As a freelance writer, I often receive payments in my mailbox after completing a client’s resume or Linkedin profile or finishing the edits of their book. Of course, I’m always grateful for the checks. And sometimes clients will attach a sticky note to the check saying how pleased they were with my work. I love when that happens. I was not expecting what I received in the mailbox today, however, and it had me feeling appreciated for the rest of the day. A repeat client sent in her check. On her envelope she had written my name and then underneath, “The Best Freelance Writer.” The fact that it was written in purple pen was even more uplifting. Then there was the beautiful flowery stamp. Not just your regular American flag. What a gift my client gave me. Probably without even realizing it.
You know when you’re far away from your house and you realize that you left the garage door open? Well, that didn’t happen to me.
I mean, yes, I left the garage door open but no, I didn’t realize it. Not at the doctor’s office. Not at the Original Pancake House. Not at Ikea. And not at the grocery store. Six hours worth of not realizing my house was open for looting. It was like I was inviting everyone in to help themselves to our mountain bikes, ladders and power tools. And everything in our house. (more…)
When I was six, my grandfather convinced me to go sailing with him. Not just sailing, but racing. It was his
passion and he wanted to share it with me. He sailed long skinny boats called Two-Tens and raced every weekend in the summer on the North Shore of Massachusetts.
My grandfather sensed my hesitation to go with him. The whole thing would take up more than half the day, and I was unsure about being any farther from land than a swim away and also about tipping over.
“It’ll be fun,” he told me. “I promise this boat will never flip. It can’t. It is physically impossible.” (more…)
The world (or at least the city and the house where I live) has grown so obnoxiously noisy. Leaf blowers and rumbling trucks; air conditioning units and the buzz of the computer; TVs and cell phones ringing; the teenager’s music blasted from the floor below. There are fewer and fewer silent moments to just appreciate the soothing sounds of the natural world. I’m not surprised that The New York Times has created an online Quiet City map that allows users to find a place in any of the five boroughs where they can hear themselves think for a few minutes. (more…)
Here’s the thing about holding grudges. The person holding the grudge is much more negatively affected than the person whose actions or words caused the grudge-holding. You know it’s true. How many times a day/week/month/year do you spend mental energy on that grudge? A long-term grudge can become so entrenched that it can impact your daily outlook, your decisions, and even your health, both mental and physical. And the sad thing I’ve discovered from my own personal experience holding too many grudges is that many grudges are based upon faulty assumptions about the other person’s motives or feelings, or about the other person’s ability to be the person you think you deserve them to be. (more…)
Studying poetry in school made me feel dumb, as if the poet was specifically trying to hide the real meaning of whatever it is he or she wanted to communicate in a bunch of undecipherable formats and words. I was irritated that you had to work that hard to figure out what an author was trying to say, and that even if you thought you’d figured it out, you weren’t sure. As a teenager, that uncertainty didn’t seem worth the mental exertion. Yet, I’ve always loved writing poetry. In fact, my family has a tradition of giving gifts along with a poem. Mine are best known for the rhymes involving curse words. There’s just so much that rhymes with shit, shitty and ass! (more…)