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Chasing The American Dream

April 16, 2005


560 Starbucks Venti Iced Coffees, 840 meals out, 196 nights in a hotel, 1 divorce, 1 new car, 3 broken hearts, and 14 months ago, I uttered that quote from Apollo 13 to a boardroom full of senior management. If memory serves me correctly, the Apollo 13 mission was deemed a failure. True, NASA was able to bring the boys home, but the mission itself was a failure.

My ‘little’ Gilligan’s Island project ended today. I can’t tell you how many times I repeated that quote to my client. It finally sunk into their heads after eight months down the road. During the last six months, we’ve been in a ‘make up for lost ground’ mode. I honestly don’t know if the external auditors will pass or fail these guys on their internal control structure.

For me personally, I know I did everything I could to get them a passing grade. If they fail, all fingers will point to me. That’s fine. The project was my responsibility. I’ll get fired, and that’s fine too because, like I said, I know I did my best. Hell, it’s only work, and work is not a priority in my life anymore. I look back at all that’s transpired over the past year. Wow. Somehow, I made it through. I mean, a year ago to this day, I was depressed about work, travel, women, divorce, seeing a shrink, and not being able to see my son. These things converged all at once and knocked me on my ass. I bottomed out, but I came back a changed man. I don’t ever want to go back to those dark ages.

They say all this adversity builds character. True, it’s part of my transformation into being a more complete person. Whether or not this project passes or fails really matters not to me. What *does* matter to me is my own personal battle with myself. Indeed, failure wasn’t an option. I’m smiling at my own personal success. Success defined here as overcoming all the aforementioned adversity.

I’m taking a few days off to spend some time at the beach with my sister and family who are visiting from Vermont. A year ago she saw a miserable person. I can’t wait to show her the new me. Thanks family and friends out there. I couldn’t have gotten here without you.


  • congratulations! success should rarely be defined as the rest of the world defines it. sounds like you have found your inner compass. good treking.

    By Blogger ropedncr, at 9:14 AM, April 16, 2005  

  • I swear I got a caffeine buzz just from reading the opening sentence of this post.

    Stay grounded and enjoy the beach.

    By Anonymous Esther, at 3:29 PM, April 16, 2005  

  • Will miss you terribly, PT, but I suppose I can share with your sis.

    Congrats for soldering on, for getting through and for keeping moving.

    By Blogger A, at 5:43 PM, April 16, 2005  

  • O-U-M-F...!!!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:16 PM, April 18, 2005  

  • Adversity DOES build character. It is all learning experiences and patience builder and at the end of that road, it is amazing all of the positives that come out of the crap.

    By Blogger Elle, at 3:30 PM, April 19, 2005  

  • wow, I have missed reading your posts!! Just catching up!! Hope you are happy and doing wonderfully!


    By Blogger Amanda, at 5:46 AM, April 20, 2005  

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