Posts Tagged ‘Present Like a Pro – Arizona Conference’

A Light Heart Lives Long #EurekaMoments 6

Sunday, November 1st, 2015

 

three stooges auto mechanics

An Unexepected Twist at the Walmart Auto Shop

I went to get the oil changed in Wal-Mart on my 1989 JEEP.

After changing the oil, in a maneuver that reminded me of a Three Stooges short, the technicians “bumped” some wires and the car wouldn’t start.

“Look, I brought my car in here to get it fixed and now it’s in worse condition,” I said to the department manager.

“I’m not sure what happened. Some wires came loose durning the procedure,” he replied.

“That’s funny because there are not even any wires near the oil drain or where you pour it in.”

“”There’s nothing we can do about it. We’ll push your car outside.”

“Grrr.”

I called AAA for a tow truck to haul the JEEP back home.

My Image of a Tow Truck Driver – Revised

My mental image of tow truck driver is a guy with grease on his clothes, reeks of cigarettes smoke, and spews f-bombs. I expected to see Jonathan Winters from It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad World.

jonathon winters

Notwithstanding my stereotype, the AAA tow truck driver turned out to be a clean-cut guy named Steve.

I sat in the cab as he towed my car away.

“How’s it going?”  I asked.

“Not bad, except I got four jobs just before I got off work at 5:00. I guess I’ll be working late again. It doesn’t bother me though because when I work these extra hours, I feel like I’m building up a lot of good karma.

Yesterday they sent me to west Ajo Road instead of east Ajo Road, so I had to travel an extra 15 miles to get to the right place. That’s why they pay me the big bucks.”

He stretched out his words in a slow-burn, mock-angry way. He smiled as he spoke. He didn’t seem to take his predicament too seriously.

 

The Impersonal Observer

I was struck by how Steve accepted adversity without allowing it to penetrate his cheerful personality. He took the attitude that, yes, bad things were  happening to him, but he was like an impersonal observer watching the action from a distance. This let him to take a philosophical perspective and to transform his misery into humor, not unlike Larry Talbot/The Wolf Man on a full moon.

Giant Sea Turtles

SCAN0250

Punta Raton, Honduras 1987

Steve’s’ attitude reminded me of an experience I had as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Honduras. One time, I took a group of kids from my school to watch the giant sea turtles come ashore and lay their eggs in the sand. It was the wee hours of the morning and we got lost on the way to the beach. Yet, I just acted like it was a fun educational side trip that I had planned all along.

And, guess what?

That’s what it turned out to be.

Lesson:

When things don’t go the way I expect, I’ll take it with a smile and I’ll remember that “a light heart lives long.”

———-

Authors note:

These stories are my attempt to glean insights from the seemingly mundane incidents that occur in every day life. My plan is to capture these “eureka moments” and squeeze all the illumination and inspiration from them, before they can slip through my fingers.

Like the storytelling of Abraham Lincoln, I think one’s own personal stories can transform both the listener and the speaker.

———

Related Posts

Yard Sales, Heroic Cats and Zombies

Overcome obstacles and doubts by doing more than anyone expected

Give yourself permission to feel frustration, then relax and let it go #tmoy #storytelling

A feather is better than a hammer to win an argument #tmoy #storytelling

Don’t let pride stand in the way a brighter future

Use warm memories to replace negative thoughts

Turn frustration into creative energy #LifeLesson 7

Act Out Characters to Make a Story Sizzle (video)

Disarm Hostility with Friendliness #LifeLesson 8

You Only Live Twice – Life Provides Second Chances LL #9

Donald Trump vs. Abe Lincoln – #LifeLesson10

Failures Can Be Transformed into Strength – #LifeLesson 11

Is it better to remain silent, or to speak up and confirm you’re an idiot? LifeLesson #12

Think for Yourself: Never Ask a Barber if You Need a Haircut – LifeLesson #13

Virtue Is Its Own Reward

Upcoming Presentations

Nov. 13, 2015. “Once Upon A Time: Inspire and engage your audience with stories.” Present Like a Pro Conference. Desert Diamond Casino. Tucson, Arizona.

Nov. 24th, 2015. “Abraham Lincoln: Stories and Humor.” Cholla High School. Tucson, Arizona.

Dec. 15, 2015, 12:40 to 1:00 pm. “Abe Lincoln: The Greatest Storytelling President.” Old Pueblo Rotary Club. Hotel Tucson. Tucson, Arizona.

PresentLikePro-page-001 - Copy

Don’t let pride stand in the way a brighter future #EurekaMoment #LifeLesson 4

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

 

reed richards2

Substitute Teachers Must be as Flexible as Reed Richards (Mr. Fantastic)

I reported to work at Stoney Elementary School at 7:10 am, five minutes earlier than my substitute teacher schedule required.

“We need you to go immediately to the cafeteria and supervise another class until their sub arrives. Candace, the office manager said,

“Sure, no problem, I said. I had taught at Stoney before and had a good relationship with Candace and the teachers. “What’s up?”

“The other sub is here but he is eating breakfast.”

“Have no fear, Mr. Terry is here!” I responded.

substitute teacher 1

Later I met the breakfast-eating sub, Stan. He was a teacher in the classroom next to mine.

Stan told me that he had an argument with Candace because he had arrived to school at 7:00 am in order to eat his breakfast before starting his job, at 7:30 am. When Candace told him that his starting time was incorrect and that he was needed right away in the cafeteria, he refused.

“Do you think I’m in trouble?” Stan asked.

“I think you should apologize to Candace, if you ever want to work here again.”

“I can’t. I was completely within my rights to eat my breakfast before starting work.”

“I agree that you are within his rights, but what school wants a substitute teacher who is not flexible? You’ll win the battle, but lose the war.”

Newspaper Delivery Boy Principles

My very first job was as a newspaper delivery boy for the The Rocky Mountain News. I was a 13 year old student at North Middle School in Aurora, Colorado. The papers were dropped off at my house at 2:30 am. I folded the papers and loaded them into my bike bags.

It took two hours to deliver the papers, counting the time for me to reload my bags half way through the neighborhood. I delivered papers every day, whether it was snowing, raining or below freezing. I felt it was my duty to complete my job, even under adverse circumstances. I feel the same way about substitute teaching.

paperboyinsnow

My obliging attitude opened the door for a plethora of teaching jobs at Stoney.

In Stan’s case, the manager and the principal were in a tight spot. Stan’s right to eat was superseded by the greater good of the school.

The Lesson

Don’t let pride stand in the way a brighter future.

—————–

 

Authors note:

These stories are my attempt to glean insights from the seemingly mundane incidents that occur in every day life. My plan is to capture these “eureka moments” and squeeze all the illumination and inspiration from them, before they can slip through my fingers.

Like the storytelling of Abraham Lincoln, I think one’s own personal stories can transform both the listener and the speaker.

———

Related Posts

Yard Sales, Heroic Cats and Zombies

Overcome obstacles and doubts by doing more than anyone expected

Give yourself permission to feel frustration, then relax and let it go #tmoy #storytelling

A feather is better than a hammer to win an argument #tmoy #storytelling

Use warm memories to replace negative thoughts

A Light Heart Lives Long #EurekaMoments

Turn frustration into creative energy #LifeLesson 7

Act Out Characters to Make a Story Sizzle (video)

Disarm Hostility with Friendliness #LifeLesson 8

You Only Live Twice – Life Provides Second Chances LL #9

Donald Trump vs. Abe Lincoln – #LifeLesson10

Failures Can Be Transformed into Strength – #LifeLesson 11

Is it better to remain silent, or to speak up and confirm you’re an idiot? LifeLesson #12

Think for Yourself: Never Ask a Barber if You Need a Haircut – LifeLesson #13

Virtue Is Its Own Reward

Upcoming Presentations

Nov. 13, 2015. “Once Upon A Time: Inspire and engage your audience with stories.” Present Like a Pro Conference. Desert Diamond Casino. Tucson, Arizona.

Nov. 24th, 2015. “Abraham Lincoln: Stories and Humor.” Cholla High School. Tucson, Arizona.

Dec. 15, 2015, 12:40 to 1:00 pm. “Abe Lincoln: The Greatest Storytelling President.” Old Pueblo Rotary Club. Hotel Tucson. Tucson, Arizona.

PresentLikePro-page-001 - Copy

Give yourself permission to feel frustration, then relax and let it go #tmoy #storytelling 2

Monday, October 12th, 2015

MACYs

 

Lost in Macy’s

Last Wednesday night, my wife and I were walking in the mall and we went into Macy’s.

“I’ll look through the men’s clothing, and then come up to the second floor and find you,” I said.

“Remember,” I said, “I want to be home by 9:00 so I can watch Star Trek on TV.”

“Okay, and may the force be with you,” Angie teased with a spooky voice, as she stepped on the escalator.

“That’s not even from Star Trek. It’s from Star Wars!” I mumbled to myself, as the escalator carried her away. She was already fixated on scouring the clothing racks for the elusive perfect bargain.

spock v yoda

I looked at the men’s clothes for 10 or 15 minutes then took the elevator up to the second floor.

I knew the best way to find Angie was to walk counterclockwise around the outside of the floor, because she generally walks clockwise to do her shopping.

I made two counterclockwise trips. No sign of her. Thinking that we had missed each other because we had been orbiting the same direction, I made one clockwise trip. Still no sign.

The clock said 8:40. We were getting dangerously close to missing the beginning of Star Trek.

I sat in a seat next to the squeaky escalator. It was about as comfortable as a knife in the back.

uncomfortable chair

There is no way she can leave the floor without passing in front of me, I thought.

My mind churned:

Why doesn’t she come?

I’m going to miss my show.

Five minutes later.

She doesn’t really care about me or she would be here.

The more I sat, the more my anger built. I felt abandoned and taken advantage of.

Lost in Penny’s

I remembered when I was about 5 or 6 years old and I got lost in Penny’s. I couldn’t find my mother and father. A clerk made an announcement over the intercom: “We are looking for the parents of Terry Sprouse. Please come to the service desk to claim him.”

I had that same queasy feeling of abandonment.

Lost child in store

Finally, Angie walked up to my so-called chair and said, “Oh, there you are. I was looking for you.”

“I was looking for you too. Where were you?”

“I tried on some clothes. They looked so nice.”

“I did say I wanted to be back by 9:00 so I could see my favorite TV show.”

“Oops. I think I forgot.”

‘Yeah, right, you conveniently forgot.”

I knew Angie was not intentionally trying to make me upset. She just lost track of time while doing something that she really enjoyed.

My tendency is to take slights personally and dwell on them too long.

The Lesson

The next time I lose my wife in Macy’s, or if I am in another frustrating situation, I won’t allow an insult to fester inside of me. Instead, I will allow myself to feel frustrated, acknowledge the frustration, then relax and let it go.

My motto is “Happy wife, happy life.”

Authors note:

These stories are my attempt to glean insights from the seemingly mundane incidents that occur in every day life. My plan is to capture these “eureka moments” and squeeze all the illumination and inspiration from them, before they can slip through my fingers.

Like the storytelling of Abraham Lincoln, I think one’s own personal stories can transform both the listener and the speaker.

———

Related Posts

Yard Sales, Heroic Cats and Zombies

Overcome obstacles and doubts by doing more than anyone expected

A feather is better than a hammer to win an argument #tmoy #storytelling

Don’t let pride stand in the way a brighter future

Use warm memories to replace negative thoughts

A Light Heart Lives Long #EurekaMoments

Turn frustration into creative energy #LifeLesson 7

Act Out Characters to Make a Story Sizzle (video)

Disarm Hostility with Friendliness #LifeLesson 8

You Only Live Twice – Life Provides Second Chances LL #9

Donald Trump vs. Abe Lincoln – #LifeLesson10

Failures Can Be Transformed into Strength – #LifeLesson 11

Is it better to remain silent, or to speak up and confirm you’re an idiot? LifeLesson #12

Think for Yourself: Never Ask a Barber if You Need a Haircut – LifeLesson #13

Virtue Is Its Own Reward

Upcoming Presentations

Nov. 13, 2015. “Once Upon A Time: Inspire and engage your audience with stories.” Present Like a Pro Conference. Desert Diamond Casino. Tucson, Arizona.

Nov. 24th, 2015. “Abraham Lincoln: Stories and Humor.” Cholla High School. Tucson, Arizona.

Dec. 15, 2015, 12:40 to 1:00 pm. “Abe Lincoln: The Greatest Storytelling President.” Old Pueblo Rotary Club. Hotel Tucson. Tucson, Arizona.

PresentLikePro-page-001 - Copy