Conversations For Transformation: Essays Inspired By The Ideas Of Werner Erhard

Conversations For Transformation

Essays By Laurence Platt

Inspired By The Ideas Of Werner Erhard

And More

Breakfast With The Master VI:

Doo-Wop, Coffee, And Intention

San Francisco, California, USA

April 17, 2018

"You can take your word back, and what you get then is your old life back."
...   answering Laurence Platt's question "Is it authentic for me, once I give my word, to ever take it back?" in We Are The Word 
This essay, Breakfast With The Master VI: Doo-Wop, Coffee, And Intention, is the first in the sixth trilogy Breakfast With The Master:
  1. Breakfast With The Master VI: Doo-Wop, Coffee, And Intention
  2. Breakfast With The Master VI II: Cherish These Days
  3. Breakfast With The Master VI III: Forwarding The Fulfillment
in that order.
The first trilogy Breakfast With The Master is:
  1. Conversation With A Laser
  2. Shut Up And Do What You're Doing
  3. Secret Agent
in that order.
The second trilogy Breakfast With The Master is:
  1. Breakfast With The Master II: Future Health
  2. Breakfast With The Master II: Future Finances
  3. Breakfast With The Master II: Future Open
in that order.
The third trilogy Breakfast With The Master is:
  1. Raw Power
  2. It Works Better As A Possibility
  3. Magic At Heart
in that order.
The fourth trilogy Breakfast With The Master is:
  1. Breakfast With The Master IV: Parental Care
  2. Breakfast With The Master IV: Taking The Guilt Out Of It
  3. Breakfast With The Master IV: Language As Music
in that order.
The fifth trilogy Breakfast With The Master is:
  1. Whatever Works
  2. Yesterday's Transformation
  3. Billions And Billions Of Stars
in that order.
The seventh trilogy Breakfast With The Master is:
  1. We're Here
  2. Being A Being Coach
  3. You Already Got It
in that order.
The eighth trilogy Breakfast With The Master is:
  1. Breakfast With The Master VIII II: What People Crave
  2. Breakfast With The Master VIII II: Keep Talking
  3. Breakfast With The Master VIII III: Fearless In The Face Of Life
in that order.
The ninth trilogy Breakfast With The Master is:
  1. A Fountainhead Of Clarity And Power
  2. Conversation With A Laser II
  3. Being A Being Coach II
in that order.
The sixth trilogy Breakfast With The Master is the prequel to When New Ideas Get Old.

Conversations For Transformation receives its one million three hundred thousandth view with the publishing of Breakfast With The Master VI: Doo-Wop, Coffee, And Intention.

The way to beat Bay Area traffic is to get up early. I'm showered and out the door by 4:21am, well on my way to having the Golden Gate Bridge all to myself. Pulling into the parking lot at our breakfast rendezvous, I park, turn off my lights and ignition, and sit, surveying the (quiet, still dark) scene. Traffic lights turn green, then red, then green again for no one in particular. Garbage trucks' articulated arms surreally pluck bins from the kerbside like a pterodactyls'  feeding frenzy. The restaurant is not yet open. Through its plate glass windows I see a toque blanche  cladded chef mopping the floor. A waitress, not yet wearing her apron, is laying tables. Still in the driver's seat, I check and re-check my e-mail and notes in which I've sketched out some of the things that could  happen at our coming meeting like possibilities.

Eventually, after about a half an hour, I walk over to the door and try it. It's open. Once inside, I head for the exact same table at which we've sat for these annual Breakfast With The Master meetings for each of the last four of the past six years.

There's a jukebox in here. I love jukeboxes. More than that, I love restaurants with jukeboxes. There's a certain atmosphere that goeswith  with a resraurant with a jukebox (as Alan Watts may have said) ... and someone's already loaded it up with quarters, and tapped in a heart-melting Doo-Wop  selection. I love  Doo-Wop. If future generations say of us baby-boomers  we got nothing  right and we ruined the planet for them, I'll protest. I'll say "That's not true:  we gave you Doo-Wop!".

"Of course, we also gave you transformation - not too shabby!" I think to myself as I quietly contemplate this about-to-begin sixth Breakfast With The Master, this next epic meeting. And to contemplate being in a meeting like this with Doo-Wop as its background soundtrack? It doesn't get much better than this. Seriously.

I catch sight of him striding through the parking lot, on his way in. I get up off my chair. I want to be standing when he arrives. It's been a year, but his hug feels like it was yesterday. He's fit and healthy, relaxed, and easy ... and powerful. This is what I'm here for (the time has come) so I quickly ante up  with some very  intimate, poignant sharing. He waits for me to finish, then smiles, saying "Let's order first!". The first of many cups of coffee arrive (Betty our waitress has her apron on now).

Over omelets, hash browns, and wheat toast, the conversation begins in earnest. It's not yet the deep, exploratory, penetrating inquiry that, given who that, given who he is, I know it will become, more sooner than later. For now, it's the necessary catch-up  items which reflect how real  life is going. And if his deep, exploratory, penetrating inquiries have but one single purpose, you could say it's to make real life work for everyone - with no one and nothing left out.

I share about what my three children are up to, and about my relationship(s) with each of them individually. I share that I coach them in pretty much the same way as he coaches me, and that it works - I mean it really  works: with honor, with aplomb, with love. I share about these Conversations For Transformation, about how I'm approaching my one thousand three hundred and fiftieth essay, about how they'll soon get their one million three hundred thousandth view. It takes a lot  to impress him. And he is impressed. But if you'd blinked, you'd have missed that look on his face of being impressed (it doesn't last too long: clearly it's not significant for him).

I share about three women in my life. I share about my Mom and what her recent passing was like for me. I share about my ex-wife, the mother of my three children, and that we've established a working communication again. It's a relief for my children to know that yes, their mom and dad will  dance together at their wedding(s). Hey! Never mind the relief it is for my children:  it's a relief for me!  Really. The third woman I share about, is a friend of mine whom I've known for forty years. He knows her well too, and at first I misinterpret another look on his face as approval. But no, it's not that: it's just acknowledgement, recognition.

Punctuated by falsetto Doo-Wop "ooo hooos"  (if you get how they occur for me, it's a simply lovely juxtaposition) we talk about people who lead while not coming from their word. We talk about people who once  led coming from their word, and now do so no longer. An interesting option emerges (not a great option but an interesting one nonetheless): whomever you gave your word to, can release  you from your word (that's another facet of the jewel of who we really are as our word).

All of the above is transformational in a way that breakfasts usually aren't, such is the milieu  we're meeting in. But it's when I ask him a question about the nature of his personal  transformation, that I am, for the first time in this conversation, blown away. I tell him I have a question for him (which I'm keeping confidential in this account) for which I myself already have an answer but I want to listen where he's coming from  when he  answers it. So I ask it. Then I listen. He answers. And I'm blown away. I ask him "How do you do  that?". He says (almost casually) "I made it up.". "You ... made  ... it  ...up!?"  I say, astonished bordering on incredulous. "I made it up" he repeats, then seamlessly segues into "... where ... you  .... are." His sheer intention surges deep into my being. It's like a million volt lightning bolt.

I'm silent. There's nothing I can say - which is to say I can't  say anything. There's nothing for  me to say. Disconcertedly, I reach for my coffee cup (only to distract from my awkwardness, my momentary ill at ease)  and without looking down into it, raise it to my lips to take a sip. It's dry. There's nothing in it. My cup is empty.

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