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Needing Street Wisdom

March 29, 2015

I’ve been really frustrated with myself for the past few days.  I had a revelation; an idea I was really excited to write about – it was insightful, it was interesting, it was motivating and original….and I had it while I was walking my dog last week.  Then a guy in an orange jeep drove up, slowed down and rolled down his window and started complimenting Zippy (my dog) for being so handsome (of course).  He used the baby voice reserved only for pets. In the moment, I was charmed, and hopeful that my dog wouldn’t try to jump into his car or chase it as he eventually drove away.

And then the idea was gone.  It was like I had awoken from a dream and couldn’t quite remember what was happening just before being jolted awake…just that I wanted to go back.   And I can’t get it back.

I know this: it had to do with the state of design; specifically landscape design.  It had to do with how I have evolved in my own career, and how I think others are evolving, and culture, and it seemed so wise and insightful and kind of big. Like something that I might expand upon and eventually write a whole book about. But it is gone, and remains elusive still days later.

I am super frustrated about it and can’t help but think there is something wrong with my brain. (age? probably. annoying.)

But I just happened across this website (Street Wisdom) in my Sunday Morning reading. Have you heard if it?

The organizer is David Pearl and he shares ‘Street Wisdom’ in aTED talk here (below).  It is longish (about 28 minutes) — but if you don’t have a ton of time, you can jump past the first 10 minutes without missing the main point.  But watch the whole thing if you can swing it.  The basic idea is this: “based on the proposition that the environment and people around us are full of wisdom we largely overlook or ignore.   Street Wisdom allows us to tune into the rich stimulus and learn.   As our strap line says –  answers are everywhere – you just have to ask.”

It’s for anyone who has questions about their life and/or work and wants some fresh answers.   It is relevant if you’re tackling a challenge in your working life, figuring out what’s next, struggling with the day-to-day stuff or seeking that inspirational breakthrough.

Though untrained in David’s specific technique, I have experienced Street Wisdom many times and know that he is on to something.  So, as I endeavor to recapture my thoughts, I am going to give it a go with the help of David’s training.  I am thinking to even organize a session with anyone who wants to come along.  Perhaps in Harvard Square?  I’ve asked for help (via the Street Wisdom website) to organize.  If I hear back soon, perhaps we can do this later this week (I am just plain desperate to get back to my thoughts from last week).   I’ll let you know when I hear something by updating this post,  and if you are interested, you can join in.


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  1. If you and Zippy walk again in the same path, it may come back to you. Go at a different time of day, maybe the guy in the Jeep won’t happen by.

  2. Jan Johnsen says:

    THIS IS FANTASTIC! thank you so much…I have been doing this for years but never knew it could be made public like this. Bravo!

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