Sunday, May 31, 2009

Asymptotal Emotions

I remember when I was first learning algebra. I was a punny little dork. So one day, thinking I was a clever little nerdette, I drew a picture like this for my dad:
And wrote: "I love you, asymptotally!" on the margin. I think my dad laughed, but being a robotics engineer, he was like, I don't think that's totally correct, my dear. To which I said, "I mean it's boundless. Don't you get it?" :)

Oh engineers and logicians. Ye of rigid definition.

Sometimes I feel like we box ourselves out of creatively experiencing the world. There is no formula or proof for faith. There is no conservation of love. I'd like to think of the Divine as limitless, stretching forever against the bounds of the universe in a infinite cosmic hug.

Some might say they don't believe there is a higher power, intervening on our behalf. I agree and disagree. I agree that there isn't some cosmic fairy, intervening to save us from our bad decisions or accidental tragedy. I think the Divine made us all with the ability to critically think, to express free will, to make choices. With this ability comes the bitter and the sweet. We have ultimate personal liberty, but that bears a level of responsibility. The way I see it, if there is Divine Intervention, it's less an invisible hand that keeps us from falling, and more like a very strong light. The light shines and shows us the truth of our existence. Sometimes we see the answers, sometimes we miss them because we close our eyes, and sometimes we intentionally ignore the signs.

In the end, we are only human. We are all in the midst of learning, stumbling, running and sometimes flying. To fuck things up is to be normal, and probably standard. It's when we're brave enough to stand up after we fall, brush ourselves off and reflect and learn - then we grow. And then comes the divine part. If we're lucky, if we muster compassion, then we forgive and move on. When we exist with total freedom from fear is when we express the essence of the Divine.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Because the Universe keeps me humble.

Yesterday the word got out that I won an award. It's been really incredible to get all the thanks via twitter, facebook, email (thanks, everyone :) I am very humbled to have received the award, and I'd like to thank the academy, Politics Magazine, Julie and all my friends. Oh, my friends! You have endured my eternal bellyaching over years of campaigns, conferences, fundraisers, and various other projects where you've talked me off ledges and reminded me that my hair is, in fact, not on fire.

Speaking of bellyaches, the Universe reminded me yesterday that I can never get a big head about anything. In it's perpetually humorous fashion, the Universe made it clear that despite receiving awards, winning tough campaigns, or receiving accolades, I'm not immune to stupid acts of chemistry.

I managed - in my infinite wisdom and odd food geekery - to create a volcano of acid in my stomach yesterday. Lately I've been jamming on the delicious miracle of yogurt, and not just because I'm a target of clever ads, although that might have something to do with it. I was also was craving something salty and delicious.

In to Potbelly's I went, to grab a cup of seemingly mild blueberry yogurt. Waiting in line, a row of shiny bags of potato chips taunted me and I thought, well, why not? Let's go with Salt and Vinegar chips because - as much as chips are awesome - no one can eat too many Salt and Vinegar chips. I know, Salt and Vinegar is to many people a gross combination to begin with. I was under the impression that a lifetime of eating kimchi had insured a titanium stomach. (yeah, not so much.)

NOTE TO SELF: Acetic Acid and another weak acid with LOTS OF CALCIUM is a really bad combination to throw in your stomach. Because this reaction
acid+ + base → salt + water

Results in this reaction


Add to that the unusual (and very nice) positive recognition (hey, I like to keep a low profile, ok? I love ninjas, remember?) by my professional colleagues, the boss, frenemies and strangers, and voila! My boss found me in a near fetal position under my desk. She innocently stopped by and the following ensued:

"Hey I saw the press relea.... oh my goodness, are you ok?" my boss looks at me aghast.

"I'm ok."

"Go home!" my boss said to me.

"Oh, no, I'm fine! Really," I moan weakly.

"You're doubled over."

"No, no I'm not" I muttered, my head by my knees.

10 minutes later, I sent her an email from a cab, with the subject header: I am an idiot and going home. She wrote back: feel better.

Yeah. Like I said. The Universe. It keeps me humble. :)