Repost: On Dealing with Emotional Extremes

I’m getting older.  We all are.  Of course, as we age, we lose things.  For example, because I’m older and injured my knee playing competitive sports when I was a young guy, I can no longer jog without having significant pain afterwards.  That sucks, but I’m fine with that limitation and loss. It’s not all bad news though.  I’m gaining things too.  For example, I … Continue reading Repost: On Dealing with Emotional Extremes

Repost: Napping as an Act of Defiance

I’ve been thinking a lot about defiance lately.  Actually, because I’m very much a contrarian at heart, I’m always thinking about ways to defy.  That’s what contrarians do; they defy conventional wisdom (among other things).  (By the way, it seems pretty clear that we need a lot more contrarians in the world.) I guess you could also say that I’m part of the resistance against … Continue reading Repost: Napping as an Act of Defiance

A Sad Day, a Happy Day

Exactly one week ago, on Saturday morning, my wife and I got into the backseat of my father and stepmother’s car, in Georgetown, Texas, pulled out of their garage, and headed eastward, to make the hour-long trip to the small town of Rockdale, Texas, population 5,323. Our goal was to attend a memorial service to commemorate the life of my uncle, a man I’d always … Continue reading A Sad Day, a Happy Day

Repost: Others

Life is like a great meandering stroll through a vast wilderness of ever-changing scenery.  Such a long tramp is bound to change us, so it’s highly likely we’ll undergo one transformation after another as we travel. I was an only child during the earliest stages of my “journey.”  I spent the first few years of my life living in a quiet, rural setting where neighbors … Continue reading Repost: Others

man and woman standing on brown field near green tree under white clouds

Nurturing Our Roots

There’s a type of tree that’s planted all over Singapore. It’s known as the rain tree because of its iconic umbrella shape. Not only is it incredibly striking to look at, the sprawling canopy provides the perfect respite from the oppressive heat we experience here year-round. It’s planted extensively throughout Singapore for this reason. It has fast become one of my favourite trees. Not just … Continue reading Nurturing Our Roots

I Wish You Well, Omar

A few days ago, I had a Zoom meeting with Omar, my nephew by marriage.  It’s been a while since I last mentioned that I married an Egyptian woman—a truly beautiful person named Azza—a little more than twelve years ago, back when I was living in Cairo, Egypt, and teaching at the American University in Cairo. Omar is Azza’s sister’s son.  He’s in his early … Continue reading I Wish You Well, Omar

Sharing is Caring

Dear, Readers, I’m speaking for all Wise & Shine writers when I say that we so appreciate your continued support of this blog.  To show how thankful we are, we want to ask you to share a link to your blog or site in the “thoughts” or comments section at the bottom of this page.  Please feel free to include a statement about what inspires … Continue reading Sharing is Caring

It’s Been Pouring

Most of us are familiar with the old saying, “When it rains, it pours.”  I’ve been thinking a lot about that adage recently because there’s been quite a lot of pouring rain in my life over the past few months. A few weeks ago, I wrote about needing to take a leave of absence from writing for this blog after being diagnosed with a degenerative … Continue reading It’s Been Pouring

Want to Write for Wise & Shine?

Hi, all.  Wise & Shine is looking for a few new writers.  If you’d like to apply to join the team, send samples of your writing via our “Contact” form.  Please familiarize yourself with the sort of things our blog publishes before contacting us.  We’ll send a set of writing guidelines to those who send examples of their work.  We look forward to reading your … Continue reading Want to Write for Wise & Shine?

An Explanation

Dear Wise & Shine Readers: As some of you might have noticed, I’ve been mostly away from the site in recent weeks.  I’m writing to let you know that I’ll be taking a leave of absence from the blog.  I’m suffering from extreme burnout.  Additionally, I was recently diagnosed with an incurable degenerative condition.  I won’t die from this illness, but I will become increasingly … Continue reading An Explanation

body of water with snow under a dramatic sky

Sunday Evening, Long Island, February 2023

The laundry is folded (or doing a passable imitation of folded), the dogs are silent and sleeping, and the house is freshly vacuumed, and even though, an hour later, its efforts have already become hard to spot as a fresh battalion of fur easily reclaims its beachheads, the house is still neat and clean (or doing a passable imitation of neat and clean). Monday looms … Continue reading Sunday Evening, Long Island, February 2023

Question of the Day (Inspired by the Red-headed Stranger)

I’m currently reading The Tao of Willie:  A Guide to the Happiness in Your Heart, with “Willie” being the great Willie Nelson, musician and songwriter extraordinaire. As you might guess from the title, the book, coauthored by Nelson and Turk Pipkin, elucidates the singer’s philosophy of life, which was strongly influenced by Buddhist and Taoist tenets, and includes lots of autobiographical details. In one of … Continue reading Question of the Day (Inspired by the Red-headed Stranger)

Wise & Shine Podcasts in 2023

In October of last year, Wise & Shine started a podcast.  In the weeks ahead, we’ll be recording new episodes for your listening pleasure.  Tuesday will be the day we publish new podcasts to the site.  If you haven’t already done so, please have a listen to our recordings from 2022. We are interested in hearing from readers and experts who’d like to be a part … Continue reading Wise & Shine Podcasts in 2023

New Podcast:  What Can the World Learn from Africa?

In the latest installment of the Wise & Shine podcast, I talk with Billy Osogo—one of our writers and a brilliant young man who lives in Nairobi, Kenya—about what the world can learn from Africa.  In Billy’s very insightful response, he tells me about “Ubuntu” and a variety of other subjects.  Have a listen and enjoy! Continue reading New Podcast:  What Can the World Learn from Africa?

I Said Goodbye to a Great Man

It’s that time of year again when my mind goes back to December of 2003, exactly nineteen years ago now, when I had one of the most profound experiences of my life.  A bit earlier in that year, in May of 2003 to be exact, my maternal grandfather, a real-life cowboy and a man I called “Pawpaw,” fell seriously ill.  He was eighty-six years old … Continue reading I Said Goodbye to a Great Man