Sunday, November 3, 2013

Paul Graham is stalking me

Yes, THE Paul Graham. It started subtly, when my son Nick sent me a Facebook link to a video of these two guys interviewing Nick & one of his business partners. I had to sign up for Facebook (again) to see it. (So I did. More about that later…) At the end of the video, as Nick & George were walking off-stage, the guys conferred for about two seconds & said, "Hey, guys, wait--you didn't know it, but that was your Y Combinator interview. You're in the next batch."

Anyway, I watched the supercool video a bunch of times before I read the accompanying verbiage, which stated the interviewers were Paul Graham & Sam Altman. Nick had previously told me about P.G., as he is also known. Paul Graham. The amazing Paul Graham. The brilliant Paul Graham.

So, that was the first sighting. I thought nothing of it, other than "cool, Paul Graham is giving Nick some money" & it was fun to watch, even the dozenth time.

Then, Friday night, the plot thickened. I went to the opening of the new juried photography show at the  Castell Gallery. Great photos, an architecturally-amazing space, free signature cocktails. Before I went, I said to the universe, "Universe, hand me some lovely miracle."

So there was this guy there with a cool t-shirt that said, I make things up. I said I liked his shirt & that I make things up, too. Not two minutes into the conversation, he brings up the essays of this guy, Paul--

I interrupted him, "--Graham."

Paul Graham!

My angel wings fluttered. So interesting. I called Nick on the way home & left him a message about the "coincidence" & told Derrick the instant I got in the door.

I've since read some of Paul Graham's essays, especially the essay about essays (you can find them all on & enjoyed them thoroughly, but I am extremely curious as to why Paul Graham seems to be stalking me. I don't have a start-up company. I don't code. Why, Paul Graham, why?

It's okay, really it is. If I had to have a stalker, I'd choose Paul Graham. For one thing, he lives in Silicon Valley & is much too busy funding promising tech companies to show up on my doorstep. For another, given his essays & how he interacted with my son, the fabulous Nick, if he did show up on my doorstep, I'd ask him in & give him the beverage of his choice. Anything I have in the house, Paul Graham, it's yours. I'd even read him poetry.

Now this is possibly beginning to sound a little creepy, but I promise I am NOT stalking Paul Graham. Nope, nope, nope. I'm just saying that if he wants to continue to stalk me, it's fine with me.

Oh--I promised to get back to the Facebook issue. I'm not a big social media fan. (Grin. Understatement.) I was on Facebook for about 5 minutes when people who weren't in college were first allowed to sign up. The second or third time someone said "You've been hit by a snowball. Pass it on!" I deleted my account. Haven't been back since. The link Nick sent me (before it was on his blog required me to sign up for Facebook. For this, & this alone, I was willing to do so. I skipped all the steps about finding your friends & creating your profile & such, but even so, I have friend requests--including at least 2 dozen churches. Did they see the empty profile & decide to want to fill it with God?

In case any of them have discovered my blog, I want them to know that I have a rich inner life & I'm sure they have plenty of friends. I know I do.

Periodically I tell people about the blog alternative. One of the reasons I don't get into social media is that I think most people--me included--spend more than enough time online, reading & writing emails, reading & writing blogs. Life is to be lived with all the senses & experienced in a more personal way. So I write a little suggestion of what you could be doing rather than reading this or any blog. (Ironic, I know, delivered in a blog post.)

Blog alternative:
272. Think about someone or something that's been turning up in your life, stalking you if you want to think about it that way. It could be a book 4 people have recommended in the past month. Even if no one or nothing comes to mind, imagine being stalked by Leonardo da Vinci or Amelia Earhart. (I'll even lend you Paul Graham, if you'd like. I highly recommend him.)