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Reflections of 2020

I took this photo of a Snowy Egret over a reflexive lagoon in Santa Barbara this morning, on the last day of 2020. And rather than just post a short caption I thought I would take some time to really reflect.

There’s so much to write – so many perspectives and feelings. I cannot possibly write them all here. I just want to address a few items I often consider.

Let’s start with loss. We’ve all experienced some sort of loss. Whether it was a close family member, a friend, a job, a relationship, an opportunity, or a piece of our mind – it was a loss.  When there’s a loss – there’s a new inspiration.  The energy of that loss can propel us to new places.  Life is temporary. We are all just here, spinning around in space, and one day we will be gone, and everyone that we’ve ever known will be as well.  It’s immutable. It will happen.  You can accept it and welcome it – or you can fight it.  Let’s start by having gratitude for what we do have – breath.

Let’s consider our liberty. Our liberties were certainly tested and pushed this year. What we’ve seen from governments around the world is highly concerning and trending towards tyrannical.  Tyranny starts with a thought from an ego and a desire to control. The rise of Nazi Germany didn’t happen overnight – and yes humans can fail to learn from the past and repeat it again. While they’re patting themselves on the back – we are crying from our hearts.  There is a reason for this – and it starts and ends with money and the government central banks quietly hoping no one will notice. Understand something – the money to pay for all the 2020 stimulus packages, the 9 trillion dollars – was printed out of thin air. This isn’t tax revenue being re-allocated from the Defense Department, the National Parks, or anywhere else. The money is being manufactured by government.  What does that mean?  It means government is negligent in its duties that they were elected and sworn to perform.  There is only ONE senator-elect (Cynthia Lumis) who sees how dangerous this is and understands what I’m talking about and cares enough to use her voice and speak about it.  This means that all of our USD is worth less – and we will see inflation. It will start outside this country where other currencies are valued against the dollar, and then it will hit us here in the U.S..  Watch it.  Mind the signals.  Some countries will see hyperinflation – and once that happens we will unfortunately see great suffering.  I hope I’m wrong about that – because there is a solution.  There is an end to the suffering. There is true freedom that cannot be taken away.  The solution to this problem is Bitcoin.  Bitcoin may just seem as a way to make money to many of you. I am telling you there is much, much, more to Bitcoin than that. Bitcoin is not just an “investment”.  Bitcoin is the response to tyranny and Bitcoin will change the world dramatically more than we can imagine.  (If you’re interested in learning more, PM me and I’ll send you some podcasts and other links to get you started down the rabbit hole).  We are still in the early phases. It is still the beginning. It is not too late.  Mark my words.  This is going to happen. Let’s recognize that the energy of true freedom starts with a B. ūüėČ

Let’s start and end with love.  The world needs more love. That’s not a clich√©, it’s a fucking mandate and it needs to happen. Divisions, sides, and opposition have no place outside of sports.  We are one people. We are one species. We are one planet.  Fear is our only enemy.  Love is our solution – and it always has been.  It’s right there for all us.  More kindness and understanding has no downside.  Let’s start doing more loving individually and we will see how the world joins in as a collective.

And just like that, the world we have known is over. Welcome to the new world.

If it’s not obvious already – this is the most dramatic shift as a collective that the world has experienced in over a century.  This crisis dwarfs the events of September 11, 2001 and the aftermath of that.

I had this Utopian vision – right at the beginning of the outbreak, everyone would just “pause” in place, go home, the virus would be contained and die, and then after a short period of time, we would just “play” and pick up right where we paused.  Unfortunately, hubris, lies, and, most of all, ego got in the way early on to prevent that dream. And the consequence of that now is death, suffering, and the world economy crumbling. And that’s that. Silly dream.

This is a reminder of just how fragile our systems are. The chain of events leading to this crisis are fascinating to consider and observe.

This is not by choice – this is by force.  This circumstance is not what we want, it is not something we asked for, it is just what is.  We are forced to accept it – and it makes us uncomfortable.  This crisis is a brutal reminder of how we are not in control of things the way we think we are.

What this crisis also is – an auspicious opportunity.

It’s an opportunity to reset our core values.

This is an opportunity to create a new understanding of our own mortality and of death.  If you’re reading this – congratulations – because you’re alive – for now. Everything is impermanent.  We really don’t know when our life is going to end, and our best laid plans just had a big wrench thrown right into them.  So appreciate the time you have had, appreciate that you’re here now, and value your health, taking sensible and reasonable actions to protect it – because for some of us, it will be taken unexpectedly.

It’s an opportunity to understand how we relate to food, our food supply chain, and our relationship and expectations of local, state, and federal governments.

This is an opportunity to work on a passion project and catch up on entertainment and reading.  As most of us self-isolate, we all set an example and test ourselves to see how we handle this and make sensible decisions – both large and small.

Most of all, it’s an opportunity to introspect and determine if we will choose fear or we will choose love.  What does that mean, you ask? It means that it’s a chance to take a breath before making decisions and not be reactive. It means asking yourself what is the most optimal outcome of what you’re about to do and hopefully having the sense to realize it’s a fear-based decision – choosing to change your mind and do the opposite.  It’s that simple. I find that this feeling comes to me after meditation and I use it to propel and guide my day.

To those that are still out, still working at grocery stores, restaurants, hospitals / health-care facilities, and other critical service industries – we thank you. You are all choosing to work not only for a paycheck, but because you want to help others. We cannot appreciate all of those on the front lines enough. You are the new heroes.

Things are changing rapidly by the day. As of today, we do not have martial law, but it’s probably coming. We also have governments creating money out of thin air, which will cause hyperinflation.  News is coming into our feeds from friends, family, and outside sources, and we have to triage and distill it so that it fits within our understanding. And with all this comes a new set of challenges and tests of our resolve and of our freedoms.  It’s a lot to handle. Cool heads will prevail.

People unite over a common enemy – whether it’s a foreign invader, a potential alien attack, or today’s enemy, COVID-19.  Will humanity and governments use this opportunity to pause (stop?) waging war on each other, making bombs, imposing sanctions and other instruments of destruction upon each other and come together as well?  Or after this is over, will we just pick up where we left off and continue existing patterns of oppression, fear, and violence? We shall see in the days and years to come. Today, right now, we are living through a reckoning of everything we know and have ever known.

We get to have this auspicious opportunity.  How we choose to act and react, both as individuals and as a collective, starts from within.  It starts with you.

An Auspicious Opportunity – Companion Commentary


Open Pallete

Rawesome Raid

I was one of those people that didn’t think much about what I was eating. ¬†For 40 years, I really didn’t think much about it at all. ¬†I would eat whatever was put in front of me, I would shop for food wherever it was¬†convenient, and I would be happy just to not be hungry. ¬†All that changed when I met my fianc√© Sima. ¬†She opened my eyes and my¬†palette, and in the last 2+ years I’ve looked at food in a whole new way.

I’m now very aware of what I’m eating and where it comes from. ¬†Americans in particular really take a lot for granted. ¬†It’s amazing when we eat imported foods, we never think about the long journey it came from its origin to your plate.

We’re fortunate to live in a city that has access to real, healthy, raw foods, and we were so excited when the RAWESOME market opened right next to our new Whole Foods, on Rose Avenue in West Los Angeles. ¬†They have amazing food there, straight from local farms. ¬†They have delicious dairy and real, non-pasteurized¬†milk. ¬†We’ve been enjoying our weekly visits and trying new foods: non-processed, the way nature intented.

Every time we would visit Rawesome, we’d feel a little tension in the staff. ¬†They were raided and shut-down briefly last summer. ¬†There was always that looming fear that it could all come crashing down again, which it did, permanently last week, as the LAPD raided and destroyed much of the inventory.

I’m all for safety and I don’t want to eat something that’s dangerous, but let’s learn from the other countries around the world, including our own country. ¬†Our nation has become a victim of itself. ¬†We were once a shining example for healthy food production. ¬†But we’ve pushed aside health for¬†capitalism, and it has failed. ¬†Companies like Monsanto¬†put profit first, quality second. ¬†If there’s a market, they sell to it. ¬†We’re now the most obese country in the world.

The problem is ignorance. ¬†It’s the ignorance that I grew up with. ¬†Organic should mean organic, but now because of abuse of the rules, we have “certified organic“. ¬†And labels and¬†ingredients¬†only work if you read and understand them.

Sima and I have built our own garden. ¬†No pesticides, no chemicals, no sprays. ¬†Just seeds, soil, plants, and water. ¬†It doesn’t get that much sun, and it’s not super hot in Santa Monica, so we’re making due with the few tomatoes and¬†zucchini¬†we see each week. ¬†But now I appreciate food so much more, and nothing tastes better than the tomatoes Sima makes in her¬†delicious¬†salad, with greens from our local farmer’s market.

I’ve learned a lot over the past few years, and have been inspired by my good friend Rich Roll and what he’s managed to do. ¬†Sima and I will often chat up the vendors at the farmers’ market, and just being around and thinking about food as much as we have has really helped me appreciate it.

The other way to go is “eat whatever, don’t care” – like most of my friends, like most of my family, like most Americans. ¬†And there are many people that live to be 90+, eating whatever they want.

I just know I feel better, stronger, and healthier now than I’ve ever felt. ¬†My skin looks great, I rarely get sick, my cholesterol is down, and I sleep better. ¬†I’ll stick with what I’m doin’.

The proud CEO of GoDaddy, Bob Parsons, standing over his Elephant Kill

The proud CEO of GoDaddy, Bob Parsons, standing over his Elephant Kill

Here’s an amazing and horrifying story of what happens when money, power, and ego rule. Bob Parsons, the CEO of GoDaddy decided to spend a small fraction of his considerable wealth to travel to Africa and kill an Elephant. He did it under the guise of “helping” the local farmers. While he may not be a liar, (after all, he is helping them), but really, this is what you want your legacy to be? ¬†With all the wealth, experience, and resources available to him, he could have and should have tried to relocate the Elephants, put up a fence (creating jobs), or deterred them from interfering with human colonized areas some other way.

Instead of CHOOSING to be creative, compassionate, and humane, he CHOSE to simply pull a trigger and end the life of an endangered animal Рto satisfy what?  Is it ego, pride, or something else?  He now thinks of himself as a hero!  What inside of Parsons compelled him to take this action?

This is a case of the worst of humanity, a single man going out of his way to destroy something beautiful just because he can. ¬†Imagine if Bill Gates or Steve Jobs did this. They wouldn’t. They know better. Gates heads the largest philanthropic fund on the planet, and works tirelessly to improve our world. ¬†Congratulations, Bob, you’ve earned your “Scummiest CEO of the Year Award“.

Shame on you, Dr. Parsons. ¬†I’m CHOOSING to move my domains from GoDaddy.

Brett Morrison – Official Site

The official web site of Brett Morrison, Self-Made Technology Entrepreneur.


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