Our Village

When I was younger I watched a movie called “Patton”. Right in the beginning pf the movie the general tells the third infantry division why the United States will win the war. The speech is riveting. In his speech he mentions that Americans are not individuals but part of a community and we can achieve so much more together.

Sometimes I hear people mention how their success or failure comes from their own efforts and I cringe. This is the most un true statement I have ever heard in my life. A persons failure or success is a collective action achieved by actions or inactions of the collective. People are social animals and they are designed to help each other survive and thrive. If you are not acting in the best interests of your neighbors (which is everyone you meet) you are not acting the way that you were designed to act.

It takes a village be a good villager.

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Sometimes it Helps

It is Tuesday and I am already off of my routines. There was construction going on at my regular route to the gym and work, my niece had her first softball game that I had to attend, the wife and I are in the middle of making a semi major purchase. I have more excuses about why I was off my routine on Monday and started to feel myself get off my routine for Today (Tuesday) but really excuses are….

Excuses are tools of the incompetent used to build bridges to nowhere and monuments of nothingness

Barack Obama

I cannot think of a better way to define excuses! However I can think of one time when excuses could be used to do more than nothing and cue the next quote….

The real man is one who always finds excuses for others, but never excuses himself.

Henry Ward Beecher

Instead of doing harm and tearing apart others when they fail to accomplish something lets work together to see what was part of the reason they didn’t get done what they wanted or needed to to.

When dealing with others listen to their excuses kindly and compassionately and help them, let’s not criticize. I have done my share of criticism, even criticism of those that I love and if I am honest criticism has never come from a place of love. I am not saying I did not love those that I was critical off I am saying that when I was being critical I was not demonstrating love for them.

Lets work hard to be the best we can be and help others become the best they can as well and you will find no help in making excuses for yourself or tearing apart other peoples excuses.

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I am

Teams, whether we want to or not we are all part of at least one team. Humanity. A team is a group of people preforming independent tasks to accomplish a common mission or objective. What is humanities goals or objectives? Well it depends on who you ask. At the most basic level it is humanities goal to survive and evolve. At a higher level I hope that humanity would; love, learn, progress, and become all around better as we evolve.

Bill Nye stated that evolution is not survival of the fittest but survival of the good enough. If something in the germ line did not kill you it makes it to the next generation. Whatever it is like lets say an appendix. I think that as a team humans can do better but how? How can we do better with our independent tasks?

First and foremost we need to love others or at the very least be empathetic to others. When I only focus on myself I will often engage in tasks that are not helpful for the team. As a matter of fact the tasks can actually be harmful to the team.

I is hard to empathize with someone we do not know or understand. So secondly we need to learn about our team. What are parts of other cultures, religions, and world views and why?

Armed with empathy and education it should give us teammates a map and a list of new tasks for meeting our teams goals.

“I am a member of a team, and I rely on the team. I defer to it and sacrifice for it, because the team, not the individual, is the ultimate Champion.” Mia Hamm

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It can be easy to forget about team human, however we should always remember that we are part of that team and we should always act like it


No one knows

“Gentlemen, we will chase perfection, and we will chase it relentlessly, knowing all the while we can never attain it. But along the way, we shall catch excellence.”

― Vince Lombardi

Happiness is? Subjective right? I mean a memory from Sunday school growing up was the youth pastor explaining heaven. “My dad imagines heaven as a farm in the country and I imagine that heaven will be a beautiful city with sidewalks.” – youth pastor Block (courtesy of Johns childhood memories)

Heaven is like happiness. My happiness and your happiness probably do not line up. I don’t know many people but there are some that do not enjoy petting a happy dog (I know crazy right?)! Our idea of happiness changes as we live our lives too.

When I was younger I was happy at my friends house watching his snake in the aquarium, now the snakes kind of make my skin crawl a little. I saw one on a walk with my dog two days ago and nearly jumped out of my skin.

Some say that being happy is a choice. I am not sure about that. I can choice to pursue things that I believe will make me happy however if I do not receive these things will I still be happy? Also, what things will make me happy? Lots of questions no answers.

I find joy in the unknown and the search for the truth. I really do. I think that this is good because I spend a lot of life with unknowns and looking for truth. If we are completely honest with ourselves well all do.

Enjoy every moment as much as you can because we never know when we will not be here anymore.


My favorite time of the workday is when I get home and see my wife. She is my best friend and I love spending time with her. My second favorite time of the work day is when I get home and see my dog.

Even when I worked from home and had to run out my dog would love seeing me. It could be an hour or 3 hours and he was always giddy to see me. Tail wagging ears up he just loves giving and receiving attention. I don’t know why he loves attention. I mean I know that wolves have evolved over time and there was a split. The dog became humanities best friend and the wolves are out there doing there own thing. I also know that dogs have been breed and were literally made for human companionship and it shows when I get home.

Originally dogs as companions had the major duty of protection and when the moment arises dog parents will tell you protection is still high for a dog but as humans lives changed so did the dogs. We now live longer and need more than protection we need affection and love and dogs show that in spades.

The thing about a dogs love is that it is present no matter what we do. If we deserve it or not. Our dog doesn’t care about how good or bad we were all day it will still greet you at the door show you an enormous amount of love. I think only when a dog is scared will that dog not show you love. When you are down the dog will find a way to physically position his or herself so that you can pet them. Many people who suffer trauma have found helpful therapy in being a dog parent.

I think this all out love we see in our pets that has been breed into them is something we need to learn from them. There are the terms “kicking them when they are down” and “piling on” and “even Killing them with kindness”. All these terms involve hurting someone. It is easier to harm someone than it is to help them. We pile on or kick people because we feel they deserve it but do they?

Deserved implies that we earned something. I don’t think anything is earned. I think that God, nature, the universe has given us everything, including a role model in our dogs. The giving nature of God and our dog should be our guide when we begin to decide what we and others deserve.