A collection of short stories and journalistic commentaries depicting my simple life
and how I fit in with the modern day universe of our times

My daughters school choir weren’t behaving at all well,
and their teacher wasn’t very happy…

“You lot are a disgrace,” he shouted. “You only ever behave properly when there are visitors here. I went to another school last week, and you should have seen those children… all well behaved, polite, and a pleasure to be around. Not like you lot. Why can’t you ever be like that?”

There was a silence in the room, until one young girl aged 7 had the courage to raise her hand...

“Yes.”, said the teacher, more than a little irritated.

“But sir,” she protested, “you WERE the visitor!”

Almost immediately, the 7-year-old had identified what millions of us adults fail to grasp… that the grass only seems to be greener on the other side of the fence. And when you get to look at it properly, more often than not it’s just as brown, muddy and weed-ridden as yours.

Most people are keen to create a positive impression. That means they tend to play up the good stuff, and hide or suppress the negatives whenever presenting to others. And as an outsider, you very rarely get a realistic impression. You’re not going to get a true picture of their school…

And you’re not going to get a true picture of their business either.

I speak to many people who are running one business or enterprise, but want to switch to another because it looks a lot easier with far less problems, nicer customers and higher profits. But they should always bear in mind that as no more than a ‘visitor’, they can’t possibly see the full picture. That can only come when they get right in on the inside, and stay there for some time – when they get beneath the veneers to what lays beneath.

People who don’t do that, usually spend their whole lives being seduced by newer and newer veneers, only to be forever disappointed by the harsh realities. And then they go off and repeat the same cycle all over and over.

Has this ever happened to you?

I think that the key here, is to understand that in most situations, you’re only ever the ‘visitor’, and to treat what you hear, see and experience accordingly. That doesn’t mean replacing open-mindedness with out and out cynicism, but it does mean abandoning the rose tinted spectacles for a while.

Equally importantly, it also means fairly evaluating and appreciating what you already have. After all, it’s a shame if you have to go to the trouble of clambering over the fence, before you can appreciate how green your own grass really is.

And sometimes, the climb back over, is often less than straightforward.



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Its my own fault really, its all about what I see in the world, and how it all translates for me.

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