In the fall, about 80 listeners to Michael Josephson’s radio commentaries submitted essays describing how his daily messages affected their lives. Ten finalists were selected, and a vote of readers of Michael’s newsletter and this blog selected the winners.
Here is the entry of one of the five winners, David Williams.
I confess that I keep a secret list of influential people with whom I would some day love to converse over lunch. Among those at my table would be talk radio host Dennis Prager and deposed Texas Tech football coach Mike Leach. I’ve had to revise my list over the years because UCLA basketball coach John Wooden is no longer with us, and innovator Steve Jobs recently lost his battle with pancreatic cancer. One seat has remained constant, however, since I first heard his unassuming voice deliver a powerful commentary on character while I sat stuck
in traffic: Michael Josephson.
And now, in the irony of all ironies, I am the one appealing to be included on his list!
My work as a high school teacher is greatly enhanced through Michael’s commentaries.
On February 10, 2011, for example, a student in my AP English class was killed in a car accident. It was difficult to explain to devastated classmates why bad things happen to good people, but I used Michael’s words to help them cope with the tragedy: “If we want to move beyond our grief and find continuing meaning in our lives, we shouldn’t ask, ‘Why did this happen?’ but ‘What am I going to do with the life I have now?'”
For fourteen years, I have also personally grown with Michael, learning to summon the moral courage to choose the road less traveled and to build my character “day by day, decision by decision.”