Saturday, October 07, 2006

I Talk Too Much !

Yeah, I said it. And I know that some of you are reading this saying..."Wow; it took him long enough to figure THAT out!" But, it's true. I, Kelvin P Ringold, Sr, sometimes talks too much. Every once in a while, someone asks me a question -- and there's a lot of people asking me questions these days -- and I am under the sometimes mistaken impression that they actually want an answers! Oops!

I have a philosophy: NEVER ask a question you're not prepared to hear the answer to -- no matter what the answer is. Unfortunately, I forget that not everyone is like me :-).

I was in JC Penney's the other day, to buy some new shoes. I'd picked out a couple of pairs, and asked her what she thought -- after all, she's an expert at this right? Well, she hemmed and hawed and said, well... "It's a nice shoe, but.. well... I can't really say how comfortable they are for you..." etc, etc... and she wouldn't give me her honest thoughts. I finally decided, "Okay, I like this shoe; I'll take it..." then she said, "I LOVE that shoe! It's one of my favorites." I asked why she didn't say something when I asked. She said that a lot of people get upset when she answers their question and it wasn't what they wanted to hear. I said, no worries ; *I* am the type of person... that when I ask a question I *want* to hear the answer! Okay ?" . . . and went on to the next pair of shoes I liked.

I put them on, stood up, looked at them in the little floor mirror, and asked her, "Whadya think?" She looked at me and smiled kinda shyly and asked, "you weren't planning on wearing those OUT anywhere, were you? It's a nice outdoor shoe... like walking and hiking and gardening. My family has several pair. Were you actually planning on wearing those with, like, good clothes?" And I cracked up ! I said, "how about like to a bar?" She said, "what kinda bars do you go to?..." then repeated that "outdoor / walking / gardening" response one more time... and all the while I'm chuckling. Then she said, "Well you said you wanted my opinion..." and I laughed and said "...Absolutely, and thank you. I've got some gardening I wanted to do anyway." We had a good laugh, she got a good sale and I got 15% off my purchase for opening a Penney's charge account!

But that's me! I've come to believe that my purpose in life is to provide PERSPECTIVE to people. One of my favorite passages in
Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah (gosh WHY does he keep mentioning that book?!") says, "Perspective. Use it or lose it." I help take your excuses away, and to be honest, I believe that's why most people (who really know me) ask me things. It's why *I* ask questions of those I trust. My other favorite passage from Illusions (there he goes again!) is, "we teach best what we most need to learn." It is very rare, my friends, that in discussing your question, I don't discover -- or rediscover -- an answer that is pertinent in my own life.

So ask away! I've always got more leaning to do, and we can take our joint excuses away together. Right?

In the meantime, I'm going to go take my new shoes for a walk outdoors, around the garden, and maybe start re-reading Illusions again... Ahhhhh. Happy Saturday!

Have an awesome day.


P.S. If you haven't been there lately, there's a cute story on the home page of Ringold.NET. If you get bored, check it out.


Anonymous said...

That's an interesting take on this subject, I'd have to say. Guess I've always gone the other way; I don't ask, so I hope they don't tell me. :-)

Kelvin Ringold said...

I hear ya; and sometimes I probably do too. But generally speaking, I feel there's more power in knowing.