As it can be easily deduced by the content here, I have a colorful life that is filled with many unique characters and experiences. One such character is Nathan Ormes who has known me since I was 2 years old. In the 90’s Nathan and I fought city hall, ran all over the country involved in political activity and started a few businesses. One such business was a company called Cliffhanger Research and Development, and the primary product at that time aside from an invention called the Torque Socket Extension was a line of T-shirts that was set to compete with No Fear Gear.
Nathan and I presented our line of T-shirts to the McCormick Center in Chicago at the Imprinted Sportswear Show in 1994 and were set to establish our base of operations in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. We had a good idea that was very lucrative. My T-shirt designs were so lucrative that I often sold the shirts right off my own back, literally. The inspirational sayings on them evoked that type of emotion from people, so Nathan and I took all the money we had and went to the show in Chicago not even having enough money for a hotel room while in town. We slept in the car at the dock by Meigs airfield watching the planes take off and land all night.
We had a few offers for consignment deals, one that was very lucrative, but it basically took away our creative rights to the company which wasn’t in our best interest, so we walked away from the show with our company and our rights, but no national deal. Soon after, several law suits for other business endeavors tied up our free time and cash for years and our idea for Cliffhanger Research and Development was shelved for a while as Nathan met his current wife and moved to South Western Kentucky and we parted ways. I took the name of Cliffhanger and made a character in my first novel called The Symposium of Justice to pay tribute to our original business idea of always having ideas that pushed the edge of innovation. Cliffhanger was in my novel the personification of an OVERMANWARRIOR.
Nathan however took a different path which can be seen in these documents presented here culminating in his 15 plus year quest to pursue his own dream and make good on the Cliffhanger name. Nathan has started the Cliffhanger Ranch Adventure Outpost in Southern Virginia, deep in the heart of moonshine country to provide a retreat for Americans to take a step back in time and relish in the meaning of what traditional America is all about. Such ideas do take money, and the work below is a result of Nathan’s business plan to raise the capital, but for my readers here, I provide a peak.
For me there is nothing more wonderful than when a person refuses to take his eyes off the ball and wrestles an idea all the way to completion, and for Nathan this is a big task that has required leaping over a gauntlet of hurdles to arrive at this point in time. I am scheduled to go down there during the summer for a meet the press event where I’m going to do some whip tricks and generally create a fair amount of publicity and chaos to help launch this new endeavor. And as I prepare for that show, it brings comfort to my mind that the Cliffhanger name not only lives on in books, but also in a ranch that is dedicated to preserving America in all the fashion that it was intended.
It gives me great pride to see that my friend has made good on his promise not only to me, to his family, but to himself to let nothing stand in his way and to bring to life the seeming impossibility of a dream that grew roots around a kitchen table designing T-shirts.
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