Monday, March 23, 2009

The more things change, the more they stay the same...

Well, we are sad to say that we have lost Jake Ackerman as a member of the team. But proud to announce that Sean Fleming has replaced his spot. Check back later for updates!

Saturday, March 7, 2009

The Route

For our team the Route associated with the Mongol Rally has been one of the most passionately discussed and debated topics as we prepare. (The other 2 topics were our Team Purpose and the causes we are rallying for, and the name.)

Unlike a name, or a cause - which once decided can be fully committed and invested in - the Route can be more fluid - subject to ongoing discussion and interpretation. One member of the group may insist that a 1600 Mile venture to Astana, Kazakhstan is just what the doctor ordered while another insists that a two-day exploration of the shores of Lake Baikal, Russia is a once in 100 lifetimes opportunity.

While these discussions make for entertaining and lively debate, they tend to be a better source of good comedy material about the value of meetings and committees than a source for consensus!

That said, it has been a BALL, and in the end we have all agreed to disagree agreeably! (Or is that disagreed to agree disagreeably?)

Team Facta, non Verba is excited to present a final iteration of our Route for the 2009 Mongol Rally. You will understand that for security purposes, the dates of travel and specific roads and locations will not be disclosed.

Here is the Route:

View Larger Map

Friday, February 13, 2009

Men of Action!

There is a lot to plan when contemplating a drive around the world...

We all met last night and were confronted that old familiar question - on an unfamiliar quest...

Are we men of words or men of action?

Perhaps the most significant aspect to this question is that it can only be answered by the guy in the mirror. (You didn't just think of the Michael Jackson song, did you? You should be so embarrassed!)

Assignments have been given, responsibilities delegated, and the path is laid! It can be fun to converse endlessly about the places we might go or how the path might deviate... but better still will be the victory of the moments when we have acted.

To Mongolia!

Allow me a quick diversion because it is fun! I read a poem this morning and blogged about it. The poem is Oh The Places You'll Go, by Dr. Seuss and how fascinating it is to think: Oh! The places we will go - on our trip.

Here is a list:

1. London, England
2. Lille, France
3. Brussels, Belgium
4. Luxembourg
5. Stuttgart, Germany
Nurnberg, Germany
6. Prague, Czech Republik
7. Vienna, Austria
8. Bratislava, Slovakia
9. Budapest, Hungary
Kosice, Slovakia
10. L'viv, Ukraine
11. Warsaw, Poland
12. Lida, Belarus
13. Vilnius, Lithuania
Minsk, Belarus
14. Moscow, Russia
Chelyabinsk, Russia
Petropavlovsk, Kazakhstan
Omsk, Russia
Novosibirsk, Russia
Kemerovo, Russia
Krasnoyarsk, Russia
Irkutsk, Russia
Lake Baikal, Russia
Ulan-Ude, Russia
15. Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
16. Beijing, China

(There will be plenty more since we are driving, but too small to mention)

Thursday, February 5, 2009

The adventure of a lifetime and more...

Grab your peanuts and soda because you are in for the ride of a lifetime. This blog has been created so that Team Verba Non Facta can share every tear, scrape, bump, triumph, and ludicrous moment that happens along our 7000+ mile long foray into uncharted territory. As my colleague Jake so adequately described, this adventure is the brainchild of several 'game' nights that took place at a mutual friends' abode, the aforementioned Mr. Brian Miller.

I must say however, that my first introduction to the idea came when we were returning from a road trip to Las Vegas. The five participants in that journey were Brian, Adam Hyatt, Jason Shelley, Joe Hilton, and Myself. (Funny we had a Hilton and a Hyatt and still had to pay for a hotel :/) After a successful endeavor to win a Magic card tournament at the local casino (a story for another time) and a victory celebration meal at the local In N' Out Burger, we began the arduous drive back to the greater Salt Lake Valley. This particular return trip burns bright in my mind to this day. The conversation we had amongst the five of us ranks in my top conversations of all time, spanning various subjects from the meaning of life to the adventures we had in our short life times to that point. During this conversation Bryan brought up the subject of the Gumball 3000 road rally. (For those who have no clue what this is, here is a link to the website that describes it: As you are hopefully now aware, the Gumball is not a rally for the faint of heart, or wallet for that matter, so it behooves me to say that I was not likely to participate in it anytime soon, to my discontent. But then Bryan brought to our attention another rally, one that was more accessible and available for anyone brave enough to try.

During the remainder of the conversation Bryan mentioned that all of us in the vehicle were now 'obligated' to go on the rally and if we didn't he would personally harm us to some degree (sorry Bryan, can't remember exactly what the threat consisted of). The humor of all this is that Bryan and I are the only participants left from the conversation and I have proof that no harm has come to any of the others, where's the consistency with that?

So here we are at last, a team from lowly Utah is bound for the Eastern world, please help Jake, Bryan, Ken, and I make this a great success by posting comments and questions, and more importantly supporting us through your charitable and/or sponsorship donations,


Geoff Dearing

Announcing the Team Name: Team Facta non Verba

Generally it can be said of most of our lives, that after all was said and done, there was probably a lot more said than done.

Not only is that quote incredibly funny to me... it is sadly true.

The other night we were developing our Sponsor Packages and as many late nights do, the conversation was jumping all over the place... somehow we landed on a website of latin words and sayings:

As we read looking for something else, the phrase Facta, non Verba emerged.

Facta, non Verba is literally translated to mean Deeds, not Words.

Picking a name for the team had been a fun discussion until that point... I think we had gone from "The spotted rhinoceroses" to "candy ass Gaborone's" or some other gibberish... but the phrase in latin put forward so perfectly what the Mongol Rally represents, along with its charities and some of the creeds we are personally seeking to emulate in our lives, you could say reading the name was like a strike of lightning... and it was done.

So enter Team Facta, non Verba. The team whose DEEDS, not Words show what they are all about.

"...those of much talk and few deeds, soon evaporate. Action is the dignity of greatness." -Jose Marti

May we with support from each other, our families, and friends carry out our goal!

Monday, February 2, 2009

The Drive Behind the Rally

Imagine a house where every week 7 to 10 guys meet up to play Monopoly, tell war stories, and cultivate ideas while consuming unbelievable amounts of soda and candy. The house belongs to Bryan Miller who once took second in the NATIONAL MONOPOLY CHAMPIONSHIP. You can bet that a bunch of grown men congregating to play monopoly is a fairly good melting pot for mischief, albeit productive mischief.

This is where I also met Geoff Daering and Ken Prince.

I entered a world that frankly I had been going through my suburban life hoping to find... and not knowing it existed. A world where first person shooter video games, a card game called Magic, and tales of international car rally's are just par for the course.

My sense is that with completely different backgrounds, Bryan, Geoff, Ken and I - along with the other guys who came to those parties were on the hunt for something.

About six or nine months ago Bryan developed a list of 20 things he wanted to accomplish in his life. The Mongol Rally is one of the things on his list... and that is why Bryan gets full credit for being the DRIVE behind the rally... the rest of us would agree that he has been the guy leading the dream.

Read my blog from last September about getting the plan going for the Rally.

So like most visions, the idea started with 8 or 10 committed participants, and has quickly culled itself down to the 4 of us. It is exciting to begin to watch the vision take shape. We have already begun taking action to make the Mongol Rally happen, from buying the first incredible Rally Monster (1999 Chevy Tracker) to planning the route map, setting up sponsor packages and selecting the charities and causes we will rally for, we are on our way to a life adventure without parallel... and this will be our home as we execute the event.

My thanks to Bryan for being the drive behind the rally.