A Good Trip to the Desert

15-year-old Joel wanted to tell a story today.

On Friday when I dropped off a leftover paper for Cindy (she was looking for a job, and I always seemed to have a spare paper at the end of my afternoon route) her mom Jean answered the door. When she mentioned they were driving out to the desert to see the spring flowers bloom, I thought what fun, and asked if I could go along.

She thought about it for a moment, and then said how nice it was that if you waited you could always depend on a man coming along or something like that. I found out what time they were leaving so they could pick me up in the morning.

My mom was surprised I was going. When she’d talked to Jean earlier, all Jean had said was they had plans the next day, but Mom didn’t get invited.

After they picked me up in the morning we stopped for breakfast with the rest of the group. The other moms and daughters seemed surprised to see me. I still thought my mom could have come along, but I didn’t say anything. I didn’t want to make anyone uncomfortable.

We got out near Borrego Springs, and the flowers were beautiful. After lunch (I didn’t pack anything and had to go into the deli to get a sandwich) Cindy wanted to sit in the sun. It was warm, and the rest of us were in the shade, so she had to go way off to be in the sun. When I tried to talk to her, she was so far away she couldn’t hear me very well and after while I think she might have fallen asleep because she stopped answering.

On the drive home, she was still sleepy. I think she slept all the way home, like two hours. It was a long drive and I knew Jean must be tired, so I said I had my learner’s permit now and if she wanted me to drive for a while I’d be glad to. I think I even mentioned that my driver’s training used exactly the same kind of car she drove. But she didn’t hear me, so after a minute I said it again. I could tell she was really tired, because she still didn’t answer. After I said it the third time and she still didn’t answer, I decided she was too tired to think about it, and I just let her drive.

It was a fun day, being out in the desert when it was cool, all the flowers blooming, spending time with friends.


Why is Silence the New “No” ?

I get a lot of spam. Not the autobot machine stuff; Gmail filters all that out. I get lots of emails from real human beings who want to help me optimize the SEO for my websites or to provide coding services for my web company.

I used to reply this isn’t a match for me, but that seemed to invite dialog, which also isn’t a match for me thank you very much.

Now I just delete them.

Most of the time they’re canned emails these folks are sending out to anyone who has “website” in their portfolio.

There are other people I’ll move heaven and earth to respond to. Real people, who approach me about something real. A question about publishing or the web or music. Real people who know something about me, and took the risk of putting their hand out to a stranger.

Sometimes, though, I can’t help them. Continue reading “Why is Silence the New “No” ?”


Why Doesn’t “I’m Sorry” Mean “I’ll Fix It” ?

photo http://www.sxc.hu/photo/832277 by William Wilhelms http://www.sxc.hu/profile/bwilhelmsI received this email this morning from, er, Giant Near-Monopoly Phone Service:

Thank you for choosing Giant Near-Monopoly Phone Service.

Unfortunately, we were either unable to verify the information you provided or you have exceeded the number of lines of service that we allow customers to purchase online. As a result, your order has been canceled.

If you would like to purchase additional lines of service, please visit one of our Giant Near-Monopoly Phone Service retail locations and present your identification to our representatives. They will be happy to help you purchase new wireless devices, accessories, and service.

Please go to giantnearmonopolyphoneservice.com/storelocator to find a store near you.

We apologize for the inconvenience and look forward to serving you.

Thank you,

Giant Near-Monopoly Phone Service

Continue reading “Why Doesn’t “I’m Sorry” Mean “I’ll Fix It” ?”


Why Buying Another Clock Won’t Get You There On Time

When I was young, I was always late. I’ve spent half a lifetime working to develop punctuality and it seems to be improving.

Aggravating the problem was how I handled being late. The lesson I learned when I made the following change has led to a major reduction in my business stress.

When I was late, all I did was hurry more to try to be less late. Of course, people were always waiting, and once you’re late, being less late than you might have been really doesn’t help much. You know what does help?

one more clock
Continue reading “Why Buying Another Clock Won’t Get You There On Time”