Life Lessons: Raised on Movies.

I grew up in a house with over 900 movies in it. My father loved movies. I grew up being able to recognise movies within seconds of seeing a random scene from them. I also grew up on the classics. Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones, Rocky, Star Wars, and many, many Disney films. In my years growing up, I learned a few things about life from movies. This is bound to happen with so many movies in the house. I decided to create a list of things that I happened to learn from the movies that I watched. They are mostly 90’s movies.

In a list of no particular order, here are life lessons from 90’s movies:

Jurassic Park: T-Rex can’t see you if you don’t move
The Truman Show: Convinced me that there were moments that I swore people were watching me and everything was about my life.
Sandlot: Shoes make you run faster and jump higher. Also you can survive a 20’ fall off any object as long as you land on your back.
Peter Pan: Having a group of friends and adventures in the wild is good.
Home Alone: If I wanted, I could fend off my home with toys. Also, aftershave really burns the face.
Little Rascals: Club House = Yes. Boxcar Race = Yes (this turned out to be a horrible mistake)
Harriet the Spy: Launched my obsession with being a child spy. Gear, notebooks, the works.
Tom and Huck: Living in the wild would be so sweet. Also, blood packs are cool.
Blank Check: I just wanted 1 MILLION DOLLARS! that’s it. That’s plenty, right?
The Big Green: This kicked off my love of soccer. Still love it. Also, it doesn’t matter how horrible you are, if you believe, your skill will increase 10 fold.
The Little Giants: I wanted a go-cart so badly. Also, I played two years of pee-wee football because of this movie.
Heavyweights: I love summer camp. Also go-carts.
My Girl: Bees can kill you.
Mighty Ducks 2: D2: Roller hockey is something I signed up for because of this movie. Also, the knuckle puck doesn’t work.
Hook: Baseballs can’t break airplane windows. Also, I wanted to be a lost boy.
The Borrowers: When stuff goes missing, for NO reason, it’s The Borrowers. For real though.
Wild America: You can survive a bear attack if you have brothers to help you out. Also, don’t pick up hitchhikers.
Mouse Hunt: It’s actually pretty hard to kill a mouse, unless you have an orange.
Prince of Egypt: This started my obsession with beautiful soundtracks. I would sit in my room an listen to “Deliver Us” and get the chills. Also “Burning Bush.” I think I cried when I heard it for the first time.
Baby’s Day Out: How did those guys not catch a crawling baby? In New York….Seriously?
Iron Giant: I want a robot.
P.U.N.K.S.: I want a crew with gadgets, and cool stuff, and we do stuff together. I may have tried to do this with my friends.
Good Burger: Every time I watched this, I wanted a burger…so badly.
The Goofy Movie: Even the awkward guy can get the girl sometimes. Also, if I need to save someone who recently fell down a waterfall, I just need a fishing pole and The Perfect Cast.
Beethoven: Having a Dog is serious work. Like A LOT. This was a smart move by my parents.
Fern Gully: We are killing the planet.
The Little Princess: I love a good story.
The Secret Garden: I learned that I cry at movies sometimes
It Takes Two: It’s never too late to stop a wedding
Indian in the Cupboard: Not every Cupboard could bring my action figures to life….
Goonies: If you have a knife, you can slide down a canvas sail. Also, some adventures are worth almost dying in cave. Also, wishing wells are deeper than I thought.
E.T.: Reese’s Pieces are actually irresistible…even to aliens. Also, Bike Rides.
101 Dalmatians: Sometimes people get married after they have just met. Right?
Dennis the Menace: Lock your Doors. Also, I want a slingshot.
Rookie of the Year: If I break my arm, I’ll throw a baseball real fast, right?
I’m sure there are more, and when I think of them, I’ll do another edition. Welcome to the Monday ramblings.

King of the Forest

Courage! What makes a king out of a slave? Courage! What makes the flag on the mast to wave? Courage! What makes the elephant charge his tusk in the misty mist, or the dusky dusk? What makes the muskrat guard his musk? Courage! What makes the sphinx the seventh wonder? Courage! What makes the dawn come up like thunder? Courage! What makes the Hottentot so hot? What puts the “ape” in apricot? What have they got that I ain’t got?

Recently, I attended a weekend retreat for the internship I took through the Maxim Institute in Auckland New Zealand. Alumni Weekend. A time where interns, past and new get together and laugh about old stories, update each other on what the internship has done for them, eat, drink, and you know…be merry. Obviously it’s so much more than that, but I want to talk about something that greatly touched me over that weekend.

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Happy Birthdays are for Others

September 14th. It was a Monday when I was born. This day is becoming more and more of a day that I just let pass by me. Sure I like birthday parties, having others around me, celebrations, music, cake, laughing at almost nothing, staying up late, and enjoying other people’s company. Of course I love that. Still, I don’t like to make a big deal of something for myself. That’s just not how I do things.

When my 28th birthday was coming up, all I could think about was where I thought I’d be, how old I was getting, what I haven’t done, blah blah blah. But then I realised just what I HAVE DONE. How very much has happened to me. The people I have been blessed to have conversations with, laugh with, know about. I have listened to stories of pain, and joy…sat with people in their darkest, and their brightest. I have felt the weight of a culture nearly forgotten and a people fighting to staying alive. I have learned to be a better professional and a much better human.

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I’m An Extroverted Introvert. Huh? Yep.

Some of you may have seen articles floating around talking about “Signs of an Introvert.” “20 Things Extroverts Do. Introverts, THIS IS FOR YOU!” “ISFP, it’s okay to Party!” If you have a Facebook NewsFeed, then you’ve seen these articles. Most likely when you’ve read one, you’ve read them all, so you skip over the ones that seem formulaic…okay, all of them are like that.

I am an Extroverted Introvert. Party in the Library. A Rave of One. Shots with a Book in my hand. Whatever you want to call it, I do both. Most of my friends who understand Myers Briggs know that this is quite possible. Others may force me to choose a side. How can you be both? That makes no sense at ALL@!!1! How can you love people but also HATE THEM!?!!22!

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The Fear of The Oxbow Lake

What if I come back and I am just another guy? What if I return and I am just a reminder of a time that existed three years ago, but is now irrelevant and forgotten? What happens when I can’t fit into a puzzle I am no longer a piece to?

For someone fairly confident about the decision to come back to his home country, I am still only human. I think one would expect questions like the ones listed above to careen through my mind at blistering speeds. Questions that cause damage to my calm and to my surety. As if there wasn’t enough to think about before leaving, I can throw on a heaping pile of insecurity about the place I called home for most of my life.

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