What I Learned From a Homeless Man

Something strange happened last night.

I did something I’ve never done before.

I’m going to tell you the story, even at the risk of sounding like a pious, sanctimonious, braggart (which of course, I am). There’s value in this story – somewhere.

I spent the evening at the Minnesota Wild/Calgary Flames NHL game in Oracle Corporation’s luxury suite eating catered food, drinking free booze, and hobnobbing with friends about ice hockey, technology, and business – all on Oracle’s tab. For me, it was a gift, for which I paid nothing.

As I left the game, I walked alone through a park, among a sea of thousands of hockey fans, when a homeless man appeared and asked, “can you spare a few dollars?”

I ignored him, like I always ignore panhandlers and continued walking.

Then I heard a woman shout, “Get a job.”

I took a few more steps and I stopped.

I turned around.

It hit me
An awakening…
An epiphany…
A visual and intuitive understanding I can’t put into words…

I stood still in the center of the park, for what seemed like several minutes, soaking in the whole scene, without an auditory thought in my head, as if I was shocked into a standing meditation. I watched the people flow by the man, who stuck out like a dead head in a river of clones.

I almost burst out laughing, but restrained myself for fear that people would find out I am crazy.

Then I reached into my pocket, pulled out a few dollars, walked up to the man, tapped him on the shoulder, and handed him the money.

As I was taking a shower this morning, I asked myself, “Steve, why did you give that man money?”

Not because I felt morally responsible
Not because I felt guilty
Not because I felt he needed it
Not because I felt pity for him

I gave that man money, because I admired him.

How a White Board and a Dry Erase Marker Can Strengthen Your Marriage

Do you wonder why so many marriages fail? Are you in a marriage that is destined to fail? Or one destined to succeed? You can find out, but it takes guts.

Have you noticed how couples with rocky relationships seem headed in different directions? How they don’t listen to each other? How they compete with each other for scarce resources?

Not enough couples have direct discussions about where they plan to be in 5, 10, 20, or 30 years.

A couple I knew competed with each other saying “if you get to spend $5,000 I should get to spend $5,000.” It resulted in financial ruin and divorce. He’d buy a motorcycle then she’d demand a new car. She’d gamble in Vegas and he’d demand a golf trip to Florida.

What if one partner’s life goal is building a dream home on 400 acres of prime pheasant hunting land in South Dakota, while the other’s dream is owning a health spa in a trendy city? How will this work out when their dreams are in direct conflict? One may say, “Oh she’ll come around to my view someday.” Maybe he’s right; maybe she will sacrifice her dreams for his. But do you want to be stuck in the grasslands of South Dakota with a woman who would rather be in Seattle? How strong will your relationship be? Strong enough to last? Or will it cost you your marriage and your dream house?

Christine and I have been talking about her business and we discovered we had a major misunderstanding about our goals. Every time we talked about hiring help, the conversation became tense and confrontational. We avoided the topic for a while, but when we returned to the topic, the same emotional friction was present.

I was frustrated because I thought I was helping her. I didn’t realize my vision of the future, the one I was trying to help her create, was not the same as her vision. Our views were different. Then I realized…

Why are we wasting energy in a tug-o-war when we could be working together toward mutual goals?

Is planning your family’s future any different than planning any other project?

You can bring this stuff out in the open and resolve it before it causes damage.

This weekend, Christine and I mapped our future. I recommend you do this too if you haven’t done it already. I’ll tell you how we did it.

What is future mapping?

Future mapping is imagining what you want your future to be and then working back from there to the present. It is inverted planning and goal setting.

When you start in the present and map toward the future you usually end up somewhere didn’t intend to be. But when you start where you intend to be and work backward to the present, it keeps you focused on where you want to be, not where you are.

Saturday evening, we hired a babysitter, picked up some take-out, and went to the software ‘war room’ at my office and white boarded our future.

Here’s is what we did:

  1. I created two columns on the right side of the whiteboard, one for me and one for Christine.
  2. I wrote my vision of our future in bullet points under my name
  3. I asked her for her vision and wrote it in bullet points under her name.
  4. Our visions included finance, education, business, parenting style, and leisure. Anything we are not today – that we want to be in the future.
  5. The process revealed conflicting goals and misunderstandings. Once we had them identified, we made compromises.
  6. Once we had a clear joint vision of the future, I moved to the left side of the whiteboard and wrote down our current finance, education, businesses, parenting style, and leisure time status.
  7. Then I returned to the right side of the board, where we listed the things we need to meet our goals including dependencies and obstacles.
  8. Then I mapped the requirements, obstacles, and dependencies backward (right to left) to the present. This gave us sets of intermediate goals.
  9. Then we wrote down what actions we can take this year to reach our first set of intermediate goals.
  10. We repeated #9 for the next year and the next year until our actions and results met our long-term goals.

If everything goes as planned, we believe we can reach our goals by the end of 2010. It might not go as planned and our goals may change over the next three years, but at least we have a plan for the future that we both agree upon and understand, which is more than most people have.

So now, as a family, we have a clear road map into the future with action plans and goals. If you map your future with your partner, there aren’t any secrets, no hidden agendas, no misunderstandings, and no scamming for resources because you both know where you are going, why you are going there, and what you need to do to get there.

Don’t allow your future to create you, allow yourself to create your future.

Best Stuff of the Week 3-25-07

Important Financial Lessons My Childhood Taught Me – This is by far my favorite discovery of the week.

Connecting to Your Inner Core – Steven is right. It’s so easy to lose track of what is important.

Being Weird Works – Believe it or not… Sometimes I wish I was even weirder. I like weird people.

Why the A-List Doesn’t Matter – Because you matter far more.

The Elite Retreat Roundup – Wendy gives us the scoop on Guy Kawasaki, Darren Rowse, and many others.

How To Turn Your Daughter into a Whore in Two Steps – I know… I know… It’s kinda negative. But I liked the post. Coming from a teacher it carries weight.

How a Community College Chess Team Whipped the Ivy League – I love an underdog; besides think of the money you’ll save sending your kids to community college.

How We Can Change Our Failing Education System

What kind of person could you get to run a small business if you told them that when they came in they couldn’t get rid of people that they thought weren’t any good? Not really great ones because if you’re really smart you go, ‘I can’t win.’ – Steve Jobs refering to public schools

The only way to change our stagnant inefficient education system is through innovation and competition not protectionism. We need to remove the government shackles from the innovators – even if they are non-degreed dropouts like Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and Michael Dell – and allow them to fix education.

Watch this brilliant video of Sir Ken Robinson (Ph.D) talking about how schools today kill creativity.

How the Public School System Crushes Souls is the most popular post ever published on this website, and the latest comment from Ian is the most common rebuttal, so I am going to take this opportunity to counter Ian’s main points which are (dare I say) the mainstream arguments against ending the current government school monopoly.

In his comment, Ian did not mention the best solution (in my opinion) to our education problems– small entrepreneurial schools.

Please read this fantastic story about people dedicated to improving education and how the government thwarts them. If you care about education, read this today, I don’t care about your current opinion on the issue, just read it – it’s inspiring, especially part 2. These are stories about people making a difference – people that are ending our education nightmare.

Legalizing Markets in Happiness and Well-Being (Part 1)
Legalizing Markets in Happiness and Well-Being (Part 2)

I will address Ian’s comment – in its entirety – in three parts.

Part 1:

First of all, 2 cases doesn’t make something a common problem. Never has, never will. The same isn’t true here, either. Though I do agree that there are kids that get screwed over in the system that is school, there are far more kids that benefit severely

Ian is partially right. I will agree that the severity of Christine’s and my experiences are not the average public school experience, but they aren’t as uncommon as Ian would have you believe. I can name over a dozen people in our school that had worse experiences than we did.

But here is an important distinction to understand – if you are having a good experience in public school. Great! I am happy for you. But if your experience is pure torture, like Christine’s, I believe you should have alternatives. Lot’s of alternatives – not just Catholic School.

Three facts:

  • 33% of American public school students drop out
  • 50% in many major cities
  • 78% in Detroit

While this evidence doesn’t empirically prove large numbers of kids have a poor public school experience, it certainly suggests that it is quite common.

Part 2:

I want to address Ian’s point about giftedness. I poorly communicated what I meant in the original post and Ian is not the only one that misunderstood what I meant about giftedness. This is what Ian wrote:

Though, the biggest offense I take from the article is the fact that you give Gifted kids (which is a perfectly acceptable name, despite what your personal values are. Not everyone can be gifted, or else it really isn’t a gift, now is it?) the label of a disability. I may sound snobbish, but I honestly doubt anyone really wants to be labeled with a disability, especially those who excel in learning and comprehension.

Gifted and Talented children learn faster than other children, and as such need a faster paced course, lest they get bored and occupy their time with other things. That’s it. We have few other needs then that, and each of those needs are based on the individual, just like any other person. I know as I was born and raised as a gifted and talented child, and i turned out no worse than most of my friends, besides the fact that I’m usually horribly bored at school, and feel like my time could be spent doing much better, more useful things, thus hating school like no one else I know. Do some more research before showing disdain at something, as it’s not wise to insult people, especially those who form a piece of your argument, however small.

I don’t have a problem with the gifted and talented. Me, Christine, my son, several of my brothers, my parents, and many of my friends fit the ‘Gifted and Talented’ label. The problem I have with the ‘Gifted and Talented’ label is that it is yet another way of alienating and driving wedges between people.

The government should get out of the business of testing, categorizing, labeling, numbering, segregating, and institutionalizing our children. We should be free to decide whether accelerated courses are for us, much the way we freely decide everything else in our lives. We should be free to decide whether our child attends a disciplined structured school or self-directed democratic school. What is good for one child may not be good for another – even when they are gifted. But the government system rarely makes that distinction; they herd them like cattle into segregated corrals with little regard for the desires of the parent or the child. We wouldn’t allow the government to choose the food we eat. Why do we accept government dictates concerning the food (education) that builds our child’s mind, character, thoughts, and personality?

In our society, being gifted can be a social disability. This article clearly demonstrates a link between high intelligence and social, academic, and economic failure. I knew a Valedictorian of a prominent Minnesota high school who was homeless. Did you know the columbine killers were gifted? Believing you are smarter than everyone else is a dangerous place to be.

I personally believe neither forced integration (denial of individual differences and learning styles) nor forced segregation (labeling, grouping, and separation) of gifted students will produce the optimal results. We will achieve the best results when we stop institutionalizing our children and begin to treat them as individuals capable of self-direction and self-discipline. Our current model of K-12 education was not designed to promote individuality and creativity; it was designed to crush it.

John Wesley recently wrote an excellent post about the dilemma of giftedness at Pickthebrain.com.

Part 3:

The solutions you offer are hardly solutions at all. Not every parent can home school. it’s impossible, and suggesting otherwise would be doing a disservice to single parents, and those who work full time.

As for the neighbor hood coop, you once again have the lack of time, and you have the lack of skill and available parents. Not every parent I know can teach advanced math, and just watching some of my substitute teachers stumble through biology notes *my teacher is sick quite often* makes me shiver at the thought of something like that happening every day.

Please note that Ian did not even mention the possibility of small entrepreneurial schools.

Again, Ian is partially right. True, not all parents can homeschool, but many that could, do not even consider it. Sometimes having a second income is not a matter of survival, sometimes it’s about having a Lexus and a McMansion while your kid falls apart in public school. For many people, choosing whether or not to homeschool is a matter of values and priorities, not survival. My family is an example, so far, we have chosen not to homeschool, but we know it is an option. It would involve sacrifice, but we could do it.

Contrary to Ian’s claim, single parents can and do homeschool. Nothing is impossible. Read Kyria Kalata’s moving story about 24 hours as a single working homeschooling mom. She’s also an entrepreneur. Maybe the nay sayers could drop her a line reminding her what she is doing is impossible.

196,000 children were homeschooled by single parents in 2003. 283,000 homeschooling families earned less than $25,000 annually in 2003. – so there’s 500,000 people doing the impossible.

Contrary to Ian’s claim that co-ops are unworkable, there are thousands of community based education co-ops operating successfully in the Untied States. Here is one example. I learned about educational co-ops from co-workers that praised the advanced material their children learned at co-ops, including college level (AP) Algebra and Biology. One homeschooled boy has earned over 30 college credits without ever stepping foot in a classroom.

Large government institutions like schools and prisons do not treat people like individuals. They can’t, the task is too complex and expensive. So instead of doing something about it, making education more entrepreneurial, we throw our hands up and saying – the current monolithic government system is the only way.

Why do we believe that only government can deliver educational services to children? It’s an outdated concept. Even modern models for universal health care don’t resemble our antiquated education system. They don’t propose that all medical workers in the United States become unionized government employees in government owned hospitals and clinics. Even socialists know such a proposal would be an unmitigated disaster. But that is exactly the model we have in American K-12 education.

We must start treating children and parents (the true consumers of education) like the unique individuals they are and allow them to make their own educational choices.

Contrary to what some people would like…
The government does not own your children…
Yet.

Understanding Your Intelligence – The Best Resources

Do you have questions about intelligence?

  • What does it mean to be intelligent?
  • Why are so many highly intelligent people unhappy?
  • What is the link between high intelligence and insanity?
  • Why don’t precocious children become successful adults?
  • Why do so many people with below average intelligence think they are highly intelligent?
  • Why do so many highly intelligent people have low self-esteem?
  • Can you increase your intelligence?
  • How much of intelligence is genetic?
  • Is high intelligence a social disability?

So instead of trying to answer all these questions, I decided to provide you with some of my favorite websites, news articles, and blog posts about understanding intelligence. I will be updating this post as I find more resources. If you have links to resources on intelligence feel free to post them in the comments.

America's Drunk Driving Dilemma

An article criticizing MADD made it near the top of Reddit a few days ago. I found it thought provoking.

It reminded me how dysfunctional, unreasonable, and imbalanced Americans are about alcohol use. We have built ourselves a ‘catch 22’ conundrum of which there is no escape until we change our values.

Let me explain the problem.

America has had a problem with drunk driving since Ford perfected the assembly line. I know it is a serious danger because I’ve lost young friends to drunken driving accidents. So what’s the answer? Today we continually increase the severity of the laws, strip away individual rights, and arrest over a million people per year. Is it working? MADD says it is, but critics say it isn’t. It depends on which statistics you wish to believe. I personally believe our current strategy is a failure and we could do better by trying to change the American values that lead to the drunken driving dilemma.

Here is the conundrum of conflicting values:

  1. People shouldn’t drink and drive because it’s public safety hazard – No argument here, except to say that the laws and methods America uses stop drunk driving are becoming increasingly draconian and it’s time we take a look at our entire value system regarding alcohol.
  2. Americans rarely drink at home because they believe only alcoholics drink at home. This is a widespread belief. When I was 17, I naively asked a guy who was sitting next to me at the bar why he paid $4.25 for a shot of Tequila when he could buy an entire liter at the store for $10.00 and drink it at home[1]. “Only alcoholics sit around the house taking shots of Tequila,” He replied. I didn’t understand the logic then and I still don’t. Many casual drinkers believe it is better to take three shots at the bar after work and drive home than it is to take three shots at home. Some of you may argue that Joe Six Pack shouldn’t drink three shots anywhere, and you may be right, but the argument is Pollyannaish. People have always consumed alcohol and they always will.
  3. Few people want a pub within walking distance of home. I’d love to have a pub down the block where I could sit around in the evening, drink a few beers and visit with the neighbors like people do in Europe. Do you know what would happen to me if I tried to open a bar in my neighborhood? People would think I’d gone mad. I’d be the neighborhood pariah. In suburban America, we zone bars in commercial districts far away from residential areas so we can protect children from the evils of alcohol. Applebee’s (one of the biggest restaurant chains in America) tagline is “Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill and Bar,” but I’ve never seen one in an actual neighborhood, they are always in some big mall or commercial district next to a Wal-Mart or something.
  4. In most places in America, mass transit is worthless. Post World War Two American development was built around the automobile. In most American cities – most people – cannot get to a pub without a car. I’ve never been a proponent of mass transit in America, but I must concede that a comprehensive mass transit system would significantly reduce drunk driving and it may be cheaper and more effective than our current ‘get tough’ strategy.

The problem in summary – While most Americans believe you shouldn’t drink and drive, they also believe you shouldn’t drink at home, but most of us can’t walk to the pub or take mass transit – yet we still drink. Isn’t it obvious why we have a drinking and driving problem?

I’d like to know what you think about this issue, especially my non-American readers. How does your nation handle the problem?

Australia is a big wide-open country like the US. How do Australians handle this problem?

[1] Please don’t ask me what I was doing in a bar at 17, that’s another blog post

What Death Teaches Us About Life

I went to a funeral yesterday. One of Christine’s relatives died suddenly over the weekend. The deceased was dearly loved by many, and the loss was a tragedy. My thoughts and prayers go out to everyone that loses a loved one.

But as I experienced the outpouring of love for this individual, I found the ceremony uplifting and positive.

Death and loss is a conundrum – a dilemma. While the pain and loss of death is immense, without a limit to our time on earth, our time would have no value and our painful losses remind us to be grateful for what we have now.

These are a few thoughts I had yesterday while reflecting on the loss of life

  • Every moment is precious
  • Ego and materialism are insignificant in the face of death
  • Question the meaning of your life
  • As long as you have one more moment, you can make a difference
  • This isn’t about me, it’s about all the people I touch along the way
  • The faith and courage with which some people face death is a testimony to the human spirit

Aurelius Marcus, believed by many to be the wisest and most tolerant emperor of Rome wrote the following about facing death:

You have embarked, you have made the voyage, you have come to the shore: get out.

You have existed as a part. You shall disappear in that which produced you; or rather, you shall be received back into its seminal principle by transmutation.

Pass then through this little space of time conformably to nature, and end your journey in content, just as an olive falls off when it is ripe, blessing nature who produced it, and thanking the tree on which it grew.

Every part of me will be reduced by change into some part of the universe, and that again will change into another part of the universe, and so on forever.

And by consequence of such a change I too exist, and those who begot me, and so on forever in the other direction.

– Aurelius Marcus

The Best Stuff of the Week 3-11-07

What Comedy Improv Taught Me About Life – by Jane Chin. I find her posts about improv fascinating because I am so afraid of improv. The more I read her posts the more I want to try to overcome my fear.

Simply Successful Secrets – by Aaron. What are your secrets to success? What do you do everyday that leads to success? Let us know. And Aaron… I will get around to posting mine… one day.

Places And Ways To Meet New People – How to be Cooler. I was just commenting to Christine how we need to get out and meet some new people.

The Outsiders – I don’t know if you were an underachiever, but I was. This article gave me great insights into my life and the lives of others. Having people tell you how smart you are throughout your childhood isn’t always a gift.

Using Archetypes to Develop Complex Characters – I do some writing other than blogging. I plan to do some quasi-fictional writing in the future and I love to study Archetypes.

About Me: I’m in a rock band – Humility from a Rock God. LOL

From the Writings of … – I can’t describe it in a sentence, but there is some amazing stuff here.

5 Common Mistakes That Make You Look Dumb – We all hate looking dumb, write? 🙂

Why You Must Take Action Now

Your well-being depends upon taking positive action.

If you are living a life you hate – one that exhausts your energy – one in which you feel trapped – one that creates physical pain – you must make changes. You must take action. Because if you exist in this state long enough you aren’t living, you aren’t even surviving, you are dying.

If you ever feel trapped by life, you’re a lot like me and you may find this story useful.

When I stop growing, it leads to physical and emotional pain. Let me give you an example.

Last Tuesday morning, Christine flew to Las Vegas leaving me alone with my 2 and 4-year-old sons. I was excited as I planned every detail of the upcoming week alone with my boys.

Day 1 – Tuesday

I followed my plan and our day was perfect.

Day 2 – Wednesday

At 7 AM – it all went wrong.

While getting dressed, my 4-year-old was squirming, talking non-sense, and being uncooperative. As I pulled a sweater down over his head, he fell to the ground screaming and writhing in pain. He held his neck and wailed, “Dad my neck hurts! It hurts bad! Why did you do that?” He calmed a bit and said, “You still love me even when you hurt me, right dad?” The guilt shot through my body like a venomous poison.

His sweater was one size too small and when I pulled it down instead of his head popping through the hole, his neck popped. It scared both of us, and he’s better now, but I spent the rest of the day wracked with guilt and worry. We didn’t leave the house, not even to get the mail.

Even though I didn’t do anything physical that day, by bedtime I was so exhausted I could barely move. Every joint in my body ached and I had a headache and a cough.

Day 3 – Thursday

I planned to take the boys to the zoo in the morning and Playworks in the afternoon, but a blizzard began. With a 2-year-old and an injured 4-year-old, I couldn’t get outside to remove the snow, so I watched it accumulate out the window. As the snow continued, it became apparent I wouldn’t be able to get a sitter to watch them while I dug out. I felt helpless to perform a basic snow removal task, so I watched the snowfall and did nothing.

After a while, I decided to take them out to play, but I discovered that I had left their winter clothes at school, so we couldn’t go outside. Stuck again.

Then I began to see unfinished things that needed to be completed. Our bedroom was half painted, but I couldn’t work on it. I couldn’t read or write, because as soon as I started, the boys interrupted me. I spent most of the day, playing choo choo trains.

Don’t misunderstand me, I love spending time with my kids, but I was wracked with guilt about the injury and now I was literally trapped inside my house unable to accomplish anything productive.

By the end of Thursday, I was emotionally dead, and my knees and hips ached. I was amazed how fast I deteriorated. I tried every personal development trick I know and nothing worked.

I knew the only way to break out of this negative pattern was positive action. I’ve battled mild depression my entire life, and the only cure I’ve found is positive action. But with the blizzard and the kids, there was no path to action. There was no escape. I can see how so many stay at home moms develop agoraphobia and depression.

Fast forward to Saturday.

  • I shoveled snow for two hours in the morning
  • Played outdoor ice hockey with the boys for hours
  • Took the boys grocery shopping while Christine caught up on business
  • Played games with the boys while Christine finished painting the bedroom
  • Vacuumed the entire house
  • Wrote a thousand words
  • Rearranged the living room
  • Rearranged the bedrooms – moving a king-sized bed

On Saturday, my energy levels were high and at bedtime, I felt no pain. I awoke on Sunday morning refreshed and free of pain although I was more active on Saturday than I was on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday combined. What was the difference? I didn’t feel trapped. Christine and I were accomplishing enjoyable tasks that created positive results.

I used to drive a truck, and it was the most depressing time of my life, because I felt trapped. I didn’t see any other options. During this time, my mental and physical health deteriorated. I didn’t feel I was accomplishing anything – I felt I was just driving around in circles all day. I didn’t see any short term or long term positive results from my actions, just constant monotony without improvement.

This even happened as an entrepreneur when we owned and operated www.music1search.com (nothing to see anymore). A year after we launched the company we were so busy repeating maintenance tasks that we couldn’t find time to automate the process. Both Christine and I felt trapped like rats on a wheel. Micheal Gerber writes about this problem in the e-myth revisited. If your business doesn’t run without you, you don’t own a business – your business owns you.

For most of my life, I didn’t understand how negative emotions drained me, how the feeling of being trapped destroys your sense of well-being, and how to counteract the problem. While there was little I could do about the weather last week, I value the experience because it reminds me of a time, to which I never wish to return. Today I see the signs when I am slipping into mental and emotional inertia, and can counteract it through positive thought and action.

If you find yourself in the position I was in last week (minus the blizzard – there isn’t much you can do about the weather), I’ll give you a simple formula you can use to escape.

  1. You must recognize that you’ve trapped yourself in a negative emotional state. You need to stop and listen to yourself for a minute and you’ll notice your anger, depression, shame, or guilt. I used sit around feeling miserable without even knowing I felt miserable. As strange as it sounds, sometimes we get so used to feeling miserable, we’re afraid of what life would be like if we weren’t miserable. The best indicator that you are trapped in a negative cycle is when you keep doing something you hate over and over but feel powerless to stop – like an addiction without the euphoria.
  2. Open your mind to the possibility that you posses the power to change your life. This means that you quit making excuses and realize that you can take action to improve yourself. The biggest obstacle to changing your circumstances is you. Look in the mirror for the answer.
  3. Change something you know you have the power to change. Start with something simple, like cleaning a bathroom or sweeping out the garage. You need to do something to build momentum. To start it’s best to find something you can complete quickly and easily with positive results. I like to write. Sometimes I fix something that’s broken or I begin cleaning.
  4. Once you’ve made one positive change in your environment – don’t stop. Take a minute and be grateful that you were able to make a positive change in your world and then think of something else you want to change and act on that. Hell, make a list of things you’d like to change and prioritize them. Don’t ever stop improving your world.

Help Fund Sergey Mischenko

Sergey Mischenko runs an auto supplies business in the Ukraine. He wants to expand his business and hire two more employees, which will provide income to two more families.

In the spirit of competition and entrepreneurship, eMom and I fought it out in the MyBlogLog Community Building Challenge, and we were able to raise $100.00 for Sergey – capital Sergey needs to expand his business. A special thanks to Lyman Reed and Kammie for donating their winnings to a Kiva.org entrepreneur.

Wendy at eMoms was inspired to help Eunice Nyokabi Thiango and her readers helped put Eunice on the front page which resulted in full finding in 11 hours.

If you’d like to spread love and entrepreneurship around the globe, go ahead, click the link below, and give Sergey some help.

Sergey Mischenko