The Big Rock Candy Mountains is the title of a hobo folk song (see below) about a mythical land, a paradise where all is “milk and honey” and wealth without work is possible. We all know that such a place doesn’t exist, yet all too often we yearn for results without putting in the required effort and desire to harvest without tilling the ground properly or tending to the crop.

To achieve what others do not you must be willing to do what others don’t. Hard work doesn’t guarantee success but it does increase the odds. However, some of the “hardest” work there is, judged by the reluctance of folks to undertake it, is to develop both hard and soft critical thinking skills: the ability, the skill set, that allows you to stand outside yourself, analyze yourself, write down and implement the how, what, where, and why of your goals, develop your life plan, work on your EQ (Emotional Intelligence), your ability to understand, direct, and manage your emotions and those of others.

Self-knowledge is the key to “other” knowledge for we cannot give what we do not have i.e. it is difficult to understand and motivate others if we are not first self-aware and self-motivated. As John D. Rockefeller said: “The ability to deal with people is as purchasable a commodity as sugar or coffee and I will pay more for that ability than for any other under the sun.” 

Closing Quotes:

“Football is like life – it requires perseverance, self-denial, hard work, sacrifice, dedication and respect for authority.” – Vince Lombardi, 1913-1970, Coach, Green Bay Packers

“I know the price of success: dedication, hard work, and an unremitting devotion to the things you want to see happen.” – Frank Lloyd Wright, 1867-1959, 5’9”

“There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work, and learning from failure.– Colin Powell, b. 1937, Secretary of State, former 4 star general, 6’2”

“Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.” – Robert Collier, 1885-1950

The Big Rock Candy Mountains

One evening as the sun went down
And the jungle fires were burning,
Down the track came a hobo hiking,
And he said, “Boys, I’m not turning
I’m headed for a land that’s far away
Besides the crystal fountains
So come with me, we’ll go and see
The Big Rock Candy Mountains”

In the Big Rock Candy Mountains,
There’s a land that’s fair and bright,
Where the handouts grow on bushes
And you sleep out every night
Where the boxcars all are empty
And the sun shines every day
On the birds and the bees
And the cigarette trees
The lemonade springs
Where the bluebird sings
In the Big Rock Candy Mountains

In the Big Rock Candy Mountains
All the cops have wooden legs
And the bulldogs all have rubber teeth
And the hens lay soft-boiled eggs
The farmers’ trees are full of fruit
And the barns are full of hay
Oh I’m bound to go
Where there ain’t no snow
Where the rain don’t fall
The winds don’t blow
In the Big Rock Candy Mountains

In the Big Rock Candy Mountains
You never change your socks
And the little streams of alcohol
Come trickling down the rocks
The brakemen have to tip their hats
And the railway bulls are blind
There’s a lake of stew
And of whiskey too
You can paddle all around ‘em
In a big canoe
In the Big Rock Candy Mountains

In the Big Rock Candy Mountains,
The jails are made of tin.
And you can walk right out again,
As soon as you are in.
There ain’t no short-handled shovels,
No axes, saws or picks,
I’m a goin’ to stay
Where you sleep all day,
Where they hung the Turk
That invented work
In the Big Rock Candy Mountains
I’ll see you all this coming Fall
In the Big Rock Candy Mountains

As always, I share what I most want/need to learn. – Nathan S. Collier