Wednesday, February 07, 2024

Thursday Thirteen #347


13 Maddonisms.
 I love Joe Maddon. The former Cub manager (2015-19) is one of my favorite people on the planet. Since he turns 70 on February 8, I am honoring him with 13 of his more memorable quotes. I don't think they are exclusive to baseball.

1. Don't let the pressure exceed the pleasure. Remember that you should enjoy your life's work.

2. Try not to suck. Stay out of your own way, do the elements of your job well -- in baseball, that's defense, pitching and hitting -- and you'll be fine.

3. If it looks hot, wear it. Dress codes and other superficial trappings shouldn't mask your individuality. Your individuality is one of the unique gifts only you can bring to the team.

4. Respect 90. There's 90 feet between bases. Hustle at all times. Don't take any aspect of your job for granted.

5. You have to be a little crazy to be successful. Another reinforcement of his players' individuality.

6. I never tell fans to temper it. I never tell players to temper it. I'm not into temperance. Passion is good.

7. See it with first time eyes. Don't allow yourself to become jaded.

8. Ignore outcome bias. Don't assume you were wrong because you tried new/different instead of tried/true and it didn't work. You can't know if tried/true would have worked better. So keep trying to come up with new/different.

9. Do simple better. Pare down a task to the basics and then do them well.

10. The process is fearless. Don't focus on the outcome. Focus on the individual plays. If you do everything right, you'll be pleased with outcome.

11. Embrace the target. Get comfortable with the idea of success. Don't let it intimidate you.

12. Don't tell me what you heard. Tell me what you think. No regurgitation. Reach your own conclusions.

13. What you put out there comes back to you. If you put out positive energy, you'll get positive vibes in return.

Please join us for THURSDAY THIRTEEN. Click here to play along, and to see other interesting compilations of 13 things.

Happy, timely texts

I admit it: when I'm not actively concentrating or doing something, my mind wanders back to Henry and his current situation. The danger, of course, is that I can miss what's going on in my here and now. And isn't there always something positive going on in the here and now?

It surprises me that joy was delivered via my phone. I've never been one of those people who always has phone in hand.

•  Photos from a former coworker. This story begins before it began. About ten days ago I had lunch with Carla. We used to work together at the ad agency. I ordered a pumpkin martini, which was a beautiful concoction made with vodka, Bailey's Irish Cream and pumpkin liqueur. It was so pretty that Carla wanted a photo of it. When I posed with the drink, I tossed my head back and laughed, as though I was a movie star celebrating an awards win. Me and my pumpkin martini were quite a hit among my Facebook faithful.

Out of the blue I got a text from another former co-worker. I haven't heard from her in more than a year. She said seeing that photo of me looking so happy made her day. She attached pictures of her two kids and let me know what was happening in her career. I was very touched by this. Just seeing me smile made her day. Hearing that, and seeing her two gorgeous and fast-growing kids, made my day.

•  A connection to Jen. She's the assistant manager I work with most often at the card shop. When I first started, she made me crazy, and I suspect the crazy was mutual. She is very Type A. Everything is important, and the stuff she freaks out over is so inconsequential it's hard for me not to laugh. Example: we have a table in the back of the store where customers can experiment with our crafting items. Yesterday's store employees didn't wash the ink off the Valentine stamps! GASP! Jen completely spun out over this. Um ... aren't the stamps created to be inked? And why is this such a tragedy?

Anyway, in order to diffuse the situation and calm her down, I always look for a way to turn the conversation from the mess ... the clutter ... the incompetence back to her. How did she learn to set up a retail display so well? Does she ever bring your kids to the store? Etc., etc. We got to talking about her husband and she complained about what a disorganized mess he can be. I told her I was like him. I am lazy with housekeeping and loathe to throw things away.

Jen finds this fascinating. At the end of my shift we agree on a little project for me at home (first it was throwing away my useless covid-era cloth masks, then it was my sock drawer) and upon completion I text her a photo of a job well done. She always answers instantly and with a ♥. She enjoys rehabilitating this slob. I think it's because I'm more malleable than her husband.

But that's not the point. We spend hours together at the store. It's easier when we like one another. And Jen and I are forming a bond.