I am a simple person with a complicated psyche.

Image supplied by author (Pictured: wife-Deanna; son-Nicholas; daughter-Audrey; me)

I grew up in a middle-class, conservative, Christian home in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina.

My negative memories from childhood encompass:
…the loneliness that sometimes accompanies being an only child
…sexual abuse on two different occasions
…being bullied in elementary and middle school

It was through these experiences that I learned I could escape through comic books, action figures (not dolls), and television.

My positive memories from childhood include:
…growing up in a loving home
…having a very supportive mother and father
…excelling in Little League Baseball
…excelling in school

Any time he could, my father…


The view from the other side can help you too.

Image supplied by author (Pictured: me with my glasses adjusted so I could see the best, and I also need a shave)

The idea of the midlife crisis did not begin until 1957 when Canadian, Elliott Jaques, read one of his papers to the British Psycho-Analytical Society. It declared that the catalyst for this event was when people came to grips with their mortality and that their lives were half over.

This can also lead to feelings of depression and regret. A survey conducted in the U.S. found approximately 26% of the participants admitted to having a midlife crisis. Of those respondents, 25% state their crisis was brought on by a major life event, rather than their age.

This was the case…


Beat boredom while you wait for your food.

A father is a bald man with glasses, mustache and goatee, dressed in green-checkered white button-down shirt with a gray cotton button-up cardigan. His daughter is sitting across the restaurant table from him. She has medium-length black hair and she’s in a black dress with white spots. They are both looking at the camera. The table is empty and they are waiting on their food and drinks.
A father is a bald man with glasses, mustache and goatee, dressed in green-checkered white button-down shirt with a gray cotton button-up cardigan. His daughter is sitting across the restaurant table from him. She has medium-length black hair and she’s in a black dress with white spots. They are both looking at the camera. The table is empty and they are waiting on their food and drinks.
Image supplied by the author (Pictured: my daughter waiting on our food at a Middle Tennessee restaurant. Disclaimer: not the restaurant in this story.)

Waiting is something no one likes to do, but everyone has to experience it from time to time. I have used the term hurry up and wait more times than I’d like to admit. Waiting on food at a restaurant can be extra painful.

Rebecca Camu first used the word hangry in 1992. Impatient people become more impatient when they are hangry. Due to the pandemic, the foodservice industry is suffering tremendously. Managers can’t find enough workers to meet the needs of hungry customers.

My daughter and I recently attended a conference together in Memphis, TN. We were having dinner…


Overcoming other’s past perceptions of you

Me (with my bald head) in a black t-shirt bending down beside an end table with two different sized round balls with faces on them (modern art) in the main lobby at the Excellence Riviera Maya, Cancun, Mexico.
Me (with my bald head) in a black t-shirt bending down beside an end table with two different sized round balls with faces on them (modern art) in the main lobby at the Excellence Riviera Maya, Cancun, Mexico.
Image supplied by the author (Pictured: Me with some modern art in the main lobby at the Excellence Riviera Maya, Cancun, Mexico. When my 26-year-old son saw this picture, he said, “Dad, did you finally find your real parents?”)

While we know we should never judge a book by its cover, we continue to judge not only books but people by their “covers.” I was a squeamish, sensitive child who loved to escape into superheroes and television. It doesn’t feel good when people judge us.

In elementary school, I developed a friendship with two guys who were very outgoing, wild, and crazy (as wild and crazy as one can be at that age). They helped me relax and come out of my shell. …


Contending with people’s opposing views

People in the streets. One person is holding a black sign with white letters that say “The Earth Is Flat.” There are 3 pictures of the earth below that with the words “Video Project” and a QR Code on the bottom.
People in the streets. One person is holding a black sign with white letters that say “The Earth Is Flat.” There are 3 pictures of the earth below that with the words “Video Project” and a QR Code on the bottom.
Photo by Kajetan Sumila on Unsplash

“We have to watch Behind the Curve.” My son told his mother and me. “It’s a Netflix documentary where they make fun of people who believe the earth is flat,” he was told by his friends.

We decide to watch it together a few days later. I did not see this Netflix movie as a mockumentary on flat-earthers. I saw it as an excellent 96-minute movie portraying opposing sides of an issue involving human beings.

Most of the movie follows Mark Sargent, one of the leading proponents of, and recruiters for, the flat Earth conspiracy theory in the United States


continuous > dichotomous

Sunlight beaming into a forest of brown trees. You see the beautiful yellow, red, and orange hues in the rays.
Sunlight beaming into a forest of brown trees. You see the beautiful yellow, red, and orange hues in the rays.
Photo by Jan Huber on Unsplash

Politics > Democrats vs. Republicans
The United States > the Blue States vs. the Red States
Legislature > Congress vs. Progress

Higher Power > Fearful vs. Faithful
Jesus > Lunatic vs. Lord
God > Catholics vs. Protestants

Processes > Theory vs. Practice
Education > College vs. School of Hard Knocks
Philosophy > Chicken vs. Egg

Weather > Sunshine vs. Rain
Transportation > Flying vs. Driving
Competition > Winning vs. Losing

Life > the more things change vs. the more they remain the same

Tagging Charles Amemiya | Kyomi O'Connor | Michelle Grieve | Samra| Thief | Maya Ris | Warren…

Michael Hollifield

Blogger, speaker, passionate about life and learning, and re-learning, and re-learning.

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