WDP — As Time Goes By

Is your life today what you pictured a year ago?

Back in the day, when I was a younger man, that would have been an interesting question, as my life would change from year to year, sometimes significantly. I might have gotten a new job, moved to a different city or state, broke up with my girl and/or started dating someone new, met and fell in love with the woman I would marry. Had kids, kids had kids. Lots of changes over the years.

But the biggest change in my life was when I retired. Since then, the changes in my life from one year to the next have been relatively inconsequential. And that’s the beauty of retirement. My life since retirement has been the same as it ever was.

So to answer today’s daily prompt question, my life today is pretty close to exactly where I pictured it a year ago.

WDP — I Don’t Care

Tell us one thing you hope people never say about you.

I’m neither perfect nor flawless. But I accept my imperfections and my flaws.

I can be cranky and crotchety and angry and impatient. But I can also be kind and generous and witty and empathetic and happy. I can hate and I can love. I am human, no different from most other humans.

The truth is, though, when you reach a certain age — my age, for example — you just don’t really care anymore what other people think or say about you. It’s not like I’m going to change. I am who I am. As far as I’m concerned, people need to accept me for who I am or move along. Makes no difference to me.

Written for today’s WordPress Daily Prompt. Also for Fandango’s One Word Challenge (neither).

WDP — Speaker in the House

Have you ever performed on stage or given a speech?

Back in my working days, I used to write articles that would be published in various business and industry publications. As a result, I would periodically be invited to speak at conference and seminars to make oral presentations on one of my papers or on related topics.

Another part of my job was to demo our software products to prospective clients and to discuss how they would affect their internal administrative processes. Often this required me standing in front of a large group of people and doing my song and dance. Not literally, of course. I can neither sing nor dance.

I was a pretty effective speaker, even if I do say so myself. Well, with one big exception. I was the speaker immediately after lunch at a large annual conference in front of about 400 people consisting of both clients and company associates. I spent most of the morning practicing my presentation in my hotel room. I had a light breakfast at around 7 am and a large carafe of coffee. I decided to skip lunch to do one last run through of my presentation.

The time came. I climbed onto the stage, stood behind the podium and started my speech. Next thing I knew I was in an ambulance being transported to a local hospital. Apparently about three minutes into my presentation, I passed out and took a dive off the stage, which knocked me unconscious.

Turned out, drinking five or six cups of coffee and skipping lunch was not such a grand idea. My blood sugar had dropped, and I fell like a tree onto the hard wood floor. Fortunately, I learned from that experience and never had another calamitous incident like that one.

I retired at the end of 2016 and have not had an opportunity to get up on stage and to make a presentation since then. Which is probably a good thing. A very good thing, I think.

Written for today’s WordPress Daily Prompt.

WDP — Wild Animals

Do you ever see wild animals?

My wife and I live in a suburb of San Francisco on the East Bay, and we see a lot of animals around our home and neighborhood. Are they “wild animals” like lions and tigers and bears, oh my? Well, they’re not domesticated, that’s for sure. They live in the wild in and around our area and they roam free and forage for food.

These animals include deer, like the one in the picture above taken in our backyard. We also have seen coyotes, raccoons, and even tarantula spiders on our property. But it’s the moles and gophers who bother me the most because they eat our plants and destroy our lawns. And trying to rid our yard of them is like playing real-life whack-a-mole.

Supposedly there are bobcats and mountain lions in the hills around our neighborhood, but I’ve yet to come across any.

Written for today’s WordPress Daily Prompt. I thought I’d give this new WordPress prompt, which started to appear on the Home screen on the iOS app maybe a few weeks ago, a try. The prompt questions seem somewhat unimaginative, but so is my response to today’s prompt. Sorry about that.

The New WordPress Daily Prompts

In my Fandango’s Provocative Question post earlier today, I wrote, “After ending its daily prompts at the end of May 2018, the brilliant minds at WordPress apparently decided it was time to resurrect it.”

Some of you have commented on that post that you hadn’t seen these daily prompts and asked where they are. I blog exclusively on my iPhone, so what I see may be different from what shows up for you. But on my iPhone, this new WordPress daily prompt shows up on my Home screen when I open up the iOS app each morning (see screenshot below).

And speaking about daily prompts, I just saw this WordPress announcement in my Reader:

Bloganuary, according to WordPress, “is a month-long blogging challenge in January, where you’ll receive a daily writing prompt to inspire you to publish a post on your blog. You can respond to the prompts in any way you like: a story, a picture, a poem, a drawing, a recipe, or even a song. Anything goes!”

Seems WordPress has done a complete about face after abandoning its daily prompts four and a half years ago. It’s now bringing them back in spades — a new daily prompt each day on the Home screen and a separate daily prompt every day in January.

I guess what goes around comes around.