A Rich Lunch

I wrote earlier of my day last week in downtown Chicago. I did not mention the most enjoyable lunch that I had.

I have known Howard Bernick for 15 years or so. He was for many years the CEO of Alberto Culver and I was, still am, a consultant to the Company. We saw each other primarily in work situations but took the time to share stories of family. He was good to work with. In general a mench. We might not always agree but we could agree to disagree in a professional way.

He left the company a couple of years ago after completing a sale of a major portion of the company. He is on his own, sitting on some boards, enjoying his parents and his children and generally enjoying life.

I cannot say that I am not more than a bit envious. He is financially well to do which gives him options on how to spend his time. I would love to have those options. Yet while envious of his situation I can only wish him well. In my line of work I meet many very wealthy people. Many of them are not very nice. Howard is.

He took me to lunch at a nice restaurant, but that is not what made the lunch a rich experience. It was the conversation that made it rich. The conversation was a good mix of reminiscing and catching up on what has happened in the time since we had seen each other. We told stories. Good ones. I learned some very interesting details about people we knew in common. I shared about the loss of my mom, the increased responsibilities with my sister and the joys and pain of raising a teenage boy. Howard has raised two sons and a daughter so he could relate.

At the end of lunch he offered to make a donation to the organization that runs the group home which houses my sister. He did not need to do that. I did not ask. (I have never been good about asking for money from friends or others I know. I will have to find the courage now that my mom is no longer in the fund raising business.) He just did.

We agreed not to let so much time go between visits. I cannot wait to do this again.

I want to become a professional go-to-luncher. I have found my calling. Now if I can find a sponsor.

About 48facets
What you read is what you get.

One Response to A Rich Lunch

  1. Frank says:

    Two noble guys having lunch. It’s often the little things that change the world. I’m smiling about this one.

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