You may think half the world is brain-dead, but in truth, there is brilliance standing on every corner, or hiding in your computer. Just for starters, listen to Rick Rigsby’s speech about the lessons he learned from a third-grade dropout. Double Wow. And I like to think about some of his thoughts. Like it doesn’t matter how long you live, it’s How You Live. That you’re not judgmental, that you show up early, (it’s better to be an hour early than a minute late, or if you arrive somewhere on time—you’re late.!) that it’s never wrong to do the right thing, and a great line: Ego is the anesthesia that deadens the pain of stupidity. Then besides Mr. Rigsby’s jewels of wisdom I’m a great believer in Admiral McRaven’s book and commencement address: “Make Your Bed: Little things that can change your life…and Maybe the world.” It’s based on the ten important things he learned as a Navy Seal. And I’m a believer. His first lesson is Make Your Bed. You start your day by taking something that’s messed up and make it orderly and neat. Mind you, I’m very spoiled. We have a wonderful, loving, I think brilliant, too, woman, who lives with us. I call her The Nanny. She says you know I'll make your bed, Senor Jim. And I say, Yes, I do, and someday, you may have to, but while I can, I'll do it. And I do—every day.
Okay, that's enough about what motivates me. I think my basic philosophy comes from ready?-my Mom. Gosh, Mary Grace White Flaherty Zabriskie, from Centralia, Illinois, made me who I am. She was a great believer in the Golden Rule: Do Unto Others as you would Have Others Do Unto You. Now, I tell you, lay that on a 4 or 5-year-old and they might nod yes, but inwardly they're going to say, Huh? I liked the thought it conveyed but didn't like the combination of words, so I rewrote it, for myself, and my daughters. Just five words and two of them are four-letter words. No, none of those naughty words you're thinking right now. Remember there are a lot of really good four-letter words: Love, Help, Pray, Save. Anyway, back to my Golden Rule, and it's really easy to follow: You Get What You Give. Think about that. If you give a helping hand, a non-judgmental ear to listen, and an understanding heart... that's what you get back. If all you do is criticize, and complain, and demand and persecute others-guess what, they give you all that back, or to say it colloquially, it comes back to bite you in the, ahem, behind.
So my philosophy isn't earth-shattering. But I would hope it's earth calming. I want to be helpful. I want to help solve problems, not make them. I want to write things that entertain (if that's the goal of a particular piece) or be helpful, sharing good advice for living a better, more satisfying life. There's another brilliant Quote I believe in my Heart and soul. Worldly wit and Bon vivant Noel Coward said, "Work is much more fun than fun." Truer words were never so Cleverly spoken. What's Your Philosophy? Share it with me. Thanks, Jim.
|MY BELOVED MOTHER AND ONE OF MY GREATEST INSPIRATIONS
Mary Flaherty, beautiful in her 40’s, also in her 70’s. Never a day passes when I do not think about her... remembering her beautiful soul.