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Showing posts from September, 2016

It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like...Star Wars

The air outside is crisp. You can see your breath and the end of your nose is red and cold. The houses that you pass have Christmas trees in the windows. There are lights arranged all over the front lawns. The stores are all lit up and twinkling. The bell ringers are sitting in front of the shops collecting your spare change for charity.

But it’s not a Christmas party that we’re going to tonight.

I’m sitting in a restaurant with my wife and my daughter. It’s not a fancy place. “It’s not the Shangri-La,” as I’ve been known to say in description of any place that doesn’t require a jacket and tie. No, this is just a hamburger joint.

We’re sitting in a booth enjoying big, fat cheeseburgers, shoestring fries, and ice cream sundaes. There is electricity in the air. There is a smile on my face. This is a special day.

At the table next to us there are two men about my age. They’re having a casual conversation about their work and if you just listened to the words you’d think they were in bus…

Spare The Rod...

Growing up in central Alabama I have been no stranger to a “whooping” every now and again.
There were times when I was out with my family at a movie or at the grocery store that I “acted up”. That’s a southern term for misbehaving not to be confused with “acting a fool” which is a whole lot worse. If the “acting up” occurred in a public place it would usually mean a lick. If the offense happened in a restaurant where people were trying to enjoy a meal it might have meant two or three licks. If I was brash enough to “act up” during church then the punishment was usually at least five licks and it was probable that I was going to get them in the parking lot.
My dad had a big, thick leather belt that hung on the inside of his closet door. Now, he had a whole lot of belts. Many of them were dress belts meant to be worn with a suit on Sunday morning. Some of them were way out of style and he hadn’t worn them in years but they still hung there. But that one belt that he wore most of the ti…

Happy 50th Anniversary To Star Trek

To say that I’m a Star Trek fan is a bit of an understatement.
When a person is growing up there are a lot of things in their environment that leave an imprint on them. People, voices, smells, and sounds leave their fingerprint on your brain as they surround you in your formative years. Decades later you might catch a whiff of banana bread baking in an oven and have a synapse fire off deep in your brain that carries you back to your grandmother’s kitchen when you were six. You might see a picture of a statue that your family visited when you were twelve and suddenly remember that vacation with perfect clarity.
One of the things that has been a part of my life from my earliest memories was Star Trek.
Even before I called myself a fan I remember seeing the images of a man with pointed ears come across my TV. I remember the sounds of the computer beeps and boops and the phasers when the Enterprise was firing on an enemy. I never sat down and watched the whole thing but whatever adult wa…

If Our Marriage Were A Person

As I got ready for bed last night I looked at you and made a joke.

“Tomorrow our marriage will be old enough to drive.”

I said it to be funny, but it made me think. What would our marriage be like if it were a person?

Our marriage would definitely be a girl. I say that because it is strong…sometimes stubborn…but has a lot of moments of sweetness. She would have long dark hair. Women with dark hair are hardworking. They don’t back down when things get tough. They’re the ones that roll up their sleeves.

Her eyes would be as blue as the sky on a crisp and cool autumn day. The paleness of her eyes would seem to be able to look through you, into your soul. She would be able to see who you are and you would not be able to hide anything from her. This is because of the openness of our marriage. We don’t hide who we are from each other.

She would be emotional. When times were bad she would wear her heart on her sleeve. She would fly at you like a hawk if she felt threatened by you. If you hu…

Popular posts from this blog

"Stretching From Here To Pletcher"...a tribute to Steve Latham

Today is a dark day.
If you’ve ever read any of my blog posts before then you’ve heard me tell the stories of my experiences in high school. I was bullied. I was bullied a lot. It’s something that has affected me my entire life. It has caused social anxiety issues that I deal with to this day. It’s not something that I like to remember, but it’s my history and it’s a part of who I am.
Granted, I was an awkward teenager. I didn’t play any sports. I wasn’t on the little league team. I didn’t even like watching sports...I still don’t. I don’t know enough about football to have an extended conversation about it. The stuff that I was into was a lot nerdier than that. I liked Star Trek. I liked reading science fiction and fantasy novels. I liked writing stories. I liked watching old black and white monster movies. I liked British sitcoms. Like I said…weird kid.
When I was a junior in high school I signed up to be a library aid for one class period a day. I figured I liked to be around book…


He was a kid.
He wasn’t literally a child. I mean, he was technically a grown man at the age of 23. But he hadn’t really experienced much of life. The small town life had been all he’d every really known and he had not yet figured out what his place in the world was. He made $6.50 an hour at a job that didn’t really hold much of a future for him. He spent his days working and at night he’d sit alone in his room, watching TV and wishing that there was more to his existence.
She was a kid, too. She was only 22. And in her short life she’d actually already lived a lot. She’d lived long enough to have been hurt by the man she loved. And she’d been around long enough to have a precious little boy that meant the world to her. She thought she had everything she needed. She thought that if it were just her and her son that she’d be fine.
The Universe had other plans.
These two met one day. They went on a date. Neither of them was really out to find a relationship. They were each just trying …

13 Reasons Why: A Parental Review

As I walked by my daughter’s bedroom a couple of weeks ago I saw her staring intently at her phone. I could tell that she was enthralled in something and I figured she was catching up on some of her favorite shows.
“What are you watching?” I said, trying to be the dad that knows what his daughter is doing.
“It’s a new show on Netflix,” she replied. “It’s called 13 Reasons Why. Everybody at school is watching it.”
I thought nothing else about it. I very rarely condemn anything that my kids are watching unless I know that it is something extremely violent or raunchy. The title actually registered in my mind because I had seen the book on the shelf at the bookstore and online a few times. I knew it was a young adult title so I figured a Netflix show based on that should be alright. I mean, she’s seen The Hunger Games, right?
A couple of days later my wife tells me that she saw a few stories online about some kids that have committed suicide after watching the show. That sounds a little f…