Squealing for a Tune-Up

Squealing for a Tune-Up

When my college classmate, whom I’ll rename Maggie, started her car, the sound blasting out of the radio was so loud I was nearly ejected through the sunroof with fright. Maggie would apologize and explain that her car had been making a funny noise. She kept turning up the volume on the radio so she wouldn’t hear the sound of her car squealing for a tune-up. Maggie didn’t want to take the time or spend the money to get the car fixed. Eventually I learned to brace myself upon impact when the car started, because Maggie ignored her car problems for a very long time. Ultimately, the car would break down at the worse possible place and time, such as…

Priceless

Priceless

Recently, I was sitting at a local coffee shop and overheard the conversation of two men at the next table. One man said he read that the price of a lifelong friend is $100,000. He told his friend that includes all the time and activities that went into building the friendship. Immediately, my mind was filled with all my memories of my own lifelong friend. I remembered all of the times we ice skated together after school, the code words we used to signal that our childhood crushes were nearby, and the string of letters we wrote to one another as teenage pen pals after I had moved away. Then I recalled the laughter we shared over our most embarrassing…

L’Eggo My Eggo!

L’Eggo My Eggo!

When I was a kid, frozen waffles were introduced with the TV ad slogan, “L’Eggo my Eggo!” Maybe you remember the TV commercial showing hot waffles popping out of a toaster, as two siblings grabbed the same waffle, held on tight, and wrestled for it. Recently, while serving up some frozen waffles for breakfast, I decided to modify the “L’Eggo my Eggo!” slogan to my new “L’Eggo my Ego!” mantra. I’ve learned that most of the pain and misery that pops in my life is self-inflicted, due to my ego getting bruised. But my ego’s perception of real life events often gets it wrong. Has that ever happened to you? When it happens to me, I can hang onto my…

Lost and Found

Lost and Found

Recently, our family went on a road trip across state lines. We went from a state that’s on daylight savings time to a state that never changes the clocks. This time of year these two states are on the same time. As usual, we stopped at the mid-point just over the state-line to have lunch. When we returned to our car after lunch, we were surprised by the time shown on the car’s clock. It was an hour later in the day than we’d thought. For the remainder of our trip, the thought of arriving an hour later than expected was frustrating. Losing that hour of time threw everything off. We stressed about everything we had to squeeze into the…

Muscle Amnesia

Muscle Amnesia

  I’ve been playing the game of golf since I was 7 years old. It’s a sport I enjoy, but was never routinely able to play. Recently I returned to the golf course on a mission to improve my golf score – an ambitious goal for me. You would understand if I shared my score with you. Let’s just say it has 3 digits, not two… Immediately, with my first tee shot, my golfer’s slice returned, sending my ball into the brush that lines the right side of the fairway. The only consistent thing about my golf game is my slice. It’s engrained in the mental ruts I’ve formed with years of muscle memory I’ve developed repeating the same flawed…

Connecting to the Web

Connecting to the Web

I love summer evenings outdoors, don’t you?  Especially this time of year.  I call it “Spiderber” rather than September. Spiders rule our backyard in Spiderber.  Cobwebs form everywhere!  It’s like watching a program on the Discovery Channel each night from our patio. One night during an outdoor dinner, I watched in fascination as a spider created a web out of nowhere.  The spider got my attention by dropping down right next to me to anchor. What happened next caught me by complete surprise. I became mystified as I watched this spider work to create it’s trap. Once anchored, the spider worked from the center outward as it expanded. With each thread of webbing the spider ventured out from the middle…

Kid, you’re in!

Kid, you’re in!

I’ll never forget my first assignment with a national magazine as a sports photographer’s assistant more than 20 years ago.  My job was to photograph the top three men and top three women finishers of the 1994 Boston Marathon. At the time I believed it was my one and only chance to have a sports photography job. Since it was such a rare opportunity, I shared with the photographer that my dream was to work at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta. He immediately discouraged me from holding onto that dream. He told me it was an impossible dream and that I was sure to be disappointed. Every photographer wants to be assigned to the Olympics. I couldn’t help it.  I…

Stop Notifying. Start Noticing.

Stop Notifying. Start Noticing.

Recently I changed e-mail service providers. In setting up all of the features, the notifications banners were turned on to alert me to new e-mail messages, when they arrive. These alerts included pinging bells and a sneak preview of the messages on my phone and tablet– why not share my e-mail with everyone with a line of sight to my devices?! Next thing I knew, my peaceful world was being disrupted more than usual with all of the noise and visual distractions arriving every few minutes. I started to consider how often we’re notified of what’s going on in the world. We’re inundated with banners announcing text messages, phone calls, e-mails, breaking news from the media, “fear of missing out”…

Aim Small. Miss Small.

Aim Small. Miss Small.

Jordan Spieth is the golf world’s current phenom. At age 21, he’s the youngest person to have won both the Masters and the US Open grand slam tournaments in the same year. Heading into the British Open, the third grand slam tournament of the year, Jordan was asked by the media about his mental approach to the game of golf. Jordan described how he dealt with all of the pressure of winning by simply focusing on the task of getting the golf ball from the tee box to the hole on the putting surface. “Aim small. Miss small.” was his answer. Spieth explained that it can be overwhelming to consider the entire hole all at once. He narrows his focus…