It could get way out of hand

…my friend is watching a show where a devout Mormon woman is placed with a gay family. The idea is that people with different background are exposed to each other to see how their perceptions change.

This woman is having a hard time. She says that it’s a shame that the people are “raising their kids to be gay.”

“There just aren’t enough rules anymore,” she says. “Children nowdays can just have too many free thoughts.”

Wow! Children could be raised to think for themselves? Oh my God! (pun intended) What on earth would happen if children were brought up to engage in actual thought of their own? We might have a society in which people actually read the text of a speech instead of synthesize their opinions from headlines and sound bites.

We might actually have a culture in which people engage in their search for a spiritual path that is given by consideration of all human wisdom that precedes them instead of simply the fairy story told in their particular neighborhood.

We might have a society in which we collectively engage in action given by logic, knowledge, compassion for other points of view, and acceptance of others’ beliefs.

No — I agree with this woman! This “free thought” thing must be nipped in the bud before it gets further out of hand.


another week on the road

…I’m posting late (monday) because it’s been a whirlwind transition from the trip to Vancouver into this adventure in the Deep South (Winston Salem NC). I got home Friday afternoon and schlepped my sorry self into downtown San Jose for the Team classroom. That was all the juice I had that day. It took a lot.

A quick transition and now I’m in North Carolina after a verrry long travel day. (got the airport at 7am and got into my room at 11pm.)

Now I’m filled with a bowl of grits and a BBQ sandwich that Mom would have wanted for me. And I’m a little sluggish, ready for another nap. Will probably give in and get up rarin’ to go again.

Think when that happens, I’ll make a pot of bad hotel coffee and get in action. There’s a lot I can do today, and I’ve only done a bit of it. I’ll dig back in when I return from my short respite in sleep.

Matt Holober showed up as a hero yesterday when he agreed on short notice to care for Apollo during this trip. Now that I know the dog boy is covered, I can relax and focus on my students, and the other games I have afoot. Can’t wait to make more progress on my various great adventures. Here’s a short list of what I’m up to these days…

48 Hour Film Project – San Jose (August)
Trail of Gold – California (Sept/Oct)
Summer Tour – Southeast (August)
War Crimes (September
How Far Jafar (2008/2009)
Schoolhouse Earth Seminar Series (Oct 2008 onward)
Sign People (2009)
Cisco Training (July onward)
Meru Training (now onward)
Mothership [a housing/working community] (now onward)
Legend Electronics (2009)

…I think that covers it mostly.

There’s more no doubt, but that’s a good start, don’t you think?


Greensboro NC trip

…I have to say that having been there, I would want to go to Greensboro again. I taught at Wake Forest Medical School and have to say that it was very pleasant.

I was driven to work each day by a great limo driver, and on the final day of the trip, he had to be away so he sent his lovely fiance/business partner. We had a great talk on the way to my classroom.

I got to eat great barbecue and hush puppies at a place near the hotel, and spent a few evenings watching sports news and enjoying libations at a very interesting place across the street from my hotel.

I was still in a cross-coaching relationship with Jill and we had some very interesting talks while I was in Greensboro. I had this feeling that something was heating up for us — but it was more likely that she simply enjoyed having a man-friend with whom she could be at ease given that nothing was ultimately going to happen. I dunno, we tended that friendship for several months afterward very carefully. It was a good, and mutually beneficial friendship.

This was also the trip during which I lashed out at Jessica and shortly after that I ceased to participate with Team. The entire decision was based on anger — I think her nasty little voicemail was about the last straw for me. It’s funny, because she’d left me that message about a week prior and when I got to it, I went ballistic.

Here’s how that broke down…

Earlier in the month I’d returned from a trip to Vancouver — busted my hump to get back to the classroom for a big Friday night meeting. The odds were that I’d miss the meeting due to flight schedule issues. But I found a way to beat the odds and get there — but it involved getting up at 4am and observing a very grueling travel path. I had to go standby — take the BART and then the Caltrain to San Jose, and then schlep my baggage several blocks across downtown to get to the center.

Understandably I was exhausted and when I found that I was being ineffective at the meeting, I excused myself for well-being issues and went home. That was the last time I met with Team as a participant. I went home and relaxed — actually I felt better about the whole experience of Team once I’d relaxed and caught up a little on rest.

What I didn’t know is that Jessica had called me on the break (at the meeting) that night and left me a message asking me if I was high or something?

I took exception to this — actually it made me furious. So when I heard the message from her (a few days after today’s flight) I called and lashed out in her voicemail. A regrettable mistake, and one I’d avoid in the future. But definitely the end of a close friendship with Jessica.

Nothing that cannot be rebuilt, but a pivotal time in my experience with the Team Management and Leadership program.


Wait a minute…

…my friend is in love with a man who is serving in the US Marine Corps as a junior officer. He’s back from Afghanistan and she’s being able now to reconnect with him. She said, “war is strange.” I say this…

Lastly, war is not just strange. It’s horrific and no longer actually necessary. I intend to work to bring an end to it for all but the most obscure and obtuse situations. And I intend to support leaders who have better ideas for how we deal with our circumstances in the world. (We fire teachers who cannot think of a way to handle their jobs without resorting to hitting the children. We would not accept a husband who says, “sometimes you just have to beat the wife — especially if you knew my very bad wife…” and we take on teaching a child who only knows how to prevail by hitting. Don’t know why we stand for world leaders who think that it’s okay to repeatedly use violence as a means to achieve policy directives. Oh yeah, it’s okay if “the other guy started it.”)

My hope is that you (and your love) and all of our children can visit Kandahar, or Baghdad, or Tehran with heads held high, with compassion for the people who live there and their way of life, and with the strength to relate to belligerent leaders there (and here) as misguided remnants of an earlier way of being for humans.  The days of getting what we want by stamping our feet and clenching our fists are done!  There’s a new day upon us, and I am inviting leaders everywhere to declare it and stand with the fortitude it will take to bring it about everywhere in the world.

(Okay, I’m a starry eyed dreamer, but I can see this clearly and it now my commitment.)

…I’m just sayin…


on a mission

…I am up to so much this week, and I’m sure I can bring much more order, intention, and effectiveness to the game than I did last week.

Notice that this “regular Sunday” posting is being created on Monday. That’s indicative of my integrity for the past few weeks. When I returned home, I sat down and just listed the things that were out of integrity about my last trip. Some of those things I need to acknowledge with Tom. And there was quite a list! I don’t think I got to the bottom. But I did fill a legal tablet yellow pad.

It was a spectacular week, and I think the coming week is set to be explosive. We planned a tour to go through the Midwest to promote sustainable living. Now we will be traveling through a disaster relief area. We’ve positioned ourselves perfectly to prototype and demonstrate the Rapid Response Learning Center.


It’s funny how sometimes, a thing as simple as finding two rolls of paper towels by surprise can brighten your day beyond measure.

There’s more to say, but I must get on with the doing. This entry at least restores my integrity with respect to having a weekly notation. More this week for sure though…


Another Sunday

…my new practice of getting a journal entry in on Sunday if I haven’t done it sooner has called me in here.

I’ve been flailing away to build out a site on Google Sites now that it has opened to the public. I was fearful that all of my content on the old Jot Spot wiki would be lost forever. It is back, and now the “sites” is open for good, I can port the content over myself.

What I mean by this is that I’ve been maintaining a lot of my thoughts, projects, musings and other mischief on a Jot Spot Wiki. (This site eventually became the Lucky Dog Estate after Google bought Jotspot and subsumed the technology into Google Sites.) When Google bought Jot, it wasn’t clear what would happen to that system, or to my content. But now it looks like I can migrate it over. That will be exactly what I wanted.

You see, Google gives me the good stuff without spattering their commerce all over me. There are ads, and there is commerce, but I don’t have to have my nose rubbed in it. So I prefer the Google world over the Yahoo! world where the ads pop up, they spring out, they balloon across the page, and sometimes they even reach out and touch my friends. Not so hot folks.

What else I like about Google is that about the time I think, “you know, I really need this feature,” that’s when the feature appears the next day. So as I work, the things improve to match my growth into the new space. This is what it’s like when engineers are free to build the things they want for themselves.

So now that I can create, host, and share my content online at Google, I’ve been in a flurry to port what I’ve had around for a while, and to create new content as fast as I can learn what’s possible. I’ve been able to embed media such as videos, slideshows, images, and even snippets from other sites into my pages here. It’s pretty amazing and I think there’s a lot more to discover as I go.

I’ve been working with Alesandra Valenzuela to create a Schoolhouse Earth Sustainable Living Summer Tour. We’re going to 8 cities to present music, entertainment, education and raise awareness for things that we can all do to be responsible for the mess we make as we live our lives. The cities are: Olympia, Iowa City, Cincinnati, Columbus, Memphis, Atlanta, Savannah, and Orlando.

Don’t ask me why. It’s a tour designed by a committee of special interests. I don’t even know what most of my own were in that. But we have our tour.

Along the way, we get to stop in Montana and shoot footage for our Thriving Artists Western working-titled “Trail of the Gold” This is the not the first time I’ve tried to do a “straight up” movie. Usually at my level of skill and mastery, it’s a good idea to avoid taking yourself too seriously. But in this production, we plan to showcase music, do one horse riding stunt, avoid the use of firearms except as objects to brandish, and actually deliver a story that’s interesting and dramatic.

I haven’t put sufficient time into these things: studying for either of the courses I’m getting paid to teach, preparing for the 48 Hour Film Project, preparing for the June and July movie nights, or doing anything powerful and direct about my income. Hmmmm… Maybe there’s a clue.

Must get on with it now. Time to make a Western. Damn the bill collectors! Bring on the ponies.