Tiny windows

July 16th, 2009

Hello and welcome to another hippopotomonstrosesquipedalianism episode of The Thursday Blog…Your mid-week guide to life. I will be your Host and we will be embarking on a magical adventure of life, love and some camembert cheese (please see your local supermarket for the cheese and your local bank account for the money to pay for it).

Today’s episode is a story with the power to change somebody life because it is a story about somebody’s life being changed, so if it helps anybody else it is a bonus. The person’s name is Joe and today’s episode is called:

“Tiny windows”

I would love to start this episode with a recap of Joe’s life but I cannot. I have no idea who he is, where he is from and why we got to share a moment that affected us both so deeply. I could assume that he was brought up in Australia, trained himself on the streets to fight for his dinner, learned kung fu from watching surprisingly enough kung fu movies; and now he lives in Sydney with his wife and 3 children and works for the secret services as a secret services secretary. This is all assumption and there are two fairly strong arguments for why this is not the case: 1.The concept is ludicrous and 2.He is only 10 years old.

Joe was at Camp Kidsong, which is a 3 day kids conference that I help out with. Now every morning and night the kids watch a fun news video with different segments one of them being the famous 3P’s. The 3P’s is a song that myself and the Rymenorrisus David Wakerley do every year. It is a fun video explaining 3 important things: 1.What are pods (They are the groups they are in). 2.How do you get points; and  3.What to do when you need to go generic lexapro prices to the potty (toilet).

It started out being a quick 3-verse catchy tune and the kids memorised it and were singing along by the 2nd day. Each year we made it harder until this year, the 5th year it was virtually impossible. It was 4 verses, 4 different tunes featuring rap, classical and barn dance music. It had a dance part and a beat box part and the longest word was ‘consternation’. This year it was tough.

Kids had been trying to memorise it all week and I had heard many failed attempts and then Joe came up to me. He told me that he knew the 3P’s and so I asked him to do it for me. His eye widened and he started to shake. He whispered to me that he gets really nervous in front of people and then begged to be able to let him record it on his camera and show it to me later. Before I could say that was fine, he ran off.

The next day was the final day of the conference and he ran up to me again with his camera and played me an audio clip. As I start listening to it he walked off and started pacing, breathing heavily into his hand to calm himself down. He was really nervous and you could tell this meant a lot to him. Unfortunately 30 seconds later his group was being moved and he had to go. He looked at me in horror and I calmly said ‘How about tonight you find Dave and I, and perform it for just the two of us”. He told me that he could not perform it in front of people but he would give it a try. You could tell agreeing to do this was one of the bravest things he had done but it was nothing compared to what happened next.

That night came and Dave and I were doing our very famous banter on stage and Dave announced “Let us see who knows the 3P’s”. We had 20 children get up on stage to give it a try and I saw Joe on the side of stage. I walked up to him and said “It’s ok if you don’t want to, but I reckon you could nail this, do you want to try in front of all these people?” I could see the fear in his eyes and I knew what he needed. I looked him straight into his eyes and said “You can do this, I believe in you”. He then said “I need to practice” and ran off.

Jo likes to run for some reason.

What happened next changed my life as well as his. After 20 people had tried and failed (no one got past the barn dance part) it was Joe’s turn. He was brilliant, he delivered the 3P’s better than Dave and I had done it. He almost got stuck on the barn dance part but then powered through to get to the end. By the end the whole crowd was singing with him and erupted in applause on his final note. Joe, the 10 year old boy that had never spoken in front of a group of people in his life, just sang his little heart out in front of 800 people.

I did not see Joe after that and I am not sure that I will again. I don’t have the privilege of taking him under my wing, helping him grow up, being there for him in the good times and the bad. All I had was a tiny window of opportunity to see something beautiful happen and I am so glad I took it.

Sometimes a tiny window is all we get and sometimes that window is all we need.

Have Fun.

Change the World.


This entry was posted on Thursday, July 16th, 2009 at 6:31 pm and is filed under The Main Event!!!. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

10 Responses to “Tiny windows”

  1. Aj Says:

    Do you know he was also deaf in one ear? Cool kid!

  2. Dan lee-Archer Says:

    I did not know that.

    Wow, what a champion!

  3. Cadu Says:

    WOW!!… :)

  4. Jeff Hawkins Says:

    Listen, THAT was beautiful… Every opportunity big and small to reach out to a kid is an awesome thing!

  5. Mirjam (NL) Says:

    What a totally awesome story! That’s why I love kids so much, because eventhough we as adults have to take that tiny window of opportunity to teach, love and empower them, kids will actually take us up on it, instead of letting fear overrule them! Good job!
    Wish we had stuff like that going on here in Holland!

  6. Giusepe Says:

    Dan… that was great! One of the best posts I’ve read from you… Tiny windows, definitely going to remember that one!

  7. J.C. Says:

    That is awesome Dan! Cool story and way to jump into those “tiny windows” full force with some encouragement.

  8. Jacob.R. Says:

    This was an incredibly encouraging blog. Thanks! Your the best at what you do.

  9. sarahjoy Says:

    i echo jacob’s comment… what an incredibly encouraging blog. i read it and immediately started to think and try to recognize what are the windows God has placed in my life in the people around me, in the situations in my life!! definitely looking out for tiny windows :D thanks Dan!!

    oh yes, i love hanging out with kids too. they’re great. i think i learn more from being with them than they learn from me teaching them.

  10. Kim Ho Says:

    Awesome story by the GodFather once again. Inspirational.

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