Memories swirl

I hope the new month is off to a terrific start for you. It seems everywhere you turn, there signs of a new school year beginning; school buses on the roads again, internships wrapping up, and office chatter about Meet the Teacher nights. Our social streams display seemingly endless photos of eager faces, beautifully awkward and earnest, filled with anticipation and the thrill and fear of the unknown, whether in front of a locker or sitting in a freshly unpacked dorm room.

Every day of Uncommon has felt that way to me. New friends and familiar faces, diving in to fresh subjects and books, uneasy interactions and introductions. There’s something exhausting and invigorating about it all. Here’s to more first days of school for all of us.


Last week’s dispatch asked, What is your favorite month and why do you love it?

Andrew wrote:

The month of April has always appealed to me. Summer on the horizon, the weather still varying with cool temperatures some days and the joy/surprise of warm days here and there. It reminds us that we should get out, be active, enjoy the company of friends and family. Most importantly it renews me and excites me to know summer is around the corner.

Adam wrote:

October is the greatest month for me. My memories swirl with apple orchards, games of tackle football in the backyard, the relief from the summer heat, hoodies, bonfires, blankets - and the anticipation of pumpkin pie, of snow, Christmas, and the beginning of the year all over again.

Steve wrote:

As winter reluctantly withdraws its cold fingers from the air, April heralds the promise of a vibrant spring -- a new beginning for earth and soul. Having endured the cold, uneventful months that follow the holidays, I am invigorated, ready to meet the day with renewed determination and a grateful heart.

Danielle wrote:

October is always so refreshing for its calm nature. It’s the beginning of the Earth going dormant, when the world literally seems a little quieter, yet, the morning sunrise is a physical promise of  warmth and another day.

Sam wrote:

I love June. Mostly because it’s the season of outdoor adventure. There are lakes to be paddled, rivers to be rafted, trails to be ridden, and rocks to be climbed. It is the month of my birth, so I get to throw a big BBQ right in the middle of it where my friends and family can slow down and enjoy the food, fellowship and fun.

Patty wrote:

In October, a simple walk around my neighborhood turns into a walk of wonderment and abundance. Places that you see every day and seldom take notice of have now blossomed into beautiful shades of red, orange, brown, and yellow.  Even though the leaves are dying, everything seems quite the opposite—so alive.

Personally, I join the chorus of people who love October: crisp weather, open windows, chai lattes, holidays on the horizon and football of the European variety.

Uncommon reads

Phil Patton on Our Longing for Lists, with examples from Johnny Cash,
Picasso, and a beautifully illustrated packing list:

Simple lists of words can quickly take on many shades of meanings.

Lisa Sanchez on The DIY Illusion:

There’s certainly nothing wrong with gathering inspiration from the creations and achievements and adventures of others. But if I hope to cultivate motivation from the things that inspire me, rather than disappointment at my failure to replicate them, perhaps a bit more self-reflection is in order.

Harj Taggar on No Email:

Having time to think is precious to me and it’s also incredibly important if you want to achieve anything close to original thought. Smartphones make it harder than ever to actually stick with your thoughts and keep working on them until they’ve been polished into something interesting.

An introduction

If you’d like to introduce yourself to the Uncommon community, send a short note along with an interesting tidbit and I’ll include them in future dispatches. This week, meet Laurence:

This feels vaguely like the first day of school. My name is Laurence Latimer and I’m co-founder of a startup called Julibox. Julibox lowers the barriers to having great cocktails at home with friends. I spend a lot of timing thinking about how to reduce the friction to both offline and online interaction between and among our customers and community. My participation in Uncommon helps me "free my mind" and get a fresh perspective on how to facilitate engagement on (and off) the slow web.

Your turn

Who was or is your favorite teacher or professor and why?