Good Will Hunting- food for thought

How often do we “settle” for a job, relationship, or situation that doesn’t utilize our full potential because we are comfortable instead of challenging ourselves with something or someone new that does?

Good Will Hunting was on free HBO weekend the other night. The 1997 movie is about a math genius who, while working as a janitor at MIT, finished a difficult equation & was discovered by a professor and his subsequent journey to fulfilling his potential. The movie put Matt Damon & Ben Affleck on the map with Best Original Screenplay & Robin Williams won an Best Supporting Actor Academy Award for his performance.

This is a conversation between Will Hunting (genius) & his best friend Chuckie eating lunch at a construction site where they were working after Will was fired from his janitor job.

Chuckie: Look, you’re my best friend, so don’t take this the wrong way. But in 20 years, if you’re still living here, coming over my house to watch the Patriots games, still working construction… I’ll f*ckin’ kill ya. That’s not a threat. That’s a fact. I’ll f*ckin’ kill ya.

No, no, no. F*ck you. You don’t owe it to yourself. You owe it to me. Cause tomorrow, I’m gonna wake up, and I’ll be 50, and I’ll still be doing this sh*t. That’s alright. That’s fine. I mean, you’re sitting on a winning lottery ticket, and you’re too much of a f*ckin’ pussy to cash it in, and that’s bullsh*t. Cause I’d do f*ckin’ anything to have what you got. So would any of these f*ckin’ guys. Be an insult to us if you’re still here in 20 years. Hanging around here is a f*ckin’ waste of your time.

Let me tell you what I do know. Everyday, I come by your house, and I pick you up. We go out and we have a few drinks and a few laughs, and it’s great. You know what the best part of my day is? About 10 seconds before I pull up to your curb, and when I go to your door. Cause I think maybe I’ll get up there, and I’ll knock on the door, and you won’t be there. No “good-bye.” No “see ya later.” No nothing. You just left. I don’t know much, but I know that.

If you have not seen the movie, I highly recommend it. If you have, but not recently, I would recommend seeing it again. It is packed with food for thought.

Beauty in Nature

Never say there is nothing beautiful in the world anymore. There is always something to make you wonder in the shape of a tree, the trembling of a leaf.
– Albert Schweitzer

Taking a walk on the Kipuka Paulu (Bird Park) Trail

Volcano National Park, Hawaii

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Strange Creatures

There are more things in the natural world than what we can see with our eyes. I was surprised to see this image captured by my camera that I don’t remember seeing with my eyes while whale watching.


Do you know what this is?

Key to Longevity


If you ask what is the single most important key to longevity, I would have to say it is avoiding worry, stress and tension. And if you didn’t ask me, I’d still have to say it.

George Burns

So much of healthy living remains focused on merely eating the right foods or exercise. Few talk about modifications in behavior such as worry less, stress less. A walk in nature, being totally present & appreciating the beauty around us, is one of the simplest ways of releasing stress. If taking a walk is not possible, photos can be a good mental break. 


Life is resilient & persistent.

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“Dark thoughts” or not



From Brian Andreas of StoryPeople…

We are so surrounded by negativity sometimes that we forget that the dark thoughts require a great deal of energy to sustain and maintain. So the question becomes simple… do I give my energy to maintain and sustain the “dark thoughts” or is it time to try something different?


From a tea bag (no, not tea leaves or fortune cookie)

The greatest pleasure in life is doing what people say you cannot do.
– Walter Begehot

How many times have we heard others say “you can’t do that…”, believed it, and it was so? Some people don’t listen and do it anyway… (see November 8 for the most recent example). Yet, it’s not about proving anything to anyone; it’s not about “right” or “wrong”. It’s about following you inner knowing & doubting ourselves less… no matter what others say!


Speaking of Bizarre Foods…

Speaking of “Bizarre Foods”, check out these offerings at the famous Night Market in Beijing, China.



“Spiced” is definitely subjective

Recent episodes of “Bizarre Foods” on Travel Channel were all about spicy foods- from Korean cuisine in Seoul to Caribbean foods in the Bronx. It reminded me of one of our trips to China that covered Chengdu in Sichuan as well as Zhangjiajie in Hunan province. We made the mistake of asking for “local” food in Chengdu where every dish is filled with peppers. 4 out of 5 people in our group do not eat spicy foods. I later dubbed it my “China diet plan”. We learned by the time we reached Zhangjiajie NOT to ask for local cuisine which was a good thing, since people in Hunan call the Sichuan food “fake” hot. We asked the tour guide what he meant by that and he replied “Sichuan food stops burning after awhile because your taste buds are numb. That does not happen with Hunan peppers!”

It is all subjective!


Formations in Zhangjiajie- the inspiration for Pandora in “Avatar”.



False News

In the past week , much attention was paid to “false news” and worse, people who took action based on “false news”. There really is nothing new about “false news”. Just go to the grocery store check out line and look to the side. Old fashioned “false news” in the form of newspapers like National Enquirer still exists. Before the internet, we called them the tabloids! Of course the difference now is someone will pay the writer lots of money  if enough people read and followed those stories on the internet… whether the story is true or not! Truth, as we found out the past few months, is subjective anyways. If enough people BELIEVED something is true, it can alter world events. We just proved that on November 8th.

So isn’t time we took a look at what we really believe in and focus on that? As Mark Twain said, “Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please. ”

Lotus flower Hongcun Village, China

Lotus flower
Hongcun Village, China


Meaning of Dawn

It is quite curious how context alters meaning. To a day person, dawn is start of a refreshing new day.  For a natural night owl, we see dawn only “from the other side” (as some of our morning friends would say). When working a 12-hour night shift, dawn means “Thank God it is almost over…” but when starting vacation, dawn is the beginning of a new adventure.