For my mother

Random Thoughts…

Top Down Decisions:

  • Why is it that organizations as they age begin to make more an more top down decisions?
  • Why do organizations forget that involving the folks that do the work in the decisions helps the people doing the work feel more engaged and involved and therefore more willing to make the sacrifices required by the decision?
  • can you succeed without engaging the people who do the work?
  • I thought a little more about this from a team perspective as well here :

Learning Styles

Why is it harder to teach a class of students representing all six (there may even be more) learning styles represented in the children of the class. Is it that most people are really only comfortable teaching to the learning style they themselves have?

Nothing like a Saturday to think and reflect on the world around me.


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What is the impact of technology on travel

I’ve been thinking about this for awhile now. My life as it was (in terms of travel) vs the life I have now in terms of travel.

1. Kindle – wow – what a great traveling device to have with you at all times.

2. Zune – wow – another great device – let’s you carry your digital life with you

3. IPod Touch – wow – ok – I love the touch over the Zune for listening to audio books –

4. net book – double wow – now I can work on a plane again!


There are a number of other devices that impact my travel life but these four are the big ones.


Another shameless product review

I recently got the new ASUS Touch Netbook. Eee PC TC91.

  • What a great tool for traveling – a full function notebook that I can actually open and use in an airplane without hurting myself or having to move my seat so far back the person behind me can’t sit.
  • I am a huge fan of touch screen technology – I now have three computers that have this capability and frankly it is amazing.
  • Not bad on heat production (the other limiting factor for a laptop – too hot for my lap!)
  • AT&T card plugs right in…
  • 16 gig is a little tight on disk space – but with it being a SSD, I can actually move the device while using it!
  • Screen is easily read/seen

I am upgrading the device to windows 7 this weekend – will post more later!


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Did you see that…

I watched my favorite professional basketball team last night (the Celtics). Its fun to watch professional basketball and watch human beings with amazing skills. I wish I could jump that high.

This is the time of year that I love. Professional Football, College Basketball, College Football and Professional Basketball are all in “season” and it makes for a wonderful viewing experience.

I should probably buy one of those tv packages that let’s you watch everything. But it was so much fun to relax over the weekend and watch sports.


My kids…and some other deep thoughts

I spent a week of vacation with sick and recovering kids. Overall I wouldn’t trade a minute of time that I spent with them even though they were a little whinny and sick. Its amazing to me – I spent a number of years as a school teacher with other people’s kids. I’ve spent many more years with my own kids and frankly being a parent is 10 times more rewarding (for me). My kids are awesome!

Deep Thoughts:

  • How do you go up 28 to 3 and lose a game by one?
  • 42-6 the Colts are for real.
  • The Saint’s are amazing – what a fun team to watch…
  • I love watching Brett Favre and Kurt Warner play. I wish I didn’t feel so old
  • Time to get back to work…



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Understanding and the human condition

If, and I am not saying it is so, but for sake of argument let’s go with this, we only had 100 dollars worth of understanding to spend at any one time. How would you spend that money? Would you devote 90 dollars to your family and 10 to the rest of your life? or would you base the distribution on the needs of others? Deciding how and when to be understanding is never the easiest thing.

At times understanding comes with a cost that is above and beyond the assigned $100 of above. You may not realize that the cost is there, but it is. Understanding or acceptance (if you choose to call it that) is accepting that others have the right and add value to a process. There are times (we’ve all been there) sitting in a meeting where it is nearly impossible to find value or understanding. Do you burn your understanding trying harder in those scenarios?

I used to sit in meetings with a team i was on where it was more a circus. There was a dancing bear and a ring master and the two of them ran the show. Why? Because the dancing bear played up to the ring master. Between the two of them they never listened (in fact in you dig in the archives of this blog you will find a poem about meetings – dancing bears and colored sticks). Not listening means that the rest of the team then has to decide if they are going to expend their understanding. The thing is, we never did. There was no value in trying to help the ring master, because he only listened to the dancing bear. Which meant the rest of us looked at what was going on in meetings and withdrew.

It is a critical component of the human condition, understanding. It shows that we have compassion and empathy for those around us. The thing is we are all afraid of the cost of understanding. So we don’t listen (to avoid the cost) and we don’t understand (still avoiding cost) and then we wonder why no one else engaged. Well, its because no one understood where the other folks in the meeting were.



Long way home

One of my favorite lines from a Super Tramp song, take the long way home.  The long way would seem at times to be something that you would avoid rather than leverage. But there are times you would consider the long way.

When I was a kid we used to take the long way every Sunday. We would wander and meander around in our car for 2 or 3 hours. Of course today you really can’t do that for a number of reasons, but back then taking the long way was a lot of fun.

The long way is also good to avoid traffic and other road related issues.

Of course in the old days we didn’t have satellite radio and GPS’s to help us avoid the inevitable long wait (although driving to Cincinnati Ohio there is one stretch of the highway that if they have a wreck – you are stuck until they clear it.

Still it is also an metaphor taking the “long way.” rather than taking the “easy way”. Its following the line of the poem “taking the road less traveled” to be “all the better for it.”

Taking, the long way home. Worse, filling the entire page with the long way home 🙂


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With the past and the future, is there an alignment? Random thoughts for Friday…

  • My car has all wheel drive. What does that mean? Will it be more successful because it has four times the drive?
  • What is the difference between vacation lost and aging?
  • What is valuable?
  • What is important?
  • Why am I lost without a GPS?
  • Why is change so painful?
  • If I stub my toe why does my other foot hurt?
  • Why do back’s ache? What are they aching for?
  • What does the world loyalty mean?

All over the place this morning. For some reason I can’t focus.


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My wife

I have had the fortune of a wonderful person willing to share the past 19 years with me. We are the proud parents of 4 children. My step-daughter who is growing into a wonderful adult, our daughter and our twin sons.

Each of our children brings a different joy to us. An opportunity to see pieces of ourselves but also new pieces.

Both Barb and I were married before. Not that either person was to blame for the dissolution of our marriages, I just don’t think either of them was in the right place and time to grow the way both Barb and I have grown since. People grow in so many different ways.

In 19 years I have come to see a world that is vastly different then the one I saw when we were married. It is a world of change and opportunity. Frankly I could never be where I am, without Barbara backing me, guiding me and being my love.

Thank you dear.

It was 19 years ago that we terrified both our parents by telling them after 2 weeks of dating that we were engaged.


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