Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Toy Hall Of Fame...

Yep. There's a Toy Hall Of Fame.

It was formed in 1998, which, surprisingly, was 16 years ago and not 6.

This year's nominees are: American Girl Dolls, Bubbles, Fisher Price

Little People, Hess Trucks, Little Green Army Men, My Little Pony,

Operation, Paper Airplane, Pots and Pans, Rubik's Cube, Slip-N-Slide

and the Teenaged Mutant Ninja Turtles....

Two of them will make the cut.

Some classics that have already been inducted include:

The Stick. In my hands it became a sword or bat, gun or fishing pole.

Etch A Sketch. The "original" laptop. I spent hours making boxes

and staircases, and seconds trying to make a circle before I'd give up.

Play Doh. I close my eyes and I can still smell it.

Frisbee. I owned a number of them, and their life expectancy

depended on my ability to keep them away from nearby roofs

and/or our dog, Lucky.

The Cardboard Box is in there too.  I made tanks and spaceships out of


Fun stuff.

But it wasn't just about the toy.

It was about imagination and pretending.

Because, after all,without them, a stick's just a...........stick.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Seek and ye shall find........

I was looking for another book when I came across this one.

I opened it and noticed the date that it was presented to me.

51 years ago today.

I had just started the 4th grade.

Life was simple.

Of course, a lot has happened over the years.

School. Career. Marriage. Family.

Joy and tragedy.

Life got more complicated.

Finding this Bible reminded me of my roots.

Both physical and spiritual.

I am so very far from perfect, a sinner in thoughts and deeds.

But this Book has been the foundation for a life I've tried to live.

And I'll keep on trying....

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

My Pyramid Scheme......

I love how the simplest things can trigger a long forgotten memory.

Today I saw a travel brochure that featured the Egyptian pyramids.

I immediately flashed back to my 6th grade social studies class.

We have a project due and I had decided on making a replica of

a pyramid.  I had crafted the shape of the pyramid from cardboard

and wanted to cover it in the same stuff I had made "salt maps" from for

earlier projects.  Young people these days have zero idea what I'm

talking about when I reference "salt maps".

It was a concoction of salt, flour and water, that when blended

properly, would allow you to fashion topographical features onto

the outline of a map that you had drawn on a piece of plywood.

You used food coloring to denote different features.

Blue for water.  Green for land.

But for the pyramid, I needed brown.

I was at a loss, until my Dad came up with the perfect remedy.

Instead of using water, why not try using coffee?

And so I did.

It gave the mixture a very realistic desert appearance.

I presented my pyramid.

It looked great.

I received an "A" from my teacher.

While I can't prove that I'm a unique case, I can tell you

that I'm the only student that I've ever heard of to get an "A"

because their teacher loved the way a project smelled...

Friday, September 12, 2014

They came in a can......

Younger friends think I'm joking.

But I'm not.

They came in a can.  And they were delivered to our front door.

Potato chips.

What a concept.

I can't tell you the last time an ice cream truck rolled through

our neighborhood.

But I remember those chips.

And the big can they came in.

Back when my metabolism mimicked that of a three week

old gerbil.  On crack.

Thursday, September 11, 2014


Silence is the rule in my mornings.

Easier to focus on the day ahead.  The "To Do's" and the "Might Do's"...

Today was different.  I turned on the TV.

I wanted the tributes and the reminders of that morning 13 years ago.

I watched a while and remembered where I was.

Just like everybody did today.

I knew that I would be emotionally raw.

I was surprised to discover that it wasn't the replays on TV

that hit me the hardest.

It was, as it often is, the little things.

I went to get my flu shot, and at the top of the form I had to fill out

was a space for today's date.

The simple act of writing "9/11" jolted me.  I felt a chill.

I left, and on my way home while sitting at a traffic light,

a biker zoomed in front of me with a big American flag

mounted onboard his Harley.

A little further down the road, a big pickup went by with two Old Glorys

flappin' in the sunshine.

I smiled.

My heart pounded.

And there was something in my eye.

Remembering will do that to you.

Never forget.

Never surrender.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Leaving on a jet plane.........

I jet out tomorrow for Wilmington, Delaware.

I'm headed up there to be part of the team that will conduct

their 4th Annual Radiothon For Nemours/DuPont Children's Hospital.

I'm going because I want to.

I'm going because I need to.

The 19 radiothons that I was a part of for Duke Children's

Hospital revealed to me my passion.  My purpose.

I won't be on the air, but I'll be behind the scenes.

And I am quite OK with that.

Coaching the radio talent, and hopefully getting them to

feel what I always felt when I did them.  Teaching them the

importance of emotion.

There are a lot of stats regarding a children's hospital.

How many beds there are.

How many patients are seen yearly.

How many diapers they go through per month.

Those are the nuts and bolts.

But the heart and soul of a children's hospital are

the stories...

The stories of survival and loss, good news and bad,

and the stories about one of the most important four letter

words I know....