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What was Bruce Lee’s favorite drink?

Raoul’s Two Cents: August 25, 2023

Wrinkled Wisdom

Drake asked me to speak on Artificial Intelligence at the Rotary Club of West Covina last Wednesday. I spoke on a similar subject last month and I was hoping to use the same material but the rapid growth of the technology in just a month forced me to rewrite my presentation. As expected, there were a lot of questions and a lot of concerns about the future among the audience. What I didn’t expect was who my friend Drake (not his real name) really was.

I met Drake only once, several years ago, in a Rotary meeting where we discussed launching an entrepreneurial program. Sadly (as in many brainstorming sessions) the project never materialized. But I did gain a new friend in Drake. He has been a devoted subscriber of my blog ever since (I bet he’s reading this right now). He would send me calendars and encouragement through the years. And when he heard of my interest in AI, he asked me to speak to his chapter.

As we conversed, I admit it was strange putting a face to a friendship born from emails over the years. I didn’t know he championed so many NGOs and continues to be so energetic even now in his sunset years. He’s the quintessential billion-dollar-deal-maker who knows how to get things done. Like many quiet heroes, he made his money years ago and he volunteered (and still does) most of his services. His 5 kids and 12 grown grand kids are successful in their own right. What an amazing individual. I wish I had more time to learn from him.

A Treasury of Old Friends

You see them everywhere — the Silent Generation and the Boomers. Many walk with arched backs and canes or wheelchairs … way past their prime, dealing with numerous aches … yet carrying treasures of wisdom from decades of experience. It’s a real treat conversing with them. If I were smart, I should write their stories to fit a TV series that will never run out of material. Some of them have passed away but there are still a few who are still influencing my life:

  • Every week I hear tales and practical lessons from a joyful widow whose heart is as big as Chicago where she learned to work hard through life’s ups and downs and is blessed with so many wonderful memories of her loving parents and husband. She provides support for grieving families who lost their loved ones —- no charge!
  • My business partner (and professor of history) teaches me about Property Management, history and faith. Every once in a while I dip into his pool of facts to help me understand the craziness in our world.
  • Another Rotarian shares his adventures growing up as a Mexican American who loves his heritage and ballroom jazz. His wife goes everywhere he goes. Hard to believe that they still organize mission trips to Rosarito — a poor Mexican village they adopted years ago.
  • Another widow (with the spunk of a teenager) whom I met at an event at the local Historical society allowed me to help with a children’s book based on a story she made up for her kids when they were still toddlers. She still writes and helps me out with my grammar because she used to edit manuals for USC (University of Southern California).
  • I am inspired even as my heart breaks for another couple who both have an incurable disease. For years they have pioneered and assisted people (primarily kids) with their visual problems through the simple use of colored overlays. I asked them to stop working and start enjoying life in their last days but, apparently, this is what they enjoy doing.
  • A former pastor (and now a dear friend) loves Christian history and Biblical exegesis. He’s written volumes of scholarly books about Biblical inerrancy. We banter about his perspective on politics and faith. We get into a lot of heavy stuff.
  • My long time buddy (back from my early days as a born-again Christian) from Tennessee is a fireman-turned-missionary. He has a joke about everything and an infectious laughter that brightens my day. He is a man of action. In the mid-80s he introduced me to a new program called Adobe Photoshop. This started my path towards the computer graphic arts industry. We’ve made several books together. He’s a cancer survivor who is still writing, designing and producing Bible study materials.
  • The last (that I can think of now) are three older friends who live in different ends of America and opposite ends of the political spectrum but they all send me jokes and inspiration that keep me going during the week. Two have volunteered at the Rose Bowl event for decades. The other has encouraged me with my business by sending me documentaries of graphic designers and photographers. He is a proud Dad who shares his daughter’s photographic work for Time, Rolling Stone, GQ and other national magazines.

If you know me, you know that I interfere with other people’s lives — I help wherever I can even when help is afraid to ask. Many have thanked me and wondered why I do what I do. They don’t know that I’m just passing on what my older friends have shared with me. Paying forward — that’s what it’s all about.

Old people: Some people call them the Silent Generation but I call them the Unselfish Generation. They may not say much, they may not look like much … but boy, much can we learn from them. Take a bite of their wisdom before it’s too late.

TGIF people!

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
— Proverbs 1:7

JOKE OF THE WEEK

Thanks to Alex of San Juan, Philippines

Original art by Raoul Pascual.

Videos of the Week

Thanks to Chito of Quezon City, Philippines

Serious introspection required.

Thanks to Raffy of Mandaluyong, Philippines

Entertaining remix of Bruce Lee’s famous interview where he proposed we be as adaptable as water.

Parting Shots

Thanks to Dean of Vancouver, B.C.

Thanks to Garie of Paranaque, Philippines

Thanks to Art of Sierra Madre. CA

Thanks to Jun of Reseda, Los Angeles, CA

Thanks to Maling of New Manila, Philippines

I found these

The Traveling Boy

My good friend (and jokester) Terry and I came up with these.

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15 Comments

  1. Hannah

    August 25, 2023 at 10:12 am

    Of course, you know that Bruce Lee had a brother who was vegan: Broco Lee

    Reply

  2. Heather

    August 25, 2023 at 10:12 am

    I’m so happy that you are passing on information to help others who struggle with AI. ITS ONE OF THE SCARIEST THINGS TO COME ALONG. Another thing for all of us to grapple with in this world!
    You are so sweet to include me in the people who give their knowledge freely to help others. Knowledge is power and receiving it and using it to move forward and pass the information on, is awesome.
    PS: PLEASE KNOW THAT YOU ARE A GIFT IN MY LIFE.

    Heather

    Reply

  3. Tom

    August 25, 2023 at 10:14 am

    Thanks Raoul I really needed a smile today , my My wife passed away at Six AM and I am truly feeling Sad.

    Reply

    • Raoul

      August 25, 2023 at 10:17 am

      Oh no. I’m so sorry Tom. This is so sad. I can feel your grief my good friend.

      Sounds like she was a sweet woman. You were blessed to have her by your side all these years.

      May God’s angels be with your family at this very difficult moment. Praise God that this is but a temporary situation for soon we will all be together when our days here on earth is over.

      Rest if you can to get ready for the visitors. Sleep.

      Matthew 11:28-30
      Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

      Raoul

      Reply

      • Tom

        August 25, 2023 at 10:19 am

        Thanks Raoul. She was very Special Indeed! Tom

        Reply

  4. Oscar

    August 25, 2023 at 10:15 am

    GM Raoul. Funny — WATTA!

    ALso thanks for being a good Brother and Friend in Christ!

    Reply

  5. Drake

    August 25, 2023 at 10:20 am

    Raoul, the ‘thanks’ goes to you for taking time to prepare and give this talk…you hit-it-out-of-the-park….your demonstrating the difference in various platforms/price was revealing as well….will not take time for all of that to level out somewhat to competitive forces….as I indicated yesterday, the somewhat shocking part to me is the accelerated pace all of this AI is moving at….wowzers….

    Looking forward to our next time together, maybe over some vino that will assist in the discussions….many thanks again for being an important part of our discussion on AI….Cheers

    Reply

    • Raoul Pascual

      August 25, 2023 at 10:24 am

      Sharing vino will be nice. I feel there’s so much I can learn from you. Maybe we can have a foursome with our wives who are both named Jackie. And if you have a yacht floating around somewhere, that might be even better.

      Cheers!

      Raoul

      Reply

      • Drake

        August 25, 2023 at 10:30 am

        Raoul….interesting you mentioned having a yacht….I will share with you the story line I continuously offer my grand-kids….be clear with your self (and equally important spouse if you have one) the lifestyle you are comfortable with, always live within your means regardless the lifestyle you wish to have and equally important, regardless of how much you earn save a percentage….I proudly wear a $12.00 Casio watch, no interest for a yacht and paid cash for the only ‘toy’ I ever purchased – a corvette ten years ago – a three-beer story in itself…..my wife & I want for nothing, our wants are simple, we have zero debt, we give to family and those in need frequently, but toy’s?….no….

        Grandpa philosophy for being content in life….if you play the game of chasing toy’s you can never win, there is always somebody with a bigger one….

        Back in the day … we sold the majority interest of the company to a venture/capital investment group so those who had invested could get out in needed…. [someone] of the VC group who acquired the majority shared (in boring details) over a very long expensive dinner the yacht he was having custom build in Europe…a one-of-a-kind big deal yacht…well months later (at another boring dinner) I listened to his complete meltdown having found out another competing VC guy was having a similar yacht built by the same builder, but 24” longer…the whinning never stopped….a real lesson learned I have shared….if you are not content with who you are, the quest never ends happily….

        My story of the day

        Reply

  6. Noel

    August 25, 2023 at 4:55 pm

    aug 26

    Another gem , Raoul. the piece on “wrinkled wisdom” , totally.

    I do know some people in the States that do similar kind of work even in their later years.. what amazes me is they have the time , dedication (and the means of course) to do those things..here in the Philippines, more and more of the older people’s lives are devoted to still working in order to survive comfortably..I still do work and not just to pass the time away (from home-LOL). My father was still going to the office at 92..so I guess it is in my genes to die with my boots on, so to speak, and hopefully do something good for other people along the way.

    On the other hand,,it’s really different for the old guys..there is this old golfer’s joke…hope i remember it ..haha

    “The 80 year old golfer Tom has had poor eyesight and finds it hard to see where the ball goes after a shot. He goes and finds his friend, Jerry, who is of the same age but has good eyesight. They go out and play and he hits his shot first.. Hey Jerry, did you see where my ball went? Sure , said Jerry. So, where did it go, asked Tom. I saw it but don’t remember where it went, answered Jerry”

    I tried getting on the zoom yesterday morning using the zoom details of last week since there was none provided this time and I thought it was a continuing thing..it wasn’t.

    stay safe bro

    Reply

  7. Hilda

    August 25, 2023 at 4:56 pm

    A pithy piece. Thanks!

    Reply

  8. Betty from Australia

    August 28, 2023 at 1:49 pm

    Thanks., Pasky! Keep well 😊

    Reply

  9. Larry

    August 28, 2023 at 1:53 pm

    Raoul.

    You said “if you were smart.” My friend, you are smarter than you think. TGIF!

    Reply

  10. Lois

    August 28, 2023 at 1:55 pm

    Thanks for the nice tribute.

    Reply

  11. Mike

    August 30, 2023 at 12:00 pm

    Thanks, love getting these each week. I’m sure everyone does.
    Have a blessed weekend.
    Mike

    Reply

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