Good Works Tour

Building a house? Well, we came close. by wisedog
August 30, 2008, 9:10 pm
Filed under: Zach | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Today, as advertised, the Good Works Tour worked (as arranged by our host, David Baldwin) with the Lawrence, KS, branch of Habitat for Humanity, helping to finish up a house.  The GWT spent most of the morning doing some light drywall work, and the afternoon working at the Habitat Re-Store, where Habitat sells materials that would otherwise be destroyed, as a fundraiser for the Habitat projects.  We were fortunate enough to even meet the future owner of the home, who was volunteering on site.

In possibly related news, our next project will be building a house from the ground up using entirely recycled materials and little to no archetechtual experience.  Though, if I’m lucky, the other dudes will let me use the plans for the house I designed in high school.  It has a greenhouse!

Here’s the video from our ranch adventure in Montana.  We work with power tools!  And I get to stand on a roof!  Dangerous!

Special thanks to the Baldwins for being great to us (and making one mean brisket — James & Tim), and to Ms. B for putting us in touch with her Kansas family.

Back in New Jersey in 8 days (Oh god),
– Wisedog


They promised me there was a restaurant on top. by timurian
August 30, 2008, 12:32 am
Filed under: Tim | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Today we drove from Boulder, Colorado to Lawrence, Kansas. A lot of people told us this would be our most boring drive, but we proved them wrong. How did accomplish this Sisyphean task you ask? Easy, we visited the world’s biggest ball of twine. And boy, was it big. Here’s a picture of how happy James was to at last meet the holy grail of twine.

Mmm twine

Mmm twine

The best part of visiting the ball of Twine was finding it. It is located in the tiny town of Cawker, which is also home to the ‘Ball of Twine Inn’, and sidewalks painted with a trail of twine. We parked on the main street and went in search of our epic quarry, but found ourselves unable to locate it.

Of course we decided to ask the locals, here’s an excerpt from a conversation I had in a gift/antique shop.

Me: Hi, I’m trying to find your ball of twine.
Store Owner: Yep.
Me: … Umm. I’d like to know where your ball of twine is?
Store owner points the direction from which we had walked.

Apparently we had parked almost catercorner to this gargantuan landmark. Perhaps our minds weren’t ready for the bliss that is beholding the ball of twine, but you could definitely see it from our car.

After we laughed at what we had done we discussed what this meant about our navigation skills, visited the legend, then proceeded to Lawrence, where David and Jill Baldwin have graciously put us up. Tomorrow we Habitat for Humanity! Yes, some places are foolish enough to trust us with power tools.

One Love,



PS Kansas has people. Really. And flat land is impressive because of the big sky. GWT <3s Kansas.

There’s a reason it’s called the Mile High City… by wisedog
August 29, 2008, 3:22 am
Filed under: Zach

Hello from Denver, home of the Broncos, allegedly cold beer, and Tim Allen. (What?)

We had a blast working at the SAME Cafe today; they have an awesome program, and everybody who gives their time there is really cool (and the food is GREAT!)

Being in town during the Democratic National Convention has been a trip in and of itself.  We saw a man dressed as the Pope with a naked mannequin on his shoulders, standing on a street corner.  I know, poignant, right?

Here’s the video from our experience with Adopt-a-Stream in Seattle.  Hope you enjoy it!  (See my previous post if otherwise.)

Also, mad props to the Townsends for connecting us with their way-cool cousin in Boulder, who’s been good enough to host us.  Also, mad apologies to Sam for waking him up this morning.  What can we say? The Good Works Tour is loud.  It’s part of our mission statement.  Not really, but kinda, if you think about it.

Thanks for watching us, and caring about what we’re doing for some reason,
– Wisedog

Oprah must hear us! by jamesintrocaso
August 28, 2008, 3:04 am
Filed under: James | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

First off, please email Oprah. Ok, now on to more news.

Today we drove, drove, drove all the way to Boulder, Colorado. We’re staying with our friend Kim’s cousin, Kristin, and all of her roommates. Kudos to them for getting us out of our van and onto some couches. Mad ups to the people of Boulder.

Tomorrow, we’ll be commuting to Denver to work at the SAME Cafe. SAME stands for So All May Eat. They’re an awesome organization that is a pay what you can cafe that’s always serving and always busy. We’ll be sure to check out the Democratic Convention while we’re in town and yell at delegates and stuff.

Also, here’s a new video today about one of our experiences in Seattle, WA. We were working with InterConnection, a group that does work rebuilding computers and giving them to those in need. The best part is volunteers are rewarded after 60 hours of work with a computer of their own! Enjoy! (Be sure to check out the competition Tim go into while we were there.)



SLC Mormons by timurian
August 27, 2008, 1:44 am
Filed under: Tim | Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Hey GWT followers,

Today we worked at CHOICE Humanitarian. Sometimes it seems like our timing is intentional. Over the weekend a tragedy occurred for this organization; a plane shuttling volunteers to Guatemala crashed and eleven people were killed. Needless to say their small office was full of activity; we were pleased that they let us help in a time where they have so much to do. Zach and James did research on news articles and statistics while I created a flash movie from letters of condolences. See, I did do something with my digital media degree! (bottom of this page)

What CHOICE does is amazing, and we were so happy to lend a hand when they could really use it. This is the first time GWT has worked behind computers, which was something a little bit different for us. It was also one of our longest days at a site, from quarter to ten to seven o’clock, though there were people in the office before we got there and we were not the last to leave. There’s something about doing work that benefits others that makes it easier and more fulfilling. CHOICE also exemplifies something that we’ve noticed makes a huge difference in the success of volunteer orgs – they focus on what the people they serve say they need and set them up for the long term. This sounds like a very basic thing, but it’s very easy to believe you know what someone else need and be totally off the mark. CHOICE judges their success not by the completion of projects, but by the projects the people they trained go on to create.

If anyone from CHOICE is reading this, we would like to offer our condolences for your departed comrades.  We read and heard a lot about them today, and they truly were exemplary people.

Tomorrow we depart for Denver! Maybe we’ll see this big salty lake that’s supposed to be here before then.

Much love,


The videos we promised… by wisedog
August 26, 2008, 3:31 am
Filed under: Zach | Tags: , , , , ,

…have been uploaded!  Thanks to a series of flukes, we now present Meals on Wheels – San Francisco and the Northeastern Emergency Food Program of Portland.

SLC Punks (a.k.a. the GWT Fellows) by wisedog
August 25, 2008, 11:58 pm
Filed under: Zach | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

What a drive we made today, from Helena to Salt Lake City!  We stopped by Big Sky, though we didn’t have the opportunity to climb up the peaks.  Good Works Tour 2?  I think absolutely.

We had a blast working (and counting shooting stars) on the Kleffner Ranch and we look forward to working with CHOICE Humanitarian tomorrow.

We have a veritable treasure trove of videos for you, Good Works Fans. And they’ll be up as soon as possible (1 tonight, 2 tomorrow, we hope).  Here’s the video for our stop at  Enjoy it, as I hope you enjoy all our new videos.

And if you don’t enjoy them, you should be enjoying them.  And if you do enjoy them, tell more people that they should enjoy them.  Remember: you are all part of the Good Works Tour if you help spread word of our mission!  Plus, for every one person you refer to the GWT videos, you earn one GWT buck, good for one hug!  …We didn’t actually make any GWT bucks yet.  …and probably won’t.  Besides, anybody who needs a hug can get one from the Good Works Tour for free.  But we’ll take your word for it.  That’s how the Tour rolls.  Let’s just say you get mad props.

Anyway, here it is.

Tonight, we get to see our friend Christine, who’s just moved out to the Salt Lake area, and who’s generous enough to host us while we’re here.  Rules!

Polygamy means more people to love,
– Wisedog