Introducing Our Blogbook - Consisting of Imagined and Unimaginable Adventures for the Open-minded

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From the very moment of its preternatural conception, Raven Vanguard was destined to be a contradictory and kaleidoscopic creature; one artfully obscured in paradox, shadow, and inscrutability.

So here’s where I let the proverbial tongue-thieving black cat out of my dime bag of magic tricks by divulging our intensely personal reasons for creating these Ravings revealing the authentic heart and soul of Raven Vanguard.

Although known more for my foresight rather than any sense of conventional restraint, I freely admit that the idea of utilizing a non-business-focused blog in connection with my livelihood had long been an anathema to my current way of thinking. My initial reservations were seemingly right on the money, especially for a blog like the one I ultimately envisioned for Raven Vanguard in which we would be unafraid to take on the world at large by unmasking the neverending cavalcade of perpetrators of cheaply and savagely done dirty deeds.

Surely, if mixing business with pleasure was a bad idea, it must necessarily follow suit that combining business with, say, social awareness is an equally bad idea. More to the point, isn’t mixing business with anything but business a foolhardy notion? Unquestionably, business is no doubt incompatible with everything but those commercial activities that are related or interconnected with the operation of the business itself; am I wrong? Of course I was wrong, but, unfortunately, it has taken me a lifetime of consternation to realize just how wrong I was in steadfastly maintaining this myopic viewpoint.

Let me explain more fully my profound, forward-looking, adult realization.

You see, way back when I was in the equivalent of seminary school, there were persons there all dressed in Benedictine black who put forth the kindly proposition, well perhaps it was intended to be more of a hopeful suggestion, that I could, if adequately pardoned, solicit the good Lord with prayer. Then along came Jim, who made it more than absolutely clear that no one then living could ever petition the Lord with prayer. Damn straight, Mr. Mojo Risen’. Welcome to the Soft Parade, unless of course, you would prefer to revisit those wickedly weird scenes conjured from inside that troublesome gold mine from which no one ever escaped alive. Strange days, and screaming butterflies indeed; my deep subconscious mind trip had only just begun.

So, what does any of this ecumenical absurdity have to do with Raven Vanguard and our Blogbook Ravings? Well, everything, if, like me, you were around during that turbulent summer of 1969, brimming with civil unrest, when Jim Morrison’s rhapsodically lamenting bellow first burst across the airwaves screaming out that apocalyptic phrase “You cannot petition the Lord with prayer!” I know that Morrison and The Doors had a similar effect on others my age, and they turned many illiterate fuck-offs like myself into would-be writers, poets, sophists, radical thinkers, and artists. In other words, Sanctuary, The Doors, and the music of my youth generally, seemingly offered the promise of eternal sanctuary (or, was that Genesis?) to save entire future generations of awakening and inquisitive minds from those transgressions of an abysmal kind that had been wrought upon the world as a whole by prior generations. Were we naïve? Undoubtedly so, but nobody ever promised that one’s perceptions of the mind were infallible. Now getting back to my overall point.

I became a lawyer in large part because it allowed me to pursue my passion for writing, but in ways that economically speaking made much more sense to me at the time. Be that as it was, as creative as my legal writing may have been, I couldn’t quite candidly and openly express every little thing I had rattling around inside of my head. Well, I surely couldn’t speak my mind as freely, and as creatively, as I wanted without facing the possibility of getting myself disbarred as a consequence of exercising my freedom of expression most thoroughly.

Make no mistake about this, the practice of law is not for the fainthearted. Admittedly, it can be a highly cutthroat, antagonistically dehumanizing, and unduly profit-centered business that routinely rewards heartlessness and treachery; it is frequently filled with contemptible pitfalls, drawbacks, entanglements, and irreconcilable dualities. It is a business that requires never-ending vigilance by the practitioner if you hope to avoid being entirely subsumed by its attendant greed, lack of morality, double-dealing hypocrisy, and unbridled bullshit. It is a business that ensnares the unwitting into becoming business generators and marketing specialists only rather than enlightened masters of the craft of law. It is a business built upon the codependency of convolutional extremes that seem only to provoke our baser tendencies. Moreover, it is a profession capable of making one wholly delusional because the business part of it can be so disillusioning.

Being perfectly honest, every profession has its good and evil, and varying shades of a little bit of this, a whole lot more of that, and a bloated boatload of every other thing imaginable. At about the time my precious Daughter came into this world, I began to imagine unfettering myself from the drudgeries of practicing law. Then, along comes Brooke, my guiding light, and, with her, my confidential mandate from God herself. Shortly after that, I suffered a significant health setback which further cemented this notion of transitioning into something else; I had often heard that overcoming a severe illness promotes personal growth, and, in my case, this was absolutely true.

With my eyes now wide open to the vastness of life, it was time to atone for my misdoings by making this world a better place. And not by merely submitting or surrendering myself to that particular someone who so regally practices the enthralling craft of the Seven Realm Arts deep within the darkening woods at the far end of the Path known fittingly as Primrose. Although admittedly this enticing subject might be ripe for discussion in a future Raving, or while sitting down with une maîtresse femme over a bourbon, or six.

When Brooke and I first started to discuss and explore, and finally give birth to our idea/dream/obsession that is Raven Vanguard, we knew intuitively that Raven Vanguard would be our perfect opportunity to speak unreservedly, honestly, and with authority, about our grievances with the world at large. That, and to once and for all give meaning to, and put into oh so many flourishing words, rapturous phrases, and indecipherable passages, the revelations of the grandiose choir of clamoring voices swirling about my brain. Yet, and this point is crucial, we were raised to believe that one should never criticize, or offer criticism, without simultaneously proposing or suggesting a means of mitigation, an answer, or possible remedy. So while we do passionately speak our piece through our Ravings, we also take the time to provide our two cent’s worth of compassionate and suitable solutions.

However, in spite of our benevolent intentions, we had hurdles to overcome with such an approach. You see, one of the very first commandments in business school is that one should never ever mix business and one’s livelihood and occupation with religion, spirituality, social or cultural concerns, sexuality, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, race, ethnicity, the annihilation of Indigenous Peoples, or politics. Business and corporate logic, as well as mainstream commerce, make this subject matter entirely taboo.

But now personally ask yourself reflectively whether topics such as these should indeed be forbidden in today’s global business conversation? That is if we expect this broadening conversation to be forthright, meaningful, and qualitatively productive. In Raven Vanguard’s opinion, this historically ingrained way of thinking is very antiquated and long overdue for a complete makeover.

Thus, because we proudly stand in defiance of all archaic taboos, our Ravings are a large part of our identity, and gracefully emerge out of the wellspring of Raven Vanguard’s collective connected consciousness. And judging by the wonderful and overwhelming reception given them by our readers, we are confident we are doing the right thing and doing it at the right time. And although our readers sometimes disagree with our take on things, the conversations and give-and-take we have had with you have helped open our eyes even more fully, and, hopefully, as we move onward, our voices will prove to be even more uncompromising, unflinching, and understandable.

Still, being outspoken and having something meaningful to say are not necessarily equivalent. Often not even remotely in the same ballpark. The reality is that many outspoken people while having plenty to say, in truth, say very little. We are not those people. What this world desperately needs more of are straightforward talkers and good-deed-doers who offer intelligible, reasoned, and useful answers and solutions to a rising tide of seemingly insurmountable nonsense, foolishness, and lies. I am no straight-laced monastic or acolyte, nor, on the other hand, am I an ardent fan of Beelzebub. That said, even if you perceive me more like a heretic or schismatic, I still have plenty to say. Listen or don’t, that’s your call; I couldn’t care less because, when all is said and done, it’s not my ass that needs saving. Wake up world. Hold yourself accountable. Join the struggle.

Oh yeah, and from time-to-time, we might actually talk about our undying love of design, and of all things music. Stay tuned. But take heed, in my maniacal mind, I am still the stuff of legend, so when tuning in, you best hold on tight, because our ride together promises to be wild and, at times, unsettling, though oh so fucking mysterious and magical.

- Thomas Moll, Co-Founder and Creative Director of Raven Vanguard Design Studio, LLC.