Once upon a time, there was a man with a vision. A vision that disease could be cured and the philanthropic landscape of the country could be changed. He started with a new take on an old word. And he changed virtually everything else around him.
This is Dan Palotta. A man who has changed (and continues to change) the world. (I’m sure this photograph is by Paiwei Wei, from the PallottaTeamworks.com web site. I know Paiwei, so I’m guessing that full credit will suffice against a copywrite claim.) Dan Pallotta had a vision that changed the landscape of this country. Every person that rides, walks, run, or does any other physical activity in the act of raising money for a charity is following in the footsteps of the model that Dan envisioned and created. \
I had the extraordinary experience and pleasure of working for PallottaTeamWorks at the turn of the century. And to this day, there is a corp of people in my life from that that can bring me RIGHT BACK to a moment in time where I was making a difference, too.
This weekend, I went to San Francisco to see Eric Wallace. A fabulous friend from Pallotta TeamWorks. One of those life friends that no matter when I last spoke to him, the conversation picks right back up and we can dive into the deepest issues. Most of my friends in this category date from college. (Something about sitting in the hallway of your dorm at 2 in the morning eating white-bread-and-Miracle-Whip sandwiches.) But somehow Eric is one of them, too, despite having entered my life a long time after those Miracle Whip days.
When Eric lived in southern California we loved, in the post TeamWorks years, to meet at The River’s End in Seal Beach after the lunch rush on a weekend and spend hours talking about the world while not sitting in the sun (he’s a red-head and I’m sensitive to too much sun), drinking gallons of ice team, and generally lolling around in my absolutely most favorite restaurant.
Yesterday I flew to San Francisco. He picked me up and we went to a drag show in the Castro district.
We stayed up until 1 AM talking about everything and nothing. His favorite color is orange. (Clearly a developing theme in my life.) And his second favorite color is green. I walked into his home and said “you have an orange sofa”, (thinking “wait until I tell Aidan!”).
This morning we got up and went to brunch (did you know brunch was “the” thing to do in SF on Sunday mornings?). We walked over to Dandelion Chocolate in the Mission District to sample chocolate without soy lecithin (a by-product of soy bean oil in virtually all chocolate that keeps cocoa butter and cocoa from separating). I’m trying to eliminate soy from my diet and it’s in EVERYTHING. Then we walked back to his house and talked literally for hours.
San Francisco is a completely different town if you’re there will a resident. I’ve been many times, and I have never particularly had anything good (or bad) to say. Today, all good. I caught the 7 pm Jet Blue flight home and was in my house by 9.