School fears: Pre-K

My little nephew is heading into a highly regarded Lubbock Pre-K very soon and he is excited but also a bit nervous. This Lubbock private school is a Christian-based school and I imagine it will be a good experience for him, but I understand his basic fears. He fears the unknown as most of us do. He fears the initial interactions with a room full of strangers. He fears the rejection and failure that can come in any setting. His fears are legitimate. They are the same fears that chase most of us around for the whole of our lives – my nephew is just getting exposed to it early on.

Poor kid.

Still, I’m sure that this Pre-K has teachers who will protect him and help to alleviate his fears. They are trained to help students learn basic life navigation skills. He will be okay. I just hope he doesn’t inherit my lifelong fears that I picked up in my Kindergarten days.


Do we ever really grow up? Do we ever really grow out of our panic that comes from early socialization? I know I didn’t. Maybe I should start over like Billy Madison and get some shampoo – because it is better.

The future looks bright for my niece who has decided to attend one of the best Texas colleges in the area next year. She could have chosen to go to a highly regarded four year Texas college, but she looked at the graduation rates as well as the job placement rates provided by Western Texas College in Snyder, Texas and made what I think is a smart decisions. After all, what good is college if it cannot get you into a good job. I think that is how colleges should be ranked – how well do they help their students get employed once they graduate. Forget the other ranking factors like campus beauty or social interactions – Just make sure I have a job post-college and I’ll be happy.

I recall my time in college and I can honestly say that my experience did not prepare me for anything useful. Four years of lecture and reading and papers for what? Definitely not a good job. I had to get my Masters just to get my foot in the job world – more money and more time. I compare this to what my niece has chosen – 2 years of technical training followed by an immediate job placement. And if she ends up wanting to go back for more years of education in the future, she can.

Anyway, that was just a rant and also an encouragement to other students to give weight to the right things when choosing a college. If it cannot get you a good job later, then find one that will.

Signing off –


Just a quick Blurt

I won’t call this a blog post because it is so very short – We will call it a Blurt for Google’s sake.  In this Blurt, I just want to make one statement about colleges in this state.

Just because you go to a huge, popular Texas college rather than small and less popular Texas colleges does not make you smarter or more capable.  Western Texas College is a two-year school but it preps students for better jobs right out of school and creates less debt than the other Tier One schools.  So don’t act cocky if you are attending a “cool university.”  Most of those places don’t get you ready for real life or prep you for anything technical or useful.  Places like WTC might not have frat life or even Bachelors degrees, but they at least get you employed sooner than later.

That’s my Blurt rant for today – I attended a large university myself and am convinced that it was a racket designed to take my money and teach me little practical knowledge.  That might have been my fault.  But, if I had a kid I’d send him or her to a place like WTC over where I went.

Why am I saying all this?  What do I care?  I just get sick of the bigger school students thinking themselves superior because they were able to get into a school that makes them pay a lot of money to sit through boring lectures and write busy work essays.

That’s all.  I will return to my cave and say little more except this:  I can’t wait for the future!  What about you?

Jesus Walks Away, Mr. Kanye

Props to the WEST side

So, if pride goes before a fall, then Kanye is gonna drop like a sack of steel loaded potatoes hurtling downwards from a super high building in Idaho.

And it is going to hurt.

I’m not wishing that on him.  I’m just rolling with the classic Bible statement (pride goes before a fall) and laying it next to his own quotes about himself – Add his words to his behaviors – and you got some serious Tom Petty free falling action coming to a guy who has some serious talent, but who lets the world tell him he is bigger than Jesus –

Yep, Mr. Kanye – We can tell you haven’t talked to God in so long and we even bet you would try to upstage Him at the Grammys if God cared about winning Best Eternal Artist –

I wonder what your future on this planet will be like.

I can easily see that you are damaged from your past days and that makes me pretty sad.

I’m messed up too (A WHOLE LOT)  and I fall hard out of arrogance.  But dude, if you don’t take up some Philippians 2 and Colossians 3 “attitudinals” and apply them asap, you are going to feel a contrast so terrible that you will wish you had never tasted fame.

Jesus still walks but you gotta stop walking away.

Who cares if you gain the whole world?  The world is passing away – Buy stock in the eternal, bro.

You ain’t listening to me – You wouldn’t hear me unless I was made of gold, played like Lebron, looked like Beyonce, and/or had an honorary doctorate from Gucci.  But, you should.  And I hope the Holy Spirit gets your ear before you face plant off of a Grand Canyon dive – You are not as bad as Nebuchadnezzar was and I hope your future isn’t like his pre-animal fall – But I truly do hope you end up where he ended up – Praising your Maker and finding healing and true joy.

Sucks to fall and it even sucks harder to fall in love with this silly culture – I am the small fish in the smallest pond, but I fell in love with myself and my reflection in others’ eyes like you have.  And I am still paying for it –

I’m not like US magazine hoping for you to lead balloon it…

I’m just a small market media company guy (Go Dream Taxi, Go.)

And, I’ve got hopes that you get better and find best.

May you choose to drop speed and choose lower altitudes on your own – not choose to keep up the climb until your engine stalls, like mine did – The Himalayas at 1,000 mph don’t taste good, Yeezie!

God will not be mocked – We reap what we sow!!!

And yet – GRACE –

find that – get wise – your long-term could be beautiful – not dark and twisted.

(Read Mesus by Loud A. Smith – it will open your eyes.)

Mesus: PartOne
Read it, Kanye. It’s your first official post-doctoral assignment…


Training Legends…

After going to college and getting two bachelor degrees and then following that up with a Master’s Degree, I can honestly say that I do not believe in campus Higher Education – unless it is the sort that actually prepares you to do something specific.

Being “well-rounded” is a nice idea if the job market did not want so many rectangles and squares.

Anyway, I’m just being negative, disruptive, and iconoclastic.I should have begun by saying:  “I sure love those Universities and Colleges that truly prepare their students to become legendary.”

Yeah – that sounds so much better than saying Higher Education is a complete racket for most of the students who enroll and major in humanities, political science, history, communications, and other useless majors which should only be made available as “affinity minors.”

So sticking with the positive – Let me say this:  for those who are in the market for Texas colleges, I know one, which basically trains all of its students to be skilled in areas where they can find great jobs when they graduate.  Sure, Western Texas College in Snyder may not produce Socrates or Nietzsche.  But after spending some time speaking with their staff and talking with their students (and even taking a peek at their graduates’ employment records) I can honestly say that this Texas college is rocking it the right way.

Students come and at a 99% graduate.  Then they go get great jobs in fields where there are high-paying job openings.

Isn’t that what college is about?

I think this Texas Community College has it right!!!

Congrats to you – You have almost made me change my mind about the intelligence of going to school beyond high school!!!


An Almost Complaint…

When I was told I would be placed in “Corporate Housing Lubbock” for a month and then into “Corporate Housing Midland” for another month, I cannot tell you how displeased I felt.  Those word combinations being issued to me by my lovely company were supposed to be comforting – “You will be sent out of town to do our bidding, but rest easy because you will be given a home there – A corporate home – A corporate home in Lubbock/Midland.  You lucky salesman.  We value you so much that we are putting you into some sort of ugly box version of furnished life in cities you would never visit.”

Thanks bosses.  You really know how to treat your best workers.

I am a traveling salesman.  I should not be complaining.  I’ve been to all sorts of weird towns and lived out of my suitcase in bed bug motor lodges without complaint.  What bothered me most about this memorandum about my upcoming road trip itineraries was the use of euphemisms to describe my “housing opportunities.”  Usually my company just says, “get a motel for under $75 and save the receipts.”  But this time, I was told I had been set up in Corporate Housing – as if I were going to be ushered into a swank spot that I actually enjoyed.  Staying out on the road is not a swank thing.  And living in a motel is never called living in a home.

I was mad at my bosses – even more angry at the marketing department who most likely worded the memo to me.  I just want honesty.  Don’t raise my expectations that I’m going to be setting up shop at a nice place every night.  Just keep it real and pay for my vending machine dinners — A Snickers, some Doritos, and a 16 ounce Mountain Dew will do me fine.

After stewing a while and thinking about firing off an email to my superiors about their joke of a housing description, I thought better of it and determined to be a good employee.  I decided to be the sort who is unflappable – someone who is not emotionally affected by a silly set of words.  I went on the extended sales trip and prepared for the regular.

But then, when I got to my destinations in Lubbock and Midland, and found that my extended stay housing (At Home Corporate Suites) was actually the opposite of what I had been imagining and even beyond what I could have asked for, I had to totally eat my words (the ones I left in my head).  For once, my company had put me up in two places that were beautifully furnished spaces.  I was actually impressed with the design, the staff who handled my needs, the food options, and the fact that it really did feel like a home.

This is my confession of being an angry little child who guessed wrong about their bosses and their care for me.  It’s also a promise to find a way to stay at these amazing places again.  I liked them better than my own apartment.

Stranger in a Strange town???

What do you do when you are asked by your company to move into a new town that you are clueless about?

Jobs make us do it all the time – or at least they request it-if we want to stay with the company and continue an upward climb for the highest levels of occupation.

So we go.

But “going away” means a ton of change and struggle.

It means making a lot of decisions that are stacked with uncertainty.

One of these decisions faced me recently when I relocated to a new city in Texas – the dreaded:  Where should I live?

Sure, Google reviews and Yelp help was there for me, but since I had never set foot onto the new land of my future success and because I had no idea as to whether these online reviews were legit, I felt quite uncomfortable committing to an apartment and especially a house without being in the area for myself.

Solution:  I found a super nice extended stay apartment (furnished corporate housing) that was cool enough to be there for as long as I needed.  For some people, since the housing is pretty sweet and seemingly turnkey, it is a perfect choice for them as they do their entire business thing.  For me, it was ideal in that it gave me plenty of time to settle into the new area and then begin to look for more permanent housing.

Being furnished, it allowed me to wait to ship my stuff out until I knew what I would need.  Plus the furnishings were actually nicer there than what I had…

Anyway, this is just a first bit of advice from me to whomever is chasing their future in a new space:  Don’t just rent or buy before you show!  Get there and find one of these amazing spaces so you can choose wisely!

Unless you believe in trusting complete strangers online or on the phone…

That is on you my friend.