• Circle Time

    On The Economy of Time

    There’s saving money by learning to do everything yourself. But then there’s the economy of your time, your interest in learning such things versus the things you really want to learn. Money doesn’t buy happiness, but it buys time, and time can yield the bandwidth to invest in yourself with the potential to earn many times over the money you spent to buy that time. In a similar vein, businesses sometimes will lose a return client by providing bad or blatantly overpriced service. They win in the short term, but lose severely in the long term, not only from sending away a customer, but sending her away with motivation for…

  • Productivity and Rewards

    The next thing

    Living in the moment is as important as looking forward to the next thing. How often an upcoming show, concert, or even a new episode of a beloved show have kept your mood up for an entire day or weeks? Give yourself mini rewards to look forward to in the future to get through the tough parts of your day. Do you want to write 500 words? Think about the video games or the movie you’ll be able to watch after you get that done. Don’t know how you’ll get up early to work out? Think about the delicious and healthy breakfast you’ll cook and eat after you’re done, and…

  • Circle Time

    The value of why

    I think that if people start explaining the why, they would get more people to listen to the what. Doctors and patients, teachers and students, instructional videos and viewer. These are all relationships that could grow stronger if the why was introduced. Patients would be more compliant if they knew why they are taking that specific medication over another, or why they need to get into good health habits. Students would pay more attention in class if the teacher would take just a moment from the lesson to explain the point of it all and how the lesson applies to the real world. Homeowners would mess their projects less if…

  • Writing

    Prose Styles – Plainsong and Baroque

    In prose, there are two different styles. Plainsong and Baroque. You might have heard of them. Let me explain each one briefly, and provide an example piece of text telling the same story in the two different styles. Plainsong Short sentences, not many adjectives and adverbs. Blunt and straightforward. The little girl came in. She murmured something to the teacher. She left the room running. The teacher announced the secret to the classroom. The girl had a crush on me. They all laughed. Baroque Ornamented. A lot of subordinate clauses. A lot of adjectives and adverbs, Pile on of detail and syllables. The little girl peeked with scared and longing…

  • Uncategorized

    On Perseverance

    There are steps you take when you have the thought of eating a homemade meal, and when it happens. You comb through your pantry and refrigerator and make a list of items you need. Then you drive up to the supermarket and grab a cart. You pick up your groceries, one by one, as dictated by the list you made earlier that day. Then you stand in line, while you go through your social media apps and emails in a matter of seconds. After promptly paying for what is in your cart, you drive back home and place everything neatly in its right place. The recipe is readily available online…

  • Dad The Conqueror

    Dad Conquers Paris

    “It will be fine,” said my dad while wheeling my grandmother into an elevator the size of a fridge box. My mother, my sister, and I were already inside. The elevator had a steel plaque that read: “500 Lb limit.” “You asked for it,” the elevator said in mechanical whirls as it started its impossible descent. A floor and a half in, it stopped in its tracks. Our only help was a non-English speaking receptionist. My mother dropped to the floor to be able to breathe. My dad and I forced the elevator open. The receptionist stared. Welcome to Paris.

  • Dad The Conqueror

    Dad Conquers Belgium

    My dad looked embarrassed. It is a mask he wears often. Everyone in the room started laughing after the hotel employee told us that the box in the closet was a safe and not a microwave—the meat sandwich we brought back for our grandmother laid inside, secure, and uneaten. I was sure after we left that Belgium was not the same country that saw us arrive. Two disagreeable adults, two teenagers in the apex of apathy, and a grandmother in a wheelchair drawing some unfair comparison between that country and hers. And wait until I tell you about Paris.

  • Memoir

    A Good Day

    More than 12 hours have passed since my two older brothers last tried to kill each other. The house is quiet, too quiet. Every second feels too soon to let go of the knot in my stomach. My hands still tremor as an effect of the last brawl, but not so much. There is no time to waste. I open the gate that kept me safe to examine the house. The gaming console in the living room is turned off and not being used, and my homework is complete. I think this will be one of the good days.