Go with the Flow
Wednesday, July 19, 1995 by Dave Winer.
DaveNet is rolling again! I wasn't sure if it would come back to me. The massage class put me so thoroughly into my Texas-style body. The words just didn't flow like they used to. What, me worry? Of course I'll write again! Just put on a tune, and start writing. This time my back is straighter. My shoulders are loose. But I still have something to say. Thank god!
In yesterday's piece I forgot to thank Annie Lennox for providing the background music for all my bodywork over the last couple of weeks. The song I tuned in to is "Money Can't Buy It" from her Diva album. Annie believes in the power of creation. In the good vibration. She believes in love alone. Yea yea! Annie says "Give up your needs, your poisoned seeds, find yourself elected to a different kind of greed."
Right on Annie. Money can't buy it. I too believe in the power of love alone.
If you've been reading DaveNet for a while, you must already know about my two main slogans -- Let's Have Fun! and Dig We Must! I'm always searching for new slogans that don't equate to one of these two.
For example, a big slogan in the massage world is "Namaste," a word that means "the divinity in my being acknowledges the divinity in your being." My American dictionary defines it more technically: "a Hindu gesture of salutation made by placing the palms together, thumbs against the chest, and nodding the head slightly."
When starting a massage, after grounding, and before touching the body, you can say a Namaste. When you're done, connect at the client's feet, your palms to their arches, breathe, and as you disconnect -- Namaste. The acknowlegement rituals are important, it's how you get ready to share a space with the other being, and it's how you resume your normal solo flight.
I added my own twist -- I'd say Namaste Y'all! to my classmates. Belt it out! Big grin on my face. Texas drawl. Down home southern boy. Drop my voice at the end.
It's fun! That clued me in. I've heard this somewhere before...
Let's Have Fun!
Yes, I think think they're the same thing. My divinity and your divinity connect. That's fun!
I think I found a new slogan, one that isn't covered by either of the previous two.
You're reclined in an inner tube, your butt in the water, floating down a river. Something cool to drink in one hand. The other hand lingers and floats in the water. The sun is hot. The water is cool.
Along the banks, wildlife lives. Great birds with huge wingspans. Tall trees, colorful flowers. Rocks and mountains. The river goes thru a town. Bridges, parks, picnics, boaters, swimmers. There are forks in the river. Go one way to visit a scenic canyon with cave dweller ruins. The other fork gets you to Pittsburgh. Both are interesting places to visit in different ways.
I believe the river can be most cleanly appreciated in a simple inner tube. The simpler the better. Sometimes we try to float with power. No drink in hand, paddling furiously to avoid something that scares you. But the inevitable is always inevitable. Struggling against the flow doesn't work. You get tired, then exhausted, your vision narrows, you spin. It's a whirlpool! There always seems to be a whirlpool waiting for you just after you get thru the rapids. And sometimes the rapids are inside of ourselves, they're not real, they're not the world.
No matter. I believe it's always best to just Go with the Flow.
And that's the third DaveNet slogan.
I promised that I'd get back to technology. Here we go!
Imagine a huge inner tube with 15,000 people on it. The river is too narrow. The water is shallow.
About half of the 15,000 people are stationed at the edges of the inner tube, operating huge earth movers. When the raft hits the shore, a common event, they panic, break the earth, trees snap, landslides, creating swamps and scorch.
It's the only way for the huge inner tube to survive.
Or is it? Right around a corner is a broad lake. Deep cool water. There's a channel connecting the river to the lake. No earth movers needed.
The huge raft is Apple.
The river is the corporate software market.
Developers are on the shoreline.
The lake is the Internet client machine market.
Lots of new machines to be sold. Home users. Apple makes sense here.
A paradigm shift just like the switch to personal computers, then graphic personal computers. Lots of growth and lots of fun. A coooool drink and warm sunshine.
It's sitting there, waiting for Apple to get smart about it.
Dig we must!
PS: Flow is actually a technical term coined by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. His last name is pronounced chick-suh- muh-hye-uh. He's from Chicago, via Transylvania, which is part of Rumania. My friend Bernie DeKoven, email@example.com, talks about flow and knows Csikszentmihalyi, so I asked Bernie for some pointers: "Check out Beyond Boredom and Anxiety (least polished, my favorite), Flow (his most successful book) and The Evolving Self (chaos theory, complexity)."