The Top 1000

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4,250 thoughts on “The Top 1000

  1. Today, I went to the beachfront with my children. I
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    She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is completely off
    topic but I had to tell someone!

  2. In day to day life, the well known football players are becoming a role model to motivate the youths.

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  6. Hmm is anyone else having problems with the images on this blog loading?
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    Any feedback would be greatly appreciated.

  7. Men start to go bald because of a number of factors.
    It’s pod-like fruit is collected, dried and then grounded into a
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  8. My wife shared your blog with me and your video from Ted.com about the 1000 awesome things. I have been feeling extra down about some personal and professional things going on in my life, but that has changed right now after watching the video and reading a few of these awesome things. Thank you for this motivational speech and helping me remember that it’s the little things that make us happy.

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  10. A motivating discussion is worth comment. I think that you ought to write more about this topic, it might not
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    To the next! Cheers!!

  11. Back in grammar school (about an hour’s drive north of San Francisco) a small batch of boys made a discovery that I bet few have ever experienced. Except that I don’t bounce like I did 50 some odd-years ago, I’d love to rerun this memory. We called it Riding Eucalyptus Sprouts. It was awesome and here’s how it went down.
    = = = = = =
    During my latter grammar school years, the present day notion of personal property rights was not a exclusive as it is today – at least if it was – my friends and I somehow missed the memo. The many local small ranches were particularly regarded as semi-public areas open for exploration, wild fruit harvesting and never ending groves of trees just waiting to be climbed.

    One glorious day, when one of our favorite plumb trees had no fruit, we proceeded up and over the hilltop and down into the next wide field which gently sloped down towards a street too many of you would recognize, so it will remain nameless to protect, well – us from prosecution. This field was both peppered and mostly outlined with giant, ancient, eucalyptus trees.

    If you don’t know or recall, these trees are scary tall, and very hard to climb. They are mostly very wide, virtually smooth trunks with thin bark that comes off in long curly sheets, with only a few branches that are either too small or too large to assist grammar school climbers. But by far the most impressive thing about them is their size. At maturity, and these were very mature, they can be over 200 feet tall, or about 40 times as tall as anyone in our gang. We weren’t scared of them, just respectful, and we had a unspoken rule about not climbing anything that could reach actual clouds…

    For the sake of this story, you also need to understand that eucalyptus trees grow very fast. And fast growing trees are almost always soft and springy with lots of bend and give to them. This is not idle dendrology mind you, but is actually relevant to the story.

    Back to the field with all these eucalyptus trees. On this day, we found ourselves almost surrounded by these giant trees and scattered about the field were a new find we had never stopped long enough to notice before. But today we noticed…

    The field owner had, maybe 7-10 years ago, cut down some trees that were dying – but had not yet fallen over. This left wide platforms of level trunks some about 5 feet in diameter, which still had root systems that were very much still alive. As it turns out, doing this to a eucalyptus tree is only an opportunity for it to throw out a few dozen sprouts all around the trunk edge that quickly, almost as you watched, grew into tall poles of slippery, flexible wood. So at first we thought we discovered these cool cages of eucalyptus sprouts that you could squeeze through and then play on the caged platform.

    This was kind of cool…
    …for a few minutes.
    Then we made a much better discovery.
    By wrapping your legs around these much smaller trunks and grabbing the younger and smaller branches, you could actually climb these sprouts.

    In minutes, we were all up different sprouts…
    …anywhere from 10-20 feet off the ground …
    Very close to our buddies on their own sprouts.
    This was much cooler!

    Then a breeze was sent us by the God of young boys, that made the sprouts sway with us aboard for the ride.
    This was even cooler still.
    And we made it even more cool by figuring out how to hold on with our hands and arms and get the sprouts swinging back and forth without the wind.

    Now, think of this; 6 grammar school boys, about 15 feet off the ground on all these eucalyptus spouts swinging back and forth on their own power. How could it be any cooler?

    Well, by learning to steer your sprout over to where you could kick your buddy – that’s how!
    So now we had 6 inverted pendulums going back and forth, out of sync with small howling warriors aboard each one.
    This was amazing fun.

    Could it get any better – oh yea! It got way better!
    Fast.

    A strategy to avoid being kicked was to climb higher, because it would have been just wrong to go lower. And, up higher, you could leverage even a wider swing radius, which gave you many more options to nail your buddies and avoid their assaults.

    I don’t remember who found out first, but someone got a surprise that, if had been me, I know I would have remembered so it wasn’t me, but someone’s sprout cracked with a loud “uh-oh” grade sound, that stopped the rest of us from swinging – mostly so we could watch.

    But the guy it happened to, well, good thing he did not have to go to the bathroom because the sound that came out of his mouth should have been matched by lots of body fluids from his lower torso, because his sprout had swung way out…
    cracked loudly down from where the sprout met the old original trunk…
    and was not going back up.

    Instead it was…
    slowly –
    with more cracking and tearing sounds –
    ever slowly –
    yielding to the greater force of a overly wide vector of centrifugal force, gravity, and the weight of one very scared grammar school boy holding on for dear life as his sprout headed for the ground.

    It was sooo cool!

    Because, the sprout, being made of that fast growing, very sappy, thick with thousands of eucalyptus fibers, was not breaking so much as it was SLOWLY tearing itself from the main trunk below.

    That sprout, for all the fear it put into the boy, actually lowered him to the ground reasonably gently, before tearing away completely and leaving him standing beside his torn sprout.

    And this was the ultimate in cool!
    The crowd up in the sprout tops went wild – cheering and yelling that we had to do it too.
    And – and no one had ever thought of doing this before.
    We were geniuses…
    And within minutes, all us geniuses were all trying to get our sprouts to give us the same ride.
    The boy who blazed the trail for us was back up another sprout as fast as he could climb to try it again.
    And now the space of air above that old stump was alive, not with grammar school gladiators, but with pre-pubescent Evel Knievel’s violently swinging their sprouts out to their apparent limit to duplicate that amazing ride back down to the ground.
    Which the sprouts consistently delivered.
    The God of young boys is soo good!

    We were in young boy heaven. There were several stumps about with sprouts about the same age and dimension around the field, so we literally had our own field day of riding those eucalyptus sprouts for several hours; swinging back and forth, finding the right height from which to start our swing and trusting our sprouts to always carefully take us to the ground when they finally tore loose from the stump.

    But like all treasure, even those that start in abundance, the sprouts of suitable size were limited in supply. We had enough to master the art, but once used, the sprouts could not be reused of course. Soon, the next sprout was getting tough to find. The many mature, un-cut trees were no good for this purpose and the remaining sprouts were either too small or too big and strong for the weight of one boy to start the needed tearing from a wide swing. As we finally ran out of sprouts, that’s when it hit us. We knew how to get a few more rides.

    The remaining big sprouts were too strong for one boy, but we had 6 of us so we could simply add more weight. Basic physics saves the day again. So we teamed up (grammar school gladiators easily forgive past battle enemies you know) and sent teams of 2 boys up each sprout to extend the fun, and it worked. Sprouts immune from the first system, were soon yielding to the second and the screams of joy returned to the field as sprout after sprout tore loose and lowered its team of boys to the ground, each ride a treasure of danger and excitement.

    But again we hit the limit of suitable sprouts. I was up one sprout with my partner failing to break loose one large sprout, almost close enough to touch the team next to us as they swung past trying to break loose their sprout. It was not working, Both teams had even climbed higher so better leverage our body weights, but both our sprouts were simply too big. Suddenly (and don’t the best ideas often arrive “suddenly”) as that nearby team was coming back past us for another break attempt it occurred to me that it wasn’t going to work, but I could make it work. I could simply jump aboard as their sprout passed. My extra weight would break this large sprout loose, and a final great ride would be enjoyed by all three of us.

    So with a great battle yell (which makes all fun, much more fun…) I did just that. I quickly found enough of a foot hold to leap over and aboard that passing sprout, and the difference was immediately apparent.
    We had much more control over that sprout now.
    It went much further than it had with just those two scrawny buddies of mine.
    And when it got to the end of its new arc, it cracked and broke free, and the best ride of the day was starting.
    But that cracking sound did not sound right this time.
    Something was different.
    Even wrong.
    And yes, we were picking up much too much speed.
    Much too fast.
    Instead of holding us up for a slow decent, this sprout was angry at us for some reason and dragging us back to earth too fast.
    Instead of slowly tearing loose, it fully broke away from the original trunk and was dragging us to the ground faster.
    But the only way knew how to get down from this ride was to stick with the sprout, so we did.
    We hung on to that sprout the full short ride down and crashed into that field.
    We came back to consciousness to the sound of our friends dancing around us and yelling how cool that ride had looked and asking if we were still alive.
    The jerks…

    Our ankles were not broken – amazing…
    But, we were really out of sprouts,
    … out of plumbs from our safe old plumb tree.
    Likely out of time. It was getting close to dinner.
    Most likely we had spent more than our fair share of luck for the day.
    The sprout gladiators were tired and happy to be alive and walking.
    It was time to head home and tell our parents that we were just hanging out with friends again and nothing interesting happened.
    Again.

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