Go West!

Written early this morning (holidays always mess with my internal clock) … couldn’t sleep … friends going through some important life-stage changes, me doing a lot of thinking.


Back when girls wore braids, that I loved to pull
In history class, at my public school
We studied those lessons over and over again.

From Washington and the Delaware
To the wall coming down in the cold night air
I hardly stopped to listen; I’m a-runnin’ just as fast as I can.

But one thing I remember said, “Go west young man.”


“Go west young man,” the horizon is big as can be
“Go west young man,” your future is wild and free
The adventure’s calling, though the world keeps stalling, there’s nothing stopping you
Live your life, son, “Go west young man.”


I went on to college just to get a degree
For a middle class boy that’sand jobs ain’t free
Learned to party hard. Not a kid; not really a man.

Then I met this girl with curly blond hair
My friends started laughing at my dumb blank stare
I didn’t stop and listen; Started runnin’ just as fast as I can.

The one voice I remember’s saying, “Go west young man.”


Bridge 1

A wedding, a mortgage, car payments, and a child
What ever happened to free, fun, and wild?


Now I work all day; I’ll be home by six an’
See your hair is a mess; and the dinner ain’t fixed
You feel like a failure; I’m beaten down by the man

Cowboys are on with their fantasy girls
Then I see our little baby in her chaps and pearls
I can hardly stop and think; I’m wrestlin’ just as hard as I can.

There’s a bunch of little voices calling, “Go west young man.”

Bridge 2

Distractions are powerful, they all tempt my heart to roam
But you’re begging me to choose to be here and not just home.

Guitar Solo

Bridge 3

I put away my childhood ways; off goes the TV set.
I’ll be damned if I’m gonna miss this chance to have the best adventure yet!


On Parenting: Dad’s Finest Moments

“You can always tell the parents who haven’t spent enough time playing with and teaching their kids.  They take it out on their kids by yelling at soccer games, griping about teachers and schools, trying desperately to recapture in a few moments those months and months of failure to invest.”  –Joshua Barron

Today, this was me.  Caed ran around the field like a madman … back and forth, running running running.  He didn’t kick much, probably because he’s my kid and he thinks too much … always out-positioning the other team.  Come on … he’s five years old … the strategy he’s developing was impressive.  So sure, I gave him the thumbs up several times, I hugged him and told him I was proud of him, but will he remember those things?  In the face of a raging tiger do you remember that there’s a kitty down inside?  I don’t know … but somehow, I doubt it.

On the way home Kristen said, “I’m embarrassed for you.”  Ouch. Reality-check. Whew.

I’m not quite sure how to handle that …

  • How many guys do I know that are forever screaming at the game on Sunday … for a team they’ll never meet?
  • How many people never wake up out of the stupor of their lives with enough care, concern, outrage, or dismay?
  • How many careless words are spoken about things that are not important?

Aha … this is a good argument … except it avoids the real issue by focusing on the actions of others.  Hmmm … maybe identity and self-control are the real issues.

Days and weeks of pursuing wisdom … responding out of who I am in Christ instead of reacting out of my failure, insecurity, and need … over and over making good choices at work, at home, with friends, with family, with peers and colleagues. All of this good investment is quickly shot on a 45 minute soccer game?  NOOOOO! What am I doing?

Maybe I should go run a lot to get the tension out.  Whew!

I do NOT want this to be me.

Pouting?  Kristen saw me writing this and told me I was pouting.  Hmmm.  Maybe.  I hope not, but it is something I’ll have to consider.
I think I’m just processing out loud … which is generally the most productive method for me … so here it is for the record. 🙂

Rash language cuts and maims, but there is healing in the words of the wise. — Proverbs 12:18 (The Message)