On the 2 August 2009 I started my long Tshirt Trade with Eric and Eran of Springleap. What an epic long trade it's turned out to be: a whole 2 years and 4 days to date.
We threw a competition to design the official onematchstick Tshirt. And then I traded nearly a hundred in a few weeks of launching the code to track the trades. Then things slowed down...
I am often asked if I think I made a mistake making this trade. I don't believe I have. I made it for very specific reasons, which will unfold as I progress with my future trades. And though I did not think that it would be such a difficult (at times), and long process to trade on the 375 T-shirts (especially such awesome, funky, designer T-shirts like Springleap T's), I will finish this trade. And soon!
To keep myself motivated and show the few nay-sayers my commitment to this trade, I pledged on 27 August 2010 to only wear Springleap T-shirts until I finished this trade. That meant that every day I would put on a Springleap T-shirt, and remind myself of my mission. And then it was easy too to show a sample to people I met who expressed interest in trading with me.
And I have kept that pledge to date. And will for however long it takes me to trade the last remaining 27 T-shirts.
I had some challenges with this dress-code pledge in the last year. Like when I had business meetings to go to – I soon learnt how to "corporatize" my T-shirts. Then there was a formal wedding a friend asked me to attend as his date. I hired a Tuxedo Tailcoat and added high heels, to dress up my T-shirt for that occasion. And then the elegant Feather Awards, where I was a finalist, I dug out my glitzy poncho that I got on my travels to India for a friend's wedding.
Recently I noticed that I’ve developed a certain "look". After starting my own podcast show with my friend and co-host Jack, I started looking for mentors to help develop my skills. I've been getting some inspiration from watching TV talk shows, and often catch the Ellen DeGeneres show while I have lunch. And then I noticed how my pledge has led me to pick up an "Ellen look".
Living in jeans and a T-shirt and a blazer sure is comfortable. And even though it's comfy, I am so looking forward to finding my own look again, and exploring some girly-girl dresses this summer, and less of the T-shirts and jeans.
So, with only 27 T-shirts to go, I am wondering if I'll manage to trade them all by the end of the month – making it a yearlong Pledge and a 2 years and one month Trade. I have this Adventure Talk coming up, these 3-way trades, and also the Tattoo Picnic Party to help finish this trade.
Do you think I can do it?