Each month, we work toward our North Star here at PASO Magazine. With a team of almost two dozen freelance professionals, we put our hearts and souls into delivering another solid issue of our beloved PASO Magazine. What I take away from each issue, is that so many of us all care about the same thing — we are willing to do what it takes to be the best. We don’t always score 100 percent, but we try.

Nicholas Mattson

Nicholas Mattson

We crave the thrill of victory. We appreciate the agony of defeat. But those are just byproducts of a desire to be the very best we can be. I know those kind of people and I’m surrounded by them. We get up in the morning, knowing that today is going to be the best day of our lives.

I love putting together a magazine filled with pages of people doing things worth writing about. If you haven’t seen the cover, look at Paso Pops, and the team of community supporters around that event. Travel Paso, Firestone Walker Brewing Co., Cass Winery, DiBuduo & DeFendis Insurance, and Rhône Rangers … all bringing the work of hundreds of local people together to celebrate a piece of local history — Ignacy Paderewski.

This 4th of July, as the fireworks pop overhead downtown Paso Robles, remember that while we celebrate freedom, independence, and all that makes America great, that it is up to you to challenge yourself, to become the best you can be, and reach for the heights that might one day inspire a festival in your namesake, for the purpose of reaching future generations of children with that inspiration and your story that was left behind.

Whether the mind behind the eyes looking up at the pyrotechnic explosions will be the next great pianist is a long shot, but the odds become exceptionally higher when we look into what is it that makes a person great — the greatest version of themselves.

After all, freedom is not the opportunity for you to do as I did. Freedom is about the opportunity to do it like nobody has ever done it before. Sure, there might be a lot of “following along with the bouncing ball” at first, but at some point, the voice in your heart will whisper a new verse, and ask you to do something that makes you uncomfortable … or scared.

Don’t think twice. Do what you came here to do. Be who you were meant to be. After all, those gentlemen who signed that Declaration of Independence did so on the premise that everyone, living and yet-born, were endowed with a right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness without exception. I’m sure each one knew that it was limited time offer. Take advantage, and do us at PASO Magazine a favor — turn your life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness into something worth writing, and we will work on writing something worth reading.

I hope you find the rest of these pages inspiring.