Lessons Learned

Another year has passed. Is it just me, or is time speeding up? Although I do all my new year’s resolutions at the Jewish New Year, I still like using the putting up of a new calendar as a trigger to think through what has been important in the year that has just passed.

There are two things that I’m left with from 2012 that are both closely linked … at least to my brain:

Throughout the year I kept finding myself thinking of a story that has been attributed to both Winston Churchill and George Bernard Shaw:

Sir Winston Churchill

A man asks a woman if she would be willing to sleep with him if he pays her an exorbitant sum. She replies affirmatively. He then names a paltry amount and asks if she would still be willing to sleep with him for the revised fee. The woman is greatly offended and replies as follows:

She: What kind of woman do you think I am?

He: We’ve already established that. Now we’re just haggling over the price.

[Thanks to Quote Investigator for this synopsis.]

As a result of this story, I have been referring to the bare minimum amount that I would dream of working for as my “whore price”. Since for part of the year, I was thinking of going into business for myself, knowing that dollar amount was important.

At one point this year, I was presented with an opportunity that sounded ideal to me. Some people thought I was crazy for wanting it, but even they could see that it would be a really good fit for me. Unfortunately, it didn’t meet my whore price.

I was still at the point where I was considering it, because, as I told to Kurt, some of my best decisions in life have been completely irrational. His response made me laugh … and think, “There is a difference between irrational and stupid.” That was my second lesson from the year. I’ve discovered that before committing to things, irrational and stupid can look very similar, at least when looking at my own life (in looking at others‘ lives, it’s really easy to see!). Personally, it is only that tiny voice in the back of my mind that lets me see the difference.

What lessons did you learn (or re-learn) this year? or Are you able to tell the difference between irrational and stupid in your own life?

4 thoughts on “Lessons Learned”

  1. I love that story. I always thought Churchill said it; I didn’t know some people attribute it to Shaw. I love that idea of a “whore price” and what you’re bare minimum amount is. Makes you think about what you’d be willing to do and at what price you’d do it for.

    Oh I definitely think there’s a difference between irrational and stupid. Many decisions I’ve made have been seen as irrational, but have turned out to be really smart. Sometimes being smart means being irrational. Although I think being irrational can often lead to stupid decisions. It’s a hard distinction to make.


    1. Too bad it is hindsight that often helps us distinguish between irrational and stupid!

      While the term “whore price” is shocking at first, it makes so much sense, and you are right, it does put things into perspective.


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