Words of Wisdom for
Leadership, Learning, and Life in
Exactly 99 Words


99-Word Stories by ,
Creative Learning Director of
The Flirefly Group.
© 2011 Brian Remer
Updated Dec. 2011

Why only 99 words? One successful way to learn is to get information in small, manageable chunks then take time to compare and contrast that information with previous experiences or theory. Each of these stories gives a new perspective with enough gray around the edges so you can add your own meaning that's personal and relevant.

Use them to reflect upon your preferences as both a learner and a teacher. How might you approach your next educational opportunity differently? When you answer that question, please

Choose a Story
Turn Right to Go Left  
Teaching a Lesson  

Turn Right to Go Left

Busy intersections are few in rural Vermont, but during tourist season you can wait a long time to make a left turn onto a crowded thoroughfare. Recently I just could not find a break in the traffic flowing east that coincided with the traffic flowing west.

Then an idea! Switching signals, I turned right into the flow. Less than a tenth of a mile later, I turned left into a parking lot and took another right joining the traffic in the direction of my original intent.

Got something difficult to do? Try the opposite!


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Three times a week, that's my swimming goal. The results are better health physically, mentally, emotionally. But that doesn't mean that I am always motivated. Some days, looking at the end of the pool 75 feet away I feel tired before I begin. Too much work!

A dip in Sweets Pond is different. When I look down its length, I see a half mile of glassy smooth water that feels like satin as I dive in. I could swim for ever here, relaxed but challenged!

How easily we allow ourselves to be limited by the horizon we see.


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Teaching a Lesson

Carol confessed that she didn't like to cook. She recalled her Home Economics class. She was beating an egg with a fork. The teacher said, "Not so much noise. I don't want to hear any clicking when you're beating those eggs!" Now, half a lifetime later, Carol admitted, "That only made me want to do it more. And I always think of that woman whenever I beat eggs!"

How would that teacher react if she knew the only thing Carol remembers from her class is having been scolded?

Often, the littlest comments have the biggest impact!


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