Sunday, January 19, 2014

Seize the secret life

It's been an unusually stressful lead-up to this year's IBM Connect 2014, the major user conference for the business unit I market for, IBM collaboration solutions and social business. We've had several major reorganizations over the past 6 months, and the timing of the event has always clashed with our end-of-year and start-of-year corporate calendars, making it an exciting, if challenging, time at best.

So I took a little mental health break from work yesterday, and saw The Secret Life of Walter Mitty at the movie theater. The original story was always a favorite of mine. I found out about the original when, in 7th grade english class, we were asked to write a short story. My story, it turns out, was eerily similar to the original, which prompted my teacher to ask if I had ever read the original. I had not, and read it that evening after school.

The movie wasn't a critics' darling. I can understand that when viewed objectively it has some weaknesses here and there. Which are wholly irrelevant. It buoyed me. It lifted me. It was beautifully shot, from the opening whimsy in the credits to the geography to the closing. It renewed my sense of carpe diem that, as I get older and more settled into a lovely middle class, suburban lifestyle in San Diego, feels increasingly slippery to hold on to:

To see things thousands of miles away, things hidden behind walls and within rooms, things dangerous to come to, to draw closer, to see and be amazed.” - (purported) motto of Life Magazine

Another year is upon us. 2013 flew in both good and bad. And so with 2014 already in full swing, a nice little reminder to not just dream a little, but to dare a little as well. I hope you'll draw a little closer to see things --sometimes hidden, sometimes right in front of us -- that will hopefully amaze.