Thank Goodness, I’ve Got My Own List!

Published: Thursday, May 16, 2013 at 11:34 AM.

Time Magazine just published its list of the 100 most influential people in the world. I didn’t make it. Shucks.    

Ed Ruscha did. I’ve never heard of him. I don’t know what he does. And I’m fairly certain he’s never influenced me. Nor had I heard of Wang Shu. Or Joaquim Barbosa, Andrew Sheng, Mary Nichols or Don Yeomans……I am sure they are all outstanding men and women but I’m still searching for their direct impact on my life. In fact, I did not know 85 per cent of the people on the list. Did I sleep through something?

I had heard of Justin Timberlake but I can’t tell you one song he sings. I couldn’t understand why Jimmy Kimmel was included but I’m in bed when he comes on TV. LeBron James was the most familiar name on the list. Well, and Barack Obama. My basketball days are way behind me and if Dwight David Eisenhower, Bill Clinton and George Bush didn’t influence me, I don’t think Obama has a chance.

And please, hear me this morning, I’m not knocking any of these people, I am proud for them. They obviously have a lot to offer. And I am not making light of the office of the President of the United States. They are all great men. What they do might effect me……but, let me tell you, there is a world of difference between “effecting” and “influencing”!

My Father did influence me. As in, “When you go down that row, son, turn your hat around backwards, I want you to be pulling so much corn I can’t tell if you are coming or going!” Even as he chided us to “work a little harder” he was always the one doing the most work, lifting the biggest logs, pulling the heaviest load. He didn’t have to yell a work ethic into us, he taught by example.

Daddy also told us more than once, “Be careful boys on who you listen to; make sure they are worthy of your attention and trust.”

Miss Carolyn Blades influenced me. She taught from the first day I walked into her classroom that studying hard pays off. She didn’t exactly say “a mind is a terrible thing to waste” but that was her message. She loved the ABC’s into us.

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