Let’s get this out of the way: I think Kyle Scheele is super funny.
To give you a sense of Kyle’s brand of humor, go to the Kickstarter page for his book (We Put A Man On The Moon), then watch the video and read the incentives descriptions. Seriously, I sounded like an idiot when I did it. Couldn’t stop laughing. And then check this out. It’s unbelievable. $9,944 of unbelievable.
Before I tell you what I thought about Kyle’s book, though, let me tell you a little about him as a person. First, his name is not Kelly. So, if you go to a booth he’s manning at a conference and ask for Kelly, people will look at you funny. Not that I did this or anything.
Kyle speaks to teenagers all over the country and challenges them to “live better stories” with their lives. His concern, and I believe it to be valid, is that this generation of young people is defined more by what they don’t do than what they do do. (You can snicker, it’s cool) Seriously, they are told over and over, don’t do drugs and don’t have sex before marriage and don’t drink underage, and while all these admonishments are good, they don’t encourage kids to change their world in a positive way. Kyle wants kids to be empowered to define their lives by how they engage with it, not only by what they avoid in it.
We Put A Man On The Moon is essentially the more robust, written version of Kyle’s talk. If you want my one sentence review, here ya go: Kyle’s book is both funny and inspiring and you’ll feel like living a better story with your life when you’re done reading it.
Kyle’s really funny, but he’s also super smart. He acknowledges in the book and in the Kickstarter video that he was inspired to a great degree by Donald Miller’s A Million Miles In A Thousand Years (who wasn’t?) and it’s to his credit that he’s added his unique voice to the conversation. He could have said, “This has all been said before” and tried to find something “more unique,” but instead he crafted his own experience into “something” we can all “learn from.” And he did so “quite well.” I mean, quite well.
One of my favorite lines from Kyle’s book is, “Many people sit around waiting for a battle to fight, never realizing that the first enemy they have to overcome is their own laziness.” Oh no he ditint! Kyle’s right, though. We can come to this place where we think we’re trying to live a more interesting story and we wait and wait for something interesting to happen, when really we just need to get off out butt and go make it happen.
Honestly, the feeling I had after finishing Kyle’s book was similar to the one I had after reading Steven Pressfield’s “The War of Art.” Some of you are like, “Shut up.” I’m serious, though. Both books make you feel like, “Hey, I can do this! I can be bold! I can overcome anything! I can be creative and live a great story!”
Kyle’s is funnier, though.