Writing Samples

Below are a list of some of my published work and most well-received posts. I am also a regular contributor to Houston Family Magazine, Man of The House.com, The Good Men Project, and Aiming Low. In addition to those below, you can read my latest published work by clicking HERE.

When I was a boy, I watched my dad sink an axe blade into his right leg. He was trying to crack a welded join, connecting a pair of fifty-five-gallon barrels, when the axe head ricocheted off a drum and struck him square in the shin. I remember the dull thump of the metal hitting his leg and the bloody splinters of bone hanging from the cut in his jeans; but mostly I remember the calm way in which he went into the house, took a shower, and then drove himself to the hospital. Aside from muttering something about being stupid, Dad never said a word. Still, the pain contorting his face at every jagged step told me how much agony he must have been in. Read more

With another season of Mad Men over, my wife and I are left with a big hole to fill in our entertainment schedule. This constitutes a real problem. We're talking about Mad Men — not some cream-puff comedy easily replaced by a few rounds of Wii bowling. Night after night we have sat on the couch, she holding a tumbler of scotch, the day's newspaper folded neatly in her lap, and me in my apron, swirling my third glass of merlot. If that sounded backward, then allow me to explain. While my wife brings home the organic, hormone-free turkey-bacon, I am a stay-at-home dad (or SAHD). Our dynamic is not atypical for today, but back when the word "stereotype" might be confused with a brand of Hi-Fi radio and helicopters were odd enough without associating them with a type of parenting, the concept of a father as the primary caregiver would have raised the suspicions of both men and women. Read more

Public Radio's This I Believe

I once took a college course studying Shakespeare's comedies where the professor contended humor could not exist without tragedy. I feigned understanding, but frankly, my grasp of the concept extended no farther than it being a fact to remember for the final exam. This probably explains why I earned only a C, despite attempts to bribe the professor by loaning him books. I think he caught on, and to spite me, he kept them. Read more

My wife, it seems, clings to the hope her eventual death will involve some element of peculiarity about it. Traditional means such as car crashes and old age fail to suffice, falling into a category deemed “mundane to the point of bordering on vulgarity.

For all we agree on, this is one area where I am at a loss, being perfectly comfortable with whatever fate may hold. This naturally makes me the polar opposite of my wife, who employs a certain religious fervor in seeking out the holy grail of her demise. Specifically, this would be a death that allows adequate time to bask in the sympathy from others, but at the same time is devoid of pain, complicated treatment and any potential for survival.
Read more

"One Smart Cookie" Blog Nosh Magazine

An economic downturn. The loss of a job. The struggles to make ends meet. Sound familiar? I could probably rattle off at least two dozen people living through this right now. It’s miserable. I should know.

In 2006 I was a hotshot real estate executive who was pulling down a ridiculous six figure income while driving a hot car and partying with even hotter women. I lived in a downtown loft, wore designer suits, and pretty much did as I pleased. Okay, I know what’s going through your head, but wait, it gets better. By the end of 2007 I was engaged, laid off and flat broke. Not only that, I was about to gain two stepdaughters and couldn’t afford to visit my three sons who lived several states away.
Read the Rest Here

My wife and I have rediscovered the joy of sleeping in on the weekends, now that the kids are capable of getting their own breakfast. We had almost forgotten the luxury of not being wrenched into consciousness five hours earlier than normal. God only knows how many times the two of us have been awakened at 6:15 a.m. by the girls’ hovering over us -- their eyebrows raised and arms folded as if to say: “Aren’t you forgetting something here? Like maybe our food?”
Read more

ARod: Getting ready to work out. I feel PUMPED!

Angelina: Sent Brad to the store for milk and diapers.

PrezHilton: ReTweet—Angelina sent Brad to the store for milk and diapers! Trouble?

JoelOsteen: Back from having teeth laser-whitened and Jesus gave me a BMW M5 series just for the hope my smile brings to the world! You can get one too!

HILARY2012: Headed to Africa on goodwill tour. Great experience for next election. Wonder what Palin is doing? Who rocks now?

ChrisBrown: In my ride heading to my girl Rihanna's crib and singing Wall to Wall.

CHUCK_NORRIS: Chuck Norris can whiten teeth by shooting lasers from his eyes and then gives you a BMW if you call him Jesus

Read more

"Peek-A-Booty" Excerpt from my book, Sugar Milk: What One Dad Drinks When He Can't Afford Vodka released March 2010
Since I'd started staying home with Allie and Avery, I found myself contending with a number of issues outside my realm of expertise. Take wardrobe choices, for instance. The usual routine consistent of Ashley selecting the girls’ clothes the night before; however, as soon as she left for work in the morning, Allie and Avery tossed them aside, overcome by a sudden urge to go with something a little more couture. A sensible look, consisting of a pink shirt, a powder blue jacket, and a pair of butterfly-embroidered jeans was subsequently replaced with a zip-up, gold vest; striped pajama bottoms; and a Tinker Bell skirt, previously part of last year’s Halloween costume. At first, I was unyielding, firm in my insistence that the girls change into their predetermined outfits, but eventually, I realized this was a matter of picking my battles, and I backed off. So, when Allie walked out of her room wearing a ratty, Hannah Montana dress-up wig and a green, full-body leotard under a polka-dot, poodle skirt, I thought, Oh why not? At least such out-of-the-box creativity helped to foster her self-esteem. This notion was reinforced by one of her school progress reports, when the teacher commented on how much the staff appreciated Allie’s “progressive fashion sense.” Read more.

So, no kiddin’ there I was, knee deep in Barbie clothes and Care Bears, when I checked my Facebook account. Low and behold what did I see, but an ad banner at the top flashing the message, “Hot Christian Singles Are Looking To Find You.”

Hmmm, I gotta see this, I think to myself. This is not because I’m a bored, lonely “housewife” but because growing up in the church “Hot” Christian Singles – especially of the female species – were something akin to a Sasquatch sighting. People claimed to have seen one, but it was rare and largely unconfirmed. Of course, Sasquatch probably is a poor choice of comparison given the similarities it also shared with the actual Christian singles I knew
. Read more

To many, it might seem odd for a guy in his mid-thirties to be such a huge fan of Superman. If I worked in the comic book industry, or if I was a serious collector it would make more sense – but I am neither. In fact, I wasn’t even interested in The Man of Steel until a few years ago when I first moved to Chicago.

I bought Season 1 of the CW television show
Smallville as something to watch until my cable was hooked up. If you’ve never heard or seen it before, Smallville is an exploration into the life of Clark Kent as a late teen and early adult as he learns to use his developing powers through many adventures prior to donning the now iconic cape and tights as Superman. Read more

"Dad, Mr. B yells at us more than you do." These aren't exactly the most comforting to words to hear from your child as they describe their stepfather. I can imagine few situations worse than having your child's welfare in the hands of a strange man. So when my seven year-old son told me this from four states away, I remained calm, but mentally a boat load of questions were swirling around on a tidal wave of emotion. Who does this guy think he is verbally abusing my boys? Read more

So I'm waiting to get a haircut and flipping through a parenting magazine when, there it was: another ode to the mommy bloggers article. Well, isn’t that just special. This is the same thought I had last month perusing Babble's list of the Top 50 Mommy Bloggers, and it’s the same thought I always have when somebody writes another oo-la-la feature about the power of moms with Internet access. Listen up sisters. I am dad (with DSL). Hear me roar. Read more

There's a boy at the bus stop. Cute kid, deep dark eyes, bright charismatic grin-probably in kindergarten. He's also a holy terror. He will rip things he wants out of other kids' hands. He tears around the entry drive, darting in front of moving cars without regard. When the drivers blow their horns, all the adults turn and look at him, wondering where his parents are. Usually, he's the last one on the bus because he has to find where he left his backpack. You can see the annoyance on the bus driver's face as she holds the door over, waiting for him to locate it. Read more

I remember, as a sophomore, having this hilarious conversation with a friend about sex. It was one of those grey winter afternoons and we were parked outside of the Christian high school the both of us attended. Part of what made it funny was the fact we were both virgins so conversations like this were sort of an indirect testing ground for guys to ascertain if the thoughts fueled on by your raging hormones were either normal or an indication of incurable sexual deviancy. Being good Baptists, of course, our entire talk was framed within the context of our assumed marriages.

“On my honeymoon I’m going to burry my head right between my wife’s breasts and go crazy,” my friend said cupping a set of imaginary double D’s that he jiggled slightly to enhance the realism. Read more

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