birds in a barrel's mission is to release creative nonfiction into the wild.

40 Days & 40 Writes is its first project.

Thanks Dad

I am being perfectly honest when I say that I suck at giving advice. I'm not a mind reader so I have no idea if what I am offering to someone as advice is what they want to hear or if they are even listening. It's just verbal diarrhea on my end to be supportive and show that I am listening. Love advice? Oh, forget. about. it. At 55, I've never been married and the "maybe she is gay" comments are being directed at me. Hey? How about I haven't met the right guy? Or I'm having a great time? And no Mom, I'm not going to go to church to meet someone like in the 60's. Way to digress and rant at the same time. My friends offer me advice all the time about dating. Much appreciated, however, I'm not an online fan and honestly, I'm good with being single right now. My family gives me career advice sparingly and even though we're in the same business, I could use some guidance since I'm unemployed. For me, that's a fine line between nepotism and assistance and it's too long to explain without having a shrink standing by. Now my father was an incredibly intelligent and disciplined man. A professor of political science at Stanford, published author, knew politicians and dignitaries world wide. He would always highlight books, collect newspaper clippings of interesting articles and stay up late every night writing or reading. I didn't get that gene. I got the "read cliff notes", cosmo and sleep late gene. He tried to instill a daily routine or weekly routine for reading or writing and studying. My brother was much better at this than I was and my brother went to Stanford. I went to UC Santa Barbara. And while my father never ceased to try and guide me to fulfill my potential - really, what is potential? I didn't listen to many of his sage words of advice, except for two. My father said to me one late night, "you're wonderful and beautiful and special. And you're going to be great at whatever you set your mind to, but to get there, keep two things in mind. Motivation and consistency. If you stay motivated and are consistent in your love of life, you will live a full life". I think back to this conversation a lot, especially when I feel blah about doing something or finishing something. And then I think about my fathers' words and it's true, when I stay motivated, I enjoy life more. And to stay consistently motivated? That's the best. So I have to thank my brilliant, funny, sweet, gentle man of a father for giving me those words of advice.

He shoots, he scores!

Cinderella's Risk