Oct 1, 2015
Oct 31, 2015
This was by far one of my most notorious challenges yet. My challenge was to eat a meal with someone different every day for a month. I had a spreadsheet that tracked all of my meals, who they were with and where they took place. You can view the spreadsheet here. It was a lot of work to pull this off, but well worth it. This particular challenge spurred a published interview with my Alma Mater, great conversations with old and new friends and an improved outlook on life. Below is a description of all my meals, who they were with, where they were and the topics of conversation:
Day 1: Today my buddy Eric Saylor and I went to Cotton Bottom. We relived our youth and talked about skateboarding.
Day 2: Day two meal was with a person that I truly admire. His name is Justin Crawmer. He was my first boss at CHG and has gone off and started a very successful company. We chatted about owning a brewery and whether or not we were going to that evenings bottle share. We made the right choice!
Day 3: I ate with the majority crew from the Fall Ferne Classic, spearheaded by Todd (not pictured here). I think the highlight (or lowlight?) was James Hedges getting a call from his wife saying that there was a crazed person gallivanting in his yard. His quote was, “why are you calling me? Call 911!” Shout out to the host, Todd for the amazing Ribs and to Mark Ferne for putting on such a fun event.
Day 4: spent dinner with the extended Takahashi family. Chinese Sundays were consumed and the highlight was sitting across the table from Dawn’s cute little 4-year-old cousin. We were probably flirting with one another when this picture was taken. One more fun fact: that gentleman in the background is Dawn’s 91-year-old grandfather and he has never been on an airplane.
Day 5: Had a great lunch with a good friend/coworker/overall person, Darin Gibby Gibson. We went to Lonestar and had delicious burritos. We talked about the Utes and how hard you should play defense in pickup ball. It was an excellent meal. Thanks for humoring me with my silly challenges Darin.
Day 6: This was my father’s lunch and he chose to take us to Denny’s. He also selected the guest list which consisted of Hayley, my sister, and one of my favorite co-workers, Spencer. The conversation revolved around Hayley and her future.
Day 7: I had a great dinner with my good friend Sam Johnston and a new friend named Kevin. We went to a funky place called Skewered Thai. It was delicious. I didn’t get a picture, but it was memorable. We chatted about The Jazz, his new relationship and the complexities of life.
Day 8: Went to breakfast with Mr. Spencer Sutherland. We took my new old ass truck to an American favorite…McDonalds. We talked about life, work and other various topics. I am a big fan of Spencer. He is always a beacon of light and a source of humor for me.
Day 9: Went to lunch with my great little sis yesterday! We hit Oh Mai (although the the picture was taken at my office) and we talked about love and where each of us will be living over the next little while.
Day 10: I did an early dinner with a TV star/friend, Petar Mijic. I was lucky enough to catch him the day before he was featured on a show on the Travel Channel. We went to Red Rock and chatted about his show, his relationship status and the NBA.
Day 11: I went to Squatters with a great friend, Devin Ether Pearson and his wife Nina. We chatted about a potential business venture and how weird relationships are. It was a fun event.
Day 12: This was a Meatless Monday and I went to Chipotle with Reid Thorpe. I work with Reid and he possesses one of the most unique personalities of anyone that I know. I had to sneak this picture because he didn’t want to be part of my challenge. I circled Reid. You will find him in this photo requesting more meat on his salad without paying for it. He has this routine that he does, he attempts to get more meat without them charging him. “Come on man, just a few extra pieces”. I am sure Chipotle hates him. We talked about work and what we would be doing with our time off if we could take it.
Day 13: Brody Leven and I shared some all you can eat vegan pizza at Sages Cafe. What a great meal. Brody is an excellent friend and an amazing person. This is the one conversation I won’t share because it was awfully personal. But if you know Brody, you know that he is one of the nicest most loving people out there.
Day 14: I am a punk and didn’t grab a picture of today’s lunch with Shawn LaMar. Shawn aka Slamdog is one of my favorite coworkers. You might know Shawn from various costumes that we have sported the last few years. He has saved me from being locked out of my home more than once, helped me with car issues and is the first guy to flex in at work when there are fires. He is a person that I look up to quite a bit. Today we went to Lettuce and Ladles, a first for both of us. We sat on the patio and discussed global warming, work things and the wrong and right way to treat women. It was an insightful lunch.
Day 15: Today’s lunch was with a new friend named Andrew Bornstein. He started working at CHG very recently but he already feels like he has been a good buddy for ages. We went to a KILLER spot called Tea Rose Diner in Murray and enjoyed some spicy Thai food. We chatted about stories of us getting pulled over, strange relationships, spicy food and all sorts of other stuff. We had some great company at lunch too!
Day 16: A lot of folks asked me, “what was your favorite meal this month”? Well this meal took the cake as my favorite thus far in the challenge. I went to Chipotle with a then new coworker named Eli (or as I like to call him, Etruth). Why was this my favorite? I didn’t have anyone on the calendar today so I thought I would just ask a random coworker. I had low expectations for the meal. Little did I know that we would get super deep at lunch. We talked about how lazy and entitled our generation is, what it would take to fix the world problems, what you need to eat to be healthy and many other insightful topics. Eli won’t see this post because he doesn’t have Facebook. He thinks Facebook is a human highlight reel and people get down on themselves because nobody can live up to what they see on the platform. Shout out to Ann Hopkins for the photobomb!
Day 17: Today’s meal was at Moab Grill with the Peck clan. I grabbed a pic a little late, we’re watching the Utah game now! The conversation at dinner was interesting. There may or may not have been a racist comment made. It was a great meal! Thanks for buying Sherri Takahashi!
Day 18: This meal was interesting. We were driving home from Moab and stopped to golf Carbon Country Club. I challenged Dawn to find the best hole-in-the-wall restaurant between Carbon and Salt Lake. As you may know, Dawn and I are big beer snobs. She saw that there was a “brewery” called Groggs five minutes away from the course so we jumped at the opportunity. When we arrived we found what appeared to be a brewery in the 60s. Now they serve domestics and bottled crap. You live and you learn. We talked about trips we had planned next year, date night this weekend and the look you would have on your face if you were diagnosed with cancer. It was a fine meal.
Day 19: Monday morning I went to The Original Pancake House for breakfast with my buddy Rob Winward. I want to keep the majority of the convo private but we talked about his future, his dope spur of the moment 9 week trip to Hawaii and various other things. It was a great meal.
Day 20: This meal was shared with a great person and friend, Amy Pett. We talked about all sorts of awesome stuff at The Thai Orchid for lunch. She offers a different perspective than my own on the meaning of life, love and work. It was a great/deep insightful convo at a cool restaurant that I have never been to.
Day 21: On Wednesday I went to dinner with one of my beer drinking buddies, Daniel Avilez. He works for the prison system and educated me on all the intricacies of prison, what could be improved and what other countries are doing. We talked about my new Big Brothers Big Sisters mentee and how I can be the best help to him. And to cap it all off I found out he is a huge MMA fan. We determined that we need to watch some fights. We ate at Annex because Dan had never been there before!
Day 22: To my surprise Kyle was the ONLY person to ask to share a liquid meal with him. He was generous enough to offer a killer beer lineup that we crushed as well as some amazing Indian food from Royal India. We chatted about work, politics, of we would ever move away from the state and a myriad of other topics.
Day 23: Yesterday’s meal was with one of my all-time favorite people on this planet. His name is Michael Waterman and he is a coworker at CHG. We went to a place that neither party had been to before, Laid Back Poke Shack and enjoyed some Hawaiian poke dishes. We chatted briefly about politics and more in depth about how to create and nurture long lasting relationships.
Day 24: I went to lunch at Mazza with a long time buddy, Craig Morris. We chatted about medical school, where he thinks he will do residency and reminisced on the good ol’ days. We went golfing afterwards and chatted about what it’s like being a dad and laughed about Bad Grandpa. Craigers is a good man and will probably be performing surgery on you at some point soon.
Day 25: I ate a virtual meal with my partner in crime, Suneil Bhambri. Suneil and I go way back to high school. We were in a band together and we have been really close ever since. When I mentioned that I was doing this challenge, he said that there was no way he wasn’t going to participate. He lives in Seattle so we had to get creative. We each made breakfast (okay, Dawn made me breakfast) and face timed. We talked about motivation, working at Amazon and things that we can do to improve our lives. One thing I can count on from Suneil is intellectual conversation, this meal was nothing short of that.
Day 26: Today’s meal was with a longtime family friend, her name is Katie Daimaru aka Pinnacle. No idea how that nickname came about. We chatted about work, her sweet dog and hubby and Pinn just made us laugh like she always does. We went to Porcupine Grill to stuff our faces.
Day 27: I had dinner with my buddy Ross McIlwaine. Ross and I weren’t super close in college, but we have become much closer over the last few months. It’s refreshing to talk to someone that is so likeminded and ambitious. Last night we went to Wasatch and chatted about good books were reading, a potential business venture and what it’s like to date for the first time in 5 years. Thanks for inspiring me to know that if you want to learn/get better at something, there is probably a book out there that can help you!
Day 28: I went to lunch with my sweet mother and two of her coworkers/friends, Julie and Francesco. We went to Taqueria el Ray de Oro. They won a national award for their burrito recently (top 50 burritos in America, this was the only one in Utah). It was simple and inexpensive, yet wildly delicious. We chatted about my challenge, an upcoming trip to NOLA and laughed at classic TV shows that I hadn’t heard of.
Day 29: Lunch was with a man that I met at a work function a few years back, Garrett. We have similar tenure at our respective companies and were in the same field. Every time I meet with him, it is really cool to see how each of our careers are progressing.
Day 30: meal was with my boy Blake Harward at Millcreek Cafe for breakfast. We talked about a workout centered challenge next month, the dating life and various other sundries.
Day 31: My final meal for October was with my favorite then bachelor, Nick Como. We went to Commanders Palace with the boys. We were mostly speechless because this meal was so outstanding.
Go eat a meal with one of your favorite people today!