AmiCOUR IP Group News and Opinions

Allen's Journey:
Gas Guzzling SUV Meets Allen's Solar Cells


Welcome to the AmiCOUR IP Blog.  We invite your comments.  Past Issues.

October 12, 2011 - 26 year old Chris Allen has a mission:  To walk across America. He started in New England and just entered Illinois. His web site,, is not particularly political, no point to prove. He didn't even invent the idea. Chris doesn't have any corporate sponsors but plenty of smart marketers would be well advised to latch on to him. Chris just wants to walk across our country. Nothing more, nothing less.

How did this writer meet Chris? The story begins with a 4 hour flight coming home from yet another Las Vegas trade show, the easy way cross America. A 1:30 AM SUV encounter with a deer cut this writer's trip three miles short with a cracked transmission cooler and bent bumper. It was certainly too far to walk, or was it? I called my wife on the cell phone and she picked me up. Chris is smart to carriy a cell phone, too. He told me he charges it with the three small solar cells. He said his cart had experienced flat tires, but I am certain he will never hit a deer.

I met Chris the next morning when I returned to the stranded car. Good Farm Bureau insurance would soon have the gas guzzler as good as new. A look at the deer confirmed, of course, that the deer got the worst of it. As I turned around, there was Chris walking along County Road 800 in the middle of Indiana's vast corn fields, pushing a tricycle cart full of gear. I quickly realized this was no homeless person. He was instantly recognized as very bright with tenacity like the inventors we work with. To no surprise Chris appeared to be in great shape, a lesson for those of us who fly to weekly meetings, eat fatty foods, drink too much, and endure way too much stress trying to do our thing. He also uses a GPS system and posts to his website. Again, Chris has no political agenda or aversion to technology for that matter. Beyond that, he uses his feet and willpower, taking it all in, and, no doubt, generally enjoying his experience. He said he plans to write a book, and I certainly hope Google doesn't scan and reprint any part of it without paying Chris his royalties. The last comment is this writer's agenda, not his. Chris couldn't visit for too long because his stopover for the night was still 18 miles up the road.  We all seem to have limited time and resources, don't we? It makes us prioritize. A chance meeting with American walker Chris Allen made my return from Las Vegas far more interesting than the trade show I was coming from. There will be another show in a year. I doubt I will ever bump into another cross country walker.