Written by The Scribbler
Okay, I wholeheartedly admit it, I’m a bibliophile. There are books in every room of my home. (Yes, THAT room, too.) As of late I am simultaneously reading four tomes: James Lileks’s Gastroanomilies, Glenn Beck’s An Inconvenient Book, Confessions of a Pastor by Craig Groeschel, and Aesop’s Fables.
It’s not clear if Aesop actually existed, but legend has it that he was a slave from Ethiopia who was quick of mind and tongue. After reading three pages of his fables, I was amazed at how relevant the lessons were, even in our jet-set culture of, “OMG – your HDTV is only a 60-incher? You might as well be on food stamps!” You’ll be intrigued to see that a tidy amount of Aesop’s tales fire arrows into the heart of some popular upline teachings.
If you’re a hardcore Mary Kay lover and you know your Aesop, you’re probably itching to cite “The Fox and the Grapes,” as in, “Puh, Scrib; you just couldn’t get a prestigious cubic zirconia necklace/track suit/pink caddy, so you’re acting like you never wanted it in the first place!” Hey, that’s fair. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m overdue for some new wheels. All it would take to shatter the axles on my ’93 Toyota Tercel would be to fart while driving. (Oh, stop feigning shock – your NSD’s done it in her caddy a thousand times over.)
However, I would prefer to acquire those new wheels in a simple dealership transaction that 1. Doesn’t involve the silver-tongued delivery of scripts to the unlearned and 2. Allows me to keep the car for a decade or two without feverishly having to meet a production quota. But hey, that’s just me.
That being said, I’m switching on the flashing blue light, people: Free Training in Aisle PT!
Upline teaching: “Fake it until you make it!”
Aesopic Arrow: The Tale of the Vain Jack-Daw
In NSD Allison LaMarr’s “Million Dollar Advice,” she says, “How would you act if you were the most successful person in MK? Are you acting like that now?” Or perhaps you’re familiar with the affirmation that trumpets, “Everyone is attracted to me; I look like a National!” Check out what Aesop says in The Tale of the Vain Jack-Daw:
A certain jack-daw, which is just a fancy name for a crow, decided he was too good for the rest of his friends, so he flew around picking up peacocks’ feathers. When he had enough, he dressed himself up in them, went over among the peacocks and proudly flounced around like one of them. But the peacocks soon saw that he didn’t belong, and they tore at him with their claws and bills.
Ladies, why must one act like “the most successful person in MK?” For all you know, that individual has all the morality of a bacchanalia on Day One. Wouldn’t it be more empowering knowing that people are attracted to you because of who you are, not because you’re in full MK face or sporting a director’s suit? Makeup and clothes are shaky foundations to build identities on.
Here’s a challenge for you: ditch those temporary-centered teachings and take a peek at what’s permanent about you. If your personality were a must-see summer flick, how would the movie poster read? “Quick with Jokes!” “Thoughtful Encourager!” “Has the Nifty Ability to Fold Origami Frogs out of KFC Napkins and Subsequently, Brighten the Days of All Who See Them!” Want to be real? Then imitate yourself, not some NSD.
Upline teaching: “Affirmations will bring you success!”
Aesopic Arrow: The Frog and the Fox
To name a few: “People beg me to be my hostesses!” “I’m a money magnet!” And don’t forget the painfully ironic “I won’t give up, shut up, or let up; until I’ve stayed up, stored up, prayed up, paid up, and become the woman that God intended for me to be.” Aesop’s Frog and the Fox shows us that saying that something is so doesn’t necessarily make it so:
One afternoon a skinny, pale frog jumped onto a rock and started to croak. He used all the long, important-sounding words he could think up and bragged about how he could cure any creature of any ailment. Before long, he had all the animals around him believing that he was the greatest doctor the world had ever known. The old fox, knowing better, said, “Do you sit there in your sickly condition and try to tell us that you can cure us of anything that’s wrong? You had better go cure yourself before you start bragging.”
There’s nothing wrong with dreaming big. However, it greatly benefits women to dream in the direction of their God-given abilities, passions, and talents. Since a majority of consultants are being taught to fake it, how can anyone in MK ever be certain that they’re dealing with the Real McCoy?
Your director’s fingers – laden with chunky rings associated with faux royal titles – may glitter with every move, but it’s only helping to brighten the package of bottom round she’s tossing into her grocery cart. MK’s praises will always be sung loud and long by the upline, but the Doxology of Personal Debt is one tune few directors will admit to knowing by heart.
Upline teaching: “You’ll never know unless you give MK a try!”
Aesopic Arrow: The Angler and the Little Fish
A man was fishing in a river one day when after several hours, he finally caught a small perch. “Please Mister, throw me back!” the fish pleaded. “I am so young and tiny now, why don’t you wait until I am bigger? Then you could catch me and have something really worthwhile.”
“Ho! Ho!” said the man. “You expect me to give up what I have now for what I might just possibly catch some other time? No chance!” And he took that one little fish home for dinner.
Next time you find yourself in a coffeehouse with a woman wearing a skirt and a pink Darth Vader helmet (“Join Mary Kay…it is your destiny…hawww-psssht!”) try responding with the moral of The Angler and the Little Fish: “It’s wiser to hold on to what we have than to count on future luck.” While this moral may not apply to all of the opportunities that life sends our way, it most certainly applies to Mary Kay’s!
An NSD was recently quoted as saying that there have been over 500 National Sales Directors in the 44 years of MK’s history. That works out to a scant 11.4 NSDs per year. In 2006, Mary Kay cited a sales force of 700,000 beauty consultants in the US. You do the math. If you’re still feeling lucky, then you might as well hit the Kwik-E-Mart on your way home from the unit meeting and pick up a roll of scratch tickets. And grab me some beef jerky, too – nothing sweetens the breath quite like teriyaki nuggets.
So there you have it, friends; a bit of Greek spice to flavor your week. Although come to think of it, Aesop wasn’t the only one to get a warm-chattering in his day. I’m pretty sure Edgar Allen Poe was warm-chatted, too; he wrote The Raven to commemorate the event. He heard someone rapping at his chamber door, he answered, and when the Mary Kay recruiter suggested that he come in with an Emerald star, he replied, “Nevermore!”