Purveyor of RAD #0021: Mike Weybret
6 months ago, Mike Weybret quit his job and moved into his new home, The John Muiracle. Originally from Lodi California, Mike is taking to his strengths as a filmmaker and director to produce a documentary of his own. We spent the day with Reverend Mike as he was passing through Los Angeles to hear about life on the road. Watch the video below as Weybret blurs the lines between passion and profession.
Where are you from originally?
Born and raised in Lodi, Ca. Famous for being one of those places you think you may have driven through on your way somewhere else more interesting. We also make a damn fine Zinfandel.
Can you give us a HIGH and a LOW of the week?
The high has got to be a hike I did with my cousin a few days ago. This little peak called Inspiration Point by Lake Alpine, it has a breathtaking panoramic view of the Sierras.
The low is probably my hangover this morning. My little home town has farmers markets in the summer and they tend to turn into a bit of a High School reunion. It’s rough right now.
When did you first get into photography and filming?
I first started making movies as a way to get out of writing essays in high school. I did it once and I had a few teachers give me the green light on doing videos instead of the other assigned projects. Big kudos to them for that. Storytelling is a passion of mine, so doing that through photos and videos just seemed natural, it was a while before I realized that people do this for a living.
We understand you are making your way to your home town to film a documentary. Can you tell us more about it?
Yeah! My family owns the local newspaper here in Lodi, or did until recently, so I journalism has always been a big interest of mine. This documentary is going to use my close access to the Lodi News-Sentinel to get an inside look at the state of modern journalism, especially when it comes to local newspapers, in the digital age. Everybody knows it is tough times in the printed news business, but I really wanted to know why that is and what are the ramifications of that.
It’s a topic that a lot of people are surprised to hear me talk about I guess. But I love newspapers. I really believe an informed public and freedom of the press are crucial to any democratic government. Though taking over the family newspaper wasn’t my calling my dad still says I’ve “got ink in my veins.”
When can we expect to see this new documentary?
We are hoping to be finished with it by the end of this year. Then it depends on a few things when it will be released. So hopefully it will be viewable in some form next year.
Your instagram community @dosomethingcool is RAD I want to live in every photo.
How would you like to see this community grow?
Thanks! As I said, I LOVE storytelling, hearing where people are from, how they got here, and where they are headed. Do Something Cool started as a little self motivator to inspire me to go do cooler things that will make for a life full of better stories. I hope people are inspired to do the same and to share their stories with me. My dream is to act like an online campfire for people to gather around and share.
Let’s talk about #thejohnmuiracle! Where the heck did you find this thing?
Shit it wasn’t easy thats for sure. I had been passively looking at vans and campers for about a year before I decided this is something that I couldn’t let be a pipe dream any longer. On a tip I started looking at Toyota Chinooks and after 2 months of actively “house hunting” I found this beauty up in Reno. The guy I bought it from, Ed, was a piece of work. He left me with two pieces of advice: check the oil and brake fluid twice a month, and never do acid in a coconut tree.
Where is the raddest place you’ve been since you moved in?
The Urban Barrels HQ.
And then it is a great big tie for second place. Death Valley for New Years Eve was all time, weird few days ripping motor bikes and almost burning my man Dylan hair off at midnight. I recently went to Yosemite, a pilgrimage for any Californian, and that place will never not take my breath away. My cousin Kate and I got a tour of the area from some new friends Lydia, Jillian, and Raven. I will be sharing something about that trip soon. I am really looking forward to driving to Alaska in a month (wow is it that soon... shit!).
What are some challenges to living life on the road?
Damn near everything haha! There aren’t a lot of easy things when it comes to living in a camper, especially an older one. Can I sleep here? Am I going to get rolled? Can I pee in those bushes? Where can I shower? You don’t have space, stuff breaks, and sometimes I feel like I am living at various coffee shops as opposed to “the road.”
But everybody has challenges and things to worry about. This set of challenges happen to be getting me really stoked right now.
What are some of the most rewarding aspects of living/being on the road?
The ability to solve all your own problems yourself is really freeing; a simple, self contained life style gives you that.
Another thing I noticed is how much it attracts like minded people. It is funny having old dudes at gas stations chat me up and tell me “My chick and I had one just like this back in ’79, man!” People are really stoked to meet somebody living outside the norm, seeing them light up keeps me really jazzed. I can’t even begin to think about how many friends it has brought into my life.
What are you most looking forward to this summer?
Well next week I am taking the PCH from San Fran to San Diego. As of now I have a few trips planned, backpacking in various parts of the Sierras. A wedding in August to see one of my best friends get hitched to this total kook named Derrik (Ha!). Then the day after that I am headed to Alaska. So hit me up as I pass through your town and lets make some stories!