About Me

Hello! Welcome to The Rocky Safari! My name is Rocky Trifari, but you can also call me by my Chinese name: 泰山.

In 2009, my Chinese teacher gave me the Chinese name: “Tàishān.” Based on my English name, “Rocky Trifari,” I was named after the famous Mount Tai mountains of China.

“Taishan” sometimes also translates back into English as “Tarzan.” So whether you prefer to see me as a safari adventurer or as Tarzan the jungle man, the bottom line is that I love to be in and around nature. I gravitate toward birds and I’ve had a passion for travel and exploration from an early age.

Using that play on my name, I was inspired to create The Rocky Safari: a wild place where I can blog about all of my weird, unusual, and unexpected adventures.

In terms of my background, I graduated from Rutgers University where I studied psychology and entrepreneurship. My experiences up to now have shown me that through harnessing the full power of our minds, we can become capable of accomplishing absolutely anything.

Since our mindset plays the single most influential role in guiding our journey through this unpredictable life, why not choose to have a positive mental attitude?

In Swahili, “safari” means “journey.”

I love to test my own limits and I’ve come to realize I’m the happiest when I’m trekking far beyond the border of my comfort zone.

People are sometimes surprised to learn that I identify as an introvert because I also happen to be very outgoing. (A distinction I discuss a lot about on my blog.) As a matter of fact, I love meeting new people and discovering new things. I’m definitely not shy. I frequently speak to large audiences for work and I readily introduce myself to strangers. I guess it’s because I love to learn and I’m curious about seemingly everything.

In 2013, I graduated from a vocational high school where I studied graphic design and spent my senior year taking all of my classes at a local college. While I decided not to pursue digital design in college, I continue to treat photography and web design as two hobbies I deeply care about. That’s why I have continued to publish new content on here since 2013. I love to travel and blog whenever I have any free time.

Aside from that, I am also a huge fan of foreign languages (as you may have guessed from the intro, namely Chinese!) Then in 2019, I moved to Spain where I studied Spanish. You could say I’m somewhat of a “polyglot-in-training.”

A few things that are interesting about me: I volunteered as a tour guide at a Chinese Summer Camp for over two years and led approximately 200 Chinese students to famous landmarks all along the US East Coast. At the age of 15, this was one of my earliest experiences of leaving home to tour and travel.

We ate at 14 Chinese buffets in a row during our travels (but they never warned me about that when I signed up!) Each day as our tour bus would pull up to the next Chinese buffet, I would turn my head to the window and shed a tear. This opportunity allowed me to gain both a large amount of experience and weight. 😉

Some of my other interests include birdwatching, drinking different types of tea, and of course, traveling! So you’ll probably read a bit about all of those things on my blog.

Between all of the flying, to pass the time, I also enjoy doing Sudoku and reading on my Nook. I have now visited more than fifteen different countries around the world (as of the time of writing) and I have no intention of stopping there! My goal is to eventually visit every country on Earth! This blog chronicles that journey.

You should also know that I adore birds! I’m whole-heartedly obsessed with them. When I was a Resident Assistant in college, my hallway was bird-themed and I even hung a bird feeder outside of my dorm room window. I’d like to think that random bird feeder dangling out from my window was somewhat of a landmark on campus during my time there. Maybe? Okay, maybe not.

While living in Spain for a year, my fascination grew and I was oftentimes called “Señor Pajarero” [meaning Mr. Birdkeeper] because the locals would see birds constantly flying and landing on me. (I’m neither joking, nor exaggerating.)

Anyway, I am definitely getting a pet bird in the future! (Still in the process of deciding which kind. I’m thinking maybe a Cape Parrot!)

In 2018, I set off on a trip to travel the world with nothing but my backpack and a one-way ticket to Athens, Greece.

Using money earned from this blog and other digital nomad gigs, I was able to pay for my entire trip in cash without creating a cent of debt afterward. On my blog, I teach others how to make it possible.

Please remember to follow my blog and connect with me on social media so we can stay in touch. Especially if you would like to know how all of this unfolds!

I know my trip overseas is going to be the craziest adventure imaginable. You can read more about about my plans for the future: here.

Don’t be afraid to reach out and say hi! I blog to reach and connect with people so I’d love nothing more than to connect with you now that you have ended up here! 🙂

For those of you who know your MBTI personality type, I am an INFJ which is the least common of the 16 Myers-Briggs personality types, especially in men. They say INFJs are the old-souls, the listeners, the care-takers, and the advocates who seek to create a better world.

I was surprised to learn that male INFJs make up less than 1% of the global population. More specifically: gay, male INFJs represent less than 0.25% of all people in the world.

With stats like those, you can imagine why I might feel like a bit of a square peg in a round hole trying to fit into society. But what makes us unique can also be our greatest strengths. So much like a bird, I’m going to do what comes naturally to me, spread my wings, and fly.

Ironically, the MBTI personality type “most suited to travel the world” is the ESTP (the complete opposite of what I am…) So once again, I guess the stats are stacked against me in that regard. We’ll see how it goes!

JUST A HEADS UP, MY BLOG IS REALLY RANDOM. AND WEIRD.
But that’s why I love it.

Enjoy!

Rocky in 2013

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155 Comments

  1. Hi! I just joined the blogging community and I found your amazing blog! I think I started following a couple weeks ago, but I didn’t really know where to comment (whoops!). I love reading your posts because we have so many things in common: INFJs, pre-med (also with this affinity for psychology), going to a vocational high school…it’s crazy! I can definitely relate to a lot of things you’ve been writing about, so I just wanted to say that think your blog is really brilliant.

    1. Hi Melissa! Thanks for following. It’s so nice to meet you! I’m glad you joined WordPress and I think your blog looks like it’ll be an interesting read as well. I’m just curious, what is your prospective major and profession as of right now? I always like to hear that from other INFJs! 🙂

      1. I’m a biology major in a BS/MD program, so I do 3 years undergrad and then go straight to the affiliated medical school. I tried switching to psychology, but I wasn’t allowed to; turns out I can’t take a lot of the classes that I wanted to take in college. When I was applying to college I wanted to major in something not biology, just because I was learning it for the past four years in my vocational high school. I’m really interested in interdisciplinary things and my program isn’t big on that, so I’ve been considering transferring out honestly. It’s a difficult decision though just because, well, we all know how hard the regular route is for applying to medical school. I still have no idea what particular doctor I want to be (although probably not surgery), but I will admit that child psychiatry has crossed my mind!

  2. Daniel

    Rocky,

    I stumbled across your blog earlier this morning and I couldn’t stop reading. I, too, am a gay male INFJ. I spent my 22 years of life feeling that I would never meet anyone that looks at the world through the same uniquely colored lenses as I do, so I felt it to be absolutely necessary that I reach out to you.

    If you are interested, I would absolutely LOVE for you to contact me.
    My email is [email protected].

    Have a wonderful Sunday,
    Daniel

  3. silverbeans

    Hello Rocky. My name is Alexis. I study at Syracuse University as a Geoscience major. I’m so so fucking happy I stumbled upon your blog. I have so many things I wish I could just express right now. Its crazy! I’m also an INFJ and I’m also gay. Reading your posts about being an INFJ have blown my mind away. ITS SO ACCURATE. EVERYTHING. The day I took the MBTI my life was complete. To read such an accurate description freaked me out and my roomate was like dude are you ok CAUSE I WAS HYOERVENTILATING. I also read many many of your posts, they’re literally SO good cause I can identify so easily. God damnit I hope I didnt freak you out! hahaha

    1. Hi Alex! Nice to meet you! 😀 I got your message via the connected Facebook fan page and was SO HAPPY that you found my blog! I get so excited when other people find my blog and can understand/relate to what I experienced with the MBTI. Isn’t it such a game-changer? I hope you enjoy my posts and I’d love to get to know more about you! ^.^

  4. Pingback: Daily Prompt: For Posterity | Basically Beyond Basic

  5. Ferdi Mori

    woahhh finally i find another infj gay boy. u know the world, we r so alienate. u really2 hav a so f*cking GREAT life, Im envious of ur good fortune(literally) . im trying to change from gay to straight, we know its hard T.T wish me luck. and u, keep writing! really love ur blog (sorry for my bad english :’) ) lol

    1. Hi Ferdi! Thank you for the kind words. Please do not be envious! I have problems just like anyone else does. Use that energy towards bettering your own situation. Also, I’d advise against trying to change from gay to straight since I’m fairly certain that that’s both impossible and psychologically damaging. In the meantime, let me know if you need help with anything! I’m here not only to write but also to listen. 🙂

  6. Olivia S

    ROCKY! I randomly found your blog (I was googling Rutgers and TCNJ because I’m transferring lol).. Small world. Also, I’m an INFJ too! Hope you’re well! I might be seeing you next fall!!!

    1. Olivia!!! Hi hahaha! I’m cracking up – that’s so funny. You must have found one of my old posts from back when I was still in high school and trying to determine which college I wanted to attend.

      I hope you choose Rutgers. I’d love to see you around here! Obviously I can’t speak about TCNJ but I’d be more than happy to answer any questions you may have about life at Rutgers! 🙂 Good luck deciding!

  7. Craig J Golbach

    I find you very intriguing. I can’t quite put my finger on it but I sincerely feel that I could sit and talk with you for hours and never know all that I would want to know about you. I’m curious that way. I like the way your mind works. To me, there is so much more to you behind that adorable handsome face. 🙂 It’s like there’s the whole rest of that “iceberg” beneath the waters surface that would be fascinating to know.

  8. Evan Lindberg

    Hello! Fellow Infj here! Just wanted to say that your blog is wonderful, honest, simple (in the absolute best way), and very relatable. Thank you for being your brilliant, infj self (never change!).
    – Cheers

  9. Jennifer Luo

    Hiya Rocky,

    First things first: belated congratulations on snagging that seat for Personal Psychology!

    A while back, I stumbled across your blog searching up study tips for INFJs, and I’ve been following since. 😀 Bless your soul for indirectly introducing me to Rice Dream (I’m addicted to the vanilla flavored one).

    I’m a sophomore in high school with a career research paper called the I-Search, and I’ve chosen psychiatry as the profession I’ll be researching about. This paper requires three in-person interviews with psychiatrists, but I’m also looking to interview students who intend to pursue it, too. I wanted to ask if I could interview you over Skype (if you’d be willing to do so).

    Either way, thanks and I look forward to future blog posts. ^-^

  10. Hi Rocky, I stumbled upon your blog because of Rutgers. I did my undergrad there. I can see that it’s still as crazy and fun as I remember. haha

    I was able to read a couple of your posts and just wanted to say Congratulations on all of your hard work. It is great that you’re making the most out of your time there. I enjoyed spending time with my friends and participating in health education there at Rutgers.

    Good job on tackling your premed classes! I still remember those so vividly esp. the crazy 5 hour orgo lab. haha Good job on getting through calculus, I know that was a pain for a lot of people. I’m guessing you won’t be embarking on the wonderful world of Calculus 3, Multivariable Calculus? =p Don’t forget your math though or else General Physics will be very painful! You’ll have to remember to find the value of the plane’s position from time (t=0) to (t = 1 minute/hour) and then use the law of sines when calculating the altitude of an airplane taking off. Fun, right? General Physics + Orgo is like going to Disneyworld. haha

    However, the upper level science classes are more fun since they’re specialized. Cancer, pharmacology, systems physiology, neurobiology, human parasitology…those were fun since the people taking them were the ones interested and it wasn’t weeding people out like the general science classes. I had to take a lot of math though, going up to calculus 4 and linear algebra haha I don’t think you’d want to take those.

    Make sure you do your best in orgo (but I’m sure you will). When I was a grad student, one of my students was premed and she called me after her med school interview. She was really intelligent and hard working. However, she got a B in orgo, but aced everyting else (bio, general chem, physics, calc, statistics, etc.). During the interview, the doctor interrogated her on why she just got a B in the course. She got through it though because she was also a volunteer EMT and tutored biology so he just nodded his head and smiled. Many of my former students actually asked if I could repost my science notes on my site which I’m doing right now. I feel like I’m preparing for recitation again. haha

    In terms of pursuing psychiatry, that’s a very noble profession. During my clinical training, I would work together with the behavioral team (I was in pediatric oncology/hematology), and I got to see cases with the social worker and psychiatrist since they were the patients and families that I had to work with also. It’s really tough because there are so many emotions involved esp. dealing with sensitive and painful topics. You’re the person that they will come to when things seem to crumble. With healthcare changing, it’s becoming too fast paced and people can’t get the individual attention that they need. The focus is mainly on the physical ailments while the mental issues don’t get as much attention. So, I think it’s great that you’re pursuing it.

    Good luck on your studies and I look forward to reading more about your adventures!

    -Kevin

    1. The Rocky Safari

      Hey Kevin! Sorry to randomly respond to this comment over 3 years later but I wanted to get back to you! My apologies, I actually recall reading your comment the day you wrote it but I don’t see a reply listed on here. I don’t know if it never sent it, if it got lost in the shuffle, or if I was just really busy studying and doing work for my classes at the time. Either way, it is so cool to hear from someone else who also went to Rutgers! A lot has changed over the last few years and I actually did not end up pursuing the whole medical school thing. While taking orgo and physics, I was like, “NOPE. Not doing this any longer.” I couldn’t see myself going to medical school for the amount of money and time it would require me to invest upfront. I decided to finish my college years studying psychology and business instead. Now I am making money doing totally different things (funny how often it happens that way) focusing more on business-type ventures. I’m more entrepreneurial-spirited so I think this was important for my own happiness. Thanks again for leaving your really nice comment! Again, I’m so sorry for the crazy delay in getting back to you! Hope you are doing well all these years later! lol

  11. ericooo

    Haha its so nice to know that you are into chinese and i know that Chinese people are awesome! Plus i love your chinese name its really cool!! And im also crazy for world languages and my dream is to go on a backpack world tour one day thats super cool haha!! Nice blog dude! 😀

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