Mix Tapes Were the Playlists of My Day

Ok, the title may have you thinking ”Huh?”, but you’re just gonna have to trust me on this one.

When I was younger, I loved, loved, loved making mix tapes.  That dates me, but whatever. The point is that I would put together the perfect combination of songs on a cassette tape, flip over the cardboard insert so that I could fill it out with the titles, the artists, and (if I was really into it) the duration of the song.  98% of the time it was something to be given to some girl I wanted to impress. Not unlike looking at greeting cards, I thought that the song and its lyrics could express my thoughts better than I could myself. She would undoubtedly think, "Holy cow! how does Jake know me so well?!" The point of this potentially embarrassing fact (that will undoubtedly get a look from my wife that says “wait a second - you made those for girls before me?!”) is that I liked making mix tapes for some very basic reasons. Ultimately, those reasons could be tied to why +Project:IDWIL was created.

For me, it is about connections. What I got out of the whole process of these mix tapes was equally selfish and selfless. Selfless in that in order for me to make a tape like that, I had to know what that person was into enough that I could put together a compilation specifically for her/him. Selfish in that it gave me pleasure in that 1) I got to show off my amazing amount of thoughtfulness, and 2) I got to be the cool guy that introduced people to songs before they became popular on the radio. Either way, interpersonal connection were being made.

These days, I get my selfless/selfish fix when I connect with new people. Though it is easy to think about "how this new person can help me," when I am cognizant enough to remember that I might be able to help him/her out, things usually turn out better in the end. It's not songs that I share so much these days, but ideas, websites, apps, tv shows, blogs, videos, links, and other specific resources that I have come across that are perfect matches for my new friend's journey. In the case of Project:IDWIL, think of the end goal website to be this massive mix tape of killer interviews of amazing people that I want to share with you - you'll undoubtedly watch some of the videos and think "Holy cow, how does Project:IDWIL know me so well?!"

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