A black and white picture of a reader with five authors around him.

Your 5 Favorite Authors

A fridge magnet changed my life. It said, “Show me your five closest friends and I’ll show you your future.” It’s the kind of saying that means little when you’re a kid, but I wasn’t a kid. I was sitting in the principal’s office with my son who had gotten himself in trouble on the playground. Oh, the joys of parenting.

As Mr. Baxter shared his concerns for my child, I stared at the magnet. I don’t want my son getting himself into trouble, and then it dawned on me that the magnet was there for the parents and not the wayward youth of America. It was my job as a dad to screen my son’s buddies. It was up to me to make sure he spent time with smart, respectful kids rather than the troublemakers. My son lost two amigos that day, and I don’t miss them. C’est la vie.

It made me think about my childhood friends, some of the good and some of them destined for an early death (One actually disappeared right after high school). I wonder how my life would have turned out had I spent more time with the deviant crew. Lucky for me, I was attracted to a beautiful girl in the “good kids” club. Even more lucky for me, she became my wife and we’ve been married for over 20 years. Thank you for believing in me, sweetheart.

That fridge magnet also changed how I read. Honestly, I’m not a social adult. I spend most of my day working and then being a dad. My closest friends are the books in my library. The authors and thinkers I choose to spend my time with will have an impact on my future. It’s an interesting mental exercise, but if you could only choose 5 authors to read from, who would you pick? I’m sure the list would evolve over time for each of us.

Here’s who I would pick:

  1. Friedrich Nietzsche
  2. Aristotle
  3. Fyodor Dostoyevsky
  4. Emily Dickinson
  5. Agatha Christe

Make the list, look it over, and ask yourself – what does my future look like? It looks like my future is a philosophical mystery. đŸ˜‚

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