Log Entry # 211: Jean Will Pick You Up.

My kids in their 30’s and some of their friends visit on some holidays. This Memorial Day was no different. Three of them arrived on Friday with JH arriving at our tiny local airport on Saturday. It WAS going to be memorable for JH!

JH called us at 2 pm from his connecting airport about an hour away to say he was in route and his flight was on time. We told him to call on his cell when he arrived.

He called upon arrival and noted that he would be out shortly after picking up his bags. We told him that we already had too many shots and beers and a friend of the old man’s was coming our way from the airport area and would pickup him up. Her name was Jean. We told him she was a nice lady, in her 50’s. There was no Jean. We didn’t know a Jean.

Actually we were all fine to drive. We loaded into the SUV, drove to the airport, got a first row spot in the short-term parking lot. We had a clear view of the arriving passenger area and the doors that JH would use to exit to get his ride.

With our clear view of the passenger pickup curb, we could see the cars waiting for arriving passengers. We saw a beige Lincoln Town Car with an older, female driver. Perfect! So when JH called from baggage claim we were able to tell him Jean was waiting for him just out side in her beige Lincoln Town Car. There was no Jean, we didn’t know the driver. There WAS a beige Lincoln Town Car!

JH exits the airport, sees “Jean” in the Lincoln. Smiling, he heads to the front windshield. He lightly taps to get her attention. She looks at JH like he’s a criminal. He looked around, checking to see if he had the right car. There was only one beige Lincoln. JH, having a positive personality, stepped to the side window and repeated his tapping to get “Jean” to recognize him. She didn’t, she’s now starring straight ahead probably hoping he would go away, undoubtedly thinking pervert, maybe police.

In the SUV we are doubled over, disabling laughter, in stitches, watching the Lincoln–JH–Jean event unfold.

We hopped out of the SUV and started waving and shouting, “Hey dumb ass we’re over here”, the side-splitting laughter loud enough to be heard from some distance. As the line goes in “A Christmas Story”, JH wove a “tapestry of vulgarity”, which would make the best of the best proud.

JH heard about it all weekend. We never let JH forget this one…

***** S&E *****

My Friends – Teachers and Leaders

Like many I have close friends, in this case a married couple, who taught for a combined 80+ years. I have known them for 65+ years. I always admired teachers, so much so when I retired I opened a one-man consulting firm to teach. But this is not about me, but about my friends the teachers.

Creating Runway!

They were both brilliant, athletic people. Both with more than average common sense. Their kids taught themselves to read and play musical instruments. Both always said what was on their minds. They were kind, caring. They had/have excellence senses of humor. They were patient but not to a fault. They coached and participated in extra curricular activities. They set high standards for the kids they taught. They demanded respectful appropriate behavior in school. They suffered no fools. They were the greatest example of dedication.

One of them went without a salary increase for years as the area in which he taught granted raises by voting referendums. He never quit. I guess the voters never thought education was important. He did.

They taught two generations. What I always find moving to this day is they yet have some of those two generations stopping buy their home to say hi, have a beer in some cases, and some to just say thanks. And they get to see first hand what their teaching efforts help mold years into the future.

Talk about touching the future…

They clearly touched the future. My friends and leaders!

***** S&E *****

Footnote: I live in a state where it is well known that teachers are underpaid. Where teachers leave the profession as they have issues making it on their salaries. In a state that takes in more than 2.4 billion in lottery revenue — about 30% goes to education. In a state that ranks 37th in education, ranked among all states. OMG!

NYT Briefing…

Here’s a clip from one entry from the briefing from the New York Times, Monday, January 6th:

“Here’s what you need to know”:


I believc most USA citizens:

  • Don’t want any more Americans killed in Iran or for that matter the Middle East.
  • Most Americans don’t want another war
  • Most believe we are not wanted in Iran and for that matter the middle Middle East
  • Most believe our efforts to oust terrorists organizations in that area of the world is like pissing in the wind
  • Most believe the religious based wars in that region that have driven hatred and murder is a fact of life
  • Most believe all the money that has been spent in the middle east and lost lives have achieved not much
  • Most believe the oh so “worn out” excuse, “IN THE BEST INTEREST OF OUR NATIONAL SECURITY”, used by Washington DC and the Pentagon, for investing people and other assets in the Middle East, is just that, an excuse used to line the pockets of contractors and business who benefit from occupations and wars, and to satiate the warmongers in the Pentagon.
  • Most believe that we have the resources, people talent, and technology to keep our borders and citizenry secure.

My answer, totally remove all people, assets, and military and stop all monies and other forms of investment from being assigned/ spent in the Middle East. Why? Answer the question, what has all that achieved in the last decades?

My answer, if you have a Middle Eastern ID or Passport, USA borders are closed to you until Middle Eastern governments clean up their terrorists mess. They certainly have the money.

Oh, wait, there is always the response we had to get involved to crush international terrorism.

Well, I believe that there would not have been a 911, nor would the Middle East care about us, had we minded our own business in the first place and stayed the hell out of the Middle East. 911 was a response.

If there are no more USA assets in the middle East there will be no more deaths.

I am a veteran, I support our troups. I don’t support our involvement in the Middle East, never have. I believe, most don’t.

Just so readers know that I’m not a nationalist: From a trade standpoint, we should be developing our economy across the globe, notwithstanding.

***** S&E*****

Bosses Who Don’t Manage

If you are accustomed to a micromanaging boss, it might seem like a dream to have a boss that leaves you alone. But too much of that can also be a bad thing.

Dealing with a manager who doesn’t manage

If your current boss is overly controlling or micromanages you, having a boss who leaves you alone and lets you do what you want might sound heavenly. But professional experience coaching senior leaders with absentee bosses (and research on the topic) says otherwise. An absentee boss can lead to feelings of alienation, job dissatisfaction, and stress.

Why is it important to have an engaged boss?

Available leverage in getting your work done

Provides a testament to your annual accomplishments

Can be a significant factor in advancing your career

Plays a partner role in setting goals and objectives

Assists in managing barriers to accomplish work


Talk with peers to see what their experience has been with your manager. You may find that they feel the same way you do. Is it possible that there are extenuating circumstances that have contributed to their behaviors? It doesn’t solve the problem of a missing boss, but it can help make a challenging situation feel easier if you see that it’s not personal.—And if you do discover it’s just you, this is good information.


Despite the situation, be a communicator!  Keep the boss informed.  If you need concurrence on work, send an email with “RESPONSE REQUIRED” in all caps in the subject line. Make an explicit time-bound request for the support if needed.  Here’s an example: “I need you to review and approve this contract/presentation by Friday or we will not meet the client’s deadline.” 

Persistent follow-up counts. One email may not do it. Be opportunistic about stating the case for what you need when you happen to see your boss. This may seem extremely frustrating, but it beats the alternative of having their absenteeism impede your ability to make progress and deliver results.


Nature hates a vacuum, so see how you can use this opportunity to step into a higher level of responsibility and hone your leadership skills. As you step up to lead, keep your boss informed so that you can make decisions to keep moving ahead. Email is your friend here. For example, “I will be moving forward with this decision on Monday unless I hear from you that you prefer another course of action.” Or: “I saw that this was a problem and I am planning on addressing it with a sub-team later this week. Let me know if you have any concerns and/or thoughts you would like us to consider.”


Work on your internal relationships. When you have mentors or sponsors at the company, you’re much more likely to hear about other potential opportunities (and have advocates when the time comes).  Developed strategies to develop and deepen your network. Create a large circle of allies—cultivate a mentor and sponsors. This will help connect you to additional opportunities and build strong support to lobby for career advancement.


Quitting when you have a bad boss can be hard for many reasons. But if you’ve done what you can to salvage the situation, it may be time to look for opportunities elsewhere.  Two questions to ask: “Am I working at a place that supports career growth? Am I working at a place that will help me learn?” Use these questions as a litmus test: If you can’t check both those boxes in your current situation, you may be best served by working for another boss or company.

If you find yourself with an absentee boss, the unfortunate truth is that it will be on you to make the situation better for yourself. In the corporate world, those who get promoted to leadership positions aren’t always suited to managing people. Hoping your boss will change will likely be a waste of time.

Accept your feelings about the situation, and drum up the energy to employ the above strategies to succeed in your current role. And if that doesn’t work, put your energy toward looking for a position that will give you the opportunity to thrive.

Reference: Dina Smith, Executive Coach and Leadership Consultant. Summarized from: https://www.fastcompany.com/90428483/how-to-deal-with-a-manager-who-doesnt-manage

***** S&E *****