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ESTHER IS VLOGGING: Go wish her a happy birthday! And make someone you love aware of that love today!

In which John discusses Esther Day 2010, love, his family, the idea of Freedom Fries, the significance of saying what you mean, and some other things.


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A Bunny
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Good Morning Hank it's Monday August 2nd (pause for Willy barking) Willy I'm trying to film a vlog.

Good morning Hank, it's Monday August 2nd 2010 unless you live in Australia, in which case it is Tuesday August 3rd 2010. Which means that at least in Australia it is Nerdfighter Esther's 16th birthday today AKA Esther day. So Hank when I met Esther in Boston I promised her that on her birthday in perpetuity we would make videos about whatever she wanted us to make videos about and yesterday she got back to me with what she wants Esther Day to be all about.

And she said she wants it to be about family and love *arghrunhandsthroughpuff* Isn't it enough to just show you that I love you without having to talk about it? I'm a boy, i don't like to talk about it. But it's Esther Day so we're gonna talk about family and love.

Okay Hank so there's this restaurant near my house called Hotcakes Emporium Pancake House Restaurant (it's a very long name Hotcakes Emporium Pancake House Restaurant lets shorten it to HEPHR). Right so on the menu at HEPHR they have a side dish called Freedom Fries, which look and taste like French Fries but they're not French Fries because they're Freedom Fries. Now Hank you may remember that in 2003 some members of the US congress got mad at France because France did not believe there was a link between Iraq and Al-Quaeda.

They got so mad at France that in the congressional cafeteria they renamed French Fries, Freedom Fries and French Toast, Freedom Toast. I'm not entirely sure why France would even want to be associated with French Fries, which first of all are not French they're Belgian and second of all they're very bad for you. It's like if there was an independent nation called a Heroin and we got mad at it and we're like 'we're renaming Heroin Freedom', the nation of Heroin would probably be like 'thank you'.

But anyway Hank, apparently HEPHR is still mad at France so they still call French Fries Freedom Fries. Which leads me to an interesting question: Is a Freedom Fry a French Fry? Hank, there's a famous moment in the play Romeo and Juliet where Juliet says 'That which we call a rose, by any other name, would smell as sweet'.

Juliet's saying that what we call something doesn't matter, the only thing that matters is the thing itself as it really is. But, spoiler alert, it's worth noting that that world view does not actually spell success for Romeo and Juliet. I would argue Hank that there's ample evidence that the words we use to describe the things we feel matter.

That in fact French Fries and Freedom Fries are not the same thing. A French Fry is a delicious albeit carcinogenic food and a Freedom Fry is a really stupid political statement, made more stupid by the fact that all American political parties now acknowledge that we were wrong and the French were right so maybe we should just quietly go back to calling them French Fries. Let me give you another hypothetical example Hank, say you love your brother. but you don't actually want to say you love him because there's just a lot of emotion and stuff built up over the last 30 years.

So hypothetically maybe you just say you like him and then just try to show him you love him. You know, by like having thousands of people plant tens of thousands of trees for his birthday, or something, I don't know what the thing is. That is not actually the same thing as telling your brother you love him.

Which i think is what Esther wants me do and maybe what Esther wants all of us to do. So maybe Esther Day is the day where we think 'who do i love who i have trouble saying I love you to'. Not some romantic interest, that's just using Esther Day as an excuse to tell someone you love them, that you already want to tell them... no.

I mean family, or platonic friends, which for me is even harder than family. Hank, *blowingraspberrynoises*, I love you. And your punishment is that you have to do a makeup tutorial, you know, in the style of youtube make up tutorials.

Deadline September 1st. So Nerdfighters join with Esther and me and tell someone you love that you love them today. And if you're feeling exhibitionistic, let us know who it's hard to say I love you to in comments.

Happy Birthday Esther. Hank i'll see you on Wednesday.