Tales from Timnath: Speaking of Regrets

Phil Goldstein

I once conducted an interview for another publication with an entrepreneur about his latest venture. Near the conclusion of the interview, when I asked him if he had any regrets or wished he’d done anything differently with his undertaking, he responded that everything turned out perfectly, and he no regrets about anything he’d ever done. His answer surprised me and told me more about him than any of his previous responses because who doesn’t have regrets or who’s so arrogant or insecure not to acknowledge them?

Remembering that interview got me thinking about some of my own regrets:

I regret not telling my late mother and father every day of my adult life what great role models they were for me, especially in matters of responsible behavior and business acumen.

I regret not getting involved in community service earlier, but I do regret raising my hand when the HOA sought a board president.

I regret not getting a dog sooner. While I vociferously opposed adopting our first dog, I led the charge with my wife for the second one (but maybe not the third, since the bed’s much too crowded now).

I regret that so much of my professional career and even some volunteer service required uphill battles, but I don’t regret always doing the right thing by not leaving well enough alone or not going along to get along.

I regret not having more close friends, but I don’t regret having the high expectations that are necessary for them to earn that designation.

I regret certain collaborations, not because of misguided motivation, but because of misplaced trust.

I regret waiting over 50 years before taking drum lessons and really regret my neighborhood basement bandmates moving away, leaving me an amateur but enthusiastic Ringo in need of another John, Paul and George.

I regret all the times exercise has caused me injury, but I don’t regret the effort.

When I’m coaching sports, I sometimes regret that I don’t have more patience, but I don’t regret only wanting to volunteer my time to those who share my view that winning, and everything that goes into winning, is a good experience.

I regret not using my tickets for the 1973 Pink Floyd concert in Pittsburgh, and I almost regretted using my tickets for Led Zeppelin in Pittsburgh five weeks later (but that’s a tale for another column).

Finally, I thought I’d always regret spending time and money earning a journalism degree that I didn’t use for 47 years, but then thankfully North Forty News came calling.

Phil Goldstein writes Tales from Timnath periodically for North Forty News. Phil is a 10-year Timnath resident who proudly serves the Town of Timnath as chair of the Timnath Planning Commission. Phil is finally using his journalism degree after getting sidetracked 47 years ago. The views expressed herein are Phil’s only. Contact him with comments on the column or suggestions for future columns at [email protected].


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