Friday, November 29, 2013


                                                        You Kiss Just Like a Girl

            After all the carnage he’d left in the school parking lot, my brother, Denny, still had enough nerve to ask if he could go to the party.  Mom sat at the kitchen table, her hair stacked up lopsided like the dishes in our sink, smoking Tareyton’s down to the bud, tapping her nails on the Formica table and staring at Denny as if he was some kind of baby killer. 
“You figure out how to pay for all those windshields yet?  Huh?” she asked.  She threw a fork but Denny ducked in time and the tines clattered off the window, hitting, Gilligan, our big blind cat.  “I don’t want to hear another word from you,” Mother said, testing out her tough guy suit, unaccustomed to all this recent madness.  “Do you understand me?  Not a peep.”
            In all, fronts and backs included, Denny popped nineteen windshields.  Used the very bat Dad had taught us how to hit with. Denny was already popular enough, but because these were all faculty cars, he became a hero to fellow students.  The teachers would have pressed charges if Dad hadn’t served a seven year stint as principal before taking off on a fling with the anorexic lady who taught first year Spanish. 
            The party was at Vickie Hewitt’s house.  Vickie had a full figure, not fat, just a lot of woman for a junior.  And she dyed her hair Marilyn Monroe white.  Plus she always had a lot of black friends over, which meant the music jammed and the party would be better because in the seventies black people were the only ones who knew how to dance.
            I’m not sure what compelled me to show up.  I was Denny’s look-alike brother, but shy and younger by a year.  He had a motorcycle and a pierced ear.  I had my paperbacks.  About the only thing we had in common was a blood line and the shared hatred of our father.
            When Vickie answered the door, my hair puffed back from so much blasting bass.  Her older sister, Christy slid around the hinge and gave me gave me a squishy hug, smothering me in her waterbed breasts.  At first it felt like one of Grandma’s hugs but then Vickie pressed in from behind me and then it wasn’t anything like Grand.  I pulled away too hard, staggered off balance and slipped into a puddle of beer or urine, or both.
            “Take it easy, Peach Fuzz,” Christy said, “That’s just us loving on you.”
            “But I couldn’t breathe,” I said, realizing at once how idiotic those words sounded.
            The music was Soul Train splendid, loud, thumping through the floorboards and walls and furniture, everything moving whether it wanted to or not.  Couples were bumping on the couch and kitchen table, grinding against appliances or the Hewitt’s incandescent fish tank which was so large it consumed an entire wall.
            I knew every person at the party, but not one was a friend.  Now they beamed when they saw me.  They gave me skin and arm bumps and back slaps and offers of free, under-the-counter, stimulants.  Mostly people wanted to know why Denny didn’t come and every time I declined drugs or drink, they asked if I was sick.
            “Nah, he’s not sick,” Vickie said, curling her lip in a snicker.  “He’s the good one.  Gonna be a pastor.  Aren’t you?”
            In that moment of mimicry, I saw Vickie’s fear as clearly as the monster pimple thrumming on my cheek.  Strange as it was, Vickie and I had a lot in common.  We were both younger siblings, both blonde (me a real one) and we were both terrified not so much of the future, but of what was happening in our worlds today, and what would happen tomorrow after the party ended, when it was just another flat weekend with nothing to do.             
I don’t know why, but I took her hand and did not let go.  I led her through the crowd and then up the stairs and said, “Which one?” and she pointed at the farthest down the hall, so I turned into the room and shut the door and kissed her at once.
            She made a little electrical noise and then I realized it was just Vickie’s leather pants squawking from the pressure of my knee on them.
            We ended up on the bed.  Sitting on the edge of it.  The dresser top had doilies all over it, along with perfume bottles and different framed photographs.  “You’re a little old-fashioned,” I said.  “That’s okay.  I am, too.”
            Vickie slapped my thigh.  “You retard.  This is my folk’s room.  You picked the wrong one.”
            “Folks?  But I thought your Mom left you guys.”
It came out as blunt as that--a chainsaw to the throat.  It came out the same way I pictured my own situation--raw and serrated.  
Vickie’s eyes watered.  “Hey,” I said.  “I’m sorry.  I didn’t mean it like that.”
            She didn’t leave or slap me or curse.  Instead she leaned into my chest, her whole body warm and damp now, shuddering, sobbing.
            When she came up for air, Vickie’s makeup was so tragically smeared that it looked like she’d been beaten with a black licorice whip. 
I gave her tissues but she shredded them.  She told me how miserable she was, that she thought about killing herself as often as boys thought about sex.
“I’m a bad person,” she told me.
I told her she wasn’t.  People loved her.  She was popular.  “Look at that crowd downstairs.”
“Those are my sister’s friends.”
“But still, you know some of them.
She blew her nose on the corner of a pillow case and asked, “Are you really going to be a pastor when you grow up?”
            I kissed her again.  It was easier now, which helped, because anytime a person brought up me being a pastor, it forced momentum down a certain direction.
            When she pulled back, she said, “You know I’m Denny’s girl, right?”
            She must have really thought I was stupid.  “Of course,” I said.  “No duh.”
            As I got up, I half-expected her to stop me, but she didn’t.  Instead she only asked, “You are gay, aren’t you?  Denny says you are.”
            I bit my lip, feeling my face flood with blood.  “Why is it if you’re shy, people always think you’re gay?”
            “Hey, relax.  I don’t care if you are.”
            “But, so you know,” she said, her eyes narrowing in seriousness, “you do kiss just like a girl.”
            I closed the door behind me and stepped out into the hall where a fire engine alarm was coming up from a stereo as The Ohio Players took on, “Fire.”
            Downstairs I found the utilities closet.  I broke a broom in half, and then a mop.  I took the sticks into the kitchen.  They felt light yet prodigious enough for the job.  They made a windy whistle whenever I whirlwinded them, which I did.
The windows exploded easily, almost self-combusting, as if they’d been waiting for this moment all along.  Pearls and husks of glass showered the air as I smashed the liquor bottles.  Ash trays.  Dishes and water glasses.  The huge television set.  Lamps.  Wall clock.  Chandelier.  And then the finale, the fish tank.
A small ocean poured forth and I thought of sailors, The Titanic, Noah.  Several slug-gray salamander-looking guppies squiggled near my toes, making it seem as if the entire shag rug were moving, scratching itself.  I apologized to the fish, but did not otherwise move save a solitary one.  I took out two lava lamps and a family portrait.
            By the time the cops arrived, I had stopped swinging.  My arms felt strapped with sand bags and my shoulders burned.
They used a blow horn, threatening tear gas.  For just a moment, I thought how easy it would be to provoke one or more of the officers into shooting me, but instead I stood where I was, hands at my sides. 
“We’re coming in!” they screamed.

Which was fine.  I’d done what I’d come to do.  I’d made my own mark.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


…In light of the 50th anniversary of JFK assignation, I thought these things were interesting:
Approximate number of public schools named after:

John Kennedy: 101
Dwight Eisenhower: 78
George Washington: 52
Abraham Lincoln: 43
Harry Truman: 38

Highest first approval ratings post-inauguration Day:
Kennedy: 72%
Carter: 66%
Obama: 64%
Nixon: 60%
Clinton: 58%

…Yesterday I wrote these three poems for a new publication site called The Rainbow Journal:

Hope In Rainbows

I found him hanging onto to the end of a rainbow
outside a bus terminal
where trash and insect husks had gathered at his feet.
No one else was watching,
not the saints or hecklers,
not even the sulking winter sun.
Gusting winds kept threating to break his hold but
this one was a fighter,
cackling as he battled back.
And when I asked why he wouldn’t let go,
he turned and gave me a toothless grin, saying,
“I still believe.”

Anniversary Rainbow

She gives me her half of the rainbow.
“To borrow,” she says.
She’s loaned me other things—
false promises,
barbwire kisses,
a life in purgatory—
and I’ve been stung enough times to know
she aims low and never misses.

It’ll be three years tomorrow
but I don’t want another day,
so I tell her to keep her rainbow.
walking out of the house,
leaving without a plan,
happy to finally be free.

The Girl Who Once Loved Rainbows

My daughter paints rainbows on her fingernails,
thinly striped but bright as crayons.
While she waits for them to dry I ask about her new boyfriend,
the one named Axle with a silver hoop through his lip
and two big fists.
She says he’s fine, he’s good, he’s looking for work, why am I always asking about Axle?
My daughter doesn’t know I’ve seen her bruises,
that wearing a turtleneck in summer calls attention.
I look at her face, trying to find the little girl who once squealed over seeing a double rainbow.
I search and I search,

but her sky is clear.

Monday, November 25, 2013


…How was your weekend?  Did you spend it with people who make you happy?

…I like this story (There was a really sweet photo of the homeless man hugging the hotel manager that I couldn’t get):

            Joel Hartman was homeless, hungry and dumpster diving for food when he came across what could have been an easy payday, a tourist's wallet with her identification and credit card. 
Hartman, who admitted to HLN affiliate WSB that he's has done bad deeds in the past due to drinking and doing drugs, decided to take the high road and find the wallet's owner. 
Hartman, 36, walked the streets of downtown Atlanta going to four different hotels before discovering the owner was staying at the Omni Hotel at CNN Center.
Surveillance videos captured Hartman turning in the wallet to hotel security guards. He gave them a fake name, "Josh Crabber," figuring they didn't need to know who he was since he was doing the right thing.
Scott Stuckey, the managing director of the hotel, found out that the wallet belonged to a French tourist in town for a conference. The woman had reported to Atlanta police that her wallet had been stolen on November 7 and now thanks to Hartman's perseverance, she had it back.
Stuckey knew it was his turn to do the tracking.
"When you're looking through food in the garbage can, it's probably one of the toughest times of his life. But when you find somebody's wallet and you do the right thing, I think we'd like to do the right thing by this person," Stuckey told WSB. 
Stuckey and members of his staff hit the streets talking to homeless people looking for their wallet hero. On November 22 after hearing through word of mouth that he was being sought, Hartman showed up at the Omni, where Stuckey and hotel staff wanted to reward him in a big way. 
The hotel put the homeless man up in a luxury room through the Thanksgiving holiday. The hotel also treated Hartman to room service and gave him $500. Hartman was speechless at the gesture. All he could do was sweep Stuckey into a big hug and say thank you. 
"It's just for doing the right thing. Maybe someone will see this, totally drugged out and stuff, like that ugly guy can do something about it. Maybe I can too," Hartman said. 
Hartman told WSB that he's been homeless since March, when his longtime girlfriend died. Recently, he'd been sleeping in the woods in an Atlanta suburb. After he leaves the Omni, Hartman said he'll get on a freight train and head to Alaska.

Hartman said he has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and he has a hard time holding down a steady job, but he does odd jobs. 

Friday, November 22, 2013


          Song of Infinity

            Fat.  Fattie.  Fattie Mattie.  That’s what she calls herself, what her mother calls her, too.  One says it out loud and the other writes it on her thigh with the metal tooth of a hair brush. 
For Mattie’s birthday she gets to pick the cake flavor but someone has misspelled Happy and her name, so Mattie’s mother makes a joke, says that money can’t buy happiness but it should at least be able to afford Happy.
            That night Mattie dreams of porcupines.  She wakes and remembers two porcupines having sex and thinks to herself, how clever that neither one gets hurt in the process.
            Her next dream is about Uncle Ernesto, his fang teeth and yellow eyes.  He smells like venom and spits peanut shells in her ear.  His whiskers are prickly against her skin, same as a porcupine.
            In the morning, as a diversion, Mattie takes up singing.  Instead of speaking or communicating she sings.  All the time, there is a song on her lips.  Now she no longer stutters.
            On the bus there are 18 x’s 2 places to sit.  Mattie takes the entire back row.  Everyone leaves her alone.  She’s already ruled out suicide but just to see what it might be like she stabs a butcher knife through the vinyl seat, the blade nicking her nylons.  Nacho-tinged laughter rattles around the bus cab like lost hubcaps down the street.  Next, someone tosses a condom water balloon, and when it bursts perfectly in Mattie’s lap, there’s a tornado of squeals and giggles.  It doesn’t matter now, so Mattie presses her palm into her pelvis, where a squiggling baby would be if she were pregnant.  She uses so much pressure that pee shoots through her skirt and down her ankles and into her shoes, and even though no one’s watching or listening she takes up an aria by the great Malena Ernman.
When she’s at the pool that weekend Mattie closes her eyes and studies the muffled blanket noises of people spending their lives.  What she hears seems impossible to her, so she hums a tune, but humming is not the same as singing, just as living is not the same as filling out the moments of a life.
Mattie stands up and arches her back.  She hears her mother’s voice warning her about posture, about getting osteoporosis and how it’s more slimming if you don’t hunch your shoulders. 
People stare and jeer and jab fingers in the air at her.  Mattie doesn’t care.  She sings a song, the one about the silken feel of a lover’s skin and his lips tasting like candied roses. 
She walks to the diving board, the high dive, steps across the plank and sits on the edge, and when the ones on the ladder behind her start to scream for her to jump, Mattie removes the knife from her suit bottoms and holds it like a torch, same as Lady Liberty.
            They scream for her, “Don’t do it!”  Some scream that she should.  Some beg, “Please, please, do it!”
            No one’s ever wanted anything from her that Mattie can remember and so she obliges, jams the blade all the way through her thigh, and it would still be stuck to the diving board but the tip breaks off as Mattie’s weigh crumbles like a mountain, heaving forward.
She somersaults.  She smiles.  The pain is electric and overwhelming.  Mattie hadn’t thought it would hurt so much, or even, that such a thing was possible.  The gusting air is a chorus of screams gift-wrapped as a song.

The last thing she sees is the little girl with the pink snow cone standing under a shade umbrella.  Their eyes meet.  The girl holds the cone skyward, a proud statue saluting, and opens her mouth to sing.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


…I saw “This Is Forty” the other day.  What a funny film.  I was smiling throughout.  Great acting, a bit vulgar, but totally fun.
I also saw “Blue Valentine” again.  Watching that is like getting your heart shredded by a woodchipper.  Oh my.  Both Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams are amazing, and it makes one wonder what a person has to do to get nominated for an Oscar.

Here are some things I like:

"We all have dreams. And we all get disappointed. We all have heartache and we suffer and work to get through it. It’s just the human condition. ...So I stand here today so proud. I’m so proud of my team and I’m so proud of myself." Diana Nyad, who at age 64 swam 103 miles from Cuba to Florida

"The greatest achievement of the human spirit is to live up to one's opportunities, and to make the most of one's resources." Luc de Clapiers

"The young do not know enough to be prudent, and therefore they attempt the impossible -- and achieve it, generation after generation." Pearl S. Buck

"How far that little candle throws its beams! So shines a good deed in a naughty world." Shakespeare

"You're a ghost driving a meat coated skeleton made from stardust, what do you have to be scared of?" William Gibson

"The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it." Chinese proverb

"The vision must be followed by the venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps - We must step up the stairs." Vance

"You write poetry books that maybe 50 people read and you just keep doing your work because you have to. Because it's your calling." -- Patti Smith

"Choice of attention, to pay attention to this and ignore that, is to the inner life what choice of action is to the outer." W. H. Auden

"Life leaps like a geyser for those willing to drill through the rock of inertia." Alexis Carrel

Monday, November 18, 2013


Reasons I Should Be Dead
Before I was or am death comes for me rambunctious sloppy drunk death knocking over a headboard a mirror breaking a lamp or plate black blast to the ribs to her back belly uppercut that shakes the planet the lake the ocean the soup that I swim and float in becoming a typhoon while I bob like an upended boat but do not drown.
Before I am fully me death returns again sneaky bastard while I’m sleeping slumbering dreaming not snoring death and death’s hand stabbing a thin metal rod into the milky cloud where I am hiding hibernating death poking and jabbing at the juice and fleshy walls tearing red gashes into this embryonic tent angling aiming for me a slippery fish who will not be so easily aborted.
After I am born the woman driving the car takes long pulls on her cigarette as if she’s french kissing a snake made of smoke touching a finger to the edge of her white cat-eyed glasses “have I seen you before?” I say only saliva slips out over my lips like goo she is sad is annoyed she sneers down at me on the seat and says “what?” I recognize the voice I want to say “it’s you isn’t it?  you’re my mother?” but my words my thoughts are gurgles Gerber baby food the thunderbird trundles over some tracks then shuts off even though Charlie Pride goes on singing does my ring hurt your finger when you go out at night I want to ask “why are we stopping?” but bubbles—two or three floaters—slide out of my mouth instead this is where grandmother died not necessarily here but on a set of railroad tracks somewhere in the middle of the night no one knowing if it was an accident or on purpose I heard them talking—the one time they were civil instead of two angry attack dogs—making funeral arrangements maybe we will go like gran “mom we’d better move a train might come” those are the words in my constipated head that become nothing but soapsuds and blue breath on the way out of my mouth “I can tell I can just tell” mother says “you’re going to be like all the rest a useless piece of shit.”
I am in another car and the man who is my new dad who is not my real dad my blood dad he has the convertible caddie going very fast the car black as evening long like a parade float but sleek I wish the wind weren’t so rough I wish I wasn’t freezing I wish my brothers would stop saying “faster! faster!” I wish my mom would stop holding onto her head scarf and use it for a parachute a homemade airlift cape that could get us out of here but instead we go over a hill leaping the crest like a slow motion trout and I think this is where death will get me right here all of us together a bunch of broken bones bloody bits or a burnt out car nothing to do but scream and pray my soul escapes somehow.
The bathroom is the warmest place the heat vent pours out air holding back holding down holding apart some of the noise it’s not my favorite room because of the smell but I go there when they start to yell this time someone kissed someone else you cheating sonofabitch you bitch you bastard and there’s hell to pay I’m a boy supposed to be a man already so I open the door in time to see his oiled obsidian hair glinting open in time to see him shoot an arrow into the closed kitchen window glass shattering breaking apart like angry glaciers and when he turns the bow to me I say to myself “be brave don’t duck don’t run don’t hide we are done here.”
I was too loud in church or not paying enough attention to the pastor or my room was dirty or my thoughts were dirty or I missed “Please” or wasn’t grateful enough or just because because I say so because I’m in charge because this is my house because of some reason or other whatever reason any reason the belt swings and slashes wuuuh wuuuh wuuuh through the air leather helicopter blades that bite and sting but then it stops to be adjusted so the buckle is the end that rains metal teeth bronze nails hail hitting my head my shoulders my arms here’s my heart cut it open go ahead make a mess of things get it over with I won’t hate you if you are quick.
This guy can drink drinks like a fish a whale get him the funnel holy hell man how’re you still standing he’s my hero whatever you do don’t crash on your back man sleep on your stomach remember Janice Joplin and Jimmie H if they say anything else to me it is oatmeal in my ears the stairs reach right up and slap me the halls hit me someone’s got one arm someone the other and I fall a final time until there’s light everything white but not heaven the nurse saying good morning young man I hope you know how lucky you are.
Hey bogart you got a death wish or what? that wasn’t a line more like an avalanche yeah yeah I say wanting to say more but my face is numb down to the roots of my molars eyes jittery ice cubes nose runny or bleeding hair 4th of July sparklers twitching my scalp but none of that matters as much as my heart sprinting up and down the gym shoe stomps booming in my ears bouncing off one wall then the next make it stop make it stop no wait don’t make it stop that’s called dead just slow the pounding please what am I doing here anyway that guy has a thin hockey stick thingy with a boomerang end scraping green felt saying “seven seven out craps” and there are men around me my friends and strangers comic book patches 12 the hard way other numbers and squares dice die my friends my heart my friend what happens here stays here.
Blood taste like licking a rock when I open my eyes I see my eyes staring back at me in the rearview how did I get here why is my car stopped stalled hit something a curb lip swollen star fruit jaw sore must have hit the steering wheel hard no airbag should be dead what time is it I keep cheating time or it keeps throwing me a life line or maybe this is how it tortures me by keeping me alive why does everyone else want it so bad life?
This is not the same as the other times the other times death came for me now I am searching for it at five am in the pitch dark running miles getting in mileage before the marathon is the rationale I tell my wife here it comes sixty five going seventy speeding semi on my side of the road just a hitch a little jump is all it takes and SLAM SPLAT we’re done here finally but that driver he has a wife too or a mom maybe maybe even one that loves him got to be fair play fair don’t fuck it up for other people for other people death is what they run from not to.
The box is white a cream-colored coffin some irony there who called for an open casket is this somebody’s idea of a joke we tell jokes my brothers and I in hushed tones out in the sober foyer us older almost too old to take no longer skinny barefoot boys but men with bellies bald heads  grudges and our own bags of sins we shuffle inside no different than dust ourselves sit on the stone hard wooden pews settle unsettle cough spit fidget fart silently “she is with God” the man in glasses says is he a liar we sing about grace “when we’ve been here ten thousand years bright shining as the sun” and then I stand because I am called called the name I was given the one she gave me I walk down an aisle dip my head at the podium I speak do not slur do not tarry I tell the tarnished and the true I don’t use bullets or blades but something falls away something dies inside of me a molting ghost carcass floating through stained glass as I inhale my first breath in this new skin.

Friday, November 15, 2013


…It’s Friday and I think some of my Facebook friends are pretty funny.
Here’s what a few of them had to say:

-i want to meet the guy who is driving around south philly in a white truck with a gold-trimmed vanity plate that says BUFFMAN and a pair of shiny blue balls hanging off the back.

-Does anyone else have to constantly replace leggings because they rip on their upper thigh coming dangerously close to exposing their vagina?

-I was into Panic! At the Disco, until I discovered Zoloft! At the Pharmacy.

-In first grade, deprived of such delicacies, I stole a classmate's hostess snowballs from her lunch, got away with it, and have felt guilty ever since.

negative people are so fucking funny.

-Someone just challenged me to "No Drink December." I interpret this as someone wanting me dead.

-Spending the night in a creepy three-story building -- an empty college dormitory -- and I am the only human being in here.

-Pass the flask and close the tab.

-"Yes, fucker, I'll have the crispy quail."

-overworked. sleep-deprived. soft-hearted.

-you can't farm death when you're still buried in the dinosaur heart of time.

-These GU energy gels are great. I think I'm going to start hitting one before I preach.

-i'm not doing this to get attention. i just wanna know. am i pretty?
I hope I get through airport security with all of this poetry in my suitcase...
Serial Killer tip #1: Keep all the dead bodies on Myspace.
Where but in Seattle can you hire a man with a herd of goats to clear a city hillside of unwanted vegetation?
repaired my shoe sole with shoe glue. in the process i lost a sock. good glue.

-Dear Rand Paul you carpetbagging boil-tick on the ass of idiocy…

-if there's anything on facebook i cant stand, it's most of you

Wednesday, November 13, 2013



            We watched water moccasins coil and uncoil like shiny shoe laces, slithering across the pond’s murky surface, their movements making towel-snapping sounds.
            It was twilight--the plum-colored sky a bruised cheek overhead--and neither of us spoke. 
            Winds howled through the high-topped cedars, spitting bits of chaff into our hair and down my shirt collar where it itched my spine like a needling finger.
            I wanted to ask if Mom’s new boyfriend had done anything, had touched or hurt her, but my sister looked transfixed by the endless series of snakes skirting across the water.
            I wanted to be the big brother who could remedy things, even though I was afraid of heights and small spaces, even though, at ten years of age, I still wet the bed and was beat for doing so.
            I thought I should say something.  Sis had gotten quiet in recent months, thin, too, her limbs lank like orange extension cords, all elbows, knots and knobs.  Now I watched her break a fallen tree branch in half and chuck it back into the woods.  I watched her claw bark off an old evergreen with her fingernails, growling maniacally as she did so.  I let her be because there was nothing else to do about it.
            Once the moon appeared--bald and glowing like white skull-- I grew nervous, said, “We should get back.”  Said, “They’ll only be more trouble if we don’t.”
            But Ginny began picking up stones instead, flinging them at the sounds the unseen snakes were making.
            I told her it was too late.  I told her it was useless, that she wouldn’t be able to hit a single snake in such darkness, but she threw anyway, the whites of her eyes flickering like warning lights, as if she knew exactly what to do next.

Monday, November 11, 2013


…I’ve got a busy week ahead.  How about you?

…Happy Veteran’s Day to all the vets and especially my brothers who served, one in Viet Nam and another who is still serving today.

…Here are some things I like to start of the middle of November:

Whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re right. –Henry Ford

Whatever the mind of man can conceive and believe, it can achieve. –Napoleon Hill

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. –Steve Jobs

Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value. –Albert Einstein

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.  –Robert Frost

The common question that gets asked in business is, ‘why?’ That’s a good question, but an equally valid question is, ‘why not?’ -Jeffrey Bezos

You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. –Wayne Gretzky

I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed. –Michael Jordan

Every strike brings me closer to the next home run. –Babe Ruth

Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans. –John Lennon

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do, so throw off the bowlines, sail away from safe harbor, catch the trade winds in your sails.  Explore, Dream, Discover. –Mark Twain

If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten. –Tony Robbins

The mind is everything. What you think you become.  –Buddha

An unexamined life is not worth living. –Socrates

Eighty percent of success is showing up. –Woody Allen

Don’t wait. The time will never be just right. –Napoleon Hill

You can never cross the ocean until you have the courage to lose sight of the shore. –Christopher Columbus

Too many people overvalue what they are not and undervalue what they are. ~Malcolm S. Forbes

It is the only unforgiveable thing really--to feel sorry for yourself. - Jess Walter

"So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past." F. Scott Fitzgerals

"Happy are those who dream dreams and are ready to pay the price to make them come true." Cardinal Suenens

Friday, November 8, 2013


…Here are some things I didn’t know but I do now:

-The other day German authorities announced that they had discovered more than 1,400 artworks--including pieces by Picasso, Matisse, Chagall and others, valued at $1.35 billion.  Apparently the goods were stolen by the Nazi's during WW 2.

-There are 70 billionaires in NYC.  1.7 million people also who live there in poverty.

-More than 47 million Americans are on food stamps.
In 2001, 17 million people got food stamps at a cost of $15 billion to run the program.  By June of this year, there were 47.8 million people getting food stamps at an annual cost of $75 million.

-Since President Kennedy's assassination, there have been more than 1,400 books written about him.

"Fists Cause Concussions" (this was an actual headline in the paper the other day.  duh.)

-The average ticket price for Game 6 of this year's World Series was $2,400.

-People spend $310 million on Halloween costumes for their pets.

-Countries with the most traffic deaths:
China –275,000
India -231,000
Nigeria -53,000
Brazil -44,000
Indonesia -42,000
USA -35,000
-YouTube is the second most popular website in the world.cid:image001.png@01CEB924.63F3B400

-The average person checks their phone 150 times per day (wow).

-The average U.S. temperature was a full degree Fahrenheit warmer than the hottest year since record-keeping began in 1895.

-So far this year over 5,000 people have been killed in Iraq.  That's the highest level since 2006.  800 were killed in August alone.

-The median household income in the U.S is $51,000.

-The yearly median household income for the richest 1% of Americans is $385,000.