If He Could Talk to You Today

A year ago today, my little brother J.R. passed away. It was a long, sad, heart wrenching descent into the grips of alcoholism. I know, upbeat topic for today, right? But this week, this week alone, I have had two people who I love very much tell me about their family's heartaches because of addiction. One friend told me her son is in trouble with cocaine. He is a father, with three kids. Another friend was recounting the sadness and horror of losing her nephew to a … [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...]

From London With Love

I had never seen this particular photo of my brother Garrett until it arrived via Gmail last week, a trans-Atlantic bullet train back to the summer of 69.     “I was looking through albums and boxes of photos last week and came across Gary's picture from all those decades ago. I started thinking of him again – as I have from time to time...” Forty-five years later a lady in London had Garrett on her mind. So she Googled him. Don’t we all? Whether … [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...]

Zen Dentistry and Other Acts of Courage

  So, I was talking to my shrink yesterday. We determined that I had not seen him since 2009, as he was in his former location, not as fancy as his new place. Must be a high demand for therapists these days. I understand from whence this comes, being a card carrying member of the Highly-Functioning Merely Neurotic Club. Even we need an occasional tune-up on the couch. I did not lay down. I did lay out what I called the churn. The dreaded … [Read more...]

Make Peace With Your Momma

Discovering the cache of Kodak slides in the basement could have made me feel bad or guilty or filled with regret. Instead, I laughed. I threw back my head and laughed out loud, like l-a-u-g-h-i-n-g out loud, spelled out. Then I said to no one except the cobwebs, “Okay, Mom. You’re in.” I had noticed the honey-colored wooden box on my cluttered work bench, amongst the rusty channel locks, duct tape and socket wrenches, laying where they were dropped by careless kids … [Read more...]

Peace and Love My Little Bird

Dinner guests gone, my out-of-town  relatives tucked in for the night, I went outside last night to blow out the candles on the patio. I sat. The weather has been blessedly mild in St. Louis the past  few days. Unheard of for it not to be hotter than a fire cracker on the 4th of July. The evening air was lovely, scent of gun powder notwithstanding. We'd had a good night. People I love, dotted my well worn deck, with the warped plank that's curled up on one end. I cover … [Read more...]

Lure of the mic, uh, I mean “road”

Well... okay, so most people are not tuned in to the radio on Memorial Day Morning, but me and ol' Charlie waxed poetic about the Art of Acceleration. Here's a link if you'd like to give a listen to Off the Leash Behind the Mic on the Charlie Brennan Show.  … [Read more...]

Ageless Warrior

So, today's my birthday. I've been trying to be breezy about it. You know,  basking in the well wishes on Facebook, with all due thanks. Heading to New York tomorrow to see Paddy Boy, son number two. Even got free tickets to see Letterman! Too bad the guest tomorrow night is kinda lame --- especially compared to the star studded line up so far this week. Oh well, I'm lucky to have gotten tickets at all. I should be happy. Blame it on the Irish in me, I'm still feeling a … [Read more...]