Brandon Eleuterio

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Butter Your Waffles

Brandon Eleuterio
Waffles and Butter
Image by Davies Designs from Pixabay

The latest Tim Ferriss interview with Jim Collins prompted me to reflect on 2020. We’ve been living through a pandemic since March and with the volume button on the box of fear stuck at “max” for nearly a year, you can’t help but feel the cool breath of death on the back of your neck. If I die tomorrow, will I have lived a fulfilled life?

In the podcast, Collins tells Ferriss the story of his mentor Bill Lazier. Not long after Bill has a heart attack, Jim and Bill sit down for a breakfast of waffles. Jim notices Bill throwing heaps of butter on his waffles.

A shocked Jim exclaims, “Bill! What are you doing?! You just had a quintuple bypass surgery!”

Bill looks up with a content smile and says, “As I was going into the operating room, I bet they saw a smile on my face. I knew without question, that if this is the end, I’m okay with that. I have lived my life the way I wanted to live it. I have so many people in my life who I have loved and [still] love. I have already had a great life and nothing can take that away. So I decided everything from here is gravy, and I’m putting butter on my waffles.”

Collins goes on to remark, “Bill never confused a long life with a great life…Years later when he died, he had a smile on his face.”

This reminds me of another quote:

“It is not death that a man should fear, but he should fear never beginning to live.”

-Marcus Aurelius

I don’t know about you, but I’m buttering my waffles.

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