Monday, January 28, 2008


It was today in history - January 28, 1986, that the Space Shuttle Challenger was lost during lift-off. I can still remember the day, where I was, what I was doing.

I grew up on the "Space Coast" of Florida. Just 30 minutes from the Kennedy Space Center. When I was growing up the school board made it a ritual that when the shuttle got past the final hold we'd have an impromptu "fire drill" so the whole school would go outside and watch. 51-L was different: the schools weren't allowed to do the fire drill routine anymore, and Challenger was the first shuttle that we didn't go outside to watch.. until someone who was outside came back in a panic because it had blown up. I personally couldn't believe it, didn't want to believe it. I went through my entire time in Jr. High without seeing the shuttle fly again, and it wasn't until my sophmore year in high school that they launched again. It was years that redefined who I was, and what I was passionate about. But at that next launch, there was a fire drill...

It's said that the Challenger mishap was a prime example of the "Abilene Paradox", interesting read on all the things that created the perfect storm of mishap.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

10 years

I can't believe it's taken me almost a week to post this up. Last Thursday was our 10th wedding anniversary. Definitely a milestone. 17 Jan, 1998 was one of the most stressful and delightful days in my life. I can hardly believe it's been 10 years since that day. It was the eye in the storm for me, in the middle of a job where I was working entirely too hard, trying to figure out how to manage, and then how to be a good husband.

Things haven't been smooth, nothing gone "according to plan", but we manage to survive and to love each other. And that's what it all about.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Keeping promises

It's one of those things that you don't think about all that much, but when I do I personally put a large value on the keeping of promises. I attempt to not make promises that I either cannot or will not keep.

So, a couple of weekends ago I came into a conflict - I put aside money each month to re-up our Disney passes, and not time for renewal was wanning. We are supposed to be moving to South Carolina, and spending almost $1400 on Annual Passes to a theme park in Florida sounds awefully foolish. We're going to be short on money because of the current housing crisis, too. Heck, we were supposed to be up there already for all intents and purposes, but the financial aspects just haven't been where it makes sense to go.

One thing I had promised myself, and in proxy my kids, was that if we were going to start getting the passes again it wasn't going to be a 1 year deal; That is, I promised myself that as long as we lived in Florida I would do everything in my power to continue getting the passes. I set up a CD and put money away each month to cover the costs. I budgeted correctly for it, and had the money in hand.

That money could have gone towards a lot of things we need right now, but that would have been as bad as lying to the kids to their face. I knew what that money was for, and we haven't moved yet. Two showings in six months has a way of changing your mind on the risks you'll take leaving a house.

The question always comes down to - when given the tempatation to not keep your promise and do what "makes more sense" at the time, do you cave.. or do you go through with the promise even if it's not the best idea? I'm sure that in the years since that God has looked down at the earth and pondered another flood, but that rainbow is our assurance of his love for us even if "every inclination of his heart is evil from childhood."

Sometimes the best decision isn't the most sensible one, it's the one that shows true character.