Every Picture Tells a Story…Don’t It?
March 11, 2011I could write a lovely soliloquy about the value of attending a Mid-Year Section Meeting, telling you all about the terrific educational programs, the world class speakers, the networking opportunities, and – in the case of the Presidents Section – the chance to tell the fraternal story to members of Congress on Capitol Hill. But it may be more effective to demonstrate the benefits of participating in these meetings through these incredible “before and after” photos of actual Section meeting attendees… Now that you’ve seen incontrovertible evidence that attendance at a Section meeting can transform your life, just click here to learn more about the specific Section meeting that addresses your professional needs and register online today… She still knows… This is a purely personal story that (for once) has NOTHING to do with fraternal solvency, relevance, or governance issues. It just happened to me last week and every word is true… We moved to Chicago about 20 years ago, when our children were relatively young (9 and 6). One of the hardest things about the move was leaving our families in California. My mom was worried sick that her youngest grandchildren would forget her. So she made it a point to send them cards for no special reason. In addition to her words of wisdom, those cards would also contain a little “walking around money” as she referred to it. One day, when our youngest son was about 12 years old, he wanted to go to the movies with some of his friends. The only problem was he did not have enough money for a ticket and mom and dad weren’t in the mood to shell out any more greenbacks to finance his leisure activities. Not 15 minutes later the mail was delivered and included in it were cards (and $20) for her two youngest grandchildren. Our son opened the card, looked at the $20 bill, and said, “How does she know?!?!?!" I, of course, had been trying to answer that same question about my mom for my whole life. Usually, however, I asked it in response to her uncanny knowledge of my poor decision-making. It didn’t matter what you did wrong, my mom seemed to know about it before it happened. Needless to say, our son was able to go to the movies with his buddies thanks to his all-knowing Nana. Fast forward 12 years… This same son, now 24 years old, had arrived at the point in his life where college and graduate school are coming to an end and working for a living was on the horizon. But before facing that harsh reality, he was planning one last month-long soiree through Europe to hone his culinary skills before entering the restaurant business in Chicago the next month. The only problem was that the financing for the trip was looking a bit thin. He figured he needed about $3,000 for the full month in Europe, but his line of credit from the Bank of Mom and Dad was tapped out. What to do…where to turn…? While he was pondering what to do and where to turn, my wife and I went to the Post Office to pick up our mail. In it was a legal-sized envelope from the trustee of my mom’s estate. She passed away five years ago to the day. No doubt the envelope contained some tax forms we needed to file for small trust accounts that we had all but forgotten. But along with the tax forms was a check payable to our son for the final distribution of the funds my mom left for him in the amount of...(wait for it)...$3,008.00. My wife and I just looked at each other in stunned silence. Five years to the day when we said goodbye she's still taking care of her grandchildren. We brought the check home and showed it to our son. His response... "She still knows!!!!!"