INTJ Holiday House Rules

HolidaysA few house rules for the holiday season. This house, at least. It’s an annual tradition around these parts.

If you’re an introvert, especially of the INTJ variety, you might want to give it some thought.

No drama under any circumstances. If you must have drama, save it for some other holiday or, better still, your birthday.

Animals are welcome.

Gifts are for kids. No, you’re not a kid. If you want to give him or her a gift, do it on a day when they’re not expecting to receive one. At first, you’ll be considered a curmudgeon, but it will pass.

Be with the people you love, not the people who are obligatory holiday visitors.

Family is how you define it.

If you don’t eat too much, you’re probably not having a good time. If you drink too much, you’ll soon have a rough time.

If you bring an attitude you get the back door. Scrooge is always watching.

Try to listen rather than talk. There are already enough talkers and they really roll it all out on holidays.

If you have a boss, avoid him or her on the holiday. The results of these holiday encounters are rarely beneficial to either party.

If you don’t have a boss, don’t be one on this holiday.

Remember the cook. Visit the kitchen, briefly. It’s the heart of the home.

No platitudes, please.

If you play a game, make sure that no one loses. There must always be a reward for last place.

Did I mention animals? They enjoy the holidays and bring us all cheer.

To all of you who have visited, have a wonderful, happy and safe holiday season.


A Hero On My Doorstep


Heroes come in all shapes and sizes. Also, in all ages. The nice thing about heroes is that they never consider themselves to be much beyond the ordinariness of the rest of us. They go about their heroism quietly, easily. It’s the essence of their uniqueness, their strength. It’s how we know, in our hearts, they are true heroes.

Here’s one of my heroes. Can you guess his age? It’s all there to discover.

Sensible works. He likes to keep it real, to roll it around in his mind until it makes sense. Now, some things don’t fit perfectly, won’t yield to sense right now. But that doesn’t end the story. What doesn’t make sense today will probably do so tomorrow, or next month, or next year. Eventually, it all comes together if you just work on it. That’s called optimism. That demands patience. Who can resist that kind of thinking? Isn’t that the way to keep yourself on a steady path through life?

Intensity is fun. I feel it and I want you to feel it also. Life is an exercise in passion, not just thinking. Feelings matter. Passions count. Intensity magnifies experience, excites new ideas, is the mother and father of fresh thinking. It’s also contagious. Without the feeling, life can get pretty bland, right?

Freud's diagrams from 'The Ego and the Id' (1923)

Exit the ego. Life is not all about him. He’s just a player and he understands that role. Sure, life is personal. But it’s personal for everyone. Other people share that same feeling about life and he recognizes that reality. His ego is just right. Not too small to be painful, not too large to be overwhelming. It’s a good fit because it views others with their unique worth and role. He doesn’t need to scream to be heard. A whisper is good enough.

Trying will get you there. It’s all about moving ahead. Sure, the past provides important lessons, both fun and painful. But that’s not where he wants to spend his time. It’s all about the future. Getting there takes work. Trying works well, sometimes. Sometimes, not so much. But he knows you get nowhere without the engine running, without keeping on. Even first gear can give you a good ride.

Even bad times are good. There’s good stuff everywhere, he says. You just have to dig a bit deeper sometimes. Yep, it’s that old optimism thing at work again. That’s an infectious attitude, something that is hard to resist. Of all the gates in the world, small and large, each has a bit of a smile emblazoned on the lock, he tells me. This is the best part of looking back, remembering, mulling over those times. It’s a powerful form of inspiration. At the soul of everything there lurks some nugget of goodness.

Everything is interesting. The world is alive with fascinating people, creatures, events, encounters and possibilities. You can take any one of them, no matter how tiny or seemingly insignificant, and find a new point of interest, another view of it all. The jigsaw goes on forever and it’s forever fascinating. Want to talk about something? Go ahead, pick the subject. He has something to say because he knows there is always a small mystery sleeping behind the obvious. Life is full of endless surprises.

Nobody should suffer forever. Bad times happen, he says. We all get the bumps and bruises. But none of this goes on forever. We tough it out. We know there will always be the next moment, the next day, the next opportunity. No matter how badly it hurts, we will heal, someday. It’s the lesson of patience and the power that comes from always looking ahead, wondering about that next horizon.

No, he would never recognize himself as a hero. Just another one of us milling around, fumbling and discovering, wondering and hoping. He’s taking the ride along with the rest of us, working out the details along the way, always hopeful and forever interested.

But isn’t that a good definition of hero?

Gregor’s Family Album

GregorGregor is proud of his family. They have a long, established heritage. He would like to share some photos with you and tell you a little more.

As you know, this is Gregor.

Considering the difficulties of his failed lobotomy, Gregor has done well. He is a determined individual, who attributes his many successes to his forebears. All of them suffered from failed lobotomies yet each overcame the obstacles and became luminaries in their own right.

You might notice there are no pictures of any of Gregor’s female relatives. This was forbidden by family tradition in order to protect them from many tenacious detractors. Not everyone is understanding or kind when it comes to lobotomies. Gregor hereby asserts that none of the women in the Gregor family ever succumbed to a lobotomy, nor did any of them even try.

AlbartomewThis is Gregor’s grandfather, the first in a long line of lobotomized family members. His name was Albartomew. No one is sure when he was born, or where. He immigrated to America immediately after WWI. Some rumors claim he was an illegal alien but Gregor strongly refutes this story.

Albartomew established the first American clinic for failed lobotomies in Iowa, or perhaps Nebraska. It could have been Arkansas. No one is certain. What is known for sure is that Albartomew fathered several children and his lineage spread to both Coasts. Albartomew had several brothers but no sisters. Most of his siblings were never heard from again.


However, one of them, Sartomew, became a male model. He specialized in demonstrating advanced head bandaging procedures across America. Sartomew had a large constituency, a cadre of enthusiastic recruits who would follow him along the byways of our beautiful back country.

As you can see, Gregor’s uncle was stunningly handsome. This helped his career and his pocketbook. It is generally recognized that Sartomew did more for failed lobotomies than any of Gregor’s other relatives. He set the family standard for success. He was also legendary for his perfect compliment of teeth, which can be clearly seen in this photograph.

Sartomew broke new ground with his philanthropic efforts. He was the first family member to turn his attention to canine failed lobotomies.


This is Butomew, Sartomew’s first lobotomy rescue dog. Butomew went on to achieve fame in his own right by learning how to count to 17 with his paws. He was the first in the Gregor family to travel to Nepal, achieving enlightenment at the ripe age of 92 before he retired.

Gregor's Cousin

Gregor’s second cousin, Flutamew, became a scientist. He followed Butomew to Nepal but was killed in a Yak fight. This was a sad day for Gregor’s family but, as always, they overcame and moved on to even greater heights.

Gregor's Party Bandages

As one of his most important legacies, Flutamew took this group portrait shortly before his departure to Nepal. He is the one pictured at the bottom right. Thankfully, this treasured piece of history was preserved and protected by Flutamew’s psychiatrist, Momamew,  who did not die in a Yak fight.

Wrap Party

Finally, here is Gregor’s favorite family photo. It hangs on the wall in his clinic. This fascinating artifact depicts the famous head wrap that Gregor’s family perfected over three generations. Gregor hopes you notice the strong family resemblances, the inherent strength in the family jawline, and piercing eyes of intelligence and determination shown in this photo.

Gregor thanks you for glancing at his family album and for sharing in his tradition. He wishes you all a successful and prosperous lobotomy.

Gregor lives here.