Archives for 2014

The Fifty Posts You Didn’t Read On New Year’s Eve

Intention and decision work together.

Intention and decision work together.

I made a decision to write one post with 50 links to other posts you may or may not have read. One last post for the year, not my best and not my worst.

One last post before I head downstairs to grab a bite to eat and disconnect from the computer.

And one last moment to tell 2014 I am done with you. Go on, get out and stay out of my way. I have made my intentions known and the decisions are conspiring with the universe to make it happen.

Begone you, I won’t be messed with, played with or engage in any more of your tomfoolery. No more bamboozling, conundrums or chicanery here.

Try any of that and I’ll give you some shoe leather to taste, yeah, I’ll put the boot to you. 🙂

Be safe all. Enjoy NYE and I’ll see you on the other side.

  1. She Saved My Heart
  2. The Best Cover Letter….Ever
  3. One Slightly Used Pump For Sale
  4. Some Things I’ll Teach My Children (Updated)
  5. Why Steve Jobs Isn’t Important Now
  6. Mean Girls Come From Mean Moms
  7. There Are No Coincidences
  8. The Most Important Things In Life
  9. Thank You Lewis Black- If It Weren’t For My Horse
  10. Your Blog Bores Me
  11. How Some People Are Using Triberr To Kill Blogging
  12. Jesus Hates Tim Tebow & 17 Other Reasons Why Your Blog is a Failure
  13. He Didn’t Die
  14. The Pinterest Predicament & The Rule Of Four
  15. I Should Have Slept With Her…. Again
  16. When Mean Girls Grow Up
  17. The Most Valuable Possession
  18. If You Could Do Anything What Would You Do?
  19. My Children Confront Death Again
  20. He Died A Hero
  21. A Whiter Shade Of Pale
  22. How Frequently Should You Update Your Blog?
  23. Don’t Worry About What You Can’t Control Part 2
  24. Spit Or Swallow
  25. And Justice For All
  26. It Wasn’t Worth Getting Arrested
  27. The Phone Sex Surprise
  28. 100 Best Movie Lines in 200 Seconds
  29. Writers Write Right
  30. The Rhythm Of Life
  31. Dear Children- Don’t Ask For Approval
  32. A Blogger’s Guide To Writing a Five Minute Post
  33. There Are Boundaries In Blogging
  34. What Is The Value of A Comment?
  35. 69 Reasons Why Fathers Make Better Lovers
  36. The Biggest Challenge Most Bloggers Face
  37. How A Dad Blogger Uses Amazon To Make Money From Writing
  38. I Hate Toys That Make Noise
  39. What Kind Of Friend Are You?
  40. The Greatest Dad Blogger Of Them All
  41. Grandpa
  42. The 100 Year Old Penny
  43. The Song Of My Heart Makes My Soul Sing
  44. Is It Intuition Or Desire?
  45. Generations- They Are All Gone Now
  46. The Best Thing My Father Ever Said To Me
  47. Dad Bloggers Get Paid To Blog
  48. Blogging Is Not An Obligation
  49. Lessons For Being Human
  50. New Year’s Eve

An Aesop Fable

Sometimes, its the stories that keep us going. The telling of a tale should never be underestimated. It can make you cry or make you laugh, it can change your perspective on life. Aesop Story Engine makes telling a tale with WordPress so easy. That’s why we’ve baked support for Aesop Story Engine right into Myth. Here are some of the things you can do with this amazing plugin.

[aesop_chapter title=”The long road ahead” subtitle=”It’s going to be anything but easy” bgtype=”img” full=”on” img=”http://myth.mtdemo.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/28/2015/05/wide-open-road.jpg”]

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Fusce at risus at lacus laoreet mollis sed id elit. Integer bibendum lobortis velit, eleifend commodo dui facilisis nec. Aliquam mi sapien, ultrices a ultrices non, sodales ut diam. Fusce semper risus eu magna placerat pulvinar. Nullam ac odio non ligula semper auctor. Aliquam nec est leo, nec dictum purus. Suspendisse accumsan erat ac arcu convallis nec pharetra eros lobortis. Mauris dignissim, ligula sed tempor tempus, massa felis egestas mi, auctor luctus diam est sit amet lacus. Aenean at dui dui, non scelerisque nisi. Morbi ullamcorper dapibus nisl, ullamcorper fringilla eros pulvinar et. Nulla rhoncus elementum rhoncus. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Pellentesque a erat velit, venenatis porttitor mauris.

Mauris dignissim, ligula sed tempor tempus, massa felis egestas mi, auctor luctus diam est sit amet lacus. Aenean at dui dui, non scelerisque nisi. Morbi ullamcorper dapibus nisl, ullamcorper fringilla eros pulvinar et. Nulla rhoncus elementum rhoncus. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Pellentesque a erat velit, venenatis porttitor mauris.

Aesop Story Engine lets you create stories with chapters, parallax images, galleries, maps, collections, characters and quotes.

[aesop_quote type=”pull” background=”#282828″ text=”#333″ width=”320px” height=”auto” align=”left” size=”2″ quote=”“There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.”” cite=”Ansel Adams” parallax=”on” direction=”left”]

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Fusce at risus at lacus laoreet mollis sed id elit. Integer bibendum lobortis velit, eleifend commodo dui facilisis nec. Aliquam mi sapien, ultrices a ultrices non, sodales ut diam. Fusce semper risus eu magna placerat pulvinar. Nullam ac odio non ligula semper auctor. Aliquam nec est leo, nec dictum purus. Suspendisse accumsan erat ac arcu convallis nec pharetra eros lobortis. Mauris dignissim, ligula sed tempor tempus, massa felis egestas mi, auctor luctus diam est sit amet lacus. Aenean at dui dui, non scelerisque nisi. Morbi ullamcorper dapibus nisl, ullamcorper fringilla eros pulvinar et. Nulla rhoncus elementum rhoncus. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Pellentesque a erat velit, venenatis porttitor mauris.

Mauris dignissim, ligula sed tempor tempus, massa felis egestas mi, auctor luctus diam est sit amet lacus. Aenean at dui dui, non scelerisque nisi. Morbi ullamcorper dapibus nisl, ullamcorper fringilla eros pulvinar et. Nulla rhoncus elementum rhoncus. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Pellentesque a erat velit, venenatis porttitor mauris.

[aesop_chapter title=”Looking at life” subtitle=”and life looking back at you” bgtype=”img” full=”on” img=”http://myth.mtdemo.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/28/2015/05/room.jpg”]

Mauris dignissim, ligula sed tempor tempus, massa felis egestas mi, auctor luctus diam est sit amet lacus. Aenean at dui dui, non scelerisque nisi. Morbi ullamcorper dapibus nisl, ullamcorper fringilla eros pulvinar et. Nulla rhoncus elementum rhoncus. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Pellentesque a erat velit, venenatis porttitor mauris.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Fusce at risus at lacus laoreet mollis sed id elit. Integer bibendum lobortis velit, eleifend commodo dui facilisis nec. Aliquam mi sapien, ultrices a ultrices non, sodales ut diam. Fusce semper risus eu magna placerat pulvinar.

Nullam ac odio non ligula semper auctor. Aliquam nec est leo, nec dictum purus. Suspendisse accumsan erat ac arcu convallis nec pharetra eros lobortis. Mauris dignissim, ligula sed tempor tempus, massa felis egestas mi, auctor luctus diam est sit amet lacus.

Aenean at dui dui, non scelerisque nisi. Morbi ullamcorper dapibus nisl, ullamcorper fringilla eros pulvinar et. Nulla rhoncus elementum rhoncus. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Pellentesque a erat velit, venenatis porttitor mauris.

[aesop_chapter title=”The Final Chapter” subtitle=”It had to end sometime” bgtype=”img” full=”on” img=”http://myth.mtdemo.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/28/2015/05/something-new.jpg”]

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Fusce at risus at lacus laoreet mollis sed id elit. Integer bibendum lobortis velit, eleifend commodo dui facilisis nec. Aliquam mi sapien, ultrices a ultrices non, sodales ut diam.

Fusce semper risus eu magna placerat pulvinar. Nullam ac odio non ligula semper auctor. Aliquam nec est leo, nec dictum purus. Suspendisse accumsan erat ac arcu convallis nec pharetra eros lobortis. Mauris dignissim, ligula sed tempor tempus, massa felis egestas mi, auctor luctus diam est sit amet lacus. Aenean at dui dui, non scelerisque nisi.

Morbi ullamcorper dapibus nisl, ullamcorper fringilla eros pulvinar et. Nulla rhoncus elementum rhoncus. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Pellentesque a erat velit, venenatis porttitor mauris.

[aesop_quote type=”block” background=”#282828″ text=”#FFFFFF” width=”100%” align=”left” size=”2″ quote=”“Ends are not bad things, they just mean that something else is about to begin. And there are many things that don’t really end, anyway, they just begin again in a new way. Ends are not bad and many ends aren’t really an ending; some things are never-ending.”” cite=”C. JoyBell C.” parallax=”off” direction=”left”]

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Fusce at risus at lacus laoreet mollis sed id elit. Integer bibendum lobortis velit, eleifend commodo dui facilisis nec. Aliquam mi sapien, ultrices a ultrices non, sodales ut diam.

Fusce semper risus eu magna placerat pulvinar. Nullam ac odio non ligula semper auctor. Aliquam nec est leo, nec dictum purus. Suspendisse accumsan erat ac arcu convallis nec pharetra eros lobortis. Mauris dignissim, ligula sed tempor tempus, massa felis egestas mi, auctor luctus diam est sit amet lacus. Aenean at dui dui, non scelerisque nisi.

Morbi ullamcorper dapibus nisl, ullamcorper fringilla eros pulvinar et. Nulla rhoncus elementum rhoncus. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada fames ac turpis egestas. Pellentesque a erat velit, venenatis porttitor mauris.

 

Do You Read The Blogs You Follow?

tracks

There is so much to see and so much to read.

In the days of yore during the grand period people refer to as the Golden Age of Blogging we had amazing tools called Blog Rolls that we used to keep track of blogs we liked to read.

Sometimes I think about blog rolls and how they touched the Sneetches with stars side of people because we kept track of who was on ours and whether that other blogger reciprocated.

I remember getting emails from bloggers asking to exchange links as well as those who wrote to tell me that it wasn’t fair for them to provide me with a link unless I did the same.

Boy, I miss moments like that, good times.

Do You Read The Blogs You Follow?

Remember when I asked Do You Miss Old Fashioned Blogging?

I asked because I have had this ongoing push-pull thing going on inside my head where I have been trying to figure out how to balance becoming a better writer, growing this blog and maintaining time for my offline life.

Don’t misunderstand me, I am not saying I don’t like the online world any more because I still do but our time is so limited and I am in the midst of this crazy time in my life where everything is changing.

It is an evolution and I welcome it but it means I have to make more significant choices about how and where to spend my time.

“It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it.”― Oscar Wilde

I don’t use RSS to read blogs or use an organized list to read blogs. It is not because am unorganized or uninterested either.

It is because when I make those lists I follow through. If I decide I am going to follow a blog I read it. I may not always comment but I show up.

A list is a commitment. That might sound silly to you, but it is how I operate.

Ask the Shmata Queen about how hard it is to pin me down and she’ll tell you that I am slow moving about some things but once I say I’ll do it I make it happen.

““The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” ― Dr. Seuss, I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!

Until Saturday I had 47 boxes of books in my garage.

Forty-seven boxes of dictionaries, biographies, autobiographies, history books, works of fiction and all sorts of other books that I gathered throughout my life.

That doesn’t include the books inside my home either because this place is filled with them.

But that evolution I mentioned earlier has me going through all of my stuff and evaluating whether I need it or not. I have more stuff than I need, time to let go of some of it.

I spent a chunk of Saturday morning going through boxes and thinned the herd down by about 12 boxes or so.

Later today I’ll go through the boxes again and try to winnow through more because sooner or later it will be time to move again and I don’t want to drag all of it with me.

And because when I get situated I’ll want to move many of those books from boxes into the house library. Books in boxes are good for exercising the body (those boxes are heavy) but do little for the mind.

Ask me why I have so many books and I’ll tell you the same thing I tell my kids, because books are a part of how we can learn to do and become anyone and anything.

“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies, said Jojen. The man who never reads lives only one.”― George R.R. Martin, A Dance with Dragons

Blogging, Writing and Reading

Blogging, writing and reading are all intertwined for me.

You can’t become a better writer without doing a lot of reading and writing and part of how you find more material to write about is by getting off of your computer and living.

If you don’t spend time in the offline world you miss things. You miss moments, some important, some less so but you can’t see which is what without being there.

And that my friends is why I keep a very short list of blogs to follow. There just isn’t enough time.

I have places to go visit, people to see and books about so many different topics to read.

What about you? Do you read the blogs you follow or is there a large cyber pile of posts waiting vying for your attention?

Fourteen Years Later He’s Looking For Better Advice

What wisdom is contained within these wagon wheels.

What wisdom is contained within these wagon wheels.

Fourteen years later your father is still looking for better advice to give you.

Yeah, I know that is an odd way to begin a post and it is not how my teacher’s taught me to write but you have learned your dad has his own way of doing things.

Technically you are not yet fourteen but in less than a hour you will be and I will stare at you and wonder as I always do why time must run at break neck speed.

I started blogging when you were about 3.5 so the first birthday posts hit around the time you hit four. If you knew you were on social media you’d be irritated because you don’t like it. “It is stupid and a waste of time.”

You know every time you say that I remind you about how “stupid social media” has been a significant source of income and a big part of about why you have clothes on your back and a roof over your head.

Every time I mention that you shrug your shoulders and I tell you life is filled with contradictions and moments where we discover we are willing to do things we don’t like because they have to be done.

The reasons why vary but they usually circle back to being done because they are tied into taking care of those we care about.

What Is The Best Advice To Give You?

This is all stream of consciousness and the only interruptions in my writing come from the moments where I backspace to correct an error. Part of that is because I want to bang this out before you midnight so I can come downstairs and join your sister in saying Happy Birthday first.

And part of it is because I am curious to see what comes top of mind.

There are lots of different things I could share with you. Lots of valuable advice, some of which you know and some of which you are tired of hearing from me.

But tonight what strikes me as being important are the words below.

“Of all forms of caution, caution in love is perhaps the most fatal to true happiness.”― Bertrand Russell, The Conquest of Happiness

I don’t know what prompted this but long ago you told me you would never get married and have made a point to remind me that you don’t like girls.

When I told you I didn’t care if you were you gay or straight and that you should hold off on making big declarations you told me you weren’t gay and then reiterated you don’t like girls.

I never thought you were gay and I never cared. We had two gay uncles who I loved and I would love you too but I don’t think you are gay because I see how you respond to certain scenes in movies.

And I recognize it because I used to respond the same way.

That is why I think you like girls. I think hormones and puberty are giving you funny feelings and it is easier to deny them.

I remember doing the same thing and then I remember the first time I really fooled around with a girl and it was a like a switch went off in my head.

Your old man won’t guarantee you’ll react the same way but I suspect it..

But I want to circle back to Russell’s words because I know your personality and I know you are cautious in many things.

It is a useful trait, especially when you add methodical and determined.

I promise one day you won’t be worried about whether you have enough time to finish the tests and people will be far more concerned about the quality of your work than whether you can regurgitate information in under 45 minutes.

Don’t let caution prevent you from taking a chance.

Jump Into The Void

There is a girl that teases you in school. You tell me it is because she is mean but it doesn’t sound like she is trying to be mean to me.

It sounds like she likes you. It sounds like she wants attention from you.

If things go as I suspect one day you’ll be interested in getting attention from girls too. Take a chance with that. Jump into the void.

Women will confound you. They will infuriate you and make you crazy. They will behave in ways that are indescribable, some of that will be good and some bad.

But some of them will open up parts and places of yourself you didn’t know about and there is merit in having those experiences.

Jump into the void and take a chance.

Don’t Jump Yet

Unless something crazy happens you won’t read this any time soon so some of this is sort of silly. But even though  I encourage you to jump into the void I hope you wait a bit.

There is no rush.

You have ample time to live and love.

There is a difference between jumping in the void now and doing so in ten years.

I am more worried about other things than that but as your father I think you as a whole.

Tomorrow I’ll probably write more of a birthday post that doesn’t focus on advice I don’t think you need now or are ready for yet.

Hell I am certainly not ready for you to start dating. It is hard enough to think about you entering high school but it is going to happen so I am starting to think about what might come along with it.

Thirty-five minutes of rambling about you is enough for now. Thirty-five minutes from now I’ll probably look at this and wonder why I didn’t come up with better advice because that is what parents do.

Happy almost birthday monster, do me a favor and try not to make the next year go as fast as this one did.

Love,

Dad

Do Mom & Dad Bloggers Make Better Family?

I have noticed wives & daughters are good at this too,

I have noticed wives & daughters are good at this too,

John, Paul, George and Ringo are keeping me company now singing about Maxwell’s Hammer, one sweet dream and golden slumbers.

And if I told you about Uncle Albert, Bands on the Run and more it would be one more step on my saying Maybe I’m Amazed but what would really shock me is if at least three people didn’t comment or email me to make sure I knew I mixed Wings with The Beatles.

Part of me feels like I need to qualify that by saying many of my readers have reached an age at which they are considered well seasoned and wise which is my way of pointing out my kids have called this old people music.

Mind you I have told them I dislike a lot of the modern crap they play which probably means the circle is now complete because it is not that long ago my father told me he didn’t like listening to my Pink Floyd tapes and wasn’t always enamored with Led Zeppelin either.

Do Mom & Dad Bloggers Make Better Family?

Since we are in the midst of the holiday season and I have been forced happy to spend time with assorted family members from all sides of my own I have come to realize I have reached a point in time at which it is clear to me that sometimes family is a giant-pain-in-my-ass.

It wasn’t always like this and I suppose I was lucky because for the majority of my life I looked forward to spending time with my family both near and far.

If you asked me to tell you what changed, who I am referring to and why I could do all of those things but I would ask you if it really matters. My blood relatives are mine and though I didn’t choose them I shall keep them because none of them have done the sort of thing that would make me cut them off.

Some of you might inquire what someone would have to do to be cut off by me and I’d tell you it is probably much easier than many people realize. I reached a place long ago where I recognized I don’t have time for people who do nothing but suck the life out of me.

I am not interested in drama and emotional vampires. I don’t suffer fools and I am very good at saying goodbye to those whose presence only creates negativity.

Yet if you are among the blood relatives or those who I choose to be part of my family regardless of genetics, well you are in luck because I am the guy who will stick it out with you.

It is the joy of being a Taurus and part of who I am.

Part of the giant contradiction of life and people.

A short while ago I listened to my few days before turning 14 year-old try to explain to my mother why he only wanted some aunts and uncles to come to his birthday and I thought about all of the mom and dad bloggers out there.

Thought about you guys and smiled because so many of you have stories that make that look tame.

Men And Pinterest

I cannot confirm nor deny that this conversation made me pull the Pinterest app on my phone so that I could search for a tasty beverage consisting of large quantities of alcohol.

Ya know that sometimes Men Use Pinterest too.

Of course the guy who wrote about the kind of life we should live recognizes it is not always easy and that it is made up of moments and layers that are sometimes bittersweet.

*****

My parents are still relatively young but old enough to have earned the senior citizen badges they hold. Most of the time I don’t think of them as being as old as they are but there are more moments where it is clear to me they have aged.

They ask for help with things they never used to and are unfiltered. In days gone by they weren’t so quick to let little irritations be known and yet things that once set them off are laughed at.

Don’t misunderstand me, I love them and am grateful to have them both. It is no longer uncommon for friends of mine to have buried one or both of their parents so I recognize I am lucky.

My children have been taught and shown the importance and value of family. I have made it clear to them that you do for family because sometimes they are supposed to be there when no one else is.

It is a lesson we have learned from personal experience and from those close to us.

****

Three years ago I stood in the ICU and held my little sister. My brother-in-law, her husband was on life support and we had no clue whether he was going to make it.

I remember my then five year-old nephew telling me how he had snuck out of bed and found his mommy crying how he asked me why his father wasn’t there to help.

Memories of those moments remind me about how sometimes you marry into crazy because my sister’s in-laws are not good people.

It would be kind to say they came unglued because their son was on life support but it would be a lie because those motherfuckers were bastards long before that moment.

Things worked out and my nephew didn’t lose his father and my sister kept her husband but that memory left a bad taste in my mouth because of how very horrible those people were.

I knew better because I learned from the best.

“Grandpa’s death certificate will say something about natural causes and that is ok. But the true cause of death is a broken heart. He missed grandma terribly and even though she was gone he used to talk to her photo. But it would be unfair of me to paint a picture that didn’t describe him as trying to live a vibrant and active life without grandma. She was his best friend but even in her absence he did what he could to get the most out of his days.

But no matter how fast we run time is always faster and it caught up to him. He Died A Hero

The music has moved from the Fab Four to ELO and I am listening to them sing It is a Living Thing and that is my cue to get off of the computer and converse in person with others.

G is in town and I am going to track him down because after 40 years the man isn’t just a friend, he is family.  See you in the comments or around cyberspace, I am out.