The Unsinkable brian cork™

Brian Patrick Cork is living the Authentic Life

Actions vs. Words = Influence

July12

we must always wish everyone well.

use our super powers for good.

and, only judge people by those around them.

please think about that, and the notion will not only grow on you, it will guide you.

it’s no coincidence that proven leaders are always referenced as examples that inspire.

perhaps it seems obvious. But, it’s none of it is easily accomplished. the practice results in the difference between the “three per centers (3%)” and everyone else.

it’s not about me, but what I do.

peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

brian patrick cork

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wisdom from the grave: Robert Heinlin

June29

yesterday, to the combined horror of my fellow citizens, the United States Supreme Court approved what shall be historically and  universally reviled as Obamacare.

that despite the letter I wrote, to you know whom.

I’m pondering how to explain both the logic and dire implications to my otherwise capitalistic and democratic-minded daughters.  I am at once searching for good in the world, while I plan an Optimistic Gentleman-related revolution.

I must be, after all is said and done, an example.

so, thusly… it’s not just any day I choose to simplify my life or this Blog as a platform for perspective by cutting-and-pasting someone else’s words. however, Mr. Heinlin speaks to us all from proverbial grave with brilliant insight that also establishes a call-to-action.

to wit..

“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” – Robert Heinlein

in reviewing that impressive list of potentially notable accomplishments, I can yet only aspire to die gallantly. however, that is certainly the plan, despite the lack of  a currently considered strategy.

I’m resolute in my skepticism that Mr. Obama has read much Heinlin, or would value the components of that list. I don’t know from whence he draws his experience. but, I am confident none of it would be leadership, or good example.

allow it to be noted, here, that tonight I am cooking for Joanne.

“behind every great man, there is some woman rolling her eyes.” – Barbara Anne Cork

no caring Mother, and the man she inspires, would support, let fathom Obamacare.

the plan is afoot.

peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

brian patrick cork

trees and other enduring Examples

April27

I don’t necessarily want to be a tree.

but, were I a tree. I’d want it to be a really cool tree. Possibly a useful example of the species. perhaps a Spanish olive tree overlooking a great, and old city.

…I genuinely love old cities. …and, colorful window shutters. …blue window shutters.

meanwhile, I rap about “finishing well” and living an “authentic life” a great deal on this blog. I can prove it by you simply exploring prior posts, if you dare. and, I also share similar thoughts through public speaking, my business coaching practice, and daily rants at Starbucks.

earlier this week I received an email from a Mom of of one of my Lacrosse players. her identity is more important to her awesome and noble husband, and their Lacrosse-stick-wielding progeny, and less so you. however, her words echo sentiments I capture from time-to-time, and fuel my august desire to make a difference in lives around my own.

she said (this is actually an excerpt):

I admire you so. Where do you get your heart and drive? We are so blessed!! Thank you for all you do on behalf of all of us!! Thank you!!!

while I’m not chest-thumping, here – I certainly do enough of that elsewhere, I find myself with a few extra moments this morning reminding myself for posterity, and I’ll take you with me, hoping that the final moments of my life find me satisfied. better yet, I have the words, “well done” reverberating in my ear, even as I fade to black. or, possibly coming into the light.

I don’t expect a large group to amass for my funeral. I’m not even certain such a glum event is appropriate for someone like myself. just plant me under a tree. hey… that just gave me an idea for yet another post.

perhaps good men that knew me well will tell my daughters stories about their Dad – and, how much I loved them (and, those men and other people in my life). and, talked about them, and their Mother, every chance I had. hopefully a few lads will tell their own charges that, “Coach Brian said hitting is the third thing you do in Lacrosse”, and my fearsome Shockers alumni will tell their own daughters that their “off-boot-toe dictates the direction of a well-kicked ball”, and, there really is a difference between being pleased and being satisfied”.

I have been surrounded by so many examples of why my life is rich. I can only prey, and I do, that I can offer in return my best self as an example in return.

In the years to come, feel free to kick any tree, and say hello.

peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

brian patrick cork

old things seem New to me

March22

So… I grew up in a military family. Ha! It’s painfully and juxtapositionally obvious, but also perplexing to most in my path. My Dad retired from the United States Air Force as a full Colonel. Many of my memories around Dad and his own measure of success – not to mention his influence over me are often detailed in this Blog. By reference, and an apparent favorite: do not miss your Chance to blow it.

However, I cam face-to-face with a relevant application of his example and influence from long ago just yesterday.

Setting the stage…

Early on, living the life of a scion of the Officer’s Club, I was exposed to the cream of the Air Force’s Strategic Air Command, and learned what those gallant men and women meant when they lived and died by the credo: “Peace is our Profession”. without realizing it at the time I came to appreciate experience, expertise and the chain-of-command. I witnessed first-hand, the synergy employed and enjoyed by gray-haird General’s mixing daily with fresh-faced 2nd Lieutenants, all firm in the belief their lives and contributions made a vital difference to one another, and the sanctity of our Constitution.

This means it never occurred to me that age, in-of-itself, was relevant. Only performance; and, all of it driven by courtesy and respect, and the call to action around a shred purpose. None were judged by anything but their ability to command and take commands that resulted, daily, in an efficient process that enabled them all to put their very lives into one another’s hands, without a second thought.

For example, I’ve never looked at an older man and saw weakness or lack of relevance. I saw only the likely potential of wisdom based upon one experience or another.

On the other hand, it’s never occurred to me to look at young people, as relative as that term has to be, and saw a lack of potential or ability.

Mind you… I’ve had my own adventures, hinted to in this Blog as well, but understood by only a few. But, my most recognized contributions have come through my duties as a Dad – and, that of a business man, that others approach for advice, guidance and stewardship.

And, for the first time in my business life, Friday in fact, I came face-to-face with a small team of burgeoning entrepreneurs, still in college, that invaded my offices – with the intention of enforcing accountability.

Background…

I’m in the midst of acquiring another startup that I’m convinced has a product that is a marketing-oriented game-changer. These soon-to-be-graduates are currently customers of the company. They are not pleased with the progress of their unique project. Our people say there is “scope-creep”. The customer says there is poor communication and missed deadlines. I want customer satisfaction and, thusly, affirmation of my investment.

Time will tell all.

But, in any event, at the large table in my board room, I found myself with three hearty and ferocious businessmen that, by age alone, qualified them to be my children. Although their graduation from college is imminent, with less than two months to go, they seemed small to me. And, they were naive, to be sure. But, eager and passionate, more importantly. And, they were irate over what to them was a lack of accountability on the part of the company. That is something that I’m unaccustomed too. My own ventures to date have been the example and hall-marks of accountability and service. So, I started the meeting open-minded. I coach soccer teams that are now at the U14 and U16 age bracket (and, they were all once at the U11 bracket). But, this was different. The first thought was mental arithmetic. I had started my own business at nineteen, also while in college (with the help of my Grandad’s money). I sold that business a week after graduation. So, I could, at many levels, relate to these young men.

But, I was biased. I knew it right away. Not defensive because they were displeased with a company I was involved with. No… I was actually age-biased.

I liked them well enough. I put them into the hands of a Project Manager that I’m mentoring myself, and even bought the entire lot lunch. We committed to deadlines and will work, with intent and a will, to see those critical deadlines met – all based upon collaboration.

But, this is me now. I’ll be fifty in October. I know I’m fitter than most. I’m always being sized-up by representatives of every generation; and, this group was no exception. I could do fifty pull-ups (I have the bar across the doorway of my office) with them hanging onto my back. And, that is how I viewed the entire matter… I’ll sling that crew over my should and see them to success. But, along the way I have to recognize that I’m going to be seeing more people that are younger than me, than older – and, my role in the business community is going to evolve, but possibly in ways I might not have considered before now.

So, every turn creates another opportunity to learn. But, also a challenge to be that example I experienced and have tried to live by daily, sitting at the feet of men that strode like giants around the world and taught me compassion, respect and accountability.

I’ll pause here and admit that I was sorely tested, a few times, to admonish them with a firm: “Stop interrupting each other”, and, “Please stop chewing on my business card”. But, they were, from their own perspective, probably working with an “old dude” with a big reputation for the first time in their emerging professional lives.

My own daughter, Haley Anne’s visage was flashing before my eyes. So to, were the eager faces of the students at Radford University, Georgia State and MIT, where I get to lecture from time-to-time came to mind. I’ll add my plans around “brian’s BEANS” as well. And, so that stage continues to be set, and my experiences are new and levied by other new things – including newer people and opportunities.

And, all these younger people are going to hold me accountable.

I’l have it no other way as they teach me and make me better and fitter to represent and reflect every talent God can squeeze into, and out of, me. This is where the Heterodox finds itself.

Peace be to my Brothers and Sisters.

Brian Patrick Cork

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What’s All This About?

"What am I looking at?", you might wonder.

Lots of stuff.

Meanwhile, here, I discuss events, people and things in our world - and, my (hardly simplistic, albeit inarticulate) views around them.

You'll also learn things about, well, things, like people you need to know about, and information about companies you can't find anywhere else.

So, while I harangue the public in my not so gentle way, you will discover that I am fascinated by all things arcane, curious about those whom appear religious, love music, dabble in politics, loathe the media, value education, still think I am an athlete, and might offer a recipe.

All the while, striving mightily, and daily, to remain a prudent and optimistic gentleman - and, authentic.

brian cork by John Campbell





photos by John Campbell

 

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