I’m a Lucky Guy

By | January 25, 2018
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I’m a Lucky Guy

Life is full of surprises and twists and turns – and I come to the conclusion that life is not fair. So what? You just roll with the punches. Life is not easy and anyone young enough to believe that fallacy will find out quickly how wrong they are.

Most of us who’ve lived more than a few decades come to grips with the truth – the real “facts of life” – you just have to learn to take each day as it comes and just do your best. Some days will float away into the neverlands, others will gnaw and nag you for weeks, months or years, and others will be beautiful, if fleeting, memories… pieces of joy and happiness, love and understanding that filled moments of days now in the past, but always living inside the heart.

And sometimes, I guess, we’re all a little bit underappreciative of the good things we have in our lives. Although I’m pretty sure that most us still working would not count our jobs among the best things in our lives. But I’m here to tell you how thankful I am that I am able to do what I do and have such a wonderful and meaningful time doing it.

OK. So what is it I do that I think is so great? It’s nothing extraordinary. I’m not a surgeon saving lives, or an officer of the law preventing a robbery, or a minister or priest saving souls. No, I’m afraid I don’t do anything so grand as those people do.

But what I do is what I like and what I enjoy. I get to work with someone (Darcy) who is kind and understanding and honest – and who is not afraid to coil my gears should I get out of line. And I say… good for her!

Twenty years ago this year, Darcy and I started out sharing graphics on a obscure web site called www.thundercloud.net. I can remember coming home from the job I had at that time and Darcy would message me and say …”We had 5 visitors today!” .It was exciting. Then toward Christmas, one day we had 50 visitors. I thought for sure we are on the way to becoming Internet mogols. It’s funny now, but I can remember being so excited, I’d be up at 4:00 AM and on the computer and I’d still be on the computer at midnight … till my eyes coudn’t stay open another minute. Talk about a labor of love.

I’m not going to get into a long history here, suffice it to say we went on to create Cloudeight Stationery and become the most successful email stationery site on the web. We had over 1/4 million mail list subscribers and we were doing well. Then came Windows 7 and that was the death knell for stationery and we had to completely reinvent ourselves — or quit.

So we loped along for a while and then in 2011 we started Cloudeight Direct Computer Care. We started helping people with their computers, and instead of charging what other people were charging, we charged a very minimal price. And as we got better and faster at what we were doing, we decreased the price. This is probably the opposite of what a good money-wise company would do, but we thought it was the right thing to do.

And we’ve kept our prices low, because we are not trying to become wealthy or earn millions of dollars – we’re long past those kinds of dreams.

But you’re probably reading this and wondering what all this has to do with me being a lucky guy. I’m going to tell you.

Just about every week day I get a chance to help people with their computers. And that’s a great part of my job, but just as great is the chance to be able to “talk” to people – albeit though a chat box – and, if not get to know them, at least learn a little bit about them.

And you know what I’ve discovered? Everyone is different in this crazy old world, but most people are very nice – and we all share the same planet, and we can all understand each other’s trials. And being patient and kind with people makes a difference.

I was not the most patient person, but Darcy kind of prodded me into remembering that we didn’t always understand computers. Heck! I can remember when zip files scared me to death. And when I’d breathe a sigh of relief of relief when a program came with an installer rather than one of those confounded zip files that you had to click around inside looking for whatever it was that ran the program.

Now, you’re going to laugh – but I remember when I couldn’t even copy & paste. I pretended I knew how, but I didn’t. I finally had to break down and admit I was a computer dummy and didn’t even know how to copy & paste – probably one of the most basic and useful computer skills.

So, I found my patience with people by remembering my early days with computers. And now I enjoy working with and helping people – and really enjoy getting to know them.

I know that we consider our newsletter subscribers, members and our boosters friends. And I know it’s important that we continue to be the best we can be and help as many people as we can.

And it’s not because we’re ever going to get rich. It’s not because we make money doing it. It’s because we enjoy doing what we do – very much. While we still need to make a living, we don’t need to be wealthy. So, we help as many people as we can every day. And we try to keep the prices on the products and services we do sell as low as we can… while keeping the quality as high as possible.

Finally, it’s the knowing we’re helping people and making friends that makes me feel I’m so lucky. I know that I speak for Darcy as well in saying we’re going to keep on helping as many people as we can for as long as we can – and we hope to keep on making friends along the way.

Now you see – or at least I hope you can see – why I’m such a lucky guy.

12 thoughts on “I’m a Lucky Guy

  1. Barbara

    I think that we are the ones who are lucky to have two people like you and Darcy to help us along here and there with the things that we don’t understand. And it is OK if you laugh at some of our crazy questions. We all go through that phase. When I was first learning computers in 2000 or so, I called the lady who had been helping me and asked her how I had to fold a t-shirt to run it through the computer and print something on it. It sounded like a reasonable question to me at the time but I can remember how hard she laughed. And to this day we still laugh about it. Blessings to both of you.

  2. Sally Thomas

    And aren’t we all so happy and grateful for you and Darcy! Not a question, by the way. I learned right along with you…especially the little things like copy and paste (which a friend way over in New Zealand walked me through). Between you, Darcy, my son and his girlfriend-the NZ connection- I was able to learn the baby steps to being able to operate my computer…sort of. It took a lot of trial, error, fear and more baby steps. But if not for CloudEight, I would never, ever have been able to be basically computer literate. I still tremble knowing I am going to have to open that box sitting in my bedroom that contains a new PC with-god forbid- Windows 10 operating system. When my Vista system takes a dump, I am going to rely on you and/or Darcy to help me get that new system set up, backed up and running. I keep saying…”when this one dies, then I’ll open that box”…which means by then the warranty will be over. Oh well. So, I for one, am so very grateful that you are happy in your job because I know you won’t be quitting before I can take advantage of your vast computer savvy that I trust. Thank you!

  3. Martha

    What a great story of your life you shared. I found when I worked that enjoying what I did was the most important thing about the job and life. Thanks for sharing and reminding us to appreciate the good things in life that we are blessed with.

  4. JonInOz

    Back to basics, what is luck … the people you know on-line to help with your computer, no, that’s not luck, that is dedication of two people who care for members of Cloudeight …. and I know from experience as a member from Day 1 of Cloudeight …. Acpressions, then Stationary, InfoAve Premium….paid for … and much more from two genuinely great people.
    In simple terms, I can see, I can hear, I can walk, I can talk, I can laugh, I can cry, I can love and I am loved, and, as an individual I am honest and an honourable citizen among family, friends, acquaintances and regular product traders with whom I deal on a regular basis.
    I am grateful to be the person that I am, luck doesn’t mean a thing, the people who were there to carve who I am from day one up to today, ad infinitum …..
    I am indebted to those I have mentioned, I am unable to pay for the years of guidance, with what, money is not enough, it is an insult.
    Luck, I name it good fortune when I logged in to Cloudeight, many, many years ago … a free, ongoing course in expert computer operation and management, and now I assist senior users ….. and fortunately I was born, bred and lived to this day with assistance from good people, even good people who didn’t need religion to be good people, my up-bringing proves it.
    “Without Prejudice.”

  5. James Sparks

    Just know that we will always Love you and Ms. Darcy. We really need you you Guys. James PS: Love your Friday Letters. JMS

  6. Linda

    I Agree with Everyone Else! We are the LUCKY Ones! So Glad to have You’s Both helping the One’s wanting to Figure out these Computers. Thanks so Much Again!

  7. Debbie

    You might be “A Lucky Guy.”, but I feel that we are the lucky ones! We have benefited from your knowledge and the fact you never gave up when Windows 7 came into being.
    I remember from Day 1 when I clicked on your site, started reading, subscribed to your newsletter, poured over your stationary, etc. From that day I was hooked and never looked back!
    I was scared Cloudeight was going to fade away when Windows 7 came out, but you found other ways to continue helping us. I’m sure you got more than one laugh with my silly questions and I could envision you and Darcy having a drink and telling stories about what this one did today that was so silly.
    You have never steered me in the wrong direction and you have always fixed my stupid mistakes without scolding me like a child.
    The information you give is clear, concise and understandable and even when I don’t understand it, you painstakingly explain it to “this 66 y/o child” again.
    I’m so glad to have both of you in my computer life and as “friends” as we joke in the chat box as you work. I have and always will support you as I can and will never trust another newsletter or remote computer repair company but my “friends.”
    Thank you both for what you do for all of us and for not giving up so many years ago! You are both loved and appreciated!

  8. John

    I think we are lucky that Darcy banished you to Ohio and we are still Up North in Michigan.

  9. Dianne

    I’m so thankful to have ‘met’ you and Darcy. I’ve learned so much from you two…and I’m still learning. Now, I am having so much fun passing on what I’ve learned. Every time I help someone, in the NOTH computer group, I think of you two. And I’m grateful to have you to go to when I need help! You both go above and beyond when we ask you for help. Thank you–and please pass that along to Darcy as well.

  10. Maggie

    Attention T.C.
    Yes I was one of the lucky ones to touch base with you in the very early days all the way from New Zealand. I do remember that at the time I did think h m m m m m he was a bit impatient but as I was so new to computers and was starting virtually from scratch I accepted it as I did want to sort out my problems at the time . On reflection after my first call I did give you a little space as I thought that if you had to deal with so many dummies as obviously I must have been perhaps I was being a little judgemental. After the second call and feeling that I could still sense a little disdain in your voice I backed off completely and struggled myself to learn as much as possible what ever way that I could. This is not a criticism but an observation on my part and perhaps you did me a favour and taught me that if anything is worth learning then get on with it and do not expect to fly on the shirt tails of other people. T.C. I stuck with Cloudeight all these years have learnt heaps from your newsletters etc, and thank you for making me realise that with a little determination and stickability all is not lost. You have done a sterling job over the years and yes your stationery was absolutely amazing and for that I thank you . I am proud to be able to say that I have learnt many things from you over the years and hope that other people will do the same. Take care T.C and more especially hope you stay around for many more years yet or at least until I pop my clogs . Thank you for being you, good luck and please keep up the good work.
    Maggie. (New Zealand).


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