July Vignettes: Life Lessons from Loretta Lynn & Memorable Movie Lines


For the past few months, I have had a great deal of fun in putting together the monthly vignettes. Some of them are topical, and some deal with the problems specific to blogging and writing and business on the internet.

This month, I have three different essays chosen for the month of July. One is from the many times we have heard the phrase, “Ways & Means” in relation to political committees and their work. And it covers such a large swath of meaning, that it struck me that it can be useful in so many different situations.

The others are part of my life-long love affair with film. And many may be familiar with the life and story of Loretta Lynn. She was and remains a beloved country music legend. But at one point, she wrote about how much the walls were closing in on her, and she had to take a break from performing and step away from it all. That is the part that I’ve focused on and can relate to!

The others are just some quotes and memorable lines from film that have been used in my own life and in keeping with the times we live in. So for the month of July, here are the vignettes!

The Ways & Means to make the improbable possible


There is a committee in Congress called the Ways and Means committee. It deals with commerce, but that is an American thing. If there is a will, and you have the means, then the ways & means can come together to make the improbable possible. Or make the impossible a Possibility. There are ways and means to make the impossible possible.

That is what I tell the people inThe Growing Group each week. It’s a motivational group where I am working to put together exercises for all of us to do (including me!) We work through the exercises each week to help make the impossible possible. Becoming a happier and kinder version of yourself takes work. There are other things to do…staying motivated during the holidays, forgiving yourself for past mistakes, and learning to face your fears to ultimately make smarter decisions are all on the agenda.

We are always using a Mantra and a motivational quote to help keep the ideas front of mind as we go…One of the quotes is from the great science-fiction writer, Arthur C Clarke: “

“The limits of the possible can only be defined by going beyond them into the Impossible”-


If you have the motivational means to do it, there is a way to go beyond your safe zone limits and discover the impossible is suddenly possible! All you need is the ways & means to do it.

The Loretta Lynn Collapse


I love the Loretta Lynn collapse scene in Coal Miner’s Daughter.  It speaks to the courage it takes to open up to people as she did. She told all those people: “ You wouldn’t be here if you didn’t care about me…Y’all are my friends and I can tell you!…”


And all you need to know about runnin’ your own life can be found in that film. I think of her all the time as I go through the day with the problems of the small business I started.  I am in awe of her for just having the courage to put herself out there. She said it best when she started talking about conversations with her best friend who had died, Patsy Cline.  “Little Girl! Patsy always told me: You gotta start runnin’ your own life or else your life’ll be running you!… Loretta definitely had lessons to teach in motivational messaging and self-care long before it was a ‘thing.’


Next, she taught us about the best way to fight when you know you are right!  There was the woman who she caught messing around with her husband Doolittle (Doo). The woman was brazen and said something like, “Do you know who I am?”  Ms. Lynn didn’t bat an eye but came out with the best line ever:  “I don’t know who you are but I know WHAT you are!”


Finally, she taught lessons in choosing your battles wisely. For the things that count, sometimes it is best to retreat tactically and fight another day. Doolittle seemed to be making his stand when he insisted to tell her about an idea he had to build their new home. When she balked at his high-handed ways, he threw it out there that they should divorce. She knew not to continue and simply tactically retreated. “ I don’t want a dad-gum divorce! I just don’t want the light shinin’ in my eyes in the bedroom window!….


Some of the best ways to look at life is to see it through someone else’s eyes. It’s the lesson that they taught when Scout was standing on Boo Radley’s porch. We need to see the world at times through Boo’s and “Loretty’s” eyes!


The most memorable lines for a Movie Buff


There is a line unintentionally funny in the film, The Right Stuff. By the way, this is also an excellent book by Tom Wolfe, which I highly recommend…and the book was made into a very good movie. The first part of the film deals with test pilots who are sent up in these deadly rockets where they are often killed. This is when the memorable line is delivered.


The guys were being killed off at such an incredibly fast clip when they went up in experimental rockets, the movie depicts several funerals for the young pilots. Next, we see one young wife arguing with her husband in a bar.  She is obviously scared for him.  The guy comforts her and justifies his position with this gem “The guy was dead before he went up!”


My friend and I would use that line all the time talking about someone who didn’t fit in or didn’t’ know what they were doing or getting into. They are sometimes referred to as life’s “Lovable Losers.” There are people who just find themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time and the saying is…their number is up!


It’s also reminiscent of an old “Twilight Zone” episode with Dick York as a soldier who would see men glowing with a strange light. He later found out it signaled to him they were next in line to die!  It’s a way to just know that there are some people who just don’t ‘get it’ when they are about to embark on something that will change their lives. And there are others who seem to know the score and have this remarkable ability to cope. They are assigned the calm. cool and collected genes- and most important of all, the lucky genes of life!


 Will the people of the 21st Century ever say….Enough Already!?


Finally, there is one phrase that was often used in really bad-B science-fiction movies. The aliens would come out of the spaceships and address anyone assembled with a phrase like “Good People of Earth.” But I am wondering if that phrase would ever apply now?  When they see how we treat each other and how we treat the planet, they probably won’t think of us as good people.  Perhaps they will come out of their vehicles and just say, “Really, people?!…Enough already!”

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