Delight 10: Dad’s Emails

My Dad is 88. He is amazing in many respects. He’s healthy, loves life and is a joy to be around. He’s also a great learner. He has learned so many skills in technology from a digital camera to a laptop and more recently an iPhone. All of these things he’s embraced after the age of 70. He calls me weekly with some kind of technical issue he’s trying to resolve. He sees me using an app and wants to know what it is.

I have a great story I’ve told occasionally in my talks but what brings me delight is his emails. No punctuation and no sense of breaks. Just a run-on stream of consciousness.

Dean

aunt della died today she was 92 oh well tomorrow Ill go strawberry picking shot an 86 yesterday it was a really warm day see you soon

dad

That’s the best. … Read the rest

Delight 9: Savouring words

I started my delight project on March 5th. I’ve yet to decide if it was the absolute worst timing or perhaps the absolute best. At the time the Coronavirus was somebody else’s issue. Soon after I started, things escalated quickly and today, of course, we’re facing serious things that makes delight hard to find. No matter the timing of this, I’m forging ahead.

While words and language have always mattered, I feel as information and ideas are so freely accessible and shared, it may be more important than ever to be clear about what we mean.

You can read a couple of posts of mine on language and words. As you can see, I can get worked up about the improper use of words. Another example of this is the work and thinking I’ve done around joy. Often people come up to me after I present and swap out the words “fun” and “happy” for joy. While I’m not opposed to having fun and being happy, that’s not really what I mean when I talk about joy. The definition I most often use is around the expression of well-being. Being well and in a good place is closely … Read the rest

Delight 8: Rex Chapman’s Tweets

There are many delightful people tweeting delightful things. But perhaps the best known is Rex Chapman. I actually remember him as a basketball player. His twitter account has emerged over the last year by building off the “block or charge” meme which is a riff off the basketball call officials have to make every time a foul around contact is called.

He has a knack for curating great video tweets. Many are funny but he also seems to have coined the tweet, “This is the content I’m here for” which are typically stories that show the best of humanity.

Case in point…

There are so many adjectives to describe that, everything from beautiful to heart-warming. I see it as delightful, a little sprinkle of goodness that reminds us of the kindness that … Read the rest

Delight 7: When Someone Falls Down

One element that is often closely associated with delight is surprise. It seems like delight often catches us off guard. That is certainly the case in many cases but not always. Sometimes delight happens even when, and especially when you know its coming.

Slapstick humour is not my thing. I don’t think it’s funny and certainly isn’t clever. My wife thinks The Three Stooges and Marx Brothers humour is low brow too. However, it’s a guarantee that if she sees someone fall down, she will laugh. Whether it’s me or even someone on TV or the movies, if it seems natural, she will laugh. Even if I hurt myself, she will laugh and then apologize. She cannot help herself. I’ve seen it coming and like pepper elicits a sneeze, a fall elicits laughter from her. But knowing that a fall will make her instantly laugh is equal parts annoying and comforting. Somehow that combination is a formula for delight. … Read the rest

Delight 6: Be My Eyes

It’s only happened about 4-5 times over the last 2 years but whenever I get a call from Be My Eyes it immediately brings a smile to my face.

If you’re not familiar, Be My Eyes is an app for those with visual impairment. If they are in a situation where they need someone to assist them, they use the app and a stranger answers the call and helps them. I’ve been able to help someone with a thermostat in a hotel, reading the label on a can and last night helping a colour-blind nurse pick out her outfit. (Actually, I passed the phone to my wife as she would be a better helper. If you saw my pants collection, you’d agree.)

I’m not saving the world or curing a disease. I realize it’s the tiniest bit of human kindness. It’s a simple lift for me and while I am hopefully helping someone else out, I think it does more for me than the caller. The internet has provided society with a mixed bag of good and evil to be sure but when it creates opportunities for us to be more human in these little, surprising and previously unthinkable ways, … Read the rest