Archive for December, 2011

You know what the title is referencing. Yep new years resolutions. That is the standard boiler plate answer for the “stick in the mud” folks. I don’t know how many people I have spoken with this month who have given me this answer, however,  (and I know this is cheesy) if I had a dollar… Well you know I would be set.

I really haven’t, until now, had an answer to this response and know my answer is actually not mine. My answer comes from some one who is much more well know than me.

” To dare is to lose one’s footing momentarily.  To not dare is to lose oneself.”  ~Soren Kierkegaard

I mean who would be able to provide a better answer for the fear of failure than Soren Kierkegaard? If anyone understood what it meant to fear lose it would be Kierkegaard. His story is an example for taking a stand on what we know to be right.  If Soren Kierkegaard’s quote is not enough to have you make new years resolutions than maybe this quote will work.

“He can who thinks he can, and he can’t who thinks he can’t. This is an inexorable, indisputable law.”
Pablo Picasso”I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it.”
Pablo Picasso

Picasso’s art will live on forever his paintings, sculptures and writing have changed the world for the better. It seems that the 91 years this man has spent on earth have been 91 years well spent.
So this new year will be here soon.  Be brave like Kierkagaard was and brilliant like Picasso. Make resolutions even ones you know you will break and when you do break remember this last quote (and then I promise no more quotes in this post).

“The better a man is, the more mistakes he will make, for the more new things he will try. I would never promote to a top-level job a man who was not making mistakes…otherwise he is sure to be mediocre.”

– Peter Druker
This New Year let’s all come together and be more than mediocre let’s resolve to be great!

That’s an easy one right? Ok so do me and yourself a favor and imagine an elephant. Got it? One of those big circus elephants all bedazzled and such with the saddle and the beautiful rider from the circus. Now if you didn’t have it, you got it now, right? Ok so now and it’s not gross imagine trying to eat it. Not in the gross way but the funny cartoon way. Isn’t that weird how we can take a really gross situation like o I don’t know eating an elephant and make it not gross by putting a cartoon bunny in the situation? Yeah I think so too. Ok ok so you have the image now right if you need anymore help click here. You want to know without clicking don’t you? Nope not going to happen you have to click there.

So with the mental image of a cartoon or the link (those who didn’t click it are really intrigued now). How would you eat an elephant (I mean they are huge!). Easy right? one bite at a time. Ha Ha I know super corny right?

Two days ago my girl friend, who had earlier in the month broken the touch screen on her cell phone, received in the mail a new touch screen. Being the mad scientist she is, she  got right on disassembling her cell phone. 20 minutes into the ordeal and I immediately thought about eating the elephant. She was not stopping though. She finished taking apart the phone and replaced the cracked screen with the new one.  Long story short (I know too late right?) she is currently using an uncracked like new cell phone.

In life we will get our share of elephants and it can become insane and just super large. When we began to feel that way it can help to imagine eating the elephant and getting by one day at a time and eating one bite at a time.



It’s winter time now and part of winter here in southeast GA is the skatefest. The city of Savannah GA transforms the Civic center from a performance arena into an ice skating ring/winter wonderland. complete with ice snow and all the greenery that comes with the winter wonderland.

This is where I was lucky enough to be yesterday with my oldest son and daughter. Kyle (that’s my oldest sons name) traded in his shoes for a pair of blue rental ice skates and took the rink with speed only surpassed by the older teenagers trying to impress their girlfriends. Hannah (that’s my daughter’s name) traded in her shoes for the same, well smaller, blue rental ice skates. After the swap Hannah got out on the ice and hugged the wall. Hannah hugged the wall all the way around the rink a few times. After three or four wall hugging passes around the rink Hannah ventured out and engaged in hand holding with me. Let’s see a better description to describe the hand holding would be, hand crushing. The hand crushing lasted much longer than the wall hugging and at the urging of her older brother Hannah let go of the hands and skated on her own. I am not sure but I think she had a lot of fun.

Watching Hannah go from wall hugging to hand crushing and finally no hand holding skating made me think about life and the stages we all go through. We start totally dependent on our parents or family support structure. We venture out at different ages 16 being the age we get our license that is usually when we start our hand crushing stage.  At the sweet age of 16 we learn how to be men and women and do our best to become men and women but we need the hands to hold of our family and friends.  The ages are different for most but usually around twenty we let go of the hands of our support structure and start “skating” on our own.

I think a good time line would look like this. From birth to age 16 we are children from 16 to 20 we learn to be adults, from 20 to thirty we try to become adults and usually by thirty you got it. The time line looks great huh? I mean the ages are of course different for different people but being on the screen is deceptive because life is not all black and white and nice and tidy. Because life is not nice tidy or black and white we will sometimes have to go back to the wall hugging and hand crushing stages and that’s fine too.  We also have to realize that sometimes we will have to be the wall and hands. So life is tough but it can be less tough when we have our walls and hands and when we use the walls and hands we can sometimes skate on our own.



The key is ?????

Posted: December 27, 2011 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

“Slaves are often thought of as people in chains. But here they are born into submission. They are chained in their heads. And it doesn’t just occur in the bush, here in the capital, university professors and civil servants have slaves”  — Mr Messaoud.

How about a heavy comment to start Tuesday morning? Let me give you some background on the quote and Mr. Messaoud. Boubacar Messaoud is the son of a former slave and the founder of a successful non-governmental organization which works to free slaves and eradicate slavery. At this very moment despite slavery being illegal and immoral and deplorable, their are more slaves in the world than ever before in the history of the world. I am not sure about you but the question of why pops up for me. Why despite all that was mentioned are there so many slaves?

I think that Mr. Messaoud’s comment points at a major reason as to why slavery is not eradicated and still in existence today.  When someone hears the word slave he imagines a man or woman or child in chains and shackles. But this is not the case slaves are used in almost all industries and all walks of life. The lack of understanding is part of the reason that slavery is still in existence. This lack of knowledge due to a lack of education coupled with an apathetic approach towards human life in a place recovering from natural or man made disaster, i.e. hurricane, war, earthquake, creates and environment in which slaves can be abducted bought and sold. It is important therefore, to never stop learning and always understand that  every life is precious and should be respected and not minimalized




much of the research for this post came from an informative small quick read titled: Slavery Today written by Kevin Bales & Becky Cornell you can find this at book at


Drumroll please…. Today is Thursday annnnd The first day of Winter annnnd The 200 post on the blog Impressed? I know it is not that big of a deal I mean winter comes every year and goes every year. Followed by spring, summer and fall. 

Winter carries with it longer nights, shorter days and in many areas of the world a bitter cold and yet it is this time of the year that all types of celebrations are scheduled and festivities taken place. Why is that? Maybe because if we as humans can survive the winter we can celebrate this survival and know that despite the hardships and ups and downs of the new year everyone will be ok. When I think about winter and the end of the year and a new year approaching many images come to mind. Images of plants blooming animals awakening from slumber people shaking off the chill and getting ready to face a new year full of resolution for all their newly made resolutions (I know it’s lame).

Have you ever seen the movie “Defiance“?  The movie follows two Jewish brothers who escape the Nazi regime and build with other escapes a village in the woods. The movie is based on a true story and the move ends after the villagers survive through a year and the snow thaws. Despite this being the last scene of the movie the audience knows that the villagers will make it the ice has thawed the snow is clearing the sun is shinning and they will not only survive but thrive. This is our future after the ice has thawed and the snow has cleared there will be many exciting and new things to experience. Take this winter to rest relax and warm yourselves. The next year is going to be a trip.




“You are using those words out of context.”  That quote seems to be the standard “go to” quote when you are in debate with someone and use their own words to prove your side of the topic under fire. What exactly does “out of context” mean?  Out of context is a statement that is taken out of a larger work and is usually skewed when used. For example someone may tell you that I said that “I beat my girlfriend” and I may have actually said “I beat my girlfriend.”  This quote may be part of a larger story which may go like this. “Last night I beat my girl friend at backgammon.” So out of context the words I bet my girlfriend could mean many different things however when we tighten our spy glasses we get a better idea of what I did the other day and if you speak with my girlfriend you would get an even more focused idea of what happened because she would say that after playing and losing to her in three games I finally beat her in the last game.

None of the above statements where incorrect. all where correct but only a few made sense. Taking something out of context is easy and is done daily by everyone with everything they hear and see. I will give you a more recent example. I just googled “what does US withdrawal from Iraq mean” and I had over 58 million links. For anyone under a rock the war in Iraq is over and there has been and currently is a mass exodus of us Troops and every military and political pundit is weighing in on what will happen in Iraq. Is the Iraqi government strong enough to prevent what happened in Afghanistan with the Taliban rule? Will Iran move in and establish a strong presence? The questions are many and all are unanswered and only time will tell as it did in Afghanistan. A great movie to watch about Afghanistan and the US involvement and withdraw and consequences is “Charlie Wilsons War“. The move Charlie Wilsons war was a great performance from one of the best actors on the planet “Tom Hanks”.  

For the solider leaving the Iraqi country side the withdraw means a Christmas with his loved ones, for the Iraqi citizen part of the new government formed after the execution of the dictator Sadam Hussein the withdraw means lack of a security force and definitely an uncertain future. Before I wax political (I know too late and sorry) lI( only use this example to show you that everything is taken out of context news stories included what is important is to focus (tighten the spy glass) on what is important to you.

For me it was important that I beat my girlfriend one time only is just fine or as I like to call it mere details. For her it was important to win more games at back gammon than me.

So what’s important for you? 



out of context debate

It’s ok re – group re – load and fire again. When I think about missing a target my mind immediately jumps to a scene of a WW II Sniper and his scout. The sniper is picking off the brass in an enemies convoy and misses. He looks down the scope in shock as the missed target scrambles for cover. The scout asks what the problem is ant the sniper informs him that he needs to take a deep breath re – group re – load and fire.  The sniper profession is a profession dependent upon an individuals marksmanship and misses are usually few and far between but they will happen.

Just like the scout assuring the sniper I want to be that to anyone reading this. Sometimes in life we feel like we have “missed the target or missed the boat or are a day late and a dollar short”.  When I started writing this blog I had made a committment to myself to write on pst every week day and yesterday as well as Monday I did not post. “I missed my target twice”. It has been a while since I missed one day let alone two in a row, but everyone misses and everyone should re – group, re – load and fire again but not everyone does. That’s the difference between winners and losers. Winners never give up and never surrender. What are you?