Saturday, September 16, 2006

Barber Dan

POOL, DAN A., Of Garland passed away May 24, 2006. Mr. Pool, aka "Barber Dan" was Owner/Operator of Spring Creek Barbers in Garland. He is survived by his wife, Gretchen Duersch; mother, Ferne Pool and brother, David Pool & family all of Emporia, KS; sister, Elaine Wilson & family of The Colony, TX. A Memorial Service will be held from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. Sunday June 4, 2006 at Spring Creek Barbers, 3848 N. Garland Ave. Suite 400, Garland, TX. Memorial contributions may be made to charity of choice.

During the summer, I have been having to go Supercuts or Sportsclip to get my haircut, because the barber shop closed. 'Barber Dan' was my barber and I realized a few years ago, I love the four barber chairs lined up, the row of chairs on the other side, rattlesnake hide on the wall, and the right wing cartoons on the coke machine. Did not always agree with any of it, but it was a place to be a man. Not that women with children were not welcome, but they came because they had boys who needed a haircut.

Barber Dan did a good job on my hair, was kind and friendly had good stories and was kind. This summer his van was gone and there was nothing on the door about what to do. Just a note to go to another barber shop. We were without a barber and all of his stuff was gone. I thought he may have had a problem with his hip. Dan had a hip replacement in the early spring, but it was not successful. So, I told him that he needed to get that taken care of. He was not doing well. I almost called his house during the summer to see how he was doing.

Today, I took my son to Kool Kuts/Cool Cuts something that is full of video games and stuffed with kids. The wait was going to be an hour to get his hair cut and I was not going to wait that long. I am impatient as my one year old who was in my arms. So, we went to the barber shop to see if anybody was there. Barber Glen was there and he shared that he told the kids that Barber Dan had gone to heaven. I was a bit shocked.

Then I went home and checked the obits online. There it was.

I lamented to my wife that I had lost my barber and that was traumatic. I did not realize that I had lost a friend and a part of our family. Dan was a blessing and I thank God for him. I mourn his loss and I have to share with my son that Barber Dan has died.

Fearless Joy,

Monday, September 11, 2006


Part of today will be moments of somberness and extreme sobriety.
We will be told to remember and never to forget.
Hold this tension of not wanting to Toby Keith and put a boot in the butt of everybody, part of me wants to remember 9/11 as it was a day the world changed, and part of me wants to forget because it hurt.

I recall when the first plane hit the tower. I was watching CNBC and they broke to World Trade Center and there it was smoking. I thought to myself, "Must have been an oblivious Cesna or something that ran into the tower." I turned off the TV and got my son ready to go to Ms. Becky's house and was listening to Sports Talk Radio and the weather guy was on for his segment and he told Jason Whitlock, "Sort of just matter of factly in shock, another plane hit the tower." I quickly went back to the TV to see what had happened and the video showed a jetliner crashing into the tower. My eyes widened and I felt the cool air on my dry eyes then I squinted. That was no accident, it was on purpose.

I drove my son to Ms. Becky's listening to the radio. The news guys and gals were working with facts and I could tell they were shook up. I got to Ms. Becky's and I asked her, "You heard what happened?" She said some other mothers were talking about it when they came in. I let Samuel go and she picked him up and held him pretty close.

I went to work at the church and I had the radio on, tuned into the internet, and the TV with no cable was giving me some fuzzy pictures. I remember hearing about Washington DC and I was scouring the internet for anything about the Flight 93. It was unconfirmed at the time and I was told it was near Pittsburgh, but there was a crash.

I called Amy to ask about her sister who was flying out that day of LaGuardia. She got word back that she was alright. Then I had this feeling that every city was going to be hit. The Sears Tower, the Arch in St. Louis, L.A.. All day planes were going to be flying into buildings. I felt that vunerable.

I heard on the radio as Peter Jennings shared with us all that first tower had fell and I could hear the grief in his voice. I turned the TV on and watched the replay of the fall and waited for the next one to fall. I had hoped and prayed that somehow a miracle would happen and the second one would stay up. It did not and when it fell, I turned off the TV and sat in my office for a few moments and went home to watch the TV on cable. There was not going to be any work done.

My wife was working at home and I talked with her. I asked if anybody was at the office. About 2:00 PM, I quit watching, all plane flights had been cancelled there was no more danger. The towers were down, the Pentagon was under control. I went for a run and it was a beautiful fall day in Kansas City. I ran and it was the most normal thing I could do. To see that life was still continuing.

I was supposed to have an interview with a church that night. I called the search committee chair and asked him, "Do you want to do this interview tonight?"
He responded, "I don't see why not?"
It was the worst interview ever. There was no energy on my side of the phone and none on theirs. We all were thinking of something else.

I picked up my son that afternoon and there was a line of 30 to 40 cars at the cash station blocking the road. There was this tremendous fear that we would be out of gasoline. I just said, "What idiots." That was the irrationality of the day.

I recall that sports talk radio went off the air for three days. The world stopped on Wednesday and normalcy started returning Thursday and Friday. I just remember afterwards, conversations being about that day, dinner parties and such. That weekend, we had a company dinner and some of the folks were not there because they were still not able to leave where they were at.

I recall wanting to join the State Department to help out. I thought about the Army, but I had a son. I just recall that I felt more American. I could not find out how do that without being reactionary.

To be honest these reflections are not that spectacular, but just an ordinary person's remembrances.

Fearless Joy,

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Running and age

The last three races I have run, I have placed.
The funny thing is that two of those races, have been my slowest times.
The competition is scarce.
I told Amy that i was really concerned about my speed. "Am I slowing down with age that much?"

This morning I got up early and did my 2.8 course that has been my standard for testing myself. I got up and hit the road hard this morning and completed the course in my second fastest time. Of course that is a minute off of my fastest time, but it is my second fastest time. I was proud of myself and decided there was still some hope for my legs.

So, I have placed and medaled in the last three races. That is cool, because I busted my hump in some other races and got nothing. That is why running is joyful and frustrating. But that is the good thing. I go home with a medal and I feel good. If I run a good time, my best time, then I say, "Wow, look at what i have done?" It works both ways.

I am off to sleep, so I can run in the morning.

Fearless Joy,