1. Dreamland Bar-B-Que. Do not go to Birmingham (or Huntsville) without stopping for this food.
2. Photographs. The old fashioned kind you can hold in your hand. I have always loved looking at pictures. Can’t explain it.
3. Hiring season. Every spring, we get busy recruiting, interviewing, and hiring new students and professionals to work for our department. It’s always fun to find out which new people you’ll be working with for the next year.
4. Kimbra – for reminding me of Motown. And for being pretty fantastic.
5. Peer mentors. Some of my cherished mentors are guys who happen to be a little younger than I am. It’s unexpected, I guess; still, there’s no denying they influence my life significantly.
6. Sir Philip Sidney. He wrote lines like this:
“So while thy beauty draws the heart to love, as fast thy virtue bends that love to good.”
7. Community. Specifically, my community group. And also my childhood friend, who is closer to me than a brother spiritually.
A decade ago, I heard someone define “intimacy” this way: the freedom to know and be known without the fear of rejection. That’s what community can lead to.
8. Bella Napoli. A restaurant that advertises authentic Italian food. I have yet to dine there; I just saw their television commercial and got the feeling their pizza might be worthy of praise. Must try soon.
9. For a few weeks now, I have been so blessed by the thought of how good it is that faith in Christ is something my mother and I share. We have such a great friendship, and there’s nothing like being able to “walk” and minister with her.
10. Lessons from my current workplace situation. Invaluable is a good word to describe the collection of things I have heard and observed while working with bosses, supervisees, and colleagues. Some of the biggest lessons came from experiences with my bosses – two people who were committed, courageous, and skilled enough to compel me to change.