Update: I wrote the post below 8 months ago. Since then, Randy has been on Oprah and the cover of every magazine imaginable. You can read how he is doing on his journey here. This guy is an incredible example of a possibility thinker. I try to emulate him. As you read his story, I think you will see why.
This morning on the way to work I heard Bill Handel on 640 KFI am radio talking about The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch that took place at Carnegie Mellon University. It has become a trendy thing now for universities to have these lecture series with famous professors who “pretend” this is their last lecture, including all the wisdom they can muster. Usually these lectures draw in people from all over and they charge quite a bit for attendance.
At Carnegie Mellon a few days ago there was a “last lecture” that got the biggest turnout yet, probably because the 40-something lecturer Randy Pausch has invented an incredible software well known in the industry that teaches kids programming through 3D cartoon images. Unfortunately he won’t be able to see just how well it does because he has been given only 6 months to live with liver cancer. He amazingly still cracks joke better than a standup at the Improv.
As I listened to him lecture in a humorous “fun” way, I wiped back tears. This man, not much older than me and also with a family, is facing the biggest brick wall and limitaton to possibility thinking one can imagine, and yet he is still giving wisdom, joy, and wit to those of us who will remain. If anyone had an excuse to curl up and become a toxic person, it is this man. Still, he CHOOSES to live with an open mind toward the possibilities left in his life. Despite the storm, he is squinting to see the rainbow and I truly applaud him as a hero for that. At the KFI website this morning I was lucky to find a link to his “last lecture” (literally in his case). If you are interested in RAW words of inspiration from an in incredible guy you can watch this wmv video of the speech and hear this AMAZING thinker speak at length about possibility thinking. If you have the time, it is worth it. I am dedicating this post of the series to Randy Pausch and his family.
Video of the Speech:
Visit Randy Pausch’s Website: http://www.cs.cmu.edu/~pausch/