Compromise: A Key Virtue in Getting Things Done

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Our society can be so hostile. Everybody seems to take sides; us against them, democrats against republicans, organic agriculture against conventional agriculture, Christians against atheists. Standing for an extreme is not a good way to solve problems because the world is not black and white. It creates more problems than it solves.

Great things really happen when people come together and compromise.

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“The Medium is the Message,” What Does That Mean?

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When humans developed writing, our ideas and our stories became more complex. With writing came the ability to formulate arguments. That led to the development of liberal arts, complex mathematics, philosophy…we could fill an encyclopedia with the various fields that developed from our ability to write.

Before writing, humans communicated primarily with speech. Because of our communications being mediated by speech rather than writing, we experienced a different reality. That is what media theorist, Marshal McLuhan, was writing about when he proposed that the medium is the message. Continue reading

He always loves you

When He cries, it rains,
but he is not crying this morning.
The sun is shining through the window,
lying on the pedals of a poinsettia.

He sits up in bed.
He stretches his arms
and the universe expands.
He smiles contentment.

He tiptoes down the stairs.
He has perfected his
apple cinnamon oatmeal recipe,
and He is ready to share it
with you and your lover.

He grew the finest oats.
He handpicked the best apples.
He cooks now in the quiet hour.
He knows you love apple cinnamon.

But He doesn’t stop there.
He cooks a feast:
steamed greens,
scrambled eggs, fried eggs,
bacon and sausage,
waffles and pancakes,
and fruit salad.

He is eager to share it with you and your lover.
He wonders why you are still so quiet.
He looks out the front window,
and discovers your car is gone.

He calls.
He waits.
The feast goes cold.
The vegetables wilt,
the eggs get soggy,
the bacon and sausage dry out,
the waffles and pancakes go stale,
and the fruit salad turns brown.

Finally, He decides to eat without you.
He finishes and cleans up.
Then you and your lover
come in the back door,
wet from the rain,
with a small bag of leftovers from
a fast food restaurant.

A Name is Like a Work of Art

Each person brings his/her own life experiences to the interpretation of it.

One of Mozart’s symphonies, though universally portraying the feelings of triumph, can remind one person of grandpa sitting on his rocking chair, smoking his pipe, and listening to his phonograph. The same symphony might remind another person of a particular movie or event.

Things change a bit, however, when a work is truly great. The truly great work can transcend interpretation based on life experiences. Instead, the person’s life experiences are affected in some way by the work of art.

It is the same way with names. You can meet a guy named Tony, and the actions of every other Tony in your life will play some role — big or small — in your initial judgment of the Tony you just met. There is a reason parents do not name their children after people they dislike.

Your judgement of the greatest Tony you meet, the one who has impacted you the most, will be less swayed by the way you feel about other Tonys. Instead, the greatest Tony will be the influencer. He will have the strongest affect on how you view all the other Tonys you meet.

Be the big one. Be the one who people think of first when they hear your name, no matter how common it is.