Flight Club: Getting Over Fear at 37,000 Feet


I Had To Get Over It Eventually…

“Expose yourself to your deepest fear; after that, fear has no power, and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes. You are free.”

— Jim Morrison

HOUSTON — Easter weekend 1994. That was the last time I had set foot on a plane. In fact, until Memorial Day weekend this year, it was the second to last time I had traveled anywhere south of the Mason-Dixon (I went to Atlanta in 1996…by car). I can’t really explain why I hadn’t, but I just, well, hadn’t. That particular Easter, we spent it in Miami. A year prior to that, my family and I had gone to Disney World in Orlando, and Busch Gardens in Tampa. As a young child we went on Family trips almost every year. Most of them by plane. I LOVED flying. It was fun. I remember going to California 20 years ago (which was the last time I was on the West Coast). We went to Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Oakland. It was great. Disney Land was a blast. We’ve flown to Florida multiple times, driven to New York and Philly, made numerous drives to Chicago and Cleveland, went to The Bahamas, and even flew from Birmingham, Alabama after my Uncle Tommy’s funeral in 1990 (after a 14-hour cramped and hot car trip from Detroit o_O!) However after the Florida trip in 1994, that was it. No more airports, or baggage claims or connectors. Just 16 years of driving everywhere. And 16 years of hearing about plane crashes…and that little thing called 9/11. Suddenly hopping on a plane wasn’t very cool to me anymore. I actually wanted nothing to do with air travel and avoided it at all costs. Then along came NABJ this year, in San Diego. Much too far for me to hop in my truck and roll out like I have done for years. I was fretting getting on a plane but knew I had to conquer that fear that had built up for the last 16 years. Let’s Go. Continue reading Flight Club: Getting Over Fear at 37,000 Feet

West Coast Pop: Observations from NABJ 2010


♦ The Things We Do For Our Dreams…♦

Success means having the courage, the determination, and the will to become the person you believe you were meant to be

—George Sheehan

SAN DIEGO (JSC) — I have spent the better part of the last seven years of my life trying to figure out who I am, what I want to do, and where I’m headed. I turn 31 in less than six weeks, and I have held all of two jobs that paid me more than $8.50 an hour and only one of them offered me any kind of benefits. I have lived most of the last 11 years with a hideous sense of regret that I may have, for lack of a gentler term, fucked up my one legit shot at building a great career when I bailed out of Journalism because I thought my shit smelled like spring daises and cinnamon and refused to take the criticism of my journalism instructor at Michigan State in 1999. I have felt like I basically have been playing catch up ever since that day I angrily stormed out of that classroom. Those who know me, know my struggle and how this has eaten away at me. Well, over the last two years I have been doing a ton of catching up and this week has seen the most forward movement I have made as a journalist since 1996. As you see from the Dateline, I am checking in from the left coast. San Diego. The home of beaches, the Chargers, Rey Mysterio Jr., and Jayo Felony. Let’s Go.

Continue reading West Coast Pop: Observations from NABJ 2010