WHAT I’M READING
• Thinking Fast and Slow – Daniel Kahneman
• Buddhism for Beginners – Jack Kornfield
• Atomic Habits – James Clear
• The Tattooist of Auschwitz – Heather Morris
• Believe Me – JP Delaney
• The Outsider – Stephen King
• Media Politics: A Citizen’s Guide – Shanto Iyengar
I'm writing this in the Admiral's Club in the O'Hare airport in Chicago, leg two of my July journeys. I spent most of last week in the Orlando area, talking to public records experts and journalism professors.
Welcome to the first edition of my newest writing project: Courting Disaster. This is based on a column I wrote for the San Francisco Examiner back in 2001 and 2002 of the same name that looked at the odd, offbeat and just plain strange lawsuits and other recently filed cases.
When I moved to Florida from California a bit more than three years ago, I was amazed by the difference in the public record laws. The Sunshine State has some of the most open laws in the nation. Surprisingly, though, this is not something that is formally taught at many journalism schools in the state, FIU included.
For better or worse, my reading list these days has been focused on the self-help variety. The latest has been "Atomic Habits" by James Clear. Though I have not finished the book, there are a few good ideas that I've picked up. One of them is something he calls "habit stacking," which is essentially adding something you want to start doing regularly into an already established routine.
Writing on a regular basis -- even when you're not entirely sure of the direction or purpose -- is a huge aspect of being, well, a writer. One of the things I occasionally struggle with in my new career as a journalism professor is keeping that tool sharp. Without the constant deadline pressures of my old life, it is challenging to get myself to just write.
A few months ago, The New Miami posted a story about an anonymous person (or persons) that created a fantasy Metrorail map. I was very taken by the map itself -- which essentially converts Miami-Dade and Broward highways, expressways and main arterial roads into multicolored rail lines.
I spent last weekend in Daytona Beach, part of a family non-reunion reunion. Daytona has been an annual destination for the last six years, mostly because that's where my grandmother lived.
A look at some of the recent news in the Miami area including: the outrageous heat, the upcoming Democratic debates and the ongoing dismantling and remaking of Wywnood.
On the way back from Tampa last weekend, my Zen from the meditation retreat I attended was tested by a series of bells and warnings from my Mini Cooper. Each time I turned on the car, I got warnings that my backup light wasn't working and neither were my rear turn signals.