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Back-to-school time can fill kids with a potent mixture of excitement, nerves, and dread. But not Kevin.

Kevin can't stop smiling.

All images via Fox 7 Austin/YouTube.


Kevin is entering fourth grade this year, and he's a walking, talking ball of enthusiasm. He was eager to stop and talk to local Austin, Texas, news reporter Tania Ortega before his first day of school on Aug. 22, 2016.

Kevin's short TV interview is going viral for the best reason: We all secretly (fine — not so secretly) want to be Kevin's best friend.

Kevin loves math and science and wants to be a "creator" when he grows up. And he can't wait to get there.

His timeline may be a little off, but I applaud his ambition.  

Kevin also enjoys riding bikes, even though his mom makes him wear a helmet, which, like most fourth-graders, he hates.

Sorry, buddy, I'm with Mom on this one.

Smart, excited, and a little bit of a dangerous streak: Kevin must be the big man on campus, right? Well, not quite.

Kevin admitted to the reporter that he only made one friend at his old school. But put away your sympathy because Kevin has no time for that. Instead of dwelling in the past or getting nervous about the future, Kevin may be one of the most optimistic fourth-graders you'll ever come across.

Whether you're trying to make new friends as an adult or just helping your own kids get out the door this school year, we can all learn a little something from Kevin.

No matter your age, new situations can be scary and overwhelming. Our minds fill with "what ifs" and self-doubt. But that's the best time to take a cue from optimists like Kevin. Stand tall, recognize what makes you great, keep calm, and remember this simple affirmation, inspired by the K-man himself:

"This is me. I am awesome. And things are going to work out."

Will they always? Maybe not. But in a stressful, fast-paced, sometimes scary world, it can't hurt to enter into new spaces and opportunities with a positive attitude.

Watch Kevin's full interview on Fox 7 and get in line (behind me) to be his best friend a few years down the road.

This article originally appeared on 09.06.17


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Democracy

A man told me gun laws would create more 'soft targets.' He summed up the whole problem.

As far as I know, there are only two places in the world where people living their lives are referred to as 'soft targets.'

Photo by Taylor Wilcox on Unsplash

Only in America are kids in classrooms referred to as "soft targets."

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There's a phrase I keep seeing in debates over gun violence, one that I can't seem to shake from my mind. After the Uvalde school shooting, I shared my thoughts on why arming teachers is a bad idea, and a gentleman responded with this brief comment:

"Way to create more soft targets."

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Paul Rudd in 2016.

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She posted about the incident on Facebook.

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