I try and be nice. I do.
But patience is a virtual wasting of my time.

This happened to me:
If you and me go up to the meat counter at the same time, I’ll do the open palm wave slight head bow gesture to indicate “no you go ahead” and let you go first.
But don’t abuse this now – please. I got things to do.

What I didn’t see coming was that this other person was more or less meat window
shopping. They wanna try the difference between the honey ham and Black Forest ham,
what’s the pastrami like, y’know I haven’t had pastrami in a long time, that sounds like
a sandwich I’d like to have. What goes well with it…By the way, not that I’m buying now,
but do you sell Braunschweiger? What brands are good? How many meats do you have
that have other meats or cheeses in them?

Now I’m sitting there watching this culinary artist in training do the mental obstacle course
of pairing meats and cheeses and all I’m thinking about is using my elbows.
I think they should have a self serve aisle in the meat department like they do at checkout.
I’d like this option about now.
But then when I’d need to use it, there’d be some deli challenged meatwit trying to figure
out how it all works.

Grocery stores need to use some old vaudevillian tactics and employ people to use it. Wouldn’t it be great if the person who is holding things up just gets the giant cane hook
to jerk them out of line. Come on, get off the stage.
They could get the help they need, we’re amused, we’re next up – it’s like unclogging a drain, you’re so happy when it starts to flow again.
Everybody’s wins.

Maybe I’ll open a grocery store…I have ideas.
What am I saying’ ? I got no patience for that.
One pound of Black Forest Ham please.


I don’t really like being sold to.
It doesn’t happen often enough that I’m
good at getting out of the pitch early.
That is, unless they get me going.
I had the scam of a very non-english speaking voice calling to tell me that my
Windows PC was having problems. Not being a Windows user I recognized the scam
and I got kinda mad right away. He hung up and moved on to find a victim.
In other cases I find myself listening as though I’m a friend for a bit until I say no
and wish them good luck.
It’s a hard job, selling.

Especially when you don’t really qualify and connect with people
but just put your sale opportunity out there.
You can tell when a salesman doesn’t believe what they’re saying.
Decreasing odds by increasing frustration levels.
Still, I don’t like being their practice dummy.

I’ve decided that the people who want to be somebody are bothering me more.
The look at me’ers. Brian Regan calls them me monsters.
These people are so busy telling you how great they are,
pitching their deal to you that they forget about how they’re being perceived.
Probably they don’t much care about that.

Is it more important to be known that actually liked?
Is your chest thumping actually helping anyone, including you?
Their motivation is transparent.
They want to be seen as something they are not.
They are pitching that something to you.
If they were what they want to be seen as then they would
present themselves without the over the top sensationalism.
What you see everyday, averaged over time, is the real personality.
To me, that over the top pitch alone makes them less of what they want to be seen as.
A friend has a theory I believe is more pertinent now than ever.
“If you say it loud enough, they’ll think you’re an expert.”
When you see the proof of what their claims are, the impression is complete.
I’m hoping to see advertising become better at ways to tell people what you do.
We advertise ourselves as we do a business, they are linked.
How about entertaining along the way?
So tired are all the best ever’s and other old tactics.
We’re onto you. New and improved, For a limited time, act now, Hurry, don’t delay
I know it still works but I’m hoping that more and more advertisers will do things like
The Dollar Shave Club does and approach me in a different way.
I know I’m being sold to, that’s ok. At least I’ll hear what you are.
Just quit the hype, be real and maybe I’ll find you of more value.
That’s what lasts.
Tell me a better story.
In fact, tell me a story at all instead of all the best ever hype.
Until then, I have a mute button and a growing lack of respect for your product.
The “pitch averse” are not your ideal target.
We think for ourselves more than you’d prefer.


Do you wanna be a shepherd?
You’re saying ahhh – it takes a lot of work,
getting up in the morning tending to the flock.
Sure there’s warm fleece and the occasional lamb chop, but is that enough?
Alright then, try this.
When you’re at a stop light, especially if you’re first in line,
creep forward a couple of feet.
It’s most likely that the car behind you will creep forward too.
Most people don’t seem to be aware they are doing it.
Do this about five or more times and it gets really funny
as you pull the puppet strings on the car behind you.
People are sheep.


The thing that makes this world so great is that everybody sees things their own way.
The thing that makes this world such a problem is that everybody wants things their own way.
My perspective is that it’s mostly shades of grey.
It’s not so Black and White as I notice many see it.
What is grey?
To me it is part black, part white. Inclusive, both.
Black is the lack of white or any other shade
and White is the lack of Black or any other shade. They are both exclusive, singular.

Now I don’t have the same patience for obstinate absolutists who will only accept
one way of thinking just the same as they don’t for us Greys.
Mostly because they don’t engage well with another point of view.
In my experience Greys will more likely engage, scratch the surface
with the people of opposite perspective.
Assuming a Grey doesn’t have well established, unchangeable B&W rules is a mistake.
Few of us really are experts or have a complete handle on things.

A B&W expert I recently encountered was so absolute that they showed no ability
to seek out information needed to come to a full understanding of the situation they were
advising on, and then relate with the information they had.
Sure they knew their craft but fell short in the ability to deliver with skills outside
of their expertise. Their B&W expertise, thus, was not wholly expert
because the B&W to Grey ratio was out of balance.

Grey acknowledges the variables

People are too complex to have it all figured out.
We’re all a mess to varying degrees.
The slide from dark grey to light grey is gradual.
You only really notice it when you look at the ends of that spectrum.
It takes time to go from light to dark grey because that’s how we work it.
Black to white on the other hand is easy to see.
That modus operandi is quick to appraise and call out. Then B&W’s are done,
moving on to the next thing. They’ve made that decision. What else is there? Do that.

Greys know there’s so much more info  – to make things better
not just to soothe their perspective.
The worst thing a Grey can do is get stuck in seeking too much info
and not make a decision.
That is the label a Grey carries.

That is what drives B&Ws crazy.
Actually, that drives everybody crazy.
You have to make a call with the info you have. Seek as much as you need to make a call.
A grey will always feel like there’s more info.

We both need each other.
The ability to listen to both methods at work in people
to be able to hear them and allow for a good decision
is bigger than our preference for the way we process it.

One thing I know:
The more I know, the more I know there is to know.

The more I know – that’s B&W.
The more there is to know – that’s grey.


I think this way a lot.
I start out with a proclamation.
I re-read it and think I should
get off my soapbox or high horse.

I should look up the origin of those phrases.
We use so many sayings without thinking and I want to know where they started from.
Makes me wanna make up some of my own and hope they’ll catch on.
I did that once.
I used to say that good things happening meant you were “eatin’ oranges.” Happy.
I liked the smile you have when there’s an orange wedge in your mouth. It’s only good.
That guy walking over there with the headphones on, playing drums like a rock star –
he’s eating oranges.

…Anyway, I start with a proclamation, then find it too preachy
and whether it’s true for me or not, I want to back off of my statement
only because it’s too absolute sounding.
So I think, yeah, well maybe… or not.

I’m sure of what I’m saying in my own head but you may have
an entirely different take on it that’s valid for you.
Many people are serial refuters anyway.

I’ve been wrong before, and so have all the know-it-all’s.
Backing off allows for a conversation rather than an assertion of one-way communication.
I’m presuming that most often proper two-way communication is the goal.

I’ll call it as I see it and back off enough to hear you.
…or not.


Did you ever just look back at somebody watching TV?
They look ridiculous don’t they?

Under what circumstances does that appear to be entertaining?
“Hey let’s go do something.” then you just sit there looking at a spot on a wall for hours.
It’s more like relaxing really.

My wife would be watching TV and I would see if she wanted to go do something.
She’d say  “I’m busy.”
“But you’re watching TV.”
“I’m relaxing.”
“How is that busy?”
“I’m busy relaxing.”
Hard to argue a point that makes both as little and yet as much sense as that does.


I’m curious about how trees live.
They seem to just be waiting for something.
They do a lot of loitering.

Trees are living things.
Homeless living things.
Unless you count that houses are made of wood
so in that way they’re always home.

They’re waiting patiently, like the person who is ahead of you in line
that has all the time in the world.
Patient people are up to something.
They’re waiting for the right time.
For WHAT? I don’t know. That ’s what concerns me.

Every time I pass trees they’re just watching.
It’s why I’m glad they don’t have faces.
Cars have faces.

It’s especially creepy in the winter when trees don’t have any clothes on.
It’s Winter.
I’m looking around at all of ‘em and the only ones with clothes are the fir trees –
They got fir. Other than that it’s like a woody nudist colony.
Winter’s when they need them the most.

I know there’s people who believe in reincarnation
but I hope if that’s true that I don’t come back as a tree.
I don’t like the way they live.


I watched a scene develop right in front of me.
At my boy’s Karate class, a kid came out of the class
to the desk at the back of the room to set his glasses
on a table. Then he turned to quickly get back to class
and immediately ran square into a large post.

Well that actually didn’t happen but it made me laugh
as it was playing out imagining it as if it did.
So then I’m the guy laughing at nothing out loud
while nothing funny is happening around me.
I got looks.

My friend heard this and it reminded him of a time he and his wife
were watching TV on the couch together.
A commercial for “The Biggest Loser” was on
and there was this large girl with glasses crying to Jillian Michaels.
Jillian asked the girl in a most heartfelt way, “Do you want to change?”
The girl, stuttering through her tears gulped, “Yes.”
Jillian Michaels asks, “What do you want to change?”
At this point my buddy’s wife blurts out, “I want new glasses.”

Properly placed, the outburst is a gift even if it’s inside your own head.
Even a misunderstood laugh works like a laugh should.