2014

As much as I joke around online and offline I’m also rather serious about many things in life including Christmas. For me it’s a time of self reflection and looking back and ahead while still being in the present.

2014 was quite a remarkable year, not just because “Die Mannschaft” won the World Cup in Brazil.

There was a lot of moving going on:

My girlfriend and her two boys moved in with me in Westminster. Even though it was meant as a temporary move it was very nice to see how well we all co-existed under one roof together. We had a lot of non-dysfunctional family time at its best. Eventually Michelle found a new home in Boulder and moved back to her stomping grounds. This left me thinking and I found a house closer to Denver that matched my needs and wants much better than my first home in Colorado. I’m not a gypsy but it was time for something new. It was very hard to say good bye to my wonderful neighbors that I see much less now. They’re like family to me (more on family later on). It was nice to put the home into the hands of some close friends that love it very much. Thanks to Barb and Eric for very smooth and classy transaction. Off I went and took the plunge into neighborhood that is in transition and will develop into something that I intend to be part of. This is a process in the making and it will be a few years until we see how well this works out.

I’m close to a future light rail station (coming in 2016) which I consider to be a huge plus as our roads get more and more clogged. In the future I’ll be able to hop on a train, have one layover at the super-cool new Union Station and get to the airport without driving.

A word on relationships:

I don’t talk much about my relationship online. You can consider my silence a good sign. It’s really too personal to spill it out in the daily stream of social media noise. My partner is by far the most mature woman I’ve ever been with and her consciousness about our relationship and its requirements is quite a guarantor for keeping the candle burning. She’s the one I was always looking for. It just took me quite a while and many twists and turns to be ready for a relationship like this. Ask me again in a few years but I have a sense that I will still be quite amazed by this women and very much attracted to her. She gets me and lets me be everything I am. That’s a huge factor to my happiness.

Do you know the feeling of being either free and single or happy and in a relationship? That’s a terrible choice to face. I want it all: freedom and happiness. Fortunately Michelle gets it. I am being challenged by someone that is not afraid to be all in and constantly looking to add even more depth to our relationship. I think that’s enough on that subject. I hope you all have or find a special someone that makes you feel the same way. If I turn silent on this now again then just know that it’s all good.

My work went through some major transitions as well. We lost a big long time client but won another one here in the US that is way more fun to work with. I’m dealing with inspiring people that value what we have to bring to the table. I’m very grateful for that as well. The German bakery is humming thanks to my amazing brother Felix and our great team over there which is part of my extended family.

My network of friends in Colorado keeps growing at a slow but steady pace. I’ve had many heartfelt moments with friends and am still in touch with many people from my old days back in Europe. For that I am also very grateful.

My family is also growing. I am a 6-time uncle, am close to my three siblings and fortunately both my parents are still around. My girlfriend’s family adopted me and makes me feel part of them.

Michelle’s wonderful circle of friends in Boulder also belongs to the list of people which are greatly enhancing my life.

I’ve been able to throw two costume parties this year again. They’re regular highlights on my calendar. Bringing all my local friends together for an evening of fun and laughter is truly a priceless gift.

Then there are all the little moments for someone that looks at life as a never-ending sequence of opportunities. I had countless laughs with strangers in all different kind of settings. I’m a big sucker for connection. You could call me an addict. I’v been very lucky to find plenty of people to play along this year.

On the downside I’m worried about the growing divide in our society and the amount of dumbing down that we see in the US and abroad. There is too much conflict as a result of this. We’re being manipulated and stop seeing each other eye to eye.I know that many poor choices are being made each day and for someone that cares about humanity on a collective level that is rather bothersome. The one shining star in the sky of international leaders is Pope Francis that is simply not afraid to call things the way he sees them. I can see him starting a cultural revolution that goes way beyond his flock. I’m not religious but almost everything he says these days strikes me as being right on the spot. No, we will not agree on women’s rights or gay marriage but we both know that there are much more important issues to be dealt with at this time.

What I wish for Christmas is a huge amount of collective harmony. A lot of that will wear off in the days to come. Some of us might elbow each other in the days after Christmas when we’re returning our presents on what’s so fittingly called boxing day. But hopefully many of us will at least be touched by that special spirit that’s lingering around these days and maybe some of you will make peace with an old enemy and reduce the collective amount of fighting in this world.

If each of you can just think of one actionable item, like apologizing and shaking hands with someone you’ve had conflict in the past or plant some another symbol of peace then we’ll all be better off.

One last thought:

This year has also been marked by some colossal losses due to suicide or drug overdoses. Unfortunately those humans will never come back. They’re gone. What we can do is look left and right and keep spreading out the word that those kinds of deaths are really incredibly stupid. There is so much value and beauty in being alive. We might not see it every day but it’s really there. Sometimes someone just needs to “move that bus” so we can see the light again. Hopefully you’ll move that bus for someone else if you see the need for it. And yes there are a few exceptions for people that are fatally ill but I’m sure you get my point.

I might come across as a total cynic with lots of what I share throughout the year but at the end of the day I truly care about people. That includes you, all your friends and even all your worst enemies as well.

Peace!