Category: Manners

Good Advice from Chief Justice John Roberts

Good Advice from Chief Justice John Roberts

John Roberts, Chief Justice of the United States, gave a commencement speech at his son’s middle school graduation ceremony that is absolutely perfect.

From time to time in the years to come, I hope you will be treated unfairly, so that you will come to know the value of justice. I hope that you will suffer betrayal because that will teach you the importance of loyalty. Sorry to say, but I hope you will be lonely from time to time so that you don’t take friends for granted. I wish you bad luck, again, from time to time so that you will be conscious of the role of chance in life and understand that your success is not completely deserved and that the failure of others is not completely deserved either. And when you lose, as you will from time to time, I hope every now and then, your opponent will gloat over your failure. It is a way for you to understand the importance of sportsmanship. I hope you’ll be ignored so you know the importance of listening to others, and I hope you will have just enough pain to learn compassion. Whether I wish these things or not, they’re going to happen. And whether you benefit from them or not will depend upon your ability to see the message in your misfortunes.

Source: The Coddling of the American Mind

Source: The Coddling of the American Investor – The Irrelevant Investor

How to Stop Spam Phone Calls

How to Stop Spam Phone Calls

The number one feature that I would like for the iPhone is the ability to have a special ringtone for anyone that was not in my Contacts. That ring tone would be silent so that if a spammer got through it wouldn’t bother me, they would just go to voicemail. If it was a legitimate call then they would go to voicemail as well and I would call them back.

As it is, I hear my phone ring, see that it isn’t someone I know and manually silence my phone. By having a “silent” ringtone for non-Contacts, I would skip this step.

I think this is possible in Android and it is probably the only reason that I would buy an Android phone over an iPhone the next time I want to update my phone.

Source: How to Stop Spam Phone Calls

The phone rings. Do you assume it’s an actual human person, trying to reach you? I generally assume it’s a robot, calling to “inform” me that my car warranty is about to expire or that I’ve “earned” a free trip to the Caribbean.

And I’m not alone. There were an estimated 26.3 billion robocalls to US phone numbers in 2018, which was a massive increase from the year before. Most of these spam calls come from scammers using software dialers to call as many phone numbers as possible. Enough people fall for these scams for the practice to be profitable, which is tragic in and of itself. The rest of us, meanwhile, are getting more spam calls than actual calls, interrupting our daily lives, including during work hours—and the problem is only getting worse.

Why should a teenager in America be afraid of a Congresswoman?

Why should a teenager in America be afraid of a Congresswoman?

Some people are very nice and helpful to others…and some people are not. Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez seems to be firmly in the latter camp.

Check out this interaction on Twitter. Why in the world should this young man be afraid of Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez? Isn’t she an elected member of Congress that is charged with the responsibility to serve America and protect its Constitution?

Here is the young man’s response.

And then

For me, maybe Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez should leave Congress and CJ Pearson should replace her.

I have not seen a statement from the Congresswoman as to why she should be feared by this young man. Is it because CJ Pearson appears to be African American (at least according to his Twitter image)? Is she racist? Or, is it because he is a male? Or, is it because he is young? Or, is it because he appears to be a conservative? Or, is it a combination of all four, a young, male, conservative African American?

Regardless, the oath of office of a Congressperson would mean that no citizen of the US should ever fear an elected official.

So if the Congresswoman is that power-hungry then maybe we should all be afraid.

How do you spell whiskey?

How do you spell whiskey?

I know that everyone thinks I only worry about politics. Thankfully, that is simply not true.

Spelling lesson time:

whisky or whiskey?

I know… you thought you’d left spelling lessons behind when you left school! And you’re probably wondering why you should even give a hoot about how to spell the name of my second favorite spirit (yes, tequila is my favorite, but too many bars serve lousy tequila so I need a backup plan).

jameson photoWhy do you need to know how to spell the pride of the Irish isle?
Street cred. That’s why.

Oh, to be sure, the spelling’s not the most important thing about drinking whisky. After all, you don’t have to pass a spelling test before they let you buy a wee dram at the pub. But, as with so much in life, it’s the small things that count. They add up. God is in the details. Or is that the Devil? Either way, you’re covered.

Besides, the answer to “How do you spell whisk(e)y?” is really simple:

Both ways.

But, there is an important distinction between the two. You see, whisky (plural whiskies) shows that the product was made in either Scotland, Wales, Canada or Japan, whereas whiskey (plural whiskeys) shows that it was made in either blessed Ireland or in the greatest country ever: America.

This is the kind of interesting information that you can casually throw into conversation with your friends at the pub. They’ll think you’re a connoisseur. They’ll be impressed. I promise.

If they aren’t impressed then they will think you are a reincarnation of Cliff from Cheers. If you are too young to understand that joke then you need to binge watch Cheers.

As a bonus, here’s another whisky spelling trivia gem for you: Despite what I told you above, the official spelling in America is actually whisky. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms decreed it so in 1968. Some distilleries obeyed. Others clung to tradition. And in the whisky world, tradition is important. Much more important than the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. jameson photoWhich is why they had to give in and allow American distilleries to choose which spelling they wanted to use, and why you’ll see examples of both spellings on American labels.

In case you are interested, I have a particular fondness for Jameson, Tullamore Dew (often called Tully at many bars), Teeling, and Redbreast but I won’t turn down a Connemara or a Bushmills.

Photo by Wicked Little Cake Company

RANT: Please don’t bruise me with your book bag

RANT: Please don’t bruise me with your book bag

I fly a lot. I typically do close to 100,000 miles in a year.

Anyone that frequently flies goes into what I call Airport Mode. This mode essentially means you zone out other people. You ignore crying babies. You are indifferent to people that talk loudly. You tolerate idiots that cannot squeeze their tuba-sized suitcase into the overhead bins.

The hardest thing to ignore is a bruised shoulder. This happens when an inconsiderate person insists on wearing their book bag on the plane and then smashes it against your shoulder while they are walking down the aisle.

bookbag photoYour book bag doesn’t make you rude when you are walking in a straight line. However, when you turn it is quite likely that you don’t realize that you are now quite deep.

You typically turn on your spine. All of your life, you have learned that you have no trunk behind you and you don’t have to make wide turns. But with that book bag, you are now like a semi-truck. You are now a vehicle that makes wide turns.

So when you are walking down the aisle of a plane, you are quite good when you are going straight. As soon you start to rotate though, remember you are pulling a trailer! That book bag and you simply do not fit sideways in the aisle. So when you rotate your body, that massive book bag is swinging like a wide-load. It’s destination is my shoulder.plane aisle photo

I probably won’t tell you that you just walloped me with your bag. I will keep silent because I am in Airport Mode. I don’t want to interact with you. I don’t want to be your friend. I am never going to see you again and I don’t want to spend the energy to fix your rudeness. It is much easier for me to wince, try to avoid you hitting me again, and go back to reading my email on my phone before I am told to stop.

Frankly, I just wish you would read this article and leave my shoulder alone. It is still sore from yesterday’s flight.

Photo by sinosplice

Photo by foilman

12 Truths You Should Know by Now

12 Truths You Should Know by Now

  1. The route to our destination is never a straight one.
  2. Real friends won’t ask you to change who you are.
  3. Cheating is a choice, not a mistake, and not an excuse.
  4. The past can’t hurt you anymore – not unless you let it.
  5. Adversity will come to every person at some point.
  6. Sometimes things fall apart so better things can fall together.
  7. Someone else doesn’t have to be wrong for you to be right.
  8. Everything has been just the way it needed to be.
  9. Silence is often the loudest cry.
  10. The difference between where you are and where you want to be, is what you do.
  11. It’s not who you are that holds you back, it is who you think you’re not.
  12. Right now is the only moment guaranteed to you.

I took this list from 12 Truths You Should Know by Now and the author has more wisdom to share on each topic. Jump over and read the rest.