Wednesday, August 16, 2017
Monday, August 14, 2017
Thursday, August 10, 2017
I have to say that the single most important lesson I learned in 25 years talking every single day to people, was that there is a common denominator in our human experience. Most of us, I tell you we don’t want to be divided. What we want, the common denominator that I found in every single interview, is we want to be validated. We want to be understood. I have done over 35,000 interviews in my career and as soon as that camera shuts off everyone always turns to me and inevitably in their own way asks this question “Was that okay?” I heard it from President Bush, I heard it from President Obama. I’ve heard it from heroes and from housewives. I’ve heard it from victims and perpetrators of crimes. I even heard it from Beyonce and all of her Beyonceness. She finishes performing, hands me the microphone and says, “Was that okay?” Friends and family, yours, enemies, strangers in every argument in every encounter, every exchange I will tell you, they all want to know one thing: was that okay? Did you hear me? Do you see me? Did what I say mean anything to you? And even though this is a college where Facebook was born my hope is that you would try to go out and have more face-to-face conversations with people you may disagree with.
Monday, July 31, 2017
Wednesday, July 26, 2017
Tuesday, July 25, 2017
They also have a great "Together Letters" program that lists people who need a little extra TLC in the form of a mailed letter. Who can't do that? I can.... and J can draw a pretty good picture and accompany me to the mailbox! Little by little, step by step, bird by bird, dollar by dollar.....
Monday, July 24, 2017
> You are making lots of friends in our new neighborhood. There's a 6 yr old girl who is sweet as can be. You've really taken to her. On Friday night you went to her door all by yourself and asked if she could come out and play. My heart nearly burst. Not just at your maturity but at your growing comfort level.... a long way from my shy boy. ....happy ending: at first she said she had to stay in (it was after 7pm) but then said "Joe! my mom said I can play a little longer!!" It was a Friday summer night - rules are meant to be bent. :)
> A full day at the beach. 5.5 hours! You "surfed" on a boogie board, rolled in the waves, rafted with me in a tube, dug 50 holes and played great with friends, new and old. It was Brooke's Grammy's beach house and I love that you know all these warm, loving, Grammies.
> Sunday, our day. Relaxed. Stayed in pj's and watched cartoons without much rushing. Rode your tractor to Dunkin' Donuts like we do every weekend and then played outside, content as can be, for a few hours while mama read her book near by. Like me, I think after a busy weekend of friends and socializing, you enjoy some time for yourself... you talk, make up stories, sing a lot, and just enjoy some time to be an introvert. There is nothing wrong with that and I'm grateful we have the type of schedule that you have time to cool down and re-energize.
It was just perfect. Life is so good with you.
|Can you come out and play?|
Thursday, July 20, 2017
Fear is a disease plaguing modern day America. Kids aren't taught to fail. Life has become so comfortable that our addiction to achievement, people-pleasing, safety, correct-ness is making risk less and less palatable.
FEAR: // Proposed shift in thinking:
What if it doesn't go right? <friends and family will think I'm dumb> // what lessons will it teach me -- mistakes are great teachers.
What if I get there and don't like it. <I have wasted time> // Isn't dreaming of things you'll never do equally (more) of a waste of time.
What if I get hurt <I hate a bruised ego or broken heart> // Everyone does. But it doesn't kill you nor does it stay broken/bruised forever.
What if I am not strong enough to finish <I will realize I am weak> // You are weaker if you don't try. The person with the least strength is the one who doesn't try.
What if I hate it once I start <Are dreams healthier in your head> // You can move on to a new dream that will be more fulfilling. We are not gifted a finite number of dreams to dream per lifetime.
What if I do it and it's everything I want it to be // Bliss.
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
“You must pay for everything in this world one way and another. There is nothing free except the Grace of God. You cannot earn that or deserve it.” - Charles Portis
“We must each of us bear our own misfortunes.” - Charles Portis
Tuesday, July 18, 2017
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on. Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain Are moving across the landscapes, over the prairies and the deep trees, the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air, are heading home again. Whoever you are, no matter how lonely, the world offers itself to your imagination, calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting—
over and over announcing your place in the family of things.
Monday, July 17, 2017
“There is a time in every man's education when he arrives at the conviction that envy is ignorance; that imitation is suicide; that he must take himself for better, for worse, as his portion; that though the wide universe is full of good, no kernel of nourishing corn can come to him but through his toil bestowed on that plot of ground which is given to him to till. The power which resides in him is new in nature, and none but he knows what that is which he can do, nor does he know until he has tried.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Saturday, July 15, 2017
Love this, posted by Adrienne Maree Brown
he was every. single. thing.
Prince taught me to stretch between genders, and then beyond the binary of gend...er, in how i love and understand myself, in how i understand my desire, my holiness.
to be unapologetically sexy, a small man or big woman, to induce desire and discomfort, taking the center of everyone’s attention with transparent seductions in a society that demonizes nature and the sensual world.
to be political and humane with my curiosity and my resources. to seek guidance and teachers and collaborators all around me.
to have diva-high standards, and to offer my opinion with a pursed lip and raised brow. to be shady as an art form.
to wear more eyeliner.
to love god and pleasure in the same breath, with the same song, with the same dance. to believe different things over time, but always claim myself as a child of the divine.
to be generous with time and support for those in my field who please me, to mentor and partner with and uplift talent.
to take the lower harmony sometimes, even if you can hit the upper range.
that it’s ok, in fact it’s my right, to be vulnerable and controversial and personal in the public realm and still have a private life.
to grace the world with the exquisite gift of a perfect falsetto whenever the moment calls for it.
and mostly to be different, to offer the world a joyful rejection of the normal, the appropriate, the mediocre.
Prince, from 'Way Back Home':
Most people in this world are born dead
But I was born alive
(I was born with this dream)
With a dream outside my head
That I could find my way back home
Lemme tell you about me
I'm happiest when I can see
My way back home
Can you see
My way back, my way back home
Thursday, July 13, 2017
"The ancient Greeks had a view of love which was essentially based around education, that's what love means - love is a benevolent process whereby two people try to teach each other how to become the best versions of themselves." - Alain de botton
"Real intimacy is a meeting between two souls, an invitation to meet each other exactly where they are, without expectation or agenda. It doesn't demand gifts and benefits, sexual prowess, conditional offerings. It merely asks you to show up as you are, fully revealed and present. It invites you to shed your masks, disguises and adaptations, and to drop into whatever is real for you in that moment. Real intimacy meets you where you live, not where you or anyone else wants you to live. It's the big sigh of relief that arises when you finally know that you don't have to put on a show to feel accepted. Here we are, just as we are. Hello." - Jeff Brown
Wednesday, July 12, 2017
Monday, July 10, 2017
Yesterday we listened to the Beach Boys on Pandora --- a station filled with old fashioned good time summer music. We danced in the living room and I felt light. Free. Happy. It hasn't been the easiest year but I made it to the other side and have more confidence in myself than I have at any other time in my life. I am proud of where I am today and that feels good and complete.
And a few favorite lines from J to honor the sweetness that is four and a half:
"My Grammy is picking me up on Monday from school." - to his friend in our building. She didn't care too much. I love overhearing what he says to his friends. No filter, just stream of consciousness. What he's looking forward to, what's on his mind....
"It's ok if you don't want to be my friend. I have lots of friends. Like, Max, Emma, Brooke, Noah, Nate....(and the name of nearly every kid in his pre-school class)" Joe sticking up for himself when one (presumably tired) little girl at the playground said she wasn't his friend. <no bullying here!>
"I didn't know Papa used to be a king and Grammy was a queen" (when I showed him my parents wedding photo)
"At the yellow house I didn't have colored sprinkles, or the zoo game, or a friend like Ophelia" -- priorities.
Tuesday, June 27, 2017
"I admired my mother in some ways, although things between us were never easy. She expected too much from me, I felt. She expected me to vindicate her life for her, and the choices she'd made. I didn't want to live my life on her terms. I didn't want to be the model offspring, the incarnation of her ideas. We used to fight about that. I am not your justification for existence, I once said to her once. I want her back, I want everything back, the way it was. But there is no point to it, this wanting."
“They wore blouses with buttons down the front that suggested the possibilities of the word undone. These women could be undone; or not. They seemed to be able to choose. ”
“We lived, as usual by ignoring. Ignoring isn't the same as ignorance, you have to work at it.”
“Better never means better for everyone... It always means worse, for some.”
Thursday, June 22, 2017
At 70 years old, she is all creativity and play. Yesterday I got a text from her telling me that they spent 4 hours at the pool and then came home and "found monsters" in her neighborhood and made them invisible with squirt guns. ...and rode his jeep ....and had a picnic. Of course.
Joseph lights up when he sees her and cries when its time to go. She is pure love and joy and fun in his eyes. There is always a game - mechanic Grammy and mechanic Joe was happening last week while they "fixed" his toy cars. Or a car wash, a bicycle wash, an adventure.... a simple, old school, adventure. A pause of gratitude for her patience, creativity and love of my little boy, her grandson. Their love is electric.
Wednesday, June 21, 2017
Choices... One of the most important lessons I learned. We choose how we respond. We choose how we rebuild. We choose to make decisions and live with their consequences. We choose to be better. We choose to learn. We choose to push ourselves beyond what's easy or comfortable.
Seth Godin says:
"Use your best judgment."
"Take responsibility if you care."
"It's difficult and a bit complex, but you can handle it and it's more likely to work."
"This might not work."
"Show your work."
"Learn to cook."
"It's always your turn."
"It's always up to you, if you care enough."
We always have a cup of choices. Thanks J for reminding me.
Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Monday, June 19, 2017
What I was into this weekend:
1. James Altucher
2. My bike
3. Venezuelan hammock
4. Roasted veggies - always
(source) Canadian Rocky Rail Trip....
Thursday, June 15, 2017
Are we better for our struggles? Are we stronger, more compassionate, more resilient because of them. Would you trade them for a more simple path or are the very things that nearly break us the same things that set us free.
“Adversity is a natural part of being human. It is the height of arrogance to prescribe a moral code or health regime or spiritual practice as an amulet to keep things from falling apart. Things do fall apart. It is in their nature to do so. When we try to protect ourselves from the inevitability of change, we are not listening to the soul. We are listening to our fear of life and death, our lack of faith, our smaller ego's will to prevail. To listen to your soul is to stop fighting with life--to stop fighting when things fall apart; when they don't go our away, when we get sick, when we are betrayed or mistreated or misunderstood. To listen to the soul is to slow down, to feel deeply, to see ourselves clearly, to surrender to discomfort and uncertainty and to wait.” - Elizabeth Lesser
Tuesday, June 13, 2017
Thursday, June 8, 2017
Wednesday, June 7, 2017
Thursday, May 18, 2017
Friday, May 12, 2017
Tuesday, May 9, 2017
It is among the most basic human truths: Every one of us, some day, will be brought to our knees. By a diagnosis we didn't expect, a phone call we can't imagine, or a loss we cannot endure. That common humanity inspires our mercy. It fortifies our compassion. It drives us to look out for the sick, the elderly, the poor and the most vulnerable among us.
Yesterday's bill --- yesterday's devastating bill --- does the opposite. The bill is more than premiums and tax cuts. It is a cold and calculated world view: One that scapegoats the struggling, and sees fault in suffering. One dead set on dividing us based on who we love, where we come from, the direction of our faith and the size of our fortunes. We see it in their tax plan, their budget cuts, their immigration policy, their civil rights assaults and yesterday, in their cruel health care plan. We must reject it. We must decide, instead, to take care of each other -- because, but for the grace of God, we will all one day wake up in need of a little mercy. This nation's character has never been defined by the power we give the already strong -- but by the strength we give the weak.
Monday, May 8, 2017
You love to laugh. We giggle all weekend. You like tickle fights and Candyland (you are always the red guy!) and Maroon 5's Don't Want to Know song. You are great at puzzles, I admire your focus and ability to stick with it even when it's a hard one. Then you smile, proud, when you're done.
I call you my angel and have no doubt that you are. You are my gift and my perfect boy. My anchor, my mirror, my rock. I love to watch you grow. I still like to hold your little hand. Grateful that it is soft and small and fits in mine. I have no doubt that you feel my love. I hope that it always gives you strength and confidence.
Thursday, April 20, 2017
It hurts and it's painful but then there's a waiting when you don't know what the hell's going on, and you don't think ay of its gonna make sense, and then there's the rising. That's the pattern always. But you have to stick around if you wanna see the rising. You gotta freaking stick around through the pain and through the waiting. Cause if you leave you don't see it.
When her pain is fresh and new, let her have it. Don't try to take it away. Forgive yourself for not having that power. Grief and pain are like joy and peace; they are not things we should try to snatch from each other. They're sacred. They are part of each person's journey. All we can do is offer relief from this fear: I am all alone. That's the one fear you can alleviate.
Tuesday, February 28, 2017
In all, I collected 248 reviews from 180 people, 105 men and 75 women. The reviews come from 28 different companies and include large technology corporations, mid-size companies, and smaller environments. I didn’t see any impact of company size in the results, nor did I discover patterns unique to any individual company.
Negative personality criticism—watch your tone! step back! stop being so judgmental!—shows up twice in the 83 critical reviews received by men. It shows up in 71 of the 94 critical reviews received by women.
There’s a common perception that women in technology endure personality feedback that their male peers just don’t receive. Words like bossy, abrasive, strident, and aggressive are used to describe women’s behaviors when they lead; words like emotional and irrational describe their behaviors when they object. All of these words show up at least twice in the women’s review text I reviewed, some much more often. Abrasive alone is used 17 times to describe 13 different women. Among these words, only aggressive shows up in men’s reviews at all. It shows up three times, twice with an exhortation to be more of it.
Monday, February 27, 2017
The always notable Seth Godin:
Friday, February 24, 2017
|Sleep No More, NYC|