Colonel Sanders became an important man. You know his story, don’t you? Kentucky Fried Chicken; it’s finger-lickin’ good.
I actually met him when I was Miss National Teen of Virginia. We were in the Apple Blossom Festival Parade in Winchester, Virginia, and had our own floats, along with Bob Hope, Joe Theisman, and The Apple Blossom Queen-Susan (President Ford’s daughter). President Ford & Mickey Mouse were there too. Now you’re impressed, right?
I was hanging out with the “important people” of the day and glowed like the bumpkin from the mountains that I was. But I was young, green as grass in May, and unworldly enough to find it fascinating. Sadly, most of those “Important” people have expired in one way or another. They’re not so important anymore.
What makes a person important?
Other people’s opinion?
Their color, sex, race or diversion?
Does scratching the face of society make people important?
Who the heck knows anymore?
It seems that what is important these days is creating a ruckus.
BS. I believe important people have worked hard to accomplish something they set out to do, never identify as a victim, and sacrifice their time to make our world a better place. Important people are kind, accepting, non-judgmental, and know what they think or like without being told.
If you look back and feel like the parade has passed you by, or you believe life will never be as good as it was on your glory day (everyone has one, eventually); if you think you’ve done everything you can do, you’re wrong.
Sorry, but I have to tell you the truth. I was (almost) a girl scout, and I’m pretty sure they always (usually) tell the truth.
But, I have to be honest, again … the Girl Scout program in Dublin, Va was canceled after this group of Brownies completed their first year.
I don’t remember why.
But, like those girls … the rest of your life is in front of you. Be honest with yourself.
You’re just beginning. Your life changed today as soon as you brushed your teeth. As a citizen of the world, you have the exciting opportunity to make today whatever you want it to be. Simplistic? Yep. That’s why it’s easy. Simply choose your mood, your actions, your outlook, and your goals.
Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “What you do speaks so loudly that I cannot hear what you say.”
Don’t imagine that you are the only person faced with things you don’t even want to withstand. Yes, you have obligations, chores, mishaps, worries, sadness, and overwhelming challenges to endure today.
BUT … whatever parades before you – you can decide how you will handle it. You can choose how to feel about it and how to react to it. That’s because you’re not a rodent.
You have the ability to look at your trials and tribulations from the perspective of
- Oh, woe is me
- I’ve got this
- I’m going to get on a tube and float down the river where no one can find me! (Today anyway.)
It’s your decision. You’re in this parade, so keep marching. You can DOiT.
The day before the Apple Blossom Parade, I attended a la-de-da luncheon. I posed for a photo with Colonel Sanders. (I was wearing a yellow polka dot gown and long white gloves. He was wearing his famous white Kentucky Colonel suit with a black string tie). We both looked ridiculous.
The Colonel had his arm around me, and it was somewhat (excruciatingly) uncomfortable because of the proximity of his hand on my right boob. I confess, I was a naive 16-year-old, and thought nothing of my discomfort at the time. I didn’t even realize until a few years later that the unsolicited advice the old man shared with me may have been a double entendre.
The Colonel gave me his formula for a happy marriage; and of course, it was focused on chicken. He said that when I married, I should (every day) offer my husband some buttery biscuits, breasts, juicy legs, and thighs with the secret spices. It only occurred to me, when retelling the story to my son many years later, that maybe I didn’t want to pass on the secret recipe. OH! THAT was what he meant.
He honestly said that to me … and must have walked away, shaking his head, wondering If I’d ever get it. I was from a rural area where simple minds flourished. I was a representative.
The rest of Colonel Sanders’ story is more tasteful and inspiring:
His father died when he was five. His mother worked, so he cooked for the family and dropped out of school in 7th grade. When his mother remarried, he ran away from home because his stepfather beat him. He falsified his date of birth and enlisted in the Army at 16. He had a son who died at an early age.
(It gets more inspiring than this).
For example, Sanders, at age 50, created his well-known “Original Recipe” with secret spices (for both chicken and a good marriage according to our conversation). 50 was old back then.
After many years of serving his secret fried chicken recipe in his local gas station and restaurant, my buddy, Colonel Harland Sanders, lost everything and, at the age of 65, he began to collect his social security check of $100 per month and wondered how he was going to survive financially.
But, as I can personally attest, Colonel Sanders wasn’t a man to give up. He marketed his recipe and was rejected by more than 1,000 prospects when he finally launched the first “Kentucky Fried Chicken” franchise and eventually sold the franchise for $2 million. Not bad back in the day for an old guy who should have been a marriage counselor.
He always wore his famous white suit in public during the last 20 years of his life. I only wore that hideous yellow & white polka dot dress with long white gloves – once. I don’t know why I’m so stuck on our attire that infamous day, except that it really is funny if you look at it – when I find it.
Moral of the Story
- Never give up on pursuing your dreams
- Never think you’re too old to do anything you want to do
- Never imagine that anything is beyond your reach
- Never think that a failure is final
- Every failure is your previous attempt: just practice: Try again
- Never give up
- You can be, see, like, and do any dang thing you please … no matter what you are wearing!
- You are important.
- You are worthy and capable, and lovable.
- You’re more loveable now than you have ever been!
It’s Never too late to start living and doing what you want. Your new direction starts right now, and there’s so much more you can do today. So, decide what it is that you really want to do.