Friday, March 21, 2014

Picture this...

Dear Members and Constituents,
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. The content density of an image can simultaneously speak to many storylines without using a single word. For instance, imagine a basketball player. He drives for the hoop,
his eyes set like flint on the basket, as he flies past his flat-footed contender. The crowd holds their breath, mouths half-open. The young Dayton player exudes a strong sense of purpose. The Buckeye seems stunned. You can almost feel the air getting ready to go out of the room as a sense of destiny begins to set-in. You are starting to get a sense for this powerfully charged image and yet this is but a sketch of the full picture (perhaps, because I only used sixty seven words). So, what do a thousand pictures tell us? It turns-out they are worth one word. The word “donut” to be precise. This morning Andrew Labbe (donut boy) donated the mosaic depicted at left to the Friday Donut Club (don’t worry he also brought four dozen crazy Voodoo Doughnuts). So come take a look at the thousand tiny Simpsons images and then grab yourself some of that Voodoo magic. Ummm donuts!
Happy Friday!

P.S. The artwork and the donuts are at Ed’s office. He will be back next week once he has had a chance to mourn Ohio State’s premature exit from the tournament.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Surfe Diem

Dear Members and Constituents,
Imagine human history as an ocean. The present, a giant wave sweeping into the future. We rise and fall as the wave advances. To me, this begs a question: is life contained in the particle or is it the wave? Our bodies (the water molecules, if you will) are the physical manifestation of this life, but, when the wave has passed through us does our life end? Or, is our life the wave itself? I’d like to think it’s the latter. We see the wave when it effects the particle, however, the wave goes-on after the water molecule has been left behind. We no longer see it but it’s there nonetheless. Regardless, whether you think life is a particle or a wave (or some quantum interaction of the two), now is your time. You are surfing the wave and this your opportunity to make your mark. Do some good! And, if you’re bent on evil and good is not an option, at least have a donut. I brought-in four dozen treats from THE 5280 Donuts. Enjoy!
Happy Friday!


P.S. Even though Ed Stocker is out today, donuts are located in front of his office.

Friday, December 27, 2013

The Resolution Rap

Dear Members and Constituents,
It’s that time of year when you feel everything is possible. The sky is the limit and you’re ready to do what it takes. And so I too will try my hand at something new. Freestyle. Those of you who believe you can’t spell crap without rap cover your ears (and read-on). The rest of you, give me a beat box.
Don’t let your resolution lead to disillusion. I propose a revolution where substitution of the classic institution leads to retribution. Here’s the solution and it’s proposed execution. Sure it’d be great to lose weight. You can elevate your gait to escalate your burn rate; or moderate what you ate on that late date. But before you try the feat and retreat from what you eat, let me be indiscreet and make you think on your feet. There’s folks on the street with no meat, wheat or beets. Wouldn’t it be sweet to put hunger on a complete retreat? Or some, I hear, wish to steer your career. From engineer to marketeer or cashier to financier? Whatever you do, be sincere and not a profiteer. Do what brings you cheer, hear? Like Mike Rubsam, he was awesome and brought two dozen wholesome donuts. So if you’re lonesome, come and grab some.
Making coherent sentences with a rapid succession of similar sounding words is harder than I thought. So maybe not everything is possible. In any event, next week Mr. Stocker returns to his regular schedule, so you can stop rolling your eyes now.

Happy Friday!

Friday, December 20, 2013

To Thine Own Self be True!

Dear Members and Constituents,
Who are you trying to impress? When you walk out the door and put on that mask, who is it for? And why do you care so much? Is it a desire to be liked or a fear to be loathed? If we are true to ourselves, we should know that being liked for something we fake is not real. Wouldn’t we rather be valued and respected for who we truly are? As for fear, it seems to me political correctness has made our society very thin-skinned. If our intentions are pure, why should it matter how others interpret our actions and words? We are all grown-up, we can handle it. I feel our society has lost much of its resiliency because so many people are afraid someone somewhere might be offended. And we are all impoverished by it. In this season of joy, we should not have to conceal the reason for our happiness (or sadness) just because that might  be unpopular. I will still respect you even if I don’t share your beliefs or agree with your views (not that you should care J). And so it is that, since Mr. Ed Stocker is out-and-about for the next couple of weeks, I get the privilege of wishing you an early Merry Christmas (feel free to wish me back any holiday you keep). And to help us celebrate, Mon Miah (donut boy) delights us with three dozen donuts. I realize many of you are not here, but if you’re in, you would be well advised to rush (they’re Krispy Kremes, so they should be gone quickly).

Happy Friday!

Friday, November 1, 2013

The Donut Connection

Dear Members and Constituents,
When I hinted I might be guest writing the weekly donut e-mails from time-to-time, I didn’t expect to be doing it this soon. Ed is on PTO and someone needed to let this social network we call the Friday Donut Club know donuts had arrived. Speaking of social networks, do you ever get friend requests or invitations to connect from folks you don’t know? If you’re like me, it happens fairly often. For the most part, when I receive these I am often compelled to do some research on the off chance I know the person but don’t remember their name. Then there’s the case of warhad faseel, voice presidetn at OMRAN (SIC). He is in the real estate industry in Afghanistan, has 27 connections on LinkedIn and wishes to add me as the 28th. Warhad’s dominion of the English language notwithstanding (I presume he meant his title to be “Vice President”), and even though real estate prices in Afghanistan are probably a screaming deal (in more than one sense of the word), I struggle to understand what value he thinks connecting with me would have. Perhaps he presumes I’m in the market for a poppy plantation near Kabul. (who isn’t?) Is he looking for fiber optic services near Kandahar? He is a 2nd degree connection, so we appear to have a friend in common but what else might we possibly have in common that makes him want to connect? The world may never know. What we do know is Jennifer Torres is filling-in today for Andrea Pierantozzi (donut girl) –there seems to be a common theme around replacements. She delights us today with four dozen hand-picked beauties. They’re sitting pretty at their NEW usual location (just down the hall from where I sit). So come make a connection with some sweetness.

Happy Friday!

Friday, October 18, 2013

Writing Into the Sunset

Dear Members and Constituents,
I think corporate America’s obsession with efficiency is generally healthy. Companies create competitive acumen as waste goes by the wayside. Product prices drop as productivity proliferates. Granted, it’s not all goodness. Change can be disruptive and it seems people seldom stay in the same post for long. Institutional memory can easily evaporate and re-formed teams can sometimes struggle re-building their chemistry. Standing as an affront to the unintended negative side-effects of continuous improvement is Level 3’s own Friday Donut Club. It was 489 weeks ago today that I started this ragtag band of sugar seekers. Although the club has moved up (one floor) and around (four offices) and grown from fifteen to fifty members (with a hundred and fifty having gone through the ranks at various points in time), it has always had two constants: donuts and my fingerprints. For the past nine years and change it has been my honor to preside over this “vice”. The time has come for me to take a break from managing the affairs of the FDC and make room for a new “vice” president (get it?). This morning, as Laura Serna Macia makes her debut as “donut girl” (donuts are here!), Ed Stocker has gracefully agreed to take-over our beloved club’s reins. Before you protest or inquire about my plans, let me assure you I’m not going anywhere. I’m staying right here at Level 3, in the same office (and I reserve the right to “guest write” the Friday Donut e-mails from time-to-time). Please join me in thanking Ed for stepping-up and keeping this tradition going.
Happy trails!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Take in the Donuts

Dear Members and Constituents,
We’ve all seen them. Cameras strapped around their necks, hair disheveled, making unexpected stops along the way. Looking out of place and not caring about making fools of themselves. As a matter of fact, we’ve all been them. Visiting the sites locals know about but never bother to go. Not caring that the traditional cuisine is not what locals eat and the antiques have recently been aged. I’m talking about tourists, of course. Why is it we only behave that way when we’re so far from home? I have a feeling it has something to do with the fact we don’t know whether we’ll ever be back, so we want to take it all in. As tourists, we have an expiration date and want to make the most of the limited time we’ve got. At home, on the other hand, we’re surrounded by the familiar, we have our comfort zone and we take our ability to take the sites in “sometime” for granted. I know folks who lived in Anaheim but never went to Disneyland until they moved three thousand miles away (my folks, as a matter of fact). But, if you think about it, we all have expiration dates. Nobody makes it out of this thing we call life alive, and nobody knows how long they’ve got left. So, why not borrow a page from the traveler and live like a tourist every day? Take it all in! I propose we start with the donuts. They’re here, courtesy of Austin Hurt (donut boy) and they’re not getting any younger. Grab yours and enjoy!
Happy Friday!