Facing Life...Before Death
There a few certainties in this existence we call life. One of those certainties is the fact we all eventually will die. Nobody likes to dwell on this fact because – for most of us – death is a pretty depressing subject.
How we deal with life is just as important as how we deal with death. Few people actually know when it is their time here upon this Earth will end. One of those people is Carnegie Mellon University Professor Randy Pausch. He participated a lecture series based on the concept of asking professor types to give a speech of what they would want to include in their very last lecture. Personally I think that’s a pretty novel concept and a lecture series I’d be sure to attend.
For Professor Pausch, a Computer Science teacher, the venue is an ironic one. You see, Pausch suffers from – and will shortly succumb to – pancreatic cancer. In this short snippet from his lecture (thanks to Dean for the link) he gives some unique and inspiring thoughts on life and the importance of living those dreams you had in childhood.
Here’s a link to the full lecture. Though I haven’t had time yet to see the whole thing, I’m sure it’s as inspiring as the excerpt.
Randy Pausch is proof that how you deal with challenges – even fatal ones – is very much a choice of attitude.
Godspeed, Randy. The world will be a smaller place without you – and your imagination.
Here endeth the lesson.
Five For Fighting ALS
If I had a nickel for every chain email that found its way to my inbox claiming I'd get rich if I forwarded it to my entire address book, well I wouldn't have the tip jar on the sidebar anymore. If you're ever wondering why you don't get those emails from me, well now you know.
So, when the Blogfather mentioned Dean Barnett's post on this effort to fund the fight against Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) – commonly known as Lou Gehrig's Disease – I was, to say the least, surprised and somewhat doubtful.
Here's the deal – and it is exceptionally simple: Follow this link, play the video, and $2 will be donated by Glenn Tullman/Allscripts and Bert and Cyndie Silva to fund what could be the final research into a cure for this deadly disease. All you have to do is watch and listen. Careful – you might learn something.
Here endeth the lesson.
It Was A Tuesday Morning In September
Six years ago this morning began like any other. American began their day in the usual way like they had countless mornings before. They woke up, showered, ate breakfast, bundled the kids off to school, and made their way to the work or whatever other daily activities they had planned for any other Tuesday morning.
Nobody ever plans anything very important for Tuesday. Tuesday is that day of the week that falls between the beginning and mid-week. Its just a day you try and muddle through.
At 8:46 AM Eastern Time, that quiet Tuesday became a day which would influence each and every day that followed. Within about an hour, the Twin Towers of New York’s World Trade Center had collapsed into what became known as Ground Zero. In Arlington, Virginia, one side of the Pentagon lay in a twisted ruin of concrete and steel. Over the skies of southeast Pennsylvania in America’s finest tradition, Citizens became Soldiers and defended with their lives their country and the lives of their countrymen.
That Tuesday morning began with America at peace and ended with America at war. In truth, the Islamofacist Murdering Thugs had been at war with the United States for nigh unto three decades. It was only that Tuesday they decided to bring it to our shores.
Much has transpired in the intervening years since that Tuesday morning. There is still a hole in the heart of New York City. There are as many opinions about that issue as there are New Yorkers – but the most vocal whiners are those who seem to be more afraid of offending the Islamofascists than they are upset and angry over the events of that Tuesday. Contrast this with the Pentagon restoration – all that remains of the attack is one blackened brick. The military brass was bound and determined that Osama “Binny” Laden wouldn’t dictate the look of their headquarters. New York could stand to follow that example.
With the passage of time comes the fading of memories. People move on with their lives and thus the country moves with them. For me, the memory does not fade. I still remember the events of that Tuesday morning in September. I have not forgotten the loss of 2,996 of my countrymen and women. The world is a smaller place without them in it.
Billy Joel once wrote a fictional song about a post apocalyptic New York. He performed it at The Concert for New York City. Click on the YouTube link below and pay attention to the last words of the song:
There are not many who remember….they say a handful still survive. To tell the world about, the way the lights went out, to keep the memory alive.
Here endeth the lesson.
Graphic HT to the Dynamic Duo of Cox & Forkum