I am not sure what to write. I just know I need to. I have to put thoughts down. I am always curious what writer’s block feels like, but I am not a writer (until now) and so never knew. I suddenly remember my eighth grade teacher Ms. Horton’s comments, “if you ever get stuck writing, just start writing about nothing and not being able to write and you will write!” She was a little crazy in the Ms. Frizzle sensibility. The teachers I had in my life were really formative to my character. I mean I am a teacher now. Wow. Ms. Horton was right! So I guess I want to write about my teachers. Teachers in general are so critical to your individual development. I mean the reality is that teachers are in children’s lives a lot more than their parents in some senses. Five days a week for several hours in the school day and then hours at home through assignments they are part of the development of young lives. Even if a student is homeschooled, then the education that he or she receives is crucial to their world view and personal ambition. I know that I am blessed that my parents partnered with the teachers to have a trifecta of influence between the teacher, mom, and dad. I know that I really appreciate it and as evidence to it, I gotta give a shout out to Ms. Horton for her advice umpteen number of years ago because from a blank page to a full article in no time flat.
Archive for Project Delta
Tonight I got to share some great jokes with some even better coworkers over some even more amazing food. It is always nice to laugh and share jokes back and forth. The aspect of tonight’s back and forth that was so intriguing was that most of the jokes told tonight were known by all. Hearing them again though and with some new embellishments made them all the more memorable. Add into the mix a highly educated waiter who had his own quips in between his service and it was an even better night. Lascivious and preposition were the words of the evening that helped start off every round of laughter. We were so raucous that some of the other patrons wanted to know what we were on about. The primary joy was celebrating Jenny’s birthday even though it definitely was not. Even that had its own joke because every single one of us had a different name according to the highly educated waiter, all because he couldn’t hear us well. I am very tired and going to wrap up but I knew I had to get some notes down about tonight just so in can remember in times yet to come. I think that this level of “journaling” is almost what Project Delta us really teaching me. At least that is what I’m getting…
I missed a day in my thirty day challenge to write at least one hundred forty words and interestingly I felt it.
I wish I would have written.
I was really excited about sharing some thoughts but now I missed that and truthfully can’t remember what I was going to say. I actually felt like I did a disservice to myself. I realize now how many times I have missed out on a thought or a concept that didn’t get materialized because of my lack of doing something. I think that the opportunity to take action or least of all write it down is something I should really change and something that others should do as well. We are such remarkable beings with such creativity and logic. It is one of the characteristics that truly separate us from the other animals around us. We should take advantage of that and act on them. If your start to rhyme words together write a poem. Take that doodle or sketch to the next level and make painting. String some notes together and make a song. How much creation must pass when we don’t take action and do something with it.
I considered going back and writing the post for yesterday, but now I think I will leave it blank so I won’t forget it and remember those lost thoughts.
Continuing with my plant trend from yesterday, today I got to spend some time working on my Bonsai tree. I have had this tree for just over six months and I have done some moderate “training” with it. I really liked the shape that it came in anyway so I wanted to let it grow naturally. One thing that it did lack was a good “landscape” to set the tree off. While clearing the full size trees from the back of my property yesterday, I found some swathes of nice moss that peeled up easily. Today I went back and collected some of the cleanest and weed-free moss sections to add to my Bonsai. It was very calming standing there working on the tree. Slowly adding more moss here and there as needed. I really enjoyed trying to make the little scene seem as if it were a full size tree in a little patch of green. I also had some nice tumbled rocks that I added for just separation.
The forty minutes or so that I spent working on that tree did really make me realize the calming nature of the activity. I can completely understand how Japanese bonsai masters could relax and just focus in on that activity. I even found myself individually picking out the moss so it stood in the same patterns. Either way the end result was awesome and I am glad I got to spend that quiet time just working on it.
Today I had to finish clearing some trees off my property and really got to get my hands in the soil. I used to be in the garden all the time with my dad. Often times that gardening was not by choice, but instead a filial duty to my dad. As I grew I tended to avoid the gardens and yard work because of the “forced labor” I experienced when I was little. Getting back to it today though was very refreshing. I had started to do some indoor plants and minor herb/vegetable planting this year, nothing significant though. I realized that I had some amazing soil in the back of my yard and come spring time I think I might have a concerted effort at building out a good raised garden box to do some more industrious vegetables. I love that Project Delta One is already spawning ideas for Project Delta Seven.
Good friends are worth a drive. We have technology like Skype, Google Hangouts, and Facebook, which all deliver really engaging opportunities to connect over distances. I realized tonight though how valuable a good drive solidifies that friendship even more. Anna and I found out that some travelling friends of ours were just two hours away. Now to most people a two-hour drive might seem like a long way to go just for a dinner, but there was no denying the fact that we had to go see them. It was truly an awesome evening. On the drive up I was able to recall the last time we all hung out together. Remembering the funny stories we shared and then thinking of the stuff we needed to update them on. Dinner was of course a time to share even more stories. After dinner on the drive home we just laughed about the new jokes we made and our plans for next time. Especially as much as I use technology there really is a lot of value in just spending face to face time with good friends.
In 2004 I had a life changing experience when I dove into a swimming pool and shattered my spine. Specifically my C7 bone, which is the same bone that actor Christopher Reeve broke when he fell from a horse. I was told that I could become a paraplegic and would be paralyzed from my neck down. At only twenty years old I saw the entirety of my life’s path changing. I was dating Anna then and we had talked about marriage but suddenly I didn’t know how she might be with me needing constant care and being locked to a wheelchair. I thought of how I might have to readjust my thoughts of being a father. I was however saved by the grace of God and the great advances in modern medicine. The neurosurgeons were able to replace my C7 with a titanium infrastructure that was then fused to my C6 and T1 vertebrae. Now I am blessed to have recovered so well that most don’t even know that I had such a massive operation.
A new endeavor I am pursuing with the influence of my friend Bill Long is Project Delta. Like a lot of great ideas, it was germinated by a late night discussion and some great food. The premise of this project was a TED Talk by Matt Cutts about a 30-day challenge. He had committed to try and do something different every day for thirty days. My friend Bill took that idea and then decided to develop a new men’s group called Project Delta. Our goal is to create a change in men by not only doing a similar 30-day change but also connecting men to a “sponsor” of sorts. My first Project Delta goal is to write at least one hundred and forty words every day for the next thirty days. I just love that it is called Project Delta. Delta is the mathematical symbol for “change” or “change in”. It is represented by a triangle, Δ , and my math brain just loves that when you add up all the angles of a triangle it equals 180 degrees. Such Symbolism! Either way this is my post for day one.