The lesson Prof. Coleman taught me

The lesson Prof. Coleman taught me

From the Feb.5, 2017 Register-Guard Nothing puts life into context like death. And so it was that while at Edwin Coleman’s memorial service last Tuesday, I was reminded why, in 1974, the former University of Oregon English professor put such a timely, and significant, piece in my life puzzle. The reason was rooted in a mugging. My own. Like a tagged trout, I had, as a high school sophomore, just been released by my folks into the shallow...

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The $1,000 Christmas giveaway

The $1,000 Christmas giveaway

My assistant elf and I locked on the target: two homeless guys trying to find comfort in the rain outside of Bruns’ Apple Market on 6th Avenue. “Could you use some stuff to keep you warm?” I asked. “Oh, yeah,” said one of the young men, a Lane Community College graduate who’s been homeless for nearly two years. His buddy was shivering under a tarp. I pulled out a sack of new gloves, hats, socks, long underwear, rain ponchos and beef...

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Lessons from Dave Frohnmayer

Lessons from Dave Frohnmayer

A FEW YEARS AGO, Dave Frohnmayer and I were speaking at Northwest Christian University on the subject of leadership when he shared an adage with students that I’ve never forgotten. “Tell me,” he said, “and I’ll forget. Show me, I’ll remember. Involve me, and I’ll understand.” Now that he’s gone — he died March 9 from prostate cancer at 74 — I realize that that’s how Frohnmayer lived his life: Showing. Involving....

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Starting a ‘second life’

Starting a ‘second life’

Editor’s note: Since leaving The Register-Guard Dec. 6, 2013 I’ve had numerous requests from readers who missed my final column. Here it is: Column writing, it’s been said, is a little like running in front of a combine in a farmer’s field: exhilarating, exhausting and fun — until you trip just once. After 14 years as a columnist, 24 years at The Register-Guard and 37 years in the newspaper business, I’ve grown weary of...

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► My so-called book tour

► My so-called book tour

To begin an interview with me on Eugene’s KLCC recently, host Eric Alan referred to the “book tour” I was, uh, launching. I mentally chuckled. Some listeners, I supposed, must have imagined me jet-setting from Boston to New York to Portland, my hand cramping up from autographing books for fans in lines that snaked out the bookstore and around the block. Me? I imagined myself giving a book talk in a restaurant while a waiter with a bass...

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The simplicity of sailing*

The simplicity of sailing*

* I’m kidding, I’m kidding! The Great “At Last” Calamity of 2012 (In Which a Lifetime of Sailboat-Launching Problems Occurred in Three Weeks) Friday, May 25 At boat storage place to pick up my 85-year-old mother’s boat, “At Last,” realized trailer lights were not working. Used hand signals for the four-mile trip. While setting up mast, realized that the pulley mechanism for adjusting the back stay had vanished,...

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