The Bend Tour Company
Born and reared in a galaxy far, far away called New Jersey, John Flannery heard the old “Go West young man..” saying and took it quite literally. He launched Bend’s first pedicab service in 2001. After 15 years of cruising in circles around Central Oregon, he recently became a partner in The Bend Tour Company to focus more on scenic/historic/cultural tours of Bend via Segways, Electric Cruiser Cars, E-bikes and Cycle Pubs. Flannery is married to Paige Bentley-Flannery, local rockstar librarian and is the father of Pierson Flannery, official Bend Art Safari tour-guide understudy.
What will your child bring up in therapy years from now?
He will most likely mention the seemingly endless supply of “Dad jokes” I share with him and my love of doing “character voices” when reading stories and playing.
When describing my work to my kid I say . . .
I cruise in circles around Bend all day on various wacky contrap-a-mobiles pointing out cool points of interests to people touring around town -like the Flaming Phoenix and hidden “Murals of Mystery”.
The golden rule in business and parenting is . . .
“It is better to ask forgiveness than permission”…oh wait that is not it…I think the two things have a lot in common but the goals in the end are pretty darn different since a parent will never worry about ROI like a business owner, which is a good thing if you look up what it takes to raise a child these days!
A general rule for both is “Commit your body, mind and soul to do your best at tackling with a sense of humor even the most mundane tasks but never try to fool yourself into thinking that you will be in control of every little detail along the way.”
What did you learn from your Dad about being a Dad?
Besides lifting a majority of my “Dad jokes” right out of my Dad’s playbook, my Dad also taught me that being a Dad means my “job description” in life will never stop morphing. One moment it is lunch maker, the next it is model rocket engineer…the next it is super-secret confidante, the next is being a walking thesaurus, and on and on and on. These days, it is those endless possibilities of my next “Dad duty” that keep me smiling the most. I mean who knew I could build and launch a rocket twice without it blowing up.
What is the best advice your parents gave you?
One of the best bits of advice my parents gave me growing up was “Sometimes the best plan is an exit plan.” In other words, “Never fear taking control of your own moments. If you are not happy with where you are at a given moment in time, always remember that you have the power to make change happen in your life.”
Do you have a role model?
My role model recipe is a generous portion of George Bailey from “It’s a Wonderful Life” mixed with a dash of Chris Hadfield (the singing astronaut) and of course a huge pinch of my parents. Honorable mention would be Rube Goldberg.
What do you think the next generation has in store for us?
I think this generation will build quite a resume for themselves featuring amazing scientific discoveries and creations of until now unheard of and unimagined doodads and gizmos. I envision contributions beyond yet another smartphone app that lets you order a ride around town or lets friends rate a pic of your latest meal.