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Predicting Potential Domestic Violence in Teenage Boys

Note:  An updated version of this piece was published on July 9, 2017 on Blasting News.


Domestic violence might not be an epidemic, but it occurs so frequently that preventative measures should be discussed and written about often. Domestic violence is not limited to men, sometimes women are abusers, and in lesbian relationships the frequency is about the same as heterosexual couples. For the purpose of this article, only the male pronoun will be used in referring to the abuser, so as not to confuse the reader.

Every single victim of domestic violence I have spoken to said the signs were all there when she began dating him. She just discounted or ignored them; or worse, thought she could change him.

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Living Life at Periscope Depth

I have observed a significant number of people in my lifetime who are risk aversive: they are afraid of change, of overhaul, of uprooting, of adventure, and even success.  They hide in their (relatively) secure little jobs, in their secure little neighborhoods, their secure little group of friends, and their secure and predictable belief systems. Essentially, they are living at periscope depth, below radar, hoping that no one will find them out.

Actor Burt Reynolds once said, “I walk around in constant fear that someone will pat me on the back and say, ‘Burt, we’re going to pay you what you’re worth, which is about $4 per hour’.”

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Depression and Things That Make You Smile

My next door neighbor Gerry is a car nut. His son Chris, 36, is one of the few young people who have acquired the gear head gene. Between the two of them, and not counting their commute cars and pickups, they have two 1930 Ford hot rods, a 1970 ½ Pontiac Trans Am, two 1970 Oldsmobile 442s, a 1970 Olds Cutlass, and a 1970 Olds Cutlass Rallye 350.

It is the latter that inspired the idea for this article: THAT CAR MAKES ME SMILE. It even makes my wife smile, and she can’t distinguish a Porsche from a Chrysler. Why is it smile-worthy? Because it is bright, bright yellow – bow to stern. Even the bumpers are yellow. Chris recently had it restored, and now it is brighter (yellow) than ever. He drives up, I see it, and a spontaneous smile comes over my face, and lasts until it is out of sight.

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Practicing Gratitude in a Slightly Different Way

What is gratitude?

The common notion of gratitude is appreciation, or being grateful for life’s many gifts. The Bible, music, public speakers, scholars admonish us to count our blessings, to look for the silver lining, to remember that someone is worse off than you are. Appreciate what you have. Be thankful that you live in America, where even people at the poverty level live like royalty compared to most people in the third world.

Much is said about income inequality and our (temporarily dwindling) middle class. The fact is the middle class has everything the filthy rich do, just not as cool: automobile, flat screen TV, place to live, air conditioner, smart phone, nice clothing, dining out, and much more. One exception of course is the middle class does not have swimming pools for the horses.

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The Five-Minute Management Audit

Some time ago I took a tour of an organization that was interested in having me work a few shifts per week as a psychologist. At the end of the one-hour meet and greet, the young psychologist who would be my supervisor said, “Well, what do you think?” I told her, “In my other life I’m a management consultant. I can tell if a place is well-run in five minutes.”



“What do you look for?”

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