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[S8E3] Take The Lead BETTER

As a primer to MDM's Feb. 22-23Virtual M&A Summit, we chat with MSC Industrial SupplyPresident & CEO Erik Gershwind and Business & CommercialDevelopment leader Jim Drohan about the company's M&A strategy,which has moved aggressively in the past 2 years.

[S8E3] Take the Lead


The distribution industry is changing, with new players and technologies that will shape how you compete and sell. Stay ahead of your competitors with this regular series from Modern Distribution Management, and learn the trends and strategies that will keep you in the lead for the long haul.

After 'Monsters' I'm really not sure what the point was. Lots of people speculated that this would lead to Rick having some character-building moments, questioning whether the Saviors were really all bad if an old pal like Morales could be part of the group.

I think Ezekiel is taking over Negan's place this season as Most Annoying Character. His ridiculous leadership style and Shakespearean speeches just make me roll my eyes at this point. The episode opens to his group along with Carol as they hunt down bad guys. There's some really awkward, artsy cuts between Ezekiel giving his motivational speech and the crew taking out Saviors. I hate these kind of edits. Just give the speech then go fight, we don't need confusing faux-artsy editing to make it feel more dramatic.

In any case, Ezekiel proclaims that "not one" of the Kingdom's fighters will fall in the day's assaults. It's one of the stupidest things you could possibly say as a leader in battle. Realistically, if you're about to undertake a series of gunfights, some people are going to die. Maybe they won't, but you generally want to under-promise and over-deliver, not the other way around. The smart thing to say would be something like:

Aye, fight and you may die. Run and you'll live -- at least a while. And dying in your beds many years from now, would you be willing to trade all the days from this day to that for one chance, just one chance to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take our freedom!!!

Yes, I just quoted Braveheart. It's a great, simple speech about fighting for freedom. He readily admits that if you fight, you may die. But if you run, you may regret not fighting for the rest of your life. Ezekiel on the other hand offers up a nonsensical prediction, as though he's some psychic, that nobody will die. That the fight will go just great. Not only will we win, we'll win without any casualties. As a leader, what happens when, shortly after making this speech, one of your people gets killed. Do you backtrack to "Only one of us will die this day!" He leaves himself no room here. Once any casualties happen, his entire motivational speech is ruined and his leadership undermined by his own stupidity.

In the end, he's forced to eat his words. They don't scout one of the compounds very well, and it happens to be the compound where the guns Rick and Daryl were looking for are stored. A hidden Savior opens up fire and takes out...well we're not really sure, but he takes out a huge number of Ezekiel's people. It's a massacre and then the credits roll.

Still, a good fight and enjoyable. Later, when they send everyone else off (Aaron with the baby) a lone Savior, for reasons we will never know, decides to shoot at them. Rick makes him a deal: Come out and drop your weapon, give us the information we need, and we'll give you one of our many spare cars, a full tank of gas and let you go your merry way. It's a sweet deal and the Savior takes him up on it, revealing that the Saviors moved the big guns.

In any case, I did enjoy this episode a lot more than the past two. It was more tense, more surprising, and had some good dialogue. The whole Morales bit was beyond terrible, but after that it picked up considerably. The bad fake crying scene between Aaron and Eric could have been fixed so easily, so I'm a little confused why it ended up so unbelievable. And King Ezekiel is just too much at this point and needs to be scaled back in the same way Negan's been scaled back. Or maybe, if we're lucky, he'll be so traumatized by his horrible leadership that he'll just become his true self and ditch the persona. It's just too much.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) today says that one in 10 children with measles gets an ear infection, which can lead to permanent deafness. One in 20 children develops pneumonia and one in 1,000 develops encephalitis, which can lead to brain damage. Learn much more from the CDC measles pages.

When Stan and Kenny reach Gibson's house, the director rambles, straps himself to a rack wearing only white briefs and says that no matter how much they torture him he will never refund their money. When the boys insist that they just want their money back, Gibson chases them around the house, imitating Daffy Duck gags while doing so. Stan and Kenny take eighteen dollars from Gibson's wallet (actually twenty dollars, but Kenny offers up two dollars for change) and flee on a bus home. Gibson, wearing face paint from Braveheart, chases their bus in the tanker truck from Mad Max 2, screaming "Qapla'!" and "Gimme back my money!" Back in South Park, Kyle talks to Father Maxi about his issues regarding Jesus and the guilt he has been feeling since seeing Gibson's film. Father Maxi points out that the Passion was originally a play used to stir up anti-Semitism, but says that its subject matter can still help people. Kyle seizes on Father Maxi's statement that "Christianity is about atonement" and says he now understands what he should do.

The first preview for Game of Thrones Season 8 Episode 3 is all about the battle between the forces of the living and the army of the dead, lead by the Night King (whose motives were finally revealed in the second episode of Game of Thrones Season 8). While mostly comprised of dark shots of amassing forces, there are a few hints that point toward major events to come in the battle for Winterfell.

"The most heroic thing we can do now is look the truth in the face," Sansa Stark (Sophie Turner) says at the beginning of the new preview, which opens on Daenerys' army assembling outside of Winterfell, including flanks lead by Brienne of Tarth (Gwendoline Christie) and Grey Worm (Jacob Anderson).

Abby challenges the team with her most serious group dance yet, and casts Lilly as the lead for the first time in her ALDC career. GiaNina and Hannah go head-to-head with solos, but when GiaNina complains about her choreography Abby unleashes her biggest wrath yet on the Broadway veteran.

Laurence BradfordAnd we're back in today's episode I talk with Nikkole Spurgeon. Nikkole is a junior software developer who learned to code in prison. I got connected with Nikkole through an organization I volunteered with recently called Persevere Now. Persevere Now teaches inmates and parolees to code. They also help them find jobs and offer other career related support. Nikkole participated in their highly competitive program. And that's what we're going to hear about today. Now, before we get into things, just a heads up that this episode has been edited differently than other episodes in the past. With me giving a little introduction to each part of Nikkole's story, I want to find the most impactful way to share her story. And I hope this is it. I also want to flag that we get into some really heavy topics such as drug addiction, violence, involvement from Child Protective Services, and so on. If any of that might be triggering, or too difficult for you to listen to, we cover those parts right at the start. So what you can do is skip forward to the eight minute 15 second mark of the show in whichever podcast player you're listening on. With all that said, Let me tell you a little bit about Nikkole. So she's originally from Simi Valley, California, and she was an army brat growing up. Those are her words not mine, by the way. And she lived all over the world moving every couple of years. As she got older Nikkole worked in jobs like hostessing or being a cashier. And she even worked at Home Depot later on. So a lot of front facing retail type of work. But unfortunately, she ended up getting into an abusive relationship. And she found herself in a serious addiction for 10 years. So basically all of her 20s and this ultimately led to her serving time in prison. But while she was in prison, and finally sober, she decided to turn her life around. As I said already, Nikkole story's intense, make no mistake about it. But it's also really incredible. All the different things that she has gone through and where she is today. So without further ado, let's start by hearing from Nikkole about what her life was like before she went to prison.

Nikkole Spurgeon 3:38Back in 2012, I was a single mother of two, I had a two year old daughter and a seven month old son and their father and I didn't get along. I was a victim of domestic violence quite often. I tried to leave him but circumstances about them being native. It's kind of convoluted, but I wasn't able to take my kids away from their father without his permission, like somewhere that he couldn't be, you know, like, for example, I wanted to move to Indiana, I could not leave the county that we were in. I wasn't able to leave the area and I lived in a small little town called bullhead. City, Arizona. It's on the corner of Arizona, really right across the river as Laughlin Nevada, then it's bullhead and then like it's literally on the corner of California and Nevada and Arizona. Um, it got really, really bad.

Nikkole Spurgeon 4:57So March 9, 2012, I was stabbed 13 times to the head face in arms by this man. I mean, everything that followed is what led me into drug use. I lost my apartment, I lost my job, I lost my car, and CPS got involved in I even lost my kids. And I didn't know how to take that. Really, I felt like I was being punished for trying to survive and get away from this guy. But there was no way I could just leave the town or else I'd be like a federal fence removing a native from their land. So I was literally stuck. And CPS taking my kids away. Since there was so much domestic violence going on. I just I couldn't handle that. I flatlined three times, I was fully transfused with my blood volume twice. So you know how, like parents say, like, I would die for my kids? Well, I literally did, I guess, and for them to take my kids away at that just broke me. I wasn't able to really bounce back. Not only that, but being a woman and your face is different. And, you know, bless little kids, you know, if I went to the store, I was getting stared at, like a monster. But I just I couldn't deal with that. I went to therapy. And most times I would hear Yeah, I understand how you feel? Well, you don't, you know, I don't feel like you've been stabbed up or anything like that. So it was just, it was so difficult for me to deal with. And I know, I knew before, like I had experimented a little bit here and there with meth. And that was that was a really big thing in that town. And that's what I turned to it. Unfortunately, I didn't deal with it the healthy way. But it allowed me to not feel and to not care about anything. So I was crazy, deeply involved in my addiction. It did affect my relationship with my kids, but I just, I didn't know how to move on. I didn't know how to move past. So I was I was an addict for almost 10 years, until it finally caught up with me I was on probation. still couldn't stay clean. I was in drug court, I couldn't do it. And finally, it led me to prison in 2018. My time down was the longest time I've ever been sober, obviously. And with that sobriety came, you know, this change of mind, like what are you doing with your life and being in prison, you have nothing but time, but to focus on all the things that you've done. All the people you've hurt, how you've gotten there, just all your mistakes, really, and you have no one else to blame, but you So yeah, I looked around one day and there was this older woman she was like, I would guess that maybe in her 60s and she was still in the drug scene, doing all that and that was just her life, even there. And I just I did not. I couldn't accept that for the rest of my life is to be either in and out of prison or still stuck on drugs. It was obviously getting me nowhere I needed to change and persevere allowed me to achieve that. 041b061a72

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