gurustu's muse the daily thoughts of an every day guru
Daily Guru Thoughts
Saturday, January 31, 2004 The Importance of Being Earnest... Today was not about Oscar Wilde's play "The Importance of Being Earnest" but rather how important it really is to be earnest in your daily life.
ear·nest 1. Marked by or showing deep sincerity or seriousness.
2. With a purposeful or sincere intent.
3. A token of something to come; a promise or an assurance.
Even though I pre-warned a friend of my eye condition and that I probably would not be able to help him organize his apartment, I did promise to call.
Morning came and went, and I got all caught up in "stuff." My cell and home phone batteries had run down and I figured I was cut off from the world til they recharged (even though the fax machine has a perfectly working phone).
I really had no legitimate excuse.
I called this evening and apologized and made promises for sushi one of these evenings, but still... he and I have a history of my bad habit of not returning phone calls (It's a character flaw of mine after I push the "save" button and send the messages off to the void).
The irony was that my next article was going to be about following through. I guess I'm not ready to write that until I learn that lesson myself.
Thursday, January 29, 2004 Truly rich... My mother sent me this little story in an email today:
A boat docked in a tiny Mexican village. An American tourist complimented the Mexican fisherman on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took him to catch them.
"Not very long," answered the Mexican.
"But then, why didn't you stay out longer and catch more?" asked the American.
The Mexican explained that his small catch was sufficient to meet his needs and those of his family.
The American asked, "But what do you do with the rest of your time?"
"I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, and take a siesta with my wife. In the evenings, I go into the village to see my friends, have a few drinks, play the guitar, and sing a few songs . . .I have a full life."
The American interrupted, "I have an MBA from Harvard and I can help you! You should start by fishing longer every day. You can then sell the extra fish you catch. With the extra revenue, you can buy a bigger boat."
"With the extra money the larger boat will bring, you can buy a second one and a third one and so on until you have an entire fleet of trawlers. Instead of selling your fish to a middle man, you can negotiate directly with the processing plants and maybe even open your own plant. You can then leave this little village and move to Mexico City, Los Angeles, or even New York City! From there you can direct your huge enterprise."
"How long would that take?" asked the Mexican.
"Twenty, perhaps twenty-five years," replied the American.
"And after that?"
"Afterwards? That's when it gets really interesting," answered the American, laughing. "When your business gets really big, you can start selling stocks and make millions!"
"Millions? Really? And after that?"
"After that you'll be able to retire, live in a tiny village near the coast, sleep late, play with your children, catch a few fish, take a siesta, and spend your evenings drinking and enjoying your friends."
Wednesday, January 28, 2004 A rewarding experience I wasn't in the office when my nominee at work got his award, but I'm glad he got it.
Politics seem to play a role in who gets certain awards and I've had my problems getting nominations through before. This award was project based, and not as bureaucratic, so it got through.
I'm all for positive reinforcement. I believe in rewarding the stuff you do want, instead of punishing the stuff you don't. Some people see that as an attempt at manipulation (as if punishment isn't) while others just see it as "fluff."
The people who get the reward know though and, for me, that's all that counts.
If someone doesn't "get it"... if they take advantage of my generosity (and there's been those that have), it's not my problem. The people with good hearts, who've risen from the occasion, have very much made up for the others.
People like to feel good about themselves; they like to be recognized for making a contribution to the world. We know we want it for ourselves, but we oftentimes forget that other people want it to. A kind gesture at the right time doesn't just give to them; it gives back to YOU... in ways that can only be described as divine.
Tuesday, January 27, 2004 Sight for sore eyes Another lesson in never fully appreciating things till they're gone...
It started yesterday in my left eye. My contact was blurring and I thought maybe the last cleaning just missed something. I kept cleaning it and going on about my business. My right wasn't so good either, so I kept cleaning that as well.
Driving home, suddenly all the headlights turned to halos. There I was, going 75 the speed limit, and the world was frosted over. I yawned and blinked as much as I could to get watery eyes enough to see. I was very lucky to make it home.
Contacts out and safely soaking gave me a false sense of security. By nightfall, the world was frosty again; only this time all by themselves. I will spare you the details, but needless to say things were coming out that shoulda been stayin' in.
This morning I literally couldn't open my eyes. I was getting ready for a trip to the emergency room when a blast of antihistamine for my nose started to clear up my eyes. Eye washes and bed rest showed progress so I declined the emergency room and made an appointment with my eye doctor instead.
When your eye doctor starts the conversation with "oh my" you know something's wrong. It was confirmed to be highly contagious bacterial conjunctivitis (which means "eye problems" in Latin and "Pink Eye" to the rest of us... really, pink is not my color). I'm now on aggressive meds to stop this thing from getting worse.
You know, when I wrote about starting back from zero, I really didn't need to have living examples. I wrote it.... so I got it already.
Monday, January 26, 2004 Feeling the loss Over the weekend I had my own loss. On Friday my site dropped from 4th place in Google to the 7th PAGE; and half my visitor numbers disappeared. Then Yahoo followed, dropping me from 7th to 58th and half the remainders were gone. I don't know if it has to do with the articles I wrote or the new rules that Google is using, but I've paid the price.
It's not like I'm making tons of money on this site, but I do want to reach the people who are looking for words of wisdom. When people find me and it means something to them, it means a lot to me too. This is a frustrating, humbling moment, that I hope to grow from and triumph over.
The irony came in the form of my email horoscope...
Beware of getting frozen into a favorite spot. Ignoring a change in policy or style leaves you far behind the current state of the art. Whether or not you agree with what's going on, you should know about it.
Sunday, January 25, 2004 Life imitating art... I've been reading a number of blogs by homeless (and former homeless) people and had them in mind when I wrote my latest article about building up from nothing. Two days ago, Jonathan's blog "Homeless and Disabled in Alabama" disappeared. With all the things he has to go through, I was concerned. Today I found out that he accidentally deleted his blog.
Thinking of my third point ("search for salvage") I went in search of an old copy at archive.org, but nothing was there. You gotta love Google! Doing a search for "homeless, disabled, Alabama" I just clicked on the "cached" link and voila... there it was!!! I copied and pasted everything I could find into a Word doc and text format, so that he can rebuild. Fortunately his archive is intact, so it's just a matter of time before he's up and running (least I hope so). There aren't a lot of homeless bloggers out there, so what they have to say speaks for millions.
In his last post, Jonathan admitted that he just wanted to be heard... and in his comments all I could say was "I hear you."
Saturday, January 24, 2004 Stop hanging on to bad memories... I've got a lot of stuff in my closet... too much stuff in fact... there's that jacket I got while in College in London and those sweaters I got during all those holidays back east. They've earned their right to hang in there forever. Then there's the "optimistic pants" that are waiting for me to get my act together and the "now why do I have these" shirts... and nestled amongst all that was a bad memory.
The day I walked into the department store I still had a body image of a 175 pound 20 year old; with memories of my mother always telling me to "eat something!" but that was no longer true. I was ten years and forty pounds away from that, and afraid to admit it to myself.
As I brought these two "stylish" shirts to the counter, the young cashier made casual conversation,
"Oh, these shirts, if you have an ounce of fat it shows."
Now maybe she was thinking about something else, or was just trying to be funny, but all I heard was
I was tempted to just walk away then, but instead said "oh" as I handed over my credit card.
I never wore them.
Even after I started back up at the gym and smaller sized pants started to show up back in the closet, I'd see those shirts, self-consciously touch my stomach, and push the shirts aside.
Today I took them out. I thought about trying them on, figuring it would be a triumph if they looked good on me... but instead I chose to let it go. The fight, the relationship... is over. I neither that 20 year old nor the forty-pounds-overweight guy... I'm lighter now... I've shed weight, shirts... and memories.
Thursday, January 22, 2004 Listen up... Can you hear it? It's your body trying to tell you something...
The body is an amazing thing... you heard the saying "carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders?" That's because your brain is telling your body everything that's going on around you. It shows up as a headache, backache and a whole array of maladies.
I heard all about it when I went to my chiropractor. "You seem a lot more tense than the last time," she remarked.
"Oh really," I replied, "you mean right after my vacation in Hawaii?"
Apparently a week of administrative tasks and performance reviews can wear a person down, literally.
So today's lesson is how it's not only important to take care of your body, it's equally important to listen to what it's trying to tell you.
Wednesday, January 21, 2004 Ranking, Ruling, Ranting... There are many times in our lives when we are judged by the rules set by others. Our everyday lives are shaped by the laws laid down years ago by people we'll never know. Even people we do know have their opinions about right and wrong and will not hesitate to tell you.
And you will be ranked accordingly.
It started this morning with Yahoo. Last week, for reasons (and rules) unknown to me, this site went from fourth place when searching for "words of wisdom" down to 32. Today it went back up. I suspect either an article that the bot didn't like, or the fact that my site looks like it went down on Saturday.
Then, driving into the work, the radio commercials are already advertising "get ready for tax time!" Another pure example of how we are categorized and judged by our ability to make our tax returns worthy of Shakespeare.
Next, I'm going through my barrage of emails in the office and read about how 90% of upper management got moved up one level. (They must really have good keywords, eh?). It made me reflect on their "rules" and I wondered what they did and why it's been so difficult to get someone on my team a promotion for the last two years.
And I wondered about myself, and my position at the company... where would I rank after these performance reviews are done? Is there growth, opportunities? I know I'm not in a bad place, but right now I also know it's not a forward moving place to be.
Finally, those reviews... "tis the season" ... and I've only just begun to write those yearly dissertations so that a committee can categorize, judge and rank everyone... not as individuals as I would prefer, but rather against one another, from #1 to the last. It won't matter if you're a programmer or an admin, you will be processed and queued up, so that the higher ranked officials will know what to do with you come raise time.
And if you want to rant about it, please take a number and we'll get back to you,
Tuesday, January 20, 2004 Mental Block The thing about returning from a vacation is that it opens up the floodgates of all the things you left behind. Other people went through their own "thing" while you were gone... and deadlines don't go away just because you did. It can feel like turning on the switch into a different world. So what changed?
"Getting away from it all" can be very relaxing... and do wonders for your blood pressure, but it doesn't help if the other 50 weeks are full of stress and anxiety.
The trick is to come to peace with your deadlines and meetings and the crazy people who fill your every-day life. They are what they are... and as long as you work with Purpose and keep striving towards your goal, you can keep the stress under control.
Plus who says you have to only take vacations every once in a while? Every day, take little mini vacations... get away, go for a walk, eat your lunch any place else but your desk.
How was it you were able to forget all about it just moments before, but you can't now? It's not the proximity to it in space that makes the difference, it's what's in your mind that blocks you up.
Sunday, January 18, 2004 Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder I had written about S. some time back, on the day he passed away. The last couple of days I’ve spoken with his children, sisters, brothers and parents… and it’s amazing how much they’ve all said the same thing – that life is somehow better now that he is gone. Even though they hate to admit it to themselves, S. created so much pain and drama that his absence is actually having a positive effect on the family. Members who stayed away now come for regular visits; people talk more openly and loving to one another.
I hope that when I’m gone that people say how much nicer the world is, I hope they mean because I was here, and not because I’m finally gone.
Paradise, Inc. So called “growth” has started to creep its way into Kauai. The thick brush of green has given way to the oranges of Home Depot. Just down the road, next to the Macys people flock with their children to get a Jamba Juice, while they guzzle down lattes from Starbucks.
I’ve said in the past that I like convenience and the Cosmopolitan lifestyle. I don’t however necessarily see it as “progress.” It would be selfish of me to want the island to stay the way it's been for years, just so I can have a “get-away.” I do hope however, that the island somehow finds a way to put its own style onto these new additions, and not end up just another cookie cutter project for Corporate America.
As we drove past the Burger Kings and the McDonalds, I kept looking around for places to surf… not the water kind, but of the internet variety. It’s starting to feel like home; but I’m not so sure that’s a good thing.
Saturday, January 17, 2004 The best alarm clock I woke up to sounds of a wild rooster who didn’t seem to notice that the sun was still a few hours away. I forgave him; after all, I would sing too if I got to live here. Besides, the sounds of the ocean coming through the opened window lulled me back into a peaceful slumber.
Then, as if the rooster had a snooze alarm, he was at it again. He didn’t want me to miss the sunrise. As the sky started to change to a dusty blue, neither did I. I grabbed some shorts, “slippers” (as sandals are called here) and a hat and rushed out to greet the sun. I also greeted several other early risers with their instamatics and tripods ready. We were all warmed by anticipation and didn’t seem to notice the slight chill in the air.
The sun didn’t disappoint. Everything was bathed in rich gold as people tried to capture the moment. I tried to breathe it in. I think I caught a whiff of Spam cooking in someone’s kitchen.
As I walked along the water front, I just had to laugh at my city self and pale white legs. I caught myself thinking “oh, that’s gonna blister” as I scrambled over a rock to take a closer look at a sea cucumber. “Just let it go” was my next thought… just… let… it… go.
Friday, January 16, 2004 Flight 209 to Paradise The fog tried to smother the airport like an old blanket from the attic. I didn’t mind. I knew I had a two and a half hour layover in Honolulu, so the fog could eat up that time and there’d still be a chance to catch the regular flight to Kauai. People thought I was crazy to just plan a long weekend, but when the special appeared on Expedia several weeks ago, I couldn’t pass it up. As today approached though, they unabashedly showed their jealousy. As I waited for the fog to clear, I just sort of wondered if they had anything to do with fogging in the airport.
I’ve been to Kauai several times in the past. Except for “passing through” Honolulu, I haven’t spent any time on the other islands. Having friends here makes a difference. It gives you a chance to see the back-sides of tourist places and the best local food you can eat. You get to see the “real” island, not the shiny prepackaged version they show the customers.
A change of scenery is good for everyone. It breaks you from the usual routine that encourages old habits. Being away helps free your mind to contemplate the “other stuff” in your life… and sometimes you’re lucky to come up with solutions besides “I wanna move here.”
The negative side of wandering away is that you can also leave behind your resolutions, especially that one about not overeating. “I’m on vacation!” you shout with glee as you order the cheesecake.
As I write this, I’m digesting my yet-another-meal with rice and “mac salad” as its side dish… the staple of the Hawaiian diet and enemy of the Atkins diet. I’m sure I’ll be paying for this with more than my American Express card.
Thursday, January 15, 2004 The Review Are in... After being listed in several issues of an email ezine, the reviews of my site are finallly in. It's a bit long, but I've listed all the comments with a few of my own... check it out now...
For Your Reviewing Pleasure... What others have to say about gurustu.com...
Excellent web site. I do find it to be too crowded but colors are well distributed and it is easier to follow. Good Luck.
Inner space is infinite; too bad web sites aren't as roomy.
Nice refreshing looking website. I liked the simple but colorful graphics, the text is clear and easy to read, even with loads of stuff the whole site looks clean. Good use of alt tags. Current and up-to-date.
I started reading instead of reviewing, and find it hard now to come up with suggestions to make it better, but here goes (all little picky stuff).
I did see a couple of typos, i.e.; second sentence of 'acttips.php' page Manyh should be Many, but with all the writing I'm surprised I didn't see more.
Clicking the link 'articles' at the bottom of the page came with a run-time error and asked if I wanted to debug.
The 'Gurustu's Muse' link at the bottom of the 'letters.php' page came back as 'page not found'
Very original, enjoyable, and someplace I could see myself visiting on a regular basis.
Thanks for finding those pesky typos & code problems. They do crop up every once in a while and I encourage people to tell me they're there... like having broccoli between your teeth, y'know?
I hope you do come back on a regular basis. I write a lot, if you weren't able to tell.
Very nice looking site. Good navigation and pages are loading very fast even on my dial up connection.
I know dialup only too well... so I do everything I can to get the site to you as fast as I can.
Gurustu.com is one of the best websites I have come across. So much information but well formatted and categorized. Easy Lay-out for all the interesting information on this site. Whoever built this tells me that they know what they are doing. I spent about an hour on this site and didn't make a dent in all there is to read and watch.
The one and only thing that I can say I didn't care for, was some of the movie sites. I don't care for nudety or excessive profanity. Some short clips were funny. Great Job! I added your site to my favorites and I plan on reading it daily. Great Advise.
Ut oh, looks like you wandered into iFilms or Atom Films or some such, which I linked to in "Other Paths." You won't find any profanity on my part of the site. I have removed those links to keep the site safe for all ages.
Thank you for adding me to your favorites.
I am puzzled by what the point of this site is meant to be. Is it just a colourful link to Google, with a couple of things that may be of use on a "normal" page, such as the site translator? Is it only me that cannot find any meaning for the existence of this site?
You know, I've often thought that the entire internet is just some sort of colourful link to Google. You might be on to something.
Nice design and concept. I have two suggestions. 1. The left and right outside borders are too "busy". The are somewhat distracting to someone try to focus on the content in the middle. I would weed them out. 2. Look into selling ebooks from the site.
1. Will take it into consideration and see if I can tidy up a bit. 2. In the works... thanks for thinking about them.
A very nice website. It was very clean and easy on the eyes with some fun pictures and fun reading. It had a lot of links on the website, too. Nice job, Gurustu.
Wednesday, January 14, 2004 For what it's worth... There are things in Life that costs... but Life itself is priceless. Every once in a while we see that value. This morning I almost trashed an email that just said 'thanks' in the subject line. After all, it was right next to 'hi' and 'your order' and 'grow overnight.' I opened it anyway, and was greeted by words that made me speechless (if you could imagine that)
Your site is very inspiring, definitely "Enlightening" and has been a great resource for me as a teacher. I do come in contact with adult learners every week, and I can not begin to write about some of the day-to-day encounters I have in my classroom. Things such as anxiety, friction, confusion, immorality, hurt, and others absolutely consume people's health, career, relationship and in certain cases their entire life.... I wanted to take this brief moment of time to say, THANKS for packaging life's most essential attributes in a way that is accessible, understandable and makes a very positive contribution to humanity itself.
I've said it in the past, but will say it again and again and again... this is what my site is all about... these responses, that tell me I'm following my plan to make the world a better place than when I got here... they are absolutely priceless to me.
Then, not more than half an hour later, I came across a blog that lead me to this... according to HumanForSale.com, I'm valued at $2,323,070.00. Not priceless by any means, but still not bad.
The rest of my day wasn't worth THAT much, but it had some valuable moments... launched a new web site and saw that at least a couple of people have started using my last site... it's a start. Minus a few moments where this project is late, and that one needs a nudge... the overall net worth of the day is still greater than the cost.
Now, do you think I can get a second mortgage from HumanForSale and do some renovations?
Tuesday, January 13, 2004 Spotted Foul... Once again, an opinion-filled email with instructions of how to steer. Basically, "stop what you're doing, do it my way." Now had this come from someone in authority, or from a valid assessment of the situation, it would warrant serious attention. It didn't.
Still, it forced me to re-evaluate, re-think and re-view everything before I re-acted. This just became another distraction to an already deadline-packed afternoon.
Reaction isn't good. It gives up your power to another. It can put you in the wrong direction or derail you altogether. It's only effective when your reaction is actually a proaction you should have taken a long time ago. In that case, it's just someone or something shaking you out of complacency. But if you still do anything directly related to the other person and not to your original plan of action, you lose.
It took an hour out of my day, but I put everything back on the shelf where it belongs. I don't need to stop what I'm doing or alter my plans in any way. That email was an attempt to do something I'm already working on; not in the same way, but with the same destination in mind.
Monday, January 12, 2004 I don't mean to be... BUT... It's amazing how quickly people react, and just how much energy they'll spend to not do something. A new idea was presented in a managers meeting today and right after the eyes rolled, you could see how quickly people were thinking of how to get out of this.
The idea is there for them, to help them market to other people, including their clients; but then someone speaks up...
"I hate to be cynical, but why do we need this? My clients don't need me to market to them; they need me to work on their projects"
Even after an explanation of how we can learn from each other and help each other by communicating, so we don't have duplicate efforts, the next naysayer chimes in...
With every point made, they scrambled for a counterpoint... almost to the point of begging...
"Please don't make us do this..."
It's just ironic how much this topic fit in with my next newsletter, The Power of Personal Responsibility.
"...another reason why others don’t want to take responsibility… because they actually have to work at it. If you want to be nothing in your life, then doing nothing is fine. If you want to be rewarded in Life, you have to earn it."
It'll just take a little bit of coaxing and a lot of patience, and who knows what else... but they'll be fine... even if they don't mean to be.
Sunday, January 11, 2004 A time piece There was so much to do for gurustu.com this weekend and time was like a tiny sliver of pie... tasting good but not completing the full meal. I managed to complete an article, cartoon, newsletter, award updates and daily thought entries. What I have yet to complete is a new type of forum that I hope will surface soon and an interview for an ezine that is starting to head toward overdue.
As the evening draws to a close, I just need to remind myself that the accomplishments have taken me far, and the rest can wait for another day.
Saturday, January 10, 2004 Finding Space... Today I spent a lot of time exploring different spaces...
Outer Space - with so many amazing pictures of the Mars Mission
Living Space - reading blogs from people trying to just find a space to lay their head
Clean Space - making room by finally moving some stuff to storage
Inner Space - Reaching inward all day in search of articles to write and cartoons to draw
Each space seems so far away, yet so close... so unrelated, yet infinitely connected as one. Space is everywhere; and only perceived to be different when we feel separated from it. Although I've hardly moved from my house today, I feel like I've travelled far more than I did last week.
Thursday, January 08, 2004 Second Lane Today felt like I was driving in that second lane... you know, not quite the fast lane, where progress is made quickly; and too far away from the exit to get off. Making progress on everything, but no real scenery to look at... just trudging along.
My left brain and right brain were fighting all day... each wanting more than the other can give; each wanting to make some sort of breakthrough. Budgets, projects plans and yearly evaluations kept looming on my computer screen, while my right brain just wanted to play...
Confusing Reality with Animation...
... or a new Medieval Reality Show about divorce...
Nothing really seemed where it "should" be... even though I know "it is what it is." The "should" word just crossed my mind throughout the day. Like when I'm using the "new and improved" project software... "shouldn't this be as easy as they said it would be?" or when I called the car dealer to see if my repairs are done... "oh yeah, they are" ... "well, shouldn't THEY have called ME?"
Wednesday, January 07, 2004 Devaluing the Priceless... I uncovered a little pre-judgment this morning that might get in my way in the future, so I'll address it now so I can discard it. It has to do with the reaction of strangers to my work; apparently I've been putting more value in what they have to say (or what I think they have to say) than those closer to me.
The first time I noticed this was in a blog entry of June 12th. In it I wrote...
Now it's always nice to have people I know check out my stuff, but when people I don't know are encouraged to write, then it just reminds me why I started the site in the first place.
Today I had mistakenly thought that some new visitors to the site submitted a couple of links. I was overjoyed. "They like it, they really really like it" was my first thought. When I found out it was the programmer of the site who submitted them, I was like "oh..."
He knows me well enough not to let me get away with that silliness; and before I was able to type "I appreciate your contribution" he was already on my case about not dismissing his input because he did it out of genuine caring for the site, and not because he built it... and he was absolutely right.
I know I couldn't have done it without him. I do realize how valuable he has been to me. What I failed to realize was that I had pigeon-holed him into "creator" mold and therefore didn't allow him the freedom just to be. I put a LOWER value on his contribution than it deserved.
And the difference between that value and the pricelessness of his creativity is the price I paid today for my own lesson. See, even Gurus need some enlightenment every once in a while.
Tuesday, January 06, 2004 Rising to the occasion... Today's theme is "rising up against adversity"...
I arose this morning to raise up my car... lug nuts are unbelievably difficult to loosen up on a tire when they've been put on by a power tool... the first adversity of the day.
I got to work to find out that other team members had car troubles and colds of their own, all with their domino effects on the stuff I was working on...
I tried to just buckle down and focus on the last fire that needed to be put out, when another adverse event came in an email.
I had been told to wait with my big project, to announce it with someone else's. I complied, only to be greeted by an announcement of that other project. Obviously, someone else couldn't wait.
Some cried "foul" and drew up all sorts of conspiracies, but I just took it as an inspiration to rise up. OK, so our announcements wouldn't be in the same package, or at the same time, but as long as I made it in the same day I figured I would have followed through on my commitment.
I don't have to beat them... I just have to beat my own drum.
Monday, January 05, 2004 The Holiday Snooze For some, the holidays are a restful time... not usually for most; most definitely not for me. Oh, I knew I was tired, and I knew that using my laptop on the bed was a "dangerous" idea... so the question is...
If you dream you're typing, then wake up to see a blank page, are you still a writer?
Seems the trips and long days have finally caught up to me. Sleep was right around the corner, the problem was... I was in a differentcity at the time.
Even though exhaustion caused some writers block today... even though I got a call in the morning reminding me of a class I had to go to in the afternoon; only to get there to discover they cancelled it without calling back... even though I discovered my tire was flat by the time I pulled into my garage... there's no place like home.
Sunday, January 04, 2004 If I had to... You know the saying "it's a nice place to visit, but I wouldn't want to live there"? Well, with San Francisco, it's kind of the other way around. I actually could make a life there. I could picture myself living in the city, traveling the busses and trolleys to work, shopping at the local stores and hanging out with friends at the local hamburger joints. It's the visiting that takes so much out of me.
Visiting anywhere is tough... the obligation to see everything and buy things that don't even look good in the store and will look just as tacky on the refrigerator back home, but you know you have to buy it to counter the armadillo magnet you got from San Antonio.
This was actually one of the first trips to San Francisco for me that wasn't work related or just passing through. The friend I went to visit has never been to S.F. before, but fortunately had a week to get all the touristy things out of the way. This gave us a chance to catch up.
Last year, during my annual trek to New York, he spoke of the upcoming opening of his theater company and entire city block of rehearsal studios right near the heart of Broadway itself. It was simply awe inspiring all that he was able to accomplish.
This trip was full of stories of long hours and wild success; unlimited potential and the sudden shock of silence. For some reason, that may take years to analyze, the business suddenly came to a screeching halt. These were not stories of failure, but of triumph; because the company remains, even when the studios are now barren, empty walls. It'll all be back, stronger and better than before. I can count on that. I know the source only too well.
Friday, January 02, 2004 San Francisco Here I Come... America was founded on freedom, adventure and the dream of riches. Generations later, San Francisco was founded by people who couldn't find them anywhere in the East. For them, San Francisco was the destination. It represented California... "open up those Golden Gates..." give me freedom, adventure and riches.
It has all that and more. So full of diversity... and attitude. It's much like Los Angeles, in that it thinks it owns the place. It's the center of the universe for those that have the privilege to live within it. New York is very much the same way too. That's life in the big city, I suppose.
I'm going up there to visit a friend from New York; a very adventurous, entrepreneurial spirit who's been a friend and inspiration to me over the years. He represents the best that New York has to offer. He thinks I have the best L.A. has to offer (another reason I like him so much). Who knows how these minds will think alike in the Center of the Universe by the Bay.
"Gurustu's Muse" may continue through the weekend trip, if I can get to the web; otherwise stay tuned here til my return. Happy travels to all!
Thursday, January 01, 2004 Looks like last year to me... Every New Years I think back to my childhood days... right after the 10-9-8 countdown, during all the revelry, I would rush to the window to look outside. I'd scan the skies and the new fallen snow, looking for something, anything, that might be different. It was a new year after all, shouldn't it look different? Shinnier, or something?
Hmm, looks like last year to me.
I think that's part of my past that shaped my fascination with Time and Life (no, not the magazines)... because there really was nothing new... and yet everything was new, every moment we lived.
Since my parents didn't get home til two hours later, and my older brother was asleep by 9... it also lead to my preoccupation with old late-night movies. If it weren't for new years, I'd probably have not learned about the classic movies so early on.
So I guess it didn't just look like last year to me... I guess it looked more like 1940.