Monthly Archives: May 2011

How to Reach Home Plate

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I manage the Atascadero AAA Indians Little League baseball team. Coaching 9 and 10 year old boys is very rewarding, especially when we’re playing as well as we have been so far this season.

I work the kids hard in practice working on skills – throwing, fielding grounders, catching fly balls, base running, hitting, bunting, pitching and catching. My job as a coach is to find a way to help every player on the team feel comfortable and safe, improve and ultimately develop a passion for the game.

Yelling at a young player when he commits an error hurts the team. Kids are smart. Way smarter than a lot of coaches realize. If one of my players commits an error I ask them “what happened out there? What would you do different next time?” Nine times out of ten they’ll give me the correct response. They always figure it out and get it right the next play. That’s the best way to learn how to play.

Life is like baseball in this regard. The hardest part of parenting is to give their kid enough rope to make little mistakes. Then have the patience to ask your kid “what happened out there?” If you’ve done your job as a parent, shouldn’t it be up to them to figure out how to reach “home plate”?

Children Change, Parents Not So Much

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Today I had an old friend call. I’ve known Don since the early 1980’s when he was a Salesman calling on me at Bike Nashbar. Don is one of the most decent human beings I’ve had the pleasure of knowing. His advice over the years helped a young, headstrong Buyer navigate the intricacies of business/human relationships. In a way, Don was a Father Figure and helped me become the man I am today.

We were chatting about his grandkids and my kids and he said something that struck me – “Kids change every day, they come home and have new experiences to share and new stories to tell. They are miniature human beings with a lifetime of living still in front of them”.

When I look at this picture taken back on July 30, 2010, when we were visiting my God Parents back in Youngstown, Ohio, I realize how much my children have changed. And how much life is in front of them.

I’m the same old guy today as I was back then.

Don, thank you again for reminding me what is important.

Osama Bin Laden

It’s rare to cheer on the death of any human being but today I make an exception. Bin Laden is an evil person who deserves to rot in hell. He is a bad person through and through.