What is your half-life?

” What do you mean by HL?”

“HL is your current age. I work in a team with a HL of 60, the range is 45 to 72″

“Going nuclear?”

“I am working on my planning horizon and a yardstick to measure the footprints I leave..”

“Are you suggesting that one’ s footprints must be as vicious as Plutonium? “

“It is the opposite”
“I was confronted 35 years back. It still haunts me. I want to exorcise it before I pass on.
He was 65, my age now. He worked for 35 more years. His footprints live on. He never left anything of the plutonium version.”

“What was your answer?”

“I had no clues to what he had in mind. He said his half life was 50 and he had decided to go on till 100. He lived six months and 15 days more.”

“Didn’t you try to change his HL?”
“I didn’t, I thought it very preposterous then to live to be 100 and working when the rest of us planned to retire in 20 more years and pass on in another 15 at around 70, life expectancy at that time. “

“What do you think now? ”
“Hmmmm. I keep it floating, unlike my Guru. I will soon be making it 66. They say you can see into the future as much as you can see into your past. The event horizon continues to grow if I continue to learn but I see more than somebody with half my HL”
“What about the team?”
“I am not sure. I bounced it off on one of them who is at 72”
“He countered me with a question. What do you think, what makes me work at 72?  Money?”
“I don’t know sir. If you could…”
“I am a professional. I am proficient in what I do and I become more proficient as I practice. I am what I repeatedly do.  My work defines me. How can I desist work. You are probably work averse and that is why you are asking. If you know your Epigenetics, you should know that work influences the behaviour of your DNA just as exercise does.”

” I did not pursue the question. I returned to my work googling for Epigenetics waiting for a more opportune time”

” I have been asking – what makes you a professional? – to fresh graduates who have gone through professional courses of 4-6 years, as part of an employability survey.”

” What were the replies ?”

“Less than 1 percent matched my expectations.”
” What did you expect ?”
” Some reference to competencies, a domain for long years of practice and a code of conduct.”
” No wonder, employability is an issue. Is it any better when you ask the same question to those with ‘experience’, for example their professors”
” What do you mean by experience, number of years?

Not any better, our standards are falling. What is the team working on?”

“Capacity building and professionalism in service delivery.”
“The team looks like a living example !”

“So what is your HL? “

Working………. 24×7?

“If it is not money, what makes you work?”

“Heard of Maslow’s Hammer?  If the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail”

“No Sir”

“Then what are your basic needs? “

“Food, Shelter, clothing, then the higher needs ”

“Maslow is the hammer here, as media and technology at times become the massage. The purpose of life is living, the goal of any viable system. Some Beer ”

“No. Thanks”

“LOL, it is not that beer. This refers to Stafford”

“Confronted by purposelessness people commit suicide, I don’t think the Hemingways had a problem with basic needs. So purpose is even more basic to your basic needs. There is an addendum to the law of the instrument. .If you have a screw-driver as the only tool ….?

Your capacity building is the new hammer. Go ahead, do it, kill capacity or whatever is left of it. “

I fell silent, afraid to face the fire in his belly.

“I work 24×7 or live 24×7. To work is to live and to live is to work/play. I have no other pastimes. Some go off grid, in the name of environment, some delete their FB accounts freeing them from digital handcuffs. I have gone off Linked in as I have no divide between my personal and professional work.”

“Work 24 hours a day?”

The secret is there is no secret ( smiles ). . I also work in my sleep. I remember my dreams in the four hours of my sleep, mostly related to what I work on. So sleep is  one of my best allies as important as my remote assistants, my sounding boards, drums as I call them who polish my rough cuts “

“But you are billing for …” I killed it before take off

The old man guessed it. He could see the garbage

“Money is not the end of everything, community is. He continued.   Why do “the Rosettos” live longer? .

“Community, Gladwell says’”. Glad that I had read at least my Gladwell.

“You can take on from there. Even when people do not add real value, they enjoy the sense of (fake) community in a parasitic relationship with the environment.   The challenge   is to shift to symbiosis, creating an internal community that contributes to net improvement of the whole”

“Sir. I have a call” (Enough for the day, lot of googling to do)


Further questions:

How old are you ?

How old is the oldest cell in your body?

How old is the universe?

How old is the material you?

How old are you going by your real birth (not the physical one) ?

Are you a viable system?


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