Guest Post: Agam’s Birthday Project

Today’s guest post is from Agam Rafaeli (pictured in the hat), who will introduce himself below. I (Cary) had the chance to meet him at the recent wedding of Joey and Rebecca Katona, when Joey told me that Agam was someone he particularly wanted me to meet. In the spirit of the post below, Agam and I were both eager to make a new friend and connect around our mutual love of Joey. So we slipped away from the band during the reception and spent a little time getting to know each other.
When we then connected through Facebook, I found out two cool things about Agam immediately. The first is that he writes his Facebook posts in four languages — Hebrew, Arabic, English and Spanish. And second, I came upon a fabulous birthday project that Agam is doing, and I signed up! Here’s Agam’s story:


Call me “Agam” or “Raphael” if you can’t figure out how to pronounce “Agam.” If we were sitting across from each other sipping beer I’d ask you what you do and what you are interested in. As this post can only be a monologue I don’t have that privilege. There is no doubt that you would ask me the same, though as this is a monologue I am able to answer.


My name is odd because I’m Israeli. My English phrasing is a bit off because most of the time I think in code as I’m a programmer. Most of the things I do are practical because that is the way I have become since endeavoring to be an entrepreneur. Though most important for this post you should know that in two days I will be celebrating my 26th winter with family, friends and Facebook friends. Instead of the usual birthday party at home or at a bar I decided to do something different.


From a young age I knew I enjoyed connecting people. Over the years it has been hard getting me presents and as it turned out the best present of all was when I had surprise birthday parties. This year instead of me being surprised to have all of my friends meet me I’m doing something a little different. Below is the post I wrote on Facebook to gather people for the project. After the dust settles, I promise to write again with conclusions.


—————The Original Post —————-

This year in order to celebrate 26 years of life I want to connect between friends of mine — but on a much larger scale than a party in my apartment. If you are willing to give me an hour of your time as a birthday present then I can promise back that that will make me very  happy. Over the years I found out that I love connecting people. This is going to require some cooperation from you but hopefully this will be enjoyable for everyone. So what does this actually require of you:

1. Sign up at this link. (Sorry, SPACIOUS people… Agam is only matching people he already knows since he wouldn’t know who to match you with. Surely we should do our own version of this some time.)


2. After receiving an intro e-mail from me you will proceed to coordinate a meeting with the person I set you up with. Know that this is a friend of mine from another time and place in my life; more likely than not you won’t know much more. You can see this as a random conversation you could have had at a party that I would have conducted.


3. Spend 45 minutes speaking to the person that I set you up with. Face to face or Skype, whatever works for you. Talk with them about whatever you wish; as much as I care you can even avoid asking them where they live or what their name is.


4. After that meeting send me an e-mail (or call me) and tell me one or two things that you learned from meeting that person. Knowing that this kind of thing makes me happy on a daily basis and probably you have already seen me try to create something like this before.


5. Receive lots of love from me on being a friend and willing to participate in my birthday project.


That’s it! As he said, Agam will update us on how this all goes from his perspective, and I’ll write my own update on meeting a friend of Agam, who is — as I said — a friend of Joey. The “friend of a friend” ripples continue.