Showing posts from September, 2015

Your last thought...

I was an editor in broadcast TV for about 20 years. One thing I noticed was that when you cut from one shot to the next, your eye focuses on the last frame before that cut, and you remember it. It was really important to know, because if a woman is being interviewed, and you edit to something else, and she starts to stick out her tongue or close her eyes before you cut, you really notice that frame. If she's smiling and starts to frown, you remember that. But if you cut just before the frown starts, you remember the big beautiful smile.

I used to edit a lot of music videos and documentaries, and sometimes it was really fun to try to make that last frame before the cut something memorable. 

I've realized that the same idea holds true for my thoughts. If I'm thinking about something, working on something, turning something over in my mind, and then I switch to thinking about something else, the thought that lingers is usually the last thought that I had before I "changed …


My brother Ben lives in a big city that definitely has its dangerous spots. Recently he asked me for some advice on how to stay safe.

"I'm going to give you four things," I said. I could see I'd already impressed him by having a ready answer. He knows I’m a martial arts instructor, but that stuff is never real to your own family.

At that time there was a subway strike in the city, and everyone was seeking alternate transport. Overground trains and buses were jammed, the roads were packed with private cars, taxicabs, bikes, and the sidewalks were overflowing with hurrying, disgruntled pedestrians.

"First," I said, as we jostled along a sidewalk blocked by a huge bus queue, “just improve your posture. Stand up straighter." This caught Ben's attention. I think he figured his sister the black belt would demonstrate some primary aikido move or teach him to stick his keys out between his knuckles. Posture? As self defense? But Ben listened. He reads Ton…