Stuff That Works by Mark Boughner

[The following post is by my friend Mark (The Boug) Boughner.  I really resonated with Mark’s comments.  There is nothing more valuable in life than family and friends who are dependable and consistent.  It also reminds me of the ultimate in faithfulness — our Heavenly Father who is “…the same yesterday, today, and forever,” and who loves us with an unchangeable love.   If you enjoy Mark’s post you may wish to check out his Blog, I’ve also included it as one of my Blogroll links.  If you want to hear the Guy Clark “Stuff that Works,” you can check out the following YouTube link: RMF]

Stuff That Works

Since returning from one of the best vacations I’ve had in a long time, the past three weeks have had it’s consistent streams of issues with my job.  Things just don’t seem to be working as they should or lack consistency of working.  I feel like I’m responsible for broken things, although I have not caused them.  However, because I am responsible for maintaining these broken systems, the fingers tend to ultimately point toward me.  Isn’t it funny how when the systems ARE working properly, the POSITIVE attention is often absent.

I like stuff to work.  I trust things when they’re working.  When I turn on a light switch, water facet or flush a toilet I depend on a light coming on, water flowing and stuff to leave the bowl.  When the expectations are met with the anticipated results, I consider it working!  In my job, I strive to provide the same thing.  People should expect the services I am responsible for to work.

One of the main things that are keeping the finger pointers at bay right now is that I’ve earned their respect through commitment.  They know I’m going to see these things through ‘no matter what.’  Even though, the things I’m troubleshooting are a bit out of my knowledge base (for now), they know my track record of sticktoitness.  You see, commitment overcomes a lot of things and offers a sense of security that very few, if any, can actually offer.  Although, commitment is not a physical thing, I still consider it ‘stuff that works.’

You know something else I’ve learned over the past couple of weeks?  Technology and modern conveniences tend to complicate things and seem to raise the consistency of things not working.  Having spent a short time away from those ‘conveniences’ I noticed that depending on simpler things and relying on less complicated things elevated the assurance of ‘stuff working.’

Here’s a short list I found of ‘stuff that works’: A good hat, a soft t shirt, faded blue jeans, broken in boots, a good leather belt and a Leatherman.  Oh sure, there are more, but these are the things that I see myself always having just like a good pickup truck.  They work!

‘Stuff That Works’ by Guy Clark

I got an ol’ blue shirt
And it suits me just fine
I like the way it feels
So I wear it all the time
I got an old guitar
It won’t ever stay in tune
I like the way it sounds
In a dark and empty room

I got an ol’ pair of boots
And they fit just right
I can work all day
And I can dance all night
I got an ol’ used car
And it runs just like a top
I get the feelin’ it ain’t
Ever gonna stop

Stuff that works, stuff that holds up
The kind of stuff you don’t hang on the wall
Stuff that’s real, stuff you feel
The kind of stuff you reach for when you fall

I got a pretty good friend
Who’s seen me at my worst
He can’t tell if I’m a blessing
Or a curse
But he always shows up
When the chips are down
That’s the kind of stuff
I like to be around


I got a woman I love
She’s crazy and paints like God
She’s got a playground sense of justice
She won’t take odds
I got a tattoo with her name
Right through my soul
I think everything she touches
Turns to gold


About ronfurg

Former naval officer, federal investigator, forensic scientist, senior executive service member and pastor. In retirement serves as volunteer and life group leader at New Life Christian Church ( Devoted to beautiful wife, kids and grandkids. Looking forward to the time when every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord of all and that He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.
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