The Race to a Better Matchstick

A long time ago, I went to Russia. I met, fell in love with, and married my translator. Not long after we got married my Russian bride and I were at home just getting to know each other. For some reason, she really wanted to know the location of military outposts nearby. Crazy, right? One … Continue reading The Race to a Better Matchstick

Visa Application

For a long time after the American Embassy in Moscow denied her request for a visa, I thought about getting my fiancé (somehow) to Mexico and then crossing the southern border into Texas — um, legally — illegally — I didn’t care. Only because I didn’t know. Really! Then we could get married and everything would be perfect. I don’t know … Continue reading Visa Application

Broken Legs and Priorities

The impact threw me from the motorcycle into the air in the opposite direction of the way we had been traveling. Physics is funny like that! I landed on my right leg, which snapped like an unlucky baseball bat in the hands of an angry Bo Jackson, who just struck out. Things were worse for … Continue reading Broken Legs and Priorities

Managing Expectations

I tell my wife and daughters all the time to manage their expectations. Whether it’s a new job, new boyfriend, new car, fast food, new conspiracy theory, or new girl scout cookie flavors, manage your expectations. You get the picture. I recommend managing expectations about pretty much everything in life. Don’t have unrealistic expectations (positive … Continue reading Managing Expectations

Never Rescue Frogs (They’re Evil)

I am sitting on the couch in the lobby of our local gym because I rescued a frog. Now, normally, I’d be upstairs working out — in the very limited way that I do. My wife is upstairs in the torture room she calls “exercise.” Healthy people walk by with their frou-frou water on the way to … Continue reading Never Rescue Frogs (They’re Evil)

Russian Sweet Tea

“You’re doing this wrong.” Don’t you get tired of these stupid headlines? I do! You’re Eating Apples All Wrong You’re Making Beans All Wrong You’re Eating Pizza All Wrong You’re Cooking Meth the Wrong Way I could go on. Regardless, let me share why it's important that you make sweet tea the right way. You’re … Continue reading Russian Sweet Tea

The Blaming Game Starter Pack

I am probably five or six years old. I’m sitting at a table with other preschool kids. The teacher is Mrs. Payne and it’s almost time for the bell to ring and dismiss a hoard of wild little kids to trample anything on their way to the school buses. Mrs. Payne is going on about … Continue reading The Blaming Game Starter Pack

Congratulations, you’re pregnant

There are a few things that professors will tell you not to do when you are in law school: don’t get married, don’t have a baby, or don’t rob banks. Crazy, right? I mean, how are we supposed to live? Thankfully, my experience in these endeavors is limited. And the statute of limitations hasn’t run … Continue reading Congratulations, you’re pregnant

The Useless Microphone

I‘m sitting in an audience straining to hear the speaker. “Why?” you ask? I’ll tell you. The microphone is too far away from the dude’s mouth. All he needs to do is to move closer to the microphone and, BAM, his little voice would be amplified and we’d hear him. But he doesn’t. Why do … Continue reading The Useless Microphone

Keys and Tryouts

I’m near Columbus, Mississippi, auditioning for a preaching job. I stop at a gas station just a mile or so from the church building where the audition was to occur. You may be surprised to hear the word “audition” associated with interviewing for a preaching job. My experience is that folks are interested in hiring … Continue reading Keys and Tryouts

Lame Claim to Fame

To successfully navigate the 12-step program of Alcoholics Anonymous, one must have a sponsor to steer the drunk from continuing on his or her destructive path. My dad had just such a sponsor. He is the guy in the photo (below). I’ve listened to my dad, through smoke-filled rooms, give testimony to his life with … Continue reading Lame Claim to Fame

The Russian Lesson

In the next room, I hear the unmistakable chatter of a foreign language. Actually, I hear my bride, Inna, speaking Russian, which is not all that unusual as she was born and raised in the land of matryoshkas (see picture), permafrost (be thankful you don’t have it), and, well, more snow. Inna is teaching Russian … Continue reading The Russian Lesson

Chapter Endings

At the time, I thought the years (actually only six weeks) that I had spent in basic military training at lovely Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio were the worst. But the next day after graduation (and after having been awarded honor graduate for my “skills” as guidon during honor flight competition) I stepped … Continue reading Chapter Endings