Book of Sayings
An old man's reflections and lessons learned for his children's children
I’ve been collecting famous, and not so famous, quotations since I was a teenager. Some are short pithy sayings, often axiomatic in nature, while others are more provocative and, at times, humorous. This book contains my reflections on those sayings and gives accounts of how they sometimes intersected with my life and taught me things. Ultimately, I hope my essays have some valuable lessons for young adults…including, of course, my children and their children.
Spock was partly right as mind over matter is a regular occurrence in daily life. And, as we’ve seen, the opposite is also true – matter can rule mind.
The interesting, and most important, question is: “who is the happiest or most content?” Probably those who feel no compunction to repent… that is what Zakani got right!
I first saw this quotation from this wise Native American leader many years ago. It was actually written on a greeting card, a rather prosaic vehicle for such a profound message. Nevertheless, this saying means a lot to me… it resonates. In fact, it has come to represent my overall approach to not only my personal life, but my businesses as well.
Sometimes the messages added to a grave marker are more for the visitors than the departed. They serve as reminders to us all that the living will themselves join the dead. As such, the message might remind us to live well, or suffer punishment.
Before delving into some of the reasons why I think some people are inherently dark and pessimistic, while others only see opportunities and light, I must confess that as I get older I go out of my way to spend more and more time with positive folks. I’ve even put an acronym on my business card, “D.R.O.M.P.A.I.W.R.O.Y.,” which means: “Don’t rain on my parade and I won’t rain on yours.”
Over 40 years ago McLuhan anticipated the internet. He wrote prophetically, “The new electronic interdependence recreates the world in the image of a global village”. McLuhan predicted that new communication devices would take us back to a more orally-based world.
We all agree that it’s important to truly get to know yourself… and equally important not to attach too much importance to that same self. A lot of what we do, and problems we encounter in our lives don’t even add up to “a hill of beans” as Bogart said in the film “Casablanca”. So why not laugh a little at ourselves. It’s better to be amused at both our failures and successes.
I’ve found that a strong and positive culture both breeds and attracts like-minded people…people who are the right people for your business because they admire your values and are aligned with your vision.
Knowing others, knowing things, is all well and good but to know yourself, to know what makes you “tick” is an essential prerequisite for all greater and deeper knowledge. It is the road to enlightenment.
Some argue that it is the very belief in God that is required for salvation. This seems odd…why wouldn’t an all-loving super-being reward non-believers who are truly good, and welcome them to heaven? Surely he is not a vain god?! Yet in Exodus it is written “I am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods”. This is a strange proclamation for two reasons. First it suggests he is, in fact, vain. And second, it implies there are other gods…a problem for monotheistic religions in general.
Bobby d's Locavore's Digest
Thinking globally, eating and drinking locally
This collection of stories reflect my experiences as an avid locavore. Over the years, as I’ve traveled through my region, or abroad, I’ve always made a point of visiting interesting local food and beverage producers. For me, they are rock stars.
My Locavore's manifesto has 4 basic rules: 1. Wherever you are, consume locally crafted foods and beverages; 2. Learn the stories of these farmers and producers, and share with others; 3. Travel lightly and buy carbon offsets for all your travels; and, 4. Enjoy the bounty of the planet and help to preserve it.
(Note: These stories are done with the technical advice and expertise of Louise McMullen.)
Stories from the world of wines, including my recommendations
My first memory of drinking wine was at my parents dining room table when I was barely a teenager. The meal was roast beef. The wine was red Bordeaux. The memory stuck. After my college years of consuming lots of beer and cheap wine I somehow developed a palette for fine wine. At university, I took a wine course, acted as a teaching assistant for that course, and eventually taught the same course. Since then I’ve visited many wineries, talked to experts and traveled to many of the world’s best wine regions. For me, wine is a healthy drink which is more than an accompaniment to a meal…it is an integral part of a meal…and my life.