COMMENTARY: Bologna Sandwiches

When Jason, a construction worker, took a sandwich out of his lunch bag, he looked at it and threw it on the ground yelling, “Bologna again! I hate Bologna.”

A co-worker said, “If you hate bologna so much, just ask your wife to make you something else.”

Jason replied, “That’s the problem. My wife didn’t make the sandwich. I did.”

Lots of people continually make their own bologna sandwiches and then act as victims when it’s time to eat them. It’s like the man who killed his parents and had the audacity to demand mercy because he was an orphan.

The bologna sandwich is a metaphor for things we do to ourselves that make our lives tougher. Einstein defined insanity as doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

For some, the problem is personal relationships. Thus, intelligent people driven by loneliness, sexual attraction, irrational romanticism, or a rescue mentality disregard their good sense and core values by repetitively getting involved with people who are bad for them.

Others have bologna or dishonorable bosses or unfulfilling or demeaning jobs. Sooner or later, unhealthy relationships and unrewarding jobs will become intolerable.

Thomas Huxley said, “Logical consequences are the scarecrows of fools and the beacons of wise men.” In other words, every mistake can make us more afraid or wiser.

If you don’t like bologna sandwiches, take control of your life — identify the values that are really important to you and don’t compromise them.

This is Michael Josephson reminding you that character counts.

Comments 8

  1. Simply superb, Mr Josephson!

    I really don’t get the words to describe your sense of self-expression. No doubt you are world leader!

    Your humble servant,


  2. Pingback: COMMENTARY 796.3: Baloney Sandwiches - Occupied Wall Street

  3. Most people will attribute this quote to Albert Einstein but there is no evidence to suggest that he made this statement.

    This quote “Insanity is repeating the same mistakes and expecting different results” appears in the Basic Text of Narcotics Anonymous which was copyrighted in 1982 and later published in 1983. It is found on page 11 of the final “Review Form” which was distributed to the fellowship in November of 1981. It is found on page 23 of the current sixth edition.

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  4. In identifying the values that are uncompromisingly important I have gone about my job search and that has meant being selective in a time that most people would say, “you are lucky if you have or find a job.” I know it’s hard, but I also know it’s harder to be in a job that is unfulfilling. I can’t compromise again and I won’t.

    1. Our “fulfullment” throughout our lives is a great table topic. Yes, Toastmasters sets our stage on occasion 🙂 Our chosen “attitude” and our personal process’ of achieving and sometimes creating the rewards we enjoy is a practiced experience. Values are always fundamental and hopefully fulfilling to us. Taking care of one’s “neighbors” must always be forefront in our priorities in order to lead a “fulfilling” life.
      These values and attitudes must feed not only our own fulfillment; but also serve the needs of our families and neighbors. Any compromises necessary at times in life must be carefully and prudently managed to stay within healthy and good boundries. Huxley’s scarecrows and beacons confuse me; but then that is another story !! :):)

  5. Love your columns, and have been reading them for many years. Just an aside, but bologna is misspelled throughout today’s column 🙂

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