Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Why My Whopper Tasted Bad

A few days ago, I was having one of the biggest cravings for a Whopper. The thought of a charbroiled patty topped with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, mayo and ketchup, between two slices of bread was all I wanted at that moment. Your thought may be "what is so special about a Whopper?" Nothing actually. But I am confident that everyone has had those moments of craving for a particular taste for something only for that time. Well, that was me.
So, I decided to go to the nearest Burger King anxious to sink my teeth into that burger, as I scarfed down fries and washed it away with a cold cup of Barq's rootbeer.
Well, my excitement to order my Whopper was not matched by the cashier's excitement to take my order. Instead, she proceeded to tell me how upset she was and how she didn't want to be up front because she wanted to stay in the back. She even mentioned telling the boss that she was quitting. The frustration and attitude showed on her face, and the quality of the customer service followed. Opening up to me at such an awkward moment was surprising and all I could muster up to say was "I understand" as I gave her a smile. Then, she proceeded to ask me about the book I was reading and at least for that brief moment I felt as if her day was brightened.
But the mood and atmosphere of the facility was set. When I received my meal, I proceeded to sit down and indulge into my previous craving. However, something was different and the feeling wasn't the same. As I began to eat, I realized that the food didn't taste as I envisioned. Now, the burger was fresh and hot, and the fries were straight out of the fryer but I realized that the taste of my burger was impacted by the aura of the restaurant. I encountered a bad mood, and in return my body and psyche adapted to it. I didn't look at my food the same way, and it definitely didn't have an aroma that was crave-worthy.
I truly believe that if the young lady's attitude was better, I would have truly enjoyed my meal. Instead, I left disappointed - more so from the turned down atmosphere that was presented.
Recognize that when we carry a bad vibe around us, it has a lasting impact on others similar to the stench of Pepe le Pew. When we live in negativity, it brings other people down.  It messes up their Whopper moment.
Lets be mindful of the aura we leave.
God Bless

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Generation Entitled

I feel like an "old head" writing this piece, reminiscent of my parents and grandparents talking about the "good ol' days." We are all familiar, to some extent, about the stories that our elders share with us and the philosophies, personality traits, and actions of their times. Ranging from the Silent Generation to Baby Boomers to Generation X to present, there has been an interest in the characteristics that each has brought to the table throughout history.

Depending on the person categorizing the generations, I could fall into the generations of X, Y, or Millennial. But regardless of the classification, I notice that there is a dynamic shift in the way many people in today's generation think and act. Now, this is where the old soul in me comes out. Though I grew up through times when my parents probably shook their heads saying "there goes the neighborhood," I catch myself peering through the eyes of my elders saying the same thing.

Today, I believe we live in a generation where the concept of respect is lost, accountability is ignored, and responsibility is forgotten. I believe that there is this idea that floats around that anything goes, and that no one should feel obligated to say anything about it. I see people using milestone ages (18, 21) to assert their adulthood through an undisciplined way of thinking. I see children growing up with no sense of direction or urgency.

What I do notice is that we live in generation in which much is wanted but little is earned. I call this generation "Generation Entitled." This has nothing to do socioeconomically, but everything to do mentality wise. Similar to the Lord of the Flies, the same will happen if we allow society to be run by children or allow childlike thinking to run our society. We will end up living in a chaotic environment where it'll end up being too late to fix the problem.

I would rather see a "generation empowered", where people are standing for something more than self. I would rather see a "generation accounted for" where people are taking responsibility not only for their actions but for the progress of their communities. I hope and pray to see a "generation fulfilled" in which people are making the most of the time they are allotted on this earth to serve a specific purpose. But more than anything, I would like to see a "generation rise" where people would stand above all iniquities.

The challenge should be for all of to ask ourselves, "How do we want our generation to be defined?" Then we must take the lead.

God Bless

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Who are you caddying?

On the golf course, we are familiar with the guy who follows the golfer and carries the golf bag. This person is called the caddie. Oftentimes, what people do not see is the caddie giving the golfer pertinent information about the course and facilitating advice about how to approach a shot. Instead, the only association with the caddie is him carrying a bag full of heavy equipment.

Have we thought to ask ourselves, “Who are we caddying?” The benefit of a professional caddie is that he is paid for his services and he and the golfer have a symbiotic relationship on the course. On the other hand, we serve as free caddies for people resulting in being the burden carriers for their lives. We allow people to cast their burdens upon us, leave their luggage on our doorsteps, and empty their baggage at our feet in which we are left to pick it up and carry it for them.

The next time you watch golf check out the golfer. Watch how freely he moves and how briskly he walks, and then watch the caddie and notice him hunched or leaning. That’s what happens to us when we carry other people’s burdens. How can we move and produce freely and effectively when our backs are hunched, our hands are full and our steps are staggering?

But what happens when we have to carry our own bags? It affects us the same. We must continue to practice the notion of “release.” We do not see Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Bubba Watson, or Ricky Fowler carrying their bags. They are free to swing.

When we carry burdens, we aren’t free to swing. When we carry burdens, we can’t stand upwards. When we carry burdens, we can’t lift our heads to see the sky; the only view we have is the ground.

Pick people up, don’t pick up their burdens.

God Bless