Lesson’s Learned From A Cardboard Arcade

Today is the halfway point of my 28 day journey; day 14!  My first post was inspired my daughter. Coincidentally, today’s post is inspired by my son, David. It is nice to be reminded of how much I learn from my two children. A couple of days ago, David came home from school talking about Caine’s Arcade. He talked about it while he did his homework. He talked about it during dinner. He talked about it as he got ready for bed. Finally, he came to my room right before bedtime and asked if I would search the net for Caine’s Arcade. Needless to say, by this point, I was more than just a little curious. I pulled out my phone, tapped on the browser, and stepped into a beautiful example of innovation, imagination, and commitment to a vision.
The story of Caine and his cardboard arcade taught me a couple of very valuable lessons. First, while there are plenty of beautiful people, things, and acts in our world, beautiful may also exist in the form of ideas and visions that have yet to be realized. These things only become a reality when the dreamers are courageous enough to commit their time, energy, and resources to them. As I watched the story of Caine’s arcade, I realize that throughout my life I have had plenty of cardboard-arcade-like-ideas. Many times, I have decided against acting on them because I doubted that others would see the beauty in them.
That brings me to the second lesson from Caine. Simply put, it is important that you see the beautiful in your dreams, ideas, and visions. You must see the beautiful that exist in you. How else would you build a cardboard arcade and sit in your little chair in front of it day after day waiting for customers to come and share in your creation? Inevitably, Caine’s arcade was successful because he wholly believed that his creation, blue t-shirt and all, was a beautiful one.
Finally, Caine’s Arcade is also the story of a community acknowledging and celebrating an act of beautiful. It is true that the vision for the arcade was rooted firmly in a child’s imagination. However, the reach of Caine’s beautiful creation was extended when others decided to connect with Caine, play in his arcade, and share his vision with others around the world. As a result, Caine’s arcade has inspired millions and launched a movement to foster creativity and entrepreneurship in children (www.imagination.is/cardboard_challenge). David and his classmates have been inspired. They are working on their own cardboard arcade at school. And I have been inspired to continue to contribute acts of beautiful to our world, to trust in my own visions of beauty, and to celebrate the beautiful works of others. I hope that you have also found some inspiration in the simple (but beautiful) creation of Caine!

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