04 Sep Just add water….
A lovely gray San Francisco day at Ocean Beach. A slight breeze.. the sun hiding behind a curtain of cloud formations. The kind of clouds that do not even allow a game of ‘what do they look like.’ One giant blanket of dark hue over our head.
Standing at Louies, it is interesting to note the presentation of past and present in my view. Sutro Baths, a marvel in the late 1800’s… turned into an ice rink in its sunset years and finally burned to the ground in 1966. The Cliff House, new and shiny. (it has a few fires too.) A friend mentioned there is an inverse relationship between the quality of the food and the quality of the view. True.
Playland used to be here. Until the 70’s when a developer decided more cash could be made with some condo’s. Ugly condos most agree. A bulldozing of smiles and laughter on this seashore funtacular that once was.
I walked with a friend of mine who is running for office. An incredible person who is earnest and honest. A very high intellect- an incredible ability to use analogies and picturesque speech to cement understanding.
I dared him to build a sand sculpture with me. I had brough the equipment to this working breakfast. My goal, to see if he knew how to build one. To use this exercise as an example of what we think we know… what happens when we have someone teach us (me)… then what happens when we have the tools (pail, etc in my bag)… then what happens when we practice. I even had a flag to put on top that had his name and the office he was running for.
Asked him if he knew how to build one. Turns out he did. He told me this great story of sand castles and little boys. I asked him the key ingredient.
No answer really.
Without water there is no sand castle. Once can either build the castle near the shore and get the water underneath.. or one needs a bucket to add to the top. Bottomline: without water there is no sandcastle.
Relationships are water. I have often said the “true currency is the human relationship.” it is what we are all orbiting around in our daily lives. With out the relationship (water) no political campaign (sand castle), no home, no business…. none of it will work.
So often folks come to me to teach them how to speak in public. I can not teach what isn’t there. My role is to either remind folks of what they have been or point out what I notice that they may want to bring into the forefront. Today reminded me the why rather than the how. With out relationships it is all just another pile of dirt.
Here is what is funny about my scheme. I am a metal artist. i know how to build sculpture. I also know how to turn a phrase and give a great speech. I have never, in my life, built a sand castle. This morning I actuallly researched on-line so I could use this exercise to help my client have a breakthrough in communication.
As he drove away, I trodded down to the playa. Built a stunning rendition of Playland with out condo’s. As I added the crowning glory, his campaign flag attached to a Blue number 2 pencil, I realized how much of my work is a reminder to me. Each session with a client is a full technicolor neon sign reminding Christina to PLAY.
I wonder how many days I will be picking sand out from beneath my french manicure I got last week so I would look more like an adult.