Duane’s Depressed is the third book Larry McMurtry’s Last Picture Show series.

As the title suggests, Duane’s life could be better. So he does something about it. He passes control of his oil company to his son, saying,

“I’ll give you one piece of advice about the oil business, the one you’re going to be running starting tomorrow, and that’s return your phone calls. Don’t put it off and don’t skip any, even if you think the person you’re supposed to call is an asshole or a flake. Make sure Earlene keeps a good list, and the minute you get back to the office return those calls. All of them.”

It may not be the only advice a father should give a son, but it’s pretty good.

If I leave an email or voice-mail unanswered, or take too long to follow through – even without a deadline – I get that Sunday night haven’t-done-my-homework feeling.

Then when I do pick up the phone or the keyboard, I feel gooooood.

Skippy Strategy: That phone call, that email. Today’s the day.

Keeping Promises