Colonel Sanders of Kentucky Fried Chicken wasn’t a real colonel, but he did shoot a guy one time.

It is funny sometimes how disconnected a person can become from their image. Not too long ago, I discovered the man behind the logo of KFC, Colonel Sanders, was very different from what I expected.

Go read this article from a few years ago and discover it for yourself.

If you don’t want to bother with reading the linked article, let me sum it up for you. The image of Colonel Sanders as a kindly Southern gentleman who makes delicious chicken when he isn’t busy smiling is only a little bit true. He was from the south and he made chicken, but that is certainly not the full story.

Harlan Sanders ran a gas station in Kentucky and had a bit of a feud with a rival gas station owner in town. As he was in the middle of a meeting with his supervisors, the rival started painting over Sanders’ sign. That led to an armed confrontation and one of the Colonel’s supervisors ended up dead, while Sanders shot his rival in the shoulder.

Apparently, Harlan Sanders was no stranger to confrontations. His tenacity and opportunism made as many friends as it did enemies, even within the ranks of KFC, the successful chain of fried chicken restaurants that he founded. But that isn’t the image that they sell on the side of the chicken buckets.

What do people see when they look at you? How far removed is that from the truth?

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2 responses to “Colonel Sanders of Kentucky Fried Chicken wasn’t a real colonel, but he did shoot a guy one time.

  1. Ooooohh, good point! Hmmmm, I’ll ask someone how they see me. Then see how it stacks up to my self-image. Thanks for the thought provoking question. (And thanks for the peek at the man behind the legend!)

  2. I have very little idea how people see me. This may sound awful, but part of me doesn’t care anymore. If I know I’m living in alignment with who I am supposed to be, then a differing opinion of what I “should be” or “should do” can be helpful, but is unlikely to change me – unless it is backed by telling the truth in love. Then you have my attention. For the rest, I guess what comes to mind is a thought from a sermon I listened to earlier this week. Ask 4 people what they would say at your funeral: Your parents (if they should be alive at that time), your spouse, your children (who are available), and a co-worker or close friend. IF there are significant differences in the four areas, you have some work to do. But if, even though less than you may desire, all four are in alignment, you are living in integrity. I tend to agree with that concept.

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