There are so many ways to reach out and touch someone's heart, to connect with them without actually meeting, to share a gift that can be re-shared. Recently we received such a gift and we wanted to share it with you. It showed up on one of those days that everyone has, where the cards are stacked against you for some unknown reason, when it takes everything you can to react as a rational human being.
Hillary and the Peace Out rock
It was just a simple grocery run up to the local Stater Bros for some lunch. Quite honestly I had been quite frustrated that day. I had ridden my brand new class one electric bike up to the local Walmart Neighborhood Market #5008 to get groceries. Sadly, the manager became very upset over my electric bike for some unknown reason and attacked me saying that he didn't want that trash at his store. I was stunned to say the very least, lowered my eyes and quietly said that I was very upset by this. I left and went back home without the groceries that I was after.
Of course, I sent off an email to Customer Service that went nowhere and received no resolution, and so that weekend both of our brand new electric bikes went back to Walmart for a four-digit refund. I was frustrated and the kiddos were upset about the donuts I didn't bring home that I had promised. And Hillary who is quite protective of me was appropriately agitated as well. Grandma who lives with us so upset that she called her doctor and had her medicines sent over to CVS instead of that store.
Hillary showing the tag for artist Rose Nash
So, after recomposing myself, I rode my brand new electric bike up Stater Bros for some cookies for the kiddos instead. And honestly, it's just a different environment at that store. Folks take time to stop and say hello while they're working, you know the opposite of the Walmart herding mentality that seem to permeate their locations. Bah!
But there I was, checked out, going to unlock my bike and get the cookies home, and I noticed the painted "Peace out, friend" rock sitting on my crankshaft. I walked over and picked it up, read it, and understood it. I stood right there and cried as I unlocked my new electric bike. Sometimes those heart-tugging moments make a grown man act all sensitive and stuff while he's out and about being athletic and all.
My wife of course was obviously touched as we rehashed the day's events. The cookies disappeared as cookies always do with seven kiddos running circles in the house. And we realized that is just how it works for us.
Life is so hard, for everyone. That is reality. Any hardship we've ever faced, we've done so as a family. And in the middle of those trying times, we find reasons to celebrate. Sometimes those moments come find us when we need them. Such was the manner in which the "Peace in, friend" rock came to us.
The last known location of the "Peace out, friend" rock.
We've diligently worked to teach our children to share, to care about the world and each other, and to pay forward. It's all that adulting stuff, and social responsiblity that we talk about, and caring for each other, even if we never meet the people we reach out to. As hard as those concepts are to instill in ones habits, we continue to share everything we can with our family, friends, and fans.
As such there was no way we could keep the "Peace out, friend" rock. When our new Radbike came in shortly thereafter, purchased with our re-appropriated funds, we used it to take the "Peace out, friend" rock to a new location. Whoever finds it, we hope that it brings you a smile.
Hillary modeling Mentality CTFU and Mentality Sideshow on an outcrop of decomposing phaneritic gabbro that proliferate in the San Jacinto Valley.
Painting rocks is a great craft for nail polish fans. The "Peace out, friend" rock appeared to be one of the cobblestones that are embedded in the local arroyos, dry washes that gorge with rushing water in the Southwest monsoon season. It's just big enough to write a message, but no so big that you can't carry it in your pocket.
So, I challenge all our fans to find a local stone and write a message in nail polish and seal it to make it last. The "Peace out, friend" rock is a great example. Make it out to someone you'll never meet. Tell them to be strong, to not lose hope, and to never quit. Take it somewhere and say goodbye to it freely. Your gift to the world will touch someone's heart.
The EcoChallenge is a world-wide event involving average people stopping in the middle of their day to so something remarkable. Folks all around the world are taking responsibility for the state of their environment. We've been involved in these activities for the 14 years that we've been together. We've cleaned rivers, parks, fields, abandoned properties, all in an effort to reduce the litter in our world.
The EcoChallenge stole our heart when we learned of it. Our planet, our community, our home, this is what we fight for every day. It is what we teach our children. It is at the very heart of who we are and how we run our business.
The Snail is part of the meme culture of the internet. Imagine receiving more wealth than you could ever need. The only catch is that for the rest of your life, the Snail is slowly coming to kill you with the slightest touch, creeping like death that makes you have to constantly look over your shoulder.
The Snail represents inevitability coming to reap the cost of your excess. Thus, pollution, litter, wasted resources, these are the Snail coming for its due reward for the excess squandered.
Next time you're out and about, stop and take a few moments to pick up some litter and help us beautify the world. It is more than our responsibility. It is quite literally the only world we have.