Well it was Free!

Well it was Free!For a Saturday, it seemed almost surrealistic with the way the weather was all day, along with not having my nearly every Saturday public open house.  It’s likely a good thing I didn’t considering the way the weather has been.  That misty rain was beginning to get a bit annoying to where I was ready to look to the heavens and say, “Would you just either rain, or get over it!”

The comic book store down the street was having some sort of anniversary celebration and by the looks of it, there weren’t nearly as many people as they were likely expecting.  There were comic book vehicles and characters outside, but only about a handful of people milling around.  I’m sure many parents decided not to have their children out in the rain.  There’s one thing we always have to consider when living in North Iowa, and that’s where the weather and temperatures can change quickly and drastically.  Planning something outside this late in the year is a crap shoot as far as I’m concerned.

Yours truly did manage to keep himself busy nearly the entire day.  As I mentioned before, when working at a menial task in some quiet space without any distractions, one can really get some deep thinking done.  I was delighted to find how much work I’d completed along with a great deal of much needed thinking.

One of the topics of thought was recalling the number of times over these long years the many people and/or entities who received gifts or grants of money.  I’ve known for a very long time how often whenever money is given to a person, municipality, or a charity, the willful waste and thoughtlessness begins.  Nearly all of them go on spending sprees to where you step back and think, “I believe that gift was the worst idea because those people didn’t have a clue regarding how to first think and plan before opening their checkbooks.”  Believe me, I’ve known many over the years who’ve squandered hundreds of thousands and all because it was free. Now it they had to work for decades to accumulate it, that would be an entirely different story. I see it on nearly a daily basis.

Those thoughts led me to the business of this so-called “much needed” ice arena.  Now don’t get me wrong, I believe in people being sports minded, but there are always those that take it to the extreme.  About 18 years ago I was quite familiar with a family who had two young boys who were head-over-heels about hockey.  Unfortunately their parents left them both to believe they’d become hockey stars.  Hockey was all consuming within that family to where there wasn’t much talked about besides their aspiring hockey playing sons.

Fast forwarding to the present.  Unfortunately most don’t realize becoming a professional in any sport has nearly the odds of winning the lottery.  Well, those two boys are grown men now and because they didn’t focus on more attainable career paths while in high school, they soon fell behind and ended up with blue collar jobs, married, and now with children.  About six months ago one of them called me just to say  “Hey”.  After hanging up from him I was saddened when I began thinking about all of those missed opportunities he and his brother had while in junior high and high school.  If they’d only kept their sport-mindedness in perspective.  As nearly always, when young, you believe you’re never going to grow old.   Now back to thoughtless waste. I want you to think about how many times you’ve seen willful waste and later heard someone say, “Well it was free!”

The above photo is one I took of the misty rain over Clear Lake.  Kinda creepy isn’t it?

Joe Chodur

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