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shutterBURGH | Nick Smarto
Never Have Another Non-Zero Day

Never Have Another Non-Zero Day

24 hours; the great equalizer. We are all governed by them, constrained by their boundaries. It’s the only commodity that can’t be purchased. The wealthy and successful are graced with the same 24 hours in their day as the proverbial pauper, and what separates the two is often how these 24 hours are spent.

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Take Me Home to Colorado

Take Me Home to Colorado

Colorado might be the ‘homiest’ feeling place I’ve ever been. Jus tstepping off the plane and getting a nose full of the Rocky Mountain air after was enough to make you fall in love. Rachel and I took a little long weekend to Colorado Springs (more specifically, Manitou Springs) for some hiking, climbing, and photography.

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5 Books That Genuinely Changed How I Approached Life

5 Books That Genuinely Changed How I Approached Life

The books below are all non-fiction books that truly have had an impact on my life. They are all guide books, in one way or another, and have influenced the way that I operate and communicate in this world. If non-fiction is your thing, you might enjoy these reads over your summer vacation.

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Memorial Day 2014

Memorial Day 2014

Summer is here, and after what turned out to be one of the longest and coldest winters of my life, I was anxious to get some outside time. I was able to pack kayaking, quad-riding, off-roading, and frisbee all in to a weekend. After being on the road for the past three weekends, I was in need of some unscheduled time outside.

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Two Weekends in the Finger Lakes

Two Weekends in the Finger Lakes

It’s hard to beat the serenity and slow-paced relaxation that can be found in the Finger Lakes region of New York. I started visiting because I have so many friends in the region, but it’s easy to get addicted to the crystal-clear blue lakes, giant gorges, sprawling vineyards, long mountain ranges and the laid-back lifestyle that so many inhabitants enjoy.

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Shanghai 2014

Shanghai 2014

I had the privilege of getting to travel to Shanghai for a business trip this winter, and it was definitely a culture shock. The primary goal of my trip was to train our Shanghai support team on some of our tools at work. It was a very long trip, almost 4 weeks, so there was definitely a lot of opportunities and challenges. But, it was an enlightening experience and I had a very productive, educational, and memorable journey.

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Party at the Purple Pig

Party at the Purple Pig

I got the invite from my Skilletation Nation friends to come up for the Purple Pig Music Festival in Naples, New York. It was in the backyard of my amigos from the North, though it was a good five hour drive for me. Totally worth it.

It was bitterly cold those nights, or maybe I just forgot that it was late September and didn’t pack accordingly. I chose to forgo the tent and camp in my (aptly named) Mini, and every bone in my spine regretted that choice. Still, for as cold as it was (and as under-prepared as I happened to be), I was thankful for the option to start the car up every once in a while and blast some heat.

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Little Cabin in the Woods

Little Cabin in the Woods

You have to make time to get away every once in a while.

We go to the Lone Pine at least once a summer for a weekend every year, and it’s a good opportunity to get the camera out.

Typically a cabin trip consists of a wild party on Saturday evening, and a refreshing dip in Blue Hole on the following morning. We did all of that, but since we had nothing but big pickup trucks with us, we did a little exploring through Forbes State Forest afterwards. We explored a few waterfalls and back roads.

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The Eastern Hill

The Eastern Hill

My eyes close, bathed in the pallid orange glow of sodium-vapor street lamps outside of my apartment. Strings of thought dissolve in to threads of memories, like nerves that can be plucked and awakened by my transient state as I begin to pass through the chasm in time between here and those nights.

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Heron 2013

Heron 2013

Another great festival year came and went, and consistent with every prior year, it just keeps getting better and better. As usual, Nathan and I committed the entire week leading up to the festival to helping prepare for the flood of thousands of people. Our main projects were mostly lighting-focused, and included adding illumination to Dragon Run. Work commenced on Sunday before the festival, as we accomplished a variety of tasks. Weather was a problem all week for the lighting guys, as you might expect. We made some very cool looking lanterns for the entrance of Dragon Run that melted in Thursday’s rain, and we had to quickly assemble the tapestry fixture to hang in its place. It looked decent, but it will be an area of focus for us next year. Rain and humidity also ruined our plaster layer on the Dragon sculpture, so time and finances permitting, Nate and I will have to overhaul it for next year. We brought our own work truck up for the pre-week, so we didn’t have to use any golf carts until festival time, which was a great relief. I bought the red Chevy (affectionately named Roxanne), and she was a real savior all week. I kept her so we can use her next year.

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