A few reflections on my 39th Birthday

(Photo of El Capitan taken during my last backpacking trip in Yosemite)

Well, it’s Monday morning, April 13th, and today is my 39th Birthday. This birthday is certainly different from any other Birthday as I’m spending it in quarantine in San Francisco amidst a global pandemic. It’s a bit surreal but tomorrow will mark our sixth week in quarantine so in many ways this has truly become the new normal.

I feel weird writing a Birthday post, in some ways it feels like a silly thing to do since the end result is people who had no idea it was my birthday wishing me a happy birthday. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but it does just generally feel a bit self-serving, which is not my goal. To that end, I’ve decided to disable comments on this post, not because I don’t appreciate all of you, but because I really just wanted to wake up this morning and write some reflections on turning 39.

This blog started out as more of a personal journal back in 2007, I could have never imagined that thirteen years later I would be writing a post every single day. Well I guess there’s one reflection! I think more than anything this birthday I feel incredibly appreciative, appreciative of my incredible wife Daina, appreciative of my amazing family, appreciative of my friends, appreciative of you – my readers, and appreciative of our incredible team at Bold Metrics who are a part of an incredible journey.

I think my biggest highlight of the last year was spending two weeks in South Korea with Daina. For both of us, traveling is our absolute favorite thing to do and we’ve both fallen in love with Asia. Daina has been learning Korean and I have been learning Japanese, both of us are really enjoying both learning the languages and then using them in-person when we travel. I was supposed to spend half of March in Japan but it looks like it could be a little while until our next travel adventure.

One thing Daina and I really enjoy doing together is skiing. We try to incorporate it into our travels as much as we can. Last year we went skiing in Pyeongchang which was such an awesome experience, from navigating our way there by train and taxi, to exploring new ski hills and Korean ski chalets.

I put the photo of El Cap at the top of this post as it symbolizes something that has become a bigger part of my life over the last few years, backpacking and getting the chance to really enjoy being out in nature. This year marks the second year in a row that me and some of my friends ventured to Yosemite for a snow backpacking adventure and being out there, on top of a mountain, looking across the valley to El Capitan was definitely one of the highlights of 2020.

I have a great group of friends, some of them are here in San Francisco, others are in LA and New York, some are in China, others in Japan, I have some great friends in Europe, and a really close friend in Australia. Traveling around the world and investing in domain names has allowed me to meet so many amazing people, and through these experiences, some of them have become lifelong friends.

Being in San Francisco has also allowed me to be closer to my Mom, Dad, and Sister which has been really nice. Since I left for college back in 1999 I have lived outside of the Bay Area. It’s nice to be back and to see family in-person more. At the same time, as many of you know, Daina and I do plan to live in Asia for the next segment of our life, so in many ways it’s also nice to have the Bay Area, where I was born, as the last place I live in the US before embarking on our next great adventure.

And then of course, there’s what Daina and I both have spent a majority of our lives on for the last eight years, Bold Metrics. It all started with an idea and a little bit of funding from Mark Cuban, and fast-forward to today and we have built a pretty incredible technology and an even more incredible team.

When we first started Bold I thought running a software company was all about building and selling a product. Over time I’ve learned more than anything it’s about finding great people that are equally passionate about what we are all doing together, and, and this is the hardest part, can all work well together as a team.

We made some mistakes along the way in building the team, it was certainly the only way to learn. Now I can honestly say we’re working with the best team of people I’ve ever worked with. It is absolutely magical, and while running a startup is stressful, hectic, it has big ups, and big downs, having the team we have now makes me feel so lucky.

Okay, well I’m not sure if I should re-title this post to “Birthday stream of conscious” but I woke up and wanted to get some thoughts out there before my day gets into full swing. We are so busy at Bold right now that today’s going to be a normal workday for us. Tonight, we’re going to have a little birthday dinner outside on our deck and then watch my favorite movie – The Last Starfighter. Yes, 80’s movies about video games and space are my favorite, it’s safe to say I’m still a kid at heart…and a kid from the 80’s!

For those of you who read this far, thanks for reading. I am so appreciative of my blog readers around the world. I write every day because of you. And with that, it’s time for me to get to work, happy Monday!

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