One Formula for Tolerable Mondays: Geaux, Teams! Monday, Sep 23 2013 

If I ran a theme-tracker on personal blog and social media posts over the past year, blue Monday would run a strong race as the most persistent. Sunday evenings on many weekends, in fact, the Psalmist’s lament fits my mood:

“For the waters have come up to my neck. I sink in deep mire where there is no foothold; I have come into deep waters, and the flood sweeps over me. I am weary with my crying out: my throat is parched. My eyes grow dim with waiting for [the next weekend.]” (From Psalms 69)

Few circumstances enable me to walk into Monday mornings with a lively gait or a cheerful spirit (toward the tedium of administrative workplace muck, that is–other regions of my being are more balanced and pleasant, thank God!). A week shortened by holiday or annual leave is one such circumstance. So are the more laid-back week-beginnings in inter-semester times when the quiet of the campus provides a balm for the nerves.

Tigers win, Monday loses.

Tigers win, Monday loses.

Drew Triumphant dispells Monday's gloom.

Drew Triumphant dispells Monday’s gloom.

But truthfully, no blue-Monday antidote is more effective in the fall of the year than LSU and Saints football success.
And so far in 2013, September Mondays are going pretty well, with favorite teams undefeated and atop their respective worlds.

Awakening Monday morning with the weekend’s victories still glowing in memory, the good humor of Saturday night and Sunday afternoon glimmers yet on Monday morning, aided and abetted by the promise of upbeat Sports Talk on the after-work WWL radio show that hashes and re-hashes the teams’ respective causes for celebration, and also keeping alive the good feelings of the weekend.

With workplace sanity and happiness at stake, may the Tigers and Saints continue to win: Otherwise, life is too short for the tyranny of blue Monday.

Among the Waters Wednesday, Sep 18 2013 

By David Pulling
March 2005, 2007

And God said, “Let there be a dome in the midst of the waters, and let it separate the waters from the waters.” So God made the dome and separated the waters that were under the dome from the waters that were above the dome. And it was so.
Genesis 1:6-7

The Gulf’s white sand beaches,
New England’s boulder-strewn shore.
No matter,
Glory rides on wind
Swept over the face of the waters

The holiness of waters.

The holiness of waters.

Like sun
Or waves rolling
In noisy moonlit surf—
Calling to lost and darkening
The author of waters
Among the waters.

The Hurricane Season from Heaven Thursday, Sep 12 2013 

Better the season from heaven than hell? Sure ’nuff. Looking over the chronicles of this column over the years, the August/September posts in just about every year shows that this time of year is the season of tropical tension. So here we are at the peak of hurricane season 2013 and, so far, “No sweat.” Today’s Atlantic Basin map from the Hurricane Center shows a number of trouble spots, but nothing to disturb the US mainland, much less the closer to home

A "no sweat" tropical map at the peak of the season.

A “no sweat” tropical map at the peak of the season.

central Gulf Coast.

So we don’t mind the temps soaring to unseasonable highs in mid-September: Dry heat is the product of land-based high pressure, the antithesis (and enemy) of ocean-based low pressure. Better to bake in the sun than to hunker down beneath a wind-blown tempest: May these conditions persist, and may there be many like-hurricane seasons to come!

WWL Sports Talk: Peace in the midst of the storm of stressful days Tuesday, Sep 10 2013 

Bobby and Deke gladden the evenings in this football season of the year.

Bobby and Deke gladden the evenings in this football season of the year.

I posted a few weeks ago about the rhythm of work in education, how the early weeks of the fall semester provide exciting times of new beginnings. As an administrator, those days also provide long and stressful days that aren’t so exciting.

So what’s the elixir of stress relief at the end of a long and trying day? It’s nothing I drink! Instead, I listen to Sports Talk on WWL Radio from New Orleans. Mostly Saints and LSU football dominates the conversation this time of year. I typically tune in as soon as I leave the office at 4:30.

I downloaded the WWL app on my phone, so whatever activity I do after work, jogging or bike riding or mowing grass or just about anything else, I plug in the ear buds and listen, often until the show goes off at 8:00.

In this most stressful season of the year, the daily banter of my WWL boys provides catharsis, a post-work balm and cleansing for the over-taxed mind.

Geaux, Saints, Geaux, Tigers. Geaux, WWL.

Faces of Summer ’13: Zoo of Acadiana Tuesday, Sep 3 2013 

When I posted my summer 2013 memoirs a couple of weeks ago, I missed the Zoo of Acadiana trip with granddaughter Payton.

We’ll always remember that monkey in the enclosure that mirrored our movements back and forth along the path. Payton found that monkey’s mimicry so funny! And so did we all.

We posed for this picture at a break point along the way. I recall it was hot that late July afternoon, but the deep shade of the Zoo made the heat tolerable. As did the company of our little Payton Elizabuff.

Father, granddaughter, and son pose during  a break at the Zoo of Acadiana

Father, granddaughter, and son pose during a break at the Zoo of Acadiana