Saturday, April 03, 2010

Saturday Night Classic Music Video

This week we go to the G's...

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Friday, April 02, 2010

No TV Part 2

Tonight, some words from Seth Godin:

But it's better than TV

At the local health food store lunch buffet, they offer stir fried tempeh.

I never get it. Not because I don’t like it, but because there are always so many other things on the buffet that I prefer.

That's why I don't watch TV. At all. There are so many other things I'd rather do in that moment.

Broadcast TV was a great choice when a> there weren't a lot of other options and b> when everyone else was watching the same thing, so you needed to see it to be educated.

Now, though, you could:

  • Run a little store on eBay
  • Write a daily blog
  • Write a novel
  • Start an online community about your favorite passion
  • Go to meetups in your town
  • Volunteer to tutor a kid, in person or online
  • Learn a new language, verbal or programming
  • Write hand written thank you notes each evening to people who helped you out or did a good job
  • Produce small films and publish them online
  • Listen to the one thousand most important operas
  • Read a book or two every evening
  • Play a game a Scrabble with your family

None of them are perfect. Each of them are better than TV.

Clay Shirky has noticed the trend of talented people putting five or six hours an evening to work instead of to waste. Add that up across a million or ten million people and the output is astonishing. He calls it cognitive surplus and it's one of the underappreciated world-changing stories of our time.

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Thursday, April 01, 2010

A Late April Fools Day Prank

After 5pm Thursday, a co-worker and I sealed up another co-workers cubical.

He won't see in until Friday morning, but you get to see it now:

Look, no doorway!

No TV Part 1

I'm not giving it up.

But often when I watch, I'm also doing something else too.

But what if you wanted to give it up?

Tonight and tomorrow, I'll have two posts for you on the subject.

This is from the DLM Blog:

My Experiment to Break Free from TV

Posted: 21 Mar 2010 08:09 AM PDT

couch potato
A few years back, I decided to try a "no TV" experiment. I wanted to see if it was possible to give up television for an entire week. It wasn't as extreme as the 30 day experiment mentioned here, but it seemed like a good length of time to me. Actually, before beginning the experiment a single week of no TV seemed like a lifetime. I had grown quite attached to my TV, but I wanted to get back some of my time. I knew that my time could be spent in a more productive manner than watching TV, but I had grown quite accustomed to plopping down in front of the TV after work and vegging there until bedtime.

As I entered the experiment, I realized I had to overcome some of the excuses I had developed for keeping the TV on. I have heard the following excuses from others and also uttered them myself. I realized that these excuses were really just falsehoods keeping me away from exerting any effort to do anything... anything at all.
  1. I Just Turn it on for Background Noise
    We get accustomed to having noise in our lives. So much so that quiet time can feel quite uneasy or even frightening. We often thrive on that constant source of outside stimulation. The television is a poor source of background noise. Most programming leans toward the negative and some (like the evening news) can be downright depressing. Beyond that however, quiet time is very beneficial. In the quiet we are forced to listen to our own thoughts. We get the opportunity to think for ourselves. The quiet allows us to recharge those mental batteries.

  2. The Kids Watch It
    Ah, the ideal babysitter; needs no payment, doesn't complain, keeps the kids entertained for hours, and allows us parents to get some time to ourselves. It's pretty obvious that "the kids watch it" isn't really a good excuse. Sure the kids get sucked into some happy delightful children's programming and sure they may learn a thing or two, but how much more would they learn by using their own imaginations? We all know that we shouldn't let the kids watch too much TV, but we often long for some time to ourselves and permit that babysitter in a box to do our jobs as parents. And really, the TV doesn't make a very good parent. Our children would be a lot better off if we encouraged play time, reading, and imagination. Of course, part of this includes us getting involved with our children and participating in some of this play.

  3. I Like to Watch the Educational Programs
    I can't count the number of times I've heard someone say they watch TV for the educational programming like the Discovery Channel or The Learning Channel. The best way to approach this is to ask yourself if this "learning" is beneficial to you personally. Would buy a book to read about this topic? If the answer to that simple question is no, then you really aren't learning anything useful at all. I'm not sure how knowledge of Lions in Africa or Kangaroos in Australia will really benefit us in everyday life. Sure the topics may be interesting, but in reality they take away from time that could be spent actually learning; learning something beneficial that we could apply to our everyday lives.

  4. I Like to Relax and Unwind After a Hard Day of Work
    Unwinding after work is a great idea, but is watching TV really the best way? How about a warm bath, a good book, some light conversation with the family, a short nap, or lounging in a comfy chair in the back yard. All of these alternatives would be better ways to unwind. Additionally, that time spent unwinding in front of the TV often stretches into most of the evening. That bit of time intended for unwinding ends up being an evening wasted in front of the TV. I'm sure you can find better methods for unwinding that won't consume your evening.

  5. I Might Miss Something Good
    This was my excuse in my younger years. I hated missing something on TV, especially when everyone else was talking about it the next day. It's a lonely feeling to be left out of conversations just because you missed a TV program and had nothing to contribute. As you get older, the scene changes to coworkers around the water cooler, but the excuse remains. The difference is, as an adult, we should feel less pressure to fit in, and have more meaningful things to talk with our coworkers about. I have missed out on hundreds of "television" conversations at work. It's really not important to me anymore, and I can give a small smile on the inside when a "television" conversation begins because I know I've made better use of my time.
I came across an interesting quote recently:

You sit around watching all this stuff happen on TV. . . and the TV sits and watches us do nothing! The TV must think we're all pretty lame. -Shannon Wheeler

I think the quote hits it about right. My week without TV was a big success. I wasn't twitching, crying in the corner, or drenched in a cold sweat. I actually found myself reading more books, talking more with my wife, and generally enjoying the evenings more. We did allow the TV back into our lives, but on a much more limited basis. In fact, we eventually canceled our cable TV because we weren't getting good value out of the programming available. How about you? Are you ready overcome the excuses and try a No TV Experiment?

Written on 3/21/2010 by Eric Watermolen. Eric is a lifestyle blogger and amateur philosopher. He enjoys discussions of our path in life. You can find him at Eden Journal, where he posts a wide spectrum of articles from personal development to spiritual and philosophical awakenings..Photo Credit: rsc-sprice

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Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Advice for Dad's

from the AOM blog:

Three Moments Every Father Dreads (and How to Cope)

Editor’s note: This is a guest post from Curtis Silver.

As a parent, there is much to enjoy about that role in your life. There are so many wonderful moments you have with your children over their lifespan that are impossible to properly track and catalogue. Some stand out above the rest-their first words, learning to walk, their first day of school and so on. These moments are to be cherished and to be remembered and make parenting worth every hair pulling second. It’s the reason I’m half bald and going gray; it’s the reason that I worry about their safety and well being every waking second (and some sleeping ones.)

However, there are moments in your child’s life, that while they may be monumentally happy moments, can also be ones that you simply dread. Especially when you are raising a precocious daughter. Boys have their expected moments in life, from bailing them out of trouble at school to getting in fights, but girls are a completely different animal. Yes, I am drawing a line in the sand between the sexes. Anyone who’s raised both boys and girls know they present two uniquely different and hair graying challenges.

No matter how much we dread these following moments that will come up in the lives of our daughters, we must also realize that we will cherish these moments once they have come and especially when they have gone. The memory never fades as it were, and each of these moments will produce a proud and sometimes gleeful memory when thinking back. Until that point, however, there is no reason for any father not to dread the moments up until these events. That’s just being a caring and protective father. Here are three moments in our daughter’s lives that we will undoubtedly dread, and how to cope with them like a man and as a competent, loving father.


The first ten years or so of your daughter’s life are generally complacent ones in that she’s not asking to borrow the car yet and kissing boys is still yucky. These are the golden years for a father, when she’s still learning and curious about the world. You know, before she becomes a teenager. There is a new period now between childhood and the teen years, they call it the ‘tween’ years.

This term is supposed to put parents at ease about their children becoming teenagers earlier than they should. Not much can be done about it. The environment we live in has made sure of that. Unless you live on a farm in the middle of nowhere with no cable television and homeschool your children, it’s hard for them to not be exposed to the so-called adult world. They will receive and process a lot of information in these years, from a whole plethora of outside influences.

Then one day, out of the blue she’ll say she hates you. She’ll slam her door and pout for hours, texting her friends about how horrible you are. She’ll say how she wants to run away and never come back, and cry some more. Then she’ll come out, after she’s now missed the show you said she couldn’t watch, you’ll make up and eat Oreos. This is because teenagers are crazy. Puberty, coupled with a still developing brain, makes teenagers veer between completely adult-like behavior and going stinking nuts. The complications of becoming a woman (not like becoming a man is a walk in the park, but that’s not what we’re talking about here) only add to the already heightened sense of looney.

Suddenly you are working harder than ever to appease this monster that has replaced your little princess. Her moods shift more than a NASCAR driver makes left turns. She says nasty and hurtful things, and picks fights over things that used to be minute details of life. She used to volunteer to do the dishes, now she’d rather spend 40 minutes arguing and screaming something about how it’s personal. God forbid your child gets a sense of politics. Nothing is more stressful and confusing than a teenager mixing political motives into why you’ve asked them to simply take out the trash.

The hardest thing about trying to cope with teenage girl behavior is to not let it get to you. Remember the part about them being out of their minds? Why argue with a crazy person? Rather, let them get it all out and feel the pangs of guilt as you stay stoic and refuse to fuel their passionate fire of misplaced rage and hormones. Handle each situation with calm and logical reasoning; it’ll drive them freaking nuts. They’ll try other tactics, calmer and more thought out tactics in an attempt to prove their dominance. This is what you want, you want them thinking and learning, using their brains for things other than raw emotion.

With a daughter, this will be difficult. You’ll still want to hug them and tell them everything is going to be alright, but you know damn well that isn’t going to happen – at least not on your terms. At the most unexpected times they’ll show you they care and appreciate your efforts. A hug from your daughter for just being there is one of the best things about having a daughter. Soon you’ll both settle into an acceptable truce throughout the teen years, with only a few road-bumps on the way to full blown womanhood.

First Date

Road bump number one sneaks right up on you. You know its coming, every father does. That overplayed father-meets-boyfriend joke repeats in your head. You are sitting at the kitchen table; everything is silent besides your daughter’s footsteps pacing upstairs above your head. On the table, the innards of your Winchester Model 101. You hear a car door slam shut outside.

Your daughter comes bounding down the stairs, reaching the front door (which you have a clear line of sight to) before the doorbell finishes ringing. You slowly start to reassemble the gun. As she approaches, you take note of the ear to ear smile on her face. She’s completely ignoring your chosen evening activity. This is part of the truce, you ignore her crazy and she ignores yours.

She’s holding the hand of a young man; you raise your gaze to meet his eyes. You glare. He blinks with fear. You complete the gun and cock it into position. The loud click breaks the awkward silence. His hand drops from hers and takes a cautious step backwards. Holding the gun in your hand, and standing slowly you clear your throat. Your daughter is still smiling, but she’s starting to wonder. She starts to introduce him to you; you interrupt as you slide a round into the chamber. You ever been shot? You ask the boy. He runs. She cries.

None of that actually happens however. Many a night in your easy chair leading up to that inevitable first encounter you fantasize about that scenario. That’s your princess! How dare some teenage lothario trespass into your house with nothing but the most nefarious of intents in mind?

Remember, calm and collected, calm and collected.

You will shake his hand; you will take him aside and remind him to be courteous and gentleman-like. You will not threaten his life; you will not break his knuckles with your gorilla-like handshake. You will not turn your daughter against you by destroying her first boyfriend’s spirit and/or legs. Because he will not be the last. Chances are there will be many more before she takes her leave of your watchful care. It will never get easier, but every time it will give you an opportunity to be a man and handle each of them with mutual respect. No matter what justification you try to make, you were once that shaggy young man, and you are still standing.

Can I Borrow The Car?

It is statistically shown that teenagers are some of the worst drivers on the road. Remember that bit about their fitfully developing brain? Well, apply that to driving. So what you have are a bunch of crazy people on the road with limited driving experience. Not to mention the current issues with teenagers texting and driving and just plain not paying attention. It’s a scary world for teenager drivers, and I am not looking forward to the day that my daughter comes of age and wants to learn to drive. Yes, I dread that day of all days the most.

No matter how much you teach your child about driving, there is only so much you can learn without actually experiencing it for yourself. We all learned the hard way, by getting out there and doing it and so will our children.

So here’s my solution to the problem: I will enthusiastically teach my daughter to drive without any argument or telling her she’s not old enough. The catch – in a car of my choosing. The trick is to not buy the car before learning to drive, or teaching them in a car full of gadgets and distractions. Yes, they need to learn to drive with such distractions, but they need to learn to drive first. No make-up at stoplights because there is no visor for reflections, no checking the cell phone on the highway because the cigarette lighter doesn’t work and no setting the radio before the seatbelt clicks in because there is no radio. All this might seem extreme, but I just described my car.

Not to mention the lack of air conditioning and the “Oldsmobile Shakes” above 80 miles per hour.

The thing is, these are our daughters. Having children of both sexes I have found that it’s much easier to tell my sons “no” than it is my daughter. I’m sure most of you have the same experience. They make this face, this pouty cute face that is impossible to deny. I don’t foresee that changing. I don’t foresee that it’s going to be easy to deny them the opportunity to learn to drive in a nice car with Bluetooth wireless, radio buttons on the steering wheel and electric windows. You know, a normal car that shouldn’t be rusting in a junkyard. So sadly my conclusion on this one is giving in. At least to the driving machine.

Never forget the lessons though. Even though it’s your daughter and she’s dealing out the pouty face like a blackjack dealer spreads busts across the table, you’ve got to stick to the basics and pull no punches when it comes to the rules of the road. Most important lesson they can learn at that age, one my father taught me, is to always be aware of your surroundings. I have read too many horror stories of teenage girls (and boys) dying in car accidents because they weren’t paying attention to their surroundings. It can’t hurt to print out those horror stories and post them on her bedroom wall either. Nothing like some conscious scare tactic reinforcements.

At this point you may be wondering – is that it? Isn’t there much more than just that in our daughter’s lives? Yes, there is much more. So stay tuned to the Art of Manliness next month for the next three moments. I hope you don’t dread the coming of part two.

Curtis Silver is a core contributor to Wired’s Geek Dad blog, a founder of the daddy blog, a contributor at and trolls the internets on his blog. Follow on Twitter @cebsilver for regular tomfoolerly and manly cynicism.

Check Out These Related Posts:

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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Meaningful Friendship

Seth Godin wrote this:

Maybe you need new friends

Real world friends are hard to find and hard to change.

But virtual friends?

If your online friends aren't egging you on...

If your online friends don't spread the word about the work you're doing...

If your online friends aren't respectfully challenging your deeply held beliefs...

If your online friends don't demand the best from you...

Then perhaps you need new online friends.

Me again.
Perhaps you need new off line friends.

Yes, they can be connected to you online too, but the best friends are the ones you see face to face, not Facebook to Facebook.

I'm blessed in that I now have lots of folks who recognize me at many of the places I go. I have a couple of good close friendships too and these guys push me to be my best, even when I don't feel like it.

How about you?

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Monday, March 29, 2010

Healthy Fast Food?

This is a perception survey.......

Top 20 Healthiest Fast-Food Eateries

1. Subway
2. McDonald's

3. KFC
4. Domino's/Burger King
5. Quiznos
6. Wendy's
7. Red Lobster
9. Outback
10. Hardee's
11. Papa John's/Olive Garden
12. TGI Friday's/Ruby Tuesday's
13. Applebee's
14. Arby's
15. Godfather's/Taco Bell
16. Chili's
17. Little Caesar's
18. Roundtable
19. Chuck E. Cheese
20. Hooters
Source: Brand Keys

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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Learning from Leaders

Biographies are probably my favorite books to read.

Fortunately the AOM Blog sometimes features bios:

Lessons in Manliness from Byron “Whizzer” White

Posted: 25 Feb 2010 11:29 PM PST

All-American halfback.
The NFL’s leading rusher in 1938 and 1940.
Rhodes scholar.
Decorated war veteran.
United States Deputy Attorney General.
Supreme Court Justice.

History is filled with men who seem larger than life-men surrounded by an inflated myth of accomplishment, an aura that collapses as soon as one takes a closer look.

But a few men are truly just as remarkable as their billing.

Byron “Whizzer” White is such a man.

White was the epitome of the scholar-athlete, a man who excelled on both the playing field (where he earned the nickname “Whizzer”) and in the classroom.

White graduated at the top of his class in high school, at the University of Colorado, and from Yale Law School. He earned a Rhodes scholarship and became an Oxford scholar.

At the same time, he earned 7 athletic letters at CU (three in basketball, two in football, and two in baseball) and was All-Conference in every season in all three sports. On the gridiron he was a true triple-threat, and excelled at rushing, passing, and punting. He was a halfback that sometimes played quarterback, and both punted and returned punts. He became the NFL’s highest paid player and made the All-NFL team in each of the three seasons he played professional football.

“He was a man who knew himself and knew his convictions and didn’t care too much what others thought.” Ira C. Rothgerber

The son of a beet farmer, White rose from humble beginnings to an appointment on the highest court in the land, where he served for 31 years and became the fourth longest serving Justice in the 20th century. As a Justice, White was a man who stuck with his principles for his entire career. His strongly pragmatic and non-ideological approach, in which he decided every ruling on a case by case, fact by fact basis, was criticized by those who felt he lacked an overarching philosophy. Indeed, his rulings at first glance seem all over the political spectrum, but each was guided by his deep convictions on the Constitution and the role of the Judiciary; convictions he did not think could be classified in tidy boxes. He thus abhorred both “thinking by labels” and being given one. One of White’s former law clerks said:

“Being non-ideological and non-doctrinaire is clearly very important to White, just as is being his own person and not worrying about his place in history. He recognizes that being a justice who believes in a more limited Constitution is not the way to gain historical notoriety. Whether it’s because he gained such fame as a young man in sports or whether it’s just his natural disposition, I think he cares a lot more about doing what he think is right than whether it will make him a famous figure in history.”

Lessons in Manliness from Byron R. White

“Byron White is the straightest arrow I have covered in twenty-five years. His personal integrity is impeccable, in the extreme.” -Contemporary sportswriter

Keep Your Priorities Straight

When Bryon White graduated from the University of Colorado, he was faced with an excruciatingly difficult decision: accept a Rhodes scholarship to study at Oxford or join the Pittsburgh Pirates and enter the NFL as its highest paid player.

White absolutely loved football. And for a guy who had never had too much scratch and had worked his way through life since he was a kid, the money was truly alluring.

But when it came to the value of sports over academics, there was no comparison for him. Asked about his exams for the Rhodes scholarship during an interview on his football exploits, White answered, “I don’t think such things as football and scholarships should be mentioned in the same story.”

Sportswriter Henry M’Lemore said of White, “To him the end zone was a touchdown and nothing more.”

And so he turned down the $15,000 offer from the Pirates to bury himself in books at Oxford.

Without even the money to pay his way across the ocean, White worked on construction crews and as a waiter in his old fraternity house to earn the dough for passage to England. He could have been earning $1,000 a week in the pros; instead he toiled for $5 a day.

Happily, after White had made his decision, Oxford and the Rhodes Trustees decided to grant White an unprecedented waiver, allowing him to play football for a year and then begin his studies at Oxford.

After a glorious year on the gridiron, the Pirates’ owner begged White to stick around for good instead of setting sail. But White knew it was time to resume his studies and entered Oxford (he would play two more seasons with the Detroit Lions after the outbreak of war in Europe forced him to return home).

Asked about his decision to become an Oxford scholar instead of continuing with the NFL, White said:

“I entered football as a game, played it as a game, thrilled to it as a game, and I leave it as a game.”

Hustle, Hustle Hustle.

“He was a determined man. He had goals and he was going to accomplish them. Everything he did he was going to do to perfection. He was unique. There was never any patty-caking with Byron…It was leadership by example. He was so competitive. From the first down, he was ready to go all out.” Art Unger, CU teammate

“I hate to lose right down to my heels.”-Whizzer White

White was surely a man who was blessed with raw, natural talent. But this potential would never have been realized if he hadn’t absolutely worked his ass off in everything he did.

All his life, White was dogged by the stereotype that a man can either be a dumb jock or a non-sporty intellectual. People found it hard to believe that a man who was so deft on the gridiron could also have a first rate mind. And so White hustled to prove them wrong.

In college he kept a strict routine from which his fraternity brothers never saw him deviate-class, football practice, job, study. “He was a brute for study,” his friends remembered. He would read his textbooks as he soaked his bum knee in a whirlpool after practice. At halftime during his games, he would be stretched out on a table with his nose in a book.

When he arrived at Oxford, his fellow students were dubious that this professional football player was a real scholar and his tutor felt doubtful that White would be able to complete his law syllabus, as he was one term behind. So White worked on his studies 14 hours a day, not even relaxing during the frequent breaks in the Oxford schedule. When White went on “vacation” with some friends to stay in a villa on the French Riviera, his roommate remembered that “Byron would be up at the crack of dawn, out the door, and running up and down a steep hill outside the villa. Then he’d come back for a big breakfast and study until dark. He studied the rest of us into the ground.”

When he joined the NFL for his second season, he had to finish some classes he had started and so brought along his portable typewriter everywhere the team traveled, writing papers into the night. Each evening after dinner he would retire to his room and sit at his desk, wearing a green eyeshade and poring over his law books.

At Yale Law School, White’s fellow students, most of which came from prominent families from the East and ½ of which came from Ivy League Schools, thought that the hype around this gridiron great from Colorado was finally going to be deflated in the face of the school’s rigorous academics. Determined to prove his worth, White once more hit the books for 14 hours a day. He graduated from Yale’s Law School magna cum laude, the first to do so in ten years.

“I had never seen anyone work as hard as he did. And after practice was over, he was still out there, practicing punt returns-catching them on the fly-or kicking, and always taking extra laps.” Bill Radovich, Detroit Lions teammate

“He didn’t quit, even for one play, all day long, both ways. He was no fun to tackle, I’ll tell you. Others were faster, but listen, he was hard man to bring down. A hard man.” Sammy Baugh, Washington Redskins

White worked just as hard on the playing field as he did in the library. In college he would stay an extra 30-45 minutes after 3 hours of famously grueling regular practices working on his punt returns. In the summer he would spend hours honing his passing skills by throwing the football through a tire he had set up. To strengthen his injured knee, he spent a summer loading and unloading piles of bricks.

In actual games he went full throttle; his teammates remember him constantly playing black and blue. As a senior at CU he was the leading scorer in the country, and his record for all-purpose yards per game would not be broken until Barry Sanders came on the scene in 1988.

Yet he wasn’t an isolated, anti-social killjoy either. At CU he was elected class president, voted as the “Most Popular Man on Campus” his senior year, and chosen by his fellow students to be the “canebearer” at graduation. He traveled across Europe during his stay at Oxford (and not always with a textbook!), and later in life was involved with half a dozen community and service organizations.

How did White learn to be such a master hustler? “I just got in the habit of working,” he said. Word.

Build Your Mind and Your Body

“Byron was extremely quiet but somewhat intimidating. None of us in the room could believe how fully his forearms filled his suit coat. We all felt like wimps.” Tom Killefer, fellow finalist for the Rhodes scholarship on meeting White during the interview process.

Strength in body and strength in mind went hand in hand for Byron White, and he kept in shape religiously even when not playing college or professional sports.

At Oxford, he was barred from playing on the university’s teams because he had shed his amateur status, and thus had to look for other ways to exercise. Each Oxford student was assigned a manservant, sort of like a personal butler. White would regularly clear furniture from his sitting room and have nightly knock-down-drag-out wrestling matches with his manservant. It was an unorthodox breach of class lines, which would have gotten him reprimanded had administrators found out.

White understood that building one’s physique helped prepare both a man’s mind and body for emergencies. White’s diligence in maintaining his physique came in handy during his time in the Navy during WWII.

In 1945, a kamikaze plane bombed and crashed into the ship White was on, punching through the decks, landing in the ammo stores and plane hangar, and setting off a fire which raged all over the vessel. Gasoline in the planes ignited and ammunition was set off and fired in every direction.

Putting out the flames and rescuing men trapped by smoke and fire was the top priority. White, who had emerged from the attack unscathed, immediately went to work rescuing people and manning the fire hoses. He used his strength to lift burning beams off men who were about to be killed. White worked for four hours straight, saving every man he could, oblivious to his own safety. E. Calvert Cheston, a fellow officer remembered:

“He was absolutely focused on the fires and on the men. A shell would go off or an explosion would occur, but there was Byron-locked in on the man who needed help or on the hose that needed to be manned. I don’t think he ever thought about himself. We were all working frantically, but he stayed so cool it was almost unnerving And he never took a rest.”

When hiring clerks as a Supreme Court judge, White would ask candidates, “What do you do for exercise? How’s your health?” People thought it was strange, even out of line, but Whizzer understood the crucial connection between body and mind.

Seek Success for Your Own Satisfaction, Not for Fame and Glory

“Byron would have been just as happy-I think he might have preferred-if he played with twenty-one other players in an empty stadium-no fans, no coaches, no referees. Football was like all sports for him-a personal challenge, a thing to test his own limits. He really hated the stuff that happened before and after the whistle.”

“[White] was such a nice guy: you couldn’t believe that somebody with all that p.r. could be so down to earth and generous.” -Chuck Hanneman, Detroit Lions teammate

For those who knew Bryon White, perhaps the most salient characteristic about his life was not his myriad of accomplishments, but how damn modest he was about them. White was practically allergic to getting attention. Quiet, taciturn, he was a private man who loathed the press, rarely granting interviews, especially about his football career. He never wanted his football success, rather than his merit, to seem responsible for his accomplishments as a man of the law.

While playing with the Pirates, a disappointing season and scheduling difficulties left the team’s owner unable to meet the team’s payroll. Even though White would be the NFL’s leading rusher that season, he still felt he hadn’t been playing as well as he should and worried that the other players wouldn’t be paid. Although he was the highest paid player in the league, and had delayed Oxford partly for the large salary, he refused to take a paycheck for half of the season or receive any money for exhibition games even though his contract guaranteed it.

And after a dismal, losing season with the Pirates, White treated the whole team to an all-out steak dinner at a nice hotel. When asked about it later, he said the team had given the dinner.

In the Navy, the man who had been relentlessly covered in the papers from coast to coast, still kept a low-profile. Cheston said, “Byron was probably the least anonymous junior officer in the navy. Everybody had heard of him, but no one could believe how unpretentious and down-to-earth he was. You couldn’t get him to talk about his football days. He never brought it up, and if you did, he’d just shrug it off.”

In response to his Bronze Medals, White said, “I just got in on the gravy train. The other guys really deserved the medals. I came into the squadron from a PT job in November after the biggest work was done.”

When Justice White attended an Orioles baseball game and the owner offered to move he and his wife from the nosebleed section to his own box seats, White refused, not wanting to be seen as receiving extra perks because of his position.

It wasn’t false modesty or a show. In the words of one of his teammates, “Byron just hated ever to seem big-headed….He was just constitutionally incapable of tooting his own horn.”

Source: The Man Who Once Was Whizzer White by Dennis Hutchinson

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