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Bruce's Blog || Just sayin'. . .

Quit Your Day Job, River of Light, Need to Put My Glasses On

Posted on November 23, 2019 by Bruce MacNaughton

Good Morning from Prince Edward Island,

Thank you for being here, let's have a cuppa. I’ll put on the kettle.

Earlier this week I read an article the Intelligent Change curated newsletter.

The article, Your Mess is Your Message, by Kevin Evans was about a book review he did. The book by Cathy Heller, titled Don't Keep Your Day Job.

The book is about Cathy’s entrepreneurial journey as well as many known entrepreneurs who turned their lives around by dealing with life's rejections.

In the review, I was especially inspired by Josh Spector's story. 

A young man who was very involved in all things athletic, even being a competitive surfer while living in Hawaii. During his junior year in college, he was struck by a car while driving his moped. He ended by being paralyzed.  Lawyers told him he would be awarded millions of dollars.

During Josh’s darkest days, a friend brought him a Bible. He started to leaf through it until he happened upon the story of Samson.

Samson is confronted by a lion, whom he tears apart with his bare hands (Samson is best known for his strength). Later comes upon the carcass of the lion and finds a beehive filled with honey. 

Josh read these words, “Out of the eater, something to eat; out of the strong, something sweet.” Josh took these words to heart and he felt they were sent directly to him.

He awoke from his place of darkness and made the decision to not pursue the lawyers and their money option. He personally felt he had not come to a complete stop at the intersection and in good conscience could not do it.

That is integrity, that is convicted character.

He felt what happened to him had a larger purpose for his life. Samson’s experience revealed a spiritual realization. God will use situations in our lives to accomplish His will. 

Josh, accepted the revelation and set out to make a difference. Today, he owns The Last Bookstore in Los Angeles, which he started from scratch. 

If ever back in Los Angeles, I will visit. 

Here is a bit of his story via Vimeo.


Speaking of books...

This week I purchased and am preparing to read, Drinking from the River of Light, the life of expression by Mark Nepo. He is a poet and philosopher providing personal reflections and exercises in this passionate testament to the spirituality of expression, particularly prose.

Here is a quote from Mark's book.

"The fundamental truth of being human is that we are incredibly sensitive creatures whose joy and pain are registered through that unique sensitivity. This sensitivity allows us the gift of seeing and perceiving. This sensitivity allows us to make sense of being alive. Unlike any other form of life, being human allows us to fit things together or to break things apart. Inhabiting the art of expressing ourselves is what lets us fit things together rather than break things apart. The art of expressing ourselves—what we experience, what we feel, what we think, and what we imagine exists within us and beyond us—is a form of inner breathing. And so, we each must learn how to do this or we will cease to exist. If you stop breathing, you will die. If you stop expressing, you may still walk around and buy groceries and pay the bills, but you will not be alive." ~ Mark Nepo

A quote I am thinking about this weekend. "The proper function of man is to live, not to exist" ~ Jack London

This morning, I learned of a friends passing. “Tom” Davies was a wonderful 82-year-old man. A fellow restauranteur who at a time owned all the KFC’s on the Island among other businesses as well. He was a gentleman and someone I admired and appreciated very much. His character continues to reflect through his gracious wife, Eleanore and his children.

In David Brooke’s book, “The Road to Character” speaks of two kinds of virtues. Resume virtues and eulogy virtues. While the former is deemed important in the marketplace, it is eulogy virtues, that speak to the character, when others praise a person who isn’t around to hear it. My memory of Tom will always be he was a man of humility, gentleness and kindness. A wonderful character. RIP Tom.

Moral improvement occurs most reliably when the heart is warmed when we come into contact with people we admire and love and we consciously and unconsciously bend our lives to mimic theirs. ~ David Brooks

Pulling on the thread about friends...

I read an interesting New York Times article listing many studies from around the world that support the theory that "friendship" is good for our health. Friendships are an essential ingredient in a happy life, so it’s time to give them the care and attention they deserve. The kind of friendship bond they spoke of was the non-spousal kind. Interestingly, they also found the proximity of the friend was not all that important.

Researchers are starting to pay attention to the importance of friendship and social networks in overall health.

Considering the fact the next few months are all about family and friends, the following links might be read and considered.

Read Smarter Living by Tara Parker-Pope of the New York Times.

How to Be a Better Friend

The Benefits of Friendship

How to Make Friendships Last 

How to Listen

How to Argue with Friends

Well friends, got to run, market morning...fresh eggs and sourdough bread. YumYum. 

While writing I have been listening to a new album by Sofaine Pamart. 

Gold Medal of the National Conservatory of Lille, Sofiane Pamart is the new French prodigy of the piano. At the age of 23, he spanned the biggest stages: Olympia, Bataclan and La Cigale in Paris. He has already collaborated with many French and international artists such as Kery James, Grand Corps Malade, Gael Faye, Medine, Scylla and Selah Sue. He draws his inspiration from today's rap and classical references such as Vladimir Horowitz, Ravel and Chopin.

His music is precise, sharp, rich in cultures and influences. 

Enjoy the sound. Sample Listen Here

Taking care of business. Be sure to take a peek at our offerings in the newsletter this weekend. If there is anything we can do to make your gift-giving easier, let us know. We can personalize each gift with your choice of items, and we handwrite the cards with your good wishes.

Have a wonderful weekend. 

Be nice. Love is a verb. 

With love from Prince Edward Island, 



My face in the mirror isn’t wrinkled or drawn.
My office ain’t dirty; the cobwebs are gone.
My car seems so shiny, like I waxed it anon.
My abs are a ‘six-pack’; my body’s all brawn.

My desk is uncluttered, with papers not o’errun.
My screen crystal clear now and typing is fun.
My garden looks lovely, nd so does my lawn.
I think I might never put my glasses back on.

~ Dr. Bob Griffin


Posted on April 01, 2017 by Bruce MacNaughton

"Dear George: Remember no man is a failure who has friends."

~ It's a Wonderful Life

This week I have been thinking about "friends."

We have many kinds of friends, work friends, social friends, childhood friends, high school or college friends, gym friends, church friends, even Facebook friends.  But what do you call a friend who has been with you through thick and thin? The kind of friends who tell you when you are off track. Real friends can confront you and bring you back from the brink of disaster. Friends love and love being truthful.  

A sign that you have "true" friends are when you share the good, the bad and the ugly about yourself, and they still stand by you. 

A true friend is a good listener and casts no judgment.  

A true friend is faithful & forgiving. 

A true friend understands your tears and is more valuable than friends who only know your smile.

If you have true friends, be grateful. Very grateful. Don't be shy tell them how much you appreciate them! Call them, visit them, whatever it needs to be, be sure to tell them. 

"If you have one true friend in the world, you are very rich." ~ Alistair Begg

I started thinking about true friendship when I read this week that the owners of Weddings PEI (Diana Lariviere and William Caw), are offering free vow renewals in 2017, for couples married more than 50 years. I thought wow 50 years is something and I am sure at the foundation of their marriages you will find true friendship. 

Also, this week learned about the efforts being made by Island Matters Rug Hooking Group to grow the PEI Museum and Heritage Foundation’s Rug Registry. A database of hooked rugs and information about the rug hookers who create them. The group is hoping to preserve this information before the art fades away.

Hooked rugs were traditionally made by Island women from burlap bags and scraps of wool to help keep the floors of their homes warm. For that reason, hooked rugs are popular in the Maritime Provinces, and I am sure many friendships were made in rug hooking circles.

Nelsena, my wife Shirley's (my true friend) mom hooked rugs, not so much for the art but practical purposes.  With limited resources, she made rugs to assist transforming a house into a home with warmth and love. Something she strived for all her life, and one of the many reasons I admired her. 

Thank you for listening.

Last but not least, I read somewhere, if you want a friend, be a friend. 

Take care friends,