Po the Pathfinder: origins

Po the Pathfinder

I owned a VW Golf while we lived in Germany. I loved that car. It was simple. No crazy gadgets. No power steering. No air conditioning. No fuel injection. No power brakes. Just car.

I loved that car, alas, it didn't make sense to bring it back to the states with us. Unfortunately, people rarely buy those old cars so we had to junk it. My heart broke into a million pieces that day.

Today, back in the colonies, we are lucky to have added a baby to the family. This meant, though, that we were about to outgrow our 2000 Honda CR-V.

The search for a new car was on. We knew right away what type of car we needed; fuel efficient vehicle with third row seating. We narrowed it down to three contestants:

  • 2016 Honda Pilot
  • 2013+ Volvo XC90
  • 2013+ Nissan Pathfinder

We loved the Pilot. I preferred the boxy styling of the pre 2013 models while the newst 2016 model had some impressive safety features. Unfortunately, the older generation had pretty bad small-overlap crash results. As for the new models, well, it was out of our budget.

We've come a long way, financially, but new cars are still out of our reach for now. Which isn't a bad thing, honestly. Used cars, when properly sourced, can be a better purchase per dollar. Used cars also help educed carbon footprint and all kinds of other neat "green" stuff.

Anyway, The Volvo XC90 is a great car. When it comes to the safety of my family, I knew the XC90 was the best fit. Unfortunately, used versions are very difficult to find.

The Nissan Pathfinder. I was a little miffed that Nissan went the route of the crossover. The Pathfinder used to be this bad ass thing of a car. Now, it had succumbed to peer pressure; it cut off its mullet and put on some khakis and polo. But, it was ok... because, in a sense, so had I.

I once owned a 300ZX, which was also a wonderful car. But, along with my Golf, those days are gone. I need a safe family car. It is part of loving someone else more than yourself; you do more for them than for yourself. And that's ok because you love the crap outta them anyway.

So, when I test drove the Pathfinder for the first time, there was this familiarity. The Pathfinder and I had both recently grown up. We knew each other's history because it was the same.

The wife and I searched the interwebz and found a good option at our local CarMax. We decided on the Platinum trim because of how much we go on family trips. It was more about making our trips more comfortable and fun than anything.

I test drove the car and immediately decided it was meant to be. Po the Pathfinder and I understood each other; we were kindred spirits.

The kids gave him his name. Named after Po from Kung Fu Panda, they thought it appropriate because of how much larger the Pathfinder is compared to the last family car, the Honda CR-V. Other than Nissan being a Japanese company while Po is technically Chinese, the name kinda fits. Po the Panda becomes the Dragon Warrior and learns so much about himself, much like myself and the Pathfinder brand. It actually works out as a name.

So, Po the Pathfinder is the newest member of the family transport. We're glad to have him. He's a fun car to drive. The styling is starting to grow on me. Let's see what kind of adventures we can get ourselves into...


I heart pens
When I have an emergent idea or thought that I need to record, I usually do it on paper. I have a subscription to Evernote, Dropbox, Google Drive. I even keep a private Github repo available for simple text notes.

Still, the first place I go to mind dump is paper. Specifically, my Field Notes notebook. I love my Field Notes notebooks; they're a good size for pockets, they wear beautifully, and the paper feels great to write in.

Along with always carrying a notebook, I always carry a pen as well. I once preferred pencil but I found them unreliable for everyday pocket reliability.

I used to carry Pilot Precise click-top. I loved the fine line I could write with these pens. They were a huge improvement over ball point pens, in my opinion. Still, I wanted finer.

Eventually, I found the Pilot G2 ultra fine tip! This little guy is pretty much my standard pen now.

I also enjoy using the Zebra F-301, the Fisher Space Pen, and the Uni-Ball Signo.

Even though the Zebra is a medium tip ball point, it still feels pretty good. I'm not much of a ball point person so I don't really explore much.

The Fisher Space Pen is just a great pocket pen. Although, I get some odd looks when I pass through security checkpoints.

The Uni-Ball Signo is actually very interchangeable with the G2. It really depends what I have within reach.