It was a memorable trip even before the moving truck broke down.
Having not yet reached our first anniversary, my wife and I were driving 984 miles from Chicago to Dallas. The truck was only partially full of hand-me-downs and wedding gifts, having had neither the time or money to accumulate much. We grew up in the midwest and nine months into our newlywed life in Chicago, found ourselves exasperated by a particularly relentless winter. We decided there wasn't much reason to delay our desire for warmer weather, so we chose Dallas from a short list of options and moved. The fact that we had little money, no jobs waiting for us, and didn't know a single person in the state (and it's a really big state) didn't deter us in the slightest.
The moving truck succumbed somewhere in Missouri. We struggled to track down the rental company or a mechanic without cell phones or any guidance beyond Rand McNally. For a few hours, being a thousand miles away from friendly faces seemed like a poor idea.
The truck could not be repaired quickly, so the company was forced to send a replacement and then haphazardly switch our carefully packed possessions. We got a free night in a cheap hotel and crossed the border into our new state the next day, smiling at the sun-drenched horizon.
My wife found a job immediately, me a few weeks later. We enjoyed the apartment pool during the hot evenings and met the people who would surprise us a few years later by assembling a room full of baby furniture when our son surprised us by arriving three weeks early.
I suppose we were looking for independence when we moved so far from friends and family, the chance to alter a predictable storyline. I'm not sure I could do that again, but I'm grateful we had the chance and the gumption to take it.
Sometimes I try to imagine what our families thought when we told them. We must've seemed equally brave and out of our minds. How kind they were, though, despite the very real distance we were putting between us and them.
I laughed when I remembered that trip this week. Our son heads to college in a few days. He says he's had enough of the heat and wants to be where it's cool. The college is 1,926 miles away.
Last week's dispatch asked, Which films have altered your perspective?
The film that altered my perspective wasn't the film so much as the experience of watching it. When the Star Trek film "The Search For Spock" came out my sister talked me into going to see it on the night it opened. The theater had too groups of people, teenagers really into science fiction and people in their 30s who had been teens or young adults when the series first aired. One such couple in their 30s was sitting in front of us with two children between 5 and 8 years old. The film started and William Shatner appeared on the screen. One of the children in front of us turned to his mother and said, "That's T.J. Hooker." I turned to my sister and said, "That boy thinks Captain Kirk is T.J. Hooker." My sister said, "That's funny, I always thought T.J. Hooker was Captain Kirk." For the first time in my life I realized there was an entire generation of people with different cultural and historical references from me.
A lot of movies have altered my perspectives. The first one that came to mind is the Peaceful Warrior (I love the book as well). It always reminds me to live in the moment and to do things because I love them instead of trying to achieve things.
None really because I don't really watch them (something about being too restless to sit still that long). But I do enjoy series like Sherlock Holmes (the old editions) and Downton Abbey. :)
Thin Red Line — Beautiful, philosophical, and poignant. One of my fave books and movies of all time.
Contact, the blend of politics, religion (or belief) and science made this a movie that reframed my relationship with all three.
The Corporation, a documentary responsible for changing the way I saw my work and made me conscious of the fact that individual responsibility trumps adherence to a perceived collective responsibility. If businesses are sociopathic, my responsibility is to temper, disrupt and alter them. If the laws governing corporations drive them toward growth at any cost, my responsibility is to be a force for sustainability and shared value.
Airplane!, primarily because it is genius and I delighted in how it found the boundary of taste and then got in a car, crashed through it, and just kept going. I also think it altered my perspective because it gave me an understanding that the world was bigger and different in ways I didn't fully 'get'. When I discovered that the movie I knew as "Flying High!" was released under a much tamer name in the USA it blew my mind.
This line got me: "We celebrate together and suffer alone." Plus the article by Sarah Hatter "On Depression" and I am feeling so relieved to be tethered to the Uncommon community. I have not been a vocal contributor or even an avid prompt responder, but I have been here on the Uncommon porch listening to y'all sharing and I am feeling ... connected.
Aubrey Plaza’s Great Disconnect
Why text while sitting in traffic when you can roll your window down and ask the driver of the car next to you to quickly guess your deepest insecurities and shout them at you until traffic picks up again?
A Better Way to Introduce Your Friends at Parties by Cadence Turpin:
Introducing your friends for who they are rather than focusing on what they do will remind them they are loved before and beyond their titles. It’s an easy way to remind them that you see them for their hearts instead of their accomplishments.
What's been your most memorable move?