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Archive for the ‘Life’ Category

THE LOSS OF A “GOOD” FRIEND

Posted by Tim Bryce on June 12, 2018

BRYCE ON LIFE

– We should relish those who make life more bearable for all of us.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

I guess I am now of the age where one starts to see their friends slip away, be it old school chums or others. For example, I recently experienced the passing of a good friend, Ro Ambrose, who lost a valiant fight to breast cancer, a disease she had been fighting for approximately fifteen years. This one hurt, not just because she was a dear friend, but for other reasons.

I have known Ro and her family for about twenty years, starting with the softball fields of Palm Harbor where I used to coach in Little League. Ro had never played the game in her youth but fell in love with the sport through her daughters. So much so, when I suggested starting an adult co-ed team she was the first to sign-on. We called ourselves “Chico’s Bail Bonds,” named after the original “Bad News Bears.” Our team gelled from the time we first took the field. We were competitive, but were mostly looking for an outlet to let off some steam after work and get some exercise. We also enjoyed libations and a little Karaoke afterwards. During the game we would distract the opposing team by cooking brats with peppers and onions in our dugout, which turned out to be a rather shrewd maneuver.

Although Ro never played softball before, we watched her improve her batting average, going from .364 to an impressive .462. She took batting practice every chance she could, was always early to the field on game day, but her trademark was to run out every hit and base on balls, much like Pete Rose. She just loved the game.

Ro possessed a great sense of humor and her laugh was infectious. So much so, everyone wanted to make her laugh. She was also an excellent cook, but more importantly she cared deeply about people and was always willing to help anyone in their hour of need. She was gracious, classy, hardworking, thoughtful and very kind. As we both worked in the Information Technology field, we would bounce technical issues against each other from time to time. She was proud of and hopelessly devoted to her husband, daughters, and grandchildren.

When she first contracted her disease she was determined not to let it stop her. Ro possessed an indomitable spirit. When asked, she would candidly tell you what her condition was and where she stood in her treatment, but she was more interested in the welfare of others. It was like, “Okay I’ve got this, I’m dealing with it, now let’s move along.” I never heard her complain about anything or anyone, least of all her condition.

Over the years we drifted apart, but now and then one of us would pick up the phone and call the other, and it seemed like it was just yesterday. If you were ever having a down day, you gave Ro a call and she would pick your spirits up. She was very inspirational in this regard.

I guess the reason Ro’s passing really hurts is that she was one of those rare pearls you seldom find in life. We now live in an age of immoral behavior, cutthroat business tactics, and a general disrespect for the human spirit. What we read in the news can turn the best of us into a pessimist. So, when we meet someone like Ro, who was the personification of goodness, we realize how lucky we were to have known such a person. So when that person is gone, it hurts, a lot.

I am certain there are other Ro Ambroses out there, so maybe it’s time to rekindle our relationship and let them know how much we appreciate them. As for me, I’ll miss her laugh, her thoughtfulness, and her heart of gold. Alas.

Keep the Faith!

P.S., Be sure to see my video, “The PRIDE Renewal Tour,” on YouTube.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

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Posted in Life | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »

YOU KNOW YOU ARE GETTING OLDER WHEN…

Posted by Tim Bryce on May 29, 2018

BRYCE ON LIFE

– The subtle and not so subtle signs of aging.

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To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

As we grow older, we begin to observe signs of aging. Such signs are usually small and subtle, so we only become cognizant of such changes slowly, usually just before it is too late to do anything about it. Perhaps the most noticeable involves how our bodies are physically changing. This goes well beyond losing strength and speed, which we expect, nor is it the obvious signs of a receding hairline, or how our hair grays. Even our weight is anticipated, such as too much or too little. These are all to be expected. What I’m talking about are the little things we tend to overlook, such as hair growing where it should not, such as in our ears, nose, or out of a forehead or shoulder. Maybe worse is the realization your body hair has disappeared and your skin is now as soft as a newborn babe.

Such changes also include our mental acuity, our power of observation, and even our sense of humor. To illustrate….

Our taste of food changes with time. Whereas we used to consume considerable portions, that might be highly seasoned, we find ourselves reducing our intake, either because a doctor has ordered us to do so to minimize sodium, sugar and fat levels, or our priorities change and we no longer enjoy gorging ourselves. In other words, the portions become smaller and more bland. In turn, this affects our gastro-digestive system thereby reducing our “health habits” to something looking like dog kibble. Further, any change in the quantity of food, or type, turns our bowels into a musical theater, sounding like the wood wind section at a greasy spoon.

In terms of libations, instead of milk and colas, we now consume diet soft drinks, coffee and iced tea, something we abhorred in our youth. For alcohol, we have either given it up completely or only allow ourselves an occasional drink at the end of the day to help us relax, usually a strong belt of whiskey as beer and wine now gives us a touch of the wind.

Food and drink affects our ability to sleep through the night. Eventually, there comes a time when we no longer can sleep through the evening and typically wake-up at least three times to pee. We try sleeping aids, such as Ambien or an aspirin “PM” drug, to help us sleep, but this only makes you pee even more.

Arthritis starts to slip into your body, and you begin to regularly feel pain in your skeleton or muscles, particularly in your lower back. This is the result of a lifetime of sprains, strains, broken bones and bone spurs which come back to haunt you with a vengeance. At first, you try to take the pain in stride, but you inevitably succumb to Advil or Aleve and devour them like after-dinner mints. Backs, necks, shoulders, legs, fingers, feet and hips continue to ache, so you begin wearing back braces, and Ace bandages for knees and elbows, not to mention athletic tape to hold you together, and special shoes to walk. Now, with all of the paraphernalia you wear, you start to look something like Robocop.

You are not as nimble as you remember in your youth. The fluidity of motion is simply gone. Whereas you marveled at your prowess on the playing fields years ago, now you walk more carefully, preferably with a shopping cart in front of you to maintain your balance. Bending over is avoided at all costs and squatting is simply out of the question.

Then there is the matter of snot. You never had allergies in your youth, but your head is now swimming in nasal mucus, making you very attractive to the opposite sex. There is so much of it, you wonder why you never invested heavily in Kimberly-Clark or Kleenex years ago. Colds lasted but a day or two when we were in grade school, sometimes allowing us to stay home and be pampered by Mom. Now colds last weeks, if not months, and the only thing to truly comfort us is Jack Daniels.

When you now get together with friends, you notice the conversation has turned from such things as family, work, jokes, religion, news and politics, to sciatica, shingles, strokes, goiters, COPD, cancer and heart disease. You complain about your sagging skin and debate what dermatologist offers the best procedure to correct the problem. After a night of talking about such ailments, you become a Hypochondriac and try to self-diagnose your problems, which the pharmaceutical companies count on. The best word of advice here is to turn the conversation back to family, work, jokes, religion, news and politics.

For some strange reason, the packaging of products is strengthened as you get older. Whereas tearing open a plastic bag, opening a tin can or plastic prescription bottle was once considered child’s play, the wrapping mysteriously gets harder to open. It is also at this time you discover your repertoire of vulgar expletives has expanded. Coincidence?

Because you fear the possibility of suffering a stroke, you take aspirin regularly or some kind of blood thinner. The only problem is, you now bruise more easily, and your skin color changes from a healthy glow to a pasty white with purple blotches. Not surprising, you begin to wear long sleeve shirts even on the hottest days.

Sex becomes less frequent than when you were younger. Instead of three or four times a week, you are lucky to get it every three or four years. It’s kind of like dancing; you remember how much you enjoyed it, but are no longer sure you remember all the proper moves. Television ads now have men convinced they cannot perform without a pill to act as a sexual picker-up. I still don’t quite understand why the ads show couples in separate bath tubs and not in the bedroom where they belong.

You find you are no longer taking a couple of vitamins a day, but a couple of handfuls of pills instead. In addition to vitamins and pain relievers, you are now taking pills to clear your head, dry out your sinuses, make you sleep, and get you horny. The doctor prescribes dozens more, all with Latin names impossible to pronounce, for a variety of medical woes, and you take supplements for calcium, fish oil, glucosimine, condroitum, diet pills, testosterone, stool softeners, antacids, anti-gas, etc. To manage all of this, you buy plastic boxes with dividers listed by day to sort the number of pills you have to consume, which is now in the hundreds. The boxes remind you of your fishing tackle box, and if you are not careful, you might find yourself fishing with a hook baited with Viagra rather than a worm.

Your eyesight weakens, but you realize this was slowly developing over the years. What you didn’t expect was to hear terms such as “macular degeneration,” “cataracts,” and “glaucoma.” You then start to ask yourself why you ate all of those rotten carrots over the years. More troublesome though is the loss of hearing which you didn’t anticipate. Now you start to wonder if the heavy-metal rock songs you listened to over your headphones in college had anything to do with it. You become perturbed with people who suggest you get a hearing-aid as you feel it is an affront to your age. The truth is y__ better g__ off y___ a__ and g__ o__ ASAP.

So far, I have concentrated on the physical aspects of aging, but there are other nuances we begin to notice as well:

In your youth, you may have been the spelling bee champion of your school, but now you can no longer remember the names of friends, places, or your school. Your math still works fine, but names elude you. Thank God for crossword puzzles to jog your memory.

Your memory also starts to elude you. Whereas you can vividly recount the day when Kennedy was shot years ago, you cannot seem to remember what you had for lunch today, or the beginning of this article.

You have difficulty adapting to the latest technology, be it a smart phone, tablets, streaming media players, or something on the Internet. This hinders our ability to drive a car as it is now dependent on the latest technology. Between XM radio, GPS maps, voice activation, and music players, we start to forget how to put the car in Drive or Park. We also develop a dependency on our grandchildren who are now charged with the responsibility of programming all of the electronics in the house. Without them, we are lost.

At family get-togethers, you are expected to pick up the check. This denotes seniority in the family tree.

You find yourself arguing with inanimate objects – and losing. Your temper flares when you stumble at what seems to be the simplest of tasks. In reality, it is not the fault of a tool or piece of equipment, it is you. Because you have performed a task a million times before, you become easily irritated when something goes awry on the millionth and first try.

You find yourself attending more funerals than weddings, baby showers or graduations. Whereas you danced and drank at many such parties years ago, now you find yourself living a more sedate existence, and miss the fun and friendships of the early days, particularly the revelry.

You discover the morals of the newest generation no longer match your own. This is projected in the fashions, food, and entertainment of the day, which you simply do not comprehend, nor the news. In response, you find yourself spending more time with your pets as opposed to people who do not understand you. In fact, you actually like your dogs and cats better than people as they do not argue with you. As such, you treat them better than a grandchild who lacks manners. At least, with a pet you can train them, but not somebody else’s child.

The biggest change of all is the fact you have gotten smarter over the years, not just because of experience, but because you recognize your limitations, and conduct yourself accordingly. Instead of impulsively jumping up to perform a difficult task, you stop and say, “Wait a minute. Let me think about that first.”

Interestingly, women generally believe men age better and more gracefully, and men feel likewise about women. The truth is none of us really like it and we’re all embarrassed by our looks, no matter the superficiality of our perceived imperfections. We need to get over this. Just pour yourself a drink with a friend and enjoy the moment. We are simply not kids anymore.

Keep the Faith!

P.S., Be sure to see my video, “The PRIDE Renewal Tour,” on YouTube.

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Life | Tagged: , , , , , | 4 Comments »

THE ELEMENTS OF SOCIALIZATION

Posted by Tim Bryce on May 3, 2018

BRYCE ON LIFE

– and why they are deteriorating.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

Recently, I was waiting in line at the check-out lane of my local pharmacy. An elderly gentleman was ahead of me and moving rather slowly. He appeared to have a slight problem understanding the cashier, perhaps it was his hearing or simply his age. I sensed the clerk was becoming impatient with him as the line was beginning to grow, but instead of trying to be friendly and help him, she rushed him through the transaction in order to get rid of him. It was embarrassing for him, and I was a bit bewildered why the cashier was rude to him.

I have noted the decline of our socialization skills for quite some time, primarily pinning the blame on our addiction to technology, but I think it goes well beyond this. I may not be a social worker by training, but I do have a degree in interpersonal communications and have observed the interplay of people in business over most of my career.

It occurs to me, there are three fundamental elements to socialization: Communications, Courtesy, and Values. I find it intriguing how these elements have changed over the years.

COMMUNICATIONS – is more than our ability to use a smart phone, but rather our ability to give and take, meaning to listen or read, and speak or write. It’s not about the technology we use, which will always change, but the interplay between people. This includes being able to read and transmit body language and facial expressions.

Our powers of persuasion are ultimately based on the three canons of speech: Ethos (ethical appeal), Pathos (emotional appeal), and Logos (logical appeal). Regrettably, high school courses in speech have taken a back seat to other curriculum and, in some cases, have disappeared altogether. As a result, young people find it difficult to form arguments and appear to be content parroting what others say, such as the news media.

As a communications major, I would love to see speech classes reinvigorated, be it through classes, inter-school debates, or in-school for that matter. I would even go so far as to allow students to stand on a soapbox in a courtyard to present their ideas. People should be assessed not for just what they say, but their ability to defend their position. We must remember communications is a two-way street, not unidirectional.

COURTESY – denotes our sense of decorum, the rules for interaction. This is based on such things as respect, empathy, patience, cooperation, and common sense. However, students are being taught contempt for authority, not respect, for people such as teachers, coaches, managers, government, law enforcement, and yes, even parents. As such, there is a disregard for the other person’s point of view, not empathy. This means we prize individualism over teamwork and cooperation. The technology of today promotes instant gratification, not patience, and; thanks to our dependency on technology to do the thinking for us, common sense is no longer common. All of this tempers our thirst for knowledge, our inquisitive nature, which is now limited to only what we want to know, representing our comfort zone. In other words, we are content letting others do the thinking for us.

VALUES – represent our sense of right versus wrong, our ethics. This has been clouded over the years as we have become more tolerant and permissive of changes in our morality. Today, people naively believe it is acceptable behavior to do whatever they please, that it is somehow sanctioned by the Constitution. The truth is, this is simply not so. The Declaration of Independence claims we are endowed by our Creator “with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

The Constitution and Bill of Rights details our freedoms and rights, such as the freedom of speech and religion, the right to bear arms, to be free of unreasonable search, a right to a speedy and public trial, a trial by an impartial jury, a right to confront witnesses, and more. However, there is nothing specifying a right to a job, a right to higher education, a right to become a citizen, a right to free stuff, and certainly no right to do whatever we want. Yet, this is commonly believed by people today. This is what common law is for, to specify the penalties for such things as murder, mayhem, assault, rape, robbery, disturbing the peace, etc.

We now live in a time where it is commonplace to express outrage through marches and riots, where the rhetoric is visceral, if not obnoxiously salacious and slanderous. Again, many people believe this is an acceptable form of conduct, guaranteed by the Constitution. Again, this is not so. Under the first amendment, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people PEACEABLY to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

In other words, there is nothing wrong with gathering to march or protest. However, when it violates local ordinances, due to such things as violence, destruction of property, or the use of obscenities, then it is no longer peaceful and violators are eligible for arrest.

I have seen numerous videos on the Internet where a law enforcement officer is confronted by a passerby in the performance of his/her duty, some to the point of interference. This normally results in the arrest of not just the original person in question, but also the passerby who confronts the police, naively believing they are immune from arrest. I find it particularly humorous when the passerby is arrested, and the original suspect is set free, all because he/she felt they had the God given right to interfere with a police investigation.

So, the reasons explaining why our socialization skills are deteriorating is rather simple: Technology has had an adverse effect on our attitudes, we have not been properly trained in how to communicate or practice common courtesy, and we are misinformed as to what rights and freedoms we possess. It is no small wonder our socialization skills are being stunted. In fact, it almost seems to be premeditated.

For more information on our changing world, be sure to see my video, “The PRIDE Renewal Tour,” on YouTube.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Life, Social Issues | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

A QUARTER-LIFE CRISIS?

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 20, 2018

BRYCE ON MILLENNIALS

– Another indication of our changing times.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

It used to be, you might experience a mid-life crisis in your late 30’s, as you approached the mythic age 40 milestone. This would result in erratic behavior, and cause people to change their lives personally and professionally, possibly even resulting in divorce. However, according to a new report from the United Kingdom, this crisis appears to have moved up in years and is now plaguing our Millennials.

Although the study was aimed at Britain, their conclusions are likely applicable to all Millennials, including those in the United States. The report was produced by First Direct, an on-line banking service in the UK, to study, among other things, Millennial financial habits. To do so, they teamed up with Dr. Oliver Robinson, Senior Lecturer for Psychology at the University of Greenwich.

Remarkably, 56% of 25-35 year-olds in the study claimed they were experiencing a quarter-life crisis which left them feeling “stressed,” “overwhelmed,” and “struggling to cope,” the same type of anxieties as people experiencing a mid-life crisis.

Top causes behind Millennials having a crisis episode in the last 12 months:

Causes by Age Group 25-29 30-35
Financial difficulties 59.89% 47.63%
Your living situation 37.91% 34.41%
Working in a challenging job 30.40% 26.18%
Lack of romantic relationship 25.27% 27.93%
Trying to find a job 25.82% 20.45%
Being in a challenging romantic relationship 23.63% 26.06%
Trying to get on the property ladder 21.61% 9.48%

Source: FirstDirect

Notice the differences between the two age groups. The figures for 30-35 age group suggests more stability than the younger group, more confidence, and maturity.

First Direct produced a report describing these problems and how to address them, “How to turn your Quarter-Life Crisis into a Quarter-Life Catalyst,” which is available for free at their web site. In it, they explain how to use this crisis to spark change in your life. This is a good read, not just for Millennials, but for their parents as well.

Personally, what I find interesting about the report, it hints at a stunting of the maturation process of Millennials due to declining socialization skills. To me, this is likely caused by our growing addiction to technology, where young people now prefer texting as opposed to verbal communications. This is enforced by the report’s encouragement for young people to network socially, something that has been declining in recent years.

Some will make light of the concept of “quarter-life” crisis. I do not. I interpret it as another indication of our changing world, a decline in our culture, and the dangers of technology.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Life, Technology | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

REINVENTING THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 6, 2018

BRYCE ON LIFE

– More political correctness running amok.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

I’m told English is the most difficult language to learn as it is chock full of colloquialisms, slang, jargon, and expletives. There is even disparity among the English speaking countries of the world, causing the famed playwright George Bernard Shaw to observe, “The United States and Great Britain are two countries separated by a common language.”

I never truly understood why we like to reinvent the wheel every so often, but we do. Perhaps it is nothing more than naiveté but more likely it is just plain foolishness. Take for example, the recent effort at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana where a writing guide has emerged discouraging the students from using the word “Man” as it is considered to be sexist. Instead of saying “Mailman” for example, they want you to say “Mail Carrier.” Instead of “mankind” they want you to say “people” or “humanity” (which happens to have “man” hidden within it). To follow the guide properly means we have to avoid such words as “Freshman,” “Chairman,” “Gentleman,” “Craftsmanship,” “Management,” and many others.

This could also lead to some serious problems in diplomatic relations as we must change the names of countries such as Germany, Oman, and Romania to Gerpersony, Operson, and Ropersonia. I’m sure these countries will understand and follow suit. Let us also not forget Personila, the capital of the Philippines, and Kathpersondu, the capital of Nepal.

Come to think of it, all of the Latin based languages observe the masculine/feminine tense, including English, French, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, and Gerperson. Instead of saying in Spanish something like, “Donde esta la Casa de Musica?” we’ll have to say, “Donde esta persona Casa de Musica?”

Instead of using the Spanish words of “el” or “la” to denote the sexual orientation of an object, we’ll have to drop the word “the” from the Spanish language, likewise for the others. I still don’t know what to do with “Hombre” as I’m sure this will offend someone. Nonetheless, this change shouldn’t affect too many people.

By the way, we can no longer refer to these various tongues as “Romance languages” as they originated from the language spoken by the Ropersons.

Recently, there have been efforts to reinvent math through the “Common Core” program, as well as rewriting American history to make us feel more guilty about ourselves, and now we are trying to reinvent the fundamental structure of the English language. I can’t wait for them to change physics whereby I’m sure they will contend, “What goes up, must be shared.”

I lectured at Purdue years ago in their business school, a fine institution. As we all know, the school’s nickname is the “Boilermakers,” a reference to the train steam boilers built there years ago. By the way, a “Boilerman” is a person who tends to boilers; I guess this will all have to be changed as well.

I don’t know why Purdue is pushing this effort, as it sounds like political correctness running amok. Purdue is also well known for agriculture and producing first-rate engineers. I just wished they would stop trying to re-engineer the English language.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2018 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Life, Social Issues | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »

2017 YEAR-END WRAP-UP

Posted by Tim Bryce on December 22, 2017

BRYCE ON BRYCE

– My most popular columns this year.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

This is my last column for the year as I prepare to enjoy the holidays and rest up for 2018. As has become customary, I’m using this opportunity to review my top essays from the past year.

As you know, I write on a variety of subjects, such as management, systems, technology, social issues, politics, and observations of our changing world. Sometimes my work is instructional and informative, other times it is controversial or humorous. I certainly hope it isn’t boring. By the number of subscribers I have, their comments, and the hits I have on my web site alone, I do not believe this is the case.

NOTE: You can find the audio versions for many of these columns on My Web Page.

My top columns for the year were:

1. The Importance of the Family Restaurant – The popularity of this article was a pleasant surprise for me. In it, I describe the role the family restaurant plays in our lives. I also heard from a few restaurant owners who appreciated the piece.

2. “Penny for Pinellas” faces up-hill Battle – Even though it was an off-year politically, there was one issue commanding the attention of voters in my neck of the woods, renewal of the “Penny for Pinellas” tax which was slipped past the voters due to low turnout.

3. Rebuilding Loyalty – Discussed why loyalty is important in our lives and why we should maintain it.

4. The Liberal Playbook – describing the tools used by the Left as they re-arm themselves for the midterm elections.

5. Where are the Adults? – written as the “resistance” movement heated up.

6. How Liberals Control the Media – this was one of many pieces I wrote regarding the Main Stream Media.

7. The Differences between Left and Right – discussed the differences in codes of conduct.

8. What the March on Washington was all about – more on the “resistance” movement.

9. Why the Left hates Donald Trump – an older piece I wrote which gained ground again.

Remarkably, there were two older pieces that were frequently read this past year:

* The Five Elements of Mass Production – written in 2013, this is a textbook explanation of the components of manufacturing and why they are necessary. The popularity of the piece suggests to me it is being referenced in school programs.

* How Did Our Moral Values Change? – another piece from 2013, I was pleased to see it resurface as morality is a favorite subject of mine.

I will be on sabbatical for awhile until I am ready to get back in the saddle.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

LAST TIME:  WHAT IS BUSINESS?  – Sounds like an innocent question, but do we have a consensus understanding?

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Life | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »

STUNTING THE MALE MATURATION PROCESS

Posted by Tim Bryce on December 19, 2017

BRYCE ON LIFE

– Is it being driven by technology?

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I have described the adverse effects of technology on numerous occasions, such as its addictive powers and effect on the human brain. However, something recently occurred which causes me to believe it also affects the maturation process, most notably in males.

I recently visited a hospital for some tests (nothing serious, just routine). While sitting in a waiting room, I happened to meet three black ladies who happened to be talking about football. Their personas and banter reminded me of “Diamond and Silk” of Trump fame, who all seemed to be of one mind and possessed an acute case of common sense.

I happened to join their conversation and we discussed everything from high school football, to college, and the NFL. I found their candor refreshing. As Floridians, they were well versed in college football in our state, including Miami’s recent loss to Clemson. We discussed the pros and cons of the college playoffs and who we thought would win the national championship, but they were also keenly aware of the need for effective coaching, both on and off the field. One of them made the observation that college players were often supervised by the coaching staff and disciplined accordingly, but in the pros there were no mentors or supervisors to keep these young men in check, which explains why it is easy for them to get into trouble. The other ladies agreed.

I happened to mention my recent essay, “Understanding the NFL’s Problems,” whereby I noted the players unpatriotic conduct and how they are prone to get into trouble. They agreed with my observations and were frustrated the players were acting immaturely.

Afterwards, I thought about their comments carefully and considered why this phenomenon with young men is occurring. We always knew women tended to mature faster than men, but it appears men are becoming slower in the maturation process. For example, studies show they are less inclined to marry and remain at home longer as opposed to just a couple of decades ago. Men at this age also have trouble managing their money. “Sports Illustrated” performed an analysis of spending habits of NFL players and found 78% of them are bankrupt, or nearly so, just two years after their athletic careers are over. As they break into the league, most go on an insatiable spending spree and develop financial habits which haunts them later on.

To top it off, it appears men are more inclined to become addicted to personal technology than women, not just via computers and phones, but through game consoles as well. This then begs the question, “Does technology stunt the male maturation process?”

Although there is considerable evidence to indicate it does, there is no concrete proof. However, years ago, when a man completed college or a stint in the military, it was assumed they were mature enough to leave home and lead a productive life independently. However, business managers today are spending more time with young people mentoring them and performing what I call “Parenting Management.” In other words, teaching them what their parents failed to do by performing the role of guidance counselor.

All of this explains why the ladies I talked to regarding football are right, the players need to be supervised to keep them out of trouble. Unfortunately, the young men are not mature enough to make proper decisions for themselves. By failing to offer them guidance, morality suffers, not just by the players, but by the younger people who want to emulate them. This is a major failure by the NFL which needs to be addressed.

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  WHAT IS BUSINESS? – Sounds like an innocent question, but do we have a consensus understanding?

LAST TIME:  WHERE DOES YOUR TIME GO?  – How it adds up.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Life, Social Issues, Technology | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

WHERE DOES YOUR TIME GO?

Posted by Tim Bryce on December 18, 2017

BRYCE ON LIFE

– How it adds up.

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To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

I was recently stopped at a traffic light on legendary US19 here in Palm Harbor during rush hour. For those of you unfamiliar with US19, it is the main artery running north-south in our county (Pinellas). There are three lanes on each side and traffic volume can be considerable. If you get caught in rush hour traffic, you can be hung-up for quite some time. It can also be quite dangerous; the bumper sticker, “Pray for Me, I drive on US19,” pretty much sums it up. There are traffic lights spread approximately three miles apart, which means there is a lot of stop-and-go traffic. So much so, I started to wonder how much time we waste waiting in traffic. To learn the answer, I checked various sources on the Internet and learned more than what I was originally looking for, for example:

WAITING – on the average, we spend 45 to 62 minutes daily. This includes waiting in traffic, in lines, or for service.

COMMUTING – According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, the national average daily amount of time we spend commuting to work is 24.3 minutes. Actually, I thought this was surprisingly low.

EATING – According to the USDA, Americans spend 67 minutes eating and drinking during meal times, but we also spend an additional 23.5 minutes eating while doing something else, and an additional 63 minutes drinking beverages while doing something else, e.g., coffee/tea breaks. In total, 153.5 minutes.

BATHROOM – we average 57 minutes in the bathroom each day, either relieving or grooming ourselves. Women tend to spend more time than men in the powder room, but that is immaterial for the purposes of this article.

TELEVISION – a 2011 report by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, indicated Americans spend a staggering 2.7 hours watching TV each day.

LEISURE AND SOCIALIZATION – several reports indicate we spend 100 minutes on other recreational activities, excluding television.

SLEEPING – most reports still indicate we spend eight hours each day sleeping. Some reports have it a little higher, but I tend to believe it is less than this. Nonetheless, eight hours appears to be the average.

So, let’s add it up for the typical work day. I’ll round off the numbers to the nearest half hour:

1.0 – WAITING
.5 – COMMUTING
2.5 – EATING
1.0 – BATHROOM
2.5 – TELEVISION
1.5 – LEISURE AND SOCIALIZATION
8.0 – SLEEPING
17.0 – TOTAL HOURS

This leaves us with just seven hours to pursue our labors which doesn’t seem like much when you compare it to everything else. It also makes you wonder if we’re truly earning our keep which is a bit disheartening.

Then there is the matter of how much time we spend on these activities in a lifetime. If I were to use just 50 years as an average, we would find the following number of DAYS spent:

760.4 – WAITING (2 years)
380.2 – COMMUTING (1 year)
1901.0 – EATING (5.2 years)
760.4 – BATHROOM (2 years)
1901.0 – TELEVISION (5.2 years)
1140.6 – LEISURE AND SOCIALIZATION (3.1 years)
6083.3 – SLEEPING (16.6 years)

Please remember, these numbers are based on averages and doesn’t take into account such things as vacations, disabilities, unemployment, etc.

As amusing as these numbers are, they should make us cognizant of whether we are wasting our time or not.

See what happens when you leave me stuck at a red light on US19?

First published: October 26, 2012

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  STUNTING THE MALE MATURATION PROCESS – Is it being driven by technology?

LAST TIME:  A LITTLE SILLY  – Why we need a light hearted distraction now and then.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Business, Life, Management | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

A LITTLE SILLY

Posted by Tim Bryce on December 15, 2017

BRYCE ON LIFE

– Why we need a light hearted distraction now and then.

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To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

There’s not too much to laugh about these days; the country is still polarized politically, and the main stream media has the general populace whipped into a frenzy over just about everything. In fact, the general disposition of the country is rather depressing, which is why it is refreshing to see or hear something that lifts our spirits, something a little silly. As for me, not long ago I was waiting in line at my bank’s drive-in window when a man drove up on a red motorcycle whom I judged to be in his sixties. This was no ordinary motorcycle as it had an attached sidecar with a golden retriever proudly perched inside wearing goggles and a red bandana. It appeared the dog was enjoying himself immensely and didn’t seem encumbered by the attire his owner had dressed him in. The sight of the dog stopped everyone in their tracks, both in and outside of the bank. The bank tellers called their colleagues to the window to see him, and the other patrons waiting in line rolled down their window to get a better look. He was simply a very cool pooch who seemed to enjoy the attention, as did his master.

This particular couple have become regulars in our area and are often seen on the roadways around Palm Harbor, a tiny community on the suncoast of Florida. Everywhere the two go, they are met by smiles and pointed fingers. They lift the spirits of people wherever they go. Golden retrievers are pretty cool dogs to begin with, but when you add goggles and a bandana, they become real hams. It’s as if they know what they’re doing and are daring you not to laugh. I’ve seen other types of dogs sitting in sidecars, but the golden retriever seems to own it, particularly if he is dressed properly.

Now, more than ever we need a little silly in our lives. Walking around in a depressed or angry mood can make for some rather deep psychological scars. It is important to now and then do something a little silly thereby lifting the mood of others and ourselves. I believe our friend with the motorcycle is very cognizant of this, which is why the pair take to the streets like Batman and Robin to bring a little cheer to the citizens of our area. We don’t know exactly who the Dynamic Duo are, as their goggles conceal their identity, but they are warmly welcomed wherever they go. It’s a nice little silly that can break the tension regardless of who you are or the problems you are experiencing. For one brief moment, you cannot help by being distracted, thanks to a little silly.

First published: September 14, 2012

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  WHERE DOES YOUR TIME GO? – How it adds up.

LAST TIME:  WHY DO OPPOSITES ATTRACT?  – Good question and something that has puzzled us from time immemorial.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in humor, Life | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »

WHY DO OPPOSITES ATTRACT?

Posted by Tim Bryce on December 13, 2017

BRYCE ON LIFE

– Good question and something that has puzzled us from time immemorial.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request.

On a recent trip to work one morning I was tuned into a local radio talk show. One of the DJ’s mentioned he happened to be married to a vegan, yet he was a confirmed meat eater. The other two DJ’s sharing the microphone with him found this amusing, as did I, and they asked him what life was like living with a vegan, particularly at dinner time. Somehow they found a way to avoid squabbles and respect each other’s culinary preferences. One didn’t intrude on the other, and they have lived happily together for quite some time.

I am always intrigued by couples who appear to be incompatible on the surface, yet somehow find a way to build a successful marriage. I have seen tall people marry short people, fat and thin, wild versus mild, mixed religions, mixed races, and mixed politics. As to the latter, there is probably no better example than political pundits James Carville (Democrat) and Mary Matalin (Republican) who were married in 1993 and have two daughters. Even though they worked on opposing political campaigns, they somehow found the right chemistry to make their marriage work. This particular union has puzzled people for years, particularly due to their different personalities. When they appear on television, Carville is very animated and chatty, and Matalin appears more sedate and thoughtful. Both have strong personalities in their own right. When they appear on television together, they make it clear they do not agree on several political issues and try to correct each other, which can be rather amusing to watch. As I understand it though, politics is a taboo subject at home, particularly around their children. As an aside, I wonder if this political odd couple votes at election time since they will undoubtedly cancel each other out.

Then there are the law-abiding citizens who marry convicts while incarcerated. I never did quite understand this; a spouse who is free on the outside and a convicted criminal on the inside, never having physical contact or living together. Even people committing some of the most heinous crimes seem to score well from within the walls of prison. Maybe there is sex appeal in the forbidden fruit of a mass murderer, or maybe they’re just plain nuts. Somehow I have a hard time grasping death row as a lover’s lane.

How the opposite ends of a magnet are attracted is easier to explain than human compatibility. Scientists have a lot of theories for the attraction of people, but no conclusive facts. There are those who believe it is based on a biological and chemical arousal whereby people are attracted by scent which somehow matches the female’s hormonal status. This would suggest it’s all in the DNA. Then there are those who believe it is based on complementary psychological makeups, or maybe based on some astrological compatibility where the stars must be in some specific alignment.

As for me, I don’t buy any of this. Frankly, I’m not sure what it is that makes another person float your boat. Maybe it’s physical, maybe it’s logical. I tend to believe there is some specific element of the other person we find intriguing, and realizing they are complete opposites, we tend to work harder at building and maintaining a relationship than those people who are much more compatible. Keep in mind, there has to be more “give and take” in a marriage of opposites as opposed to those who are evenly matched. They have to work harder if they want to sustain it. A relationship of opposites will be obviously more challenging than a compatible relationship which will likely be more sedate. I guess some people thrive on a challenge, and some do not.

Maybe the only way this can be proven is by studying the duration of marriages and divorce rates of compatible couples versus polar opposites. Wouldn’t it be interesting if the opposite couples were more successful? Keep in mind, Carville and Matalin have now been married for 24 years, and it certainly couldn’t be due to their politics. In 2009, the two were interviewed by CNN’s John King who asked them how to maintain a happy marriage:

Carville: “I don’t have a position on anything domestically. So I just say yes, and then go on and do it. I mean it. I would say the three ingredients to successful marriage is surrender, capitulation and retreat.”

Matalin: “Spoken like a true liberal. What a martyr. Faith, family and good wine. That’s how we do it.”

First published: September 28, 2012

Keep the Faith!

Note: All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies.

Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M&JB Investment Company (M&JB) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 40 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at timb001@phmainstreet.com

For Tim’s columns, see:   timbryce.com

Like the article? TELL A FRIEND.

Copyright © 2017 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.

Also read Tim’s columns in the THE HUFFINGTON POST

NEXT UP:  WHY DO OPPOSITES ATTRACT? – Good question and something that has puzzled us from time immemorial.

LAST TIME:  A LITTLE SILLY  – Why we need a light hearted distraction now and then.

Listen to Tim on WZIG-FM (104.1) in Palm Harbor,FL; Or tune-in to Tim’s channel on YouTube. Click for TIM’S LIBRARY OF AUDIO CLIPS.

 

Posted in Life, Marriage | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

 
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