I can’t believe how dishonest car repair chains shops have become. I always take my car to this local guy that works out of his shop in a warehouse complex. He keeps his cost down and only takes cash.
Anyway, today I broke down right in front of an AAMCO repair shop. My serpentine belt broke which caused an increase in pressure cracking my radiator. AMMCO wanted $500 to do the repair.

It was then I remembered my car insurance covers towing. So I took my keys back and called road side assistance. They towed my car to my little old man for free. He replaced my radiator with a new one, change both belts. Put new pads on my back brakes and change my oil. Oh he also lubed my car as well.

$250 out the door, thank GOD I have an honest car repair guy. I hope he never dies.


Closing in on 50 we realize that being at the tail end of the baby boomer generation put us in a unique gray area between two very different groups. Most of us did not feel the wrath of the depression although our parents certainly did; they seemed to shield us from those horrifying times memories.
Yes we all heard the stories from our grand parents about food lines and pot luck dinners. I heard a story about people stealing the paper off of apples in the market to use as toilet paper. I heard about endless dinners of potato soup and leaks and I heard about how my grand mother killed my mother’s pet chicken for dinner one night. She never ate chicken again.
We came from modest middle class families wearing hand-me-down clothes and playing with passed down toys. But we had more than our parents did when they were children.
So what was our contribution, our obligation to the next generation?
We were taught that a penny saved is a penny earned. We were taught not to buy anything unless we had the cash to pay for it. We were also taught to help people less fortunate then ourselves.
The shield our parents held protecting us from the harsh realities of the depression dulled our sensibilities toward the possibility it may happen again. Did we do our job teaching the next generations the lessons from the past? Explaining to generation X and Y that hard work is the only way to succeed. Feeling good about your accomplishments is really the reward not your ability to put $1300 down on a $60k vehicle with a payment of $500 a month. To feel good about the fact no one gave you a free pass because of your hard work. Or did we sit back and let them create their own path? Hoping that they would find an easier way, a faster way to reach their goals and protect us in our old age.
We did sit back, and we gave them the reins too early. We didn’t spend enough time telling them, warning them about what could happen.
Credit Cards, Equity loans and leasing cars became the norm. By the end of the century most families were spending 1/3 more per month than their income. People were living on borrowed time and we all watched it happen.
What should my Generation do? We need to be heard, we need to take back the reins. We can’t spend or borrow our way out of this mess. There has to be a correction, a re-set on how we all live.
This is what my generation has to offer, only if we’re giving the opportunity. But it may be too late.


It seems like the autumn brings out many things. Cooler weather, the holidays and in recent years with the advent of Face book, people try to reconnect with old friends and acquaintances from the past.
It never seizes to amaze me how a single image from the past greatly affects me. It could be a picture of a car or building that immediately transports me back to that time and place. Sometimes I can almost smell the air from my little town, nestled in the arm pit of New Jersey.
One thing is fore sure time is passing quickly.
Thirty years—it went by in a blink.
Were we too busy to notice back then, when the fight was strong within us? When nothing would stop us from doing anything (just once) to see what it felt like. It seemed that time stood still back then.
And now are we too busy trying to get our piece of the pie? Working hard, trying to get that promotion, wanting to earn more money so we could buy more stuff.
For some of us it was all about getting married raising children and buying a home.
Those memories are strong as well, like watching your child open their first Christmas present. Or, the first time you walked into your own home. And of course, the day you got married, are all meaningful strong memories.
But they still don’t affect you like the images and memories before all of that happened.
When having enough money for gas or a six pack of beer was more important than what the next day could bring. Or, if you wanted to take a road trip you jumped in the car with the clothes on your back and BOLTED. You didn’t have to plan, pack or make sure there were enough snacks, videos and games for the ride.
It was a time before the internet and cell phones but we all seemed more connected. We always knew where to find someone to hang out with and it really didn’t matter what we did, it was always ‘Out Of Hand’.
So why do memories from high school and college affect us more than recent memories,   especially the ones that were supposedly life changing?
I guess it’s because, it was a time of infinite possibilities, when dreams seemed possible.  Those old images sometimes reveal more than just fond memories. They remind us of the people we once were. Or maybe, they remind us of what we could have become.
Anyway, it’s nice to reconnect with people from the good ole days.  It doesn’t seem that the people we meet or work with today come close to the definition of friend. Especially when most of us change those acquaintances as often as we change are bed spreads or furniture.
One thing is for sure we'll blink again and it'll all be over.


I for one, never thought this reusable sack thing was going to stay with us. Kind of like, right after 9-11 everyone was flying the American flag and now except for government buildings and banks you rarely see one.

I know how many landfills are over stuffed with plastic wares and how we must think about the earth and keeping her clean. I get it, but I also know that most plastic is recyclable and most plastic bags are made from other throw away plastic.

So, some marketing guru high in an office over looking ....Madison Ave.... came up with the idea of making store specific reusable sacks, each costing a dollar adding revenue to the bottom line. They knew that if enough people bought them it would also reduce the operational cost for the store.

I’m sure that Son of a Bitch took a Lear Jet down to the ....Bahamas.... and is sipping Pina-colada’s laughing his or her ass off right now.

So fine, we fell for it—Thanks Al Gore, spank me—may I have another.

All these bleeding heart liberals ran out and purchased reusable sacks from their favorites stores. When they’re on line they proudly pull them out – “No need to ask paper or plastic I have my reusable sacks!”

Of course, the worst scenario is having a husband and wife that shop at different stores. Now they acquire a collection of these reusable sacks. Yippee! So now when they load up for the week and have a full cart of groceries, they whip out their brightly colored—“I care for the environment and we’re trying to fight Global warming—multi-labeled sacks and hand them to the cashier.” 

Look into the eyes of a cashier the next time you see this happen. They rather have two bricks smashed up against their skull than someone handing them a bunch of mis-shaped sacks from multi-stores. They struggle with them and begin loading groceries. They don’t hold much and you have to use twice as many.

Now what’s that mean to me? I tell you, I’m the guy behind you that has to wait until all of the sacks are separated and stuffed, which takes twice as long as shoving them into the recycled plastic bags in the first place.

If you really think your helping the environment buy using these reusable sacks, you’re kidding yourself. If it makes you feel good about yourself well then have at it. But the truth is your doing nothing but putting more money on the bottom line for your favorite grocer. Oh, and pissing off the people behind you.

So load your Prius up with your reusable sacks and have a nice day.

I think if this trend continues the grocery stores should have a separate check out lane for those who deem it necessary to purchase these sacks. Let’s call it the ....GREEN EXPRESS LANE..... Maybe then you’ll realize how long it takes to fill those sacks and be on your way. I will proudly remain in the plastic or paper lane waiting my turn to check out.



Sheriff: Landfill body appears to be Fla. girl - Bay News 9

Sheriff: Landfill body appears to be Fla. girl - Bay News 9

Until Florida can figure out how to protect their children. Vacation somewhere else. Maybe hitting Florida were it hurts TOURISM. This has got to stop.


I was introduced, or you may say seduced into reading in an unusual way. It was 1974, I was in 7th grade and my middle brother was a junior in high school. He was completely into skin diving, and deep sea fishing. The year before he caught a 300lb hammer head shark off the coast of Miami. That fish still hangs in his living room today.

Anyway, it’s was June and we were almost out of school which meant we would be taking our semi-annual trek to Florida. One day after school, I walked past my brother’s room and saw the book Jaws on his night stand. “You see the original hard cover copy depicted a nude girl swimming with a large great white rising below. The difference in the first edition was the girl’s body was perfectly detailed. Yes, the illustration showed everything including detail on her private parts. The publishers later altered the image blurring the girls body.

Well, being a healthy 12 year old boy I was—let us say intrigued by the cover. I picked the book up and started thumbing through hoping to find more pictures. Of course, there were none. Remember this was 1974—no internet porn and it was rare when a boy of 12 could get his hands on a Playboy or Penthouse.

That night I started reading. I wanted to know why this girl was swimming naked; I wanted to know about the shark. It was a difficult read for me; it took me almost one month to finish the entire book. It was the first novel I read cover to cover. I actually finished the book in the back of our vista cruiser crossing the Florida border.

I liked the story and I couldn’t wait for the movie. When the movie premiered in 1975 I was disappointed. I realized the movie didn’t take me were Benchley’s words took me. It was then I realized the magic—the escape—the power of the written word. I continue to read anything I can get my hands on.


My 5 year old son has been sick since Friday. He has 5 out of the 7 symptoms for H1N1. He doctor told us to take him to the ER immediately to be checked.

This Sucks


Warning: there is a fake text message being broadcast. It says it's from Peninsula Bank from Florida. Which is a legitimate bank. It's states your ATM card has been canceled and you should call the number provided. DELETE THE MESSAGE AND DON'T CALL!


Some way between sipping an overly sweet coffee and holding a Marlboro light I can still manage to type, however my mind wrestles with a disturbing catch phrase, “Depression The Other White Meat”. I began this journey long ago, in a basement, in a garden apartment building my Father managed. There I experienced many firsts’ for a mustering teenager. I logged many hours behind that gray metal door some alone, some with companionship. My adolescence was filled with shooting pool, listening to music and smoking a lot of marijuana. Not to mention many other illegal substances once referred to as recreational drug use. I didn’t know why I nested deep in the underground of a North Jersey basement for so many hours knowing that one day I will have to leave this place. Which is probably why I held on to it for so long?

Although I acquired many bad habits in my borough under the bricks and mortar and at times I completely lost my path, I did have moments of clarity delivered in many ways.

It may seem, I never rose from my hole, I did. I exercised social behavior as well; in light of my ability to score good dope. Seriously there were a few people in my life I did consider friends. Friends that actually enjoyed my company, each unique in their own way and now successful, my regret is never keeping the friendships alive. They are all just faint memories.

On the lighter side I experienced my first love. She was not your stereotypical New Jersey Italian girl, she was a natural beauty. She didn’t have big hair, tons of makeup and skin tight Jordache jeans oh no! She wore her hair mostly flat with a slight Farah feathered look, a little eye liner and that was it. She had green eyes and a wide smile. She was the one, until I fucked it up. Anyway we dated for 3 years we always attended each others family functions many of which were located in Brooklyn. We were each others first love. Needless to say I strayed and for the next three years watched her blossom into a beautiful young woman from a distance. We did have one reunion many years later after I moved to Florida, but it only lasted a few weeks.

I call her the one because she recognized my potential even when I could not recognize it for myself. Moreover, she saw a talent that I refused to acknowledge and one Christmas morning as I unwrapped a box that was extremely heavy I was planning my escape. In it was a brand new electric type writer. She told me to put some of my ideas on paper, of course at the time I didn’t want a type writer. I wanted new speakers for my car. It was our last Christmas together, she was graduating high school and I was going to college. She told me I have a gift for story telling and I told her what she could do with the type writer. This was my way of pushing the people I love away building a wall that still shadows over me today.

At the time, writing seemed stupid, believe it or not, I never connected writing and books. Until one day when my now estranged brother had a copy of Jaws on his dresser. I was intrigued by the cover of the nude girl swimming as the shark rose from the deep. The original illustration of the nude girl was extremely detailed and was later replaced by a blurred depiction. I watched as the book sat for weeks collecting dust until I finally snatched it smuggling it down to my layer. I read the bylines and preface and closed the book staring at the cover. Then I opened it wanting to know more about this girl and why she was in the ocean alone swimming naked. Three hours later I read the last words on the last page and I was hooked.

Jaws, was the first book I read from cover to cover and I was floored. During those three hours my body was sitting on an old couch in a basement that seconded as an opium den in New Jersey but my soul was on a wooden fishing boat off the coast of Long Island fighting with Sheriff Brody until the very last shot, “Peter Benchly had me at da dum.”

In my mind the connection was made, stories on paper equal books and people read books to escape. I wonder if the majority of avid readers are depressed. I believe any kind of compulsive behavior can lead to some neurosis and if reading helps depression label me depressed. Hell it’s better then popping Zoloft or Cymbalta until you can’t take a crap when you need too.

By the way, every woman in my life pushed the writing thing on me. My next steady squeeze offered a Brother Word processor which still has a few hundred pages of a story called The Seafood Business. Unfortunately, that Brother sat in an attic in Florida to long and the floppy disk is now permanently fused in the drive. My current ex-wife with whom I currently live purchased my first computer. Blazed on that silicone disk are also several stories frozen in time. Maybe one day I’ll pay to have them extracted. I have started many manuscripts always getting bored or thinking no one will want this crap anyway, why waste my time.

The reason for this blog is to say it’s OK to have regrets however regrets that are no longer on the surface can still eat away at our being causing irreparable damage. We may not remember every time we changed directions or left the people we were suppose to care about in our wake of discontent; later affecting everything we hold dear.

I know I have an extremely addictive personality. As a teenager I was high on something everyday. In my twenties, I drank like sailor and later discovered prescription medicine. Well all of that is behind me and I sit here today wondering if I wasn’t stoned most of my 47 years on this planet I might have been able to give more or become more then what sits here today. Well, it’s not too late; to whip it, whip it good. I still have my books and I have plenty of stories to tell. I just have to get my head out of the clouds.

It may have taken 30 years but …. Thank you, and I’m Sorry K. Arbeeny where ever you are.


This blog was edited because it was brought to my attention that the time line I illustrated was incorrect.  I tried not to mention any names or businesses because this blog is written under a pen name and I really didn't think anyone was reading it anyway. I apologize if I offended anyone or misrepresented any of the facts. This story is true but the names and places have been left out to protect the innocent.

My first job in the Sunshine State was in a restaurant. It was a popular local eatery filled with nostalgia and rich in history. I was hired as a host, mainly because there were no server positions available. What I didn’t know was the General Manager at the time took a liken too me. He wanted to teach me the business and as I watched him and he managers orchestrate a busy night. I became interested and was quick learner. In no time I was promoted to a Dining Room Manager.

Although the pay wasn’t very much and most of the servers made more money  per hour than I did it didn't matter.  Hey,  I had insurance, a steady paycheck and several perks. One of which was scheduling company fishing trips aboard the owners fishing boat. Of course, someone from management always had to attend so I aptly volunteered my services. There was nothing like being on a boat in the Gulf of Mexico. Cristal clear waters, good people and plenty of good fishing. When I told friend from home about how the boss let us go fishing they could not believe it. If fact no one can believe it now. I guess it was a risky thing to do, but it truly created a bond between management and employees. A better bond than any seminar or self help tape could do. Good clean fun.

As weeks turned into months I bonded closer with my mentor. Spending many off hours with him meeting his family and drinking many beers.  We discussed my life and his life and where we were both headed.  This was truly something I didn't expect and I owe a great bit of gratitude to him and his family. He help me grow, he helped me learn and he stood by me when no one else would. Everyone should be so lucky. I really don't think I would have stayed in Florida if it wasn't for him.  

So with the help of my newly appointed mentor, we developed a way for me to continue learning the business. I needed time in the kitchen so I creatively scheduled people to supervise the front while I learn about food preparation, cooking and storage in the back. 

I figured it took me about a month to learn the front of the house so maybe it would take 6 to 8 weeks to learn the back. 'NOT' 

A year later I was promoted to Kitchen Manager which meant a larger salary and a bigger cut of the bonus pool. Although  serving well prepared food was rewarding the heart and soul of any restaurant lies behind the double doors.

Good servers are very very hard to find. Out of all the servers  that worked  with me over the years I can only think of a hand full, maybe 5 that were really top shelf. They were the ones that enjoyed serving and it showed, especially when they counted their tips The rest of the servers were constantly turning over. Cooks on the other hand stuck around awhile. Even the bad ones were useful to some degree.

A year later I was offered the General Manager position mainly because the current GM decided to take on a new location. I finally had the opportunity to shine. Record setting food cost, high profits and a clean well maintained location didn't go unnoticed . With the help from my crew, my mentor and other colleagues I was finally offered the opportunity to buy into the company. Although there were some that didn't have the same enthusiasm and quiet frankly I believe finally cause me to leave.

Anyway my first month at the helm we averaged 300 covers for lunch and 1000 covers for dinner. This location actually had a rebirth and it was busier than the day it opened. My staff made money, my managers made money and after a while I felt a great sense of accomplishment. 

That's what I choose to remember and I have no regrets.

Well that’s my story and I'm sticking too it but that was many years ago. Like so many ex-restaurant people there are so many stories. Looking back I really only have great memories from that time in my life and here is one of them. 

Getting back to what this blog was suppose to be about I figured you  would need a little background on me. Hopefully it will add validity to the story.  The best stories always start in the kitchen. I worked for three major restaurant companies before I called it quits. So those of you who figured out who I am, you really don't know which restaurant chain I'm referring too at  any giving time. It's just part of the fun. Mind you, while I was in the food industry no one was ever in any danger of getting ill or suffered greatly  from the things you're about to read. 

After leaving that infamous local restaurant chain which unfortunately was sold and is now down to one location I ventured to one of the Bigs in the foodie biz. My first stop was a popular Italian eatery that is the sister concept to a world wide steakhouse themed after the land down under (get it?). 
My stay with them was short, only six months. Working for a global  restaurant chain was very different then working for a privately owned company. A lot of politics and a lot of ass kissing. It didn’t really matter what experience or talent you possessed. After opening 100 + locations the only thing they cared about were bodies running locations. I can't tell you how many drug addict, alcoholic, thieves that were considered outstanding management simply because they knew how to manipulate the system and their bosses. No shit.

However, what I experience in the bowels of those kitchens was to say at least unbelievable. Ultimately, the food must go out, anyway anyhow. This is not fine dining like portrayed in the book Kitchen Confidential by Tony Bourdain. In his portrayal, in those famous New York eateries what I experienced was in no way similar to the steps and procedures I witnessed in getting the food to the plate and out to the customer. You see the cooks and chefs in Tony’s book all seem to have a vein of arrogance.and a heart filled with pride. They're serving  fifty to a hundred dollar a plate meals cooked by chef’s earning 80K to 100K a year. This is not reality in the cookie cutter chain restaurants world and the common folk eat there.

The highest paid cook in my kitchen was $15 per hour and our most expensive plate which included two side dishes was around $12. This is where America truly ate. First and foremost you have to realize that if you frequently dine out, let’s say 5 times a week for lunch and two times a week for dinner. You my friend have eaten off the floor or your steak knife was just wipe d off and recycled or the glass your drinking from was just barely rinsed and reused.

Oh yes, what goes on in the kitchens of America must stay in the kitchen’s of America. Over the next few blogs I will share some of my experiences in these well known and quite frequented establishments. Some of you may be privy to the happenings in this fast paced world of chain restaurant cuisine and some might be quite surprised. Most of the men and women I worked with were great. They cared about what they were serving and how it was prepared. In a fast pace high volume restaurant you will find some of the best people busting their asses to get your well done porter house under your nose. But if you’re an ass-hole which many of you are  when you go out to eat,  don’t be surprised by following blog entries.

Let’s start with a well done steak. If you’re a steak lover and order a king cut prime rib or a porterhouse or even a 9 once filet you probably want the temperature to be medium at most.  medium rare is optimal. Well, let me tell you about red neck Bob and his party of 13, four adults and the rest children under the age of twelve. 

Bob and his buddy were hungry for steak, they are men, and men know a lot about cooking steaks, right? And by God Bob knows how he likes his steak This party would be a nightmare for any server, but I had one of my best serving it that evening. The kids were bouncing around not looking at the menu and wives were just happy to be out. No one really acknowledge the server until they started wanting things and they wanted something every 3 minutes. While running her ass off trying to please these once a year dinners the men sat back drinking Busch beer (they requested it in the can) with a smirk on their face silently stalking their victim. (the poor little server) They already knew this one was going to be on the house.

The last time these people went out was probably their wedding. after the ceremony at the court house.  The only reason why they decided to come in this night was someone gave them a gift card and by GOD they were going to do their best to stay with in its monetary limits.

Bob ordered the King Cut Prime Rib and his buddy ordered a 20 once Porterhouse each well done. Bob explains how he burns his steaks at home that way they’re nice a tender.  "Huh!" Bob probably buys his steaks at  Walmart when they're on sale of course. I don't know about you but I never have any luck with the meats from Walmart. However, Bob knows what he likes and even if the cut of beef is a beautiful slice of prime rib he wants it burned.

When we got the order request in the kitchen a good grill man knows there is only a few ways to bring a thick cut of meat to that temperature. Nuke it, fry it or weight it, either way it’s going to be tasteless. I can never bring myself to nuke or fry beef so I take it upon myself to bring this delightful slice of heaven beyond its normal cooking temperature and try to maintain some integrity if not for me, for the cow that gave its life for our culinary pleasure. I began the grueling process of flat grilling the meat with a five pound iron weight on top. Always turning it over and removing the weight every few seconds checking its texture and juiciness. After 8 horrifying minutes hanging over a 500 degree flat top it was done, well done. I was able to maintain it's shape while transferring what was now left of this prime rib to service.

To make a long story short this guy sent the steak back three times eventually demanding a comp. The steak were perfectly cooked to order the first time and everyone agreed, But when it came back the last time I allowed my line cooks to take over. First the steak was dipped in 600 degree fryer. Nope, not done enough, then it was the microwave. Still not done enough, after a second spin in the microwave Bob reluctantly accepted it and cleaned every scrap off his plate and demanded to see the manager.

Peter my front end supervisor came back to the kitchen to find out what happened. I wanted Peter to make the call hoping he would grow a set and give Bob a free appetizer card for his next visit, but no Peter was pretty much a pussy so he comped the entire table. The check was over two hundred dollars and they left a $2 tip on the table for the server.

But wait there’s more; you see Bob made everyone at the table drink ice tea. Bob knew that there were free refills on Ice Tea and his table was now on their tenth round. So  line cook  located the server and the tray that held Bob's parties drinks. He then proceeded to add a little something extra to the two largest glasses on the tray.
No, it wasn’t any kind of bodily fluid in fact it was quite edible and undetectable. He added orange and yellow food coloring to Bob's tea just enough to stain the enamel on his teeth. In a restaurant the lighting is usually dim and  you can’t see someone’s teeth even if they're sitting across from you. So I’m sure when Bob finally went home and looked at his mug in the mirror the next day he probably thought he was coming down with Jaundice.

Thanks Bob and don’t forget to come back and see us.


If I had a billion dollars:

Lots of money often comes with lots of responsibility. Of course, we all want to travel my childhood dream has always been France. However, you must learn–very quickly about finances. Or you will end up just like the 70% of all lottery winners-BANKRUPTED.

I would make sure the money was divided and invested properly leaving a nice chunk to spend. Of course, I would allow for some reckless spending, travel and upscale my living. But I would make damn sure that the dividends received would support me for the rest of my life.

Oh, I want a 2010 cherry red camaro convertible.


Cash for Clunkers Program;

It’s not a bad idea trying to stimulate the auto industry by offering rebates to dealers for older gas guzzling cars. In turn the dealership moves cars which stimulate the factories to produce more cars. This will help AMERICAN Auto workers to their keep jobs. But, this incentive package is for all car manufacturers foreign and domestic. So, we are sending US tax dollars to Japan, Korean and China.

Out of the 1st billion dollars; 70% percent of the money for the Cash for Clunkers problem will go to foreign car companies. Could someone help me understand why the Cash for Clunkers Program wasn’t limited to American Auto Companies? This is our money why would we stimulate the growth for foreign Auto Makers? Isn’t it the foreign auto makers that have been slowly crushing American Auto Makers for the last twenty years?

Think About it.


There comes a time when you finally GET IT …. When fear is no longer plausible and the downward spiral stops … Then you know its time to say … NO MORE.

There has been more than enough commiserating, more than enough half truths unanswered questions and just plain lies. You spent too many hours crying inside so no one can see you’re fear and that you’re not so strong.

This is the time to clear your mind, to closely look at the players in your life. After days and weeks of separation you realize what once seemed normal has torn you apart. Only then you can see the World through clear lenses.

Now it’s time to stop hoping, waiting and praying for some miracle to change your path or magically give you happiness. Or for your life to some how have meaning with a side of sanity and security.

You also realize that the important people in your life are not perfect. There are no guarantees that they or you will always look out for each others best interests. Also, you realize that you are not perfect either and not everyone will come to love, understand and appreciate you.

People are entitled to their own views and opinions.

You must learn to be your own champion and as you evolve through these hard times a new found confidence will be born.

You find that complaining and blaming others for what they did or didn’t do really has no bearing. You learn that people don’t always mean what they say and promises are not binding. You know with out a doubt who is on your side, haven’t they’ve always been there. You really learn to stand on your own.

Then and only then will you feel safe and secure.

You will stop judging people and accept people for what they are. You will overlook human frailties and finally have a sense of peace.

You can finally see that you were looking at life through tainted lenses. Lenses that were marred by messages and opinions received distorting your vision.

You will begin to take note of every distorted opinion. This is how you should behave, this is how you should look, you’re too fat, and you wear the wrong clothes. How much money do you make, what do you drive, how big is your house and who are you indebted too.

You can now begin to redefine who you are and what you stand for.

You learn the difference between wanting and needing and you develop an instinct of what’s real and what’s for show.

You learn that in order to receive you must first give.

You learn there is something to contributing too creation. You may stop floundering through life merely as a consumer. Always looking for the latest and greatest before your neighbor acquires it.

You will realize that honor; loyalty and integrity are not punch lines and still hold the key to what is real. They are the foundation on which one can live a fruitful life.

You will find out you don’t know everything and it is not your responsibility to save the World.

You will learn the difference between guilt and responsibility and the importance of living with in ones means.

You will learn the chip on your shoulder was placed there by you and only you.

You learn that relationships take work from both parties. And people don’t normally hold each other equally important.

You simply stop trying to control people, you let go of the strings.

Then and only then do you realize that alone doesn’t mean lonely.

You will stop working so hard always putting your feelings wants and desires before others, which is a good thing.

You will develop a feeling of entitlement. It is OK to want things, to ask for things. Sometimes you must demand things that are important.

You realize that you do deserve to be treated with love, kindness and respect and you will accept nothing less.

Moreover, you realize that the body you’ve been mistreating all these years is your temple, your church, your synagogue and you begin to heal.

You learn that achievement is worth working for and wishing only delays the outcome.

Life isn’t always fair, you may not get what you think you deserve and sometimes bad things happen to good people.

Feelings of anger, resentment, and envy must be redirected or they each, in time will eat away at all that is you.

You must admit when you’re wrong and spend more time building bridges instead of walls.

Once this process is complete you will take comfort in simple things. Things that you already have and millions of men, women and children around the World don’t a full pantry, clean water, a warm bed and a hot shower.

From this point on take responsibility for yourself, and promise yourself to never betray what is real. “YOU”

Never settle for less than you deserve.


It’s apparently clear that if you’re over the age of 45 your chances of being hired in this economic environment are slim to none. No Human Resource Director wants to interview you. Why, your resume is in line with the job qualifications, you want them to call your previous employer for a reference and your average length of employment is 10 years. What’s the problem?

I tell you the problem, if you’re over 40 you’re probably married with children (which increases health cost). You resume parallels the qualifications for the position (which means you will probably step on some ones toes). You invite them to call your previous employer (which means you’ll probably get a great reference). Shortest stay at a job is 10 years (which means if you’re hired, the position won’t be vacant until you die or get promoted). This is not a recipe for job security for the Hiring Manager or HR person.

Why wouldn’t you fill open positions with experienced qualified older workers? “Because they might work out, be productive and never leave. “Oh my, what will you do if employee turnover comes to a screeching halt?”

Company owners take heed, if your Hiring Manager or HR person suggests installing a revolving door for your new employee’s entrance that’s a sign. If you’re Hiring Manager or HR person was filling open positions with hard working experience personnel that buy into what you’re doing, there would be no reason to install that revolving door.

Ah Ha! So why hire the young and inexperience, they probably won’t stay very long and someone will have to continue hiring and administer those stupid personalities’ tests. You know the ones that you’re Hiring Manger or HR person suggested you subscribed too. You remember, the tests that would weed out bad candidates and cut down on turnover ultimately building a stable team so your company could prosper.

Human Resource is a dreamed up position from the 80’s by someone that probably couldn’t get a real job. They convinced some business owner that their knowledge of labor law and unemployment claims would save them time and money. Ultimately a cost effective way to protect the business owner from law suits. But in most cases they are not lawyers but they can hire one, so could you. So why not do the hiring yourself, it’s your business why trust someone else to pick your winning team?

Don’t get me wrong, you need someone to weed through the piles of resumes but ask yourself this question why don’t you ever see a resume from someone over the age of 45. Then ask your HR person to give you statistics on employee turn over since they‘ve been employed.

If want to see someone puke up a little in their mouth you will.

If you want your business to succeed take a chance on an older applicant. Ask for the resumes that reflect candidates that remember phones with cords attached. You may be surprised and thankful for what you find.


You can see it in your neighborhood; the house on the corner seems empty. The lawn is over grown the bushes need trimming and a rope hangs from a branch that once ignited a child’s dreams of flying. At night not a single light is on. The darkness is haunting as happier memories fade into misery, embarrassment and hopelessness. Where did they go? No one knows as another family is added to a list of statistics.

You can see it on the driveways around your neighborhood, two cars sit silent instead of one. Neighbors watch knowing something is different hoping that Bill or Thomas across the cul-de-sac is vacationing or taking a leave absence instead of the alternative. After weeks pass the neighbor that shared a quick conversation with you is no longer there. In fact, he tries to avoid you always peeking out the window, making sure no one is walking their dogs or washing their cars before he dashes for the mail or evening paper.

You’ve seen it at the grocery stores, gas stations, and schools.

We now belong to a displaced generation, a group that doesn’t want to answer questions from neighbors, family or friends. Equally the neighbors, family and friends stop asking, “How’s the job search going?” In the grocery stores they walk the aisles expressionless avoiding eye contact with anyone that might ask, “How’s it going?”

Their eyes tell a story of anguish and depression longing for a break to do what they were meant to do, work. But they know there is no end in sight. CNN is reporting 10 % unemployment but some say it’s more like 15% maybe close to 20% in some states. The only recourse is to search and submit hoping for a reply from one of the one hundred résumé’s sent this month. If only the news would tell a real story, the story of a neighbor watching another home with overgrow scrubs and an uncut lawn. Another empty dwelling and a families dream put on hold. Tell the story of the rope swing that hangs still in the front yard.

If they could see through the eyes of men lost and alone not knowing were to turn.
If they could see through the eyes of men that want to provide comfort, security and to just feel worth again.

It’s now common to see men picking up children at school, shopping for food and driving through town during the day. It’s common, but it’s not right. They would rather be somewhere else earning, providing comforting. It’s been too long facing the morning with no purpose. It’s been too long to be able to plan beyond today. You can’t rationalize your way out of what only can be described as devastation.

Did it take 5 years after the Towers fell to really destroy our way of life? We watched as first responders resuscitated a nation. We supported decisions to help stimulate and revitalize. But we were blinded by our willingness to overcome adversity never seeing what really attacked us, the real weapon of mass destruction, ourselves. We were so sure we conquered evil rebounding after a massive attack never realizing the worst was yet to come.

Our enemies knew us all too well, the Trojan horse delivered on September 11th disguised as a single attack was never the real threat? It was our willingness to turn the page, move on, forget and start spending that lead us here. They knew we would do exactly that. Now we stand in line for another job that doesn’t exist. As we walk in the footsteps of men we never thought we’d follow.

As you step outside to get your mail or pick up the evening news paper you turn and look at the home that never really was yours. At least that’s what you tell yourself.

If they could see through the eyes of men that no longer blame anyone but themselves for letting it happen.
If they could see through the eyes of men that would sacrifice their sole just to be able to provide again.
If they could see through the eyes of men that would give back if only there was something to give.
If they could see through the eyes of men that have become irreversibly damaged by this economic reset yet must go on.

For the first time in our lifetime, we don’t know what the future holds in fact many don’t care anymore. What they do care about is someone stepping up and just telling us the truth, so that we all can just move on. The truth would not only set us free it would enable this displaced generation to see hope again in the eyes of men.

God Bless America