Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Are You a Finisher?

There is some commercial where the dad proclaims to be called "The Finisher." The next scenes show him walking from room to room telling his kids to finish their vegetables, finish their homework and finish their chores.

I actually get a good feeling inside when I complete something. It could be something as simple as completing the yard work or as complex as balancing the checkbook.

I am easily entertained and amused, so it does not take a lot to entertain me. I try to appreciate the small accomplishments in life.

Life is too short to take things for granted.

Start things you like. Finish things you start.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness. That someone might need help finishing something they started.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Loving What You Do

I went to a presentation on IronRuby by John Lam and Scott Hanselman last night.

John was in Portland, Oregon, giving a presentation at the civic center and made time in his schedule to make another presentation for the Portland Area Dot Net Users Group.

John works for Microsoft in building 41; this means that John knows nothing about the Portland, Oregon area. The reason I mention this because John's ride had complications in locating the presentation site and was a bit late.

While the group was waiting for John to arrive, Scott entertained us by answering or not answering questions, as well as putting on a demonstration of some of the work that he had done in Ruby recently.

Scott's presenting skills are well worth the price of admission; in this case it was free, but it was still worth the time. Scott is full of energy and talks about a thousand miles an hour and took other questions as he was pondering and researching another question. And he actually did a pretty good job of multi-task answering.

John arrived and immediately heckled Scott as if Scott were a bad comedian. And then a quick bantering began about how a computer geek could get lost in the day and age of GPSes. The two acted like they have been friends for eons.

After a brief intermission in order to give John time to set up his computer [an Apple MacBook by the way] and presentation, we were off and running.

The energy that John brought about the product that he was helping develop was incredible.

The day of a computer geek being trapped in a dark room with a computer and geekfood [pizza, Asian food, some high caffeine beverage, and/or anything out of a vending machine] and no human contact are gone. Geekfood is still in, but today's geek must be able to group/customer face, which means speaking to people is a must.

John talked about the good, the bad and the ugly about IronRuby. He did it with such vigor that you could tell that he was not just working for a paycheck. He truly loves what he does; coding and talking about what he does [obviously not giving away any trade secrets].

It is very refreshing to see a couple of individuals who are making the most of work-life by loving what they do.

Like I have said before, if you have to work to make a living, you might as well get paid to do something that you love to do.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness. It could be as simple as displaying to the world that you love what you do.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Back to Basketball

Four Months

In the grand scheme of life, 4 months is not a long time. When you are recovering from an injury, 4 months feels like an eternity.

Last night was my first real night back playing basketball after a four month hiatus due to me braking my ankle.

I would like to describe my performance as awesome, but that would not be truthful. It was more like rusty, not so good, slow, and you-call-that-defense. I am no spring-chicken any more so it takes me longer to try to do what I used to do effortlessly. Then there are somethings I just can't do any more; my days of dunking the basketball are a distant memory.

There was a girl playing last night that even on a good night for me would have made me look pretty bad. The girl could play.

Even though my play was definitely lacking, it was still a lot of fun. Being able to fellowship with the guys made the night worthwhile.

Enjoy the good times.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Just Wait

As a kid, the words "just wait" were never a good thing.

"Just wait till your father gets home."

"I wanna go now. No, just wait."

"I wanna do this now. No, you are just going to have to wait."

"Mom. Mom. Mom." [She is talking on the phone or to someone else.] "Just wait a minute."

Where you were a kid you never wanted to hear that you have to wait. Shoot just ask a Gen-Y person today to wait and you will get the same response as when they were a little kid.

As I have gotten older I have learned that waiting is not such a bad thing and waiting could actually be the best thing to do when you are pondering a dilemma.

For example, today I had 5 hours of meetings scheduled and about 8 hours worth of work to do on top of it. To boot, I had an early in the day deadline to meet for one of my projects.

In order to have time to meet the deadline I arrived early, because one of my meetings fell right into the middle of my testing time. While I was testing, I received a notification that the meeting time was being changed to a different day, so I had more time to test in order to meet my deadline.

I was not sure exactly how I was going to get everything done, but I did not panic and I did what I could and waited for the next event to occur. So, waiting was very beneficial for me.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness. It could be as simple as telling them to Just Wait.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007


The only constant in life is change.

The quality of your life is based on how you react to change.

Not all change is bad. Now saying that, all change is not necessarily good. With your life's experience you have to decide what the change is that you are facing - is it a good change, a bad change, or one that really does not directly affect you.

Getting something new is a change. Going somewhere new is a change. Ordering something different at the restaurant is a change.

You never know if you are going to like it unless you try it. I repeat, all change is not bad.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness. They might need it; especially if they are going through a change.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Who Are You?

There is one piece of advice that I got from my father that I use daily and pass on to other people when asked. Whatever you are going to do in life, make sure that you enjoy it and do the very best you can at doing it.

Life is not always fair.

Some people are good looking, for example, George Clooney, while others are not so much.

Some people are very gifted athletes, such as Jackie Joyner-Kersey and Michael Jordan.

Some people have really nice cars, while others are fortunate enough not to be required to use public transportation.

Don't worry about what other people have or can do.

Be thankful for what you have and can do.

Like The Who sang, who are you?

Make sure that you do your best at whatever it is that you do. Enjoy what you do so you can do your best. And be thankful for all the things you do have.

I am soliciting responses. What do you do for a living? And do you like/love what you do? Are you thankful for all you have?

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness. This is your chance to show people who you are and in a positive way make people want what you have because you performed such an act of kindness.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Parental Curses

There are very few things as effective as a parental curse.

What is a parental curse, you ask?

I am glad you asked.

Remember when you were a teenager and you did something that you were not supposed to do and you were told, most likely from your mother, that she hopes that you have children just like you; this way you understand exactly all the pain that you put her through.

Chances are that whatever it was you did, in the grand scheme of things, was not all that bad, but it definitely got on your mom's last nerve. Which brings me to the curse.

If you have children or even a single child, the chances are your child(ren) have done something in life that got on your last nerve. As time passes, whatever that something was, probably does not matter that much, if at all, but you got to feel exactly what your mom was talking about. And you got a child or children just like you were.

The other curse does not affect everyone, but it did affect me. Again if you did something bad and kept at it, your mom probably told you that if you kept it up, she would stick you where the sun does not shine.

By the time I was in eighth grade I was taller than my mom; I didn't think much most of her threats - I was a teenager, I knew everything and I was taller than she was. However, now many years later, I live near Portland, Oregon - where the sun ☼ doesn't shine all that much.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness. They just might need it if they have been afflicted by the parental curse.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Sleep is overrated

There never seems to be enough time in the day to what needs to be done.

If there were not the need to:

  • work
  • sleep
  • do chores
I would have plenty of time to do all the things I want to do.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

What are you waiting for?

There is a saying in the military that goes something like "hurry up and wait."

There are a couple of ways to wait.  One is to wait for something to happen and do nothing in the mean time.  The other is to wait in anticipation and expectation and prepare for whatever it is you are waiting.

An expecting to-be-mother and father generally do not wait until the baby arrives to start getting everything ready for the new arrival.  They start preparing the room, buying or gathering the necessary equipment and items for the baby and friends throw a shower to give the baby the things needed or wanted.

Most of the time, when we are waiting on things we just kind of wait.  We don't do much other than wait for the whatever to arrive.

Imagine how much we could get accomplished if we waited with expectancy on everything.  Instead of hoping that something will arrive, change the thought process to expecting it to arrive and prepare for it in that manner.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness.  It might be something they are not expecting.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Friday the 13th - Part 2

Today is another Friday the 13th. This is beginning to feel like a movie series.

Any day is a good day if you want it to be. Today is no different than any other day, so I proclaim that today, Friday the 13th day of July, 2007, is a good day.

I do not advocate walking under a ladder. There are some superstitions that are just common sense. This is one of them.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness. They just might need it today.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Things I learned from my dog

When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.

Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride.

Never leave home without ID.

Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure ecstasy.

When it's in your best interest, practice obedience.

Let others know when they've invaded your territory.

Take naps.

Stretch before rising.

Run, romp, and play daily.

Thrive on attention and let people touch you.

Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.

On warm days, stop to lie on your back in the grass.

On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree.

When you're happy, dance around and wag your entire body.

No matter how often you're scolded, don't buy into the guilt thing and pout. Run right back and make friends.

Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.

Eat with gusto and enthusiasm. Stop when you have had enough.

Be loyal. Never pretend to be something you're not.

If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.

When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by and nuzzle them gently.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness. Even your dog likes acts of kindness.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Things you don't forget

There are three things that you won't ever forget if they happen to you. Child birth, a heart attack and kidney stones.

Child birth is one of the most memorable things a woman can go through. Through all the pain and agony, a new life is presented to the world that makes it almost worth while, I hear.

If you ever have a heart attack and you are fortunate enough to survive it, you will never forget the incident. You will always remember the symptoms so in case you ever experience them again, you will know what to do.

Kidney stones are a pain that you will never forget and hope to never experience a second time if you are unlucky enough to experience them once in your life. I had a kidney stone a little over 15 years ago. I hoped that I would never have to go through that pain again. Unfortunately, I think I got to experience the onset of another kidney stone over the weekend. The reason I say I think is because the radiologist at the hospital said there was nothing there yet. This did not make me feel any better. Needless to say, it was not a pleasant experience at the hospital and the pain continues to be unpleasant as I type.

A buddy of mine at work told me a story about his father and a kidney stone that at least gives one kidney stone a redeeming quality. While the doctor's were looking for the kidney stone in the father's abdomen region, they found an abdominal aorta aneurysm (AAA) that they normally find during an autopsy. So getting this kidney stone saved my buddy's father's life.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness.

Friday, July 6, 2007

A Friend is Moving on

Today is my friend's last day at work at the same company where I work.

The first time we worked together, we did not do a very good job of keeping in touch when he left. Thanks to modern conveniences, such as the telephone, IM, email and snail mail, we will still be able to keep in touch.

Justin is getting a wonderful opportunity to advance his career, so I wish him all the best.

When he closes down shop at the end of the day, it won't be good-bye, but truly see you and talk later.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness. A phone call, IM, email or letter is sometimes all it takes.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

4th of July

In the United States, the 4th of July is a pretty big holiday, as it should be. It is a time that we remember gaining our independence from England.

We also need to remember it as a day of independence and that our freedom is not free.

If you go to a parade where veterans from the different wars are represented, show them that you appreciate their efforts - hoot, holler, clap, stand up, or whatever suits your personality.

Make someone's day (a veteran would be good) by performing a random act of kindness. Happy 4th of July to one and all.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Footsteps in the Sand

One night a man had a dream.
He dreamed he was walking along
the beach with the Lord.

Across the dark sky flashed scenes from his life.
For each scene, he noticed
two sets of footprints in the sand,
one belonging to him and the other to the Lord.

When the last scene of his life flashed before him,
he looked back at the footprints in the sand.
He noticed that many times along the path of his life
there was only one set of footprints.
He also noticed that it happened at the
very lowest and saddest times in his life.
This bothered him and he questioned the Lord about it.

"Lord, you said that once I decided to follow you,
you'd walk with me all the way.
But I have noticed that during the most
troublesome times in my life there is
only one set of footprints.
I don't understand why when I needed you most
you would leave me."

The Lord replied "My precious, precious child,
I love you and would never leave you.
During your times of trial and suffering,
when you see only one set of footprints in the sand,
it was then that I carried you."


Monday, July 2, 2007

iPhone - coolness

My buddy John is the first in our work area to have the new iPhone. My daughter does not get to touch or even see it because I know she will want one. I am summoning all my won't power to not want to get one now; my will power is fine - it keeps saying that I will get one.

The iPhone has way too many cool features - everything from being able to call someone, which is what a phone is supposed to do, to taking pictures and rotating the way they look, to getting directions, to being able to playing music and movies in either full-screen or wide-screen format.

The coolness factor definitely is in place. However, my won't power is kicking in with some common sense because I could be completely captivated by this device and absolutely nothing else would get done.

If you have the money, time, and boredom I highly recommend that you visit a vendor or friend that has one.

Short Straw

Everything starts on the inside. If you think you are going to be a success, then you can be a success.

Did you draw a short straw, meaning that you received an assignment that everyone else is happy and relieved they did not get?

If you did, make sure your attitude is positive about the assignment and think about how good you can make the assignment and make it an assignment that everyone else wants in the future.

If you need some extra incentive, your bosses and coworkers should have extra respect for you when you complete the assignment within the time constraints and under budget.

Make someone's day and perform a random act of kindness. Someone may have drawn the short straw and really need it.


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