Reading to Excel – Have you read any great books lately?
I think one of the most proficient ways to learn is from reading. When I was a kid, my Dad told me to read but I was much more interested in other not so educative things. It wasn’t until I turned 20 or so that my mind started to flourish, and I really started to figure out what I wanted to do and what path my life should head down. Honestly, I had one hell of a lot of fun before that, did a lot of things I wish I hadn’t, but then I started to have some concern about where it was that I might end up if I didn’t get some priorities straight!!!
School to me was a real pain and I found it excruciatingly boring. I had a very short attention span and if something wasn’t interesting, something would go off in my head that said “BORING!!!” and I would glaze over. I wasn’t someone that followed the rules or could be told what to do and because of this I rubbed a few teachers the wrong way and was told by one teacher to quit and give everyone a break. Well that was one guy that I shouldn’t have listened to, but he did elevate the boredom. On leaving he said you will never amount to anything!!!!
Well that was years earlier and now it was years later, with prospects looking bleaker than I had envisioned and those words would ring clear in my head often. We all end up there at some point, right? Please tell me I am right. At least some of us that see that fork in the road have a realization that the fork in the road has more than 2 paths and that one works its way down, not up. Well that’s where I was at 23 or so, looking into the wild blue yonder, dreaming about all the fantastic things life has to offer and realizing that you are SOOOOOO far removed from those things being reality unless you stop dreaming about it and put in the hard time to get there. That’s when you start remembering those words “you will never amount to anything!!!!” Not so fast teach. I have a little more faith in me than you!!! Really, what was stopping me other than me? Right??
A little off track but that is where reading really started to change my life. I started to realize that books were like the holy grail. People spend years doing all the hard work, researching and then do a synopsis of it all in a book. You read it and suck in all this knowledge!!! Absolutely brilliant!!!! It’s kind of like hiring tutors for 5 cents a day to report back after they are finished.
I know I may be a bit odd but the things that I really like to read are business type things, documentaries, finance, self help, how things work, logistical information and anything to teach me about everything.
Years ago, I subscribed to summaries of books and business monthly’s like the Hume Report doing that for 5 years or so, and although you can go through an enormous amount of information, I felt I might be missing the important pieces that tie it all together. After that I got into audible books which were much better if the person reading the book was not BORING. I drifted away from that years ago until my son Myles turned me back onto it and now the readers are so much better.
So, just listened to Malcolm Gladwell’s “talking to strangers” awesome book. He also wrote, “Blink”, Outliers, David and Goliath and many more. If you don’t read anything ever, I urge you to read these. They are brilliant and will shed light on so many things. It is impeccable analysis of subjects on so many things.
A buddy of mine, with whom I trade books frequently just gave me a book about Johnny Carson to read written by his lawyer Henry Bushkin. An interesting read. I find it extremely interesting to read about the quirky personalities and behavior of people like this. Ya, I know, I should get a life!!! But really, some of this stuff is more than interesting. Sports, business, finance, music, actors and the like can be really interesting subjects.
The way I look at it, you could spend year after countless year in school learning, a host of things that I find so pointless, when there is an avenue available to us all to “mind meld” as Star Trek’s Spock would say.
If you have a book that you think everyone should read, I would love to know about it.
In the meantime, and as the rainy weather descends, pick up a book, a glass of wine, turn on the fireplace and drift into another world. Enjoy!!!
Brian & Myles McCullough
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