Pay It Forward Ends…No Way

August 16, 2013 - Leave a Response

Stop the kindness people. Just stop it. That about sums up what is happening on one of Georgia’s toll roads, GA 400. Apparently the company who collects the tolls has decided that you are no longer allowed to give the toll booth operator $.50 to cover the toll of the driver behind you in line. Some people were complaining that they did not see the toll operators toss the 50 cents into the collection as they drove away. The thought or assumption was that the operators were pocketing the extra money. So, Abacus Corp, the firm who operates the toll booths had put a stop to the Highway Charity.

pay if forward

Now keep in mind that later this year the tolls are ending anyway. Toll booths will be taken down next year and GA 400 will free and clear without those pesky quarters to drive a few miles. So, just where do we now turn for our desire to “pay it forward”? I have personally paid for the driver behind me in the mornings at the McD’s drive through. I don’t do it everyday, but it does come back your way, because I have had my breakfast burritos covered by a driver in front of me.

Usually this happens anonymously. You pay and drive. But what would happen if while in line at the local quick trip you offered to cover someone’s drink purchase? Just because…with no strings attached. I am certain the recipient would have a story to tell and maybe approach their day with a thankful heart and seek ways to pay the kindness you showed on to someone else.

The real blessing you have is that very fact you don’t know what might happen. And you might never ever know. But what you do know is that you did the deed, the act of kindness. Such a small price to pay for such a great feeling that is hard to describe and harder to value in terms of money.

Pay It Forwards has not ended. It is available for all of us to use in random acts of kindness.

 

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Dog Days of Summer…Really?

August 15, 2013 - 2 Responses

Dog-Shivering-4c-LR-2We are in the midst of those Dog Days of Summer. You know those days that the humidity is through the roof; the heat index is pushing triple digits by 9 AM. You go out to grab the mail and by the time you get back to the house, you are ready for a cold shower. But…even the cold water isn’t very cold. Yep…August is here.

But apparently mother nature is on vacation or El-Nino is moving on from bone dry days, past the wet and hot days to our new freeze your frame days. It is all over the news. We just might set a record for…ready for it:

The Coldest High Temp since 1908

Where is my encyclopedia? What was happening in 1908 that brought on such an event. And even more perplexing…what have we done to deserve this?

Oh well, nothing brings out another reason to blog than does the crazy weather. After all, without all the crazy weather extremes we would never has those ever so popular…AVERAGE TEMPS and AVERAGE this or that.

Well, time to get my mind wrapped around fall. After all, school is back in session…pre-season football has begun and I do believe I can see a leaf lying in my front yard. Now, just where did I leave my hat and gloves?

 

Hollywood Baby

August 14, 2013 - One Response

HollywoodWhat a morning at that place where I work. First, you need to know that training is a vital part of an associate’s experience. Not just knowing about cars, but knowing and displaying the proper professional principles in sales to be exceptional at what we do…every day.

Secondly, our training occurs ever morning, occurs throughout the day and even on Sunday before the store opens. And part of the training is to watch video clips showing what “good” looks like or sometimes, what “not so good” looks like.

Well today I was privileged, along with 4 other associates to participate in the video taping of a couple of training videos. These short demonstrations of what good should look like will be used to train new associates. I played the part of an average customer. It was a morning filled with re-takes, cuts, action and my favorite…that’s a wrap.

My fellow associates displayed great enthusiasm, even though they needed to arrive early, early in the morning in order to finish the shoot before the store opened. All, in all it was a fantastic experience and one that I was really glad to have participated in accomplishing.

I have not lined up a talent agent…nor am I signing autographs, nor will my blooper reel be available, I will consider myself fortunate to work for such a company that gives regular folk like me a chance to show off some hidden talent.

Tomorrow I go back to the regular routine…actually doing what I do best for real. So, don’t call me Mr. Hollywood….well, OK, maybe just once.

 

 

Cold Water Lesson

August 12, 2013 - One Response

You don’t think much about hot water in your house, until you have no hot water in your house. That was life around my home this weekend. We are headed to church, ready to go when…as we open the garage door we step into a water all over the garage floor. A quick check of the area revealed that our water

water_heater_repairman_cartoon1

heater was leaking from the bottom. Fortunately not pouring out, but a regular dripping. With the amount of water lying around, it must have dripped all night long. 

So we went into clean up mode. I turned off the water to the heater and began to remove wet objects, sweep water out the garage door. Then we realized that the water was still dripping. The shut off valve was not shutting off and this left us with only one solution…turn the water off to the entire house. And sure enough…the leak slowly stopped. Now, an emergency plummer was needed. The call was made, the appointment set. I was ready to head to the Home Depot and buy a new heater, but he advised us to wait till he could source one which was better and less expensive. However, that would only happen Monday morning. So he caps off the copper pipes, and then turns back on the water to the house. 

You would think we are back in business with just cold water available. Think again. I was prepared for the cold showers, but after about 2 minutes of enduring a cold shower, the water stops. Apparently the showers which have the control valve to blend hot and cold, will not allow just the cold to come through the shower head. I don’t know why, but I know that it can leave you in a pickle. 

So, the plummer is on his way this morning to correct our situation and return us to “normal”. And life goes on as before. But it does present an interesting life lesson.

First, we live in a very affluent nation. We worry about heating our water, but in many areas of our world, people worry about having water.  My water problem was for bathing comfortably. Many in our world worry about just having water as it relates to safe drinking for survival. Check out this site: Free Water

Second, we all make plans and faithfully expect all of our plans to come to a fulfillment…in a positive sense. But often our plans are derailed. In the scope of all things, my displeasure of interruption of my plans is small potatoes compared to some who leave a doctor’s office in shock over news of cancer eating away at their life. Or others who get that late night phone call, informing them of a loved one’s involvement in an automobile accident.

Soon my life will soon be back to normal. My plans to replace our old tube TV with a new thin flat TV, well those plans are on hold now for a few months. Good hygiene habits do take precedence over my TV time. I will welcome the new hot water heater with open arms and have a better appreciation for the blessings in life and lessons learned to help me live a fulfilled life too. Now where is my shampoo???????

 

 

Picnic Pedal Power

June 15, 2013 - One Response

I have am off work today, almost. Just a couple of hours facilitating a training session at work, then 3 days off in a row. It has been a while since my last 3 day. Of all the things that I will tackle over the next 72 hours, a picnic is probably not on my list. But as they say, “I don’t always go on a picnic, but when I do, I use my picnic bike.” 

PicnicBikeEnjoy your Saturday.

So Long

June 14, 2013 - 2 Responses

A goodbye is applicable at various occasions. Recently we said goodbye to some co-workers who are Goodbyeadvancing in their careers, either with the company or apart from the company. Work relationships formed with people on a very regular basis creates friends who are more that just associates. It is difficult to see someone depart, but rewarding to know they are fulfilling a dream, rising in the company or walking new ground with an exciting adventure ahead.

And there are other goodbyes. There are some which come as a surprise; some come as a shock; others come out of the blue. Some are forced and some are calculated and needed for the best. And I believe Shakespeare had it right when Juliet said these words, “Parting is such sweet sorrow.”  It is an oxymoron–a combination of pleasure and pain.

I am certain you have experienced those goodbyes in your life which seem to bring all emotion to the surface. You hover somewhere between joy and sorrow. Sorrow to see them have to go or why they must go. And when a goodbye is unpleasant in situation, memories of the past, the good times, can soon replace any emotions of sorrow, shock or anger.

Some people come into our lives and quickly go.  Some stay for a while, leave footprints on our hearts, and we are never, ever the same.  ~Flavia Weedn,Forever

Goot bye adieu

 

 

Here We Go Again

June 12, 2013 - 2 Responses

I won’t spend a lot of time on it. Every year I feel a need to mention it, but as someone once said, “it does no good to complain…ain’t nobody gone to listen anyway.”

hot weatherWelcome to summer time in Georgia. High temps, high humidity, and high temperaments…. I can’t wait till the sun goes down.

I’ll Beee Back…

June 12, 2013 - 2 Responses

commercials_thumbnailA few years ago I acquired my DVR. At first use, I knew I would enjoy this little piece of electronic wonder. I was in control of live TV. Soon, I discovered that I could record programs easily and watch them later. Much like my old VCR, but much faster and better. All of our favorites were now available on my schedule. It was not long after this that I realized I was not seeing many commercials. In fact, I was fast forwarding through them so much that my typical 60 minute drama would only last about 45 minutes at best. What a time saver. And Madison Avenue was not shouting at me through my TV. Heaven on earth.

But alas, and I do mean alas, the commercials have crept back into my life. Now just about every other post or two in Facebook will have an advertisement. Some recommended by my friends. (Thanks for nothing) and others just because when I needed to research purchasing a new weed trimmer, well now apparently the entire universe is trying to sell me one. Yikes. Please..when I am ready, I will venture to the store to touch it and buy it.

And now comes the emails. Yes, I signed up to get some information from company A. I received the information, but now comes a large number of ads to my email box from companies not even connected to my original request…my email has been sold to ADVERTISERS. So, here I go, trying to opt out of these vultures and clean out the old in box of commercials.

Maybe this is just punishment for my pride at eliminating all those TV ads. So I guess my only conclusion is to correct or at least add to the famous quote, “The only things certain in life are death and taxes”. Well, from here on I would add, “The only things certain in this life are death, taxes and those darn commercials.”

So since you just can’t live without them, you might as well enjoy the ones which are thought provoking, entertaining and motivational, you know the ones I speak about…”Start Here”. Yeah, I have a horse in the race with those ads for sure.

 

Stuff

June 9, 2013 - Leave a Response

green-stuffI talked a few days ago about our project of getting hardwood floors. Well since then we have lined up the contractors. Yes, contractors. We have someone scheduled to lay our flooring and someone who will paint our walls. But now comes the scary part…we need to get the things off the walls, and clean out some furniture. Our dining room hutch is loaded with stuff…china of course, special glasses, cups, plates etc collected over the years. And in order to move this furniture we need to re-locate all this stuff into boxes temporarily. 5 boxes packed with more to go. And then there is the knick knack wall in the family room with special pictures, things, speakers for the TV, and various odds and ends of memories. Now move to the office. Our desk top is about as crowded with stuff as the computer’s desktop is filled with apps and programs. And all this stuff needs to be stored away temporarily till all the contractors are finished. I am at 7 banker boxes now and probably will hit the store for another bunch.

So the question becomes, “Why do we have all this stuff?”  The answer is of course, because.  Yes, because. Americans seem to accumulate stuff. If we have too much stuff, well we then call it hoarding. Now let me say, I am no where near those who hoard. You  know the ones who are on TV. But…thank goodness for the occasional garage sale. I can spread my stuff out over the entire county for others to enjoy. Then I can acquire more stuff. Hopefully not.

George Carlin has spoke about our “stuff”. Here   He is a little crude, but makes the point…we all have stuff and we all build bigger barns to house the stuff. But you know we don’t take it with us when we die. So for sure I will say that all the stuff I have removed will return to whence it came–to the china cabinet, to the desk, to the walls, cause well, it ain’t my stuff. No my stuff was regulated to the garage or basement years ago. Out of sight and out of mind. So, I am thankful to the Goodwill people who gladly accept my stuff and give me the receipt back for tax purposes. After this ordeal, I think I will spend the summer reducing our accumulation of needless stuff. After all, maybe once I see the carpet in the basement again, I might want to change it out. 

Team Pride

June 9, 2013 - One Response

OSUOver the years, I have been exposed to outdoor grilling. I remember my dad piling up the charcoal and squirting on the lighter fluid. Then came the command, “Stand back.” After tossing in the match the flames burst across the entire grill. It was then that he brought out the fan. He would hold the fan to blow on the charcoal to get the hot coals ready sooner. Then came the scattering out of the coals and finally the placement of the grill.

My Dad liked his burgers and steaks well done, with a capital W. He would flip, flip and flip again and again. His skill at never losing one through the grid on the grill was amazing. At least to my young eyes. So, the large handmade patties soon became some small little dark disks. It is no wonder I like ketchup, mustard, mayo and pickles on my burgers…I needed some moisture.

Well, move ahead several years and I have upgraded to the gas grill. They typically have a short shelf life. Probably because I use it frequently and I have never covered the grill. I figured why cover it, when you will just be using it again soon. But, now I have two reasons to cover my grill. I will protect it from the elements, but more important, I will show my team price with this OSU cover. I think it looks rather cool and certainly shows where my support goes. Thanks for the Father’s Day gift.