Never bet with your heart…

Never let anybody see how you are hurt, wearing your heart on your sleeve.

Don’t do anything but support your conference during bowl season.  Yeah, we hate Oklahoma but when they are playing the Pac 10 or the Big 10, you hope that they kill em for the good of the conference.  It was one of many lessons I never learned fully.If it was up to me I’d want every Big 12 team, except Tech to lose every single game.  I hate em all with a nod to my dad’s Cornhuskers.

Always support your family, no matter if they hurt you or disappoint you. Your family is all you have.

Always work hard.

Don’t do things that you aren’t willing to do yourself.

Lead by example.

Love everyone, unless they mess with you, then keep em close.

I get up every day early to let the dogs out, don’t slouch around.

Keep your car clean and your engine oil changed.

Respect your things, cause I ain’t getting you more if you break it.

Do well in school, learn, don’t feel that you know it all, cause you don’t.

and finally one of my favorite lessons from my dad.

Silence is golden, while you’re talking you can’t hear what others have to say. You don’t want to miss something do you?

I was telling a friend today at work in response to his problem that he was having and old story from my dad and it all just came back to me.  The lessons he tried to impart to me when I was young.

Rather than buying cords of wood that were expensive, he’d go and buy logs and chop the wood himself.  He’d come home from work and head to the backyard with an ax and some wedges.

Patrick and I would just watch, sometimes ‘trying to help’ by pulling the logs if dad got the wedge stuck.  We’d fight over who had the ‘better’ pair of gloves and it was one of the times where I think dad opened up to us.  He wanted us to know the power of a hard days work and after we finished ‘helping’ him, he’d have us take out the garbage or some other chore.  I was only seven or so, but those were some of the most vivid memories I have when I lived across the street from my grandparents.

Sometimes grandpa would come over and my dad would light a pipe.  We’d listen to them talk sports and whenever I thought it was the right moment I would say something.  If I was right I would get a smile that would last .5 seconds.  If I was wrong, I got the glare and the unmentioned punishment of not talking for 5 min.  I got more punishments then I got smiles.

I thought I knew it all.

But I don’t.

In some ways I am frustrated beyond belief.  But in other ways I realize I just have to listen more and relax.

Just watching my dad do what he called “Life’s Work”