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Lean back a second…

Yep, these are stories. Stories about things that really happened, too. See “Other Stories” above for more. Nope, they’re not just a bunch of picture post cards!

Sometimes journeys chosen take us down unintended alleys, or usher us into and through some gasps and surprises that could never have been predicted. Look around below here for the story about the story or about the “setting” here. Better yet, check out the menu at the top for specific stories, and pick and choose, or jump around, but have a good time.

Vietnam001There are lots of places to look around–check out the pull-down menus for specific venues and genres. There are stories of travel, Vietnam, business, and more. Pick one.

From here on down to the bottom of this page, I just am letting my mind wander about some of the things I think about. If you have time, these set the stage. If you don’t have time, peruse the menu choices. Enjoy your journey.


If one is curious, if one is willing to turn another page in that book (y’know, the thick one with that ambiguous title), if one can justify a few meaningful risks that might not ordinarily be considered …well, just maybe that person might then have a few worthy events to share with others too. But, just because some can find ways to use those ingredients on our own shelf of life’s experiences, we wonder whether if it’s worthy meal for more than one to savor.

Wes with new M16 rifle - 1966


So much of my particular story begins as a young adult …as it usually does for most of us. Then we make a choice, prepared or not. In the book Just Dust (for more information about this book, go to, I describe how I went through the dichotomy of choice and consequence, over and over. It’s an introspective recounting that those who were in Vietnam will immediately relate to. For those who know someone who endured similar experiences, it may also help them to understand these events with greater insight. Examine some of the blogs for a few of those insights.

For just as many introspections as there may be, there are many unusual experiences and observations as well …surprises, realizations, and many “I get it!” moments that young men encounter along the way. It’s a wad of stuff. Join me for a picnic of some unanticipated adventure.

A story about “hacking military secrets with a paper sextant” aboard ship crossing the Pacific in 1966

Vietnam plus 1960s social change created a new culture with its own unpredictable twists. During the 1970s, 80s, 90s, 00s, even though my job was no longer the military, many of my Marine Corps principles permeated my work, and led me to seek out places I’d never been to before.


Not all business decisions were necessarily profit motivated …they needed to fit into a disciplined, right-way to do things kind of orientation first. Once this was done, we did it so that earnings outpaced expenses, we did it as a team, and we explored places others had not considered to go.

For example, our well-defined AAA business territory, Montana, had been developed and managed from a fairly narrow rural perspective. Not long after my arrival, we seized the opportunity to expand our territory to include Wyoming and Alaska …huge increases in square miles, big hurdles to overcome in how this could be managed by a relatively small management staff with some tough mountains to climb in order to do so with positive bottom lines. But we did so remarkably well, always faithful to the core business model. But that’s yet another story!

Yeah, there are so many stories … but consider looking around at some interesting over-time-type changes through another’s eyes.

And, what’s this about a maphead?


There’s no doubt in my mind that my proclivity for maps influenced a great deal of my choices along the way. The “what” and “how” of things were always subordinate to the “where” of it all. Only after pinpointing “where” could I put the “why” of anything together.

So as time went by, it made sense to consider the “where” of everything, then write this down onto my own “atlas” depicting my life journey in a from-here to-there kind of way. There were numerous forks in the road, hills to climb, or oceans to cross as it turned out. Choices were measured in miles instead of minutes or months; “druthers” were either left or right or straight ahead. But once the “where” moved into my fingers, the task became putting miles traveled on paper in ways others could see …kinda like publishing my map. As one becomes able to recognize those unfolded roadmaps and approaching roadsigns, they become able to join me on these confronted roads less-traveled.

Stick around …enjoy the journey.

Semper fi


There’s a PS, of course:

PS. Since you may have figured out by now that, for me, it’s mostly about the “where” of things, one of the “how’s” I use to manage my journey comes from playing chess. Click here to read more on this topic. I invite you to check out Chess online for more information about a cool site to play. You can even challenge me here. My user name is Chaz- (be sure to use the hyphen).