William David Pearlman, affectionately named Poppa Neutrino, spent his early childhood in San Francisco. At the age of twelve he saw a documentary on nomadic aborigines, and decided: "That's the way I want to live; I never want anything more." Throughout his seventy-four years Poppa has been an underage soldier, inmate-gone-governor-appointed-highway-department-official, circus performer, entrepreneur, religious leader and church founder, interstate nomad, band organizer, street performer, revolutionary football play designer, raft builder, and record breaker.
In the late 1990s Poppa became the second man in history to cross the Atlantic Ocean on a raft, and the first to do it on a vessel made of trash. In 2007 Poppa will attempt to become the third man in recorded history to cross the Pacific on a raft, again doing so on a barge made of recycled materials. The voyage will begin in his hometown of San Francisco with a prospective landing in Beijing, China, in time for the 2008 Olympics. In March 2007 Random House will release The Happiest Man in the World, a biography about Poppa Neutrino by acclaimed author Alec Wilkinson.