Sunday, December 31, 2017

“You’ll realize who you are when you stop being who you aren’t.” – Anonymous

From “The Human Condition: A User’s Manual,” by Arnold Kunst
31 December
Not everyone who came in contact with Jesus Christ became a Christian. I can just imagine two guys coming down from the Sermon on the Mount, and the first guy says, "Wasn't he fantastic! Imagine: it’s the poor in spirit, not the rich, who are blessed!" And the other guy says, "I don't know; it was a little chilly; I should have brought a jacket." 
The moral: One perceives only what one is open to. Maybe the problem with the guy who didn't get much out of that experience was that he didn't bring anything to put it into!

“A hero is someone who has given his or her life for something bigger than oneself.” – Joseph Campbell

From “Lincoln 365,” by Arnold Kunst:
December 31
 Lincoln's death was an unparalleled international phenomenon. Of course heads of state, like his great and good friend Queen Victoria, sent condolences. But what was astonishing was that, according to one historian, condolences also came from the Working Class Improvement Association of Lisbon, the Students in the Faculty of Theology in Strasbourg, the Teachers of the Ragged School in Bristol, the Vestry of the Parish of Chelsea, the Cotton Brokers' Association of Liverpool, the Men's Gymnastic Union of Berne, Switzerland [all 44 members]. As if moved inexorably by some powerful if unseen gravitational pull, people thousands of miles away all made it their business to express their profound sorrow at the passing of this most enigmatic of men. For somehow Lincoln had managed to capture their imaginations, this man carved from the granite of the great American heartland, who had clambered through the dense entangling undergrowth of misunderstanding and greed, of violence and stupidity, to burst forth onto God's very own broad, sunlit uplands.

'Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.'

- Mahatma Gandhi

“The biggest mistake a small business can make is to think like a small business.” - Anonymous

From “The Human Condition: A User’s Manual,” by Arnold Kunst
30 December
My son and his wife have just made the following 2018 resolution: leave their Internet business and eventually move to the Sierra foothills to open up their own snob coffee shop/dessert shop. [Among other things, she does a killer tiramisu!].
But before they do anything drastic they’ve decided to get their feet wet gradually: he’ll continue with the Internet business and she'll get a job as a barista at a foothills Starbucks for six months. While there she’ll work her way up first to assistant manager, then manager. That way she’ll learn the coffee-shop business from the bottom up, and all on Starbucks' nickel!
How’s that for a New Year’s resolution!

Saturday, December 30, 2017

“Yesterday’s weirdness is tomorrow’s reason why.” – Hunter S. Thompson

From “Lincoln 365,” by Arnold Kunst:
December 30
With horrendous casualty figures, Lincoln's chances of re-election in 1864 were minimal. Three months before the election, former President Millard Fillmore said: 'All men who value their own liberty should unite to change the administration, for without this all is lost.' 'Mr. Lincoln is already beaten,' wrote Horace Greeley the influential editor of the New York Tribune. 'We must have another ticket to save us from utter overthrow.' Even Lincoln's friend Senator Sumner agreed. 'It may be that Mr. Lincoln will see that we shall all be stronger and more united under another candidate.'

'He who buys what he needs not sells what he needs.'
- Japanese proverb

Friday, December 29, 2017

“Anyone can say ‘I love you,’ but not everyone can wait and prove it’s true.” – Anonymous

From “The Human Condition: A User’s Manual,” by Arnold Kunst
28 December
Go for perfection. My friend Bill used to tell the students in his English class that whenever he assigned an essay to them it was already perfect, down to the last semicolon. Their problem was, they would have to massage it often enough until it got to that point. Impatience was the temptation - an essay handed in before all the rewrites are completed, he used to remind them, is just like taking a cake out of the oven half way through the baking process because you’re hungry. That’s called “Half-baked!”
Like, who wants to drink a piece of cake?

“Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.” – Arthur Ashe

From “Lincoln 365,” by Arnold Kunst:
December 29
'You cannot build character and courage by taking away a man's initiative and independence.'
- Abraham Lincoln

'Life is always full, exciting, rich for those who go at it head on.'
- Arnold Kunst