The Road Home

The Road Home
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Monday, December 21, 2015

Please Take a Look at This One Again

A friend recently told us they had been reading some of our older articles and really enjoyed one titled Just Grow Up! They said it made them laugh, but it also made them think, so we went back and read it. Sometimes it's funny to reread something you have written, especially when you don't really remember what it was about, and sometimes it really doesn't seem like we have written some of these articles, it must have been somebody else. This is one of those. If you're relatively new to the blog, or if you have been reading for a while, we hope you enjoy this article, which we wrote about a year ago. One thing that struck me was the question about whether we are better off now than we were a year ago. Let us know what you think.

Until next time - Fern


Originally published November 1, 2014

Just Grow Up!

You know, sometimes there are people that just won't grow up. They want someone else to do everything for them, make decisions for them, make sure they don't fail, tell them how and what to think, and just in general present themselves as whiny, sniveling, dependent pests. Fern doesn't care much for whiners. Well, that wasn't very nice was it? But it's true. Sorry, but some people may find this post to be a tad bit irritating and others may find it to be offensive. If you find it offensive, then let us apologize now. If you find it irritating, good.

There are many people that just can't make a decision. They waffle back and forth, and back and forth, until they've dug a trench in the ground deep enough to bury themselves, and still no decision has been made. One time Frank was in a staff meeting where the decision of the day was what color table cloth to put on a table for a student event. After 45 minutes of discussion, still no decision was made, and Frank was just about to lose his mind. Frank is a very decisive person. He considers the information presented, analyzes the situation and makes a decision. If it is something that is imminent, he has a decision made in a matter of minutes or seconds. If it is something that can wait, he will take more time to ponder things. The ability to make a decision is one of the things that made Frank a very effective school principal. He was once in a meeting where the athletic director was being questioned about something that had happened. We always admired the response the director gave when he was questioned. "It was my call, and I made it." That's it. Situation, analysis, decision. 

Folks that continually sway back and forth will be greatly taxed to decide what to do when faced with a life and death survival situation. That indecisiveness may be the death of everyone involved. Even if it is the wrong decision, in most situations a decision must be made. Hopefully if the wrong decision is reached, there will be time to correct it or recover from it, but standing by and wringing your hands is not the thing to do. Decide and take action instead of wasting precious time wondering what to do, or waiting for someone else to decide for you.

Frank has people contact him about radio information. "What is the best radio?" And he repeatedly responds, there is no best radio, there is no best gun, there is no best truck. Frank is always polite, of course, but in the real world, he is not always polite. He reminds people of the old saying, "If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen." You see, he can't decide what radio is best for someone. He has decided what radio is best for him. He has decided that multiple times. And next month, he may decide that there is another best radio for him. But, all of these are his choices. We all learn everyday. Sometimes we get new information, but we can't always wait for that perfect, in this case, radio. New and improved is not always better. 

There comes a time when you have to decide what is best for you, your family and sometimes your community. Frank has been known to tell people, "Start at the shallow end of the pool and work your way in." If you can't swim, don't jump into the deep end of the pool. Frank has a name for that, he calls it stupid. Start at the shallow end, take your time. No one says you have to go to the deep end any time soon. That's your decision, and your choice, when you do that. Frank, in his gentle demeanor, has insinuated to folks that if you're afraid to get into the shallow end of the pool, then go back and play in the kiddie pool. Everything is safe in the kiddie pool, because the kiddie pool always has adult supervision.

This might sound a little harsh. It might sound even a little bit cruel, but indecisiveness, especially paralyzing indecisiveness, can stagger any form of growth. So, what color of table cloth did they decide at that Christmas meeting? Red, green, red, green? Instead of being a two hour decision, in Frank's mind it was a two second decision. Little background here. This was one day at school where they were going to show a video. There was a table at the back of the room, one table, with cookies and chips, in a semi dark room. Well, I can't decide. Green or red?? Five adult educators, two hours later, and no decision. There are reasons why some people drink.

Okay. It doesn't make any difference what gun you choose, because it is your choice. But people will debate to the end of the earth which caliber is best to stop a 190 pound deer. It's an endless discussion. The Ford, Chevy, Dodge debate will go on until we go back to horse and wagon. I'm not even going to address sporting events. Making a decision is as easy as flipping a coin. Now this is from Frank. Grow up, man up and do what is right. And then you hear this whining sound. But what if I don't make the right decision? Then call up your mommy and ask her! And if your decision doesn't work out for you, you can always blame the former administration. I'm sorry, I meant to say, the way you were raised.

Like I said earlier. Grow up and man up, and make a decision. More people have been killed or hurt by indecisiveness, not by wrong decisions, but by no decisions. If your family is in danger, what are you going to do? Stand there and chew on your fingernails and wet your pants? Can't you see the storms coming? Take a time frame of five years and look back five years. Look at every major factor that affects your lives, and tell me if any one of them is getting better. And you seriously believe that in the next five years that things are going to get better? 

It doesn't make any difference whether you bug in, bug out, but you've got to get off of the fence and make a decision. And if you can't make a
decision now, when are you going to? Well, I don't know what my neighbors would think if I were to store food. Who cares?? It's none of their business. Well, I've read that a 223 is too small. I've read that a 9mm is too small. Excuse me here, but there have been more humans stopped with a 223, which is a 5.56, in modern times than any other round. What is the debate? Well, I want a 7.62 x 39. Then get one! Quit reading and get which ever one you want, but decide! The 9mm issue. But a .45 has better stopping power. Can't deny that, especially if a man is running at you with a spear. But the 9mm has sent more people to heaven than the .45 has. Let's see, give me a choice, 9mm seventeen shots, .45 maybe ten shots. You decide, but do it today. And if you can't decide, flip a coin and go with whichever way it lands. Do you need somebody to tell you what kind of coin to flip? Once you make a decision, don't go back and second guess yourself. This activity is counter productive. Look forward, not backwards. Do this a few times and it will get much easier.

There comes a time in life where we have to step up to the plate, and I'm speaking to the men here primarily. You will never get on base, much less make it home if you are afraid to step up to the plate and take a swing. A boss of mine years ago told me more than once, "It's time to put on your big girl panties and make a decision." Or....there is the kiddie pool, but I guarantee you, the big pool is significantly more gratifying. Now what shall I have to eat? Scrambled eggs or fried eggs? Decisions, decisions!

Frank & Fern


  1. Great reminder. I've been in meeting like you describe with educators. On going discussions with no decision made with people that make decisions about students all the time. Why are they frozen over a table cloth?

    I do wonder about people in situations with limited funds. Making a decision between two lesser evils makes me pause. Though I'm learning you have to move on when the sun comes up tomorrow.

    1. Hi, Steve. Sometimes major decisions do need to be pondered, as they should be. But whether to get barbecue potato chips or regular potato chips is not something people should lose sleep over. Just pick one.

      Financial decisions should also be weighed carefully. This is just part of growing up. This is the authority we are given by a higher power, and it is our responsibility to choose. Hopefully, we will choose wisely.


  2. You're right that we each need to decide what's right for our own individual needs. However, there are many people who look to you for your expert advice. You may not feel like an expert, but you know more than many of us do about many subjects. If nothing else, you can keep us from making the same mistakes you've made. I have a friend who asks for my advice about beekeeping. I'm a newbee, but have more experience than he does. We don't expect you to know everything or to tell us what to do. We do value your opinion. I guess what I'm saying is you should take it as a compliment that others ask for your advice. Do just that...give your advice. We don't take it as a command, just the advice of someone who's been there and done that.

    1. Hello, Grammy. Interesting words you share. It is nice to be able to share information from an experienced point of view. When I'm looking for advice I seek out those that have done it, not those that are going to do it. I have an old saying. "I want the pilot, the person flying my plane, to have gray hair." In other words, I want the person sitting at the wheel to have experience. There is nothing wrong with young, I just prefer solid experience.

      We seem to be lacking as a nation, experience in many areas. I want the man sitting in the big chair at the White House, who is also the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, to have slept in a fox hole one time or another. We don't have that option this time.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts.


  3. Loved it. But if you'll permit me to play a bit of semantics here, there really is a best gun, radio, etc.

    The best gun is the one you already purchased, trained with, and have with you (with loaded magazines) at the time you need it.

    The best radio is the one you already purchased, trained with, and have with you (with charged batteries) at the time you need it.

    The best truck, the best generator, the best tractor, the best chicken feed, the best dog... I think you get my point!

    I also see so much analysis paralysis that it drives me nuts. Folks need to recognize that it's impossible to ever know enough to make the "best" decision the first time, so just accept that anything you actually decide and do is better than indecisive whining because, at worst, you'll learn enough to make a better decision the next time.

    Mike in SE Virginia

    1. Hi, Mike. Well put, and I agree. Just pick one and do it. And be happy that you had one. Learn how to use whatever it is. Take care of it. If somewhere down the road you choose to upgrade, go for it, but don't do something or buy something just because the fool standing next to you did. Do a little research, make up your mind and don't look back. Thank you, I appreciate your comment.


  4. Greetings,
    We seem to be a nation made up of mostly whiners, wimps , blamers,and indecisive sheep . Most folks do not want to make a decision for fear of making someone else uncomfortable with their decision . Sheeesh !
    The person who can think and arrive at a reasonable decision quickly is someone who will be at the top of the leadership pile and deservedly so . It appears to me that most folks in society need a checkup from the neck up .
    Right now , things in this country are pretty easy for folks . When the waters get a little choppy , some will think it is time to learn how to swim , but then there are those who are already sitting in their lifeboat with a lifejacket on, eating the fish they just caught with the pole they had stashed in the cabin next to their sleeping bag , dry clothes and rain gear . The point is that people need to think about life beyond next Tuesday . My gosh even the book of Proverbs says a person that doesn't want to work doesn't deserve food .
    My grandma had a saying about whiners " they would gripe if they were hung with a silk rope" . I do not suffer fools easily . This is definitely the time to "man up "and get with the program of self reliance and take responsibility for yourself .
    On that happy note , thanks for your blog and " MERRY CHRISTMAS " to you both .

    1. Bluesman, Merry Christmas to you too, and thank you. Thank you for reading and thank you for your generous thoughts.

      I don't know what's going to happen to all the sheeple type, whining wimps that aren't still attached to their mommies. My last couple of years in education, I was really let down at the quality of the high school young men. No motivation, no drive, only wanted to play video games. They weren't even interested in girls. Times sure changed from when I was in high school. I'm not saying all the boys were that way, there is still that percentage out there that has drive, motivation and fire in their eyes. But there are a whole bunch that don't. I used to refer to them as slugs, and other assorted names.

      Thanks again,


  5. Thanks Frank and Fern. This is something I have struggled with most of my life, mostly because of the fact that I worry so much about making a wrong decision that I end up making no decision at all. I am getting better, but it is still something I struggle with.

    I wonder if part of the reason more and more people are unwilling to make decisions is because we have divorced the consequences of a decision - both good and bad - from the decision itself. Society has become so concerned with protecting everyone from everything that people only come to see decision making outcomes as bad. Likewise, society trains people that the good should only benefit the group, not the individual. Protected from the bad, not reaping the good, why would folks feel compelled to make a decision?

    Nollick Ghennal! - TB