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Milwaukee's Daily Magazine for Wednesday, April 16, 2014

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Readers Blog: Dobie Maxwell's 'Dented Can' Diary

Binder Finder

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Tuesday August 28th, 2012 – Milwaukee, WI

   Just when I think I’m finally getting myself organized and putting a plan together, along comes an unforeseen glitch to throw everything off course. Isn’t that just about how life works for us all to a certain degree? It’s not about the glitches, but how we react that determines our successes.

   I received a phone call way too early this morning informing me I had left my three ring binder of comedy notes at the restaurant in Milwaukee where I met up with my cousin Wendy yesterday for breakfast. I brought it because I thought I was early, but it turned out she was already there.

   I’ve been putting a lot of work into those notes of late, and didn’t want to risk losing them so I made sure my phone number and email were printed prominently in several places so I’d get that call if indeed I did happen to get separated from the binder - which is exactly what happened.

   I was smart in making up the binder so I could work on my comedy whenever I had any down time, but scatterbrained enough to leave it behind at a restaurant. Yin, meet yang. That’s how life goes. I was grateful for the call, even though I was rather disappointed at my own lack of focus.

   The last thing I’d planned on was a trip back to Milwaukee, but I wanted to retrieve those notes before anything happened to them. I’m sure cousin Wendy would have gladly picked them up for me, but I chose to get them myself and make up for my blunder. It was my fault, nobody else’s.

   It was a beautiful day, and I chose to not let my little goof ruin it. It could have been worse as I could have not had any identification at all and never gotten the call. Earlier this year I lost my one and only booking calendar packed with important contacts which I still haven’t gotten back.

   When I walked into the restaurant, there was a whole different crew than yesterday and it took them several minutes to track down the binder. I’ll admit I panicked a bit, but then somebody found it and all was well with the world. I thanked them all and walked out with a relieved smile.

   Since I was already in town, I made the best of it by clearing up another glitch from yesterday that was bothering me all day. Drew Olson and I had lunch at Jake’s Deli on North Avenue and it occurred to me after we left that we didn’t tip the lady who served us. It was an honest mistake, but I don’t like to do that and I felt like an ass about it all the way home. It was totally my fault.

   I decided to again take charge of the situation and go back to Jake’s and see if she happened to be working. She was, and remembered me from yesterday. I sincerely apologized and put a $5 bill in her hand. Her eyes lit up like Santa brought more toys December 26th. I’m so glad I did it.

   After that I called my friend Kipper McGee to see if he was in town and had time for lunch. Kipper has always been a great friend and loyal supporter, and I felt I owed him. He was indeed in town and available and was glad I called. I didn’t want anything other than to show my sincere appreciation for all the favors he’s thrown my way over the years. For a seemingly blown day, I was able to spread some good energy. Life really is about how we react to unplanned situations.

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