Dried Leaves

Dried LeavesA long time customer/client of mine sent me a text last evening asking if I’d have time for an early breakfast this morning.  I agreed on the time and place, so off I drove before sunrise to one of our local breakfast eateries.  The handful of people already seated were already busy enjoying their morning meals.  Of course all the men had their baseball hats glued to their heads.  It seems to have become quite commonplace in North Iowa.  I’m sure visitors from the big cities must find it all the more noticeable than I do.

While waiting for our orders to arrive, we played catch-up on recent events in our lives, as well as my bringing him up to speed with our real estate market conditions.  He seemed surprised when I told him about the shortages we have within certain price ranges.  I also shared how nearly all buyers are not wanting to be faced with doing any repairs or improvements before they move into a home, which certainly limits the number of homes fitting their criteria.  He agreed that it’s become a pandemic with many of the younger as well as our older buyers.  I couldn’t help but insist that it’s the by-product of our age of specialization to where the average American worker possesses one, and on a good day, but two marketable skills—that’s it!

We also happened to touch on how many of those working in government jobs seem to create un-necessary obstacle courses to where one begins to wonder if they’re only doing it to justify their receiving paychecks greater than their positions warrant.  He made me laugh while sharing a few of Milton Friedman’s quotes which were: “If you put the Federal Government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there’d be a shortage of sand.”  I also liked, “I can spend somebody else’s money on somebody else. And if I spend somebody else’s money on somebody else, I’m not concerned about how much it is, and I’m not concerned about what I get. And that’s government.”  It caused me to recall how many times improvements were made, but there was no one assigned to maintain them.  It also reminded me of how people who are freely given something, take the least bit of care it than those who actually had to earn every dollar to get the same.

I’m glad I agreed to that early breakfast with him because he’s always able to cut through the flowery excuses and reasons why people in government, as well as non-government jobs manage to justify their feeble attempts in convincing the masses that they’re making honest contributions to our communities.  Just today, someone assured me he’d have a small job completed, and when I drove past the property on my way home, there was no sign he’d even been there.  Not fulfilling a promise is bad enough, but to not even make a call to say it wasn’t going to happen made it all the worse.  Now I’m the bad guy for telling several others it was going to get completed today.

While arranging the plants in my office this morning, I removed the dead leaves from my avocado tree.  The above photo is of several of those richly textured dried leaves.

Joe Chodur

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