Arriving in Costa Rica

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Looking out at Costa Rica through the plane window

Descending into Costa Rica

What is your destination city?

Ummmm… Guarante or something? Hmmm… If only I can get on the internet…. Do you have the Wi-Fi Key? Can I use your phone perhaps?

Apparently, you can’t zoom out a Google Maps map without being on the internet, and since it seems that people don’t have addresses in Costa Rica, Brendan just gave me a Gmaps link when I asked where to go.

Am I not going to get to enter the country now? Read the rest of this entry »

Missed my flight.

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Yeah… Sure I can wake up.  That phone is pretty loud.  I’m really starting to fade….. just a 1 hour nap, then we leave. We can easily make it by 5:30am…. “Dude, we’re not gonna make it.”  “Huh?”  “Yeah. It’s like 6am already” (flight leavlels at 6:30am.

I payed $150, and got another flight.  One that leaves at 2pm.  Thus, I have time to blog for you :)

No more dancing….

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My ex-dance instructor

My ex-dance instructor

I got a call Friday, where the girl who’s teaching me to dance said she’s gotta cancel that night’s lesson. Too bad, we were going to hit up a Salsa club.  I was actually sleeping when she called, so I kept the conversation short “Great… no worries… gives me more time for productivity tonight.” I went back to sleep, but I noted that she had an angry tone to her voice.

The tone of voice was the one when someone is angry because they JUST found out something… like that someone is cheating on them, or something along those lines.  I wasn’t sure what it was…  I had my suspicion though. Maybe I was just imagining it, I mean, it is just one cancelation, and I was sleeping, right? I mean, just the night before she took me with her to her friend’s house for Thanksgiving dinner, shared some laughs, she said she liked the pictures I took so far, and reminded me about the Salsa club.  Must be the fact I was sleeping… read too much into things, right?

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Mail a postcard to a little kid, and get a free piece of Couch Surfing Ori art!

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A dog named Angel- One of my creations

A dog named Angel- One of my creations

My nephew has this contest going on.  Him and his class have to get postcards from the largest number of cities.  Since I travel all over, my brother thought he’d ask me to help.  Well… guess what?  It’s often difficult to find a postcard while you’re driving.  Sometimes I’m driving at night and all the cities are closed. Sometimes it’s hard for me to find a post-office.  So… I thought I could ask someone who is helpful, generous, nice, and just an all around great person. Yup, I’m talking about you!

I’m not even asking you to fork out a whole dollar without giving you something back!  Here are 4 of my favorite images that I created.  I sell 4×6 sized ones for $12, but I will mail you the one of your choice, as a thank you for helpfing me out!

I have a few reasons for doing this:

1)I want my nephew to feel like he’s accomplished something.  I want to help his self-esteem and confidence.  Having that from childhood can really influence a life.

2)I want the kid to like me!  This is my brother’s step-kid.  So… I’m pretty new to (and excited about) this whole “Uncle Ori” thing. So… come on… spend the dollar, help a kid, and help me out! Read the rest of this entry »

The trouble with Rocket Launchers!

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Evan Golden and the Rocket Launcher

Evan Golden and the Rocket Launcher

I always take pride in that my life has so many scenes that people say “No way! That didn’t happen!  That only happens in the movies!” Today, I tell you of one of those times.

I guess there’s no beating around the bush… I have a rocket launcher.  It’s from the Gulf War.  It was given to me as a thank you back in 2004, for shooting (photography) a friend’s daughter.  I always try to help out friends, and I’m fairly sure that all the good Karma is one of the few reasons that my house didn’t get any flood damage, while many neighbors did.  So… yeah… I got swords, knives a rocket launcher, a BB gun… I’m not a weapons collector, I’m a photographer that’s owed a lot of favors.  Funny thing is, this is about favors.  The other day I was in San Diego.  I was jogging along the boardwalk, when my phone goes off.  It was Jarmo!

Jarmo is one of the few photographers that actually works for Playboy… as compared to the majority of playboy photos, which are taken by photographers that Playboy buys/contracts the photos from.  Playboy has some strict standards!  “Hey Ori!  You know that rocket launcher you used to have?” “ah huh”  “still have it?” “ah huh…but… It’s at my place in Atlanta… and I’m in San Diego.”  “Oh….. well… we’re shooting an action movie, and a real rocket launcher would really add to our scene.” “hmmm… well… let me see.. You’re a buddy, and you hooked me up with Playboy’s lingerie for my business card photo shoot…. let me see if I can get my neighbor to send it.” “ok.. but it needs to be here by Thursday morning, ok?”  It was Tuesday.  “Let me call him, and see.” Read the rest of this entry »

Bug Eating, Marching Bands, Skydiving, DJ’s, Barbershop, Bungee Jumping… Crazy Castle Party at Dos Equis’ “Most Interesting Academy”

adventure, events, photography, Uncategorized, video 2 Comments »

most-interesting-party024Some people know me “oh so well!” Big shout out to Holly for sending me an email that had my name all over it (well.. only in the To line… but it was clearly targeted at me):  Rare Magazine Presents Dos Equis Rare Academy” -

Get Your Masters in Interesting

The world’s premiere institution for the education and dissemination
of the study of being interesting, the Most Interesting Academy, will
for the first time in its long and storied history, open its doors to
you. This is your chance to acquire awe-inspiring skills and eclectic
knowledge.
 Read the rest of this entry »

Need an anthemn singer for your next large sporting event? Check out this inspirational moment.

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People can be so great! My dad’s been telling me my whole life that everyone is out to screw me (the bad kind), and yet, I keep seeing people do great things for each other! Since my journey has relied heavily on building networks of people, connecting with people, and even the kindness of people, I thought I would go and meet (and get a couch invite from) Keith Ferrazzi, the man who (literally) wrote the book on connecting with people: Never Eat Alone.

Keith’s presentation was great, and he talks about how people connect with people, and everyone wins.  Here’s the ultimate proof.  While signing books (his new book, Who’s Got Your Back, is already a New York Times #1 Bestseller), one attendee, David Goodrich, mentioned to Keith that he would like to someday sing the national anthemn in front of a large crowd at a sports event. The following is what happened immediately after!

If you have a sporting event, and would like to hire David, or send him fan mail, e-mail him at: goodrich9@gmail.com or call him at 972.470.0332

Laughter Yoga – The best exercise/fun you can have!

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Laughter has so many physical/mental benefits! I really had a lot of fun at Atlanta Creativity Exchange when I attended their Laughter Yoga. It’s apparently a big fad in India. I felt great after leaving this class. I recommend trying this! I taped/edited it, so you can try it yourself. Spread the word! Read the rest of this entry »

The truth about the headwound!

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Yup, thats real blood!  *gasp*

Yup, that's real blood! *gasp*

When I walked into Yanik Silver’s Underground (marketing conference), I was fine.  When I left, I had stitches in my forehead (good things mom n dad don’t read my blog, eh?). Everyone wants to know what happened… did I  really get in a knife fight?  Do strippers really slide off your face if you smack their ass too hard?  This tell-all video will REVEAL ALL!  Not for the faint of heart, or language-sensitive!

Xmas for Jews!

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When you’re a jew, there’s not always much to do on Christmas. So… Merry Xmas if that’s what you’re into… Happy Hannukah if that’s your thing… and enjoy this, no matter what you’re into!

Marketing Seminar – my favorite.

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Marketers tend to be a creative crowd.  Matt Bacak is one amazing marketer / entrepreneur, and has put on a seminar this weekend.  So, yup, I’m awake at 5:30am, but I’m excited.  I get to hang out with Jeff Herring last night at my very 1st twitter meet-up.  Oh yeah, I got a twitter account: http://twitter.com/CouchSurfingOri, so I can now micro-blog from my cell phone :) .  Well… off to the seminar!

Attack the problem with a vengance…

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1st of all, the nice thing about realizing your problem is workaholism, that’s kind of cool… because for me it revolves around a passion (or need?) for creative problem solving… maybe it’s control issues, not wanting to be wrong… who knows (or cares)?   So… when that’s the problem, I get to use it against itself– I’m working on finding solutions, others, support, etc… it’s the good ol’ fashion research.  The best site I’ve found is Workaholics Anonymous which is actually at workaholics-anonymous.org  … it took some work to find, as there are many articles that use the term workaholics anonymous in their headlines… but do not actually talk about it.  Cnn / cnet / money / jobs — all these .com’s wrote articles about the growing trend in self-employed peeps who have blackberry addictions, and need to put in more hours.  So.. now you have the link.  I got a 20 out of 20 on their checklist.  I’ll go to a meeting on Wednesday.  I don’t really care about anonymity…. everyone already knows I work all the time.  But… I am taking immediate steps that I’m thrilled about.  Other than deciding to go Wednesday, I changed my cell phone greeting to announce that it is my personal line, and my land line that it is a business line, and both announce that business calls will be answered during NORMAL business hours.  That was a huge step.  I’m consolidating my business into things that take up less time… trying to force delegation of work instead of doing it all.  Trying to have “regular” sleeping hours, *as if* I had a day job.  I’m making sure to be more social with the neighbors, instead of blowing ‘em all off “I’m working!”  I think I’ll watch some tv tonight… that should be exciting.  I’ll try to monitor how much guilt I feel about watching tv when I know what projects are still incomplete.  I’m listening to other’s stories from WorkaholicsAnonymous.  I laid out on a raft in the pool today, followed by reading my work-based reading outside… great tan now :) And…. I’m trying to come up with things I can do instead of working – in the evenings -  so far I’ve come up with clean my place, watch tv, hang out with people, paint, study guitar, study piano, take up Capoeira again, Toastmasters, and writing my CouchSurfing book… but.. that last one might be considered work.  Aren’t they all work? Piano, guitar, Capoeira- they all require a lot of consistent dedication.

Oh well.. I’m feeling pretty good about the future :)   I also found this great (and fairly accurate) skit about the topic.  Self-depricating humor has never been an issue with me-

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Some days are better than others… sometimes it’s weeks…. Poor Angela.

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I think I’ve been all right. I’m exercising often, eating fairly well, and have had an internet connection that’s steady. I haven’t been able to order internet from Comcast, Adelphia, AT&T… and AT&T had purchased Bellsouth as well as many other DSL providers that used to service the area. Frigging monopoly! Anyways… Bellsouth is what my neighbors all have, and the only thing that comes out to our area. I ordered service from Cavalier, which called me back a day or 2 later, saying that I can’t have DSL… but they sent me a bill for a regular phone line I didn’t even want. Today there was no internet. I should’ve taken that as a sign, right?
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Resolutions: 12 ways you can keep them!

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I find New Year’s Resolutions to be a pain in the ass…I can remember being a kid, being slightly overweight, and starting every year with a list of new year’s resolutions… and then failing.  The end result is that I lost belief in myself.  I thought perhaps I can’t meet goals, or achieve what I want.  To think that I’ll be a fat loser.  Now, I have a modeling profile, and people always tell me how handsome I am.  In middle school, I was embarrassed to take my shirt off in the locker room… now I’ll prance around in my underwear in front of strangers. So… here’s the deal:

1)Don’t set up a New Year’s resolution!  You’re going to have more goals this year than just that one, so… just set up goals…

2)Focus on one goal at a time.  You can make more friends, eat less junk food, go to the gym more often, lose 100 pounds, increase your salary, and learn a foreign language.  But it takes 21 days to form a habit, and if you’re working on 4 things at once, you won’t get any of them completed. If you focus on just jogging daily…. you can do it every day for 21 days, and then you can add another goal to focus on; the daily jogging will not be as difficult to stick with now that you’ve formed it as a habit.

3)Set realistic goals.  If you want to lose 100 pounds, know it won’t be instant.  So, start with 10 pounds, and pace yourself.  You can do it, but if you starve yourself, and are completely miserable, then you’ll dislike the process, and quit shortly

4)Reverse engineer your goals, and break it down into steps.  If we’re talking about losing 100 pounds, you can probably lose 10 pounds a month without suffering.  So, that would mean that you should break 100 pounds by 10 months. When you make your steps by the deadlines, you’ll have motivation to keep going!

5)Set deadlines: Goals are dreams with deadlines.  If you don’t set up a deadline, you subconsciously can rationalize how to blow it off.  If you have deadlines, you try to figure out how to beat them.

6)Reward yourself.  If you make a goal by or near the deadline, treat yourself.  If it’s a diet, then go eat something nice.  Try to keep the reward relevant to what you’ve been doing. For example, if you lost 20 pounds, buy some new clothes!  Show off your results.  Other people will notice, and compliment you on it, which will help your inner image, and make further pursuit of the same goal much easier. In 1998, I flew to Trinidad to teach 3d animation.  They fed me so much, that upon my return I could not fit into a certain pair of pants.  I had gained about 10 pounds in 3 weeks. I was upset at myself, and signed up for a gym membership.  I started doing cardio, and lifting weights, and in about 3 weeks, people started asking if I’ve been working out.  Then it got to the point where some heads even started turning, and I started wearing tanktops…. I never wore tanktops before that.. I was too embarrassed to. The point is, because I stuck with it for just a little bit, I got some results.  People noticed those results, and that helped me get even more results.  It actually got to the point where I could bench press 255 pounds.   When I started, I could barely lift the bar.  If I hadn’t gained that extra weight in Trinidad, I wouldn’t have the physical build that I do these days.

7)Have accountability!  Get a friend who’s got the same goals. This is like the sponsor  thing for Alcoholic Anonymous.  “Help! I’m thinking of eating a donut!” If you’re dieting with a friend, you know that someone else is watching your progress, you’re less likely to cheat or quit.  You can set up challenges between you, or perhaps a bet.  Make it big– for example; We both need to lose 30 pounds…. Let’s jog together 3 times a week, and let’s place $500 each in an escrow account (or something like it)… if one of us quits before beating the goal, they lose the money.  If you have something big you may lose, you’re more likely to keep at it. Tell others your goal.  This is another form of accountability.  If others know, then you’re not as likely to quit… perhaps a fear of embarrassment.

8)Be informed. Do research on the best ways to make your goals. The internet and book stores are filled with so much information on everything!  You can learn 3d animation, photoshop, culinary techniques, basket weaving, gardening, foreign languages, hypnotism, diet techniques, fitness techniques, photography, and quantum physics… all for free!  The public library has a ton of material as well.  To top that off, doing things online allows you to find other people with the same goals– i.e. other diet buffs, or people looking for more success.  There’s a great website you should checkout: www.meetup.com for example.  It lets you find other people in your area that like to do… whatever it is you like to do.  Online forums let you discuss your results, post questions you may have, and have discussion of methods.

9)Study other techniques for goal-setting.  There are many world famous individuals that specialize in achievment… people such as Tony Robbins, Zig Ziglar, T. Harv Ecker, and many more.  The thing to watch out for, again, is to set up realistic goals. These guys have good points, and good techniques.  However, some of them make you feel super powerful, and then when you don’t get quick results, you feel like a failure, and they’ve done more harm than good.  So.. be realistic.  There are many many books on how to achieve goals regarding anything… so be specific.  How to improve your sales… versus How to improve your sales of Vacuum cleaners to 3 person families in the midwest.  Another good trick is just to watch people who’ve succeeded before you.

10)Work on your inner image!  If you work on your self image, then you’re much more likely to get the external result. If you’re fat, then you diet, but you still see yourself as fat, you’re very likely to bloat back up.  If you’re fat, and see yourself as a thin person, the dieting and exercise will come much more easily, and will more likely stay off.  If you’re trying to quit smoking, you need to see yourself as a non-smoker, not as a smoker who’s trying to quit. That is the basis for hypnotherapy.  There are books and videos to help with the self image.  For some people it might be “The Secret” for others it might be a more scientific approach such as “The New Psycho-Cybernetics by Maxwell Maltz & Dan Kennedy “.  Having goals, and using tools such as visualization to see yourself achieving them is very powerful, and scientifically proven to be effective.  They say that golf is 90% in the mind.

10)Take action now!  The longer it takes for a thought to be converted to action, the less likely it is to succeed.  You don’t want to get “Paralysis by analysis”  Have daily goals… even if it’s just one thing.

11)Show off your results. People notice, and that’ll help you keep motivated.

12)Don’t be too hard on yourself!  Other people making fun of you is nowhere near as bad as you making fun of you. If you’re talking about weight loss, keep in mind there are variables– for example, you may lose 10 pounds, then weigh yourself, and notice that you gained 3 pounds back…. it’s called water weight.  It’s a variable, you can go up or down by up to 5 pounds in a day… although that number’s a little extreme.  At the same time, don’t use that knowledge to make excuses.  If you’re slacking… take corrective action.

Meeting Tomorrow — they saved the day!

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All I have to say is that if you need a laptop, or projector, or meeting equipment… you need to check out www.MeetingTomorrow.com – it’s awesome…. they can ship your equipment overnight (with industrial packaging that’s easy to ship back).  I’ve got so much to tell you about Brooklyn and Chicago, but I have had a difficult time of it, as my laptop has been having trouble for a bit (That, and driving, finding next couches, adventuring, processing photos, and working on site takes time). It’s gotten so bad that I had to take it to the shop.  What’s “So bad” ?  Well.. running slow for one.. but when my computer growls at me, I know that it’s time (I have a similar theory with my car).  “but Ori, you can’t be without a laptop!  How can you blog or communicate with your thousands of adoring fans without one?” 

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Site changes!

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Ok!  All right!  Finally!  I just deleted my site last night, and re-uploaded it , in order to set it up to be faster.  It seems to have worked.  I expected lots of errors, and feared to lose all my data.  Thankfully, my technical skills were good enough to get this going.  So… now the site runs faster- yay!  Now that that’s done, I can upload some more of the blog posts I’ve written.  So.. the look and feel of the site may be changing a tiny bit over the net few days…. Expect a map of where the couches are, a couch summary, a testimonials section, and many more photos!

Karma strikes the wicked…

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Summary: Our plans to go to Maryland are almost canceled when this evil chick tries to be mean to Angela. In Maryland, Karma messes with this girl’s flight!  Take that! Read the rest of this entry »

BURNING MAN SLIDESHOW!!!

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Ready to be entertained for a while? I have not had nearly the amount of time needed to sort through everything… but I did process a good majority of the pics, and while I wanted to sort it into galleries (people, burning of the man, burning of the temple, camp, me), I decided to put up one random-playing slideshow… ’cause every day now I’m getting asked “Where’s your burning man photos?” My older bro even called me up almost yelling at me, as to why aren’t they up, as he’s told everyone about ‘em…” So… here they are for now… I’ll do a better presentation shortly when I redo the site. Read the rest of this entry »

2007 Navigator’s Run

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Navigatorâ’s Run was founded in 2006 by Reno, Nevada-based S.P.E.E.D. Corp President Micheal (Mike) Beauchamp. Specifically made for automotive enthusiasts of all breeds, Navigator’s Run combines the sport of cross-country rallies with drivers and vehicles as diverse as the Lamborghini Murcielago LP640 to the Mitsubishi Evo VIII.

Navigator’s Run 2007 brings together 100 different teams hailing from all different parts of the United States and Canada. The journey begins in Kansas City on June 17 and concludes five (5) days later in Wichita, KS. Participants will enjoy luxury hotel accommodations, private VIP parties, numerous photo opportunities, magazine, newspaper, and television coverage, gorgeous models, and one lucky navigator will take home the $50,000.00 Grand Prize.

How do you take home the prize?

Navigator’s Run combines the skill of endurance driving with the ability to find the shortest and most effective route between checkpoints. This is not a speed competition or a race. We expect all drivers to comply with all local, state, and federal laws governing public roadways. The objective is to make it from checkpoint to checkpoint with the lowest number of miles accrued cumulatively. At the end of the run, the team with the lowest amount of accrued mileage will take home the Grand Prize. The use of satellite GPS navigation units is permitted and encouraged.

For the remaining 99 teams, we will be providing other prize giveaways. The team who places second will receive $10,000.00 and the third place team will take home $5,000.00. Beyond that, random giveaways will be for prizes include plasma TVs, Ferrari Laptops, Bose audio equipment, Oakley apparel, TomTom navigation units, prepaid fuel cards, magazine subscriptions, and more.

If you need more information about the event, please write to: info@navigatorsrun.com.

CouchSurfingOri hits the road!

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What better day than the 1st of the year to start this amazing adventure?

1)It makes it easy to keep track of how long I’ve been on the road.

2)This is certainly a great way to keep that New Year’s “I resolve to travel more” resolution, eh?

LAUNCH PARTY

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Come celebrate this amazing launch for this amazing project…. Samba dancers, Hip-hop dance troupes, lots of models, great music…. Be there! December 22 @ Pearl Night Club in South Beach