Author: curiousmike

Alabama Astronaut

I’m posting today about one of the more interesting people I’ve barely met in my life — Abe Partridge. I met him as he rolled through Roanoke, Virginia on his way to or from somewhere — touring, as he does. He played a wonderful concert of his original music to a small but incredibly appreciative […]


I’m still reading Monica Guzman’s “I Never Though Of It That Way.” Just wanted to post a note about a new idea — for me. Guzman makes a distinction between asking yourself two questions which usually signal whether you’re open to a new idea. Question 1: “Can I believe this?” Question 2: “Do I have […]

Structural Stupidity

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how to have better conversations, mainly spurred on by a book I’m reading: “I Never Thought Of It That Way,” by Monica Guzman. Here’s an off-the-top-of-my-head collection of “Truths” I think I’ve collected in the past few months. As always, subject to change… Here’s a Braver Angels podcast […]


I posted the following piece (minus a few edits) on Facebook in 2012. Facebook reminded me of it today. It seems I was ahead of my time 10 years ago — or at least foreshadowing this web site. . . . There are lots of things about Affordable Care to dislike — among them, the […]

Be the Idiot

It’s my own personal observation, and source of sadness, that so much of today’s conversations are about convincing someone (including ourselves?) that we are NOT idiots. I’ve been in some sort of engineering profession for most of my life. However, I was a high school teacher for four years. During those years, I learned a […]

Love + Work

I just finished a book by Marcus Buckingham, titled “Love + Work.” I didn’t really want to read it. I kinda had to, because my wife “thought I would like it.” I started by speed-reading it — which usually means I read the first paragraph of each chapter, the first line of each paragraph, and […]

Who are you really?

I had to share. One of my negative habits that I’m trying to leave behind is the habit of turning on my TV when I eat. We have one right above the little table where we often eat informally. I tend to flip to Netflix and watch whatever series I’m watching that my wife isn’t […]

Agree to Agree

Just a quick thought… I understand “agreeing to disagree” — really I do. Often, that’s where we get in a conversation. Maybe even most of the time. But “we agree to disagree” doesn’t have to be the default position, does it? Furthermore, is that really a “conversation?” When I read “ideas are exchanged,” I interpret […]

The Predator?

I’m going a bit out on a limb with this post. Way out, actually. I’m taking a writing class* (several, actually), and this day’s exercise was to write a poem, inspired by a number of carefully chosen prompts. To be clear — I’m not a poet. I generally don’t really “get” poetry, unless it’s performed […]