A priest, a teacher, a millionaire, and a narcissist were golfing together.
As they walked the course, they came up behind a foursome that was moving very slowly, and that didn’t offer to let them play through. Calling over the club pro, the foursome inquired about the poor sportsmanship of the slow group. The pro explained that the slow golfers were blind. The priest said, Oh, bless them, I will keep them in my prayers. The teacher said, I will tell my students how inspiring they are. The millionaire said, I will offer to pay their greens fees for the year. The narcissist said, Why can’t they play at night?
I enjoy some funny stuff so I thought a great way to kick it off would be to single out the greatest people ever to walk this planet. Don’t take my word for it, just ask a narcissist! They have a way of taking out the trash but taking credit for painting the whole house…vampires wont bite them out of professional courtesy!
I think everyone has had some sort of encounter with a narcissistic person at some point even if you didn’t know what to call it. Grandiose views of themselves that few others share, and outstanding ability to attach themselves to the spotlight, at ANY cost – any cost to you, that is..
Nellie was a very smart animal and I had no idea what I was about to learn when I first took the microphone at my new job. I was in college and this was just a job to pay some bills I thought. I would realize later in life that this position working with dolphins would teach me some very important lessons about life. It was in many ways the groundwork for my career as a social worker although I had no idea at the time.
When I look back on my career working with children, teens and adults in the mental health and educational system I rarely do not have a memory of the most peaceful training job I ever had, the easiest and the most fun in certain ways. I have no regrets about getting into social work and helping people, but I often remember the job I had working closely with and learning to perform with Nellie the bottlenose dolphin.
Nellie was almost 40 when I was a new guy on the scene, just wading my way around the aquarium and trying to understand how these awesome dolphins were interacting with staff working with them. It was a job I looked forward to each day and for good reason. No matter what was going on in my life, no matter what my personal stress level- the dolphins were uninterested. Each day as I walked along the tank where they played I was sure to be greeted with a tail slap sending a wave of water over me, just as a ” good morning ” to me! Most of the time they would swim along side of me as I walked, eyeing me to see what my mood was.
Amazingly, on the few times I strolled past them when I was not feeling good, they dove off into the water, leaving me alone and giving me my space. I would learn later that they can sense when people are ill, even when a woman is with child!
So as I spent my time there, getting to know each dolphin day by day, practicing our show that we would perform 3x per day for huge crowds on the oceanfront stadium I was transformed by the ability of these animals to adjust to an environment that was not their natural one .
Not only did they adapt, but they thrived and had fun there every day.
After a few months and 100 shows together, I became comfortable in our routine and could predict just when each dolphin would jump and how high, amazing the crowds!
It was the dream job and there was something about it that would lift any soul out of anguish even if just for the day. I got to work around happy dolphins, and was dealing with the happiest audiences in the world. I saw people at their best each day, it was a pleasure to be with both the dolphins and the people. I met celebrities who came out of nowhere just to touch a dolphin. I remember Pat Boone shaking my hand after I let him toss a fish into the open mouth of a dolphin, and being in the midst of movie stars as they filmed movies on location.
Nellie was an older dolphin and would be the only one to give me a hard time when I needed it. She would periodically leave me hanging during a show, refusing to appear from the tank an jump up in the air at my cue. I first thought she was just old, until a seasoned trainer told me that this was her way of breaking me in, a way of letting me know that she could put the show to a screeching halt at any second!
It was 6 months before she let up and complied for every show, 6 long months.
Nellie was training the trainer!
I went on a few years later to enter into a profession where I worked with people when they were at their worst, and there were no dolphins to make my day easier. Social work was not for the faint of heart, and I spent many years in some of the darkest places working with some very trouble people.
I am thankful for both jobs however and wouldn’t change a thing. Sometimes when I am dealing with a tough situation or teenager, I recall Nellie refusing to perform for me- and I smile. Somehow that dolphin taught me to find the good in any situation and it stuck.
I had a well thought out point to make in this post, but I think I will leave it as it is. Everyone should have a memory like that, something to make us smile when nobody else is. Nowadays, my motto is to go out each day and make people wonder how I am still smiling, still seeing the positive in things. Nellie taught me to lighten up, to laugh at things. Thanks Nellie.
We All Have a Mental Disorder Now- The DSM-V.
Well, I have written about this topic several times, but I could not resist sharing this older, but very relevant article about what the new mental health bible really means for us, and for the mental health professional. Here is an overview of how the “system” works. If you are thinking that it doesn’t apply to you, hold on because it probably does now!
Student Beats Teacher- Over Grade Received-
What can I say? More embarrassing news for us as a society. What happened to making an appointment with your teacher to discuss your grades? SMH.
Father Murders Child So He Can Play More Video Games….Yes Its True.
We have all been there, right? You are trying to do something when your toddler interrupts you, and you become frustrated. We usually respond by saying ” Stop, or I will MURDER you” -right? No, that’s not right I am hoping. Most of us have become impatient and maybe even raised our voices from time to time, but MURDER? Killing a toddler because they would not be quiet? It seems inhumane and impossible, but it happened in Florida. As disturbing as this story is, it does not end there. The man who did this served prison time for sexually assaulting a minor in California, and has a rap sheet for these type of crimes, so what the heck was he doing alone with a toddler anyways? Where is mom? Where is the system that routinely pulls children out of safe homes, because parents spanked them ?
It is wrong on so many levels, but first and foremost, we have a DCF system in place that is more concerned about falsely accused parents, who are accused of slapping their child for punishment than they are about children who are in the care of CONVICTED felons.Maybe it is the caseload of the workers for the state, maybe not but something must be done and soon. Whatever the case, we have way too many children who are being left in the care of already convicted child beaters and molesters. I spoke with a DCF caseworker who told me she had 300 kids on her caseload. 300? I can barely keep an eye on 3, how do you monitor 300?
At any rate, we need to do a better job of protecting the kids from monsters like this, and we also need to punish these people accordingly. This article says he may be facing 10 years? 10 years? Are you kidding me? He took a whole lifetime, and he may serve 10 years? How pathetic is our system . Stop jailing the parents who actually spank their children for good reason, and put the pedophiles and murderers away for good. Should we even have to discuss this? Sadly we are, again. What do you think the problem is in our society?
I am feeling that feeling when you know you must write about something, and you try to put it off, but everything in my life is pointing to the same thing. I cannot avoid this any longer. This is one of those posts that you can either write 5 pages or just a paragraph on. Today I will give the short version. Nevertheless, very important this life lesson is, so please do think on it and share.
We often say we do not gossip, or have favorites but are we really being honest? I read a wonderful quote from a friend of mine yesterday that kind of hits home on this topic.
” Don’t tell me what they said about me, tell me why they felt so comfortable telling you”
If you think that one through, you may end up as red faced as I did. Yep, I have found myself sharing things that I had no business listening to in the first place. I am not proud of it but I have. So I join in with anyone who also has been in that position in making a change, deciding to treat people equally and properly. Just do it!