Haunted Houses & Bars of Orion

Lately I’ve been feeling like I’m 14 years old. Which is my typical maturity level, but no, I’m referring to the other cognitive signposts of that age. Take pickleball for instance.  As I compete in pickleball tournaments and the competitive juices flow, I feel 14 years old once more. Seven matches later, I realize I’m…

Tell me your life story in 4 minutes

Tell me your life story in 4 minutes. This is a question I have been asking my friends and family. Their first reaction is stunned silence, a deer in headlights. Then slowly, the wheels begin to turn and they speak, measured and careful words, maneuvering around covered landmines. The years roll away and they become…

Singing with Al Green

Karen and I were driving through Wisconsin farmland a couple of years ago, and I was overcome by pastoral splendor although it may have been too many cheese curds. I began singing America the Beautiful, like Ray Charles, because after all, my middle name is Ray. I’ve always loved that song. It’s not ambivalent, it resolves,…

What I’ve learned eating pie

We decided to get away this past weekend, so we visited our friends, Rick and Belinda, in Fayetteville. We watched the fleeting colors of autumn scatter underfoot as we walked the farmer's market at the old town square looking at beautiful vegetables and contrarian havens of high gluten pastry. Karen grew up in the Garden…

Midnight Confession

Word.   Word is a strange word...the longer you stare at it, the odder it becomes. Stranger still is the moment you hear correct words in a song after many years of singing the wrong words. Karen was making a Margherita pizza last night while singing Midnight Confession, a song by The Grass Roots from…

Le Temps

Certain languages, including French and Bulgarian, have one word for both“time” and “weather.” The French is rendered Le Temps. One of my treasured moments as a Dad combined weather, time, and beauty. I was sitting on a peak in Arkansas with my son on a Sunday morning singing while watching a thunderstorm roll in not…