Success isn’t about the numbers

The second annual Community Progressive was held yesterday at Julia Davis Park here in Boise, Idaho.  It was a phenomenal success.  If you were there and you disagree, keep reading.

A pretty chilly morning — 41 degrees is one figure I heard — and a steady drizzle and sometimes rain conspired to keep the numbers down early on.  But as the sun came out so did more and more people.

Also competing with the CP was the Ironman bike/run/swim competition.  You know the Ironman — the events for those folks that thing punishing yourself is a cool thing to do.  I smoked a cigarette or two and had some coffee while I watched these concentration-camp-skinny people run by.  Guess I’m not cool.

But back to the Community Progressive.

It would be easy to say it wasn’t a success.  For the reasons I’ve mentioned, the projections of the organizers wasn’t met.  There was a good crowd, but the numbers never materialized.

There was a little — not much, just a little — grumbling from some narrow minded geezelheads  about how it wasn’t a success and they had wasted their time by coming out.  These folks missed the point — or they never saw it in the first place.

Our society and conspicuous consumers say that bigger is better; churches and rock concerts measure success by “ticket sales”; stores measure success by “foot traffic”; television and radio measure success by “ratings” — or by how many people watch or listen.  Yah, we’ve become a society that is excited about large numbers.

By answer to that?  How is that working for society now?  Answer, it’s not!

While corporations have gotten engrossed with the mantra “bigger is better” the average American’s paycheck gets smaller and smaller.  While people chase more and more toys and gadgets more American jobs are being shipped overseas or just disappearing altogether.

While growth at all costs is pursued, morals and values have disappeared from the landscape.  Need an example?  Just look at the state legislators in Idaho.  While — as a Mormon dominated group — they yell about family values and such, they’re selling Idaho down the road to companies that are chasing ever bigger numbers.

Community Progressive was a success because it gave people a chance to network.  Make new friends and re-connect with old friends.  It gave people a safe forum to espouse their beliefs and positions on issues as well as providing a place for the free exchange of ideas — even if those ideas didn’t always agree; but hey, isn’t that what community building is all about?  It gave people the chance to attend workshops and gather information that they wouldn’t be able to gather anywhere else.

Yah, I heard a few vendors grumble about the numbers, but then, they just don’t get it.

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