Funky Comments

I want to take this opportunity to say thanks again to all who have commented on this blog. All the legitimate comments and the likes and follows are appreciated. Some comments that are obviously not legitimate have me mystified.

“Haven’t seen this before. Thanks for mentioning.” Then they finish with a link to a website. Really?

I guess some people are so desperate for comments that they’ll accept something like the above comment as real. I advise against it. The link associated with general comments like that is usually spammy or worse.

It takes time to build an audience. We’re not all Mark Twain or even Robert Kiyosaki.

It’s nearly time to go tutor at Reality Changers and I’ve been thinking about what else I can do to make more of an impact. I’ve been doing this for 5 years and I guess one of the things I would like to see is other people following me into tutoring. So far no one in five years has imitated my labors. That’s actually a strong word. Presence is more like it.

Don’t get me wrong (one of my favorite overused phrases) – I am a help most of the time. [Some of the time?]

But I’ve noticed over the years that I’m rusty on a few things. I used to be awesome at math. My biggest problem now is I can’t remember the terminology or they are using terminology that I never learned.

Last week was different. I actually had trouble doing a word problem and converting it into an equation with one variable. I guess I need to brush up.

Words. I have more impact when they ask me questions about writing, literature, reading and speaking. Those questions don’t come as often.

When I first started with my current student, Shawn, he was a freshman and he was just starting Japanese. So he made flash cards and I helped him that way. That was what we did nearly every week.

I did share with him some political columnists a couple months ago for some essay he needed to complete. That was good to have those in my back pocket.

But Japanese for him now is way over my head. Way beyond flash cards.

In some ways I’m glad that when he’s a senior he goes into a special Senior Academy at RC. I don’t know how much I would be able to help in the advanced classes he’ll be taking. Hopefully we can take a trip to UCSB this summer so he can see it firsthand.

If things continue the way they have then Reality Changers will probably assign me a new freshman in late August or early September.

I would really like to get more kids involved in public speaking, too. I’ve had a hard time getting enough of them to come regularly.

My concern is that the money situation isn’t real enough for them until it’s too late.

They can win up to $22,000 for college through the Lion’s Club speakers contest and that’s only one reason for them to learn to be better public speakers. Reality Changers requires them to speak at least once a year to the RC audience.

Most will have to take a speech class in college and it’s absolutely mandatory if they attend a California State school. Plus, they will almost all have to speak to a small group or even a medium size group at sometime during their career. That’s just the way things are now.

Never underestimate people fear of public speaking. LOL

They do a great job of volunteering in the community, too.

Over 4 years each student puts in at least 200 hours. I didn’t do much of that. I had no clue about that during high school. When I got involved with a church youth group in my senior year I might have done a little, but I was not in touch with the community that much.

Now that I’m nearly fifty I realize how important it is to volunteer.

When you make time you find that you are learning things you didn’t know you’d learn. If you volunteer and the experience isn’t like that or it isn’t positive, do something else.

There are so many ways to volunteer in this world and people you help are almost always grateful.

Thank yous really touch your heart if you let them.

How much more will you get out of volunteering for and hour or two or three than if you were sitting at home watching television?

We can do so much through volunteering as opposed to everyone getting paid for every bit of work they do.

I have no problem with people being compensated fairly, even generously, when they are employed.

However, as long as we let wealthier and wealthier people mostly do as they please with their money, there probably won’t be a more equal distribution of income any time soon. That is not casting aspersions, it’s merely observing reality.

Since we have that unequal distribution of wealth, no matter how or if one judge’s it, it makes sense that some of what people do they do on a volunteer basis.

My church has a week during the summer called Vacation Bible School. Actually, we call it Kid’s Games, which started in Egypt I think, but it’s basically the same thing with more physical activity thrown in.

I think we have around 300 volunteers to get this done and I’m not sure how many kids attend. 500? 600?

One lady a couple years ago asked how our church could afford to do this. Technically we couldn’t IF we paid everyone. We don’t have a big enough budget for that. But when people decide that they’re going to give something of themselves we have a pretty cool event.

I’m not personally involved in that.

The same goes for anyone. Pick something that means something to you. Or as some say – something that resonates with you.

That’s why I picked Reality Changers. Young people going to college who might not have is something that I can get behind.

We all have only so much time so each of us has to learn to say no to some things.

Just don’t say no to EVERYTHING.

If you start volunteering at something that happens regularly, whether once a year or once or twice a week or somewhere in between, you’ll soon find yourself building a tradition and a legacy.

Last week someone asked how long Reality Changers had been in Solana Beach. I wasn’t exactly sure and someone spoke up and said something about me being the granddaddy of the group. That’s not exactly true. There’s a staff member there who has been there longer than me. But it felt good just the same.

I don’t do it so people will say what a great guy I am. I do it because I believe it’s important. For the time being I’m going to continue. I still might create my own nonprofit someday.

Yet I will continue to show up on Monday nights for the foreseeable future.

Looks like it’s time to go.



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