For that question, everything. One word gives the mind a window into what a brand is, means, and stands for. For the little rag tag group of veterans, it was coming down to what we would call our little venture. But first, a few introductions.
Enter the “commo guy” as they call me. For my civilians out there, “commo” is just short for communications. If you’re a Marine, then it looks more like COMO (I think), which just means communications officer. For us, that would be a SIGO, or signal officer. Anyhow, getting off track. I was added to the conversation because I knew “tech” as they put it. Generous, but I’m just an avid fan and I was good with the gear I used while wearing the uniform.
Enter Craig, a combat medic. A short but now rather built guy, balding, father of more than a few kids. I remember when he got his EFMB (Expert Field Medical Badge) and then all sorts or doors opened up. He was at HHC (Headquarters and Headquarters Company) with Rob and me. I’ll get to the other two next.
Now there’s Michael, who from what I understand was in Alpha company and an infantryman as well. I didn’t know him very well, but the other guys appeared to, so a brother to them is a brother to me. It was all good.
Finally, there’s Rob, nicknamed “the Sauce” because of his last name. Scout/sniper, good dude, a dad, pretty hard core, had a bit of a GQ look to him, and was good with the ladies. Smooth talker and operator. He has a prominent role in this story, so he’ll pop up in more than one occasion throughout this tale. Keep your eyes peeled.
So now, Rob and I joined this group chat on Facebook setup by Craig and Michael. From what I gathered stumbling into this, it was more of a couch surfing website/app for veterans who appeared in the same unit or had served together. I’m actually still not entirely sure. Yet, that’s the direction it was going, so I offered advice in the development realm having worked for a software company near my alma mater for about a year and became educated on the process.
Some of the names that came from brainstorming were borderline absurd and some were limited to the horrible sense of humor that most people who have served in some capacity have.
- Battle buddy travel buddy
- 3hotzandacot.com (which was mentioned about what it would sound like if misspelled/typed)
- Traveling battle buddy (like the traveling gnome)
- Couch timeshare
- Battle buddy bed and breakfast
Those were some of the names thrown out there. The idea was to offer a site where people could open their homes to traveling veterans. And looking back on it, it was a very Airbnb-esque concept before I even knew anything about that site or made the connection.
Get on a map. Point. Click. See what’s available on your travel route.
Simple and to the point, even for the more computer and tech-illiterate out there.
The last thing said by Michael was that he had to bounce given, as he said, “being drug against his will to go see lights at the Denver zoo with my wife’s family…” and of course “I’ll try not to kill the animals.”
Shortly after one of the team had to go, we setup a time to talk and headed to our first brainstorm session. Keep in mind, that brainstorm session would evolve into something almost completely different, but the title of the project was really on track to set our actual path and plan in motion.
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