This is something we all know, but some of us need a reminder about every now and then. You don’t measure your life by how long it is (although that’s no reason to desire less than a long life); you measure it by how much you’ve lived in the time span you’re given. Since none of us knows exactly how much we’re given, it behooves us to live as much as possible, as energetically as possible, with the proper focus on what’s of actual value in our lives… EVERY DAY. Continue reading
This entry is about living your life in excess but bear with me for a few moments as I share a story with you from my recent past. I was working at The Tiki Tobacco Barn – a name that may not make sense except that it was a cigar shop located on the property of a Tiki Bar. It was an average day when an older guy (about 65ish and we’ll call him Bob) came in with a younger couple (guessing late 20s). While the young couple went into the humidor to pick out cigars, Bob decided to engage me in conversation. I had the shop television on and the series NCIS was on. This was during football season. Continue reading
Inspired by Michelle Johnson-Brown, From the Cigar Lounge Wisdom series
It was a mid-July evening and, as I have for many an evening, I sat at the local cigar bar and enjoyed the company of some friends. One young lady and I had previously enjoyed a contemplative conversation about the human spirit and everything that goes on with it. Last night we had a very brief but impactful conversation about what is of true value. Of course, “money” (I’ll explain the quotes in a minute) came up and, as a side effect of that, time. Continue reading
How many times have you been out in public some place – it could be the mall, a city street, a restaurant – and you see those folks who are so busy looking at their cell phones that they are completely oblivious to what’s going on around them? How many times have you seen someone walking along and you can tell they’re not really there? That mentally they are somewhere else; they are “day dreaming?” How many times have you caught yourself doing the same? All too often we disconnect from the real world in ways that lull our mind into a sleep-like state; at least where our awareness is concerned. In doing so, we cost ourselves the potential experience of seeing beauty or blessings. Continue reading
I have been actively writing short stories since I was in the 7th grade. I learned to type in the 9th grade and, thanks to lots of years of playing the piano before that, I could type FAST (still can). I have the benefit of a good private high school education plus some. What it took me most of my adult life to learn was the value of NOT immediately saying or typing about something that made me angry. Venting while angry – whether you do it verbally (bad) or in writing (worse) – is NOT a good thing. When you find yourself preparing to do that, THEN is when you need to practice the pause. Continue reading
I’ve made the observation that the older I get the more friends I have who are, seemingly all of a sudden, interested in “staying in shape.” Yes, it is somewhat funny that “staying” implies they are already in good physical condition, and they’re not, but it’s also sad too. For that matter, it’s far easier to stay in shape if you start focusing on it when you’re… wait for it… IN SHAPE and at about the age of 18; or somewhere along in your teenage years. After that you’re trying to recover the shape you know you can be in but haven’t been for years. I speak from experience here. That said, “getting in shape” requires being in motion. Some I know believe that unless you’re moving FAST then you aren’t moving enough to do yourself any good. Few seem to appreciate that any motion is better than no motion and that any motion tends to increase itself over time unless we do something to stop it or slow it down. Let me explain what I mean.
I was at lunch just the other day with four men who I consider friends. In fact, two of them I consider brothers. One of those brothers I have trusted with my life and I’d trust the other three with my life without hesitation. The one that I HAVE trusted with my life I’d happily storm the gates of Hell with, sure that we’d either come out the other side together or neither of us would come out at all. I share that so that you can understand this: These are four men I hold in high regard and whose opinions I respect. What they say I take to heart and give due consideration, even if it’s something I really don’t enjoy hearing. Continue reading