Dude, Where’s My Graduation Pic?

Flying back from New Mexico last Sunday relishing my newfound recognition of slip faulting, the product of my recently completed Geology 111 class, which constituted the “Final Four” credits that had been standing between me and my Bachelor’s Degree for lo these many decades, I was one proud slamma-mamma-jamma (not so much a summa-cumma-Lawdy) college graduate. Yep, 42 years after an academically challenged 18-year-old first crossed the threshold of an English 101 class … [Read more...]

My hair smells like salad dressing…and other downsides to multi-tasking.

Back to reality blew in with a biting, cold vengeance this week, didn’t it? On Monday morning, 10-degrees, I’m stuck in traffic, and can’t figure out why the dumb asses won’t “Close the gap! Close the gap! Move up, you numb nuts!” I’m yelling in my car. I hate it when people won’t move along. I hate it when I become a lunatic. Tuesday morning, at the crack of frigid, I drive to the airport. Nobody “hops” on a plane anymore. I eventually board, take my seat next to … [Read more...]

Boatload of Dreamers

Today is my eldest son, Nathan’s birthday and this year, we have a lot to celebrate. He just sold his first screenplay out in Los Angeles. Yep, Hollywood, the real deal -- writer, director, agents, lawyers, “my people will call your people,” that kind of screenplay. Sounds glamorous, right? Of course it does. And while it touched off a flurry of coast-to-coast woo-hoo texts among our little family that could, with every imaginable emoji following behind it, (my three … [Read more...]

Jet Fighters or National Parks – You Make the Call

How could I have been so disdainful? Almost hateful. Normally, I’d just gun it, all 427 miles, like being forced to sit through a PowerPoint before you get the free steak dinner from the timeshare pitchman. Who could blame me? I’m spoiled. My life has been rooted in some stunning landscapes. They don’t call New Mexico the “Land of Enchantment” for nothing. I have lived in Albuquerque, Lake Tahoe, Key West, San Francisco and Virginia Beach. Coastal Carolina? Oh, … [Read more...]

Cue the Puppies

Behold the gatekeepers. The Slice Literary Writers’ Conference I attended in Brooklyn last weekend proved to be an eye opener. It was a privilege honestly, to see and hear first-hand from the real deal in this moving target we call publishing. I refer to them as gatekeepers, not to be churlish, but simply to acknowledge that the agents, editors, publishers and publicists, sitting on panels with their names on poster board table tents in front of them, constituted a … [Read more...]

Be a Badass

Sunrise, August 27, 2014, eastbound U.S. Highway 70, 83MPH en route to Indianapolis and I am a fucking race car driver. It was the music. I was jammin’ out to Crossroads, full blast. Full blast and feeling fine for no apparent reason.  Hell, I was on my way to a video shoot, with four hours on the road, coming and going. But with the sun coming up over church steeples and countless rows of corn flashing by at the speed of, well, 83MPH, and Clapton blaring from my … [Read more...]

Look Up, Look Down, Be Silent

Thousands passed daily, unaware. They were busy. Busy with life, busy on their cell phones, senses plugged by earbuds or constant chatter, white noise, windows up, closed off, busy. Their loss. How could they not notice the unfolding of a reality show above them, the inspiration of which I have not experienced in a long time. If ever there was something uplifting it was the daily episode of Life in the Nest of the Mississippi Kite. For several days in late July, a … [Read more...]

What Are You Willing to Risk?

A friend of mine turned 64 this week, said he played the Beatles “Birthday” song in celebration. Cranked it. Probably danced with his baby girl on his hip. He’s a new daddy. Yep, 64 with a six-month-old daughter, his first child. Life is full and good, albeit not exactly what he’d planned, heading into retirement. Oh well. All of this abundance started with him taking a chance. He risked rejection, humiliation, even heartache, just to speak to the cute salesclerk at the … [Read more...]

Don’t Squander Your Greatness

What a week! My inbox has been bursting with so much good will vapor, it’s as fragrant as Bath and Body Works during their 75% off sale. Here’s a sampling of this week’s bouquet: Julie wrote to say she’d forwarded my story  “Same Little Legs Still Carry Me” to her sister, who, God bless her, is not only dealing with the loss of her 25-year-old-daughter, but breast cancer as well. Julie sent it to her sister to remind her of just how strong she really is. I was blown … [Read more...]

Same Little Legs Still Carry You

The little girl in the bright yellow tee-shirt caught my attention. Must have been nine, maybe ten. It was rainy, not a downpour, rather one of those spongy May mornings. Stationary raindrops clung where they landed, glistening spheres on feathery iris, pale and pearly white. The landscape was awash in purples, pinks, grey and green. Many shades of green. I noticed her because she was alone. This is a rare sight on a busy street during the morning rush and the little … [Read more...]