Friday, September 17, 2010

the whys

I got an email earlier in the week from a colleague.

Interjection to say that I think a colleague is someone you essentially tortured in an interview and they survived. My Dad taught me that technique of quickly getting to know someone. It's like Maya Angelou once said, You can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage and tangled Christmas tree lights. Dad and Maya, they would have a wonderful conversation.

Anyway, I initially tortured Daniel.

And he lived.

Not only did Daniel live, he also did what you could call on a judgement basis, thrive. In three and a half years he went from working in a foundry, describing himself as "shy", suffering from severe bouts of insomnia to where he would stop breathing so many times an hour that you have to figure he was actually not breathing more than he was breathing, being on several meds at once, seeing a physician weekly to....


Everyone hold your breath.



I'm serious.




He trained for and subsequently ran a triathlon. He became an Ironman and one of the top four decision makers in a national company with international reaches. He got married. He is having a baby. He is walking around with this HUGE grin on his face.

Interject to say: Now I know there is so much shitty stuff happening on this Earth at times. Especially if you watch any news. Shit. Shit. Shit. I'm with you on that, but I'm telling you that I don't think you're gonna help many people on this Earth if you don't start walking around with a smile on your face. The person you need to help is right out your front door. They are staring you in the face in the mirror. If you're not smiling...then figure that shit out. Cause, seriously, if you're anything like me, DUDE....you got it so GOOD!

So I'm saying Daniel knows he's got it so good. This is what Slater and his friends may call a swagger. I love that word. That word means that someone somewhere was loving his life so much that someone, maybe himself maybe his friend, had to say, "Ya' know that walk you do? That little bounce to your step? I think I'll call that a swagger."

Daniel has a swagger.

Getting back to the original story several paragraphs back Daniel, my colleague, emailed me Monday. This email is the rough thoughts of Daniel's book. The book yet to be written. Daniel wants to write 'cause he's wondering WHY. He wants to know WHY he could go from being so fearful that he needed to take medication to being medication free and sleeping well and not drinking and not smoking and....well, fuck, he didn't say it but I'm saying having a swagger.

WHY?

He's got a point. I see it. Daniel always does and when we talk I always argue with him. This is one of the things so lovely about Daniel..he is so open and ripe for debate. He loves to think with other people.


He is thinking about the WHY? and he wants to write a book about it.

So I told him I'd buy the thing. Seriously, what an incredible story. But then (just 'cause I will never not debate with Daniel, it's so much fun) I said, "Sometimes I stop thinking about the whys and just enjoy it. Just embrace it.....then write."

I get to see some incredible people tomorrow.

So incredible they raised a girl who got her license to drive a car the same day she received her license to fly a plane. Road and air all in the same day. My only claim to fame, what should be put on my tombstone, is that I played Frogger with her on an old Atari when she was, I don't know, eight years old maybe.

Yes, she beat me. I feel lucky she would even play me.

So fitting right now, I think, would be another Maya Angelou quote, "I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life's a bitch. You got to go out and kick ass."

Gratitude.

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