Disadain Gravity

​You can disdain gravity all you want, call out its unfairness, seek to have it banned.
But that’s not going to help you build an airplane.

By Seth Godin

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What I Wanted to Hear from my Teachers on my First Day of High School

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Regardless of whether you are a teacher, a parent or a student, reading and debating this letter by Prof 2.0 on the first day of high school could be a great way to start the year. And the rest of your life.

What would I have wanted to hear from my teachers on my first day of school?

What would I want them to tell me if I became a student again?

Stories about summer holidays? No.
Those of my classmates? No. I would already know everything.
«You have to study»?
«This is going to be difficult»?
«We’re going to have to make more of an effort»?

No. No, thank you.
I know. This is why I’m here.

Tell me something different. Something new. Make sure I don’t start getting bored so soon.

Make me feel even just a faint desire to start this school year. From the ear of passion, I can hear perfectly.

Show me that it’s worth my while to stay here for a whole year listening to you.

Please, tell me that it will all be relevant to my everyday life. That it will help me better understand the world and myself. That it’s worthwhile for me to be here.

Show me -above all through your own life- that the effort you demand of me will fill my own life the way it fills yours. You have dedicated studies, efforts and dreams to teach me your subject. Now show be that it’s all true. Show me that you are conveying something desirable and indispensable, something that you own and that you wish to give me as a gift.

Show me that you lose sleep to teach me these things that — you say — are worth my efforts. I want to look into your eyes and see them shining. If they’re not shining, I’m going to get bored. I’m telling you now. And I’m going to do something else. You can’t lie to me. If you don’t believe it, why should I?

And don’t tell me about your salariy, about the union, about your family and relationship troubles, about your failures and your obsessions. No.

Tell me about how much you love the force of the sun that has burned for 5 billion years and transforms hydrogen into light, life and energy.

Tell me what makes such a miracle happen and continue for at least another 5 billion years.

Tell me why the moon always shows me her same face and teach me how to interrogate her like a poet does.

Tell me how it’s possible that a rose has petals arranged according to a divine and infallible proportion and why the heart is a muscle that beats involuntarily and how the eye transforms light into images.

There are so many things in this world that I don’t know and that you could teach me, with eyes shining, because only wonder knows.

And tell me about the mystery of humans. Tell me how the Greeks built temples that make you feel like you’re in contact with the gods. And how the Romans managed to combine beauty and utility like nobody else. Tell me how Leonardo da Vinci did it, how Magellan did it. Tell me the secrets of Einstein, Gaudi or Mozart. If you know it, tell me.

Tell me: how am I supposed to decide what to do with my life if I don’t know about the lives of others?

Tell me: how am I supposed to find my own story if I have not a bit of passion for those that left their mark?

Tell me what I should gamble my life for. Or don’t. Don’t tell me. I will decide for myself. You can show me the possibilities.

Help me discover my passions, my talents, and my dreams.

And remember that you will only succeed if you have dreams, projects and passions of your own.

Otherwise, how am I supposed to believe you?

And remind me that my life is not repeatable. That it’s made for greatness. Help me not to settle for small pleasures -real and virtual- that may satisfy me in the moment. Deep I side, they just bore me…

Challenge me. Put my best qualities to the test. And record them on your register along with all those grades that are always the same.

Help me not to believe illusions and not to live on dreams filled with air. But at the same time teach me to dream and to have the patience to realize these dreams, turning them into projects.

Teach me to reason. Help me avoid deriving my beliefs from ephymeral fashions, the dominant thought and from unreasoned thought.

Help me to be free. And remind me of how beautiful this world is. Talk about it. Make me want to discover everything it is hiding before I begin to long for a tropical vacation.

And please, one last favor. Keep your cynicism to yourself. Don’t hide your battles from me, but give me the strength to bear them. Do not poison my hopes even before I have conceived them.

For this these are the reasons why, one day, I will remember you.

Indecent Body Exposure at the Olympics

This is how Iranian television covers the 2016 Olympic games in Rio de Janeiro.

And the following is one of the most powerful images of the Olympics: a beach volley match between Egypt and Germany.

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Indecent Exposure

The concept of acceptable level of nudity in public and on TV varies remarkably around the world.

In Europe full frontal nudity is regularly seen on TV and in public. To Europeans, nudity isn’t always a sexual thing.

Meanwhile, in America, nudity is a taboo. TV broadcasters in the U.S. can’t show nudity on the air between the hours of 6 a.m. and 10 p.m.

In America, public nudity is often considered “indecent exposure” and is actually a punishable crime.

In Europe, however, Munich has legalized nudity in six “Urban Naked Zones,” Denmark legalized nakedness on all public beaches in 1976, and the Netherlands legalized “recreational nudity” back in 1985.

Out of all 50 wonderfully clothed states in America, only New York, Hawaii, Maine, New Hampshire, Ohio, and Texas have explicitly legalized toplessness of both men and women in public places.

On the flip side, good old Utah is one of the handful of states that went out of its way to include breast-feeding mothers in the category of “public lewdness.” In Louisiana, an exposed nipple could land you in jail for three years

Speeches that Changed the World

These are some speeches that have changed the world through the power of their words and their electrifying message. 

While they all differ, they’re all connected through their use of eloquent meaning and powerful, passionate, and unimaginably purposeful delivery to inspire (and arouse) the audience towards massive action.

John F. Kennedy – Inaugural Address

 

Written speech

Martin Luther King – I Have a Dream

Written speech

Ronald Reagan – Remarks at the Brandenburg Gate

Written speech

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

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The difference between a good (American) school and a bad (Spanish) school for 14 year olds in two pictures…

1) An email asking my son to choose two between the elective subjects: advanced networking, genetics, 3D design, movie making, photography, advanced math, culinary arts, creative writing. And to choose two between 4 languages: French, Spanish, German, Chinese.

2) My son was forced to write 30 times «I will not speak even if I have raised my hand to ask to speak» by his  professor in a Spanish school.

You can make your own judgment…