Untotaled–Stepping 15 (August 17th, 1965): Mr. O … May 24, 2014

Jonathots Daily Blog

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(Transcript)

I called him Mr. O because he had a Norwegian name with five syllables that I could neither remember nor pronounce.

He was older than death.

What I mean is, his flesh was so gray and his movements were so slow that he appeared to be a creature coming from the grave instead of one inching towards the tombstone.

I didn’t like him. He didn’t like me.

I think our mutual displeasure began one day when I was mowing the lawn and the grass clippings blew onto his beautiful, graveled driveway. He came out of his house screaming at me, explaining that all I had to do was turn the mower around and pull it towards me, so that the clippings would go into my own yard.

Honestly, it sounded tedious, meaningless and frustrating.

So when I went inside and explained it to my mother and father, they had the opportunity to do something inspirational. They could have explained that since it was Mr. O’s driveway, he had the right to decide how it would be decorated.

But I guess they had problems with him, too. Because they rolled their eyes, called him a few choice names and walked away, leaving me to believe it was my family duty to continue to aggravate him.

So I did. I refused to mow in the direction he requested, blowing my grass across his well-kempt drive.

In retaliation, every time one of my balls rolled into his yard, he retrieved it and refused to give it back.

It was a feud.

It was ridiculous and could have been so easily handled if I had been instructed to give place to the feelings of another human being. But instead my childish sensations were justified instead of rectified.

I think my parents thought they were trying to be cool and side with their son. But I needed more than that.

I needed to learn how to live in a world that demands sharing.

Before I could grow up and become a decent human being, Mr. O passed away. So many things I would like to tell him.

  • For after all, Mr. O had the right to determine what came into his own yard.
  • Mr. O even had the right not to like me.
  • And I must realize that Mr. O had the God-given right to be cranky.

For after all, if I am going to be mean to everybody I don’t like or who doesn’t like me, I’m going to be too busy pursuing vendettas … to ever enjoy myself.

 

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After an appearance earlier this year in Surprise, Arizona, Janet and I were blessed to receive a “surprise” ourselves. Click on the beautiful Arizona picture above to share it with us!

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G-4: Stay or Go? … December 27, 2013

Jonathots Daily Blog

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clayI did it.

I made something.

Like every endeavor known to man, I felt greatly fulfilled upon completion, and a little disappointed with the inadequacy of the final product.

You see, in my mind, it should have been much better. But when I was finished, there were flaws. To my comprehension, glaring.

It was time for a decision–a very important one, may I add.  Do I stay or do I go?

Do I step up to what I have produced, proudly taking ownership, and begin to work with it until it becomes better, or do I distance myself from the project, expressing my displeasure and pretending that it wasn’t my fault?

Being creative does not guarantee perfection. Matter of fact, it usually presents you with the opposite: imperfection that yearns for your abiding, loving touch.

There is nothing I have ever done which possessed the qualities of my vision when I finished the first prototype.

That’s just life.

Where we develop a sense of purpose, devotion, loyalty and perseverance is in the extent to which we take responsibility for our labors, and nurture our creations to better forms.

  • No family is perfect.
  • No song is perfect.
  • No nail in a board is perfect.

Everything in life requires a second visitation, demanding that we take personal responsibility.

Is there a time to go? Is there a time to walk away from what hatched from your egg and emerged as a big disappointment? Here’s a guideline:

  1.  If it resembles what you want, but merely needs some work, stay.
  2. If its existence is proven to be a hurtful thing to those around you and yourself, go.
  3. If it is full of promise but ugly, stay.
  4. If it’s ugly, lacking promise, go.

The most valuable concept to possess in the human brain is the knowledge that nothing we touch is birthed in perfection. You have to come around, take a look, find out what needs to be fixed … and produce the good humor that makes correction process tolerable.

 

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Click for details on the SpirTed 2014 presentation

Click for details on the SpirTed 2014 presentation

Please contact Jonathan’s agent, Jackie Barnett, at (615) 481-1474, for information about scheduling SpiriTed in 2014.

click to hear music from Spirited 2014

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Sniff and Whiff … December 2, 2013

Jonathots Daily Blog

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scratch and sniff“That stinks.”

Two words normally thrust together when we are in a mood to express our displeasure over some event or individual.

Matter of fact, often we talk about the “smell of success,” so it’s safe to assume that failure has its own distinctive odor. If you think about it, being a human being, you can certainly sniff the whiff of doom, compromise and defeat on another person.

So how do we keep that unpleasant aroma from permeating every pore of our being? There are many schools of thought. The normal diagnosis for such weakness is to express confidence in ourselves and let that exude from our beings as evidence of our pending victory.

But over the years I have learned that confidence leaks and flat-out dumps its load of joy whenever confronted with unexpected difficulty. So some of the more boisterous and bold individuals I have known turned into real chickens–cluckers–in the heat of the frying pan.

Equally as useless is false humility, where we pretend to be modest while secretly storing up a ton of self-assurance to allegedly release at just the right moment when surrounded by trial and tribulation. It’s just another disguise.

There is a path that does remove the stench of inadequacy while also realistically assessing our abilities without either diminishing our capacity or over-reporting our statistics.

“I can’t, yet I do, so I will.”

These are the three ingredients that make us appealing to fellow-travelers, while also keeping balance in our own lives.

1. “I can’t.”

Some folks consider this to be negative, but actually, it’s humility. The gift of knowing your true talents while also being aware of your weaknesses through trial and error is the greatest gift you can give to a comrade–and an endearing one, at that.

Candidly, a truthful person always has the potential of doing more. A liar is stuck with his or her promises.

2. “Yet I do.”

“Even though I have discovered areas of lack, I have taken the time to acquire expertise and am consistently bearing fruit.”

Merely saying “you can’t” without producing something you can do is to be a loser. But knowing what you can’t do while pointing to obvious successes that you’re presently pursuing is balanced human thinking.

3. “So I will.”

I will what? “I will continue to do what I do well, while expressing my energy to humbly try something new.”

This is the trio of emotions that make us appealing to one another–because we say right out loud, “I have a weakness, I have a passion and I have a willingness.”

There is nobody who can counteract, contradict or criticize such candor.

So as you go about your business, especially during this holiday season, don’t be afraid to report your can’t quotient as you give a tally on what you are doing, and also express a desire to pursue more.

This is the sniff of a whiff that lets other human beings know they can draw close … instead of pulling away, repulsed.

The producers of jonathots would humbly request a yearly subscription donation of $10 for this wonderful, inspirational opportunity

Click for details on the SpirTed 2014 presentation

Click for details on the SpirTed 2014 presentation

Please contact Jonathan’s agent, Jackie Barnett, at (615) 481-1474, for information about scheduling SpiriTed in 2014.

click to hear music from Spirited 2014

click to hear music from Spirited 2014

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