Living Remarkably–Daily Choices (The Big Moo by Seth Godin) (October 2008)

Susan's Thursday morning note October 16, 2008 
Living Remarkably - daily choices.  The Big Moo by Seth Godin

Good morning!  I was going to only send you a reminder about our open house & book signing today, but can’t resist writing to you a dialogue that I read this week on one dying man’s lessons to his nephew on being remarkable.  This is from a book called The Big Moo: Stop Trying to Be Perfect & Start Being Remarkable by Seth Godin.

Ben: Uncle Shecky, what's wrong?  I got your call & came over immediately.

Uncle Shecky: Ben, my boy, I don't have much time left.  So I've decided to let you in on some wisdom - to convey to you the lessons of my life 

        and teach you the three secrets of being remarkable.

    Ben (surprised & slightly awed):  I'm all ears.

    Uncle Shecky:  Yes, I've noticed that since you were a child, Ben.  You know, your cousin Jerry is a very well known plastic surgeon.  

        He does excellent work.  He could help.  But I digress.  Ben, there are three secrets to being remarkable.

    Ben:  What are they?

    Uncle Shecky:  A guy walks into a doctor's office.  He says, "Doctor, it hurts when I do this."  And the doctor says...Ben what does the doctor say?

    Ben:  Don't do that.

    Uncle Shecky: Exactly!  Now to the next secret.  A guy is walking to work one day and right outside his office he sees a penguin.

         He's startled, doesn't know what to do.  So he takes the penguin into his boss's office and asks his boss, "What should I do with this penguin?" 

         The boss looks at him and says, "Take him to the zoo, you idiot!"  A few days later, out on the street, the boss runs into the guy and he still has the penguin.  

        The boss is shocked.  He looks at the guy and says, "I thought I told you to take the penguin to the zoo!"  And the guy looks at his boss and says... ( a pause as Uncle Shecky waits)

    Ben:  I did.  But we had such a great time, today I'm taking him to a ball game.

    Uncle Shecky:  Precisely!  Oh, Ben, I'm so proud.

    Ben:  Thank you, Uncle Shecky.

    Uncle Shecky:  Now the last secret.  A woman from Ohio is walking in midtown Manhattan.  She's a bit lost.  She sees a man carrying a violin case, 

        walks up to him, and asks him, "Excuse me, sir, how do you get to Carnegie Hall?"  The violinist looks at her and says...

    Ben (not waiting for the prompt):  Practice, practice, practice.

    Uncle Shecky:  Right!  And those are the secrets to being remarkable.

    Ben:  Uh, I don't get it. (Uncle Shecky clutches his chest)

    Uncle Shecky (in a weak voice):  You've been a great audience...

    Ben:  Uncle Shecky?

    Uncle Shecky (his voice weaker still)...Thank you...Good night...Drive safely.   The Curtain falls.

I wanted to write that for you because the dialogue replayed itself in my head after the reading, giving me something I wanted to think about.  Then, what is interesting is this morning when I was working below on the list of what books came in this week I happened to read the following… “As he was dying, Abba Benjamin taught his sons this:  Do this, and you’ll be saved:  Rejoice always, pray constantly, and in all circumstances give thanks.”   I am interested in the two different comments from two different dying men.  One from a practical standpoint of “being remarkable, not ordinary with your life” and the other from a spiritual perspective.  They are both important.  We are saturated with constant self-help articles, but why not have these six for us to always keep in mind.  Simple.  Begin every few moments to retry.  Continually make goals to try again to be holy, to make decisions inwardly that no one even knows we made, to not constantly come down on ourselves for our mistakes, on the condition we know we are pursuing constantly our goal of  “stepping heavenward.”  Wanting the moment of death to be only a step into God’s presence, for we are already praying in our daily lives…already in his presence.   From two dying men…

If something is hurting you, stop doing it.

Do what you love.

Practice, practice, practice.

Rejoice always.

Pray constantly.

In all circumstances give thanks.

Have a great weekend.  Thank you for coming to the store these last seven years and encouraging us.  Thank you for letting me enter your Thursdays.  Susan


Latin for this week:
Quaere verum - Seek the Truth.

Works Cited:
Godin, Seth.  The Big Moo: Stop Trying to Be Perfect & Start Being Remarkable.  New York.  Penguin Putnam.  2005.