Archive for the ‘Check This Out’ Category
Reflections on Turning 60
When you turn 60, you would not believe how many of your friends call to make the corniest remarks about you turning into an old timer. “Hey, Phil, have you bought your first bottle of Metamucil?” one of my buddies joked. “Come on, don’t be glum. At least now you can play in the senior division of tennis tournaments,” said someone else. “Haven’t you heard?” said even another smart aleck well wisher. “Sixty is supposed to be the new 20! Why don’t you get a toupee and hit the town?”
At least I’m not the only one getting grief. Right now, every hour upon the hour, there are about 330 baby boomers in this country that are hitting the big 6-0. That’s right, there were that many of us born in 1950, during the heart of the Baby Boom Generation. We grew up in the carefree 1950s, came of age in the rebellious 1960s, experienced the absolutely peculiar disco era of the 1970s, pushed ourselves during the career-driven days of the 1980s, and sometimes indulged in the lavish excesses of the 1990s. We also were right here for what has, at times, been a very difficult first decade of the 21st century — a decade that has included the terrorism of 9/11, wars and an economic crash that none of us have ever seen before. (more…)
The Mockingbird Turns 50
This past Sunday, July 11, marked the 50th anniversary of one of my all-time favorite books: To Kill a Mockingbird. I think I was 10 or 11 when I first read Harper Lee’s novel, the only book she ever wrote, (as far as we know) and to this day, I can remember the sensations I had while reading it: the overwhelming feelings of heartbreak, of shame and outrage, and, in the end, of love and acceptance. The characters were so real and so vivid to me as a naïve kid growing up in Oklahoma and Texas that I felt as though they had become close personal friends. Some now deride the book as simple and one dimensional — one critic called the heroic Atticus Finch “a repository of cracker-barrel epigrams” — but the book, and the nobility of Atticus, meant a lot to me. In fact, as soon as I finished it, I started it all over again. It was some years later when I saw the movie, which came out in 1962 starring Gregory Peck. Needless to say, it’s one of my favorite movies, too. (more…)
The Last Day of Your Life …
What would you do if you had only 24 hours left to live? On Friday’s show, Megan says she’s already living as though it were her last day, traveling through all 50 states in an RV. This amazing young lady quit her job and left her boyfriend and loved ones behind to raise money and awareness for brain aneurysm research. Megan says she’s doing all this to honor her father, who died from a brain aneurysm when she was 11.
So how would you spend the last day of your life? I know where I’d be — right here, surrounded by family.
A Day of Reflection
More than 180,000 U.S. troops are currently stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan, sacrificing their lives to keep America safe. This Independence Day, while we’re out watching fireworks and going to cookouts with loved ones, our thoughts, prayers and thanks should be with the brave men and women who put themselves in harm’s way every day to stand up for peace. Over the holiday weekend, the chances are pretty good that you’ll cross paths with at least one or more veterans. I encourage you to show respect and give him or her thanks. In my mind, there’s just not enough we can do for these heroes. (more…)