MLB Player Uses $2 Million To Buy Hippie Van, Lives Out Of It To Surf

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So much was made of J.J. Watt buying a cabin in the middle of nowhere (in Wisconsin) to train during the NFL off season.

MLB pitcher Daniel Norris, 22, takes simple and rugged to the next level, however.

Despite the fact that Norris, who plays for the Toronto Blue Jays, inked a $2 million signing bonus, he is living in a 1978 Volkswagen microbus.

“It was a really cool experience for me, learning how to be self-sustainable. That’s just kind of how my mom and dad raised me: Learn to live on what you truly need and not really anything more.” (National Post)

Norris named his hippie van ‘Shaggy,’ after the Scooby-Doo cartoon character. He packs it with surf boards in the off season, and drives around the coasts looking for the perfect wave.

He even drove from his home in Tennessee to Florida, the location of spring training for the Blue Jays. Along the way, he hit various surfing spots before training got underway.

“I’ve been different my whole life,” he says. “I’ve always dressed weird. In high school, I always wore weird shoes that nobody else really wore. I was always different. But that’s just kind of the way I was raised so I was always comfortable in it. I never really cared. I knew I was goofy but I kept quiet. I never really talked much.”

We can’t make athletes fit in a box. They’re just like you or I: humans with diverse interests and a yearning to experience the basics of life.


Kim Constantinesco

Kim Constantinesco

As the founder and editor-in-chief of, Kim Constantinesco dives under the surface hype to illuminate heroes in the sports world. Whether talking with the first man with cerebral palsy to summit Mt. Kilimanjaro, or the first woman to mountain bike across Afghanistan, Kim has a keen interest in shining the spotlight on ordinary people doing extraordinary things. She believes it's time media starts placing a higher value on the people and communities who are actively doing something to make the world a little better. Previously, she covered the Denver Broncos and the NFL for seven seasons. Her work has been featured on, CBS Sports, Fox Sports, The New York Times, and USA Today. She resides in Denver, CO. When not working, she can be found deep in the Rocky Mountains throwing backflips on her snowboard. Follow Kim on Twitter: @KimCon14
Kim Constantinesco

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