73 F
Tahoe City, CA
Monday, October 16, 2017

25 years of writing columns

Since I got my first job writing a weekly column for the Vail Daily about 25 years ago for 52 columns a year, for 25 years, 1,300 columns equals a lot of words. One of those columns appeared soon after it snowed 99 feet at Mount Baker one winter. Another when it started to become a 7- or 8-hour drive...

The Ford Pinto

During the 1970s, as far as I was concerned my life was in complete disarray. I was in the middle of an ugly divorce, my kids were all over the place with my son Scott graduating from the budget-busting Art Center in Pasadena, my daughter Chris was going to college in Santa Barbara, and my son Kurt had spent...

The Mattress

I have a 6-foot-long, folding conference table in my office and under that table is a mattress designed for backpacking and sleeping on a bed of rocks. My office bed is so comfortable that I seem to fall asleep within 2 minutes when I lay down. I don’t know how many times I’ve folded up conference tables, but you could...

Freedom on Mount Waterman

Tied tightly to the roof of the nearly new 1929 model A Ford coupe was my two-man toboggan that I had spent half of the semester of my seventh grade woodshop class making. This as my first project. I was already freezing cold as we started to climb up into the San Gabriel Mountains. Even though I had left my...

Unanticipated consequences, again

Once in a while, it’s a good idea to pause in your journey through life and realize what might have happened if you turned right instead of left at that fork in the road. Had I not ridden my bicycle along with a friend for 3 miles to the Polar Palace ice arena in Hollywood, I might never have felt...

Enjoying the ski life

In the spring of 1997, my wife Laurie and I were living the good life in Vail, Colo., skiing almost every day when I was invited to take a ride on a private jet to Bozeman, Mont. On board were former Vice Presidential candidate Jack Kemp, Jon Reveal and the man who had invited us, Tim Blixseth. We were going to...

Escaping in the dark

In 1930, we were headed northbound on a narrow, two-lane road in the San Fernando Valley called Ventura Boulevard. Our family’s entire possessions were jammed in and on top of the car because we had again moved in the middle of the night to avoid paying back rent. Apparently, my father didn’t feel like working and since it was...

New skateboard parks

In the early 1960s, my family was living in Hermosa Beach and our friend, Don Guild, owned the local drugstore. Appearing one day in his front window was an 18-inch piece of wood painted red with a roller skate nailed to the bottom. On the top in big bright, white letters it said “Bun Board.” A friend of his had...

Early surfing

When the economic crash happened in 1929, the unemployment rate in America skyrocketed to more than 25 percent. Almost daily, someone knocked on the back door and said, "I will do anything for a sandwich of any kind, please because I haven’t eaten in two days.” My father was one of those 25 percent out of work and the family...

Golf is as dumb as skiing

Golf is as dumb as skiing, but you can do it wearing fewer clothes. When the Yellowstone Club in Montana was opened, it became the world’s only private ski and golf club. I was lucky when I got the job to hang around and ski with potential members, and Tom Weiskopf was chosen to design and build a golf course....


Tahoe City, CA
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