Archives for August 2016

The Myopic Arrogance Of The Fool

Tonight I made the mistake of reading the mewling words of buffoons and numbskulls who think they have the right to tell people who they should vote for.

The funny thing about it is I agree with much of what they say but presentation is everything and theirs is so awful it makes me want to slap them silly.

Don’t tell my children I said that because I don’t promote, condone or approve of responding to the clown in the same arrogant and myopic manner they talk to others.

But it doesn’t mean I won’t think about it.


Presentation is an ongoing discussion in my house, primarily because it is a skill that teens and preteens need to work upon.

The kiddies have heard me tell them more than once I would be glad to help them but only if they learn how to say please and thank you.

Friends and relatives tell me when I am not around they are very good about this which always makes me wonder what is it about me being there that makes it difficult to remember these three words.

Anyhoo if the arrogant fool learned how to present ideas in a less obnoxious way they would find a more receptive audience.

The funny thing about it is the buffoon is smart enough to understand this but they seem to have the same inability to adjust as my children do.

The Myopic Arrogance Of The Fool

I am in a funny place this week where I am stuck between two worlds and the transition is quite rough.

S0me people say it is because Mercury is in retrograde and others offer different reasons.


Well I say sometimes people are so fucking stupid they make rocks look like rocket scientists or something along those lines.

What you wont find here is a more descriptive account of why I feel light and optimistic but am also ridiculously angry.

Nor will I attempt to provide any more details because there are boundaries in blogging and sharing more would cross a line.

The only reason I am saying anything is I have to vent a bit and this offers that aforementioned bit.

I expect the negative to be temporary like most things in life but it doesn’t change this moment and the accompanying aggravation.

Blame it on feeling like you don’t have the kind of support you need, let alone want.

war sherman

The level of frustration I am dealing with is responsible for my wanting to go General Sherman on a few people but it won’t happen because that thing called maturity has left its mark upon me.

Granted I’d like to ignore it and go let some of these people reap the rewards of their efforts but the pleasure in that would be shortlived and the consequences are significant.

So I allow myself a moment.


I came across It Was Logical and Love Between The Lines again today.

They got me thinking about some of the writing I did the last time I lived in Texas and how inspired it felt.

I have been back in Texas for several days but didn’t have internet access in my apartment until today.

Since I was concerned about data usage I didn’t try blogging from my phone but I did think about writing.

And as I mentioned above I thought about the quality and quantity and wondered if my feeling that it was high when I lived in Texas is true.

Of course that led me down the primrose path to try and determine if time and place had any real affect upon it.

Because the reality is I don’t want to say I only do my best work under certain circumstances. I want it under any and every circumstance.

The hour is late and the time for bed is past so I’ll  share but a few more words with you.

I hate to admit how happy I am to have an internet connection again. The funny thing is I have gotten very good at disconnecting when it is my choice, less so when it is not.

Good things come to those who work hard and make an effort.

I intend to do as Ralph says. See you in the morning.


Sailing The Seas Of Life

Moved out of my place on August 9 and had surgery on August 10, I think.

Those dates might be off by a day or two, it is hard to keep track when you have had as much going on as I have.

Kind of surreal to think about it all because the day of my surgery when the hospital asked me for my address I told them I didn’t have one.

I was technically homeless, but not because I couldn’t afford a place but because I had moved out of the one I had and hadn’t found another.

It wasn’t how I had planned to do things but it wasn’t a particularly big deal to me because I knew within two weeks I’d have a new one.

All I had to do was get to Texas.

Sailing The Seas Of Life

Maybe it is sort of appropriate I am listening to Erin Grá Ma Chrói (Ireland of My Heart) now.

I am not Irish, but I have Irish relatives and I can relate to the sentiments expressed in the song.

My  mother cried the day I said goodbye. She didn’t try to hide it but she didn’t try to show me either so I let it go.

I hugged my folks goodbye, walked out the door towards the car and then turned to wave goodbye one last time.

Mom and dad pushed me hard to make sure I took the job that pulled me out of state. They both told me they were sure I would regret it if I didn’t.

They were right, I would have but I won’t lie and say I didn’t have second thoughts.

Dad has three surgeries coming up and though none of them are technically major they are all important.

If they do as they are supposed to they will make a big improvement on his quality of life now and in the future.

It is not that it is horrible now because it is not, but it could be better and if nothing was done it would get much worse.

So I walked out door knowing that in some ways my leaving would make their lives harder because I wouldn’t be within an hours drive any longer.

And I did so knowing that things can spin on a dime and that one day I might have to run for the airport again.

But none of us know if that day really will come or when.

It is possible it could be years and that uncertainty is a big part of why I listened to their advice.

Freud on struggle

Struggle Leads To…

The last ten years of my life have been filled with some real high points but they also include the lowest points too.

It would not be an exaggeration I can see the worst moments too.

There are some periods there where I took some of the worst beatings I could imagine and while you can always point out how it could have been worse it doesn’t change my feelings.

Nor does it change the reality that those things changed me and I am not who I once was.

That is not necessarily a bad thing either, no experience is truly wasted but there were moments where I wished I was.

Moments where I wondered if I should crawl into a bottle or hole, or both.

But I didn’t do either and I kept pushing because it is who I am and what I do.

Eventually, I turned the corner and found my way back.

It is why I can look my children in the eye and say that every storm can be weathered and that if you keep fighting good things come out of it.

Today I sit in a hotel room preparing to head out towards a new dawn for a great job.

It is an opportunity that I probably wouldn’t have come across if I hadn’t been through everything I have been through.

Now I just have to walk through the next door and see what happens.


Two weeks after my surgery I flew to Texas for an extended weekend and went looking for a new place to live.

Drove all over the place and finally found one that will make a good base of operations. I leased it knowing it would be another temporary place but was ok with that.

Because this time around all that has been done and all that has happened to lead here has been by choice.

Though they haven’t always been easy choices to make they were choices and I feel good about them.

It doesn’t mean I am not a little nervous but it is mostly of the good sort.

When the kids and I talked about it all we all came to the same conclusions and agreement and that made it easier too.

A Father’s Job

Steiner the minor surprised me the most because I expected the most resistance from him.

But he said even though he didn’t like it he saw how it made sense and understood why I was doing it.

And though I don’t owe anyone an explanation any time I have been asked I have told them a father’s job is to provide for his family.

I am as certain as I can be this will enable me to do a better job of providing for them and that is my bottom line.

So here I sit in my hotel, one day and one night before the new life truly begins.

If I hadn’t been through the storms I don’t know if I could have or would have done this. What I do know is I am going to hit it hard and do all that I can to make it into something special.

I have to because I owe it to them and I owe it to myself.

So I keep sailing the seas of life be they stormy or calm.

500 Illiterate Bloggers Blow Bull For Swag

Sometimes the best choice you can make is to turn around and walk away because the father you just cut off didn’t slam on his brakes and lay upon the horn for fun.

He or should I say ‘I’ didn’t have any interest in adding to the noise pollution and chaos of rush hour but sometimes situations call for split-second decisions.

I chose to hit the horn and hoped the fool in the Ford stopped his forward momentum and prayed my daughter and I wouldn’t get smacked.

It is possible my prayers consisted of four letter words and thoughts about how much effort it would take to remove his arm from his body so that I could slap some sense into him.

What Happened Next

The fool in the Ford unrolled his window and issued a single finger salute and I responded with an extended toot on the horn and my best thousand mile stare.

Daughter said “Daddy, stop honking. What if he comes over here?”

“I won’t let anything happen to you. I promise if he is dumb enough to get out of the car he’ll make Flat Stanley look fat.”

She giggled and told me to be smart.

“You are not Superman.”

“No, I am Wolverine.”

“You don’t have the claws.”

“That is for everyone else’s safety. If I had those claws I’d be unstoppable. Now, I am just partially stoppable.”

She rolled her eyes, but smiled at me and we went about our business.


The Road Not Taken

We shared the quiet and for a brief time I drove in silence and then I told her again I was serious about making sure no harm came to her.

She smiled and told me she knew that and I smiled back at her and thought about something her older brother said to me.

“Dad, if someone shot you I am sure you would get him before he got to us, but you would still probably die.”

It wasn’t said with any sort of bravado or given any sort of dressing.

The words were commentary tied into a longer conversation about safety and the world and they were bittersweet to me.

I appreciated the faith and was glad that even as a teen he still believes that his old man will do everything he can to protect him.

But he is old enough to know and understand there are limits to what a person can do and though it is good for him to understand there is a piece of me that wishes the kids still saw me as Superman.

Not because of my ego but because that sort of faith is a gift and once the innocence is gone, well life changes a bit.

The wind blows a bit harder and winter is a bit colder. It is a part of growing up but I would extend their childhood and some fictions for a little bit longer if I could.

It is part of why I am leaving on the next great adventure. If it goes as I hope I’ll be able to do more for my family.

500 Illiterate Bloggers Blow Bull For Swag

I shouldn’t be irritated by what others do.

It shouldn’t irk me to read posts written by hacks who hit the blogosphere for free products, trips and garb but sometimes it does.

Some will call it jealousy but I don’t.

I could blow the bull for swag.

I could swallow the load and smile knowing that I was gaming the system but I just can’t do it.

Don’t misunderstand that to me that I take issue with all bloggers who write sponsored posts or share reviews because that is not true.

Sometimes you find those reviews here and sometimes the recaps of trips too.

But it is not what powers the blog or pushes me to post.

I am here because I love to write and it is probably unfair for me to complain about the illiterate hacks who haunt the blogosphere for other reasons.

But life isn’t always fair and I am as entitled as any other person with a blog and internet connection to write as I will.


Got one day left in LA, one day before I saddle up and go back to Texas.

One more day before I hug my kids goodbye and tell them I’ll see them soon not knowing what soon really means.

More than a day, maybe more than a month(s).

Done not because I am running away from them but because I am running for them.

It is with thought and with foresight and a plan that I set out on the next part of this journey.

Content with my choices doesn’t mean I like all that comes with them, just that I know what is required.

And that is what a good dad does, what is required.

It won’t be easy to just pick up and go but if it gives us the better life I expect it will then it will all be worth it.

Sometimes you have to take the bull by the horns to make changes and that is what I am doing here.

Don’t Be A Slave To Life

If you are part of the 17 long time readers you’ll know I am not kidding when I say I don’t write with the same frequency here as I once did.

It is not for lack of desire or effort but because the current circumstances have made it far more challenging to write the way I want to.

I am not sure if that is a good thing or bad, it simply is and sometimes that is just how life goes.

My best guess is that when this transitional period I am in ends there will be a natural increase in production levels here that hopefully will be matched by quality posts.


In a few days I’ll load the car and make another run across five states to the new house and start a new life.

And as I travel I’ll do my best to be present and aware of my surroundings because you never know what kind of interesting people and adventures lie ahead.

Somewhere in the desert I’ll get that crazy feeling of wanderlust that I always get and think about driving down the road not taken just to see where it takes me.

But I won’t let myself get distracted from by bright and shiny objects because the plan I created long ago is just starting to move from idea to reality.


When Opportunity Knocks

Sunday night the kids and I sat down to talk about the new opportunities in Texas and the coming changes.

When they asked me if I could provide them with a single sentence that explained what is going on I told them when opportunity knocks you answer the door.

It led to a longer and more sophisticated conversation about how to determine good opportunities from the bad ones.

When we finished speaking I felt like they had a much clearer understanding of the how, what and why of this moment and a better appreciation for my position.

I suppose this is one of the primary advantages to having children who are no longer babies because the teen and preteen mind understood things in a way they just couldn’t before.

They may not like, agree or appreciate everything but they understand and sometimes that is enough.

As I walked down the hall to go to sleep I told them I loved them and said I don’t want to be a slave to life and they shouldn’t either.

“There are multiple ways to get to where we are going and no single path to success. Don’t let people or situations fool you into thinking there is only one approach.

Sometimes you have to get creative in your approach but if you work at it you’ll always find a solution that works for you. Might not be perfect, but it is usually manageable and that is just how it goes.”

They nodded and smiled and I took that image to bed with me.

All we can do is our best and adjust as we go along.

When Blogs Go Bad

Sometimes blogs go bad and we the humans that run them find ourselves scratching our heads and or kicking and screaming because technology refuses to act as we think it should.

That’s what happened here.

Can’t tell you if the problem started last night or if it was today because way too much has happened.

What I know is that when I updated this joint to the latest edition of WP it gave me the finger and tried to kick my ass.

I don’t take kindly to that sort of treatment from people and even less so from machines.


I raged against the machine but tried to be smart about it.

Tried to stay calm and follow the same advice I give my children about effective problem solving and perseverance.

If you are reading this then I suppose I ought to present this as proof of my success in both resolving the issue and in doing so in a semi-timely manner.

But I would be lying if I said I wasn’t tested or frustrated by this blog choosing to go bad.

I am supposed to the rogue. I am supposed to be the maverick.

Not the bleeping blog.

But sometimes things happens.

Sometimes life happens.

Roll With The Tide

I have to remind myself to roll with the tide and to use the power of the waves to push me forward.

Doesn’t make any sense to fight against such a mighty force as the sea because given time it will always win and it always has more time than we do.

Given that the Traveling Jack show is about to roll out another tour it is even more reason to work hard to not fight the elements.

The smart man lets the wind power his sails and saves his arms for when the seas are calm and he truly must row.

Got to be the smart man now, got to save my strength for when I really need it.

So much good stuff going on now, so many amazing things about to happen. Sometimes we fail to recognize how the ordinary can turn into the extraordinary overnight.


Life is going to be very busy the next few weeks so I am not sure how much time I’ll find to be around here.

The goal is always to update daily but there may be some moments where I just can’t get it done.

If you are a new reader the good news is there are almost 10,000 posts floating around here so there is plenty of material to read.

You can find some of it on the About Jack page or alternatively you can point and click your way through some of the links below:

Words Are The Death Of A Blogger
An Uncertain Certainty
Four Generations & A Wedding
The Best Thing My Father Ever Said To Me
1 Foolproof Way To Become a Better Writer
The Story Of A House- The Final Days
He Died A Hero
Twenty-Five Links That Will Make You A Better Writer/Blogger
Of Dads and Daughters
The Greatest Dad Blogger You Never Heard Of
Mean Girls Come From Mean Moms
Two Things That Are Killing Twitter
Reciprocity In Blogging
Save The Last Dance For Me- 75 Years of Marriage

See you soon,