Archives for the month of: June, 2012

Only until a person reaches star status or super star status do people start celebrating their celebrity. It’s because the star is out of reach. The “no way could I ever do that” sets in so you can relax and appreciate their accomplishment. After all, you could never attain that. They must be super human to do that. They must be a freaking alien to do that. So, because the super star possesses an ability that is way above and beyond your mere mortal existence, it allows you to sit back, look at your friend while watching TV, and say “Gee aren’t they incredibly gifted” as you sip on your espresso secretly wishing that was you. 

So, here’s the challenge. You be the star. No, I’m serious. Read my lips. You be the star.

Do you sing? Do you dance? Do you play an instrument? Do you do a stand up routine or have acting ability? Go ahead and give it a shot. Oh, but wait, you’re so ordinary you’ll never achieve that. It’s only for those that get that big break. The ones that have real talent. Heck, we’ve known you all your life and you’re not like one of those at all. 

If you’re like most people that’s what those around you will tell you. Yes, there are the precious few that will hear “Wow, Susie, you have what it takes. We’re with you all the way. You go girl”. But for most of us mere mortals we are told “For Pete sake, sit down, shut up, and just be normal. 

And what are the signs of the “For Pete sake, sit down, shut up, and just be normal” syndrome? How can you tell it’s happening to you? How can you tell those that you’ve loved all of your life will slowly start turning on you? How can you tell? How can you tell that the people you thought would stick by your side, give you that “Adda boy or girl” you need, give you the support your project or talent deserves, will suddenly, quietly desert you? 

Most times it’s the silence. The strange, eerie absence of sound. The absence of any kind of comment about your accomplishment or your attempt. 

 The silence is deafening and it is now very clear that there will be no applause, cheers, or “Hey congratulations”, band or fanfare or any kind of recognition at all for your accomplishment. No nothing. No, not for you. For you see, a very strange phenomena has taken over your family and friends. They thought they knew you.

 So how dare you even try. 

Oh, sure, they mean well with that casual, plastered on smile as they pat your head, squeeze your cheek, and tell you “That’s nice dear” all the while absolutely, positively knowing you will fail. 

So how dare you even try. 

So what is the reason for the silence after your book has hit the stand, when you’ve sung in your first gig, when you’ve strummed your guitar in your first band, when you’ve pranced across the stage in your first audition? It could be, for some family members, the silence, the desertion, the absolute in your face indifference is because, in their mind, they cannot fathom, understand, or comprehend why you didn’t sit down, shut up, and just be normal. That you actually really tried and you did it. After all who do you think you are? 

Of course, that’s just my opinion. 

As you may have already guessed it happened to me. It threw me for a loop. And the strange thing about my case is that some people acted supportive until—oh, oh, his book appeared in living color on Amazon. Then somehow I must have contracted the plaque or leprosy. Now don’t get the wrong idea. I didn’t run around screaming ‘look at me’ as I waved a Kindle in their face insisting they read my book. No, I was a little more tactful than that. Although I did want to do that. I just sat back and let them, friends and family, come to me. I allowed them to comment or not, to ask me about the book or not. And I got a loud and resounding ‘NOT’. I realized my focus was out of whack when my wife told me she had heard someone say that your journey of marketing anything begins when you stop trying to sell it to your family and friends and focus on the public in general. That’s when you have a business. That’s when you have a product. What was I to do? I took her advice. 

If anyone would like to tell their stories feel free. 

Catch you on the down swing because there is only one way to go from there—up.

Lee Pierson

 

 

 

 

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Is everyone doing well? I hope you’ve blogged to your hearts content and your readers are enjoying what they are reading.

Once again let’s hit the ground running. This one is a good one. Even if I do say so myself. In fact, this was not a national issue when I wrote the chapter about the little fat kid with glasses, Spencer, getting harassed at school. It wasn’t until I was finishing up the last half of the story was their any instances of bullying at school hitting national attention. I’ll get things started by giving you two maybe three examples of bullying when I was a kid. Of course, that’s on one condition. That you guys give me some examples of bullying or being the bully. I’m not going to be the only schmuck bearing my soul. Tell me how you felt when you were being bullied or how you felt when you were the one being the bully. How it affected your life and what, if anything, you feel about it today. I think people realize now, through national attention, this sort of thing has life long effects. But like in the story, and real life, it’s how you handle it that will determine your future.   

To start, I’m not proud of this but I feel I must be the first one to admit it so maybe others will join in. In this first story I’m the bully, I’m the bad guy. I was in grade school although I don’t remember how old I was. There was this kid up the street, Greg, no last names, and he was a big kid for his age and I was little for mine. Anyway, for some odd reason I got a big kick out of taunting this kid so I could hear him whine and tell me he was going to tell his “father”. He was very formal and intelligent and never used the word dad. And maybe that was the catch. Maybe I was trying to make him mad enough to say something that sounded normal and not so smart all the time, bring him down to my level. I’m just guessing. I don’t really remember. This went on for some time, me calling him names and him running home yelling “Father, father.” Well, I guess ‘father’ was teaching this kid to box after each taunting session. So the next time I started my stuff he proceeded to hit me right in the head. I, of course, ran home crying. Ok, keep the cheering down I feel bad enough as it is. That ended the bullying. Why. Because it wasn’t as much fun when he fought back. Somehow it took the glamour out of it and it was then I decided it probably wasn’t the right thing to do.

Ready for story number two. 

This one I like a little better. Remember, not always, but bullies seem to work in pairs. They give strength and courage to each other and end up fueling each others fire. That’s why it seems to escalate and doesn’t stop. In this instance it was the Gorman brothers. They lived on the block behind me and down at the end of their street. They were notorious for causing trouble not only in their neighborhood but at school and I believe they were a little older than I was. These were students teachers hated. Cat calls from back of the classroom, flunking all their subjects, and beating up kids for no reason. They usually stayed in their own neighborhood but for some reason they decided on this day to visit mine. Tom lived across the street, a few houses up, and we played together all the time. We were goofing around in his driveway when, here they come, the terrors of the universe, came sauntering up to both of us. I don’t remember exactly what they said, I just remember the fear and humiliation that I felt. I remember them threatening us and flipping the end of my nose then laughing. It was like powerless mice taunted by lions that could gobble us up in a second. You just didn’t know when they were going to pounce and praying that they didn’t. God must have been looking down on me that day because they quickly became bored and walked away while calling us names. I never forgot that day and decided I couldn’t live with that kind of fear. Are they coming back? Are they going to see me at school and continue the terror there? Are they going to hit me next time. I mean really beat me up. I was the kind of kid, and still am, that if I don’t like something, can’t accept the situation, I seek to change it. Sooo, one day I was in class, I think sixth grade, when I was handed the weekly reader. It was a monthly publication that the teacher handed out that had all kinds of cool articles in it. Well, this particular issue had an article in it about Judo, that it was a sport in the olympics and a martial art that could also be used for self-defense if you wanted to. Wow, boy did I want to. How did the right thing come along at the right time. There is only one answer–because it was suppose to. It even had the name of the United States Judo Association‘s director and an address where you could write him. I remember going home, carefully composing a letter, mailing it, then waiting on pins and needles.

Life is funny, isn’t it? It was like fate or destiny told the Gorman brothers they had done their jobs, that they had completed their mission because they never bothered me again. Although there is a little bit of a twist or irony here. As we grew up, the Gorman brothers dropped their bully act and because I was a little bit of a party guy I would see them around occasionally. One evening I threw a party at my house and guess who shows up. You got it. The Gorman brothers. I guess one of my friends invited them. Anyway, I was always so proud of my trophies and had them displayed in a case at the top of the stairway that led to the bathroom. A little later on during the party I spot two guys going upstairs heading for the bathroom. I watched as they stop, look them over and then make comments like, “Look at all these trophies!” and “I didn’t know Pierson knew this stuff.” Guess who it was. That’s right. The Gorman brothers. They stood there for quite a while looking at them and I was tempted but never told them I had them to thank.

I went on to many more Judo tournaments including nationals and even the U.S. Open which is international. I didn’t place in that particular tournament but it was cool getting my butt kicked by the best.

What did I learn from the two examples. One, don’t be a bully or you might get knocked in the head. Two, destiny has a way of corralling you into the thing you are supposed to do. 

Now, what are some of your example. Don’t make me come looking for you. Just kidding.

Catch you on the down swing because there is only one way to go from there—up.

Lee Pierson    

 

 

 

I would like to share a little piece that I originally wrote for my eBook “Cages and Kitchen Tables” but it was too much narration so I gritted my teeth and took out my ‘gold nugget‘. And I couldn’t use it for a synopsis because there is no mention of characters. I thought this would be a good place to share it.

It speaks of Ben Meyer‘s relationship to Ricky Rabbit, the neighbors pet he visits on Friday nights, the one he vowed to keep safe even if he had to go to the ends of the earth. After all, haven’t we all held a pet, maybe caressed and cuddled them, gazed at their innocence and beauty, saw a glimmer of humanity in their eyes, and knew we couldn’t bear to see anything happen to them. And if something did happen wouldn’t we all realize what an emotional shock it would be for the household of that pet, the grief and loss they would feel? That’s what Ben Meyer experiences when an evil stranger, with ulterior motives, kidnaps his beloved friend and Mr. Granstrom’s pet.

What would you do if fate called on you to rise to the occasion, to go on a journey you didn’t know if you were prepared to go on? That’s a tough question. I believe that love is the catalyst to courage. That love knows no fear and it never fails. It will climb the heights and plunge to the depths and never ask for anything in return.

This is for Ben Meyer, Ricky, Spencer, and Tara. My friends.

Sometimes there is a bond between two lives that can’t be explained, a bond that transcends reason and explanation. This bond is cemented by destiny and can’t be broken.

            It has once been said that all things work for good. Good for the lives that have been predestined to go down a certain path. A path they did not choose, yet find themselves on.

            And does ‘all things work for good’ take into account evil? The evil that lurks in the shadows. That plots and plans the demise of innocent lives.

            Maybe more so.

            Struggle, impossible choices, impossible odds, loss, and grief. Aren’t these the things that mold and shape? Aren’t these the things that prepare those who are brave enough to persevere? Brave enough to embrace it and ultimately welcome it.

            In a small town, there are those about to take a journey. One that is about to commence. A journey they did not choose nor want yet find themselves on.

            A journey that will change their lives forever.