There are some things that are expected of all of us. Some that are expected of most of us. Some that are not really expected at all, but if we do them, we leave a lasting positive impression. Just a few recent thoughts, reflections and musings about some of these in light of the recent days, weeks, months, two years. Not directed at any one person, per se, but maybe applicable to some of us more than others.
If your tie unravels, becomes untacked, or otherwise is in need of repair, sew it up yourself, kindly ask your wife or someone else who is good with a needle to do it for you, or retire the tie. Never, ever tape it.
Walk with your wife. Let her walk beside you. Do not leave her at the car, forget her, let someone else accompany her, or hold the umbrella over her head. Are you proud of her? Do you want everyone to see her at your side, as your equal partner? Then walk with her, not a dozen paces ahead.
When you need to confront someone about a difficult issue, such as the fact that you are firing them, do the right thing and speak with them face to face. Confrontation and dismissal by tweet are for cowards.
Sleep. For the love of God, get some sleep.
When a very simple but profoundly meaningful act is expected, do it gladly. It costs you nothing and may mean everything in terms of positive exposure, compassion and overt patriotism. By the way, those men of The Old Guard walk the same twenty one paces back and forth every day, in blazing heat, drenching rain, swirling snow or under threat of hurricane. Twenty four hours a day, three hundred sixty five days per year. Your worrying about a bad hair day in a little rain is meaningless to them.
Do not shove your peers. Not to jockey for position in a photo op. Not to express discontent with their policies or beliefs. Not in jest. Do not shove.
Calling someone a loser, a week person, slick, a liar, or dumb as a rock is not the way to forge any kind of alliance or even shore up an existing base. Doing so only provokes others, distances, creates rifts in already tenuous relationships, and showcases a profoundly limited descriptive vocabulary.
Watching the events unfold around you is a pretty good way to gauge the temperature of a room, an auditorium, or a church. When people with extensive philosophical, political, and personal differences are chatting amiably with each other, but stare straight ahead in dead silence after you enter the room, that should be your first clue that you are not a welcome member of the club.
Surround yourself with very smart people who you can trust. Then listen to them. Otherwise, they are worthless to you.
Respect history. As we all know, it does not always repeat itself, but it rhymes.
Do not reinvent the wheel. Others have sacrificed personal comfort, honor, blood and treasure to come up with a damn good blueprint of how democracy should and can work. Use it.
Do not consort, cavort, comfort, or collude with the enemy. He is real, and he has nothing but contempt for us.
Even if you are in over your head, act the part. There are people who will coach you. There is usually a script. There are expected duties close to home. Do them. Look the part. Salvage some respect, if not for yourself, then for the office.
Lastly, read. Then, read some more. There is always more to be learned and understood.