Sidewalk Ghosts / Article – A Four Letter Word

four letter

I sit here writing, contemplative, examining… I sit here, looking at my wife and daughter across the room, wondering about the example I am setting for them? I sit here thinking about the sum whole of why Operation-365 even exists and the blood, sweat and tears put into building it. I sit here in analysis—self-debating as I decide to recommit to my essays in adding a different spin on our daily entries.

For almost three years Operation-365 has allowed us to meet and get to know 100s of absolute strangers, and it will continue to do so. To read about, and now with the video entries, to literally hear the words shared by these hundreds of brave people. All walks of life have we met. All manner of attitudes have we approached, and to be open, the big take away is still being developed.

However, I can faithfully say this: each and every day we are getting closer to our end goal of building our globally connected and diverse community. A place where we can eventually do more than simply listen to each other (not a bad thing at all), but to eventually activate our efforts in doing something to better each other’s lives. We have many ideas as to how to do this, and over the next months and years (yes, we are here to stay) we will continue to promote our challenges, create more interactivity and start a path toward our greatest of goals—to generate revenue that can be invested back into helping those in our community.

We are a virtual city in the making. A place where the silent majority truly matters. Our boarders are unlimited and our populous is made up of everyday people living everyday lives—you and I… the mothers, the fathers, the lonely, the popular, the weak, the strong, the wealthy, the poor, the young and the old.

Technology has allowed 365 to bring us together in a cause that is ever evolving. Our culture is forming and it is wonderfully composed of all faiths, races, situations and outlooks. We are a people who embrace diversity and are real in our opinions. Opinions that for almost 36 months have been able to find common ground, even when we have differences in our personal point of view. That is the beauty of 365.

100s of strangers have been asked one basic question. From those who have intimidated us, to those who have invited us in, we have asked this query. It is not a radical survey or a long form in any degree. It’s actually quite an innate request. Simply this, “What single word would you like to share with the world?”

We’ve heard them all. From “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” to “Freedom.” Streams of creative to thoughtful insights have flowed in, yet in all we have interviewed, added to the many who I have personally spoken to on the streets, one expression has risen to the surface. It emerges from both those who have, to be honest, frightened us at first, to those who have hugged us as friends. This magical word resonates; a word that is so easy to roll off our tongues, but one that is so very difficult to act upon in this modern world of hidden hurt and doubt.

In revealing the word, know that I am not asking us to have a Kumbaya moment. Nor am I directing us to overcompensate in reproving ourselves (or others) for the past, and I am certainly not asking us to to overindulge in a sense of “do good.” What I am proposing is a basic consideration. A consideration that we might take pause to reflect upon as we navigate in this fast paced world. Think of it as a rest of heart and mind that perhaps can transform our individual reasoning as to how we view our fellow man.

“That word is?” you ask. You might even be guessing already, and I bet many of you are correct in your assumptions: LOVE.

Call me a sentimental fool, but I’m even tearing up as I reveal it. Its four letters have the power to reach deep into our soul as they conjure up an endless list of pains and joys. Feelings that, if used for the right purposes, can facilitate the grandest of healing and action.

Yes, we all know the word. However, the depth of understanding it is an ever-eluding puzzle, one that if assembled correctly has the potential to move us towards the light; or, if left in the box, can isolate us into the shadows.

I could go on and on about the word, but I choose not to. I’ve said enough. It is time for me to step off the soapbox and put myself at the back of the room to partake of your wisdom. Wisdom that we have been so graced with over the years. Wisdom that has come to us by people we don’t even know. Wisdom that is timeless. Wisdom that has the bandwidth to bind us in unity. That is, if we are together and active in sharing it.

Friends of Operation-365, we salute you. It is you who are the true spirit of what we are doing. Every day of every year we have the ability to evoke universal good. The secret to our mission is pure and sweet. To do what we can in our own circle of influence, for that is where the real change begins.

Talk soon my good friends,