This entry is being posted on behalf of Bruce La Rochelle.

On February 15, 2018, Bruce passed away as a result pancreatic cancer. One of his last wishes was to emphasize the fact that his cancer was brought on as a result of smoking. Perhaps not surprisingly, he wanted to ensure that through his death he wanted to benefit others by warning of the dangers of smoking, which took his life all too soon.

Bruce has entrusted me with his blog and his academic materials to me. I will do my best to honour his legacy by maintaining it and posting those materials as I work through them. His obituary can be found here.

If you have any thoughts on Bruce or the maintenance of this blog, please feel free to leave a comment or contact me at david@david-ma.ca.

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Stable Light

She said “I hope you do as well as you can, for as long as you can.”

Reminded me of an Odetta signature sentiment:

Go well
Stay well

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Incidentally

Had a friend who referred to me as “lemon” in high school, around the time of this song:

Lemons never do forget
Stop the bells that ring so loud

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Guidance

Neil Remington Abramson commented as follows:

Before my stepfather Ed died, we didn’t talk about it. He graciously pretended for me he wasn’t about to die, even though he was telling all our friends, I heard later, that he was. I don’t know if I pretended, but I tried to talk him into a positive mental attitude, thinking he’d have a better chance, if he stayed positive. Two days later, he was dead and I was telling him all the things I should have said earlier, as he lay dead in his hospital bed. God willing, he heard me.

When my mentor of almost thirty years was dying of lung cancer, I knew better. I was scheduled to go to a conference in Ottawa – a work obligation – but I stopped in at the hospital because he wasn’t expected to live till I was back. He was in a coma, but I’d heard from a friend who ran a hospice that they can hear you and remember your presence and words even unconscious. I told him how important he was in my life and that to me he was like a younger father or an older brother. He smiled and I knew he heard me.

I know so many more people now dead than living. Going, going, gone are the ones I relied on for wisdom and advice. Who is and will be left to guide me when the younger ones come to ask me?

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Deadline

When you know it’s over

When did it begin

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Distance

On the bus. Group of six boys, probably around 14 years old, jostling for position in the seats across. Lots of laughter and great friendship. Non-stop. Cellphone focus as ancillary. More the joy of participating in the moment.

Decades older, looking across. Was more solitary at their age. Admiring the group excitement, then and now.

Such a life ahead, and with decades into

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Focus Diffusion

In leadership generally, people seem to expect to focus on one leader. If that leader does not meet expectations, there is no fallback position, other than leadership replacement.

Since few people can be all things to all people, it would seem preferable to move to an “office of the leader” model. Several people assuming a collective leadership role. Different skills complementing collectively.

Often the answer isn’t in one person:

Collective charisma?

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