6 days ago

Most of you know that I create a little milk tea company called Boba Guys. It started out as a popup shop serving out the bar of a ramen restaurant and it didn’t make a lot of money, but it was fun. It’s grown since then. Business has been booming and I’ve been able to hire a few people (there’s 9 of us now and growing!).

Today I’m happy to announce that we are opening a second store in Union Square! Our second store is twice as big as our first store and we’re trying to make an incredible test kitchen/laboratory in the back. The stuff of dreams!

But I need your help. We don’t have any investors and all the money we’ve put into it has been from our own life savings. We know it will work (see store 1) but we don’t have enough cash flow to make it crazy awesome. Our backup plan is to make it medium awesome, but life’s too short for that.

Building this company has been a long time in the making for me. I always thought it would be some whiz-bang get-rich-quick startup I’d build or latch onto, but instead I built Boba Guys. The nights are just as long, but it’s been a rewarding experience meeting so many people who genuinely love what I’m doing here and know how passionate I am about building a company that is worth a damn.

To be totally honest with you, I don’t know how this will all turn out; maybe it will be a bust a few years down the road, maybe sooner. But I wanted to take my shot, and I wanted to do it publicly so that when I’m old I can say that I gave it my best.

So if you have a moment, please take a look at our Kickstarter for Boba Guys Labs. I’ve created some cool rewards too (we never do merch, so now’s your chance!).

How can you help?
A pledge would be nice, but even sharing what we post on our Facebook or posting on your tumblr goes a long way to helping us realize our dreams.

Thanks so much for taking the time to read this, supporting me, and hey…never forget your beginner’s spirit.

Boba Guys Labs: A New Way To Experience Boba Milk Tea

1 month ago

Having fun in the studio.

1 month ago
My first photo taken with the new camera. Kit lens is pretty nice, can’t wait to see how the 35mm f1.4 performs.

My first photo taken with the new camera. Kit lens is pretty nice, can’t wait to see how the 35mm f1.4 performs.

3 months ago
New blade.

New blade.

4 months ago
A nice little cafe I spotted in Shimokitazawa.

A nice little cafe I spotted in Shimokitazawa.

4 months ago

My 10 Favorite Jawnz from 2013 (in order of appearance)

  1. Boba Guys Mug - I drink all my milk tea and coffee from this mug. You can only get this at the Boba Guys store (for now).
  2. MAKR Plant Ring - Stylish way to hang your succulents. Left some pretty big holes in the wall when I moved out…oops.
  3. Michael Frimkess - I’ve obtained a decent amount of art in my time, but this was my first significant piece of art that might be worth something someday. People either love it or hate it, which is how art should be.
  4. Pia Wallén cross blanket - Classy heirloom domesticated stuffs. Ladies love it.
  5. Tibor Kalman, Perverse Optimist - The definite tome on Tibor Kalman. Endlessly curious, sensitive and a designer’s designer.
  6. Rapha Hooded Top - The perfect jacket for riding around in San Francisco. I wear this almost every day and the black colorway has been the best one they’ve done.
  7. iPad Mini Retina - Glad I waited for the retina mini instead of getting the iPad Air. For me, this is the best form factor and I shelled out for the LTE version so I rarely carry my laptop day to day now.
  8. Band of Outsiders suit - They basically employed Martin Greenfield’s expert suit-making experience with slimmer cuts. I have a couple of these suits now but finally replaced my go-to black suit this year.
  9. Eddy Merckx - Sex on two wheels.
  10. Tea People - I’ve been brewing my own tea blend in the evenings. It is still pretty strong as far as caffeine goes, but you don’t crash as hard as a cup of coffee late in the day.

Runner ups: Snow Peak umbrella, Evernote, Supreme sunglasses, Bonavita electric kettle with digital temp, and Timbuk2 Raider Pack.

4 months ago

I’ve been meaning to overhaul jawnz.com into this cool concept that’s still under wraps, but I guess that will have to wait until 2014. Here’s a mini update of jawnz on heavy rotation (though the snowpeak thermos has now gone missing).

4 months ago

We made some decent breakfast this morning.

6 months ago

My girlfriend’s grandfather wrote an autobiography of his life. It’s printed on standard printer paper, spiral-bound and not very fancy: using simple words when simple words were needed. He was one of the first asians to attend and graduate Harvard University. He never learned to swim and consequently it took him hours to pass his compulsory swim test before they would give him his diploma. I never got the chance to meet him. But it chronicled a lifetime full of achievement. It got me thinking about my own accomplishments, and more importantly, my own experiences.

To paraphrase Rob Honeycutt, did I still have the excitement of youth; big eyes ready to drink it all in?

In September I visited my family and ate good BBQ in Austin, took the Boba Guys team out bowling, recognized that Biddenly was growing beyond what I could offer, worked with IDEO on rebranding Timbuk2, watched Charles Bradley sing his heart out, started preliminary research and development on a yoga product, went into escrow on a 2nd Boba Guys location, visited Virginia for the first time for a wedding, and in between dancing and oysters was able to sneak out and ride a bicycle along lonely and dark streets, to enjoy the wind on my face.

7 months ago