"All I knew is I was crammed into the back seat of our Impala with my cranky sisters and a bunch of smelly irises and lilacs."

ValueSpeak

May
22

It would be stretching things to suggest that Memorial Day was Dad’s favorite holiday. Truth be told, he was actually more of a Thanksgiving man. That was a day that called for lots of eating, shooting half-court set shots on the basketball court with the boys and giving long-winded prayers – all specialties of the [...]

May
15
Posted at 1:16 am

It’s the seventh game of an NBA playoff series. The hype has been huge and the play has been intense. Coach A says The Pressure is on Team B because they were the favorites going into the series and are now on the brink of elimination. Coach B says The Pressure is on Team A [...]

May
07
Posted at 11:33 pm

Anita gave birth to our first child nine months to the day after we were married. OK, it was nine months less one day. But who’s counting? So Anita experienced her first Mother’s Day as a mother before she experienced her first wedding anniversary as a wife. And we wouldn’t have had it any other [...]

May
01
Posted at 12:02 am

At first, the screams didn’t register with me. I was standing outside my eldest son Joe’s home last Sunday, saying goodbye to my youngest son, Jon, who was taking his puppy home. It had been a great afternoon visiting with family members as we celebrated my mother-law’s birthday. It wasn’t until my eldest daughter, AmyJo, [...]

Apr
23

Not too long ago my friend – we’ll call her Geri – finished taking her final college exams. She has earned her degree one or two classes at a time. Her grandchildren are very proud. That’s right – grandchildren. Geri is in her 60s. “I may be the only graduate who has to use a [...]

Apr
17

Ollie and I have a strange and wonderful relationship. I think it’s strange to have a pet that is definitionally wild. Ollie thinks it would be wonderful to eat me. Strange. And wonderful. That’s us. Jon, our youngest child who lives at home while going to college, has wanted a dog ever since he was [...]

Apr
10
Posted at 3:01 am

Not too long ago my 60-something friend Curtis was asked to help supervise a Cub Scout hike. Soon after the hike began, one of the Cubs – 8-year-old Josh – started shadowing Curtis, and the two quickly became good friends. Josh talked about everything and anything along the trail, including a few things his mother [...]

Apr
03
Posted at 1:18 am

It was about this time of year when I saw my father for the last time. He was 93 years old at the time, and Alzheimer’s had taken away most of his tremendous capacity and capability. During the last few years of his life I re-wrote his obituary three times. Each time we thought something [...]

Mar
27

Mike was hurting. No doubt about it. His right foot was aching, way more than usual. It doesn’t really matter precisely why his foot was aching – there were an assortment of reasons medical, physiological and athletic. What matters is it was sore. And Mike was hurting. “You really need to see the doctor about [...]

Mar
20
Posted at 4:46 am

You’ve doubtless seen the symptomology all around you this week. Maybe you’ve experienced it yourself: eyes glazed over. Fingers trembling. Uncontrolled twitching of facial muscles and limbs. Occasional panic attacks followed by outbursts of joy and/or rage. It’s March Madness, a 64-tiered malady from which there appears to be no recovery until the last bacon-wrapped [...]