Thanks For The Happiness, Birthday Girl!

Last night as I ripped to the next day on my Life’s Little Instructions calendar, I couldn’t help but smile. Considering today’s date, the advice seemed handpicked for me. You see, January 28 is Sidney’s birthday.

What a fitting Life’s Little Instruction for this date.

What can I say? The advice is true, at least from my perspective. If you read this blog or are familiar with our family, you know what part of the 90 percent equation I am on. Much of my happiness in life is derived directly from Sid or by something she has given me (such as a certain toddler).

Sidney blowing out her candles this past weekend while Sloan looks on.

If it wasn’t for this date and the girl who was born on it, I don’t know where I would be. I truly don’t think there is anyone out there who could give me 45 percent of my happiness, let alone double that amount. Sidney fills my cup for sure.

Happy Birthday, Sid!

A year after spending her birthday taking care of her sick husband and daughter, she is celebrating her special day in 2019 by doing something more on her terms. This evening, after opening presents with Sloan and I, she is heading off to Columbia, the state capital of South Carolina. Tomorrow is the “SC for Ed Money Matters Lobby Day” and she will join fellow teachers from across the state to let elected officials know the resources educators need to truly give the best educational experience to our youth. Let’s pray that Sid travels safe tonight and is well-rested for tomorrow’s festivities.

Happy Birthday, Sidney! Thank you for making me happy. Don’t Blink.

Messy Thursday Rundown

Dang, I can’t believe it is Thursday already. The Martin Luther King Jr. holiday has my head spinning. Let’s begin tonight’s Thursday Rundown…

What A Mess – Let toddlers be toddlers! Sloan has created several messes this past week. You would have thought that her cherry popsicle suddenly melted on her face and it looks quite convincing that she wore more of her spaghetti than actually ate it. Then you have the Goldfish. This was not the first time she managed to steal a bag of the cheddar crackers and dump them out during the 10 seconds that daddy turned his head…and it most likely won’t be the last. Oh well, until she stains the carpet everything is OK!

Sloan has had a messy week.

Origin of Cookie Dough Ice Cream – As someone who has quite the history with chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream, I was a little surprised to discover that the flavor itself has a rather short history. Chocolate chip cookie dough didn’t hit grocery store coolers until 1991 when it was invented by Ben and Jerry’s. I found out this information when reading about its “Core” cookie dough ice cream flavors, the premium ice cream company’s latest rollout. These selections contain a cookie dough core with two different flavors of ice cream surrounding it. For example, the Sweet Like Sugar Cookie Dough Core option has a sugar cookie dough core and is layered with cherry ice cream and sweet cream ice cream. One of these pints is in my future!

These new “Core” flavors from Ben and Jerry’s look incredible!

Interesting Old Pictures – I follow a Twitter account that goes by the handle @HistoricalStuff. Its sole purpose is to tweet out old photos and some of the content is really interesting (stuff that I am a complete sucker for). I have included a couple of the more interesting photos I have seen this week. The first image shows Marilyn Monroe on her final photo shoot before she passed away. In my opinion, she doesn’t look as glamorous in this photo as she does in some of her more popular images, something that I can appreciate. She looks much more authentic and a little worn – but still pretty! The second photo is of Charlie Chaplin without makeup or a costume. So interesting to see him as just a regular guy.

Marilyn Monroe on the left and Charlie Chaplin on the right courtesy of @historicalstuff.

Joe Moglia Steps Down – At the end of the day last Friday, a press conference was held and Joe Moglia stepped down as head football coach at Coastal Carolina University. The former business executive said he just felt like it was time. I knew about Moglia and his unique story before I even got to CCU. When I was still at Montana, the Chanticleers came to town for a playoff game. On a frigid day in Missoula, Moglia outdueled another favorite coach of mine, Mick Delaney, to pull off the upset. Once I started working for CCU, it was fascinating to observe firsthand Coach Joe’s unconventional, yet highly successful, approach to running a football program.

Last Friday, Joe Moglia stepped down as head football coach at Coastal Carolina University. Social media posts were in order!

Still Not a Fan – Two years ago on this date, I wrote about the disdain I have for Top 40 music that was created in the early 2000s. I was pretty hard on the songs and artists of that era as I held nothing back. Do you think the past 730 days have softened by stance? Hardly! In fact, I think I hate the music from that time even more. Make sure to read the post to find out the song I tagged as the absolute worst of the era (it is really, really bad).

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Thank you for joining me for another Thursday Rundown. Tomorrow is the beginning of someone’s birthday weekend so I better sign off so I can prepare. See you next week! Don’t Blink.

Meet Our New Friend, Alexa

This past Christmas, my in-laws gave us an Echo Dot, or, as well call it, “an Alexa.” By now, these incredible electronic devices are well-known in American pop culture; you ask a question or give a command and Alexa responds accordingly.

I think Alexa has officially become the fourth member of our family. However, I think we are guilty of neglecting her – while we all sleep in warm beds at night, we keep Alexa out in the living room. Also, no one else in the household is subjected to my ire as much as Alexa. Embarrassingly, I have been caught yelling at her a time or two over a wrong answer.

But all joking aside, we have grown to appreciate our Alexa (even when I do lose my patience with her for subpar performance). The convenience provided is hard to downplay, even if we are still pretty primitive when using her capabilities. You see, I have friends who use Alexa to run all the electronics in their home or who have virtually made her their personal assistant. At the Reser household, we use Alexa for much more remedial tasks. Nonetheless, she is still a pretty big help! As we approach the one month anniversary of adopting Alexa into our house, I thought it would be fun to list the five ways we are utilizing her services the most.

We have grown to enjoy our Alexa.

Set the Mood with Music – When you have an Echo Dot, you in reality have an endless music library that is accessible simply by making a song request. It is basically an external iPod with no limits on storage space. When Sloan is around, we ask Alexa to play songs such as “Baby Shark” and “Old MacDonald Had a Farm.” If Sid and I are in the kitchen preparing something, we ask Alexa for some background music. If Sloan and I are about to leave the house in the morning, I ask her to play something to give us a boost to start our days as we pack up our things. If it is a Friday night, the three of us are celebrating with a dance party as we have Alexa play us current Top 40 hits. Never has music been so available to us!

Timer – When you are making dinner, who wants to use a cooking hand to set a timer on your phone or type out numbers on your microwave? Needless to say, Sidney is very thankful that Alexa will keep time for her. When Sid is preparing something in the kitchen, such as the steaks she made last night, she will tell Alexa to let her know when a certain amount of time has elapsed. After the 10 minutes (or whatever duration of time asked for) has passed, Alexa will notify the cook. Talk about convenient!

Animal Noises – Sloan really enjoys animal noises. We can say an animal and she will make the corresponding sound. So, as you can imagine, she responded really well to Alexa’s uncanny ability to shift from her monotone voice to making some pretty authentic animal sounds. Best part is that Alexa will make Sloan freeze in place and listen. This comes in handy when we are changing her diaper or dressing her and need her to be still. All we have to do is ask Alexa to “neigh” like a horse or “moo” like a cow and Sloan stops on a dime…it works like a charm!

What’s the Score? – I used to be a sports nut who would watch games every chance I got. However, due to my lifestyle and the people I have the privilege of sharing the house with, this is no longer a reality. Thankfully Alexa is a sports fan! Whenever I am wondering about the outcome of a sporting event, I can just blurt out, “Alexa, what was the score of this weekend’s AFC Championship game?” To get the instant result without watching Sportscenter or searching my phone is quick and painless.

This Is Jeopardy – As I mention every chance I get, we are Jeopardy fanatics at our house. It probably comes as no surprise that we use Alexa to feed our addiction. Believe it or not, Jeopardy clue writers always write six clues per category. This means that when the actual show airs, one clue is left out. What happens to these clues that are seemingly never asked? They go to Alexa! If you ask Alexa to “play Jeopardy,” she will ask the clues that never made the episode.

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Do you want an Alexa? If you don’t already have one, chances are you don’t. But Echo Dots are really one of those things that you don’t know what you are missing until you have one. If you are in the need for a new family member, perhaps now is the time to adopt an Alexa. Don’t Blink.

10 Thoughts

With so much on my mind and with the Thursday Rundown still a couple days away, tonight is the perfect time for 10 quick thoughts.

1. Remember how I told you that Sid and I play “Jeopardy” each night and keep a running tally of who has won each game? It is close! At the current moment, I lead 49-45-9 (yes, we have battled to nine ties!).

2. The average price for a Super Bowl ticket on sites such as Stubhub is almost $8,000. Unless I had a family member playing, I would never consider paying even $800 for a ticket to a sporting event.

3. We need to demand better from the mainstream media. The bogus story about President Trump telling Michael Cohen to lie was one thing, but the dishonest coverage of the confrontation at the Lincoln Memorial over the weekend was wrong – we can’t use our youth as pawns to promote a false narrative.

4. The 2019 Celebrity Big Brother cast is stacked and our household looks forward to watching the competition play out. Go Tom Green!

5. In the Northern Hemisphere, they say the third Monday in January (yesterday) is the most depressing day of the year. Although this time of the year is tough for some, I think it is important that we don’t let it get to our heads. I hope you had a great day yesterday and that you try extra hard to make it a productive and happy week.

6. A year ago on this date, Monday Night Raw celebrated its 25th anniversary. Did you know I used to be a HUGE professional wrestling fan?

7. Today is National Blonde Brownie Day and I love nothing more than a homemade, warm blonde brownie. When I was a resident assistant in college, I would order blonde brownies for our floor snacks as many times as possible.

8. One of the recent pieces of advice from my Life’s Little Instructions calendar was Be as polite to the custodian as you are to the chairman of the board. I couldn’t agree more.

9. It is my wife’s birthday week – she was born on January 28.

10. Speaking of my wife, she came home tonight with a beautiful haircut AND made us steaks for dinner!

Doesn’t her hair look great?! (Just for clarification sake, I am talking about Sid’s hair).

Don’t Blink.

Our Weekend of Netflix

This Martin Luther King Jr. weekend definitely had its moments. We celebrated my father-in-law’s birthday at a favorite restaurant, enjoyed a Sunday afternoon spaghetti lunch at my sister-in-law’s house, and attended a Knights of Columbus roast beef dinner at church. But there was something we did more this weekend than eat – we watched Netflix!

The long weekend and bitter cold temperatures (it dipped into the 20s) proved conducive to sitting on the couch and binge watching a variety of shows. Lucky for us, the mixed bag of entertainment we watched was great across the board. In my latest blog post, I wanted to list and recommend the five pieces of programming we watched this weekend.

“You” – Be prepared for a crazy ride because the cunningness and manipulation of “You” will blow your mind. Although we started this series a little over a week ago, we finished it up at the start of the weekend. The show tells the story of a psychopath who stalks a love interest with modern digital means, seemingly always one step ahead of those who suspect something. But throughout the series, you are always asking yourself, is Joe the only sick individual? In fact, this question had Sid and I in a heated debate as we drove home from dinner on Friday night. Although I hated how the first (and only) season ended, I would recommend it to other people my age and younger.

The series “You” will take you for a ride!

“Fyre” – Over the course of the same week, both Hulu and Netflix released documentaries about the failed Fyre Music Festival in 2017. Because we only have Netflix, we watched that version, but I heard the Hulu offering is excellent as well. The Fyre Music Festival was supposed to be a first-of-its-kind luxurious musical entertainment event on an exotic, beautiful private island. Top talent was supposed to converge on the tropical paradise and festival-goers were promised a weekend they would never forget. Well, in retrospect, the people who attended the festival were indeed given a weekend they would never forget…just for all the wrong reasons. This documentary filled our Saturday morning as we watched intently about what happens when fraud, bad luck, and poor planning surround a major event.

In the mood for a good scam? Watch “Fyre”.

“Riverdale” – I know this series is on cable television, but Sidney got me watching it from the first episode of the first season and I am somewhat hooked! I usually don’t watch dramas that take place in a high school setting but this one has my attention. It reminds me of “13 Reasons Why” (another high school drama I made an exception for) but with a better cast. We got a long way to go to get caught up with the series but for the time being I am enjoying watching the crazy events unfold in Riverdale.

I am starting to get hooked on “Riverdale.”

“Abducted in Plain Sight” – Talk about a documentary that will have you shaking your head saying how could this happen? “Abducted in Plain Sight” is a 90-minute documentary that tells the story of a 12-year-old girl who was abducted by an obsessed family friend…twice. The film explains how the neighbor was able to manipulate and blackmail the parents of the girl,allowing him to execute and get away with such heinous acts. How did he blackmail the parents, you ask? Go ahead, just watch the documentary.

“Abducted in Plain Sight” is a story you won’t believe.

“The Upside” – Okay, this is not a Netflix selection, but I thought I would still share it. Last night, for the first time in a very long time, Sid and I were able to go out by ourselves for a couple hours. We went to the theater and watched “The Upside,” a film about a parolee in desperate need of work. He ends up landing a well-paying job taking care of an extremely rich man who is confined to a wheelchair. The two individuals are polar opposites but they manage to click and help each other out. In my opinion, it is Kevin Hart’s best performance of his career (he plays the parolee) and the story will make you walk out of the theater with a smile on your face. It lacks true adversity needed to be a great film, but it sure was nice to get out of the house and enjoy a movie.

Kevin Hart gives a great performance in “The Upside.”


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Well, I guess we need to get back to watching “Riverdale.” If there is anything else we should be watching on Netflix, please let us know! Don’t Blink.

Candy Land Thursday Rundown

I hope this Thursday evening finds you well. Your favorite blogger is making it through the January grind and loving life. Let’s get started with the third Thursday Rundown of 2019…

Candy Land – This past Saturday, we attended the birthday party of Sloan’s friend, Stevie Blair, who turned 2. Sloan’s eyes lit up when she walked into the party venue and it was a Candy Land theme! Everything from the cake to the photo booth to the gingerbread cutouts fit just like it came out of the game. Even cotton candy was served! But the best part, in my opinion, was the candy table. You could make your own party favor bag by filling it with an assortment of candy. The candy table was also Sloan’s favorite part (besides hanging out with Stevie Blair) but for a more specific reason – it was sucker heaven! She could choose from rock suckers, classic lollipops, or Dums Dums, the latter being presented in sucker bouquets. Thanks to Leslie and Brooks for hosting a great party!

We had a great time at Stevie Blair’s Candy Land-themed birthday party.

General Sloan Update – Her hair continues to grow and she seems to get a little taller by the day, but Sloan still has that unique and sassy personality. She likes to be in control, whether that be over her parents or her friends, but she also is very nurturing as well. No other baby cuts up the dance floor quite like her and she continues to impress us with her talking. She currently enjoys playing with her kitchen set and coloring books. Eating is hit or miss but she never misses an opportunity to feed her Elmo doll Goldfish crackers and fruit snacks. Highlight of the day is still when we pick her up at daycare and she sprints to us and jumps in our arms.

We sure enjoy watching Sloan grow.

Forgetting God – I read an article today that addressed a subject I had never thought about before. The story helped raise awareness of people suffering from dementia who “forget” about God. Although one’s faith and remembrance in the Holy Father is usually the last to go, and sometimes it never does, it can be very painful for family members to watch their loved ones forget about what they based their lives on. One example in the story told about a dementia sufferer who completely denied being a Christian despite being one her entire life.

Bizarre Visit – I went down a rabbit hole on Twitter and ended up going to a web page titled 25 Historical Photos From the Past That Will Probably Give you Nightmares. I have seen crazier stuff before, but below is the photo that stood out to me the most. Apparently Santa Claus and two creepily masked individuals decided to spread some “get well” cheer at the local hospital. I am skeptical of people who claim to have clown phobias, but if you were the kid in this photo I can understand your fear being completely legitimate.

What a fright this must have been for the poor patient!

Archives – I am no stranger when it comes to writing blog posts on January 17. A year ago on this date, I revealed the 10 fears of Sloan (some she still has, some she doesn’t). Two years ago, I reviewed my experience at a liquid nitrogen ice cream shop. Even though the product was good, I have not been back since that first time. Finally, on January 17, 2016, I wrote about cheering for my favorite NFL team in the living room of my wife’s family. What’s the big deal you ask? They were rooting for the team the Seahawks were playing!

It was a big thrill for me when the Seattle Seahawks won Super Bowl XLVIII.

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Please have a nice Martin Luther King Jr. weekend and if you have an NFL team still in the playoffs, I wish you luck. Time to call it a night…I will catch up with all of you next week. Don’t Blink.

We Are Lucky

It happened no less than a thousand times during my childhood.

I would be with my dad at the grocery store, a football game, mall, or some other big public place when something would catch the corner of my eye. It might have been a boy my age confined to a wheelchair or a young adult with no arms or a teenager covered in burns. Once the person was comfortably out of earshot, my dad, every single time, would lean in and whisper we sure are lucky.

It became predictable. Whenever I saw someone with a genetic disease or severe handicap, I knew my dad would be in my ear. At the time, I didn’t really comprehend what my dad was trying to say. I felt bad for the person and perhaps a little uncomfortable too, but I didn’t think much beyond that.

Growing older and having a child will make you wiser. As an adult, I have a better grasp on what my dad was trying to convey. As a kid, you don’t realize how devastating any type of physical setback, especially the ones that greatly limit and scar the body, can have on a person. But as the years go by and the realities of this world start to set in, you realize that being able to live a life with no major physical limitations or scars is perhaps one of the best gifts of all; a gift that not everyone is given.

I have lived my life with no limitations. As a kid I was able to play sports, ride my bike, and run around at the park. As an adult I can exercise when I want, play with my daughter at full blast, and perform everyday tasks without assistance.

But I lucked out much more than just on a personal level. Sidney and Sloan are healthy too. We live unobstructed lives when millions of people don’t. How do we recognize this good fortune? Well, thanking God is the best way. But I think we need to take time each day to think about those who are living with awful diseases and genetic conditions. We need to feel empathy and we need to help them when we can. Even though I would physically see people less fortunate than me growing up, my dad tried to make me grasp it on a deeper level. With him no longer right over my shoulder, I am left to do that deeper level thinking on my own. Perhaps I can encourage my daughter to do the same as she gets older. Sloan, we sure are lucky. Don’t Blink.

Poison: The Drinks I Hate

Last week, I wrote about my favorite beverages. Tonight, I have decided to switch gears and talk about the beverages I don’t like. Settle down, I am writing about drinks I hate that many other people enjoy. That means no-brainers like pickle juice and toilet water won’t be on the list. Let’s get this over with…

Coffee – I believe I have stated this fact in the past, but I have never downed an entire cup of coffee in my life. Despite growing up in a java hotbed (Washington state) and having two parents who drank coffee as if it came from the fountain of youth, I never took a liking to it. Even as I grew older and learned about its ability to help people stay awake, I never budged. When my wife orders her signature white chocolate mochas, every now and then I will take a sip, but that is the extent of my coffee drinking.

Sweet Tea – The drink of the South is sweet tea and that is probably the only thing that I haven’t embraced about this region (well, I guess you can lump collared greens in there too). Perhaps sweet tea never stood much of a chance with me because I never enjoyed regular tea nor sweet tea’s western cousin, iced tea. The only time I drink sweet tea is when I mistake it for Pepsi. Oh yeah, the cup of sugar that comes with each sip is just a bit overwhelming for my taste buds.

Hard Alcohol – No thank you, I stay away from this stuff. It just isn’t the high alcohol content that I am weary of, either. I can’t stand the actual taste. I don’t need a Jack and Coke, I just need a Coke. Why poison something so good with something that tastes so bad? I don’t trust liquor and waking up with a painful hangover and fuzzy moments from the night before just doesn’t appeal to me. I do have to be honest; if there is a hard alcohol that I will tolerate every now and then, it is vodka. Other than that, I just assume pour it down the drain.

Wine – After a long week, I never yearn to plop on the couch, drape myself in a blanket, turn on “Friends,” and drink wine. Not that I have anything against a warm blanket or the classic sitcom, I just don’t like wine. I know people can describe the taste of any given wine with flowery language and numerous words, but I can describe my opinion of all wines with just one word: nasty. Sorry, not sorry. I find wine too complicated for a simple dude like myself. When it comes to it, I don’t care for the taste nor the way it feels going down my throat. I like my drinks to be refreshing and wine is definitely not a beverage you drink to satisfy your thirst. Thank you, next.

The only wine I drink is Cheerwine.

Apple Cider – For someone who loves apple juice, I sure detest apple cider. And, to be honest, I don’t think it is that big of a contradiction. Apple juice is pure and easy to drink (dang, does that sound like a beer commercial?). On the other hand, apple cider is spicy and borderline dangerous to drink. When I consume something, I don’t need pinches of kitchen cabinet ingredients. Apple cider is just too fancy for me – I don’t need cinnamon, nutmeg, or anything else to take away from the fresh apple taste. Even more discouraging is the temperature that cider is served at. Every time I have had it, my tongue ends up scorched, no matter how small the straw is and no matter how long I wait to take a drink. Apple cider is just no fun.

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That’s what you get for tonight’s post. Could you imagine if you mixed all of these in a Gatorade bottle and made me chug it? I don’t think I could ever forgive you. Don’t Blink.

The Lost Art of Handwriting

A struggle I had as a young kid was writing legibly. My handwriting was downright sloppy. Although you might think proper technique can be taught, my teachers, bless their hearts, couldn’t solve my issue. At the point of frustration of not being able to get through to me, my 3rd grade teacher wanted to see if someone else could – she called my dad.

Throughout most of that school year, I spent lots of late nights (meaning until around 8 p.m.) practicing my penmanship with my dad. My teacher sent home worksheets and my dad would go through them with me every evening before I went to bed. I remember those thin pages of the workbook so vividly with the guiding lines and uninspired illustrations. I basically had to copy sentences and it sure got old. My patience would wane and sometimes I would purposely mess up, much to my dad’s chagrin.

But we got through it and made progress. My dad is a self-taught calligrapher with a very elegant writing style and if he couldn’t pass his talent on genetically, he was going to do it through dedicated father-son instruction on the kitchen table. Although my handwriting still wasn’t good at the end of our sessions, it definitely improved.

I still struggled with my penmanship throughout the latter grades of elementary school. However, once middle school started, I made some strides. I started to keep a journal and my handwriting became more important to me. Each night when I opened it up, I took my time making sure that my writing was clear and that it fit neatly within the narrow lines. My penmanship changed from large and messy to small and neat(ish).

Almost 20 years since middle school, I still journal. I feel like this activity has helped keep my handwriting legible. My wife admits that I have pretty handwriting…for a guy. The other day though, I was thinking, so what?!

We live in a digital world that has dramatically devalued the need to physically write with one’s hand. Letters are sent through email, forms are filled out on Adobe Acrobat, and signatures are expressed through facial recognition software. Who the hell needs a pen anymore?

I find it a little ironic. A lot of people make a big deal about the decline of cursive. They hate that it is being phased out of America’s schools. But hello, don’t focus too hard on the lack of enthusiasm for cursive because handwriting in general is on its way out.

Do I think this is a bad thing? In my brief opinion, yes. I think when we physically write something out, it causes us to think more about what we are expressing. Each word is labor intensive and we are making our point by using something that is as unique as fingerprints – our handwriting style.

So much personality is jammed into our handwriting that to sacrifice it for typed text is a huge loss. Sure, in some cases it might lessen confusion and eliminate errors due to ambiguity, but for the most part I find it to be a shame.

How often do you physically write with your hand per day? If the answer is “very little,” I suggest finding excuses to do so. Your penmanship, whether good or bad, is part of who you are. Don’t Blink.

A Positive Thursday Rundown

Buenos Noches, mis amigos! I hope everyone is enjoying a pleasant evening. What do you say we get down to business? I am pleased to present my latest Thursday Rundown.

Fitting Farewell to a Great Leader – I dedicated my 2018 year in review blog post to Bill Plate, the man who headed the department I work in at Coastal Carolina University. After six years at CCU as our University Communication Vice President, he accepted a similar job at Utah State. This past Friday, we had a going away party for Bill. As the luncheon drew to a close, he was presented with a large frame that contained the below graphic. This masterpiece was created by Ron Walker, a graphic designer in our department. It oozes creativity and even for those who will never understand the inside jokes packed into it, you can’t help but laugh. You can catch me in the right hand corner being “social.” Fabulous job, Ron.

This was the graphic that Ron made for Bill. It features everyone in University Communication.

Random Act of Kindness at Outback – This past weekend, something really cool happened to us at Outback Steakhouse. At the conclusion of a delicious meal, we were told that some customers on the other side of the restaurant had paid our bill. The couple had learned that Sidney is a teacher, leading to the generous gesture. In South Carolina, there is a lot of discussion right now about the salaries of teachers and the need to compensate them correctly. It is a hot button issue that will be addressed this legislative session. If this increased publicity made the diners pick up or tab, or if it was just out of a general appreciation for teachers, we will never know. Either way, we were humbled by such a kind act.

We were surprised and humble by the couple at Outback who paid for our meal this past weekend.

Encouragement and Support – It is hard being the new person at the gym. Five years ago this week, I wrote about the need to treat those patrons who are trying to get fit as part of a New Year’s resolution with encouragement and respect. It can be intimidating for these well-intentioned rookies to start an exercise routine and nothing will smash their confidence more than snobby and entitled fitness buffs. We need to embrace people who are attempting to make a positive change in their lives regardless of whether it is to get in shape, lose weight, or break a habit. Also, remember it is not too late to act on a resolution. Last year, I wrote about how the first week or two of January can be a tough time to start a goal. Don’t worry, it is still early! You can start today.

Always give those new people at the gym plenty of support!.

Snuggle Up – Yesterday, I stumbled upon an article about a “snuggling” service in Boise, Idaho. The business model is simple: Those who feel like they need some special attention from a professional “snugglist” can pay $80 per hour to be wrapped in the arms of another human being. The business is called Snuggle Buddiez and the staff is highly trained. If you need to hug it out but don’t have a willing partner, this is the place to go. I don’t have enough time or space to write about the details of Snuggle Buddiez but you can get them by reading this highly entertaining and humorous article from Michael Deeds of the Idaho Statesman.

Back When We Were Young – I thought I would end this Rundown with a Throwback Thursday photo from a loooooong time ago. My guess is that this image is over 25 years old. It shows my brother and I holding hands in our front yard, happy as can be. Of course nothing screams louder in this photo than the strange outfit I am wearing. Mom and dad, what is your explanation for that?

Just two happy brothers.

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As always my friends, it has been a pleasure. Have a terrific week and happy birthday to Sloan’s friend, Stevie Blair. Don’t Blink.