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Archive for the ‘Life’ Category

DEALING WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT

Posted by Tim Bryce on July 12, 2018

BRYCE ON COPS

– Should you be adversarial or respectful?

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

I recently found myself embroiled in a passionate argument about law enforcement. Someone had posted a video on social media showing a man in his car eluding police allegedly after a road rage incident. He refused to stop until he pulled into his driveway at home. The fact he failed to acknowledge police commands and argued loudly when he was caught agitated the police who forced him to the ground and put him in handcuffs. A few of the viewers commented how outrageous the police acted and they would have done likewise in resisting arrest. In contrast, I made the remark the suspect only had himself to blame; had he done as he was instructed, I doubt it would have turned into an ugly episode.

This resulted in a firestorm of comments against me for taking the side of the police. Frankly, I was surprised by the push back. In my defense, I described how I was taught to drive years ago by my father, who said if the police pulled me over, to keep my hands on the steering wheel, do not argue, and treat the officer with respect saying, “Yes Sir” and “No sir.” As the police see a lot of people during the day, they know nothing about me and will naturally approach cautiously. As such, it wouldn’t pay for me to pose a threat to them by being a smart ass.

I found this advice to be invaluable over the years. By acting this way, I was able to talk my way out of a ticket on more than one occasion. Each time, as the officer saw I wasn’t a threat and was heeding his instructions respectfully, I was let go with a simple warning.

After explaining this on the posting, I was accused of being a wimp and should have stood my ground and taken the officers to task. One gentleman claimed it is necessary to resist the police, simply because they are looking for an excuse to impound your vehicle. I have never heard of this before, so I have no way of knowing if this is true or not.

The way I see it, law enforcement has a difficult job, and they meet a lot of strange people in their daily routine, some not exactly playing with a full deck of cards. My philosophy in dealing with the law is to demonstrate that I am not some kook who poses a threat to them. When this is established, I find it is relatively easy to have a rational conversation with them where I can explain my side of the story. Regardless of how I tried to rationalize it, others in the group thought I had behaved cowardly. The only thing I know, I probably get fewer tickets than they do.

In a way, I am reminded of the classic comedy routine by Chris Rock titled, “How To Not Get Your Ass Kicked By The Police.”

What bothered me about this little incident was the total disregard for law enforcement, portraying them as disreputable ogres who are to be fought with, not respected. I recognize not all law enforcement officers are perfect, but to have people openly provoke a confrontation doesn’t make sense to me. Frankly, this adversarial relationship is disturbing as I believe law enforcement serves a vital function for the community and should be appreciated for their efforts. Then again, maybe this is just another sign of our changing times. I grew up in an era when we were taught the police were our friends, but I have a feeling this is a lesson no longer taught. It disturbs me when I hear 29 officers were killed in the line of duty thus far this year (compared to 44 for all of 2017). Frankly, I’m surprised how patient and professional most officers conduct themselves in light of the animosity against them.

Next time you are stopped by law enforcement, keep your cool and act respectful, they are only trying to do their job and not get killed in the process.

P.S. – Perhaps the most imaginative way I’ve heard of someone talking their way out of a traffic ticket was the father of a friend of mine in Chicago years ago. The father, named Al, was a baker and typically worked the late shift. One night, as he was driving home in the wee hours of the morning, he was tired and anxious to get to bed. Consequently, he was driving a bit too fast.

As he passed a billboard, he spied a patrol car hidden behind it, undoubtedly running radar. Seeing the car pull out from behind the billboard, he knew he was going to be ticketed. Thinking fast, he pulled his car over to the side of the road, popped his hood open, jumped out and began jiggling his carburetor (Yes, this was before electronic ignitions). As expected, the patrol car pulled up behind Al’s car and the officer stepped out. Al looked up at him and said, “Oh, thank God you’re here. Something’s wrong with the carburetor and the car was running away on me. Boy, did it scare the heck out of me.”

The officer looked at Al, then the carburetor, and gave him a warning to get the car fixed before he got into an accident. Yes, he let him go. Brilliant, just brilliant, and a great story he told for many years thereafter.

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.

 

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Posted in Crime, Law Enforcement, Life | Tagged: , , , , , | 5 Comments »

WHY THE ESCALATION IN SUICIDES?

Posted by Tim Bryce on July 5, 2018

BRYCE ON LIFE

– Is there a connection to the decline of religion?

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

A couple of months ago, I produced a presentation titled, “The PRIDE Renewal Tour,” which noted the changes in our culture and what can be done about them. Among the subjects discussed, I reviewed a recent report from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) regarding how youth suicides have skyrocketed 70% over the last decade. “According to the CDC, nearly 45,000 Americans age 10 or older died by suicide in 2016, making it the 10th leading cause of death.” It is also the 2nd leading cause of death among young people, ages 15-24.

According to Tom Simon, one of the authors of the CDC report, the increase in suicides is not limited to just our youth, “We know that overall in the US, we’re seeing increases in suicide rates across all age groups.”

This was amplified by the recent suicides of designer Kate Spade and celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain. Although it is unclear as to precisely why they decided to take their own lives, it was reported they suffered from depression. Despite their success, they simply couldn’t find happiness and contentment.

From their deaths, the public is slowly becoming aware of the growing trend in suicide, particularly among our youth. So what is causing this, failure? This certainly was not the case with Spade and Bourdain. Perhaps it was triggered by the influx of drugs and technology. Maybe it is simple depression, which has also been growing over the years. A recent REPORT claims “15 percent of the adult population will experience depression at some point in their lifetime.” Of that, “nearly 50 percent of all people diagnosed with depression are also diagnosed with an anxiety disorder.”

Again, we can look at the influences of drug and technology addiction, but I believe it goes deeper than this, specifically a loss of meaning in life which particularly affects our youth. To this end, let us consider the slow erosion of our MORAL VALUES as reported annually by the Gallup organization.

I have been following this since 2012 and in just the past six years alone, there has been a noticeable decline; when asked, “HOW WOULD YOU RATE THE OVERALL STATE OF MORAL VALUES IN THIS COUNTRY TODAY?”

2012 2018  
20% 14% EXCELLENT/GOOD
36% 37% ONLY FAIR
43% 49% POOR

We can blame this erosion on the media’s distorted views of morality, the failure of the family unit to properly teach their youth, and the decline of organized religion. As to the latter, both Gallup and Harris have produced polls showing the belief in a Supreme Being is slowly declining. Further, attendance at religious institutions is also dwindling; “65 percent of churches are declining or plateaued.”

Even more disturbing is fewer younger people are going to church which, of course, affects membership. Consequently, “for every new church that opens, four close.” For many years, churches and temples preached the lessons of right and wrong, but with fewer attendees, these lessons now go unheeded. It has become glaringly obvious to churches they must change in order to survive, be it the venue or how to disseminate their message.

More importantly, STUDIES make a direct connection between the rise of youth suicides on a loss of sense of purpose as derived from the decline of religion. In other words, as religion declines, youth suicides skyrocket. It is not a coincidence.

We would like to believe money, fame, and success leads to happiness. As evidenced by celebrities such as Spade and Bourdain, this is not the case. It’s a matter of how we see ourselves, our role in society, and learning to live a meaningful life, which are all lessons we should learn from our family, our schools, and our places of worship. However, if we do not support such institutions, we are doomed to watch our suicide rate continue to escalate unabated.

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

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 | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

HOW ABOUT A LITTLE PATRIOTISM FOR THE 4TH?

Posted by Tim Bryce on July 3, 2018

BRYCE ON INDEPENDENCE DAY

– The virtues of a home town parade.

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

I have always enjoyed the charm of a local Independence Day parade. In my old hometown of Wyoming, Ohio, a suburb of Cincinnati, the streets would come alive in the morning with the sounds of fire truck sirens, the High School marching band, and numerous neighborhoods dressed in red, white and blue and marching in the parade. Local politicians would ride in the parade and wave to the crowd. A friend of mine used to live at the start of the parade route and would have coffee and donuts available for the fire and police departments as well as parade organizers. People lined the streets, waved flags, and had a great time. Some of the neighbors along the parade route would roast hot dogs. It wasn’t about politics, it was simply a great way for the community to pull together in honor of the country. I am pleased to say they continue this tradition to this day.

Unfortunately, it is not the same in my current hometown of Palm Harbor, Florida who has yet to discover the benefits of this community event. I would have thought the American Legion, the VFW, the Masons, or the local Chamber of Commerce would have pushed for such an event, but not yet. Maybe they think it is too hot for such a parade or that not enough people would show any interest. I hate to say it, but Cincinnati gets every bit as hot as Florida during the summer, perhaps more so. And there should be sufficient interest as neighboring Safety Harbor hosts such a parade. I wonder what they know that we don’t? It would be nice to see the local community pull together and demonstrate a little unity on America’s birthday.

No, this is not about taking a knee and protesting. It’s about community spirit, pride, and teaching patriotism to our youth, plus having a little fun while we’re at it. Are we so polarized that we cannot simply enjoy our community and country? I’m not there to represent a political party or ideology as that is not the point. Instead, I attend such functions as a proud American.

As we all know, the Declaration of Independence was signed on Thursday, July 4, 1776 in Philadelphia. A copy was then taken by courier to General Washington who was currently stationed in New York City with his troops preparing to engage the British. It took some time for the document to reach Washington as it was delivered by horse rider, not by text messaging, e-mail, or Morse code for that matter. Consequently, Washington received it two days later on Saturday, July 6th, along with a letter from John Hancock as president of the Continental Congress.

After studying the DOCUMENT, Washington ordered his troops to assemble in Lower Manhattan on Tuesday, July 9th at 6:00pm, where Washington’s officers read the Declaration to all of his troops. Local citizens were allowed to attend as well. For the general, the document was very timely as it provided the rationale for breaking away from Britain and creating a new nation, thereby motivating his troops.

The words in the Declaration were so inspirational, New Yorkers raced down Broadway where they toppled and decapitated a statue of King George III. This was later melted down and used for ammunition against the British. It must have been quite a sight.

Since then, America has celebrated the 4th of July as an important event in our history. I do not believe the founding fathers would be overly impressed by some of today’s home town parades, but I am sure they would appreciate the love and affection we still hold for our country.

Happy Independence Day!

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, Politics | Tagged: , , , , | 3 Comments »

OLDSTERS ARE COOL!

Posted by Tim Bryce on June 21, 2018

BRYCE ON LIFE

– The wit and wisdom of our seniors.

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

It’s cool to be an oldster. You really do not appreciate it until you reach your sixties when your offspring are grown up and in the work force. People look at you differently, thinking you are past your prime and should be retired. It’s kind of like, “Okay Old Man, sit in the corner, eat your cookie, and we’ll take it from here.”

I have a problem with this as I still have a few dances left on my card.

Young people do not believe you can keep up with the pace of today, that you possess knowledge from a by-gone era that is no longer applicable. It disturbs them greatly when you demonstrate you know how to use their technology, not just as well but better than they do. The young people also think you dress funny, especially when you wear a suit and tie, and that you cannot comprehend the jargon, entertainment, or customs of today. They are particularly mystified when you say or do something politically incorrect and it doesn’t seem to bother you.

What oldsters lack in the customs, vernacular and technology of the day, they make up for in hutzpah, guile, and bravado. Their values may be different than the youngsters, but their experiences make them resourceful and a fountain of information. Even better, they have developed a sense of humor laced with wisdom. To illustrate, I have assembled a Youtube! playlist featuring the wit and wisdom of oldsters, which you can access HERE. Some of these stories are funny, some poignant, and others simply entertaining. The intent of is to give young people a glimpse into the mind of the oldsters, how they think, what they have learned, and their perspective on life. From it, you should be able to glean the mindset of oldsters, that they are not obsolete and want to prove their worth.

As for you oldsters out there, you’ll love this immensely.

These essays remind me of the story of two bulls, one old and one young, who were standing on a hill overlooking a herd of cattle. Being a bit impetuous, the young bull said to his elder, “How about we charge down the hill, snort loudly, and make love to a couple of cows?” The old bull replied, “I have a better idea; let’s quietly sneak down the back of this hill, slip around from behind, and get the whole herd.”

The message from these video clips is simple: Giving up is the ultimate tragedy. As long as we have a breath to breath, we need to demonstrate our worth, otherwise it is time to pack it in.

Mark Twain summed it up in terms of how young people perceive oldsters: “When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years.”

Then again, Mark Twain was an oldster when he made this observation.

P.S. – Congratulations to 65 year old trainer Bob Baffer and 52 year old jockey Mike Smith on winning the Triple Crown aboard Justify.

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: , , , , | Leave a Comment »

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.

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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.

 

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.

Click for AUDIO VERSION.
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.

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THE ELEMENTS OF SOCIALIZATION

Posted by Tim Bryce on May 3, 2018

BRYCE ON LIFE

– and why they are deteriorating.

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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.

 

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A QUARTER-LIFE CRISIS?

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 20, 2018

BRYCE ON MILLENNIALS

– Another indication of our changing times.

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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.

 

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REINVENTING THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE

Posted by Tim Bryce on March 6, 2018

BRYCE ON LIFE

– More political correctness running amok.

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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.

 

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2017 YEAR-END WRAP-UP

Posted by Tim Bryce on December 22, 2017

BRYCE ON BRYCE

– My most popular columns this year.

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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.

 

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