Monday, November 11, 2013

Looking into the scenes of our lives


All of these above words are fractured pieces of a whole that we can grasp reality around.
Have you ever looked at a movie and seen a scene from it and could look at its beauty or its thoughts and be transcended and mesmerized by it.

I like to look at the world in this way.
These fragmented pieces that break off are easier to digest and wrap our minds around as we figure out how life can work for us!!!

Saturday, November 09, 2013


This poem below was read at the 5th annual Art Trail for an Open Mic Poetry Night Nov 9th:


Hands Patting on one's knee.

Identity shifts
   Within light and darkness
      We are never alone with our shadows that accompany us on our paths.

Walking through the grocery aisles
   with a cart that has a mind of its own.
Packages promising Instant Happiness
Candy positioned in aisle #7
   on the other side and never looked at before.
Violations at instant check out of 12 or less.
  Not prosecuted but accepted without question or defense.
Bagged to supply several days of nutrition.

Be careful of our words
   For they are building blocks of thought
   Easily toppled or
     firmly cemented as the concrete of our lives.
    Becoming digested within our minds
       to recall at a moment's notice.
     Or as Richard Fewell shared:
      words gone by are then swooped up by someone else for their use.

Rivers slowing down in our lives
   And mirrors serving as a reflected memory of what is going on.
                                    9-11  11-9

Tuesday, November 05, 2013


Good afternoon world and a special dedication to my dad who has been gone from us for the past 4 years. For you took a trip as you announced to the hospice nurse that you were packing your bags  to get ready to go on a trip.

As I was listening to a conversation between a child and his mom, I overheard the word, "Octopus" and many good impressions come from dwelling and meditating on the word.

First, octopusses have to be rather flexible as they glide through the waters.
Next, they have firm footing as they stay glued  to the underbelly of a rock.

These octopusses have been known to be floaters who glide along the water.
They have that special ability to get out of a sticky situation by squirting their ink in defense to the sea above.

Our family has met one of these "octopuses" in Maine in our fishing encounters.
When my dad and I went fishing on our 16 foot motorboat, we caught a sea squid that had its 8 tentacles and then we released it back into the water.  I caught one or two of these and they were rather memorable but as a younger boy, I relied on my dad to take out the hook and release the critter back into the water.  Something that takes delicate and calm hands to safely maneuver the hooks out and not be sprayed.

And reflecting on those delicate and calm hands, my dad expertly released several racoons and even a skunk with the have a heart traps that Audobon provided us when we had our struggles with our woodchuck family which we shared our garden with. It seemed to be the Woodchucks who got to our goodies before we ever got to.

And my dad's hands were able to expertly guide companies as they went through their mergers and acquisitions.  Being able to calculate on the balance sheet their net worth and determine the tax consequences of a purchase related to accounting law.

Lessons that I am currently in the process of learning as I move along in life guided by the Hand of the Lord of what I am to do with my life.
That need to be flexible.
That need to have fun.
And the need to know when to let that ink fly in the sky above me.

So I thank you, Dad, for knowing how to do all the things that you did for me such as teaching me to drive a motorboat, to playing gin, being able to have fun with a calculator in Mr. Fuller's office, and how to be a man.  And to stay on course through life and as you told me last before you went home to "stay the course and keep on trucking." 
Very valuable words in our society today!

Kiva to a great man!!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Devotion as the crown jewel to the early church's success.

Amazing the impact that the local church had on the world.
I am amazed even today at my friends and their devotion to the word of God.
When I read an interview with my friend Chip, he stated that he read the Bible 3 to 4 times a year through. Now that takes commitment.

And I glance back through world history and I see the birth of the early church.
And that church went through many growing labor pains.
Yet these people had a secret that seems to be lacking now.
Especially for me-
That is a devotion to the Holy Word.

Yes, I will carry it with me. put it in my pocket. Glance at its pages. Point to a passage.
Yet back then in the first century, there were no verse numbers, handy cross references or concordances. Just the first edition of the Holy Spirit deposited into each of those believers.

Men and women willing to die for the faith that Jesus expressed.

Sure some confusion when Jesus left.

At that moment, there was no Paul having written discourses on the elements of the faith.
Or Peter having written warnings on fighting the false teachers.

Just ordinary men and women who met the Lord Jesus and heard of him and what he did.

Think of it this way.  A summer blockbuster just came out and word is buzzing on the street.
Think Oscars.

Yet the success of the early church was their devotion to the simple elements of fellowship and the discipline to carry it through.

Even with the impending death of some of them if they carried it out.

SO I salute my friends who have that deep devotion.
And I aim to emulate them.

And to deliberately do those things which make one godly and try harder to not deliberately do the things which cause so much harm.

Glory be to God!!!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Making Impact

Good morning World.
I came from my 30th High School Reunion.  A long time passed even though only 5 years from last time.
As I looked at the crowd, I wish I could have scratched some surfaces and seen how the insides of their souls were.  Yet I did the best to make an impact on their lives by smiling and being friendly.

Being a little awkward too. But I heard from a few that was their experience also.

I guess we all have those awkward moments. And to make a ripple, a  pebble does have to fall from the hand of the thrower and go at an arc of some distance and then skip across the surface of the pond until it falls beneath the surface of the water and disappears from sight.

Its ripples from above mark the surface of the water with an ever widening arc.

And then may reappear years later into another hand
  To make that same journey.
Not knowing its impact.

Only maybe seeing how a life was changed.
To take on a new arc.
A new path.
A smile to warm the soul.

A tingle of excitement within the body.

Remember not to give up hope as one travels through life.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

In Search of the Lost and Found Department

Today, we are going to look at humor and its effect on our lives.
Have you ever had a time in your life when you have ever lost something?
Or many things?

I heard a joke once that goes like this.  A gentleman kept losing his stamps that were on the envelope.
He asked, "How can this be for I am very careful to place it on the envelope"  The other gentleman said, "well, have you checked how you licked them. It is really dry on this adhesive side. Maybe you should lick them on the other side!!"

Well,  I have and I'd like to show you some ordinary circumstances in my life when this does occur and some ways to overcome them.

Once, when I traveled to Washington DC for a rally on the national mall, I went alone on this journey.
I just turned 23 and said, " I wanted a day of adventure and a way to prove that I could control life well.  When I got to the bus, I ran into one of my friends from church so I would not have to be alone on that day for the journey.  We rode together and then headed out for the national mall.  I got there and then decided to saunter off to the Minnesota delegation since my brother lives there and get some trinkets  as a memento to my visit to DC.
Then after deciding not to get the trinket, I headed back into the crowd and realized somehow it DOUBLED in size and my delegation sign got lost within it!!
I wandered the mall for what seemed a few hours until my friend waved his arms as he was calling, "Is Scott there?"
This served for me one of the tangible examples of what it is to feel lost and then to be found and secure.

Now, to maybe help our government stop from wandering for the next 36 hours, it might be helpful to have some sentries in the crowd watching out for someone who is maybe lost? But what really is lost?  Now that would be for another session!!

Another time that I have experienced losing something was my job. I have a good track record of that in that I  lost my first job after college after about 14 months and then lost another one after our company was sold.  Now, these first two banks i worked for I had an excellent track record of losing 2 out 2-100 percent. My mom and dad said, maybe you should change where you work and you will have more success.  Well, I took their advice and then landed up in a company where I was for 20 years.
At Schrier and Bunzl, I kept my job but did have some adventures with the lost and found department.
On my first day to the office for the interview, I did get a little lost since the sign for 306 Black Rock Turnpike was not readily on the building. So I wandered for what seemed like a few moments until I found the building.
And then once inside, it can be a challenge to find that needle in the haystack. I sure had those moments when a supervisor would want a given piece of paper only to go back in the haystack and wonder where in the haystack it really was.

Now, I am in charge of the celestial lost and found department.  We are hiring for a position in this department.  But there can be some conflicts arise when something is lost and then is found.  Let us listen in on a conversation of a typical work day here.

Thunderbolt #1.  Someone stole my thunder?
Galaxy 1:            Really?
Thunderbolt 1:   Yes, really!!  I had my thunder in the corner over here.
Galaxy 1:            Your thunderbird??
Thunderbolt 1:   No, my thunderbolt!! You see, I was wandering the galaxy that you are supposedly                              watching and my thunderbolt disappeared.
Galaxy 1:            Have you consulted with lightning about this.  I hear she has lightning speed.                                       She can   help you find it for you!!  Do you want me to call her in on this?
                           And we can use speed dial for this one, for sure.

Okay, candidate, now as you can see from our Galactic firm we do  need some help. This could be the  ideal position for you as it is a seasonal job.  You mainly work evenings  or in the late afternoon.  Yet, you need to be on call for these disputes do happen often.
You do need a tremendous attention to detail in this matter and do need to see  far into the future .
You do need to have NO fear of heights for you will be way up in space.  And you will need a change of wardrobe with these big white suits for your job.
And you need a reliable source of transportation with excellent gas mileage.

candidate:  Yes, I am up to this job.  As I told you, I have a track record of finding stuff that I lost while operating in gravity!!  Now, what is the training program for finding this stuff in zero gravity!!!
Can I apply for a training grant from WIA for several million dollars?

And then there are the times when one loses lets say their cool.  Their emotions.  How do we package these anyway?  It would be nice to have an aisle 5 where we have our cool and then an aisle 9 where our joy is found. But there are those aisles that have the wrong items in when our hotter emotions are often found.  Only to find a way to bring it all together.

Now remember , it is real important to have these qualities because you never know when someone may ask you, 'SAY, SIR, I LOST IT!! CAN YOU HELP ME FIND IT?"

Saturday, October 12, 2013

The Eagle's Spirit

In the world today, the spirit influences much of how we live.  It has been described as the wind which is invisible within our sight. But it has also been said that you can see its effect from the blowing on a piece of paper.   It has been said that relationships bring a grand Karma and blessing to our lives that heals our lives.  And the way that spirit manifests itself is how we impact our lives by our actions and attitude.

Life has those special moments of bright colors that emanate from the horizon.  That is why I love the fall and the possibility of new opportunities.  And how we can get those unexpected surprises when you are not actually looking for them.  For bright colors do not always last forever. They sometimes fade after a strong Maine sunset over the coast.  Or how those brilliant fall colors come strong on the trees and then fall off and fade into the ground as nurturing soil.

The same can apply to how we impact one other in our relationships.
Special relationships can be eternal-those moments where we call out to one another.  Calling out from within the crowd, Bianca brought me into bring me into her circle while I was on the Bellarmine lawn during freshmen orientation at Fairfield University in 1983.

Even though we did not stay in touch often during our college years, it is an ember that sits quietly and patiently in the coals of our lives and gets reignited during our lifetimes.
 And relationships spread across time and place and get rekindled by a sweet note or postcard sent from across the world.  And it has continued on for the last 30 years.

Bianca has a good hearty and infectious laugh that can punctuate the silence.  I enjoy being around her during these special times.   Her handwriting is big and flows from her hands like the  flowers of a petal.

During one of the reunions at Fairfield University, Bianca shared with some of her friends how her dad came out and rescued her from a relationship that was not going too well and being protective of her.

It was during this time that she was called home after her father died. I was heading home from work and brought home the newspaper and opened up the obituary section at my kitchen table and saw that her dad passed on. I was shocked since he seemed so strong.

Often her family had special parties in her palatial backyard with a pool at it. Music played in the background.  Another evening, we had a special get together planned at an area restaurant but we headed to her house to pick up something. Bianca invited me out to her backyard for a moment, and about 15 of her family and friends were there to offer me a surprise greeting for my 39th birthday.  Her family had a nice outdoor bar where we shared some sodas and drinks in the outside cool breeze with her established family.  I received a nice crystal eagle wrapped in tissue paper and I have it displayed on my television console.  And I am currently known as Eagle from another good friend of mine.

Spreading through time, I have had some special times with Bianca as we traveled throughout Fairfield for several great lunches. Once it felt real special as I got my hair just right and wore my Fairfield University sweatshirt.  And I had a a beaming smile on my face.  The office knew I was  in a good mood for it felt good to catch up with my best friend, Bianca.

 And during the third of one of these gatherings at noon, she failed to show up but that Friday afternoon, a nice bouquet of cut fall flowers arrived at my office!!

I was the talk of the office since men often did not get flowers. And they wanted to know who my special admirer was.  That was prior to a  thanksgiving holiday.  I kept my flowers on my living room coffee table and kept them watered.  The flowers had a special aroma.  Often they asked, "Scott, is this the one?" but I responded back, "No, grace has flowed into Bianca's life with a friend from across the pond!"

A couple of months later during a winter afternoon with the snow freshly on the ground, we headed out to a lunch and Bianca shared great news that she was engaged and going to get married.  I was very happy for her,  For she found her friend from another friend.  Phil lived in England and they hit it off well.  And the special thing about Phil was that he lost his wife a while back and  complemented Bianca's loss of her dad.

And during one of our special lunches, we took an extended time after a quick bite at Boston Market and got my glasses at Pearle Vision Center.  Then I picked them up on a Saturday when Bianca got married for their U.S. wedding in her backyard.

And while he was briefly in the states to be introduced to Bianca's mom, on one of Bianca's first dates I was included as we went to the movies. Not a particularly great movie but just a great time to be together as friends.

And I got to be on her radio show as she interviewed me on how I overcame my struggles and was her bright spot. This occurred a few weeks before halloween when I was interviewed from my home.

Often we exchange emails and I share special inspirational writings and emails.  Bianca has encouraged me to write a book for I am a brilliant writer for I am great at it.

When my dad died, the first person in the world that I shared the news was with Bianca for I knew she would understand.

See, for the fall season brings many great blessings from the time that we met, to the time I received her flowers to the time of being on her radio program.

And I am reminded of how I need to extend and reach out from my soul to bless other people and let the moments flow.
And music flows from these times and they can be magical when we are present.

And to witness how people can be resilient with some of the struggles that they face.

And I need to find and create those moments for others to enjoy and not be cognizant of a time frame but to see it as a long horizon that changes over time in the strength of its color and beauty.

Just as I have found with my special friendship with Bianca and her family.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Celebrating Life and its mirrored beauty.

Good day World. Been a while expressing joy outside of the world of facebook.
I have been reminded of the brevity of life from a post by someone I knew who lost her husband of 50 years tonight.

I realize that we have an appointment that we can not put off. It can be easy putting off a medical procedure or assignment to another day. But we are all given an appointment of our passing.

but more significantly we are each given an appointment of what to do with the hundreds of thousands of breaths each day and the seconds that line them as well.

May we all live those moments well each and every day.

Even when it may not appear pleasant sometimes with disappointments that we all must face.

Let us splendor in the moments where the flower has not faded. Let us look on its reflective beauty which brings us back to our heavenly Creator who greatly loves us.

Many peaces and joys that fall upon the readers of this reflection!!!

Sunday, September 08, 2013

Finding ones Direction in life

These days I am trying to figure out which direction I am to go in life.
I have been on a few detours as of late. Some parallel routes but still trying to find out the direct path from A to B of where I am to go.

I have been distant from these pages as I have been helping other people get to where they need to go, but I have somehow forgotten how to give myself direction.

All has been made clearer as I tried doing a couple of things in reverse such as trying to buckle my seat belt in reverse and approaching the wrong car in the parking lot. And feeding the dollar bill in reverse for a can of iced tea.

And leaving the latch off the door.

Life sometimes gets a little scary and uncertain but that is where the role of faith comes in.
A road map and the mapquest did not fall into my hands when I woke up to give me the step by step directions for this day.
But I could have been given a blueprint with a few nudges on it if I just spent a few minutes and prayed for the direction of my day.
Then maybe some destinations will become a little clearer for me.

I do have some destinations being marked out such as the letter to the editor for the Disability Awareness Employment Month for the paper and an analysis of how our church  can be more friendly to those who are trying to get in its doors.  To think from the other side.

I have been told in multiple seminars of how to think like a hiring manager.  Maybe I need to learn how to think like the person with an increased passion needs to have to do what has been gifted to me by my God.

I don't know if any of you feel this way. If you have found lessons along the way that can be of help to you, I am welcome to receive thoughts and reflections back on your journeys as well.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Lost and Found

As I walk the city streets, I will find the periodic penny on the streets and I love to pick up the pennies and claim that as my asset. Small in value but then it begins to have value for me.

For the past few years, it seems that I am gifted in the lost and found department.
Just today, I decided to take a short cut to get to the Fairfield History Museum to go down one side of the triangle but I ended up taking twice as long to my destination and got corrected and back on track and arrived on time to the event.

And on Saturday, I went down the wrong side of the street for about 4 minutes until I realized I had to cross on the other side of the street.

And then there are the times when it can be hard to find the cell phone camoflagued on the desk or the important file left somewhere.

The good news is that all of the stuff gets found. It is just that it takes so much darn time to locate things occasionally!!

That is why there should be a lost and found compartment in our brains. To locate and find those thoughts and memories that fly from our brain. Or to retrieve that key word or phrase which would make everything else just fall together.  We could call it a thought retriever GPS!!!

But there is no such contraption that I have yet found.
It would be nice to find one though.  Maybe it will be found in my lifetime and would be such a gift for those who have debilitating illnesses with memory loss.

Or to find and reclaim the time that was lost.

But I am thankful in my faith world that God places great value in being found. Especially for the sheep and other examples in the parables of people and things being found.

Look at the celebration that occurs over the lost coin being found by the poor woman and how the lost prodigal son is found when he comes home to the Father and a party is thrown for him.

So I will continue to go through my life. In its moments of lostness but also in the moments of celebrating how I made it through the day despite getting lost or maybe confused. Of how I can help someone find themselves as they navigate a particular course of their lives.
And I look forward greatly to that time when I clearly find the landing field to land my plane on the ground and not continually circle overhead.

But then I look at Moses and his 40 year trek through the wilderness as he wandered in those circles and had plenty of time to think about life.
Just as I did in the Harbor Yard Arena a few years back and how I came to the word picture of networking being "work being found placed in a net"

But I am thankful that I found some time to reflect on that little fact of life and the value of being found.

And how thankful mom and dad and my therapists were early on to find the time to help me so that I can navigate on my own every day. To get lost and to be found. To be safe in the arms of our Heavenly Father.

Saturday, June 08, 2013

Crossing paths as brothers in family.

Families are unique vehicles in which we get to grow up in as we travel the paths of our lives.

My older brother Randy has been a person that I have looked up to with his success in the editing world having worked as editor on such shows as Diners, Drive-ins and Dives.  And he also helped with Once upon a Tree which was a show that had muppets in it that helped to communicate life lessons for children.  And he helps edit educational shows for Medtronics on advances in the health field.

In a way I am following my brother's footsteps into the realm of media as I help to produce a television show on restaurants and destinations called CT Perspective TV.  I get to qualify many restaurants that are on our show by learning about them and bringing them to the producer's attention and also assist with the production work by providing close captioning for our viewers.  I find it fascinating about how the story can be created with the interaction of images, sounds and people.  And the shows end up being lively, educational and entertaining. I definitely can see where my brother has found his passion in the editing and video production world.

Randy has always loved cats and has had them for long times in his life. As a child, he had Twinkie, a yellow and black calico cat that was with us until she vanished mysteriously.
Also when I was 9 or so, Randy would assist the youth sports league that the Henry Viscardi School had for those who were physically challenged.  He always got great satisfaction in serving in that capacity.  And whenever I would visit my brother and his family in Minnesota, Sammy, one of his siamese cats, occasionally jumps up on my lap and I was able to stroke his fur and hearing the purring underneath the chin.  That was when he had the courage to come out from under the chairs.  And his cats loved to climb on the kitty condo and I got to pet them there also.

Randy has a love for astronomy and while growing up, he had a telescope that I looked at a few times at the sky. It illuminated and enlarged some of the planets and stars.  In Maine, we had a chance to look at some of the stars with our naked eyes from our cottage deck.

My dad, brother and I did have a chance to get a way for 4 days on the Victory Chimes in Maine and we had the chance to share our lives together while listening to the stories being told by others and hearing the guitar music being strummed while on the deck. And to eat the home cooked meals down in the dining area right next to the kitchen.

Randy also loved speaking French and for a while growing up, I had several key phrases that one could say in French in a booklet that he helped to create.  And even some books in French for vocabulary and  verb usage. My fluency and capacity never took off past a few words or phrases.
But it was fun and I still remember trying to say something in French in the backyard in Fairfield.
He also played the guitar while he went to high school and played a little while thereafter.

One of my favorite roles that I have been given as the younger brother in my family is as Uncle.
14 years ago, I became Uncle when Abby entered our family.  Randy has always been with her arranging to be at home while her mom worked and then switching the roles later on.  Mom, Dad and I made many visits during the initial years when Abby was born and we would take walks and watch her grow up and spend quality time together.  And now during her visits, I get to hear her advancing in her studies with Japanese and her clarinet.  And Abby blessed us with my dad's service a few years ago with a portion of "Ode to Joy." Abby helped my dad water the flowers with the watering pot in Arizona.

At times, distance can be a challenge with not being able to hop on over to the next street as a lot of families have but we have those times in the summer or during holiday that we get together and gives us opportunities to remember the paths in the past and it always is good to be able to hear and share stories while looking out at the vast expanse of sea before us.

And I have grown to realize lately that brothers can exist outside of bloodlines and have found that true to be in my church family where I can communicate and share my dreams and ambitions. But for any family to function well, hearts need to be open and I need to open mine more so that I can be more effective in entwining stories from the past to make them more vivid and to come alive.

And I have taken that step in a way as I serve as a big brother to my friend, Gary, from the Kennedy Center.  And God has taught me many of the family lessons growing up of sharing, of being there for each other and caring.

I have learned while being with family that we all have gifts and talents to share and it is great how we all as family can make this world a better place and it has been good to take the time to share the blessings and memories with each other while we are still together.

I just attended a service for someone in the community that passed on recently and I knew Coach Teatreau but not his wife, Rowena who passed on. But I knew Coach and wanted to support him.  At least, I did not get lost getting to this event but was a few minutes late having gone down the wrong side of the street. His family talked a lot about memories growing up and having those conversations that bind families together. And when I saw Coach Teatreau's son, Mike and his wife, I shook Mike's hand.  Mike and his wife rescued me when I was a little lost in Fairfield during the night a few years back while trying to get to a function for the Fairfield Arts Council at one of the beach pavilions and came along and brought me to it.
And as I passed them today as they were leaving the service, that memory crossed our paths.

So as it is in that Irish Blessing,
May the road rise to meet you,
May the wind be always at your back,
May the sun shine warm upon your face,
May the rains fall soft upon your fields,
And until we meet again,
May God hold you in the hollow of your hands.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

New opportunities.

I am thankful for a new opportunity to reconnect with a friend who I have not spoken to in over 18 months. It was a little awkward but it shows to me that I have grown and was able to fly from the guidance that I received in the summer of 2011 when I was afraid that I could not.

During that summer, I was told that I have great potential and that is true.
During my conversation and recalling our memories of who we knew and some of the things we did and said became a little awkward.
I do have a heart of forgiveness but at times I want to hold onto a card and not release it fully to the deck of life.  For when that happens, it will be hard to play a full game if I am asked to later on.

It shows I still have a growing edge.
And as the scripture says in 2 Cor 5:17, the old has gone and the new has come.
Just like when one buys a new computer or car or starts off in love, there is that examining phase and looking at the object or prized possession or relationship from many different angles.

And the angle that I am looking at now is not to label someone as former or ex and that can pertain even to where I used to work for 20 years. If I look at things from a leveling playing field, I may actually be providing depth and more possibilities than I thought were possible.

And maybe then the awkwardness will melt more and I will live out my life out of the vast potential that I do have within my very soul and psyche!!!

Thank you for this opportunity to open up and share and listen to your laughter and help my friend and I stir the soil in our lives.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Triple Crown

They are beneficial to have in this life.
It has been said that this is what life is made of.

Dreams propel us forward and give us the goal and drive to succeed.
I have been a jockey the past 2 years chasing and pursuing a goal and dream called the Triple Crown.
Getting up on a horse is never easy. It is quite high in the air.  And I am low to the ground.
Yet on top of my horse, I gallop through the stalls sitting tall and proud. Taking in the atmosphere of the scene.

My name gets called to the starting gate and I line up with the other riders. Rope in my hand and feeling the horse about to jolt forward.
Get ready, get going and start!!
The race has begun.

Back in 2010 I wandered through the stall at the Toastmaster barn and looked on for 5 to 6 months and never got to the starting gate. Wondering what it would feel like to begin to race in life.
Then I took the challenge and got in the lane for the first talk. A 4 to 6 minute one about myself: the Icebreaker.
I held my  notes close to me and gave it.  Fearful that I would make a mistake on what I was about to say.
Then I kept moving forward, one gallop at a time and began to be more comfortable with the crowds in the stands.
I had some trouble in some of them. Starting off speaking but the volume off and then I would be speaking as the volume turned up.  Catching some of my listeners a little puzzled of where I was going.
Yet with some coaching and prodding from Jeanette, I got more comfortable with story telling and with making my point.

During one of our meetings on the telephone with our cabinet, Judy challenged us to set a goal for ourselves in June 2011. I set as my goal to get the competent communicator award accomplished by December 2011. And I did just that!!!  One of my inspirational talks I gave before the Journey, a fellowship of men from surrounding churches.  On that morning I got picked up by Frank Borres in his sporty red convertible and I in my blue blazer ready to give my inspirational talk on my journey through life and tying it to the advent story. At the Covenant church that morning, I could see the Christmas lights in the background and the beauty of the sky behind me. And off I went for that 9th speech which ended up being 24 minutes long. And evaluated by my coach Jeanette who made suggestions and helped me to finish off that dream in 2011.  16 short months from when I first walked into conference room 301 wondering what the whole world of Toastmasters was all about.

The other great part of the Toastmasters race is that of leading.  I have been leading all along whether in a small group at church or doing a project at work.  But here it was more defined. John Maxwell has many different definitions and nuances on leadership but in essence he says that "leadership is influence, nothing more, nothing less."
And when I joined and continued to show the commitment of showing up on time and being dedicated, I was called by our President Tom and was asked to serve on the team as the Seargant at arms and set up the flags and the chairs and provide note sheets and agendas for our participants.
At one of our leadership meetings, the role was described as that of a magician who sets the stage for a great meeting.  I got to set out the flag in front of our room and even had the opportunity of capturing it and bringing it through the city streets so I could bring it to our conference in the fall. Along the way, I had to pick up some of the screws holding our stand amid the concrete and brick steps downtown and got to be in the parade of flags of the Toastmaster clubs and guests in the stadium.

The leading consists of small tasks such as the timing, the counting of ums an ahs and running the meeting.  These can be quite daunting at times.
With our handy green timer and our green, yellow and red cards, we are able to speak without worrying about time most of the time.
The timer can be a challenging device to operate at times-having to push many buttons to get it to work. Many of our members have been flustered with it.  On some of my speeches, I used to question the timer and said, "Tom, is it time yet?" Tom said, "keep on going, Scott, it has only been 3 minutes."  I replied, " I am near the end of my speech and it is 5 minutes long.  Oops, looks like I have to sit down and give it another time."
And since  I guard the timer between meetings, I know when it is 11 after the hour since there is an alarm that beeps. It sure is a mysterious green monster.

Then there is the counting of the ums and ahs. Hard sometimes to keep up with the cadence of a breakdown in the lane of words. Something that I have put off for many months but did it one day so that I could click off that element in leadership!

Running an actual meeting has been a great experience for me.  It feels good to get up at the imaginary lectern and introduce our team and get them going on their roles.  Sometimes we do not go directly to the starting line but start wherever we are in the race!!  The rope can get tangled at times in the directing of the hour but there are those times when everything flows as you intended it to.

And then during one of our lunches after our meeting, Tom asked me to consider becoming the President of our club.  When I was serving as the Seargant at Arms, I used my gift of encouragement to prod and have others join us in this journey of life of speaking and leading.  And one of the goals and aims of the President is to inspire others along the way in the journey of life. I have thoroughly enjoyed being able to represent our club and the challenges that it faces. And ultimately to lead it to the goal of distinguished. Just to be able to get more enthusiastic participants to line up with the other horses along the way.

After our meetings, we give out the Toaststar award that gets given to someone who shows great leadership or to one who taught someone a valuable lesson in life from the meeting. I have received this star on numerous occasions and have carried it throughout the state to various meetings I have been with and put it out in front of me.  It even inspired one of our leaders, Stephanie, to have it during our networking sessions and called it her shooting star-inspired by my Toaststar. Yet, I never won the shooting star!

While there are numerous other stories to tell, the adventure continues for me. I go to the Cromwell Derby next Saturday saddled up and ready to be an alternate presenter if one of the jockeys can't do it for one of their 6 sessions.  And to stride into the stadium and bring the flag along.  And to line up with the others who have met their dreams of getting their awards. Their triple crowns, their distinguished Toastmasters and other distinguished awards. And for that moment to be alongside great leaders and speakers, ordinary people, who dreamt a little bigger and were able to influence those in the crowd!!

And to inspire others and their guests to go out on their dreams and capture whatever they want.
And the ultimate field of dreams to me could be the capturing of real work as well.

Now to continue on in the march of my life and to have the time to grab that hot dog and look out on the field of riders and see and hear and feel the gallop of their hooves underneath.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Music and Dance and Color

Life is about music and dance. And color.

It was a rough day for me as one of our good friends at church began her perfected journey this weekend towards heaven and left us behind.

Life is short.
In my memoir class on Saturday, we were told to reflect on music and dance.

That very thing that I tend to just put on for a Sunday morning. That Sunday best which gets reserved one time a week. Yet, today I choose to dig out  the cassette player and the tapes.
And listened to some Neil Diamond singing on losing people we love.

I remember how at parties, I have danced and twirled the women that I have danced with.
How fun that can be. Even with the clicking of the fingers out of rhythm. It is just getting on that dance floor. And interacting with the beautiful colors of the women that I dance with.

Our nation is a melting pot of different cultures and each day, we wear and carry a melting pot with tremendous fragrances and colors--a tapestry that is unlike any other.

Yet tragically, I forget to look at that melting pot and embrace it. I sometimes fail to put a little bit of myself into someone else's melting pot to give it life and flavor and love.

And in less than 3 weeks, we are going to remember how Jesus took the life from his veins and gave us a living transfusion. A transfusion that is going to bring about change. 
Even thought the prick of that needle will hurt some.

So, Jeannie, I am putting some color on this page and thank you for your journey through this life!!!  May you be blessed in the presence of Jesus forever!!!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

His love washes us as white as snow

This week we received a record amount of snow in one 24 hour period that is taking about 7 days to totally remove from all the streets in Connecticut.

Recounting the tremendous effort to remove the vast amount of snow before us is a good reminder of what this season of lent is all about.

No matter how heavy our hearts are with the pain and disappointment that is before us, we have a God who sympathizes with our very weaknesses.

The snow as a backdrop covers our own sin. That part of us that gets in the way with our relationship with God.

After it snows, the earth is totally covered with an even layer of white. At first glance, it may appear as an even coating until one enters forth and sees the depth before them.

It takes great effort to move some of the mountains.
Requiring payloaders, dump trucks, steam shovels. Plows.

And so requires pastors, elders, deacons, parishioners, caring friends and the Lord to make us whole and clean.

And so the love of God totally covers us.
Overwhelms us in drifts of endless love and beauty.
Hiding and burying our very sin and defects that are ever before us.
Transforming ourselves with an eternal beauty.

Remembering that Jesus washes our  sins as white as SNOW!!!

Thanks be to Jesus of what He has done!
And thanks be to Scott B, Jim G, Jim B and Amanda that brought me into that loving relationship with Jesus.

For I am forever grateful to you.

This reflection comes about after reading a poem by T.S. Eliot entitled, "Ash Wednesday"

And pray to God to have mercy upon us. And pray that I may forget
These matters that with myself I too much discuss
Too much explain
Because I do not hope to turn again
Let these words answer
For what is done, not to be done again
May the judgement not be too heavy upon us

Because these wings are no longer wings to fly
But merely vans to beat the air
The air which is now thoroughly small and dry
Smaller and dryer than the will
Teach us to care and not to care
Teach us to sit still.

Pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death
Pray for us now and at the hour of our death.

T.S. Eliot - "Ash Wednesday

Thursday, January 10, 2013

A poem of healing

Awakening on that December day,
 one week before the Winter solstice.

Christmas trees just up
  and lights strung together.

Four simple numbers.  12 14 12
Linked together forever...

Of bravery of the teachers..
  seeking to protect the lives of their students.

To the colors of the school.
  Pure white for the innocence of the children
  and the hope and joy that were before them.
Green for the verdant hope of renewal each spring.

Let the reds and whites and golds still twinkle in your souls.
Those crimson joys to return ever so slowly.

Within the embers of our current time,
  let a burning blaze of goodness and kindness emerge from those quiet embers.

Let us provide those extra hugs to the children and the parents that are ever needed now.

Let the memorials grow and hope be instilled again in the lives of those affected.
Of that silent row at graduations and weddings.
Of the empty generation.

Yet you, Sandy Hook,  are a community forever changed
  In a world that is forever changed as well.

Still remember to celebrate the innocence of lives of children born.
  To see them jumping for joy in the future.

To see a bonfire of hope again...
  continually igniting our world with endless 26 acts of kindness being demonstrated before mankind.

Let us change the numbers of time each day...
  Further distancing from that horrific day
  and yet drawing us ever closer day by day..
   by those memories still etched in our minds, hearts, and souls.

By Scott R. Davis

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

The Sounds of Silence

Happy New year of 2013 from the roost of Triumph.

This past year it seems has barely had enough triumph. There have been pockets of it but it has been a rough one for the East Coast with Super Storm Sandy and Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Yet out of this silence has come love for one another.

It has been a hard year at times for me as I have been having some trouble finding the exact path to follow and go along.  I at times have struggled to listen to you, Lord.  I have wanted to go the path that I have chosen.  Lord, I hope that some good may come from those ventures.

I am told that I have a lot to offer you and have many talents.

As I watched the beautiful film, "Children of a Lesser God" I discovered that silence while somewhat awkward can be golden. But what I also seem to understand now is that it has to be a place where communication and understanding can happen for us to move forward.

That is what politicians do and those who are in relationships.

And that is what God did in the very beginning of the creation.  With the spoken word, you brought the marvelous universe into being. And with your breath, you created mankind.

And during the era before you became universal to all mankind and could be seen, you spoke through the prophets and special one on ones with special men like Moses.
And you created 400 years of silence when the office of the prophets closed down and a little reorganization took place.

And then you sent angels to announce the arrival of your Son Jesus to the world.

Oh Lord, help us to hear your voice this year and listen to it and understand it.
To speak and demonstrate your love.
So that you don't go silent any more.

Happy New Year. I am back to bless this world again. For it needs it more than ever before!!!