Where you’re from matters


I forgot to post this on Sunday, but better late than never.  Its the the text I read at my dad’s funeral, nearly 8 years ago now.  The story is personal and important, and that’s why I post it annually.



It took a while, as it does for most youth, to realize that the vistas of the world I was seeing was a direct result of the shoulders I was standing on. I thought in order to matter in the world, you had to go out and conquer it. But what I have learned from my dad, the man … more »

Your Turn To Clean The Barn

I mentioned yesterday that growing old is still about growing.  Change doesn’t come naturally, but it is necessary if growth is to occur.

As an entrepreneur, it seems like about every six months my job description changes.  And all the changes centered on the goal of growing my business.  In the first two years, my job was hands on, baking, cooking, purchasing, and troubleshooting, every day, all day some times.  The pace was necessary for the season, but unsustainable.  It became evident that I had to change or die.

Then came a time to hire more people to help shoulder … more »

Practice What You Preach

If you are a new reader of my blog, the theme of my latest posts might not seem very chef-like. So let me give a little more back story as to why.

A couple of years ago I renamed my blog, The Sustained Chef.  I did so because I noticed an irony between my personal and professional life.  I put a significant amount of energy and care in the quality and source of the food that I put on your plate in the restaurant, but I was not as equally interested in giving attention to my own well-being.  In every … more »

I’m sorry, but you don’t have access

I’m occasionally challenged by a younger generation that my diminished views on continuous connectivity are outdated, that social media and constant electronic communication are just a part of the new culture that technology is creating. I’m supposed to get used to it, old man. And maybe so, I’m not willing to away that quickly

When I consider the dilemma that ubiquitous technology is creating in my personal and professional life these days, I am reminded that there really is nothing new under the sun.  There are no new human struggles, only new contexts.  My forefathers didn’t carry a smartphone, but … more »

How many packs a day?

Some friends and I were having lunch one day and the topic of stress came up in the conversation.  “What’s the leading cause of stress in our lives?”  was the question, to which one guy immediately responded, “My phone!”  He proceeded to complain about how dominating the phone was in his work, always having to respond to it or to voicemail on it.  He even described a negative physical response when he saw the blinking light that indicates yet another message.

What’s interesting about this conversation is that it didn’t happen yesterday, it happened several years ago, way before smartphone … more »

What you see is what you get

Several years ago, Karen and I were traveling through OK and spent the night in the town of Guthrie, just off the interstate north of Oklahoma City. On the morning of our departure we decided to stroll through town, and in so doing, we came across a shop that caught our attention.  It was titled, The National Lighter Museum, and as you would expect, it was just as advertised.  It was the largest collection of lighters that you could possibly imagine, of all shapes, sizes, colors and brands.  We decided to step inside.

The curator greeted us and could … more »