Monthly Archives: April 2013

Happy Poem In Your Pocket Day 2013

I like to rehash this story for Pocket Poetry Day. Poetry reminds me to always keep an open mind about things. It reminds me to give things you may not seem to like a chance. It reminds me the best horizons are the ones which expand. Put a poem in your pocket and a smile on your face today.

Back in sophomore honors English, my teacher, Mrs. Goheen, gave us the assignment of memorizing and reciting a poem in front of the class.  I was/am not a huge fan of poetry (Note: It’s getting better) to begin with, so this was an assignment akin to flossing and brushing the dog’s teeth.  When I see poetry in books, the words get fuzzy and begin to dance around into a deadly vortex (Note: It’s getting better).  As the same time, I admit there are several poems and poets I really like (Note: Shel Silverstein, Jack Prelutsky, Frost) .  Well, anyway, completely true to form, I forget all about the memorization assignment until late evening the night before we are to be thrown to the wolves.  I search frantically through our home bookshelf listening to the “I told you so’s” from dear Mother and the laughing of the brothers.  All in the know go to bed that night thinking old MH is toast in the morning in English class.

I sit in class the next morning, waiting to be called to the gallows.  When my name is called, I feel the class and Mrs. Goheen stare at me with anticipation of great failure as I walk to the front of the class.  For those who don’t know me, I am a lineman, plain and simple.  I was probably the last over the cut line to get into honors English. I was a seat filler, a butt in the seat (Note: Always the dumbest in the smart group and being a decent to good athlete did not help me one bit with the “honors” class teachers).  So, there I stand in front of the class, trying not to make eye contact with anyone.  I crack my knuckles and clear my throat for a little slapstick comic relief, take my best Shakespearean stance and begin.

The Duck

Behold the duck.
It does not cluck.
A cluck it lacks.
It quacks.
It is specially fond
Of a puddle or pond.
When it dines or sups,
It bottoms ups.

-The Duck by Ogden Nash

I can’t remember what grade I received on the project.  The audience seemed entertained and Mrs. Goheen seemed satisfied with the selection (Note: She still saw me as a dumb jock at this point, and I didn’t really do anything to convince her otherwise until my late year cutting-edge, incisive biography book report on Bob Dylan).  I am sure it was probably a B+.   Mrs. Goheen asked why I picked that particular poem.  I told her it was my favorite poem, but in all reality, it fit when written on the top of my tennis shoe, just in case I got stage fright.  But, The Duck became my favorite poem and still the only one I have burned to memory.

Thank you Ogden Nash.

Happy Poem In Your Pocket Day to one and all!

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Perception is Reality (via Baseball Excellence)

From Baseball Excellence Tip of the Week newsletter 4/15/13

Perception is Reality– (A Tip for players) The way you act is how others perceive you. The way you conduct yourself on a baseball field in practice and games goes a long way as coaches determine how you will benefit the team. Your talent level “is what it is.” You can improve your skill level and you can have a positive approach. “It takes no talent to hustle.”

Respect the game.

Play with class.

Take Pride in the way you play the game.

Show an aptitude to learn. (Be Coachable)

Understand that failure is a part of baseball and learn to react in a mature fashion.

Always try to contribute something positive to the team (no matter how small)

Remember, you never know who is watching.

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Baseball Excellence is the best baseball, perhaps the best all-around coaching, resource I know. It has been integral to my development as a sports coach and defines who I am as a baseball coach. Most of the drills we did in our programs came from the Baseball Excellence Practice Planner. With the articles on their Instructions & Fundamentals web page, one can become a pretty damn solid baseball coach and a better baseball player. Simple, common sense, and effective methods.

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Beth Fred’s Book Release: THE OTHER MARLOWE GIRL

We are shifting gears away from the stupid-funny sports-themed posts usually found on THE COACH HAYS blog to highlight a clean romance book release from the wonderful Beth Fred. Beth tirelessly helps authors promote their work through her blog and social media and, today, I am proud to do a small part to help return the favor. So, without further ado, here are the promos for Beth’s new release, THE OTHER MARLOWE GIRL, Book 2 in the The Marlowe Girls series, and Book 1 in the series, THE FATE OF A MARLOWE GIRL.

Beth, the stage is yours.

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Meet Beth Fred! That’s me! I’m a full time ELF keeper and part time writer/blogger/writing instructor. I’m represented by Kathleen Rushall of Marsal Lyons Literary Agency. I like my tea hot, my romance sweet, and my guys chivalrous. Real men hold open doors, refer to you as ma’am, make promises they keep, and aren’t afraid to profess their undying love. It’s not breakfast if there aren’t carbs(at least, not in the South). Fajitas, carnitas, and churros are just few of my favorite things. Bet you can’t guess where I’m from 😉 Wanna know more about me? You can find that here:

Email me: bethfred08(at)gmail.com

Blogger:  bethfred.com

Tweet me: bethfred08

FB Author Page: https://www.facebook.com/bethfred08

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When twenty-four-year-old Tiffany escapes her sister Kammy’s too wild Cancun bachelorette party, she finds herself in a bar with the unwanted attention of a gorgeous local named Luke.

Luke may be charming but Tiffany is leaving in two days and doesn’t need any complications. But complications are exactly what she gets when the cops show up to raid Kammy’s party. When Kammy is arrested, Tiffany agrees to have dinner with Luke, so he’ll help her get Kammy out of jail. Kammy’s arrest forces her to spend an extra day in Cancun, meaning she’ll miss a crucial meeting, and as an accountant in tax season, she is already drowning in work. Not to mention, every second she spends with Luke makes it harder to leave. With Luke, Tiffany can forget about work.

But will the airport be their final goodbye?
Available at: Amazon & Smashwords

ebook, 42 pages

Published September 12th 2012 by Amazon

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edition language: English

original title: Kismet

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When twenty-four-year-old dance school drop out Kammy Marlowe is evicted by her mother, she goes to her favorite bar. She finds an unlikely friend in the blunt eye candy, Enrique. But Kammy knows there is no way she and Enrique have a shot because he’s her brother-in-law’s brother and has been privy to her wild past.

Enrique swears he’s only interested in the person she is today, but their relationship is tested when her ex-husband’s drug dealer attacks her, looking for money. With no options and a money hungry drug dealer on her back, Kammy accepts a position as a dancer at a strip club. But when Enrique shows up at the club, their relationship is over. With no reason to stay in Texas anymore, Kammy auditions for the Bolshevik Ballet and gets the opportunity to go to Russia. Only Enrique is determined to stop her.

Will she give up the chance of a lifetime to stay with the man she still loves?
Available at: Amazon

Ebook: 107 pages

Published: April 5th 2013

edition language: English

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Superhero on the Cheap

As a kid, there was great anticipation for late spring and summer. Sure, there were all the usual reasons, no school, baseball, and no school. It also meant it was creeping closer to grape season. I know, I know, it’s not natural for a young boy to anticipate any sort of brightly colored food which may give off the slightest hint of “healthy”. But, this kid liked his grapes.

Of course, there were ulterior motives. Back in the day, grapes came packaged in perhaps the greatest boy-friendly packaging in the history of commerce. Grapes came in nets; small plastic nets that stretched to hold the grapes firmly without squashing them.  To me, these miracles of modern packaging made a great disguise when pulled over one’s head.

The grape net. All the awesomeness of wearing panty hose over your head, without the stomach churning thought lolling around the back of the mind that you are wearing PANTY HOSE ON YOUR HEAD.  With your identity safely hidden behind smashed features, you could be anyone you want. Villain, hero, crook, or vigilante, the choice is right there at your fingertips.

Me, I would transform into a superhero when I pulled the net over my big, round head. I could leap from sofa to chair, and back to sofa with the ease of a grasshopper. I could run at lightning speed, sniff out the older brother’s deviant activity, and chase the rabid, half beagle/half basset hound from high security areas under the shade of the honeysuckle bush.

And the best part? When all of Hays Manor was safe and secure, there were plenty of grapes in the fridge to re-hydrate and re-fuel upon. Win-win.

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