Web Inspirations

Web Inspirations for Anyone, Anytime, Anywhere

Nov 28, 2007

A Special Victory

At the Seattle Special Olympics, nine contestants, all physically or mentally disabled, assembled at the starting line for the 100-yard dash. At the gun, they all started out, not exactly in a dash, but with a relish to run the race to the finish and win. All, that is, except one little boy who stumbled on the asphalt, tumbled over a couple of times, and began to cry.

The other eight heard the boy cry. They slowed down and looked back. Then they all turned around and went back, every one of them.

One girl with down syndrome bent down and kissed him and said, "This will make it better." Then all nine walked together to the finish line.

Everyone in the stadium stood, and the cheering went on for several minutes. People who were there are still telling the story. Why?

Because deep down, we know this one thing: What matters in this life is helping others win, even if it means slowing down and changing our course.

--Unknown

Nov 13, 2007

Seven Other Wonders

A group of students were asked to list what they thought were the "Seven Wonders of the World." Though there were some disagreements, the following received the most votes:

1.) Egypt's Great Pyramids
2.) The Taj Mahal
3.) The Grand Canyon
4.) The Panama Canal
5.) The Empire State Building
6.) St. Peter's Basilica
7.) China's Great Wall

While gathering the votes, the teacher noted that one student had not finished, so she asked the girl if she was having trouble.

The girl replied, "Yes, a little. I couldn't quite make up my mind. There are too many."

The teacher said, "Well, tell us what you have, and maybe we can help."

The girl hesitated, then read:

1.) To See
2.) To Hear
3.) To Touch
4.) To Taste
5.) To Feel
6.) To Laugh
7.) To Love

The room was so quiet, you could have heard a pin drop. The things we take for granted are truly wondrous!

--Unknown

Have you ever been confused as to which side of your car the gas tank is on when you drive into a petrol kiosk? Do you sometimes drive to the wrong side of the gas pump?

Some of you may actually wind down your windows and stick your head out to check.

Well, here we put your puzzlement to rest.

Here's the best kept auto secret in the world at the inconvenience of car drivers. Perhaps the dealers and manufacturers just get a kick of seeing people pop their heads out of their windows, or maybe it's in the small print in page 104 of the car manual (who reads car manuals right?).

If you look at your gas gauge on your dashboard, you will see a small icon of a gas pump. The handle of the gas pump will extend out on either the left or right side of the pump. If your tank is on the left, the handle will be on the left. If your tank is on the right, the handle will be on the right.

Ta dah! Spread the good news!

Nov 12, 2007

You're Probably Right

At my granddaughter's wedding, the DJ polled the guests to see who had been married the longest.

It turned out to be my husband and I.

The DJ asked us, "What advice would you give to the newly married couple?"

I said, "The three most important words in a marriage are, 'You're probably right.'"

Everyone then looked at my husband. He said, "Yeah, she's probably right."

First Important Lesson - Cleaning Lady
During my second month of college, our professor gave us a pop quiz. I was a conscientious student and had breezed through the questions until I read the last one:

"What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school?" Surely this was some kind of joke. I had seen the cleaning woman several times. She was tall, dark-haired and in her 50s, but how would I know her name?

I handed in my paper, leaving the last question blank. Just before class ended, one student asked if the last question would count toward our quiz grade.

"Absolutely," said the professor. "In your careers, you will meet many people. All are significant. They deserve your attention and care, even if all you do is smile and say "hello."

I've never forgotten that lesson. I also learned her name was Dorothy.

Second Important Lesson - Pickup in the Rain
One night, at 11:30 p.m., an older African American woman was standing on the side of an Alabama highway trying to endure a lashing rainstorm. Her car had broken down and she desperately needed a ride. Soaking wet, she decided to flag down the next car.

A young white man stopped to help her, generally unheard of in those conflict-filled 1960s. The man took her to safety, helped her get assistance, and put her into a taxicab.

She seemed to be in a big hurry, but wrote down his address and thanked him.

Seven days went by and a knock came on the man's door. To his surprise, a giant console color TV was delivered to his home. A special note was attached.

It read:
"Thank you so much for assisting me on the highway the other night. The rain drenched not only my clothes, but also my spirits. Then you came along. Because of you, I was able to make it to my dying husband's bedside just before he passed away... God bless you for helping me and unselfishly serving others."


Sincerely,Mrs. Nat King Cole.

Third Important Lesson - Always remember those who serve
In the days when an ice cream sundae cost much less, a 10-year-old boy entered a hotel coffee shop and sat at a table. A waitress put a glass of water in front of him.

"How much is an ice cream sundae?" he asked."Fifty cents," replied the waitress.


The little boy pulled is hand out of his pocket and studied the coins in it."Well, how much is a plain dish of ice cream?" he inquired.

By now more people were waiting for a table and the waitress was growing impatient.

"Thirty-five cents," she brusquely replied.

The little boy again counted his coins."I'll have the plain ice cream," he said.

The waitress brought the ice cream, put the bill on the table and walked away. The boy finished the ice cream, paid the cashier and left. When the waitress came back, she began to cry as she wiped down the table. There, placed neatly beside the empty dish, were two nickels and five pennies.

You see, he couldn't have the sundae, because he had to have enough left to leave her a tip.

Fourth Important Lesson. - The Obstacle in our Path
In ancient times, a King had a boulder placed on a roadway. Then he hid himself and watched to see if anyone would remove the huge rock. Some of the king's wealthiest merchants and courtiers came by and simply walked around it. Many loudly blamed the King for not keeping the roads clear, but none did anything about getting the stone out of the way.

Then a peasant came along carrying a load of vegetables. Upon approaching the boulder, the peasant laid down his burden and tried to move the stone to the side of the road. After much pushing and straining, he finally succeeded. After the peasant picked up his load of vegetables, he noticed a purse lying in the road where the boulder had been. The purse contained many gold coins and a note from the King indicating that the gold was for the person who removed the boulder from the roadway. The peasant learned what many of us never understand!

Every obstacle presents an opportunity to improve our condition.

Fifth Important Lesson - Giving when it counts
Many years ago, when I worked as a volunteer at a hospital, I got to know a little girl named Liz who was suffering from a rare & serious disease. Her only chance of recovery appeared to be a blood transfusion from her 5-year old brother, who had miraculously survived the same disease and had developed the antibodies needed to combat the illness. The doctor explained the situation to her little brother, and asked the little boy if he would be willing to give his blood to his sister.

I saw him hesitate for only a moment before taking a deep breath and saying, "Yes. I'll do it if it will save her." As the transfusion progressed, he lay in bed next to his sister and smiled, as we all did, seeing the color returning to her cheek. Then his face grew pale and his smile faded.

He looked up at the doctor and asked with a trembling voice, "Will I start to die right away?".

Being young, the little boy had misunderstood the doctor. He thought he was going to have to give his sister all of his blood in order to save her.

One day, a teacher asked her students to list the names of the other students in the room on two sheets of paper, leaving a space between each name.

Then she told them to think of the nicest thing they could say about each of their classmates and write it down.

It took the remainder of the class period to finish their assignment, and as the students left the room, each one handed in the papers.

That Saturday, the teacher wrote down the name of each student on a separate sheet of paper, and listed what everyone else had said about that individual.

On Monday, she gave each student his or her list.

Before long, the entire class was smiling.

"Really?" she heard whispered. "I never knew that I meant anything to anyone!" and, "I didn't know others liked me so much." were most of the comments.

No one ever mentioned those papers in class again.

She never knew if they discussed them after class with their parents, but it didn't matter. The exercise had accomplished its purpose.

The students were happy with themselves and one another. That group of students moved on. Several years later, one of the students was killed in Vietnam and his teacher attended the funeral of that special student.

She had never seen a serviceman in a military coffin before. He looked so handsome, so mature.

The church was packed with his friends.

One by one those who loved him took a last walk by the coffin. The teacher was the last one to bless the coffin.

As she stood there, one of the soldiers who acted as pallbearer came up to her.

"Were you Mark's math teacher?" he asked. She nodded: "Yes."Then he said: "Mark talked about you a lot."

After the funeral, most of Mark's former classmates went together to a luncheon. Mark's mother and father were there, obviously waiting to speak with his teacher.

"We want to show you something," his father said, taking a wallet out of his pocket. "They found this on Mark when he was killed. We thought you might recognize it."

Opening the billfold, he carefully removed two worn pieces of notebook paper that had obviously been taped, folded and refolded many times.

The teacher knew without looking that the papers were the ones on which she had listed all the good things each of Mark's classmates had said about him.

"Thank you so much for doing that," Mark's mother said. "As you can see, Mark treasured it."

All of Mark's former classmates started to gather around. Charlie smiled rather sheepishly and said, "I still have my list. It's in the top drawer of my desk at home."

Chuck's wife said, "Chuck asked me to put his in our wedding album."

"I have mine too," Marilyn said. "It's in my diary."

Then Vicki, another classmate, reached into her purse and showed her frazzled list to the group. "I carry this with me at all times, " Vicki said and without batting an eyelash, she continued: "I think we all saved our lists."

That's when the teacher finally sat down and cried. She cried for Mark and for all his friends who would never see him again.

The density of people in society is so thick that we forget that life will end one day. And we don't know when that one day will be.

So please, tell the people you love and care for, that they are special and important.

Tell them, before it is too late ...

Nov 2, 2007

Life is Not a Race

Too many people put off something that brings them joy just because they haven't thought about it, don't have it on their schedule, didn't know it was coming, or are too rigid to depart from their routine.

I got to thinking one day about all those women on the Titanic who passed up dessert at dinner that fateful night in an effort to cut back. From then on, I've tried to be a little more flexible. How many women out there will eat at home because their husband didn't suggest going out to dinner until after something had been thawed? Does the word "refrigeration" mean nothing to you?

How often have your kids dropped in to talk and sat in silence while you watched Jeopardy on television?

I cannot count the times I called my sister and said, "How about going to lunch in a half hour?" She would gas up and stammer, "I can't. I have clothes on the line. My hair is dirty. I wish I had known yesterday, I had a late breakfast, it looks like rain." Or, my personal favorite, "It's Monday." She died a few years ago. We never did have lunch together.

Because Americans cram so much into their lives, we tend to schedule our headaches. We live on a sparse diet of promises we make to ourselves when all the conditions are perfect! We'll go back and visit the grandparents when we get Stevie toilet trained. We'll entertain when we replace the living room carpet. We'll go on a second honeymoon when we get two more kids out of college.

Life has a way of accelerating as we get older. The days get shorter, and the list of promises to ourselves gets longer. One morning, we awaken, and all we have to show for our lives is a litany of "I'm going to," "I plan on," and "Someday, when things are settled down a bit."

When anyone calls my "seize the moment" friend, she is open to adventure and available for trips. She keeps an open mind on new ideas. Her enthusiasm for life is contagious. You talk with her for five minutes, and you're ready to trade your bad feet for a pair of Rollerblades and skip an elevator for a bungee cord.

My lips have not touched ice cream in 10 years. I love ice cream. It's just that I might as well apply it directly to my stomach with a spatula and eliminate the digestive process. The other day, I stopped the car and bought a triple-decker. If my car had hit an iceberg on the way home, I would have died happy.

Now, go have a nice day. Do something you want to do, not something on your "should do" list. If you were going to die soon and could only make one phone call, who would you call and what would you say? Why are you waiting?

Have you ever watched kids playing on a merry-go-round or listened to the rain lapping on the ground? Ever followed a butterfly's erratic flight or gazed at the sun into the fading night? Do you run through each day on the fly? When you ask someone how they are, do you hear the reply?

When the day is done, do you lie in your bed with the next hundred chores running through your head? Ever lost touch? Let a good friendship die? Just call to say, "Hi?"

When you worry and hurry through your day, it is like throwing away an unopened gift. Life is not a race. Take it slower.

--Unknown

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