July 16, 2013

10 Priceless Things Waylon Lewis deserves for his 39th Birthday. ~ by Waylon Lewis

I’m old. I’m not that ^ old.

Bonus: How to Celebrate one’s Birthday in the Buddhist Tradition.

It’s my birthday! Want to give me a virtual, free present? This year, Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis is going on the road. Subscribe to our youtube channel, free, http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpf6efsF90gmury4j7quNjw?sub_confirmation=1 for a new video with a thought leader / wonderful awesome musician every Friday. Love to you all! ~ Waylon Lewis (I’m hot, fan me, you’re cool)

PS: we’re also celebrating my dog Redford’s 6th birthday, he’s a rescue and was born mid-July.

The first 39 years of my life have been incredibly fortunate, hard, painful in the best way, wonderful, fun, sweet, charming, full of love…the next 39 will have to rocccck to come close.

Sometimes you gotta love/hate technology.

I had planned a quiet meditative Birthday eve night: run/hike with Red, some work, dinner, solo hot tub, dog, gin, moon…sleep. Then, tomorrow, celebrate with dear friends and community (No big production, like the last two years. Just a simple barbeque potluck in my backyard).

I got the run/hike in…but then, though solo I was suddenly wonderfully surrounded. Texting and videos and instagrams (oh my) with dear pals, texts, Facebook greetings from old pals, colleagues, a new friend…and suddenly it’s 145 am, and I have yet to get offline.

But I did have one good quiet solo special moment. If only a moment. It’s nice to take a moment for yourself, in this crazy silly speedy busy world.

This song ended right on the hour of midnight and I just breathed deep and raised lungta (a Shambhala meditation practice for genuine heart confidence) and hugged myself (yeah, once in a long while it’s good to do, I figure). And…then went back to work.

Okay, posting this—then time for hot tub, gin, then House of Cards, meditation, then Red cuddling and sleep.


From a year ago, a very different message, and a bunch of photos and a little attitude. And from way back when I was 35, just a young tike, 10 special different things I’d like to get for my birthday.

All of what follows below is old. Just like me.

I wrote this bit last year, I think:

Fuck you, it’s my Birthday, was the actual title.

But we don’t like to swear in titles for no good reason. This is a child-friendly site. Though I never get why we don’t swear around children, since the only child I know who swears all the time was Huck Finn, and he was the best ever, and all the other children—every single fucking one of them—grow up and learn to swear. So what’s the point.

Anyways, if you like to get offended, skip the silly captions below and go to the top 10 list, there’s some worthwhile bullshit in there.

For everyone else…come here and give me a bear hug. Cheers. Here’s to another fucking brutal amazing year.

May it be of benefit! ~ Waylon.

Old Man Lewis, when Young. Weird little teeth.

Photo from last night’s party.

Showing my sharp frank sweet ever-curious Grandma Carol my work/play: elephantjournal.com. Photo by my sweet Aunty Liz.

Love of my (next) life.

Wassup bitch, it’s my birthday.

Walk the Talk Show‘s moving to New York. So fuck you.

I didn’t mean to upload this photo (by Lindsay our ex-intern) of my dining room, where Team Elephant works at my big dining table with the leaf that slides n’pops up. It’s cool. So is the disco ball in the morning, the Great Eastern Sun shines in and Bee Gee dralas party on my ceiling.

Bearded old man Lewis at wonderful new Shine.

Douchebags are everywhere, in this life. Daniel Epstein is not one of them. The Unreasonable Institute has been one of the few highlights in a wow, yet richly disappointing year.

I liked my beard. No one else did.

Showin’ off my slacklinin’ skillz at Wanderslut.

A true fiend.

Republicans cut school funding and closed small, neighborhood schools all over this country 10 years back. Education and community and biking/walking to school rules. There are so many reasons the next generation is leaving behind the once-Grand Ol’Party it’s not funny.

I’ve gone four years without a car. Fuck you, spending money on gasoline from tar pits or the Middle East.

I don’t cook, but Graham sure does. Ladies, he’s taken (by lovely Lauren, they just got back from New Zealand and shit). So fuck you.

He gave me his jacket. So fuck you, too.

When dirty hippies take baths they turn the water dirt-colored.

When dirty hipsters take baths they take iPhone instagram photos of themselves and auto-post that shit to their FB Walls. Fucking Hipsters…can’t ever just relax and do one thing and one thing only.

A friend of mine photoshopped this to put the Bat Signal in the distance. Batman can’t fly, though, so it’d be like 45 minutes in traffic before he could get across the bridge and save anything.

I have been on so many panels at so many conferences this year and it’s always an honor…

…and at the same time most of them are all talking heads not listening to one another it’s all ego and hype and empty and, the least you can ask is that they recycle your fucking name when they’re done.

Kids, most of this world you’re growing up into is desperate, callous, uncaring…and so are you. Today I saw a college kid drive up in an SUV, drop his styrofoam smoothie cup on the road, and drive off.

If you’re born with a heart, cherish it, keep it open, but stand up tall and straight and strong.

First time in SF. The Hub. I thought for awhile, but nothing happened.

Good thing thinking is overrated.

I don’t know either of these women, I just asked them to pretend I was cool while another someone I didn’t know took a photo of me.

But seriously: 1.5 years ago I had the worst relationship of my life and haven’t got over the subsequent 8 months of ————————————————————— ———————————— —————————————— ————————— —————————————————— ————————— ——— —————————CrayCray. I might’uv beyond-first-dated five Ladies in 1.5 years, and only really dated one girl, and she for only a month before she dumped me for being a boring selfish workaholic, I guess. We’re still friends, she came to my party last night.

The problem: I can’t trust anymore, I’m shellshocked, freaked out by craycray—so all I do is work and hang with my dog and climb and work more.

One of my goals in life, now, is to not only be an awesome dad but, as my pa failed to do, to tell my future hypothetical children that—while all sentient beings are fundamentally good—some prioritize their happiness at the expense of anything else, and truth is secondary to them. Crazy happens (many of my good guy friends have had one or two goes around the Crazy merrigoround). You can’t fight it, you can only retreat, retreat, retreat, stress, get depressed, close down and shy away. And that doesn’t work, either.

Hey, by the way, for anyone who hasn’t experienced crazy, save your comforting quote about adversity. You can’t handle every difficult situation in life by throwing Rumi quotes at a Facebook Wall and hoping one sticks.

Top 10 Things I want for my Birthday, other than a Pool Table.

1. To remember your name. Seriously. It’s a national epidemic. For generations we all knew 50 people, never traveled 50 miles outside of our town, on average. Now we all know thousands, and we’re walking around with filled-up brains.


2. To stop being an @#$%^&*ole. Most people, I get on with brilliantly. Some people can’t stand me. I feel awful about that, and would love to stop irritating others. As they say in Buddhism:

“If you want to be happy, think first of others. If you want to be unhappy, think first of yourself.”

Perhaps it’s because I’m a bit alpha, or I’m an only child raised by a poor, but still doting, wonderful mother—in any case, I’ve turned out to be a voracious, driven, self-motivated creative force. That all sounds nice, unless you’re trying to date me.

3. For everyone to turn odd nooks and crannies and corners of our parking lots and medians into xeriscaped landscapes and mini-gardens. We could cut global warming significantly if we all used white roofing and changed even 10 percent of our too-hot parking lots and manmade fake nature-lite landscapes into God’s green earth, once more.

4. To read one page of this each day.

5. For you to meditate for even two or three minutes each morning, right after you wake up, stretch out, brush your teeth like a good boy or girl and before you make coffee and check your phone/email/get stressed/make plans.

6. To live with my mom and grandma and aunty and see my dad more often (he’s close by). They’re both getting old (as am I!), and I miss them being a part of my lives! I’ve never been much of a correspondent.

7. For Nuclear War to be made illegal. The subtle, yet substantial change in our world-view that would result? We’d all start thinking about future generations, instead of (rationally) assuming that some random terrorist will get his hands on a bomb at some point and start a domino war.

8. To complete my idea for the “Ecosystem” on elephant, which will 1) save and reinvent paid, quality, original journalism in a new media context, 2) grow elephant at 200% a month instead of 20%, and 3) enable me to take a break, get a life, fall in love, jump full-time into my talk show, get rich and run for Guv’ner. I know it’s not much of a follow-up after “No Nukes,” but Buddhism, in which I was trained growing up, is all about connecting heaven (vision, big ideas) and earth (practicality). If I can’t grow elephant, I can’t bring together those working and playing to create enlightened society and share their good words beyond our choir and to all those who didn’t know they gave a care (deep inbreath—that’s one version of our mission). And I can’t be of benefit to others, become a public servant, get married, have curly-headed trouble-makin’ children, or…

9. Get on my road bike more often. Isn’t it funny when we get our wishes—in this case, to own a road bike—then ignore what we love? I’m able to ride up into the mountains, zoom around. Since I finally unpluggged from my car four years back, it’s been great. Still, I’m not taking advantage of my wheels nearly enough—riding downtown to work on my laptop in a cafe counts for something, but not a lot.

10. Be of benefit. It’s the only thing that motivates me to get up in the morning (other than coffee): whether it’s through my Walk the Talk Show (going on tour soon), or politics, or elephantjournal.com itself, or my upcomin’ Dharma Brat book, or my upcomin’ Eco Boy vs. Yoga Girl…I’d like to have a go at helping the world help itself, and have some fun doing so along the way. I’ve been given a lot via my root guru, Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, my mom, Linda Lewis, and my sangha, or community. I’m 38, now, and it’s high time to give back.

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