The angst of de-cluttering

The angst of de-cluttering

At Lane County’s Glenwood Central Receiving Station — better known as “the dump” — I callously toss the cardboard “Jason-Deena Wedding” sign into the paper recycling bin. Seconds later, seeing it lie forlornly amid the debris, I’m overcome with guilt. How could I? I almost feel compelled to dive into the bin and retrieve the sign we made nine years ago so guests could find my son and daughter-in-law’s wedding site. Ah, but I...

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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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First grandson turns 9

First grandson turns 9

EDITOR’S NOTE: When Cade Welch, our first grandson, was born in 2005, I began a ritual of writing a once-a-year letter to him in The Register-Guard — and later to his sister and cousins — come birthday time. Today, Cade turns 9. In his honor, here’s that first column. MAYBE YOU’VE experienced it: one of those “whoa” moments when you’re reminded that in the book of life, you’ve ventured far beyond the...

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Living a Yahtzee life

Living a Yahtzee life

They say if you want to make money in the writing business you find a niche and go to that place again and again. In other words, if the crowd loved your trumpet solo don’t come back on stage with a guitar or xylophone. Play that trumpet, baby! Again and again and again. I get that. And I don’t begrudge any writer who subscribes to that theory. To each his or her own. But here’s to those who’ve gone the other way, who’ve followed their...

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Earning my Wonderful Life wings

Earning my Wonderful Life wings

Pacific Continental Bank in my home town of Eugene has an interesting requirement for all new employees going through their orientation: they must watch It’s a Wonderful Life from start to finish. “The message in that film is the message we want our employees to come to work with every day,” says Dean Hansen, senior vice president & relationship manager. “The idea that our actions make a difference in the community around us.” I...

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A pirate’s life for me: burying skeletons from the past

It was going to be the highlight of the summer of 2010: an elaborate beachside treasure hunt for my 5-year-old grandson Cade, whose trip through Disneyland’s “pirates of carrots and beans” — as he calls it — had enthralled him with all things skull-and-crossbones. “Remember to wrap the plastic around the candy before you bury the treasure,” my first mate suggested as, shovel in hand, I prepared to head into the thick shore pine...

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