Before It’s Too Late

Like, right now

A client in Tucson occasionally put me up at the Arizona Inn when I was in for a market visit. It looks completely ordinary from the outside, but it’s one of the best hotels I’ve ever stayed at — and that includes the Four Seasons and The Ritz.

The reasons have nothing to do with external markers of luxury and everything to do with incredible personal service and privacy. It’s a small hotel, yet each time I stayed there, I had a unique experience.

For instance, Gene Wilder was playing the piano for a sing-along in the Library on my first visit. A few years later, in that same room, on that same grand piano…

Desperado, why don’t you come to your senses?
Come down from your fences, open the gate.
It may be rainin’ but there’s a rainbow above you,
You’d better let somebody love you, before it’s too late.

Don Henley himself.

He was singing, not very loudly, with his eyes closed. He appeared to be singing to one woman in the room with him. It was very late, after 2am, and he never saw me because I stayed outside the room, just listening.

It felt as if I was hearing the words for the first time — the loneliness, the regret — perhaps because he was singing it to one person, and that made it sound different.


Have you drifted through life, unaware of time, mostly, focused on money and status and things?

Maybe you’ve let friendships wane, relationships fail, benchmarks come and go without much notice?

Maybe you’ve spent more time worrying about yourself than others, preoccupied with someone else’s definition of success?

Thinking back, have you reached down to push others off the ladder you’re climbing, or to clasp a hand and help another rise, even if they out-climb you?

Have you watched the gun aiming at someone else when you could have stepped in front, should have stepped in front, because, in your heart, you knew it was the right thing to do?


Everything that has a beginning has an ending.

We think a chasm separates us from eternity, when Kidd and Rusty and so many others you knew personally remind us it’s not even a big step.


One day, maybe today, you’ll wake up and all of this will be gone. No more station. No more radio show.

You’d better say everything you want to say before that day comes. And we never know when that day will come.

That’s the whole point.

You’d better thank everyone you’ve always thought about thanking for their help along the way.

The people who believed in you, who pushed you to be better, better than you knew you could be; the people who wouldn’t let you settle on those days when you might have, who let you earn money by having fun.


You may be in a terrible storm right now, swamped with fear and doubt, unable to see beyond today’s downpour, but so are a lot of others, and you may be the hope, the encouragement, the rainbow they need to notice today.

Make sure each one who needs you today believes they’re at a private concert, that you’re singing to him, or her, alone.

That’s your calling. That’s why you’re where you are.

Don’t wait ’til it’s too late.