Day 20: Excellence Always

In this blog:

  • Mindless Meandering…
  • Day 20: Excellence Always – a video recap
  • Week 1 Day 1 – 1.5 Miles
  • 2015 – Future Runs

Mindless Meandering…

Lately, I have found that when I take things from my mind and write them down – say, in an email to my brother, for example, that I can add greater life to those thoughts and somehow, that simple act of writing those things down brings me a step closer to taking action.

Getting Serious is still fresh in my mind as is the daily list of 10 prioritized items we write down and send out each day from the 100 Day Challenge.  I mentioned Karate & Piano previously but, Career Goals & Objectives would probably be of a greater pragmatic importance.  I’ve got about 7 months until the Part IV Board Exam which, in most people’s eyes would make it seem as absolutely Not Urgent but, I can’t think like that.  There’s too much to know and it’s too important relative to the rest of my life.  We need a score of 375 to pass but I’m thinking a goal of scoring a 475 would be fantastic and allow me to be eligible to practice in any state and get paid by all insurance companies.  Passing the first time is important because it’s such a ridiculously expensive exam.

just remembered, I need to follow up on a great job I applied for a couple weeks ago….

Scheduled, consistent action/study is necessary to get through Part IV and, if by chance Part III doesn’t go through I’ll also be totally ready for that again.


Day 20:  Excellence Always

Video definition of Excellence

Video definition of Excellence

is what i'm doing

Excellence

Some people perpetually create for themselves a condition for their own dissatisfaction.

 


Week 1 Day 1 – 1.5 Miles

2014-10-20 13.43.342014-10-20 19.19.05

Went to the park in the morning to get in either 20 minutes or 1 lap (1.5 miles) to start off my training program again.   I also ended up having to walk around a neighborhood for work so I kept track of that also 😉  All told, 3.5 miles for the day.

I’ll be repeating the original 26 week program, at least as far as the basic weekly sequence of 2 short, 1 medium, 1 long run per week is concerned and will probably be sticking with the 6 week buildup built into the program as well.

There is far less excitement for this second round – during the first round I could tell myself – and others, I was training for a marathon and, quite frankly, I believed I was but, the results didn’t pan out to that level of achievement but ….there were results and some very positive changes.  I’d say I’m a pretty solid 5k runner right now in that I can go out and actually run that distance pretty much whenever I want.  …probably 80% of the time anyway.

I’ll have to ponder over this program.  I have three full days vacation scheduled after KC and will devote more time to the specifics of the program then.


2015 – Future Runs

For right now – I’m already signed up for the St Louis Rock n Roll 1/2 marathon on October 18, 2015.

I was also looking at two 1/2 marathons in April of 2015 – the Go! St Louis and the Lincoln Presidential 1/2 marathon in Springfield, IL.  I would like a giant lincoln penny as a medal… 🙂

OK – now I’m signed up for the Go! 1/2 in April as well….

OK – I’m signed up for the Lincoln Half Marathon which is a week before the Go! 1/2 in April – very cool – productive blog today 🙂  I got some of that excitement back 🙂 🙂 🙂

My training thinking here is that I’ve got 6 months until April (for my 2nd training bout) and then another 6 months until October (and a 3rd bout of training)  🙂

 

 

 

 

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Success Requires Inconvenience

In this blog:

  • 100 Day Challenge recap to date
  • Success Requires Inconvenience
  • Sacrifices

100 Day Challenge recap to date

Today is the 19th day of the 100 Day Challenge and today’s video is Success Requires Inconvenience.  There are a few things which are sticking out in my mind as perhaps being key to greater success in my own life.  The very first video was Grow Up, Get Serious.  The grow up part doesn’t resonate too much in my life but, the Get Serious part does.  Karate and Piano are two areas in my life that could benefit from being more serious.  With karate, I know simply attending the classes can only do so much in helping me advance and I have to practice and review my katas & yakusoku’s outside of class, i.e., get more serious.  Piano is one of those things which tends to cross my mind on a daily basis but absolutely nothing is being done in regard to playing at a level I could appreciate.  Again, this is another area where I either need to eradicate further thinking about it in my head which will never happen or, instead of random fleeting thoughts, simply do it.  Practice.  Play.

I’m sure if I dwell on other areas of my life I’ll be able to come up with more ways to get more serious and thus get better results in any of those areas.

There was a list of things the other day about how to help empower one’s life and among that list was something along the notion of being uncomfortable and striving for more discomfort.  I know this is a simply adage about getting out of your comfort zone but, really applying that in day to day situations and everyday life on a consistent basis can be a little different since it can mean cutting into time normally spent engaging in behavior patterns which may simply be coping mechanisms for ones life.

I guess some coping mechanisms can be better than others.  Some may be downright destructive while others may be more benign and simply a waste of time.  I suppose mine would be more in the benign, time wasting camp.  I recall in another blog that I’d mentioned it being very easy for me to be content – A cup of coffee and an internet connection can easily turn into a pot of coffee and mindless tangential Internet surfing.  This leads me into thinking about Steven Covey’s book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People where he illustrates a Cartesian coordinate system with Importance on one axis and Urgency on the other.  Things in a person’s life are either important or not important and they are either urgent or not urgent.  This is how the four sections of the graph are filled out and in order to spend more time on things that are Important but not necessarily Urgent, we take time away from those things which are Not Important and Not Urgent …which, as one example, could be my coffee & Internet Surfing.


Success Requires Inconvenience

Success Requires Inconvenience

 

High performers understand that the road to success is filled with acts of discomfort and sacrifice.  They choose what needs to be done regardless of the inconvenience.  But, if they don’t like to be inconvenienced then why do some people embrace it?

Successful people are influenced by the desire for pleasing results.  While the overwhelming majority of people are influenced by the desire for pleasing methods.  That is the distinction, successful people are driven by pleasing results while the majority of people are interested in pleasing methods.  That’s where the excuse of convenience comes into the equation.  The vast majority of people are inclined to be satisfied by such results as can be obtained by doing things that they like to do or simply that they find to be convenient.

appetite

 


My first notable sacrifices while trying to adhere to this program would have to be skipping going out to watch the Cardinals baseball game to take care of other more important matters.  Listening to the game on the radio while taking care of business was the substitution.

The biggest inconvenience was similar for both me and my brother this past weekend.  I have to admit – on Saturday morning, physically, the last thing in the world I wanted to do was get up at 5 a.m. after having so little sleep the previous two nights.  The thought of skipping both the 5k and karate testing crossed my mind.

Our testing was a little premature due to an upcoming trip to Okinawa for many of our dojo members.  One person never showed up for their testing and another couldn’t get through the testing.  I talked with people afterwards and without exception, everyone of them had considered skipping.

I know over Thur, Fri & Sat night, my brother had only 10 hours of sleep himself which was about the same as me but still managed a trip to New York for a talk and a flight back and then a totally butt kicking 2:07 time in the half marathon on Sunday morning.

So, there’s definitely effort going out – just looking to further tweak situations for greater productivity – looking to embrace more inconvenience for greater results and, i would think, a happier life.

 

 

10 Strategies to Empower Your Life

In this blog:

  • Day 14:  Say No – 10 Strategies to Empower Your Life
  • Week 39 Weigh-In
  • 5K – Karate Testing – Half Marathon
  • Future Plans & Death
  • Week 2 – After Action Review

Start Saying No.   The Day 14 Video is called Say No.  There is a pretty detailed 10 step list which can help a person empower their lives.

A short Yes List and a long No list.

10 Powering and Productive Strategies you can use to empower your personal & professional life.

  1. What strategies, initiatives and activities will you say “No” to?  List the activities that can slow down or prevent progress from happening.  Everything is fair game – nothing is sacred in this exercise.  Simply put, if an activity does not advance you forward, then say no immediately.
  2. What meetings will you decline or delegate?  List every meeting you have in the remainder of the challenge and determine which you will NOT be attending.  Meetings consume large chunks of productive time and most can be declined or delegated to someone else.
  3. What relationships will you not keep?  The way you manage your relationships has an enormous impact on your ability to perform at high levels.  Identify the top three energy draining relationships you are committed to saying No to then, focus on creating strategies to free yourself from each of them immediately.
  4. What competitors will you not follow?  Too much time is lost by following and focusing on too many competitors and so-called gurus.  Identify the top 3 and immediately remove yourself from all of their email distribution list, blogs and other related communications.
  5. What websites will you not visit?  Websites are like magnets & vampires they draw you in and suck away your productive time.  Pull up your list of favorites and delete most from your favorites and keep only the ones of greatest value.  You must institute a “No Surfing” policy and stick to it.
  6. What money will you not spend?  Put yourself on a fiscal diet – every dollar spent should be thought of as an investment towards greater operating income even petty cash.  With this in mind, what things or entire even budget categories will you not spend money on.
  7. What foods will you not eat?  We are all reservoirs of energy and everything we do requires that we use it wisely.  So, it’s imperative that you focus in on your nutritional intake and exercise.  Eliminate any food or drink that compromises your energy levels.
  8. What thoughts will you not entertain?  Remember, that which does not move you towards your goal, takes you away from it.  Therefore, remove those thoughts that are limiting, defeating or downright negative and consciously replace them with thoughts of abundance, optimism and positivity.
  9. What television shows will you not view?  If there was ever a time hog that needed to be slaughtered, television tops the list.  If you stop to think about it those tv hours don’t take long to add up.  Even in a moderately tv watching household, it’s amazing how many hours are spent in front of the box.  The solution — go cold turkey and focus on making huge performance gains.  Take control of those previously lost hours and put them to good use.
  10. What will you no longer tolerate from yourself or others?  Identify the standards you wish to measure your life by and reuse to lower or negotiate at any time or any reason.  No is a tool of liberation and empowerment so use it with absolute authority and conviction.

That’s one heck of a list!


Week 39 Weigh-In

While updating my weekly weigh-in wallpaper for my computer, I realized my weigh-in isn’t until tomorrow BUT …I’ve already done it and we’ll just say it’s close enough for this week.  For today I’m weighing in at 263 pounds which is a 2nd consecutive week of declining weight.  Overall, still maintaining +/- 3% of that 260 weight I started at from a week after my winning weight loss contest so – ….27 weeks of maintaining a weight loss is fine by me!  🙂

Week n - 2nd 12 Week Session Weeks 39-27 - Copy

…maintaining a 50+ lb weight loss for over 1/2 a year – 27 weeks 🙂


5K – Karate Testing – Half Marathon

This should be a really fun weekend….

On Saturday I have a 5K in downtown St Louis at 8 a.m. – and ….as soon as that is over I’ll need to get my butt to the dojo back over in Illinois because Karate testing starts at 10 a.m.  On Sunday, the St Louis Rock n Roll half marathon starts at 7 a.m.   Packet pickup for these events ….I’ll do that Friday – there is supposed to be a wrist bank in the 5k packet that I wear during the half marathon then when that run is finished there is supposed to be a tent where I can get my Spinning Guitar Pick medal for participating in back to back runs 🙂   …just remembered – since this will be my 2nd Rock n Roll half marathon of the year I’ll also be getting some kind of repeat performance medal… I think i have pics of these somewhere …. all told, I’ll net 4 medals from this weekend.

obtained for running back to back races in the same weekend

obtained for running back to back races in the same weekend

obtained for running two Rock n Roll runs in the same year

2013-04-02_20-43-47_165 - Copy

HalfMarathonMedal Sat5k_Medal


Future Plans & Death

Running – Here I’m looking at repeating the 26/30 week program I was doing for my 3rd full marathon. It was originally a 26 week program and I added four blank weeks so it would end on the date of my 3rd marathon (November 1st) and, ironically enough, I pretty did exactly what was listed during those extra four weeks …nothing – pretty close to nothing anyway but, I did get in a good 1/2 year of training and made running progress.  When I started that 26 week program it was kicked off by a couple half marathons so I’m going to let this week’s half marathon be the kick off for my next 1/2 year of running.

I will be going back to Kansas City for a week long review for my part IV boards exam which is scheduled for May of 2015.  Part IV is interesting and once you pass you can never take it again and whatever score you get is what you live with for the rest of your life.  It determines which states you can practice in and even which insurance companies will pay you.  It is quite important so – KC review beats out my trip to Wynne Arkansas.

There is a nice half marathon on Sunday, November 2nd which I have run in before – maybe I’ll make that my 2nd kick off half.

Scrolling through media to find those upcoming medals reminded me of several events I want to do in 2015 – Macklind Mile, Tour de Belleville, Moonlight Ramble, Tour de Donut, Lincoln Presidential 1/2 mary, Go! St Louis 1/2, etc.

New Spreadsheet plan – shorter distances but maybe faster times.  I want a much higher percentage of running as opposed to walking … I almost forgot what the Future Plans referred to but I think I remember it mainly pertains to setting up a new program and creating a new spreadsheet.  I think I’ll start a new weigh-in wallpaper with that new spreadsheet.

Death – I’m still pondering this concept – this reality.  I went to another Masonic Funeral last week for a fellow Mason who had been a master mason for 61 years and 9 months.  I remembered during my first Masonic Funeral that one of the higher ranking members of the lodge tried explaining to me that one of the objectives of freemasonry was to overcome the fear of death.  What exactly does that mean, I’ve wondered.  I suppose ….well, I can’t speak for everyone but thinking about dying isn’t a constant thought in my head.  I suppose it’s just ignored but even my awareness level of an impending death but, at this point, I know one thing.  I know partly how my funeral is going to look.  I know there will be Masons present and I’ve heard what they are going to be saying a couple of times now.

I think part of this Masonic teaching kind of embodies that Carpe Diem notion which was briefly mentioned in a previous blog.  Some of the lines from the Dead Poet’s Society such as…. “did these boys wait until it was too late to take one iota from their life of what they were capable of?”  …just paraphrasing from memory there.   or that poem – To the Virgins, to Make Much of Time by Robert Herrick – “Gather ye rosebuds while ye may, Old Time is still a-flying and this same flower that smiles today Tomorrow will be dying.”

I’ll keep learning.  On a kind of related note, it looks like I’m going to be an officer in the lodge come 2015 or maybe starting in December of this year so… still more to learn.

Week 2 – After Action Review (AAR) phone call – 

compare & contrast….  wow, what a difference a week can make.  week 1 of this 100 Day Challenge was fraught with poorly defined objectives and mainly only served to provide a greater awareness of what a loser I was in certain aspects of my life.  Week 2 AAR – huge difference – yesterday was a simple day consisting of work, karate and then coming home and kicking butt around the house with various endeavors but, at the end of it all, I could honestly say that I had lived that day about the best I possibly could.

Anyway, each week at Noon (CST) there is an AAR phone call with Gary, the guy that made up this 100 Day Challenge and in that 40 minute phone call he mentioned a list of 12 things to help improve our lives so, I took notes in this blog to share with others who might be interested.  My list has 14 items but I wasn’t able to completely differentiate between all the items so …there is a two item bonus in my list.

Also – I mentioned previously that this was a $147 course but there was an offer extended for me to be able to add up to 3 people to the program for $47 each.  Not that I would pay that but, if anyone is interested I’ve still got two extra people I can add to the program.   Leave a message – paypal me $47 to my email address of dukowitz@gmail.com and we’ll set you up.  I’ll probably shoot out a mass email to the 300 or so Masonic brothers in my lodge, maybe one or two of them will be interested as well.

There are 77 days left in the 2014

  1. Elevate your conversations
    – High Achievers talk about Big, Bold, Better Ideas
    – Average People talk about common events
    – Little People talk about other people – gossip, etc
  2. Elevate your Beliefs –
  3. Elevate your Actions
  4. Elevate your Attitude – expose your mind to a better life.  expose yourself to excellence – surround yourself with it
  5. Elevate your expectations by demanding more from yourself and others.
  6. Elevate your discomfort by elevating & challenging your discomfort zone.  it’s inconvenient to workout when you’re tired – reality is it’s convenient and easy to make an excuse.  it’s inconvenient to make a good meal and convenient to buy fast food.  expose yourself to discomfort.
  7. Elevate your value by raising the bar and going the extra mile.  the difference – go the extra mile –
  8. Elevate your gratitude by elevating your consciousness.
  9. Elevate your future by focusing on key priorities.  What we think, know or believe is of little value compared to….
  10. Elevate your joyfulness – it’s perfectly fine to have fun in everything that you do.  joy is a virtue that hides in plain site
  11. Elevate your reputation by delivering exceptional results.
  12. Elevate your network
  13. Elevate your Focus by saying No and Setting Boundaries.  Have a short Yes list and long No list.
  14. Elevate your Fun by laughing more and worrying less.   outlook not determined by circumstances (reminds me of Victor Frankl)

Your thoughts your words and your actions & beliefs can help improve your situation.

77 days left in this year and Each One Counts

– Everything Matters –

Everything Counts

Your thoughts, words, action, beliefs are like an elevator that can either help bring you up or take you down.  Well said, Gary 🙂

Always Move Forward

Day 13:  Always Move Forward

The odds that you’ll succeed in achieving any of your goals in the 100 Day Challenge without taking action are about the same as winning the lottery without buying a ticket.

For those times when you feel trapped, stressed or in a prison of your own making, you must take massive, intentional, purposeful goal directed action.  It is the ultimate silver bullet.

In Real Estate, it's all about Location, Location, Location

In Real Estate, it’s all about Location, Location, Location

In Goal Setting and going about achieving your goals, it's all about Action, Action & more Action

In Goal Setting and going about achieving your goals, it’s all about Action, Action & more Action

You can’t just stick out your thumb and hitchhike your way to success.  You have to roll up your sleeves and do the work that needs to be done.

it's like those 10 two letter words... if it is to be it is up to me.

it’s like those 10 two letter words… if it is to be it is up to me.

idk

 

Days 11 & 12: Carpe Diem & The Power of Focus

The 100 Day Challenge found at http://www.100daychallenge.com cost $147 and isn’t something I would normally join on my own.  My brother is familiar with the guy who put the program together and he joined it then was able to invite one other person to participate in the program free of charge which is how I got involved with the program.

I have to say, I would recommend this program and while $147 seemed like a heck of a lot a couple weeks ago, it doesn’t seem like as much today because I’ve gotten so much value from the program.

As far as lofty, flashy or impressive goals …well, I don’t have any that I’m currently working on other than perhaps some actions I’m taking for my Part IV boards which may ultimately lead to a better life.  Back in high school is when the flashy goals, like getting a Lamborghini existed 😉

Today, and especially for the short term it’s more about responsible living and taking care of business at hand.  The preceding 6 years of my life was a bit abnormal due to school but I can see and am working to get much of my old life back because …it was pretty good to begin with 🙂

Starting each day with a worthwhile video and empowering message has been beneficial.  Having to prioritize my activities, commitments & deadlines for each day and sending that list out to other people in the program is something pretty new to me but has had some nice effects.

On a pragmatic level, I’ve limited my laptop/internet time by allowing myself two 45 minute sessions and one 30 minute session each day on my computer.  I even set a timer on my phone now to help hold me to those time slots.  Otherwise, I can spend hours on YouTube or building fantasy cars or reading Quora.  I don’t think I would have thought of using a timer while on the internet if it wasn’t for this program.  It has forced me to ask different questions and come up with different strategies.  It takes good stuff which may or may not have already been in my brain and pushes it to the forefront and helps make that good stuff become more of your everyday living.

My brother passed along another course that comes with a free hardcover book (free means only paying $7 in S&H) and some kind of 12 week course is included.  The book is called The Motivation Manifesto: 9 Declarations to Claim your Personal Power.  For anyone interested that course and book can be found at http://www.motivationmanifesto.com.

The Day 11 video on the 100DC was about Carpe Diem or Seize the Day.  The gist of that video can be obtained by watching Dead Poet’s Society.

Today’s Day 12 video was The Power of Focus.  Winners are the most focused people in life and losers and the least focused.

focus

 

If your goals, hopes & dreams could talk, what would they say?

Dear John 01

Let’s hope they would not be writing you the following letter…

Dear John (insert your name),

You probably already know what this letter is about – you’ve seen it coming, I know you have.  It’s about us John, it’s over.  I’m leaving you.  I’ve hung on as long as I’ve could, you’ve got to give me credit for that.  I mean the way you swept me off my feet and talked lovingly about the future we would have together.  I’ve waited so long for your embrace, your attention and your love.  Why have you neglected me?  Why have you made so many excuses?  Your inaction and addiction to procrastination is absolutely tearing me apart.  I simply must move on.  For years, I would get so excited when you talked about the business we were going to start, the places we were going to visit and the home on the water where we could watch the sunset every night.  My heart would pitter patter every time you would talk about me to other people only to be let down once again because you were afraid.  What are you afraid of?  It’s only me.  I’m your hopes, your dreams, your goals.  I wanted you as much as you wanted me but you have left me no choice, I simply must move on.  Please do not attempt to talk your way out of this.  The years of indecision and lack of discipline tell me everything I need to know.  If you really and I mean really wanted me, you would have found a way for us to be together.  I am tired of having my hopes soar so high, just to see them dashed.  I simply must move on.  Time is marching by without us and my greatest fear is suddenly becoming visible on the horizon.  I’m so afraid we’ve come to the end of this 100 Day Challenge and never had the chance to really get to know one another.  It absolutely breaks my heart to have to entertain this thought but I simply must move on.  Like the genie that grants three wishes, I wanted to give you your hearts desire.  All I ever wanted, needed and asked for was your attention, your devotion and your willingness to work hard for me.  If that was too much to ask for then I’m sorry.  I simply must move on.  All things of value must be earned and I’ve grown tired of your excuses and lack of patience.  On numerous occasions I was within your grasp but you quit too soon.  Why did you leave me when you were so close?  I’ll let you in on a little secret, every day I would call out to you, I would whisper, “I am your goal, here I am, come and get me.”  I’m curious, did you ever hear me?  I repeated this question day after day, month after month, year after year.  But, now I’ve grown tired of hearing that the timing is not right, that you’re tired or that some day you’ll get around to it.  It’s time for me to get around to it and find someone who is committed, focused and proactive.  I simply must move on.  On behalf of all of your hopes, dreams & desires …there is something you should know about us.  We will never fail you nor ever let you down.  The main reason why we have not embraced one another is because you have failed us by not taking action.  Why?

Sincerely,

Your Goals, Dreams, Hopes & Desires


Kind of sobering and, at the end of your life, your goals, dreams, hopes & desires will be gone.  Never again having a chance to obtain, get or achieve anything you may have once desired.

Relatively few people are in this particular 100 Day Challenge but everybody is in a Lifetime Challenge.  Are we, as Marianne Williamson has said, “living a life which earns our self respect” or are we living a life fraught with self condemnation from which we only want to escape by any means necessary?

St Louis Cardinals! (& Day 9: Raise the Bar)

In this blog:

  • Raise the Bar – Day 9 Recap of 100 Day Challenge Video
  • St Louis Cardinals

Day 9: Raise the Bar

Most of this video goes through the Olympic high jump competition and shows how the world records kept improving as the bar was raised and different techniques needed to be developed to successfully traverse greater heights.  The analogy being if metaphorically you want to raise the bar in your own life you will also need to develop new techniques.

raised bar

Unless you try

 

 


 

St Louis Cardinals

I was one of 53,723 people who got to witness the St Louis Cardinals win game 7 of the 1982 World Series against the Milwaukee Brewers.  I distinctly remember driving to that game because the wire coathanger fix that was holding up the exhaust system in my 1976 Plymouth Arrow finally gave way and the muffler, which was starting to drag along the road as I drove, completely detached from my car.  I remember looking into my rear view mirror and watching the whole thing – pipes, muffler and all bouncing down the road behind me.  Thinking back, as a responsible citizen I probably should have stopped my car and gone back to remove the muffler & pipes from the road but, as a young and enthusiastic Cardinals fan on his way to the World Series …I don’t think that thought crossed my mind at the time.

The Cardinals also went to the World Series in 1985 & 1987 that decade.  Contrary to what the history books might tell you about the 1987 World Series against the Kansas City Royals winning in 7 games – the TRUTH is that the Cardinals won that series in 6 games if not for the inept first base umpire Don Denkinger who, in the bottom of the 9th inning of game 6 mistakenly called Jorge Orta of the Royals safe at first base when he was CLEARLY OUT.  one moment ….

OK – here’s the link – 1985 World Series Game 6 – 9th Inning

The ball is ALREADY in Todd Worrel's glove!  Jorge Orta is obviously OUT!

The ball is ALREADY in Todd Worrel’s glove! Jorge Orta is obviously OUT!

The blown call occurs in real time at 2:27 in the video but at 3:03, 3:13 and 3:24 – any way you look at it, Orta is out.  This was a 1-0 game with the Cardinals leading and only 3 outs away from a World Series victory.  After this play they should have been 2 outs away from a World Series win.  There is a huge world of difference between having 1 out and nobody on base as opposed to zero outs and a man on first.

I suppose there is a legitimate segway between the success orientation of this blog and the St Louis Cardinals but honestly, I think I also just wanted to brag.

Bill DeWitt Jr took over as principal owner of the Cardinals in 1996 and had a vision of sustained success.  I would really like to know more about that vision and exactly what details it involves.

Under DeWitt, the Cardinals have advanced to the playoffs 12 times, moved onto the National League Championship Series 10 times and played in the World Series on four occasions.  Their 63 postseason wins since 2000 is the most among any team in Major League baseball.

Sustained success is a nice concept and maybe not that it’s on the board I can start pondering the topic, asking myself questions about it and maybe come up with some rational answers.

The Cardinal Way is another theme talked about at times when referring to the St Louis Cardinals.  So far, the best I could find out about that concept is from Wikipedia’s mention of George Kissell (1920-2008) who spent 69 years with the Cardinals organization.  His influence is generally regarded as being a major basis for what has come to be known as the “Cardinal Way”.   George also mentored major league managers including Sparky Anderson, Joe Torre and Tony LaRussa.


 

Raising the Bar – Part Deux

Mainly this Day 9 video reminds me of T.S. Elliot’s quote, “Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far they can go.”  Not bad stuff to be reminded of on a daily basis.  I am curious and somewhat impressed that someone actually came up with 100 different videos for this 100 Day Challenge and am looking forward to them all 🙂


 

St Louis Cardinals – Part Deux

According the Don Denkinger, the first base umpire.  He basically had his eye on the bag and his ear on the glove – that is, he was waiting to see which came first – either hearing the ball hit the Todd Worrel’s glove or seeing Orta’s foot hit the bag.  I’m not sure how anybody could expect to hear a tossed ball with 53,000+ screaming fans in …what should have been …the last game of the 1985 World Series.

Another little factoid and reason I love the St Louis Cardinals – they are a middle of the pack team in terms of payroll but a leader of the pack in terms of results.  This year – the Cardinals made do with with a payroll less than HALF of the Dodgers – $253.3 million vs the Cardinal’s $111.25 million.

And Todd Worrel – had he actually struck out Orta would have been the first picture in major league history to strike out 7 consecutive batters in two games in the history of World Series Play.

Tommy Herr got screwed too in the 1987 World Series with a bad call but it wasn’t necessarily a game changer like this 1985 blown call.  With over 160 games in the regular season, I’m not sure how much instant replay is needed since things like bad calls can kind of work themselves out but, maybe for the World Series it might be more appropriate.

Yeah – Cards fans remember that 1985 World Series – especially if you were around back then.  Some things in life are eminently important and indelible – getting married, having children & of course, when your team wins the World Series!  🙂