Stuff I Learned Yesterday
About Stuff I Learned Yesterday
Stuff I Learned Yesterday is a podcast that aims to encourage, inspire, challenge, motivate, and improve the lives of those who listen to it. Stuff I Learned Yesterday is released each Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Each episode ranges from 5-15 minutes long and contain short stories based on real events and lessons learned by the hosts. Friday episodes are called the Friday Forum and are filled with inspirational and motivational thoughts submitted by Stuff I Learned Yesterday listeners. Submit your story for a Friday Forum episode by calling 304-837-2278, visiting our feedback page, or click on the Send a Voice Message button on the left hand side of this page.
584- Community Feedback for “The Car” & “Legacy” Preview
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To the best of my knowledge, I won’t be passing from this earth into eternity any time soon, but none of us know when our last breath will come. As motivating as that might be to cause one to contemplate his legacy, it’s a different life event that has caused me to focus on it. That life event involves my kids. That is, last year was my daughter’s senior year of high school, and this year is my son’s senior year. While I think Addi may continue to live with us for another year or even two while she works out her plans, she very much desires to move out when she can and spread her wings. Colby, on the other hand, has already started making plans to move across town to attend the University of Oklahoma next fall. It’s quite possible my nest will be empty in the next 12-18 months, and this fact has had me wondering if I’ve done what’s necessary to help my kids for their next steps. Read More…
583- Driving Success
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I never get tired of hearing the sound of the MGB GT starting up, and I thought it might be appropriate to record this final episode of the season in the very object that this season has been about. So I hope you don’t mind the sounds of my car. I thought we’d take it for a little drive today. Every time I get in this car, it’s a satisfying and joyful feeling. I can’t help but get a smile on my face. I just love this car. I mean, I love the car, I love the look of the car, and all that stuff. That’s why I got the car. But this car is so much more than that. This car brings satisfaction every time I drive it because of what it represents. It represents a goal achieved, and that’s just incredibly satisfying. When I get in it and I think about what it represents and having set a goal and then achieved that goal, it reminds me that there are more goals out there to achieve. I think, of the struggle that it took to get to this point, it and it invigorates me and inspires me. It gives me excitement and belief that I can face other challenges that come my way. There’s a lot of satisfaction in that, but even if I hadn’t gone through all of the ordeals that I went through to get to this point, even if I hadn’t had to rewire the car, there would still be a tremendous amount of satisfaction with the car simply because of what it represents. And that is, it represents a goal being set and achieved. Read More…
582- Countdown to Ignition
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Where does one begin rewiring a car? For me, the answer wasn’t as hard as it may seem. That decision had been made months before. You see, during the research and education phase of this process, I’d done a lot of work to figure out what wiring harness would be the best fit for my car. Because the MGB and MGB GT were made nearly unchanged for almost 20 years, getting parts for them is still quite easy. And believe it or not, that includes getting brand new wiring harnesses. However, my car was not quite a factory spec car. As far as the electrical system was concerned, my car had an aftermarket air conditioner, a high-voltage coil, electric ignition system instead of a traditional distributor, and electronic speedometer instead of the stock system. Although to be honest, at the time I didn’t know about the high-voltage coil and electric ignition system. More on that later. Read More…
581- Diving Into the Deep End
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On February 17, 1986 I turned 10 years old. Four days later Nintendo released a game that would become my favorite game franchise of all time. Released on the Nintendo Entertainment System, or NES, The Legend of Zelda captivated me like no video game, including any Mario game, had ever done before.
The problem for me was, I owned a SEGA Master System, not a Nintendo. Fortunately, my friends down the street had a Nintendo, and I loved going to their house to play Zelda. From time to time we’d even swap systems for a few weeks so they could play our SEGA games and my brothers and I could play their NES games. Zelda was unlike any other game of the era. Instead of it coming in a grey or black cartridge, it came in a shiny gold one. Instead of losing your progress when you turned off the console, Zelda had a battery inside the cartridge that allowed your game to be saved even if you powered off the console. Read More…
580- Challenge Accepted
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For as long as I can remember, I’ve admired the way my dad has the ability to create with his hands. Some of my earliest memories involve interacting with his creations. My dad was a carpet layer, and a good one at that. He drove a full-size fan, and it only had seating of the two front captain’s chairs. The rear cargo area of the van was completely covered in carpet that dad installed himself. On the driver’s side of the cargo area was a large tool chest made of plywood and covered in carpet. It housed the tools of the trade when they weren’t in use. Our house featured other handy works of his including a locking gun cabinet and a cedar chest. Even the paddle he spanked us with when we got in trouble was something he’d hand-made. Read More…
579- Snowball to the Face
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Walking home from school discussing the flagpole moment that would live in infamy, Ralphie, Flick and Schwartz relived the triple dog dare moment as Randy toddled behind them. And then, they heard the laugh of Scut Farkus. Scut and his toad henchman, Grover Dill, yelled at, intimidated, and twisted the arms of the boys until the boys ran away, screaming for their lives.
I’m sure most, if not all of you have seen this scene from the movie, “A Christmas Story.” Later in the movie a dejected Ralphie has enough when Scut blindsides him with a snowball to the face. Ralphie transfers all his pent up disappointment and frustration into his fists, and Scut’s face becomes the recipient of all that fury. Scut had it coming, and you can’t help but smile at the bully getting what he deserved. Read More…
578- When Goals Fall Short
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A curious boy once asked a wise owl how many licks it takes to get to the Tootsie Roll center of a Tootsie Pop. The owl opted to conduct an experiment to determine the number. One…Two…Three…crunch! Three, the owl declared. In the longer version of this famous commercial, the cow, fox, and turtle all confessed they’d never been able to make it to the center without biting it, and clearly the owl had no more patience than the other animals when it came to enjoying the sweet taste of a Tootsie Roll Pop.
Unfortunately for me, purchasing a car from Georgia and having it shipped to Oklahoma is a process that cannot be sped up by biting. That beautiful flame red classic would eventually find its way to my garage, and regardless of my level of patience, I had no choice but to wait. Read More…
577- Take the Plunge
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I could feel the wind jostling my hair. It wasn’t the kind of wind that knocks you back, but it was there letting me know that at that height, there was nothing to obstruct it. Behind me I heard the words of my friends Charles and James cheering me on. When I took the first step that would eventually lead me to this place, my heart was full of courage and confidence. The obstacle seemed small, the danger non-existent. But now I’d come to the end of my journey. My perspective had changed. I’d signed the waiver, strapped on the harness, climbed the seemingly endless flights of stairs, and fastened myself to an umbilical cord of rubber bands. Staring down at the parking lot below, the airbag that would break my fall in case of failure now seemed a lot smaller. For that matter, the trees, cars, buildings, people…everything seemed smaller. There was nothing left to do but trust all the processes and people who’d helped me get to this point, to lean on the experience of those who’d walked this path before, and see for myself whether or not the bungee cord would hold. Read More…
576- Get to Work
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When I was 5 years old my parents bought me a Mighty Tonka Off Road Adventure Buggy. The Tonka Adventure buggy looked something like a Ford Bronco of the era. It was about 14 inches long and about 8 inches high with large wheels. It was great for playing in the dirt, and turned my backyard into an off road race track. I’d stand behind the Tonka, lean down and put my hands on top of it, and push it while running laps around the yard. In my mind I was at the wheel of a life-sized 4×4. It’s my first memory of loving a car. Read More…
575- Objects Not to Scale
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Tucked away at The Factory at Franklin sitting at the table farthest from the door, there I sat listening to Cliff talk about goals and limiting beliefs. After teaching on these topics for a while he instructed us to turn to a blank page in our workbook and number it 1 through 25 down the left hand side of the page. He then gave us 10 or 15 minutes to fill out all 25 places with things that we wanted in our life 5-10 years from now.
Last week I asked you to perform this exercise, except I only asked you to come up with 20 things. How did it go? If you were like me, you came charging out of the gate like a racehorse at the Kentucky derby, only to run out of steam when I came to the back stretch. In this exercise, I only came up with 11 things. Here they are: Read More…