Tag Archives: extraordinary

The author high on the Nose Route, circa 1991. El Capitan, Yosemite, Ca.

Day of the Rock

You might consider two choices: You can live the life you have, with contentment, or you can live the life you think you should have, stubbornly. One takes heart, the other takes vision, and both, passion, persistence and commitment.

I’ve spent a good portion of my life as a bit of an itinerant, moving from NY to Pittsburgh to Atlanta, back to NY, all around SF (after a very circuitous  and protracted tour of the country), in several National Parks as a semi-homeless person in my ’66 VW bus, and finally (ok, maybe not finally (ok, as my wife pokes me, definitely not finally)) down to Los Angeles 9 years ago. I’ve traveled to Europe, Southeast Asia, China, Japan, Central America, Canada, and remote islands in the deep Pacific. I’ve rock-climbed from Joshua Tree to Yosemite to British Columbia to Upstate New York to Thailand, wandered through the Sierras, Cascades, Rockies and the Adirondacks and ridden a motorcycle across Mexico on the Baja 1000 course. I’ve stood at the top of Mayan pyramids, the World Trade Center and the summit of El Capitan and at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. I’ve wine tasted in Napa, savored the aprĂ©s ski of Lake Tahoe and Vail and lived the good life on the upper east side of Manhattan. In my adopted home state of California, I’ve raced mountain bikes, snowboarded Mt. Shasta, leapt from an airplane in the Central Valley, and hunted deer in the Trinity Alps. I’ve built houses in Atlanta, New York, San Francisco and LA and I’ve flown helicopters and airplanes – the latter upside down from time to time. I’ve started two businesses, one of them an international, multi-million dollar, somewhat successful venture. I’ve been a carpenter, a movie producer, a landlord and a limo driver. I’ve dug ditches (literally) and had lunches with Studio Execs. I am a husband and the father of two rambunctious, energetic and stubborn little boys. And ultimately, because we all have places we have been, great things we have done and darn good stories to tell – regardless of our backgrounds or our choices – I consider myself a very ordinary man.

My inner goal was – and still is – to find out what it is that I am really supposed to be doing here (here on this planet, not here in LA, although for now they are one and the same.) Changing places or jobs, as it were, usually came with some anxiety that was largely based upon fear of the unknown, especially when I violated one of the cardinal rules of moving: always make sure you have a new thing before you leave the old thing. But, more often than not excitement and exhilaration were the overriding emotions I experienced. There is something about starting something new that is so innate, so human and natural, that its almost as if we were made to be renaissance men and women or perhaps (as in my case) even serial adventurists. I heard a recent statistic that we now change our jobs every 12 to 18 months. Seems natural to many of us, but wasn’t always the way of things. I think my father – a dedicated research physician who has held the same career at the same hospital for the duration of my entire life – would disagree, but I find some comfort in having discovered in my travels that the only constant really is change, and, should we choose to embrace it as caretakers of this technology-saturated, digitally-chaotic, social-media-infused infrastructure of the new millennium (*take note Generation Z), change, with all of its intimidation and panic and gnashing of teeth, can be a good thing, and may just lead us to the what, the why and the who we are.

It is in this spirit of change that I have started this collection of writings, a next iteration of my experience here. I think it somehow fitting to launch this on my birthday but I am not even sure what it will be that I will ultimately stake here, as an internaut, in my little corner of the cyber world. As a Virgo, I am acutely aware that, to be successful, there will have to be some sort of through line. Perhaps we will develop that together as we go, sharing the experiences that further the telling of our collective story. I am looking forward to this next adventure.

Welcome to my blog.