Fred’s Thursday Blog

The Four Hundred Pound Day

The Four Hundred Pound Day

  Listen to “The Four Hundred Pound Day” by Fred Smith   Tiger Woods‘ victory at the Master’s is a myth. I know that sounds like a post on a fringe site but I’m not saying it is fake news. Instead, his winning is a perfect example of what Joseph Campbell in his book, “The Hero With A Thousand Faces” would describe as a myth – a story that symbolizes one of the fundament ...[Read More]

Over And Over Again

Over And Over Again

Listen to “Over and Over Again” By Fred Smith   A favorite illustration was debunked last week. For years, I have used the image of the grain of sand in the oyster being the source of the pearl. It’s not true and I will miss it! Oysters and other mollusks thrive in the shallows and if a pearl were formed each time a grain of sand slipped through, pearls would not be the rare and p ...[Read More]

Our Little Town

Our Little Town

Listen to “Our Little Town” by Fred Smith   When we moved from New York to a small town in rural East Texas thirty-five years ago small towns were not trending. That has changed. Today, there is a surge of books, articles and even documentaries celebrating the values and lifestyle of small towns. Local is in and, at least for now, global is in decline. In “The Road to Somewhere,” ...[Read More]

He Told Stories

He Told Stories

Listen to “He Told Stories” by Fred Smith   Years ago, as a much younger man, I began a search for wisdom in giving. Although looking back, I realize that I didn’t know what “wisdom in giving” truly meant. I was really looking for advice and a jumpstart – not wisdom. I had read everything available, but I wanted to find a person from whom I could learn not only the practical aspec ...[Read More]

The Rich You Will Always Have Among You

The Rich You Will Always Have Among You

Listen to “The Rich You Will Always Have Among You” by Fred Smith   Like others, I have been disappointed by corrupt wealthy parents and coaches finding a way around the system by helping a scoundrel open the “side door” to admissions to elite colleges and universities. I don’t think anyone familiar with admissions was shocked by the fact that it happens. We have had various forms ...[Read More]

A Sometimes Solitary Life

A Sometimes Solitary Life

Listen to “A Sometimes Solitary Life” by Fred Smith   If you read biographies you notice a frequent pattern in the lives of many great leaders. Early success and then years of obscurity and hardship – even rejection and exile. Two good examples are Winston Churchill and Abraham Lincoln. Writers and artists may show promise – even brilliance – and then languish fo ...[Read More]

A Living Thing

A Living Thing

Listen to “A Living Thing” by Fred Smith   My grandfather was a Baptist pastor with the temperament of an Irishman. Named Matthew Bunyan after John Bunyan, he was always addressed as Brother Smith by my grandmother. Mercurial and unpredictable are likely the right words for his relationships with both the deacons and the congregations he served. Today, we would call him a church p ...[Read More]

The Reef

The Reef

Listen to “The Reef” by Fred Smith   In “Where Good Ideas Come From” Steven Johnson uses the illustration of a coral reef as an example of a structure that is both fragile and still able to withstand the incessant pounding of waves and storms. He relates Charles Darwin’s first experience with reefs and his amazement they were able to withstand the violent surges of water. “The oce ...[Read More]