What back pain has taught me about slowing down

For quite a few years now I have been plagued by back pain. It started when I misstepped while running a half-marathon in 2012. I stepped wrong, felt my spine compress, and ever since about every year or so I have a herniated disc that falls out of place and decides I am going to have to go a lot slower for a while. And I hate going slow. And it showed in my recovery. The cycle would go; I hurt my back working out, working in the yard, sleeping, whatever. Then for the next two weeks I stubbornly power through. Generally in great pain and I become very grumpy and lash out at people. Not the best way to recover. I would get mad, yell, and otherwise become a jerk because I did not want to show vulnerability in any way. Continue reading

Orlando! Slow down and stop killing walkers

This morning on the way to work I witnessed a near death. A car, turning into a parking lot just blew by a young woman who had to jump back to avoid becoming the latest casualty on Orlando’s roads. The car just kept going, the woman, visibly shaken stared the car down and then started walking. This is not a new occurrence. In 2017 24 people were struck and killed by cars in Seminole, Orange, and Osceola Counties. This was a new Central Florida record. And honestly I am surprised is not more.  Continue reading

Everything Gen X Learned About Dating They Learned from Alex and Ellen

Apologies to Chuck Klosterman and his notion that the Say Anything character of Lloyd Dobbler ruined dating for all of Gen X but I think there is a deeper influence on our relationship building. It all happened in 1987 on an episode of Family Ties. In that episode the main character Alex planted a now famous kiss on his love interest Ellen while the Billy Vera and the Beaters song At This Moment was playing. This week in 1987 that song hit #1 on the pop charts on the backs of that scene. The kiss sent a rocket of emotions through Gen X. Alex was the guy every girl wanted to bring home and to marry and raise a family with. Ellen was the girl next door who every guy wanted to meet. Smart, funny, and beautiful she was the archetype for who we wanted to spend our lives with. Continue reading

#1 New Year, New Me – Time to Focus

I have a lot of interests. I like music, social media, pop culture, sports, issues in higher education, family, politics, television (especially HGTV and Food Network). What that means is I am often distracted and this leads to all sorts of time sucks that result in draining my attention and time. I have a nasty habit of saying I am going to get such and such done and then my news feed, a phone call, or House Hunters International marathon gets in the way. In 2018 I hope to change that in a big way. By learning to focus more effectively I hope to find the time I need to get the things done that are important to me, my family, friends, and career. So where to start? Continue reading

18 Ways I Hope to be Better Next Year

Its the season for reflection and renewal. And yes, I am a resolution guy, and yes, I often struggle to keep them. I think I know why. Most of us think of change as incremental. That there is a promise in making small changes that add up big or making that one big change that helps all the other things out. Think of all of the hope peddling that we tend to do in the most popular New Year’s Resolution – losing weight. Over 50% of all New Year’s Resolutions have something to do with weight loss, fitness, or nutrition and it’s no wonder. In this narcissistic culture we tend to value vanity and think that looking a certain way will lead the way to that raise, new job, new relationship, or even a longer life. And, quite frankly, all of those things can be true. But what if we threw caution to the wind and just decided to make all of the changes we wished we had resolved to do years earlier and just did a deep dive into change? What would happen. Well, I am about to find out. Continue reading

My 2017 Top 20 Albums – Pure Comedy!

2017 was a nice year for music. There was enough new and enough returning music to satisfy any music fan. There were big releases from the likes of Taylor Swift and U2 and plenty of pleasant surprises. This is my list of my 20 favorite albums with a small blurb for my top ten albums. Hopefully you will find an album or artist you will like. You can also take a listen to the NPR Music Top 100 Songs playlist on Spotify. Continue reading

The Simple Dignity in Being Allowed to Pay

I am sitting in the Boston Logan airport. My flight takes off for Orlando in about an hour and a half. I just spent the past 24 hours at a conference on free speech and expression. It is a typical business trip for me. I am at the airport bar, enjoying a pint and some food, answering emails, and generally minding my own business. The bar is packed, most are. There is one open seat next to me. In a few minutes a woman sits next to me. She is young, thin, has a quiet voice. I really do not take much time to look at her. Most of the time us travelers are really not super into close interactions although the size of the airport dictates that. She squeezes in beside me. She is looking at her phone, we are all looking at our phones. There is nothing unusual about these interactions. Continue reading

1 2 7