Monday, March 9, 2009

What Friends Do...

Drivel. It’s what I spew. However, some folks find it entertaining; so I am generally not too ashamed of the goofy thoughts I share with the world through the blog.

When I started my new job back in October, one of the first people I met was Fran Kandrac. I tend to have a keen eye for humans and dogs, and it was immediately apparent to me that Fran is one of those people who knows everything and could effortlessly help me with any job related tasks I did. I quickly made friends with Fran.

One day Fran and I were talking about non-work stuff, and it came out that I spew drivel out onto the World Wide Web. When I was done describing the blog and my magazine articles, Fran told me about her website.

What followed was my realization that some of us use the internet for self promotion as they tell goofy little jokes, and others use the internet to help the people around them. Fran is a genuinely funny woman, but her website isn't a silly little blog full of one liners. Fran's provides help for people who need a friend.

I wasn’t thinking about websites when I got an instant message from Fran this morning. My first thought was, “Oh God, tell me I didn’t actually hit “SEND” on that little spoof email to the North American Vice President…”

Instead, Fran’s instant message was telling me that Daryn Kagan was going to have her own show on Oprah Radio. Admittedly, my next thought was to head toward Fran’s office and tell her she had mistaken me for someone who cared about Oprah Radio. However, before I did that I thought I would click on the link Fran had attached. So I clicked, and after I got past my initial guy reaction… “I’ve never heard of Daryn Kagan, but she is fairly hot”… I realized that she (Daryn) was talking about my friend Fran.

How cool is it that on the very day where Daryn Kagan makes her debut on Oprah Radio, she uses her personal website to highlight the work that Fran Kandrac and her daughters, Aimee and Stephanie, are doing through their website:

Plagerized (or quoted) from the website, the purpose of What Friends Do is:

“When a life-changing event happens, friends and family want to help! The webtool is a FREE website that can help family and friends form a "Team" and respond in an organized and helpful way. Helping a friend through a life-changing event involves lending a hand with meals, transportation and other tasks. These events also call for understanding, love and uplifting support.”

I seldom ask my drivel fans of Skiving Off to do anything for me, but this one is special. So, today I am encouraging you to do two things for me. Check out the
video at that describes the work of the Kandracs. Then, I ask you to visit and imagine the possible ways that you can use this tool to positively impact someone.

One idea... I suppose we could start a “Team” for someone we know who recently relocated back to his hometown (Indianapolis) from Michigan. Ya know… it’s a lot of work getting settled into a new

Fran: Congratulations. I am glad to see your good work get the national exposure it deserves. Also, Accounting crapped all over my last expense report... can you take care of that for me???? Don't kill anyone... just scare them. (You're the best.)


Fran said...

Hey Jeff - thanks for the great plug for! And thanks for the nice things you said about me, too. :)


Randy said...

Jeff,, I too would like to thank you for this plug. I do not know of, nor have I ever heard of Fran, but her work is much deserving of some prime time atention. all to often, people do not want to "get involved". But I see this is not the case with "What Friends Do".
Although, I do not see any reference to God/Jesus Christ, I am betting that Her walk is with the Lord, and that is where she is pulling strength from. May God Bless you Fran, and thank you for wanting to help those who are in need.
And may God bless you as well Jeffery.
see yaaa,,
Randy Clapper

Anonymous said...

How about a nice round of applause for Randy? Seriously, though. I was raised by Parents who often asked us to just go out and do things for others. No implications of why, etc. Just to do them.

I still fix things for others regularly without the expectation of getting anything in return. It always makes me a little uncomfortable when they offer. We've had our fair share of gift cards rendered as a thank you.

One of the most powerful examples I had growing up was of my Grandfather helping complete strangers. He was the friendliest guy. I recall him waving at people coming the other way as we headed to our trout fishing destination – these old dirt roads with people looking at you trying to figure you out. They’d wave back, trying to recognize him, faces fixed. I wondered why he did that; person after person, hardly a chance he’d ever even see them again.

We would often go ice-fishing in upstate/northern New York. The storms coming off of Lake Ontario would catch many off-guard, and leave them completely (and very dangerously) stranded in a ditch, shivering and near or in tears.
I remember many occasions where my Grandfather would pull over and bark out instructions to us to apply the chain to pull them out, tires spinning on his truck until we would extricate them.

The resultant hugs and ‘thank-yous’ that the wife or whomever would have at having been saved were very powerful. He would never take a single thing for his efforts but instead would stay with them to help guide them back into town. This happened dozens of times, often several times a night during the bad storms. We would run out of time for fishing and sleep in the camper until the morning. Good memories of simple, good living.

Anonymous said...

Alright, already. I've checked back with this thing for few days, now, and nothing new. No comments, no pictures, no odd humor, no references to old-school rock. Nada. Not even so much as a Marc Adams or Lie-Nielsen drop, let alone an Icelandic or Toyota reference. Even Gail and your Dad are starting to wonder if you'll ever surface from surfacing things in the basement.

To that end, and with the hopes that this will spark something, I am hereby filling in with the following.

D'jever notice, while driving around with Peyton in your Mercedes SLK 320 (with AMG Sport Package), that random thoughts just pop into your head. Then, out of your fingers into this blog? Anyhoo, here we go...

Are scuba divers that surface too quickly more likely to understand a Mercedes?

Shouldn't Poison haved called it "Skinny Bop" instead of "Unskinny Bop?" I mean, did you seen that stick figure singing that song? The guy had to run around in the shower just to get wet.

Speaking of 80s rock, let's combine a few of the song's names to save some time listening to them, and to give them a little more meaning, shall we?

Mr. Roboto - you - Owner of a Lonely Heart you. Just Call Me - Addicted to Love. You know, - Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) - In a Big Country. I just can't help but think that there's - Something About You - You Keep Runnin' Away - Don't Go. Because, I keep having this - Gemini Dream - that - Everybody Wants to Rule the World. Then I wake up with a - New Sensation - and realize that it's because of my tendency to - Hold on Loosely. Aw, - Hells Bells, - You Shook Me All Night Long. In the - Heat of the Moment - I just want to - Fight the Good Fight. - In the Name of Love - There's No-one Like You (in - Panama).

I'm going to have to end this here. I think some kid from a trailer park about 3 miles away just took out my mailbox.

Randy said...

I think your last responce was not a real good idea. I mean, it's bad enough we have one charactor, (Jeff) that needs to check in at the front desk, now I beleive we have two.
I think posibly, you might want to spend a little more time at the Maple trees, tapping for some maple syrup?
and a little less time in front of your PC.
Jeff, we need you, please stop working so hard at the "office" and get back in front of your PC.