The Taipei Ninja

Visiting Taipei was a wonderful end to our first escapade into travel. We got there in the afternoon, bused over to the city, and explored the main train station. On the ride there, I realized that Taiwan was a tropical island in climate and culture.

The mountains along the road are furnished with the lushest of green trees, the air is moist and exciting, and the people are watercolored with that sense of ease that only comes from being surrounded by the environment of the sea and forest.

The main station is gargantuan. It goes down several floors as an underground mall, and the central hall towers several stories above street level. Windows up the height of this building let natural light pour down onto hundreds of youngsters, families, and travelers lounging on the expansive checkered floor below.

As we approached this hall, something caught my eye from across the atrium. A shadow slowly descended from the ceiling. Just as I made realized it was a man in black, struggling with rope attached to a harness, he suddenly swung himself head first. Not even a moment after this startling flip, he plunged. I gasped.

This strange, dark figure flew toward the floor. The velocity was constant until he halted, face a few feet from the ground. The man flipped right side up, feet meeting the floor, unhooked and disappeared into the crowd.

As I collected my jaw from the marble floor, I searched the crowd for this guy. My wife and I rushed toward the scene, but couldn’t find him anywhere. There was a section squared off with orange cones where he had landed. By the time we got there, everyone had dispersed and the man was nowhere to be seen.

Following the black nylon rope up with my eyes, I saw that it came from a section of the wall that was opened up near the ceiling. I didn’t have time to figure out the circumstances of this strange performance.

When you see something different like that, done boldly, it causes discomfort and awe and questioning. It reorients your perspective and acclimates you to things outside the norm.

I would never have thought someone would rappel down from the top of a train station. But now it’s possible and I think, what a great use for all that space up there!

Whatever new or unconventional thing it is that you’re discovering for your wellness, just remember that there’s always a first. It’s either going to be you or someone else.

I was one of the first people in my former workplace to drink butter coffee. At first I was shy about it. I thought people would think I was dangerous and weird. So I drank it in a covered mug so no one would see. Eventually I was so convicted with the results that I started telling people closest to me.

A few years later, it was so common that there was often Kerrygold butter in the office fridge. Someone had even brought a Magic Bullet blender, and I learned that there were occasional butter coffee making sessions.

Be different and be bold.

Live powerfully,





Choice and Influence

I can choose to be positive.

Whether I’ve gotten enough sleep or not. Whether I’ve eaten right or not. Whether I’m limber and mobile or tight and sore. Whether or not I’ve been barefoot on the ground within the past couple of days. No matter my condition I can choose to act positively in thought, words, and body. My choices are influenced by my environment. The actions that come from me are heavily tinged with the color of my wellness. But choice is still a choice. There is always a moment of decision that is free of surroundings.

But it’s a lot easier when I’ve done things right. It’s possible to stack the deck. I can make things such that I’m more likely to choose well, more inclined to act positively, and better equipped make a good impact on the world.

But yet again, choice is a choice. As much as we want to do more to make ourselves better, it comes down to choices. As Seth Godin says, the methods can be a distraction. When I’m tired, and I’m not where I want to be, it’s too late to try to change things around me. I’ve got to simply make the decision to do good. Whether I feel like it or not.

And then, again, there’s the ability to maximize my potential to do good. So that, in the moments of truth, I think less about doing anything else but the right things.

Live powerfully,