Character

“Character is what you know you are,

not what others think you have.”

She knew what to do.

“Determination and perseverance move the world; thinking that others will do it for you is a sure way to fail.”

She did not fail, in the long run, despite all the obstacles.  Just ask her numerous, successful, students.

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Mastermind

It’s Trade, Stupid

He was kicked out.

They had no natural resources: except a natural harbor and being in a central location of the poor South East Asia.

It was a mismash of cultures: Chinese, Malays and Indians, under the British colonial rule, made from the flotsam and jetsam of the Chinese Diaspora and local Malays with a sprinkle of Indians.

Exhausted by World War II, the British wanted out of the colonial business, so they tried to give Singapore to the newly formed Malaysia.   Singapore joined neighboring Malaysia, another former British colony, in 1963. The following year riots between ethnic Chinese and Malays broke out, and Singapore and Malaysia split into separate nations in 1965.

No go there, there was Tunku, he had enough problems with his Chinese. Too many Chinese and Lee was not a weak leader, not easily manipulable.  

Kicked out of the Malaysian Federation, Lee Kuan Yew, leading a newly independent Singapore from 1965, with overwhelming parliamentary control, oversaw the nation’s transformation from a relatively underdeveloped colonial outpost with no natural resources into an Asian Tiger economy. In the process, he forged a widely admired system of meritocratic, clean, self-reliant and efficient government and civil service, much of which is now taught at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy.

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Can We Talk

She sure could.

“I hate housework! You make the beds, you do the dishes and six months later you have to start all over again.”

“People say that money is not the key to happiness, but I always figured if you have enough money, you can have a key made.”

“I’ve had so much plastic surgery, when I die they will donate my body to Tupperware.”

And her friend Barbara Walters accused her of “Frankly, she did almost anything for a laugh” — but Joan would definitely disagree, for she said of herself “I will do Anything for a laugh.”

In Memoriam
Joan Rivers
[June 8, 1933 – September 4, 2014]

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The Gardener

The Gardener of “Souls”

“He was such a wonderful human being. He was gentle, not a Hitler-esque cruel director. I never saw him get angry; he wasn’t a tortured human being in any way. Because he’d been an actor himself, he made a gardener director. He knew exactly what the plants were, how much sun and how much earth and water they needed. He let them grow and blossom in their own time. I loved him and I shall miss him like anything.” –Saeed Jaffrey

“Dickie, a one-man entertainment empire, was at least as significant as those humanitarian titans he brought to life on screen. He was also the quintessence of kindness and modesty, and it was a privilege to have known and worked with him.” — Michael York

It took twenty years.  He told everybody that he would do it. 

It took him twenty years of Championing to get the funding and to make it.

Richard Attenborough was able to make Gandhi (1982), which had a fine performance by Ben Kingsley in the title role. The film is dedicated to Lord Mountbatten, Pandit Nehru and an unknown Indian called Motilal Kothari, who suggested the subject to Attenborough in the first place in 1962.

Nehru’s advice to Attenborough was that it would be wrong to deify Gandhi: “He was too great a man for that.” The film won eight Oscars – best picture, best actor, best director, best original screenplay, best cinematography, best art direction, best editing, best costume design – the biggest haul ever for a British movie. In his acceptance speech, Attenborough said: “Gandhi believed if we could but agree, simplistic though it be, that if we do not resort to violence then the route to solving problems would be much different than the one we take.”

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Don’t Worry, Be Happy

That’s not easy to do.Especially for the talented Performer Artisans.

For they are the happiest people in the world, but…

On the side of light: There are the highs, the higher highs, and the highest high.

On the side of dark: Then there are the lows, the lower lows, and the lowest of lows.

Creativity can be an addiction.
— Robin Williams

What happens when you feel that your creativity and grace disappeared, not to be found ever again? There is no faking(acting) fix.  No, the quick fix of drugs and alcohol can’t solve the problem, either.

The curtain rises on the scene
With someone shouting to be free
The play unfolds before my eyes
There stands the actor who is me.  

The Word that Dr. Keirsey used for this is Latin (via French): ENNUI

Freedom just another word for,
nothing left to lose.

en·nui

noun
  1. a feeling of listlessness and dissatisfaction arising from a lack of occupation or excitement.
    synonyms: boredom, tedium, listlessness, lethargy, lassitude, languor, weariness, enervation;

    malaise, dissatisfaction, melancholy, depression, world-weariness, Weltschmerz
    “an ennui bred of long familiarity”

“Ennui” is how the Artisans become “depressed.” There are two kinds of “depression” (for two of the Temperaments) and they are quite different. Depression for the Guardian is painful and “red”: they are very sick and very tired: they are demobilized. The Artisan “ennui” is akin to boredom — they find themselves in grey and fog filled landscape, they are beguiled. To them, they feel in their gut, nothing exciting will ever happen again. It scares the Artisan

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Rational Maverick

In Memoriam

It is the first anniversary of my father’s death.

david_keirsey_in_library
Professor David West Keirsey
(August 31, 1921 – July 30, 2013)

I always imagined that Paradise will be some kind of library — Luis Jorge Borges

I was born into even a better paradise.  My father was wordmeister (a studier of words) and a personologist (a studier of persons), and a book reader: A Rational Maverick.  And I was just like him — well sorta’.  He was born in the 20’s and I was born in the 50’s.  Two ages of innocence:  he after WWI and me after WWII.

He had different upbringing than me, but we were of the same Temperament (Rational), Role (Engineer) and Type (Architect).  A kind of a natural science and engineering type of person: a nerd, in modern argot. I naturally graviated towards being a scholar in quantitative reasoning and the use of words, because of his and my mother’s library of life. He had naturally became a scholar in qualitative reasoning and the use of words.

I began reading when I was seven. Read (most of) a twelve-volume set of books my parents bought, Journeys through Bookland. Read countless novels thereafter, day in and day out. I educated myself by reading books. Starting at age nine my family went to the library once a week, I checking out two or three novels which I would read during the week. Then, when I was sixteen, I read my father’s copy of Will Durant’s The Story of Philosophy. I read it over and over again, now and then re-reading his account of some of the philosophers. (Long afterwards I read his magnificent eleven volumes—The Story of Civilization. I also have read his The Lessons of History many times, this being his brilliant summary of the eleven volumes.)

I mention Durant’s book The Story of Philosophy because it was a turning point in my life, I to become a scholar as did Durant, thereafter reading the philosophers and logicians — anthropologists, biologists, ethologists, ethnologists, psychologists, sociologists, and, most important, the etymologists, all of the latter—Ernest Klein, Eric Partridge, Perry Pepper, and Julius Pokorny—of interest to me now as then. [Turning Points, David West Keirsey, unpublished]

When I started to discuss (and soon to debate) things with my father, we discussed logic and the use of words.  I had become a reader too, rather naive and ignorant as children are, however.  Luckily, my father had learned what it meant to learn.

The second turning point occurred when there came a sudden, drastic, and permanent change in my life. In May 1942 I was drafted. I quit school immediately and joined the Navy to become a fighter pilot. Why fighter pilot? Because as a child I had read every book I could find about the fighter pilots of the first world war, finally resorting to 5 cent pulp books, many well written (I have no idea why these planes and their pilots fascinated me). So when called to war I could not imagine my engaging in any other kind of warfare. Not that I wished to go to war. Far from it ─ I wished to pursue, not the enemy, but college studies. Even so, I found flight training fascinating but challenging and hazardous, many cadets failing to pass the frequent tests at each stage of training. Incidentally, it was during flight training that I learned the crucial difference between education and training. An educated person has acquired knowledge; a trained person has acquired skill. An effective person has acquired both. [Turning Points]

He was able to go to college on the GI bill, renew his scholarship, and to continue “action” research (as he called it) when the War ended.

In January 1946 back to college. We lived in my wife’s parents’ home in Costa Mesa until the summer, at which time we moved to Claremont, this because my wife’s parents let us live in their (refurbished) garage. Indeed, we chose Pomona College in Claremont, not for its many merits, but solely because we had a place to live in. What a stroke of luck! Claremont was a college town housing no less than seven colleges, each unique and well known, one of them being Claremont Graduate University, my place of study for thirteen years, I resuming my interrupted life as a scholar.

 …

I attended Claremont Graduate University—the fourth turning point in my life.

Claremont Graduate University had a clinic in which I practiced counseling troubled persons for four years.

Pursuant to writing my masters thesis I studied ten persons said to have high blood pressure without physical disease or defect, then called “essential hypertension.” Met with each person many times for many months, using personality inventories and what was then called ‘associative anamnesis’ in which they told me the story of their lives while I asked them to go into more detail about their more disturbing experiences, taking copious notes all the while. No one had ever paid such rapt attention to them and tried so hard to understand how these experiences affected them, or accepted everything they said without criticism. It was on the basis of this method of interviewing that Carl Rogers built his notorious career, he giving the method names such as ‘non-directive counseling’, ‘reflective listening’, and ‘active listening’. Practicing the method early on and thenceforth gave direction to my career as a counselor of both troubled and troublesome children and their parents and teachers, and as a trainer of those who would practice such counseling, and finally as a writer on personality, counseling, and madness.

I found all ten persons to have the same personality, what I would much later call the Guardian. It was this long study of persons’ lives that set me on my lifelong career course. Thus I became a person watcher. Wrote Personality in Essential Hypertension for my MA degree. [Turning Points]

My father would go on to be a clinical school psychologist for the next 20 years, collecting and inventing corrective intervention techniques and developing Temperament Theory.  We would discuss experiences and his ideas, and many of the ideas that he got from the hundreds of books in his growing library.  Then there was:

The Book

Bates and I wrote three books, one of them titled Please Understand Me, the contents taken from transcriptions of my lectures and conversations with Bates, she the scrivener. When Bates died I gave the manuscript to her sister to have it published. Her sister did nothing about it for a whole year, so I then retrieved and rewrote the manuscript entirely and, finding no publisher, published it myself in 1978—a turning point.

The book had a strange history. It started as sixteen separate “portraits of temperament”, these being expansions of the sixteen “psychological types” of Isabel Myers, a novelist who was devoted to Carl Jung’s ideas on personality. Had the college book store print each portrait separately on typing paper, sixteen sheets clipped together, put in a manila folder and sold in the college book store. Sold five thousand copies the first year (1975). When Please Understand Me was written, the sixteen portraits were in its appendix, probably the reason the book still sells thirty or so years later and has been translated into a dozen foreign languages. [Turning Points]

He would go on the write or contribute to more books: Portraits of Temperament, Presidential Temperament, Please Understand Me II, and Personology.

He never completed Dark Escape, his magnum opus on Madness, a manuscript that he worked on and off for 60 years.  Some day I would like to publish it or a subset in some form.  Some of the work is at his blog site that I created for him,  http://professorkeirsey.wordpress.com

I continue to wander in the library of life, sometimes reading or rereading books that my father wrote or read: with thought in new regions that my father never could go to, but wondered about.

Maverick is His Name

Who is the tall, dark stranger there?
Maverick is his name
Riding the trail to who-knows-where
Luck is his companion
Gambling is his game
Wild as a wind in Oregon,
blowing up the canyon.
Easier to tame

River boat, ring your bell!
Fare thee well, Annabelle
Luck is the lady that he loves the best
Traveling ’round New Orleans,
living on jacks and queens
Maverick ïs the legend of the West

Yes, he was a natural.

He never did memorize the exact lines, but he was better than the writers, at what he said at the moment.  In the moment.

He didn’t need to act as Maverick, he was an original Maverick.  James Bumgarner,  was a self-described “scrounger” for his army company in the Korean War.

The Natural Operator.  It’s called Temperament.

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Here’s Mickey

NO, THAT’S NOT MICKEY MOUSE, he would come much later.

When he was fourteen months old, unknown to everyone, he crawled onstage wearing overalls and a little harmonica around his neck. He sneezed and his father, Joe Sr., grabbed him up, introducing him to the audience as Sonny Yule. He felt the spotlight on him and described it as his mother’s womb. From that moment on, the stage was his home.

He was a natural Performer, from the beginning.

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The King

of Comedy.

Hail Caesar!

He was the King: A Natural Caesar.  Sid Caesar.

And he was a natural Entertainer from the start:

Max and Ida Caesar ran a restaurant, a 24-hour luncheonette. By waiting on tables, their son learned to mimic the patois, rhythm and accents of the diverse clientele, a technique he termed “double-talk,” which he would famously use throughout his career. He first tried his “double-talk” with a group of Italians, his head barely reaching above the table. They enjoyed it so much that they sent him over to a group of Poles to repeat his native-sounding patter in Polish, and so on with Russians, Hungarians, Frenchmen, Spaniards, Lithuanians and Bulgarians.

He was the King.  Hail to King. Long Live the King. The King of early television comedy.

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Keirsey Temperament Awards 2013

The Keirsey Temperament Awards for 2013

Keirsey Temperament Awards 2011
Keirsey Temperament Awards 2012

Each year an individual is awarded from each of the Four TemperamentsArtisanGuardianIdealist, and Rational.  And we acknowledge this year’s passing of well known individuals who exhibited their Keirsey Temperament, In Memoriam.

The awards are given to individuals who are usually “famous” and have significantly impacted the world, as to illustrate and highlight the Four Temperaments.  Keirsey Temperament Theory maintains all four Temperaments play important roles in society and we need all kinds of people to use their developed natural talents, to do the best at what they do best.

The selection is difficult, for sometimes Temperament is hidden because we are looking at these individuals from a far. Usually I don’t know the individuals personally, and only through the media am I familiar with these people.  I am the judge and jury, with the suggestions from those are interested in Keirsey Temperament.

2013 Keirsey Temperament Awards

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