I had a whole big Journey planned for you today.
Then my beautiful Lucas came to my office.
“Dad, can we do something fun tonight? Like go to the movies?”
So the “really smart analysis” I did with my email database will have to wait a week, maybe two. Instead, a few thoughts about time.
True story. I got extremely sentimental – tearful, even – when my Zachary, now just two years from college, told me about the image below.
I guess everyone has grown up.
It made me think of my childhood. How I’ll never ride bikes on 76th Street again. I’ll never again sit down to an ordinary night’s dinner with Dad, Mom, me, and my two sisters.
How time kept moving. And the idea that everyone “grew up,” moved on, didn’t care, anymore, it was too much because I recognized one day, very soon – and if everything goes as planned! – Zach will be gone. Only then will I miss the things he does that aggravate me.
Zach, Kevin, Luke, and Dad
Zach saw how emotional I got over the thought (I hadn’t even seen it yet) of that poster. And he held me and let our embrace be heartier and longer than usual.
He got it. In fact, Beth told me “Zach said he should have gone to the movies” with us for that very reason.
Kevin is my nephew and godson. At publication today, he’s boarding a one-way trip from Newark to San Francisco. He has his first day at Facebook (very bright kid) on Monday. He spent most of last week, at my sister’s insistence, going through every last book, article of clothing, etc. and decided what to pack, donate, or discard.
Lucas, shortly before he invited me to the movies, told me he erased all his video games because he “realized they were a waste of time” and that he wanted to spend more time with us.
And my father died seven years ago yesterday. If you’re feeling vulnerable and need a cry, see “Saying Goodbye to Dad.”
Time’s toll on business
With my existential mindfulness in full swing, and now that I work for myself, I decided I’d fire any client that made me unhappy.
Last month, I “fired” my short-tenured partner Informa from our joint conference effort, opting to return to my 10x Medical Device Conference roots and running things the way I like. (Fine people, but I quickly remembered why I no longer belong in a multi-billion-dollar company. It wasn’t as fun, I earned less, I worked more.)
Yesterday it was “time” to get my Medical Devices Group as far away from LinkedIn as I reasonably can, as quickly as I can. They decided to denigrate the tools available to group managers still further – this time, beyond the breaking point. (You can read my articles, “Beating LinkedIn” and “Destroyed,” if you want details.)
All these things together: Geoffrey, Zach, Kevin, Lucas, Dad, my conference; even LinkedIn, came together in this post-midnight missive from me to you.
Does any of this belong in this Journey we share?
I’d say yes, because you can only do your best creative work when you’re in the flow. That comes when you’re content. When you’re enjoying your work. And when you’re putting family and friends first.
So if you happen to be that one person I touched this week with a timely message, write me if you like or keep it to yourself. But commit to doing something before we run out of time.
Your assignment: Give joy to someone today, the way this stadium did for this child.
No Fast Round This Week
Instead, watch the laughing child again. And think of him later today, too.
Thank you for joining me on The Journey.
See you next week – or sooner – if you choose to reply to this email,
P.S. Ant Man & The Wasp was entertaining. If you like movies, join the AMC Stubs program: Movies are only $5 on Tuesdays!