Controlling the uncontrollable

Sounds like a contradiction right out of the gate, doesn’t it?  By definition, uncontrollable circumstances cannot be controlled.  For those of us who like to be in charge and know what to expect, it can be pretty frustrating when surprises come along.  You can choose to deny or fight the new reality, or you can…

Wake-up call

I think “wake-up call” may be one of most misused phrases in our language. It is typically used to describe a surprise, something that suddenly popped up and really got our attention. Then it follows that we actually “woke up” and started taking action, like metaphorically getting out of bed and getting on with our day. For…

The next step

As I crossed over the 10-mile mark with my running form fully in the groove, my mind began to wander.  The endorphins had kicked in and I was enjoying the half-marathon, but I couldn’t help thinking about 2 years ago. That’s when I huffed and puffed my way through my first mile, on a quest…

Between a rock and scared face

Have you ever been forced to make a hard decision between the lesser of two evils?  Let’s set aside political elections for a moment.  I’m talking about personal decisions you’ve had to make under difficult circumstances, when you had limited options. We went on a family river rafting trip on the Tuolomne river a few…

The day after

The images from September 11, 2001 are permanently etched on our national consciousness.  I’ll never forget what happened, and pray that it never happens again.  I’d like to propose that September 12 be the real holiday… the day we all came together.  We were unified as Americans, flying flags of freedom, connected to each other’s…

Going deep

Can you smell it?  Football season is in the air again.  I just joined in for a few downs with some neighborhood teenagers playing touch in the street in front of my house. As I counted down one Mississippi to five Mississippi before rushing the quarterback, I flashed back to the glory days of mud…

What matters most

Have you ever made a ranked list of what matters most to you in your life?  Not easy, is it?  And the minute you make that assessment, your circumstances could change.  That’s the thing about priorities… they are relative and situational.  What used to be #1 on your list could drop like a rock, and #10…

Clues to character

It’s true that clues to someone’s character can be found in the way they treat others.  I wrote a story in August, 2009 about a homeless kid I met on a train.  It seemed like a small thing to me at the time, but it ended up being the most read and passed along blog post of that year. …