The real LPT is in the comments

Hidden gems can be found in /r/lifeprotips.

Usually in the comments.

Someone will post a “Life Pro Tip” (LPT) on Reddit like, “Tie your shoes so you don’t trip and fall.” And, invariably, in the comments, someone will reply with something actually useful or interesting. Maybe a blog post from a site dedicated to tying shoes with videos demonstrating a dozen different ways to tie your shoes, depending on shoe type and use. It’s pretty neat.

In any case, I wanted to go on the record as appreciating the comments people are making on these dailies—even if not directly on the website. (It’s cool.)

Recently, on Does this make any sense at all, over on Facebook, for example, Mark said:

Makes perfect sense. You are using self cognitive skills to delve deeper into the ‘real’ meaning of life. (That sounds pretty deep, lol.) You are at the stage of forming a position of what you consider to be the true meaning of life.

When you realize you’ve been focusing on what you don’t want, as though it was what your really wanted. Incredible. Subtle, yet serious difference between “not shitty” and “awesome.”

Carter surfaced one of the key benefits to documenting the journey.

How cool to be able to look back in 20 years and see where you were today.

I know, right? If only I’d documented the first part of the journey better.

Cassandra dropped a way powerful rubric.

Whenever I find myself feeling like I’m at a fork but don’t really know where the paths lead, I do this exercise.

  1. Imagine someone you admire; they could be real or fictional, alive or dead.

  2. State the reason out loud why it is that you admire them.

  3. What you just stated is what you crave most in your life right now.

Carter also pointed out:

[That m]akes a lot of sense; lets you know where you stand too.

And Eric shared Mr. Rogers’ “Garden of Your Mind”, which was a solid reminder, given the circumstances behind the original post.

It’s always nice to know people read your work, but it’s even nicer to know your work earns a comment or two from time to time.

Thanks, everyone. I appreciate it.

Haters gonna face the music

A respected friend, Michael Rodarte, commented on my Montessori piece last week on Facebook.

MR: IMO, people should talk to those who are “doing better” in order to progress in the hobby they love.

I think too many people these days get angry at people doing something they love at a higher level. Instead, they should approach that person and ask competent questions to learn from someone who is doing well.

ME: Solid. Like stepping up into the realm of mentoring.

MR: Yup. Mentoring or the old Tradesman/Apprentice structure.

If people continue to just look at those with more skills and knowledge as “haters”, we will be in for a big surprise 15-20 years down the line.

When the smart people pass, their knowledge will die with them, unless someone saw the opportunity and tried to learn from them.

I’ve long believed the best way to raise the bar is by building up the foundation.

And I’ll admit I’ve generally come from a somewhat socialist point of view in that regard. Pay the goddamned burger flippers $15 and hour—and watch how quickly they spend it. It’s that simple.

But Michael points out the other side of that coin. It doesn’t matter how much marketing has convinced you that you deserve everything your heart desires—immediately, with zero effort. That’s bullshit and you know it. You gotta earn it.

Photo by Josh Sobel on Unsplash

We’ve got to reframe expertise. Go ahead and covet thy neighbor. But be do yourself a favor and love him, too. Be his friend. Get to know him. Learn from him.

Nothing can stop you from learning about something you truly want to learn.

Get off your ass and learn something today.

You’ll be glad you did.

The Internet is still awesome. Protect it.

Get away from the hyper-partisan, barely literate bullshit, and the internet might just inspire you.

Since Facebook and LinkedIn will likely strip the URL from this post (you know, because they “support an open internet”), here’s the quick overview of the link you’re missing by not making the jump to my site to check it out.

Kid goes to boarding school. Gets abused. All the kids get abused.

Parents don’t believe them. Nobody believes them.

In 1992, one of said students, 13, is on winter break, skiing with his family. He’s suicidal. He’s actively figuring out how to end it all. His piece of shit parents don’t seem to notice, but a kind stranger he shares a ski lift with does and asks him what’s up.

His voice is familiar, but he’s all bundled up with goggles and a scarf, so whatever.

Kid opens up and tells his story. Kind stranger shares that he went through something similar in Catholic school growing up. Tells him, “One day you’ll be a grownup and this will all be a distant memory. It’s going to be okay.”

Kid decides life’s worth living that day. Random, kind stranger saved his life.

As the ski lift reaches the top, the kind stranger’s wife is waiting. Kid recognizes her as “the girl from Cheers.” It’s Rhea Perlman. Which means kind stranger was none other than Danny DeVito.

Kid, now all grown up, see’s a story on Reddit about how DeVito and Perlman took the little girl from that Matilda movie under their wing when she was going through some shit back in the day.

Kid shares his story and asks if anyone could get a message to DeVito letting him know he saved his life and was right. Everything is okay.

None other than Arnold friggin’ Schwarzenegger shows up, thanks the kid for sharing, and says he’ll make sure Danny DeVito sees the post on Reddit.

The internet is awesome.

Let’s keep it that way.