Monday, February 27, 2017

Declores - Heaven Board #12

 "Spreading the light that illuminates
The divine grace from the great ideal.
     Spreading the light that illuminates
The divine grace from the great ideal."

Today is my day four of the Greater Cincinnati Walk to Emmaus (Men's Walk #100).  If you have ever pondered God's Grace, wondered about the power of prayer, and yearned to feel closer to God's LOVE, then the Emmaus Walk is whispering to you now.  If instead, you are thinking - No not really, like me for 15-17 years after seeing Susan when she first experienced her Women's walk and wanted to share this experience with me then .... it's not your time and maybe these are not your questions. 

For you, it may be a different question about GOD's mysteries that are turning in your mind, or burning in your heart, or churning in your purpose in life.  When that time comes, it will be right for you.  After all it is all GOD's time and you living on his time.

We are given free will in every aspect of our lives but one - TIME.  For me the Emmaus Walk was a glimpse of GOD's time (and is now Heaven Board #12).  Actually I now believe there is no time in Heaven.  When I gave up my watch and phone (begrudgingly) at 7pm on Thursday, time stopped.  Today on Day 4 it has started again. 

Heaven can't wait!  - DeColores!


Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Heroes Fall - The Wise Recall

P.N. sent me a November 1978 Harpers article "Too Rich for Heroes" by Henry Fairlie as a follow-up to our Wednesday  after Tennis Inkling discussions over a beer. It was in response to my question about who he considers wise, and my belief that our country needs a common purpose (similar to the race to the moon) to combat our divisive incivility.

"If we no longer have any heroes, it may not be because no one is fit to be a hero, but because we are not fit to recognize one" states Fairlie.

So, I wondered what is the difference between a wise person and a hero?   Both are discussed as virtues by the ancient philosophers.  Both are dependent on character and principles. 

Steven Hall in his book "Wisdom" describes eight "Neural" pillars of Wisdom - Emotional Regulation; Knowing What's Important; Moral Reasoning; Compassion; Humility; Altruism; Patience; Dealing with Uncertainty.

Fairlie talks about traits in Heroism as Courage, Valor, Excellence, Generosity, Forbearance, and  Daring.

Seemingly the common treads are Generosity/Altruism and Forbearance/Patience.  Yet when I ask the questions - Who is a wise person you look up to?  and Who is your hero?  the responses are usually different (normally I say to exclude family members who invariably are answers to both -  My father, mother, grandparents etc.). 

Also Hero answers vary across different domains - sports, academic, religion, business, politics, artists, military etc. and possibly connected to event/outcome. Heroism inspires in ways of action and motivates in risk taking ways.  In fact, too often we hold Heroes up to the standard of perfection.

Wisdom answers seem to gravitate more in the compassion, humility, and passive domains (probably due to the connection with older age and experience).  Conversely wisdom yields no need of perfection - just an outcome of overall virtuous well living and lessons of life in words. 

So Heroes fall  and the Wise recall.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Pet Cost Benefits

Several days ago T.M. mentioned that they "put down" one of their two cherished pets - a dog.  Those of us who have the joy of the close companionship of pets (or any type) and have experienced their loss can empathize when someone announces their loss.  In fact, T.M. shared his history of pets and the good memories of them growing up with his children.

Mom and Dad never allowed pets (that is -  in the house) when we were growing up.  Coming from farm backgrounds animals (and pets) we always outside and served various purposes beyond just being a companion.  However, they did allow us to "adopt" a stray cat once or twice.  Fast forward and now Vana, D'Lane and I have had various pets in our families -  personally I can inventory over 18 in my last 60 years (current inventory is 2 dogs and 2 cats).

I've maintained that having pets will extend your life (and all pet owners agree).  But is this claim really true?  An interesting article on this subject "Can Pets Help You Live Longer" concludes: "Besides being good companions and adding joy to many people’s lives, pets may provide some health benefits."

My view is that 60% of U.S. Households  (165 million) must believe that the benefits of owning pets exceeds any costs - financial, emotional and physical.


Thursday, February 9, 2017

Pathetic Customer Service Wanna Be

Today at lunch I heard a classic Customer Service story from a friend (privacy was requested) that reminded me of my own favorite POOR Customer Service Story.  Here are two classics in one blog.

The content of this story is politically charged (especially in today's incivility) and contains graphical language that may offend you (depending on your political bias).  Read forward at your own risk.

Story #1  -   A supporter of President Donald Trump recently called Nordstrom (yes Nordstrom the infamous icon of superb Customer Service) to voice her objection about the recent news of their discontinuing of Ivanka Trump merchandise.

[Note some history here: During the election there was a call to boycott Nordstrom back in October with a balanced Nordstrom's response "Nordstrom responds to viral letter"]. Back to the story ---  

After waiting 15 minutes on hold, she then told the Nordstrom Customer Service Representative that she would be forced [because of Nordstrom's politically pressured actions] to cancel her Nordstrom's credit card. 

[Here's the punchline Customer service response]

"That's PATHETIC, Sorry to see you go."

Story #2  -   Years ago, I was continuously flying every week during my years at Accenture.  Going back and forth to Canada, I had decided to fly both Delta and Canadian Air.  I had been a Platinum card holder of Delta for 5-6 continuous years when during the heavy years of flying to Canada, I had missed by a few segments reaching Platinum status. I decided to send an email to Delta Customer Service requesting consideration for an exception and to renew my Platinum status.   The return email subject was titled:

"Platinum Wanna Be"

Here are two stories of how exemplary customer service that drives intense customer loyalty can be lost in a single word!  And they both demonstrate how these stories are etched into the memory of individuals and spread virally to the detriment of the company.

Pathetic Customer Service Representative Wanna Be