“Let’s get coffee!” How many times have you said this? If you’re my age and living in the United States, chances are pretty high that number is greater than your digits by a long shot. I’m not sure what people said in 1813 or 1913, but getting coffee has certainly become a part of our cultural norm in 2013. And right along with it comes that other cultural norm: the opportunity for regret.
There are so many rituals in making and drinking coffee (tea is just the same). This is true especially when you make coffee at home. The filling of the device, the smell of the beans, the sounds of the coffee becoming real, the first taste. For coffee drinkers, making and drinking a cup of coffee includes all sorts of emotions and experiences that change it from the mundane into an almost revered thing. So asking someone to join you in that pursuit is both a casual thing and potentially a memory-making event.
A man known as Sweetness once said, “We are stronger together than when we are alone.” It is easy to think that Walter Payton was simply talking about life as a Chicago Bears football player; it is easier to think about Sweetness rallying his team to work together. But it is better to think of Walter being one of us regular folk whose only experiences with a pigskin is to toss it around in the summer sun. Because “Sweetness” Walter Payton was right on the money on this one…
WE ARE STRONGER TOGETHER THAN WHEN WE ARE ALONE.
Many thanks to all my readers who wished me good luck on running the Hood to Coast 2011. I did indeed run all three of my legs and can now call myself a Hood to Coaster, or some such thing. You know I must have had a good time if I’ve already signed up for another run on October 2nd, the Great Columbia Crossing. And I did have a good time running Hood to Coast. There is a lot to be said for having accomplished a goal, but it is even more powerful to be part of something bigger than you, bigger than the daily experience.
I went to work on Sunday a bit stiff, but it was great to have the opportunity to talk immediately about the race and what the race really reminded me of: I am a part of a community. And the role of community in our lives certainly centers us in ways that solitude cannot. Community brings us back into a fold that reminds us of the connectivity of humanity and how being connected reaffirms our very existence. Continue reading