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Mike Olson

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“When you write a story, you’re telling yourself the story. When you rewrite, your main job is taking out all the things that are not the story.” – Stephen King The aforementioned Mr. King has admittedly been one of my favorite authors over the years. After the scaring the piss out of me for the better part of my teens…...

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Tell me if you’ve heard this one before… Q: What looks like a cartoon butthole, but leaves an even fouler stench on every sports season it touches? A: I guess I gave the punch line away in the headline. * Forgive me. My tight five needs a lot of work. In the 423 combined seasons that the NFL, NBA, NHL,…...

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“I want you to take my job,” my buddy said. My response was very eloquent: “You whaaaa?…” Let’s back up for a second. An old friend of mine had recently accepted a new gig, getting him out of a real hell-hole. He’d been working his ass off at the old place to get his young family on their feet, putting…...

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I’m standing in a forest. The trees are so tall, I can barely see any light at all. Only the trees aren’t actually trees, they’re men. Three giant men. As I gaze up at one of their somehow impossible height, I recognize that the giant in front of me is Nikola Jokic. In a huge and booming voice, he says,…...

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“The greatest test of courage on earth is to bear defeat without losing heart.” – Robert Green Ingersoll When I came to, the first thing I realized was that I was no longer wearing swim trunks. The second thing I realized was that that was not my biggest problem. As a kid growing up on the less-desirable side of L.A.,…...

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“Hope? Let me tell you something, my friend. Hope is a dangerous thing. Hope can drive a man insane.” – “Red” Redding, Shawshank Redemption “Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things. And no good thing ever dies.” – Andy Dufresne, Shawshank Redemption We were five minutes into one of my youth soccer seasons when I started to…...

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We called it “Uh-oh ball”. When you spent a lot of time traveling through small towns, you had to find ways to fend off boredom. After you’d already exhausted the hours of ridiculous road trip conversations like, “what sort of meat would you eat for the rest of your life if you could only pick one?”, we had to find…...

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I cannot hear the song True Colors without crying. It wasn’t always this way. A long time ago, when I was performing for a living, the group I sang with had the good fortune to be selected to headline the closing ceremonies of the Special Olympics Winter Games in Copper Mountain. We’d had an amazing and overwhelming experience with throngs…...

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“You and me, we don’t even have a choice…” – Apollo Creed, Rocky In the first (and greatest) film in the Rocky series, middling fighter Rocky Balboa has been invited to the fight of his life, a one-in-a-million shot at the heavyweight title. Rocky debates his options as to whether to fight. He knows that if he does, odds are…...

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My favorite grandparent was the youngest of the lot, born in 1918. Though the month of her birth was notable simply for the fact she was in it, she was also born in the same month the Allies forced the Germans back behind the Hindenburg Line in World War I. Because of the war, they also started the World Series…...

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“I am practicing being kind over being right” – Matthew Quick, Silver Linings Playbook I was on a trip to visit friends in Northern California two years ago and was walking along a river near their house when a 20-pound rat crawled out of the water in front of me. I quickly ran through the following options: Am I on…...

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“Perfection is not attainable. But if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence.” – Vince Lombardi Standing in line at the Hunger Games, I mean, Costco the other day, I overheard a conversation in which a gentleman had decided to purchase a brand new printer primarily because it cost him less than it would to replace the ink in the…...

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“Fear, left unchecked, can spread like a virus” – Lish McBride, Necromancing the Stone Turns out a virus can spread plenty of fear all by itself. After having spent the last few days at a long-planned and poorly attended conference, the only topic on anyone’s mind seemed to be avoiding contact at nearly all costs. Having already avoided flights to…...

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Sixteen games left to go, and these Avs are HOT

“Good character is not formed in a week or a month. It is created little by little, day by day. Protracted and patient effort is needed to develop good character.” – Heraclitus Smart dude, that Heraclitus. Being exceptional in your character really is formed by moments, habits, and a dedication to trying to do things “right” in every moment. It’s…...

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“JERAMI GRANT HAD FORTY-NINE POINTS TONIGHT!!!” I had just walked in the door, and knew I’d misheard her. I was sure I had something crazy in my ear. I wanted to ask my wife to repeat herself. I somehow encapsulated all of that response into something a little briefer: “HE WHAT????” The “what” had landed in a register I thought the…...

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He thought he saw a Garden-door That opened with a key: He looked again, and found it was A Double Rule of Three: “And all its mystery,” he said, “Is clear as day to me.” -Lewis Carroll Friends, Denverites, Nuggets Nation… lend me your ears. No, really, just for the WKND. Er, weekend. I should have them back to you by…...

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Do you believe in miracles? Let’s get back to that in just a second, and talk about church first… no, not like that. My family was pretty good about getting to church every Sunday in my youth, though I often felt like I wasn’t spending the other six days steering myself in the same direction I was being taught every weekend.…...

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The best days of my soccer career had already come to an end, and I was now winding it up with regular stints on my collegiate club squad. We had a match upcoming with the club from Boulder, and I’d heard stories about their rock star left wing I’d be facing. Stories so impressive as to be hard to believe.…...

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I was nine the first time I saw her, and all I knew was I had to have her… No, I wasn’t hormonal. Not yet, anyway. As a matter of fact, I wasn’t even really thinking of her as a “her”. But I’d never wanted anything so badly in my less-than-3500-days on the planet. In return, she just stared at…...

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A few weeks ago, I was standing in line at a killer deli not too far from me, and ordered their Italian Hero, called the Godmother. It was so tasty, I actually ate it in my car in the parking lot. That hero… did not have much of a journey. Ba dump bump. In the more classical sense, Joseph Campbell…...

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