World travel videos, photos, and blog.

This is the end, beautiful friend

This is the end, my only friend. The end of our elaborate plans. The end of everything that stands-The end.

In 24 hours, I will no longer officially "live" in Los Angeles. I'm a little too wined and dined to spill more words about it right now but the words of Jim Morrison seemed to creep into my head as I lay it down to sleep one more night before I move out of my apartment.

Here's to what was, what should have been, what could have been, and what never was. Your loss, my loss. Regardless, somewhere, someone wins.

Meet the Robinsons!

It's a pretty exciting day as March 30 is the official release date of Walt Disney's Meet the Robinsons. I've been working on this animated film for the past three years and it's incredible to see it finally come to the big screen. Last night I watched the stereoscopic 3D version at the El Capitan in Hollywood. It looked amazing. It was such a trip to watch it with a real, super enthusiastic audience. You've gotta go out and support by checking it out in a theater near you. If you stay for the credits, look for me somewhere after the music credits under Production Assistants. I worked on Story.

Ray Bradbury on Love

"Stuff your eyes with wonder. Live as if you'd drop dead in ten seconds. See the world. It's more fantastic than any dream made up or paid for in factories." — Ray Bradbury

Disney Animation often has noon lectures where they bring in guests to speak for an hour while treating us to lunch. Yesterday, I went to my last lecture and the guest was author, Ray Bradbury. It was amazing. The man has lived such an incredible life and has no intention of slowing down. He shared story after story about how his love for books, film, theater, and life itself has brought him so many opportunities. He stressed that it was this love that makes whatever he does a success. He told us that if you can love something enough, it doesn't matter if you're paid for it because nothing is more valuable than that love. Let me tell you, when you meet a guy as passionate as he is, it's infectious. You'll find yourself wanting to do whatever he wants to make his dreams come true.

Grow old but never grow up.

Bowel Movements

Pooping abroad has been a real concern of mine. I don't want people to get the impression that I don't eat. I eat plenty and my body metabolizes the food pretty well. So well that I can have a nice healthy bowel movement sometimes three times a day. But I've got issues about bathrooms. I love my bathroom at home because I keep it very clean with Clorox wipes and toilet bowl cleaner. At work, we've got those nifty seat covers and a cleaning staff that tidy up the joint a couple times a day.

When I'm traveling through Asia though, my fear is that I'm going to eat something strange and have to deal with squat toilets. I've read travel forums about these things and in some cases you're left with nothing to wipe except for your hand and a hose. Good times.

Pooping around the world is going to be a freeing experience. I've always admired my friends who have no shame in their bodily functions. I mean we all have to poop! It's as natural as breathing. For now. I will savor every moment on my private throne in Glendale.



I can't stop procrastinating. I have a bunch of packing to do. Piles of books, notes, gadgets, and doodads. Doodads all over the place! All I want is to get out of here and hang out with somebody. But everyone's busy. Too busy for poor little Tony. ::tear::

My mom calls me everyday and scolds me for not eating. I started thinking about why eating becomes so low-priority for me when I'm home. In LA, eating is such a social event. I love that. I like having company while I get things stuck in my crooked teeth. Why do you think I keep asking you out to dinner (you know who you are)? It's so I can stop losing weight.

To be honest, my family's concern that I'll starve on my trip has some validity. I have a history of wandering cities around the world and not being able to just go into restaurants to order food. It's like some sort of mental disorder. It's okay though. I'm going to find help.

And mom, if you ever figure out how to get to this site, I'm making fried rice right now. You know what's funny, I finished off the supply of rice you sent me last year. I love it when a plan comes together.


Cell Phone

When I was in Germany, I was surprised to find that my cell phone still worked. I then proceeded to call people at random. I'm taking my phone with me but I'm going to try to keep it off. A 15 minute call to my brother ended up costing me $22. That's like a dozen beers.

I found this link on Cingular's site that tells you whether your phone will work in different countries.

Did you win the lottery?

When I tell people that I'm quitting my job and traveling for the rest of the year, they first wonder how I'm affording it. You have to realize that I had a decent job for five years and I lived a pretty simple life. I set aside as much money as I could comfortably while still enjoying my quick trips abroad, a nice piece of video/computer equipment, or a dinner out with a nice lady friend.

All of my money was in stocks (which I've sold off) and online Savings Accounts since college. and had the best rates. And because I have always been a pretty good money manager, my credit has stayed pristine. Last year I took the full line of credit from my oldest card (an MBNA Mastercard I applied for freshman year at UCI because they were giving away a CD case) at 0% interest and placed it into a 9-month Certificate of Deposit at 5%. While the money earned interest, I was required to pay a high minimum on the balance of the card. But in reality, I was actually forcing myself to save. Example: I borrow $10,000 from my credit card at 0% interest. I put it in a CD at 5%. I have to pay 1% of the balance (or $100) on the card monthly. After one year, I make about $512 on the savings account but I only owe $8800 on the card. The $1200 in payments I made are savings. The whole transaction nets me $1700. But I was working with much more money than that.

Which brings me to tax season. You pay tax on interest earnings. Fortunately, I have a side business in video services called Filmgeneration. I don't make a lot of money as it's usually just gigs I pick up through friends of friends. But I do put a lot of money into it and I am able to file a Schedule C and write off my expenses.

Once I've plowed through my savings (I assume Western Europe will take care of this pretty quickly) I will rely on credit cards and begging. After people ask me how I'm paying for this trip, they usually ask me what I'm going to do when I get back. I answer, "Working to pay off the trip".

Oh, and I'm selling stuff left and right. Anyone want an IKEA PS sofa bed? It's blue and really comfy.


I've been getting a lot of words of inspiration (and humor) from friends and travel sites. I'm going to try to collect them here.

Live life like you were dying!

Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do, than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore, Dream, Discover. - Mark Twain

The tragedy of life is not death; rather, it is what we allow to die within us while we live. -Norman Cousins

Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgement that something else is more important than fear. -Ambrose Redmoon

If someone does not smile at you, be generous and offer your own smile. Nobody needs more a smile than the one that cannot smile to others. -The Dali Lama

The time to enjoy a European trip is about three weeks after unpacking. -George Ade


I'm still working on a series of auto-biographical videos based on my decision to quit my job, sell everything, and travel for eight months. Meanwhile, to test the usability of YouTube, I posted three films I shot for while traveling. One of them was for a series called "Stark". I incorporated footage from my 2004 trip to Tokyo.

Edge of Day on YouTube


Videos, Photos, Shop... Wha?

So traveling the world... fantastic opportunity... not something anyone can just up and do... blah blah blah. Sure, whatever. Even after deciding to quit my job and see some of the planet, I wasn't feeling very excited about the trip. I felt like I was leaving on bad terms. I'm running away from loneliness by taking a solo trip for eight months? What the heck is that?

Art and creativity have saved me so many times in the past. I needed a project to work on to inject some enthusiasm into my veins (thanks dude). My fantasy is to be able to write a lot while I'm on the road and if you're (un)lucky, it'll all be here for you to read. I'd also like to post videos along the way. How practical this will be is yet to be determined. I'm bringing a camera and a computer. I don't know if I'll have the time and energy to sit, cut videos, and post them to the web after sweating through a day of sightseeing. But I did want to set everything up in case I did get around to it.

From visiting other travel blogs, I've learned that everyone gets to a point where they're too busy enjoying their trip to worry about some web site. Afterall, it's my precious time and money.

Speaking of which, I also tried to set up a Shop page to maybe bring some revenue into the site. Right now, this site's just for my friends and family. But Filmgeneration started out that way and now we get hits from Antarctica. So you never know. The shop page also has a link to send me money through PayPal. If I ever post a blog that says, "Help... emergency... send funds", I expect you to whip out your credit card and help a brother out.

The Videos page links directly to my YouTube channel where I'll be posting vids. I chose YouTube due to its mass appeal and traffic, even though I hate the picture quality (I always minimize the size for better resolution).

The Photos page goes to a Picasa album that I haven't had time to test out yet. If I don't like it, I may switch to Flickr.

And finally, the Links page. It'll probably serve as a bookmarks page for my personal use but it may be useful to others.

Let's get you up to speed...

So a couple months ago or so, I found myself feeling incredibly miserable. Not as miserable I was at this time last year... that was MIS-ER-ABLE. I'd been working for Walt Disney Animation for five years, three of which were spent on a film called Meet the Robinsons (OPENING FRIDAY, MARCH 30!) As we got closer to the release date, I started to ask myself whether my head was completely into starting on the next film (and it was looking like it would start immediately and was set for an 18-month schedule... which is very intense). The thing is, life in Los Angeles was getting increasingly hard to deal with. To be honest, loneliness was getting the best of me. To do a good job, I needed balance and everything seemed way off balance. But this wasn't enough to just up and quit my job. It's a fun company, I consider the people there my family away from home. I had benefits, a weekly pay check, all sorts of crazy fringe benefits. In fact, I never considered leaving Disney until I had a solid film idea to go off and shoot. That's been one of my goals with from the beginning. Keep shooting shorts until I've reached the point where I felt ready to shoot something longer, something that would require some time off.

Anyhow, I was in the middle of a wrist-aching project at work when I started thinking about taking some time off to travel. I'd been wanting to go to Vietnam for a while. My friend Manash and I had discussed working hard in 2007 to save up for a big trip in '08. But then I came across Here was a guy who had worked in game development and one day decided that there was more to life that an office job. So he packed up and traveled around the world. Along the way, he made videos of himself doing a goofy dance in exotic locales. Stride Gum found the viral vid and paid him to shoot another video the next year.

So I'm watching this video on YouTube and I'm in awe of the places there are to see out there. I've done some traveling and seen some things but to see Matt dancing in Africa with a bunch of Rwandan (I think) kids... I was overwhelmed with emotion. I've seen these places depicted in films and on tv shows but it doesn't always register in my brain that there are so many people out there. I'm often so consumed by my own problems and stuck in my little bubble that I forget. And that's why I travel. New perspectives. I'm forced to open my eyes and look around.

If you know me, you know I'm not the most impulsive person. I think things out. And then I think about them some more. With the blog, I'm hoping to give people some insight into that thought process, share my experiences, entertain, and maybe inspire as Matt did.

IMT goes live

I've finally finished building the site. At the very least, it'll give me a place to write. I've been sitting in my apartment trying to pack but I couldn't get anywhere until I finished building What do you think? Not bad considering that I came up with the whole idea less than a week ago.

I'm going to split some of my thoughts into separate journal entries. (I've been making a strange conscious effort to not use the word blog for some reason.)

So you've discovered my travel blog. I'm slowly getting the web site together. I should really be packing up my apartment right now.

I must warn you that this journal will be filled with lots of lamenting, whining, and whatnot. You have to take it with a grain of salt. If you've ever seen me in person, you've probably noticed that I have this "pained" look on my face most of the time. My head is full of garbage and I haven't had a place like this to dump some of it out. So bare with me through the misery because I also hope to bring you smiles and anecdotes from afar.

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Location: United States A 29 yr old filmmaker from California traveled through Europe, Africa, Asia, and Australia/NZ over ten months from April 2007 to March 2008.

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    April 6:
    April 30:
    Czech Republic
    June 3:
    June 20:
    June 22:
    June 27:
    June 30:
    July 22:
    August 9:
    August 27:
    September 10:
    October 3:
    October 30:
    December 3:

    January 23:
    New Zealand
    February 26:
    March 1:
    Florida, North Carolina,
    New York, England, Spain

    December 29:
    January 9:
    New York City
    January 17:
    Washington D.C.
    February 18:
    March 18-23:
    New Orleans