A couple of years ago I was in Columbus, Ohio visiting my nephew, an avid golfer and member at the Ohio State University Golf Club. I recall The Columbus Dispatch being full of headlines about the mortgage crises and speculation about how people will lose their homes to foreclosure. My nephew and his wife live in a beautiful house with a pool. Susan does the landscaping and cuts the grass. It’s one of the prettiest houses in the neighborhood. They are comfortable and are proud of the fact that they are not overly leveraged. We are “Livin’ the dream,” Jim likes to say with a touch of pride. That dream now includes their newly adopted baby daughter Colleen.

“Livin’ the Dream,” is something we heard Russ say a lot on Sunday. Russ graduated from Ohio State in 1974. His pal Mark joined us on the tee box. Mark works for alumni relations. He works for two-time Heisman Trophy winner Archie Griffin (1974, 1975). It’s fun to meet people this way. During a four and a half hour round you are bound to learn something about your fellow golfers. Mark is a former wrestler in college at Wisconsin. Russ’ life has been touched by tragedy. His son was in a car accident that left him brain-damaged but functional. The boy is living independently now. Today, Russ does what he can to help his son get by and make the best of things.
You have to count your blessings. Be grateful for what you do have. It’s all kind of relative. That weekend, sitting at the Corazon Spa overlooking the pool and small lake on a sunny afternoon in the middle of Ohio may not have been La Jolla, California or Palm Beach but for that moment we were “Living the Dream.” I can almost hear the live cover band playing Jim Morrison and the Doors extended version of L.A.Woman.
Well, I just got into town about an hour ago
Took a look around, see which way the wind blow
Where the little girls in their Hollywood bungalows
Jim Morrison died in Paris, France on July 3, 1971, in his bathtub at the age of 27. Fans and biographers have speculated that the cause of death was a drug overdose. The official report listed “heart attack” as the cause of death. Sometimes It’s hard to know the truth of things or why things happen the way they do.There are haves and have nots, families touched by economic hardship or tragic events. Still there are things to be grateful for, like music, sunshine, golf and a peaceful afternoon by a lake. Maybe it’s best to go through life one day at a time and just do the best you can.

- Optimistic Contributor, Wes Morgan: originally posted August 18, 2010