Monday, September 30, 2013

Asserting One's Self

So we made a sort of breakthrough this week:  we figured out that 1) I can be assertive; and 2) that I am best at being assertive where such behavior can actually create change.

Assertive:  Disposed to or characterized by bold or confident statements and behavior

It has shown itself in a plethora of small ways:  deciding to sell the car - and then deciding to ask twice what I was going to, and getting it.  Making the decision I was going to go to the Highland Games - and going.  Making decisions about what will be prioritized at work instead of patiently waiting for others to decide.  Deciding what and when will be used for a gardening area.

All good.  All empowering.

But we discovered a second thing as well:  that assertiveness practiced in an atmosphere of hierarchy is counterproductive.

There is nothing more discouraging than making a decision or planning a course only to be overruled by someone else - especially when that someone has little idea of what is actually being discussed or is completely disconnected from the matter at hand.  It turns assertiveness into a cauldron filled with resentment and anger as one's decision is unable to be acted upon - instead, one has to follow the dictates of someone that may have other knowledge (but never shares it) or is completely disconnected but feels the need to be "in control".

The solution?  Simple yet difficult.  If one does best in circumstances where one can act assertively, be in those situations.  If the situation you are in does not allow you to do that, change your situation.

As I said, simple yet difficult.  But is the difficulty really more than that which I currently endure:  the crushing weight of being unable to make decisions (but having to execute everyone else's) and yet being expected to "take the initiative"?

If I can be assertive - and if I need to be assertive to move forward in my own life - then I simply need to accept that, ultimately, I need to put myself in those sorts of situations.  My ability to grow may very well depend on it.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Yay Bogha Frois!

So Bogha Frois, one of the greatest voices of sanity and encouragement in my life, is launching her jewelry business on etsy.  She is a very talented artist and I am sure that someone in your life would benefit greatly by purchasing something from her store.  You should go there right now:

No.  Seriously. Go look right now.

Friday, September 27, 2013


Part of the the depression I sure I am feel about my current position is simply the fact that I feel like there is no "out" here.  No matter what plans I try to come up with, they also circle back to the fact that it feels like I have no time to do anything.

Bogha Frois has been encouraging me for some time now to do one thing a day to get started.  There are days where this seems impossible but every day she keeps encouraging me:  one thing.  Do one thing.

So I decided to make a list of my assets.

The list started simply enough:  in digging through a desk drawer I found a headpiece for the computer that was still in the bag - the sort you can use for online calls or learning.  Internet, of course.  My laptop.

But as I continued I found the list expanding:  hand tools.  Gardening Tools.  Library of books on specific subjects.  Garden area.  A small pad in my back yard one could put an open outbuilding on.  A harp.  Bokutos.  Cheese making equipment.  Before I realized it, I had constructed a list - not so much of things that were just around, but things that had the potential to be used for something.

My intention is to expand this list to other areas:  skills and abilities and expertise.  From here, my hope is that I can use this to begin to generate ideas for some sort of alternate plan.

Is it likely that my hand tools or even my small pad will help me generate income?  Not necessarily.  But what I did find is that it generated a great deal of thought about how I could use these items. 

And figuring how one can use something is the first step in one learning to use something.

Thursday, September 26, 2013


There is nothing more dispiriting than being reminded that you are a cog in a machine.

Such a reminder came crashing down on me yesterday as I went to my day.  Being 25% reduced in effective labor status (with no real end in sight) means that work has rapidly begun piling up and suddenly the concept of "working manager" becomes all too clear:  what to do first (five things, of course) and what to let slip.  It all has to be done, of course - nobody particular cares how or where it is done or truly how much more there is to do than what is there - but that is not their problem, of course.  It is yours.  You are the cog that makes it happen.

Then, of course, one gets smacked with the politics of office.  No matter how carefully I have attempted to cultivate changes in how reporting structures work I continue to discover that mine remains the same.  My job, in my reporting structure, is essentially to be responsible for all aspects of what my department is while being carefully denied the title and recognition of actually being responsible for it all - in other words, "Set everything up, make sure you come by to bow at the altar of Senior Management to bask in the warm glow of their ideas, and then go off and do the work.  And oh - please be sure that you credit the Great Manager with all that has gone well and direct all credit our way.  If you fail, of course, you are own your own."

I have diligently worked to try to find to do what was asked, to make things better, to get over that hump of doing all but not being the person recognized for it.  Instead, I find that although so many people are sympathetic to the problem, no-one really wants to do anything.  The cost of challenging the status quo - the thing that employees are so often enjoined to do to move companies forward - does not pan out when you reach a higher playing field. 

And so I find myself exactly where I have told recruiters two years ago, three years ago that I would be:  doing the same thing again and again with little chance for advancement or growth - or even a change in how thing work.  Because ultimate the concern is simply that the work gets done - and the work, theoretically, could be done by anyone.

As long as they understand that they are simply a cog.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013


Frustrated I watch
the bats return at pre-dawn:
Oh that I might soar.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Best Effort

"If (you) wait for a job to be good enough to deserve (your) best shot, it's unlikely (you'll) ever have that job." - Seth Godin, Linchpin

I struggle with this.

I struggle with this because so many of jobs - this one included - seem precisely opposite of this.  The world so often seems opposite of this.  The sense that no matter what I do my effort does not matter - in fact, it is eaten up and dispersed into a nether region of space.  I hear the tramp of "responsibility" and "authority" tramp down the halls with no relation to any sort of goal or reward. 

What would my best shot look like?  That is the part that both concerns me and makes me wonder.  What would unbridled effort at being the best at my job truly look like?  And would it be recognized as such?  Or would it just fade into the background noise of what is expected from everyone, leaving me that much farther behind the curve?

Or is my focus all wrong?

Perhaps it is what it does to us that is the real point of the exercise.  Ultimately the job has multiple factors which we cannot control:  financing, management, failed projects, acquisitions, layoffs.  It is what we become in spite of these things that is the true benefit of giving our best effort.  If I think about it, I am forced to admit that I have seldom carried a job out with me.  What I have carried out is myself and everything I did and became during that time.

If self development is the goal and the path to getting to job we ultimately want, why are we not giving more of our best effort - not for the job, but for ourselves?

Monday, September 23, 2013

The Bitters

I post quotes.

I have been doing it for a number of years, an outgrowth of one of the authors (Brian Tracy) that I read:  "Find a useful quote.  Send it to fifty people."  And so, over the years, I have been collecting quotes from everywhere:  literature, audio books, business books, the internet itself.  Over time my planners have filled up in the back - and rolled to the front - with the quotes I have gotten.

Thanks to the wonder of Facebook and Twitter, I have the mechanism for the outreach of quotes:  every day Monday through Friday I post one or two.   I post one around general life or achievement and one that tends to be around some aspect of business.  The pleasure comes from seeing people "like" them - an indication that they have found something significant quote.  It is a small way for me to feel like I am contributing to the life and achievements of others.


Some time ago - maybe a year? - I posted a quote (I do not recall what one now) to which someone posted a snarky answer.  It surprised me a bit, both because of who did it and the fact that they did it publicly.  It depressed me because I always want to encourage, not upset - so much so that I stopped posting them for a while.  Time passed of course, and I started posting them again - with the same sort of general "likes" in a day. 

Then it happened again.

It rocked me back on my heels again - not just because of who did it but that they did it publicly.  I fought the initial response of deleting the post - after all, I think that a third party reading it will find it as jarring as I did and I suppose that is not a bad thing - but I had to circle back and review what I was doing again.

Fortunately this morning I was reading Linchpin by Seth Godin and came across the following quote:

"You can spend your time on stage pleasing the heckler in back, or you can devote it to the audience that came to hear you perform".

Of course.  I can pay attention to the 1% that seem intent on voicing their opinion (if you do not agree with somebody, just do not comment or even ignore them), or I can focus on the 99% that seem to be garnering some value out of my daily activity.  Where is the correct focus?

Some people just seem to have a case of the bitters.  The trick is not to let them dominate your life or ruin your attempts to better it.

Friday, September 20, 2013


I suppose that it is silly to think
that I trapped in one place,
that all forward motion has ceased.
But that is how I feel.


The world seems to rush on around me:
People moving forward, lives moving forward -
a blur of motion that goes on the periphery
while I simply stand.


I keep telling myself that things will change,
that the motion is invisible now,
but that invisible
is not the same as not moving
at all.


Or am I fooling myself,
thinking that the point of life is moving forward,
when speeding through life means simply
speeding by life?


Thursday, September 19, 2013

Stepping Out

I find that I am stepping out more and more at work, taking charge, perhaps acting almost leader-like.

It is a little terrifying.  I do not know that I am doing everything correctly.  Sometimes it feels like I am simply adding more work to my life.

But at the same time it is invigorating.  It is an interesting feeling when one feels that one has some sense that one is charting one's own course rather than simply walking down a path that others set before you. 

One significant change that I have found is that I find myself asking for permission a great deal less.  If I understand what needs to be achieved, I will make a plan and go do it.  What I am no longer doing - at least not in the formal way - is going and asking for permission prior to asking.  I will consult, I will seek opinions - but I will not seek permission.  I will act.

I am not quite sure where all of this ends.  There is only a finite range to one's leadership at any one company of course; at some point the ability to lead becomes constrained by size and circumstances.

But that is it may be.  Right know I am doing - and learning.

Leadership may be a skill to be learned after all.  Who knew.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013


Will we ever see the paths not taken?
Is there ever a view
into other universes,
places, or times:
the great forks in the road of one's life
or even the small random chances
of fate?

What of the might have beens:
the other major,
the other job,
the other person.
the threads of our lives we put aside
to weave the ones that we know now?

Is eternity a singular stream,
or multiple paths,
running to an ocean?

Can we ever meet our other selves?
Would we recognize them if we did?
Or would we find them far different than we are now,
with no more than a surface similarity?

Or is all black beyond
this one path we choose,
leaving darkened pathways behind
never to be crossed again?

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Getting Rid Of, Simplifying

This process of having children which seem to be ever more involved and work which seems to want an ever increasing amount of my time has been biting deeper and deeper into what I consider my "personal time".  That list of things that I always want to do has become more and more compressed until it almost seems like a black hole, not allowing even light to escape.

I suppose on one hand this is a good thing, because it enables one to (by default) focus on the few things that one really wants to do (since that is all the time there is); on the other, it is frustrating because even as one tries to cut down to the essentials, time continues to run away and even those things seem beyond reach.

Essentials.  I have been thinking about those a great deal lately, propelled by the Steve Jobs biography in two areas.  On the one hand, his continued effort to simplify, eliminate and get down to the core purpose of an item; on the other, the very real sense of mortality that hangs over all of us:  it is really not so very far from my age that he himself passed away.

Moving helps, of course.  The fact that our space arrangement has changed, that we have essentially "settled" on a location to be in (given interest rates, perhaps for quite a while), means that by default we are having to question everything we have:  do we need this.  Is this essential to what we do as a family?  I am having to apply it to my own stuff as well:  do I need this?  Do I use this?  Does this at all fall into the area of essentials that I have identified in my life?  If not, I am starting to attempt (sometimes a difficult thing for me) to move it out of my life.

But I am trying to apply this to my own personal, inner life as well.  The essentials:  what is Toirdhealbheach Beucail about?  Who am I as a person?  What I am trying do?  What is my core purpose and where can I simplify or eliminate elements of my own life - of me - to be more fully true to my purpose?

It is not something I have mastered by any stretch of the imagination - in fact, merely trying to put it into words solidifies my thoughts that this is something I have only unconsciously been working towards and it needs to be more conscious.

But needed.  Time continues to compress and run away from me.  It would a pity to arrive at that time when horizons begin to expand - or contract completely - and discover that my purpose continues to be buried beneath things real and psychic.

Monday, September 16, 2013

"I Wonder If"

Something happened to me on the way to my life: I found out I could push back.

It was subtle enough.   I was listing a few things on Craigslist for sale.  I looked at the price I had posted on it last time, said "I wonder if", and hiked the price 20%.  It sold.  I did the same thing with the beloved Protege that we are selling.  Even with its age and some issues I looked at what I originally was going post, said "I wonder if", and doubled the price.  I received three interested offers; I am sure one of these will buy. 

This is atypical behavior for me - usually I approaching things from the point of view of what I think someone is likely to pay - based not on any outside information but rather my own internal voice telling me "It's not that good - and after all, you don't want to be that confrontational."  But this time I took a chance - a small one to be sure, and one which was not unrecoverable from if it failed.  But still a chance.

And it worked.  I cannot tell you the level of confidence I felt after I got those e-mails and had that cash in hand.  Suddenly I started looking around thinking "What else can I post and how much can I get?"

I dwell in reality of course - real estate taught me that something is only worth what someone else is willing to pay.  But the connection I never made before it is always not best to determine in your own mind what someone else is willing to pay. 

But in the larger scope of things, what a subtle change.  I moved from a position of helplessness and dependence - "What will they give me?  What if they don't like me if I ask too much?" - to a position of strength  - "Let me ask.  There is no harm in asking."

"I wonder if".  What a powerful statement.

What a statement to apply to the rest of my life.

Friday, September 13, 2013

An Unknown Crossing

It is Friday night and I am writing.

I know this is not a typical thing for me.  But I find myself deeply troubled this evening.  An event happened at work which has left me feeling....odd:  a coworker left.

Not a planned leaving anyone was aware of.  Not a leaving I directly expected.  Not a leaving that was mentioned 30 minutes before they left.

An e-mail.  And then they were gone.

It troubles me because in my heart of hearts it feels like I was on the wrong side of this equation: one of them.  The Bosses.  The Man.  The Power.  The People You Do Not Tell What Is Really Going On.

This bothers me.  It bothers me deeply, actually.  I hate being left out of the loop - especially when I like to think of myself of someone that is in touch with the pulse of what is going on from day to day:  the pulse, the ebb and flow of the environment.  Instead, I find myself on the outside looking in:  confused, wondering what I could have done better or differently - maybe not avert the actual leaving but to at least be in a position to wish a cheery "Good Luck".

Have I bought into the system that much?  Am I trying to "get ahead" in a system or in a way that leaves me isolated from what I was, or what I once hoped to be?

This person was not a silly person - they were intelligent, talented, very capable, fun humorous - exactly the sort of coworker one could hope for.  It is always a matter of great concern when such a person leaves.

The second thing - a lesser issue to be sure - is simply the sense of yet another person going.  I have seen so many people leave over the last 4 years - many good friends, good people, moving on to better things. 

We will go in on Monday.  Some sort of announcement will be made of course:  the incident will be downplayed, someone else will be brought in, and life will go on.  In some fashion the position will be filled - even if the hole in our little dysfunctional family will not.

But it will still leave me with a question as I get up and walk out of the room:  what have I become, or what am I perceived as, that I seem to have crossed over a divide I never knew I traveled?

Carla J. Clay Studios

So my friend Carla, who is an incredibly talented artist, has a website:

You should really click through and go to her website.  Maybe even buy something at her store.

What?  You are still here?  Go look!

High School Football

The Weekday Night Lights
Are exciting for football,
but morning comes soon.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

A Hint of Sadness

One of the habits I have picked up over the years is following my old employers.  Initially this probably started as a reaction to the fact I was curious how their stock was doing; over time it has turned into an exercise about how the companies are faring in the industry.

Yesterday I took a stop by the company who is the successor to the company that shut down in 2009, the company that led us to new home.  The company itself has passed on but the intellectual property - and many of the people - have coalesced at a new company.  They seem to have done quite well for themselves, having moved forward in the last three years and broadened their programs to give them breadth.  On a whim, I also went to Linked In to see who I knew working there.  All of a sudden a name popped up with a title:  "Director, X".

It was my old department.

I immediately clicked through to their Linked In profile.  It turns out we had actually met once at a job fair long ago.  Our paths had dodged around each other as well:  they had worked at a company we received product from, they came to the company I left to start the Firm.

I was overwhelmed with despair.  That was my position.

Or that should have been my position.  I interviewed for it in 2010, when we were back in Old Home.  On a lark, I went in.  I knew the people.  I knew the product.  I knew their systems - good heavens, I helped to write them.  But I was in New Home at the time, and would have needed moving assistance to come back.  They were a small company and so (not unreasonably) they opted to go with a local consultant and then eventually a Director.  The Director whose profile I saw.

I slumped in my chair a bit.  This is the worst of all feelings - not that have had an opportunity and blown it, but that you were denied the opportunity in the first place and so never had the opportunity to blow it.

One can make the argument that it makes things seem even worse when such a think arises.  I suppose that's true.  But when one is never really happy in the first place it just seems to rub salt in the wound, especially when opportunity (or at least the hope of it) seems to have abandoned the shores of your life.

I will keep up with company, of course.  They are doing really novel and important work in their field, the sort of thing that if it succeeds could be a game changer.  But I will always be watching with a trace of sadness as I hopefully see them march from success to success - for they are marching forward, while I seem stuck in place.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


“Artists Ship.” – Steve Jobs

One of the interesting features of Steve Jobs that I find interesting – and reinforced by my recent reading of Seth Godin – is the phrase “Artists ship”.  For Jobs this meant that it meant that it was not enough to be merely creative or to seek to express one’s self creatively.  The ultimate outcome of the art should be to ship:  to complete the project or item and move it on into the world at large.  The artist that did not ship was, to Jobs, the same as the artist that did not complete anything at all.

This statement has challenged me as I have been languishing on the completion of the text that I completed last November.  I wish I could tell you why.  There seems to be a certain reluctance on my part to push the work to completion.

I wish I could understand what the issue was.  Part of me says that it is the self critic inside of me which keeps me from moving forward.  Part of me says it was the feedback that I received from the Createspace competition:  that my writing was such that it was hard to engage the characters.  And then I am consumed with the sense what I do is simply not worthy of moving to the publishing state.

Which is silly. 

True, my writing is not the height of Ernest Hemingway.  Arguably it has got better.  And non-engaging characters?  I have to rein myself in for a minute:  it was not a novel I was writing (which was part of the competition) but rather a fable – so of course character development is different.  What is stopping me?  The reluctance that if I ship I will not make the million dollar bestseller?  The fact is that I have not done so to date, but that has not prevented me from publishing before.

To have written, edited and not published is the same as not having written.  The question I should be asking myself is “Did I do my best?”  If I did, I can expect no better of myself – even as I this is the only thing I ask of all others.

To ship is to finish.  To ship is to put something to bed – and to be able (intellectually and emotionally) to move on to the next thing.  Could it be that the reluctance I find in myself to move to the next project is not as much a lack of creativity and ideas as it is my mind telling to finish before I move on?

Artists ship.  If I claim this title as a writer and author, I must do the same.

Monday, September 09, 2013

The Space Beside The Bed

As part of our “new” bedroom, The Ravishing Mrs. TB procured a pair of new bedside tables for use.  They are the same wood as the dresser and chest of drawers that we procured at IKEA.  Matched with a new beside lamp for each of us, it represents the first upgrade in bedside accouterments since 1993 and our pressed fiberboard screw-in table leg tables. 

So in the spirit of making a clean start as part of our new home, I am trying not only to reorganize but to simplify.

I am taking some of my cues based on the biography of Steve Jobs I am currently listening to.  Mr. Jobs, who had a great love (some could call it obsession) with design, described how he and his wife spent hours in the evening discussing the design and function of a washer and dryer.  I have not gone quite that far in my quest for reorganization, but I am trying to ensure that at least part of what I am doing has the function and appearance in mind.

Minimalist.  That is what I am striving for.  If I have it I should either use it or derive pleasure from it.  The having of things which neither are neither useful not provide pleasure is something I am trying to move away from.

The largest item on my table, which has been there for many years, is a basket that I keep various things in.  Moving towards the goal of keeping things as simple and minimalist as possible, I decided to remove the basket from the table leaving only my clock, my lamp and a drink coaster.

But what to store in the drawer.  It is obviously less spacious than the basket. So came the consideration of what I keep in the basket.

Two highlighters and four pens?  I need only one of each.  Cards?  They have sat for a year without examination; time to locate them to where I keep such things.  A flashlight?  There is a drawer, that will store the bookmarks as well.  My journal?  Now sitting atop a neat stack of books on the lower shelf.

The result?  A simple nightstand next to my bed with a minimum on it – and a minimum in it. 

I will be honest.  It is simple.  It is clean.  It is organized.

I love it.

Friday, September 06, 2013


I find myself in a reluctant position to continue with my book editing.

The puzzles me a bit.  What I would perceive as the “hard” part of the book, the creation, is complete.  What remains is the (to me) tedious task of editing and re-editing, of listening to the flow of the language, and then the process of publishing.  If I have completed the “hard” part, why then do I find myself so reluctant to continue on?

It is actually sort of remarkable.  I have become almost pathological about working on it, finding reasons that I have other things to do, conveniently not having the blocks of time necessary to do it.  I have almost reached the point where the thought of working on another book has moved from my mind.

Why is this?  I love to write.  I love the exercise of put electrons to paper and developing my thoughts.  I was excited to see myself in print and even more excited when I actually made some money on the books.  But now, nothing.

Is it something more profound?  Is it the initial thrill of dream fulfilled meeting the reality of the world as it is and realizing that the dream, while good, has fulfilled its purpose:  it brought me to one finish line, but it was hardly the one I expected to find?

The act of writing and publishing was one of the hardest of my life in years.  Why?  Because it meant bringing something to completion, to the point of completion that it was actually ready to be done.  Having done it, I found it easy to do again.  But having done it again, I found that the return was not the same the next time out.
Is this because of my own expectations?  Have I convinced myself that the important part is not so much me expressing myself in hopes of somehow impacting someone else as it is me wanting fame and fortune showered upon me because, for once in my life, I finally showed up with 100% effort?
The reality is that the third book will most likely not bring me that return.  But that is no reason not to complete it.  I initially started writing (I think) as an output of a soul that was seeking to find a way to influence others, to help someone, to make a difference.  Those goals have not changed – but neither has the equally important goal of learning to finish what one starts.

The finishing is the thing.  Anything I realize from it is merely frosting on the cake of accomplishment.

Done then. I will push on to the finish line – because only by finishing do you get the bragging rights.  All else is merely talk by those who simply could not push through.

Thursday, September 05, 2013

Wild Rabbits

Running in the dark,
wild hares eat nervously:
Flash!  I am outpaced.

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Retaking the Initiative

So the move is completed.  The house is somewhat unpacked, at least unpacked to the point that we can move around and begin to reconsider the placement of everything we have – and why we have it.

Part of the outcome of the move is that everything we have is now under one roof – ours.  No more storage of items in the houses of others or in small outbuilding.  Everything we own now exists within the four rectangular walls that we call home.

Another outcome of the move has been the “downsizing” (I use the term loosely) in the size of our  house – certainly in square footage but more relevantly in the number of rooms and closets that we have.  Suddenly we have less places to organize and keep all of the items that we own, that we have dragged with ourselves from place to place convincing ourselves that these are critical things we have to keep.

The move has allowed us to retake the initiative of remaking and retooling our lives.

Retooling.  That sounds like such a big word, does it not?  A sort of massive makeover involving the destruction of large pieces of equipment, the tearing down of walls and rebuilding of even larger walls, and the appropriation of even more complex pieces of equipment.  The result sounds like it should be the outcome of an industrial project, with gleaming steel and robotics ready for action.

The reality of our retooling is much less exciting.

Our retooling has much more to do with a reconsideration of all that we have brought with us – looking at it, considering it, and then determining if it is something which has value in our lives as we move forward.

We have accumulated a great amount of the stuff over the years – just this week we finally sold the last LPs what we had (the actual player is two years gone at this point).  Some of it was sentimental, some of it was what I thought would matter (Three years of Shepherd’s Conferences notes: Gone.  What did I think I would do with them?), some of it is for projects that have no meaning in my life right now.  It is a propitious time to reconsider what it is and why we still need it.

We will still have plenty of items to keep of course – my book collection (the bane of my moving experience) still lacks the bookshelves for permanent display – and the handmade items of Na Clann are safely tucked away.  Even after the consideration and removal, we will still have plenty of “stuff” to fill our lives.

But hopefully after this retooling, we will have “stuff” that has actual purpose and meaning to where we currently are in our lives, what we hope do, and ultimately what we hope to create as an outcome of our lives.

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

An Unexpected Interlude

You will have noticed that I have not posted in a while.

What is up, you may have asked?  Did a vacation suddenly loom that was unexpected?  Did a horrible tragedy occur that has kept him from writing?  Or has he merely become a bit lazy?

None of the above, I am afraid.  I – and we – are victims of a combination of corporate systems and bad customer service.

With the advent of our move we had a simple request:  keep our current number, the one we have had for four years.  What has transpired is a farce in which over the course of three weeks we have had three phone numbers, two rounds of internet access, reaching to the point that we currently have no phone number and no internet access.  We are “assured” that we can get access – and possibly phone at this point – on September 10th, almost one month after we moved.

This is a failure of epic proportions.

By our count, the Ravishing Mrs. TB has spent approximately 10 hours on the phone over the last two weeks trying to get the situation worked out.  We have spoken to at least 7 different individuals – all nice in their own way and trying to be helpful, but unable to actually help us resolve our problems.   A victim of corporate processes, we are informed that “It takes a week to get anything done.”

What a shame for them.

It is inconvenient for us of course – but they have pushed us into action as a less inconveniencing incident might not of.  For the first time we are seriously looking at “Do we need a home phone?  Can we get by on cells alone?  And what other options do we have for internet?”  And now we are motivated enough to be willing to do something – motivated to the point that options which had previous only been interesting discussion items are now active considerations.

The price of inaction is sometimes not just opportunity lost.  It can sometimes be the very undercutting of your business model – or your life.