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Confession-looking through mirrors of the past | Friday, May 9th, 2008

Photographs are funny things. They tell us things that videos can't. I like the theory that at any single moment, there are an infinite number of possible next moments - the one that we move into is dependent on a multitude of factors, the most important of which is (I'm hoping) our own decision-making process, and that of all living things around us. It's the Butterfly Effect on steroids - the ultimate existentialist question for me.

Are there really an infinite number of realities, every moment multiplied by another infinite number of choices?

Doing some cleanup on one of my servers earlier today, I came across this photo; which was my 'corporate photo' for most of the time I ran The Strict Machine Foundation, which I had established over 5 years ago:

Steven and the Tiger

My hair was a longer, my glasses were hipsterer, my body frame was narrower, my swagger was haughtier and my sweaters were turtlenecker. In other words, I was your typical Mac user. :p Other than that, I don't really look all that different today.

Over the past five years, we've raised several hundred thousands dollars for sustainable development, health research and internet research. We've set up Linux networks to replace Windows ones at Youth Computer Clubs in Cuba. We've built the world's largest social network for young scientists, and built bridges between scores of researchers in low-income and developed countries. And so much more.

Most importantly, we learned. We met people that have affected us so much that we couldn't even begin to describe it. We've seen some of the most beautiful regions on Earth. And the whole time, we had a blast doing it.

Now, I move on to other things. New challenges, new adventures, new relationships. The only thing that's clear is that it's a good time to be doing what we do. And an even better time to be around people who feel the same way about their own work.

With all this in my mind, I worked hard today. I went to get a pair of pants trimmed, had Moroccan tea and Gouda cheese for lunch, spent over 2 hours at the gym for the nth day in a row. People were enjoying the summer. A 30-something year old guy drove by in a red Porsche with the top down and the radio pumping. I listened to good music all day, and had a great dinner with my dad (curry lamb stew, salad, Perrier, and then some cardamom tea accompanied with the ridiclassyly good New York cheesecake I made yesterday. An impossibly beautiful Québécoise girl came to workout on the treadmill immediately next to mine - when all the others were free.

Then, with all these thoughts bouncing around, I asked myself the obvious question:

Who the fuck buys a red Porsche?