Richard Connor: Searching for truth amid the vagueness of life

That old web is really worldwide, you know.

I was reminded when last week a man from Montana wrote to me to ask why I had not specified the city I referenced in my column.

He wrote: “I thought it strange that you didn’t name the town you were writing about.”

Often, the wonderful readers are not so polite.

- FWBP Digital Partners -

He could have accused me of sloppiness and poor reporting.

I wrote back to say that the exclusion was intentional because I believe what I found to be the involvement, the mood of the townsfolks and government officials as well as the natural beauty of the landscape in Arizona could be literally or maybe just figuratively found in “Anywhere, U.S.A.”

Beauty in the eye of the beholder.

My general description, though, must have been ok because the reader nailed it as Superior, Arizona.

- Advertisement -

Excluding the name of the town was something I thought about for a while and then lapsed into channeling my Hunter S. Thompson or Eckhart Tolle. My description was meant to be spiritual.

Regularly, I hear from a friend in Dallas, Bruce Anderson, who is a marketing and public relations expert – a genius, I’d say. He can write, too.

He also wrote asking what in the world I was trying to do. I lingered long enough in response that he wrote again, saying he might have figured it out.

“So, after re-visiting the column a few more times and reflecting on it, I guess the literal part of my brain was switched on when I read it originally. Now I suspect it’s a much more intelligent literary essay compiling fictional and non-fictional experiences across a common geographical space to efficiently reflect on the space in totality. I’m presuming the light bulb finally turned on in this dimming mind. Nice work! You’ve inspired me to take (my wife) back out there to celebrate my birthday in October.”

- Advertisement -

Told you he was smart – but he gave me much more credit than due and I told him so. I quoted, roughly, Oscar Wilde: “Do not confuse loquaciousness with depth.”

It was all non-fictional, by the way, true as could be.

We can find spirituality and serenity wherever we choose to look, even if we have to sometimes peer vigorously.

So, I found that in the Sonoran Desert.

I discovered something else rejuvenating. I saw folks at a town meeting totally engaged in helping their community. My column has been edited by the same person for over 30 years, more or less. He is straight forward and brooks no nonsense. I was surprised he agreed to publish my trip to the moon.

But he nailed an essential piece of what I found at that meeting.

“Direct Democracy,” he said.

I received more responses to that column than any in years. Each person found something different that attracted, even moved them.

“Cause I need some of that vagueness now,” sang Joan Baez on “Diamonds and Rust.” And last week, so did I.

Maybe my intent worked. Or maybe it didn’t.

Richard Connor is president and publisher of the Fort Worth Business Press. Contact him at