Anyone can accomplish their dreams, if they put their mind to it.
Four Brantford teens proved that recently when they secured a visit to the city from The Buried Life, a group of four Canadian men who’ve made it their mission to travel across North America completing a list of 100 things to do before they die.
To win that visit, BJ Carlos, Vincent Eudemoni, Brayden Wagenaar and Nick Gallarza, had to sell more than 750 of the Buried Life’s first book, What Do You Want To Do Before You Die?
The only problem – they had three days to do it.
“I saw they were advertising their new book and I saw they had this promotion ‘Bring The Buried Life to your school,’” Carlos said. “But the deadline was in 3 days.
“It was my dream to meet them. And their idea is that if you have a dream, you should go for it. If you work really hard and you are really determined you can make it happen. And we did.”
After being turned down for help by their school and exhausting all their ideas, the St. John’s College students thought it was all over.
“We started running out of ideas and I remember the day before the deadline we said ‘maybe we should give up,’ but I said ‘man, there has to be a way to figure this out,” Carlos said.
Carlos spent the night racking his brain for ideas and as a last ditch effort, he sent an e-mail to local businesses in the hope of getting a corporate sponsor.
“This was a Hail Mary process, it was a long shot,” Carlos said. “I checked my e-mail the next morning and I had one and it was from a corporate sponsor saying they would help.”
The sponsor, which asked to remain anonymous, purchased all 750 books, securing a visit from The Buried Life in Brantford.
The Buried Life began six years ago when British Columbia-based friends Duncan Penn, Jonnie Penn, Ben Namtin and Dave Lingwood were looking for something new in their lives. They decided to borrow an RV, buy a camera off eBay and throw a party to raise money for gas so they could hit the road for two weeks and achieve their dreams.
In 2010, MTV picked up the concept, airing The Buried Life as a reality documentary series for two seasons. Over the years the men have accomplished almost everything on their list, including playing basketball with US President Barak Obama, asking pop star Taylor Swift on a date and sending their book into outer space.
In the process they pay-it-forward. After they cross something off their list, they help someone else reach their own dream.
What the Brantford teens accomplished is exactly what The Buried Life set out to inspire when they got their start six years ago, Nemtin said.
“It’s really, really great what they did,” Nemtin said. “That’s why we started the project, to prove that anyone can do anything. This is further proof that when you put your mind to something it can happen.
“People said they couldn’t do it. This is classic Buried Life.”
The Buried Life will speak in Brantford on Friday, Sept. 7 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Branlyn Community Centre. While he doesn’t like to give away too many secrets from the show, Nemtin said it will be interactive and all new.
“We tell a lot of untold stories from the last six years of The Buried Life and how the project came to be and share some funny anecdotes from the road,” he said.
Now that Carlos, Eudemoni, Wagenaar and Gakkarza have all 750 books, they need to sell them. The boys will sell the books, which double as tickets to the Sept. 7 show, on Saturday, Aug. 25 from 9 a.m. to noon at 257 Brantwood Park Rd. A rain date is scheduled for Aug. 27.
Visit The Buried Life in Brantford! Facebook page for more information or to arrange to purchase a book.