I’m crying while writing this in my car. My doctor just told me I have a health issue that could kill me, he actually said those words. ...I have kids and a wife, and I'm scared as hell. Tell me a story, man, I need cheering up.
A WORRIED MAN
When I finished school, I decided to try my hand at writing professionally. I got laughed out of a newsroom.
An editor told me to “Go find some kick-ass stories, then maybe we’ll talk.”
Of course, I'm not a “kick-ass” type of guy. My expertise is more in the half-assed arena.
Anyway, I got into the habit of visiting nursing homes for stories. I’ve visited multitudes of them. I’ve met some stone-tough people there.
I remember one in particular. I’ll call him Tom.
In his young days, he was a high-school coach in a one-horse town that had a water tower and a party line.
He'd never had a winning football team. In
fact, some seasons he had to shut down the football program—there weren’t enough players.
One summer, doctors diagnosed him with cancer. He got so depressed that he stayed indoors and gave up living. He resigned before school started.
One day, he laid in bed, feeling sorry for himself. He heard heavy footsteps on his porch. All day, the footsteps. One pair after another.
He kept his curtains drawn.
When the footsteps finally quit, he peeked through his window. There were so many bouquets and thank-you cards on his porch that people started leaving flowers on the sidewalk.
On the first day of school, a friend called to tell Tom that thirty-some boys signed up for the football team—more applicants…