DCC News


Weekly e-newsletter for members and friends of the Dublin Community Church


June 20, 2008


Horizontal Surety

I remember several years ago looking at Grandpa Krueger’s little notebook. Grandpa Krueger was Marty’s grandfather. He came over from the “old country” in the early 1900’s with his parents (I think). He was German but the “old country” was one of those ethnic German enclaves which would now be in Russia.

He and family came over to the new world. He or his father worked on the railroads in upstate New York and then when he was older, Grandpa Krueger became a draftsman and eventually designed locomotives at the Lima Locomotive Works. (For us Limaites it was just called “The Loco.”)

Somewhere in my Mother-in-law’s belongings is Grandpa’s little notebook with all kinds of notes of this and that. There are important dates and meetings. I think these sorts of little notebooks were a staple of gentlemen in the late 1800’s and into the early to mid 1900’s.

Many of the pages, I remember, were dedicated to self-improvement with books and articles that he should read. He had numerous “pithy” quotes with which to inspire himself and move up the ladder of success in the business world. Evidently Grandpa took his own advice, because he did climb the ladder of success. I have come across articles of other men of that era possessing such little notebooks of inspiration.

So, recently someone sent me a quote concerning the idea of “getting away”. It may have been a veiled suggestion that I should get away, but I will take it in the spirit in which I think it was intended. Anyway part of the quote goes like this…

“Every now and then go away, have a little relaxation,
for when you come back to your work,
your judgment will be surer…”

That piece of solid advice was written by none other than Leonardo da Vinci. No, I am not suggesting that Leonardo and Grandpa Krueger had anything in common, other than roots in the European continent. They were separated by several centuries and there is no doubt about the sheer genius of da Vinci; though Grandpa Krueger was pretty smart himself.


But, I was struck by one phrase that reminded me of Grandpa Krueger’s little notebook…

“…your judgment will be surer….”

It seems that we shy away from use of the word, “Judgment” these days for fear of sounding like a TV Evangelist. (And, if you think of it, it is rather judgmental of me to make such a statement.) Yes, I know, not all TV Evangelists are judgmental and should I ever get to be one (though I have trouble imagining who would sponsor me) I will then be singing the praises of a TV ministry.
But for now, I am struck by the idea that if we get away from a situation, it can only improve because our judgment will be surer when we return.

Recently I found myself lying on the floor for most of the day with a paintbrush in my hand. This is not my normal daily routine, and I think I may have scrunched my left shoulder a bit too long on the hard tile floor as I cut in the trim around the baseboards of the room. My next day back at work did actually prove out the theory of da Vinci though. That is…the next day….My judgment WAS surer. I was rather pleased that I had any judgment at all, but that it was surer was a great bonus.

So I thought to myself that maybe lying horizontal on a floor and painting at baseboard level for a week would be the simplest (and least expensive) way to “surer judgment,” rather than go to the time and expense of a vacation at the lake.

Then I thought about it again and decided that I would still rather go to the lake. Which actually proves that I now have “surer judgment.”

I found enlightenment from lying on a linoleum floor for 6 hours, I’m sure of it. I wonder if Grandpa Krueger ever had that revelation?

Peace, Rev. Bob Tussing