Words Matter

The Time? 10:20

I find it intriguing to talk with people who carry around certain times in their minds, just as others carry around dates that are important to them.

A friend of mine knows she was born at precisely 4:37 a.m. and now 437 is, in fact, her lucky number. Other people remember the exact time of their marriage, the time they caught the biggest fish of their lives, or the time the tornado hit.

For me, the memorable time—to this day—is 10:20 a.m. It’s amazing to me how often I will look at my watch at that time during the morning and I know why. I loved grade school recess and looked forward to the 20 minutes we had every day. It was pure enjoyment. We could play an inning or two of baseball, play tag, round up, basketball, or, in the winter at our school, you could have snowball fights in designated areas. It was genuine physical exercise. None of my friends wanted to miss recess because we had misbehaved or not finished our assignments.

Recess is an interesting concept that goes back at least as far as 1884 when educator W.T. Harris observed that “recess allowed for the complete suspension of the tension of the will power and the surrender to caprice for a long interval.”

It’s too bad we have replaced recess with coffee breaks in our organizations and legislative bodies. As I look at what’s going on around us across so many different areas, I can’t help but think it would be a good idea for all of us to go outside and play together every day for at least 20 minutes.

The world might be a better place.



Proverbs 15:1

A gentle answer turns away wrath,
but a harsh word stirs up anger.


Can't Not Do

Grateful Living
Dale Turner (High Tide Press, 1998)

While written in 1998, the words of Dale Turner stand the test of time and are just as relevant today as the day they were written. With grateful hearts, it is difficult for us to be bitter, consumed with fear or concerned only with ourselves.

This book is replete with thought-provoking observations:

“Thanks is just a little word
No bigger than a minute
But there’s a world of meaning
And appreciation in it.”

or profound insights that still resonate today:

The greatest need of our day is for a combination of open-mindedness that makes way for progress, with the loyalty of convictions that conserve the contributions of the past. We must have a union of clear thinking with devotion to worthy and enduring values.

We people of conservative and liberal temperament must make up our minds to work together. We need each other.”

Whether in rhyme or in prose, I couldn’t say it better.


If you are curious about curiosity this book is for you.

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