Monday, August 18, 2008

Yeah, I Know

Okay, so shoot me. I know it has been awhile, BUT I'VE BEEN BUSY! Summer is officially over; I start back to school tomorrow...I just can't "wait" to see the smiling faces beginning at 7:45AM. Only 35 school weeks until summer vacation. Only 180 school days, but who's counting. All in all, it was a good summer: I spent three+ weeks in Texas spoiling my grandchildren and hanging out with my daughters and their husbands (too many beers and too much rich food), painted two houses so I can continue to do the above and feed my passion for books. I spent a week in Washington, DC at a NEH workshop on the history of the African-American experience in the Capital city (fascinating), met some great people from across the country and drank too many beers and ate too much rich food (do you notice some constants here?) I fell in love with my new car (a PT Cruiser) and just about wore out Kid Rock's CD Rock and Roll Jesus especially " All Summer Long". Check it out on youtube. It is the new anthem of summer. I wish I could promise I will write everyday, but...

That's it for now.
Talk to you later.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Spring and Derby

A busy week this week, what with Derby and all the activities that go with it. A true dilemma this Friday...Goo Goo Dolls at Fourth Street Live and the B52s on the waterfront...both start at the same time and both are free. Anyway, a friend at school sent this to me. What do you think?

What kind of impression do we leave on our students? This sweet story reveals the power of kindness. Pass it on and be kind to the people around you.

I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes. I noticed a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily apprizing a basket of freshly picked green peas. I paid for my potatoes, but was also drawn to the display of fresh green peas. I am a pushover for creamed peas and new potatoes. Pondering the peas, I couldn't help overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller (the store owner) and the ragged boy next to me.
'Hello Barry, how are you today?'
'H'lo, Mr. Miller. Fine, thank ya. Jus' admirin' them peas. They sure look good.'
'They are good, Barry. How's your Ma?'
'Fine. Gittin' stronger alla' time.'
'Good. Anything I can help you with?'
'No, Sir. Jus' admirin' them peas.
''Would you like take some home?' asked Mr. Miller.
'No, Sir. Got nuthin' to pay for 'em with.'
'Well, what have you to trade me for some of those peas?'
'All I got's my prize marble here.'
'Is that right? Let me see it' said Miller.
'Here 'tis. She's a dandy.'
'I can see that. Hmmmmm, only thing is this one is blue and I sort of go for red. Do you have a red one like this at home?' the store owner asked.
'Not zackley but almost.'
'Tell you what. Take this sack of peas home with you and next trip this way let me look at that red marble', Mr. Miller told the boy.
'Sure will. Thanks Mr. Miller.'
Mrs. Miller, who had been standing nearby, came over to help me. With a smile said, 'There are two other boys like him in our community, all three are in very poor circumstances. Jim just loves to bargain with them for peas, apples, tomatoes, or whatever. When they come back with their red marbles, and they always do, he decides he doesn't like red after all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for a green marble or an orange one, when they come on their next trip to the store.' I left the store smiling to myself, impressed with this man. A short time later I moved to Colorado , but I never forgot the story of this man, the boys, and their bartering for marbles.
Several years went by, each more rapid than the previous one.
Just recently I had occasion to visit some old friends in that Idaho community and while there I learned that Mr. Miller had died. They were having his visitation that evening and knowing my friends wanted to go, I agreed to accompany them.
Upon arrival at the mortuary we fell into line to meet the relatives of the deceased and to offer whatever words of comfort we could. Ahead of us in line were three young men. One was in an army uniform and the other two wore nice haircuts, dark suits and white shirts...all very professional looking. They approached Mrs. Miller, standing composed and smiling by her husband's casket. Each of the young men hugged her, kissed her on the cheek, spoke briefly with her and moved on to the casket.
Her misty light blue eyes followed them as, one by one, each young man stopped briefly and placed his own warm hand over the cold pale hand in the casket.
Each left the mortuary awkwardly, wiping his eyes.
Our turn came to meet Mrs. Miller. I told her who I was and reminded her of the story from those many years ago and what she had told me about her husband's bartering for marbles. With her eyes glistening, she took my hand and led me to the casket. 'Those three young men who just left were the boys I told you about. They just told me how they appreciated the things Jim 'traded' them. Now, at last, when Jim could not change his mind about color or size....they came to pay their debt.'
'We've never had a great deal of the wealth of this world,' she confided, 'but right now, Jim would consider himself the richest man in Idaho '.
With loving gentleness she lifted the lifeless fingers of her deceased husband. Resting underneath were three exquisitely shined red marbles.
The Moral :
We will not be remembered by our words, but by our kind deeds. Life is not measured by the breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath.
Today I wish you a day of ordinary miracles.
A fresh pot of coffee you didn't make yourself.
An unexpected phone call from an old friend.
Green stoplights on your way to work.
The fastest line at the grocery store.
A good old sing-along song on the radio.
Your keys found right where you left them.
Send this to the people you'll never forget.
I just Did... If you don't send it to anyone, it means you are in way too much of a hurry to even notice the ordinary miracles when they occur. It's not what you gather, but what you scatter that tells what kind of life you have lived.

That's it for now.
Talk to you later.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Summing it Up

This was pushed my way today. An interesting look at the power of music.
Short but sweet.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Ramblings while listening to the ball game

I think Spring has finally arrived in Louisville. It looks like 70 degree temps for the foreseeable future. Received great news today...I was selected for a National Endowment for the Humanities workshop. The title is "Race and Place; African American life in Washington, DC 1800-1954. Really looking forward to the trip to Washington the first week in August. Washington is truly one of the great cities...the fact it is all expenses paid is even better. I will be living at George Washington University for the week. Other tidbits: Brian has a new website for the true Tiger fan. He is covering the 1968 Detroit Tigers on his website For a person my age this year in Detroit history is a blast from the past. Check it out. Philip Roth is receiving great praise this week for his 75th birthday. One of the great American writers. Among all his great works, three are especially close to my heart:
The Plot against America is a look at America if Fascism came to our shores.
The Great American Novel is a great baseball novel. It is the story of the Ruppert Mondays, a team so bad that they never play a home game because no city will claim the team. Check it out if you are a baseball fan.
Finally, The Breast, the greatest work of satire I have ever found. It is a takeoff on
The Metamorphosis by Kafka. In Roth's work the hero turns into a female breast rather than a cockroach. Just the premise is enough.
All three of these works are worth a look.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Spring Break 2008

I'm home, no thanks to American Airlines, but that is another story. My trip to Texas was great...where do I start? Amanda and Justin are going to have a baby...yep, another grandchild. They told me in a unique way. When I arrived, they asked me if I wanted to see a new DVD they had received. It was a DVD of the first ultrasound. It was beautiful. This began a great week. I ate too much and drank too many beverages. The food was great. I have three recommendations if you ever travel to the Big Bend country, and I do recommend the trip. Big Bend is God's country, beautiful and isolated. Back to food. The first is Alicia's on the south side of Alpine. The best hamburger I have had since Watkin's closed. The second is in Study Butte, pronounced "Stoody". Its name is Cathy's Crazy Cowgirl Cafe. It is a true dive. The Frito pie was excellent even though it came in a bowl rather than the bag. Non Texans wouldn't understand. The final spot is the best of the three. The Edelweiss Restaurant is in the Holland Hotel in Alpine. Not only is the chicken fried steak to die for, but it has a mirobrewery. Try the Brewster Blonde. Beside the food, the attractions were great. Justin, Amanda and I went to a star party at the McDonald Observatory. I was a crystal clear evening. I have never seen so many stars in one place at one time. In our trip to Big Bend we visited Chisos Mountain Lodge. The views were spectacular. The rest of the week I wandered the back roads, visiting Fort Davis and the Museum of the Big Bend . I left Alpine on Thursday morning, knowing that my flights home had been cancelled. Never one to be stopped by a "pissing contest" between the FAA and American Airlines, I rented a car in Midland Texas to drive home to Louisville...a 20 plus hour drive. As soon as I rented the car I decided to visit Dee, David and the grandchildren in Temple. Talk about making lemonade out of lemons. It was great to see them, if only for a few hours. I will be spending three weeks with them in June, but seeing them for a short time was tremendous. The drive home on Friday was uneventful. I left Temple at 7:00AM and arrived home, turned in the car, unpacked and was in bed by 11:30PM. but now comes the difficult part: SCHOOL. Tomorrow morning at 6:15.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Out of the mouth of babes?

An interesting observation from one of my students. It's great teaching students who understand critical thinking.
"I used to work in a pharmacy, I now work part-time in a restaurant, and I did work at a soup kitchen. This project has asked me to detail what I have learned in the course of this service. I learned that people everywhere are nasty to people who serve them food, yet ironically are very friendly to the people who give them their medicine. Perhaps this is evident of society's growing dependency on drugs. Or maybe it shows that rich or poor, some people will still try to take advantage of those whom they have power over. Maybe it is reminiscent of a cultural perception in America that people in food service deserve to be treated badly. My last theory is that in the presence of food-a most basic need, even above medicine, people revert back to their feral or instinctual brains and this causes a survival mentality. This survivalist attitude causes a person to forget humanity and focus completely on meeting the basic need. For this reason they will be rude. My theories may seem pessimistic, I assure the reader they are not. Many people in both food venues displayed basic human kindness. However, the similarity as a whole between the two interested me from a purely observational, psychological, and introspective manner and so the pessimistic view won in terms of what I gained from the experience."
Not bad for a senior in high school.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

May 22, 2008

This is the day that the new Indiana Jones movie opens. Check out all the info at A great website. Can you believe it's been 26 years years since the first Indiana Jones movie hit the big screen? Has it really been that long? Only 72 hours until my arrival in Alpine, Tx. to see Amanda and Justin...counting the minutes.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later.

Monday, March 31, 2008


Want to feel real stupid...the above number is the total number of words in the English language or says Global Language Monitor which has just relocated to Austin from California. Check out the back story by reading Kelso. Today was a great day after a bad start. I'm sitting here listening to Marty and the Reds on XM, drinking a cold beverage...a new one at that. D.B. Hobbs Golden Light from LaCrosse, Wi. It's what I call a "painting beer" cheap but cold. $4.99 a twelve pack.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later.

Sunday, March 30, 2008


Good Question. I have to agree with George Will when he said 90 feet...the distance between home and first. The baseball season begins tomorrow, in spite of ESPN and two games played on the other side of the international dateline. Oh, the power of the almighty dollar. Baseball can't begin before the Findlay Market parade in Cincinnati or the first pitch in Detroit. My great memories of growing up revolve around baseball. My first trip to Brigg's Stadium with my dad when we sat behind the Tiger dugout because my dad knew the beer distributor who had the seats. Dad probably was a major family contributor to the economic well being of the Teer family in the downriver with his beer purchases. Great payback. Those usher uniforms at "the corner" were great. Then I remember dad giving the usher a quarter for wiping down our seats. I was amazed...a week's allowance just for wiping down a seat. I don't remember much about the game, a great catch by Al Kaline in right, tremendous play by Harvey Kuenn at short and the communal urinals in the restroom...quite a right of passage. I have loved baseball ever since. And I'm a is a sport to listen to on the radio. With XM Radio I can listen to every game every night.
Living in Louisville is a fan's dream. I have season tickets...the first game is Friday. Slugger Field is the best place to see a's a gem.
Catch George Will's baseball column in today's Post.
That's all for now.
Talk to you later.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Doing Good

Yeah, I know, it's supposed to be "Doing Well", but this isn't great literature. Tonight it is basically a rant. Have you ever wondered that doing good (whether it is in work, friendships or whatever) is like pissing your pants when you are wearing black pants? You get a warm feeling, but no one notices. That seems to be it lately. You try to do good but no one cares. Is it self- centered on my part or is the entire world consumed with "self"? You try to be kind and caring( yeah, it is me talking, Mr. Sarcasm!) but the people around seem to be going along their own merry path to self destruction. Any suggestions? I know, I shouldn't be bitching; I have a great life: a job to die for, great students, two great daughters and their great husbands, and two of the cutest grandchildren anyone could ever ask for. Then, what the hell is the problem? Maybe, it's something I will discover along the yellow bricked road to the Emerald City.

Now to something a bit literary. Picked up a copy of The Ten Cent Plague: The Great Comic-Book Scare and How It Changed America. It's an interesting look at the impact of the comic-book on American culture, especially for those who grew up in the 50s and 60s. Pick it up if you have a chance.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter

Happy Easter everyone. I hope everyone will have a great day. Going to spend the day creatively: Mass at 9:30, grading the last set of tests for the end of the marking period, and painting the trim in the hallway. Sounds great, doesn't it. I find painting relaxing, especially the exactness of trim. I'm off tomorrow, but the electrician and heating person will be here at 8:30 to install a new ceiling fan in the living room and check the air conditioning unit for its yearly maintenance. So much for sleeping in. On the print front, I received some bad news yesterday that The Street and Smith Baseball Yearbook is no more. It is now the Sporting News Baseball Yearbook. To the average baseball fan it may not mean much, but I have been collecting the Street and Smith yearbook for twenty years. Buying the yearbook always symbolized the beginning of the baseball season for me. Oh, well.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Four Day Weekend

Beginning a four day weekend (teaching at a Catholic high school does have its perks). I'll probably spend the time reading and grading, but I have to paint my hallway after building more bookcases. Check out my link to all things in Temple; my granddaughter Waverly has discovered Moon Pies; can RC Cola be far behind. Came across some interesting new websites in my search for truth: Project Qutenberg at the Library of Congress has a collection of 17,000 ebooks, some familiar, some truly obscure. Bookbrowse. com has a great interview with Mischa Berlinske the author of Fieldwork which is one of the best books I read last summer. Finally, one of my students told me about a movie site watch-movies. net. Quite a collection of full length movies, but the quality is lacking in some.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later.
Remember, always hug your enemies; you made them.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Is Spring Near?

It's a beautiful day in Louisville. Can Spring be near?
Came across some "stuff" of interest today:
Mike Wendland at has a great review of a new video site I'm going to check it out this weekend.
A fun read is "Dirda on Books" on the Washington Post website. It's a live discussion; you can read the transcript on Thursdays and ask questions about books Wednesday morning. Check it out.
Our Free Public Library has announced its Spring writers series. Quite a lineup: Richard Price, Andrew Ferguson, Philip Shenon,Kevin Phillips, Omar Tyree and David Maraniss will all visit the library this Spring. The author who will have the biggest audience will be Lauren Weisberger of The Devil Wears Prada fame. She will appear May 29 at 7PM. Check out the info at
That's all for now.
Talk to you later.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Kelso's take on drugs in drinking water

An interesting look at the newest fear in America, from the point of view of John Kelso in the Austin American-Statesman. Kelso is a keeper.

Drug-free water shows sea change in Austin culture
Maybe SXSW will add a buzz to our tap water.Tuesday, March 11, 2008
You want to know how much Austin has changed since I moved here 32 years ago? I'll tell you.
In a study of drinking water in cities across America done by The Associated Press, Austin was one of just three places where traces of pharmaceuticals didn't show up in the water.
Ain't no way this study would have turned out like that back in 1976. In the '70s, an investigation of our drinking water would have turned up several joints floating on top, along with a box of rolling papers from Oat Willie's, and a couple of Roky Erickson music posters.
The study really did discover minute amounts of drugs in drinking water in 24 major U.S. metropolitan areas, but not in Austin. We're talking about tiny amounts measured in parts per billion or trillion. How does the stuff get in there? Simple. You take a pill. You go to the bathroom. The water is flushed, then treated at a water treatment plant. But the filtering process isn't able to catch everything. So small amounts of drugs end up in the drinking water.
So what does this mean? You've seen the TV ads for Cialis, right? So if you're an old guy and you have a personal problem that lasts over a minute and a half, you should call your doctor and ask if city water is right for you.
Also discovered in the mix were veterinary drugs. The good news is that you're a little less likely to have fleas or distemper.
What I can't figure out is that with all the Bubbas in South Austin peeing in the yard, how come they didn't find trace elements of Shiner?
Also, I'm wondering what effect this week's South by Southwest Music Festival will have on Austin water. With so many drummers in town, you might be able to pour yourself a glass of water and get a buzz.
I also wonder whether this revelation will hurt bottled water sales in other parts of the country. When word of this study gets out, you might have aging hippies all over America trying to recapture their youth by waterboarding themselves at the kitchen sink.
In this investigation, you could tell who was taking what in various parts of the country by what kind of residue showed up in their water. A sex hormone was found in San Francisco's drinking water. Let me make a wild guess and say it wasn't testosterone. Meanwhile, downstream in Southern California, they found anxiety medications. Big surprise, huh? You'd be anxious, too, if you had to spend your life wearing $500 sunglasses while worrying about a brush fire burning down your house.
Of course, with all these uptight Californians moving to Austin, I'm surprised our water isn't 68 percent Xanax, with a Perrier chaser.
John Kelso's column appears on Sundays, Tuesdays and Fridays. Contact him at 445-3606 or

Monday, March 10, 2008

New stuff I found while snowbound this weekend.
Kinky Friedman is back writing his column for Texas Monthly after his run for Governor of Texas. Check him out, especially his podcast.
A new book review/writer program has hit the net. It's titled "Titlepage". The first edition had a great interview of Richard Price.
The Sunday Source at the Washington Post has started Beer Madness, a takeoff on March madness. It pits beers from all over the country in four brackets, leading to a "national champion" of beers.
Check out Brian's new blog over at Tigerblog. Net. It is a new baseball book blog. He is just getting started, but has the potential for a great site for baseball books.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow

Boy, did it ever. I haven't heard an official call, but there are 9 inches of the white stuff on top of my compressor unit. A great day to catch up on reading, grading and watching all those programs that I DVR'd. It is interesting about DVR. You use this technology to record programs you don't have time to watch, thinking that sometime in the future you will have time to watch. Does this make sense to anyone. Anyway, I was able to watch two episodes of Dexter. Originally shown on Showtime, CBS is showing "edited" versions of the show. An interesting look at the anti-hero. I recommend.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Questions for a snowy day

Questions to ponder while watching the snow fall in Louisville. Possibly up to 7 inches.
Sent to me by Steve in Michigan

Can you cry under water?

How important does a person have to be before they are consideredassassinated instead of just murdered?

Why do you have to "put your two cents in".. but it's only a "penny for your thoughts"? Where's that extra penny going to?

Once you're in heaven, do you get stuck wearing the clothes you were buriedin for eternity?

Why does a round pizza come in a square box?

What disease did cured ham actually have?

How is it that we put man on the moon before we figured out it would be agood idea to put wheels on luggage?

Why is it that people say they "slept like a baby" when babies wake up likeevery two hours?

If a deaf person has to go to court, is it still called a hearing?

Why are you IN a movie, but you're ON TV?

Why do people pay to go up tall buildings and then put money in binoculars to look at things on the ground?

That's all for now.
Talk to you later.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

On second thought

Alright, it's better. Just spent mindless time in front of the TV watching Bones and a new show New Amsterdam. DVR is great. Highly recommend New Amsterdam; it isn't House, Bones or Criminal Intent but it has an interesting premise. The next episode is on tomorrow night on Fox. Why are the great shows all on Fox or TNT?
That's all for now.
Talk to you later.

Just another shitty day in Paradise

Did you ever have on of those days, one of those days that was bad from the beginning and only got worse as the clock ticked,ticked, ticked away the seconds, the ticks almost laughs at you while you agonized through the day? That kind of day. School was fine, or should I say the girls were fine. It's all the rest of it that makes it agony. Then it all ended when I went to the regional basketball game, only to have our team lose to a decidely inferior team in overtime. I knew it was going to be a long game for the girls when the school's all region selection went out with a wrenched knee in the first quarter. She was in agony the rest of the game, both the agony of the pain and the agony of the spirit. She SO wanted to get back in that game but the knee just wouldn't let her. The rest of the team played their hearts out, but it wasn't to be. I guess I'll get back to my grading, while listening to Kid Rock and Rock n Roll Jesus. Great White Noice. That's it for now. Talk to you later.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Books, books and more books

The book fairy has arrived and I am in a state of pure joy. New arrivals on Breckinridge St are:

The Money Shot by Christa Faust: a hardboiled detective novel told from the point of view of an ex porno star who is playing major payback on everyone who has "screwed" her in the past. It's quite a list.
The Expedition by Karl Iagnemma: a novel which begins in Detroit in 1844 and ends in the upper penisula
Blood and Thunder: the Life and Art of Robert E. Howard by Mark Finn: the story of the creator of Conan, the Barbarian.
Sellout by Randall Kennedy: the story of racial betrayal. A must read for all those who are concerned with racial problems in America today. Written by a Harvard law professor, who wrote Nigger in 2001.
Gang Leader for a Day by Sudhir Venkatesh: a sociologist's look at gangs in America today
The Last Flight of the Scarlet Macaw by Bruce Barcott: an interesting look at the destuction of the environment, in this case in Belize.

Quite a list and gives my readers a view as to my reading preferences.
That's it for now.
Talk to you later

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Sitting here multi-tasking... Listening to XM radio channel 12 and grading my students' essays. They wrote a commentary on a letter by Tim O' Brien. I have enclosed it for your opinion. What do you think? My students seem to like it.

Dear Timmy,
A little more than a year ago, on June 20, 2003, you dropped into the world, my son, my first and only child – a surprise, a gift, a miracle, an eater of electrical cords, a fertilizer factory, a joy, a pain in the rear, a thrill in the heart, all the platitudes with a big red cherry on top.Here’s the truth: Boy, oh boy, do I love you. And, boy, do I wish I could spend the next 50 years with my lips to your cheek, my eyes warming in yours.But as you wobble into your sixteenth month, it occurs to me that you may never really know your dad. The actuarial stuff looks grim. Even now, I’m what they call an “older father”, and in 10 years, should I have the good luck to turn 68, I’ll almost certainly have trouble keeping up with you. Basketball will be a problem. And 20 years from now…well, it’s sad, isn’t it?Sadder yet, that’s the very best scenario. Life is fragile. Hearts go still. So now, just in case, I want to tell you about your father, the man you think I am. And by that I mean not just the graying old coot you may vaguely remember, but the guy who shares your name and your blood and half your DNA.Above all, I am this: I am in love with you. Pinwheeling, bedazzled, aching love. If you know nothing else, know that you were adored by your dad.In many ways, a man is what he yearns for, and while it may never happen, I yearn to walk a golf course with at your side. I yearn for a golden afternoon in late August when you will sink a tough 12-footer to beat me by a stroke or two. I want to shake your hand. I want to say, “Nine more holes?”I yearn to scatter good books around the house – in the bathrooms, on the kitchen counter, on the floor beside your bed – and I hope I’m there to watch you pick one up and turn that first precious page. I yearn to see the rapture on your face. (Right now, you eat books.)I yearn to learn from you. I want to be your teacher, yes, but I also want to be your student. I yearn to be taught, again and again, what I’ve already started to know: that a grown man can find pleasure in the sound of a happy squeal, a gap toothed grin, in the miraculous utterance of the word “Daddy”.I yearn to watch you perform acts of kindness and generosity. I yearn to witness your first act of moral courage. I yearn to hear you mutter, however awkwardly, “Yeah, yeah, I love you, too,” and I yearn to believe you will mean it.It’s hard to imagine as I watch you now, so lighthearted and purely good, so ignorant of gravestones, but, Timmy, you’re in for a world of hurt and heartache and sin and doubt and frustration and despair. You will do fine things, I know, but you will also do bad things, because you are wholly human, and I wish I could be on hand to offer forgiveness.More than that, I long for the day when you might also forgive me. I waited too long Timmy. Until the late afternoon of June 20, 2003, I had defined myself, for better or worse, by the novels and stories I had written. I had sought myself in sentences. I had loved myself only insofar as I loved a chapter or a scene or a scrap of dialogue. This is not to demean my life or my writing. I do hope you will someday read the books and stories; I hope you will find my ghost in those pages, my best self, the man I wish to be for you. Call it pride, call it love, but I even dare to hope that you will commit a line or two to memory, for in the dream-space behind those vowels and consonants is the sound of your father’s voice, the kid I once was, the man I am now, the old man I will soon become.That said, I would trade every syllable of my life’s work for an extra 5 or 10 years with you, whatever the going rate might be. A father’s chief duty is not to instruct or to discipline. A father’s chief duty is to be present. And I yearn to be with you forever, always present, even knowing it cannot and will not happen.There have been advantages, of course, to becoming a father at my age. I doubt that at 28 or even 38 I would have been so willing – so eager – to walk away from my work to warm your bottle. I doubt I would have fully appreciated, as I do now, the way you toddled over to me this morning and laughed and gave me a first unsolicited hug. (You knew I was waiting, didn’t you?) I doubt I would have so easily tolerated the din at bedtime, or your stubborn recklessness, or your determination to electrocute yourself, or the mouthfuls of dirt you take from the potted plants in the foyer, or how, just a moment ago, you hit the delete key as I approached the end of this letter.You’re on my lap now, my spectacular Timmy. I’m using your fingers to type these words.
I love you.

Saturday, March 1, 2008


Sitting here grading essays, listening to a "new" group, at least in my experience. Stumbled across them in this week's issue of Rolling Stone. What attracted me to the group was that they are from Belton, Tx. home of Mary-Hardin Baylor the institution of higher learning from which it was important that I graduated. Their videos are available on your usual video sites. What was interesting about the article is they are classified as Christian rock. Boy, has that genre changed. Take a gander at the group at its website The group is coming to Louisville derby weekend. I might take the dive and go see them. That's it for now. Talk to you later

Friday, February 15, 2008

Current Reads

A Bend in the River by V.S.Naipaul for my English Class
The Appeal by John Grisham
The Cleft by Doris Lessing
The Prince of Darkness by Robert Novak

Welcome to my world

The title says it all. This is the beginning of what I hope will be an on ongoing look at my world. It seems stupid that I should be doing this; I am basically a private person who relishes his privacy. What I hope for this blog is a discussion of my likes and dislikes in books, movies and television. First thoughts: what were "they" thinking when Denzelle Washington was not nominated for his role in American Gangster? It was his best acting since Training Day for which he won the best acting award.