It’s no secret that I’ve had my share of half assed relationships. What I mean by that is that one party — whether me or my partner — were only half in the relationship…only willing to go so far or give so much. It’s hard to see when you’re in the middle of it, yet it always seems so obvious when you’re watching it happen to a friend. That’s how the term “grand gesture” came to be…I don’t remember whether it was me or Kilo that said it first…I think it was me, but that doesn’t matter. The notion actually spawned from a chance encounter with a long lost acquaintance and before we knew it, it became a mantra. Let me rewind…
Last November, Princess Grace and I escaped to sunny Florida for a long weekend. The Farmer’s Almanac said the winter was going to be brutal (confirmed!) and it had already turned cold in Indiana so we decided to run off to Florida to soak up some much needed ocean air. Normally, the ocean is exactly what I need to clear my head and re-energize my spirit but as I sat on the beach all I could think was “mountains”. Something had shifted and the ocean wasn’t giving me what I yearned for. I needed mountains.
With my birthday approaching and the longing for mountains still with me, Kilo and I planned a birthday trip to Boulder. It started simple enough with a lovely little house nestled near Sunshine Mountain. I’d never been to Boulder but my shamans said there was a lot of energy there…so I knew it was exactly where I needed to be. Without realizing it, my birthday weekend getaway ended up being the weekend the Bronchos played the Patriots in the Playoffs. Being huge Peyton fans, Kilo and I decided to get tickets to the game. Enter the Tennessee Cowboy.
It had been about 10 years since we’d seen each other in person but Facebook kept us connected and following each other. Most of our exchanges centered around heckling the other when our football teams played but eventually evolved into yoga and lifestyle choice discussions.
As most people do these days, when I bought the game tickets I posted a photo to Facebook. He saw the tickets and being a HUGE Patriots fan (I choose not to hold it against him), he messaged me that he wanted to go to the game too. It’d be a chance to see two rivals play — arguable maybe two of the best quarterbacks ever — and to get to hang out. Seems harmless enough…and it was. Who would have known that it’d spawn a movement?
The Tennessee Cowboy bought himself a ticket to the game….an airline ticket…a hotel…and rented a car — all in the span of about 40 minutes. After 10 years, he was grand gesturing his ass to Boulder to hang with me and Kilo….and we had a great time! The three of us YOLO-ed our way through the visit with perhaps the most hilarious (and disturbing) game of Cards Against Humanity with three random strangers at a Denver brewery to ever be played.
Point being, the Tennessee Cowboy knew he wanted to reconnect with a long lost friend and he made it happen…in epic fashion. That’s what real men do….they grand gesture you. They throw caution to the wind…live in the moment…follow their instincts…and go for it. They make memories! They put themselves out there. They make.shit.happen. They don’t think about…dream about it…wish for it…they DO.
When Kilo and I got back from the trip, the other witches were so confused and dying to know how this seemingly strange man ended up spending the weekend with us. The more we described the weekend, the bigger they smiled. They intuitively got it. Without knowing the words, they recognized the grand gesture.
Fast forward to a few months later. Kilo and I are sitting in my office talking about the relationships we found ourselves in…relationships that had become severely half assed. Without thinking, I said “If the ‘Tennessee Cowboy’ can fly his ass to Colorado to hang with us, the least these guys can do is [insert something that was far from a grand gesture but more than was happening at the time]…. We need to stop making it so easy. We both deserve a grand gesture!” And a mantra was born.
Today we have a private Facebook community dedicated to the Grand Gesture. Dedicated to sharing stories of what real men do to show appreciation for the women (or men) in their lives. Dedicated to reminding us that we are all worthy of being grand gestured…and of giving grand gestures…because life IS a grand gesture if you’re living it right.
“Love isn’t about ridiculous little words. Love is about grand gestures. Love is about airplanes pulling banners over stadiums, proposals on jumbo-trons, giant words in sky writing. Love is about going that extra mile even if it hurts, letting it all hang out there. Love is about finding courage inside of you that you didn’t’ even know was there.”
To my Tennessee Cowboy, thank you so much for inspiring a movement…for giving us a mantra…for putting yourself out there…for being my friend…and for being the original grand gesturer, you OGG. Nobody YOLOs quite like you do, dear friend!