Story Monday: Hamilton

For the first Monday of each month I like to discuss story. What it is and how it affects us. Today, I’m going to get a bit political as I look at history. Particularly early North American  history.

Recently I have become slightly obsessed with Hamilton the musical, based on the Biography by Ron Chernow. The broadway show written by Lin-Manuel Miranda, previously of The Heights.This musical tells the factual story of not only one man but also the birth of my nation. I must say it is great to listen to while running as well.

What I am reminded of most is that anything we currently bemoan the state of affairs. None of this new. There has always been personal ambition mingled in with collusion which somehow benefits the citizens.

I am reminded that this country was founded by an imperfect group of men. Men who were all too human in temperment and ambition. Their hurts and desires at times getting in the way.

It had to be frightening and confusing for not only leadership but regular citizens. Imagine being back then. A war has just been won, severing us from Europe. From what we knew to a new system , yet untested.

One beset by ego, back room deals and uncertainty. Some things never change. I also see hope that dreams and  hardwork can bring. Benefiting not only a person but so many more.

The show, does not shy away from Hamilton’s foibles. Which all of us are susceptible to as well. These can be our downfall, but also be moments to show our strength of character. The story of Alexander Hamilton resonates because it is the human one. The struggle, triumph, self destruction , selfishness and love. 

That and the amazing music.

The Stories We Tell

The first week of the month I like to discuss story. What it is, how story has evolved and changed over time. You can read the first post on this here. Today I want to talk about our stories and how we are telling it today. Namely through social media.

We are all story tellers. More so these days than ever before. With the prevalence of social media, it has become our new reality. Instead of stacks of letters and documents, future generations will sift through our posts.

It is through these posts that they will piece together the story of our lives. This occurred to me as I thought about the purpose of social media. Of course one aspect is to connect with people. To seek information as well.

But what about the legacy these postings will have for future generations.

What is the story that they will find about us? The version of our lives that we present is often sanitized or an edited version. It is how they will discover how we lived. Will we be judged because of one or two random posts? Photos, pithy (at least we hope) comments will paint a fragmented picture.

Time will tell what kind of picture this will paint. What will all our sharing, posts and present to them. Perhaps it is something to consider.

What is the story of ourselves, our lives that we hope to leave behind? Which fragments of our lives will form this picture?