Camille told me a story tonight. She was at school watching a documentary and saw something she didn't understand. It wasn't on the film though, it was in the other students. There were 23 nine year olds watching a documentary on Walt Disney and AA Milne's Pooh Bear. Full disclosure I am a fan. I have read Milne's work over and over to my kids as much as I have Dr. Suess or J.K Rawling. Pooh Bear is something of a safe zone from my childhood and a treasure I have passed on. I have sung little black rain-cloud to my kids uncountable times, its our lullaby. This crowd of nine year olds were mocking Disney as a fool and were saying how dumb and childish Pooh bear was.

I know right?

Camille was confused she didn't understand how or why all of these kids looked at something she sees as a treasure and basically crapped all over it. "I don't get it Daddy?"

So we talked, her James and I. I let them ask me questions about why people who do not like something feel the need to tear down other peoples things. "Daddy, my friend and I weren't laughing we didn't think it was funny." "My favorite story about Pooh bear is the Honey tree Daddy." "Why were they making fun of Walt Disney?"

The truth is my children, people tear things down to raise themselves. It happens a lot and the fact you do not understand this bodes well for you in my opinion. As you get older you will find out that there are so many people who are different out there. Different is a strength, but for some idiotic reason when you are growing up, when you are in school it becomes a cross to bear. Kids in groups are a ridiculous thing. I guarantee there were a few in that crowd mocking the film that were feeling the same way you were, but they were too afraid of being judged not to laugh. Your difference is a Stigmata at the moment, your love for the things that Make your Nod. Later on as these passions become talents, They will be what makes you unique, they will become the things that raise you above others in the crowd, and the crowd will change over time.

The insecure ones, and most of youth is filled with insecurity will fear your difference and talent, they will try to bring you down if they can. This sounds horrible, but its not. As you grow you will find a strength if you want it, right now its within your Nod waiting for you. Its built of all the things you have learned and all the things you will. Its made from all the heart and soul of your family your Damage Inc. Its there my children. As long as you look for it its there. Love what you love, the crowd be damned.

The crowd for many is a strength because they can hide. It doesn't take strength to hide it takes fear. I let my fear of being judged when i was young bully me just as much as the actual bullies I ran into, and in the end I learned something. Your Grandpa used to try to get it through my thick head. There will always by bullies my children. There will always be a crowd, but they do not have to matter to you.

So everyone who reads this, and prefers the sound of a little black rain cloud and the buzzing of bees to the fake and unearned crowd accolades say something. Show Camille and James they should be proud of the things they love. Share it, comment let your inner six year old remember what the honey tree meant to you.

Crowd be damned.

My good friend Sensei Mike Oliver does a lot of speaking out about bullying. Its a big part of training Bushido into children so that they can become who they wan to be, and not get lost in the crowd. I am proud of the work he's doing at Zen Martial Arts center in Sacramento. He has a lot  to say about it.


I don't trust a person who doesn't appreciate Pooh Bear.


Angry at the crowds,