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Thinking Chocolate

In Jim Valvano’s speech that he gave at the ESPY awards in 1993, he told the funny story of giving his first coaching speech to the freshman team at Rutgers University. So, he wanted to really motivate these kids to go out and play a great first game of basketball.

He researched great coach speeches and settled on one that had been given years earlier by Hall-of-Fame football coach Vince Lombardi, who had given his speech as coach of the Green Bay Packers.

So, Valvano looked at his Rutgers freshman players and started into his speech. He really wanted to fire them up!

Gentlemen, we will be successful this year if you can focus on three things, and three things only.  Your family, your religion… and the Green Bay Packers“.

I still get a kick out of that story, whenever I see Jim Valvano’s speech. I always imagine the look on the faces of the entire Rutgers team.  So, let me segue into what some might add to that list of things of importance.

Specifically, it’s also the things that California Representative Nancy Pelosi says that keeps her going and also provides great gifts. That item… chocolate. I guess she would say to focus on “Your family, your religion… and chocolate”. Here’s what the NY Times tells us:

She doesn’t “eat chocolate once per day, but constantly,” Ms. Pelosi said, “It’s an ongoing thing.”

“If there were one food I would have in life, it would be very dark chocolate ice cream,” she said. “If it were not invented, I would have had to invent it.”

Ms. Pelosi, a Democrat, has loved chocolate since her childhood in the Little Italy neighborhood of Baltimore, where she enjoyed parfaits at the corner store and, of course, gelato.

According to the article, Ben and Jerry’s New York Super Fudge Chunk ice cream is her  favorite. She also keeps plenty of Ghirardelli chocolate squares on hand.

She also tells the reporter, that she keeps chocolates “In the desk, in the purse, readily available at hand,” she said of her stash. “It’s a wonderful thing.”

She also believes in chocolate diplomacy. Speaker John Boehner of Ohio “has given me plenty of delicious chocolate from his district,” she said; noting that she’s a fan of Graeter’s chocolates in Cincinnati.

What does she give Boehner in return? “I’ve sent him a number of things.”

I suspect that Boehner would say that she has given him, “A hard time”.

And for pic o’ day, I thought this was a funny elf on a shelf:

elf on shelf


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