Thursday, September 30, 2010

Learning to discover a new world...

In every workplace, workout gym, operating room, promotional board meeting and or single person corporate gray cubical we always bump into that someone that doesn’t mind sharing a good old fashioned newly redesigned, “I’m in the moment.”

Not movement but moment.

Depending on your studies and shape of motivational engine, it easy to connect The Moment with The Zone or an act of being held within the incredible warmth of Zen; yet none of them say movement.

Former Vice President Al Gore was in The Moment when he masterminded a universal map for tree huggers, plant lovers, earth savers and the uneducated to follow a simple idea on how to better understand what Global abuse is and can do. Unlike most blessed with that heavenly feeling of Holy Cow Something Bigger Than Life is happening Batman! Mr. Gore put effort into the presentation of the message by creating a tribe of believers that spread out and moved a middle of the night thought into the realm of realism.

Mr. Gore being a political figure nabbed something from his father that's most often set aside; he learned the art of knowing the difference between telling people what to do and inciting a movement.

While growing up in teen tennis shoes I vowed to never listen to my stepfather. He wouldn’t change his way of leading, “Do it because I said so…” You can’t talk to an artist or a ship builder like that…I’m going to locate the opposite side of his reasoning and use it as a tool to better understand the reasons and purpose behind why he had to command rather than openly share.

Author Seth Godin writes, “Great leaders empower people to communicate. They establish the foundation for people to make connections, as opposed to commanding people to follow.”

One of the golden rules of radio first taught to wanna-be jocks and two speaker talkers is physically taking the time to understand the difference between "talking to" and "taking at" a potential listener. Rush Limbaugh doesn’t talk to you. He throws so much information at the image in the rearview mirror you’re forced to believe in his agenda.

I call it billboarding; how many signs along a lonely highway does it require for you to finally stop and participate? If one person tells you that Z-coil shoes comfortably erase the pain from your legs you might show some interest. If the ugly shoes with a metal coil exposed in the tail start appearing in Zumba class…now you want to own it.

But how do you learn the cultured art of talking to and not at while still holding onto the vision of creating a movement rather than an overused motion? Limbaugh’s approach has earned him enough brownie points to survive a one legged race. Through the platform of radio communications a tribe has been created therefore there is movement. As much as one assumes he's talking at you...the core source of his delivery is to you by way of constantly informing.

But how many times has a boss, parental figure or teacher set free a plan with high demands and expectations and left it sitting on your desk without participation? It’s your job or current act of survival to manipulate the forces of evil and penetrate the process only to learn it was fun the first time but every week?

Malcolm Gladwell was deeply moved by the destruction of the Berlin Wall. While the world welcomed the freedom of millions trapped behind political points and views, Malcolm found inspiration and influence in the gradual growth of a tribe that loosened the stones gaining decades of support that one day becoming unstoppable.

In 1976, my 8th grade teacher Mr. Fox once said to me, “This nation has been weakened by long lines at gas stations and the threat of a lengthy recession. There can’t be change until we decide as a people that the suffering has to stop.”

Nearly 3 ½ decades before Seth’s Gobin’s book Tribes hit shelves the mouthy war torn beyond middle aged man teaching current events to wandering teenaged minds laid out the ground work for what being part of a movement requires. What is served as a moment might feel like a gift or blessing but remains worthless until there’s movement.

Personally, I’ve found great interest in studying the makers of Monster and Red Bull power drinks. Both companies make products that alter the human mind. So do beer companies but it requires a proof of being 21 to purchase it. It’s cheaper to buy a Bud or Heineken. It’s illegal to drive while drinking alcohol but there’s no written law nor is it suggested that after having one or more power drinks you shouldn’t be driving or operating mechanical devices. The deflation of energy is like stepping into a coma which is why 5 Hour shots promote, “There’s no sudden drop.”

Power drinks are the legal cheap rush that MD 20/20 and Boones Farm wine offered at Ted Nugent concerts in the 1970’s. I can talk and talk about it all day but until there’s a movement giant signs will always influence you to buy three for $5. Steroids are illegal in professional sports and frowned upon in common man gyms and basketball games yet everyday I see average Joe’s guzzling power drinks before a workout to get their heart rate up. Take it a step further…how much caffeine do you consume a day?

Why should there be a movement if we’re all feeling pretty damn good?

The boss is coming! BRB!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Who washed their car?

I grew up thinking rainy days were Monday’s and the weekend! Winning Wednesday’s were designed to do the hump, to perform a circus style leap over the hot searing flames of pressures generated by endless I need’s, I want and give it to me now’s. Imagine my surprise when I opened my eyes and saw raining trickling down the television weatherman’s outdoor camera lens creating a kaleidoscope effect that normally turns a child’s frown into a happy face clown.

In being my traditional true Montana raised self; its time to protest! How dare we be given rain on a Wednesday! It’s the pivotal portion of the week where the average worker decides how much energy they should pour into a project knowing the nearest horizon carries with it the scent of a freshly unwrapped Saturday.

If we were living the 60’s we’d reshape the streets with protest parades featuring giant handmade signs that read, “Unfair to daydreamers! No gain when it rains! Dribble your drops elsewhere!”

This isn’t the typical late September drip, they bite! A stinging that races through the surface of your skin straight to the bone forcing the inner core of your dreams to become instantly frozen which sets free the mighty beast; the flu and cold bugs living with millions if not billions somewhere in between.

I stand in protest!

If I’ve studied the pictures of the 60’s with a keen eye and well rehearsed sense of direction, if two separate sides find that they are not agreeing both parties must dress to impress those who’ve chosen to follow. My attire is to the point! I’ve elected to wear a vividly colorful completely tasteful guitar printed Hawaiian styled shirt open to my hairless navel while swiftly moving through the halls on feet protected by open toe flip flops! Thank God I took a shower because I don’t need the other side screaming, “Ewwww stinky toes!”

Not even a second passes and the ticker mixer of a heart with its infamous beat box Hip Hop rhythms I carry pounds out loudly the love I have for all living trees and weeds; knowing of the horrid drought we’ve not by choice jumped within must learn to accept the bitter flavor of rain on a Wednesday.

Come on! Who makes up all this guilt? The last thing consumers and American workers need to hear is the clippity cloppity screeching of windshield wipers that should’ve been changed during the mid-year rains of April June and May.

Hey! Wouldn’t that be a fun game to play? What if for 52 weeks we rearranged the 12 months that make up a year?

January could fall somewhere between summer and fall. July can be the new December…Lord knows we could use the July 4th holiday after spending three months Christmas shopping. March is filled with too much wind so why not put it inside the center of summer so we can easily blow the heat away?

If they can redesign the Ipod, Ford Mustang and your banking account options every ten minutes in America, don’t you think its time we do something about the way we mosey through the same stinking 365 days of every year. If this were the NBA or NFL they’d figure out ways to trade away a few days. I’m willing to give up six Monday’s for two sunshine filled Thursday's and a full moon Friday but only if we Saturday’s can be 28 hours long followed by a three hour workday Monday.

Wanna know why there could never be such positive change? Because elected officials only decide to make a difference if dollars are somehow attached to the final process. Monday thru Friday’s are free. Saturday and Sunday’s only cost if you toss a party and the red wine mixed with a quick swing of tequila hangover is far worse than you could imagine.

January’s, February’s and the other day of the week holders don’t really exist…they’re the yellow envelope looking things on your computer screen found on the C drive. You’d think they’d be easy to reach but each time I double click the evil message reads, “You need permission from the administrator.”

If we interrupt the presentation by using three fingers at once to knock the feet free with a solid kick toward Control, Alt and Delete…what if during the rebooting we’re turned back into crying babies and there’s another 12 years of public education waiting for us?

One television news reporter brags about how the state educational lottery system has earned public schools millions of extra dollars and the next day the superintendent of the system announces the possible closure of several places of lessons being taught. I’d drop out in Kindergarten. Even Carlos Mencia won’t steal this nation’s educational joke.

It seems too easy to pick up and run but where? Housing costs are a nightmare, there’s no security in any career and NASA isn’t building space ships anymore.

If you were a Pilgrim dressed up in Thanksgiving clothes and someone shouted, “I have found a new land where there’s no taxes to be paid! Religion can be of many! Bosses have no power! Gas prices are cheap and Christmas feels like everyday!”

Would you drop what you’re doing and chase the dream? Or have you accepted the idea that today is just another rainy Wednesday and there’s absolutely nothing you can do about change?

Whatever your decision...I will always believe in you first…

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Blame your silence on the experts...

It’s extremely entertaining to walk through Michaels, Hobby Lobby, Home Depot and Lowes hardware store and listen to people dream, “We want to build this onto our garage. I would love to paint on something other than a canvas. If I superglue this tiny piece to that object…can you imagine how people will react to my Thanksgiving center piece.”

Through Public Television, HGTV and the Cooking Channel, once shy yet incredibly creative souls like Bob Ross have located reason to reach through the flat screen and give a passerby hope in the field of expression.

Chef Gordon Ramsey has done more for having dinner at home with the family than the millions spent yearly teaching kids the importance of eating properly in public school.

I’m not an expert in the business of putting art on display. My job is to be the silent wolf who patiently watches a wish slip from the curves of privacy onto the lips of sharing. Shaped are the ideas of bringing creative flow to the edge of the waters so pure but because the majority of us don’t practice art…the delivery seems unnatural to the muddied corners of the circles we keep.

It took nearly 18 years to open my songwriting musical life to my wife. It’s always been there! I still have cassette tapes of the high school band in 1977 and faded colored pictures of a solo adventure with a three string poor mans guitar cuddling up to my arm pit at the age of six or seven.

At 48 the volume became too loud to hear anything else. By giving myself permission to explore, the mountains seemed to fade until the day a door refused to open; I can still feel the pressure of my heart taking a sledge hammer and wreaking havoc on the rib cage…it was time to share the dream with the person wearing the ring.

It's all too easy to go squeaky clean silent when around those we choose to love. I bet if we learned to share our creative secrets mroe there would be less divorce.

A few weeks ago I spent time with a fellow martial artist at a new gym; he was brilliantly excited about getting the opportunity to practice each lesson taught in a place built especially for raised heart rates and walls that could withstand the beating from vocal chords trained to release powerful bursts of energy. The student of Kenpo asked, “Where do you find the confidence to display your forms in a place where those who don’t do martial arts tend to point laugh and stare?”

I was shocked, my fears weren’t alone, “Confidence? I’m horrified to break out in a black belt form in front of people that have no clue what I’m doing. I feel like a white belt in a world oversaturated by Simon Cowell wanna be’s. I never let go of the fear. The only reason why you saw this was because if I stop doing the forms the inner lining of my core energy will disappear leaving each dream with no reason to want to leave my house.”

It’s not difficult to be an artist or someone who’s creative. Difficulty sets in when the rest of you decides it’s bored.

Practice makes better practice. Mistakes are required to fine tune the thin lines that make up the eyes of the world you’ve been introduced to. But nothing silences a person faster than an expert.

Instantly the human mind turns off the seemingly experienced. I’ve always believed the world’s greatest hitter in baseball Ted Williams couldn’t teach his DNA clone how to put a ball over the wall. Sure it’s a memorible experience to learn for a while but sudden quick twists in the hands of time reveals to the student billions of doors of other opportunities because its hatefully more difficult to please the instructor than it is to have fun.

2002 one belt shy of becoming a black belt in Karate due to the economic conditions my Sensei elected to leave the circle. A green belt stood up and said, “I’ll teach us from here.” Now you know how I got into Tae Kwon Do. My reasons for departure in 2010 has nothing to do with the Master and everything to do with the student wanting a stronger spiritual martial arts life. It is the foot, fist, way…and my journey at the point of testing for 3rd degree is to seek the message and not the destruction. They don’t award students with higher belts for seeking a path that changes another human’s life. The expert no longer believed in the vision handed to me.

I love making mistakes! A true artist learns how to better hide them on a canvas. In time, those who study the display can easily see why the yellow paint in the corner was spread into place…to seize control of the wandering imagination so that you didn’t recognize the facial hair on the balding man, it didn’t seem out of line with the story a painting shares.

During a crazy stupid day of writing daily pages I spilled ink on the books I keep…it took the shape of the perfect wine glass. Rather than scream, holler and pitch a fit the size of Alaska, the imagination was instantly intrigued by the presence of something I’d never seen; Mont Blanc ink from an ugly thin bottle had the capability of moving me in a way that words couldn’t explain.

This unexpected act from the universe arrived three days after I had experienced a horrible reading at a major book store where the writing artists present were restless with their thoughts and vowed to be published or to give it all up now. Before Nook, Kindle and the popularity of the World Wide Web…we had writing circles of poets, songwriters, long form storytellers and people who wandered in because it’s pretty damn cool to be snoopy sometimes.

I’d say nearly 90% of those who attended were closet writers that trusted no one not even themselves. The act of displaying their creation was a painful chore but through some invisible chord it had become their vow to publish or go silent. We sat inside the rows of books watching as potential clients walked by but rarely if ever did anyone purchase the subjects they where writing.

Its important to know that I never acted as the expert nor do I when students from Broadcasting schools arrive to learn more. Before anything begins I find no fear in sharing with them, “It’s my goal to point out the reality of what you seek…it will become your decision to stay or leave.”

Art is borrowed. From building, planting, painting, writing, speaking to dancing…it arrives in the middle of a whistle and keeps stealing your breath until one morning you wake up and there’s silence. What many don’t realize is that creative flow is grown in circles. Rather than generate the energy to formulate a block…listen to the heart that beat so loudly when something new arrived. Its not that it became tired of making mistakes or feared the next judge in line fully capable of inviting more tears than the last.

Art is borrowed. Live it for a while then shake hands and let it go. Trust me…it will return more educated about the world to which you live within.

That’s not an expert sharing those views…if you look down at my aging feet…we’re wearing the same shoes.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Too insane for the Brady Bunch and Partridge Family...

It’s Monday! The single day of seven when employees by the billions waddle, wade and stumble their way back to a workplace that’s garnished the energy of every dream from the darkest corners of your soul turning it into an unkind act of unfiltered failure, fear meeting survival, chocolate overtaken by raspberry preservatives. Whatever the artwork, it ain’t feeling right on the corner of Walk and Don’t Walk.

A quick stop at the newly designed convenience store this morning put me in the front row of a budding concert of passerby’s whose faces resembled waking monsters. Their clothing wrinkled, shoulders slouched, their walk a bit pouty; if I had just dropped in from space the picture painted would be of a scrunched up and shredded orange that had been forgotten in the hot Carolina sun.

Cars and trucks come with dents and dings and front seats of vehicles resemble portable offices with no place to pee. Basically meaning…life in general has become the job.

CBS This Morning did a feature yesterday based on accepting the new normal. A reality piece based on how difficult it continues to be to convince this current workforce that we aren’t going back to the land of used to be.

I remember what it used to be in Montana 1968 and a few chapters thereafter; my stepfather Joe would mumble, fumble and foil his way through the kitchen each morning complaining about what didn’t get finished over the weekend? As kids we’d sit in the living room or nestle up to the mirrored image in the bathroom and hear his ill feelings loudly torching the bread of his lightly fried bologna sandwich the mother figure had made for him an hour earlier.

At that age, I believed going to work was a prison sentence. How dare he be tortured to leave his family at 7am on a Monday and expect there to be togetherness at the dinner table less than twelve hours later. Wow! When was the last time that happened?

Dinner has become a series of choices, The Olive Garden has all you can eat pasta, Golden Coral has far better salads with endless rows of steaks, pot roast and mashed potatoes, Taco Bell gets away with selling candy coated Spanish food for 79 cents, there’s all you can eat at China Buffet and Chic Fil A is never open on Sundays.

Why do we eat out so much? Because macaroni and cheese boxes claim to feed four to six and we feel guilty when it barely reaches beyond one. Meat without the seasonings are blanketed with newspaper print of always being connected to the latest disease, toss in the veggies and most recently eggs and the end result is a country that fears eating. So we choose to stuff our faces with Doritos, Lays Potato Chips, Snickers because it has peanuts so it must be good and a flu shot because the stomach tends to be spinning a lot lately. Let’s nip this in the butt right now…there’s too much junk food available to get sick now.

I’m not saying we’re eating badly. I’m not an expert. I tend to react to what’s being read on the teleprompter during the 5 and 11 o’clock news. Personally, I tend to enjoy the food better when the restaurants rating is below 90…there are some things we shouldn’t know and whatever they’ve chosen for flavor can’t be any different than having breakfast, lunch and dinner on a real farm in Ranchester, Wyoming where we’d milk the cows and dump it into a pitcher in the fridge before serving it fresh. The cream that rose to the top was scraped off and turned into butter. There were always flies in the kitchen that featured a wood burning stove and air conditioning on farm was open windows blessed with spider eggs, bird feathers and some germ that traveled hundreds of thousands of miles and was tossed down through the trees during last nights storm.

Uncle Willie is now in his 80’s and is still built like a rock. Both his parents lived deep into their 90’s and I’ve yet to pull from personal memory banks the videos that showcase those two wild beasts force feeding themselves with pills and liquids to keep the heart ticking and the cholesterol at the correct level.

People don’t hate their jobs in America…your neighbor, cousin, sister and whomever else you can stuff into the frame sitting on the piano dislikes what they’ve become and the job is always going to be the innocent bystander that can take the punch and keep giving nothing back.

We are a nation of incredible ability silenced by the makers of false hopes and highs. Depression is what you feel when life becomes normal. Dr. David called me the perfect example of one who is addicted to excitement…if it’s not readily available I tend to create it. Like 92% of American households that requires the art of using ones mouth torking the tension of relationship be it at a business or somewhere in the halls that wind through your home. Why? Boredom!

We aren’t addicted to fast food in this country…we’re convinced that we’re bored. Drug and alcohol abuse comes from boredom. We’re not bothered by $10 movie tickets and $12 buckets of popcorn because it means we won’t be bored. We’re still the two year old children that drove mothers insane. We want it now and if we don’t get it that means we’re headed toward the shopping row at Wal-Mart labeled Boredom; buy anything in the store and get six cases of boredom free.

People hate their jobs because it’s become too expensive to feed our boredom. While some hoist their life and style into seven day work weeks, theft and daily acts of begging are the other pages society keeps. The days of being free to blow with the wind are no longer part of what CBS called the normal. The career you’ve been attempting to design nearly three quarters of your life is nothing more than a conversation you’ll save for a grandchild who’ll softly ask, “Is there anything you didn’t get to do while growing up?”

I’m currently in the midst of enjoying the 16th seasonal change outside this writing window here at the radio station. The leaves are yellowing, a few a bit drier than normal, maybe one or two look as if they’ll be turning red soon or like sly fox they could be sneaky and go totally golden or bright orange. Total cost…free. Boredom level…nowhere to be found.

There’s a seriously high chance I won’t be consuming fast food today.

Stop chasing your tail and locate the character that makes it swish like a cat on a playful rainy Monday. Bat the air with your paws pretending to catch an invisible bird or mouse then lay back and purr like a human figure is rubbing the curves of your fuzzy tummy.

Cough, cough, gag, cough, hike the back up high, cough, burp, gag, gag…it took forever to get rid of that fur ball. Let’s get back to living.

Friday, September 24, 2010

We allow too many to sing for us...

Best selling author Brian Andreas writes, “She waved at all the people on the train and later when she saw they didn’t wave back, she started to sing songs to herself and couldn’t remember having a better day.”

I can’t help but wonder if we’ve stopped sharing songs with the children inside us. It sounds like a Julia Cameron Artist Way influenced question but through all the plastic walls we penetrate there must be some sort of truth in the soils that hold the original seeds to every dream we keep hidden from the world.

Laughingly I make fun of my current endeavors of being in a recording studio laying down the tracks for twelve songs while embarrassingly running from the chapters of the punk kid with a bowl styled haircut that once stood on giant haystacks in Ranchester, Wyoming pretending there were 500,000 screaming festival fans singing along the way they once did with Dylan, Lennon and Crosby Stills and Nash.

That kid could find happiness anywhere! Then one day you wake up and you’re expected to take everything serious. Being serious comes with a price; drop your dreams and build better foundations that guarantee an income with dental and health insurance.

I’m deeply inspired by Home Depot employee and Charlotte native Tommy Dicarlo, all he ever wanted to do was sing. He didn’t have a band so he settled for karaoke. It’s proved to be the missing musical link to the salvation felt when standing on a stage readied for an amateur performance. Millions of young boys and girls are set free from high school every year holding onto the idea of one day becoming something in a world of constant change. Set aside are the inner aspiration of gripping drum sticks or wrapping your greasy finger prints around the neck of a Hummingbird acoustic; its melts away quicker than a Popsicle held by a messy faced child standing outside on a 102 degree summer day.

It doesn’t matter how low you turn down the radio or how far you shove a CD into a player each push, shove and influence to turn your back doesn’t erase that scoop of goop that whispers to you, “I want to hear you sing…now do it again and again.”

There’s something about being on a live microphone that brings the sweet sounds of true soul from a tossed away childhood that mysteriously connects with a passerby who unexpectedly found themselves stopping and taking note of passion versus just doing it to have something to do because life’s boring.

Tommy’s a 70’s child who mastered the fine art of perfecting a simple self belief, “I can do it.” Do what? Harness a better sale at Home Depot? Create an unforgettable relationship with customer’s that guarantees the store will keep its highly touted reputation?

Hidden away in the darkest corners of the world of Tommy and only released during karaoke nights was a smoldering obsession to give fans of the rock group Boston a sound that time stole from us when news arrived that leader singer Brad Delp was no longer with us. Nothing hurts more than the echoes that remain in the aftermath of losing the voice that takes your shy self to a level of performance that makes you scream like a rock star while driving home or humming like a bird in the bathtub with suds tickling your nose.

Tommy’s daughter convinced him to put his Boston performances on You Tube and that decision floated through the universe like chocolate ice cream meeting birthday cake. Band leader Tom Sholtz just happened to be surfing the web and time stood still.

What is it about music that sucks the air right out of your lungs? How can a single note steal from your common sense and leave you in a state of addiction as the rest of you becomes an act of wanting to sell everything just to feel it again and again? What if Lennon and McCartney were inspired to write due to the song of a bird who then would get credit in the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame?

“She waved at all the people on the train and later when she saw they didn’t wave back, she started to sing songs to herself and couldn’t remember having a better day.”

Three weeks ago I sat in the recording studio with Alan believing in the spirit released from his finely tune guitar—the moment I let go of the worries a Cancer holds too close to their visionary tracks…nothing seemed important except to take from the air lyrics from a song written by my very good friend Gary in 1979. I remember nestling up to the microphone attempting to locate a melody and into Pro-Tool you hear me say, “Come on Gary I need your participation.” And from the fog the child’s face reappeared.

I’m not going to write that we lost Gary to a drug overdose because its too cliché for Rock n Roll but all too true in the history of my personal hall of fame. Until just recently his music lived on a light blue cassette tape stuffed in a microphone carrying case with orange tape spooling around like a separate universe. I can still see him pressing his palms into the pages of a king sized notepad hoping to seize from the wind a hum or two to share with a world he’d never get to see.

Maybe I’m wrong…at 48 I could be deaf. I see young, old and plenty in the middle tapping their toes or swinging their hips but I almost never see lips moving to a rhythm and tone that lifts from your seeded soil those songs that always invited happiness on the rainiest of days chilled with fear, lack of love and a desire to keep reaching when the rest of the world had already given up hope.

What if today…you began to sing?

I will always believe in you first….

Thursday, September 23, 2010

I love the way you speak...

I love words. I’m not picky. Don’t mind if they come with two letters or twenty two. I love the sight, sound, smell and feel of words and the way they're heard inside our heads, hearts and other body parts that become part of the participation race to be entertained, loved and healed and or whatever words do to you and those who make up your circle.

Shakespeare was given permission to make up his own words. One of the best books I’ve read is his dictionary. It teaches a wandering mind how to take a word like butt and give it more than a crack down the middle.

People tend to laugh at me after finish reading, calling my works too far out there. My most recent book Another 1021 Thoughts was edited by Lisa Alessandra who writes: Your writing expresses complex thoughts and at times a stream of consciousness style that can be difficult for the reader to follow. It was a challenge to maintain the delicate balance between touch and don’t touch and when in doubt I left it alone.

Those are the words that tend to silence the art right out of a persons frame of mind. Shrugging the shoulders, I picked up her point of view and stayed true to the style that was given to me while walking through an empty field connecting Ponderosa Elementary School in Billings, Montana to the back roads of a child’s vigorous imagination.

Sitting across from Maggie two weeks ago I expressed, “If Shakespeare and Twain were given permission to write with words any way they so chose…I too want to play by the same rules.”

To which she replied and I do respect her openness and always dependable honesty, “You aren’t Shakespeare.”

Julia Cameron constantly reminds each of us to gain the confidence to display your art so that we can learn to ignore criticism. Although I’m still horribly injured by the treatment of an art gallery in New Orleans…the lesson learned is that life isn’t a Disney movie. Rather than wishing we should be moving toward the areas that dreams tend to build in the middle of a sleepless night.

Two years ago I was asked to be Samuel Langhorne Clemens…one of seven children from a Missouri raised family whose life and style depended on the presentation and flow of the mighty Mississippi river. Those experiences put ink in the pen and life in the pages of books that continue to be masterpieces in American history. The museum was in need of a crisp clear Southern accent that could be understood by travelers not familiar with the elongated bent notes that have become the shapes of our communication in the over heated shadows of a southern trail. Becoming Mark Twain was an experience I hold dearly because everything he was then came through to these modern times. When he wrote about the river I not only saw it but could smell the dead fish mixed in with the chopped up grasses and nasty brown and black mud swirled together like soup by the giant paddle ships that made transportation the only way to move during his time.

The problem with today’s paperback books is simple; they read like an Aerosmith song…they all look and sound the same. Originality is dead in the world of writing.

I can drive from Charleston to Gastonia and hear six different styles of the southern accent. I was shocked to return home to Montana and hear a Wisconsin influence. If Sarah Palin is from Alaska why does she carry a North Dakota sound? Because she’s from the home of the great potato Idaho. The Pacific Northwest does have an accent which was proudly displayed in the Oscar award winning flick Fargo.

My good friend Nate constantly tells me, “How you write is how others will perceive you. You want people to follow you through social networking and it begins with being able to put the right words in the correct formation.”

It reminds me of the day that radio program director Rob once sternly shoved into my on-air presentation, “You can’t win in the ratings race until you stop being a boy from Montana and start picking up the way we talk in the Carolinas.”

I love words. I’m not picky. Don’t mind if they come with two letters or twenty two. I am deeply bothered though when bosses say, “Can I have a word with you?” Its at that moment I want to grab an old fashioned Websters Dictionary and point to the only word they can use during our moment of togetherness.

Words…we can’t live with them or without them. One of the most heart wrenching words of all time is hypocrite. We all know what a hypocrite is but do we know where the physical word arrives from? Super J uses it in the big book. But it was through his younger year working environment that he was introduced to it…the Hypocrites were a group of actors who’d perform until the sweat was no more…after which they’d stand in front of the audience and remove their masks asking for money or they wouldn’t leave the stage. Two faces…performer versus beggar and or business person. Admitting you live one way only to learn you are a much different person in the chapters of a different book.

Words take people to far away places without having to go through irritating security at overcrowded airports.

Nineteen people from Singapore pulled into my blog yesterday, 11 from Indonesia, 9 from Egypt, 3 from South Korea and 1 from Germany. My mother has never read my writing. If my daily goal was to find the words that inspire only my mother the universe would never get to meet the Shakespeare and Twain inside of me.

I will not write the next great novel but that single person in Germany might be inspired try today.

I fricken love words!

I will always believe in you first…

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

More money is spent on personal wars than real wars....

It’s completely natural to be mentally and physically involved with emotion when something happens not to your liking to you, your family and or community. The first reaction is to instantly invite change without using tremendous amounts of power; therefore we rely on others to bring the energy to the unexpected game at play.

Stop! Count to twenty two! Race to the restroom and flush the toilet three times!

It’s completely natural to mentally and physically allow your emotions to get involved with moments of dislike and sour taste but practicing the fine art of innocent bystanders such as children, coworkers, neighbors, brothers and sisters is nothing more than scraping the needle on a turntable/record player across The Eagles Greatest Hits not once but two hundred times.

People think I’m insane but the shape of your eyes tells me to take cover.

Thanks to Face Book, Twitter, My Space, Texting and minute by minute updates inside the assumed protective world of emails; it’s become our willingness to wear our weight on the shoulders holding up the ticking thinker with bat ears on the side geared toward pulling in more reasons to be depressed, sick to your stomach, hateful of your job and whatever else is going to be compared to the ugly feeling felt.

It’s human nature to compare your whoops and oh my Gods to each person you meet making their pitfalls and spin outs highly more earth shattering; by days end you’re having a brilliant performance because everything you’ve done is no where near as bad as theirs. One problem; the people you unknowingly took down because they felt compassionate enough to listen, help heal and deliver you to a higher mountain of peace and serenity now feel like crap and without choice are forced to carry your weight on their shoulders.

It’s got to stop! The world isn’t your babysitter, psychologist, parental figure or best friend. Let’s get one thing straight, the only reason why the human race exudes the energy to be nice to each other is because we’re taught to love thy neighbor; in the real world where bears make potty in the woods, the vicious cycle of survival is based on the strong and never the weak.

No matter how bad your heart hurts and your dreams feel empty and cold; your daily if not hourly goal should always be to look deeply into the nature of what upsets the presence of your path to create a mindful and compassionate response. Money doesn’t buy happiness. Having 4,000 friends on Face Book doesn’t guarantee you the Mayors job in the cities you keep. The idea of wanting to feel accepted has become this nation’s worst addiction with a new high waiting impatiently each time you reach to turn on the computer or cell phone.

It’s human nature to shout out commands. I grew up hating my stepfather because the only way he knew how to talk to me was through orders sharply delivered by a mouth so big the airport in Billings gave private tours to visitors in search of the seven wonders of the world.

What I didn’t want to do was grow up to be him. I buried myself in religious studies only to realize, “Holy cow! The preacher man is yelling too! Look at those arms flying in the air! It must be ok to scream…”

The power of authority doesn’t have to be aggressive and overbearing; mistakes are supposed to be made or we’d still be cave people running around half naked with chunks of squared rocks and wood holding up carts that don’t move.

Learning to be patient is a trick parents use to softly remind you that time doesn’t always deliver dreams to their proper place on the pedestal. Practicing patience as an adult is nothing more than the reintroduction of the two year old freshly dipped into a vat of chocolate and a mid afternoon espresso.

More adults want it now than every child featured on this planet. The only difference, adults come with power happy positions that strike out at you like knives headed for Harrison Fords head in Indiana Jones. We’ve accepted the idea that giving up is survival. Tossing away your ambitions for another person’s checking account is the new American dream. You either buy into the process or walk.

Ladies and gentleman…there’s a lot of suffering going on in this country and nobody has the courage to step forward and say, “I’m going to stop hurting like hell.” Sickness levels continue to reach all time highs because the mind body and soul doesn’t know if its coming or going and the moment its figured out, you pass out from exhaustion only to wake up ten minutes later to feed another person's wants and desires.

It’s human nature to be unskillful in our guidance but in the process we’ll learn how to share in a way that doesn’t create suffering. In being so open with our emotions we give reason to everyone to turn and walk away from us. I should never be able to read your mind thirty feet from these fingertips.

Three virtues are required in the construction of a brilliant day; the virtue of cutting off, the virtue of loving and the virtue of insight.

Cut off your anger, your craving and ignorance. I called a very good friend yesterday who is seriously down and out. Bluntly I said, “As a human I have compassion for you but as a fellow artist I stand not above you but near you and remind you that being an artist gives you permission to create in the places you feel pain.”

The virtue of loving is accepting, forgiving and embracing. Never once did I feel embarrassed or required a need to run from my mentally challenged brother. I accepted that we weren’t the perfect family. I embraced the idea of learning more which has helped me realize there’s not a soul on this earth who isn’t challenged mentally.

The virtue of insight is being able to see in someone’s eyes the uninvited changes one tends to experience…seek not to fault your friend but empower them with an avenue of positive vibrations. Be the first to say, “Hello.” Be the last to say, “Have a great night.” But do not jump in the hole with them or the world has been gifted with two states of depression.

Learn to look deeply before reacting even if it means racing into the bathroom to create what those on the outside will assume was a triple flush. Step out of that room laughing your head off and shout it out loud, “Whew! Now that I’ve got that out of me…it’s time for a beautiful day! Quick! Someone come shake my hand!”

I will always believe in you first…

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

How to finally get over it...

I didn’t realize this but new studies show that being a “Team Player” stifles your creative end result. Helping others achieve success steals from your personal goals often leaving you depressed, confused and several miles off what you assumed was the right path.

I first bumped into this thought process while studying the words of former Philadelphia 76er’s owner Pat Croce who vibrantly pointed out how unimportant being a “Team Player” is. It doesn’t have the potential; it without a doubt the energy to generate an avenue for the lazy to become weaker and the strong to locate ample space to discuss last night’s game.

I’m often accused of being a loner. Laughingly I point out that my process of doing has yet to position itself in the center of a team that sees where I’m going. I’m the kid on the playground that doesn’t play tether ball or four square; the visionary that walks below the tall 200 year old Oaks wondering if a leaf finds fascination in feeling the sensation of falling during an extremely important part of the year.

Team work for me is a joke. The moment you’re forced to depend on someone’s dedication and loyalty is an agreement that far exceeds the expectations of marriage. Once those vows are shared it’s a nonprofit organization but in the world of business survival, a working relationship feeds the pocket with a canal of loose change and without a doubt there’s always a team player more willing to take then give…which in return silences your endeavor to maintain success.

I live and work by a single rule self dubbed The Beatles. Four diverse guys with enormous amounts of visibly different talent and yet there was harmony. If Lennon had chosen to silence McCartney you might not be singing Yesterday. Paul once said, “I never feared taking my music to John. I knew who I was and knew he’d make my music better.” Lost but not forgotten is the impact that each of them invited after the divorce. George Harrison helped to raise millions of dollars for Bangladesh while continuing to inspire guitarists that arrived decades after his inception and through his willingness to share music continues to change the face of current disasters.

I’ve yet to read the radio book that tells the true tales of a pied piper. Publishers aren’t interested in the battle wounds required to make a dent in an industry that’s endured more changes and challenges than any other medium and it still continues to hold up its arms with fierce fire shooting from its nose. It doesn’t require a Team Player to enhance your interest to listen—radio is still visual pictured by a passerby and ultimately it’s the weekend or late night talent on the air that’s creatively designed the canvas that’s given birth to a safe place for your imagination to travel.

It may have taken a team of people to clear the way for a single thought to travel the distance between a control board and your car stereo but ultimately the loner has carved out the connection.

Look what happens on television when two and sometimes three news anchors spout their waves of thought all over your flat screen…count how long it takes for you to tune out. Mike Edwards used to tell me, “People don’t know why they find dislike in a broadcast…they just know they don’t like it. Your job is to make sure you don’t provide that stage.” He didn’t say “Our” job…he said “Your” job.

I pulled into an RV outlet one afternoon basking on the idea of letting go of the world to dine on the wonders of nature. The sales rep had me until the team playing manager walked onto the scene and boldly told me how bad the economy is and that with prices like this the unit will be gone tomorrow. I had no problem looking the rep in the eyes and calmly saying, “You had me at hello but lost me when you decided that you needed him to seal the deal.”

The banking industry has a CEO not CEO’s. It’s called a Department Head not heads. If we are to find truth and faith in research than the releasing of there being no true purpose behind investing in Team Work should be looked upon as being a tool. The report didn’t say we shouldn’t work together. It viably points out that dumping all your Doritos into the chip bowl doesn’t guarantee you something to pour your salsa on during the big game.

Players bring things to the table. Team Players kick the chair, mumble while stumbling through the hallway, hated the idea of having to wake up so early and usually take two hour lunch breaks or munch a bunch of snacks at their desk where communicating to the client. What they don’t see, a client can feel inside the depths of their presentation.

Players are leaders. Team Players are followers. Players calmly walk up to a Wal-Mart manager and gently share “You spend millions of dollars in advertising every Christmas promoting how your guests never have to wait in long check out lines and in the off season I’m spending fifteen minutes wondering why I shopped you and not Target. Am I supposed to believe the only money you want from me is what I might make this December?”

It opens gates…

Oh! Speaking of Wal-Mart…those electric fans in front of the cashier are purchased by the minimum wage employee. I asked, “Do you take it home with you after the shift is completed?” Shaking her head from side to side she said, “No…the majority of us can’t afford this fan so we’ve learned to share it.”

That’s not team work…that’s a Player who saw a need then decided to share. Leaders are born everyday…even at Wal-Mart. Know the difference and start having a better day at work. If you’re depressed, angry and torn a part…before you quit, decide first to participate as a player and not a follower.

I believe in you…

Monday, September 20, 2010

Insert really weird title so you'll read the story below...

When did Gaffney move to South Carolina?

I immediately woke up this morning, swiftly sitting up straight, hit the rewind on the DVR and played it over and over; the newscaster had some how pushed hard enough through the world I keep and penetrated the strings controlling the brain. A quarter century in the 24th largest radio market and never once did it occur to me that the world’s most famous peach water tower is comfortably positioned in Gaffney, South Carolina.

Guess I’m guilty of the there, their, they’re disease. Not to be confused with the read/read syndrome when you stop thinking about if you’ve read a book or you’re set to read one. We just do to do and in doing we don’t have to think too hard about doing.

We travel so much between the Carolina’s that each city’s whereabouts no longer seem important. I rarely hear someone say, “I’m headed to Charleston, South Carolina.” It’s just Charleston, Myrtle Beach, Columbia, Boone or Asheville.

Isn’t that why they’re called the Carolina Panthers? It was Mr. Richardson’s way of saying, “This isn’t Charlotte’s NFL team nor does it belong solely to North Carolina. We are the Carolina Panthers!”

I totally get that…sharing is the first lesson taught in life. Until you’re gifted with a wild sister two years younger and the thought of lightly tossing the ball toward the evil being the parental figures introduced becomes a full fledged knock down battle in the center of the living room floor usually followed by a solid, “Mom!”

What happens if I don’t want to share Gaffney with South Carolina? It’s on I-85 which moves through my town and state therefore through association it is what it is…Gaffney, North Carolina.

This is where the confusion comes in…it took the longest time for me to figure out Gastonia wasn’t part of our southern sister. I figured if you’re traveling south, somewhere along the trail you crossed the boarder. We do it at Carowinds! North side, South side! Billions of pictures have been taken of visitors to the park who find it fascinating to be in two different states at the same time.

I guess this explains why I keep getting speeding tickets cruising into Gaffney. The entire planet knows the South Carolina Highway Patrol is a group of happy people willing and able to hand rule breakers a pocket emptying reminder of how serious they are about traffic safety.

At 4:30 this morning, the generator wasn’t computing, these lion colored eyes lit up the bedroom like the lighthouse on Cape Hatteras trying to figure out how an entire city could pack their bags and move to a completely different region.

Then I got to thinking, “Why aren’t entire communities doing that?”

They’re always switching teams in the pro leagues! I couldn’t tell you the last team Michael Jordon played with. I just know he’s 100% Chicago Bulls! Then again, he did play baseball for a summer, he managed the Wizards and I think he played and now he owns the Bobcats. For all I know he’s the Mayor of Gaffney, North Carolina!

In a perfect world it would be nice to drop the state by state identity; Cheyenne is Cheyenne and Love Valley is…is…I think near Statesville, North Carolina. I’m defeating my own purpose!

My sister lives near California, Maryland. I thought We the People stood proud on the thought of being original. The most common name for a town in America is Riverside. It’s being used in 46 of the 50 states; followed by Centerville, Fairview and Franklyn. Sorry Gastonia…the folks out west just don’t get it but the dude on 60 Minutes last night referred to your city as a place to locate football players.

City names are like human names; they have to be attached to a person place or thing or they mean nothing. My bosses name is Nick. If I run outside screaming his name 4.5 billion Nick’s might come running. I once had a dog named Nick. I refuse to let my boss lick my face and I’m not going to scratch his fuzzy tummy.

I about passed out when the makers of the Twilight series officially declared one of their characters to be called Aro. I wanted to stand up and protest, “That’s my name! Get your own!” But fifteen Roberts, Cindy’s and one Juniqua Lynn would stand up and order me to bite it like a vampire.

As you can tell…I’m a little upset that Gaffney isn’t part of the North Carolina family. Wish I could blame it on GPS, Droid, Iphone and the farmer at the market who told me to cross two sets of tracks and then take a right at the stop sign, go two miles until I see a bald headed chicken then make a U turn.

I just assumed…which has made an ass out of you and me. I’ve never understood that terminology except to say I don’t have to blame myself first. Obviously “assume” is a man created word. But what state is it located? Let’s look under confusion.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Stop looking at me or I'll tell Mom!

Brian Andreas writes, “I used to believe my father about everything but then I had children myself and now I see how much stuff you make up just to keep yourself from going crazy.”

Am I the only insane grown man who can’t find the proper plastic to wrap around my imaginary world? I’m incredibly guilty of not finding pleasure in fantasizing, locating truth in reality more. Suddenly I feel as if I’ve become the stepfather Joe who couldn’t crack a smile in the center of the world’s funniest joke.

Seriously! Sitting in the coliseum watching Disney On Ice I’ll break out in a conversation with a kid based on using the proper strings to keep the skates tight followed by a story fed by rivers of trips and stumbles put into play during my hockey days. Somewhere along the line the pants legs will be hiked up to show off the operation scars only to hear the kid shout, “Shut up! Oh my God who sold me these seats?”

Many times I wish life would’ve blessed me with a father who made things up…I would’ve spent less time trying to figure out how to dream.

While teaching at a Broadcasting school the headmaster pulled me aside and gently asked, “What’s up with you and Herbie? He’s complaining about you putting too much focus on grasping what radio really is which has forced him to think twice about selecting it as a career.”

Gulp! I’m a buzz kill! America’s Got Talent is my proof! Attended a movie premiere Tuesday night totally missing out on Prince Poppycock’s final attempt at reaching the big time; did I pull my mind body and soul into the DVR last evening to catch up with the rest of world? No! Instead of having fun…the realist in me waited longer than normal to see the finals so I could push fast forward through the commercials and get to the winner quicker than thunder creates lightning…only to be completely disappointed with this years crowned champion.

No wonder restaurants seat me in the back next to the bathroom. This would explain why my martial arts master puts me up against the 500 pound monsters…its his legal way of kicking my tail back to Montana, then up to Victoria, BC…down to the Rock n Roll Hall of Fame straight into my front yard in the Carolinas only to hear me say, “Wow…do you realize if you would’ve picked you knee up higher that kick would’ve landed a little closer to my fat mouth?”

I’m completely jealous of author Brian Andreas having a father who created stories that weren’t true. I might have become a real man on the moon rather than a dufus that tipped the doghouse over and pretended it was Apollo 13. I can’t imagine what the neighbors thought when I’d on purposefully walk in slow motion over to a horse apple pile and plant the United States flag in it officially declaring, “We did it! NASA is there a Dairy Queen nearby?”

Page through my daily writing and its nothing more than a human being documenting the arrival of mood swings and how to bend around mountains taller than Tetons’ of Wyoming. Constant words written include, “Two generations from today a punk teenager connected to the veins that keep me alive will be wasting time in his Grandmothers attic and come across this trash and think what?"

If Stepfather Joe had been a little more creative in his story sharing I might have invented the Ipod! President Obama may have called on me to bail the banks out. I could've said, "Stop investing money and energy in American Businesses that outsource their success to countries too far away to identify on a globe." We still use those right? No wonder the jobs are going there! Most CEO’s couldn’t find Waxhaw on a map…they depend too much on a manmade GPS system.

Are you too much of a realist or do you allow fantasy to play its game inside your walls of fame? I’d be telling a major league George Washington fib if I didn’t say every time I crank open a radio station microphone I don’t pretend it’s the most unforgettable day on earth. I’ve never had the courage or strength to be anything more than a seed for a great mood coming through those speakers. It’s a trick learned from legendary funny man Foster Brooks who said, “I don’t play like I’m drunk…I put focus on being drunk and playing like I’m sober.”

Think about it…

There’s nothing fake in presenting a self that knows how rough bosses are, how exceedingly far we push our limits when there are no walls to stop us from reaching points to turn back and how irritating it is to walk into a mall store and the employee finds more pleasuring in texting someone than helping you find something new to wear. Rather than use an open microphone to complain about something you already know…be the drunk trying to act sober not the sober person pretending to be drunk.

Working with nationally recognized comedian Pam Stone taught me a valuable lesson in life…be you and never sell out. Listen to everything being offered then keep on keeping on in the channels of taking life with its twists, turns and spills and turning it into an avenue of conversation. She never tries to be funny…everything she performs is based on us relating with her stories which makes her unforgettable.

Brian Andreas writes, “I used to believe my father about everything but then I had children myself and now I see how much stuff you make up just to keep yourself from going crazy.”

I’m going to Toy Story 3…and the poor kid sitting next to me is going to hear how much I love Buzz Lightyear and how I’ve collected every fricken action figure since his introduction which will spin off into a conversation about my KISS dolls and blue elephant collection. By the end of the night he’ll walk away calling me a total nut until he walks into that bedroom and realizes toys have feelings too.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

I knew you when...

Art is invisible, it has no face, it has no heart beat and there can be continuation from its origin until we begin to open our eyes.

In a tiny corner of Davidson, North Carolina sits a privately owned movie theater daring to make a difference within the oversaturated waves of Corporate American Hollywood. No stadium seating, no twelve dollar buckets of popped corn, no rush to push heavily promoted assumed blockbusters during the official start of Oscar season.

Our Town Cinema’s is designed to invite… It’s quiet and hidden away from the constant commands to keep up or drop off the map. Places to be versus wants and needs are no longer important therefore watching a movie has returned to becoming a pleasure.

Even in today’s standards Independent no longer means free from massive amounts of expectation—film festivals are big business which makes me wonder what the alternative is when the alternative is being promoted just as much as a silver screened Depp, Dicaprio, Hanks or Bullock?

Art is invisible…it has no face. Even with a name like Robert Whitlow movie goers are caught between two rocks in an open sea of blindness due to a lack of support from local writers, actors, newspapers and other media outlets who can’t see how promoting a film shot in town is going to get them better ratings. Therefore, the art becomes a heart beat with no continuation.

The Trial stars Matthew Modine, Robert Forester and Charlotte’s very own Cherokee Cillie who once sat with me late, late, late one New Years Eve staring into the vibrant colors my paint brushes brought to life deeply inspired by a willingness to shut off criticism and bring sight to the surface of expression. She fell madly in love with a piece made of Mont Blanc ink and through its presentation it was easy to see she could see places of performance and understand how the artist got there.

The deeper we travel into the channels called American culture the farther we are from inspiration and influence. We’ve become a generation locked on fad and like fat, it’s dragging our lungs down making everything we come in contact with too heavy to carry.

Talk about seizing control of the vein of gold; thousands of dollars are spent annually on the symphony, Broadway plays that have become boring pieces in New York so they've launched national tours making small towns like Charlotte and Charleston feel important for seven days, pro sports aren’t about protecting fans but rather gathering enough cash to finance the next fresh from college millionaire.

No wonder we aren’t taking note of the newly released film The Trial!

We’re focused on doing the same thing over and over again. Yet we constantly complain about Reality TV being souped up episodes of Ozzy and Harriet, sitcom storylines are no different than Archie Bunker, Al Bundy and I love Lucy. America’s Got Talent is Star Search on steroids and how many times can Adam Sandler, Will Ferrell and Ben Stiller play the same character and still rake in enough cha-chings to pay this months rent?

Our Town Cinema’s is a tiny whisper in the middle of a major hurricane; the missing lyric in a favorite song you discover years after first heard; the middle ground when your shoes are shaped to move through the beginning and end. Art is invisible, it has no face, it has no heart beat and there can be continuation from its origin until we begin to open our eyes.

Nothing motivates me more than taking six steps back from reality and watching someone you know grow.

I love my mother dearly but have never understood why she could physically see my passion to write and perform music but did nothing to get me lessons. I settled for radio instead. Now it’s become my vow to ignite sight in the masked worlds we keep; through insight there is a stage and everyday it shall always call your name. There can be no change in the way we’re entertained until someone decides to be different.

The Trial…see localism in a movie house whose heart is in the right place…Our Town Cinemas in Davidson.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Brilliant ideas rarely make it to reality...

If you want growth, you need to find people willing to join you; believe in you and donate to you in the way of offering support. Only those focused on change will stand beside your efforts of something new and extremely positive. Who said that? Seth Godin, author of the highly touted social networking guide for beginner’s book called Tribes We need you to lead us.

How often do you bump into a self proclaimed leader who promises Hollywood lights, camera action and the end result is Butte, Montana at 10pm on a Sunday night? Modern day decision makers are in the way of success completing its journey. The true stars on the playing fields are at the bottom of the ladder, the skeptics who’ve held onto a bright idea for years but constantly hesitate to set it free.

Seth writes, “We hesitate because it feels like something we need to be ordained to do. We believe without an authority we can’t lead…big organizations reserve leadership for CEO’s”

And you see where that’s gotten this country.

I am a tree hugger and grasp the concept of making everything green; from cars to factories from toilets to rain barrels. Anyone associated with the backwoods effort of saving this planet knows from the beginning; to get where we need to go, it’s going to cost a lot of money. Besides, the junk required to go green is ugly and like a diamond, nobody wants to connect their chapters to a brown paper bag.

As an artist, it became my vision to design rain barrels that didn’t look like garbage cans. I met with a brilliant designer from Ohio who carefully landscaped the full process of creating a weather proofed top that collected the water, a giant ceramic belly to hold the tears from passing clouds, a spout to deliver the substance inside to its proper flower bed while still allowing a passerby to say, “Wow! Look at that piece of art in the front yard!”

The prototype was brilliant! It worked exactly the way I dreamed. What I didn’t expect was the company chosen to manufacture the “Green” product would triple their costs knowing such yard art would sell and they wanted a bigger chunk of the cherry pie. That meant I’d be forced to charge too much money for something that should come free with every tax payers house.

I call it the Compact Disc Theory of Pocketbook Terrorism. We were told in the 1980’s that CD would tumble toward an easily digestible price. It’s never happened; look at what’s taking place inside the world of music. While 65% of the world has purchased MP3 players and IPods; consumers still lagging buy two maybe three CD’s a year and it’s usually from the cheapo box at the front of Wal-Mart.

Where’s the leadership in that?

Seth explains, “For there to be followers there must be passion for change.”
For us to spend money and or create enough open space to welcome something new into our unwritten chapters we require inspiration and the feeling of being connected. Gene Simmons of KISS might be the greatest musical marketer of all time but The Grateful Dead understood the art of collecting followers and giving them a required daily balance of what to expect and get it not just today but everyday, even in the years after Gerry Garcia.

Being an author of five books…it’s become my passion to reach out to the Kindle and Nook world and say, “Screw book companies and publishers that charge $15 or more for something no human hand has touched.”

No shelf space is being swallowed up by paperback novels and motivational speeches. No large boxes are created to ship the words locked in hard covers to the consumer. No employee is required to stand on their feet for 8 to 22 hours during the holiday to sell the latest books from blah, and blah and blah, blah, blah. 99.9% of the time I give my books away because I’ve not met the person to stop them from wasting their money at the counter.

Going Kindle or Nook is perfectly green. As an artist the greatest way to support it is to offer what moves through me at an extremely attainable price. And if you quickly rush to Amazon to see what that is…you might as well ask me now why $2.99…cuz if Amazon is making something available to writers and for it to be there everyday...we show our gratitude by giving back to them. Everyone who chooses to release their creations into the presence of a passing breeze may lose the opportunity to grow.

Seth writes: The Market requires change and that requires leadership. With leadership comes the ability to create change because the market demands change."

Corporate American managers manage they refuse to dine in change unless it’s the fourth quarter and someone’s got to go.

If within the secret self you keep don’t care about organizational structure…you are a leader. If you exceed the levels of required passion while holding ideas capable of bulldozing ancient ways of concept and delivery….you are a leader. What keeps you from reaching the full potential of your dreams is a stupid word called awareness. Without awareness there can be no change.

Success doesn’t always start at the top. Business leaders are waiting for you to lead them. Only to hear you say, “Well…um…sure it sounds nice but I don’t have the time.”
Retirement will get here quicker than graduating from high school…decide today what flavor of cat food you expect to stack in the bare shelves Old Mother Hubbard left for you back in the day when Nursery Rhymes came with a deeper purpose.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Endless amounts of energy...

This isn’t a commercial, an endorsement and or anything that resembles a big voiced announcer screaming through two radio speakers in the way that convinces you to buy something that could make your life better only to follow all that energy with a faster than a fuzzy bunny, “See dealer for details…”

Last weekend, a joke, because I do weird things but mainly because we recently lost a very good friend to cervical cancer and a major chunk of the cash taken in is donated to the continued awareness and prevention…I purchased one of those highly touted every sports figure on earth from Shaquille to David Beckham supports it…Power Balance bracelets.

I’m such a sucker for items that push punch and drag their images onto convenience store shelves bragging about how they’ve been specially designed to tork your performance to unheard of levels. I point and laugh at many of the tiny plastic bottles promising double the poof while swigging down the tallest of tall cold cans that are more expensive than a beer buzz.

How on earth could a white bracelet made of rubberized substances that stretch but don’t break convince the system to bang bang boomerang for its buck? More importantly, how can a featured hologram mysteriously work with your balance? I’ve been all over the web trying to sink this vivid imagination into the who, what, why and where’s of this toy. It is a toy right? Can an item based on Eastern spiritual beliefs truly develop strength? Yeah right…ha ha ha ha right?

I’ve laughed for a week…quickly covering my left arm, as if to hide my willingness to believe. Then my first weekend with it attached to the frame came into play—a late night performance Friday followed by an over the edge extremely full Saturday and Sunday. No trip, no stumble, gallons of coffee not in use or power drinks that make you pee and pee…a stupid bracelet kept me going. 72 hours in the average weekend…I’ve had only three hours sleep.

When you do a morning radio show sleep is the absolute most important tool in the handbook of rules. Finally at 1:15 this morning I took the bracelet off and out I went for 45 minutes. Had to get up…show time comes all too fast.

Magnets right? The holograms are magnets…its nifty cool plastic sugar laced with caffeine. No steroids…trust me, my biceps resemble dead snakes along the highway…if it was steroids I’d be hired by the Chicago Cubs and told to hit balls over the wall.

The Los Angeles Lakers aren’t embarrassed to say The Power Balance bracelet gained them access to being labeled NBA’s current kings of the court. I wouldn’t be surprised if some scientist from Florida came out and said Hurricane Igor who’s currently dancing in the Atlantic Ocean is wearing one.

If Stepfather Joe was in town he’d bean me in the head for believing in something so odd ball crazy, “You nut! It’s mind over matter! Once that noodle is convinced that it has a new best friend the end result is a positive influence.”

My wife is a brilliant racquet ball player…I won two matches yesterday; had the bracelet on. While driving through town I wasn’t forced to stop at twelve consecutive traffic lights. The radio station played five of my all time favorite songs back to back. When visiting a fast food eatery the person behind the counter smiled. Holy cow this is serious stuff!

Maybe President Obama should wrap a Power Balance chunk of bling around the economy—I give the nation a week and we’ll all be working for major corporations that take the time to invest in their employees and not just their personal journey’s. Slam a couple of these puppies around your cars wheels, gas mileage might increase to 100 mpg. Give them to your teens! They’ll stop texting to the person sitting next to them and start taking out the trash while spending valuable time making their beds and keeping their rooms clean.


The only missing from this perfect day is chocolate. Where’s the chocolate? What kind of a bracelet is this? There can be no balance in any day if chocolate isn’t part of the game. Gold is $5,000 an ounce…chocolate is priceless. World leaders drop their arms when offered chocolate. Bosses tell a good joke before racing back into their custom built offices. Chocolate makes the world spin in the right direction! Without it we’d be fixtures in space dodging space shuttle dust.

Its Monday…we need chocolate! Wrap that around your wrist and tell me how many hours of sleep you get. Do you think if I unwrap the tiny hologram in this Power Balance bracelet a hunk of chocolate will greet me with a giant sweet as can be chocolate smile?

Happy Monday! As you make your way through another workday sipping or sucking down whatever keeps you moving forward keep one powerful thought in your heart and soul…every second of sleep you miss can never be gotten back. There’s no human on earth that’s ever caught up to the crazy amount of sleep we’re losing chasing dreams.

Whatever your fuel…never stop listening to your body. There’s no such thing as a remedy for energy. The end result of every legal rush is an addiction to take your body a little bit further reaching farther than normal expectations and then the body shuts down without a care in the world.

Stepfather Joe would thump the thinker melon and remind me, “They don’t sell pre-owned bodies at Wal-Mart. Don’t make me take this foot and lift your tail above your shoulders. Bet your friends won't like that energy bracelet…”

I’m such a dork!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Give people a reason to collect your posters...

Having a bad day? Every corner you turn is another rope designed to trip your efforts of moving forward? Been awhile since you felt the excitement of being on top of the world?

What gives? If we’re supposed to be the most spoiled generation…why then do so many walk around the office, through malls and on city created trails acting as if being a live is the worst decision anyone could make?

Human emotion is the art I study. Through the use of other people’s thoughts and pen scratches you quickly learn of the multitude of ups and downs that paint the way for your path to follow the bread crumb trails leading to and from a new day. A thought that forced me to stop came from Buddhist Monk and spiritualist Thick Nhat Hahn who writes, “It’s because of ignorance that we suffer.”

Cell phones, handheld computers, wall to wall flat screen televisions may give us sight but it’s insight that we’ve elected to let go. Without it the elements that make up our reality evolves into fear. When there is no compassion, there’s no acceptance. And how often have we stood in the bathroom mirror filled with an overflowing amount of dislike for the set of eyes staring back?

According to Mr. Hahn, insight should never be looked upon as being a superpower. With insight you’re gifted with liberation, a break through, a vision of a self you’ve thought of several times but never understood how to reach them not once but several times. The easiest way to achieve such a feeling is to put focus on non-self.

Dr. Yutang Lin admits that grasping onto such a journey is extremely difficult mainly because modern day circumstances are created and delivered by self centeredness. The act of becoming non-self is doing more for others than for your self, which according to the doctor doesn’t come too easy in our current society. And yet it looks at you everyday in the shape of the way we studying those on magazine pages who’ve gained world fame, personal desires connected to better jobs and houses, finding the perfect romance in your love life and making sure every weekend is locked down with something to do and it has to be entertaining.

Wikipedia calls non-self: The absence of separate self.

Instantly I’m reminded of a Bodhisattva, one who is motivated by compassion and seeks enlightenment for everyone; a path to an awakening. Pretty deep talk for a Friday until you realize that weekends can sometimes be the single most important step not in your life but a passerby affected by your efforts.

Heart walks, breast cancer awareness, Big Brother and Big Sister programs, volunteering at your child’s school, cleaning up a creek, street or neighborhood, reaching beyond your front yard to help Mrs. Katz who lost her husband less than a year ago and everything he once found love in serves as a heavy weight reminder and its taking everything in her mind body and soul to find a positive…

With insight you’re gifted with liberation. The easiest way to achieve such a feeling is to put focus on non-self.

Swiftly the tables turn again knowing there’s always that deep in the gut temptation that screams, “I do for others all the time and get nothing in return!” Ouch…not a cool game to play. When you expect you’re doing nothing more than setting yourself up, “It’s because of ignorance that we suffer.”

A great place to begin is at work…take self out of your job. Constantly we allow ourselves to be deeply embedded in the desire to collect every penny owed without ever realizing the number of lives that are touched minute by minute by the product or services generated by the energy of our imaginations and or ability to create. I know an artist that constantly reminds me that each featured piece is designed to lift someone’s day. The art is often given away not sold because seeing another become enlightened by your art is priceless.

I don’t know how many times I hear every walk of life pour sorrow onto the open fields of success waiting to be born becoming an open wound that either festers into disbelief in the self you are or creates an open space to which you set aside everyday, every year and one day at 90 you’ll look back and wonder why such a decision to be happy didn’t seem important at the time.

These are extremely trying times and with every passing moment the American dream takes one step farther away from becoming your reality. Banks aren’t going to bail you out. Fast food and ice cream lead to obesity. People Magazine costs more than high blood pressure medicine. CD’s are still eighteen bucks and forget about how much you’ve invested in Hollywood’s biggest and brightest big screen ideas.

The act of becoming non-self is doing more for others than for your self. Go back to work Monday morning feeling great about sharing what you’re given during the arrival of each guaranteed sunrise…life.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Why do bosses hire others rather than you?

Nothing is more liable to misuse than power therefore personal growth becomes the newly shaped spirituality.

Would this be the reason why books based on motivating your workplace, favorite hiding place and places to reach are constantly found in or around the New Age Religion section of most book stores?

John C Maxwell, Anthony Robbins, Character is Destiny from John McCain, Andy Andrews, Harvey McKay and Lynn Robinson have left their pages to be hung in the quiet word galleries in areas of the store that almost seem empty until you begin to push your imagination into the ink stains they’ve left behind.

But never once did I make the connection that each of them took from the wind a source of information based on power making it the new found religion.

Blame it on my connection to a Montana county line childhood caked with church studies and outings; never once did someone explain that an increase in sales and performance plus the reconstruction of a business lifestyle is looked upon as being spiritual.

Why then is being a work-a-holic frowned upon? It’s no different than a minister, preacher or pastor carefully laying out the groundwork of this Sunday’s message. Oprah couldn’t have said it better, “Employees and business owners who understand the secret tend to have better and longer lasting success.”

The secret being; what you’re expected to bring to the surface of your daily duties rarely has anything to do with your personal gain and everything to do with the product reaching a client that will use it to better their way of living. The misuse of power creates a crack in the process of exceeding the limits of expectation.

A police officer doesn’t enjoy pulling speeders over; the paperwork is excruciating! Yet without their guidance speeders have the ability to wreak havoc on other peoples lives, stealing from them at times when least expected. The officer serves as a middle man, a messenger of sorts, making sure both parties involved are safely delivered to their proper destination with the least amount of difficulty.

So how does that fit into the New Age section of a book store?

When you stop to realize your job isn’t just a job. When you learn to recognize your efforts at the workplace are valued more by outsiders and not a constantly nagging boss glued to facts and figures.

Self evolution is experienced when you decide to develop the powers that offer you motivation without misusing the abilities that made you who you are. Everyone has countless amounts of possibilities, reaching them fairly isn’t always worth the struggles so we’ve evolved into a nation of shortcut takers masterminding plans that make working an individual sport rather than a team effort. And in the end…growth isn’t achieved because those holding the experience to achieve have no room for someone willing to pay their dues, they can’t locate a wide enough space to fit their personal growth into. Therefore, we have in essence a modern day religious war.

Think about it; if personal or work environment growth is recognized as being a form of spirituality the end result is going to always be different beliefs and a misuse of power which in the long run generates poorly developed skills as communicators and I don’t need to remind you of the days when you’ve bumped your nose into someone’s silence then spent the next eight hours worried about your own position on the company ladder.

Progress: perfecting capability, possibility, faculties and qualities. A development of deeper truth helps educate the wandering mind. I tend to call it Radio Reality. You might call it A Bankers way of living or Behind the Cupcake’s. Show me a business that isn’t overflowing with employees that have willingness but no clue as to where they’re going to get the necessary experience to obtain success.

Employees are no longer developed they’re dropped into an arena and expected to survive.

Make it your goal to stand next to a coworker and figure out how to make progress. Success loves to take naps and in each of us there is a bear waiting for the opportunity to pop open its eyes and discover a higher level of performance. If the worker within isn’t shown the way…we become a nation blessed with multitudes of wanderer's who find more pleasure in being unemployed than actively affecting the lives of people who pass you by.

Personal and professional growth is spiritual. No wonder it hurts like hell when you keep walking into windows and walls designed by coworkers and bosses that have not a passion in the world to help you make it. They’re more interested in their personal gain therefore the misuse of power is evident making what we do wasted time for one and for all.

I’m not asking you to stand on a box and preach a good word. One coworker…stand next to them today and listen. What you hold is experience and it’s that adventure that becomes the missing link. Never forget this important rule; one that I have officially dubbed The Beatles floor plan: four completely different guys…yet there was harmony.

Stop treating your job like a job and begin to put focus on the people buying the product. What are you doing to guarantee a service or product to make somone's life better? If your response is, “What’s in it for me?” Don’t expect personal and professional growth this year. Wall Street, bosses and family members find no reason to invest in objects with no value. Raise your worth by participating in the presentation of letting one steal your art.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

If it wasn't for Margaret Padgett...

In the radio industry there’s an invisible world many outside our two speaker stage never get to see, feel, hear or experience—there are no books, no free food or opportunities to take another step up on the company ladder; it’s a single moment, years of travel and quite possibly a one way highway toward a horizon you never reach until one day a message on Face Book forces you to recount the sheep.

I’ve often believed its God’s classroom.

Announcers, jocks and on-air talent are “invited” not sent into a realm of lessons taught. There are no teachers, professors or big voiced mentors but rather the most raw, untrained sense of letting go of personal goals to put focus on how to look deeper than the surface of this business and how very little of it has anything to do with you and yet the end result of a lone belief can be someone’s hope, wish come true and or only drop of peace experienced during a lifetime of personal and private struggles.

Margaret Padgett has passed.

There’s not a radio talent in the Carolina’s that hasn’t heard from or some how been touched by her incredible drive to reach through a telephone with a landscape of unforgettable inner beauty, an endless willingness not to act but to seriously be happy at all costs and many, many times it required a jocks joke to perk up her morning, noon or night because in Margaret’s world that little laugh was the only fuel the Great Creator gifted her with.

Before the World Wide Web, texting, Skyping and My Space…Margaret put a lot of faith and trust in ample amounts of phone time; often becoming escorted visits to the studio where our conversations became giant hoots and hollers blessed with laughter, compassion and a fist full of true love spread through the speakers to which we speak from in ways that continue to affect the path of millions we’ll never meet.

I’ve credited Margaret and David Hill countless times for being my deeply responsible mentors in the department of teaching me how to drop the super hero’s cape and have the courage to be “real” rather than a publicity hound seeking headlines from local fund raisers.

A fellow radio announcer unveiled a picture of Margaret and myself in the late 1980’s…great songs can take you anywhere in the world without feeling a sudden rush in your stomach…pictures from a past you can’t change recreate the dips in the highway serving as a reminder of why Broadcaster’s do what they do during times when doing needs only a whiff of inspiration and it’s that energy that becomes a force for the rest of the world to participate with.

I can’t help but wonder if Chuck didn’t think about Margaret during the extremely long hours dedicated to sitting in every seat of a newly shaped coliseum to help raise funds for a nonprofit organization. What about the announcers who’ve leaped onto massive roadside billboards to raise awareness and continuous amounts of radio talkers that have poured their hearts and soul into twenty, forty and fifty mile walks or participated with radio and telethons for what never feels like an eternity and yet the average person couldn’t do what people like Margaret inspired radio people to reach through.

You probably won’t read about her in local newspapers. Chances are the only reason why you’ve made it to this sentence is because fate put you on this page.

Show me a jock, announcer, Broadcaster or DJ that didn’t dedicate their life to the community and my first question will always be, “Did you ever talk or meet with Margaret Padgett?” I can’t imagine how many millions of dollars wouldn’t have been raised if she hadn’t put forth the effort to pick up that phone and call the voice that just happened to be on the air that day.

God’s tools are of many and Margaret you were the one that entered the soul of those driving favorite songs from a radio station control board out to a car, office or home and in between the lyrics the announcer would say, “Hey this weekend, join us for _______.”

It was how they said it that convinced the radio listener to open their heart and that lesson was taught by a girl whose strange twist in life fed passion for all people into the vocal chords that learned how to warm the thoughts of a passerby.

God has your wings Margaret…I know you’re enjoying your freedom to finally fly. You are his angel now...

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Part of the path...which role do you play?

Now that summer has officially come and gone its human nature to return to the play toys and cardboard boxes of years past and attempt to rebuild the dreams set free to roam on the streets of everyday life.

The infamous list of many things to do and to be done! Why can’t we catch up? The truth sucks; we’ve become masters in the well displayed art of procrastination. And I’m man enough to admit my name’s been on top of the “It can wait until tomorrow,” charts.

I cheat in the way of keeping focused. I talk myself out of being creative, “If I do it now, what happens if the end result steals from the energy supply and other promises are forced to wait? I can’t do that! I officially declare today is a play day!”

So the list of must do’s and you better do it before winter strikes sits and patiently waits for the circle to swing around and begin again.

I did some research on this talking trick and found out the majority of us at work, home or in states of volunteering physically don’t mind if we sit down with friends and gently explain why things shouldn’t be finished. We literally talk ourselves out of doing something that needs to be done figuring, “There’s always next weekend. It’ll probably be cooler.”

This is why we keep seeing the same authors at Barnes and Nobel and Borders Books…Peter Max and Jane Seymour at Wentworth Galleries and the same old bosses on top of the company ladder; it’s too much work to convince our creative selves to put out the energy required to make a difference today.

In 1997 I was challenged by Mother Nature to take on an inner city project that involved working side by side with the United States Forest Service; the goal was to reshape many hills by lightly decorating the tortured soil with seventeen hundred six inch seedlings. To this day I walk with a limp because the only leg used to send the shovel into the hard cold Georgia Clay was my right leg…I jokingly call it Forest Carpel Tunnel of the knee…the constant shoving then bending to bury the roots of tomorrow has served as a brilliant daily and late night reminder of how little we are when it comes to a larger path for others to follow.

Early Saturday morning I was awakened by a hauntingly loud ear piercing scream; I had never heard anything like it. Instantly shooting into action I checked on the dogs, their sleepy heads were counted while my open palm touched their chests for a heart beat. Then it was a race through the house to see if one of the birds had fallen off their perch. I saw nothing never realizing it was the forest I had been protecting trying to get my attention.

While placing dove eggs outside for the raccoons and other fuzzy creations that had called my crazy Montana way of living in the south home…I walked into a view I never dreamed of reaching; the oversized, way too tall to measure, skyscraping oak that cuddled the creek through several decades of constant seasonal changes had fallen to the earth shattering into a billion tree pieces.

No powerful thunder storms, no strong late summer winds, out of control beavers, no chainsaws or people pretending to be forest farmers…my old friend to which I had written about nearly two billion times in my daily writing chose this past Saturday morning to stop playing in the way we see life, for what I heard was the birth of angel wings enabling the old oak to soar across Carolina mountain tops often talked about by visiting big black wild crows and constantly hooting owls.

Mom always told me a forest is completely quiet when a tree decides to let go. That is absolutely not true. For the final breath of my long lost friend was that of a his limbs waving one final time, as much as it hurt to shimmy shake rattle and roll in a forest protected by a stupid ole human with no tricks up his sleeves, his determination created music to which I hear while painting pictures on your computer screen.

It was this old oak that I wrote: I don’t think humans see the true beauty of a tree…the leaves that which collect sun rays and giant beads of rain are the roots…its beneath that a tree truly blooms. I sat many a days next to that hunk of wood wondering, “What if what I write is true? How can we see what hidden secrets you keep below the soul of this soil?”

I didn’t race to the garage to find a saw to chop up the fallen tree friend. Do you have any clue how many earthworms have looked up its sturdy tree frame and said, “Wow one day I’d like to climb that tree?” By letting those not tall enough to touch the trees once highest peak, the beauty of nature is the music all who’ve been present begins to sing.

So what does any of this have to do with setting creative energies aside? Did I talk myself out of continuing to love the forest? Did I allow my neighbors to talk me into shaving the land clean so they could build and build never thinking twice of what a missing tree means?

I often wondering how many people there are in the world that don’t have a relationship with a tree. We get so darn busy with everything else expected. We plant grass, weed the flower bed, mow the lawn ten or twenty times from spring to summer and in the process of trying to be neat and clean, that front wheels of the mower keep bumping into the booty of that tree like a two year old who can’t stop tossing food or whatever else is on the tray in front of them.

Then one day…the tree falls and there’s nothing you can do as a human to put it back up. You can try your hardest to locate a tree to replace it but reality being a big bite puts you in a place of what if you personally don’t make it? How can you take your love for something so silly and give it to the eyes, ears, nose and feet of someone you’ll probably never meet.

I feel as if I should send an email to the person who planted the tree some 70 or 80 years before me. To say nothing more than, “Thank you for not talking yourself out of doing something creative. Thank single moment in your creative life gave to me many many pieces of poetry.”

Friday, September 3, 2010

Why do we need a three day weekend?

Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Labor Day Weekend!

During these modern days of extra work with barely enough pay one can’t help but be tremendously shocked that this 72 hour coffee break still exists. There’ll come a time when a mid-Sunday conversation with your grandchild will burst from its hidden clutches, “I am truly part of the final generation to enjoy the good old days.”

Lawmakers consistently chastise China for their working conditions but no United States Senator, member of the House of Representatives or Mayors office has pulled off an American investigation into the weakening of the arms, legs and backs of what once stood tall as the world’s most productive people.

Small business is a joke…they’re seen as beginners with big hopes and fantasies and within an unexpected breath they are eaten up by large corporations with fancy lawyers paid to do nothing more than keep a one time powerful American imagination near or below the poverty level.

The only competition on today’s business home front is between two employees fighting over who gets to sit by the window.

Raise your hand if you work just because you need insurance.

I didn’t come to this computer page to rat on the pyramid of leaders who’ve continued to make millions after they’ve sliced their work forces to an extremely thin performance. It’s accepted behavior. We’ve drank the Kool-Aid. We walked right into this haunted house of a recession with no train tracks to lead us out.

This Labor Day Weekend; spend time in the bathroom mirror staring into the eyes that have been with you since birth. Watch the home videos they’ve created. Study your reactions to actions generated by department heads and ask yourself, “Did I become who I am because of what I did or am I what they failed to make me?”

Change will not incur until we as a people recognize the importance of what being at work once meant to a growing people that came from places deeply dampened by crooked cowards that gained access to decision making. Nobody lifts their voice of concern any more. My stepfather Joe would be laughed out of town while being labeled a loud mouth trouble maker.

Mom constantly told me of the 30’s and 40’s being the worst of times—having to work in bullet factories as a teen to help her family survive. She still tells the tale of tall businessmen walking slowly down each unpainted row demanding more energy from the workers because there was always somebody else who could make bullets faster.

But quickly she’ll change the subject officially declaring those early years as the best of times, leaving me in a state of confusion. One minute they’re horrible while at times she sounds as if she’d like to one day return.

September 3, 2010…the gateway to Labor Day Weekend…if you could, where do you wanna go back to? Was there a time in your life when struggles were still looked upon as being innocent, fresh and new? If we truly are the final generation to endure the good old days…where on your built in GPS system did you feel safest?

Rather than wasting your time with happy Arroe trials and trails…I leave you with a burst of belief. If I were your boss there would be reason to believe in you…because it’s you, yourself and whom ever you want to be that builds the necessary confidence to put a thought into motion. In a world fed by a driving need to be an arm chair business quarterback, the last thing you require is a purpose to retire.

Relocate that zone you call your own. Find it to be everything you left it to be. And when you return locate the strength to shake its hand not once but everyday thereafter. For who you are today is always behind until you step up and realize dreams never die, they patiently wait until you’re through with your day…then visit you late, late at night.

We don’t have to be the final workings of a people assumed unstoppable. Bosses come and go just like three day weekends meant to honor the work force. Without you they’ll probably find another but you without you is a mission like no other. While still staring into those eyes in the bathroom mirror whisper this short sentence, “I will never fire. You are my strength when I’m tired. You are the air in the balloons that lift me over tall, tall mountains. You are me and if you don’t mind…I’m going to start calling you my best friend.”

Labor Day Weekend was designed to honor the hard working backbone of a nation so powerful others had but one choice to follow. You are in the business of you…if there’s one lesson to learn, don’t treat yourself like today’s modern day boss. Always take care of the people that make your business succeed. Take care of you.