Run Your Own Race

420834_10150716047846117_1713767169_nI’ve been hugely competitve in everything I do as long as I can remember. I regret that now. What if you beat someone in a race only to fond out they had artificial limbs under their sweat pants. Would you feel big then? The best way to attack life is by setting “personal best” records. This is measured success on your own terms and it is true growth because it’s against yourself. Some people talk a lot of smack when it comes to other people but they have nothing to say when they lose against their own records. Be humble I say, that’s a big part of this. Continue reading Run Your Own Race

Starbucks has a Short?

IMG_3658-1.JPGFile this one under, “Where the hell has Damien been? Under a rock?” If there’s one thing I thought I knew it all about, it’s Starbucks. Turns out I read on their site they have a super small coffee size called, appropriately, a “short.” I’ve long wondered why the drink I thought was their smallest was named a “tall.” Now I have that crucial lifelong learning knowledge. I’ve grown to love Starbucks and it just goes to show you there are hidden treasures of knowledge all round us, even when you think you know it all. Check out the secret menus at many popular restaurants. Continue reading Starbucks has a Short?

$5 Toys?

The image below is NOT an Ad.
imageI just drove by a discount store and the sign in the window read, “$5 Toys.” Immediately I imagined they were marketing to weekend dads seeking to please kids they only see once in a while. Then I imagined it might be for families low on cash. It’s funny how we read into things based on our own prejudices. Because of that, I let my mind wander into places where I wouldn’t normally go. As a dad, I can’t think of a situation, especially around the holidays, where I would be drawn into a store that offerred $5 toys. I like a good deal as much as anyone but these toys are marketing themselves as cheap. How can anyone complain if they don’t work or if they are otherwise boring. It’s been said it’s the thought that counts but let’s face it, you usually get what you pay for. Discount stores buy huge lots of unwanted items and sell them for 99 cents and up. Don’t dads think of that when they see this sign? Am I heartless for making these observations? Who are these discount stores really helping? Sometimes I wonder. Continue reading $5 Toys?

How to Process a Punch in the Stomach

fight_stomach_punch2_00-quick-e-mail-view1I just got some news tonight that felt like a punch in the stomach. It’s fine, I’m fine so don’t worry friends and loved ones. It concerns the current state of affairs with my school district. What do you do when your employer says something about your union that is a bold-faced LIE? Answer is … throw a party! Life’s not worth getting so embroiled in the web of people in power that you miss out on the sweet pleasures of being alive. I’ve suggested to the union that we have a party and with a little luck, and my powers of persuasion, that will happen. I don’t have to get stupid to have fun. Just point the way to the carbs table and I’ll be good to go. When life punches you in the stomach, learn to divert your attention away from the fist. In due time, after some rest and relaxation, you can process it better and get things taken care of. I guess this is why teachers strike. I’ve never been part of a strike but I am an organizer and I’m starting to see the worth of it. It all gets back to that staple I always write about: relaxation. If you are relaxed, you are better, period. Don’t fixate on working all the time and avoiding the label of “lazy.” Sometimes that laziness is what solves problems. Take a break after to get punched in the stomach. Rested and relaxed, you may be able to deliver a much stronger reciprocal blow. Continue reading How to Process a Punch in the Stomach