2010 is calling. How will you answer?

Posted: December 31st, 2009 | Author: admin | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | No Comments »

The good news: in the last 20 years the total number of armed conflicts across the globe has been reduced by almost 60%, the number of ongoing conflicts has dropped by 50% and the world’s displaced population has decreased by 16%.

The bad news: Globally, there are almost 80 wars currently being waged and of these, 29 are ongoing, sustained conflicts. The total number of refugees and internally displaced people as a result of war is currently about 42 million -which is equivalent to the combined population of the 44 largest cities in the United States.

Viewed from afar, statistics show conditions are certainly improving. Viewed from the ground, in a refugee camp, somewhere  in the Democratic Republic of Congo, each day is a living hell.

Hoping 2010 will be better, will do nothing to actually make it better. So take it upon yourself to insure that in some small way it is better. If you have a little extra, please pass it on to those who have nothing. If you have a voice, please use it for those who can not or will not be heard. 2010 is an opportunity to do something good. To act selflessly. To become something bigger than yourself 365 times. Make the most of it. Happy New Year and go in peace.

The Wildcat: turning weakness into strength by changing the game.

Posted: December 28th, 2009 | Author: admin | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | No Comments »

A few Sunday mornings ago, I was out early, driving Number 2 to see some friends. We began to talk about the day’s upcoming football games. This was the first week that Mark Sanchez was sidelined as the Jets’ quarterback, turning the role over to his back-up.  Number 2 expressed a degree of pessimism regarding the outcome. I told him that I thought it opened up a lot of opportunity to play unconventionally. To use the Wildcat.

If you are unfamiliar, you can read about the wildcat in the link above. Essentially it bypasses the quarterback and snaps the ball directly to the running back, effectively confusing the defense. Miami has used it extensively and effectively after the potential career ending injury sustained by their QB, former Jet, Chad Pennington. It works best against a truly disciplined and precision coached team like the Patriots. It completely befuddles them. As a digression, in my opinion, that is how the NY Giants beat the Patriots in Superbowl XLII: Eli Manning seemed a bit unsure what plays he was going to call, this instability actually worked for them against the highly prepared and mechanically precise Patriots.

Back to the car. As our conversation continued, I told him that he could apply the Wildcat to anything. He could change the game inside the game, turning disadvantages into advantages. The spirit of the Wildcat is to not just think bigger and broader, but to think differently. To unconventionally apply what is available right now in order to break through the status quo. The Wildcat is the leap of faith. It is the spark of invention. It is the path of the most resourceful and unconventional. And it truly does change the game.

When you hit a wall, encounter a problem or come upon a challenge which may seem too formidable to attempt, turn the situation into an opportunity. Become a game changer. Become the Wildcat.

war: what is it good for? absolutely nothing.

Posted: December 7th, 2009 | Author: admin | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | No Comments »

Are we as a nation becoming desensitized to war? Desensitized to the physical and emotional damage, both immediate and delayed, that is  being sustained by our children, siblings and parents? Desensitized to what we are asking these men and women to do? To what we are asking them to endure day after day, month after month and year after year? Desensitized to the consequences of our actions as a nation as well as the consequences of our individual actions or inaction with regard to the events which are unfolding around us?

When will war become obsolete? When the thought of waging war becomes too horrendous to for nations, NGOs and individuals to contemplate. When the true effects of war are universally recognized and understood, both intellectually and emotionally. When we collectively and individually decide to look across the table, across the street, across town, across our country and across our borders and see people as people. As sons and daughters. As mothers and fathers. As husbands and wives. As people that love and are loved. As people without added labels, descriptions, qualifiers or other words tacked on that are designed to separate them from ourselves.

Unachievable? Utopian nonsense? Impossible? Perhaps today but who knows about tomorrow or the day after that. Someone has to be the first one. Perhaps that someone will be you?