Grateful Heart Monday

Welcome to another chapter of Grateful Heart Monday, where gratitude is the only focus of the day, which for today is for a guy named Shane Loux, a retired pitcher for the major and minor leagues, who also just happened to be the very same guy who aerated my yard recently for the company I use for lawn service.

I would never have thought that a retired major league baseball player and presently a minor league baseball coach would have ever been someone to show up at my house for one of my regularly scheduled lawn services. But, that indeed is what happened early one morning at the wee hours of 7:30am when a kind gentleman showed up at my home and introduced himself as the perso who would be aerating my yard for the day.

As Shane did his assessment of the job and got his machine ready to go that does the aeration, I asked him a number of questions, including whether this was his full-time job or not. That was when I became very surprised at his answer, as his normal job was a coaching one for a minor league baseball team, the Missoula Osprey, under the Arizona Diamondbacks franchise.

I’m not sure I ever would have guessed that Shane was once a Major League Baseball player or that he was now a coach under a major franchise. I guess the idea of plugging a yard with a bulky machine, getting super muddy in the process, and then walking around with a hand-held feeder to place seed down everywhere is not something I’d ever imagine a former MLB player would do. Maybe that’s because I’ve always had this image of all professional athletes having mile-wide ego’s where doing something like aerating a yard would seem quite beneath them. But that is indeed why I’m so very grateful that Shane came into my life that day, if only to teach me how wrong I was in a long-standing silent judgment.

For the brief two hours Shane spent at my home doing the lawn service I was paying for, I truly saw a humble, egoless, kind, and spirited soul. Shane had such a soft presence about him, one that really reminded me of another guy I wrote about a few years back, a guy by the name of Nevin Martin, who was a gentle soul and the pilot on a small charter plane I flew one day.

Like Nevin, Shane carries this extremely positive energy about himself, one that makes a person feel quite uplifted by just being around him. There were never any judgments that came from his mouth and no negative comments, not even to any of the OCD behaviors I’m sure I exhibited by asking him one question after another! He exuded such a great sense of patience with me, like Nevin did, and is someone who I feel would be the type of coach I’d want to have if I was a young kid aspiring to be a baseball great one day.

I think it’s pretty awesome to see a guy like Shane doing a yard job during the summer for a company his family owns in an area that’s pretty far from his regular home in Arizona, just to lend a hand. The humility in Shane’s actions, the friendliness of his soul, and the genuineness he brings to the table by just being himself is truly something to be grateful for and why Shane Loux is a well-deserved recipient of this week’s Grateful Heart Monday.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

Thought For The Day

Quote #1

“Picking on someone else isn’t cool and it’s not funny. Tearing someone else down and getting a good laugh at their expense is nothing more than a cowardly act and cruel at best.” (Andrew Arthur Dawson)

Quote #2

“Nothing annoys me more than when someone expects you to be okay with something that they themselves wouldn’t be okay with if you did it to them.” (Unknown)

Quote #3

“I’m human. But overall, whenever I see anyone being made fun of or given a hard time, I rush to their defense. I want to help them because I know how it feels.” (Stephanie Klein)

Bonus Quote

“No one is ever going to make a difference in this world or make it any better, by making fun of another’s flaws and imperfections.” (Andrew Arthur Dawson)

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

I Don’t Like To Be Picked On, AT ALL…

I don’t like to be picked on, AT ALL. And I especially don’t like being picked on when it’s around a group of people. I’ve been picked on my whole life, for whatever the reason. Ever since I was a little kid, I always seemed to become the recipient of everyone’s jokes and pranks. Getting laughed at by a number of people all at once was a typical occurrence. And while everyone else always seemed to be laughing at me, I was constantly crying silently within, wishing to God they’d stop.

What I’ve learned over time is that anyone who tends to frequently make fun of someone else or has a laugh regularly at another’s expense is because deep down they’re totally insecure about some part of themselves and may not even be aware of it, that is until the tables get turned onto them. Because once they are, once they become the recipient of being made fun of, they usually get quite angry and irritated.

The fact is, I don’t think anyone really likes being made fun of, especially when it’s picking apart their flaws or imperfections. The simple reality of why anyone does this type of behavior is to take the focus off of themselves, to make sure no one ever sees their own flaws or imperfections. Because when everyone else is laughing at the person they’re picking on, no one is going to be laughing at their own shortcomings.

What I find the most frustrating though about getting picked on is when the person picking on me tells me I need to “lighten up” or “develop a thicker skin”. Because, you know what?


While I may be a sensitive person and while I may be an emotional person, I don’t need to ever change myself just to become a better recipient of getting picked on. No one should have to change any part of themselves just to become a better recipient of another’s jokes and pranks. Lightening up or developing a thicker skin is solely that person’s way of wanting to feel better about their toxic behavior. Because deep down, their Spirit knows it isn’t right and also knows it’s causing more pain than good. Yet, so long as they keep getting everyone else to laugh at who they’re picking on, they generally will keep doing the toxic behavior anyway. That is, until one day, when the tables fully get turned onto them, when one of their flaws or shortcomings become the constant recipient of another’s jokes and pranks, as it’s then they start truly feeling the terrible pain of that.

Picking upon another’s flaws and imperfections and having a good laugh at their expense is by far the worst type of humor out there in my humble opinion. But you know what I find to be the best type of humor? When people learn to make fun of themselves, when they take their own flaws and imperfections and make light of them. That’s pretty awesome whenever I see people doing that. On NBC’s America’s Got Talent, I’ve seen both a person with a severe stuttering issue, and another with Tourette’s Syndrome, both take the stage and make the most incredible comedic routine about their limiting conditions. When a person makes fun of themselves and is the one driving the humor, it always feels a lot brighter, a lot lighter, and ok to laugh at. But when a person has some type of limiting condition, like in my case, with severe hypochondria and OCD, for another to make fun of that, never feels good to me one bit. Because that type of humor isn’t coming from an unconditionally loving or spiritual type of place.

Truth be told, the quickest way for me these days to start distancing myself from someone is when they’re regularly picking on me and having a good laugh at my expense. I’ve developed a thick enough of skin now to at least say I don’t need someone like that in my life. And just because someone tells me they only pick on those they like doesn’t change the fact it still hurts when it happens.

The bottom line is that I don’t want to be a doormat for someone else’s humor anymore. It never feels good and I know that many others who’ve walked in my shoes, who once were a “nerd”, “dork”, “geek” or “freak” or labeled something else demeaning like that in their childhood like I was, would totally understand what I’m saying and agree.

So, the next time you think that picking on me, or anyone for that matter, is a good thing to do, if you truly care about me, or the person you are doing it to, you might want to stop and make fun of yourself instead. Because having a good laugh at my or another’s expense, laughing at one of our flaws or imperfections, things we already struggle with enough in life, is not a spiritual quality, nor is a quality I ever wish to have in someone I call a friend.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson