The Dinghy and the Commission Check: A Short Parable on Grit

My father-in-law once told me a story about when he bought a little fishing boat when he was a kid, maybe 9 years old or so. He was growing up on the coast in Southern California and the great love of his childhood (and kind of his adulthood) is fishing.

He was so proud of his little boat. There was only one problem.

While a small motor, he was also a small kid. He couldn’t start the damned thing.

He would try and try and try again all day, fail, then come back and try again the next day.

Close to the end of the summer, he got to the boat one morning, gave the motor ripcord a good pull and the engine flared to life! From that day, not only could he fish to his heart’s content, but he learned a valuable lesson about grit and determination.

In a similar vein, I’ve been writing every day for the last 8 months. This morning I woke up to see that something I wrote earned some money.

While it’s certainly not the main point, it’s validating on many levels. And I’m not afraid to admit it made me a bit emotional even, as it’s the fulfillment of a long-held aspiration.

My own father never told me much about his childhood, his hopes or his even his dreams as an adult. He was a quiet and reserved man. But I wish I knew something like that; something that fired him up down deep to his core.

I don’t know if my own kids will ever read this, but if they ever do then know this. This one meant something to old Dad today.

Leave a comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: