Friday, April 22, 2005

April 22, 2005
Robert Ray just stuck his head in my office (3:36 p.m.) and said, "We need to complete 16 pages a week to get this book to the printer on time." This is the kind of specific goals I need to stay focused. Thankyou Robert.

Had a doctor's appointment at 10:45 this morning and this doctor, who I hadn't seen in about a year, agrees with the mysterious Doc Scoggin, "All of those supplements you are taking will create some expensive urine and that’s about it." We laughed. When I mentioned to her about how the homeopathy guy is really against coumadin, she quipped, "Yes, because it's so cheap." Well, there’s some truth to that. The bottles of pills I have recently bought from Homeo Guy have little stickers on the top with numbers like 160 and 85, as in $160 and $85. I would speculate I've spent more than a grand on this stuff and as Dr. P. pointed out to me this morning, "None of it has been found to do anything."

I have to get a catscan next week. As I was paying ($10 co-pay), I asked the nurse if she could recommend a deli nearby and she said there is a Chompies across the street (this is at Scottsdale Medical Center North, on Shea Blvd), and sure enough, when I got over there the place was slammed. It's almost an exact replica of the deli we usually go to up on 32nd Street. Had a New Yorker on rye and an iced tea ($14, includes tip). Saved half of everything for Carole and brought it back to the office for her.

PBS is going to do a documentary on Doc Holliday and they've contacted me about using some of my Doc artwork. When I gave them my usage price ($100 an image) they reminded me that they are a "non-profit" organization, and I assured them I am too, but not by choice. And, I told her, the main reason for my non-profit status is because I keep giving my stuff away. She laughed. We'll see.

Kathy thinks my recent appraisal of my media career was lacking in several departments (she avoids reading this, but invariably something gets referenced at the grocery store, or at the gym, which makes her realize I'm yapping about her in here, and then she goes and looks). Her point is: almost all of the entries have to do with my art career. What about my managing skills? Haven't I learned something from running a magazine for five years?

Well, yes Dear, I have.

• I know that most of the daily crisis blow over, usually on their own.

• I know that you need to be very selective on which battles to fight.

• I know that encouragement and faith in people's abilities is the strongest motivator (when I was doing the logo for KDKB radio, GM Tommy Vascocu said, "Make me look good for choosing you." Wow! I worked many hours overtime to make that come true).

• I know whenever anyone leaves the company, they get blamed for anything and everything that goes wrong, for months, and sometimes years!

• I know when you get too successful, most everyone has a secret urge for you to fail (and sometimes even when you’re not successful, but you are perceived as more successful than they are, which usually isn't real hard to do, but still).

• I know that success is kind of like wrestling a gorilla. You don’t quit when you’re tired—you quit when the gorilla is tired.

• I know that sometimes you just need to make a decision and if it's wrong, you’ll fix it tomorrow.

• I know that you need to control your own destiny or someone else will.

• I know that some employees thrive on challenges and freedom, and others need a map and specific orders.

• I know that many times employees just want to be heard and that it's important to listen, really listen (and not fashion answers while they are talking, which is the most tempting thing to do).

• I know that having too much money saps creativity. Fortunately our company has been very creative.

• I know inside every problem is an opportunity dying to get out.

But all in all, I think the legendary manager of the New York Yankees summed it up best:

"The secret of managing is to keep the guys who hate you away from the guys who are undecided."
—Casey Stengal

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