Drake’s Top Five Back to School Tips

Drake’s Top Five Back to School Tips

Drake’s Scorpion, for many, was the album of the summer. Now that vacation is over and the school year has begun, it’s tempting to walk into class with our heads low knowing that, as Drake may say, our Summer Games are over. 

That begs the question, what else would Drake say? What pieces of wisdom remain to be discovered from the Champagne Papi? As the new school year begins, what lessons does Scorpion offer up? 

An Obligation to Joy

"Tenemos el deber a la alegria."
We have an obligation to joy.

It's funny when you think of all the obligations in your life. You have an obligation to go to school, to work, to pay taxes. When we think of obligations, we can usually list off all the things that we HAVE to do but don't WANT to do. But what if you actually had an obligation to experience and create joy? What if you had an obligation to art and beauty? What if the world depended on your laughter?

Today, I had an opportunity to hide.
My job was to inspire 1200 high school students to be crazy enough to change the world. But before I arrived someone said the students, “wouldn’t want to hear my message.” Then, a voice in me that said. “What you do doesn’t make a difference. You should just give up.” Pero, tenemos el deber a la alegria. 
But, I have an obligation to joy. 
So I went on stage regardless of my insecurities.

Today, I had reason to complain. 
Five minutes into my talk, the microphone started to malfunction.
Pero, tenemos el deber a la alegria. 
But, I have an obligation to joy. 
I put the mic down and spoke to my young friends without it.

Speaking to the kids who “wouldn’t want to hear my message” is an honor. When I looked into their eyes. I saw a generation who wanted to listen. I saw teenage faces who wanted to make a difference. It wasn’t easy. I’m hoarse but giving my voice so that others may have a voice brings me joy.

I posted a new video to YouTube today. It’s about how all of us have an obligation to Joy; to experience it and to bring it forth in the world. If it makes you “jaja,” consider liking, leaving a comment, or subscribing to my YouTube channel. That would bring me joy.

Won’t You Be My Neighbor?

IMG_0626.JPG

Tears rolled down my eyes as the ending credits scrolled on Won’t You Be My Neighbor, a timely documentary about the life and legacy of Fred Rogers. For those who don’t recognize the name, Fred Rogers hosted one of the most popular children’s TV show’s of all time, Mister Rogers Neighborhood. I say this without hyperbole, Won’t You Be My Neighbor is one of the best documentaries I have ever seen. Period. It was the story of a devout man of faith who gave his life to serving and teaching children. It highlighted a selfless human, dedicated to restoring human dignity by loving every one where they were. No questions asked. What I saw made me want to do everything in my capacity to fight a little harder to make this world a better place. It made me want to push back on the despair this world serves up and repair things where I can. It made me walk into day one of my tenth year at CANDO camp in Chicago with a renewed sense of purpose and vigor. It made me look into the eyes of little guys like Bart and say, “You made this day a special day by just you being you. There’s no person in the whole world like you and I like you just the way you are. Won’t you be my neighbor?”

The Walk Out

The Walk Out

“On the one-month anniversary of the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High school, students across the country walk out and hold rallies to demand gun control. In D.C., students turned their back on the White House and held 17 minutes of silence for each of the victims.” - Hallie Jackson, MSNBC