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Starburst

This weekend I re-watched Mystic Pizza and noticed Matt Damon makes an appearance in the movie:

Matt Damon at 18 as seen in "Mystic Pizza."

What struck me about this is the “you-never-know” factor. Here Damon only had a line or two in a movie with Julia Roberts before she was famous. When they did their scene do you think either could anticipate Julia Roberts would become one of the highest-paid actresses in Hollywood, or that Matt Damon would become a heartthrob? No. They were just doing a scene, following their passion and then BOOM, their fame exploded like a starburst. For Roberts it took another two years with the release of “Pretty Woman.” For Damon it took another nine with the release of “Good Will Hunting.”

What I love about this, what I find so inspiring, is that moment before they were famous. Why did it take two years for Roberts and nine years for Damon? What made each of those films “the one” that made them a star? Sometimes I take it for granted that people weren’t always famous. That Matt Damon hasn’t forever been glossing magazine covers, that there was a point where he was a normal guy, playing bit parts, trying to make ends meet, and then the stars aligned, he had the right connections, and all of a sudden he became a household name.

I find this incredibly fascinating because we could all be on the brink of something and we just don’t know. I could film my niece singing a rap song and she could become a youtube star. Joe Schmo could have an asteroid land in his yard that’s covered with a key ingredient to eradicate AIDS. Little Susie Ray could go to the mall and be spotted by a model scout and start walking runways. In life we have no idea what’s around the corner and how big it can become, and that’s what’s so interesting to me.

I dream of a world where we live each day with a sense of wonder and mystery because we remember we have no idea what’s next. A world where we keep pursuing our dreams even when it seems like they’ll lead to nowhere. A world where we are open and honest with ourselves and allow whatever will be to be.

Another world is not only possible, it’s probable.

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Fast-paced Cohesion

I still have the flu so I won’t be writing anything major but I still wanted to share something that inspires me. I LOVE this video of people flashmobbing a 9-year-old’s arcade:

(And here’s an article about it.) What I love about this is how a little boy so earnestly built an arcade and waited everyday for customers. They never came until one day they did. And not just one but an entire crowd. I love how quickly it all came together. Everything lined up and exploded into something bigger and better than the boy asked for or expected. Amazing.

 

This video also illustrates to me the power of people to coalesce, to come together and create something beautiful. It shows how quickly things can work and people’s dreams can come true. Instead of taking years something can take days; that’s incredible!

 

I dream of a world where we support each other. Where we bond to allow everyone’s dreams to manifest. A world where we work together to create something magical and amazing. A world where we coalesce to create something better than we could have done alone.

 

Another world is not only possible, it’s probable.

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The Beauty of Life

Sometimes I’m too verbal and I need to turn off my brain and engage my senses. I thought it might be nice on this momentous day (I mean how often do Passover, Easter, AND a full moon coalesce?) to revel in the beauty of Earth and to remind ourselves to stay present.

I don’t know about you, but this video shows me things aren’t as gloomy and depressing as they seem. It shows me another world is not only possible, it’s probable.

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There has been a lot of talk about racism and The Hunger Games. The New Yorker has a blog about how often in literature we imagine characters to be white until proven black. And Jezebel.com posted a story about how many viewers of The Hunger Games movie have posted racist tweets. For those of you who don’t know, Suzanne Collins explicitly states in her trilogy characters Rue and Thresh are “dark-skinned” but somehow that escaped many readers’ notice. What’s so appalling is some viewers said the movie was “ruined” because the characters are black. And that because Rue was black her death wasn’t as sad. This is going to sound strange but I’m inspired by all this.

 

Don’t get me wrong, I’m NOT inspired by the racism that’s being displayed, I’m inspired by other people’s response to that racism. I’m inspired that there is outrage. I’m inspired that the twitter accounts of those who posted racist comments have been taken down. I’m inspired there’s a lot of fuss – and rightly so – about the idea being black makes a person less innocent.

 

It wasn’t so long ago racists were the majority in this country. It wasn’t so long ago lynchings were a common practice and newspapers advocated for mistreatment of others. The fact that now racism is so denounced, that it is so politically incorrect is an amazing thing. Seriously. I know we’re not making as much progress as we’d like, but I’d rather focus on the fact we’re making progress at all. Jim Crow laws no longer exist. The majority of people are loving, compassionate, and more open-minded than not. I think that’s been illustrated by the outrage at the comments people have been posting in regard to The Hunger Games.

 

I’d also like to point out racism is a belief and beliefs can be changed. It’s not a disease. It’s not something you have or you don’t. Racist people can change their minds, see the error of their ways, because more often than not it’s due to ignorance. They’re stereotyping out of fear, they’re not seeing a person as an individual but rather a category. I’ll even admit here that when I was younger I was a little bit racist. I used to stick to certain circles and not stray far from them. That all changed when I went to the National Conference for Community and Justice’s Camp Anytown. Sometimes you just don’t know better and you need to be taught. But that’s the point – open-mindedness can be taught. When you undergo exercises showing other people have experienced similar things even if they’re a different race, it builds understanding, and compassion. Racism cannot exist in those circumstances and that’s what inspires me.

 

I dream of a world where we continue to eradicate racism. A world where we understand all of us bleed, all of us have hopes and dreams. All of us are people. I dream of a world where we can see each other as individuals. A world where we see people for who they are. A world where we value a person’s heart over the color of their skin. A world where we come together in the spirit of unity, acknowledging we are all brothers and sisters.

 

Another world is not only possible, it’s probable.

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