What Story Should You Tell?

He Rode A Blazing Saddle

He Rode A Blazing Saddle…

I am the real reason the devil went down to Georgia. Ask my kids and they’ll tell you that cloven hoofed bastard knew if he decided to mess with me I would expand his understanding of eternal torment and hell on earth in a way he wouldn’t ever forget.


I don’t wear a black hat just because it goes with anything and I can assure you that supernatural beings don’t enjoy riding the pointy end of one those Texas Longhorns any more than you do.

Talk about the colonoscopy from hell.

The Impact of Social Media On Storytelling

Social media has been very good to and for me. It has expanded my career and provided multiple opportunities professionally for me and been something I enjoy using personally too.

But I am happy I was a grown up when I got into it. I never had to worry about the things that our children do. The bullies I encountered were always people I saw in person and the misunderstandings were usually things that happened in person.

It doesn’t mean I don’t think about what stories I am willing to share online. I don’t mind telling you about the time the ladder broke and I had to jump off of the roof but there are other tales you won’t find online because not everyone needs to know them and because I don’t want to risk professional complications.

You can interpret that to mean I don’t want current or future employment to be damaged because someone was concerned about whether those tales would be problematic.

When my children and I talk about being careful about what they post I always tell them they have to recognize people don’t always understand our sense of humor or recognize sarcasm and that misunderstanding can occur because of this.

They think that is ridiculous.

“Dad, the devil isn’t real and no one believes he is afraid of  you. That is not logical.”

I wink at my son and ask him what makes him so certain. “I had more than thirty years of life before you showed up.”

My daughter never misses an opportunity to help her big brother and offers her own contribution.

“Daddy won’t be really old until he is 50 but he is old enough to done a lot you don’t know about.”

What Story Should You Tell?

The kids are both right but they don’t know how much time I spend thinking about storytelling on a personal and professional level.

Every time I work on my resume I take a hard look at it and try to determine if it is telling the right story. All of my professional work has fallen into this category too.

It is always about trying to figure out if the company is telling the right story or stories. Are those stories resonating with people? Do they generate a positive or negative response? Are we building connections? Are we building relationships?

What do people take away from it?

What Story Are We Telling

Adrian Gonzalez hits a home run.

My family is very fortunate to have been given tickets to a recent Dodgers game. We sat about five rows behind home plate and got the change to participate in the dugout club restaurant.

My son asked me if I have ever had better seats and I didn’t hesitate to say no. In forty years of going to games these were the best seats I have ever had and it was only made better because it was a great game.

“Adrian Gonzalez hit two home runs and tied a career high by driving in six runs, and Matt Kemp hit a home run and threw out a runner at the plate.” LA Times

“Dad, I can’t wait to tell my friends”

“No problem. Do your best to be humble about it. We were lucky to get these seats as a gift.”

You can’t see me typing but if you did you’d see a wide grin on my face. I always enjoy going to the game but I can’t remember the last time I went to a game and felt like I was ten years-old again.

It was magical.

Much of that had to do with the expressions on my children’s’ faces, especially after they each got a ball.

And now here I sit thinking about what story I should tell about the game.

Did I ever tell you about why the devil went down to Georgia…

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  1. Joshua Wilner/A Writer Writes September 9, 2014 at 7:54 am

    lardavbern1 That was an amazing game, felt like little league seats. So cool to here the conversation on the field.
    My youngest is definitely a bit naive about what can happen when you post online. I try to monitor what she does so I can help.

  2. Joshua Wilner/A Writer Writes September 9, 2014 at 7:52 am

    Mary Stephenson I am consistently surprised by how many people think their privacy settings are so secure nothing they post can be seen. I make a point to remember you never have as much security as you might like.
    Sometimes your comments are shared by those who have access not because they are trying to hurt you but for good reasons but that doesn’t remove the risk. You always need to be aware.

  3. lardavbern1 September 8, 2014 at 5:23 pm

    Glad it was such a great game. It is more fun when you have better seats. 
    Wise to caution your kids about their social media use. My older boy is getting to that point and I am afraid he is naive. http://larrydbernstein.com/me-myself-and-kids/

  4. Mary Stephenson September 8, 2014 at 11:26 am

    Ah, if they would only hide their “timeline, etc.” from the world it would save them a lot of grief!  My daughter is old enough to know better and when I said to her, “I wonder how many good paying jobs you missed out on?”  Of course her reply was blah, blah.  But the next day she had all her info hidden!  Amazing ……….!
    Good post for those who think they are invisible.

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