Tuesday, September 04, 2007

"Pursue the Passion" Bus Tour Stops at Adversity University!

NOTICE: We've Moved! Please click here to be taken to the new location!!

From left to right: Noah Pollack, Zach Hubbell ("The Puppy"), myself and Brett Farmiloe. Not pictured is James Whiting ("Jay") who took this photo.

On Sunday, October 2nd, four young college graduates from the "Pursue the Passion" cross country bus tour stopped and visited me here at Adversity University in Akron, Ohio. In a previous article, I had written about Brett Farmiloe (far right side of the above photo) who started this whole project, to interview people from different backgrounds about their professional passion(s). They are now on a country-wide mission to find out how and why people succeed by doing what they love. Jobing.com is their major sponsor.

As a result of their visit, Brett wrote: What Confidence Can Do.

Brett and Zach once worked as corporate auditors (I did too - you may remember "Harry the Bank Boss" story - "Harry" was my irate boss in the auditing department at a Wall Street bank). Brett held me spellbound with a riveting tale of how he was planning to quit his job so that he could start this bus tour. One day his boss called him in to have a "talk." On her desk were two envelopes. One was a bonus and the other was a raise. Little did either of them know what they had in mind for that fateful meeting!

Zach (affectionately called "The Puppy" - if you ever meet him, you'll understand why they call him this), on the other hand, quit one week before the "Pursue of the Passion" bus tour started. Now that's passion, if you ask me! He was among the most frequent participants during the interview, asking a whole bunch of great questions.

Noah and James ("Jay") are both creative writing/music geniuses who met and became friends at the University of Arizona. You can read their blog at Class Project. Noah even wrote an article there about his visit to Adversity University: "Shut Up and Listen." Jay used to be a football player and told how he broke his collarbone three times. He was such a gifted and inspiring storyteller that I felt as if I were there, watching the whole thing unfold in front of me.

Each and every one of them had the magic ability to inspire me with the realization of latent possibilities. After their tour is over, they intend to write a book and produce a documentary. You could be a part of it. In fact, why don't you head over to Pursue the Passion schedule and see if they are coming your way soon? If they are, write Brett an email and introduce yourself. If they are heading your way and you're passionate about what you're doing, you most definitely qualify for an interview with them. It doesn't matter what it is that you do. As long as you are living your dreams and following your passion(s), they want to meet you!

Trust me, you can open your home to these extraordinary pacesetters. They are not only polite but exceedingly grateful for your time. Give them the use of your scrubbed down shower and provide them with a stack of clean smelling towels, they'll sing your praises until you tire of it. Give them a tray of delicious muffins and feed their hungry bellies, you've made friends for life! Talk about your innermost passions, they'll listen raptly and make you feel special because they have each mastered the fine art of listening.

Finally, and this is very rare, each one of them carry a heart the size of the world. By the time you bid them farewell, you won't be able to help but want to hug them tightly. That's exactly what I did. I stood there and watched their RV pull away while Noah opened the back window and thrust his fist in the air in victory.

Do yourself a favor and give yourself the same opportunity to have them in your midst - you'll forever remember the experience.

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Anonymous Noah said...

Stephen, your beautiful words are most apreciated. Your courage is inspiring and has left me awash with new confidence and motivation. Thank you, and please, stay in touch.


4:37 PM  
Blogger Stephen J. Hopson said...


You're quite welcome and I know we will stay in touch - there's a reason for everything and I think your bus stop in Akron had something to do with that. Have a blessed rest of the trip.


5:13 PM  
Anonymous Phil Gerbyshak said...

No wonder you've been so quiet! You've been enjoying your time with the passionate guys from Pursue the Passion! What a great story you shared, and they shared on their blog.

Thanks for being an inspiration Stephen!

10:27 PM  
Blogger Stephen J. Hopson said...


Yep, you got that right! If you ever have an opportunity to meet them, you'd enjoy them as much as I did. They are a great group of good people with a good heart. It's obvious they share a great sense of comradeship.


6:25 AM  
Blogger Karen said...

What a neat book and documentary this will turn out to be!

6:27 AM  
Blogger Stephen J. Hopson said...


Yes, it should turn out to be quite an interesting book/documentary. These guys are very intelligent, articulate and have good heads on their shoulders. I can't wait to see the final outcome.


6:47 AM  

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