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I noticed that all the prayers I used to offer to God, and all the prayers I now offer to Joe Pesci, are being answered at about the same 50% rate. Half the time I get what I want, half the time I don’t… Same as the four-leaf clover and the horseshoe…same as the Voodoo Lady who tells you your fortune by squeezing the goat’s testicles, it’s all the same: 50-50. So just pick your superstition, sit back, make a wish, and enjoy yourself.
Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler. A man should look for what is, and not for what he thinks should be. We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them. A question that sometimes drives me hazy: am I or are the others crazy? Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex… It takes a touch of genius – and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction. All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.
When I was young, my father used to say, ‘If you are alive, there is hope for a better day and something good to happen. If there is nothing good left in the destiny of a person, he or she will die.’ I thought about these words during my journey, and they kept me moving even when I didn’t know where I was going. Those words became the vehicle that drove my spirit forward and made it stay alive.
My grandma used to make syrup for us because we couldn’t afford it and I just played around with her recipe. I made strawberry syrup and that didn’t really work out but I made strawberry-vanilla and that sold. Then I just went out and took marketing classes, went to seminars, learned about marketing a product and striking deals. It ended up taking orders of $1.5 million.
I used to be very self-conscious. I used to wish I was pretty. My cousin Georgia always taught me that if you smile, people will like you. Sometimes people will say something you don’t like, and you get angry a bit, but you just smile. You let it go by, even if you really would like to choke ’em. By smiling, I think I’ve made more friends than if I was the other way.