08
Apr 15

My Rules for My Life – another incomplete list

On Food and Drink
Drink your coffee black.
Drink your whiskey neat.
Eat your beef medium or medium rare.
Eat your beef.
Cook with butter. Never use margarine.
Make bread.
On Family
Kids are portable.
Don’t take your kids everywhere.
Eat together.
Fight with Nerf guns.
On Friendship
Love big. Need people and tell them you need them.
Put others first.
On Gifts
Give gifts that have good personal meaning and value.
An inexpensive, but thoughtful gift is better than a gift that is only valuable because it’s expensive.
Give gifts.
On Restaurants
Avoid chain restaurants.
If you must split a check, give more than you owe and never take out a calculator.
Tip 20% minimum.
Never send food or drinks back simply because you don’t like it.
If someone at your table needs more time before ordering, say so. Help the waitstaff avoid the awkward long-pause.
On Grace and Class
Bodily functions and emissions shouldn’t be discussed or exhibited with anyone other than a doctor. And even then, it’s probably not that necessary.
Never snap or whistle at another human being.
Commenting on the physical attractiveness of a third party is almost always a bad idea.
Learn people’s names.
Be a friend first, Facebook later.
React small to the bad stuff.
On Reading
Always be reading something informative and something shallowly entertaining concurrently.
Read on a Kindle reader.
Read first, Facebook later.
On Health
Eat healthy and exercise just often enough to be able to eat unhealthy and relax often enough.
On Fashion
Never tuck in a collarless shirt.
Dry-cleaned and professionally laundered clothes are good for the soul.
Buy more shoes.
Wear more rings.
A sportcoat makes it look better.
Don’t put tattoos where they can’t be easily hidden.
On Productivity
Work hard. There’s big stuff to do.
Prioritize your schedule. Save your “dessert” for last.
Write everything in Evernote first.
Build your life toward some big, scary and right goals.
On Faith
Decide to believe.
On Other Stuff
Avoid the trendy stuff.
Use and carry an all-metal Parker Jotter pen.
Listen to the music that moves you – even if they laugh at you.
Tell people about the good you notice in them. Don’t withhold love and praise.

31
Jan 15

Road Trip Rules

I love road trips with our teams of staff and interns. We often rent big vans and drive to events for our organization. Here are some of the rules.

1. No human gaseous emissions.
2. No touching, lap-sitting, massaging, head-resting on/with a person of the opposite gender – unless it’s your spouse.
3. No headphones. Be with us.
4. The driver chooses the music.
5. No ketchup.
6. No chain restaurants. We will eat good food.
7. Garbage always goes immediately into a garbage bag.
8. No uninvited backseat driving.
9. No whining.
10. An arbitrary number of good-will points is awarded to those stuck in a middle seat. 


24
Jan 15

Stuff from a Communications 101 class

  • You are not your audience. Everyone does not think like you do. Don’t make bad assumptions.
  • Rhyming or starting each point with the same letter doesn’t make your message more memorable. It makes it seem cheap.
  • Avoid cliches always. (n.b. We should only get to use some version of “life is a journey” once in our life. Let’s assume you’ve used your chance.)
  • We probably don’t ever need you to tell us how the dictionary or “Webster” define anything. Never use any version of the phrase “according to the dictionary…”
  • Avoid using “you” when you mean “I”. (e.g. “When someone yells at you, you feel angry.” should probably be “When someone yells at me, I feel angry.”)
  • If it’s boring for you to write or say, it’s probably boring for us to read or hear.
  • Velveeta is not cheese.
  • Don’t use more words when fewer will suffice.
  • You can put cream and sugar in your coffee, but you’d be wrong.
  • Inspire creativity in yourself by getting out of the ordinary routines. Fill your head with new stimuli and then create.
  • Never read from your notes or recite your own words from memory while speaking. Talk naturally through your ideas.
  • Never be the hero of the stories you tell.
  • Find opportunities to reveal your passion and personality in your speaking. But don’t forget to be gracious.

23
Jul 13

Preventing Idiocy: Classes people should take as adults

This list is in progress. Feel free to contribute thoughts.

The bare minimum essentials:
Creative Writing
Visual Design
Public Speaking
Hermeneutics
Statistics
Geography
Philosophy
Nutrition

Electives:


08
Mar 13

My Rules for Air Travel

1. Pack the night before the trip. Not before.  There is a separate list of rules for packing.

2. Book a window seat for early morning flights so you can sleep against the window. Otherwise, pick an aisle seat – the freedom to roam is important.

3. Anything other than a window or aisle seat is crap and should be sold at half price. Therefore, the poor guy stuck in the “middle seat” gets to use the #$@^% armrests.

4. Always carry on (don’t check) your luggage. Always.

5. Have a toothbrush, individually wrapped face wipes, a book and downloaded movies at hand. A real pro also has good cookies for the flight and a fresh shirt for arriving decently.

6. Inflatable neck pillows, fanny packs, passport carriers, hidden travel wallets, safari vests, camel-packs, matching t-shirts? No. Don’t be that guy.

7. When someone is sleeping, reading, writing or wearing headphones on a plane – it means “please don’t talk to me”.

8. The guy in front of you can feel it every time you put that tray table up, tap the touch screen on the cool in-flight TV or rest your head on the tray table to sleep – do the right thing.

9. The armrest and seat cushions are very important borders. Stay inside your space while seated.

10. Just because you’re not in a rush to get out of your seat, into the aisle and off the plane once its landed, doesn’t mean the people behind you aren’t. Get out of the way.