lyft: book cover judgment

pc: Soul <3

i picked up J at the long beach convention center

from first glance, he looked like a pretty… dry older white guy

almost kinda geeky or nerdy lol

my suspicions were validated when i found out he’s a data scientist

it was a long ride ahead, from long beach to pasadena


but we started talking, rather i had a lot of questions lol

like what’re you doing in long beach?

(he attended a conference)

did you enjoy the conference?

(he did, it was interesting)

what was the conference about?

(engineering, machine learning, and other things that i don’t remember, but are science-y)

i asked him about what he likes to do in his free time

J: play music

we went back and forth a bit on random stuff,

like his two boys (1 in college, 1 in high school),

living in pasadena (it’s too hot),

what we like to do on our free time (he likes to play around on his guitar, i’ve been writing and drawing more),

etc etc etc

i really appreciated that he was responsive and seemed to want to continue the conversation

we had a few notable moments on our ride that i super appreciated

one was talking about how we’re taught to think, do, and be in a box so that we can fit in

but there’s so much out there and within each person,

that conforming to social norms is actually harmful to the individual, and subsequently, to society

he shared that his older son is on the spectrum,

and i shared that my godson is also on the spectrum and that i super loved and appreciated what i’ve seen,

just the way he does what he wants, says what he wants, and be’s the way he wants,

and will not accept another way to live.

i have mad respect to my godson and others on the spectrum

they teach an unrelenting abiding by their own truth with no apology and explanation

because really, there need not be.

that sort of flowed the conversation to where, after a pause, he said that he had made decisions out of fear

i asked him to expand

he said, when he was in grad school (he’s a phd btw), he had wanted to be a professor,

but somewhere along the way, he convinced himself to let go of that pursuit because truly successful individuals went out into the world and *did* what they studied, vs taught

i’d heard that before too

what a load of bullshit wrapped in nonsense

it was interesting to hear

because i felt like he would be an amazing teacher / professor

in the conversation, i picked up that he was fairly in tune with wanting people to have space and feel safe enough to share what’s on their mind and ask questions,

which i’ve learned are pretty damn important in the process of learning lol

i told him what i thought based on my interaction with him so far and he was pleasantly surprised by my feedback

i hope he really considers it a possibility to pursue teaching in some capacity

another moment that was really cool was around the topic of people being defensive and strongly opinionated

we basically agreed that people who were defensive didn’t really feel safe to be or think who and what they are and what they want to be

he said, there’s some empathy to be had for people who can’t see the other side of things


aiite mr data scientist

another moment was when we were talking about privilege and he said that he learned that he ‘lived in a world that was set up for people like him – white males’

talk about self-awareness lol

he said he didn’t know this in the beginning, but he realized other people did not have the same opportunities as he did

i immediately asked how he came to that because that’s a huge ass awareness

he thought about it for a minute, and said it was by talking with his wife.

he saw that she experienced the world differently, was faced with challenges that were specific to being a woman, etc

dzang x2

i was just constantly amazed and so interested in his story and perspective

so much for my book cover judgment of him being another white guy

lessons were learned lol

the last one i’ll share is when he shared about a time when he was in a car with a woman,

and someone cut off their car,

he immediately spewed the word, ‘fag’

and she responded by saying that she was not okay with his use of that word

i’m not a huge fan of policing people’s vocabulary or actions, but i was most impressed by his response

he said that he stepped back a second, asked himself why he said that, where it came from, etc

and that he was ultimately glad that someone pointed it out to him

and he learned from it,

more than about the word choice in that moment,

but the general place from which he perceives and responds to life

all in all, he sounded like such a thoughtful (not just in terms of being sentimental and kind, but actually self-aware and reflective) and interested person.

pure, really

and he seemed genuinely interested in understanding people, society, and himself

i trust that he’ll continue to be curious about himself and his desires and move from inspiration as he allows for it

oh and i shared with him about insight seminars, which i have not gone through but Soul and Stef have

and i felt like he would have an amazing time there, learning about himself

and how to live from the heart and all that good cheesy stuff

11/10 hell yah

J – thanks for being such a fun person to ride with. you really made my day!!! i’m excited for everything ahead of you! 🙂



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