My Softer Side


A few months ago, a nice lady called and asked me if I’d like to be on the cover of Guideposts magazine. “Sure,” I said. “I love football.”

I thought she had said “goalposts.”

“Well, that’s very interesting,” said the nice lady, “but Guideposts is not about sports. It’s an inspirational magazine about faith and devotion and overcoming life’s many obstacles through clean leaving and deep spirituality.”

[Long pause]

“Uhh … you know who I am, right?”

“Yes, you’re a smart aleck who crawls through sewers and sells Ford trucks and gets bleeped on the television,” she said. “But you also seem like a nice man who runs a worthwhile foundation and supports the Boy Scouts. We’d like to write a story about the things that influenced that part of your life, and present it to our 8 million readers in the first person.”

“Well, thanks,” I said. “That’s very flattering. But if you want the story to appear in the first person, why not let me write it myself? I don’t much care for the whole “ghost writer” thing.”

[Long pause]

“Well, Michael.” (Uh-oh.) “We’ve read some of you Facebook posts, and frankly, we’re not sure that your writing … style … would be a good fit for our readers. We prefer a kinder, gentler approach to narrative storytelling.”

“I can be kind and gentle,” I said. “I’ll just write it the way my mother would.”

“Oh, that would be lovely,” said the nice lady. “We’re all fans of your mother’s blog. She such a delightful storyteller.”

Anyway, Guideposts hit the stands this week, and 8 million loyal readers are getting to know the softer side of Mike.

(Thanks, Mom.)

I hope they like him.


Guideposts Magazine: Using the Tools God Gave Him