(Issue #619) Turtles, Giraffes, and Roosters

For what and/or for whom are you ready to crow about this coming week?


We’ve all heard the idiom to stick your neck out. It is used when you embark on an endeavor that entails a level of risk to yourself. When you expose your neck you take the chance of failure, ridicule, and setback. At the same time, that extended neck can be the impetus for success, acclaim, and progress. Keeping the neck in the same place (the safe place?) may reduce risk as well as chances for success.

While we might consider sticking out our neck to be about us, it can also be about someone else. For instance, when we speak in support of a marginalized person or group, we face consequences for what we have said or done.

The animal world helps us humans visualize this risk-taking activity. (Of course, chickens and turkeys might take exception as sticking their necks out probably involves a chopping block.)

Photo by Steve Piscitelli

Think of the turtles having to stick their necks out to move forward. If they keep their heads safely tucked inside the shell, it is protected but at the expense of forward progress. Danger passes, out comes the neck. Progress delayed.

Same for larger animals. Consider this quote attributed to Sid Waddell.

“Well as the giraffes say, you don’t get no leaves if you don’t stick your neck out.”

Photo by Steve Piscitelli

And for animals in between. While reading The Ultimate Book of Useless Information, I noted a risk-taking move associated with barnyard beings.

“Roosters cannot crow if they are not able to fully extend their necks.”

Roosters are known to crow as a method to stake out their territory. Yet the image of the extended neck provides an apt metaphor for putting ourselves out there. We make sure people see and hear us.

For what and/or for whom are you ready to crow about this coming week?


Video recommendation for the week.

When we stick our necks out, we (probably) have thought about what we are doing (even if for a moment or two) and believe it is worth the risk.

Buffalo Springfield asked us to consider For What It’s Worth (released in 1966).


Make it a wonderful week and HTRB has needed.

You will find my latest book, Roxie Looks for Purpose Beyond the Biscuit, in
eBook ($2.99) and paperback ($9.99) format. Click 

My dog Roxie gets top billing on the author page for this work. Without her, there would be no story. Please, check out her blog.

And you can still order:

  • Community as a Safe Place to Land (2019print and e-book). Available on Amazon. More information (including seven free podcast episodes that spotlight the seven core values highlighted in the book) at the above link.
  • Stories about Teaching: No Need to be an Island (2017, print and e-book)Available on Amazon. One college’s new faculty onboarding program uses the scenarios in this book. Contact me if you and your team are interested in doing the same. The accompanying videos (see the link above) would serve to stimulate community-building conversations at the beginning of a meeting.

You can find my podcasts (all fifty episodes) here.

You will find more about me at www.stevepiscitelli.com.

©2022. Steve Piscitelli
The Growth and Resilience Network®
Atlantic Beach, Florida

About stevepiscitelli

Community Advocate-Author-Pet Therapy Team Member
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