The Guy in the Glass
“The Guy in the Glass,” written in 1934, is a folksy poem with a solid premise. I became aware of the poem earlier this month at a farewell dinner for Alpine Meadows’ Kent “Hoopie” Hoopingarner. To be able to look himself in the mirror is his personal creed.
We should all be able to look ourselves in the mirror. Everyday, every decision. I thought about that when I wrote the column on Martha Stewart.
So here it is, “The Guy in the Glass” by Dale Wimbrow.
When you get what you want in your struggle for pelf (self),
And the world makes you King for a day,
Then go to the mirror and look at yourself,
And see what that guy has to say.
For it isn’t your Father, or Mother or Wife,
Who judgement upon you must pass.
The feller whose verdict counts most in your life
Is the guy staring back from the glass.
He’s the feller to please, never mind all the rest,
For he’s with you clear up to the end,
And you’ve passed your most dangerous, difficult test
If the guy in the glass is your friend.
You may be like Jack Horner and “chisel” a plum,
And you think you’re a wonderful guy,
But the man in the glass says you’re only a bum
If you can’t look him straight in the eye.
You can fool the whole world down the pathway of years,
And get pats on the back as you pass,
But your final reward will be heartaches and tears
If you’ve cheated the guy in the glass.
Jim Porter is an attorney with Porter-Simon, with offices in Truckee, South Lake Tahoe and Reno. He is a mediator and was the Governor’s appointee to the Bipartisan McPherson Commission and the California Fair Political Practices Commission. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or at the firm’s Web site, http://www.portersimon.com.