Syncing Curves

Posted on July 28, 2021. Filed under: Uncategorized |

Tonight when I was putting my two year old to bed, I realized that he’s now at an age from which I have actual memories. It was like he was touching the first plotted point on the curve of my conscious life…and with that realization came a very different type of empathy and envy for him. Empathy was for the depth of his current experience. A weekend is no longer just time to move through, but perhaps something so significant that it will be with him forever. And envy, for the volume of experience that is the product of that depth times the time that he will walk the earth. I think about the volume of my own life over the past (cough) 39 years, and suddenly I see this forward movie of his playing that is so rich and full of everything it is to be human, come of age, love, learn, feel, and so forth…He’s in for such an epic fucking ride…and as he moves through the years and stages that I have already experienced and loved, I will be experiencing something that is probably going to be great also, but without the kick of self-actualization. You only get to go through that once, and it’s ahead of him and behind me.

I look at his little butt, squirming in the sheets as he searches for a comfortable position to sleep, and I think about his physical growth as a form of timepiece, measuring his progression through this voluminous ocean. It doesn’t reflect but a fraction of the experience ahead, and yet it progresses at that same rate as all the more etherial and metaphysical elements of his existence.

I can’t help but fear for him in the decades ahead. Climate, intolerance, inequity, pandemic, and so forth…all constraints that will make his version of growing up different than mine. What if his entire existence is in the same state of stress that feels an aberration to us at this moment? But that fear is tempered by an equal or greater optimism. I see the problems he’s facing, but can’t yet see the solutions and inventions and revolutions that will make his life as rich and “good” as mine has been. My sense is that they will come. I had lunch last week with my friend Nick Chirls. I was in a particularly glum mood, contemplating the potential demise of humanity and the planet, and he looked at me deadpan and said “I think we are going to figure it out.” I think he’s right, and I think the solutions don’t come until a generation of people, like my sons, are born with these stressors baked into their earliest sentient experience. And while it’s painful to internalize the harm that truth presents to my kids, it’s reassuring to know that the ingenuity and ability of our species, when trained on a given context over a long period of time, can change that context. My hope is that my sons will participate in that endeavor.

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2 Responses to “Syncing Curves”

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This is beautiful.

Nikhil

@nbt

Sent from my iPhone

>

Super interesting post, Jordan. Thanks for sharing.


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    I’m a NYC based investor and entrepreneur. I've started a few companies and a venture capital firm. You can email me at Jordan.Cooper@gmail.com (p.s. i don’t use spell check…deal with it)

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