The North Star is the anchor of the northern sky and the Golden Rule is the guiding light for our daily lives, especially in the real estate business.
As I recall, my introduction to the “Golden Rule” was when I was 9-years-old and had just made the Little League baseball team in Aberdeen, Washington. It was on a Saturday morning when my Mom and I would spend time together in the kitchen while she was ironing and I was sitting at the table putting together a model plane or car.
She asked me what my goal in life was and I responded with “to play professional baseball.” The New York Yankees was my favorite team, Mickey Mantle was my favorite player and I had just made the Little League team.
Her immediate response was that I was wrong. This was somewhat a surprise reaction to me that day, but I learned this was only the beginning of her earnestness as a “no nonsense gal.” She had been raised on a farm in Walla Walla, Washington and served as a nurse in the U.S. Army during World War II. Her first assignment was being sent to England for the purpose of caring for the troops wounded during the D-Day Invasion and for the many that followed until the end of the war.
She believed one’s efforts and duties should be in preparation for entering the gates of Heaven when you stood before a chalk board and were asked to write down all the good things you had done in life. Your goal was to ask for a second piece of chalk.
From Little League baseball in Aberdeen I went on to play collegiate football at Oregon State University in Corvallis, Oregon. After graduating with a Masters Degree, I began a teaching and coaching career in Southern Oregon.
My entry into the business world was when two friends and I opened a ski and tennis business in Ashland, Oregon. This was where I was introduced to the “customer is always right” philosophy when much of the snow equipment that had been sold in the fall and winter was now being returned because the local ski areas of Mount Ashland and Mount Shasta had received no snow. This was the year of zero snow falling on the West Coast and two of us had to now earnestly search for meaningful income.
I now entered the building products industry which would lead to many employment and travel opportunities including Sacramento. Soon after my arrival here, another “no snow” year was experienced with the impactful and hurtful decline of the new housing market. Once again, I was in search of a new career and was introduced to the wonderful world of the real estate business.
As a father, I am blessed with two terrific children who are now adults. One of myfavorite memories of time with Nicole is the trip she and I took when we drove to South Dakota for the sole purpose of hopefully seeing Curly Bill (the buffalo) and eating dinner at the Sweet Grass Grill in Deadwood City.
The inspiration for the 10-day journey began with our reading “Buffalo For The Broken Heart” by Dan O’Brien. It was the summer before she would start her classes at Northwestern University and we always tried to have a few days of “daddy-daughter” time.
Our trip was most fun as we traveled from Eugene, Oregon through Washington, Idaho, Montana, North Dakota to South Dakota and then home. Yes, we did see Curly Bill, ate a delightful meal at The Sweetgrass Grill and even had the marvelous opportunity to meet Dan O’Brien.
Many trips were also enjoyed with my son Ryan and his soccer teammates. For approximately 10 years, I was the manager for his youth soccer teams and we traveled to games in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, Utah, Vermont, and Washington.
As I tried to help guide and assist the many terrific young men on his teams, I also learned to be more understanding and accepting of others. One of my learning-about-life experiences was in Hawaii where I was responsible for eighteen 14-year-olds where we were participating in a week-long regional championship tournament.
One of my responsibilities was room check every night, which was especially challenging since we were lodging in one of the hotels on Waikiki Beach. After a couple of days and nights there, I had been receiving “rumors” that some of the boys were going out after curfew. So, I asked my son Ryan if there was any truth to the rumors. His response was as follows: “I don’t think so Dad. I was out last night at about 3:30am and did not see anyone.”
He went on to play soccer for UCLA and the University of Vermont. I went on to fully appreciate the fact that I truly learned a great deal about trust and caring relationships from him and his teammates during these wonderful years.
As I continue to try to honor my late Mom’s guiding light of living and working for that second piece of chalk, I have been a volunteer and am now a Board Member of the Sacramento Stand Down Association which provides services to our Homeless Veterans and those Veterans in need.
I also try my very best to be guided by the Golden Rule when working for and with my Clients in the real estate business. I greatly value the importance of listening before speaking as well as making every effort possible to assist in their desire to purchase a new residence and/or sell their existing residence.