Teeth Cleaning

Have you ever noticed that when you’re getting your teeth cleaned, your mind wanders? I mean, the alternative is to pay much too close attention to what’s happening. So I was mind-wandering in just that position a couple of weeks ago...

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Painstaking

Painstaking

When I was teaching high school English, one of my favorite texts was John Ciardi’s How Does a Poem Mean? His love for poetry shines on every page, especially when he mentions “the pleasure of taking pains.” We have so many...

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Conversations

Conversations

Lecture. A word that strikes terror into our hearts. I’ve given a few lectures, I’ll confess. And lectures can be outstanding. In college I sat entranced in a large SRO classroom while Professor Leyburn gave his famous, tear-soaked...

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Attention Span

Attention Span

How many of us neglect childhood? Not as we’re living it, after we’ve “outgrown” it. I suggest we’re never past our childhood, and we need to focus on the advantage of being childlike—focused on fearless discovery...

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Amazing Grays

Amazing Grays

The name of the class: Successful Job Interviewing. My Department of Education audience was evenly divided between older men (mostly white, with decades of service) and young women (of diverse ethnicity and race, with only a few months in their...

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Subvert Yourself

Subvert Yourself

“Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought.” John F. Kennedy    A day doesn’t pass that I don’t want to ask someone “Have you thought about that?”  And someone includes me. It’s too damn easy to fall into the...

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Bland Loyalty

Bland Loyalty

Joe Scarborough, during the run-up to the 2014 election, spoke about his family and how loyalty was very important to them as a core value. “We were a Crest family,” he pointed out. “We might try Colgate, but we were always a Crest family.”...

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Annapolis, MD 21403