On Giving 
Tuesday, August 26, 2014, 10:58 - Commentary

Today Iím donating a kidney to my best friend, Jimmie Briggs. This process has given me a lot to think about and in response Iíve written this.

On Giving

Itís easier than receiving for most of us, letís just get that out of the way first. To give is to be lauded. To give is to have power. To receive, or rather more accurately to be in need, is to be weak and often powerless. When we give we feel generous. Afterall, they donít name buildings after those who have asked but rather after those who have, mostly after being asked, have given.

None of this makes giving any less important or necessary. Itís just to say that having to ask, as any of us who have been in that position can attest, is unpleasant. Who doesnít want to feel needed? Who doesnít want to feel as though the choice we make can save someone in however small a way?

This is a defense of receiving.

I have asked and I have received in my life. I have received without asking as well. And of course I have asked and not received. And for that I am a better person. To ask is to be weak. To ask is to be vulnerable. To ask is to acknowledge both to yourself and the person of whom you ask that you are in need.

To ask is to confront your own limitations. It is to accept your humanity because in fact we are only human in relation to one another. This means we, at some point, will be in need. No matter what the need is objectively, whatever that means, in that moment it is everything to the person who is asking.

To receive is to be delivered from the belief that we can live this life alone. It is a reaffirmation of who we are at our very core: interdependent.

It is a hard lesson to learn: that we exist not just for each other but because of one another. None of us would be here but for someone else. To understand this is one thing; to know this is quite another.

So we stand amongst each other. Giving and receiving in turn. Being grateful when we receive and feeling grateful to be able to give. We grow in the shade of one another and smile that we have had this time together.

And in the end we learn that all we have is the ability to give and take. Realizing in the end that they are, in fact, the very same thing.
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Why I Am Donating My Kidney On Tuesday 
Friday, August 22, 2014, 19:54 - Commentary
New York City

I've been back in New York for the past five weeks for an important reason.

Next week if all goes well Iíll be donating my kidney to my best friend, author and activist Jimmie Briggs. If you knew him as I do youíd want to give him your kidney too, heís that kinda of guy.

Itís not a decision Iíve come to lightly but when I found out three years ago that Jimmie and I were the same blood type I knew I had to get tested. He had advanced kidney disease and needed dialysis three times a week to stay alive.

A friend who had given me so much personal and done so much for so many others was in need. How could I stand by and simply watch?

To be human is to be in constant need. Sadly we spend so much of our lives denying this simple fact, denying the idea that not only do we from time to time need each otherís support but that on a fundamental level it is our very interconnectedness, our inescapable and fundamental need for one another than defines us. Our pride, vanity and ego get in the way of allowing us to be vulnerable, in fact to be truly who we are.
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The Next Generation 
Monday, June 30, 2014, 10:55 - Photo of the Day

I'm always struck by how many young people are involved in keeping this tradition alive.

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City on a Hill 
Wednesday, June 25, 2014, 11:05 - Photo of the Day

And they can go higher still!
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The Human Bridge 
Tuesday, June 24, 2014, 21:03 - Photo of the Day

It's amazing to see these towers come to life.

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Political Sport 
Monday, June 23, 2014, 11:01 - Photo of the Day
Of course politics finds its way into this sport as well.

But it's really about teamwork.

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The Builders 
Friday, June 20, 2014, 21:12 - Photo of the Day
Higher and higher still!

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The Highest Peak 
Wednesday, June 18, 2014, 17:53 - Photo of the Day
One of the most interesting traditions I've photographed is the building of human towers here in Spain.

Every two years a huge gathering is held where different teams compete to build the most complex towers.

Over the next few posts I'll share some of what I've encountered!
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BCN Sights 
Tuesday, June 17, 2014, 22:22 - Travel

It's a place that draws me close even when I'm far away.

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Goodbye and Hello! 
Friday, June 13, 2014, 17:34 - Project News

It has been a lot of fun to spend time in Switzerland but now it is time to return to Barcelona!

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Sunday, June 1, 2014, 16:31 - Photo of the Day
Zurich, Switzerland

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Economic Fuel 
Friday, May 23, 2014, 18:28 - Photo of the Day
Zurich, Switzerland

We rarely think about where the gas in our cars come from but what about those who power our economy? What are their stories?

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Tools of the Trade 
Thursday, May 22, 2014, 10:25 - Photo of the Day
Zurich, Switzerland

I really enjoy spending time in places that I would not ordinarily visit.

It's probably the best part of being a documentary photographer.

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Reflected Glory 
Wednesday, May 21, 2014, 10:23 - Photo of the Day
Zurich, Switzerland

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Factory Life 
Tuesday, May 20, 2014, 10:20 - Shooting
Zurich, Switzerland

I've had a chance to spend some time at the Stahl Woodworking factory in Zurich and over the next week I'll share some images!

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