If you’re anything like me, you’re probably feeling a little bit of election hangover today. It’s been a rough year that has led to an extremely intense week with a lot of heavy emotions regardless of who your choice for president was.
We live in particularly divided times where it can feel super difficult even sharing an opinion you think might trigger strong emotional responses from folks who have different beliefs than you.
Bearing that in mind, I felt today was a good opportunity to share with you my all-time favorite story of togetherness. It happened in World War I.
If you’re not familiar with the first World War, it was absolutely brutal.
Maybe the most brutal war that there’s ever been. Both sides would dig out trenches they could use to defend their position while machine gunners mowed down the folks who came screaming across.
If you did manage to make it past no man’s land (The terrain in the middle between each trench) your next job was to pull out your knife and start sticking people with it. And if you refused to try and cross no man’s land, you were executed on the spot.
Making conditions even more brutal was the fact you couldn’t just clean up the corpses lying in no man’s land. They stunk and, when it rained, their bodily fluids would wash into each trench and you’d have to deal with a condition known as “trench rot”.
Yes, it’s exactly what you think it is.
So not exactly ideal conditions to go and make friends with the men on the other side of no man’s land.
Except on December 24-26 1914, that’s exactly what happened.
At a time when your only goal in life was to kill your enemies, both sides reached an unofficial Christmas truce. As a matter of fact, in the weeks leading up to Christmas soldiers from all nations crossed no man’s land to talk, trade, and exchange seasons greetings.
And then on Christmas Eve and 2 days following, during these unofficial cease fires across the Western front, soldiers put down their weapons and played soccer matches against one another.
It was an act of humanity in the middle of an all-time worst horror show that makes me feel a little bit more proud to be a human being.
While there’s very little poker in today’s newsletter, I just thought this little story might give you a bit of hope for humanity at a moment in time where it feels close to impossible to bridge our individual differences as a species.
P.S. It may not make much sense to you on the surface, but compassion and love are large parts of my overall coaching methodology. We all need a little bit more love in our lives.
If you’d like to learn more about my private coaching offerings, you can do so at https://chasingpokergreatness.com/coaching