Friday, August 27, 2010

The End of a Run

Our wonderful yellow Lab, Gable, died yesterday around 4 PM. I am very sad. He was truly my most very favorite of our six dogs that we've had. He always had quiet dignity (unless he was chasing down something that didn't belong in our yard!)

The other three dogs that lived with him over the years knew that they could run out or swim out after the Frisbee but they absolutely could NOT touch it. That was Gable's job and no dog should ever think otherwise.

Gable was named after Dan Gable, an Olympic wrestler, because of his tendency to trip other dogs by reaching around in front of their leg and tripping them as a wrestler would. In this photo from awhile ago, he is "smiling." Something he did when we would say, "Gable, are you a bad dog?" He loved veggies. The only food he didn't eat recently was an offered basil leave which he spit out. Carrots and green beans were his favorites and I had to fence both of those crops to keep him out.

I miss him, but know that he was just barely holding on. His weight while once a proud 95 muscular pounds had plummeted to 61. He was skeletal. I asked doc Martin how old a 16 year old dog was in people years and he said that it was off the chart so that we could be proud of how well we had taken care of him for him to last that long. That and probably very good genes.

There is a big hole in my heart. On the relationship scale he was at the very top.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Hidden Rules of the Game

The other day my husband mentioned that a new person had attended their "in the garage," (read, man cave) ever-so-often, poker game. He said that he doubted this new person would ever be invited back. I couldn't imagine why that would be so. After all, there is plenty of belching and f__ting going on during the play. Oh no, it was not rude behavior. No, the rule broken, was that this newbie won. Yep, you got it, he took their money.

I guess there is an unspoken rule that you don't do that when you are new. I don't know what you do when you're having a winning streak, but I guess you're just supposed to play badly. But no one clued this person in to the secret.

Which takes me to my favorite topic - networking! Think of the organizations you belong to. What do they do to help your visitors know the secrets of the meeting? What riddles do your guests need to solve in order to be part of the "in" group? Do you banish these visitors when they don't follow code or do you help them?

In my world, the definition of networking is helping others to feel comfortable. What's yours in relation to the above story?

Monday, August 23, 2010

'Toonly Different

I read a great post from Tom Fishburne this morning. You can read the whole article here, but basically Tom wrote about how some cartoonists draw for just a narrow audience, giving an example of one who draws cartoons that would only make sense to people who are Unix programmers. Now I gotta' tell you, the only reason I even know the word Unix is because I have a son in that world of funny computer words. (He is also a blogger in the networking world and I guess that could make him unique in that he is a computer guy and can form and maintain relationships, too!)

Tom went on to tell that he in fact saw a Unix flavored cartoon when someone stood up at one of his presentations and had the 'toon printed on his t-shirt.

Of course my thoughts took a jump at that point. A foundation of the course I teach is helping my students to figure out what is unique about them; what sets them aside from the rest of the pack. Recently several of my students were asked what cereal box or magazine cover they might appear on and WHY. But even better, I think, would be, "What about you or what you do would be worthy of a t-shirt?"

Any answers? Remember it's got to be different.