By Michael Laskow

Forty-two hundred people sat defending themselves from a morning mist that threatened to become much worse. I sat with a “mist” in my eyes as I impatiently waited for my daughter’s name to be called so she could begin her ascent to the stage and get her diploma. She was graduating college.

She seemed a little sad to be leaving her friends and her beloved university behind. I’ve never known a “kid” who got so much from her four years at college. She relished every aspect of it.

As the clouds gave way to some blue sky, her name was called. She climbed the steps without tripping. We were both relieved. She seemed concerned about making it across the stage gracefully. I was concerned about the list of fatherly advice that was exploding in my head.

This list could go on and on, but I’m not trying to write a book. I promise you though, I do have a point to make.

When my daughter walked down the steps to return to her seat, I noticed that I was smiling so hard, it actually hurt. I realized that I was smiling for two reasons. One of them was the joy a parent feels when they see their child accomplish something grand. The other reason was that I immediately started writing this column in my head. I had already picked out the “Life Tips” that could help our members.

Leave it to me to inject TAXI in to every aspect of my life.

When you write your music, you’re obviously working at something you’re passionate about.

As a musician or songwriter, you need to be honest. Your music has to be honest or the public will know it’s not before the first verse ends. You also have to be honest with yourself. It takes guts to admit that you’ve written a stinker and it’s time to move on to the next tune.

And as the graduation ceremony drew to a close, I remembered the time when I told my parents that I was so close to my daughter that it felt as though her heart beat in my chest. As close as we are, I know that she rarely follows my advice, but I still love her just as much.

And I’m happy to report that my daughter Rachel has accomplished a great deal in her twenty-one years. Youth isn’t always wasted on the young.