By John Abas
Hey there. Remember us? We’re that one group of dancers, headed by that one Filipino dancer guy, Danny-something…. We talked about following your passion, then danced for y’all, and then you did that flash mob with the dying bird noises? Hey there. It’s good to see you. :)
The past 4 years have been an interesting journey. Through 8-hour road trips going on zero sleep, to laughs exchanged secretly as we messed up during dance routines. To audiences filled with thousands doing YOLO Flash Mob, to that one time when those kids boo’d at us and only 12 people stood up. Through the hugs and yes, even the occasional fight, we laughed, but more importantly, we learned.
And one thing we’ve learned, yes from watching you, but also because we watch CNN and read books and stuff, is it’s an extremely interesting time to be a young person on the Earth.
Did we say “interesting?” Cuz we actually meant “scary.” It seems like you’ve inherited a lot of problems you didn’t create. Problems that no one seems to have the answers for, and that no one’s really taking responsibility to fix. Often you’re judged on your value and integrity by a society that isn’t really practicing what they preach. You’re expected to do the “adulting” thing, except the actual adults aren’t really leaving a good example for you to follow.
People are dying out there. There’s injustice out there. The ice caps are melting. And people are still doing horrible things in God’s name. And what’s the point of trying when all the smart people say you’ll be in debt forever or never make as much money as your parents? What power could one person possibly have to fix anything that’s broken in this world?
And yeah, normally we’d be scared, too, but we’re not. We have faith. You see, for you what might have been just a 60-minute presentation, has for us, been the time that girl said she was pursuing her dream to be a musician. It was the kids who told us they felt safer coming out of the closet. It’s each ASB kid we’ve met that renewed our faith in leadership and civic duty (Hey Mallorie! How u doin, girl?). It’s every student and teacher that wrote to us, telling us how a little dancing and some jokes made their day just a little brighter. It’s every adult that ever hola-hooped their way to the floor, and all the future singers who grabbed the mic, faced their fears, and sang an Adele song to the crowd. It’s all the faculty, staff, and advisors we’ve met that reminded us you’ve been in good hands all along. (Hey Sara, and Green Eyes. Oh and hey Melissa, and Ms Roberts! Love you all!)
See what we’ve really learned in this long, yet very short 4 year journey, is that yes, the world is converging towards madness lol, but that also it has a chance, and you’re it.
And what you need to do, is live, and keep following your passion. Find the place where your talent and your usefulness meet, and then share that skill with the world. Take action and be unafraid, especially in the face of uncertainty, because we’ve watched you work and know you can do it. Take a stand for the issues knowing that now, more than ever, your vote matters. Fight or peace. Work harder than ever to remake the world in your image, because it’s gonna take a new image to solve the old problems.
Good luck, and watch us do the same. We are extending the Happiness is NOW experience to something that endures long after the presentation stops, and you walk out the gym doors. It’s gonna be an interesting, tremendous journey for both of us, but we’re both ready. Let’s start walking.