5-hour plane rides can be a good thing. Lots of quiet time. Good thinking time. Good writing time.
Although Thanksgiving has just passed, I was able to have a wonderful time with family in the Maritimes. Our days were full with no turkey dinner but lobster instead. While reflecting on the idea of Thanksgiving, I remembered a moment from America’s Game, one of my favorite series from NFL Films. (My secret fantasy is that one day I’ll be able to work for them) This clip is from the 1983 Oakland Raiders Superbowl win. I think I was reminded of this because of Al Davis’ death. This team was ranked 20th of best all time teams but I quite liked hearing Todd Christensen reflect on this team. Not only he is extremely articulate, he actually used the word loquacious once, but his love and gratitude for being a professional athlete are clearly evident. This clip describes what he did right after the Superbowl ended and the Raiders became world champions. I’d seen this episode a few times and wanted to capture this specific moment so I apologize for the poor quality but I think his message is clear. (The video should play at the 41-minute mark)
“There is only one sin and that’s the sin of ingratitude”.
My Dad also instilled that in me. I never want to be one of those people either. Not as thankful as I should be, I do try hard to remember to be thankful. Like Christensen, I often feel I have no business having all that I have. So I figured it was time to be thankful while I had some quiet time on the plane. I won’t list all my blessings here but just a few.
Blessed with a great wife and kids, our house is filled with lots of love, laughter, with a good dose of crazy mixed in. I’ve shared some of this on The Twitter and hope it translates in a good way. While we tease each other lots, our house is a great place to be. Come by for a visit sometime. I think you’ll agree.
We tend to spend time with about 3 or 4 couples that we all share lots in common. Whether it’s a game of golf with the boys or potlucks with everyone, it’s quite wonderful to live life with these good folks. It would also seem that a requirement is that you must be able to pull up a Seinfeld reference on a moment’s notice. I’ll also add to this list the addition of many new friendships I’ve developed online. Others have written more about these new type of relationships but I simply know that although the word “friend” may be changing, I know the folks I’d be comfortable sharing life’s challenging moments and struggles with. If you really don’t understand this concept. Read Alan’s adventure. That might help.
For 23+ years I’ve been working for Prairie South Schools. I’ve worked for wonderful Principals and Superintendents who have allowed me the luxury of exploring and playing as I learn. I’m never sure if it was because they really believed in what I was doing or if they were just too busy to worry about me. Either way, it’s been rewarding work. I really do love to teach. Teaching for the past 5 years at the University of Regina has been awesome. Being able to work for up to 4 months with pre-service teachers and exposing them to the possibilities of new learning via technology is truly exhilarating. I can’t think of one session out of approximately 100 where I didn’t say, “Yes, I get to teach!” Mind you, many of those included some of the best ed-tech presenters on the planet, but still. Thanks specifically to Alec Couros for opening that door for me. I’m also grateful for the opportunity to work with schools, speak at the odd conference work with people like Sheryl and Will. What is most rewarding here is that usually, I end up learning as much or more with these experiences as the folks I present to.
Thanks also to spaces like this and for you, who bother to read what I write and even offer up advice, fix my writing and even suggest once in a while that I rethink some things.
What are you thankful for? Write it out and share it. I’d be grateful to read it. Happy Thanksgiving.