One-Liner Wednesday – Advice

You can learn something from everyone you meet, if you’re paying attention.”

One Liner WednesdayMy brother sent this one to me last week. He remembers, as do I, hearing this bit of advice from our dad. We remember because it was one of those things we heard on more than one occasion.

Paying attention is sometimes difficult. We are pretty quick to write some people off as having nothing useful to say. Still, it’s rarely the case that someone is a total dry well.

This post is part of Linda G. Hill’s fun weekly series One-Liner Wednesday. Since this post was my brother’s idea, I’m sharing a few pictures of his cats.


  1. Did we have the same father? This was one of my dad’s favorites too, along with ‘if you think hard enough, there’s an answer to every problem’ and ‘the day I stop learning, do me a favor and close the lid.’

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  2. Throughout my career I’ve said something similar about presentations. Despite how bad a speaker may be, despite how boring the speaker may be, and despite how bad the PowerPoint presentation may be . . . if you listen . . . if you pay attention, you will learn “something” from being in the room.

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  3. You know something? You’re right — you can learn something from everyone. Even the people who mess up. As the saying goes (more or less), it could be that you’re here to provide an example of what NOT to do. Nice shots of the kitties! Give MiMi a pet for me.

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  4. Such a true statement, although these days, once conversation starts, all too often it seems that ears and minds close. The quote’s related to something I read somewhere that’s somewhat similar: “Everyone you meet is better than you at something and you’re better at something than they are.” Maybe that keeps us from feeling either superior or inferior and then your quote kicks in and we can both learn something…if we’re open enough to do so.


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  5. You know, usually people’s choices of pet names bothers me to no end. They’re often either boring, cliched, over-the-top, or downright ridiculous. But I really got a kick out of “Butch” and “Sundance”! Great pet names right there. And that’s some very good advice. There’s always something to be learned from every person you run across and every situation you find yourself in. We’d all be a lot better off in life if we approached everything — good and bad — from the perspective of “what can I learn from this?”

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  6. The cats are lovely. As for paying attention… my mind frequently wanders when someone’s talking to me so I miss quite a lot of what they’re saying. It’s why blogging and reading blogs is so good for me – I can re-read. But it’s true – you can learn something from everyone.

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  7. I and Sarah recently are connecting with a male cat in the neighborhood. He usually strolls right down my balcony and tries to hunt sparrows and pigeons who come by to drink water, but when he can’t find anything, he meows. We finally throw some biscuits and he readily eats them and walks away with who-the-heck-are-you attitude.

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      1. I can’t do that here. In India, we have to respect the fact that vegetarians would not like it, even though the cat would not spare a single shred of meat, but I can only offer meat if the cat is in my home. So for the moment, he has to do with plain biscuits.

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            1. Yeah. Recently, when I was touring my Spanish friends, I realized they were fooled to pay extra money, obviously, they are new and white skin so locals take advantage. I shared with them so many details to ensure they don’t pay more than the actual price. I guess they felt that they should have consulted with me first before shopping. I also help them experience Indian Railways and they were so thankful and happy. They wrote to me that their train journey was the most memorable and also the cheapest of all the 10 days they traveled across India.

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            2. Can a tourist get tricked into paying more for train fare than normal? I think your Spanish friends were very lucky to connect with you – good planning on their part and generous service by you and Sarah.

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            3. Not if you buy it directly from the Indian Railways, but few tourists know how to do that and where to go to buy tickets. Travel agents can trick you for sure to earn their commission. Iris and Angel went to Aurangabad from Mumbai (372 miles journey). They had bought 2 bus tickets for Rs 2600 (USD 39) (10 hour journey). However, they wanted tickets for back to Mumbai, so I took them to Indian Railways office. I made an inquiry and got them a first class superfast AC train tickets for Rs 1300 (USD 19) (6 hour journey). It was quite a revelation for them.

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  8. Sounds like your dad had some wisdom, Dan. The only advice I can remember my dad consistently giving his rowdy brood was every April when he said, “Always pay your taxes with a happy heart and then write God Bless America on the envelop.” I do the first.

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