Ted Lasso = Modern Elder?

August 4, 2021

Ted Lasso = Modern Elder?

May 29, 2023

Ted and I have a thing goin’ on. I’m a binge-watch virgin. At 60, I’m embarrassed to write that. Didn’t really understand the phenomenon until way too many MEA alums said I needed to watch the Ted Lasso Apple+ comedy series featuring an American college football coach who becomes a British pro soccer/football coach.

I watched all ten episodes of the first season this last weekend and I’m now a believer in both Ted Lasso and binge-watching.

Yes, the series addresses issues of age and wisdom in pro sports and life, but there are a whole bunch of other lessons Ted Lasso offers that felt like they lept from our modern elder workbook (and my experience at Airbnb) including:

1. "Same seed, different soil." You may not understand the rules of a new game, or a new industry, but you still understand people and "EQ Warriors" (a Lasso phrase) almost always win.

2. Being a beginner has its advantages. To "think different" allows you to pioneer new ideas and approaches that veterans hadn’t imagined...or did, but many years ago.

3. A great coach (mentor or leader) makes everyone around them better. He or she is someone who inspires you (and the team) to offer your best.

4. Humility, humor and homilies make you more human. We don’t just want to support a winner, we want to support a role model who loves people and leaves his or her ego at the door..

5. "Be curious, not judgmental." Walt Whitman said it first, but Ted quotes him and quite a few other common folk. Curiosity is the elixir of a modern elder.

I grinned from ear-to-ear when the new player from Mexico, Dani Rojas, joins the team and was asked what kinds of products he wanted to endorse as a football star. He simply says that he just wants “to give joy away.” That’s what I said when I started my boutique hotel company, Joie de Vivre.

Given that Ted Lasso has earned more Emmy nominations (20) than any first-year comedy in history, it may just prove my "karmic capitalism" theory: what goes around comes around (at least in the end). Do good and you’ll likely be treated well.

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