I don’t travel without my family much, at least not overnight. My dad was away a lot while I was growing up, especially for the first few years of my life. However, he did everything he could to make the trip as short as possible, to catch the earlier flight, to be there.

Back then, phone calls were rare. Now, I can text and email each of our kids and Nancy, even while sitting in a meeting. I can call. I have all kinds of ways to nag, even from a distance.

Today was a whole new way of interacting at a distance.

As some of you know, I’m writing posts every week over at GNMParents.com, talking about what I’ve learned from 21 years of being Andrew’s dad. I usually write sometime on the weekend. On Monday, when the posts have been going up, I email the link to Nancy and Andrew and Allie.

Today’s post talked about how Andrew got cut from the soccer team at the start of his senior year and how that lead to meeting the love of his life. In the second comment, Meg asked what Andrew thought about the experience. And so he answered. She asked a followup question, which he then answered.

It was a funny process to watch, which is what I had to do. I’m an hour away at a staff retreat. I was part of this conversation in the same way everyone else is: at a geographic distance, with emotional immediacy. I saw his thinking at the same time and in the same way as everyone else.

What was clear was that his ability to handle this interaction about his life showed the same maturity as he used to handle the experience from 3 years ago that I was describing. What’s also clear is that he’ll handle whatever area of communication media he ends up in with clarity and ease of expression. What’s also clear (I know, awkward paragraph construction) is that social media will provide a good platform for interaction even between father and son.

So go check out the article and comments.


While we’re talking about elsewhere, Joanna Young invited people to describe powerful writing in 30 words. So I did. Here’s her post with my quote. The reason I’m sending you there instead of putting it here is that Joanna does a great job of talking about writing with confidence. It’s worth visiting her blog.


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