Pursuit of Happiness

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Failure Is Simply the Opportunity to Begin Again.

As a born and bred Michigander, I have great pride for both my state and the people that come from it. The automobile industry is what gave Michigan it's shine, glory, personality, and ambition. However in recent years, it is also what has given Michigan some of the hardest times it has ever faced. Though hundreds of stories label my home state as on "life-support," "tanking," or "a useless ghost-town" I still believe that Michigan has so much opportunity left. Sure, we aren't in the best situation, but nows the time to look to those who made Michigan what it is. Even more specifically, Henry Ford.

A great Michigander, Henry Ford was a leader to all and to this day his words inspire creativity and hope. Just what Michigan needs right now.

"Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently."--Henry Ford

As if he knew that Michiganders would need this advice, the people of Michigan need to gather up their pride for our state and ambition for its success to create the amazing future that I know is in hold for us.

For those who believe the car companies are over and done. Stop. Give them a chance. Right now, these Michigan-based companies are developing amazing cars that are being neglected because the rest of the population has the impression that they can no longer develop a good car. No wonder the prices are higher than the imported, foreign, short-living new-age vehicles. GM, Ford, and Chrysler have excellent developers that are working to create more and more energy efficient long-lasting AMERICAN MADE automobiles.

For those of you who argue that no "American car" is actually made in America, you obviously have never been to Michigan. There are thousands of workers proud to assemble cars in these Michigan companies. And I am priveledged to call their work American Made.

So for all of you Michiganders down on your luck, just remember that you have the ability to start over. All you need is a little inspiration and enthusiasm. After all...

"Enthusiasm is the yeast that makes your hopes shine to the stars. Enthusiasm is the sparkle in your eyes, the swing in your gait. The grip of your hand, the irresistible surge of will and energy to execute your ideas."--Henry Ford

Monday, February 7, 2011

One Nation Under God...And Ronald Reagan.

Ronald Reagan.

This name speaks power within itself to nearly every conservative in the glorious United States of America.  Every member of the GOP has praised his name.  Every conservative idolizes him.  Every Southern Frat Gentleman drinks to him on a daily basis.   So here's a toast to his grand 100th Birthday yesterday. 

I must admit even though I am a staunch conservative, I may idolize him more than most...If you look over my bed, you will see centered neatly on the wall Ronald Reagan's campaign poster.  So why glorify him the way I do?  It may come to surprise you, but it is less about his policies or politics and more about the man he was inside.

The belief that the individual is capable of anything and everything has been drilled into my head since I was in the womb, unfortunately not by Ronald Reagan, but by my mother.  However, not everyone has a mother as nurturing in individual goals as mine, so the rest of the country should look to Ronald Reagan for aspiration. 

“There are no constraints on the human mind, no walls around the human spirit, no barriers to our progress except those we ourselves erect.”--R.R.  

Though people may think the American dream is no more, I am a firm believer that is still thriving inside people who want it the most.  Unlike most of my generation, I understand that the American Dream isn't something that is just handed to you.  It was grounded on the hard working individuals who made our country great and had the ambition and drive to attain their goals.  Ambition and drive is something that is few and far between these days. However, it is possible within every individual.  As Ronald Reagan so rightfully said, we, ourselves, are our only barrier.

Now, I am not saying that every individual in America should be forced to believe in God, but why can't we Unite as One beneath Him?  God is after all freedom.  This doesn't mean you have to go to chruch every Sunday (though, I am not saying you shouldn't!).  I am saying that our nation as a whole needs to unite once more.  Let freedom drive us into a prosperous future!  Forget the petty arguments that America is a melting pot.  They are completely wrong.  We are all Americans.  I'm not saying forget your culture and heritage.  But be proud to live here.  Be proud to be One Nation Under God.

“If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God, then we will be a nation gone under.”--R.R.

What wiser words could be spoken?  Our nation is at its weakest when we are separated.  The "fasces" are present throughout the entirety of the United States Governement and history.  For those of you who do not know, a "fasces" are individual wooden sticks bound together to symbolize "strength through Unity"  This is what Reagan was talking about.  If we forget our Nation is One, we untie that bundle and stand alone as weak twigs, easily broken. 

So whether you are conservative, liberal, Christian, or Agnostic, take politics aside to glorify this President as he should be.  And take some time to think about yourself, your goals, and your country.  You never know who will be the next Ronald Reagan.--Though I'm seriously hoping it's me :)

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Every Day's A Bonus

This post is dedicated to one of the most lively people I have ever known, Jeffrey Lynn Rochester.

It was two years ago yesterday that he left this world.  Jeffy was one of my dearest friends and classmates in high school.  He unfortunately was diagnosed with brain cancer our Senior year.  He was one of the brightest students in our class and the best baseball pitcher our school had seen in years.  

Jeffy touched so many people in our small little town and made a huge difference in everyone's lives even after he passed away.  Even after he was diagnosed and went through extremely tough treatments, he still kept up with his school work and was determined to get himself well enough to play the Spring's baseball season.  He knew then that "Every Day's A Bonus."

Though he may have been sarcastic and one of the most Realist people I know, he had an energy in him that most people do not see.  He wasn't afraid to tell someone exactly what he thought when he thought it.  Our senior year was filled with many exciting moments that he did not intend on missing.  Even after extensive surgeries, he was at football games, senior activities, playing in baseball games, traveling with his teams, and made it and participated in graduation without even the slightest idea that it was amazing he was capable of doing these things.  He knew "Every Day's A Bonus."

When the time came and he passed away the Spring after we graduated high school, I have never seen a town as a whole so emotional and taken aback.  When his dad, Jeff Sr., spoke at his funeral, there was not a single dry eye in the church.  He expressed Jeffy perfectly.  We all knew that "Every Day's A Bonus."

Jeff's family had bracelets made engraved with "Every Day's A Bonus" on them. There is not a time that I go into town and do not see at least one of these bracelets.  They remind us of Jeffy's amazing legacy.  There has not been a single day when someone has not stopped and asked me what these bracelets mean.  I sit there and tell them Jeffy's story with a smile on my face.  Each person that asks always apologizes for bringing it up; but I just say that it doesn't make me sad anymore.  I know that he is here in my heart and served and is still serving a purpose.  To this day, Jeffy is teaching people, "Every Day's A Bonus."