Be a Jeter

Watching my Yankees over the weekend was a treat. My good friend and our very able attorney, Ron Fleming of Pillsbury Winthrop invited me to the game on Friday. It was great watching my team keep the drive alive with a 5-0 win over Toronto.

But what caught my eye — and made me think of you, Readers — wasn’t all the plays on which the Yanks scored, but one on which they didn’t.

In the bottom of the 2nd inning, with bases loaded, Gary Sheffield grounded into a force out at third, and Derek Jeter found himself in a run-down between third and home.

Oh no!

Now the run-down is typically a sure out for the defense.

But Derek Jeter didn’t feel like playing along.

He juked, jived and muscled his way out of the run-down masterfully, getting safely back to third to keep the inning alive.

And I think that’s what we all can love about Jeter — it doesn’t matter the stakes, the situation, or the score — he’s going to play his absolute superlative best. And he’s going to make his own success happen.

And now you, my dear Readers, may feel that your career is caught in a run-down. Your boss and your subordinates have got you cornered. Or this job-hunt has got you stuck between the time you need to spend doing it right and the pressures and demands of the day job. Sometimes it can feel like the game is stacked against you.

So I’m asking you to be a Jeter today. This first Monday of fall, this last week of September, this first day of the rest of your life.

Be a Jeter. Beat the throw. Don’t let the odds keep you from winning. Use everything you’ve got and everything you’ve been given to get back to third base. You’re just about to score, Readers, and I’m here with you all the way.

So while I’m certainly rooting for my Yankees this fall — and all you Red Sox fans will be rooting against (especially my colleague Michael Shafrir)–let’s all agree that the sportsmanship, the gallantry, and the never-say-die determination of Derek Jeter is something we can bring with us into our lives today, this day, this week. We can make of ourselves whatever we choose to.

Actually, that reminds me in a funny way of two quotes from Ancient Rome:

One, from my namesake, Emperor Marcus Aurelius:

“Our life is what our thoughts make it.”

This is from Meditations , his excellent Stoic ruminations on life. And it’s always meant to me that we have the power to create our own destiny, our own future, our own success. You, too, Readers, have that power. Set your thinking right, and your thoughts can make, and re-make, your life.

The other ‘quote’ that came to mind:

“Illegitimati non carborundum”

Or “Don’t let the bastards get you down!”

OK, this one is pretty dodgy Latin, but it’s a fun way to remind yourself that a sense of humor wins out over everything.

Well, let’s get on to the…Oh my gosh, is it more than five thousand new jobs again, Readers?! Yes it is!