just thinking out loud, Uncategorized 0 comments on Frankly my dear, no one gives a damn

Frankly my dear, no one gives a damn

That’s how I feel right now about my need to make excuses for myself of late. No one gives a damn, and nor should they. I don’t have any good ones… there rarely is a good one. I need a good reason to move forward, and I think that I’ve finally found it. It’s over. 24 is over, and it’s time to take control again, and understand how in so many ways I control the destiny of the most important thing in my life right now… me.

So here’s a game plan for me:

  1. Get Organized
  2. I’m working on a good calendar & to-do list for myself. I’m not quite sure what I need or what I want. I now that iCal isn’t it, and I also know that Google Calendar isn’t it. Would love to get suggestions from people to see what they use. I also might just build my own. I’ll start with a to-do system, and work my way up. I’m really trying to figure out what I would need in it. I would need SMS access; I would want some level of control for others to see when necessary and not see when not necessary. Anyway, just thinking out loud here, but this is definitely number one for me.

  3. Set Goals
  4. It’s really hard to have any idea of being successful unless you have some metric against which to measure. I didn’t think this was true. I always assumed that the end goal was to just reach a new milestone, regardless of what it may be. That’s a never ending road to nowhere as it were. When I went to TIP camp during the summer of 2000 (which was probably the best summer of my life, btw), we had a session on the difference between nowhere and now here and how incrementally different these two words are in the English language visually, and yet how large the chasm between the two is philosophically. Setting goals is effectively my exploration of how to jump that chasm from nowhere to understanding what now here means.

  5. Have Fun Again
  6. I saved the best for last. I think the thing that I’ve really lost is just the idea that I need to have fun. There just isn’t enough life not to have fun all the time. I need to find my smile. I enjoyed my soccer match this week just for the folks that I got to play with. Yeah, they drive me crazy, but that’s why I love them. I actually have a huge crush on one of the co-eds… but don’t tell anyone! I laughed a lot today with the “Costume Gang”. We made a big mistake leaving when we did. We lost too much of our day, and essentially lost a day at work, but for my morale it was good. It’s what actually led me to force myself to re-focus, write this, and make the commitment to gain control again.

I am committing here to making this next year of my life huge. I don’t know today how that’s going to play out. I don’t know if it’s a good or bad thing. What I do know though is that looking back on the year in 365 days will be much like an architect returning to the keystone in an archway knowing that it takes all of the stones to build the archway, but this one stone to bind the rest together.

just thinking out loud, Uncategorized 0 comments on Update on Me

Update on Me

I’ve been doing a whirlwind tour of my life over the last month or so. Some physical, some mental… a lot in the here, but also a lot in the tomorrow (I’m so good at living in my past, that I’ve ignored that bit). It’s been a very riveting personal roller coaster. I’m taking some time to get off of the roller coaster, and just write down what I’ve figured out. The goal isn’t to offend, but to enlighten.

And so it goes.

I’m good at what I do. Sometimes I need to stop and just say that because I get too focused on all of the things that I can’t do. I enjoy learning from the people who I work with, and I hope that I bring something into their lives as well. It’s a really great family that I have at the Box. And I think I add to it in some small way.

I’m learning an immense amount about what I want to be, who I want to replicate, and, very surprisingly, what I don’t want to be. I think that last point is the one that really strikes me as being the least obvious thing to learn. And yet, you run into personalities and individuals where you can clearly see how they make people less well off. They are the quintessential elephant in the room. It’s become very clear to me that I need to understand what makes those people so unlikeable to me. Otherwise, I’m going to make those same mistakes.

I’m an imitator, a mockingbird, in that I find things in people, and then try them out in myself. Is this how all people are? I don’t really know, as I’ve never been anyone else that I remember. But I’m finding that I’m incredibly good at taking what I like in other people and emulating it in myself; engraining it as my own. The things that I really like, I then make a concerted effort to preach downstream.

I love to dream. I dream big dreams, and don’t understand those who have to be grounded in reality. Life, for me, is meant to be lived flying towards the moon. I love that about myself… If I ever lose this, then I don’t think I’ll recognize myself.

I need to take better care of my body. Not just in terms of exercise, which I’m much better about lately, but also in terms of what I eat, sleep, time outdoors. I’m bad at this. I need to work on it. I will improve upon this.

There’s a lot more, but I made this a ten-minute exercise tonight. I’ll get back to the grind of the hourly exercise tomorrow. Very excited about what the last month of 24 has to offer me. It will hopefully be a launching pad into 25 that I could never have imagined.

just thinking out loud, Uncategorized 2 comments on Modern Gladiators… or maybe cows to slaughter?

Modern Gladiators… or maybe cows to slaughter?

I just finished reading a really intriguing set of articles in this week’s New Yorker. I wish they had a micropayment system where I could pay for articles that I enjoyed a la how Radiohead releases their albums, but that’s a different topic altogether. I’m going to write some thoughts, more along the lines of immediate reactions, and then maybe follow up if I can find some time after doing some thinking and discussing. The first article is by Malcolm Gladwell, and can be found here

Ignore for a fact that the article draws links against dogfighting because of the prominence that dogfighting has gained in the last few years, and instead think about when humans pitted humans in battles to the death against each other for entertainment. I ask you to ignore it because I’d rather focus on the notion of long-term human suffering in the name of entertainment as opposed to animal cruelty. I think the major pieces that come to my mind are the Gladiators of the Roman Empire, and the jousters of the Middle Ages.

(I’ll admit that I know very little about either in any form of depth, and so please let me know if I’ve made an assumption, and you know it to be wrong.)

I think a crucial difference between then and now lies in how we view fellow persons. There isn’t a need to prepare soldiers as there was in the Middle Ages. If I’m not mistaken, which of course I can be, the tournaments of the time acted as a way for those who competed to show off their prowess in the ability to wage war. Winning wars is no longer an indicator of the success of a man. The merits of that can be debated in another forum, but to me it also makes the value of physical prowess much less.

On a similar note, the spoils of war are also no longer something which is an integral part of society. Slaves, wealth, and property were all benefits given to the winning army in the age of the Roman Empire. Slaves, and again I could be quoting popular fiction instead of historical fact here, were often in the center of the Coliseum tasked with being the kill or be killed entertainment du jour. Thankfully, in my opinion, we’ve found that elevating even our enemies in victory to a higher level of understanding has replaced the notion that success should be measured by spoils won and stolen.

Given that these forms of entertainment have become outdated either because they are no longer necessary in preparing for war, or because we’ve advanced in our moral treatment, what is it about football that keeps us engaged. It has so many of the attributes of the Coliseum and the Tournaments of the Middle Ages. The battlefield analogies, the insane athleticism, the unbelievable wealth associated with it all. And it turns out that we’re still cheering for a sport that at the end of the day leaves the players in a broken state, unable to even take care of their families despite the millions they have earned.

It actually turns me off to the sport in my mind, and yet, as I sit here and watch Monday Night Football, I’m completely engaged in it all. Why can’t I see that in my entertainment, that these men are killing themselves? Why is that okay? I don’t really know, but I’m fascinated by it all.

What do you think?