I was trudging out the door the other morning in blizzard conditions to get the newspaper. As I got to the end of our long driveway, I looked into the paper tube below the mailbox and quickly discovered that the paper had not been delivered yet. 8:30am, and no paper. Are you kidding me?!? I looked a driveway over and my neighbor was making his way down to get his as well. We talked about what to do and he said he was going to call the office and lodge a complaint. I told him to give it a minute and see if the guy would show. Being an old paperboy, I knew what that office complaint would mean to the carrier. Sure enough, a minute later the guy barreled up in a car full of papers, rolled down the window and threw us each a paper. Not a word was spoken and as the guy took off he left my neighbor and I in a cloud of black car exhaust smoke. My neighbor was not happy and left me with an impression that he was going to do anything to make sure we got a new paper delivery person.
Ever since the movie “Pay it Forward” made its impact back in the early 2000s, so many (including myself) have been attracted to the concept of taking what’s given to us and re-presenting that generosity in ways that benefit the lives of others. It was my privilege to witness this play out at The Maplewood a few days before Christmas.
Whether you’re talking about “Obamacare” and the Affordable Care Act, the stock market, college costs or the future of Medicare and Medicaid it seems like everyone is on edge about what might happen.
The latest saga involved the government getting shut down and then a bunch of talk about a debt ceiling which had the combined effect of frightening people to death. Employers are on edge, employees are on edge, the market is on edge, and the general public is just upset about all the rhetoric coming out of Washington. We wonder about funding our retirement in a stock market that seems to rely on the media daily for direction, and as a result we see a continuous roller coaster ride where 300 point swings in one day are not unusual.
Today’s world of instant communications has allowed us to do amazing things. Software and hardware have progressed far beyond what most of us could have even imagined 10 years ago. We stop at the gas station on the way to work and wave a small key fob at the gas pump and it turns on. While we pump our gas the pump talks to us and shows us enticing images that are geared to lure us into the mini-market and buy a pizza, bottle of Pepsi or 12 pack of beer. Simply amazing. What we don't see is all the agonizing steps that went into that front-end technology and the hard work that continues to go on behind the scenes that allows the proper payments to get deducted from your debit card and/or the billing that seems to magically happen to your gas credit card. You know that there has been a lot of signing of contracts and negotiating fees and payments to various vendors that make this all happen. It is really all in the details.
As my 20 year old daughter went running out of the house the other night I noticed her wearing a new denim jacket. I looked twice and thought about it and chuckled to myself. Five years ago she wouldn't be caught dead in a jacket like that. Now it's cool. I see other styles coming back around again that I remember from the late 70s and early 80s. I see my daughter’s friends wearing platform shoes, bell bottoms and a whole bunch of things I saw years ago. I scratch my head and wonder what the next thing will be that’s OK to wear again.
The term “sequester” – the $85 billion in automatic across-the-board domestic and defense cuts set to take effect today – is on the tip of everyone’s tongue. What sort of impact will sequestration have on skilled nursing facilities?
As we close the book on 2012 and open up a fresh New Year we are filled with both fond memories and anticipation. As I try to think back to January of last year it hardly seems possible the many changes and challenges we have seen our way through.
It's time to say goodbye to 2012 and move along. What will the New Year hold? If you’re like us, we like to “re-rack” and see what we might want to tune up and change. We’ll ask ourselves questions like “what has gone well and what do we absolutely never want to do again?”
What are the most memorable events of 2012 for you? We all have different thoughts about what might top the list, but for most, it was something that hit the mainstream news or something you saw on TV. The mainstream media has an interesting effect on how we see things. It also impacts how we see ourselves fitting into it all. I saw something recently that made me stop and think about 2013 and what I need to do better. I wanted to take minute and share it with you.