A Story About My New Business

A thousand years or so ago The Shmata Queen looked at me and asked if I ever hold still. She had happened upon me while I was fully engrossed in a telephone call and was pacing around the room. One hand clutched the phone to my ear while the other one flew back and forth in a series of unseen hand gestures.

Her question made me laugh. I have three speeds- sleeping, overdrive and hyperdrive.  Ask my mother to tell you what I was like as a small child and she’ll tell you that I used to wear her and everyone else out.I was busy. A little man in motion.

Now I am a much bigger man, but still in motion. My mind is constantly working on thoughts and ideas about a million different things. I suppose that is part of why you find so many different posts here about so many different topics. I find life to be exceptionally interesting.

Take a walk with me and I’ll tell you some more.

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May you live in interesting times is supposed to be the translation of an ancient Chinese curse. Personally I prefer the ancient Yiddish curse which reads something like this: “May all your teeth fall out except one, so that you can have a toothache.

The boys and I have been commiserating about our various challenges and how none of us expected to be facing some of the conundrums that life has slapped us with. It is easy to grow frustrated and angry. Much of it is unfair and not of our doing.

So what. Life doesn’t care. It just keeps moving. A long time ago I decided that I didn’t want to place my destiny in the hands of others and set about taking steps to rectify that. It is a process but things are moving forward with it.

This past Saturday night I came up with another piece of the puzzle. I have an idea for a business that really excites me. It is something that has incredible potential. I like it because it is a simple concept. It doesn’t require a degree in engineering to understand and it is scalable.

Oh the scalability has me downright giddy. This can be very small or quite large. But I don’t want to put the cart before the horse. We start with baby steps.

So I am in the process of constructing an outline for it. We’re building a little road map that we hope will lead to success. This might not lead anywhere. This might be nothing more than a dream. But my fragile male ego says that the difference between me and the other guy is that I try to live my dreams.

That busy little boy still lives inside. He still thinks that he can fly. So my job now is to help him find his wings.

The Greatest Blog Post Never Written

This could be the greatest blog post that was never written. It could be magical, amazing and enlightening. This could very well be the one that launches my career as a writer. Well, I should qualify that.I have worked and am working as a writer. This is a different sort of thing that I am referring to.

A post that leads to an opportunity to write a book and to become a published author. I keep dreaming about it. I keep writing about it and wondering how to make it into reality. Do I want to write the great American novel and if so, what do I want to write about.

I can be funny. I could tell a million stories that you make you laugh. Or I can go a different direction and write about the great love that got away. I can make you remember that man or woman you still carry a torch for. I can tap into those feelings and make you ask yourself the uncomfortable question of, “what if.”

But then again maybe it is better to write a book under my role as a father. It could be called “The Dude they Called Dad” and feature me with a very serious and solemn look on my face. Or it could go the silly route, that fits me.

The other day I realized that I have an idea for a line of clothing. If you are one of the three people that know me you recognize how goofy that is. Me, the clothing designer. Ok, it is not really meant to be a designer like you’d see at some fashion show. It is different, but I have a pretty clear idea.

It is an idea that I am going to give life to. I am going to turn take it from something that I play around with in my mind into something that is real, tangible. Damn it, I am going to make it happen for no other reason than I can.

This thing is going to be proof that sheer desire and force of will can make amazing things happen. I am really fired up right now. We’re almost one month into the year of Jack and things are happening, albeit slowly, but they are happening.

It reminds me a bit of moving a heavy object. I have started to rock it back and forth. Slowly the momentum is building and its own weight is beginning to make it move. I just need to generate a little bit more movement and then that sucker will start traveling.

The hard part is not getting started but making sure that I don’t smack into any icebergs.

Well have to see what happens. For now all I can say is that this could have been the greatest blog post that was never written.

What I Dream About

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My mother tells me that my preschool teachers used to tell her that they were certain that I would grow up to be a writer. They said that I had a very active imagination. They were right, I did and still do have a very active imagination.

I dream in bright colors and crystal clear images. I see movies play in my mind and wonder why I can’t turn them into reality. I am not Walter Mitty, although I suppose that we share some traits. I am a dreamer but I am not someone who intentionally misleads other into believing that I am someone other than who I am.

I dream about writing books and becoming a published author. I dream about becoming a columnist and writing screenplays. I dream about becoming a doctor, a scientist and a teacher. I dream about playing left field for the Dodgers and power forward for the Lakers.

I dream about building a castle and manning the walls. I dream about traveling around the world and quiet moments at home. I dream about places and things that make me smile. I dream about MLBF and having a home library. A place with built in shelves and big overstuffed chairs.

I dream about owning a private jet and island getaways. I dream about living out the stories and promises and whispers of the night. I dream about that kiss and the moments in time. I dream about walking those roads in Jerusalem again.

I dream about doing the Ironman and the incredible amount of work it will take to get there. I dream about carving and reshaping my body so that it once again looks as I remember it.

I dream about many years from now when my children are grown and wonder if the visions I see will resemble reality. I dream of long walks on the beach and quiet drives up the coast.

I dream about writing songs and playing music. And sometimes I dream about being granted the talent and ability to perform them.

I have many dreams, far more than I have shared here. There are endless details that I could list but haven’t. Some of these dreams will become reality and others will remain unfilled. The ultimate goal is to see that I don’t look back in regret. I don’t want to have a life that ends in I could have but didn’t.

I want a life that is more than that. It is not to much too ask for. I may dream big, but I am willing to do things to make them into something more.

What Do Fathers Dream About?

The dark haired beauty looks up at me, a mass of long dark curls cascading down the side of her head and orders me to pick her up. “Abba, I am 5.5 now and I want a phone and pierced ears.”

The dark haired beauty looks up at me, a mass of long dark curls cascading down the side of her head and orders me to pick her up. “Abba, I am 5.5 now and I want a phone and pierced ears.”


dream on

As she says this she hugs me, caresses my face and kisses my cheek. This girl of mine has been studying me for her entire life. She thinks that she has me wrapped around her finger. A hug, kiss and a coy look are all tools that she uses to try and disarm me. This little girl has discovered that feminine wiles can be used to try and get her way.

I squeeze her back, kiss her forehead and ask her if she wants to know a secret. She smiles and leans in so that I can whisper in her ear. “I love you! And that is why you aren’t getting a phone.” She snaps her head back and gives me a quizzical look.

I laugh and remind her that I grew up with 1,298,098 sisters. I know all of the tricks and none of them work on me. And then I explain to her that because I love her I set boundaries. She tries one more tactic, tells me that she dreamt that I gave her a phone. I smile again and tell her that dreams are good and that mine are different.

In response she asks, “What do daddies dream about? It is an excellent question. And I swear that for a moment the little girl is gone and a woman is standing in front of me. I suppose that it catches my attention because I think of dreams often. It is a regular topic between the boys and I, dreams that is.

We talk about about them, the boys and I. All of us are in some kind of transitional place in our lives. Some are getting divorced, some are dealing with unemployment/career issues and all are trying to figure out what it means to see our thirties in the rear view mirror.

I take the dark haired beauty by her hand and lead her to the couch. We sit down and she curls up against me. I close my eyes for a moment and savor the moment. She is growing quickly and I see the time when she won’t make this sort of time for me.

I tell her that daddies dream about taking care of their families. I tell her that daddies look at their children and dream about helping them to become good people who have character and are happy. I tell her that it is my job to help her avoid making some of the mistakes that I have made. She scrunches up her face and says that is impossible, I am a boy.

I roll my eyes at her and watch her giggle. She is at that age where it is fun to say that “boys are stinky.” I say that we aren’t stinky and she tells me that she told everyone in school that I can’t drink milk anymore. I smile at her and tell her that she should tell them I am “lactose intolerant.” That should make for fine conversation.

Just when I think that I have redirected the topic she tells me that she doesn’t want to go in the bathroom when I come out of it. Damn if this kid isn’t trying to get the last word on me. I smile at her and tell her that it is time to get ready for bed. She tells me that she isn’t ready.

I nod my head and tell her that I have a solution for that. She asks me what it is and tell her to follow me into the kitchen. I open up the fridge and take out the milk. As I get a cup I tell her that if she doesn’t want to go to bed she can hang out and see what happens if I drink milk.

She scrunches up her nose and screams “no way.” I smile and chuckle. I have to call my sisters and let them know that I have found a new victim for old tricks.

A short time later that little girl is tucked inside her bed. She has just finished reading a story to me. As she drifts off to sleep I smile and think about writing a post about my dreams. Maybe I have grown a bit too accustomed to blogging about life. 😉

If I Was a Professional Blogger

When I said that 2010 is going to be the Year of Jack it was because 2009 was in many ways the worst year of my life. It felt a bit like I was slowly being suffocated. I am not afraid of dying, but I prefer something quick and painless, don’t we all.

But as my kids say I am 40.5 and part of a family with incredible genes so life is really just beginning for me. That is how I view 2010, the new beginning. Part of that new beginning involved heavy thought about what I want to do on a professional level.  What career path do I want to follow.

In a perfect world I’d play left field for the Dodgers and power forward for the Lakers. In the land of reality I have to adjust those goals somewhat. Walk with me for another moment and I’ll tell you some more. I have a BA in Journalism. I was the Editor-in-Chief of my high school and college newspapers. For a while I thought that I was going to be a sports reporter.

It didn’t happen. Looking back from my freshman year of college until today I see an interesting path of things that I have done. Here is an incomplete list:

  • Teacher/Youth Director/Youth Advisor/life guard
  • Salesman- sold advertising, copiers, sun glasses, tools for cutting for concrete
  • Dir. of Marketing
  • Writer
  • Construction jobs- Primarily as a project manager but it includes a few other items as well.
  • Information Broker/Business Development/Meshugehneh

I intentionally left off the obvious husband/father type stuff. Looking back it reminds me a bit of a real life version of Chutes and Ladders, but far more complicated. Maybe a spider web version of Chutes and Ladders makes more sense, I don’t know.

If I was a professional blogger I’d take all those experiences and tell stories about my life. I’d connect with my readers and do my best to build a community. A community of people who love to come here not because they like reading my tales, but because they like each other. It would be a combination of bar/diner/home and backyard.

You hang out at Jack’s because everyone knows your name. You hang out at Jacks’ because his story is your story and your story is their story. You hang out at Jack’s because you can’t believe that idiot still comes by. You know, the one that drives you crazy for whatever reason. Jack’s place is real. It is authentic. You don’t like everyone, but those people are the exception. The good far outweighs the bad and that makes Jack’s place a precious commodity, a refuge you can’t do without.

That is the rough draft, just a few sketches I made on a cyber napkin while sitting on my cyber bar stool, or maybe it is a booth, or a hammock. Doesn’t really matter.

If was a professional blogger that is sort of how I hope it would be.

I am starting out the year in one place, don’t know where I’ll be living or what I’ll be doing- but it will all be part of the story. If you like adventure stick around and join me, let’s see what happens.

2010 is the Year of Jack.