30 years coaching experience/Worked Camps/Clinics on 5 Continents

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Day 13: My Hero

Day 13:

My father and I never had the close relationship I wanted growing up. Part of it is that we have different personalities and part of it is that my father was figuring out who he was as I grew up. Do not get me wrong, I had a great childhood and a great father, I still do, but I was never as close to him as I wanted to be. I will accept some responsibility for it also, because I can see my personality in my daughter, a sort of loner at times content with being by myself. But as I grew, my father was (and still is) my hero. There was so much about him that I wanted to be like from the way he walked, talked, dressed, how he was funny and intelligent, I wanted to be him.

Now I am a father. I see what he went through from a different perspective. But what has not changed, is that now my son is my hero. I want to be like him. Fearless...really that is it. My son is fearless. I know some of that is my responsibility, but he was born that way, too. He does things at a young age that I would have not been able to do even as a teenager.

So what do I do with him as his father? I continue to teach him things like I am writing about in this book, and guide him into being a fearless, positive leader. With our faith in God and what is right and wrong, I need to make sure that I help him reach his purpose at a younger age than I did. I must teach him through words and actions what it is to be a loving, caring husband and father. I must teach him through words and actions that there is something greater than himself in this world and that is a great compass for him to keep him grounded as he grows, is tested, and fails which is inevitable.

Father of a boy? My goal is to help my boy grow and develop into a good man. My legacy in helping him is that though after I am dead and gone, my actions, love, and caring for him will be passed on to him, who will then pass it on to his children. It will be something that was passed onto me and will continue on for generations to come. Wow...what a responsibility? But I would not have it any other way.

Challenge: If you are a dad to a boy, hug him, kiss him, and tell him how wonderful he is. But do not hesitate to teach him discipline and to understand his responsibilities as a future man.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Day 12: What's Your Purpose?

Day 12:

I can remember when I was younger and some of the jobs that gave me a paycheck. They were not exactly fulfilling, yet I was able to go there, put in the hours, and they gave me money. But I remember being miserable. Part of it was because I was young and immature, but the main reason is that I had not found out my purpose yet. In fact, I had not thought about it much if at all.

I trimmed Christmas trees, worked at UPS, mowed grass at Covered Bridge Golf Club, built military tents at a factory, was a prep worker at Bob Evan's restaurant, and an assortment of other jobs that I did not like. I will never forget the time that John Bradley, then head basketball coach at Henryville H.S. in Indiana asked me at 23 if I wanted to coach his freshman basketball team. Why would he ask me? No way I would be ready to do that! He gave me 24 hours and after thinking about it, I accepted.

I was right, I was in no way ready to be a basketball coach, but I kinda, sorta found my purpose. It was to be a coach! Ok, so that's what I thought, but as I evolved as a coach to becoming a teacher, I started to figure it out. My purpose is to help others, especially teenagers in finding their purpose. As a coach and now as a social studies teacher, I am around these people daily and am able to help them with that purpose.

I try to give good advice, and good advice comes from experience, and experience comes from....bad decisions. I have always found it funny that teenagers, but kids in general, will listen to an adult they respect and they feel respects them more than their own parents who actually love them. This is a huge responsibility which can cause some problems at times, but I try to help not just the students, but also their parents. Because being a parent is a tough, tough, tough job.

But what is your purpose? This goes back to self-reflection. If you are miserable in what you do for a living, then you have not found your purpose yet. Your purpose is something that brings you satisfaction on a consistent basis.

Challenge: If what you do brings you very little satisfaction, then I challenge you to continue looking for your purpose while you do what you are doing now. Once you figure out what your purpose is, I challenge you to figure out a way to work your purpose into your current career, or better yet, turn your purpose into your career.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Day 11: Daddy's Girl

Day 11:

My daughter is a Daddy's girl, or it is more like I am wrapped around her little finger. Of the two children, I see her personality more in line with mine. She did not get a lot of my bad issues, but, I guess that is perspective. She is a perfectionist, a competitor, and really tries, sometimes to be a great person. She does so much to help other children, but we cannot seem to get her to keep her room clean, or have her brush her teeth without reminding her every day, but I guess that is part of being young.

It is funny that before I had a daughter, I tried not to participate in anything degrading towards women, but, unfortunately if we are honest, you do. From jokes, to comments, to...well I do not have to be that honest, but it was not always nice. But then you have a daughter and the way you see other women is through the eyes of their fathers. The jokes or comments that you might think funny, are not so funny anymore.

This is a scary world raising a daughter. Young boys will be exposed to pornography more than any past generation and they will develop much of how they treat women from watching that stuff. They will not be able to help themselves especially if they do not reflect or deny themselves that which is so readily available.

The scripture that I hang onto is Proverbs 22:6 "train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it." I hope that the way I treat my wife and the way that I raise our daughter will be true as Proverbs 22:6 states. I will be intentional in how I raise her by loving my wife, hugging and kissing my daughter and telling her how special she is often.

No matter what age she is and what she is going through, I will still see her as the baby girl that I held in my arms the first time, and I was scared to death. I will still see her as the little girl who skinned her knee and I carried upstairs to make it all better, I will still see her as the little girl moaning in pain from a severe ear ache as I hold an ice pack on her, and I will still see her as the little girl who gives me the biggest, best hugs ever.

I will never give up in helping my daughter to be a woman of worth and if it takes monitoring her social media or reading the notes in her room, I will do it. I will love her, guide her and pick her up when she falls. I pray for her often in that she will find a good man who will love her half as much as I love her. If that happens, she will be just fine.

Challenge: If you have a daughter this is not just a one day thing, it has to be a habit. Be intentional in loving her and giving her self-worth. Give her space, but be the safety net, and when necessary, out of love, keep evil away from her.

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Day 10: Be Joyful

Day 10:

Life is not about your happiness. The sooner you realize that, the happier you will be. Wait, that does not make sense. That is because life is hard, it can be a cruel, cruel world and you will not be happy all of the time. However, you can be joyful if you choose.

Life is not about your happiness, but it is about finding joy in as many moments as possible. Most joyful moments are so small that we often overlook them, thus missing out. Find joy in a song that reminds you of your childhood, find joy in a funny comment made by someone, find joy in breathing and being alive, find joy in the successes and failures of your life and of your children. They are learning and they will learn more by watching your reaction to situations than anything you could tell them.

Life can be hard, life can be unhappy, but there is much to enjoy. The choice is up to you to be joyful or to let the world beat you down. Choose joy as often as possible.

Challenge: Choose joy today in something...anything, the options can be limitless.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Day 9: Honey, I'm Home

Day 9:

Ephesians 5:25 - Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it.

What does it take to be a good spouse, more specifically here a good husband? I grew up in a home that was not religious, but I watched one thing every day that benefited me, a father who loved my mother, his wife. Many times I would watch him grab her as she walked through the house and kiss her, I watched him give of himself for her happiness and that example was good.

But growing up without any other guidance, I started to see women as an ends to a mean, as an object of my desire. I was baptized after I met my wife, but I still was not a good man or husband for a few years as I grew in my faith. As I grew, I started to truly understand Ephesians 5:25.

God so loved the world that he sent his son to die on the cross, and Jesus so loved the church that he willingly went to the cross. Jesus loved the church so much that he gave himself up for it. That is what we are all called to be as husbands, to give of ourselves, our lives if necessary, for the love of our brides.

As I grow in my faith, I have become a better man, but also a better husband. Everything about our relationship improved because of my deepening faith in God. That improvement is important for a couple of reasons. One, I am a better husband for my beautiful wife who is the daughter of my father-in-law which I get now that my daughter grows up. The second reason is that I need to be the example that my daughter will use when it is time as she grows up and some man tries to win her heart.

Challenge: Today, grab your wife, hug her, kiss her and tell her that you love her and that she is special. This is a challenge not just for today, but make it a habit. I promise it will improve your marriage and if you have children, it will be a legacy that lives on.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Day 8: It's a Wonderful Life

Day 8:

While writing this, it is the Christmas season and each year during that time I like to watch my favorite movie of all time, It's a Wonderful Life starring James Stewart as George Bailey. George is a dreamer and wanna be adventurer who through different life events is "stuck" in his hometown taking care of the family owned Building and Loan. George cannot get out of Bedford Falls, and he battles bouts of anger/depression because of it.

At the end of the movie, a large amount of money is misplaced and it looks like George will go to prison and at that moment, he realizes he is worth more dead than alive. The moment he is about to drown himself, an angel drops into the river and George saves him instead of ending his own life. The twist is that during this encounter with the angel, George wishes he'd never been born and the angel makes it so. George then sees Bedford Falls from the point of view that he'd never been born and so many things changed just because George Bailey never existed. It's a great movie and one that I recommend in putting your life in perspective.

What a great gift it would be to see the world as if you had never been born. What I think we would see is how great an influence that we all have and how different the world would be without us. No matter how famous or lack of fame you may have, you are making a difference each day. Some of that difference may be negative, but there are so many positives you are doing without trying, just imagine if you were proactive in doing good.

Challenge: Take some time today and imagine if you had never been born. Your spouse would not have met you, your children would not exist, many of the people who have thanked you for helping them whether on purpose or not, would not have had that help and what happens to them? Your heart is beating in your chest, that means you have a purpose, that purpose is used all of the time, sometimes without your knowledge. No matter how down you can get, you are a hero to someone, I promise.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Day 7: Truly See Yourself

Day 7:

Reflection. If you are not happy where you are in life, it has nothing to do with anyone else other than you. Yes, that does not sound fair or politically correct, but you are not a victim. Of course, we have all had bad things happen to us, some have had terrible, unthinkable, atrocious actions happen to them, but you still choose to be a victim of that circumstance or not.

Some things can be overcome easier, some, well, you need much, much help from caring and loving people. But you can overcome it. If you are not happy with where you are or the result of your life so far, take a step back and reflect on your actions. Your actions. Not your dad's or mom's or ex husband or ex wife, or your brother or sister, or crazy Uncle Larry (I didn't have one, that's a random name).

Now that you reflect on your life and your actions, take a look at the results of those actions and now comes the hard part; be honest with yourself. Be honest with yourself. This is the part where you play the victim card because if you truly reflect and are truly honest, you will not like the things you see or realize. 

So if you are not happy with the results of your life thus far, (sometimes it can not be so dramatic, it may be just the actions of the last few months) reflect on what you have done and what you can change, and what you can do to not be a victim of any experience you may have gone through.

Challenge: Take 5-10 minutes today to think about your life, maybe the last few weeks, months, or your entire life and see where you play the victim. Now once you have found where you have played the victim, think about why you did so. Then once you figure that out, come to grips that only one person control your behavior and whether you are victimized or not and that person is you.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Day 6: What Sports Can Do

Day 6:

I have played and coached sports for much of my life. I have a competitive nature, I am the kinda person who will compete at anything from basketball to checkers to trying to do anything that someone has told me cannot be done.

When I played sports as a younger person, I was told often that sports prepared you for life. I can remember when I lost a game or won, that I had no idea what they were speaking about. Nothing in life could be as bad as losing a game that we should not or being blown out in a game. Nothing could feel that bad. So what I had to do was pull myself up and get ready for school and face the day after a loss. To me, it was the worst thing in the world.

When I started to coach, it was similar. Nothing was worse than losing. Then I got divorced and dealt with that, the anxiety and depression after the tornado in 2012 and dealing with that, my children were born and I realized that there were more important things in life rather than winning and losing a game. However, in dealing with with those earlier hard times (losing and thinking that my world had come to an end) they were precursors in how to deal with life's hard times.

Peyton Manning said once that "it's going to be a struggle, so don't be surprised when it is" when speaking of an NFL football game. Life is the same way. There will be struggles, so do not be surprised and rely on the lessons you have learned in the past. With me, it was sports, for others it might have been real life issues dealing with their parents or lack there of or other issues that you've made it through.

Just know that no matter what you are going through today, no matter how bad, this too will pass. When dealing with my anxiety/depression a few years back, I thought this was my new life, my new normal. I had someone tell me that "you know, this isn't forever, it will get better". And when those words were spoken, it helped lift some of the weight off of me because I did not think that way.

This too will pass and it is important to understand that and to compete. Compete through your issues as if you were playing a sport, you will win. It may take time and it may be messy, but you will win especially if you rely on that which gives true hope...Jesus.

Challenge: 1 Corinthians 9:24 "Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize." If you are down, compete, it will get better. Just remember to compete the correct way.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Day 5: I Still Don't Want to Get Going

Day 5:

Ok, you have tried some of the things I have written about. You have gotten up and gotten moving, you have started reading about inspirational people, and yet, you still cannot find the desire to move. I get it, suffering from anxiety or worse yet, depression, can remove that flicker of light from your life. Both are normal parts of life, however, if you notice yourself staying in bed too long or a general feeling of "blah", do something about it.

I believe that you cannot control what happens to you, but you can control how you react to it. I used to think that through pure mental toughness, you could over come anything negative. Then when I was 43 an EF 4 tornado passed over the high school I was teaching at and had a real near death experience. It was not like falling out of bed fear, but an actual "this is it" type moment as the school was completely destroyed. At first, I was fine, I felt I was invincible, then came the severe anxiety and then depression which I still suffer from time to time.

I felt helpless and out of control, I was not able to control my reaction to what happened to me and then through that perceived weakness, I sought help. I went to my medical doctor for medication and to counseling to get some of this off my mind. It helped, a lot. I was able to move on through much work and prayer. It was one day at counseling that I was not weak because I could not control how I reacted to this event, in fact, I was controlling it by accepting that I needed help.

Philippians 4:8 from the (NIV) "Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things." In the times of the worst anxiety, I would sing a song lyric: "lead me to the cross, where I first found love"(I don't even know if that is the correct verbiage). I would keep my mind on the most true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and admirable thing I could think of...Jesus.

Challenge: Do something daily that brings a smile to your face. Listen to music, watch kids be excited, or watch a funny movie. Do something that helps you remember that living is a good and fun thing.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Day 4: It's All Mental

Day 4:

Mental toughness is everything! I truly believe that. I believe that most of our issues and how we deal with them come straight from the mind. I have written about motivation, getting up and get going, inspiration, self-motivation, but it all comes down to you moving.

Mental toughness is doing what you are supposed to do when it is not easy or convenient. Think about it, most of the time when we are lazy, or we put something off, it is because we just do not want to, it makes us uncomfortable. And we really, really do not like to be uncomfortable in this country.

I listened on the radio a few years ago, the Dennis Prager Show, I believe where someone called in with great guilt and shame. They were the caretaker of their parent who had Alzheimer's and it was depressing this caller so much they could not stand to go and help their parent. It was bothering them so much watching their parent go through this unfortunate process that they wished they would die. It would be better for both of them, the caller said. His guilt was that he felt this way and was ashamed for thinking this way about his parent and he felt like a bad person. Prager responded that it showed how good of a person that he was that despite his feelings, he still continued to care for his ailing parent. It took mental toughness to continue doing what he was doing despite his feelings.

Mental toughness or lack thereof shows itself in many ways and we are all mentally weak in some ways, we are soft, living in a plush world (USA). It can be seen in athletic events, getting up when the alarm goes off in the morning, never being late to work, going to work when sick, and attending to an ailing parent when it is the last thing you want to do.

Be mentally tough and remember Philippians 4:13 "I can do all things through him who strengthens me." This verse is all about mental toughness, rely on God.

Challenge: Do something today or in the next few days that makes you uncomfortable. Better yet, reflect on those things that you do already that show you are mentally tough, but continue to stretch and improve.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Day 3: Don't Wait to be Motivated

(Card from Florida prison mission trip)

The only motivation that is lasting is self-motivation. If you are waiting for someone else to motivate you to get up and get moving, you may just wait a long time. Many people in this world enjoy that there are the unmotivated, they are thriving off of it. Of course, there will be some people out there who are willing to give of themselves to help motivate others, but do not wait for them. Take care of yourself.

Find someone who has inspired you. Inspiration lasts longer and will get you moving and maybe even inspire someone else. There are many stories, find and read books for crying out loud, of individuals that will inspire you. I love the stories of the Bible and of Jesus himself, it is my faith in Jesus that has inspired me especially when I encounter how cold and evil the world can be.

When you read stories that some have it worse than you and are doing much more than you, it should inspire you to do more. Once you are inspired, you will not wait around for someone to motivate you, you will be self-motivated. By being self-motivated, you take control or power of your circumstances and take control of whether you succeed or not.

Challenge: Find and read a good book about an inspirational figure and read Psalm 23 often: "The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures, He leadeth me beside quiet water, He refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for His name's sake. Even thought I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me."

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Day 2: But I Don't Feel Like It

Day 2:

From  Proverbs 3:5-6New International Version (NIV) Trust in the Lord with all your heart  and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him and he will make your paths straight.

Yesterday, I wrote about how when you want to change, you have to get up and do it, but there are so many times that we do not feel like it. There are many things I want to share about this ideal and will do so throughout the next year, but it is amazing to me how as I start to drift spiritually, if I just pick up the Bible and read fromm it, I suddenly slow or even stop that drift.  

Proverbs 3:5-6 says to trust in the Lord, lean not on your own understanding and he will make your paths straight. It is so true. I know you may be struggling right now with your spiritual growth, and maybe you are not, but if you put yourself in God's word to begin the day, it will get you headed in the right direction.  

Put the Bible next to your bed, download an app on your iPad, or phone and make the first thing you read in the morning something from God's word. I cannot guarantee that you will want to jump out of bed and be ready to attack the day, but it will give you a good foundation for the day and maybe, just maybe, you will be ready to attack the day.

Challenge: Surround yourself with God's word, read it, live it, and even more so when you enter a spiritual valley and believe me, they are inevitable.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Day 1: Get Moving!

Day 1:

I have been writing in my blog for a few years now at and have often wondered if I should put it into book form. I have kept writing, and finally after seeing my friend Neil Coffman do something similar, I have decided to try and write something each day for one year.

One of the reasons that I have put it off is that I am lazy, just like many of us, I put things off. I talk about writing a book, I talk about organizing my closet, I talk about doing this or that, I, like many others, talk a lot about what I need or want to do. I try to be a disciplined, structured person on my days and may even have a reputation as being so, but my wife and children can tell you differently. There are many days where I want to stay in bed, there are many days where I want to do the minimum possible, there are many days where I want to talk about an issue or cry out that someone should do something about what I see going on around me, but I stay in my comfort zone.

But you have to get up and get moving. When Moses was leading the Hebrews out of captivity from Egypt, they cried out to God and in Exodus 14:15, God spoke to Moses and said as translated in the New International Version "Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on." or as in the New Living Translation:  Then the LORD said to Moses, "Why are you crying out to me? Tell the people to get moving!"

Indeed, get moving! We all need a swift kick in the behind from time to time, but the best person to do it for us is us. The best motivation is self-motivation, so get up and get going, do not just talk about what needs to be done, what you need or want to do, get moving today.

Challenge: Do something today that you have put off far too long. It can be as simple as replacing light bulbs in the living room or making a phone call to a family member you have wanted to reconcile with, do not put it off another day. Reflect on how it feels to do this deed and continue on.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Starting Tomorrow

My friend Neil Coffman has written a book with 365 days of pep talks which you can see and buy HERE, and it has inspired me to do something similar.

It will be close to what I do here on my blog anyway, but in a more organized way. There will be my thoughts that I have about what it means to live, compete, and endure each day through my relationship with Jesus Christ.

Sometimes I will reference scripture, and sometimes I will just give a tip or idea that has guided me through my 45 years. I am doing those for a couple of reasons, mostly to get my thoughts/beliefs written down, but more importantly, I want a book or something that I can give to my children to have after I am gone.

Hope you enjoy it if anyone comes around to read.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

5 Ways to Guard When You Can't

If you are not very good at playing defense, you must make up for those deficiencies. If you are undersized, you must make up for those deficiencies. Here are some rules I followed most years, but especially when I was limited athletically or with size.

1. Keep the ball in front of you. Don't defend outside of the 3 point line. Scouting report must be used to know who is a shooter and must be guarded outside the 3 point line, making a decision to give up 2's instead of 3's to a really good shooter.

2. A pack line is probably better than regular man to man rules with help side. Along with planting a man in the lane, a half man/half zone type look. This way when an undersized team has to rebound, they have their man.

3. An undersized team who is not good at D, must block out...and many times illegally. It's not a foul until is called, then called again, then again; well you get it. They must keep their player behind them and hold them if they have to by wrapping them up from the front.

4. Then they MUST get every defensive rebound especially those that go long or hit the floor. You have to compete like never before to get those rebounds.

5. The best defense is often your offense. If you are patient or can score at ease, it helps, but you must be prepared for those nights when you can't score, and then you had better not turn it over and you must find a way to get some offensive rebounds.

Mental toughness. You must do these things all of the time and get every rebound, or you will be in for long nights and/or seasons.


Monday, November 24, 2014

Twas the Night Before Basketball Season

Twas the night before basketball season,
and all through the gym, basketballs were bouncing,
and hitting the rim;

Coach was preparing for the game the next day
as players excitedly went over each play;

They wondered what the games coming soon might bring,
as basketball in Indiana is top of the hill the absolute king;

Nervous to finally play and compete,
they couldn't sit still in their locker room seat;

Coach went over the scouting report with glee,
as the players listened so attentively;

They noticed their match-up with delight,
to put on their school's uniform and go out and fight;

To play for their school and community,
was something they've looked forward to absolutely;

So bring on the visitor, and toss up the ball,
basketball season is like Christmas for all;

Good luck, good luck to each's favorite school,
go out, have fun, and act like a fool;

For it is the home team that will bring you great pride,
so sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Carrie Underwood - Something in the Water

I am not the biggest country music fan, but I like Carrie Underwood and I really like this song.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Former IU Men's Basketball Head Coach

There are only 3 living former coaches for the Indiana University men's basketball team. I think that says a lot about the durability of the program, but maybe because one of the living coached there for almost 30 years. But one of those coaches, Kelvin Sampson, well, let's just say he won't be welcomed back to IU anytime soon.  Whether his fault or the administration's, IU was hammered with NCAA sanctions and put under a rock so heavy that it has been hard to dig out from under it.

The other two coaches are Bob Knight and Mike Davis.  Bob Knight is a basketball legend. At one time the all time winningest coach in men's basketball, he revolutionized how the game was played in the 1970's, a great basketball mind, and built the IU men's program into what many consider one of the top 5-8 basketball programs in college basketball. But his volatile temper, and, I will just say it, his lack of respect for those he didn't perceive as deserving of respect caught up with him.  He was fired after IU President Myles Brand put him on a zero tolerance plan (dumb), then he grabbed a kid by the arm and was fired for "What's up Knight?", and began to teach the student proper etiquette in addressing his elders.

Since that time, Coach Knight has been asked, pleaded with, cried to and begged to come back to IU to be recognized. He was asked by Sampson and current head coach Tom Crean.  He has been asked by former players, most recently A.J. Guyton who was being inducted into the IU Hall of Fame. He has been begged, cried to, pleaded with by the IU fans.  Fans that Knight has claimed to be the best and how great they were to his teams and to him. The fans that would do anything for him to come back one more time to be shown the love and affection they have for him. But he has refused to come back, many times.

Then you have the current Texas Southern head coach, Mike Davis. Davis was the "winner" after Knight was fired to take over the program. Players were mad and threatening to leave IU after Knight was fired, and Davis who had recruited many of the players stepped in. What did he do? He won 20 games that year and then took his second team to the National Championship game where they lost to Maryland. After that he had 3 seasons in a row that IU fans are not used to and was lambasted, ridiculed, and destroyed by the IU fan base. Eventually, he resigned and moved on to coach at the University of Alabama-Birmingham. Davis had and still has every right to be bitter about his time at IU. All he did was help save the program in the wake of the Knight firing, win, then get a contract extension, isn't that what was supposed to happen?

Davis recently returned to IU and he brought his current team. In every single interview, Davis had a smile and spoke glowingly about his time at IU, how it paved his road for future coaching jobs. In those interviews, both pre and post, he has said great things about IU, its fans, his former players, and the current coaches and players. He has talked about how he would love for his freshman aged son to be able to play at IU, and he has been so humble it is almost hard to believe.

To me, it really contrasts Knight's reaction to IU. Knight, beloved and begged to come back by the fans and he has turned them down. Davis, not beloved or begged to come back by the fans and he has been true, pure class. I think it says much about not the men as coaches but as human beings in what they see as important in life.

I think Mike Davis has it figured out.


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Aiden, I See You

Every fall, we do our intramural basketball camps with games at Silver Creek Elementary as part of our high school basketball program. Each year, you get to meet cool kids who are playing and learning about basketball for one reason, they love the game.

This fall, I met a new cool kid, Aiden Johnson. Aiden is like many kids his age in all the things that he does, except for one thing, he is fighting for his life after being diagnosed with leukemia at an early, early age. From :

On Feb. 20, 2007, at age 2, Aiden came home from day care with a mild fever and swollen lymph nodes in his neck. Thinking he might have tonsillitis, his mother made an appointment with his pediatrician for the following day. Aiden’s doctor, Richard Boada, M.D., looked him over and took a blood test. After receiving the results, Dr. Boada said he thought his blood testing machine was broken and sent Aiden to the hospital to have the blood test redone. Another finger poke and tube of blood later, the hospital ran the test and asked to redo it using blood from a vein instead of a finger.
Dr. Boada called Aiden’s family that evening and explained that he and the oncology team at Kosair Children’s Hospital believed Aiden had leukemia. Aiden needed to get to the hospital right away. The emergency department doctors at Kosair Children’s Hospital confirmed that Aiden had high-risk acute lymphoblastic leukemia. His white blood cell count was extremely high at 232,000; normal is 4,000 to 12,000. Over the next 3 1/2 years, Aiden had a procedure called apheresis, three central line placements, chemotherapy treatments, numerous lumbar punctures, countless blood and platelet transfusions, finger pokes two to three times a week, bone marrow aspirations and lost his hair, but he was a strong, brave little boy through it all. Aiden received his last chemotherapy treatment on his sixth birthday — and what a celebration he had! Aiden went to kindergarten and first grade as a healthy, happy little boy. Then in July 2012, at the age of 8, his cancer returned. He had been in remission for five years, and off treatment for two. Life was once again turned upside down. Aiden was placed on an intermediate-risk therapy treatment, which required him to receive an additional two to 2 1/2 years of intense chemotherapy treatments. Aiden was admitted to the hospital right away and had his fourth central line placed. He had two testicular biopsies and suffered a blood clot that required having part of his stomach lining removed. He currently endures two to three injections daily, lumbar punctures and two to three finger pokes a week. He takes 12 to 15 pills daily, has lost his hair twice, receives frequent blood and platelet transfusions, and almost always receives his chemotherapy treatments as an inpatient at Kosair Children’s Hospital. Aiden is home-tutored to help him keep up with his classmates. He loves music, singing and dancing, but his favorite activity during his fight for life is building with Legos.

Aiden is now in 4th grade. He is a child that I remember my daughter, who is also in 4th grade, coming home and talking about. Aiden this and Aiden that, and how cool this Aiden in her class was. Being in her class it affected my daughter in that she hasn't forgotten about him and she has kept a positive outlook not realizing, I think, how serious it could be. I remember Maddie talking about him and I listened, but I didn't want to really listen because it bothered me. If it could happen to this little boy, it could happen to one of my children and I didn't want to think about that possibility. A horribly selfish way to look at the situation, but I am being honest, it scared me.

But since he has come to basketball camp and I was forced to deal with him as I do with all kiddos, however, he was different, and now I wouldn't have it any other way. How awesome is he and his parents, too,for allowing him to go to basketball camp and to be knocked around just like all other little boys? To live as normal a life as possible a midst their struggles?  I have become like many other people in that I want to help him and his family. I have gone from my selfish and looking the other way self, to wanting to help in any way I can even if it is just a laugh, or a hug, or writing in this blog to make others aware of his situation. 

Aiden is in the hospital again after having run a fever for about 2 straight weeks which is not good. They don't know what is going on, but they may have a better idea per his Facebook page Prayers for Aiden. You know, I didn't want to face the reality of Aiden because it scared me about my own two children, if it could happen to him, it could happen to them. But instead of looking the other way, scared of that reality that my own children are mortal, we need to stare straight at their mortality and not look away at others that are sick, even children. We must look at them, hold them, high five them, laugh with them, and love them because they might not be our child, but they are someone's child and those little things to us are huge things to them.

Keep fighting Aiden!!!

Click below to see and hear this cool, cool kid.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Alone and Thinking

I am 45 years old and I have a 10 year old daughter and a 6 year old son. I guess with all of the great things that are being done for sick children (from playing college basketball to NFL football), my own mortality has come into my thoughts. I have been called Mr. Worst Case Scenario and I do often think of all the negatives that could occur on any given issue, so some may tell me to calm down. But it hit me this weekend that I only have a a little time left with my children.

Sure, we are talking 25-35 years, but to me that seems so little when you think that I am 45. I remember when 15 years from now was going to be cool, now it gets me to 60. My son, if I stay relatively healthy, will be younger than I am now when I die. My daughter will be older, but she will be young also. So now I don't want to be away from them, I want them close. How can I ever be selfish enough to be away from them? Time that I won't get back. Yet, I cannot smother them with me, I have to give them space and I have many things to do and other responsibilities.

But as I thought about it, why am I worrying so much about 30 years from now? I could die today, I mean, none of us know when our time will come so why worry so much about it now. Enjoy the time you have, enjoy and teach them each day because the end will come. It might be when you are 80 years old, or it might happen today.

I have always suffered from anxiety, I think everyone does, but it has never kept me from doing things. There are times I want to stay in my house and not go out, but I refuse to allow my anxiety to cripple me. It has worsened since the tornado of 2012 that I went through, but I have also become more aware of my anxiety and its effects. The thoughts above are part of my life, the quiet time when I have nothing else going on. The thoughts that enter me into minor depression, but I am intelligent enough to understand that I cannot control it, but I can make the most of it.

Mr. Worst Case Scenario? Yep, I apologize for those that I am around when I come off negative because I know it can be annoying. But try to understand that I understand I am that way and am working on it, and trying to make it a funny thing and not something that leads to depression.

By the way, I have an unbelievably wonderful wife. A woman sent by God to lead me to Him and to help me in this life. We have been through a lot and she has the patience of a saint with me.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Hey Look, IU Has Problems and I Have an Opinion

When did being a 45 year old man become a "kid"? Now I know that sometimes I may not always act my age, I like to enjoy myself and have a good time, but when did 45 become a "kid"? Or 40? Or 35? Or 30? Or 25? Or 20? Or 18? I have been told I am a "kid" at every age since I turned 18 usually by some older man. But when do I get to grow up? When do I get to be an adult and not a kid?

What we have in this country, and I don't think it was intentional, is a delayed adolescence going on. We now have men in their 30's who live at home and maybe have a job, maybe not, and it isn't frowned upon. I will say that I delayed a little. Went to college right out of high school, dropped out, worked the entire time, moved out of my parent's home at 23, worked, then got back into school and graduated from college around 27. What I was until then was an adult man who needed to grow up some more.

At 18, you have every legal right of an adult except the purchasing of alcohol. Every single right. You can vote, you can get married, you can join the military, you can drive, you can work as many hours as you want, you can do everything everyone else can do but buy and drink alcohol.

So when I read about how adult men can't make good decisions on the Indiana University men's basketball team and most of the blame goes to Coach Crean, I get a little frustrated and confused. What else can a coach do besides suspend, run, practice early, preach about the importance of making good decisions, and penalize the entire team? If the adult men playing for you do not want to do the right things, whose fault is it? Should there be harsher penalties? Who knows? I don't even know all that was done to try and stem the tide. Should some of the players be removed from the team? Maybe, but who? And how well do you know the person? Maybe this is the place for them to grow and learn as a man and maybe they need to be helped to learn and grow as a man elsewhere.

But we can sit behind a computer and social media not knowing much about an event and begin to castrate all involved. We can point fingers and say what should be done without having any power to do anything, and how convenient is that for us? I know that I can sometimes complain about my boss, I think it is natural, but what I always follow it up with is "but I don't want his job, it's a tough job in which no matter what you do somebody isn't happy".

I will say that I have been a supporter of Coach Crean for many reasons, most of them personal. Do I think he is perfect? No. Does he think he is perfect? No. Should he be given the opportunity to clean this mess up while trying to win games? I think so. And I think he wants that opportunity, too.

Finally, I just want to add...would you adult men for the IU men's basketball team who claim to love your coach or coaches, claim to want to compete and play hard for them, coaches who have taken time away from their families to help you grow as a person and a basketball player, please begin to act like you care about them? Because right now many of you look like selfish, entitled jerks not caring how it makes you, your coaches or your university look.

Monday, November 3, 2014

We All Fall Down Sometimes

Two issues in the news the last couple of weeks shows how people handle similar situations, differently. I am not placing right or wrong on either situation, but trying to contrast the actions in similar situations.

Lauren Hill is a young woman who is playing basketball at Mt. St. Joseph's University. In high school, she was diagnosed with a brain tumor, one of those really bad ones, the kind that has "fingers" that grasps onto the brain and there is next to nothing that you can do for it. She had a desire to play college basketball, and yesterday with the help of Xavier University and the NCAA, she was allowed to play and scored a couple of points. The season started early for her team because they just don't know when she will die. It could be today, it could be in a few weeks, but she has fought and fought and fought to get to this point. At the end of the game yesterday, she fell down, and what do you think she did? She got back up again, with a smile and as the horn went off she hugged her teammates and called it the best day of her life. If you watched, I am sure you shed tears as I did.

Then you have Brittany Maynard. She was a 29 year old woman with terminal brain cancer. "Was" because she chose to move to Oregon where it is legal for assisted suicide. She had a bucket list that she did with her husband such as going to the Grand Canyon and then chose to end her life before the complications of her disease became unbearable for those around her to see. She was having more prolonged seizures and pain from the violence of them. Brittany didn't have a basketball game televised nor has much of her bucket list been "celebrated", but I am sure she also had some best days of her life before choosing to end her life.

Two very similar ways to live their lives, but two very different ways in which their lives will come to an end. I do not think what Brittany Maynard did was right, but (before you start to destroy me) I do understand why she did what she did. Who wants to put your loved ones through the horrendous decline to death? I have seen family members deal with this and as horrible as it is that someone dies, to watch them lose that spark that made them, well, them; I believe it may be more horrible to watch that spark shine a little less bright on those who are still around losing their loved one.

Watching Lauren's first college game and the emotions and the celebration of her life and the fight she has shown to get to this point, I don't think I would want her to leave, I don't think I could watch her end her life. At the end of the game, she walked over and hugged her family, and as a father, I just don't think I could let go. I just don't know if I could let go of my little girl knowing that each ticking second she's alive very well could be the last. I get emotional just relating it to my own daughter, and yet, I just do not know how I would handle it. Ultimately, it would be my daughter's decision, it is her life, but how could I let her go?

So what am I trying to say here? I don't know. Life is full of these types of situations where we have to make a call and that call is something that we have to live or die with. It isn't a game where the calls we make may win or lose a game, but decides how we will live the rest of our lives and how that decision will effect others.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Worst Possible Answer

(Theoretical person gets caught doing something wrong) "I'm not the only one!" or better yet "It isn't as bad as what they are doing!"

When caught doing something you shouldn't be doing, it is only natural that we would get defensive. It is natural that we would try to minimize the effect of what we are doing wrong comparative to others. It would be like a husband caught cheating on his wife and then saying, yea, but my buddy does it all the time. It does not minimize what you have done at that moment to that person.

Accept responsibility, apologize, do whatever it takes to move forward and then work on not doing it again. I am not talking about affairs or gambling, or anything, but about everything.

And trust me, I can be the worst in trying to justify my every action, but I'm trying.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

The Selfie World

(that's me in my great grandfather's lap, I look younger then)
We live in a new era, the Selfie era. Such a new word and era that when typing in this blog, it is underlined meaning that I have misspelled it, maybe I have, I could care less.

I have tried to take selfies, I really don't like them. I am not attractive enough to take pictures of myself all the time, but I have tried it a couple of times. The point is that there are so many people taking pictures and videos of themselves (vine) that there is little notice of changes as we change, or age, just trying to be nice.

When I look in the mirror, I still see, relatively, the same guy each day. Sure I am balding, ok bald, what hair I have is grayish, ok gray, and I have gained a little weight around the middle of my body. But I don't see those changes looking in the mirror every day, however, when I see a new picture of myself, I often don't recognize the dude in that pic.

I am not into selfies, so I don't see the "new" me that often but when I do, I wonder how my father sneaked into my pic and if I really look like that guy, how does my wife even look at me. Fat, bald, and gray looking more 65 than 45, at least in my eyes.

Aging isn't really that bad for me, until I see myself in a picture. Then I wonder how in the world I became an old man over night.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Coaching Your Own Children

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I have watched others coach my own children for a few years and they have had very good coaches, but I know that I have something that I can add to their teams. So I have decided to coach as much as I can.

Recently, their 5 week basketball leagues finished and I was coaching four games a day. Thankfully, I have help with my son's team as Borden's Doc Nash helped as his two sons were on the team also, and I enjoyed doing it.

Could I have done a better job by having practice?  Probably, but I didn't and we were able to compete. Brandon's team wasn't as good, but Maddie's team won all but one game and they won their tournament.

It isn't about being in charge, it is about passing more of my values and beliefs onto my children by coaching them. Some will agree and some won't, but it is what I have chosen to do and I enjoyed it, though coaching my son was a little more challenging than my daughter.

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Thursday, October 23, 2014

As You Age

I wonder how much longer I can do what I do when it comes to coaching. I am a little too involved physically and each year it seems to be less and less because I just cannot do it. From running to playing, to just being lively at practice and games; to running our elementary programs, I never fully realize how bad of shape I am in until we start again.

Just doing simple drills in short bursts leaves me winded. And then two days later, my legs and shoulders hurt and I wonder why. Why? Because I don't do enough physical activity anymore and that ends up being my exercise.

I know I should exercise more. I know I should run, walk, treadmill, something, but my motivation to do so is much less than my knowledge to do it. I am pre-hypertensive when it comes to blood pressure and I know that exercise would help, but I just can't motivate myself and it's sad.

I think I am handling aging fairly well, I am only 45, but mentally as I get older I want to be comfortable. And being comfortable is only really good in small increments. Too much comfort makes us weak.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Mr. Worst Case Scenario

I have been called Mr. Worst Case Scenario a few times in my life. When some issue comes up or is in the news, I think of every possible scenario where it can happen to me. The one time that I downplayed the odds of something happening to me, it did happen which would only reinforce my previous behavior. Call it a personality flaw, my wife laughs at me and rolls her eyes, but it has kept me "safe".  But it has been something I have had to overcome to venture out from that "safety".

I do think it is a benefit in coaching any sport. I think of every possible worst case scenario and try to prevent them from happening. I guess that is why I never relax in a game or "win" until it is physically impossible to lose. Up 10 with 5 seconds left, game over. Up 10 with a minute left, or :45, or :30 left and I am still coaching as if anything can happen and possibly would.

I would rather keep my starters or best players in too long and then sub out when it's over than to have to put them back in the game again. That's why when I usually do sub, I sub everyone out but the best one or two players to make sure there is ball handling, passing, and scoring still in the game.

It might not be right, and I may have ticked off a coach or two in the past, but I am not doing it to rub anything in. I am doing what I think I have to do to guarantee a victory, even up to the last few seconds because I believe that you and your team can do crazy things to beat me. I've seen crazy things happen before and some to me, I don't want them to happen again.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Parent-Teacher Conferences and Mr. Mom

I know that I have written about how wonderful my wife is before and thanked her for all that she does in our lives, but it gets exaggerated when this time of year arrives.  She is a teacher in an elementary school and for two straight nights, she will be conducting Parent-Teacher conferences with the parents of all her students.

When she does this, I have to do what I do AND all that she usually does for us and our children for two...whole...days!  Let's just say that when those two days are over, she deserves a day off, and I have an even greater appreciation for all that she does.  She really is the real MVP of our family. There is nothing that I can do or say that would out do what she does for me and our kids.

I love her and I appreciate it.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

I Know There's a Balance, I Can See it When I Swing By

(Indiana's John Mellencamp)
That's actually a line from Between a Laugh and a Tear by John Mellencamp, the resident Indiana folk singer who most people have heard of (Small Town, Little Pink Houses, Jack and Diane, etc.).  But I am using it for how you run a program and your expectations for the program.

When you are building a program that hasn't won or there have been discipline and academic issues, you want to have the highest expectations in getting the players to reach for them.  Of course, they still need to be realistic expectations, but you must pull people up to those expectations.

Once you have a program going in the right direction, you want to continue to strive for the highest expectations both on and off the court.

But, and I have never had to deal with this, once you have gotten to a higher level on the court, how do you handle expectations?  Do you make the ultimate goal a state championship each year, or do you concentrate on being the best you can be each day?  Jim Matthews, a great coach I helped with at New Washington H.S. in the late 1990's, used to talk about having as much success as possible in the post season.  There wasn't a goal to win this or win that, but to have as much success as possible.  For some teams that may be playing well for a half, for other teams it may be winning the whole state tournament.

But what about those teams that have the potential for a deep run? Excellence each day? Or focusing on the end result? I don't think either is wrong.  I think if you make excellence your goal each day (shouldn't we do that every year?) it will all take care of itself.  If you make the end result the goal, it really is just looking at the day to day in a different way. If the end result is your goal, your focus, it will force you to concentrate on day to day excellence. But it must be enforced each and every day.  You cannot talk about the end result and then not enforce excellence each day.

There has to be a balance in dealing with this issue, but I am not sure I know where it is.

So what was this article about?  Me thinking out loud and still not sure if I figured it out yet or not.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Ever Feel this Way?

When in a discussion, often which could be defined as an argument, I have held back the last few years.  There was a time when in arguing or even in talking with someone who wanted to really "give it to me", I would not hold back.  Ultimately winning the argument/discussion and being a total jerk in the process.  But I won and that was all that mattered.

Since I have grown in my faith, those same instances come up and I feel myself holding back.  For many reasons.  My faith and the example I try to live by which is the common decency not to be that way to another human being.  But as I get pushed and pushed, I feel that old me surfacing.  I say things I shouldn't because I know things I wish I didn't. Plus, to be real honest, if you don't feel like your hands are tied behind your back, it's real easy for me to put people "in their place".

It is so easy that when others feel they can fight back and say something they believe to be a "winner", I can go even further.  If you don't have that common decency to hold back, you can be ruthless, but I have found that I don't want to be that person, ever.  It is only when I am continually attacked or you want to win the final argument that the words form in my brain and are on the tip of my tongue, but I don't use them...sometimes. Sometimes because the insufficient human in me still rears its ugly head (I do apologize now which I would have never done in the past).

It is much easier to hold back if I drop out.  If I don't discuss anything with anybody having no opinion or I do not compete or coach it is easier to not take so many arrows, but what kind of life is that? I just keep praying for a thicker skin, the ability to smile it off, move forward, leaving the unhappy person behind as they continue to shout angry diatribes into the vastness of emptiness (where did that come from?).  

Monday, September 29, 2014

You Just Never Know

I have coached sports for many, many years. There is little that I do, if ever, in practice or games that does not have some sort of reasoning behind it.  There is always a reason for what I am doing.  You may not agree with that reasoning, but there is a reason; mine.

I have caught myself questioning coaches myself, then when asking the coach what was going on, they tell you information that I could not know unless I was coaching.  Unless I knew what was going on within the team and its players.  When I have questioned then I find out this info, I get upset with myself because the questioning has happened to me before, and I do not like it.

This past weekend, I was coaching my daughter's little basketball team.  We were up 12 with about 1:30 to go and the other team was allowed to press and I had no timeouts left.  My fear was that the other team would score, steal it as they pressed, and keep scoring...a lot in a short amount of time.  It is a team that is thrown together, so we haven't practiced and probably won't.  But with no timeout, I could not draw anything up if we were pressed.  It was conceivable that the other team could have scored a lot in a short amount of time.

I wanted our girls to back off defensively.  I wanted them to just keep their girl in front of them because at the 4th grade level, that makes it real hard to score.  Pressure allows for the defense to score, but it also allows the offense to have more open shots.  I wanted the time to run off, I wanted the girls to dribble around for 20-30 seconds before shooting, so that we would have less time to turn it over and allow the worst case scenario from happening.  All the while, our parents are yelling for our girls to pressure the ball.

They didn't know what I was trying to do.  They didn't understand what was going on in my mind and what I was wanting to do to ensure that we win.  You just never know what is going on in the mind of a coach, but I can bet that there is something going on, some reasoning.

So relax, it's under control, at least I think.

Friday, September 26, 2014

I Can Rest When I Die

I have sat around the last two years and have seen my two children get good coaching in their respective sports.  But I know that I have some skills and gifts that can enhance that.  I've decided to coach them.  I have done it here and there, but nothing crazy like I am about to partake in.  I've decided that I will be coaching them whenever I can, no more just sitting on the sideline knowing that I can help, and continue to help with the boys' basketball program at Silver Creek.  My son does a lot of stuff through that so it's like double dipping.

Will that run me ragged?  Of course.  I told someone the other day my schedule coaching both of them in multiple sports and was told I would get burned out.  Probably.  But it will not be long from now when they are gone and I will have wished I did more.  I will look back and think or wonder if I could have helped them grow, not just athletically, but also mentally through toughness.  I will try it for a couple years and see how it goes, but I just don't think I will hang it up with them.  I am an older father of 44 with a 9 and 6 year old.  I already see that they are growing up and away from me.  I already understand that I probably only have a few years more for them before they are making decisions on their own away from the guiding hand of their parents.

Will I get burned out?  What else would I do?  Sit on the sideline and be frustrated because I know that I could help?  Wonder in a few years where I went wrong?  I would rather be wrong by being too involved in a good/positive way than be wrong because I wasn't there for them.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

One of My Biggest Fears

Are my kids too busy? I often get down because it seems like every single day is filled with activities. As soon as school is out, I coach so I am dealing with my responsibilities there, but our kids have at least one practice per night.  Baseball, softball, basketball and/or gymnastics every day including weekends.

Are they too busy?  I think so.  One of my biggest fears is that at 9 and 6, they are so busy that they will be burned out by the age of 16.  That at 16 they will want to quit all activities because they are just done with them.

So far, we haven't forced anything on them.  They whine a little about practice from time to time, but nothing more than that. If they complain, we tell them they don't have to play the sport next season (what's a season anymore?), but they must finish out what they are doing now.

My son quit soccer this fall to play fall baseball.  He has said that maybe next year, he would like to not play fall ball and get back into soccer, we shall see.  We have signed a contract for my daughter to participate with a higher level gymnastics program, going 9 hours per week.  She has made comments that maybe when it's over, she'd like to go back to her old gymnastics teacher, about an hour or two per week.

Parents often want their kids to play so many sports at a young age to make sure they get a college scholarship.  That's the last reason why I want my kids to play sports, in fact, it probably isn't on the radar at all.

I want them to:
Have fun and enjoy themselves.
Learn to handle adversity and success with class.
Learn to keep competing through good and bad times.
Learn that in life, we often need the help of others to be successful.
Learn that hard work doesn't guarantee success, but you can still have a good attitude.
Socialize and bond with their classmates/teammates.
Learn so much more about life than they can get just doing nothing.

That's it.  That's all.  College scholarship?  Sure it would be nice, but it has nothing to do with them playing.  Call it the coach in me, but I see how rare that actually occurs.

Play hard, play smart, play together, have fun...that's it.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Friday, September 19, 2014

Love This Pic from post September 11, 2001


I don't know what it was about me when I was a kid, but I have always looked for approval.  Low self-esteem, insecurity, etc; I don't know.  I don't remember being that way until around 6th or 7th grade when I started to go through changes as an adolescent boy.  Always wanting to be accepted, loved, revered were things that I needed and was willing to sorta sell my soul for it.

Then around my late teens and early 20's, I realized that no matter what I did, you weren't going to get everyone's "love".  Then I started coaching and you have to develop a thick skin because sometimes the only person who loves you might be the person looking back in the mirror.  But that lack of confidence, in some ways, was still there and as I grew in my faith, I decided I didn't want to deal with the negativity anymore.  And I resigned.

Then the tornado hit and I tried so hard to do the right thing for everyone while dealing with my own "stuff" from it.  And what I realized was that those ideas of wanting to be accepted, loved, and revered were back with intensity.  I have worried so much of the perception of me in the public because not everyone knows me and if they hear something negative, maybe they would believe it and I don't like that.

But here in the last week or so, there have been a few situations that have arisen in which I have been innocent and yet there are negative ideas, comments, or whatever about me out there.  And last night, it hit me...enough.  I cannot control everything said or thought about me, so I am done worrying about it as much.  Some of the walls will go back up and some of the arrogance will return.  Even though I am a follower of Christ, I will always fall short and will continue to try to grow, but some of you...I am not letting you bother me anymore.  Enough.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

So Busy

It is unreal how busy my wife and I stay.  Five years ago, we thought we were busy, but that is nothing compared to today.

We have our lives, but our two children are getting so busy.  Combine that with my "new" job in which I need to make sure that my plans are good and having to create them for Government that I am teaching, and I feel that I am running from one thing to the next...with little time to read, or write here.

What would I do if I weren't so busy?  I'd find something.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

#firstworldproblems vs. some perspective

A Nation of Finger Pointers

I am reading the "Intolerance of Tolerance" by D.A. Carson and he has this quote from Lance Morrow's essay in 1991 in Time magazine.  You could see it coming even back then.

"The busybody and the crybaby are getting to be the most conspicuous children on the American playground. The busybody is the bully with the ayatullah shine in his eyes, gauleiter of correctness, who barges around telling the other kids that they cannot smoke, be fat, drink booze, wear furs, eat meat or otherwise non conform to the new tribal rules now taking shape.The crybaby, on the other hand, is the abject, manipulative little devil with the lawyer and, so to speak, the actionable diaper rash. He is a mayor of Washington, arrested and captured on videotape as he smokes crack in a hotel room with a woman not his wife. He pronounces himself a victim- of the woman, of white injustice, of the universe.  Whatever.   Both these types, the one overactive and the other over-passive, are fashioning some odd new malformations of American character.  The busybodies have begun to infect the American society with a nasty intolerance - a zeal to police the private lives of others and hammer them into standard forms.  In Freudian terms the busybodies might be the superego of the American personality, the overbearing wards.  The crybabies are the messy id, all blubbering need and virtually infantile irresponsibility."  

Where do you stand?  And how easy has society made it for us to be either one or the other at any given point?

What He Said

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Is it Just Me? Probably.

I've always been the kind of person with a quick to get agitated personality.  Pat Summit described herself one time as a person as it wasn't hard to push her buttons because they stayed about halfway pushed in all of the time.  I can relate to that.

But recently, I have gotten worse.  I don't know if it is my age, my blood pressure, my coming off my anxiety medication, but I cannot believe how little is actually done correctly and how uninformed people are.  Someone once told me that I see things a certain way and if not done that way, I get frustrated.  It's gotten worse lately. 

From the lack of being in control of just about anything, to actually having some control, but not ultimate control has frustrated me.  I watch and see how few people actually do what they are supposed to do. I see how people want something and complain but when they get it, there's always something else to complain about.  I read social media (I should stay off that, I know), and read so many things by people who have an opinion, but don't know what they are talking about.

I have tried to be seems to be getting worse. I don't want to come off as the angry teacher/coach/parent/person, but I am afraid it is coming to that. The lack of outrage at some situations and the misplaced outrage in others drives me crazy. Meanwhile others just live their lives in the confused fog of thinking they have it figured out.

Luckily I have a wonderful wife and am surrounded by great people at my work, or I might actually lose my mind.  Not really.  Okay.  Maybe.