My 9-year old grandson, Gideon, asked a big favor of me the other day.
“Poobah, I have 11 imaginary friends who need to start staying at your house.”
“Okay. Can they all sleep upstairs?”
“They could, but I doubt they’ll ever all be here at the same time.”
Gideon told me what I needed to know about each of them and which ones would often go out wandering for days at a time – and not to worry about it – and which ones would come and go through the windows and who would sleep exactly where.
There was only one imaginary friend who was going to continue staying at Gideon’s house.
I am no stranger to imaginary friends. Indy and I have several of them.
I, myself, am an imaginary friend.
Brian Scudamore, Erik Church, David St. James, and James Alish are the primary leaders of O2E Brands. I write ads for their four franchises. A number of years ago, these guys began bringing groups of their top-performing Franchise Partners to meet “the wizard in the castle on the mountain in Texas.”
Okay, I can play that role. All I have to do is unlock the majestic tower Pennie created and give a tour of the magical campus she created that surrounds it.
But Brian and Erik and David and James had an altogether different plan.
Unbeknownst to me, they told their Franchise Partners that every newcomer was required to present me with a gift when they met me. And that the gift had to be deeply meaningful. And they had to tell me a story about it when they presented it. And if their gifts and stories were acceptable, I would invite them upstairs to spend some time with me.
I was, of course, embarrassed at first, but this little ritual in the underground art gallery became precious as time went by. These awkward encounters taught me the importance of the imaginary people in our lives.
The people you admire from a distance – the authors you read, the actors who entertain you, the voices on the radio that sing to you, and the faces on Youtube that peer into your eyes – are imaginary people that inhabit your world.
The character is always bigger than the actor who brings it to life.
I recently received an illustrated letter containing 7 questions from a young boy named Bennett.
I will conclude today’s memo by answering Bennett’s questions:
- Can you make 2 suns?
No, I cannot speak 2 suns into the physical world, but I can speak 2 suns into your mind. “As Bennett stood in his front yard in the middle of the night, the darkness on his left melted away when a glowing, silver circle began to rise up out of the ground. When that circle of light was as high as his left shoulder, a golden ball began to rise out of the ground on his right. And when the light from the gold ball touched the silver, 12 sleeping flowers lifted their heads, 9 hummingbirds flew away, 6 big dogs barked in Spanish, 3 policemen blew their whistles, and one old rooster crowed cock-a-doodle-do.”
- Can you make a copy machine?
Yes. If I press special numbers on my telephone and say, “I want a copy machine,” a copy machine will appear the next day.
- How many floors are in your castle?
Five: The Art Gallery, the Banquet Hall, the Eye of the Storm, the Library Floor, and the Star Deck.
- Can you make a camera?
Yes. When I touch a certain button on my computer, a camera will appear on my front porch two days later.
- Can you make a crayon box?
Yes, I make crayon boxes the same way I make cameras.
- Do you have a wizard family?
Yes, there are 46 other wizards in my family. Indiana Beagle will put some photos of them in the rabbit hole for you.
- Do you have any comments?
Yes. This is my comment: You are a very brave boy, Bennett. You do things that other people only think about doing or talk about doing. You drew me a nice picture and you wrote me a good letter. Because you have courage, and because you are a doer, and not just a talker, you will be successful at whatever you choose to do. I look forward to meeting you when your Dad brings you to Austin.
Roy H. Williams
What do you call a person who has owned more than 40 businesses and helped to sell more than 500 others? You call that person Terry H. Monroe. When Terry offers no-nonsense advice on how to be certain you’re getting full value for your businesses or professional practice, he knows what he’s talking about. And he’s talking with roving reporter Rotbart right now at MondayMorningRadio.com. So what are you waiting for?