40 Years, 40 Lessons

- "Heads up" does not mean look up.
- Dogs know.
- There is only so much one can do.
- We can always do more.
- The only importance of disciplining children while they are young is so they are not an embarrassment to you--because despite all efforts--children will end up being who they want to be when they are grown up.
- Friends are the family that you can choose.
- The expression "lucked out" means you are lucky. (despite sounding like you are out of luck)
- In the phone book, 'Thos' is short of Thomas and 'Jas' is short for James.
- The 'TH' in Thompson is not the same as the 'TH' in the word 'Thing'. The 'h' is silent.
- When an elevator door opens, you must step to the side and let everyone out BEFORE you go in.
- A sure fire way to get someone to quit staring, is to pick your nose.
- Do not wiggle your eyebrows as a non-verbal form of "yes" in the States. (a common gesture in the Philippines)
- It is not really all that necessary to have someone "see you off" at the airport.
- Greeting complete strangers with a "how are you doing" does not take anything away from you. (but just so you know, people don't really want to know about that in-grown toenail)
- Fiber, sleep, red meat, independence, vitamin E, blogging, alcohol, chocolate ... anything... in excess is not good for you.
- It is okay to say no.
- Bite sized spam and spaghetti are not considered party fare in america, and for that matter, serving ox tail in a peanut sauce is not the best way to introduce filipino food to most americans. (again my apologies to the ashmans)
- Despite what you may have heard, it is okay to pay for things with spare change. (and yes, pennies count!)
- In a crisis, do not offer the perfunctory "if there is anything I can do" unless you are actually prepared to do something.
- Think of your parents the way you'd like your children to think of you.
- Classism is an unspoken social ill.
- Just because something may be true, does not mean that it isn't gossip.
- When someone has to start a sentence with "to be honest with you"-- most likely, they are not being honest.
- Telephone etiquette: ignore your call waiting.
- You do not need a good memory when you are in the habit of telling the truth.
- Praise undeserved, is slander in disguise. (thanks kay)
- Seeing the positive in every situation can be habit forming.
- Nobody likes a show-off.
- Unless asked, keep your opinions on child rearing to yourself
- Practice your smile in front of the mirror.
- Prolonged anger is hazardous to your health.
- Life is too short.
- Despite being from a family of fainting goats ( steve's term of endearment for my family), genetic predisposition can be defied.
- Non-toxic people are good for your psyche.
- When someone you love is in a rocky relationship, keep your opinions to yourself --even when you are asked-- until the divorce is final.
- When someone is suffering, acknowledge the pain. Never say: Time will heal.
- Time does heal.
- Be a good example to your children
- If your tonsils give you bad breath, get it removed.
- 40 year olds do not make good doormats.


  1. 40 agreeing nods your way.

  2. hmm, i always knew there was something rattling in that no-o...

  3. 46 nods to the 40 lessons I learned too.


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