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Annie,

Parents do funny things. It almost becomes essential to be a parent so you can understand what motivated yours to do what they did. Apparently, my folks read parenting books and Dale Carnegie books that described how to make achievers. The consequences of this weren't considered and it probably hurt my folks to not admit their pride as much as it pained me not to have the affirmation.

That is why I tell my daughter every day how proud of her I am, and that I love her.

I also tell a story about the librarians at the 42nd street library in NY. I don't know if you saw my posting about Mr. LaHuta, the speech and discussion teacher at PRHS, but I will take a chance and re-tell it.

An assignment for Mr. LaHuta's discussion class lead me to the 42nd street library in Manhattan. My need for literature on the topic of "prejudice" had exhausted the available resources of branch libraries on Staten Island.

The main reading room of the 42nd street library was awe inspiring. I was only 16 years old but the books and manuscripts I was ordering were serious scholarly stuff.

The girls who processed these slips and put them into the pneumatic tubes that went to the stacks were very respectful of me. They treated me the same as they would treat a professor.

That respect made a big impression on me, and it liberated me from feeling limited in future perspectives. As a result, I list librarians among those people to whom I owe a debt of gratitude.

Of course, this was an isolated incident in space and time and librarians, like all people, are pretty diverse. However, no one should ever underestimate the positive motivating effect of giving respect to your customer, client or patron.

Providing respect could profoundly benefit the recipient and enable him to propagate it to many more people. A little event may have big consequences, sort of like chaos theory where a butterfly, flapping his wings some where in the world, caused the wind that parted the red sea...or something like that.

Best regards.

Art

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