We had the good fortune of connecting with Cano Cardenas and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Cano, what role has risk played in your life or career?
Risk is the best/scariest thing one can ever really do in life. To succeed, or to get things that you have never had, you have to take a risk. To fail, is to take a risk. “Success lies on the other side of fear” – nipsey hussle.
My entire life, day in and day out, I was scared. Scared of what others thought of me, scared if I failed, scared if I did well. I was scared of taking a risk. That changed when I dropped out of Penn State university to pursue my dream of being a pro slateboarder. I moved to Los Angeles and started my path towards my dreams. It was not without plenty of mistakes, and burned bridges, but I took the risk. After about 10 years of chasing that dream, I broke my back and dislocated my hip at 28. Skateboarding is all risk, and very high personal reward. So Although I failed at my dream of pro status, I met amazing people, had life changing experiences, and learned how to maneuver life when bodily harm is not a factor. That translated to my dream of being a coffee roaster and owning my own coffee roasting business one day.
Everything I have done since the change to coffee has been all risk. I am scared to take a leap for a second, maybe a day or a week depending on the severity of the situation. At the same though, the outcome is always the same. I choose to say two vulgar words that I would say when charging a skate trick, and move forward.Yes, I am scared. Yes, I might fail, but how will I know unless I give this 100 percent, and go down swigning?
So far, the juice has been worth squeeze.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Caffeine & GREEN, is a small batch specialty coffee roaster. It is also a successful podcast that has been running for about 3 years now. We also have a fight team that adds to the separation from other coffee brands locally/domestically/ and internationally. As the owner of Caffeine & GREEN, I got to where I am at based on pursuing a position as a coffee roaster at Zumbar coffee & tea. My background is in sales/pr/marketing. I know how to sell, how to market, but not the craft if coffee. Once Steve Rayle & Jason Bush taught me the dedication to the craft, I felt I was ready to venture out on my own. Never looked back, and now we are here with Caffeine & GREEN, and Steel Mill Coffee.
Not one second of this has been easy, whether it was working 3 jobs, 7 days a week for over a year, or running my own business and managing a coffee program for a shop in oceanside, ca at the same time. This is all hustle, this is all heart, this is all love. For myself, and my brand Caffeine & GREEN, I am about moving forward, and celebrating the people that are doing amazing things for themselves. I love to promote my friends, I love to promote quality coffee, and a good tunes. Caffeine & GREEN is for the people. You working? You grinding two jobs and school? You training for a fight, you have a struggle you don’t talk about? We are for you! I see you, I support you and your dreams. I don’t have to know you personally, but know that I know you working hard and I see you g! That’s what Caffeine & GREEN IS ABOUT!
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
First we would get coffee, obviously. Steel mill coffee, Hawthorn coffee or Zumbar coffee
Pancake glory or a burrito at Trujuillo’s at state.
Drinks, raised by wolves, dinner, born and raised, or Fernside
Torrey Pines hike
South Cardiff beach
Ocean Beach skatepark
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
First and foremost, above all! Shout out to my mama! My ride or die forever! My grandma, she taught me what it is to always do more, and to just keep going.
The Handa family (Danny, Danielle, Bill, Janet, Layla, Izzy). The Sayer’s family
(Linda, Tommy, Cory, Adam), Aubrey Nolan and The Nolan fam. Alex Jun & the Jun family.
Regis lukata, Kurt Hodge, Dimetrus collins, the entire Animal Style crew, Shea Cooper, Steel Mill fam, my mentor’s Steve Rayle, Jason Bush, Big Ernie r.i.p, every guest that has been on the Caffeine & GREEN podcast, the entire Parusa team, Jhanex Alviz, Tyler Schaefer & David Grostic.
Lastly, a special shout out to Raul Lopez & Liav Cloughley.
Youtube: Caffeine & GREEN podcast
Jt Rhoades Alma Photography Cano Cardenas