“We open our mouths and out flow words whose ancestries we do not even know. We are walking lexicons. In a single sentence of idle chatter we preserve Latin, Anglo-Saxon, Norse: we carry a museum inside our heads, each day we commemorate peoples of whom we have never heard. Penelope Lively, an English fiction writer.


  • “Vanish into thin air” …
  • “There’s a method to my madness” …
  • “Wild-goose chase” …
  • “The green eyed-monster” …
  • “Break the ice” …
  • “Wear my heart upon my sleeve” …
  • “Swagger”


So the ballplayer, Fernando Tatis has swagger. One thing ingratiating about him is that he, occasionally, wears his heart on his sleeve. Shakespeare’s English was the first of Modern English and look at how much it has changed. Walketh not upon early Modern English unless you want to be misunderstood even worse than you are now.

Ah, the museum of which Ms. Lively speaks. Before Shakespeare, the Norman conquest of the 11th Century brought lots of French into the English language. Long before that the Mesopotamians had the first cuneiform written language, an advancement beyond the pictograms of earlier times. (,to%20its%20earliest%20prehistoric%20origin.)

That written language provided for the kind of written record needed for government/civilization through to our present era. It sure helps.

Language is really fascinating stuff, even to the point of noting regional dialects all over the world in the same language, changing over time. Language is a wonderful, wonderful tool for those who find much peace in the writing process. Hope that’s your writing experience and it’s not a “green eyed monster.”


Pilgrim on a Long, Long Journey

A few years after my brief, first marriage ended in divorce, I met my spouse of over 40 years in Baltimore. She was an art student at the Maryland Institute College of Art. It was the spring of 1977. I met her parents on our second date. I took her to dinner several times. She certainly grew on me steadily.

In the midst of that relationship I traveled alone to Washington, D.C. I looked up a distinguished, well-known attorney who I was told was a relative in Washington. He described to me the tragedy of having recently been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s.

He was only 60 years old. I was 32. He explained to me the difficulties with his ten-year old son as a result of his memory loss. It was a distressing conversation.

I told him how serious I was about Kristine, how special she was to me, how…

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Traveling Together

Pilgrim on a Long, Long Journey

So it was deja vu as I waited for an outgoing flight to see our grandsons in the summer of 2019 . I sat in the waiting room and using both my plug and USB I tried to keep my android droiding. No matter how many electrical, chair outlets I plugged none of them would charge my phone. This had happened months ago as well. By the time I reached the 34th chair outlet my spouse gave me an interesting look. I gathered she was trying to decide which poison in 3.4 oz. containers she would inject into my lunch on the plane.

She was a little gnarly already. Her 3.5 oz. container of flawless moisturizer was absconded. It was .1 oz. over the limit per a TSA Agent with her thumb on the scale. She beamed as she explained that to my unsuspecting spouse.

I am here to testify my…

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A Second Look at Heights

Pilgrim on a Long, Long Journey

It was about the summer of 2015. Kris and I were staying in an inn outside of Yellowstone National Park. Trying to mimic a cowboy, I went down to the stables of the resort to sign up for a guided tour on horseback. We were to visit the nearby Wyoming hills.

Kristine and I mounted two beautiful horses and headed into the wilderness. I looked ridiculous on a horse, as, I would have had I donned a cowboy hat.

At some point the guide about to change elevation rapidly asked if any of us were afraid of heights. I was, but, I appreciated my dilemma. I wanted to forego either: 1) embarrassing my adventurous spouse or 2) walking the snake infested hills back to the stable. I shouted to our guide at the head of the pack “I do, but, I’ll deal with it.” As Garth Brooks sang in Tony…

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Jam and Toast

“Laughter is the jam on the toast of life. It adds flavour, keeps it from being too dry, and makes it easier to swallow.” Diane Johnson, American novelist.

I think that laughter helps to keeps us buoyant or afloat. It oils the gears of life. It helps us in our brokenness to see life with more perspective. To belly laugh at yourself to me is a sign you are getting somewhere in the effort to become more loving.

Thank God for the opportunity to hear, to be heard and to increase our capacity for love.

Personal Growth

“Before I can live with other folks I’ve got to live with myself.” Harper Lee who wrote To Kill a Mockingbird.

I think the more self-knowledge we have, the easier it is to live with ourselves and others. I do believe gaining self-knowledge is an uphill battle. I accept as true, that, comprehensive self-knowledge is unobtainable, now. I sense to the extent it can be obtained, it is in quite small increments.

I personally believe it’s only by the grace of God that our soul, or psyche as the Greeks called the soul, actually grows for the better. My prayer for each of us is that our growth for the better would be real and not imaginary.

What I Saved The First Day We Met

Pilgrim on a Long, Long Journey

Online dating was about one quarter century in the future. It was a sun-filled Sunday in March 1977. I met Kristine at the Baltimore Sun-advertised open house at her art school. As I stood by her that afternoon we discussed her work of art and who we were. I loved the artistic image she had created. I also wanted to see her again. By the grace of God’s Son she did give me her name and number on the art gallery card above.

For reasons I will never completely understand, as you can see, I saved the card. In 1977 it was placed, loosely, in a scrapbook. Today it is in a lucite frame our son and his fiance gave us recently.

Why didn’t I just put the number in my personal phonebook and pitch the card? Some neuropsychologist/philosopher might say there was this deep-seeded, neurological connection between my present…

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“Confront the dark parts of yourself, and work to banish them with illumination and forgiveness. Your willingness to wrestle with your demons will cause your angels to sing.” August Wilson, the late, Pulitzer Prize winning playwright

Lincoln called the best part of ourselves our better angels. I know I could not have effectively wrestled with my demons without the grace of God. I tried it for several decades. It was pandemonium or a host of difficult demons that thwarted my quest.

Then at 40, God spoke through others in my life, particularly my spouse, my daily experience and His Word, the Scriptures. The changes were illuminating.

To those who must touch and feel reality, how might you do that in the large portion of your life in which you dream? That dreaming is critical to your very existence. As Hamlet said, “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”

Tatis Against the Best

So the fierce baseball rivalry between the LA Dodgers and San Diego Padres continued Thursday through Sunday. Tatis’ homer off the great Walker Buehler, the starter at the top of the Dodger rotation, about 10 days ago was only the beginning.

Over the last four days he hit two off Kershaw, two off Bauer and one off May. Kershaw and Bauer hold Cy Young awards and May appeared unhittable.

Those shots included the hardest measured ball ever hit off Kershaw in his entire career. On top of that Fernando Tatis’ first year of hitting stats place him ahead of Mickey Mantle’s stats over his first full year of play.

If anyone doubted the wisdom of his recent 14 year contract for 340 million dollars, I rest my case.

Our Two Lives

“We have two lives… the life we learn with and the life we live after that. Suffering is what brings us towards happiness.” Bernard Malamud, the late Pulitzer Prize winning novelist

So if there is a God, you say, why does he allow such suffering in the world? How can you draw close to Him and feel deep joy without the suffering life brings us?

My precious adult daughter overcame childhood cancer and my precious adult son fell off a second story roof onto concrete. Today, they are both, exquisitely well, by the grace of God.

Their suffering and, as a result, the suffering of my wife Kristine and me has brought us closer to each other. Whatever the outcome held, I never needed His comfort more than in the periods of their recovery. We were lovingly comforted. The tribulation has not weakened, but, has reinforced my trust in our sweet, sweet Lord.