Yesterday I decided to go to the gym, and I'm so glad I did. Besides getting in an excellent 45 minute swim, I spent time afterward in the gym's hot tub as a reward-to-myself for getting out in the snow and cold to work out.
When I got in the hot tub, it was already occupied with a very nice couple. Let's call them Mr. and Mrs. Tango. Mr. Tango had an interesting kanji tattoo on his arm, and I asked him about it, and then shared my own tattoo, the one I have on my leg.
I told him what it means:
The Tao that can be spoken is not the Tao, The name that can be named is not the name.
And that led into a very long conversation about all sorts of things. including Taoism, mindfulness, shenpa, meditation, and zen stories.
At one point, Mrs. Tango said I was very funny, and could do stand-up comedy. And Mr. Tango said I was really good at explaining things, and asked if I was some sort of teacher.
"Well, sort of," I said. Then, after taking a moment to think it through, I told them I was a podcaster, and an author.
"Oh, what sort of author?" they asked. So I told them. And we kept right on talking. It was fun, and awesome, and felt good to share openly with open-minded folks. I shared my belief (gleaned from one of my favorite books/movies, Way of the Peaceful Warrior) that there's no greater calling than service to others.
Mrs. Tango grabbed her cell phone and started jotting down a lot of the things I had been talking about, the authors, books, lectures, songs, and movies I made reference to, and said, "Wow, there's so much stuff. You should maybe have a list."
What a damn good idea.
I told her I would indeed start one.
And look, Mrs. T. I have!
I'll keep adding to it, of course. What's there for now is just the beginnings of it. But hey, that's what this blog is all about, right?