Blog Clan

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

A New Chapter

If you read the blog series I wrote about my father, then you already know he's been a prolific inventor his entire life. During his weeklong visit in February of 2012, we agreed to take one of his most promising designs, the Angle Oar, and submit it for a utility patent with the US Patent and Trademark Office.

That decision prompted a series of transitions in my own life, including leaving an attractive full-time position with a software company and launching not one, but three new business ventures. I think of them as my immediate, short-term and long-term endeavors. The "immediate" one is a marketing and consulting practice I've named MegAmuse (like this blog). MegAmuse satisfies my craving to be involved in marketing and communications in some capacity, plus it helps bring in an income. I love it. I've created websites for small businesses, helped create a marketing plan for a growing technology company, and written articles for various publications.

The second business, Health Traits, is my "long-term" project. A business partner and I are currently testing a new fitness program model in which clients identify their dominant personality trait and then have a fitness program designed to leverage those traits and corresponding behavioral patterns for maximum effectiveness. Once we've proved the efficacy of the model, the sky's the limit. We can offer the program to personal trainers, individuals, medical offices and health clubs.


 

The third business, the Angle Oar, is my medium-term business, and the one I'm most passionate about. I'm pleased to say it's moving along nicely. If you visit our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/angleoar) you can see how the oar works. I really believe in my core that this new paddle will revolutionize kayaking as we know it. While that's exciting on it's own, it will also open the sport to thousands of new enthusiasts. Specifically, people with certain physical disabilities who've not been able to kayak before will now be able to do so. That's because the Angle Oar virtually eliminates the strength and energy required to paddle the kayak, unlike its traditional predecessor which requires a lot of upper body and back strength. The oar is mounted on a unit that makes it "weightless," therefore requiring very minimal effort by the user to gently rotate and paddle the kayak.

I am blessed to be in good health, with no physical limitations other than the aches of pains of getting older (and playing too much soccer), however I can imagine how liberating and exciting it would be to have access to a whole new sporting arena if I were to have mobility issues or a paralyzed limb, for instance. The Angle Oar holds that potential. Not only are the strength issues greatly mitigated, but the oar can actually be managed with a single hand or arm. I tried it on my most recent kayak outing. It wasn't without some challenge, but it was definitely doable.

Throughout this transition, the most gratifying part has been that my father is still with us. When he visited a little over a year ago, he was recovering from major surgery. A few months later, he had pneumonia. I honestly didn't think he'd still be with us, but he is. I think the sense of purpose we share in getting the Angle Oar to market is an important part of the reason why, and I am determined to make it successful, not for me, but for him.

If you feel compelled to help in this endeavor, please visit our Facebook page, Like the page, and Cast Your Vote in the naming poll: Is it a paddle or is it an oar.  Thank you!

 

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