Difficult People

March 6, 2021

Shut it Down!

I graduated from high school in 1975 (45 years ago). The school I attended was in a rural area of Peoria County. Most of the students in the school were from families in which at least one parent worked in a blue-collar job, such as manufacturing or the building trades. I came from one of those families.

February 21, 2021

Superior Talent on Loan from God

You’ve probably never heard of Robert Pittman. He’s a 67-year-old American businessman who was one of the founders of MTV, the first cable music television network in the United States. MTV was launched on August 1, 1981, and initially featured music videos and related programming that was presented by television celebrities who were known as VJs (video jockeys).

February 6, 2021

How to Turn Frustration into Happiness

Last month, was the 38th anniversary of when I opened my law office. After 38 years, I still get frustrated with running my own business. I’m going to share something that happened to me last month that caused me to become extremely frustrated and angry. After I share my experience with you, I’m going to give you one of the keys to happiness — a key that allows you to still find happiness in a world that is fraught with frustration and anger.

January 9, 2021

Stupid People and Foul Language on Facebook

When I was 11 years old, every Friday my dad made me write a personal letter to a woman he hardly knew. The woman’s name was Miss Miller, and she was my sixth-grade teacher at St. Mark Catholic Grade School. I don’t remember if it was her idea or his idea. All I remember is that after she called him on the phone a few times to complain about my behavior in class, they developed a scheme in which I was forced to write the following letter on a blank sheet of paper every week:

December 5, 2020

The Reflector Theory

When I was born (May 1957), my mom asked her 17-year-old brother, Dick LaHood, if he would be my godfather. My earliest memory of my Uncle Dick is from the early 1960s when he would pick up me and several of my brothers and sisters in his Cadillac and take us swimming at the Timber Lake Club.

November 28, 2020

The Season of Gratitude

During the Thanksgiving season, we usually hear and read about all the blessings we should be thankful for, such as our faith, health, family, country, and freedoms. The one common denominator in  these blessings is that they were all given to us as gifts.

October 17, 2020

The Magic of Stress Inoculation

Last week I wrote about my five-year-old grandson, Liam, who was scheduled to have open-heart surgery on Tuesday, October 13. At the end of my article, I asked for prayers for Liam. I’m happy to report that the surgery was successful. The surgeon was able to apply a patch that was a little larger than a dime to the hole in Liam’s heart, and after the surgery, Liam’s heart rhythm was normal, and he was placed in the intensive care unit.

October 3, 2020

How to Handle a Defiant Child

In last week’s article, The Defiant Catholic Child, I wrote that in every large devout Catholic family there is at least one child who is difficult to handle and demands more attention than the other children. In my article, I called this type of child “the defiant Catholic child” and limited my discussion to children who grow up in normal, devout Catholic two-parent homes.

September 26, 2020

The Defiant Catholic Child

I’ve written before about how I grew up in a family of 17 children — nine boys and eight girls — and how my wife and I raised seven children of our own. In every large family, there is at least one defiant child who is difficult to handle and demands more attention than the other children.

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