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God’s profession…

Posted May 4 2016 by in True North with 4 Comments

Whenever I observe my wife mother our children I am awed.  Whether watching nature documentaries, or simply seeing Moms nurturing their children, we are witnessing God’s profession, true?

Happy Mother’s Day to all of you professionals – and I’m not referring to “working mothers”.  Yours is the profession of love, compassion, protection, guidance, pride, and so much more than a W-2.

Not that the working side of Motherhood is not important – it is:

Woman’s Equation

Whatever women do, they must do twice as well as men to be thought half as good. Luckily, this is not difficult. 

Unknown Sage

This equation certainly applies to our household.  My wife runs circles around me with her love and support of our children and grandchildren.  All while maintaining our little ranch and running her company.  She is awesome!

Me?  Well you might say I remind you of the phenomena in nature where male lions eat their young.  Not that there haven’t been times where my young didn’t deserve it – yours too?  Thank God for their Mother.

Oh they are getting better; learning; maturing; feeding off the encouragement their Mother provides them as her life-long commitment.  Perhaps there’s hope for we male types yet.

Yes, our mothers offer us a wealth of lifetime lessons; worthy of passing down from generation to generation.  Our favorite Unknown Sage reminds us of a few of the many things we learn from our mother:

My mother taught me TO APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE.

“If you’re going to kill each other, do it outside. I just finished cleaning.”

My mother taught me RELIGION.

“You better pray that will come out of the carpet.”

My mother taught me MORE LOGIC.

“If you fall out of that swing and break your neck, you’re not going to the store with me.”

My mother taught me FORESIGHT.

“Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you’re in an accident.”

My mother taught me about the science of OSMOSIS.

“Shut your mouth and eat your supper.”

My mother taught me about CONTORTIONISM.

“Just you look at that dirt on the back of your neck!”

My mother taught me about STAMINA.

“You’ll sit there until all that spinach is gone.”

My mother taught me about WEATHER.

“This room of yours looks as if a tornado went through it.”

My mother taught me about HYPOCRISY.

“If I told you once, I’ve told you a million times, don’t exaggerate!”

My mother taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION.

“Stop acting like your father!”

My mother taught me about ENVY.

“There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don’t have wonderful parents like you do.”

My mother taught me about ANTICIPATION.

“Just wait until we get home.”

My mother taught me about RECEIVING.

“You are going to get it from your father when you get home!”

My mother taught me MEDICAL SCIENCE.

“If you don’t stop crossing your eyes, they are going to get stuck that way.”

My mother taught me ESP.

“Put your sweater on; don’t you think I know when you are cold?”

My mother taught me HOW TO BECOME AN ADULT.

“If you don’t eat your vegetables, you’ll never grow up.”

My mother taught me GENETICS.

“You’re just like your father.”

My mother taught me about my ROOTS.

“Shut that door behind you. Do you think you were born in a barn?”

My mother taught me WISDOM.

“When you get to be my age, you’ll understand.

See what I mean?  God’s profession!  What did Mom teach you?

GAP

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Luv still rules…

Valentine’s Day is on its way – there’s still time to make special arrangements for that special person in our life.

Love_Billboard-2

OK, OK – so I can’t take credit for creating this awesome display of love for my love.  That was someone else’s awesome display of their love for their love.  But I can take “observation credit” for stopping along the roadside while driving through this western Illinois farm community to take the picture, can’t I?  I think my wife will give me credit for a little kind-hearted, photo-plagiarism because I know she knows:

Love rules without rules

Italian Proverb

And who says men are oblivious and have no powers of observation?  OK – so with the billboard approach there were no subtleties.  But observing his demonstration of love reminds us all that for this Sunday, no assumptions; no taking her for granted; no obliviousness; no subtleties are allowed.  On Valentine’s Day, we must shout our love for our love from the top of the mountains!  Of course, we hope our women do the same for the men in their lives:

You know “That Look” women get when they want sex?  Me neither. 

Steve Martin

This Sunday may be a special day in my marriage, but our relationship over the years has taken constant care (and patience).  Thankfully, my wife has patience:

Patience strengthens the spirit,

sweetens the temper,

stifles anger,

extinguishes envy,

subdues pride,

bridles the tongue,

restrains the hand,

and tramples upon temptation. 

George Horne

It’s easier to be patient with the little things I suppose.   But when times get tough, the most convenient person to argue with, vent to, and take our frustrations out on is often our partner, true?  Life seems to move so fast; people seem to be so stressed; the media inundates us with so many sensationalized issues.

I don’t know; are meaningful, loving partnerships easier or harder to find these days?  With everything racing at a break-neck pace, who’s responsible for maintaining a healthy, loving, long-lasting relationship?  Well, here’s a view from Wyatt Webb:

You are 100 percent responsible for 50 percent of any relationship.

Carrying more than ½ the load you say?  Yep – you and my wife, too.

Thankfully, my wife and I are still in love after all of these years.  We will do something quiet this Valentine’s Day; we enjoy our quiet time together – always have.  We’re blessed with sharing many common interests, so spending time together and “decompressing” from our fast-paced life is a nice retreat.

Like you, our conversations will span a variety of topics; children; friends; happy memories; love.  Of course, when we’re together we will also synchronize our calendars; debate upcoming projects; disagree on priorities; discuss business; and almost always review our finances.  Yuck!  Necessary I suppose, but certainly not very romantic.

Yet this Valentine’s Day I will be reminded:

A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person. 

Mignon McLaughlin

So here’s to February 14th – Valentine’s Day.  May you enjoy it with someone special in your life.  If you’re lucky enough to be in love, may you cherish your quiet time together; sharing common interests; being patient with life’s challenges; relishing the restorative results of romance.

And if you’re with someone but you’re not yet sure if he or she is “the one”, don’t worry – trust your gut feeling:

Love is not finding someone you can live with; it’s finding someone you cannot live without.

Rafael Ortiz

Love rules without rules Valentine’s Day – and every day.

GAP

Did you like this little ditty?  You might enjoy my others too.

Cowboys & You’re welcome…

Every day I say, “Thank you” to someone.  I bet you do too.  Of course, the common response in our modern era is, “No problem”.  Where did that come from?  What ever happened to, “You’re welcome”?

When someone says, “No problem”, that implies, “It wasn’t a problem for me that I did something for you that caused you to say Thank you”.  Well OK, if the something done to stimulate my “Thank you” was done for kindness reasons.

The problem I’m having with “No problem” is the typical context is not kindness-based, but rather courtesy-based.  And in that context, “You’re welcome” is the more courteous response, yes?

Maybe we should follow our cowboy heritage.  I’m fascinated by cowboys and the traditions of the American West.  The cowboy image carries with it attributes of ruggedness; strength; bravery; and courtesy, true?  A tip of their hat; a polite, “Ma’am”; a soft “You’re welcome” in response to “Thank you”.

I’m referring to actual cowboys; working men; rodeoers.  Not we city folk who like to dress up in boots, belt buckles, and B.S.

The cowboy way can make a difference in our lives; like my son Kevin has in mine.  We celebrated his birthday last weekend – I hope you enjoy this little present I gave him years ago from the opening to chapter seven of my book, The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective©.

Chapter VII:  Cowboy Up – You’ll Get Through It!

Dedicated to the American Cowboy – may we all learn to be more like them.

Now, I’m no cowboy; but I know one.

Cowboys are quiet, polite – men of few words; comfortable just listening while others around them bark at the moon nonstop.

No, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve heard one.

Cowboys have a reserve of strength far and above the average person – physical strength to be sure; but also great emotional strength.

I’m definitely no cowboy; but I’ve seen one.

Cowboys have the ability to remain in control even while every living thing around them, man and beast, spooks in mortal fear.

True, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve been protected by one.

Cowboys remain focused even with adrenaline rushing through their veins when they’re bull riding, or racing flat out, one-handed on horseback, to rope an escaping calf.

Yes, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve lived with one.

Cowboys are fearless especially at the age of 15 when they look down in the shoot and prepare to mount a bare back bucking bronco at their very first high school rodeo competition.

Absolutely, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve filmed one looking down that very shoot.

Cowboys always believe they can.  The cowboy feels that sigh of relief when he’s all twisted up in the dirt, having fallen off a stumbling horse and the rodeo announcer comes on the PA system and says, “Well folks, he’ll have an option for a re-ride.”

So, I’m no cowboy, but I’ve sat next to his Mother in the stands when we heard that Rodeo Announcer come over the P.A. System to say, “Well folks, he’ll have an option for a re-ride.” And as the announcer glanced down to the stands to see her reaction he quickly added, “But his Mother says NO!”

You see, I know a lot about cowboys.  That’s why I’m so sure I’m not one.  No, I’m no cowboy, but my son Kevin is.  And every day I try to be a little bit more like him.

Thank you for being you, Kevin!  Luv, Dad.

GAP

Did you like this little ditty?  You might enjoy my website too: www.TheQuoteGuys.com

High School Sweethearts…

Posted Oct 7 2015 by in True North with 4 Comments

Fall; October; football; high school; Homecoming – do you remember your first high school sweetheart?  High school is a very special and memorable time for teenagers; it certainly was for me.  And I always enjoyed the autumn season when I was in high school – Homecoming; Halloween; dating; parties (most chaperoned, some not).

Forty five years ago, this very time of the year, I asked the prettiest girl in my high school out on a first date.  I guess it went well enough because here we are forty five years later and I’m still awe-struck by the glow of her beauty.

I hope you enjoy this opening to Chapter XII True North, of my book, The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective © as much I enjoyed writing it:

Dedicated to… a crisp night in October; with a slight breeze blowing through bare trees – waiting for the coming winter.   Close your eyes.  Can you smell remnants of autumn leaves burning?  

To winning the homecoming football game.  To being carefree. To a Saturday night party at the teenager’s house whose parents are away.  Can you hear the kids having fun in the kitchen; the basement; and the backyard, all to the beat of the Rolling Stones? 

To couches, blue jeans and sweaters.  To the floor lamp reflecting on her blond hair making it shimmer with silvery streaks of light.  To the nervous small talk of a teenage boy in the presence of a varsity cheerleader.  To the patience of the teenage girl sitting on the couch with the captain of the varsity basketball team.  Can you remember when you could actually hear your heart throbbing? 

To throw pillows, which come in handy when the small talk runs out – what else can a young boy do?  And to playful pillow fights; which lead to gentle wrestling and ultimately to that first kiss. Remember how delicate she felt in your arms – the hint of her perfume – the taste of her lips? 

To first dates – dinner and a movie.  To the movie Catch 22 and the Oriental Theatre in downtown Chicago.  To dating the prettiest girl in your high school; to falling in love; to asking her father’s permission for her hand in marriage.  Were you ever so nervous? 

To the tears welling up in my eyes even as I write this short memoire.  To all those emotions; all the happiness; all those hopes and all those dreams; some fulfilled, some yet to be; and all that I can remember today as if it just happened yesterday – that I will remember everyday, as long as I live.  How can someone be so lucky? 

To 1970 – and that Saturday night in October in Elmhurst where I kissed Debbie for the very first time.  And to the friend’s house whose parents were out – to their couch, their floor lamp, to their throw pillows; and to the Rolling Stones music.  Can you imagine being so young, so infatuated, and so in love?  I still am.

GAP

Did you like this little ditty?  You might enjoy my website too: www.TheQuoteGuys.com

42…

Does that number bring some special meaning to mind?  Maybe the number of Girl Scout cookies you purchased (or ate) this year?  Was it the ending number of the 99 beers left on the wall from St. Patrick’s Day?  Perhaps it’s the page length of your 2014 income tax return?  (Or, the percentage of take home pay left to us once all of our taxes and deductions are deducted!)

As baseball’s spring training season begins, Wikipedia reminds us that Jackie Robinson and the number 42 are forever linked:

Robinson was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962. In 1997, MLB “universally” retired his uniform number, 42, across all major league teams; he was the first pro athlete in any sport to be so honored.

Maybe someone in your family wore number 42 when they played basketball or football?  According to www.express.com.uk  the Top 10 Facts about the number 42 include:

#1   The Buddhist goddess of mercy, Guanyin, is sometimes depicted as having 42 arms.

#4   There are 42 dots on a pair of dice.

#7   Forty-two per cent of the London Underground is under ground.

The number 42 definitely brings something special to my mind this year.  You see tomorrow is my 42nd wedding anniversary.

Our favorite, Unknown Sage once said,

Life can be measured by the number of moments that take your breath away.

Based on that metric I have enjoyed a very, full-measured life.  It’s actually been longer and even more full-measured than 42 years.  That’s because we met in the 7th grade; became sweethearts in high school; and wed in 1973; 42 years ago.  She still takes my breath away!

I’ve written about my wife frequently.  It’s fun to share our joy.  Oh, we’ve had our ups and downs like any couple in a long-term relationship.  I think we communicate well, but I’m still learning life’s key lessons – if not from my wife then back to our Unknown Sage:

Pratter’s Prayer

Lord, make my words as sweet as honey, for tomorrow I may have to eat them.

Communication of course, can be a bit tricky.  Somehow I must have benefited from Harlan Miller’s advice:

Often the difference between a successful marriage and a mediocre one consists of leaving three or four things a day unsaid.

Over the years like so many couples we have changed our residence; changed our lifestyles; changed our interests.  Maybe it was the fact that for several years I was a business road warrior and out of town often?  As one of my colleagues said:

The secret to a long marriage is a husband that travels. 

Lisa Kwiecien

My wife comes from a family of long-lasting marriages.  I knew her parents and her maternal grandparents well.  Her sisters have had long and successful marriages; my brother, too.  My Mom and Dad would have enjoyed a long-lasting marriage if not for the cancer that took my Mom’s life while she was still young.

Many of you are in a long-lasting relationship; many have been married longer than we.  A Mile High Salute!

Are long-lasting relationships difficult to maintain?  Maybe.  Perhaps we would agree in Harold Nicholson’s revelation:

The great secret of successful marriage is to treat all disasters as incidents and none of the incidents as disasters.

When we find that special person, we don’t think it’s difficult do we?  Often times the thing that matters most is simple and obvious:

Love is a rock against the wind. 

Etheridge Knight 

Happy 42nd Anniversary Dear.  I love you!

GAP

Did you like this little ditty?  You might enjoy my website too: www.TheQuoteGuys.com

High School Sweethearts…

Posted Oct 1 2014 by in True North with 5 Comments

Fall; October; football; high school; Homecoming – do you remember your first high school sweetheart?  High school is a very special and memorable time for teenagers; it certainly was for me.  And I always enjoyed the autumn season when I was in high school – Homecoming; Halloween; dating; parties (most chaperoned, some not).

Forty four years ago, this very time of the year, I asked the prettiest girl in my high school out on a first date.  I guess it went well enough because here we are forty four years later and I’m still awe-struck by the glow of her beauty.

I hope you enjoy this opening to Chapter XII True North, of my book, The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective © as much I enjoyed writing it:

Dedicated to… a crisp night in October; with a slight breeze blowing through bare trees – waiting for the coming winter.   Close your eyes.  Can you smell remnants of autumn leaves burning? 

To winning the homecoming football game.  To being carefree. To a Saturday night party at the teenager’s house whose parents are away.  Can you hear the kids having fun in the kitchen; the basement; and the backyard, all to the beat of the Rolling Stones? 

To couches, blue jeans and sweaters.  To the floor lamp reflecting on her blond hair making it shimmer with silvery streaks of light.  To the nervous small talk of a teenage boy in the presence of a varsity cheerleader.  To the patience of the teenage girl sitting on the couch with the captain of the varsity basketball team.  Can you remember when you could actually hear your heart throbbing? 

To throw pillows, which come in handy when the small talk runs out – what else can a young boy do?  And to playful pillow fights; which lead to gentle wrestling and ultimately to that first kiss. Remember how delicate she felt in your arms – the hint of her perfume – the taste of her lips? 

To first dates – dinner and a movie.  To the movie Catch 22 and the Oriental Theatre in downtown Chicago.  To dating the prettiest girl in your high school; to falling in love; to asking her father’s permission for her hand in marriage.  Were you ever so nervous? 

To the tears welling up in my eyes even as I write this short memoire.  To all those emotions; all the happiness; all those hopes and all those dreams; some fulfilled, some yet to be; and all that I can remember today as if it just happened yesterday – that I will remember everyday, as long as I live.  How can someone be so lucky? 

To 1970 – and that Saturday night in October in Elmhurst where I kissed Debbie for the very first time.  And to the friend’s house whose parents were out – to their couch, their floor lamp, to their throw pillows; and to the Rolling Stones music.  Can you imagine being so young, so infatuated, and so in love?  I still am.

Gary A. Pokorn

Did you like this little ditty?  You might enjoy my website too:  The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective© Please check it out.

To Dad…

Posted Jun 16 2013 by in True North with 1 Comment

Happy Father’s Day!  Aren’t fathers and grandfathers great?  The memory of my father brings a proud smile to my face (and my heart!).  If you’re lucky enough to have living fathers and grandfathers, give them a hug today, OK? 

There are many Father’s Day traditions – what’s yours?  The Westernaires White Olympics performance in Golden, CO is a tradition.  We have picnicked there many a year and enjoyed the show. (Check ‘em out at www.westernaires.org

Ten year old kids performing western-style, precision horse riding to an audience of families, fathers, grandfathers and friends.  Although these kids will be terrific riders by their senior year of high school, those riding Father’s Day will only be capable of bringing a proud smile to their Dads’ faces (and hearts!). 

The fearlessness and composure of ten year olds today amazes me!  Jumping onto a horse twice their height; grabbing a flag; and taking off one-handed to ride a precision drill – amazing!  When they’re in the saddle, they’re in charge, just like their Dads (hoping the horse doesn’t know any different, of course).  I never faced such a challenge.  Why, when I was ten, I only had to make sure I was home before the street lights came on. 

From this man’s perspective, men certainly have an entertaining view of the world, don’t we?  Take Mike Jaeger’s point: 

Tell a man there are 300 billion stars in the universe and he’ll believe you.  Tell him the plate you’re handing him is very hot and he’ll have to touch it to believe it.                                 

Sound familiar?  Yep, me too. 

The older I get the more appreciative I am of the love and devotion my father gave to me and my brother.  I am also more impressed with the patience and perseverance my wife and my sons have had with me over the years – I’d say I have definitely been an “acquired taste”.  Now that my sons have children in their lives, I get to be the grandfather, yea!   Being the grandfather has responsibilities, too: 

Sometimes the only difference we can make is passing our wisdom on to someone else who will make the bigger difference.

Linda B. Gray 

My children have certainly made a bigger difference in my life.  And when they use one of my little sayings, or demonstrate a family value or tradition they acquired from my wife and me, well it brings a proud smile to my face (and my heart)!

Our children and their children will carry on the values and traditions we learned from our fathers and their fathers before them, yes?  For us Dads, this is one of life’s most satisfying accomplishments.   Makes me want to keep on keeping on – maybe bring a few more proud smiles to their faces (and hearts!) for a few more years to come. 

Who was it, Mickey Mantle?  I think he said: 

If I knew I was going to live this long I would have taken better care of myself. 

Sound familiar?  Yep, me too. 

Of course, someday our little angels may turn on us; they’ll want to take away our car keys before sending “Gramps” to a nursing home.  And when that day comes we’ll think of our forefathers again: 

When I die, I want to die like my Grandfather who died peacefully in his sleep.  Not screaming like all the passengers in his car.    

                               Unknown Sage 

Brings a smile to my face (and my heart!).

GAP 

Did you like this little ditty?  You might enjoy my book, too:  The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective©  Please check it out Subscribe.

Love rules without rules

Still one of my favorite Italian Proverbs. 

There’s a special day later this week – Valentine’s Day.  What are you doing for that special someone in your life?  Too busy?  Too tired?  Too stressed?  You’re both working?  It’s still not too late you know.  Or did you plan ahead and set a date with your honey for next weekend? 

I don’t know, are meaningful relationships easier or harder to find and maintain these days?  Life seems to move so fast; people seem to be stressed; the media inundates us with sensationalized issues.  With everything racing at a break-neck pace, who’s responsible for maintaining a healthy, loving, long-lasting relationship?  Well, here’s a view from Wyatt Webb: 

You are 100 percent responsible for 50 percent of any relationship.                                 

A nice reminder as we think of that special person in our life this week.  We are responsible.  Carrying more than ½ the load you say?  Yep – you and my wife, too.  Thank God my wife has patience:                             

Patience strengthens the spirit,

sweetens the temper,

stifles anger,

extinguishes envy,

subdues pride,

bridles the tongue,

restrains the hand,

and tramples upon temptation.

George Horne 

This Thursday may be a special day in my household, but our relationship over the years has taken constant care (and patience).  Little things mostly; not very difficult, I suppose; but we have been very fortunate.  Marriage seems less common than divorce these days; long-lasting marriage is becoming even rarer.  And when times get tough, the most convenient person to argue with, vent to, and take our frustrations out on is often our partner, true? 

My wife and I are still in love after all of these years.  We will do something quiet this Thursday; we enjoy quiet time together; always have – going all the way back to when we started dating in high school.  We’re blessed with sharing many common interests, so spending time together is always a nice retreat. 

Like you, our conversations span a variety of topics; children; friends; happy memories.  Of course, when we’re together we also synchronize our calendars; debate upcoming projects; disagree on priorities; discuss business; and almost always review our finances.  Yuck!  Necessary I suppose, but certainly not very romantic. 

Like you, we leverage electronic communication in our daily routine – email; voice mail; texting – what a modern couple!  I get a kick out of these technologies.  Less personal I suppose, but it keeps us in closer contact throughout the day.  However, these machines won’t replace our quiet moments together.  Brings to mind what Jim Sterne said about the year 2000:

Live contact will never be replaced by a machine (except ATM’s – we love machines that give us money). 

Yet this Valentine’s Day I will be reminded:

A successful marriage requires falling in love many times, always with the same person.

Mignon McLaughlin 

So here’s to February 14th – Valentines Day.   May you enjoy it with someone special in your life – a friend; a family member; your spouse.  If you’re lucky enough to be in love, may you cherish your quiet time together; sharing common interests; being patient with life’s trials and tribulations.

And if you’re with someone but you’re not yet sure if he or she is “the one”, don’t worry – trust your gut feeling:

Love is not finding someone you can live with; it’s finding someone you cannot live without.

Rafael Ortiz 

Love is special on Valentine’s Day – and every day.

GAP 

How’s your day?  When life gets tough you could get a helmet.  Or, you could read The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective© Please check it out.

To my cowboy…

A couple of weeks ago I wrote a little ditty about being yourself, costumes, self-improvement, and my dog (see http://thequoteguys.com/2012/11/be-yourself/ ).  In it I said that for Halloween this year I wore an American Cowboy costume to my wife’s Halloween party.  I also confessed that I’m no cowboy.  

I’m fascinated by cowboys and the traditions of the American West.  Businesses and business executives in this country could make things better for all of us if more leaders heeded the advice found in one of my favorite books (and a source for more than a few quotes when writing these little ditties):  Cowboy Ethics© by James P. Owen: 

I have come to realize that anybody can make money; it is much harder to make a difference. 

The book was a gift from a client of mine, Steve Major, several years ago.  Working for Steve made a difference in my life.  And his leadership ethics have made a positive impact on the lives of people that work for him, too. 

My son Kevin has also made a difference in my life.  We are celebrating his birthday this week – I thought you might like this present I gave him a few years ago when I wrote about him.  This is the opening to chapter seven in my book, The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective©.  Enjoy! 

                        Chapter VII:  Cowboy Up – You’ll Get Through It! 

Dedicated to the American Cowboy – may we all learn to be more like them. 

Now, I’m no cowboy; but I know one. 

Cowboys are quiet, polite – men of few words; comfortable just listening while others around them bark at the moon nonstop. 

No, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve heard one. 

Cowboys have a reserve of strength far and above the average person – physical strength to be sure; but also great emotional strength.  

I’m definitely no cowboy; but I’ve seen one. 

Cowboys have the ability to remain in control even while every living thing around them, man and beast, spooks in mortal fear. 

True, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve been protected by one. 

Cowboys remain focused even with adrenaline rushing through their veins when they’re bull riding, or racing flat out, one-handed on horseback, to rope an escaping calf. 

Yes, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve lived with one. 

Cowboys are fearless especially at the age of 15 when they look down in the shoot and prepare to mount a bare back bucking bronco at their very first high school rodeo competition. 

Absolutely, I’m no cowboy; but I’ve filmed one looking down that very shoot. 

Cowboys always believe they can.  The cowboy feels that sigh of relief when he’s all twisted up in the dirt, having fallen off a stumbling horse and the rodeo announcer comes on the PA system and says, “Well folks, he’ll have an option for a re-ride.” 

So, I’m no cowboy, but I’ve sat next to his Mother in the stands when we heard that Rodeo Announcer come over the P.A. System to say, “Well folks, he’ll have an option for a re-ride.” And as the announcer glanced down to the stands to see her reaction he quickly added, “But his Mother says NO!” 

You see, I know a lot about cowboys.  That’s why I’m so sure I’m not one.  No, I’m no cowboy, but my son Kevin is.  And every day I try to be a little bit more like him. 

Happy birthday Kevin!  Luv, Dad. 

GAP 

Did you like this little ditty?  You might enjoy my book, too:  The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective©  Please check it out Subscribe.

To Dad…

Happy Father’s Day this coming Sunday!  Aren’t fathers and grandfathers great?  The memory of my father brings a proud smile to my face (and my heart!).  If you’re lucky enough to have living fathers and grandfathers, give them an extra hug this Sunday, OK? 

There are many Father’s Day traditions – what’s your favorite?  The Westernaires’ White Olympics performance in Golden, CO is a tradition.  We picnicked there last year and then enjoyed the show. (Check ‘em out –www.westernaires.org )  This Sunday, ten year old kids will be performing western-style, precision horse riding to an audience of families, friends, and fathers.  Although these kids will be terrific riders by their senior year of high school, those riding this Sunday will only be capable of bringing a proud smile to their Dads’ faces (and hearts!). 

The fearlessness and composure of ten year olds today amazes me!  Jumping onto a horse twice their height; grabbing a flag; and taking off one-handed to ride a precision, team drill – amazing!  When they’re in the saddle, they’re in charge, just like their Dads (hoping the horse doesn’t know any different, of course).  I never faced such a challenge.  Why, when I was ten, I only had to make sure I was home before the street lights came on. 

From this man’s perspective, men certainly have an entertaining view of the world, don’t we?  Take Mike Jaeger’s point: 

Tell a man there are 300 billion stars in the universe and he’ll believe you.  Tell him the plate you’re handing him is very hot and he’ll have to touch it to believe it.                                 

Sound familiar?  Yep, me too. 

The older I get the more appreciative I am of the love and devotion my father gave to me and my brother.  I am also more impressed with the patience and perseverance my wife and my sons have had with me over the years – I’d say I have definitely been an “acquired taste”.  Now that my sons have children in their lives, I get to be the grandfather, yea!   Being the grandfather has responsibilities, too: 

Sometimes the only difference we can make is passing our wisdom on to someone else who will make the bigger difference.

                                                                  Linda B. Gray 

My children have certainly made a bigger difference in my life.  And when they use one of my little sayings, or demonstrate a family value or tradition they acquired from my wife and me, well it brings a proud smile to my face (and my heart)!

Our children and their children will carry on the values and traditions we learned from our fathers and their fathers before them, yes?  For us Dads, this is one of life’s most satisfying accomplishments.   Makes me want to keep on keeping on – maybe bring a few more proud smiles to their faces (and hearts!) for a few more years to come.  

Who was it, Mickey Mantle?  I think he said, “If I knew I was going to live this long I would have taken better care of myself.”  Sound familiar?  Yep, me too. 

Of course, someday our little angels may turn on us; they’ll want to take away the keys before sending “Gramps” to a nursing home.  And when that day comes we’ll think of our forefathers again: 

When I die, I want to die like my Grandfather who died peacefully in his sleep.  Not screaming like all the passengers in his car.    

                                                                  Unknown 

Just kidding.

                                                                  GAP 

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