February 13, 2014



Since I was a kid I felt I was different. 

On days it was rainy and stormy I was alive...Everyone else complained of the rain. I called it "My kind of day!"

On Snow Days when everyone was sledding I was charging 12 dollars to shovel driveways, and in the Summer cutting grass to earn money.

When everyone else was playing football, I was at Glenn's Books in Kansas City marveling at the Children's Book Illustrations and taking my hard earned grass cutting money to purchase my next antique illustrated book.

When the coaches held me after school the first day of class each year to try to get me to get all muddy and shoved around playing football, I simply replied with, "OK...what does it pay?" When they said it did not pay, I said, "Well I have a part time job after school, I make 6 dollars an hour, I'll play football for you for 8 dollars an hour!" They scratched their heads each year and walked away.

My Senior year I got a raise at work, they tried again...and even at a mere 10 dollars an hour they still would not pay me to play. My reply the last year was, "You give College Scholarships to kids, I want to be paid. Why would I walk away from a 10$ an hour job to have mean guys shove me into the mud for free?" Again they walked away.

This continued into College where I always had a a full course load and a job and made time to date, work, have fun and fit more into my life than others.

As I started my career I would work sometimes 80-100 hours a week at my craft and not once on 30 years has it been work for me! I get to live my dreams, earn my money and have massive impact on those people and projects that hire me. Hopefully always for the good or better. And I am not speaking from arrogance, I am speaking from results and hard work that has allowed it to happen so many times over the decades.

Now here I am now, almost 57 years old and nothing has changed.

I always will still always try to help you do better if I can. I want us all to do better. I want us to stop competing and start collaborating. I will use my knowledge and the power of my network to make it happen. But don't ask me to work for you for free especially when you won't put equal or greater effort into helping or growing yourself and your own ideas. I absolutely cannot help you when you don't even value what it is I can do for you and you somehow have come to just expect it.

Where did we learn to accept handouts and change our beliefs to some bizarre notion that others owe us? I don't owe you, no one does. Work for your dreams, build them and surround yourself with impeccable people who align with your beliefs. Then go out and help others to make the world a better place. And it will take sweat, determination and lots of lost Snow Days!

And if you want to shove me around or push my face into the mud, I am now 300 dollars an hour. Make me an offer and I will happily consider it. 

Until then...I suggest you find a bit-o-passion! Learn your craft and start helping others to do better. This "You owe me" mentality is going to get you about 16 feet further in life and then you're dead in the water!
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