APPRECIATION IS THE GLUE

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Tom Fawcett

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Sep 29, 1993, 6:55:59 PM9/29/93
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Walking around the halls upstairs, I discovered a large room
used for management training. On the walls were lots of
posters with big bright lettering. The posters all had to
do with managing people and and developing personal skills.

The place looked like a kindergarten for businessmen.

One of the posters said:

ENTHUSIASM
MAKES ALL THE DIFFERENCE!
YOUR ENTHUSIASM
FUELS THE GROUP!

Another:

HOW YOU PLAY THIS GAME
IS
HOW YOU LIVE YOUR LIFE!

and another:

APPRECIATE YOUR CO-WORKERS!

A P P R E C I A T I O N
IS THE GLUE
THAT HOLDS
THE TEAM TOGETHER!

I APPRECIATE YOU FOR:

and a big empty space.

I looked at this one for a few minutes.
I picked up a pencil and completed the sentence.

I APPRECIATE YOU FOR the way you crawled from the
wreckage, your knees and elbows scraping on the
sand, and the thick smoke burning your eyes. I
can't imagine how you found the strength to crawl on
your hands and knees in the desert night, away from
the carnage and the burning twisted aluminum. I
picture you struggling among charred rocks in the
garish light of blazing aviation fuel. I imagine
you crawling across desert flowers and cactus
quills. I see you crawling slowly, finally coming
to a small dune where you could breathe without
choking -- free to run, free to escape.

But you didn't escape. You caught your breath, you
gathered your strength, and you went back into the
twisted wreckage. Back to the burning fuel, the
shattered glass and the melting plastic. There you
found me and dragged me out. I'll never understand.
I don't have your courage. You pulled me away to
safety, and then went back for the others.

Later, long after you had disappeared again into the
wreckage and failed to come out, it occurred to me
what had happened. You must have passed out. But I
don't have your strength or your will. I stayed
where I was. I didn't move to save you. I let you
die. I let the team die.

I had the long night to think about this. I thought
about who might find us. I thought about what they
would see, and what they would conclude. In the
morning I carefully erased with my boot all traces
of your path in the sand.

When I got the promotion they moved me into your old
office. I really enjoy the large window and the
beautiful view of the desert.


At the bottom of the poster I drew a picture of a cactus
next to an airplane wreck.

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