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"The Buried Life" - What do You Want to Do Before You Die?

  • Date: Tuesday, October 7, 2014
  • Time: 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
  • Location: Valders Hall of Science, #206

The Buried Life (TBL) originated in 2006 when four now-twenty-something's - Ben Nemtin, Dave Lingwood, Duncan Penn and Jonnie Penn - set out in an old RV to complete a list of "100 Things We Want To Do Before We Die," and help out strangers along the way accomplish something on their own lists.

Originally from Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, the foursome pulled a borrowed '57 Dodge Coachman RV out of a field which lost five of its six tires on the road, bought a secondhand camera for $100 on eBay and hit the road for two weeks to see how many items they could check off their list. 

On their journey, TBL, approached people to ask the question, "What do YOU want to do before you die?"

The name, The Buried Life refers to a poem written in 1852 by British poet, Matthew Arnold, in which he says our daily life becomes so cumbersome that our REAL life becomes buried - and we each have a longing to live our "buried life". Jonnie Penn studied the poem in an English class at the time the team was formed, and soon the name stuck. 

By 2008, after three years of pursing their list, building an online community and funding it through sponsorship and working extra jobs, TBL, had people from more than 139 countries participating in their website, without any promotion or marketing. 

In mid-2008, MTV's Reveille's Howard T. Owens helped the team check off #53: Make a TV Show, by capturing the four in a reality show, in real time with no manipulation and no assistance from MTV, except for cameras rolling.

Presenting will be Duncan Penn, eldest Penn brother and honors graduate, founded an NGO with the goal of introducing soccer to kids around the world who have experienced the ravages of war. With three others, Penn successfully delivered 1,000 soccer balls and pairs of cleats to impoverished children in Ecuador and helped build two soccer fields near Mount Chimborozo. Penn's work has inspired Rwanda and Uganda to adopt similar programs and now working towards building eco sustainable soccer fields.

Jonnie Penn, who spent his high school days filming snowboard and skate videos with his friends, became an award-winning filmmaker by age 18. The accomplished activist, philosopher and writer was chosen to represent Canada at the Oxford University Debate Championships. Penn delighted in playing the role of devil's advocate at McGill University while he was in attendance.  

Free with CAF; $10.00 without. Presented by SAC Leadership & SAC Homecoming.

Questions? Contact Mary Weis, SAC Leadership, 563-387-2000