I’m a magazine guy.
Old-fashioned, print magazines from an airport newsstand with color photos, seductive liquor and cologne ads, and short articles by great writers fit my narrow attention span.
One of my favorite sections of magazines is a back page dedicated to a Q&A personality profile. You’ve seen them. A hip celebrity provides clever answers to simple questions to give readers a glimpse into his interests, opinions, background and thoughts.
I think to myself, “If I were hip, how would I answer these questions?”
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Here’s my best shot:
What’s the best advice you have ever received? An old boss once told me, “Be selective who you take advice from.”
What’s the worst advice you have ever received? “Let’s do it anyway. Our parents will never find out.”
What does the great outdoors mean to you? Rocky Mountain National Park in Estes Park, Colo. I love the smell of the pines.
What advice on vanity would you give to another man your age? Look in a mirror only when you must. When you do, check closely for lone, long lost hairs.
What is your greatest fear? The flying monkeys in the “Wizard of Oz” attack me while I’m walking across the old swinging bridge at Camp Ondessonk.
What is your favorite snack? Vanilla ice cream. A little Hershey’s chocolate sauce on top.
What’s the last great book you’ve read that no one else may have heard of? Recently, I bought a paperback book at the airport called “Shotgun Love Songs” by Nickolas Butler. Easy read. Midwest setting. Flight delayed. Can’t believe I read the whole book.
Favorite athlete(s) ever? Stan Musial, baseball. Kurt Warner, football. Brian Sutter, hockey.
Close your eyes. Where is your happy place? Diamond No. 1 at the old St. Phillip’s Grade School baseball fields. Popcorn cooking in the concession stand nearby. A post-game rainbow sno-cone with my name on it.
Best lesson from your Mom? A parent’s love for her children is unconditional. Every time I screwed up, my mom would tell me she was mad, hurt, disappointed or upset. But she said she loved me — despite my stupidity.
Best lesson from your Dad? Don’t try to fix it myself. Call the repairman. It’s cheaper.
Which talent would you most like to have? Play the piano, guitar or mandolin. Or be able to fix something, anything.
Favorite number? 6. Stan the Man.
Favorite color. Forest green. Reminds me of Ireland. And the pine trees in the Rocky Mountains.
Least favorite color? Cub blue.
What is your most treasured possession? Two of them. There’s a painting by my Mom on the wall of my computer room. A rural setting. I also have my dad’s old corkball. It reminds of my early childhood and Sunday afternoon barbecues in the old neighborhood.
What is the quality you most admire in another man? Humility. I like guys who make fun of themselves more than others.
Who would you most like to sing at your funeral? Springsteen. Ray Charles. James Taylor. Have you ever heard former Big Red tight end Jackie Smith sing, “Danny Boy.” Wow! I’d love for old No. 81 to send me off.
Favorite band you really like but you’d never tell the guys you play golf with every weekend? Rascal Flatts.
Favorite sport to watch in-person? Hockey. I’d love to watch it in St. Louis some day in June.
Favorite childhood meal? Fried bologna sandwich. Crunched potato chips on top.
Movie you can’t believe you cried while watching? “The Rookie.”
Favorite hobby you wish you had? Art. I’d like to be able to create something sustainable that’s nice enough to put on somebody’s wall or shelf. Something that makes people say. ‘Wow, Mackin! You did that?’”
You wish you could eat more ...? Tomatoes. Love ketchup and tomato sauce. Can’t eat fresh tomatoes, though. No way.
If you could have beers with one guy – dead or alive – who would it be? Jackie Robinson.
Biggest regret? That I didn’t say goodbye to some friends and family before they died. A good lesson there. Don’t wait until it’s too late.
What is your motto? Be yourself. It’s all you can be, each and every day, consistently.