Junkyard Mind

My brain has become a rusty scrapyard. There’s no movement besides the occasional tumbleweed rolling through. And this is really inconvenient, because I need to find something to write about.

Every month, I’m scheduled to send one 600ish word column to my local newspaper. The subject can be literally anything under the sun: the editor only asks that it be “a reprieve from politics” (Lol).

Easy enough, right? For someone who enjoys writing as much as I do, it should be a piece of cake. Well … it’s not.

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Allergy attack at the county Hall of Records

Today did not live up to my hopes and dreams.

Sung and I went on an excursion to the county seat. This was a new area for him, and I hadn’t been there in years. So we decided to take advantage of the gorgeous spring weather and do some exploring with Lotus.

I couldn’t wait to show Sung my favorite hike in the county. Waterfalls and panoramic views, plus the promise (this week only) of a stunning wildflower display. But the first item on our agenda: visiting the Hall of Records. We walked into the impressive new building hand-in-hand and waited in line, six feet apart from everyone else.

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How I became a dog person after two decades of fear

If you saw me with my dog Lotus today, you would never guess that I used to be terrified of dogs.

Actually, terrified is an understatement. Ever since I can remember, I had a deep phobia of pretty much all animals. Cats freaked me out and rodents made me squirm. Birds and reptiles … forget it. Fish were the least offensive, but I still shied away at the thought of touching one.

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One of my vices: wasting time on devices

I hate screentime notifications. I can’t stand the little purple hourglass icon which announces the official number of minutes and hours I’ve spent staring into my phone or laptop.

Don’t get me wrong, I feel lucky to have technology. I’m happy I can research stuff on the internet and keep in touch with friends and family. But those aren’t the activities that make up the bulk of my screentime.

What fills my digital hourglass is The Endless Scroll. Sound familiar?

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Life lessons on the 20th Street courts

As I figure out what I’m doing with my life this year, I’m feeling nostalgic about my first job. I worked for the Department of Parks and Recreation, at one of the youth camps they host at the 20th Street tennis courts. I started helping out at the summer camps when I was 16 years old.

Coach Raymond was my boss. He told me he hired me because I connected with the kids. I was not a good tennis player at all, although I improved a bit because sometimes he stayed late to coach me. However, I learned a lot more than tennis from him. Coach Raymond modeled a work ethic which I still carry in my heart.

Here are three things I learned during the three summers I worked for him:

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