Just The Chance We Take!

Oprah's Chance

 

It’s Friday!!! Imagine that!! So … uhhh … T.G.I.F.!!

What a hot summer we’re having, heh!!?  Yep, yesterday was the “50th Anniversary of the Voting Rights Act”.  It was also the Day of Independence for Jamaica”!  Irie!  And of course, last night, we had the Republican Party’s first debate for their presidential candidates … and what a show it was, starring Donald Trump who from the beginning “set the stage” for his antics!!  He made it clear that he would NOT support any other candidate … if he didn’t win the Republican nomination for president!!  I mean, if they didn’t sound more like a bunch of school boys with the line, “I am the only one on this stage who did …. or who did not … whatever …”!  Is this what the run for the presidency has come down to?!?  Believe it … or not!
In each of our lives, we take many many chances.  Now “chance taking” is also a necessary ingredient in self exploration, to say the least, and is pinnacle in making progress in many other arenas.  It is something that we have to learn to do if it doesn’t come naturally.  Our lives are “full of opportunities” … not only to succeed … but also to fail!  That is something many folks dread … failure.  Some folks don’t know how to handle failure as it is often one of the first steps taken to get on the “road to success” in whatever arena you may be focusing on.  All in all, even as Trump did last night, we ALL must take that “chance” at trying something different, which by description, may be uncomfortable … at first.
As we enter August, yes … it’s August … “Back to School” Programs are beginning to take place to provide the children with motivation to get a great start for the school year!  It seems that I will be planning another presentation soon for Nicole Valencia and her group with the Broward Sheriff’s Office’s Program that she runs for high school students in Broward County.  It’s a good thing when you take a chance at “life”!
Peace,

John I. Cook, Director

What’s That Background Music?!

vector music

Happy Hump Day, yep!!!!

I was cruising home last night after doing some errands listening to Pandora’s jazz station featuring pianist, Kevin Toney.  I always enjoyed music since I was a toddler.  My two sisters would occasionally have me entertain their friends as a “puppet” of sorts as they held me by both hands and had me dancing to the music they were either just playing or singing.  I can definitely attribute my love of music to my early years.  Even my mother, from time to time, when just the two of us were home together and she had some cooking to do and I was plum tuckered out, would put on some old school jazz of Billie Holiday or even some Louie “Satchamo” Armstrong.  The likes of Count Basie was often heard blending in with the sounds of Duke Ellington from our console stereo in the living room of the apartment!  I could sleep to some of the softer music, even.
When you are out and about, either at work or at play, what kind of music would “people” hear as you approached a room or office, restaurant or club!??  Do you think that “music” would change depending on the environment or the participants in the “moment”?  You know, I have often been a bit unsuspecting from time to time of what another person(s) wanted me to think “about them”, if you will before we had any interaction either at work or at friendship, in sports or hanging out!  Have you ever paid attention to the atmosphere, for lack of a better word, you know … of whatever was taking place at that time?  I have often been the one just observing for the most part, attempting to find an opportunity to join in and enjoy the ambiance.  Of course, if you’re at work, the atmosphere will be more business like, for the most part.  And be aware of the fact that “all informal overlays” in the office environment, which there are in most places, must be taken into account in ones efforts to understand “things”.  For example, on my job, I usually try NOT to listen in to others conversations, especially if they are managers.  I wait until they are done, and then I get close enough to address them.
So, for me, in most places, I prefer a more peaceful approach … maybe Japanese jazz like Keiko Matsui or smooth jazz by Grover Washington or Bob Baldwin.  However, I must admit that there are moments when I want my background music to be “Night on Bald Mountain” by Bob James.  Of course there are many moments when I prefer the “peaceful warrior” approach to circumstances.   Admittedly, it all depends on the circumstances.  All in all, most folks know when I am coming around … cause they hear my peaceful music.  What’s “your” background music like?!?

Peace,

John I. Cook, Director

Educational Excellence

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