Call Me John

I was about five years old when I discovered that my name wasn’t actually Johnny. I didn’t say anything about it until I was eight. Then, my OCD kicked in.

In the third grade, I decided to insist that I be called John. John was my name, and I should be called that.

This didn’t go over too well with my parents, especially my dad, who informed me that he could call me whatever he wanted.

He had a point, but my name ...

Continue Reading →

Surviving TV

I have become enamored with survival shows on TV.

Honestly, this isn’t a recent thing, it started about 10 years ago with a program called Survivorman, starring a man named Les Stroud. The premise is to take Les and drop him off in the most inhospitable place possible, with no food or water, few supplies, and a give him a week to not die.

It’s quite like going to the mall with your wife.

Mr. Stroud was the first of his kind to ...

Continue Reading →

Just Call Him Cowboy

“That one was given to a man when he retired from the Illinois Railroad in 1891,” said the man. He looked as if someone had opened a time continuum and he’d just left 1891. He wore jeans, suspenders, and a real cowboy hat.

Thin, with longest white beard I’d seen in awhile, I thought how easy it would be for him to take the stage with ZZ Top and no one would be the wiser.

“How much?” I asked.

“I’d have to have ...

Continue Reading →

The Summer of ’76

There was almost no breeze. Record temperatures were being shattered in England, and the Southern US was also pretty darn hot.

But three teenage kids in Arkansas decided that it would be a great idea to live in my backyard for most of the summer of 1976.

My cousin Randy was up from Alvin, Texas. I honestly can’t remember why he stayed with us for so many weeks, but I do remember that my mom quickly reached the end of her rope ...

Continue Reading →