“Don’t you understand that we need to be childish in order to understand? Only a child sees things with perfect clarity, because it hasn’t developed all those filters which prevent us from seeing things that we don’t expect to see.”
I worked at the Central Indiana Special Olympics track and field meet on Saturday and was assisted part of the time by two high school age kids. I was again impressed with how willing they were to serve and how warm and friendly they were to everyone. My interaction with young people always seems to be positive. I think it is due to my learning just how smart they are, how they have yet to learn why not to do things and how their enthusiasm rubs off on me. I do know that there are many other kids who have problems, kids who are aggressive and anti-social but I don’t often get a chance to interact with them.
I have found that what appears so often to be intergenerational barriers to communication can be overcome if we just stop and listen to what young people have to say. In my case more often than not the kids are more knowledgeable and more reasoned than many of the folks I talk to from my generation. I truly respect them not just for their knowledge but also their willingness to take action while so many of us just sit on the sidelines and complain.
I worked the Kiwanis volunteer registration table at the games and was located next to a representative from a local utility who was registering a hundred or more volunteers from her company. I was pleased to be able to add her to my ever growing collection of friends. While we chatted I learned that she recently helped her mother make the transition to an assisted living facility that has worked out well as her mother has made many new friends and is substantially more active and involved then she would have been if she had stayed in her home.
I told her that I thought it would be great to move to a transitional setting so that we could take advantage of what there is for those of us who are adjusting to the changes brought on by age. I also hated the idea of waiting to get rid of a life time of needless trinkets and such until I was infirm. I realized in talking to her how fortunate I am that my most valuable collection is the friends, acquaintances and fond memories that I carry with me wherever I go. It is not what I own or what is around me that gives me comfort; it is the people I have met, cared about, respected and enjoyed that are the true treasures.
“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.”
At one point during a game, the coach called one of his 9-year-old baseball players aside and asked, “Do you understand what cooperation is? And….What the word team means?”
The little boy nodded in the affirmative.
“Do you understand that what matters is whether we win or lose together as a team?”
The little boy nodded yes.
“So,” the coach continued, “I’m sure you know, when an out is called, you shouldn’t argue, curse, attack the umpire, or call him a pecker-head. Do you understand all that?”
Once again the little boy nodded.
He continued, “And when I take you out of the game so another boy gets a chance to play, it’s not good sportsmanship to call your coach a “dumb ass” is it?”
Again the little boy nodded.
“Good,” said the coach. “Now go over there and explain all that to your grandmother.”
To be able to look back upon one’s past life with satisfaction is to live twice.
Marcus Valerius Martial
The Michaels family owned a small farm in Canada, just yards away from the North Dakota border. Their land had been the subject of a minor dispute between the United States and Canada for generations. Mrs. Michaels, who had just celebrated her ninetieth birthday, lived on the farm with her son and three grandchildren.
One day, her son came into her room holding a letter. “I just got some news, Mom,” he said. “The government has come to an agreement with the people in Washington. They’ve decided that our land is really part of the United States. We have the right to approve or disapprove of the agreement. What do you think?”
“What do I think?” his mother said. “Jump at it! Call them right now and tell them we accept! I don’t think I could stand another one of these Canadian winters!”
Kids: they dance before they learn there is anything that isn’t music.
A New Yorker taking a drive in the country happened upon a farmer feeding his pigs in a most extraordinary manner. The farmer would lift a pig in his arms, hold it up to the branches of a tree and wait while the animal ate an apple. He would then move the pig from one apple to another until it was satisfied.
The city man watched this procedure for some time, then finally said to the farmer, “This seems an inefficient way of feeding your pigs. Why don’t you simply shake the apples off the tree and let the pigs eat them from the ground? That would sure save a lot of time.”
The farmer looked puzzled, then shrugged and replied, “What’s time to a pig?”
“That’s what it takes to be a hero, a little gem of innocence inside you that makes you want to believe that there still exists a right and wrong, that decency will somehow triumph in the end”
A man pacing back and forth glanced at his watch and yelled upstairs to his wife, “Honey, are you ready yet?”
Shouting back, the woman replies, “For crying out loud, I’ve been telling you for the last half hour that I’ll be ready in a minute!
I’m addicted to placebos. I’d give them up, but it wouldn’ make any difference.
Jack hadn’t been to a class reunion in decades. When he walked into this latest one, he thought he recognized a woman over in the corner, so he approached her and extended his hand in greeting, saying,
“You look like Helen Brown.”
“Well,” the woman snapped back, “you don’t look so great in blue either!”
“A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you just the way you are.”
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile
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