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Thursday, September 30, 2004
Awash in Wonderment... 
In the middle of what you do best, there is a magical space; filled with light and love... and it is so easy... that you wonder why everything else can't be just like this...


I feel like one of the luckiest people in the world today. I had the joy of working with two of my coworkers who are so creative and talented that the day wasn't just a breeze, it was a joy. What we lack in tools and time, we're making up for it in ingenuity and sheer chutzpah!

We're making a video using a little webcam, and we're taking turns holding it so that we can each be in the show. For what it's worth, it's priceless.

I hope to get to work with these people after I move on. I wish they could join me.

We're pretty sure that the people who failed to show us vision in the past, will fail to see the point of the project, but that's ok. That'll just prove my point as to why I'm leaving.

In the meantime, just DOING this project reminds me of why I do it in the first place.

9:42 PM

Tuesday, September 28, 2004
No timeouts... 
When time is running out, you have to stop thinking about the end and concentrate on making each moment count...


I feel like I'm in the last two minutes of a football game, with no timeouts left.

Hard to believe I just used a football reference, being the sports weenie that I am, but I guess I've been around enough games to catch the feeling.

Anyway, time is running out for the current job and there's still so much to do. It's not even transition stuff (I guess everyone is just going to wait for me to go, so they can call me in a panic, trying to find something). I've got two major projects and tons o'small ones. It's the small ones that'll drive me crazy cause they all think being small, I can get them done easily.

Well, priorities have got me focused elsewhere. Sorry folks, but big rocks first.

I just hope the lil projects don't start throwing rocks at me now.

10:04 PM

Sunday, September 26, 2004
The rumor mill keeps cranking... 
The rumor mill is the faster form of communication. It can be your fiercest enemy, or the strongest foe. Use it well and use it often...


I was put in charge of "communication" in my department last year. Then I was reprimanded for not being able to get people to communicate. I told them "you can lead a horse to water, and drown it" which didn't set well with the BigBoss (B2) who loves horses... but it got my point across. I could provide the tools and the topics, but the rest was up to the rest.

They never really got it.

There's a lot of blocks in communication, and instead of taking on the personal responsibility to do it better themselves, they preferred to blame others. "Human Behavior" sure, but no excuse.

But one juicy bit of gossip, and well...

Ever since I told the New Boss (NB) about my plans to leave, people have been looking at me sadly, or dropping hints of my departure or congratulating me outright.

It's not that the ink isn't dry yet; it's that the pens haven't even been taken out yet!

I wish I had this power of communication all the while I was staying.


10:03 PM

Saturday, September 25, 2004
If it's true, then I'm rich... 
You can't believe everything you read, especially on the net... or else we'd all be beautiful, rich, doctored and desirable...


Amongst all my emails promising me the easy route to college degrees, body parts larger and smaller and all those poor people around the world who have to dispose of their $30 million dollars, I got this:
"Good news,we can save you $395 a month on your property!!"
Considering that this is my mailbox that I only pay $10 a month on, that's a profit of $385 a month!!

Maybe I CAN get rich on the internet...

10:55 PM

Friday, September 24, 2004
Act as if... 
Act as if something already is, and let the rest of the world catch up...


The NewBoss (NB) has a favorite saying "Act as if..." It's a great idea, as long as you're applying it to something positive, of course. I'm using it to make some things happen before I move on, and it does work.

The down side of this is that NB is already "acting as if" I've left. The offer hasn't come officially, yet there's already been a number of meetings without me. I understand his point of view. He's got this bear of a department to run, not knowing anything about the department, the company, who to talk to/who to trust... and a major player in his plans is leaving. I totally understand.

He's a great guy. I really like him. I would have been honored to serve along side him with all the battles he has to fight. But I also know that it's been a losing battle for a long time (I have the scars to prove it). I have Opportunity staring me in the face. This time, I don't feel I have any good choice but to take it. He totally understands that.

Understanding doesn't make it any easier.

My lead designer may have made it easier. He promised NB that he'd stick around for at least 6 months. I know LD wants to go with me; we've talked about it. When he told me about the 6 month promise, I wasn't upset at it at all. In fact, I was very very proud of him at that moment. It proved to me, after all this time, what I've always known... that he is a man of honor. I've been truly blessed to have him on my team all these years.

I've been blessed to have so many people on my team over the years. Those that have stuck by me the whole time have made my life so rich, so rewarding. They have so much talent, they impress me. They have such good hearts, they touch my soul.

I hope they totally understand that.

11:15 PM

Enjoy the view some more 
I got another batch of my Catalina pictures up.

Enjoy Part 3

10:39 PM

Thursday, September 23, 2004
It's time... 
Listen carefully to the winds of your heart. It'll tell you when it's time to go...


I tried... in hope and despair; in optimism and obstruction... to make a difference at my work. I know I did... but a lot more in the beginning than in the end. As time and tensions would have it, everything became a larger and larger barrier with each passing attempt. Success had not only become a distant memory, it seemed to keep moving farther and farther out of my reach.

So I get it... the door ahead is closed.

And yet, another door has opened.

The old boss had always promised that she would make a place for me where she was going; and today she made good on that promise.

The official offer to change jobs to a different part of the company came today... one with more challenges and less resistance; one where people are not only glad to see me, they're here to help.

It's not just greener grass out there, it's the open road.

9:57 PM

Tuesday, September 21, 2004
Enjoy the view... 
Every once in a while, stop to admire the view...


Okay, Okay, I know you want to see pictures of the trip to Catalina. I threw together a quick blog for just the occasion...

Come sail away at Guru's Views...

New pics added at 10 pm: Part II

6:50 AM

Sunday, September 19, 2004
Being fair... 
Sometimes Life isn't fair... and if your skin is fair; wear sunscreen.


I went in search of nothing; knowing full well what I was really looking for was no time table, no internet, no pressure... and that's what I got. That, and sunburn. Even with SPF70, I knew that it was going to happen, so I just did my best and accepted my fate. For the experiences I've had, it was so worth it...

The Catalina Arts Festival
Local artists gathered in the main street of Avalon to show off their talent to passers-by and serious art lovers. A lot of different versions of Catalina's harbor. Two struck me as my favorite. One was of a local house, with a lot of detail in the house, but trails off into nothingness instead of hillside; the second one was the Avalon harbor, made to look like Van Gogh's Starry Night.

Local Musicians
The air was filled with the sounds of guitars and wind pipes and harps. Mystical, playful and fun, each tune changing with the local stores filled with their nicknacks and waffle cones.

The thing that just amazed me about Catalina were the colors. Everything was so rich, from the deep blues of the water to the reds and yellows of tiny boats, to the greens of the docks. Having a digital camera along for the entire trip, I couldn't help but pause to snap an explosion of colors that caught my eye.

Golf Carts
OK, you can't go to Catalina without noticing that everyone drives a golf cart. Yamaha seems to have quite a cushy little deal, but I saw the occasional Volkswagen or Ford Golf Cart. There was the additions of leopard spotted seat cushions, or flames on the sides, or a baby seat. Having them parked along the streets made the tiny apartment buildings and hotels look much bigger.

Boat Ride
Yesterday was calm waters, and I went out in a rented motor boat with a few friends. The water and sun was warm; and the views were spectacular.

Local shows
There's nothing like having your waitress excuse herself to go up on the stage to introduce the headliner for the comedy night... herself! Over at Flip's Sushi, the owner, Mary Schickling, dishes out Calamari and Comedy. When she returned to my table after the show,I joked "you've got a good gig here; if you don't give people their checks, they have to stay till the end of the show." Fortunately, she has a sense of humor.

Well, I didn't really need the last bit of adventure on the way back. The water was nothing like it was the day before. There were swells so high that the boat rose up into the air and crashed down with a giant splash that it lost its fun after the fifth time. Plastic bags had to be handed out and paramedics showed up when we got back to Long Beach. I survived by sitting upright, keeping my head completely level; and allowing the bottom half of my body ride it out like a bucking bronco.

It feels like I've been gone for weeks... and there's nothing like it!

9:10 PM

Friday, September 17, 2004
Want for nothing... 
Sometimes you must seek out nothing, in order to find it all...


When I told people I was going to go to Catalina Island for the whole weekend, a number of them remarked "there's nothing to do there!"

"That's exactly why I'm going."

I've been there before. There's plenty of nothing to do there, so I expect nothing, I want nothing and I'll come back with nothing.

That's all there is to it.

11:07 PM

Thursday, September 16, 2004
A little light... 
Sometimes a light goes out too soon. We may pretend it never happens; we may not understand "why" when it happens to us, but it does happen. It's as much a part of life, as the light itself.


I found out at the end of the day that a coworker's grandson was killed when he was waiting for a bus. He was only 8 years old. She still came into work, even though this happened yesterday. Maybe she needed some "normalcy" to get her mind off the pain. Maybe she needed to be around life.

I wish I knew about this before she left. She needed one more hug.

10:57 PM

Tuesday, September 14, 2004
If you love someone... 
They say "if you love someone set them free..."

When you do, be prepared to welcome them back...

...be prepared to never see them again.


I can't help a friend. No matter how much I want to. No matter how much I've tried. He's in place I cannot go. To help him would be to hurt so much else. I've thought day and night; a myriad ways that would help us both. Yet each attempt would seem pale; almost mocking of his situation. I fear that caring would only make it seem worse.

Ironically, I'm the one who said "Even one drop of water lightens an ocean of black." Yet he's adrift, and I'm a bad swimmer.

So he's gone off to face it alone. I'm here; at a loss, but I'm here.

Many safe journeys. I'll try to find a path for you, if I can. Other than that, I'll leave the light on for you.

11:53 PM

Monday, September 13, 2004
The Sun Sets... 
What you say may not be what they hear... be very careful to express yourself in Truth...


Yesterday, my interview appeared in the Baltimore Sun. You can read some of my answers here. Below is what they heard...

Stuart Rosen, a Californian who reads several homeless bloggers and says he wants to be the next "Dr. Phil," dispensing his own brand of wisdom.
Close. I said I wanted to go on Oprah, then get my own talk show, like Dr.Phil.

...he says he remains wary of their chronicles. 'Just because they type a blog doesn't mean they're on the up and up,' he said.
Off. When asked if I believed the bloggers were telling the truth, I replied "Just because something is on the internet doesn't mean it's real. You have to take everything you read with a grain of salt. However, I don't believe the homeless are in it to do something bad.

The article made it seem like I doubted the intentions of the homeless, which is farthest from the truth. I do know that a few of them have had trouble that betrayed their words, but I'm not the skeptic type to disavow the word of some people whom I now call "friend."

'It's not about the fame or the fortune or even trying to get a handout. It's about having a story to tell,' he said. 'The Internet is a home. It's a place to go and connect to people and get support.'
Good... at least, enough for now.

10:22 PM

Saturday, September 11, 2004
They Went on to Greatness... 
September 11, 2001 was on everyone's mind today... even in their silence and their weekend celebrations that seem to mock that day, but give hope towards tomorrow.

For me, that day was a mix of movie madness and wrenching reality. Being on the phone with friends as it happened live was frighteningly real; yet watching the images on TV and not being there to support my friends, made it seems like a horrifying movie.

The realness didn't hit home until I stood there, at the base of what used to be a symbol of my home, seeing the devastation; unable to imagine what horrors they must have gone through.

Yet as I stood in front of the church that was left standing, I felt a peace; a huge wave of light pass through me. Then, off to my right, I met two angels...


11:27 PM

Freedom is never free... 

three years ago... the world as we know it began...

5:23 PM

Friday, September 10, 2004
A chip off the old trust... 
A promise is like an china teacup, so delicate and fragile. Once broken, it will never be the same; even if you put the pieces back together.


I had to take yesterday off from writing to let the pieces settle first.

The details are unimportant. They'd only get in the way, anyway.

A promise was broken. Doesn't matter the 'logic' behind it (there isn't any)... doesn't matter all the additional flowery words of 'support' (they don't match the actions).

A very clear promise... was very clearly broken.

I saw it coming. That's why I wrote "Keep your Promise." It doesn't make it any easier.

This person has a reputation (as far as I am concerned) of not being true to their word anyway. The latest only shows another spot on the leopard.

I have a respect for their position, but that position would be far better served by a person of integrity. They have not earned it.

But I am a man of integrity, a man of honor; a man of MY word. It's all I have. That, and empty hands.

My cup is still half full.

10:09 PM

Wednesday, September 08, 2004
The Sun Shines... 
You're not as alone as you think. Others do see you, and some even love you for it.


I had an interview with the Baltimore Sun this morning. Because I have been active in the homeless blogging community my site comes up very high on the list in Google.

I talked about how I first came across homeless blogs, what attracts me to these blogs, what I have to offer these bloggers and what I get out of it.
Here's (sort of) what I had to say...

How I first came across homeless blogs
I joined blogger.com to make my own blog. I loved blog-hopping the latest updated sites. That's where I found them. I was fascinated that this group of people, who struggled against so much, were finding a way to speak out.

What attracts me to these blogs
They're not ramblings of lost people. They're intelligent comments, full of hope against struggle.

What I have to offer these bloggers
Advice. Support. A helping hand. A kind word.

What I get out of it
The satisfaction of knowing that I can make a difference.


** Article due out Sunday, Sept 12, 2004. Be on the look out.

10:34 PM

Tuesday, September 07, 2004
Not just the facts... 
Sometimes the facts can get in the way... they tell you 'the truth' of where you've been, but don't always tell you the truth about where you're going...


I stared at the numbers today, spread across the worksheet in its rows and columns; each line revealing, and betraying, my plans. They say the "facts don't lie" and the more I read, the more I felt like the liar all these years.

The story goes back way too long ago, when I first lost a majority of my staff due to office politics. I lost my ability to deliver to my clients. Eventually the clients went away, the projects dwindled to a fraction of the size they once were. When I talked about the people I needed on my team, it was because I was trying to return to my former glory; more than anything else.

As my team got bounced around like foster children, people forgot. New people came and built upon the ruins and never noticed.

So now, with numbers that don't support the growth of the team, I'm at a loss as to what to say. I'm selling rubble and old rumors.

Sure, if they have vision and faith, they can help me get back to something even greater than before; but that's only if they ignore the facts, and believe in my future. Tough sell.

And yet I'm not depressed by any of this. The grieving has long since past. I'm just working on my options and experimenting with new and exciting ways to build new dreams. I am working on the future; where no numbers have gone before.

We'll see what the spreadsheets have to say about that!

10:08 PM

Sunday, September 05, 2004
Don't just dream it... 
Our dreams are hints about the hidden parts of our lives. Don't just sleep through them, pay attention!


I don't know when it started, but my dreams have become particularly BORING lately. I mean, I know my day-to-day routine hasn't been made up of the stuff of adventure movies, but sheesh. I dream of work... or just sitting around and talking to people... or writing about stuff... I'm not actually DOING ANYTHING.

Have I become that much of an observer of Life, that I've stopped living it? I mean, I love a lot of the stuff I do during my day, but yeah, it's been a bit routine; a bit watching from the sidelines.

I guess my dreams are just trying to tell me to "get a life."

So this weekend has been about that. I've been getting outside, going to places where people are... and I've been meeting them too, not just watching them so I can blog about it.

It's a nice change, that I didn't know I needed until I woke up to it.

11:07 PM

Friday, September 03, 2004
"Thank you"... such a small package... such a large gift.


During my usual Friday team meeting, I was getting a bit impassioned about something or other... my motivational mode kicked in, and I think I was talking about empowering employees, or rewarding employees... when I started in about the power of "thank you." Just simple stuff, you know, no big announcement, balloons, fanfare... just "thank you."

It made me stop in mid-sentence.

I turned to one of my teammates and asked, "I stopped saying that, didn't I?"

He looked at me.

"I used to say that all the time, didn't I?"

A little smile came, but with the eyes of sadness.

"I used to end every day with 'thank you'... when did that stop?"

He just shrugged.

THUMP! Right there... on my chest...


"I'm sorry."


"Thank you."

"Thank you all."

I went around the table and found something to thank people for... maybe for them; maybe more for me."

Today was a special lesson, in more ways than I can say.

Other than...

"Thank you."

10:32 PM

Thursday, September 02, 2004
What a trip 
After you've made an attitude adjustment, other people will try to get you to act the same old way. That's for their comfort level, not yours. That's the toughest, but most crucial time to commit to your new goals.


It played out like an old movie, but with new players... filled with "you can't have this" and "you can't have that." This time, there's even hints of broken promises.

Admittedly, it hurts.

I promised myself that I wouldn't become negative about it. I wouldn't beat myself up for having hope and believing that this time might be different; even if it plays out like every time before, I promised I wouldn't come to expect it to always be this way.

Admittedly, it's tough.

Ultimately, if they stay this course, they will lose. With lack of vision, they will be blind-sided by those who are more skilled, more daring, more prepared. They will have good people doing nothing. They will only get the amount of support they show their people.

Admittedly, it's sad.

I've separated my life so that I can get fulfillment outside of work, so my happiness is not an all-or-nothing deal.

Admittedly, I wouldn't mind being happy at work too.

It isn't over yet. I still believe that what I envision can be achieved there. I still don't want them to lose.

Admittedly, I'm a foolish optimist.

But I know that doors do close, and lights do turn out. I know that some people build their walls too high and too thick. That's their choice.

Admittedly, I'm not a fool.

I have my choices too.

Admittedly, I'm free.

10:13 PM

Wednesday, September 01, 2004
No Latitiude... 
There ain't no latitude... with that attitude!


Right on schedule, the naysayers are out in force. "Oh, he won't last" and "as soon as he figures out what's really going on around here, he'll be gone" and...

** snort ** curl lip ** roll eyes ** walk away **

It's a shame that people have become so bitter and jaded that they've given up hope. They've figured that it's never-gonna-change, so why bother?

What they've failed to see is that it's the "why bother" attitude that locks them into repeating the same old thing; dooming them to the same old results. They'll be 'right' about their predictions, but never claim they had a hand in it.

I find myself countering it with every encounter.

"Sure, but he's NEW! We can use that to make some changes before it's too late."

** snort ** curl lip ** roll eyes ** walk away **

Fine with me.

** Go to computer ** order new equipment ** plan for change **

10:22 PM


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