What You Should Have Said…


Originally published in the Grand Rapids Business Journal, October 1, 2007

When you’re 16 and lifting weights in the basement while your parents are talking with a neighbor upstairs in the kitchen just beyond the open basement door, and you just finished your last rep and go to put the bar back on the holder and it slips and it crashes onto your thighs and you say, “F-bomb!” and because F-bombs are actually lighter than air it floats upstairs to the sudden and coincidental pause in conversation, what you should have said was …nothing.

When it’s after 10:00 at night, and it has been a long, long day, and you’ve said “Good Night” to your kids several many multiple times but they never seem to actually go to bed and you’re about to pass out and you hear a kid walking in the hall and you shout, “I swear I’m going to break your legs so you stay in bed!” and it turns out the kid was coming to you because she just lost a tooth, what you should have said was …nothing.

When you’re on the Grand Rapids Public School Board and you’re frustrated because hundreds of parents send their kids to suburban schools for various reasons but at the very least they are the kind of parents concerned enough about their children’s education to be active participants and you say to them, “You’re a bunch of racists and if don’t like the schools in Grand Rapids, then move someplace else.” what you really should have said was, …nothing.

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