Monday, January 30, 2017

A Suitcase Full of Toilet Paper

The last week was spent on the road from Lumberton, NC; to Portland and Salem, Oregon; and back to Atlantic Beach, NC. Sometimes I have to look out the window to remember where I am. Having so much time on my hands prompts some observations that are probably left alone.

One morning I was having breakfast in the lobby of one of the fine hotels in our country (really, you should see the lobby of The Grand Hotel in Salem, OR!) and as I’m finishing up I notice a woman—a guest—walking around with an armload of fruit. 

She was walking from bowl to bowl testing apples to get the best ones. When she noticed me watching she said, “We’re leaving.” To which I offered, “Obviously.”

A few minutes later she reappeared with two medium-sized BAGS; one filled with fruit and one filled with bagels. She walked over to a large bowl of yogurt cups and started checking them out.

Now, I get the fact that the food is just out there, and you paid for a room, and if you ate all of it right there you’d be ok. But, does that give you the right to simply help yourself to mass quantities? Am I off base or does the caper lie somewhere between being rude and stealing?

Before I left I got the desk clerk, the head of housekeeping and the manager of the breakfast area together and told them what I had seen. I asked, “At what point does this kind of activity go from helping yourself to theft? Or, is it theft at all?”

Their answers were great…and stunning! The housekeeper said, “I can’t tell you how many times we go into the room of people who are staying for a number of days and EVERYTHING is gone; shampoo, soap, both rolls of toilet paper, anything that isn’t nailed down. And we can see it in their luggage. I stopped by one room after they’d been with us for 4 days and one suitcase was filled with toilet paper!”

The desk clerk and breakfast manager were nodding the whole time.

I understand the sliding scale of honesty most of us operate with. But, I guess my thought is that if you’re going to steal something make it worthwhile…steal something BIG! 

That HD TV in the room was looking pretty sweet.


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Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Are You Visible or Invisible?

Over the weekend I ran across a wonderful thought I, and some of you, need and can use.

From Mark Nepo’s, The Book of Awakening:
“the cost of being who you are is that you can’t possibly meet everyone’s expectations, and so, there will, inevitably, be external conflict to deal with—the friction of being visible (my note: don’t you love the phrase being visible?). Still, the cost of not being who you are is that while you are busy pleasing everyone around you, a precious part of you is dying inside; in this case there will be internal conflict to deal with—the friction of being invisible.” 

Upon reading the paragraph I immediately thought of John C. Maxwell’s advice, “If you want to live a happy and successful life you’ll have to get used to having difficult conversations with people.”

Are you visible in life? 

If you are, good for you! If you are not, why not?

Do you know someone who is not living a visible life? Send them this blog today.


PS…One precaution…are you assuming the I’m just being me outlook because you think it's a hassle to learn how to work and live with others? 

Or, as an excuse for being a jerk? We don’t need more of those; we have enough already.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Momma Called...Stick With Me On This...

STOP!!! I’m going to use a phrase in a moment and some of you will automatically want to click away from the blog….I’m asking you to hang on a second and see if I have something to offer you can use.

Here we go: Tonight is the college football national championship (that’s the phrase….click, click, click…see, I told you some folks would bail!)

This morning one of the ESPN talking heads was interviewing Shaun Alexander, a former Alabama All-America and NFL MVP. Alexander was asked about Dabo Swinney, the head coach at Clemson and a former Alabama player and coach, possibly becoming Alabama’s coach if UA Head Football Coach Nick Saban retired.

Alexander said, “You never know, but when momma calls….”

The talking head thought the comment was cute and kept repeating it. She obviously had no clue that the comment was based on history, on truth; maybe you don’t know the history either. 

So, here it is: In 1957, Paul “Bear” Bryant was coaching Texas A&M….short story is that he had pulled the Aggies out of the doldrums and made them winners…unfortunately, Alabama, his home team, had run into some down seasons…Bryant took over the Alabama football team in 1958 and went on to become a legend in college football. 

When asked why he came back to Alabama, he replied "Momma called. And when Momma calls, you just have to come runnin'." 

Shaun Alexander was simply repeating the thought from a legendary story.

The comment jumped out at me because a lot of us don’t realize what, for each of us, momma really is. Granted, for the vast majority of us momma isn’t really…well…momma, anymore.

But, what if you understand that momma is really your key motivating factor? What if it is the thing/issue/belief/truth—or maybe, yes, a person—for whom you would do anything? You’d move mountains, change your habits, get moving, stand up to anything or anyone! 

We all know the old phrase, Who’s your daddy?


The real question, if you want the life you say you want, is…what’s your momma? What, if it/they called, would bring you runnin’?

If you like this, Like it. If you know someone who could use it, pass it on.

Friday, January 6, 2017

3 Days With Bean Eaters!!!!

Stopped by Whole Foods last night to grab some last minute supplies before the blizzard. It was a panic!!

Every register was working and the lines stretched back up into the aisles. A worrisome thought was that the longest line was in the aisle where they keep the beans. Spending 3 days snowed in with a bunch of people who’ve been living off beans is not my idea of a great weekend…especially where there’s a fireplace in use!!!!

The thought that struck me as I left (no, I’m not a line-stander so I went to Food Lion and things were fine) was that most of those people—most of us, for that matter—will spend more time planning for a couple of snow days than we will planning to have a successful life.

Think about it…when I ask people in seminars how many of them make lists to help them be more effective and efficient I’ll get, MAYBE, 1/3 of the group raising their hands. But, they’ll make a grocery list in a skinny minute.

After graduation from high school or college the vast majority of Americans never read a whole book the rest of their lives. But, they’ll stand in an aisle reading the nutrition content on a box or pull a People magazine off a rack near the register and read it.

And, when I look in people’s baskets I see chocolate chip cookies and ice cream, beer, wine and mixers. Now, I love all that stuff, but you know a bunch of those folks are going to wake up on Sunday morning, look in fridge and think, “Dang, we’re out of eggs, milk and bread.”

“But, we do have beans.”


Will someone open a window…puhleeze!!