Our last episode ended with two subjects either of which I'd love to cover---an NFL tight end picking up other people's garbage and stoicism. We had covered life for a professional team athlete under a pandemic. Then George Floyd and Black Lives Matter eclipsed the pandemic in the media and public discourse. We covered all these topics in this episode, starting with stoicism, which I think set the tone for thoughtful, reflective conversation on important but difficult topics. None of my podcasts are scripted, but this was probably my most unscripted. Though it only scratched the surface of sharing personal experiences, hopes, fears, expectations, and other vulnerabilities, it seems the start of what to share. In this case, Chris's thoughtful conversation helped, especially applying stoicism to our situation. On a personal note, as an emerging public figure, if I'm not flattering myself to say so, I've had conversations with friends and family with misunderstandings that got us angry at each other, even if on the way to greater understanding. It's scary to talk about personal things in an environment where people look to interpret things in the worst way. It sure is easier to watch others in public and criticize them.
I love talking to professional athletes. Today I talk with Chris Manhertz, a tight end in the NFL with the Carolina Panthers. We cover three main things and partly a fourth. Making the NFL never having competed in football. He played basketball in college, but made it, now five seasons in. I'd call it a dream come true except for the work it takes to make happen. Playing during a pandemic. Sports are hit as hard as anything. Athletes reach their potential. How is he responding? How can we all respond? The environment, of course. We just touch on philosophy and stoicism, which we'll cover more in our next conversation. If you want to reach your potential, people like Chris Manhertz help. I hope the audio picked up his smiling and enthusiasm for acting and using adversity to prompt him to more. I hope I didn't sound too selfish asking about what I find intriguing about the actual experience of professional athleticism, but I think others will find fascinating what I do---the inside experience of playing on a professional sports field, training and playing with professional athletes at the peak of human ability.