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This Is It


Many years ago I got very lucky and rode my motorcycle into a warehouse where a band of engineers was building applications on top of a new payments platform called PayPal. This was the very beginning of a collection of companies that would infamously be dubbed the PayPal Mafia, and I had just ridden my motorcycle into it.  


I also had a little plane, when I had little else, and this novelty became a sort of calling card for me to the New Economy.  Of average intelligence and little wealth, I needed a force multiplier.  I was a farm kid but knew the world was changing.  I suspected I should have been born a generation before with my love of analog things.  “Don’t play the odd man out” my grandfather, a farmer, said.  So I lied and cheated my way into Dartmouth, then the cockpit, then a warehouse south of Market Street in San Francisco.


The simple plane with its steam gauges and basic principles of lift and yaw became my party trick to get invited places.  I could now start conversations with hard to reach people.  Not only could I now reach remote places, I had a conversation starter for people well above my pay grade.  Just as I spent my summers delivering goods and people deep into the largest wilderness in the US, I now had a story that delivered rare and unusual people into the hands of the new economy.  The plane informed the paper.

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