River Wissey Lovell Fuller


September 2004

Les exhorts us all to give 110% to ensure we gain the success we desire.

Glancing at my clock I see it's 5-3Oam the day is Thursday 1st July 2004 and I'm reading yesterday's newspapers and finding items so interesting I'm cutting them out for my scrapbook. Why keep a scrapbook? Well, so in six months time, even in six years time, assuming I'm still around, I will be able to read again these items and find them as interesting as the day I first came across them.

One item that appealed to me was about the late Bill Shankly, a Scotsman, who was the manager of Liverpool Football Club from 1959 to 1974. When he was at his barber's one day he was asked, "Anything off the top?" to which he replied, "Aye Everton".

He is also reported to have said, Football isn't a matter of life or death, it's something far more important". Bill Shankly epitomised, Passion, Commitment, and Dedication, not for him 100% effort, but that extra 10%, the 100% was important but the extra 10% was ten times more important.

You could say, "Who's interested in football?" and if you do you have missed my point; I'm on about 110% commitment to whatever you do. I don't care if you are a village parish councillor, a regular church goer, secretary or treasure of any club you care to mention, if that 110% commitment isn't there, then I want to drop this conversation right here and move on. If you don't like 110% what do you like? 80%, 40%, 10%? I've got an idea, why not leave it just there and walk away, because if you can't give 110% then you can't give anything.

In my youth I never once walked off a soccer field without feeling totally exhausted because I had given my all and if you haven't done that you have let your side down. All of us have responsibilities, which we should face up to we have to ask ourselves why are we here? Surely not just to tick off the days as they go by.

We should ask ourselves am I giving 110% to my family, my job, my village, and if not why not. I'm reminded of J.F.Kennedy who, when he was President of the U S A, said, "Don't ask what America can do for you, but what can you do for America." We should all look at things in the same light and I should ask myself what have I this last week done for life all around me, the answer more than likely could be very little.

In order however to give this total commitment you must in many circumstances be part of "the team" it is no good sitting on the outside looking in. The question is, how do you break in to this "team"? And that is at the very heart of why so few people give of their best, they are denied the opportunity to do so.

You really have to face up to the reality that in this part of the world it isn't what you know, but who you know. We really do follow this crazy scenario in many aspects of our village life that tells us that if you wish to take the delectable Miss Jones out to dinner you don't do the blatantly obvious and go and ask her you sit back and wait for her to volunteer.

That isn't quite correct, there are some occasions where a few people are asked, say to join some organisation, but only when a certain formula has been addressed, are they "one of us", if not their ability is not considered.

I'm saying that the "Old boy's network" is alive and well, and I've been around long enough to see it.

Les Lawrence

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