Yesterday, The Society of Professional Journalists recognized what so many journalism students from St. Louis have known for years: Mr. Eden is amazing. Mr. Mitch Eden (or E Dawg as I liked to call him) recently won the Society’s Distinguished Teaching in Journalism Award and for one, am so happy for the guy. If it weren’t for Mr. Eden, I would not be where I am today. I am a writer because of him. A vivacious reader because of him. A continually curious specimen because of him. And someone who remembers to laugh on an hourly basis because of him. He instills much more than how to write a feature story (Make the O) and how to use the inverted pyramid.
And I’m so glad the rest of the nation can see the inspiration and class he brings to the profession and more importantly, to humanity.
“If you’re gonna do it, do it right. If you’re gonna hype it, hype it with the facts. I don’t mind what you did. I mind the way you did it.” –Bob Woodward, All the President’s Men
I’m not a morning person, so when Matthias told me that the only time he would be able to see me was at 7 a.m. on a Monday morning at Starbucks, I seriously considered if this person even knew me at all. But alas I went and had myself one of the best mornings to date. It’s so reassuring that no matter how much time passes between our visits, we can pick up right where we left off. And easily fall into step.
With a stressful week at work, it was nice to just sit back and laugh and sing with my brother from another mother. Time has clearly treated him well over the past year…
Last night, Amanda and I went to a screening of Jeff, Who Lives At Home. The film, from the Duplass brothers, played at the Film Festival last year and stars Jason Segel, Ed Helms and Susan Sarandon. I went in expecting lots of laugh and not too much thinking.
The film delivered in humor, cringe-worthy moments and just complete absurdity. But that’s not what kept me engaged, the script was superb. The way everything tied at the end with a nice little bow you just didn’t see coming and it all was because Jeff (Segel) watched Signs one day and decides when someone calls him as a wrong number, it’s a sign he’s supposed to do something great with his life.
For me, I completely believe in signs, though I’m sure it’s just my imagination making something more in order to make me feel better about my decisions. But I couldn’t help but take it as a sign that I need to finish editing my book and send off when upon exiting the theatre, we walked right by my writing idol, Roger Ebert.
The film opens on Friday, March 16.
This week, the Dalai Lama provided a bit for The Daily Beast from his new book My Spiritual Journey. The whole article stems around the power of laughter and smiling. It’s no secret that I truly do enjoy laughing. I think a good belly laugh can go a long way. And I think a day is successful when I laugh until I can’t breathe, squirt something out of my nose, snort, double over in pain, etc. A few of what the Dalai (or is it Lama?) wrote in his book makes me eager to pick up a copy:
We are always amusing ourselves, teasing each other, joking. It’s our habit.
I truly believe that this idea of constant joking is key to my life being as fantastic as it is. Yea, life is rough. And the world is flat. And woe is me. But focusing on all of these doesn’t do anyone any good. It’s finding the humor in every situation I encounter that makes me able to continue on, no matter the challenge or problem. Otherwise, I’m pretty sure I would never leave home.
If we want those smiles, we must create the reason to make them appear.
Nothing lights up my life more than giving someone a smile. It’s something we all have in abundance in our lives. Our time, our money, hell our life only has so much “wealth” to it. But smiles? Those are something we can easily pull out at any time to change any type of mood. Life is only what you make of it. It’s only what you put in to it. So why not create fantastic moments that leave people with a feeling of jubilation?
I try to remember these ideas when I get wrapped up in a moment or argument. Will this matter in five years? Will I still feel this angry in five minutes? I have yet to answer these questions with affirmative yeses. So instead, I smile and laugh at myself for taking life way too seriously.
Despite wearing a Cubs shirt, and being surrounded by Cubs fans, I'm elated. Has everything to do with the company you keep, and mainly, spending an afternoon with Manch.