Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Randy Pausch

Okay, I know this is the most watched video in the world right now.
And thus mainstream and not in line with my blog.
I don't care.
There comes a time when anti-conformity must give way to what is profoundly authentic.

This man deserves our respect, his work deserves to be seen. 


Anonymous said...

Randy Pausch is a nice guy I'm sure. It is a tragedy that he is dying. But let's be honest-- nothing he has to say is a profound insight or necessarily new. Its all been said before. what bothers me is that people keep hearing this stuff and walking around dazed like they've never heard it before.
If Dr. Pausch's restated end-of-life insights help someone-- great, but me thinks there is more to the popularity of this story than the message. After all theres the $7MM book deal-- think of what the publisher expects to make. Dianne Sawyer special-- watch those ad revenues, and what a boost for Disney, to say nothing of the money invested in virtual reality ventures.
Dr. Pausch's predicament is sad, but, remember it happens to us all. 47 is young, but we all know of children who die of cancer every day. They never even got to have a childhood to make dreams in.

I would also add that many many many people have personally moving insights on life when they face the clarity of death. They don't get book deals or walk-on roles in Star Trek movies either. They didn't do cutting edge research and there were no halls of clapping collegues and TV cameras when they died either. They die in obscurity, mourned by the few who knew them-- Now that's courage. I wish Dr. Pausch well, but I do not find his insights especially new nor do I find his death more tragic than many less well sung human beings.

Meta-Tribes said...

well anonymous, I welcome the cynics, I think we all have a right to voice our opinions. I'm sure there were some New York fire fighters walking around on 9/12 that were actually jerks, and the people that knew that had to hold their tongues because of the public lynching they would have received.

BUT! I have to respond.

The point is not new insights or hogging the limelight of tragic deaths.
The point is that some professors toy with the question of what their last lecture would be, and this is one of those 'last lectures', but delivered by a teacher that had the opportunity to give it some forethought. That alone is enough to get my attention.
The significance of the Pausch lecture is that put together a message that was not for his own glory, but to give the gift of fatherhood to his children that have now lost their father.
This has cultural significance in that America has generations emerging with absent, apathetic, or workaholic fathers.

As for the money, I don't like profiting off of death either, but that was neither the purpose nor motivation. That money is going to take care his family and cancer research.

Meta-Tribes said...

also, I have know some people that died and they WERE jerks. I paid my respects but some people never had anything of value to say when they were alive and I don't really care what their final words were either.
I didn't know Randy Pausch, but I did appreciate what he had to say. I don't have an index of profound last words, so this will have to suffice. I know that a lot of other people appreciated his no harm done right?