Bootsnall Travel Network has named me as one of their Rogue Travelers for 2007. It’s supposed to be a good thing, but consider the meaning of the word “rogue.”
rogue (rog) n.
1. An unprincipled, deceitful, and unreliable person; a scoundrel or rascal.
2. One who is playfully mischievous; a scamp.
3. A wandering beggar; a vagrant.
4. A vicious and solitary animal, especially an elephant that has separated itself from its herd.
5. An organism, especially a plant, that shows an undesirable variation from a standard.
So, I’m an undesirable plant, a vicious elephant, a vagrant, a scamp, or a rascal. I like to think I’m somewhere in the middle between 2 and 3.
Bootsnall is sponsoring me. What does that mean? Well, they’re not really paying for anything expensive like airfare or other expenses. But they are hosting, designing, and promoting this blog that will follow my 3 month trip to Bangladesh, Cambodia, and China.
To give you a better idea of what the trip is about, I’ve pasted my Rogue Traveler Application below:
WHAT ARE YOU DOING?
I am going on a global quest to answer the question: Where am I wearing?
Check the label on the shirt you are wearing. Where was it MADE? China? Indonesia? Macau? Chances are it’s somewhere you’ve never been. You may not even be able to place it on a map. Do you wonder what the country is like? Who made your shirt?
Read the tag. Let your mind wonder. That’s what I do. My feet are about to follow.
A pile of unfolded laundry has set my course:
• T-shirt: MADE IN HONDURAS
• Blue Jeans: MADE IN CAMBODIA
• Boxers: MADE IN BANGLADESH
• Lucky shorts MADE IN USA
And no list of where I wear could be complete if I didn’t include the staple of my wardrobe:
• Flip-Flops: MADE IN CHINA
I will visit these countries seeing what there is to see; doing what there is to do. Once I have a feel for the country, I’ll seek the factory where the item of clothing was made and, ultimately, the people who made it.
And then I’ll tell their story.
WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS?
I’m doing this to explore the global marketplace while bridging the ever-widening gap between producer and consumer. That, and because putting myself in random situations and trying not to look like a complete fool makes for great writing fodder. And great writing fodder helps put food on my table.
I’m a freelance writer that has contributed to publications such as the Christian Science Monitor, Transitions Abroad, the World Vision Report (Radio program), and of course BootsnAll. To read some of my writing visit www.travelin-light.com or my Blog www.travelin-light.blogspot.com .
HOW WILL YOU DO IT?
I’ve already completed the Honduras portion of my quest. It was a kind of trial to see if the quest was worth pursuing.
This spring I will complete the quest by visiting the factories in Dhaka (Bangladesh) Guangzhou (China) Phnom Penh (Cambodia) and finally the factory that made my lucky shorts in the USA.
I will work with local university students and labor rights organizations to establish contacts with the factory and/or workers.
WHAT ARE YOUR ULTIMATE GOALS?
1. To get people thinking about Where They are Wearing and to educate myself and others about our position in the global marketplace. If someone reads a post on my blog, or one of my contributions to a publication and turns the neck of their shirt around to read the tag, I’ve succeeded.
2. To contribute correspondences and freelance submissions to newspapers, magazines, and radio programs around the nation.
3. Write a book about the experience. A few editors and agents have already shown interest in the project.
WHY SHOULD YOU BE CHOSEN?
I’m an experienced blogger, writer, and photographer that can provide BootsnAll readers with a unique voice on a one-of-a-kind quest.
WHAT SETS YOU APART?
I’ll be the only person to have ever visited Bangladesh because his Christmas Boxers with ornaments and the text “Jingle These” on them were made there.