Archive for the ‘Quote Board’ Category


The wheels are turning now…

October 29, 2011

Tonight the Seattle University cross-country team, coached by my friends Trisha and Uli Steidl, returns from their conference meet in North Dakota. Phil seemed especially interested in the fact that they would be taking two vans home from the airport, so I did my best to make this a “teachable moment.”

“There are seven girls who went on this trip,” I said. “If four of the girls are in one van, how many girls are in the other van?”

Phil quietly consulted his fingers. “Three!” he said after a long pause.

“Good! Now let’s say that there are EIGHT girls on the team, and that seven of them are in one van. How many are in the other van?” I asked.

“. . . One!”


“She’ll be sad.”


“She’ll be all alone.”

“But what if there are some boys in that van?”

“She wants to be with the other girl runners.”



Phil’s idea of a great conversation starter?

September 11, 2011

Last night Phil and I were at a small dinner party where there was a kids’ table and an adults’ table. From the adults’ table, I overheard Phil say to a 10-year-old, “Did you know that my dad is a scientist?”

I don’t know the context of this remark, but I was tickled that he thought it would be interesting to others. Perhaps there was even a hint of pride in his voice?


Yesterday’s excerpts from the improvised screenplay of my life

August 28, 2011

[Setting: We are next to a building at a beach and recreation area. The building includes bathrooms as well as a window for renting equipment.]
ME: Phil, I’m going to check whether you’re old enough to use the pedal boats.
PHIL: Why do the bathrooms know that?

[Setting: Phil has just spent a few days with my cousin Paul, who is in the navy. We are driving by a cemetery.]
PHIL: What’s that?
ME: That’s where people are buried after they die.
PHIL: Are any army guys buried there?
ME: Yes, probably.
PHIL: It’s good that Paul isn’t buried.