Tag Archives: inspirational

Quotes of Affirmation

“Positive anything is better than negative nothing.” – Elbert Hubbard

“We have to do the best we can. This is our sacred human responsibility.” – Albert Einstein

“Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Wishing is not enough; we must do.” – Johann Von Goethe

“Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” – Anais Nin

“Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and then go and do that.” – Harold Whitman

“There is no such thing in anyone’s life as an unimportant day.” – Alexander Woollcott

“The purpose of man is to live, not to exist.” – Jack London

“We change the world not by what we say or do, but as a consequence of what we have become.” – Dr. David Hawkins

“All you have to do is look straight and see the road, and when you see it, don’t sit looking at it – walk.” – Ayn Rand

“Do you want to know who you are? Don’t ask. Act! Action will delineate and define you.” – Thomas Jefferson

“I think in terms of the day’s resolutions, not the year’s.” – Henry Moore

“Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value.” – Albert Einstein

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.” – C.S. Lewis

“Forever is composed of nows.” – Emily Dickenson

“Happiness, not in another place but this place… not for another hour, but this hour.” – Walt Whitman

 

Chris George, providing reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

John Maxwell Bons Mots

  • The pessimist complains about the wind. The optimist expects it to change. The leader adjusts the sails.
  • Leadership is not about titles, positions or flowcharts. It is about one life influencing another.
  • You don’t overcome challenges by making them smaller but by making yourself bigger.
  • A difficult time can be more readily endured if we retain the conviction that our existence holds a purpose, a cause to pursue, a person to love, a goal to achieve.
  • “Failing forward” is the ability to get back up after you’ve been knocked down, learn from your mistake, and move forward in a better direction.
  • If you start today to do the right thing, you are already a success even if it doesn’t show yet.
  • The greatest mistake we make is living in constant fear that we will make one.
  • If we are growing we are always going to be outside our comfort zone.
  • Leaders never outgrow the need to change.
  • Learn to say ‘no’ to the good so you can say ‘yes’ to the best.
  • The more seriously you take your growth, the more seriously your people will take you.
  • Most people have a desire to look for the exception instead of the desire to become exceptional.
  • Although it’s admirable to be ambitious and hard-working, it’s more desirable to be smart-working.
  • You build trust with others each time you choose integrity over image, truth over convenience, or honor over personal gain.
  • The timing of your decision is just as important as the decision you make.
  • A great leader’s courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position.
  • A man must be big enough to admit his mistakes, smart enough to profit from them, and strong enough to correct them.
  • Happiness simply cannot be relied upon as a measure of success.
  • Reaching the top is a monumental achievement, but remaining there may be the most spectacular feat of all.
  • Plan and execute your first failure so that you no longer have to fear it.
  • If you don’t change the direction you are going, then you’re likely to end up where you’re heading…
  • Everything begins with a decision. Then, we have to manage that decision for the rest of your life.
  • It’s true that charisma can make a person stand out for a moment, but character sets a person apart for a lifetime.
  • People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.

Chris George provides reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

A Dozen Maxims By John Maxwell

  • Speak the truth. Transparency breeds legitimacy.
  • People may hear your words, but they feel your attitude.
  • Change is inevitable. Growth is optional.
  • The only guarantee for failure is to stop trying.
  • Talent is a gift, but character is a choice.
  • Life is 10% of what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it.
  • We cannot become what we need by remaining what we are.
  • Doing the right thing daily, compounds over time.
  • Growth inside fuels growth outside.
  • People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.
  • To add value to others, one must first value others.
  • You cannot overestimate the unimportance of practically everything.

Chris George provides reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

Writers on Life (more memes)

 

 

 

 

To pass along these remarkable memes, right click on the images and copy/save – and then share widely.

To regularly receive these bons mots, follow By George on Facebook and Twitter.

Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

Writers on Life (10 memes)

 

To pass along these remarkable memes, right click on the images and copy/save – and then share widely.

To regularly receive these bons mots, follow By George on Facebook and Twitter.

Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

#1 Christmas Movie : “It’s a Wonderful Life”

Through the years, By George Journal has featured “It’s a Wonderful Life”, well, it’s the best Christmas movie we have – a moving account of a caring, community-minded, family man who struggles with inner-doubt and comes to fully appreciate the love of family and friends. In our crazy, mixed-up world, it doesn’t get better than this.

Here are quick links to our Journal’s posts on this must-rewatch-this-holiday film. 

Drop us a note and let us know when you view “It’s a Wonderful Life” this Christmas season. Enjoy!

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Chris George provides reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

The iconic “It’s a Wonderful Life”

“It’s a Wonderful Life” is deemed “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant” by the United States Library of Congress and selected for preservation in their National Film Registry.

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal in 1984, Director Frank Capra expressed amazement on the film’s elevated status: “It’s the damnedest thing I’ve ever seen. The film has a life of its own now and I can look at it like I had nothing to do with it. I’m like a parent whose kid grows up to be president. I’m proud… but it’s the kid who did the work. I didn’t even think of it as a Christmas story when I first ran across it. I just liked the idea.”

(According to American film historian Stephen Cox, in a 1946 interview, Capra described the film’s theme as “the individual’s belief in himself,” and that he made it to “combat a modern trend toward atheism.”)

BTW – Director Frank Capra later sighted this film as his personal favorite. Likewise, James Stewart said that George Bailey was his favorite performance.

Director Frank Capra on the set of “It’s a Wonderful Life”

Chris George provides reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

On the Meaning and Wonder of Life

  • Life has no meaning the moment you lose the illusion of being eternal. – Jean-Paul Sarte
  • This is it. There are no hidden meanings. All that mystical stuff is just what’s so. – Werner Erhard
  • The search is what anyone would undertake if he were not sunk in the everydayness of his own life. To become aware of the possibility of the search is to be onto something. Not to be onto something is to be in despair. – Walker Percy
  • The mountains, rivers, earth, grasses, trees, and forests are always emanating a subtle, precious light, day and night, always emanating a subtle, precious sound, demonstrating and expounding to all people the unsurpassed ultimate truth. – Yuan-sou
  • In my hut this spring, there is nothing — there is everything! – Sodo
  • The world is not to be put in order, the world is order incarnate. It is for us to put ourselves in unison with this order. – Henry Miller
  • I am a part of all that I have met. – Alfred Lord Tennyson
  • Darkness within darkness. The gateway to all understanding. – Tao Te Ching
  • Perhaps the truth depends on a walk around the lake. – Wallace Stevens
  • How could drops of water know themselves to be a river? Yet the river flows on. – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
  • Hide your body in the Big Dipper. – Zen saying
  • Being is. Being is in-itself. Being is what it is. – Jean-Paul Sarte

Chris George provides reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

Top 3 Facebook posts of 2018

This week, By George counted down the top 10 posts to be highlighted in 2018 on the By George Facebook Page. Here are the top three selected from last year:

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#2

The #1 By George Facebook post of 2018…

 

Chris George provides reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

Friedrich Nietzsche (memes to wake the soul)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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To pass along these remarkable insights of Nietzsche, right click on the images and copy/save – and then share widely.  To receive similar, profound memes on a regular basis, follow By George on Facebook and Twitter.

Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

Wisdom of Winston Churchill (6 FAV memes)

Here are 6 brilliant sayings by Sir Winston Churchill which have been made into attractive memes (ready for you to right-click-copy-and-paste into your presentation).

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Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

 

Poetry for the day; sentiments for the ages

Here are three remarkable poems that capture the solemn and significant essence of this day. These Remembrance Day poems express sentiments for the ages.

Timberline Remembrance Day Ceremony

For the Fallen – Laurence Binyon

With proud thanksgiving, a mother for her children,
England mourns for her dead across the sea.
Flesh of her flesh they were, spirit of her spirit,
Fallen in the cause of the free.

 

Solemn the drums thrill: Death august and royal
Sings sorrow up into immortal spheres.
There is music in the midst of desolation
And a glory that shines upon our tears.

 

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,
Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.
They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,
They fell with their faces to the foe.

 

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them.

 

They mingle not with their laughing comrades again;
They sit no more at familiar tables of home;
They have no lot in our labour of the day-time;
They sleep beyond England’s foam.

 

But where our desires are and our hopes profound,
Felt as a well-spring that is hidden from sight,
To the innermost heart of their own land they are known
As the stars are known to the Night;

 

As the stars that shall be bright when we are dust,
Moving in marches upon the heavenly plain,
As the stars that are starry in the time of our darkness,
To the end, to the end, they remain.

 

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In Flanders Fields – John McRae

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

 

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

 

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

 

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Dulce et decorum est – Wilfred Owen

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind.
Gas! Gas! Quick, boys! – An ecstasy of fumbling,
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling,
And flound’ring like a man in fire or lime . . .
Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.
In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.
If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent(14) for some desperate glory,
The old Lie; Dulce et Decorum est
Pro patria mori.

 

(ed. – DULCE ET DECORUM EST are the first words of a Latin saying taken from an ode by Horace. These words were often quoted at the start of the First World War. They mean “It is sweet and right.” The full saying ends the poem: “Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori” which is “It is sweet and right to die for your country.”)

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Chris George, providing reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

Lest we forget

Poignant quotes and verse, lest we forget…

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  • The living owe it to those who no longer can speak to tell their story for them. – Czeslaw Milosz, The Issa Valley
  • The greatest glory of a free-born people is to transmit that freedom to their children. – William Havard
  • We must be prepared to make heroic sacrifices for the cause of peace that we make ungrudgingly for the cause of war. There is no task that is more important or closer to my heart. – Albert Einstein
  • When our perils are past, shall our gratitude sleep? – George Canning, The Pilot that weathered the Storm
  • And they who for their country die shall fill an honored grave, for glory lights the soldier’s tomb, and beauty weeps the brave. – Joseph Drake
  • When you go home, tell them of us and say, for their tomorrow we gave our today. – John Maxwell Edmonds
  • The dead soldier’s silence sings our national anthem. – Aaron Kilbourn
  • They hover as a cloud of witnesses above this Nation. – Henry Ward Beecher
  • To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die. – Thomas Campbell, Hallowed Ground
  • I dream of giving birth to a child who will ask, ‘Mother, what was war?’ -Eve Merriam
  • In war, there are no unwounded soldiers. – Jose Narosky
  • For death is no more than a turning of us over from time to eternity. – William Penn
  • They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old: Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn. / At the going down of the sun and in the morning, We will remember them. – Laurence Binyon, For The Fallen
  • In my dreams I hear again the crash of guns, the rattle of musketry, the strange, mournful mutter of the battlefield. – American General Douglas MacArthur
  • And each man stands with his face in the light of his own drawn sword. Ready to do what a hero can. – Elizabeth Barrett Browning
  • Nurture your minds with great thoughts, to believe in the heroic makes heroes. – Benjamin Disraeli
  • Valor is stability, not of legs and arms, but of courage and the soul. – Michel de Montaigne
  • Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are often stiffened. – Billy Graham
  • The more we sweat in peace the less we bleed in war. – Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit
  • Heroism … is endurance for one moment more. – George F. Kennan
  • The legacy of heroes is the memory of a great name and the inheritance of a great example. – Benjamin Disraeli
  • Give me American supply lines, British planes, German officers and Canadian troops, and I can take over the world. – German Nazi General Erwin “The Fox” Rommel
  • Praising what is lost makes the remembrance dear. – William Shakespeare, All’s Well That Ends Well

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Remembrance Verses

Our cheer goes back to them, the valiant dead!
Laurels and roses on their graves to-day,
Lilies and laurels over them we lay,
And violets o’er each unforgotten head.

– Richard Hovey

 

How sleep the brave, who sink to rest,
By all their country’s wishes blest!
When Spring, with dewy fingers cold,
Returns to deck their hallow’d mould,
She there shall dress a sweeter sod
Than Fancy’s feet have ever trod.
By fairy hands their knell is rung,
There Honour comes, a pilgrim gray,
To bless the turf that wraps their clay;
And Freedom shall awhile repair,
To dwell, a weeping hermit, there.

– William Collins

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Cover them over with beautiful flowers,
Deck them with garlands, those brothers of ours,
Lying so silent by night and by day
Sleeping the years of their manhood away.
Give them the meed they have won in the past;
Give them the honors their future forcast;
Give them the chaplets they won in the strife;
Give them the laurels they lost with their life.

– Will Carleton

 

In Flanders Fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

– John McCrae, In Flanders Fields

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Chris George, providing reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

 

12 quotes in the name of peace

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  • Peace cannot be achieved through violence, it can only be attained through understanding. – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • Peace is not an absence of war, it is a virtue, a state of mind, a disposition for benevolence, confidence, justice. – Baruch Spinoza
  • A people free to choose will always choose peace. – Ronald Reagan
  • It isn’t enough to talk about peace. One must believe in it. And it isn’t enough to believe in it. One must work at it. – Eleanor Roosevelt
  • Peace begins with a smile. – Mother Teresa
  • Peace is not only better than war, but infinitely more arduous. – George Bernard Shaw
  • The real and lasting victories are those of peace, and not of war. – Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • Peace is not absence of conflict, it is the ability to handle conflict by peaceful means. – Ronald Reagan
  • I believe that to meet the challenges of our times, human beings will have to develop a greater sense of universal responsibility. Each of us must learn to work not just for oneself, one’s own family or nation, but for the benefit of all humankind. Universal responsibility is the key to human survival. It is the best foundation for world peace. – Dalai Lama
  • I am convinced that everyone can develop a good heart and a sense of universal responsibility, with or without religion. – Dalai Lama
  • You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist. – Indira Gandhi
  • Mankind must remember that peace is not God’s gift to his creatures; peace is our gift to each other. – Elie Wiesel

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Chris George, providing reliable PR & GR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

On Gratitude

The Pilgrims made seven times more graves than huts. No Americans have been more impoverished than these who, nevertheless, set aside a day of thanksgiving. – H.U. Westermayer

Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving. – WT Purkiser

So while it’s true that Thanksgiving only comes but once a year, we should actually celebrate thanks each and every day. It’s just a matter of learning to live with a spirit of gratitude. – Unknown

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity.  It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.  Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow. – Melody Beattie

On Thanksgiving Day we acknowledge our dependence. – William Jennings Bryan

Greed grabs, Gratitude receives. – Unknown

Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed.  Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude. – D. Waitley

Thankfulness is the ‘chief exercise of godliness’ in which we ought to engage during the whole of our life. ‘Gratitude is the heart … of the Christian life.’ – Unknown

Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings. – William Arthur Ward

How wonderful it would be if we could help our children and grandchildren to learn thanksgiving at an early age. Thanksgiving opens the doors. It changes a child’s personality. A child is resentful, negative, or thankful. Thankful children want to give, they radiate happiness, they draw people. – Sir John Templeton

Gratitude is a constant attitude of thankfulness and appreciation for life as it unfolds.  Living in the moment, we are open to the abundance around us and within us.  We express appreciation freely.  We contemplate the richness of our life.  In life’s trials, we seek to understand, to accept, to learn. Gratitude is a continual celebration of life. – Unknown

Gratitude is a vaccine, an antitoxin, and an antiseptic.’ This is a most searching and true diagnosis. Gratitude can be a vaccine that can prevent the invasion of a disgruntled attitude. As antitoxins prevent the disastrous effects of certain poisons and diseases, thanksgiving destroys the poison of fault-finding and grumbling. When trouble has smitten us, a spirit of thanksgiving is a soothing antiseptic.- John Henry Jowett

Thanksgiving Day is a jewel, to set in the hearts of honest men; but be careful that you do not take the day, and leave out the gratitude. – E.P. Powell

I am grateful for what I am and have. My thanksgiving is perpetual. – Henry David Thoreau

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Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

 

A life lesson at home plate

This is making the rounds – a great story with a remarkable life lesson.

 

In Nashville, Tennessee, during the first week of January, 1996, more than 4,000 baseball coaches descended upon the Opryland Hotel for the 52nd annual ABCA convention.  While I waited in line to register with the hotel staff, I heard other more veteran coaches rumbling about the lineup of speakers scheduled to present during the weekend. One name, in particular, kept resurfacing, always with the same sentiment — “John Scolinos is here? Oh man, worth every penny of my airfare.”  Who the hell is John Scolinos, I wondered. No matter, I was just happy to be there.

In 1996, Coach Scolinos was 78 years old and five years retired from a college coaching career that began in 1948. He shuffled to the stage to an impressive standing ovation, wearing dark polyester pants, a light blue shirt, and a string around his neck from which home plate hung — a full-sized, stark-white home plate.  Seriously, I wondered, who in the hell is this guy?

After speaking for twenty-five minutes, not once mentioning the prop hanging around his neck, Coach Scolinos appeared to notice the snickering among some of the coaches. Even those who knew Coach Scolinos had to wonder exactly where he was going with this, or if he had simply forgotten about home plate since he’d gotten on stage.

Then, finally … “You’re probably all wondering why I’m wearing home plate around my neck. Or maybe you think I escaped from Camarillo State Hospital,” he said, his voice growing irascible. I laughed along with the others, acknowledging the possibility. “No,” he continued, “I may be old, but I’m not crazy. The reason I stand before you today is to share with you baseball people what I’ve learned in my life, what I’ve learned about home plate in my 78 years.”

Several hands went up when Scolinos asked how many Little League coaches were in the room. “Do you know how wide home plate is in Little League?” After a pause, someone offered, “Seventeen inches,” more question than answer.
“That’s right,” he said. “How about in Babe Ruth’s time? Any Babe Ruth coaches in the house?”
Another long pause.
“Seventeen inches?” came a guess from another reluctant coach.
“That’s right,” said Scolinos. “Now, how many high school coaches do we have in the room?” Hundreds of hands shot up, as the pattern began to appear. “How wide is home plate in high school baseball?”
“Seventeen inches,” they said, sounding more confident.
“You’re right!” Scolinos barked. “And you college coaches, how wide is home plate in college?”
“Seventeen inches!” we said, in unison.
“Any Minor League coaches here? How wide is home plate in pro ball?”
“Seventeen inches!”
“RIGHT! And in the Major Leagues, how wide home plate is in the Major Leagues?”
“Seventeen inches!”
“SEV-EN-TEEN INCHES!” he confirmed, his voice bellowing off the walls. “And what do they do with a Big League pitcher who can’t throw the ball over seventeen inches?” Pause. “They send him to Pocatello!” he hollered, drawing raucous laughter.

“What they don’t do is this: they don’t say, ‘Ah, that’s okay, Jimmy. You can’t hit a seventeen-inch target? We’ll make it eighteen inches, or nineteen inches. We’ll make it twenty inches so you have a better chance of hitting it. If you can’t hit that, let us know so we can make it wider still, say twenty-five inches.’”
Pause.
“Coaches …”
Pause.
” … what do we do when our best player shows up late to practice? When our team rules forbid facial hair and a guy shows up unshaven? What if he gets caught drinking? Do we hold him accountable? Or do we change the rules to fit him, do we widen home plate?”

The chuckles gradually faded as four thousand coaches grew quiet, the fog lifting as the old coach’s message began to unfold. He turned the plate toward himself and, using a Sharpie, began to draw something. When he turned it toward the crowd, point up, a house was revealed, complete with a freshly drawn door and two windows. “This is the problem in our homes today. With our marriages, with the way we parent our kids. With our discipline. We don’t teach accountability to our kids, and there is no consequence for failing to meet standards. We widen the plate!”
Pause. Then, to the point at the top of the house he added a small American flag.
“This is the problem in our schools today. The quality of our education is going downhill fast and teachers have been stripped of the tools they need to be successful, and to educate and discipline our young people. We are allowing others to widen home plate! Where is that getting us?” Silence. He replaced the flag with a Cross.
“And this is the problem in the Church, where powerful people in positions of authority have taken advantage of young children, only to have such an atrocity swept under the rug for years. Our church leaders are widening home plate!”

I was amazed. At a baseball convention where I expected to learn something about curveballs and bunting and how to run better practices, I had learned something far more valuable. From an old man with home plate strung around his neck, I had learned something about life, about myself, about my own weaknesses and about my responsibilities as a leader. I had to hold myself and others accountable to that which I knew to be right, lest our families, our faith, and our society continue down an undesirable path.

“If I am lucky,” Coach Scolinos concluded, “you will remember one thing from this old coach today. It is this: if we fail to hold ourselves to a higher standard, a standard of what we know to be right; if we fail to hold our spouses and our children to the same standards, if we are unwilling or unable to provide a consequence when they do not meet the standard; and if our schools and churches and our government fail to hold themselves accountable to those they serve, there is but one thing to look forward to …” With that, he held home plate in front of his chest, turned it around, and revealed its dark black backside.  “… dark days ahead.”

Coach Scolinos died in 2009 at the age of 91, but not before touching the lives of hundreds of players and coaches, including mine. Meeting him at my first ABCA convention kept me returning year after year, looking for similar wisdom and inspiration from other coaches. He is the best clinic speaker the ABCA has ever known because he was so much more than a baseball coach.

His message was clear: “Coaches, keep your players — no matter how good they are — your own children, and most of all, keep yourself at seventeen inches.

 

(ed. – Thank you to Dick Inwood and Claude Bennett who forwarded this poignant story to us.)

 

Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer and experienced communicator? Call 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.

Some of Muhammad Ali’s greatest quotes

ali_1992By George has compiled some of our favourite quotes from the life of Muhammad Ali – “The Greatest of All-time.”

 

“I am an ordinary man who worked hard to develop the talent I was given. I believed in myself, and I believe in the goodness of others.”

 

“It’s the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.”

 

“It’s lack of faith that makes people afraid of meeting challenges, and I believed in myself.”

 

“Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.”

 

“The man who has no imagination has no wings.”

 

“Service to others is the rent you pay for your room here on earth.”

 

“A man who views the world the same at fifty as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life.”

 

“Rivers, ponds, lakes and streams – they all have different names, but they all contain water. Just as religions do – they all contain truths.”

 

“It isn’t the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it’s the pebble in your shoe.”

 

“The fight is won or lost far away from witnesses – behind the lines, in the gym, and out there on the road, long before I dance under those lights.”

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“I hated every minute of training, but I said, ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.”

 

“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.”

 

“Silence is golden when you can’t think of a good answer.”

 

ali_foreman“Only a man who knows what it is like to be defeated can reach down to the bottom of his soul and come up with the extra ounce of power it takes to win when the match is even.”

 

“I never thought of losing, but now that it’ s happened, the only thing is to do it right. That’s my obligation to all the people who believe in me. We all have to take defeats in life.”

 

“I wish people would love everybody else the way they love me. It would be a better world.”

 

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Here are a few golden quips about the ring and Ali’s mastery of talking trash.

“Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee. His hands can’t hit what his eyes can’t see. Now you see me, now you don’t. George thinks he will, but I know he won’t.”

 

“I’m the greatest thing that ever lived! I’m the king of the world! I’m a bad man. I’m the prettiest thing that ever lived.”

 

“I am the greatest. I said that even before I knew I was.”

 

“It’s just a job. Grass grows, birds fly, waves pound the sand. I beat people up.”

 

“I done wrestled with an alligator, I done tussled with a whale; handcuffed lightning, thrown thunder in jail; only last week, I murdered a rock, injured a stone, hospitalised a brick; I’m so mean I make medicine sick.”

 

“If you even dream of beating me you’d better wake up and apologize.”

 

“I’m so fast that last night I turned off the light switch in my hotel room and was in bed before the room was dark.”

 

“I am the astronaut of boxing. Joe Louis and Dempsey were just jet pilots. I’m in a world of my own.”

 

“I used to tease Joe Louis by reminding him that I was the greatest of all time. But Joe Louis was the greatest heavyweight fighter ever.”

 

“People don’t realize what they had till it’s gone. Like President Kennedy, there was no one like him, the Beatles, and my man Elvis Presley. I was the Elvis of boxing.”

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Chris George, providing reliable PR counsel and effective advocacy. Need a go-to writer or experienced communicator? 613-983-0801 @ CG&A COMMUNICATIONS.