Category Archives: Uncategorized

HUMILITY or THINKING LESS OF YOURSELF VS OF YOURSELF LESS

As I watch our President white knuckle his release of power. Power he lawfully gained, and power he convincingly and lawfully lost, I’m reminded of John Dickson, Humilitas, and humility.

“humility is not low self-esteem, groveling, or losing our distinct gifts. Instead, humility both recognizes our inherent worth and seeks to use whatever power we have at our disposal on behalf of others.”

#iamgrateful and #iamthankful for this reminder.

We are here to become our best selves (first) and then to direct that in service of all and everyone around us.https://www.amazon.com/Humilitas-Lost-Life…/dp/0310328624

Regardless of what’s returned. Service with an expectation of returned response puts a limit on that service’s potential. It will likely be individual.

Service, with an expectation that it will only be paid forward, well that’s a momentum creating event. It can be perpetual.

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My $.02 | Faithpatches

I wrote the first version of this in early 2002, and the most recent version of this in 2007 (the version below is that last version). I saved it because I knew I’d want to revisit it. And here I am.

I’m revisiting this at 45. I’m still just as lost as I was then; if not moreso because I’m older, and with less time to figure it out. I vacillate between my lack of success against this happiness ideal as either thinking too much or, thinking too much of myself. Both are my own failures.

I am coming back to this concept during these times because maybe more than anything, I realize that the person who needs faithpatches is me? I had grand plans for this concept as a way to communicate the power of small good things as ways to start patching tested and even challenged faith. Now, at 45, I realize at least one thing: I’m the only one I know who needs patching. 

Everything below is where the concept originated:

In 1999 I was a little more innocent and frankly, life just felt right.

 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) went up almost 2,000 points that year. The Yankees of New York and the Braves of Atlanta, the two most prominent baseball teams of the 1990’s, met in the decade’s final World Series to settle the debate around which team would be crowned the decade’s indisputable champ (“The team of the 90’s”). The public’s national security concerns were focused on a PhD from China named Qian Xuesen and a “spy scandal”. 

 

And most importantly, even when things were going wrong, we had the confidence that things would end-up, right. 

 

We had faith.

 

And then things changed and the world started to feel a bit “off”. We had a presidential election wrought with failed processes. The DJIA has since spent years working its way back over 10,000, forget about approaching its peak at over 11,800. New national security concerns arise on what seems to be a daily basis, and the spy scandals we talk about today involve our own government ‘spying’ on its own people. 

 

And no human being alive on September 11, 2001 will ever fully recover from the affects of that day’s events. Ever.

 

Life had gained momentum, but in a very different direction. Now, when things go wrong, we still have confidence. We have confidence that things may actually get worse.

 

We have started to lose our faith.

 

Faith is a term which has been hijacked by the religious (right, left, center, anywhere). [You may alienate a large number of people with this language.  I agree that religion has no real bearing on your book, but I think this book may speak well to many religious people.  You may want to soften the language so as not to send them packing early]  When I considered the title of this book I struggled with the use of the word ‘faith’ and what it would inevitably connote. Considering its etymology, the word faith is derived from the Latin fides, which according to Mirriam-Webstier, is “akin” to the Latin word for trust, fidere. Definitions abound, the word faith universally implies a confident trust in some thing, some value, some belief. Whether that trust is codified in spiritual texts or social contracts is irrelevant. Faith, in its purest form, identifies the confidence with which we trust whatever we are accepting (or want to accept) as truth. 

 

When those planes struck the World Trade Center (the second plane striking right before my very eyes) they pierced through glass, concrete and steel. We have all seen the pictures. We have all watched the replayed broadcasts on TV. But something more serious was pierced that Tuesday morning. 

 

Our faith. Not a religious or even spiritual one; simply, our faith and belief in one another. Human faith.

 

In his book “The Protean Self: Human Resilience in an Age of Fragmentation”, Robert Jay Lifton introduces the concept of “The Protean Self”, based on the Greek sea god Proteus, a god capable of adapting and modifying his form. The term Protean has since come to mean the ability to exhibit diversity and reflect variety—versatility. Lifton’s analysis was stimulated by a catalyst similar to that which inspired this work in-front of you. His goal was to analyze human resiliency in the face of ever-increasing uncertainty; life blossoming squarely in the face of a force working so hard to stifle it.

 

“The protean self emerges from confusion, from the widespread feeling that we are losing our psychological moorings. We feel ourselves buffeted about by unmanageable historical forces and social uncertainties. Leaders appear suddenly, recede equally rapidly, and are difficult for us to believe in when they are around. We change ideas and partners frequently, and do the same with jobs and places of residence. Enduring moral convictions, clear principles of action and behavior: we believe these must exist, but where? Whether dealing with world problems or child rearing, out behavior tends to be ad hoc, more ore less decided upon as we go along. We are beset by a contradiction: schooled in the virtues of constancy and stability—whether as individuals, groups or nations—our world and our lives seem inconstant and utterly unpredictable. We readily come to view ourselves as unsteady, neurotic or worse.” (Page 1, Chapter 1)

 

It is impossible to argue with human resiliency. It is prevalent, but it is not absolute. Our faith, too, is subject to similar bounds. Human faith is a powerful, radiant fabric which surrounds and protects the human spirit. It is supple, it is flexible, it is unsettled—but it is not impenetrable. Our faith can be pierced, the fabric can be punctured—but it can also be repaired. Our faith can be fixed, can be made whole again—but sometimes we need help.

 

Sometimes we need faith patches.

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PDA | AN OPEN HAND or BRINGING SHARING TO LIFE

“That’s mine!”

As parents, we’ve all heard that scream from across the room. Your kid saying it to another kid — another one of your own, another kid in general. Or vice versa. But you’ve heard it. And it’s painful.

How do you teach your kids to share?

On Monday, a funny day in the household overall given the range of emotions and performances displayed by Anaiya and Jaanu, I had a couple of strong parenting moments. The one I wanted to share here was my response to “That’s mine!” flying out of the Play Room like a bat out of hell with its wings on fire.

Anaiya had just wrapped up her class and made her way to the Play Room where Jaanu was playing nicely by himself; but with her toys. She grabbed her transformer back from him.

We were about to hit a meltdown.

I quickly grabbed her hand and asked her to put the toy car in mine. Begrudgingly, she did.

I then called Jaanu over and walked them through in spirit, a message that when you hold on tight to something, you leave little room for other things. So your tightened grip means that thing you’re holding will be held, but it also means you’ll be missing out on so many others.

I then demonstrated. By holding her car in my hand tightly clenched, and then trying hard to pick up other things. I tried to pick up another car. A spoon. A yogurt pouch. I couldn’t pick up anything because my hand was so tightly clenched.

Then, I turned my other hand over. Palm up. Fingers stretched. Car free to go where it wanted. And I started picking up other things. I then had the kids add things to my hand and a mini tower formed.

When you have an open hand, you have given yourself the space and made yourself open to new things.

We went a layer deeper.

Holding on to your thing with a clenched fist isn’t wrong; I just want to make sure you believe it’s so valuable that you are willing to forego what other opportunities may come. And if the whole world operates this way, well, we’ll all pass value between one another without fear of losing or fear of being empty-handed.

The visual resonated. The interactive demonstration resonated.

What I love even more though; is what happened next and what has happened since.

First, Anaiya ran up to me and gave me a hug. She said she finally got it. And she thanked me for always taking the time to tell her stories that help her understand. “You tell the best stories, Buhboo!”

Next, and every day since, when a grab for “mine!” has happened I’ve simply looked at the kids and opened my hands. And in return, they’ve nodded, and proceeded to open their hands, and share. With each other. With friends.

Parenting is hard. I’ve had more failures in conversations, education, coaching, and discipline that I can remember. But those moments where on the spot, an idea comes to life and opens up the way your child sees the world (and the way they grip their toys) is magical.

 

 

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TYMMPB… | You’re the Best in the History

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I don’t remember the first time you said it. I do remember hearing it for the first time; and going absolutely bonkers.

We were doing yoga in the morning during the early days of COVID-19 and as we sat and talked about what the day held, what was going to make us happy, what was going to get in the way of our happy, what was going to be fun, and what was going to get in the way of our fun; in the midst of that logical juxtaposition of what you want, what you control, what gets in the way, and of that, what you control, somehow we stumbled upon “history”.

Your sister spoke first. And as her usual, eloquent and loquacious self, found a way into a spotlight where there wasn’t one, and then proceeded to find a way to own it.

What were you going to do? You were still a couple months away from knocking on 4’s door and here she was, the love of your life, your role model, choosing to go first in expressing her gratefulness in the morning leaving you to follow?

Was that even fair?

Do they have Mike Birbiglia open for someone who’s trying standup for the first time? You know?

She wasn’t better by design; only by years. At this stage in your life she’s got 50% more experiences than you do. It’s not reasonable to have you follow.

You let her roll. But your lips started turning up at the corners.

And when she finished, you dropped your greatest line and now the way I plan to talk going forward in celebration of amazing things always:

“The best in the whole history.”

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It’s so perfect.

It encapsulates you.

It’s succinct. Never take 12 words to say what you can say in 6.

It’s powerful. Never leave doubt on how you’re feeling at the moment.

It’s uniquely generous. Never just give, give in a way people haven’t experienced before.

It’s memorable. Never be forgettable, by choosing to be, say, and do things in unforgettable ways.

It’s sincere. Never fake anything. Ever.

It’s on your sleeve. Never wear anything in your heart or mind, that you wouldn’t wear on your sleeve too.

I love you. You are my absolute and undeniable homie.

I’ve never felt so comfortable expressing my love to someone. Even your sister, at some point, is like “Buhboo, you can’t love me this much!” But you? Naw’man. You? You escalate. When I tell you that you’re the best kid in the world.

Well; you tell me I’m the best buhboo in the history.

A few hours ago you were three; now, at this moment, you’re four. Even you’re reading changed from yesterday to today!

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You will never be three to you again. But I want you to know, to me, you’ll always be …

…a little bit of you at one…

…a little bit of you at two…

…a little bit of you at three…

…a little bit of you at four … and I’m so excited to learn about what that means.

The world. We included. Did a lot to you this year. You switched schools a few times. You moved from your Nana and Naniji’s comfortable daily love to a new home without them. You faced COVID-19. You got scratches. And bruises. On your face, your arms, and dare I say and admit, your heart.

You had people debating you when you weren’t there to be.

But every single day I look at you and I’ll say, man, given what the world and we included have thrown at you, you’re so…damn…good.

We owe you more and we owe you better.

People rise and fall to the expectations you set for them, son.

You’ve called each of us the best in the history. It’s our job to rise to that level and I’ll tell you, we’re getting after it.

As for you? Today You Make Me Proud Because of how real you are; and how wonderful you can make the world feel. You have a gravitational pull that isn’t based on mass (that’s me).

As you step into 4 and build on what’s before, I am so proud of who you are fighting to become every day; and I’m more excited about the kid I’m going to be talking about going into 5.

I love you, homie. You truly are incomparable; you are the greatest son in the history.

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PS: This year I made you gummy animals for your birthday treat; the ones filled with NERDS are INCREDIBLE! We even made you a dragon one as a primer for How to Train your Dragon: The Hidden World!

Image from iOS (5)

But going back to that whole “best in the history” thing we were talking about; you see, 3 days ago you woke up one morning, and when we were getting ready for breakfast you did this dance asking me for gummy bears.

Yeah. Gummy bears.

What’s funny is 2 days earlier I had decided I was going to make you Gummy Bears, ordered all the stuff, and it was on the way.

So I am wicked happy you’re going to have Gummy Bears on your birthday, homie.

And even moreso, that you proclaimed your craving for them while wearing a shirt that would have made JJ happy in pursuit of the Goodest of Times.

But, I’ll tell you, I’ll be as busy as a one-legged cat in a sandbox if one of the greatest moments in my history as a Buhboo (aka father), isn’t the fact that I tapped into your Gummy Bear longing days before you did …

…and then delivered on it.

We got 2020, homie. We got it; because we got each other.

I love you. And all you’re becoming. And all you’ve been.

 

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PDA | Butting Up Against the Limitations of Language or Thank You, My Children

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I’ve been trying to write this post for 3 weeks. I’ve tried many different hooks and patterns. I’ve tried to be simple. I’ve tried to be poetic. i’ve tried analogies. I’ve tried to be detailed. Yet every time I got about 350 words deep, I’ve leaned my head back away from my laptop, frowned, selected all of the text in the editor, and hit “delete”.

Nothing I can write does my feelings and my appreciation for you, justice. Nothing.

I have no words. There are no words. Language is limiting. As I understand it, there are over 1,000,000 total words in the English language, over 170,000 in current use, and on average, a person uses 30,000 of them.As I told your Mama when I proposed to her: “even 1,000 poets, writing 1,000 words a day, for 1,000 years can’t capture what moved me to propose to her”.

Now; for the second time in my life, I find myself verbally helpless; trying to find a way to bridge how I feel with the few words available and the even fewer words I know.

I don’t know how to capture what I’m feeling in words; in a way that you will read them at some point in your future and understand the weight of the feeling and the sentiments behind them.

But what I know, is that it won’t be for a lack of trying.

Anaiya. Jaanu. Buhboo.

For all of my worth as a human being: thank you.

There will come a day in your future; maybe a few, where you’ll wonder if you are up to the task. If you can pass some obstacle in front of you. If you can conquer some challenge. If you can go some Seussian places you want to go.

You will wonder. You will pause. You will hesitate. You will question.

And when you do, I want you to read this. And then, I want you to call me. On the phone. Over whatever device is in vogue when that challenge presents itself. And when I’m past my life while you’re still living yours, close your eyes and picture me. Reading this to you.

There is absolutely nothing you can’t do. Because at age 6 and age 3, you took the greatest punch the world has seen in over 100 years. You took something that crippled towns, cities, states, countries. You took a haymaker that brought humankind to its knees. In days. To our collective knees.

You took that. And you brushed it off your shoulder in a way that would make Aaliyah, Jay-Z, Barack Obama proud. You wiped a drop off blood of your lip in a way that would make Bruce Lee, and every Saturday afternoon Kung Fu theater hero (as well as your Dada Fua) proud. 

There has been so much discussion about the lockdown the world has experienced post COVID-19. Coronavirus. Corona – why us? There’s been some discussion about how resilient and adaptable human beings are. How if you had told us 3 months ago the way we’d be forced to live now, we’d never have been able to imagine it; and we certainly would have denied it would be possible .But when it happened, we adapted, and here we are.

Yes. Adaptable. Resilient.

But none of us are doing this adaptable thing, this resilient thing, with your grace.

And that is precisely where I lose all ability to express myself.

I want to tell you how one night you went to bed, ready for the next day. Your ordinary next day. An Alexa alarm. Breakfast and drop-offs. School and play time. Somewhere between 9 and 10 hours, a super majority of your life, for a super majority of your days each week, you were immersed in a world that we got glimpses of when we opened your backpacks, checked logs and updates from your teachers, hears mentions of when you had the time, energy and interest.

One night you went to bed, ready to do all the things we told you that you had to do. When we dropped you off at daycare. When we celebrated your first day of school  Make friends. Play nice. Listen to your teachers. Eat your meals. Be strong when you’re being bullied. Find strength when we aren’t there and when you feel like nobody else is, however fleeting. Do all these things because they are the most important things for you to learn now.

One night you went to bed knowing the next day was going to be filled with all those things.

And when Alexa woke you up that next day, we told you that wasn’t happening anymore. We told you that schedule, that way, wasn’t going to be the way. For a while.

If that had happened to me, I’d have needed a lifetime to plan, and a lifetime to prepare, and a lifetime to adjust; and I’d go through the motions and I’d do what I’m supposed to do.

But I don’t think, ever in my life, that I have operated with your grace. How can someone be so strong, so unwavering, so staunchly making progress, while doing so in a way that seems so effortless, so natural. You see, when I look at you, I don’t remember the way our life was 5 weeks ago. Because when I look at you, and observe you act, and watch you interact — I am only convinced that the way we’re living now is the only and obvious way we have been living all along.

When I look at my calendar. When I talk to people at work. When I read the news. Tonight is Sunday. Week 5 of quarantine. Poised for an even longer and more isolated road ahead. Into a new normal. Never returning to the way life was before. And it can be overwhelming.

When I look at you, though.

It’s Sunday.

What are we doing today, Buhboo?

Thanks for grading our worksheets, Buhboo!

Yay, we get to watch a movie, Buhboo!

I didn’t like my dinner, Buhboo, but I’ll eat it for you, Buhboo!

When I’m with you, it’s Sunday. It’s just Sunday for you.

And you’ve found a way to make it “just Sunday” for me too.

You can’t see your friends. Except, maybe from across the street. You can’t hug your Nana, Nani, Dadi, Tito Foi. Your Mamu is living with us, upstairs, in the guest bedroom and the best you can do is let him know when you’re downstairs so he can step out to get the tray of food we’ve left outside his door.

You can’t go to the park. You can’t go for ice cream. You can’t go to Charlie Brown’s (yeah, by the way, we need to talk about how for most of your childhood your favorite restaurant was a terrible chain restaurant that indicates you share a palate and a thirst for ambience with people born in the 1940s).

You can’t go to school. You can’t go to Tae Kwon Do. You can’t go to Dance Class. You can’t go to Bagels 4 U. You can’t go to Genus Boni. You can’t go to Shop Rite and you definitely can’t get the free cheese handouts there and at Whole Foods. You can’t … do … everything that brought you joy.

Yet you’re still, full of joy.

You are. Absolutely full of joy. It is because of you, I wake up with a bounce in my step excited about what we’re going to do today. Because of how you ask your questions, I focus on what we can and will do today; not what we can’t or can no longer.

“Buhboo, what’s our plan for tomorrow?”

What an absolutely beautiful question; Warren Berger would adore it. “What is our plan for tomorrow” is more intrinsically hopeful than “What are all the things we can’t do tomorrow that we could have done 5 weeks ago?”

It’s been 5 weeks, and you’re still asking beautiful questions.

You’re making me see the beautiful.

Your laughs fill our house. Your cries do too; but if we were to put them on scales, there would be no contest in terms of which direction we’re tipping.

I’m also watching you grow.

Anaiya: Yoga. Dance. Math. Reading. Mentoring. Eating. Breathing. Guiding. Defiance (I mean, you absolutely hate to lose at a level that would make Michael Jordan proud.) Love. The way you clutch my arm, at bedtime, at wakey time, and at so many times in-between, and hold it like it’s the last arm you’ll get to hold and hug on earth. I can’t help but feel that some of that has nothing to do with me, actually; you’re holding my arm so tightly because it’s the one place where all that’s been taken away from you is manifesting. And riding your bike with no training wheels. Yeah, that happened.

Jaanu: Dance. Gibberish. Letters. Tracing. Troubleshooting. Putting away dishes. Cleaning. Defiance (I mean, you absolutely hate being told what to do.) The way you proclaim to every person who’s ready to hear you that they are “the greatest in the history” is tagline and catchphrase I hope you never lose. I can’t help but feel that you’re expressing that as a way of defining a new baseline for history, and helping people find positivity and feel special in this altogether new way of being.

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I’m words, sentences, paragraphs in; and as you can see, I’ve written so much, and I’ve said so little that captures how proud I am of you. How honored I am to be your Dad, your Buhboo.

1,000 poets. 1,000 words a day. 1,000 years.

Even when, as a family, we experience the most extraordinary of losses, you find a way to bring love, to comfort, to hug and support — videos weren’t designed to have this kind of impact and sincerity. You have managed to make video feel human and intimate.

Consolation is something you give to people. After loss. After disappointment. Right now, as I read what people write and say and share; I feel an excessive amount of consolation. I see a world full of people acknowledging loss and disappointment and sadness; and from that, trying to force a rose to bloom from concrete.

Consolation is what I see and hear in every interaction.

Except the ones I have with you.

With you, it’s “just Sunday”.

With you, it’s “what IS our plan?”

With you, it’s not resilience. Or adaptability. Or perseverance.

With you, it’s not about the new normal.

With you, it’s just what’s next. Your ability to make everything that is, seem natural; and to make what’s next, seem possible. Is what makes me, so uncontrollably humbled and so infinitely proud, and so eternally enamored.

Thank you.

So when that hill, or that mountain, or that sea, or that valley, shows up in your way. I want you to call me. On your phone. On your <<unnamed device>>. On your memory.

And I want you to hear me. Loudly. Clearly.

The world handed you the worst the world has handed anyone. And you flicked, brushed, dusted, and resumed.

Thank you, my children. Thank you, my kids. Your Mama and I wish the rest of the universe had you to wake up to, you to bring tomorrow’s schedule to, you … to look forward to.

Because then, they’d all be as happy, as proud, as hopeful, as we are.

(And just as speechless.)

How much do I love you? More than anything.
How long will I love you? More than forever.
When will I stop? Never.

Ever.

 

 

 

 

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TMLFYI… | Beyond Explanation

I don’t know how to explain it or you. I’m dumbfounded.

You’re 5 years old and change. Sometimes you have the auditory sensibilities of an 80 year old Roadie who traveled with the Stones but “never could afford those ear plugs”. But sometimes, you demonstrate the auditory acuity of Superwoman wearing Miracle Ear.

The best part? Those often toggle on and off as personas in the same conversation.

But I’m here to write for you today because there are times when I do just feel. Heavy. Old. Dragging. Barely carrying my own weight let alone being able to pick you up when you want.

And the most magical sound and the most magical face for me is yours, in that moment. When literally not a soul is attuned to my self-awareness of my own inabilities, and life is just moving forward — Godspeed – life is just accelerating like Cole Trickle on a comeback lap.

When literally, that’s the scene, and the studio audience is waiting for a feeling.

You step in.

Every time.

And make eye contact. It’s one of the times you treat me like you treat everything else you focus on, and nothing else matters. You drop your fork. You drop your crayon. You drop your dolls. You drop your interests.

And you look at me and you keep saying “Buhboo” until I look back.

And then you drop it like Thor’s hammer.

“I love you.”

And with that, my wings have wind.

You’ve done that to me since you were born, Buhboo. With your actions (when I was stressed and needed you to chill or sleep or stay asleep, you magically did), and now, with your attention.

Thank you, Buhboo. You heal me with your words and your attention. I love you, Anaiya.

Image from iOS (1)

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485 POSTS LATER

I analyzed all my #iamgrateful and #iamthankful posts. Fascinating stuff.

Humbling stuff.

> 485 posts in 2 weeks short of 2 years
> Basically 3 Months with Zero Posts (12/2016, 2/2017, 3/2017)
> 331 straight posts (ending on 10/2/2016)
> An average of 30 Likes (14754 total), 6 Comment Threads (2962 Total) and 1 out of every 5 posts (86 Total) was shared.

Perhaps best … at some point over the past 2 years, 34 different people made their own post using #iamgrateful and #iamthankful. That’s a nice feeling.

There are some obvious winners. Our post about Jaan’s birth left the rest in the dust. People love our babies, justifiably so.

People love it when we get along. The photo of Michelle Obama hugging GW (which got love from all people on all sides, and gave me hope) had the most shares.

They also love it when we try and get along, but the effort can cause a push and pull. My post asking a favor of everyone who voted for Trump, to lead with empathy, received the same number of shares…but I also lost some friends even by making the ask.

I lost my credibility on 10/2/2016, after the first Trump v Clinton debate and a post I titled “She Lost”. I was angry. I was reading everyone’s comments and I couldn’t believe the side I supported was missing the point: Hillary was losing by not winning. By losing my temper on people, I lost some friends. I lost some self-respect. And I lost credibility.

The average number of people liking my posts dropped by 20%. It doesn’t pay (for me) to lose my temper. Ever. I was also rude. And it still kills me. Hurts me. People also don’t turn to my feed for news or “genius”. Most of my posts with “zero” comments and likes were posts where I thought I was sharing something “smaht”.

I should stop that. 🙂 I’m not a thought leader about any thoughts other than thoughts about my kids. People turn to my posts to see my family, to see me celebrate other people, and maybe, to pick up a smile. Self-promotion? Doesn’t suit me (nor should it.)FB can be helpful. People like being helpful. Holy hell do people like being helpful. The most comments, outside of Jaan being born, were reserved for the times I asked questions (sometimes 60/70 comment threads, or 2x the average.)And it’s like life in general. The more you are there for folks the more they are there for you. Stepping back from life makes repatriation a little slower.

It was a good exercise for me. I’ve always been aware of what people look to me for (comfort, safety, honesty, and hopefully, support/faith), what they don’t (confidence, genius, intelligence), and when they turn away (when I get passionate, and when I get angry). The analysis above … validates what I’ve known for years. It helps keep me honest about my small place in this world. And my active pursuit of it always brings me back to a simpler place requiring me to find greater context and humility.

I pulled this post together as part of a storytelling exercise. It was supposed to serve the basis for a presentation I was making on Thursday night to 100 people. But that … fell through. For a whole host of gut punching reasons. I am sad about it. But I won’t stay sad about it.

It’s far from a loss in the least. I’m excited to come back to this in a year and beyond. Just like I was able to go back and visit some of my favorites from the past two years. And remind myself of some of my mistakes.

#iamgrateful and #iamthankful for what I’ve learned. Game on.

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FOR WHAT IT”S WORTH

Thanks to an old friend, effectively a distant but still an older brother by deep familial ties, Sumeet Goel for sharing this song and this post. #iamgrateful and #iamthankful for what music can do when we stop to listen to what we’re listening to. His comment was that it is supremely relevant to our time, whatever side we’re on.

Lyrics. They’re why I’ve always found myself moved to and gravitating toward great folk, great hip hop, great music where the lyrics carry the song regardless of format and version (if a song can stand up to a single voice on an acoustic guitar, it is worth paying attention to in any form … thank you Andy Fox for that eternal lesson.)

No need to search for the lyrics, I’ve put ’em right here for you.

There’s something happening here
What it is ain’t exactly clear
There’s a man with a gun over there
Telling me I got to beware

I think it’s time we stop, children, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down

There’s battle lines being drawn
Nobody’s right if everybody’s wrong
Young people speaking their minds
Getting so much resistance from behind

It’s time we stop, hey, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down


What a field-day for the heat
A thousand people in the street
Singing songs and carrying signs
Mostly say, hooray for our side


It’s s time we stop, hey, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down


Paranoia strikes deep
Into your life it will creep
It starts when you’re always afraid
You step out of line, the man come and take you away


We better stop, hey, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down
Stop, hey, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down
Stop, now, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down
Stop, children, what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down

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HBD

Enough said. I love you. #iamgrateful and #iamthankful to have a protector like you in front of me at all times Anu Kiran And I know Priya KC Bhatt feels the same way. 😉

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May be an image of 2 people and people smiling

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SIBLINGS

This past Saturday, after a fine lunch, the kids and I made our way back to the car. I placed them in their car seats enough to hold them while I went back to load the stroller in the trunk. As I was a-stroller-folding, I heard Jaanu crack up. Then again. So I peeked through the trunk and into the backseat to see…this. This will be my favorite picture forever. Hard to see it topped. I love it because it’s emblematic of a sibling relationship. At the very core, the hands. This reminds me of my sis and me, Anu Kiran. Those hands might as well be ours. And though as we have aged and grown, we’ve experienced different facial expressions and body language. Sometimes smiling like this, sometimes angry, sometimes sad, sometimes tired and sleeping, and often times with one feeling one way and the other another way. Sometimes we are facing in, sometimes up, sometimes away. But you know what never changes? Our hands. I always have yours in mine and you always have mine in yours.

#iamgrateful and #iamthankful that you are my sis. And that you are always there to reach for my hand and have been since the day I was born. I hope Anaiya is to Jaan what you have been to me. If so, he will have no greater blessing. I wanted to be the first to say HBD. May it be momentum to make this year and all that follow, wonderful. Love you, Tito!

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