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My ill-fated undergraduate date with Natalie...
In 1992, I was in my later years of undergraduate education at university...
There was a girl I liked from afar. Her name was Natalie... I didn't know her very well, but I was very attracted to her. She was kind-hearted, good looking, and always smiling...
While I didn't know her very well, I had a group of friends I would often hang around. She also hung around the same group of friends. So, although I actually didn't know her personally very well, I saw her a lot, since we both hung around the same group of friends...
The shared house of four of these friends was a short walk from campus, and I'd sometimes hang out there between classes, or when I was skipping class! She'd show up there every now and then, too...
I'm not sure how it happened, but one day, she somehow asked me if I'd like to see a movie...
Wow, a date with Natalie!
I jumped at the chance!
The movie we saw was a not-so-well-known film called "Strictly Ballroom" (1992). This happened to be then-unknown Australian director Baz Lurhmann's first movie.
He's better known now, due to movies like "Moulin Rouge" (2001) with Nicole Kidman, and more recently, "Elvis" (2022) with Tom Hanks.
"Strictly Ballroom" is about a shy girl, who partners with a more experienced male dancer, and they enter a ballroom dancing competition. He wants to buck tradition, and rather than dancing traditional steps, he wants to dance his own steps, to the horror of all involved!
The refrain that repeats throughout the movie is...
"A life lived in fear is a life half-lived."
This message of the movie stunned me. I couldn't get it out of my head!
So much that, when Natalie and I left the movie, I was a bit like a zombie, with the message of the movie echoing through my head...
Sad to say, it was my first and also last "date" with Natalie. I don't think I impressed her much with my "zombie-like" state!
(But don't worry about her... I know she's done very well in life, and while I haven't met her for years, I'm sure she's still as nice as she was back then...)
The message of that movie has affected my life ever since...
When I'm afraid to do something, I try to remember that message... That "a life lived in fear is a life half-lived!"
Around eight years after my ill-fated date with Natalie, I got in touch with Gordon Alexander. I was working in Boston at the time, and I arranged to fly to Ohio to meet with him...
That meeting turned into this website, and the Seeds of Wisdom forum!
When you think you want to do something - including collaborate and work with people you find online, including on forums like this one - don't let fear hold you back!
Just remember... "A life lived in fear is a life half-lived!"
I could tell a dozen more stories where I overcame my fear, and it turned into something incredibly positive!
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