What does it mean to be a man? Courage, certainly, would top most lists though courage is by no means the exclusive province of the male (In fact, much of what follows likely applies to women as well. I'm just not qualified to compile that list).
I spent Father's Day afternoon with my son. Nothing fancy, a movie and dinner. Going to movies is one of the things we've always enjoyed doing together. Simple and relaxing. I wish I had a list of everything we've seen over the years.
At Day in Our Village on March 2 (the calendar said "June," but it must have been March. I could see my breath), Tracy Brooker of OPRF Embrace, a new initiative to accentuate the positive, said they were videotaping responses to the question, "What do you love about Oak Park?" A worthy endeavor since Oak Parkers tend to criticize more than praise (though one of the things I love about Oak Park is that we're willing to criticize and not just engage in mindless boosterism. We want to make things better).
In the film Win Win, a high school wrestling coach, during a reflective moment, asks his star wrestler, a bona fide prodigy, "What's it like to be that good at something?" Most of the people in the audience for the OPRF High School Orchestra's Senior Farewell Concert, May 15, probably wondered the same thing as Scott Daniel, one of three winners of the 2012-13 OPRF Concerto Competition, launched into Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto in D Major.
This column about one of my old college profs ran on March 16, 2011. Afterward, I decided to track him down and found him retired and living in Palos Heights. In fact, he was about to conduct his final concert.
Until seventh grade, it was all about sports for John Clay III. Basketball, to be precise (he's 6-3). Maybe because of the demands of sports, he was looking for an easy course to fill out his schedule, so he took choir. A few of the girls told him he had a nice voice. OK. And his best friend, Da'Boris Bradley was "a theater geek." Being a seventh-grader, of course, Clay teased him about it.
As a newspaper editor for over 22 years, a newspaper columnist for over 28, and having written two books (more on that in a future column), I've been contemplating the craft of late. During the last two decades, I've read a lot of writing that … could be better — including, maybe especially, my own. Not everyone will become a good writer, but everyone can be a better writer.
I'm a typochondriac. I wake up in the middle of the night wondering if I fixed that transposition of letters and whether I checked the spelling of "peripatetic." You might think such details are inconsequential, but I assure you they are not. A lot is riding on it.