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Friday, August 10, 2012

THE MOMENT

Did you ever have a moment, when it happened, dramatically altered the course of your life forever? I'm talking something OTHER than death, health issues, or demonic possession.



I've had four.



Tom The Thief -

I don't know how it all started, but when I was 7 or 8, I began my criminal life. I wasn't good at it, maybe because I wasn't making any money, since what I stole from the local grocery store were school supplies that I gave to everyone else. Not a good business model. My “moment” happened when I got caught. No one can say what would have developed if I was going to continue this career path. Would it lead to taking cans of tomato paste, argyle socks, or used cars? I doubt it. I never seem to get away with anything.

The FBI would surely have caught on, jail isn't as glorious as the rappers would have you believe, and besides, too many “Robin Hood” movies have already been made. Thank goodness for eagle-eyed managers!


Tom The Business Owner -

I had left my dream job when it turned into a nightmare. Having no idea what to do or which direction to go, I took a year or so and looked around. What I figured was, since I always had a better idea than who I was working for, why not work for myself? I started an insurance agency. It was not overly large, I employed one – me. It paid no benefits or had a secure future, but it was fun and eventually, I started to turn a profit. I was able to target a popular segment of the industry (new mortgages) and I was able to get them first and using only the best companies that had the cheapest rates. I could see a bright future.... and then, my “moment” kicked in.

I had a bicycle accident. It wasn't the scraped-knees-or-cut-hands kind. I landed on my jaw, breaking it and a few teeth, requiring an ER visit and oral surgery. What they do for the jaw is to wire it shut. Sounds medieval. On Star Trek, they would have used a bone-knitting laser and a hypo spray. Just so you know, a wired jaw means you can't seriously sell anything! If you can't sell anything, it's difficult to keep the business going unless you have a pile of money you wish to see shrink to nothing. I already had the NOTHING, so I was forced to return to my former dream job.

While this sounds like a tragedy, it actually has a happy middle. (I can't say ENDING because I left again...)

I returned to my previous position and was immediately successful. I had a good staff and they carried me to a promotion. It wasn't where I wanted, as a matter of fact, it was the LAST place I thought of going – Philadelphia. Jeeze.....

If you don't already know, BROTHERLY LOVE is an inside joke. The only LOVE is that they LOVE to be angry, they LOVE that they booed Santa, and they LOVE to blame other people for their own mistakes. Not that I didn't meet some great people there, I did. It's just natural to remember the shitheads....

Anyhooooo..........

Going to Philly allowed me to experience success in dramatic ways. As an office, we went from 53rd in the company (out of 53 districts!) to finish 3rd. It was an amazing ride. Not only did this allow me to make more money than I could have imagined, I traveled more, and felt better about myself professionally. It taught me so much about business and people.

It allowed me to take Mom on a convention, so she could witness her son being given some lucrative awards. To see the pride in her eyes was worth all the hard work.

I was there for three years and it was the best time in my life.

If I didn't have that accident, I would not have even visited the art museum. (Come to think of it, I STILL haven't visited the art museum! I have got to add that to the TO-DO-VERY-SOON list...)

Thank goodness for bad roads and riding without hands!


Tom The Eternal Soul -

I met Audrey online years ago. We talked about many things and ended up friends. She took me to the Indianapolis 500 and see it beyond the TV screen. She was from Chicago and we made time to visit each other occasionally. One such time called for me to be in the Windy City. We hung out for a few days and did touristy things, but the “moment” was far deeper.

Waiting for Audrey to get ready, I was looking through her bookshelf and noticed a series of books by Sylvia Brown. If you sort of remember the name, she is the psychic that appeared on the Montel Williams Show many many times. She claims to be able to bridge the gap between the living and the dead as well as predict the future. I don't know about that, but I do know I read one of her books on what her version of heaven is like. Life on the Other Side: A Psychic's Tour of the Afterlife happened to be the same vision I have had since I can remember.

[A short explanation of why this hit me so hard was the simple question – Why does god let children suffer in places like Africa, when they are truly innocent? Sylvia explains it by saying we choose the path (and pain) of our time on earth. Think about it. If you had an eternal soul, wouldn't you WANT to experience pain and suffering at some point? I never accepted that god has the answers and he ain't telling! It made it all so clear to me and deep down I knew I believed in having more control over my life than most religions allow.]

While it's questionable to agree with someone who may or may not be a candidate for the funny farm, I found comfort in knowing that my idea of heaven is shared. None of us know how accurate our beliefs are until that special day comes, but I now have a sense of calm that I did not possess before. I always wondered to myself what lay ahead, after we leave this earth. Is it lights out, like a lot of educated folks say, or is it something more? I never thought any of the organized religions were completely correct, but this affirmation from a strange woman made me believe in my own thoughts.

Thank goodness for crazy ladies from Kansas City.


Tom The Writer -

I've written about how I started this site before but I didn't go deep enough.

Now that some time has passed, I can see what it truly meant when I hit the “publish” button. I'll admit that I had no clue of what I was doing, (not that I know anything NOW!) had no clue of where it would lead, and had no clue if anyone would read. As of yesterday, 4000 views later, I know that what I say is somewhat entertaining, a bit thought provoking, and hopefully, a place you want to go back to again and again. The “moment” I clicked the button, I found a passion that I didn't know existed. Whether I have a talent for it remains to be seen.

Thank goodness for the freedom to express your own thoughts on anything!

Since you are reading this, you have my gratitude in taking time out and finding out more of what makes this odd guy tick.

I'll try and keep it interesting, and hopefully fun...

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