Preface: Please feel free to click on anything highlighted in blue to learn more. Welcome to my page - I hope you enjoy the ride.
WHO AM I?
My name is Rick, though my friends and most who know me refer to me as Rick Tastic, a name which was bestowed upon me by a friend due to the nature with which I live my life and express my soul in this gorgeous universe.
I started writing after I visited the playground of America - Las Vegas - for the first time back in 2010. I was assaulted with questions from friends and family about what trouble I got into, but due to the amount of work I had at the time (back in my days as an airframe structural analyst for Northrop Grumman I was regularly working 60-70 hours a week) it would have taken a massive conference call to tell everyone the story, so I wrote an email, sent it out to close friends and family, and received super positive responses.
Then I sent it to other friends and family, and received more super positive responses.
This process repeated until I just thought, Fuck it! Ok, I'll start a blog.
"I've always believed that Rick Tastic is the modern day Hunter S. Thompson."
- Tom Hudson
Since that fateful year almost a decade ago, my mind, heart, and soul, and the way they seek to express themselves in my writing have... evolved. In the past several years I've been through some of the highest highs and lowest lows I could ever imagine, and as a result my writing has transformed into what it is now.
I lost my father in 2012 without warning and became the man in the family overnight. I've had my heart shattered numerous times and acted out in ways I'm not proud of because I'm human and I have moments of weakness. I have loved a woman so deeply I almost gave my life for her and vice versa. I've let my self worth get so low I thought for years about killing myself. I've been terrified, confused, in more pain than I could ever imagine, broken, homeless, unemployed, desperate, in tears, and hopelessly lost within myself, all at the same time, and I pulled myself out of it because I kept pushing forward and wouldn't give up even on the days I wanted nothing more than to go to sleep and never wake up. I have no problem writing about and discussing any aspect of my life because all of it made me who I am.
As a result of this openness I've been fortunate enough to develop I have also been fortunate enough to attract countless beautiful souls into my life whose presence and support have inspired and encouraged me to pursue greatness, to build my dreams, and discover what my own soul is capable of accomplishing in this existence.
WHAT AM I DOING?
In April of 2017 I walked away from my life to seek adventure, get lost in the world, build a network of amazing humans with deep souls, gentle hearts, and brilliant minds, and ultimately figure out what problem we're facing (or will soon be facing) as a species that I can dedicate the rest of my life to engineering a solution for.
“If you’re working on a problem you can solve in your own lifetime, you're not thinking big enough.”
- Wes Jackson
I don't know how long this path will take me, nor can I fathom where it will take me, but that's all part of the adventure, isn't it? If I simply designed an itinerary to take me around the world I would be closing myself off to seeing only what I want to know, rather than exploring the unknown and uncertainty of serendipity. My potential is lying dormant inside me, and by exploring the world I will find small reflections of it in places, in books, in ideas, in conversations, in emotions, in pain, and most importantly, in other people. This is a soul-searching journey, though I am not searching for my soul, but the souls of others who will help illuminate my own simply by our serendipitous meeting.
On one hand, you could say this journey is my equivalent of what many young men used to do in the aristocracy/nobility in their late teens and early twenties - travel the world, work with the best artists, teachers, musicians, engineers, and philosophers, and then return home to establish themselves in whatever field they so desire.
In a sense, that's where I am, but rather than seek out the "best" humans, I'm seeking the best "in" humans:
- I interact with all types of people to better understand humanity and consciousness in general.
- I learn as many languages as possible to better understand the underlying threads of language and communication.
- I write because the best way to understand complex ideas is by trying to simplify them so anyone can understand them.
- I read books and listen to podcasts to: (1) understand the problems of the past & present so I might better understand the types and magnitude of problems in the future, (2) get inside the heads of people who currently think, act, and live on a level I aspire to (or at least have in the past (if they're dead)), and (3) stretch my imagination as far as it can go so nothing is off limits when it comes to figuring out problems we might face in the upcoming decades.
I do all of that so I can determine what I'm going to dedicate my life to once I'm done traveling the world - it might be writing, it might be teaching, it might be engineering... I can't say for sure, but seeking clarity in that objective is the purpose of this journey. It's why I must travel and expose myself to as much of the world as I possibly can, and I need to do it on the cheap to both challenge myself AND show the world what one person can accomplish in terms of success and happiness with the bare minimum to eliminate as many excuses as possible in people's minds.
WHY AM I HERE?
Ultimately, like anyone who has ever changed the world, I can't do it alone. Anyone who has ever done great things has stood on the shoulders of giants, but before I can stand on those shoulders, I must have the support of friends from all over the world who believe in me and are willing to lend a hand (or maybe a ladder) to ensure I can reach those shoulders when the time comes.
This journey is also my equivalent of the spiritual journey males have gone through in many tribal societies throughout the world since the dawn of humanity to gain an understanding of their purpose within the tribe, acquire their tribal names (got that down - hollah!), and obtain wisdom they can then share with the rest of the tribe. The entire tribe supports this and makes a ceremony out of it because they all agree how vital it is for each member to understand how he or she is connected to each other and the world around them.
I have come to Patreon to invite you to be a part of the tribe so I can share with you what I learn as I learn it - minute by minute, day by day. In return I ask only for your support in making sure I have the resources to take the time I need, visit the places I need to see, risk my life in the pursuit of knowledge, and record my journey for all to witness, in the hopes my path will inspire more people to do the things they love because THAT is what will ultimately make this universe a better place for all of us.
HOW WILL I USE THE MONEY?
This is the easy part, my fantastic future fellow tribesmen and tribeswomen.
I'm living a minimalist lifestyle on this quest, so my daily expenses are rather small. I'll be couchsurfing and staying in hostels, and most hostels I'll be staying in charge less than $20 USD per night (so far in Latin America I've been averaging $10/night), and I can survive on one meal a day for $5 or less in many third world countries, especially when many hostels offer complimentary breakfast. Vehicular transportation, however, is going to be my largest expense. While traveling from city to city and country to country I will be relying primarily on hitchhiking (FREE!), buses ($5-$30 per trip with multiple trips per day/week/month depending on the adventure), and trains (I don't even know, yet), but when it comes time to hop over oceans and traverse vast expanses of land in a hurry, the airfares are going to be a wallet shaker, for sure.
On top of that there will certainly be emergencies. I've already been mugged once, and would have had to use almost 25% of my savings just to replace what was stolen if it weren't for the amazing friends I'm unbelievably grateful for who supported my GoFundMe campaign.
Ultimately, once this train has picked up momentum due to the incredibly generous support of all of you, I will be making my rounds through various major cities of the world to meet you, my new friends and tribe.
First beer is on me!
Well, with that said we arrive at the end of my Patreon novel. I hope by now you are STOKED to accept my cordial invitation to be a part of my tribe, which if it is the case I thank you for any support you are willing to offer, but if not, I thank you regardless for being a reader and taking the time to ingest everything I've written here. It’s my pleasure to entertain, inspire, and serve you!
That's what she said...