Wednesday, July 31, 2013

100 Words: Good riddance...

Dear Sarcasm and Cynicism,

I'm tired of you. Both of you.

You tell me the world is ugly, but I see beauty. You tell me people are selfish and unkind, but I'm surrounded by smiles and helping hands.

You wound, unprovoked.

You don't laugh, you mock.

You were once razor sharp tools, but overuse has turned you into blunt instruments. You're dull.

If you cut down a field, but don't replant, and regrow, then all you are is destructive.

And you've consumed too much oxygen, please go away, and take Irony with you.

I don't have time for you anymore.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

100 Words: A Few Photography Rules

Fill the frame. 

Be sure to tell the story you want to tell.

Get down with your bad self. 

Life can look radically different, depending on your perspective. 

Tilt the camera.

The camera manufacturer only put the buttons on top of the camera for convenience. 

Leading lines. 

Despite the topsy turvy world we live in, lines are everywhere -- and your eyes love them. Plus they're great for pointing right at the subject of your story. 


Imagine a tic-tac-toe grid over your view finder, and place the subject along the lines, for a more lively image. 


Monday, July 29, 2013

100 Words: A Good Day

Sometimes it's hard to define what a good day is.

Not today.

This evening I reconnected with one of my cousins that I haven't seen in eighteen years.

Ben was the cousin closest to my age, growing up. He was my other half in the family -- a slightly shorter, mirror image. The times I spent with him were some of the happiest of my childhood.

Then life came along and suddenly we're forty year old fathers of teenagers.

His mom insisted that we get together.

And the years melted away, and the laughter was real, and my day was good.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

100 Words: Saturday Morning Cartoons (another run-on sentence)

Watching Saturday morning cartoons, when I was a kid, was like a big play dough bowl of artificially flavored, sugary imagination, exploding in every direction, in a kaleidoscope of primary colored super heroes, and mystery solving, talking dogs, and wabbits and puddy tats, splattered with educational nuggets about a place called the Conjunction Junction, and commercials selling me everything I thought I ever wanted, with aluminum foil covered antennae, and a vertical hold knob, beaming the universe into my living room, one ludicrous scenario after the next, making me smile, teaching me to dream about things higher than my ceiling.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

100 Words: 500 Posts (The Best I Could Do)

This is my 500th blog post.

It's taken me almost seven years to get here, and 100 words seems very inadequate to express what this blog means to me.

I've found a voice, and I've found that I have something to say.

About my family.

Nothing is more prevalent than what I write about my family.

I often wax nostalgic.

Sometimes I've made myself laugh. 

Sometimes I was lost, and you saved me.

Little things in life, became lessons. 

And, finally, I've found that writing about this world has helped me to see how truly beautiful a place it is. 

Friday, July 26, 2013

100 Words: What Makes Me Smile Tonight?

Sometimes, I sit back and marvel at the things that make me smile, and I realize that there's a lot more that makes me happy, than doesn't.

I can
get as discouraged as anyone, with the direction of the world we live in, and the foolishness that passes for civility, and discourse.

That is, until I look around at my own life. My family is incredible. My marriage is strong. My kids are good kids, because they want to be good kids.

My friends are true friends.

My life is good.

I think about all of this, and I smile.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

100 Words: Who Knows? You Might Like Poison Ivy

So, I've made no secret of the fact that I have not enjoyed my poison ivy experience.

At all.

But, that doesn't necessarily mean you wouldn't...

You might like poison ivy if:

You enjoy mosquito bites. Thousands of them.

You don't mind the smell of sulfur and brimstone.

Your name rhymes with Nadalph Whitler.

You're tired of the ususal, peachy fleshtones, and looking for a new direction -- something closer to the color of raw, ground beef....seasoned with e coli bacteria.

You like being mistaken for a leper.

You just want to be left alone, when the zombie apocalypse begins.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

100 Words: Pioneer Day

Utahns celebrate the 24th of July, as Pioneer Day -- the day, in 1847, that Brigham Young, led the vanguard of the Mormon pioneers, into the Salt Lake Valley and declared: This is the place.

This was the culmination of a movement of American citizens, denied the most basic and fundamental of American rights -- the right to worship as they chose. Hounded and hunted, from state to state, the early mormons left for the Promised Land of western America, seeking a home where they could worship according to their own consciences.

If you cherish your religious liberty, thank a mormon pioneer.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

100 Words: Will and Kate + One

The Royals had a baby yesterday.

William, and Catherine, brought into the world, their firstborn son, third in line to the British crown.

The brits, who adore their royals absurdly, were overjoyed.

Americans, conversely, came out by the gob-load to express how disinterested they are in the event, and how little an impact it will have on their lives.

If you're so obsessed by this news, that it consumes your every waking thought, you need a life.

If you cannot wish a seemingly decent couple of first time parents joy in their new journey, then you also need a life.

Monday, July 22, 2013

100 Words: When the Colors Run

Remember those watercolor paint sets you got as a kid?

You used the paint by touching a wet paint brush to the color you needed.

Then you slopped the colorful blob of water onto your canvas. By the third color, your art had become a wet glob of pulp.

Eventually, the colors began to bleed into one another, you couldn't get back to the original color. Back then, I wanted the colors of my life, sharply defined.

These days, I find life to be much more beautiful, when the colors run together.

Sometimes you see colors that you never imagined.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

100 Words: The Sandlot

This summer marks the twentieth anniversary of one of the greatest movies of all time -- The Sandlot.

The Sandlot was filmed in the Salt Lake area, and tells the story of a group of boys whose love of baseball follows them through their early years, and ties them together, in a tight grip of friendship.

Except for the baseball angle, this is my story.

I grew up in a neighborhood of good friends, bonded by adventure and imagination and Saturday afternoons, and long summer evenings.

The Sandlot is not how my childhood was, but it is how I remember it.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

100 Words: Family Reunions

I come from a large family.

On my mom's side, I have dozens of cousins.

(Dozens of Cousins would be a cool name for a rock band)

There was a time when we all fit in the same room, on
Christmas afternoon, at the feet of our grandparents.

Grandma and Grandpa have been gone for many years now, and we are scattered to the winds, raising our own families, living our own lives.

We got together today, to smile and laugh, and remember how lucky we are to be a family.

Plus, they don't reject me for my weird habits...

Friday, July 19, 2013

100 Words: Advice for 7/19/13...until I run out of words

Learn what poison ivy looks like.

Avoid it. It's like a biblical plague. Only worse.

Stop caring what Justin Bieber thinks...says...does...

The same goes for Miley Cyrus.

And any kind of Kardashian. Whatever that is.

And Congress.

Smile, when you want to scream -- it's never as bad as it seems.

A bad attitude never accomplished anything worthwhile. Ever.

Once in a while, find something crazy and off the wall, with no practical application in life, and do it for the pure weirdness of it.

Like learning to ride a unicycle.

It keeps you young.

And that's 100 words.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

100 Words: An Ode to the Twinkie

Twinkies taste like a summer afternoon, in 1982, on the back porch of a home in suburban America, where all the neighborhood kids are running through the sprinklers, and climbing the trees, skin burning in the heat of the day, or lying on their backs, staring into the blue expanse, identifying the puffy white clouds as sheep and Volkswagons and dragons, and planning the next sleepover, and all the adventures they'll have, that they won't tell their parents about for years, embracing the day, not worrying about tomorrow -- that's an adventure for the future -- and dreaming big, and loving life.