SURFING IN KANSAS CH 8
By Keith Kos
“Destination: ROCK BOTTOM”
BLOG CHAPTER 8
We finally made it back from the Florida trip, extremely exhausted. I had worried my family and had their hearts and guts twisting from my story of getting knocked out by “DC’s” son. I showed up with a busted face and stitches and received a big hug and kiss from my wife and daughter. My smile has never been the same since that day I got punched in the face….I should have pressed charges on “DC’s” son.
It was time to get back to work on waves and moving forward with my vision of bringing artificial wave technology to Kansas. We all felt pretty good about our progress and the deals we had going from the IAAPA conference. We touched base with the owners of the wakeboarding cable park and “DC” had a conversation with one of the owners. As I sat across from “DC” at our kitchen table I saw the expression on his face while talking with the owner. “DC” got ugly on the phone and raised his voice to the owner. The conversation was going downhill. “DC” managed to make the owner so angry that he dropped the deal and decided not to move forward with us. That was one of many bridges “DC” burned behind us along the way. Also, none of the deals we made at the IAAPA convention in Florida ever came to life because “DC” never followed through with these deals. See, it was much easier for “DC” to con people out of their money than to actually follow through and complete a project. The sad thing is, “DC” could have been a millionaire by now if he successfully completed any project he worked on. “DC” always said OPM brother, OPM. OPM meant “OTHER PEOPLES MONEY”. At that time OPM sounded like a good idea, little did I know he was using OPM to get my money!
Things really started to spiral out of control at this point. We weren’t closing any deals, investors were slowly dropping out of our project, and people started wondering about this guy “DC”. I look back on it now and realize I should have listened to the people I love around me trying to warn me about “DC”. In one of our first conversations over the phone, one of the owners of the wakeboarding cable park got on a conference call with my buddy that helped me build our first wave pool, “DC” and myself. The conference call was going well and the owner asked to speak with me alone without “DC” on the line. “DC” dropped off the call and I remember the very words the owner told me. He said, “Keith, I’m not sure about this guy. Be very careful and keep your radar antennas up”. That meant keep an eye out for any weird things “DC” might do to ruin our company. Again, I should have listened but I had tunnel vision and I wanted my dream to become a reality very badly. I paid no attention to anyone that said anything negative about “DC” because I truly believed in him and believed he was going to help make my dream a reality…. I was very wrong.
We were starting to run low on funds from our investors and “DC” pressured me to get more investors and funding. Remember, I was paying for all of “DC’s” expenses food, lodging, tv, phone, internet….it was very expensive. No matter what I did, no one wanted to work with “DC”. Our existing investors were still hanging on but were not writing anymore checks until they saw some real progress. “DC” always did just enough to make me and our investors happy and motivated. After many talks with “DC” about showing some progress and actually working on the wave pool, he decided we should build another wave pool model at our investor’s garage in Polo, MO. Building this model was a desperate attempt to wow our investors and attract more investors. “DC” and I started laying out the wave pool model in the garage in Polo, MO.
At this time, I didn’t know it, but “DC” started feeling the heat of everyone figuring out he was a con artist. My amazing wife pretty much knew he was a con artist since the day he showed up at our house. “DC” manipulated me into thinking everyone was against me, even my wife. He put negative thoughts into my head about my friends and family. It makes sense to me now, all the people he said were against me actually figured out he was a con artist and “DC” knew it. Also, at this time I was on Adderall to keep up with “DC’s” crazy life. I admit I sometimes abused the medicine because I would work all day at my job and then spend most of the night working on my vision with “DC”. Therefore, I took more in one day than was prescribed. Things quickly began to spiral out of control. “DC” became paranoid. I was arguing with my wife and spending too much time away from my family. I was brainwashed by “DC” into thinking my friends and family were out to sabotage my vision.
We were making progress on the wave pool model in Polo. “DC” designed some crazy reef in the pool involving pyramids. He called it something like a dodecahedron reef. He said it would make a perfect peeling barreling wave. As we were building the model, “DC” seemed a little distracted. Nothing was going right and I felt our close bond as “brothers” was diminishing. I was very frustrated and didn’t realize what was going on. See, “DC” knew we were running out of money and he had burned too many bridges to move forward so he was working on his next plan to con someone else. He had spent all of our money. I was optimistic and was still trying to find ways to fund our project. As we were building the model, I was framing in one of the walls and was using a nail gun. I had two 2x4’s held together and pulled the trigger on the nail gun. I had done this many times with no issues. This time I had somehow nailed my 2 fingers on my left hand to the 2x4! Evil things like this happened all the time around “DC”. I was shocked to see my fingers stuck to the 2x4 and had to have “DC” pull it off like meat on a shish kabob! That was it! I was extremely exhausted and frustrated and decided to call a day in Polo.
Since the beginning of the journey of trying to get “DC” out to Kansas I had managed to shatter my big toe, get my face bashed in and knocked out and now I nailed my fingers to a 2x4. Now that I look back at it, it was like God was trying to warn me every time I got hurt about future events with “DC”, the con artist.
I started to panic, how was I going to fund our project and keep “DC” in Kansas by paying for all of his living expenses. I was extremely stressed out, depressed and desperate. I was stuck….. nothing I was doing was producing any positive results. I started drinking heavily and taking Adderall, which was not a good combination, to deal with my mind that was twisted up like a pretzel. All my family could do was watch my whole world start to collapse in on me. I had put my poor wife and kids through hell already with the whole “DC” experience and I did something to put the cherry on top of dragging my family through hell….. but that will have to wait until the next chapter.
Thanks again for reading! Stay tuned for Chapter 9…. The vision gets destroyed, someone has an intervention and the con artist gets exposed!