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Know Jack #230 Don’t Kill the Messenger

Happy Halloween! I got an early start on the holiday doing karaoke as the Voodoo King. I can’t sing as many a rueful soul who has listened can testify but being scary and creepy sounding was part of the attraction this time.

It’s one of those exercises it stepping out of my comfort zone. I suppose somewhere inside me I have a comfort zone… it just has a revolving door for easy exit.

Singing in from of people who expect me to successfully carry a tune is not really anything new. So, karaoke does not produce anxiety for me anymore than public speaking.

My talent for both is equally unimpressive in substance. The unique factor in my speaking career is not in the delivery style, it is how and when I am called upon to do it. This can usually be summed up in a few words.

How, is alone without a net. When, is the time the situation demands somebody stand up and say something and no one else wants the job.

In 2005, I was working in a medical floor just off the ICU. Blood transfusions and cardiac monitoring were our main thing. I was caring for a young man… I say young because he was a half dozen years younger than I was at the time (I became a nurse at age 40.)

Anyway, this young guy hit his call light and reported he was having trouble catching his breath. I went right down…and I mean a real, I went right down. I walked the twenty yards to his room to find him clutching his chest, his face black…which was impressive as he was a white man.

The code blue was on. The man died. You would think the unpleasant duty of informing the man’s wife would fall to a physician or the nurse supervisor for the hospital…and it should have.

But Jack was a former hospice chaplain and recently retired minister. Guess who got the duty and had to pick the poor woman up of the floor when she collapsed from the weight of the news?

If the message hurts you, offends you, or inspires you. It is not the messenger who is the source of blessing or cursing it is the message and how you have chosen to hear it.


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