Rawness of Reality

Organic Treecup Tea and the Beginning of Treecup's Journey - Mark Sotomayer #018

December 08, 2019 Kevin Stalker Season 1 Episode 18
Rawness of Reality
Organic Treecup Tea and the Beginning of Treecup's Journey - Mark Sotomayer #018
Show Notes Transcript

In this episode, you will have the opportunity to meet Mark Sotomayer. Mark is a young entrepreneur who created his own business Treecup. Mark has strived to make a healthy tea that also tastes good. I'd say he did just that with Treecup. Treecup has eight uniue flavors of organic teas. Throughout this episode, you can hear Mark talk about the beginning of Treecup, how he overcame a potential lawsuit, what it is like to have a business in college, and his own beverage preference. Also, every time you buy a tea Mark plants a tree in Hati. If you are interested to purchase one his website link is below. 

Follow Mark Sotomayer: @mrk_stmyr

Follow Treecup: @treecuptea

Website: Treecuptea.com 

Don't forget to subscribe, follow us on Instagram @_rawnessofreality, Snapchat @Rawnessreality, and Twitter @rawreality_

Remember, Stay Raw with Reality

spk_0:   0:00
Welcome to Episode zero Winning for rawness off reality I'm your host Kevin Stock, and in this episode you have the opportunity to meet Mark. So Domeier. Mork is a young entrepreneur who started his own business, called His business is beverage based, and every time you buy one of his product, he plants a tree and hating one for one. Listen in to hear how he confronted a cease and desist order, how he started his first crowdfunding campaign, and how every time you buy a tee pee plant a tree. But enough from me, here's mark set of mine. My favor is the Djinn CNN Yang. It's a makes off strong green tea. The green teas harvested totally different, and that's completely organic sounds from China. It has experiment, Lemon, and also Jin sang to really give you a nice like kick of kick of a lot of caffeine, really behind behind the green tea. But yeah, that one. That one was really mostly inspired by me having to get up in the morning right at college. And like just looking for a concoction of the strongest T I could make, that'll keep me focused for, you know the morning and just really make me feel good as well. So you definitely didn't like coffee or was coffee. Also,

spk_1:   1:29
I drink more coffee than tea.

spk_0:   1:31
Actually, you do. Still, I still I feel like a hypocrite sometimes saying in that scene I was like, I'm making people by t often here. That's my Bush. But copy, I just Nothing gets you going like a nice cup of

spk_1:   1:46
coffee. You know, when you really are trying to be

spk_0:   1:48
productive. What about espresso? Yeah. I love a nice Americana. Yes. How about yourself? Eso coffee? I've really gotten into lately. I've been way more into t there on my whole life. There's just something I think it's healthier. I could be wrong, but I think to use healthier before we get until just a different t things like that. I want to thank you for coming on. Rana. Some reality today Shut out to Mark Soda Meyer. Mark has started his own business tree cup and it started as take Tama. Exactly. Yeah, and he wasn't allowed to keep the name Talma. And what he did was he asked his supporters and other people for inspiration for a new name and id. Like Thio here. How you came up with the new name Tree Cup. I did see a request video on YouTube on. I'm sure you put that elsewhere on social media, but what was What was that, like asking your friends, family and supporters for help with that? Yeah, that was an interesting

spk_1:   3:00
time. Uh, in when you're starting something and you know something that the path really isn't clear. There's oftentimes setbacks in the setback skin last a while. So we had a re Brandt, as Kevin was saying two different name. We used to be called Telmo. It was really fitting. It means I love you. And it also means t love. So it was kind of like a Spanish play on words and s o popular phrase. I love you in Spanish so popular that a Guatemalan company actually sent us a cease and desist letter in the mail. And I said we had to change the name by the end of the year. Or also sue us right on, eh? So we were like at the top of Google by that point whenever you typed in town. So, you know, it's pretty excited about that and obviously, yeah, our, uh So I was going to continue building the brand. It's a good thing that I got this letter and really, it was able thio start again and yeah, so I got that letter, like in July of 2018 and, uh, after I got that letter was a little paralyzed. We were about to start a crowdfunding campaign. I called my my lawyer and he's like, don't do the crowdfunding campaign you Ah, you know, they could take everything from you if they wanted to know if you made any more money, they could take all the money you have, theoretically, right? He's just speaking from illegal per perspective. And we went ahead and just did the crowdfunding campaign anyway, just because we still wanted to complete the task at hand, which was, you know, fund the marketing materials and all that behind our own tree nursery over in Haiti. So time went on and I was kind of paralyzed. I stopped pitching two different shops. The town will brand that had been selling hard, you know, we had even had a couple of nice PR pieces like the Pittsburgh Post Gazette and other Pittsburgh based kind of like lifestyle little blog's. And so we had to change the name and I had no clue. What have I thought of a lot of cool names, for example? Hey, H E Y t Haiti, because we plant tracing a DEA All right. And, you know, I was even thinking, you know, with a marketing thing like that, you could even just put just, hey, like, real bold, big letters Hang on the bottle. And when people talk about talk about that Haiti or something like that and then I thought about, you know, treaty. All right, that sounds naturally, you know, good for what we d'oh. Which is a planet tree for everybody people by and you know, I thought of other ones, one which I really liked, that kind of had an exotic ring to it, which I always like for brand names was P emblem means tree and Haitian Creole. That was taken as well. All these or keep on being taken. I found that, you know, a lot of even if I was to say file for a trademark to see if I could have the name Nonetheless, the domains taken or the hashtag staking or excuse me, the that at the user name on Instagram or whatever is taken s so I couldn't find anything. And finally, it's December and I only have ah, the rest of the month to change the name. I don't know what to do in paralyzed, And so I put out this request for proposal toe like all the, uh, all my linked in on my website on YouTube. And, you know, a couple 100 people saw that and I had a Google sheets which I had them go to to submit the name. We got some awesome names. One of them was like Pittsburgh Tea Company, Sustainable Tea Company. I thought that was cool. Really. You know, some of the people which are just some of my friends from college or people who have had the tea before, you know, submitted were really interesting. Um, and then it was actually a trademark attorney that I had sold t two at a vendor show the summer previous. He said he messaged me back on Lincoln. He's like, What about tree cup? I'm like a tree cup like teacup, and I looked up all the domain and everything. Nothing was taken, and I looked it up on the trademark database for the government, and it wasn't taken. I'm like it's not taken. He's like, I know I'm a trademark attorney. I Yeah, I checked it before I told you know I'm like I and then the vision of the silhouette of the cop with the tree and it just came upon me, right? And, you know, when I thought of that, I'm like, OK, trick up it is. And then the next month, January is when we started getting started on the design. So it was a long process, really. It was Ah, it was It was stressful because I didn't know if I was gonna find a good enough name, and I didn't know if I was gonna find something, you know, that was available toe continue with. But I think we pieced the pieces together quite nicely now.

spk_0:   8:04
And the design of the tree in the cup? Where did that come about? You said in a vision? Yeah. Uh, yeah.

spk_1:   8:13
I mean, it's just feeling really so he said, trick up. And I'm naturally thinking I study entrepreneurship in college and I take a lot of marketing classes as Kendall. With my mind fears, too, especially with naming and stuff like that, I

spk_0:   8:27
think it's kind of like an intuitive thing. You just kind of play around with different things. Could we try? Oh yeah, let's try it. All right. Awesome. Which which is which? Yes,

spk_1:   8:39
so they're both Uruguay ocurre Omata. It's a mix it to, ah, Japanese green teas. And this particular flavor is an interesting one, yet yet to shake it. It's brewed a little differently than the other types, and it has a totally different flavor than your

spk_0:   9:00
the types. And we will take pictures. And

spk_1:   9:05
so, yeah, I'll leave this one kind of like intact

spk_0:   9:08
for you guys play around with later. And so I see that there's leaves.

spk_1:   9:14
Yes, so macho is a dry powder. It's like a concentrated Korean powder that the Japanese using different ceremonies

spk_0:   9:21
and such some water with that room that night.

spk_1:   9:27
So, uh, yes, a much is a very particular flavour. So you know, some people really like it. If you're not into flavors that are really earthy, grassy, you know, than you, you might not.

spk_0:   9:41
But thank you. Yeah. Let me know what you think? Well, I'm a big T advocate. Hey, excited for this. Cheers. Cheers.

spk_1:   9:58
Yeah, and it's meant to be served ice iced. So as we have here,

spk_0:   10:04
Okay. What? So this is it's really refreshing that but it's a true moon natural too. I like that. Yeah, it brings me to the roots of the tree itself

spk_1:   10:18
being go. And the big thing with me is the feeling. So it's incredible with any spice and herbs that gives you a certain feeling. You know, certain coffees will make you feel certain ways to make you digest certain ways, but also make, like your mind in your psyche feel certainly. And I think tea perhaps has the most different. You know, in the in the any tea with the amount of teas there are on Earth, there's a range of different effects and feelings that you can get from different sorts of tea. And so I hope you feel a little kind of Zen ful with the macho.

spk_0:   10:54
It's yet it's nice. I, uh I drink a lot of March 18 actually, Awesome. I'm not happy to say I always go to Starbucks for it For most of the time, I got a green tea. Matcha quite a bit and cold, like ice star hot. Either way, it's great, but just like the machi itself, I feel like I could just, like, eat it up all the time. He's really get. It's probably not good to see that too much, but hey, it was definitely good. And so this this has much and do any others have much as well.

spk_1:   11:29
Now this is the only one that tastes, you know, quite so earthy as this one are. Other ones are Peruvian. Chai tea that sexual my grandma's

spk_0:   11:42
recipe. Yeah. You're sorry to veer off. I saw a video of you. I know your grandma was at the stove top and she was cooking. There were all these different ingredients. What? What is that? They're just like four. Yeah. Four ingredients. Yes. 04 ingredients and water. Yes, and that's all it takes to make the students Peruvian Chai tea.

spk_1:   12:07
Yes, we caught the Peruvian China, the Peruvian shy. I think we probably made up that flavor way. Did, as a matter of fact, but it's it's it's It is, you know, and at his essence is just chai and simple how the Peruvians do it with a kind of local ingredients. So it's cinnamon cloves and a niece all infused with an organic black tea. The base tea leaf is from Sri Lanka. That's grown like up in the up in the clouds, up in the nice mountaintops up there. And yeah, we infuse them on together, we boil them, and they make that. And yeah, that was that was our first flavor. That's actually the reason, you know, we started the company. And since then, we just added a couple tees. And we're excited with our new packaging to really go out to the market to test out our unique flavors.

spk_0:   12:59
So this brings me thio different questions. So it's Peruvian Chai tea? Yes. And this is Ah, recipe. That restaurant. Sorry s O. This is a recipe that has been a part of Peruvians lives. For how long?

spk_1:   13:17
Yeah. Yeah, long time.

spk_0:   13:19
Okay, So my question then is people see that it is now being marketed as pervy in China. Tea? What is the community? What Peruvians thinking of this? That's

spk_1:   13:32
a good question. Now there are a ton of Peruvians in Pittsburgh, but the ones that I've communicated the ones I do Me, I do make sure, too, you know, get to know them pretty well and what they think of the proving chai, especially the flavor. You know, they think that they all they all say it's like something they've had are some that their mothers have made. It's just a well known thing around there, and Peruvians they are very well known for They are super impressive in the international stage. To be frank, you know, even in Peru, there's not a ton to be proud of. Right mantra. Peter. That's cool, right? The Nazca Lines, the beach. You know, people talk about the food, and really, that's about, you know, soccer teams not too great. We're not to get any sports center. So Peruvians as a whole. I think that, uh, yeah, the ones I've met are like that proves being brought out in an authentic way into the marketplace. Or at least I'm attempting to do it and they definitely support it and feel the flavors true to the culture.

spk_0:   14:40
That's that's called You have that support Yeah, vehicle. So Mike actually has a question. He's meeting, That's you. Yeah, I'll swing over the mike. Mike, Uh, hey, what's up? So I have a focus in business and, like, entrepreneurship is a huge interest for me. And one of the things I wanted to get your perspective on is how you turn like everything in the world. You know, it's chaos, but you can pull it together into something does go here and an orderly, and it works for you. How did you experience that when you were coming up with tree cup the elbow? You know, the entire process. How did you get that work? Yeah, that's

spk_1:   15:27
a really good question. And it first off, I'd say it involves an outlook. I think I had a couple ingredients, like in my personality to really you know, nowadays. I've been doing this for coming on this fall two years, and I find fulfillment in it. So I think me, uh, I love sales. I usedto work for isis on knives, cut cone eyes, and you guys have heard of that? Yeah. I used to sell those knives back like the last latter half of my high school and then all my freshman year, and I really, really like sales. I developed kind of a love her sales. And so, Yeah, and another thing. I traveled a lot. My, my my parents moved a lot while growing up. So, um, kind of adapting to different people cultures and, you know, just situations. I like that. I kind of I prefer that then just, you know, a day to day, um, kind of consistent thing every day. And And yes, So those are my looks, and then another thing is, you know, I just a really deep craving toe. I just want to start my business. Ever since I was in high school since, uh, I I joined future business leaders of America. It's a club in high school, my freshman year, and I had no clue what I wanted to do with my life. Up until then, my dad might get my parents are foreign, right? So they either want me to be like a doctor and a lawyer, And, uh, but I knew, you know, ever since Senator what? I wanted to do something in business. So all those mixed together and, um, there's a reason I started Talma, which I don't talk about very often, but I'm gonna talk about it. This time. So, um, this my sophomore year in college. Ah, right before that, during being between my freshman and sophomore year for that knife selling organization, I was a manager. So I had my own office and there was a lot of work like 60 70 hours a week. And I had a lot of sales wraps and all that that I had to manage. And so it was a three month. It was like, technically, a four month position. So I just worked my butt off right for this knife selling organization. It was cool. So But, you know, I quit that at the end of summer. I'm like, Okay, well, this is the thing I did to kind of better myself, you know, to get my resume. But now I want to do something for me. And, uh, okay, then I started school. Stop selling knives and a couple weeks into school. It's Labor Day weekend, and we have Labor Day weekend off. I go to Growth City College, by the way, and I go back home and my mom makes me all my favorite foods for lunch. And there's a picture of my grandma's tea. Literally drink the whole thing on like, Mom, Let's see so good. You could sell it. And she's like, Well, you sitting entrepreneurship, why don't you? And then that's when the light bulb went off and, you know, just a couple of weeks, I think, like, a month after, you know, quitting my other business, which, you know, I a lot of responsibility there. Um, I'm like, All right, I want I want to do this. Okay? So immediately. What happened next? It was like, All right, Mom, after this, you know, let's empty out some milk. Gallons. Can you make me, like, two gallons of this team? I'm gonna take it back to Grove City to see if white people like it. And that week I was just slinging t in these little Dixie cups, you know, having people try it. And, uh, some people thought I was too sweet. We had a really sweet back then. Now it's only six grams, so it's about 20 calories worth per bottle. So very low. So we've kind of perfected the recipe since and pointed us two weeks go by. And the school I go to kind of strict and look conservative. You know if, but I got kicked out of school for smoking weed. I got kicked out for the whole semester, and it was only one month into school, and I had been working on Ah, I knew I wanted to do this teething. For the last two weeks, Ah, and I had been perfecting and really going hard at school, like all my friends had tried the tea and all the variants. And I had even had the name figure out town had labels printed. And I was really excited about moving forward with this. Even in the clients I was actually gonna use in a simulation, I got kicked out of score, and it was pretty embarrassing, you know, especially that school, small school people talking on that. But But that left me, You know, it was interesting because that whole summer I was working my butt off, right? And then I thought it would get me ahead. And I worked my butt off so much that, you know, I was just smoking a lot of weed at that time. The cope with it, I guess. And I got you know, I I got kicked out for weed and then I had four months empty. Nothing to do. I couldn't do anything. Oh, I could get a job. Sure, but what I like do I really want to go $78 an hour. And, you know, people tell me what to do with being a waiter or whatever. So I was really depressed for, like, a week and 1/2. You know, I remember, like, sleeping like, 12 hours a night. I've never done that in my life. Like a week and 1/2 strangers, just. But then after that, I'm like, All right, well, I have four months and people don't get this time to just work on whatever they want. And I had a chip on my shoulder. I needed to do something that was worthwhile to make this worth my time to make this suspension with my time. You know, um and I'm like, All right, well, I'm gonna do this. I'm gonna start this tea business. I'm gonna see how far again I had a goal. A sound like 1000 bottles by the end of the year. And so, uh, so that's when the journey began. A story with me getting suspended from

spk_0:   21:13
college. Really? That's that's an awesome bounce back story, E

spk_1:   21:21
i Well, I guess time will tell later on. I think I think perhaps the stories I've heard people getting into financial troubles, I I envision that might be a lot harder than you know, Just, you know, getting delayed in the cease desist or getting kicked out of school. But but

spk_0:   21:39
it seems like time and time again, no matter what's coming towards you to kind of disturb your path, you seem thio confront it with tenacity. Yeah, well, thank you. I appreciate that. Yeah, of course. And I want thio kind of here a little bit more about Haiti and what you're doing in there. You just got back from a trip and you went and you planted some treats. Yep. Could you talk about how many trees, how it was and what it's like to play the harmonica with a bunch of Haitians around you? Wait.

spk_1:   22:20
Yeah. So, uh, yeah, Haiti. A lot of people, you know, ask the question of how did I get in touch with Katie? They asked me, Are you Haitian? What's your roots with it? Um asked me if we grow the t in Haiti on that, you know. So while suspended, the very first vendors market I did was one that was local to my town of Evan City. How

spk_0:   22:42
quickly after your suspension was that

spk_1:   22:45
I was signed up, like, two weeks after two or three weeks after

spk_0:   22:49
that? Yeah. Yeah s. Oh, I'm sorry. What did your school think of that? Did they know that was going on? Like, Yeah, they suspended you, and then you're like, Well, we started a business like they must have supported, right?

spk_1:   23:02
Yeah. They support it. That's that's awesome. Okay. Yeah. Is there no problem? Yeah, they were supportive. You know, when I came back, I was surprised that I wasn't as judged or as, uh, It wasn't as bad as I thought. With

spk_0:   23:17
people's with people's perceptions, most things never are. Yeah, right. That's the thing. We always think things were going so much. Where is going into it, Really? All right. Everyone's gonna hate me. Yeah, but everyone's like it's not like that. Yeah, Yeah. We're not really like, uh, the the front focus of many people. Yeah, Most of the time.

spk_1:   23:39
Exactly. Exactly. You know people, we we have a tendency to make mountains out of mole hills. Well said, Uh, yes. So I'm doing this vendor show, and this is the first time I'm asking people for money in exchange for a bottle of tea. All right. And it was cool. It was actually a big Sambi festival. He was. So there's a movie called The Night of the Living Dead. It was filmed in my hometown. I live like, a mile from the cemetery, and every year all these people from around the U. S. Like, literally all around, like I had people from Cali and Texas come to this little town just that because they're big zombie fans and such. And So I had these little zombie cups that I had ordered from Ali Baba to give the tea out in to make it somehow Zombie themed. So I'm there. It's like a three day festival, and I'm selling T. I'm nervous at the beginning. I get the hang of it pointed by the third day. Uh, I have a random Ah, older gentleman in two in two young boys come up to me. They're trying to tea. It's great. They're like, sticking around. They're talking to me, and they're like, Oh, you gotta wait, my son's coming, the older gentleman said. He's like my son's coming. He's a professor. Ah, he's an entrepreneur is well, so he hold definite want to talk to you about this. He comes. His name's Dave Brower and I give all the credit to him. And it was a very serendipitous moment And keep in mind, you know, First Vendor Show ever. By now I've done like over 70. So this guy asked me about where I'm at with the business. I told them, Well, I want to attach a social cause. I wanna continue to grow and I want to see I wanted to be healthy. I want to be organic and I would like to see this in markets like whole Foods kind of premium, more premium markets. I wanted to be like the toms of beverage. There's no philanthropic beverage. I've seen, you know, from a little bit of research, and I've been thinking about different things like I'd been researching like Hurricane Irma was happening at that time. So it would be cool if on the label, it said, we donate some profits to Hurricane Irma, I like the concept of the cause. Marketing. Ah, from a business standpoint, mostly. So he told me he sits on the board of the tree planning organization. He tells me about deforestation in Haiti, and he's talking about any. See this? A businessman? Because what he really tells me is like, you know, the tea plant. A tree in Haiti. It would be pretty inexpensive. Um, if you want to do something like a one for one campaign and then I'm like, Okay, well, give me the phone number of the director of Haiti friends. He's like, Okay, and, you know, we keep talking, we keep in touch. Oh, yeah, by the, By the way, This guy's a coffee and tea distributor. He has his own business, okay? Distributing it and he's made some, you know, some pretty good money off of it. So we really connected. So I get in touch with the director of Haiti friends, and, uh, I had traveled a lot over the world. You know, Peru. I've been to the Dominican Republic. I really had a heart for developing countries. And I'm talking with him and I get to know after a bit that he's He is the grandson of the melon family here in Pittsburgh. So he's definitely got a really, really good network here. And the organizations mostly funded by, uh, you know, old money here in Pittsburgh, which I thought was cool, Right. And, um, he tells me it will be about 40 cents a tree. And at that time, I didn't know too much about the beverage industry. I'm, like, 40 cents a tramps on it gets out, like, 23 maybe $4. That's doable. So I'm like, Okay, bye. T planet tree. That's it. We're going to do that. We've been doing it ever since. A couple months later, I had gone back to school. You know, my spring semester. Edward, the director of Haiti. Friends tells me I'm going to Haiti. This day is like march, Um, for a couple of days. I'm going alone. You can come with me if you want. I'm like, OK, sweet. Definitely gonna have to do that. Just me and the director of Haiti. Friends going and it's falls literally on the whole week. The whole week of my midterms during that s o. I tell my professors I'm like I'm going to Haiti for the midterms and they were passed. But I went to Haiti. They they are like, dunk up. But they all let me dio the test. When I came back, I told them I mean, this is this was my plea. I study entrepreneurship. I'm gonna do something extremely entrepreneurial Instead of taking your midterm,

spk_0:   28:06
they should have given him a just for that, I had to take things.

spk_1:   28:13
I think about that again. But I went a film. Love with Haiti. Ah, Haiti's, um, a misrepresented country. It's a very cheerful Caribbean community that's really happy. The people are mics off French Caribbean. Which Caribbean is just a lot of dance, a lot of fun, a lot of hanging out and, you know, a little bit of Spanish and very African American, half row and fell in love and even the story of Haiti. I was inspired by it. Hey, he's the only country in the history of the world where slaves overthrew the leaders and the government, which was France of one of the, you know, the the world leaders back when they gained their independence, Haiti and they became their own country. And ever since then they've been let out let left to dry really by the rest of the world and trade and sucked of the resource is mostly in the agricultural sense, which is why they're about 80% deforested and soils eroded et cetera Said I could talk about it, but so I really had a heart Fort saw the need and thought the price was good. Me and And we became buddies right away. We're still good friends. And, yeah, we've just been planting trees ever since we pay about 10,000 trees. So far,

spk_0:   29:29
10,000 indeed. And how many have you individually touch? Seed to soil?

spk_1:   29:35
Yeah. So we, um Haiti friends has a whole staff about a dozen tree planners. So we pay them and they do the task. I think, um, you know, if I were to go down with the missionary team or something, then that's good in awe. You know, the trees would get planted, but it would be more expensive for a saying be it wouldn't be providing worked a dozen people. So me, I've only planted like, 100 to 200. And that was this past trip when we went there for

spk_0:   30:05
about two. Is that, like, just doing the act of, actually like, planning the tree, knowing that, like, this is because, like, one individual seed is but one bottle. But what was that feeling like when you plan in the 1st 1?

spk_1:   30:17
It was amazing. Uh, it was kind of mind boggling, because I don't feel like I'm doing the tough work over here, and, um, this past year, by the way, we didn't I mean, we only accounted for a very small percentage of the organizations funding, right? So it's not like we're not yet at the capacity to make a remarkable difference, although word we're scaling up to that. But I still felt, uh, they they do a lot of work. You know me, I do some decent work, but they are doing a lot of work over there. Day to day. A dozen of these Haitians work in the sun in this tree nursery every day. You know, the trees that we just come there and plant they had to plant three months ago and they had a weed around it. They had to make sure it gets watered when there's no water over there. Every single sampling, and they had to grow it to that extent. And then even that day, right when we're planning the trees that the tunnel work, it's not like we could just go outside, you know, dig a hole, put a seed. And we have these, uh, saplings that have been growing for the past three weeks over there. Um, and there's thousands, thousands and thousands. And you know, when I was there, when we were getting ready to plant trees that morning, it took him, like, 23 hours to get all the trucks loaded with the trees. And it was just a ton of work, like stacking them up to fit like 2000 per truck. And that in a loan was a ton of work. And then we had to go three hours up. The rockiest route was like we were off, Roni. And by the by the time you got up to the mountain top, you know they are the community was there waiting for us in this community. While they were while the staff was surveying the area, they were talking to all these farmers and hosting classes to teach them how to plant trees and howto fertilize them how to make sure they don't die. Ah, certain sort of, you know, natural pesticides they can use against different things. And so there they've done aton of legwork. This organization, um and really, all we have to do is just show up, do a little bit of work. And so it it was It was great to be a part of something big, but they're the ones that do a ton of work, and that just makes me feel like I'm getting a good return. You know, I'm not just getting a return on money, you know, because our company is exist to make a profit. But I'm getting a return because all these people gets our spending their time being paid to do this as well. You know, they have a job because of you know, something we're supporting. So it sze very complex. You know how everything works. And I'm kind of overwhelmed by just how much they dio. So that's what I think Whenever I'm there planning the trees, they do a lot.

spk_0:   33:07
Really. Thanks for sticking around for the last 30 minutes. Really enjoyed speaking with Mark. And I hope you all enjoyed list. The next part of this episode is called Burst. This isn't a first time for burst time, but I'm gonna break it down for So I asked Mark four different questions pretty sporadic and off the top of my head while ask him the questions we're gonna be eating Starburst Hope you guys are ready. Here we go. I'm ready. Are you ready? I'm ready. All right, let's go. So this isn't a phrase time from Bruce Farm, but we're doing it now. So what we do is we take a package starburst, and we open it up a zay opening up. I'll tell you what we're doing. So with this package Starburst, we're gonna eat him, Mike, you can have some too, Uh, s. So this pack today is a duos pack. There's, like, multiple flavors going on in here, so great. Yeah. Starburst. I'm gonna ask you some questions while we eat thes starburst sweet and we'll go from there. They could be relatively short, fast. So favorite type of tea that isn't a tree cup brand

spk_1:   34:30
kombucha uh, Kombucha tea. Really? I like all sorts of Khumbu chose if it's like a fruity sore of tea and it's a combo jump, then I'm a really big

spk_0:   34:43
fan of it. Favorite artist out of Pittsburgh uh, like every finger, anything. Is it really true that since this is favorite artist out of Pittsburgh

spk_1:   35:02
favorite artists out of Pittsburgh, I'm not, I don't know, a ton of artists out of Pittsburgh. I think Andy Warhol

spk_0:   35:10
spoke of you. I was gonna say I knew or two. But currently I'd have to say Zachary Rudder. He's a local artist who's currently thriving in the city right now. Task. He's the spread love symbol right there. The one in the middle. Check them out sometime. Okay, So if you were going to take a book on the plane to Haiti, what book would that be? Okay.

spk_1:   35:40
Kingdom of our worlds. It's actually a book about Katie Haiti's revolution and really the whole history of it. I've been recommended

spk_0:   35:51
it several times. Haven't read it yet. E here. It's like the best book on Haiti. Kingdom of our worlds. Favorite starburst flavor, orange. Really? Yeah. I don't like going personally. We still get along with what is rawness of reality mean to you?

spk_1:   36:18
Yeah, we were talking a little bit about authenticity before this. But it's just more than that. You know, I think I'm reading a book about mindfulness right now, uh, written by actually a local you should actually having on your pockets. Roddy Gibbs is his name. Roddy gives fantastic. I mean that in his talks about being in the present and, you know, meditation as a practice of trying to be in the present. Uh, so I think, you know, rawness of reality. I think the only thing we know Israel, you know, is the present. You know, that's about it. Because as and we're creating these moments organically and even when we think about the past or the future, although we're thinking you're and the were thinking in the realm of reality. But it's not reality because it's been hindered by her mind or whatever. The only thing we know anything that's really real raw is this. So that's what I think of when I think Ron, it's

spk_0:   37:16
a reality. Okay, um, that's that's really all I have for you today, Mike. Do you have anything else? All right. Yeah. I'm really glad to have you. Yeah, Thanks again. Oh, Shadow to Harlan Cole Phillips. for connecting us. Yeah, banging? Uh, yeah. You guys by some tea so he can start planning more trees. We'll see you. Cool. All right, That's nice. You like it? It's good. Good times. Good times. Indeed. Again. I enjoyed Speaker in March. I hope you guys enjoyed. Listen, I know I've taken a brief hiatus, but I'm back and better than that, Remember, Subscribed our channel Raiders five stars and tell me what you'd like to hear from me. How I'm doing and how I can improve our episodes can only get better from here. I want to give a big thank you to my campus, our production manager and Joe cow on the beats. And one more big shout out to mark. So to Maya. Thanks again for the tea. Remember, people, Every time you buy a t, he plants a tree. One tea for a tree. That sounds like a good deal to me. And remember, stay raw with reality.