Saturday, I participated in the Clean Air Council Run, a 5k race on the backdrop of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, right by the Schuylkill river. This was my second year, and judging from the crowd, the run is growing in popularity.
That is good. It's good that we have a date with our planet. Better yet, it's good when we make that date every day. I know many of you - of us - do. More car share, more office share, greater like-mindedness. We are connected in more than one way.
[image from New World Biomass Conference]
Today is a special day for me. Today celebrates my twentieth (20th) anniversary in the US. I still remember it like it was yesterday. No, I did not come off the boat on Ellis Island, which I had the pleasure of seeing again with an intimate group of friends at Blogger Social - exactly twenty years after I saw it with a most special person, my mother. I got off an Alitalia flight. In my mind, I was down on my knees and kissing the earth I was standing on all the same.
Opportunity does not come knocking in a literal sense. You go find it. I found it here. In another language, in another culture, in another country. With me, I brought dreams, experience/education, ideas, what sits between the few inches that separate my ears, and that other piece, the one that sits slightly to the left inside my rib cage. To make those work, I rolled my sleeves way up and used my arms to do and to welcome new friends.
I've said it all along. It's nice to repeat it here. Thank you all. You know who you are. Those who have made it possible. Arms extended from Italy to Philadelphia and anywhere in between. When you see life as a journey, it all counts. It does.
The official launch date for EcoTech Daily is today, and the site is already famous. It was quoted by Shel Israel last week, after discovering the site from the review of an interview Shel did with GM Vice Chairman Bob Lutz. EcoTech is the brainchild of my good friend Chris Baskind. We had a conversation here about an earlier project of his, Lighter Footstep, last year.
I reached out to Chris to get the scoop behind his new effort, which seems to bridge green tech and green business. Here's what he said:
Here we are, several years into what some are calling the Green Revolution, and we're still finding our way. But one of the really neat things that is happening is the nexus of clean technology and business, which is where EcoTech Daily will live. What I find particularly exciting about this area is that it has become non-political: it's all about what works, common interests, and finding new solutions to old problems. There's probably a wider lesson to be learned in all this.
Well, more than one so far. I was reading about Ning's Infinite Ambition on Fast Company and suddenly realized that the Earth Day Network is built on Ning. It isn't just a site where users can build their own social networks -- Ning is a model of how to create a perpetual growth machine, says the article. If I recall correctly, the daughter of my good friend Roger von Oech, Athena, works at Ning.
The sidebar in the article talks about Virtuous Circles. Each white dot is a member, the starburst shows that member's invitations, the clusters represent the viral chain. This is a representation of connections. It is estimated that by New Year's Eve 2010, Ning will host 4 Million social networks serving up billions of page views daily.
It has not escaped my notice that Ning cofounder and CEO, Gina Bianchini, has a very Italian name.
Connections make the world go 'round. It's because when something touches us closely, we pay attention to it, we see it, we take the time. Can connections save the earth?