The Strangest Places

I was still in my office when the janitor came in last night after my writing class. I was busy. He was humming a tune… each of us could easily have ignored the other as if they didn’t even exist. But that’s not what happened.

My office is somewhat odd. I don’t have a desk, just a tall table. I haven’t had an office chair since 2003. I keep a guitar close at hand, you know… just in case. Also, Vera makes a bit of an impression.


The janitor – I know now that his name is Alberto – grabbed the trash and shook it out into a bag and then turned to leave my room. But he stopped short, back-peddled a step and complimented me on keeping music involved in my work life.

To be fair, weeks can go by where I don’t lay a finger on Vera and I don’t much care for my office guitar. Also, I was headed to a friend’s birthday party and rushing to get some work stuff wrapped up so that I could leave. However, I’ve found that it is worth taking the time to get to know the people who live and work around you. Rather than thanking him and getting back to what I was doing, I stepped away from my computer and asked him about his interest in music.

An hour and forty-five minutes later, Alberto and I had discussed family, philosophy, medical school, currency exchange, retirement, game design, the Federal Reserve System and America’s move away from the gold standard, small business ownership and the cultural value of art.

Alberto left me with several pieces of advice, but one in particular stuck with me. Actually, quite a few are sticking with me because he insisted on writing them down. This one, however, I want to share. It’s a simple little equation and it is just the exact thing that I needed to hear last night. It goes like this:

Passion + Action = Results

It’s a simple and perfectly commonsensical bit of math, but powerful. It doesn’t need explaining. All you need to do is recognize it and start iterating.


I live a charmed life… and encouragement and motivation find me in the strangest places.

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