The Lovers of Valadro

Thoughts from Dr. Joe They died young, probably during late adolescence. However by the looks of it, they were in love. Two 6,000-year-old prehistoric skeletons from the Neolithic period were found locked in an eternal embrace in Valdaro, near Verona, Italy, hidden from the eyes of humanity. It could be the oldest love story. Verona is where Shakespeare set the star-crossed lover’s tale "Romeo and Juliet." Incidentally Verona is the same area where Giuseppe Verdi set the opera Rigoletto, the story of doomed lovers. Archeologists believe the find has more emotional than scientific value. The lovers were adolescents of the Neolithic age, a formative period in the evolutionary development of society. It was during the Neolithic era when religious, societal and emotional sentiments were formed, particularly relative to family and village. Thus scientists and anthropological experts assert that the lovers’ embrace with arms and legs leave little doubt that their final connection was born out of deep sentiment. The remarkable story of the Lovers of Valdaro aligns with the aurora of love. Although we compose music, write love songs, prose and love stories we hardly scratch the surface attempting to intellectualize love’s phenomenology. Subsequently we encapsulate its mystery Read more

Channeling Father Flynn

Thoughts from Dr. Joe I first came face to face with Father Flynn in 1957; I was in the 5th grade. I had to answer for the D’s Sister Mary Judith gave me in behavior. Father told me I would hang from the flagpole at Saint Frances of Rome if I were to continue such antics. For the rest of that fall, I was his indentured servant. My servitude continued well after the fifth grade. I became his eyes and ears in the neighborhood, his muscle, and prosecuted his will in a tough Italian/Irish neighborhood in the Northeast Bronx. I was conscripted for life and couldn’t break the hold he had on me. Although Father Flynn has passed, I am linked to his memory. He was the reincarnation of Saint Ignatius Loyola and Genghis Khan. Saint Ignatius was a soldier before he found the Jesuits; Father served with the China Marines prior to ordination. It was rumored he became a priest to atone for the mayhem he cause growing up Hell’s Kitchen and what he did to the Japanese in the war. He was shrouded in mystery; that’s what made Read more

Dr. Joe’s Class

Dear AS,

Somebody has to champion the cause of getting some form of projection for our classroom. You can see the debacle that results when conditions aren’t just right. But there’s a life lesson. You push ahead regardless of conditions and adapt and overcome. Championing a cause is seeing it though to its finality.

Hope you enjoyed Arthur. He is a remarkable attorney and teacher. His pleas to you: delegation, learning who to trust and of course how do you recognize trust. I have been teaching you these tools the entire semester. To recognize trust you must be a person others can trust. I do disagree with Arthur in that to be a good leader you must be a good follower.

Attendance was a bit spotty… I understand that the night before was Halloween… Although I understand, I do expect you to “Cowboy Up” and get to class.

Kindly recall Joshua Chamberlain, the Colonel of the 20th Maine regiment during the Civil War. What you saw was transformational leadership, bringing others up toward a sense of idealism. The bottom line here is as follows: We find significance when we dedicate ourselves toward something outside ourselves. Something greater than we are.
Here is the link to the youtube cut:

In the “Dead Poet’s Society we learned that Carpe Diem, Seize the Day reminds us to get the most out of each moment. Kipling reminds us that we need to live, “With sixty seconds worth of distance run.” Do we ever see the forest through the trees? I didn’t!

Perhaps what s most significant to life is the realization and follow through that we may contribute a verse to life. Such is the poem by Whitman, “O Me O Life.” You’ll see that on the final. No need to memorize it. Just understand its implications.

O Me! O Life!

O ME! O life!… of the questions of these recurring;
Of the endless trains of the faithless—of cities fill’d with the foolish;
Of myself forever reproaching myself, (for who more foolish than I, and who more faithless?)
Of eyes that vainly crave the light—of the objects mean—of the struggle ever renew’d;
Of the poor results of all—of the plodding and sordid crowds I see around me; 5
Of the empty and useless years of the rest—with the rest me intertwined;
The question, O me! so sad, recurring—What good amid these, O me, O life?


That you are here—that life exists, and identity;
That the powerful play goes on, and you will contribute a verse.

Does anyone follow Twitter? If so, I am going to ask that you follow me since I am trying to get my stories out there and read throughout.

Stay gold,
Dr. Joe

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If… Rudyard Kipling

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or, being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream – and not make dreams your master;
If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two imposters just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
And stoop and build ‘em up with wornout tools;

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on”;

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings – nor lose the common touch;
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run -
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And – which is more – you’ll be a Man my son!

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Dear AS,

Rob Smith’s comments were serendipitous, as emerging young adults an understanding of the potential that sits waiting for you to say, “Yes” is exponential. My mantra has always been say, “Yes to Opportunity.” A life in accord with concrete actions toward some goal is fruitful. There indeed exists an evil element that may or may not take over our soul called, “Fear of Failure.” It is a most debilitating consequence and if this monster masters you, life will be a serious of regrets for not trying.

I have spent a few days trying to find the words necessary that will enable you to to slay the dragon called, “Fear of Failure.” Guys there are no words and you just can’t intellectualize the cure. Perhaps the only methodology possible is to try and go all out in the attempt. The worst thing that can happen is that you fail. I have failed more times than I have succeeded, but I have attempted many things.

There are parallels to the story by Nietzsche, “Thus Spake Zarathustra”. The road to fulfillment is filled with fear and the only thing that we should ever fear is fear itself.

Stay Gold,
Dr. Joe

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