Once upon a time, my wife and I were stranded at Heathrow Airport because of an extremely dense fog that had settled over much of England. All flights were cancelled, and thousands of people camped out in the airport for up to twenty-four hours.

Once upon a time, my wife and I were stranded at Heathrow Airport because of an extremely dense fog that had settled over much of England. All flights were cancelled, and thousands of people camped out in the airport for up to twenty-four hours. It felt like we were never going to leave for New York.

I was dressed in a very stylish pinstripe suit with a starched white shirt and an elegant tie. In stark contrast to the present, twenty-five years ago people dressed to travel.

At some point during the lengthy delay, I struck up a conversation with a fellow traveler – a German businessman. Once he discovered that we were headed to New York, he asked about my profession. Observing my fine suit, he said, “You must work on Wall Street.” “No”, I responded. “I am a composer”. He looked very surprised, paused for a moment and eventually said, “I thought everyone who did that was dead”!

WDYDWYD? Because I was born to do it; I am not dead; and as an artist, it is my job to document our 21st Century society through music. Yes, it may seem a bit strange, but it is WIDWID!

This essay and portrait is part of a community-art and leadership project called “wdydwyd?” Tony Deifell (KNLP-16) invited his colleagues in the Kellogg Fellowship to reflect on what motivates them to follow their personal and professional paths by answering the question, “Why do you do what you do?”


“wdydwyd?” has reached over 1.5 million people worldwide and it has been used for team-building at Google, Twitter, many colleges and universities, nonprofits and K-12 classrooms. And, according to Wired Magazine, “In Silicon Valley, that question has been the hottest team-building meme since Outward Bound – and it’s spreading.” For more information: http://wdydwyd.com/leadership.


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