One of the first things you realize when you gaze at an achievement board is this: It is through our intense individual focus that we achieve what we achieve, yet none of it can be done individually.
A billionaire cannot be made living on an island alone. (Though after gaining those billions, an island can be bought by a lone billionaire.)
For Ann and I, we’ve been helped by others at different junctures in our lives, massively so, especially by family. Because of intertwining threads of culture and family we’ve been gifted with possibilities that would be far fetched in, ohhhh I don’t know, Tibet. Or many other locations around this globe.
An example on a larger scale: There’d be no Microsoft without Bill Gates. Yet had Bill Gates been born in Somalia, the computer revolution here would have gone off without a hitch. Bill Gates, had he survived childhood there, might be some warlord’s techie wench today.
Here in the Western world it wouldn’t look that different at all. Other people and other companies would have filled that niche. It might look slightly different
— maybe a MicroHard would have surfaced — I’ll pause a moment here so you can have your fun
— but it was the zeitgeist itself bursting with tech advances and entrepreneurial young bucks that brought the personal computer revolution to reality.
Looking over my achievement board is energizing and humbling. Energizing because nothing on that list accomplished itself. It took me. Or me and Ann.
It also took me and others. Meaning it also took my greater context: family, friends, schooling, country, those working at their own myriad endeavors to create buildings and roads and electricity and art and commerce and governance and fair play and . . . the list would be longer than all the words I’ve written in my life if I were to get detailed.
It takes all the doings of all the doers around me.
It took centuries of labor and experimentation to create the playground I play in.
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