Why Can’t We Just Stay As Superman?

Superman

So when we’re young, we think we’re Superman, Batman, or whatever superhero comes to mind. 


Our bodies are beautiful, supple, strong, and heal quickly. 


We are taught by our helicopter parents and philosophic teachers that “You can do anything you set your mind to!


In our fantasies, we surely can do amazing things–we lift unbelievable weight, fly around at the speed of light, do karate better than Bruce Lee, outthink Einstein, save the world, and then make off with the beautiful damsel to boot.


Kryptonite is no problem–we are (seemingly) invincible.


Then we hit middle age–40 something–and all of a sudden what do you know?


Oh, this doesn’t work right and that doesn’t feel right.


The Yiddish expression, “Oy vey” seems about it.


And off to the doctors we go.


After the exam and tests, doc says, “Mr. (or Ms.) [whatever], you have [fill in the blank].”


You respond, “Is that normal–at my age–already?”


Doc says, “Absolutely, this is what happens as you get older.”


I say, “Doc, does anything good happen when we get older.”


“Of course not”–we both laugh. 


This reminds me of when my dad used to sing this song in this funny mock Irish accent, “You’re not as young as you used to be you’re getting old and gray!” 


This week, a colleague was coming down with something–possibly something not good. 


I told him how I hoped this turns out well for him and how sorry I was for what he was going through.


Writing off the illness, he says to me, “We all end the same anyway” (i.e. we all end up dead!)–ah, another unhappy notion that is. 


I joked back, “But we all don’t end up in the same place.”


I got a few laughs at that too (some of my father in me). 


Well anyway, I thought about this after–about some of the special subhuman beings out there–and the very special place that I am certain G-d has in store for them:


– Serial murders and other violent criminals


– Rapists and child abusers


– Terrorists and their sponsors


– Megalomaniacs, bullies, and corrupt officials


– Thieves, cheats, and liars.


And guess what about these schmendricks–they get old too, they go to the doctor too, and then they are going somewhere warm, very warm, and it’s not to the Caribbean. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Freak Accidents, Illnesses, And Events

Treadmill

Dave Goldberg, the CEO of Survey Monkey (and the husband of Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Facebook), died suddenly in a freakish accident falling off a treadmill and hitting his head. 


Poof…dead at age 47!


Unfortunately, we hear all the time about these type of tragic occurrences to people.


And of course tragedy knows no bounds–so while sh*t happens everyday to people from all walks of life, we tend to pay more attention when it’s someone we know and love or when it’s splashed wildly in the news about fabulously successful people we admire and follow. 


– Entertainer, Michael Jackson (50) dead from drug intoxication after suffering cardiac arrest.


– Actor, Robin Williams (63) dead by hanging suicide. 


– Singer, John Lennon (40) shot in the back by someone he had autographed an album for.


– Martial Artist, Bruce Lee (33) died on a movie set from a cerebral edema.


– Model, Marilyn Monroe (33) dead by drug overdose.


– President, John F. Kennedy (46) dead by assassination.


Whether by a plane crash or car accident, drowning or fire, poison or electrocution, a criminal or animal attackterrorism, war, or natural disaster, a heart attack, stroke, or cancer, through suicide, punishment, or mercy killing…regardless of the probabilities and statistics, many people never make it all the way to “a ripe old age.” 


We feel bad, shake our heads, say a few words of sympathy perhaps, when we hear of these lives cut short.


But like the TV shows, Six Feet Under (HBO) or 1000 Ways To Die (Spike)–there are a near endless number of horrible ways to go–and they can take you at literally any time.


While we can’t stop living and just sit around worrying all the time about all the bad things that can happen, we do need to remember that anything can happen at any time (and these things are not so freakish after all)–no one is beyond the Angel of Death, no one should be arrogant, and we should make the most of every single moment that G-d lovingly grants to us.  😉


(Source Photo: here with attribution to Military Health)

The Lights Never Really Go Off

Light Switch

It was interesting at work recently, when a colleague was contemplating what to do about some key person being out of the office and unavailable…



And they go: “Next man or women up–last one flips off the light.”



In other words as they say, the show must go on!



So hurry up and let’s get the person’s deputy, “second,” or the next one on the ladder read in and working on this. 



When it comes to work, we can’t stop because someone is “out of pocket”–the job presuposes any particular person or persons.



While many peope think (or wish) they are irreplaceable, the truth is that with the exception of your closest family and friends, we are all just shy of, “Okay, whose up next?”



I remember a friend who told me many years ago that he believed that the whole world revolved around him (yes really), and that everyone else was “just a figment of my imagination.”



Ha, I’m pretty sure that a lot of people have had a similar thought or sentiment about themselves. 



But the truth is that while everyone is unique and invaluable–there are over 7 billion of us out there and growing–so there is always someone else waiting in the wings to jump on an opportunity to fill someone else’s shoes (no matter how big). 



It is a harsh world and reality–but we are here as long as we are here, and then there are others who come after. 



In a sense, this is a good thing, because as mere mortals, we don’t want everything to depend on us–we are frail, we get sick, we die–but by having others who can step in and carry the flag forward, our efforts do not end with us. 🙂



(Source Photo: here with attribution to Niklas Morberg)

Cancer 101

Cancer Incidence Stages of Cancer
I saw this in a doctor’s office and thought it was very educational on Cancer.



The first diagram has a brief definition of cancer and the incidence of cancer type for males and females.



The second explains the stages of cancer, I through IV, and is shown in the small intestine, as an example. 



This stuff is so scary and horrible. 



The “C” word…we should never hear it, say it, or know from it anymore!



G-d should help us find a cure to rid this world of this disease.



Save us from that which afflicts us, and send us a complete healing of body, mind, and soul, Amen!!!



(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Time, Our Most Precious Asset

Einstein
Albert Einstein taught us how this world is governed by space and time. 



Before we are born and once we are gone, space and time no longer apply–we are in G-d’s realm.



Time is so important and precious, that even space is constrained by time–i.e. we cannot be in two places at the same time.



When it comes to time, we can never have enough and this pervades every aspect of our lives.



Here is a short list of how we are bound by time:

What Time Is It?

What Time Are We…?

Do You Have Time?

Can You Spare Some Time?

Who’s Got Time?

How Many Times?

How Much Time?

Do You Remember The Time That…?

Where Has The Time Gone?



Time Is Precious

This Time is Different

Only Time Will Tell

If Only There Was Time

Wish I Had More Time

Time is Too Short

It is Time

Time is Ticking

Time Flies

One Step At a Time

Maximize The Time You Have

Stop Wasting Time



Decision Time

Time To Change

Timeless

Timeline

Time Bound

Time Heals

Time is Money

In No Time

From The Beginning of Time

Once Upon A Time

There Was A Time

Now’s Not The Time

A Long Time Ago

Time To Getaway

Awesome Time

Great Time

Good Times

Bad Times

Marvelous Time

Excellent Time

Meaningful Time

Hopeful Time

Horrible Time

Depressed Times

Manic Times

Next Time

Time of My Life

Makeup Time

Time Out

It’s About Time

The First Time

This is The Last Time

There Is No Time Like The Present

Between The Time

About That Time

Same Time

Different Time

Parallel Time

Past Time

Make Time

Use Time

Spend Time

Save Time

Best Use of Your Time

Take Your Time

Short of Time

Losing Time

Taking Time

Stealing Time

Don’t Have Time

Some Time

No Time

Anytime

All of the Time

Every Time

Numerous Times

Exact Time

All The Time

At The Same Time

For The Time Being

Keep Time

Out of Time

Long Time

Short Time

Right Time

Wrong Time

Before It’s Time

Now is The Time

Past Time

Present Time

Future Time

Spacetime ContinuumTime Travel

(Not) Enough Time

Most of The Time

It’s The Only Time

Need More Time

Time is of The Essence

Tell Time

Local Time

World Time

Time Zones

Timetable

Timekeeper

Timekeeping

Time and Attendance

Overtime

Comp Time

Part Time

Full Time

Old Times

Modern Times

Wartime

Peacetime

Summertime

Wintertime

Springtime (wonder why there is no falltime?)

Setup Time

Time is on Your Side

Time of Redemption

Time of Mashiach (Messiah)

Time to Forgive

Time to Avenge

Judgement Time

Time Unfolds

End of Times

Confusing Times

Work Time

Busy Time

Down Time

Quiet Time

Meal Time

Bed Time

Nap Time

Starting Time

Ending Time

Almost Time

Happy Times

Sad Times

Holiday Time

Hopeful Times

Solemn Times

Special Time

Important Times

Tough Times

Structured Time

Lawless Times

Time of Doubt

Time of Birth

Time of Death

Time to Work

Time to Retire

Time Alone

Time Apart

Time Together

Me Time

My Time

Our Time

Family Time

Play Time

Party Time

Happy Hour Time

Game Time

Show Time

Movie Time

Real Time

Dinner Time

Lunch Time (no real breakfast time!)

Private Time

Time Stamp

Time Magazine



Thank You For Your Time 😉



With special appreciation To Rebecca Blumenthal for brainstorming this with me–it was a fun time! 



(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Taking A Bow

Taking A Bow
Wow–this is some awesome piece of art!



Aside from the beauty of it, what do I think about looking at this?



Something like this:



Some people take a bow in arrogance and self-aggrandizement, while others are bowed in humbleness and grace.



Those who see only their own greatness fail to see all those people, factors, and most importantly, G-d’s mercy that enabled them to achieve what they have. 



We are but agents of the heavenly maker above who endows us with creativity and the ability to capitalize on it. 



We should be bowed in thankfulness to G-d, but unfortunately all too often instead stare in the mirror admiring our own image that we imagine is so talented and successful because of who we are and what we ourselves have done–that we can’t even contain our bursting self-satisfaction in wonderful selves. 



Yes, it’s good to recognize when we do something good and when we make mistakes so that we can learn from them, but G-d is not only our one-time maker, but he gives us the knowledge, skills, abilities, and good fortune to succeed in what he wills. 



I remember being taught in Jewish day school that not a leaf falls from a tree without G-d wishing it–that G-d is not only the creator, but is intimately involved every moment with us and the world.  



Like the most brilliant computer that can calculate gazillions of calculations a second, G-d can orchestrate the fates of all his creations in a just and masterful way that takes everything we do and don’t do into account.



May it be G-d’s will to endow us with what we need to succeed and for us to be deserving of it, and to recognize from where it all comes and not be so in awe of ourselves that we fail to see our innate limitations and mortality that is us. 



(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Treat People Nice

Treat People Nice

On a recent college visit, I saw this sign hanging on a door.

The quote is by Maya Angelou and it is very powerful:

“People will forget what you said,
People will forget what you did,
But people will never forget how you made them feel.”

As human beings in this world, we come and go.

Our time here is finite.

We will be replaced by others.

What is truly memorable about us is our relationships and how we treat others.

When we show kindness to people or when we are cruel to others–these things are never forgotten.

Our interactions are the mark of who we are inside–do we sincerely care about others and the bigger picture or are we just plain selfish?

How about you–can you remember:

  • how that parent who loved you made you feel?
  • how that teacher who taught you made you feel?
  • how that friend who played with you made you feel?
  • how that boss who mentored you made you feel?
  • how that clergy who inspired you made you feel?
  • how that spouse who was your companion made you feel?
  • how those children who looked up to you made you feel?
  • how those colleagues who supported your work made you feel?

I’m sure you can also remember times when people made you feel not so good–perhaps, you scowled or even cursed them under your breath.

Getting results in life is not enough–we can’t do it by stepping on other people and really being successful that way.

Empathy and kindness or a hard heart and cruelty–you will be remembered one way or another. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)