34 Things You Probably Didn’t Know about Me

  August 20, 2014 blogging tips 🕑 10 minutes read
Savusavu Bay, Fiji

Savusavu Bay, Fiji


I’m more like Al Roker, Michael Bergin and a former NBA guard than you may imagine.


One Dimensional Bloggers


Too many times I’ve seen bloggers as 1 dimensional machines. Churning out content, making connections, cashing in and living the internet lifestyle, you and I likely forget many of these folks live – or lived – way different lives.


I have dimensions/hobbies/past jobs/connections you likely had no idea about. I betcha you have a similar story yourself. The thing is, sharing these cool aspects of your personality draws people in to you.


People like:


  • New bloggers
  • Seasoned bloggers
  • Like minded folks
  • Potential customers
  • New readers


You are SO much more than you think you are. Digging deep to share your personality, and your stories, makes you not only a person of interest but a darn versatile blogger too.


Blogging from Paradise


As I type away here in Savusavu, Fiji at dawn, I’m hearing the sounds of nature.  Crickets, jungle birds, and a light, mild breeze flowing off of beautiful Savusavu Bay, gently serenade me.


Did you know that Savusavu Bay is one of the best places on earth to cultivate pearls? Time to set up another income stream.


Anyway, I arrived here because I told my story. Yep, you may know it by now. Broke security guard, on the dole, 5 years ago, and here I am blogging from a cliff side home, 50 meters above the water, in Fiji.


I had to say the coconut was good...look at the guy's machete! Seriously though, the coconut juice tasted delicious. From Naginagi, Fiji, on the beach.

I had to say the coconut was good…look at the guy’s machete! Seriously though, the coconut juice tasted delicious. From Naginagi, Fiji, on the beach.

The story made it happen because my story is my story. Nobody else in the history of civilization can tell the story. So since I’m telling it, I stand out. Simple. Tell your story, at least if you want to blog from paradise, or stand out in whatever blogging niche you so choose.


Al Roker Comparison


I am a meteorologist. I studied meteorology at Kean University in New Jersey. I took courses like:


  • Atmospheric dynamics
  • Atmospheric thermodynamics
  • Differential equations
  • Physical meteorology
  • Physics 1 and 2


Needless to say, I sharpened my noodle by sitting through these difficult, upper level courses. I’ve used some of the critical thinking skills developed during those days for my current world traveling, blogging lifestyle.


That’s the thing; my meteorology past is part of who I am today; the guy blogging from paradise who inspires folks to retire to a life of island hopping through smart blogging. If you know that Al Roker and I have something in common I can automatically become memorable, which helps me connect with more folks who could see benefits from reading my blog.


Michael Bergin


I was a physique model, ya know? Part time gig. I spent a few years honing my physique to get super chiseled, for some paid work, and for some runway work too.


I shot with the photographer who did fashion model icon/actor Michael Bergin’s first shoot. In the same studio. I also did a runway show in New York City and more than a few paid jobs.


In fact, I built much of my life around modeling and more specifically, bodybuilding, from my mid 20’s to mid 30’s. I dove into the fitness thing full bore. I also gained confidence from posing in front of the camera, and developed poise during the runway show and few conventions that I worked.


These qualities have benefited me greatly as a blogger. We all need confidence and poise to blog effectively.


Playing with Former NBA Guard


I also played basketball back in the day. I was a shooting guard through Junior College, playing against the likes of future NBA players Tim Thomas and Brevin Knight in high school.


Anyway, when I attended junior college I teamed with an unknown but ULTRA talented and athletic guard named Horace Jenkins.


He went on to star at Division 3 William Patterson College. “June” Jenkins won the college slam dunk contest and impressed scouts enough to land a spot on the Detroit Pistons.


Horace beat the odds by making the NBA as an “old man”. He was my teammate and a friend.


Read Horace’s story if you want a lesson in persistence. He was one of the oldest rookies ever in NBA history, as after we played together at Union County he worked for 3 years, went to Willy P, played in Europe, bounced around until he was finally signed by the Pistons.


Bloggers, you just know how persistent you must be to make this blogging thing work.


What Does this Have to Do with Your Blogging Success?


Everything. Your story makes you, you. The more aspects of your personality, or neat factoids, you can stress from time to time, the more folks will buy in.


I could tell ya, I’m a former security guard who now runs a blog.


Big deal.


I can find 1,000 other former security guards who run blogs.


But..if I told you that….


“I’m a fired security guard who lived on the dole and accumulated $50,000 worth of debt, was sued by creditors, went bankrupt, saw my cash dwindle down to 4 pennies in my wallet, sold my car and gave up my apartment to fund a dream, and I’m currently a professional, full time blogger living in a home with a million dollar view in Savusavu, Fiji, who’s visited Thailand, Laos, Fiji, Bali, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, India, Nepal, Costa Rica and Peru over the last 40 months of world travel, a guy who’s been endorsed by a New York Times Best Selling author and million dollar earning bloggers, and a guy who runs a successful freelance writing business, and runs a growing, thriving blogging community at Blogging from Paradise…”


….if I told you that story, well, no other person in human history can replicate that one. That’s mine. I own it. Since I own that story, I have a branding tool that nobody else on earth can use. This story tool helps me stand out from ANYBODY online…yes, even the famous folks.


The same rings true for you, if you tell your story freely, openly, and from an inspired space.


The Cool Facts


Telling your story includes sharing all types of stuff about yourself. I recall learning a neat fact about one of my idols, Arnold Schwarzenegger. The man was a multi-millionaire business man before he became the world’s greatest bodybuilder.


I never knew that. That little tidbit inspired me even more to live my dreams and to take you with me because if this guy could run a mini-empire, on the business front, being a dude who barely spoke English when he arrived in the USA, I know I can achieve neat things to inspire folks to retire to a life of island hopping through smart blogging.


Don’t hold onto your story folks. Don’t be selfish. People want to know you. Sharing is caring. Really. Sharing different facts about yourself reminds you, how special you are, and it also reminds your current and new readers to dig deeper, to find new reservoirs of talent and to stoke old talents long latent, to become an even greater dynamo.


I Aced Atmospheric Thermodynamics


Maybe I didn’t ACE the class in college but I scored a B, or B+, I believe. Considering the complexity of the subject matter and the depth of the knowledge being presented, that was a damn impressive task in my mind.


I had to work at it, and study, but I also have a few brain cells working in my favor. So when I tackle a blogging problem which pales in comparison to the long, complex, at times mind-boggling mathematical equations I tackled in atmospheric thermodynamics, or in physical meteorology, or in differential equations, or in advanced physics, I know that I can solve just about anything on the blogging front.


Blogging from Paradise: Being Comfortable in Your Own Skin


Today Kelli and I visited Nagigi, Fiji. The banana lady from the market we visit, named Olivia, invited Kelli and I to her home village for lunch and an afternoon on the beach.


I love the woman. She reminds me so much of a Fijian version of my Grandma Biddulph, a beloved, kind, generous person.


When Kelli snapped a picture of Olivia and myself I placed my arm around her shoulder. I didn’t feel self conscious, or awkward, or funny doing so, for a few reasons.


1: I’m largely comfortable in my own skin, so since I love me, I’m confident in myself, and feel free to spread love to others.


2: Olivia is a loving, caring person, who is way comfortable in her own skin. She’s outgoing, chatty, and just a plain fun Fijian to hang with.


Why am I comfortable in my own skin? I tell my story. I shared stories from our trips with Olivia, I shared facts about New Jersey with her, and facts about New York City, because I just love telling my story, and most aspects of it, at that.


I love publishing posts like these. Why would you subscribe to my blog, or buy my eBook, if you don’t get to know me? Why buy from a stranger? Or subscribe to a stranger’s blog?


I may not share every aspect of my personal and professional life but if I dream to make a connection with you I better share much of my life with you, to allow you to know, like and trust me.


I had to tell my story, to build my friend network. Avoid the common blogging mistake – check out Rebekah Radice’s post as it really rocks (click the prior link) – of hiding your story, so you can accelerate your blogging growth.


We buy into stories. More importantly, we buy into people who we can learn much about, and learning much about me requires me to be a bunch more than a one dimensional automon, publishing posts, posting comments, writing eBooks and helping my freelance writing clients.


OK, on to the factoids.


  1. I am a meteorologist by schooling
  2. I was a physique model – part time
  3. I was a security guard in Port Newark, NJ for 5 years
  4. I once bench pressed 335 pounds during my bodybuilding days
  5. During my basketball playing days I could dunk….a soccer ball
  6. I went on my first date at 26 years of age
  7. I was a song leader during my school church days, as a wee little lad at my grammar school in NJ
  8. I received awards for oratory when I was 10 years old
  9. I was terrified of both stray dogs and Godzilla movies as a kid
  10.  I owned a BMW 323i during my employment days
  11.  I owned a Peugeot as a high school and college kid
  12.  I once petted three 400 pound tigers during my travels
  13.  I lost 20 pounds in 2 weeks while suffering through giardia in India
  14.  Avid wrestling fan back in the day, with the WWF and ECW being my favorites
  15.  Then New Jersey Archbishop Theodore McCarrick offered me an Irish Blessing
  16.   I lived a hop skip and jump away from former NJ Governor and headline maker Jim McGreevy
  17.  My friends include successful programmers, financial analysts and a prominent podiatrist in New Jersey
  18.  My friend Derrick Gordon is the first openly gay Division 1 men’s basketball player
  19.   I’m currently spending 4 months in a bay front home in Savusavu, Fiji
  20.  I’ve traveled the world for the past 40 months straight
  21.  I was shy growing up (yeah, seriously, I was, but the first date at 26 thing probably clued you in)
  22.  I flew for the first time 3 years ago
  23.  First flight: New York City JFK to Denpasar, Bali (23 hours total)
  24.  Kelli and I have adopted aka taken care of street animals during each stop on our current trip
  25.  My dad worked 37 years for a steamship company; mom was a nurse for almost 30 years
  26.  I followed St. Patrick’s high school basketball team in NJ; notable NBA players from Pat’s include Al Harrington, Sam Dalembert, Kyrie Irving and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (Kyrie and Michael played on the same team with Derrick Gordon listed above, as well as North Carolina guard Dexter Strickland)
  27.   I am obsessed with the TV shows 30 Rock and Curb Your Enthusiasm
  28.  I ate 7 to 8 meals a day when I was a bodybuilder
  29.  I did a runway modeling show in NYC
  30.  I worked as an inside sales rep for one of the top software/hardware resellers in the world
  31.  I was a database analyst for a large telecom in New Jersey
  32.  I worked as a client enrollment representative for a large financial firm
  33.  I am old enough to see a nun wrap someone on the knuckles (Sister Pasquale)
  34.  My hometown spawned celebrities like Olympic Gold Medalist Decathlete Milt Campbell, Parliament Funkadelic’s George Clinton, Superstar Lawyer Robert Shapiro, Duke and Chicago Bulls basketball star Jay Williams, and movie star Dudley Moore spent his last days in my town


I hope you enjoyed reading the list.


5 years ago I wouldn’t have dreamed I’d be living this life, let alone, writing a list like this.


Being shy hurts you in so many ways. It’s fine if you’re private; I get that because Kelli and I are private folk in some ways….but keeping your story hidden, on lock down, is in most cases selfish….because you could help so many folks through their problems when you share your wins, your losses, and just as many aspects of your personality as possible.

So the lesson for today; stop being shy! Open up. If this former social wallflower can become the life of the party, and if I can inspire a bunch of folks to island hop, to become pro blogging, traveling folks, you can do the same.


The eBook


If you want to become a full time blogger you can buy my eBook here:


  1. kelli says:
    at 8:25 am

    Hey Ryan
    I loved the point you made in this post about letting people get to know various aspects of yourself, and not be all business all the time. You can still project a professional image while displaying some of your ‘humanness.’ It is particularly important in the online world, and can go long way in building trust. Having been in a relationship with you the past seven years, I knew most of these facts, but a few I didn’t and even I learned more about you here 🙂

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 3:57 pm

      Hi KC, Yep I kept a few in my pocket even for you. I rarely note my Irish Blessings received, especially as a little kid. Amen to that. Trust building is our number 1 priority and by opening up, we can gain that trust quite quickly. Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing.

  2. Harleena Singh says:
    at 9:36 am

    Hi Ryan,

    I agree with Kelli above about sharing more about yourself, rather than your blog or your business, or all that you otherwise do.

    Most of the time we build a circle around us that no one can enter, or we are hesitant for reasons best known to us. But with the limited life we all have on this Earth, it makes sense to free ourselves a little and share about ourselves, after all the blogosphere is such a small place with awesome bloggers, isn’t it? 🙂

    BTW – I didn’t know so many things about you, which I just did seeing your list of 34 you mentioned, so always learning more about you makes me feel good to know someone so much better.

    Thanks for sharing. Have a nice week ahead 🙂

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 3:54 pm

      Hi Harleena, I agree there. With us bloggers being a tight knit group it helps to get to know one another better. Sharing all these aspects of our personalities is fun for the blogger, and for their readers to I think. It can also be a critical aspect in building transparency, and in detaching from blogging outcomes too. Thanks Harleena. You too my friend 🙂

  3. James Thurn says:
    at 10:04 am


    A 23 hour flight is not a joke! Especially for your first time. The longest flight I’ve ever been on was 13.5 hours to China from Chicago. The total time traveled was much more though. I flew from New Orleans to Chicago, then had to wait hours before I headed to Beijing.

    Something that most people wouldn’t know about me is that I’m a former LSU Track & Field Athlete (400m Hurdler & 800m Runner). Now, I’m a sports performance coach in New York.

    I could tell that you used to be a bodybuilder too. For some reason, that one didn’t surprise me haha. Having 7 to 8 meals per day is what it takes when you’re training at a high level. I still eat that many meals today because of the habit I developed as an athlete.

    Meteorology on the other hand… I had no idea that was coming. I got my degree in information systems & decision sciences. Most people either see me as a sports coach or a computer guy. They rarely see the mix of my passions.

    This was a fun post,

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 3:52 pm

      Hi James, Neat! Wow, a high level D1 athlete. I can imagine the training you experienced as a track guy for the Tigers. I’ve always been an LSU fan, from the days of Chris Jackson, to Shaquille O’Neal. Way cool too a sports performance coach in NY. You’re close to me. Maybe we can meet up when I’m back home. Thanks so much for sharing James.

  4. Vernon says:
    at 6:10 pm

    Hi Ryan,

    I knew nothing about you before (just got here clicking around somewhere on the web).

    Despite not knowing anything about you, I still found the post absolutely fascinating to read, which means that you just proved the point that you were making. I can see why your blog has become a success, and I’m inspired to use it more in my own blogging and writing.

    I was never a bodybuilder, but did spend a good bit of time working out in my teenage years. Then in 11th grade I got terrible malaria which almost killed me and set back my muscle training totally. I stayed fit, but never got the muscle again. Based in a real city now, I’ve started getting back into it and putting on muscle I last had over 20 years ago.

    I love the fact that you are a meteorologist by training. When I started my job as a tour guide many years ago, perhaps on my third tour I had a guest who was a meteorologist. He was fascinating and taught me the valuable lesson that as a guide often my best guiding was where my guests actually knew way more than me. That has, many years down the line, been part of what lead me to start my own business.

    Awesome blog, I’ll be visiting the subscribe button soon!

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 6:14 pm

      Hi Vernon, thanks so much! Appreciate the awesome comment. Wow, malaria? That is intense stuff. I’m happy you’re living a clean, fit lifestyle and way cool story about being a tour guide too. I imagine it’s a super fun field to work in. Thanks again Vernon, great to cyber meet you.

  5. Nathaniel Kidd says:
    at 7:54 pm


    I am going to have to get you on the basketball court one of these days. Great post my friend. Great point also about letting people know your story. As you know people connect with people and not their businesses really. Thanks for sharing.

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 9:11 pm

      Nathaniel that would be awesome! I remember a pretty good ball player named Kidd from California 😉 Thanks for stopping by and sharing, great to see you.

  6. Catherine Holt says:
    at 5:17 am

    It’s always great to get to know the blogger behind the blog. Whilst you have an “About” page, there is only so much you can put in. The more that you are able to connect with your readers, the greater engagement you will see and your blog will flourish.

    I like you love travelling. I spent 4 years living in London and used it as a base to travel Europe. I literally spent my weekends visiting different countries…it was awesome!

    My hometown??…it was where Charles Dickens was born and where the Dday landings were planned!!

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 3:45 pm

      Hi Catherine, How cool is that? You have quite the hometown….I was born on Feb 8, Dickens, Feb 7….almost share the same one. That sounds like a blast, traveling throughout Europe each weekend. Thanks so much for sharing.

  7. Dan Western says:
    at 6:34 am

    This is great Ryan. Even after reading many of your blog posts, there are still so many things on this list that I didn’t already know.

    One thing about myself which I’m actually quite excited for; is that I will be flying to Australia next month to spend 3 weeks travelling with a mate of mine.

    It’ll be the first time I’ve flown on my own :). Looking forward to the 24 hour flight ;).

    Thanks for sharing Ryan.

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 3:43 pm

      Hi Dan, Wow, what a flight. I flew solo for the first time – at least for a LONG trip – last January. It was fun, very chill, and my flight lasted quite a bit too….with layovers, a really long time. Relaxing experience, although with Kelli it’s still relaxing too 😉 Thanks for sharing and have a fun weekend Dan.

  8. Phillip Dews says:
    at 12:40 pm

    I love flying! The second time I flew was back in 1989 and that was the last time which is far too long! that was one just over an hour and I was only 13 plus I was on my own flying from Birmingham international to Guernsey (Paradise on Earth, and well worth a visit).

    I am so looking forward to flying to New York next year and meeting up finally dude. I will be great I’m sure.

    Not many people will know that I once earned a Green Blue Peter Badge (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blue_Peter_badge) In my local patch of Plant’s Brook while doing a spot of birding at the age of 12/13 I took the BBC a guided tour of the site while they was spending the day there Filming!

    Unfortunatly the presenter Mark Currie fell in the lake off his boat. I am sad to say though that I have since misplaced that badge! Still no time to be sad hey!

    Great post as usual dude!
    Manete alsius
    – PD

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 3:33 pm

      Hi Phil, How cool is that? Good for you man….I dig it, for shorter flights…longer flights are OK too….Likewise man looking forward to it PD and that is awesome. My parents were avid birdwatchers back in the day. Thanks so much dude!

      • Phillip Dews says:
        at 3:26 am

        All good dude! I have hear’s the Central Park is a great place to do some birding as well

      • Ryan Biddulph says:
        at 3:41 am

        Most certainly my man…you’ll love it there.

  9. TimothyTorrents says:
    at 12:58 pm

    It’s funny, a few different bloggers that I follow published similar articles recently as well, each one with a different point of view. You accomplished a lot with your life, huh. I would be lying if I didn’t say I was a bit jealous!

    Great article as usual, retweeted!

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 3:31 pm

      Hi Tim, Really? Which bloggers? I’d love to check em out…just diving into freeing but uncomfortable situations helped me grow this list…thanks so much…hey I know you have a bunch to share too 🙂

  10. Kumar Gauraw says:
    at 1:12 am

    Hi Ryan,

    Your story is quite inspirational and like many others say I agree to that the more we share our stories, the more others get to know us personally, the more connections remake and the more trust we generate and that brings success even more.

    Speaking of long flights, some will find it to be very intriguing but I can completely relate to you because I have made a number of clips from Chicago to New Delhi – a 16 hour flight. Is it uncomfortable? You bet! Is there any way around it? Sure there is-take a break journey and spent 24 hours in travel 🙂

    Through your 34 things, I learnt a few more things about you and I thank you for sharing that. And yes, I wish you all the success with your new e-book as I know it will impact many more lives in a positive way.


    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 3:47 am

      Hi Kumar, Yep that Chi-town to New Delhi flight can be a doozy. I did the NYC to Delhi to Mumbai to Bangkok flight in January. I got an awesome deal but paid for it in layovers lol….also, we did Chennai to Mumbai to Delhi to NYC back in December of last year. Lot of flights. Thanks so much for sharing and for your kind words Kumar. Enjoy your weekend.

  11. Brittany Bullen says:
    at 2:45 am

    Hey again Ryan,

    I just wanted to hop over here from triberr and let you know that I posted a review… although I must confess I haven’t had a free moment to read it! (I know, I totally lose most of my networking points for saying that, but I wanted to be honest)

    That said, I have read your chapter headings and a lot of your blog posts, so I think I have it on good authority to write what I did (spoiler alert: I gave it 5 stars.)

    For some reason it showed up under my bro-in-law’s name, Aaron Charles Bullen, but it was actually me. I don’t think he’d mind.

    Here’s to your resounding success!

    P.S. This’ll be the first link I include with a comment to my new blog– it’s so fun to start new things, isn’t it?

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 3:45 am

      Hi Brittany, Wow, thanks SO much!!! I appreciate you 😉 Congrats on your new blog….how exciting! It really is fun to start new things, to begin on new journeys and to grow through it all. Thanks again Brittany and have an awesome weekend….heading over to your new blog now.

  12. Rohan Bhardwaj says:
    at 1:49 pm

    Hi Ryan,

    Once again you made me jealous. Jealousy is a nice thing, if one works for it in positive attitude.

    Well, got to know much about you. You keep nailing it everyday. One doesn’t knows their full potential until they are challenged by life itself. You are a live example how life makes you even better when it hits you hard.

    Thanks for gluing the broken ladder of inspiration for everyone out there. 🙂

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 4:06 pm

      Hi Rohan, Really well put. You should keep on sharing your inspirational thoughts; I dig your delivery. Life gives us many opportunities to improve ourselves through obstacles. Thanks so much Rohan.

  13. Andrew M. Warner says:
    at 11:12 am

    Hey Ryan,

    “You are SO much more than you think you are. Digging deep to share your personality, and your stories, makes you not only a person of interest but a darn versatile blogger too.”

    Ain’t that the truth. People connect more with stories and people that are real more than anything. I think that every blogger should make it their habit to share their stories and parts of their personal life to connect with their readers.

    They might think that their personal life if their own and not anyone elses, which is fine, but in blogging these days, it’s all about trust and building those relationships. You stand to be better at building those relationships when you open about your life.

    This is alot of stuff that I’m sure many people (except Kelli of course) didn’t know about you.


    That was the best show on TV when it was on … I hope they do another season because I sure miss it.

    And I also miss that back in the day wrestling like you said. Especially ECW with Sabu and Tazz (when he could wrestle.) Ah the good ol’ days.

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 4:03 pm

      Sabu and Tazz, wow, what a blast from the past. Oh yes, I recall them well. We used to challenge these guys when we were much bigger and acted much sillier, back when ECW swept through NJ….challenge meaning, we had some fun with them, screaming at them, from the ringside…..Curb, Kelli and I feel, is about the best show ever, agreed fully. Thanks so much Andrew 🙂

  14. Amey says:
    at 11:54 am

    Hi Ryan! Its very inspiring story for all of us. I would also like to know your schedule.

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 3:20 pm

      Hi Amey, thanks much. I post Mon-Wed-Fri, at 8:05 AM EST each day. Or, my workout schedule? 90 minutes of walking each day, combined with boulder lifts, 20 minutes each afternoon. Other schedules are more personal and of a delicate nature; can’t share here.

  15. Mandie @ RamblingMandie says:
    at 10:06 am

    Ryan, I’m not surprised you were once a model – you take a better selfie than I do. 😉 Haha

    This post made me feel a lot better about writing the Versatile Blogger post where I shared my random facts. At first I didn’t think that sharing random facts about myself would be of any value to my readers, but I was nominated by a blog I love so I couldn’t say no.

    After reading this, I remembered that it is good to let readers in behind the scenes. Especially with a travel blog, I AM my brand, so it really is helpful to let people see the whole package. After all, people connect with YOU, not stories without personality.

    Thanks for this fun read!

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 3:54 pm

      Haha Mandie, yes I get plenty of practice and do recall my days behind the camera 😉 So true; I felt the same way, sharing more of my story, but the more I felt the urge to write posts like these I knew it would be in a growing direction for my blog and brand. Folks love knowing the source of their advice, because before they trust the advice they check the sourse. Thanks so much for sharing Mandie.

  16. Adeel Sami says:
    at 1:33 am

    Hey Ryan,

    Man… I am a year late to respond to this awesome post ….

    And so great to know you, the story, the style, and the life’s history; all are way too great to know you more.

    I am too saddened to come to know you this late.. Amongst the great folks I found when the fire of blogging ignited within myself, you’re the best!

    The Arnold’s story inspires me much, as you said he was broke at his English accent and knowledge, so am I — Way too hard for me to learn English to better interact and understand from the folks. But it is such a big relief for me that if someone can do best with his life let aside his speaking skills, why I can’t then?

    I can certainly do as well, learn it more and speak to practice more. The blogging places of such great folks like you are unveiling me to understand the new words every time I read the new posts and then I pull my dictionary in hands which I always keep on my table.

    Oh and I haven’t been on the plane yet in 29 years. Opppss did I tell my age as well? I intended so. 😀

    Thanks for being an inspiration! 🙂

    See ya more often!

    ~ Adeel Sami

  17. gary gruber says:
    at 3:14 pm

    When I was eating raisins with my oatmeal this morning, I told my wife that when I was a kid, I would chew raisins and spit out the juice so it looked like I was chewing tobacco. I thought it made me look like the grown up men I saw who chewed tobacco. My Dad chewed tobacco but only when fishing or in his workshop alone, never around my Mom. So then I tried real chewing tobacco, “Mail Pouch, Treat Yourself to the Best” and it was simply awful. That experience may have steered me away from tobacco in any form for the rest of my life. Why do I tell this story?
    It’s a very small part of me that very few know or have even heard. Stupid little kid trying to act all grown up and getting sick as a result.

    • Ryan Biddulph says:
      at 11:58 pm

      Hi Gary,

      Incredibly fascinating. Because sometimes the seemingly smallest experiences change our life course. Good for you.

      I have never touched a cigarette in my life. Nor any tobacco product. Like you, a childhood experience guided me.

      My mom would actually vomit if she went out to eat in a place where smoking was permitted. In the 80’s this was most places. Dad was in outside sales, so he and my mom would take out clients to dinner and a play in NYC regularly. On many Saturdays, when she returned home, the late night vomiting. She was that allergic to cig smoke. Association made and lesson learned as a kid; smoking = vomit. LOL….so cigs for me.

      Thanks for sharing Gary 🙂


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