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Last night as I drove I-25 north to Cochiti Lake from the Albuquerque Sunport into a massive thunderstorm, I had time to think about the last 6 days.

My journey began with Mark’s family reunion. About 60 Sadowskis gathered at Lake Sammamish Park where just one week prior there was a gunfight and two men were killed. Cops came by our picnic area and told us we had to take down the Sadowski Family Reunion banner (complete with family crest) because it could look like a gang symbol. At some level we were a gang – or a group with a common bond – but we just wanted to eat our weight in polish sausage – not kill anyone.  A sign of the times I guess.

The next day we hung out with Mark’s 13 nieces and nephews in a giant house we rented in Seattle. We brought our Wii. The living room became the center of activity. Non-stop for the next 24 hours these kids took turns playing tennis, baseball, and of course we bowled. Mark’s nephew Joey looked at me and said “I’m so glad you guys brought this game – can you imagine what we’d be doing without it?” Indeed. Talk? Go for a walk? Play cards?  A sign of the times.

Sunday Mark and I spent the entire day cleaning up the yard of our Seattle rental house. It’s time to sell it. If you want a house that doesn’t have hardwood floors, stainless steel appliances and granite counter tops, we have the one for you. We priced it accordingly but the first showing revealed what we already know – although it is priced as a first-time-home-buyer-fixer-upper – the expectation is that it will already be fixed up. With granite counter tops, stainless steel appliances….blah bah blah. Definitely a sign of the times – expectation high – commitment low.

And finally off to Chicago to attend my first AACUL meeting as VP of CUANM. If there weren’t enough acronyms in that sentence for you – I have more. One of the speakers was a CAE, EVP of ASAE. I’m not kidding. Her topic was “Association Beliefs, Behaviors and Attitudes in the Current Economy” – aka we (credit unions) need to young it up or die. The same message delivered by Jim Collins at the 1 Conference in Las Vegas earlier this month.

Just for fun I tweeted “Speaker at AACUL talking about social media – bet I’m the only one tweeting this.” Sure enough, a couple minutes later she asked the audience “How many of you tweet?” A smattering of hands. And then “Are any of you tweeting right now?” I was the lone tweeter. At first she was excited and applauded me and then BAM – threw me under the bus by saying “We don’t know what she’s tweeting – she could be saying something really negative.” In other words – fear social media. Perfect. You just gave all of these leaders permission to protect the status quo.

A sign of the times?

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August 2010