Blog Posts

Creative Flow or Wasteland? Nancy Drew Provides the Clues

By Jean Storlie / January 16, 2024 /

My calendar did not include an emergency meeting with the PR department that entailed challenging negotiations about technically accurate nutrition information versus consumer-friendly language. Although tensions between the nutrition and PR functions predated my tenure … the dynamics were escalating too far. During the meeting, my team (nutrition communications) was criticized for creating dull, uninteresting…

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The Day I Met Margene

By Jean Storlie / October 25, 2022 /

I walked into Margene’s Wagstaff’s office in the spring of 1977 wearing a jean skirt that I’d embroidered with flowers and a gauzy peasant top. My hippy garb was out of place with Margene’s prim and proper attire. She wore a coordinated sweater set and plaid skirt with pearls  and classy loafers. We couldn’t have…

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“But He Hates Me”

By Jean Storlie / September 27, 2022 /

In graduate school, I worked as the nutrition coordinator for an adult fitness and cardiac rehabilitation program associated with a university. As a relatively new position in the organization, it lacked established processes. Bright-eyed, naive, and optimistic, I proposed lots of new ideas to enhance and expand the nutrition services. Phil, the director, who was…

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Opportunity Disguised as Loss … Ten Years Later

By Jean Storlie / August 30, 2022 /

Instead of checking my email before work, I called my mom to wish her happy birthday. When I walked into the office, I could tell something was odd. My boss walked past me without greeting or eye contact. Looking out at the sea of cubicles, I noticed that everyone had their heads down. I felt…

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JFK’s Assassination: Where Were You?

By Jean Storlie / November 22, 2021 /

I Was Laying on the Living Room Couch On a gloomy day, November 22, 1963, in La Crosse, WI, I was home from school sick. My mom had to pick me up from school. Even though kids were not allowed to lounge on the living room furniture, she settled me on the couch and returned…

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Struggling Whether to Finish or Quit?

By Jean Storlie / July 23, 2021 /

Last year, I wanted to resign from a volunteer role about six months before the end of my term. There were many, many rational reasons why it made sense to walk away from a toxic situation. But something inside me wouldn’t let me quit. Every time I’ve faced the dilemma about quitting versus finishing something,…

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Deciding “Who Gets the Gifts?”

By Jean Storlie / April 29, 2021 /

My work group gathered in a cozy room for a team-building retreat. The conference room was tucked away from the hubbub of the main workspaces and high-traffic corridors, adjacent to a comfortable lounge area. We’d worked together for a while and knew each other well. Also, we enjoyed our work and got along. Our plan…

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Watermelon Grudge and Loyalty during COVID

By Jean Storlie / May 20, 2020 /

My mom, Lois, was a 1950s housewife with three pre-school kids living in La Crosse, Wisconsin. Lois, a frugal shopper, spotted an ad in the local paper for 50¢ watermelons. Shazam, she was on a mission! When my dad got home for lunch, she rushed out with their only car to take advantage of this…

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Dad, How Will the Animals Read?

By Jean Storlie / March 10, 2020 /

My morning routine was interrupted when my six-year-old daughter, Eleanor, screamed, “No!” I was in the midst of getting myself ready for work and cajoling our son to do the same. Her outburst drew me to the upstairs landing, where I looked down on a conversation she was having with my husband, Jay. He was preparing…

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Wrong Turn Skiing with Susan

By Jean Storlie / February 11, 2020 /

On a brilliant winter day when my youngest child was about three months old, I made plans to go cross-country skiing with my friend, Susan. After months of being tied down nursing and caring for an infant, this was a major outing and big adventure for me. Susan picked me up, and I bid goodbye…

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