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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

While shopping at Orchard Supply...

We had just parked our truck on a bright warm sunny afternoon, and as we got out we heard some heavy foot falls of someone running. We turned to see a young tall man running as hard as he could across the parking lot. He was carrying what appeared to be a fairly large toolbox. As he passed us, I remember thinking “that feller is in a mighty big hurry”. He jumped into the passenger side of an awaiting vehicle and off they drove. It was only after we turned to walk into the store and saw some employees watching them get away that we realized that we had just witnessed a robbery in broad daylight. How brazen! How foolhardy! They didn’t appear to be armed; there were no shots fired. The vehicle was a large black SUV. Someone noticed that it had Oregon plates, but was too far away to read the number. Were they stealing a toolbox or just practicing for a larger heist? Was the box full of tools or was it full of money? Next time maybe I’ll think to have my cellphone ready to take a picture.

How Long is your Rope?

I figure my rope is at most twenty years. Although it might only be ten years or five years or perhaps five months or maybe only five days. When I was in my twenties, my rope seemed so long I didn’t have to worry about it. I figured it had to be at least seventy years. Well here I am seventy-one and I can tell you seventy is not so long. So I want to enjoy every moment, and I do not want to waste even one of those moments in anger, because I do not enjoy being angry.

Anger is a choice. I do not have to be angry just because someone is angry at me. Anger is what we resort to when we cannot think of any better solution to a problem. It is caused by frustration, or because someone else did something dangerous or stupid, or simply “not my way”.  I resort to anger when I choose not to think.

Anger may also be used to control our children, our employees, our students. But it is not very effective, because all it really accomplishes is to alienate, and drive people away from us. Our children will confide in someone else, employees will seek employment elsewhere, students will not participate in class. There is only one person I can control in this world, and that is myself.

I cannot control another person’s derogatory statements about me, so the best I can do in that regard is to prove my detractor wrong.