for something to help a user base can be an office excel spreadsheet that is passed around via email in its infancy. You’d be surprised how much can be learned and/or gained traction from such things.

Actions + Ideas = Something Great
Every idea can be great, from a specialized trash can, to a purse design, to an ornament you place on your Crocs, or a website to share simple two line messages with friends (just look around you at what you own or do). Just stick with it (and mind you that doesn’t mean simply bull-headedly pushing a singular concept – that’s “lazy hard work”). Stick with improving an idea, listening to users, reacting and adapting yourself and idea to what you learn and come across. If you do all the above, you most certainly will succeed, right? 😉

Don’t Save Money, Save Time and Stress
Often times we go cheap to get things started, and being exceptionally frugal myself, this lesson was hard for me to see. Often times saving money comes at a greater cost then the time you lose, the stress you gain and the expertise you fail to implement. Hire people that can do a job exceptionally well, get equipment that will make your business work exceptionally well, etc. That doesn’t mean be lazy and spend money without research or thought…spend smart BUT getting someone cheap, bad equipment, lack of staff to handle the load, and cutting corners bites you in the ass often and seems to always end up more expensive and threatens your growth down the road; like death by a million paper cuts. Always get the best and figure out how to make it work in your budget!

7 tips on being an Entrepreneur

I was recently asked to put together some quick points around entrepreneurship. Points became paragraphs and since I rarely get a chance to blog I figured I would kill two birds with one stone….

You have the x-factor

Try to listen, question, get help and delve into guidance and advice that makes sense to YOU. Don’t just do what people tell you to, or what is the current common thought. If you are special enough to be successful it’s because you have your own mind and your own great perspectives. Those differences should be the lens in which you consider the advice you’re given, and how you choose to embrace the ones you connect with the most. It’s important to listen, but if you JUST do what the “experts” say then you should work for them and not yourself. It is a tough skill to master, listening well to experts is a key component to learning, growing, and it helps you avoid making the same mistakes. What I am driving at is how YOU work is unique, and that uniqueness greatly changes the result of advice you decide to implement. To put it in terms that may risk an oversimplification, true “jerks” work well employing jerk-like tactics, but nice people do it awfully – and vice-versa.

Two Experts Walk Into a Bar

If two experts disagree on something then it’s fair to say no one knows THE right answer – take a step back, it’s an opportunity to find your unique path.

Can’t Buy Me Love

Do what you love — I know it’s cliché but truly adopting it is harder than it seems. You are an “instant success” if you’re doing what you love. Otherwise, you may be working hard at something you don’t love just to pay for the things you do. I say cut out the middleman! If you accept the love-of-doing more than the love-of-having life gets simpler (sounds hippie, I know.) For example, if you love Ferrari’s you should work around, on, or with them at any capacity you can (instant success.) Don’t work your way up at some random office or profession that you don’t love just to buy a Ferrari some day. Seems like a lot of wasted time just to experience some distant moment of possession.

Focus is Deep

Focus hard and focus on your core. Focus doesn’t always mean doing less, it often just means doing more on one specific thing. Most anyone can make any one thing great if they focused on it and dedicated their life to it. If all you did was think about how to make one specific thing awesome every day I think you’d succeed. P.S. Focusing on two things has half that chance of success or less and so on. However, doing two things that both directly impact the greatness of one thing can compound your greatness. Careful, when you’re in the weeds those two examples can seem very similar.

Blank pages suck!

Blank pages suck! Conceptualizing abstractly too long can kill an idea. Create, draw, promote, attempt, try, share, and do as much as possible even if it seems unneeded or premature. Don’t let technical know-how stop you. A movie can be cartooned without a camera, a car body can be made with clay, and a site for something to help a user can start as a spreadsheet passed around via email. You’d be surprised how much can be done, learned from, or gown into from such basic experiments.

Actions + Ideas = Something Great

Every idea can be great, from a specialized trash can, a purse design, or an ornament you place on your Crocs. Just stick with it. Stick with improving an idea, listening to users, reacting and adapting yourself and your ideas.

Don’t Save Money, Save Time and Stress

We can often go cheap to get things started, and being exceptionally frugal myself, learning the difference between cheap and smart is tough. Instead of saving money compare costs: the time you lose is a cost, the stress acquired is a cost, and so on. Hire people that can do a job exceptionally well, get equipment that will make your business work exceptionally well, etc. That doesn’t mean you get to justify spend wads of cash in the persuit of excellence. It means first focus on what you truly NEED and what will make you successful and THEN figure out frugal ways to attain those things. Find out what costs are you incurring unnecessarily and cut it. Then, re-invest those saving into the more important things. Spend smart, but don’t get trapped in a death by a million paper cuts pinching pennies across the board. Always aim for the best and then figure out how to make it work in your budget.

Are we as humans not born moral?

Religion doesn’t create morality ….our humanity is the foundation of morality. Give the power of being human the ability to love life. Do you love life? Do you want to kill right now? Even if God said not to love would you, could you love your wife, your dog or your son less?  That feeling within, that conscience or that burning feeling in your chest is your humanity. That person on your shoulder telling you not to do wrong is within you, and that regret you feel and can’t get rid of far after a wrong has been done is part of what makes you human. Your morality, created by God or not, your natural state of being human is what guides you and 99% of those around you.

Religion doesn’t create morality and nor should religion usurp your innate feelings to care for your fellow man – humanity IS the foundation for morality. We should not lose sight of the fact that we are moral by nature, for the sake of prosperity and civilization we always have been. Under hundreds of religions there is a common thread, preservation of life, and the dignities and freedoms that come with such life. Give the credit of being moral back to the people and allow we the people to love life for life’s sake, not based on an order by God.

With or without a greater being watching over us the essence of this observation is that we are humans and we want the best for ourselves and our loved ones as humans, innately.  If we assume that ‘without a higher power guiding us all is lost’ then we are invariably saying that we are all bad people innately and we are only acting good because we don’t want to receive judgment or punishment, which actually is just plain saying we are bad people. So why try to be good, we aren’t ‘fooling” god…do you think you can fool god? I mean we are living a lie if we are innately bad unless someone demands we are good. I guess my problem with that line of thinking  is that I think I’m a good person that wants what’s best for my friends and loved ones, without being scared into that feeling. I mean did you get forced into loving your child?! I would hope not, you are probabl a good person whether or not someone told you to be. Yes you make mistakes and yes you need guidance but over time it seems like guidance stopped being guidance at all, it became more like mindless slavery and lack of credit to how great of a person you are innately, as a human

If  the only thing keeping one man to the next civil is something outside of that man then what are we protecting when we “try” to be good? You can’t force good out of someone. It’s simple: Do you love life? Do you enjoy being alive, do you enjoy living? You should. Without any denomination or oath do you have the will within you to face another human and kill them without remorse or conscience? For those that have no remorse, which I firmly believe to be the infinitely small minority of people out there, I would bet that there is no thread of consistency among them by race or religion, most likely it is their environment that has left them without a ‘moral compass’ as it isnt a lack of doctorine but the over empahsis in adobting a more negatively focused doctorine that can be found any where a person is willing to take a message out of context. Even worst, their misguided beliefs could only be exacerbated, and often is, by their choice of interpretation on what God intends for them to do. Religion has not stopped atrocities on man. Some may argue that it has been the fuel for hate in most cases throughout history.  I love the moral compass that is found within relgion. This compass can indeed help guide you in times of doubt or lack of pupose and hope, but it is not the compass but the legs of  man that does the walking.

At this point those on the extreme right believe that the lack of religion is indeed the lack of morality, but that perseption lacks a faith in man kind  and I beleive the more and more we disect man, humanity, and morality from one another and give all the credit of purpose or goodness to religon we will end up losing ourselves and what maks us beautiful and human. For the most part it is baseless as even the most devout person with mental problems could not repress those problems from within, strictly through their religion alone. The written word can help remind us, re-inspire or re-solidify our love of life but we must re-invigorate our understanding that we as a people are indeed good and no doctrine will keep the bad minority of the world out. It is paranoid, selfish, ascetic, and overall negative.

If religion did indeed “create” morality then let us rely on that creation now within us once again, and let us be moral for morals sake as we were born/created to do so.  I was once told by a devout conservative that I scared him because I did not broadcast or adopt  a specific doctoring or religion that I believed in, in his words “how can I be sure you wont decide to kill tomorrow if you chose to without knowing what set of rules it is you abide by, a written doctoring”. I responded with “How can I be sure that since you have fragmented your fundamental human morals from a written doctrine/faith one day you won’t hear/read what you believe is Gods word that instruct you to kill me. Won’t you act on that guide as a devout follower without question or rebuttal, in essance dyning your instinct not to kill. Ins’t it more interesting that many have killed against their better judgment or concious in the name of some higher power?”  I don’t think this man was a bad person, but most of the worlds most heinous atrocities were constructed in this manner, from women to black, to Jews, to gays and beyond fanaticals only have power when man abandons their own personal beliefs in their innate perspectives on love, life, humanity and our resilience.  It feels like we have lost faith in humanity far before anyone can truly argue that we have lost our faith in religion and good.

The Bill of Nights

When night falls
When night falls

No Goals

What we are talking about here is the grasping of some greater force, call it fate or kismet, that can be harnessed if one is willing to give themselves up to natures will and allow this ‘force’ to guide them through their day. I have done my research my friends and can safely say that if you live in a city such as DC, NY, LA, SF or even Huntington Beach, CA you have an amazing story awaiting your discover right outside your door any day of the week. There is no need to plan, no need to find a buddy, no need to check the news paper for events. Nope, you and the city can work together to create an amazing night. It all lives within the faith and trust you give your cement filled provider.

Sping Stroll
Spring Stroll

Persue the unexpected

You must give in and recognize the unexpected pleasures that can only be found when walking aimlessly through a bustling city. Is it a pleasure that can only be understood while doing so. Much like Martin Buber wrote in “I and Thou”,:
it is within the moment that understanding is achieved. The moments after a moment is realized the human mind begins to analyze it, it begins to process the moment thrusting it away from the experience you’re having and into your memory, or it will begin trying anticipate what should be expected to happen next; the experience itself is short lived and is felt – not understood.

Every time you leave your house and you give your fine city a chance to express itself it will return the favor with a parade you didn’t know about, a race that wasn’t on your calendar, a must see sculpture to see thats not on your to-do’s, an unfortunate accident that will be seen on the news to your suburban counterparts only hours after you have taken it in, or a simple interaction with a new or old friend that you didn’t expect in a part of town neither of you have any good reason being in. Adventure must be your middle name and patience must be your side kick.

The rules are fair and must be followed to a T and with complete acceptance both of the mind, the body and the spirit. They are as follows:

Simple Version (Bill of Nights Lite):

1) Go out early on a beautiful day
2) Don’t expect anything more then getting the chance to experience your city
3) Don’t make plans or make phone calls to see what your friends are up to
4) Push your self to stay out all day and night, do not go home till after midnight

Full Body Version (mmmm…..Sooooo meaty):
1) You must pick a beautiful day. Good weather and good sun is key

2) You must leave the house early, no later then 11 AM

3) You cannot have any expectations or plans set up for the day.

4) You must be prepared to enjoy the day and nature for what it is, do not expect to drink, or have “fun”. Focus more on getting to know your city, enjoying the day and being alone with your thoughts

5) You can not call a friend, you can answer calls but you can not make calls at any point of the night to see what going on with others. Doing so will derail the fate that nature has worked so hard to prepare that you have no chance of foreseeing.

Rules
Rules

6) You must go into any bar, restaurant or diner that catches your eye. If you have even the slightest of curiosity – follow it. Even if it’s to just go inside the establishment and walk around to get a feel for it and leave.

7) You must force your self to have a beer, snack or coffee at some of these places. Try your best not to convince yourself otherwise, walk in!

8) Make small talk with strangers. I know this is tough for many of you, especially the shy ones, but as a recovering shyaholic I must tell you every chat has possible outcomes that grow exponentially greater when you and your world are combined to help permiutate the possible outcomes; onother words its necessary to shake your destiny up a bit. Small talk with strangers when you’re by yourself is like a brilliant chef throwing spices into a soup that allows for an unexpected taste to dazzle his customers. I learned from traveling throughout Europe that it was the necessity to experience my surrounding on a budget that forced me to asked questions about where to go, how they like their town etc. As Blanche DuBois put it , Always depend on the kindness of strangers

9) Wear sneakers

10) If you get tired sit on a bench but don’t get too comfortable, keep walking and exploring new neighborhoods. There is always a dip of excitement a few hours into the adventure. It’s normal and is a hump that needs to be passed much like a cramp you would get in a race.

11) Observe your surrounding do not stare at the ground

12) Do not have head phones on. The city is bustling with activity and you may just find, as I always have, someone you know in a random part of town bump into you. It’s amazing how bloody often this happens!

13) You must stay out till after midnight and not in any single place….once again keep moving

14) say yes. If you do see someone you know and they ask you to come with them for lunch or a beer etc….go!

15) Always leave one opportunity experienced for another new presented opportunity. Allot of people go wrong here. The night turns out great early, they get excited that The Bill of Nights worked and get too comfortable in that experience to entertain the possibility of a different one. A new request comes in and is turned down, the person thinking that the night was already success…it is not a success until you are out after midnight and interacting with all possible out comes. See 3+4

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Remember it is not a single event your are perusing rather it is the night as a whole. Experience new things, new neighborhoods, all new adventures every chance you get. I know it snot easy. I catch myself making mistakes now and again but stick to the mantra and correct myself as soon as I can. I have had an amazing night implementing The Bill of Nights 100% out of the 10-12 times I’ve done it. Not only that, but close friends that implemented it correctly have also succeeded in an amazing story about unexpected encounteres and memorable experiences.

If you believe in your city, your city will believe in you!

P.S. If you have a good or bad experience from your Implementation of “The Bill of Nights” leave it. Share your experience and comments 😀