Friday, March 07, 2014

Cruelty, malice, and their far-reaching consequences

Someone once encountered and captured a relatively tame and docile forest animal.  The person was, however, very sadistic.  Despite initial kindness to win the animal over, over time this kindness changed.  When the animal didn't do exactly what the person wanted, this person treated the animal badly.

This went on for many years.  The animal cooperated for a long time, for the most part, because it came to be dependent on the human.  But it finally desired to be free of it's cage.  It had times when it got to experience a different life, brief moments where it finally saw what true happiness could be.

Eventually the animal was pushed far enough that it left.  But in the process of leaving, the human, after first opening the doors for the animal, lashed out in it's anger over the animal leaving.  

It was one time too many.  The animal, for the most part tame, was driven back to it's untamed instincts.  It lashed out in response, it's anger and hurt too much for it to keep inside any longer.

But at it’s core, it still was not cruel or malicious.  It only desired freedom from the human who initially had shown it kindness, but for so long had treated the animal like a piece of property…like something to do tricks to amuse them.  


They parted ways.  But both were harmed in the process…permanently harmed.  The human became bitter and petty, rejecting all creatures like the one they felt had wronged them.  The animal harbored a deep mistrust and fear of humans, and developed a new instinct…instinctive hatred of the human and all that were like that human.

Thursday, August 08, 2013

"Cabaret"

Willkommen, bienvenue and welcome to the Kit Kat Klub, where Sally Bowles (Kristen Hester) and the mysterious Emcee (Miles Wiseman) sound the clarion call to decadent fun. But even as her attraction to American writer Cliff Bradshaw (Jonathan Bertschinger) turns into a passionate romance, outside the Nazi party begins its rise into a brutal force, and events are set into motion that will lead to one of the darkest chapters in human history.






From the director of Fiddler on the Roof and A Doll's House comes a musical experience like no other, featuring classic songs such as "Willkommen", "Two Ladies", "Money", and "Tomorrow Belongs to Me".

Welcome to the end of the world.

Tickets are on sale NOW (click here).  Show dates are September 13, 14 (8 PM), 15 (2 PM), 19, 20, 21 (8 PM).  

Saturday, August 03, 2013

A look behind the scenes of "Cabaret"



A look behind the scenes of "Cabaret"



Community Players of Hobbs presents

"Cabaret"

Directed by Nathan R. Miles
Music director Daniella Mendez
Choreographer Karen Salb

September 13, 14 (8 PM), 15 (2 PM), 19, 20, 21 (8 PM)

Tickets
$15 regular seats
$18 table seats

available online
http://www.communityplayersofhobbs.com

"Cabaret" is intended for mature audiences, parental discretion is advised.

Video by Shoshana Howell Photography
www.shoshosphotos.com

#iloveacabaret

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Challenge filed to stop resumption of same-sex marriages in California

Someone tell the anti-gay, pro-discrimination crowd that it lost, please...they don't seem to have the latest copy of the memo.

Funny...the group asking for the emergency injunction to stop the marriages going foward in California...is a group from Arizona. Standing?

NM high court asked to legalize gay marriage

New Mexico could be the next state to legalize same-sex marriage. In fact, it's the (very valid, in my opinion) view of the plaintiffs in this case that it is *already* legal, given the state's very strong Equal Rights Amendment. We'll see what the New Mexico Supreme Court says.

So...yeah...

I'll just link my thoughts, rather than copy/paste.

Friday, May 24, 2013

My observations on leadership


"Leadership is solving problems. The day soldiers stop bringing you their problems is the day you have stopped leading them. They have either lost confidence that you can help or concluded you do not care. Either case is a failure of leadership." - Gen. Colin Powell

"Leadership is action, not position." - Donald H. McGannon

"The pessimist complains about the wind. The optimist expects it to change. The leader adjusts the sails.” - John Maxwell

"A good leader takes a little more than his share of the blame, a little less than his share of the credit." - Arnold H. Glasow

These are all very true...I've learned this truth from observation and actual practice.  I had some good sailors in my Navy days who helped me learn these lessons, and many others. 

Delegation...being the leader does not mean you do everything yourself.  Give your subordinates the athority to do their jobs, hold them accountable, and be willing to accept that it may not get done exactly like you would do it.

You don't have to be the technical expert on everything.  That is why you have your team...use them.  Familiarity with all aspects of the job is necessary, but you may not be the best person for each job.  Again, that is why you have your team...let them do their jobs. 

Respect...it is a two-way street.  It is earned...there will initially be respect for a leader by virtue of position, but no rank or title will earn you true respect.  How you treat your people, in both good and bad situations...how you lead your team...the trust you engender in them...that you stand up for them, that you are willing to accept responsibility for both success and failure...those things earn the real respect.  Position/rank/title only go so far.  If the only respect you receive is due to position, you've failed.

Ultimately, you also have to be willing to accept the results of your endeavour...especially when failure is the result.  The captain of a ship understands this probably better than anyone...he may be asleep in the dead of night, but the ship running aground will still cost him his command.  It's easy to step up and accept success...how failure is dealt with is far more telling.  It certainly doesn't make it hurt any less when you do have to accept it, but owning up to it will earn that respect for "next time".  Done right, the praise goes to the team...and the blame, mainly to the leader.  Is it fair?  No.  If it's "fair" one desires, being the leader is the wrong position for them. 

A prime example is that of the University of Hawai'i football program.  The Rainbow Warriors, under head coach Fred von Appen, were 5-31 for his three years as head coach, culminating in a 0-12 season in 1998.  von Appen was fired and replaced by the interim head coach of the NFL's San Diego Chargers, former UH quarterback June Jones.  Jones maintained most of the team's starters for the following season, and with largely the same team he led UH to the best turnaround in NCAA history, with Hawai'i sharing the WAC championship and winning the O'ahu Bowl.

Don't be afraid to pitch in and work with your team.  Don't ever expect more of them than you are willing to do yourself.  Hold yourself to the highest standard.  Don't worry if you are not perfect, either...but definitely worry if you repeat the same mistakes (or worse, if you repeat them in a more damaging manner).  If you cannot learn from your mistakes, you cannot lead.

Last...but not least...the true leader doesn't need to broadcast it or brag about it.  That they are truly in command will be evident, and that they are competent at it will be visible in the results. 

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

The end of the book

I just want to go somewhere and let this all go. My rage, my pain, my anger, frustration, hurt. I want this to end.

 

It's supposedly easy for me. Well, that's bullshit. There are aspects that are, but overall it is not easy at all. I hate every second of my life right now. Any fun or seeming happiness you see right now...is an act. A facade. You may find this hard to believe, but even someone like me has some feelings, and they all just hurt right now.

 

To hear that I somehow just made this as a snap decision...just a whim, with no consideration at all...that is such utter crap. I question this every waking minute of every day. I hate this...it is not what I wanted.

 

Now that it's inevitable...I wanted to at least make it as painless as possible. As minimally devastating as possible, for everyone. Well, so much for that. Rational and sensible take a back seat to emotion. Apparently the preferred course is bitter, resentful, and painful. For however long we have to share the same roof, it has to be hostile, or at least tense.

 

So...what life I thought I had is over, with no turning back, and it can't even end decently. It has to drag out like an ugly, painful cancer that can't even kill its host quickly.

 

I once believed in all those fairy tales that life could be happy. Well, I was wrong. The only thing you can depend on is that it begins, is a barrel of shit, and ends. Maybe the religious people are right...there is a Hell, and it's here.

 

The world wouldn't miss me, and at this point I sure wouldn't miss the world.