The Story of Life as we Know It

We write the story of our life one thought, one daydream, one word at a time. I'm on my 50th draft of a story called "Barry" and it's very much a work in progress - red pens and Post-it notes everywhere. The older I get, the more I enjoy the revision process, asking "What if?" and "Why not?"

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Midgets in the Mist

At an Internet marketing seminar, I bumped into an old friend (literally), someone I worked with thirty years ago. Our conversation included a fond memory from the fall of 1987 when we made a trip from Birmingham, Alabama, to Marin County just north of San Francisco, to learn how to draw on what was one of the most sophisticated computer graphics systems in the world at that time. Exciting work.

On our first morning, the hotel fire alarm went off around 6 a.m. I staggered about, hopping into jeans and pulling on a tee-shirt and then made my way out into the hall barefoot where a dozen midgets were blazing a trail to the exit door. I blinked and rubbed my eyes. In the parking lot - where there were at least another dozen midgets milling about - I looked around for my friend, who should have been pretty easy to spot in this crowd. When I found her, she was standing next to Ron Howard, a.k.a. Opie Taylor and Richie Cunningham (or as Eddie Murphy might say, Opie Cunningham).

I rubbed my eyes again. I blinked. After making his acquaintance, I learned Mr. Howard was directing a film called "Willow" that was shooting in nearby Muir Woods. Before 6:05 a.m. on my first day in California, I stood in an asphalt jungle with midgets in the mist, experiencing a California film-world fantasy. It was a wonderful, spontaneous prologue for a day of high-speed training on high-tech computer graphics. Now, it's a memory I laugh about with my kids, a memory I almost filed too far back in the file drawer.

Do you have a funny memory you can share with someone today?

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Your Most Embarassing Memory

In a group setting, I was recently asked about my most embarrassing moment.  I have a LOT to pick from, but this was the first thing that came to mind:

My gypsy family moved from Baton Rouge, Louisiana to Hollywood, Florida when I was eleven. We quickly bought a house, enrolled in middle school and found a new church.  Prospects at Sheridan Hills Baptist made their way down a long aisle during the benediction to stand below the pulpit. The preacher made this an important part of the service by introducing each individual and saying something personal about them.  When it was time for the DeLoziers to be presented, the reverend turned his back to the congregation and moved down the line in front us, shaking hands and speaking. “Welcome Fred,” I heard him tell my father. “God bless you, Joyce,” he told my mother. “Jim, son, we’re glad to have you,” he told my brother. When he stood in front of me, he said, “Barry, your fly is unzipped. I'll stand here while you zip it." Sure enough, while the congregation sang "Just As I Am," I stood there just as I was, shirttail hanging out.

What's your most embarrassing memory?

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Pressure Sensitive Synchronicity

Ever feel in sync with time? You know, you glance at the clock throughout the day and it's on the hour exactly?  Happens to me often.  I have no problems sleeping through the night, but if I wake it's always at 3:33 a.m.

I tend to be more of a "word" than a "numbers" guy, but I track a lot of figures for my business ventures. Sometimes numbers tell stories better than words. I recently had two mathematical improbabilities jump off the synchronicity meter.

The first happened driving between appointments, making a mental list of tasks to accomplish before leaving town. "Time to change the oil in my car," I thought, glancing at the sticker pressed to the windshield. My mechanic calculated my next oil change should occur at 48,327 miles. Odometer read 48,327 miles. I pulled to the curb to make sure I wasn't transposing a number. Spot on.

The second "coincidence" occurred a few weeks later as I unwrapped a single-cup coffee maker we received as a gift. My family - the wife, two kids and even the dog - were all in the kitchen as I set up the appliance. Like my windshield, the coffee maker had a pressure-sensitive sticker, this one over an LCD display window. As I peeled it off, I asked my oldest son what time it was, which he determined by reading the clock on our stove: 10:53. Printed on the sticker, to demonstrate the display, was the time 10:53. 

I'm connecting with pressure-sensitive stickers. 

Do you ever feel a sense of order with numbers?