I Just Want to Ride…

Motorcycle Arlo Guthrie wrote the Motorcycle Song (The Significance of the Pickle) in 1967 as part of the counter-revolution then sweeping the country. Son of folk musician Woodie Guthrie, Arlo Guthrie’s best known work is Alice’s Restaurant Massacree. The chorus to the Motorcycle Song is as follows:

I don’t want a pickle

Just want to ride on my motorcycle

And I don’t want a tickle

‘Cause I’d rather ride on my motorcycle

And I don’t want to die

I just want to ride on my motorcy – cle.  Continue reading

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“Burning Down the House”

Burning house I’m a connections person; I don’t have many original ideas, but I like to think I have a knack for seeing the link between what might be seemingly disparate ideas. So, I’m listening to the radio (which I rarely do), and on comes Burning Down the House by the Talking Heads. Released in 1983 this was part of the group’s fifth album, Speaking in Tongues. For those of you not in the know, speaking in tongues is known as Glossolalia which is a phenomenon in which people appear to speak in languages unknown to them.  Part of the lyrics are:  Continue reading

Medicaid – Please Lend Your Voice

helping handToday there is no personal story, no witty reference to any modern media.  I am asking for your help in determining the future of Medicaid. If you, or someone you know or love, is not currently affected by Medicaid it is almost certain that you will be at some point in your life.  Please see the below message, taken from an alert from NAELA (National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys, Inc.):
Continue reading

“To Stand in the Arena”

Parchment of the Constitution with a red background         July 4, 2017 marked the 241st anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. 41 years ago I had the good fortune to celebrate the Bicentennial in Paris, France at an outdoor barbecue held outside the US Embassy. I was 15 at the time, and I remember just feeling pride in our nation that day. As I reflect on that memory I feel that same sense of pride I felt then.

There is no doubt this nation has challenges, and to be sure there are inequalities we as a nation must address, but without question we are blessed to live in this great land. Yet, with this good fortune comes a responsibility. We must always exemplify the values espoused by our founding fathers. Were they perfect? Clearly not, but the values they founded this country on remain a standard to which we must all aspire.

It is easy to criticize who our forefathers were and to emphasize what is wrong in this nation, but I echo Teddy Roosevelt when he said:

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

We must all be that man or woman in the arena who strives to do their best because this nation is a light to other nations. Few of us know that the United States leads the world in charitable giving, but it does, and it is because the people of this nation are at their core generous. Imperfect yes, but always striving to reach a lofty ideal.

It is not something we often talk about, but this striving is exemplified in the political debate that so often vexes us. It is in the little kindnesses people of this nation often extend to others, and it is in the everyday exercise of freedoms we have that many in the world do not. It is in the struggle to ensure equality and in the wrestle to determine what the legacy to our children will be, and it is in the messiness that is this republic.

I had the good fortune to meet an immigrant from Germany who in his youth had seen Nazism first hand; as we discussed his past he told me we in this country did not know what we had, and to be candid I felt some guilt as I realized I sometimes was not grateful for what I have.

So, be that man or woman in the arena. Vote. Write your representative; give of your time; protest injustice, and engage in a cause. Celebrate freedom. Together we can continue to hold high the lamp of freedom.

“Ride Away, Ride Away”

Cowboy silhouette (see others in my portfolio/lghtbox)  I cannot resist another classic film reference, and if you have not seen “The Searchers,” you need to. John Wayne stars in this 1956 John Ford classic which also features a cast of John Ford regulars. Better yet, the movie has a great theme song sung by the “Sons of the Pioneers:”

 

What makes a man to wander

What makes a man to roam?

What makes a man leave bed and board

And turn his back on home?

Ride away (Ride away), ride away (ride away), ride away   Continue reading

“Row well, and live”

Ben-Hur_

© 1959 Warner Bros.

I love this line from the movie, Ben-Hur, and in fact, I often quote it to my employees, but I am not really the terrible employer this line might make me out to be! However, sometimes, I consult with employers who often think their workers are their servants, and the employers seek to craft employment agreements which go beyond the mark. Employers often include provisions in their employment agreements that seek to prohibit employees from working in similar businesses or locations once they leave. Commonly known as “non-competes” or “non-competition agreements” these provisions often create issues between employers and their former workers.  Continue reading