Week 29, 2023

Week 29, 2023

Week 29 of 2023 has arrived. On the Great Plains we are commiserating about the heat... soon we will commiserate about the cold. The circle continues...

Time to walk over to your 4K Weeks poster and fill in another square.  Done?

I am feeling especially happy and lucky to be alive this week... no reason... just a feeling!

Thanks for being here, and reading. It is vital to "sharpen the saw" as a regular practice.  I think of these emails as a way for me to sharpen my saw and help you sharpen yours.

The 4K Weeks Brightsider- A Multicolor Extravaganza!
The 4K Weeks Fade to Black- Momento Mori, Anyone?
The 4K Weeks Long View- A Different Horizon

Remarkable Weeks

Week #29 in the year 2021, Richard Branson, traveled at the edge of space on a suborbital test flight for his American spaceflight company, Virgin Galactic.  He was 3703.71 weeks old. (71.03 yrs) 

Week #29 in the year 1997, Tiger Woods won the Masters Tournament, the youngest golfer and the first African American to accomplish this feat. He was 1123.86 weeks old. (21.53 yrs).  ...In 1975, Lee Elder was the first African American to play in a Masters Tournament.        

Week #29 in the year 2007, J.K. Rowling's final book in the Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, was published.  Eleven million copies sold in 24 hours!  She was 2190.00 weeks old. (42 yrs)

Week #26 in the year 1971, Elton John scored his first number one album in the United States featuring the huge hit, Rocket Man.  He was 1320.57 weeks old. (25.32 yrs) 

This Week's Quote

There is nothing in a caterpillar that tells you it's going to be a butterfly.    Buckminster Fuller

First off, do you know who Buckminster Fuller is?  If not, get “edumucated” here... I read his book Critical Path in the early 2000's (written in 1981) and it was eye opening... I filled it with more notes than any other book I have ever read.  He was truly a person who thought independently. "You do not belong to you. You belong to the Universe."

Second, did you know that a caterpillar basically turns to liquid inside the chrysalis? 

Does it even seem like the same universe to the caterpillar? Does the awareness of the caterpillar transfer over to the butterfly?  The "what came before/what comes after" part of this thread of inquiry is hard to hold in your brain.  

We know vanishingly little about our universe.

Third, there is no telling who any of us will become. You do not need to be defined by all the failures and successes that have come before this moment in your timeline...

You owe the past nothing of your future.  You don't have to give a nod to the slob you have been thinking about being more tidy... Just. Be. More. Tidy. 

You can deep dive into the events of the past if that will help you thrive in the future.  Or, you can be a butterfly and turn your old self to unrecognizable slime and build your new self...

I remember Ben Folds explaining one of his songs (I think it was Mess) as being inspired by a moment when he realized that he could no longer fully explain to a new friend how he got to this moment... too much water under the bridge... they would have to just take him as he is from here forward. 

Here's to you becoming a butterfly.

What I am Consuming This Week

Against the Rules, On Background: Who Buys Distressed Assets? I like Michael Lewis... author and podcaster... This is an interesting discussion about what happens when companies have entered "The Zone of Insolvency". There are a lot of side effects to capitalism!

Cautionary Tales, "The Coup, the Poet and the Secret to Winning Wimbeldon" Tim Harford.

Cautionary Tales is always worth a listen... this is an interesting discussion of the Rudyard Kippling poem "IF"

cnbc.com "A 2000 Year Old Chinese Mindset Can Make you More Successful In Life." A brief article describing  the Chinese Concept of wu wei ("ooo-way") which translates to "effortless action."

 APA.org, "Practice for Knowledge Acquisition (Not Drill and Kill)" I have been a fan of Anders Erikson since reading Malcom Gladwell's Outliers.  This is a good synopsis of how to implement deliberate practice strategies, and their effectiveness for teachers and students in grades 1-12.  

What I am Thinking About This Week

Storms and what they offer.

 A severe thunderstorm rolled though the Kansas City Metro Area this week. For an hour, torrential rain, hail, thunder, and 70-mile-an-hour winds buffeted different parts of the city.

 About 90,000 people in the city are without power, including my two sisters. No tornadoes, so that is good. No loss of life as far as I know.

We lost a 70 foot tall hackberry tree in our backyard.  I knew its days were numbered. Eight years ago a similar storm took about 30% of it, and opened up the trunk to insects and rot. 

 It's sad, no question.  My kids' tree house, that I built, lives the the former shade of that tree. The place where those memories were made is mostly gone. The shaded, woodsy backyard that we have always known is gone for the next 50 years or so,  and I have just lost two weeks of "free" time to being an amateur lumberjack.

But... it has also brought us opportunities. We can see blue sky in that corner of our yard now, and the two PawPaw trees that I planted last summer might now actually have enough sun to grow, and maybe we can finally get solar panels... and on and on.

It is totally reasonable to grieve the loss of the way things have been... for a minute... but don't forget to also give thanks for the potential that didn't exist before the storm.

Have a great week! 

Thanks for being a part of the journey with us! Please tell me if you liked/disliked the email this week.  Ask my wife... those are the only emails I like to get!

Spencer, Owner of 4KWeeks.com


One more thing: If you love your 4K Weeks poster, do me a favor and give it a review over on Amazon. Let people know how it has helped you, or how you use it. We had to sign up there to defend our trademarks, and they allow reviews for products purchased elsewhere. It would really help out... it is a pretty vicious sandbox

Dad Joke O' The Week

What runs around a baseball field but never gets tired? 

A fence!

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