He died on Sunday. He was 79. His name was Harry.
I first met Harry about eight months ago when he moved into the nursing home where I teach a monthly Bible study. He wheeled himself into the activities room with a smile a mile wide. Even though Harry was in a wheel chair, I could tell he was a tall, broad-shouldered man. He immediately introduced himself with vibrancy, vigor, and anticipation—“Hi, my name is Harry!”
I returned, “Well hello, Harry, my name is Beth. I’m so glad you’re here.”
“Harry D. Baker, Jr.,” he clarified. “And thanks for letting me come,” he added humbly and honestly, yet with much confidence.
I knew in an instant that there was something special about Harry D. Baker, Jr. And that’s what I called him every time I saw him thereafter.
I could tell Harry D. Baker, Jr. had been a leader in his prime. I could tell he had much influence. The way he spoke, the way he carried himself (even though he was in a wheelchair), his demeanor, his attitude…everything about him indicated he had something most people don’t have. There was something uniquely different about him. And whatever it was, I wanted it.
Harry D. Baker, Jr. had swagger, panache, flare. He had that “indescribable it.” I call it OOZE. Whatever he had, it radiated out from him. When he left the room, those still present dripped with whatever it was.
OOZE. You can’t teach that. After my first encounter with Harry D. Baker, Jr., I had a notion to go spend some one-on-one time with him—ask him questions, listen, learn, and observe. I wanted to encounter more OOZE. I never did that and I regret it.
You see, when you encounter such an individual, you’ll know it immediately. And when the OOZE begins, you’ll want more. My suggestions:
- Seize the opportunity
- Watch and learn
- Sit and sponge
- Don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions
- Let them drip on you as much as you can
You never know but what drippings you’ve picked up from them, you might just pass onto others.
Let the OOZE begin!