• John Burton


Turns out the thing I love most about Ivy-anything can save the world.

I am used to chaos now. You? If one more columnist or pundit or blogger starts out with "these times are --- whatever" - I mean, how is anyone startled by that? I can't eat inside out (indoors at a restaurant but a writer has to do what a writer has to do) and Trader Joe's only wants one Burton in a time. We all get it.

And everybody wants the road back. Equally un-newsworthy - fake or otherwise.

How can Ivy help?


Dignity knows no religion, or party, or even zip code. Dignity knows no hierarchy. It knows no race, it knows no GDP, it knows no preconceived anything. Dignity doesn't even really know up from down, other than I stand up before you sit down. You want to argue with me that Buddhism is a religion (it isn't) and that I cannot be Buddhist and Presbyterian at the same time (I can). Let's. And say we don't convince each other. We can still have - dignity.

Dignity is a standard. Apply it. Anywhere. Dignity is the reading glasses of standards. Everything becomes clear. How do you want to be treated? Who should leave the Titanic first? Jets ever going to win anything? (No, they are not.) Who is right? Who is wrong? Hold on. Let me put on the progressive lenses of my tortoise shell Dignity-glasses. Yep. It's more clear now.

Prince Harry? Because. (1) He had the dignity to honor love in the face of loss. (2) He had the dignity to be open about mental health. (3) Even after he honored love in the face of loss, when the tide he swims in wouldn't turn, he left it in tact without destroying it and went another way. (4) His other way was service. THAT is dignity.

We saw the other day, this TV ad for Alien Tape. This stuff - you can hang photos with it, you can hang shelves with it, it is waterproof, and your kid cannot knock a bowl off a counter if there is Alien Tape under it. It works indoors and outdoors, and it has nano-technology. Millions of suction cups, the website says. And you can reuse it. You can REUSE it. I would still rather apply dignity.

Dignity is Ivy. At the core. But it doesn't have to be. I used to, in my formative years, ask myself, "What would Magic Johnson do?" Then James Taylor. Then Barack Obama. None of these folks are all that Ivy. And (this is going to shock you) the answer was not always either clear or helpful. But this dignity thing, I ask myself, "What is the dignified thing to do?" and all of a sudden - I'm a monk. The good kind.

Dignity can save your day. Can inform your whole life. And, if applied like this Alien Tape, could move the whole world. And it's Ivy. Very.