The Culture of the Lure

Alf and I went to a Home Show last weekend.

I knew it was going to be trouble before we left the neighborhood.

I can say no to candy, doughnuts, and ice cream, but I have no willpower when it comes to things for the house.  Fried Eggs

I managed to not sign any work orders with the floor guys and the kitchen granite guys, although I did make a couple of appointments for them to come out to the house later on.

What got me this time was a chef with a winsome personality demonstrating a line of amazing pots and pans that let you to cook without water and oil. He lured me into his area by tossing a freebie gadget in my direction. One of those plastic thingies that when inserted into a lemon it lets the juice out without the pits. It was hypnotic. Next thing I knew I was sitting in the front row hanging on to his every word. He made a raw salad, cooked fresh veggies in one of those gleaming pots, and baked a chicken breast that looked like it had been grilled on a barbecue. Then he passed the platter around for all of us to sample the food. It was crunchy, savory delicious.

I bought the line.

He threw in three extra pieces of equipment for free, which by themselves would have cost enough for a down payment on a condo.

It’s impressive the choices of products you can find for your home these days – from flooring to cabinets, to windows, roofs, pools, fireplaces, interior and exterior surfaces – everything to turn your house into that Hollywood mansion look.

It just shows how much the celebrity influence has spilled over to our clothes, our homes, our cars, how we travel, the kids we have, the dogs we own, and the food we eat. It’s all fair game, including those pots and pans for your kitchen.

Calvin says, “Sucker! You should have stayed home and taken me on a rabbit walk. But now that you have them, toss the kibble, I want crunchy delicious.” beagle

Quit Your Bleeping Beep!

Alf has a beeping contest with our neighbors.

Every morning when they leave the house, they unlock the car and it beeps.

At night when they return home, sometimes quite late, they lock the car and it beeps.

Alf matches them beep for beep. Instead of two beeps, it’s four with his, and more on the weekends.

When we leave and come home, he beeps.

“Trying to make a point,” he said.

This has been going on for months.

“Is your point poking them yet?” I asked.

“I’m hoping they’ll get the hint and disengage the beep. It disturbs the neighborhood,” he said.

“You mean it disturbs you,” I said.

“They have no manners. They’re unaccustomed to American ways.”

“You mean they’re uncivilized.”

“They’re selfish,” he said.

“Why don’t you talk to them?”

“Wouldn’t help.”

“Why not?”

“Have you ever been to their country? The noise level is deafening 24-hours a day. They’re used to it. What’s a beep here or there to them?”

“But they’re not there, they’re here, and you’re irritated by the noise,” I said.

“I’ll keep beeping. I want to see where this takes us,” he said.

Calvin says, “This is so childish. I’d go over there and pee on their tires.”

How To Do Your Real Work

Every so often I write about resistance. You know, the distractions we give in to that pull us away from our real work.

In my case, it’s writing. In yours it could be designing the next space vehicle.

Whatever your calling is, you’re familiar with the pull to distract.

Distractions allure you. Out of the blue you long to learn Latin. Or free-fall from an airplane. Or take tango lessons in Buenos Aires.

Maybe it’s not such a large vision that compels you to drop what you’re doing. Maybe it’s bull-riding lessons, finger painting, or singing with your canary.

Sometimes the distraction is even closer than that.

Facebook.

Twitter.

Pinterest.

Blogging. (Checking your analytics every hour)

Text messages.

Skype.

Video games.

I could go on, but you catch my drift.

The social media platforms are massive distractions! They will absorb you. Consume you. Smother you.

They  also:

Stall you.

Numb you.

Suck your energy.

They’re only a worthwhile investment when you’re building a posse of fans for your work.

Otherwise it’s death to your creativity!

Go on a diet.

Make a pledge to look at these platforms only after you’ve done your work.

Tell a friend to hold you accountable.

And then notice your productivity and creativity soar.

Calvin says, “Yep, when I get pulled off a scent, I end up in a ditch with thorns up my butt.”