I’ve been traveling a lot for work over the last 18 months – enough that I now select my preferred seats on nearly every aircraft in the Delta Airlines fleet when I book my flights; enough that I can speak the secret language of gate agents; enough that I have a standard format for my packing list; enough that when I go more than a couple of weeks without going somewhere, I feel a little lost.

And, at first, it was all very exciting. Coming from a background of covering local news for newspapers and magazines – where a ‘big’ trip would still have me home for dinner – the idea of getting paid to get on a plane and go someplace else was thrilling. (more…)

If you had told me ten years ago, when I was working for a local newspaper covering local news and never really going anywhere, that one day I would be traveling all over the country (and the world) to attend and speak at conferences, I would not have believed you. Or, if I had, I would have dreaded my future.

They seem so boring. A bunch of people getting together at an event center or hotel convention center, droning from room to room, standing at booths and wearing name tags. I mean, no thanks, right? (more…)

I’ve been thinking about this a lot over the last few weeks. Maybe it’s the time of year – when smiles linger a little longer, movies get more touching and people seem to be more generous – or maybe it is just the sentimental side of me that wants to believe in the idea that the things you put into the world are reflections of how you’d like the world to be, but I’m kind of fascinated by happiness right now. Like, really fascinated by it.

I’ve also just fulfilled a long-held dream of buying my first house, the release of which was like a double shot of adrenal mirth between my toes. I’ve been very focused on reaching that goal for a very long time. Everything I did was somehow related to it and, now that we are (nearly) all moved in and the kids are settled down, I realize that, for the first time in a long time, I can make choices related to something else. (more…)


I was in New York last week for work and, as I tend to do every time I am in the City, I had breakfast with an editor of mine – Adam Korn, of WilliamMorrow/HarperCollins. On the surface, Adam and I could not be more different. I am a six-foot-four corn-fed Catholic child of the Midwest who would rather spend a week in the woods than a weekend on the Upper East Side. He’s a five-foot-six Jewish kid who has never lived anywhere but New York. And, yet, our friendship is one the most treasured relationships in my life. Every time we get together, we talk about books and ideas. We finish each other’s sentences like old school chums. We talk with rampant enthusiasm and our hands, so much so that we often draw stares. (more…)

David and Goliath It’s been a busy couple of weeks and I’ve fallen behind on publishing the podcast, but this week I take a look at Malcolm Gladwell’s newest book, “David and Goliath,” which explores the myth of the underdog.

Goliath was big and strong. David was small and unarmored. But was David really the underdog or was he simply forced to think differently?

Check out the podcast on iTunes and tell me what you think. Is it better to be David or Goliath in any walk of life? Can you be Goliath and think like David?

I want to know. Comment or contact me on the Contact page. 

Be useful.

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The Good Life Project podcast has been sitting, undisturbed, in my iTunes account and on my iPhone for weeks. It was an impulse subscribe, just browsing the titles one night while sitting on the couch, avoiding writing. But, it’s been a couple of days since I’ve synced my phone and this evening I was all out of new episodes of other shows, so I decided to give it a try.

Host Jonathan Fields sounded familiar – I’m pretty sure I saw him speak at a conference a couple of years ago – and introduced his guest as hotel visionary and world-traveling festival guru Chip Conley. (more…)