Sweet dreams, baby. Don’t get mad. Get even. Something we’ve all wanted to do.

February 20, 2012 | Author: | Posted in Dr. Jeffrey Lant’s Article Archive

A dish best tasted cold.

by Dr. Jeffrey Lant

Author’s program note. I’ve just turned 65 (February 16, 2012). And it is entirely natural to reflect at such a moment, the moment society starts telling you in ways subtle and minute, to “give it up”, “pack it in, “sit back and smell the roses” (never mind that they cost $5 a stem hereabouts). Such comments are irritating in the extreme. I mean, I’ve got all my hair (grey suits me just fine), most of my teeth, and a body to die with. I’m ready for the next 40 years or so, maybe more.

But I want to make some adjustments before beginning the next part of my earthly journey. Call it a check-up; call it a tweak; call it anything you please, but it’s time for a few (minor) adjustments, things I’ve been thinking about doing… and want to implement now before the Grim Reaper precludes me from making these trivial modifications that’ll make me more perfect than ever.

To put you in the mood for what we must do (for I know that you, too, want to change a couple of things), go to any search engine and listen to the most popular record Roy Orbison ever recorded, “Sweet Dreams” (released in 1962). It’s about a guy who wants a girl… he dreams about her… fantasizes… can’t get enough. Then he snaps, gets tired of waiting, tired of hanging around, tired of begging, and he sings his song, the song we all want to sing, “Dream baby make me stop dreaming. You can make my dream come true.” But she ignores him… and breaks his heart… Okay, so I’ve altered the meaning of Orbison’s lyrics… but that’s the point of my article… which is for the good people of Terra Firma, the people like you and me, who get shafted every single day… who are nice, kind, reasonable, sweet tempered; who get abashed, rejected, humiliated, embarrassed, taken advantage of every single day… and want to learn how to get their own back, have to learn — or we’ll keep getting crushed.

Sweet baby, you’ve come to the right place… for we’re dishing out comeuppance today, oh yeah!

It was a hot, humid day in Chicago.

Dreams are funny things and while I pooh-poohed their significance when I was a young and callow fellow, I don’t pooh-pooh them any more. Dreams are a way of processing the things that happen to all of us, presenting them in a new way; a way that enables us to understand things better, get them off our chests, and get some good ideas for resolving situations still unresolved, for all that they happened years, even decades, ago. It’s one of these situations, I am about to share with you now, something my brain, through its picture-perfect dreams, is telling me it’s time to take care of.

I no longer recall when the actual incident took place, but I remember it was during one of my many barn storming book tours of years ago; when you write 18 books like I do you find yourself in a plethora of odd situations of the “It’s Tuesday, it must be Milwaukee” variety. And because I was an aggressive, indefatigable promoter, few authors had more of those moments than I did.

Now, anything can and will go wrong on such tours. Planes can and will be missed. The television station you counted on for that crucial mid-day interview can fire the anchor and change its format minutes before you’re due to be featured. Books can get there a day late… the seams of your favorite trousers can split when you bend over… and, yes, this actually happened, some certifiable moron can position the American flag too near the mega-watt lightning and start the auditorium on fire, threatening you with incineration, extinction, and a very bad hair day.

Luckily, in at least most of these situations, there were good people around to help; people who know you’re on a schedule, under the gun, and go the extra mile and really help you. I must say I’ve been the beneficiary of such kindness all my life… but not always… and that’s why I’m writing this article; to get it off my chest… and show you how to get sweet revenge… rather than restless dreams.

Like I said, it was a hot day in Chicago… and the folks at the bookstore where I was to be autographing books were anything but cooperative. And this time they went out of their way to be as difficult and uncooperative as possible; maybe it was the heat… or maybe they were malefactors sent from an evil empire. It didn’t matter, they made me hotter under the collar than I already was. But I didn’t snarl, vituperate, or go ballistic. I am far too well bred for that. And that’s where my dream kicks in…

In it the nasty whelp who called himself a manager was doing everything he could to make the day miserable for me… only (and this is why dreams are so therapeutic, so satisfying, so uplifting and cheering) this time I didn’t take it. Instead, as soon as I was firmly convinced that Mr. Manager was not going to help, I decided to pay him in some of his own irritating currency.

But you’ve got to do it subtly, shrewdly, carefully, with patience, biding your time, so that you’re never fingered as the culprit. Here an old Italian adage is worth recalling: “Revenge is a dish best tasted cold.” Vero!

Thus, on the day of the incident, my way of handling it was all politeness and punctilio; not an affronting syllable to be had or heard; it is for such moments that the ins and outs of civility exist, to be used, and lavishly, too, as called for. But all the while, your brain should be churning, turning, dreaming up the perfect revenge. And so it did for me…

First, I made it a point to complete my difficult encounter so that every person in the management and administration of that friggin’ store, was personally thanked by me… that hand shake, that smile, those last few words all a necessary camouflage for what I was conniving.

Then a trip to a local quick copy shop where I could create my own sure-to-wow ’em proclamation, featuring these arresting words!

“Beat the heat!


ALL Flavors. As much as you can eat.

Our special “beat the heat” offer from Joe’s Books.

Just ask for Joe when you arrive!!!!”

Organizing urchins…

The hardest part of the entire episode was finding the person who would find the necessary street arabs to stand in the sun distributing the flyers to all and sundry. That person must be efficient, loyal to me, capable of escaping quickly, no trace whatsoever. And, because this was a dream, that was easily effected…

…. And so the flyers went out without hitch… Manager Joe became (for an instant) the most popular man in Chicagoland… until the eager mob discovered they’d been “had.” Unfortunately good taste and my own inherent sensitivity prevent me from telling you of the many and various outrages then perpetrated on ol’ Joe. But they were sufficient for my purposes. One anonymous call to the “Chicago Tribune” ensured that… and the picture that accompanied the story told the rest; outraged citizens, a squad of sweating cops, chaos all round. Delicious. And so, while the level of invective, imprecations, maledictions waxed at Joe’s, I sat back, just a few blocks away, in the ornate Palm Court at the Art Institute I love, enjoying tea and Henry James. Perfect.

“Sweet dreams, baby.”

Thus my sweet dream became even sweeter reality and a lesson of life one needs as soon as possible. Now sing a bit to me, for I have well and truly deserved it:

“Dream baby make me stop dreaming you can make my dreams come true.”

You betcha.

About the Author

Harvard-educated Dr. Jeffrey Lant is CEO of Worldprofit, Inc., providing a wide range of online services for small and-home based businesses. Services include home business training, affiliate marketing training, earn-at-home programs, traffic tools, advertising, webcasting, hosting, design, WordPress Blogs and more. Find out why Worldprofit is considered the # 1 online Home Business Training program by getting a free Associate Membership today. Details at worldprofit.com


This author has published 407 articles so far. More info about the author is coming soon.

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