“When I flew back to Chicago that fateful day in 1954, I had a freshly signed contract with the McDonald brothers in my briefcase. I was a battle-scarred veteran of the business wars, but I was still eager to go into action. I was 52 years old. I had diabetes and incipient arthritis ... But I was convinced that the best was ahead of me. I was still green and growing, and I was flying along at an altitude slightly higher than the plan.”
Ray Kroc | 1902 - 1984 | Builder of McDonald's
I read Ray Kroc’s autobiography last year. I was 51.
An inspiring read in many ways, but the words above are what stuck with me most … being 52 … green and growing. The passage inspires me so much that I text a picture of it as a Happy Birthday message to all my friends who turn 52 ... a group I joined this year.
The energy, enthusiasm, and optimism at 52 … I love it. (And 52 in the 1950s… probably like being 72 today!)
Kroc did some big work with his last 30 years, but it was his previous 30 years that got him ready … a bunch of good, bad, and in-between experience.
Takeaway: No matter where you are on your ride through life, there are all kinds of opportunity every day … right now … tomorrow … 10 years from now … 30 years from now … opportunity to practice and perfect your ability to think, to communicate, to relate to others … to put in the work and make good things happen for other people and as a result, make good things happen for you.
Green and growing, Baby! Smoving all the way through.
“It’s been a ride … I guess I had to go
to that place to get to this one.”
Eminem | 1972 - | Unafraid Rapper
While I enjoyed last year’s movie about Kroc and McDonald’s (The Founder), I liked the book much more. I also learned that several things in the movie weren’t true.
About the artist and her project above:
Advice from My 80-Year-Old Self
Inkjet prints, ed. of 30
Accessions Committee Fund purchase. 2016
O’Malley believed deeply in the capacity of art to have a positive effect on people’s lives. To gather the texts for this series, she took to the streets of Berkeley and asked children and adults: “Imagine you had the opportunity to time travel and meet yourself at eighty, to sit down and have a cup of tea with your eighty-year-old self … You muster the courage and ask her for advice … What does she tell you?” These prints—O’Malley’s final artistic project before her untimely passing at the age of thirty-eight—reflect her participants’ inner wisdom, mirroring back things that deep down they already knew.