I got a text from a friend yesterday that started with “you were right”. I mention it, because, well, that doesn’t happen very often.

On the weekend I was about to provide a great solution to a problem when the intended receiver stopped me with, “I don’t like unsolicited advice”.

I don’t either. In fact, I am not much a fan of being told what to do at all. I guess, in some ways, that makes me a typical guy. No, I don’t ask for directions, and no, I most often don’t look at instructions – hence I get lost when I’m traveling and I have leftover stuff from building Ikea furniture.

Where do I get off thinking I know more than that Swedish guy when it comes to the bookshelf? It’s not that I know better, in fact I’m probably the last guy I should be going to for guidance. It’s that I have a hard time knowing different.

It all started because, from a very young age, my mother would say, “Question authority”. We spent lots of time in front of the television with her disagreeing with most of what was said on the news or by any politician. I left home ever suspicious of the dominant view.

Of course none of that stops me from offering my ideas, whether I’ve been asked to or not. Once, while I was running with a friend who is a member of Parliament in Ottawa, I was letting him know what I thought of his government’s policies. After I’d gone on awhile he replied, “Rory, if I ever get into a position where I can appoint diplomats, you won’t be one of them”. So, I guess I’ve got that going for me.

That all said, what do you think I should do?