Archive for August, 2010

“Sense of Possibilities”

Attention Millenials:

Do you have a college degree? Do you have a full-time job? Do you have your own home? Are you in a serious relationship?

No, I am not a bank lender.

 If these questions are overwhelming, don’t sweat it. I answered “yes” to only one of these questions and according to an article in NY Times Magazine What Is It About 20-Somethings? by Robin Marantz Henig I am in good company.  In fact, Jeffrey Arnett, a psychology professor at Clark University views the 20s as a distinct life stage between adolescence and adulthood, which he calls “emerging adulthood.”

As Arnett points out, there are a whole host of factors that help explain this changing timetable for adulthood: Economic, societal, technological and even developmental, to name a few. The article highlights a recent study sponsored by the National Institute of Mental Health  which showed that human brains were not fully mature until at least 25 – which is later than what scientists previously thought.   

When my Grandad was my age he was well into his career and married with two children. Although I just earned a Master’s degree I haven’t tied the knot and I don’t have any children … that I know about (ba-dump-bump).

It took him years and years to get his college degree because he was working full-time while supporting and helping raise a family. I admire the way he managed to juggle these responsibilities and advance professionally and personally, but I am also relieved that our generation doesn’t have the same kind of pressure to meet these milestones at such an early age. Sure, I would’ve prefered to start a career straight out of undergrad instead of accruing more debt from student loans, but the recession made that difficult. With one foot in the adult world and the other in a variety of other places  I have been able to use this time for self-discovery, adventures,  relationships, and to further my education.  Now I have a better understanding of what I want and my goals and aspirations are much more clear.

Evaluate your own situation and look around at other people you know and see what stage they fit in. I have friends that are all over the spectrum. One path isn’t necessarily better than another … generally speaking. Marriage, kids and even financial autonomy might come a little later for most of us Millenials or Echo Boomers, but maybe then we won’t have to endure that mid-life crisis because we rushed through our “emerging adulthood” stage too swiftly.

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Good Timing

 Scenario One

I arrive to the theatre and rush to the ticket line because I’ve been dying to see this movie. Apparently so has everyone else. The excessively jolly woman behind the glass informs me that she literally just sold the LAST two tickets and had I shown up a few seconds earlier I would be in luck. First thought: bad timing. Second thought: Why in the hell are ticket distributors secured behind a glass like they’re the Pope? These people are given more security than bank tellers. What does this say about movie goers?

Scenario Two

I’m in a NYC Starbucks and by happenstance run into this cute girl who I know from undergrad. We’re both a little stunned that we happen to cross paths in a city that holds over 8 million people. We sit down, shoot the breeze for a bit, and agree to meet for dinner later in the week. First thought: boo ya! Second thought: Good timing.

I would like to buy a coffee for the person who coined the phrase timing is everything. It’s true in so many ways. A good joke, a nice move on the football pitch, a job offer, a meeting between soul mates – all have elements of good timing.

Is there a way to acquire good timing? To a degree, yes.

There is the natural, innate kind of timing that really cannot be taught. A merciless shot blocker or a great comedian has this gift.

Good timing can also be the result of hard work, preparation, and learned experience. Had I finished making dinner slightly earlier I probably would have scored tickets to the movie.

And there is also the luck element which is out of everyone’s control.  When it’s on our side it’s great, but I’m not depending on it.

Before the internet exploded, some people invested in Google because they liked the name, others with a sound understanding of the market invested after doing thorough research. Both had good timing.

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Where Dreams Are Made Of

If Carmelo Anthony ends up taking his talents to Manhattan it could revitalize a Knicks fan base which has not seen their team reach the playoffs since the 2003-04 season.  What is more, the acquisition could compel a player like Tony Parker or possibly Chris Paul to join the Knicks in December when trades are permitted for free-agent signees and draft picks.

Amare and Melo team up in the club.

Allegedly, during Melo’s wedding back in July, Chris Paul gave a toast in which he said, “We’ll form our own Big 3”. For now it looks like Paul is content on staying put in New Orleans, but if Carmelo joins Amare Stoudemire in the Big Apple, Paul just might try to maneuver his way out of the Big Easy (he is under contract with the Hornets until 2012).  

This scenario would be tremendous not only for hapless, disgruntled Knicks supporters who have watched the franchise with the highest payroll run themselves into the ground, but also for the NBA.

The NBA banks on star power, rivalries and big market teams. New York is a storied franchise situated in the largest media market – the league simply does better when they are relevant. Paul/Parker, Melo & Amare would shine under Coach D’Antoni, arguably the best offensive coach in the league. What excites me most is when I think back to the 90’s when the Heat and Knicks were slugging it out, quite literally at times,  and how this could renew this great rivalry. It’s hard to believe more than a decade has passed since Allan Houston hit the Game 5 series winning floater for the eighth seeded Knicks in 1999.

Melo would also be returning to NY where he led the Syracuse Orange to the National Championship in 2003 as a freshman.

If the Knicks do manage to pull off these moves and still keep a supporting cast of players intact that could compete with the Heat, my money is still on the Big 3 in South Beach. While Melo and Amare are a far cry away from being considered good defensive players – LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh are all heralded for their defensive prowess.

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The Now

“The price of greatness is the responsibility over each of your thoughts.” – Winston Churchill

Living in the moment and I mean truly living in the moment is challenging.
Presently (pun intended) I am working on freeing my mind of wasted, useless thoughts and taking advantage of every minute I am here. Why? Because I want to be at peace with myself, nourish my relationships with others, and maximize my productivity and make a boat load of cash.

We can all do it (positive affirmations are important). Yes We Can! (haven’t heard that in a while) but it’s not easy – especially when you are new to the game. Being in the now is much easier when your mind is free of cluttered, negative thoughts. Once you take command of the recycled negative thought patterns (aka making your thoughts your bitch) that swirl incessantly through your mind, you are better able to enjoy what you’re doing which ultimately leads to greater productivity, fulfillment and happiness.

After reading the The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin Sharma I ascertained that I am no monk. It also gave me the realization that I can gain complete control over what I can control. A long-time friend of mine recommended it to me and I recommend this book to you, regardless of where you may be in life.

I am nowhere near mastering “the rituals of radiant living” but I am on the right path. Practicing Buddhist principles seems to work pretty well for Phil Jackson, so I thought I would give it a shot.

I leave you with this mind numbing question: What number is greater?

a)Famous quotes by Winston Churchill
b)Number of women Wilt Chamberlin slept with

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