Sunday, October 22, 2017

My 20s, Cherry Limeades, and Chaos

There's this presentation. An element of surprise in waiting. The endless anticipation of a Jack in the Box when the clicks stop. And in my 20s, churning out my greatest hits and my worst follies with this heightened sense of hope, my subconscious projects a grand film in my psyche that I'm a call away from success and happiness. Maybe my life will match up with the trinkets of good fortune I envy.

It's interesting; with my good memory, you would think I could see the grand composite of life 28 years back where I might think to myself, "Hmmmm. Looks like we're going in the right direction! Good work! I'll give myself the proverbial raise by buying more Sonic drinks during the 2-4pm Happy Hour window e v e r y  d a y...."

But at every checkpoint of life, I keep looking back at how their shadow grows  – the densely fuzzy gray spot acting as the past. Popping off ideas about what it all means so far, or what I can even recollect is, in the moment seems like a profound image. Like a slam poet waxing in his prime, I dive into the philosophical, the comedy, the drama, and the insight. I stand from my stage leaning up against the mic stand with spotlight exposing the sweat on my brow, and I'm deeply entrenched in this near-visceral display of profundity.

And then it stops.

I huff and puff in front of the crowd and then the silence lets loose a light applause. They're lost, confused, interested and even slightly amused, but they don't relate like I do. I've gone too far, but I feel fine now.

Then something hits. Like a good ole fashion reset, life carries on.

Got a raise? Awesome. Talking to this beautiful girl? Awesome. The car hop recognizes you during that happy hour? Kinda cool.

It all somehow goes away and the contentiousness delivers you somewhere away from all that. Security, freedom, and Cherry Limeades to last until they don't. I'm blissful, awake, and practically a wide-eyed, goofy-grinned bobble head sauntering through the day-to-day with aplomb. It's as if that shadow never existed. Maybe I do have this thing figured out. Maybe I need to just chill out finally.

But can I?

You see, in my 20s, beyond the looming great shadow, dangles the carrot of ambition. I'm approaching a chapter of "Well, what did you do with all that youthfulness?". At some point the carrot goes away when the doctor says I need to start taking care of myself more and the medical bills arrive with greater frequency.

Am I scared? Not exactly that. I mainly have to shrug my shoulders and recognize the chaos of our world is all-the-time beyond me. My powers to carpe diem in this superficial could be limited merely by the fact I'm not a life-size Ken doll, so I take what I can get; it's not like that's the only thing.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

On Giving Up

Giving up. There's nothing subtle about that feeling. You know the one—the snap of tension that falls away from your mind and soul. From here on out, you wonder about the looming prospect of regret, though you might consider its liberation allowing the spirit to flourish like scattered, floating seeds from a dandelion.

You fixate. Your focus is a laser beam passing through a hall of mirrors. You don't shy away from the goal, and you tell yourself "work hard", which leads to "harder", which leads to "kill me?"

You're stressed out. You can't seem to shake the palpable foresight of diminishing returns. If you're going to break through the wall, at what cost is that? Do you repair the wall, too?

You form excuses. All of sudden, from your mind's corridors, creeping doubts pay a visit with their laundry lists of rationales with appended exit strategies. Pros look like cons and cons look like pros.

What do you do?

You give up. Here comes the tension.

Stuck in meta-purgatory, a mental in-between, you evaluate this instance of giving up as a mark on your character, or an avenue to maturity. At this point, "compromise" or "letting go"  seem like promising terms now that you've become the Swiss army knife of coping mechanisms.

Wait for it...

Maybe you're just human, and that's okay. We could all stand to be a little more human, right? In the interim, you've got plenty of time to pad your Facebook with other happy things about your life. No one has to know, right? Now that you're consulting your higher self's PR team, you should manage to skate by family dinners or first dates unscathed by the question of "so, what happened???"

Almost there...

You say, "I gave it my best. I promise myself to never let this happen again"


The tension is gone. You're now a ballet dancer on a thin sheet of ice. Maybe you reach for the mouse and play Linkin Park's "In the End" on repeat while musing over Friedrich Nietzsche's bleak meanderings. Maybe your wings unfold to shake off the dust of better days. Maybe you write an abstract blog post about what it's like to give up, but who the hell is weird enough to do that?.

It's a curious thing when giving up. All this time you evaluate yourself with a proverbial mirror and compare it to the image of a non-existent highlight reel of success. It never occurs to us in the moments of extreme focus to abandon the mirror. Because it's also at this time you forgo the microscope used to examine what really makes up who you are.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015: Tear Down, Examine the Pieces, Rebuild

There's been a lingering question that I think disturbs us all. I think it's somewhere in the lower-left compartment of our subconscious. Maybe it's not a question at all. Maybe it's the answer we avoid. But to depict the idea as clearly as I can, it would be "What is the meaning of 'meaning'?

Somewhere along the way I think we can get caught in the pre-programmed nature of who we are in our culture -- to truly chase what America offers as security but with transient benefits. We busy or worry ourselves with the "the next thing", or we tithe our interest to a hope of success we associate with "progress". And with all these ideas of progress, the cons seem smaller, or in our optimism non-existent. But who can blame anyone for that? Life goes on, you deal with the cards your dealt and you play the game because stagnation leaves you in a worse place. It's opportune time to cut losses. So, you push, and you push, and think about yourself constantly and when it never seems enough -- when it eats you alive at night or in the morning -- you ask yourself the question, "What does it mean to mean anything at all?"

I stopped asking.

You see, after the year 2014, I had gone through a mess of misfortunes (save for a supportive family). I give the year 2014 the title of Waves of Rejection. I didn't fit people's idea of a meaningful existence several times, and I would feel ever so humbled to even approach that point with so many. However close I got, the trap door collapsed from underneath me.

It wasn't totally over. There, lying in wait, 2015 was a punchline of a joke I'd never see coming; I had a stroke of luck (that's the setup).

A fantastic girlfriend, a new job, pleasurable new friends, some sense of direction, and a way out of my own poverty. I was grateful. It looked like I was back on my way to finding greater meaning or purpose. How could I not be after 2014 humbled my soul to the consistency of an acrid sponge? On the day I got my new job, a couple days after just filing into the unemployment office, I got the call every heterosexual male dreads.

It was over. She broke up with me. I don't know why, but it was meaningful to her. A couple days before this was one of the happiest days I've ever experienced, and then I was shown the door. Someone has got to stop installing these trap doors everywhere.

In all its glory, a new phenomenon appeared:

Sudden heartbreak.

Gut-wrenching, vulnerable, and quixotic as any psychopath's primary method of torture, it was here, and it was here to stay.

It was an unwelcome house guest, somewhere near that lower-left compartment of my subconscious, throwing rocks at the part of my brain that tries to figure things out. But I can't.

Heartbreak, I imagine, is like the boss of a gas station who wants you to scan through all the tapes that video surveillance captured within the last two months to gather any evidence or clues of who stole ALL THE DAMN CHEETOHS. At times, when scanning through the videos, a highlight reel emerges of the greatest moments you could share with that person, and when you've gathered enough footage of possible evidence, you still can't quite conjure a strong case. I can't decide if the good memories or the bad ones are worse to think about.

You blame that person. You blame yourself. You blame the world. You blame God. You are running out of fingers to point with. So, you play it over and over again. You share it with other people, and they have different interpretations. Nothing is conclusive. The married couples are glad they're not in that game anymore. It all means something different. People project their own interpretations and it gets you nowhere. Everything leaves you more and more incredulous in your scrutiny. At some point you ask yourself if this even productive enough to keep trying to figure out this puzzle. There has to be a threshold of pain where mental anguish can only do so much.

Heartbreak still writes me scathing emails about my past performance, sends postcards acting like we have a friendly, professional relationship, or likes my Facebook statuses despite the fact we're not talking. Heartbreak, quite frankly, is a dick in upper-management.

I started talking to someone else who was special to me. Someone I thought could finally mean something more; it just couldn't romantically pan out.

And in the slow fade away girls seems to do, I found myself opening that lower-left compartment again to discover something about that question. I found that despite the long quest I've trekked to learn how to love myself, I had forgotten that I change. My relationship with myself was simply going through the motions of what success means.I was losing reality. So, like any relationship, I began to resent what I had been doing, who I was, or who I had become. You start the blame game over and over again, and nobody wins. I wasn't aware that I could grow a pocket of hate despite how confident and steadfast I try to be despite life's surrounding struggles. But there it is, hiding away like a marijuana plantation in someone's closet. I use that analogy because it should be illegal.

Whatever -- I moved on. I can't sweat following people's delusions of meaning all day, everyday.

Several insightful conversations, a reevaluation of myself in contrast to the universe, and a time to be so small -- I had to admit to myself a few things, examine the pieces, of what 2014 and this heartbreak all "meant".

But is that really necessary? No one's telling me it isn't. Some say to grieve. Some say there are plenty of fishes. Some say an opportunity is just around the bend if you work hard enough. I chose a different approach: rebuild the relationship I have with body, mind, and soul. I have the opportunity to better myself ($$$).

What perturbs me most is that people date like it's all a game in the presence of meaning, yet when we've found "the one" we act as if it was fate all along. It's how seduction becomes a four-letter word. People don't seem to date in the utter pursuit of meaningful relationship with purely seduction in mind, but welcome to dating! I have a hard time believing in destiny, and an even harder time thinking destiny and positive meaningfulness go hand-in-hand. I find destiny to be possible within the power of God, but I don't give everything over to that cosmic lottery.

So, here I am, focusing more intensely on my personal well-being, and following the dreams I've always had. I can't say it will all be meaningful, but I can hope it lends myself to profound moments where I can really love again in all that love requires of me.

I'm working out more regularly, wrapping up the production of my musical EP, eating better, being involved in other creative projects, visited NYC as bucketlist place to visit, and feeling a bit more confident again. I suppose part of loving myself is learn how to accept my weaknesses and find where they are best suited as strengths.This year was the impetus to rebuild what it means to mean anything at all. The saga continues. It takes time.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

The Problems with Corporate Worship Music

We must consider that music is only one form of expression in praise and worship. Otherwise, worship should still be happening without music, prayer or not. However, music is tantamount to the problem of people's ideals that dictate what Church culture should feel like to them within any given community.

It Does Not Resonate With the Listener

I came across this post on Reddit:

""The problem with some Christian communities is they cloister themselves off from the world instead of being lights within it. They define Christian music as that which expresses how we 'should' feel as opposed to how we 'actually' feel. It's as if other Christians are not allowed to struggle or doubt or curse or fail. Or if they do, they must do so privately. What a travesty, and what a perversion of Christ's ministry and message. Suffering is part of the human experience, and God willfully made it part of his own experience in Christ."  

I've always felt that way. Worship music in our churches can, at times, be a very utilitarian effort in appealing to the masses. We praise with  accepted Christian truths alongside the lack of time for worship music to have adequate preparation of original work that would be more dear to the soul of the writer. However, even in that case, it may still not resonate, thus creating the same problem of "Should I identify with this?" that you would find in typical corporate worship, big or small. Can you imagine being in the cultural melting pot as a foreign immigrant and the cultural leanings of the music seem a bit out-of-touch to what you were raised with?

Don't get me wrong -- I find corporate worship on a grand scale to be effective even if hindered by its perceptibly disingenuous nature -- stand, sing the song, get your worship points in. Let's consider this a result of the church's physical design that has been regarded as thee traditional space of congregational worship for hundreds of years.

There are some songs that don't completely resonate with me as much as others will, and that's fine; some worship pastors will pick songs that match the message of the sermon, or the sermon series - they do what they can. Some songs are so meaningful to others; I have a enough of a heart to say I wouldn't want to take that feeling away from them.

We are still missing out on probably entire pews of church attendants who have all the opportunity to worship with their full heart, and yet was stunted it to its basic, uninspired level.

Commercialized Christian Music Contracepts Artistic Diversity

This is probably my most unpopular opinion, but Christian radio and CDs are controlled a bit too much by generous investors with highly conventional and/or conservative tastes.

There has been an upsurge of Christian music as an art over the last decade, but it's still in a fledgling phase of proving  profitability to such a niche market to more intuitive Christians. At this time, I see it appealing to the angst of teenagers and less to a musically-attuned generation of people.

To me, commercialized music means it must appeal to the masses, and less to God in light of bending to the will of capitalist business models.  Also consider that the current stylistic choices of western music aren't very diverse in Christian music - they're incredibly genre-specific, and at times are overly dogmatic. This all makes Christian music seem very profit-based (not entirely a bad thing, either!), doesn't it? And if we were to somehow rationalize that stylized, profit-based Christian music is a good thing, then it certainly isn't gaining attention from the secular music industry as it stands, which is a whole other set of problems entirely.

I know for a fact I don't stand alone when I say that Christian music, on the whole, isn't very enjoyable to listen to, but there are, of course, exceptions to everyone's ears. All I'm saying here is that diversity in Christian music is not valued, and music in all forms is an intellectual representation of a community or individual that creates it for resonating with the hearts and minds of the audience. We need more diversity to resonate with the heart of listeners. We need to take creative risks that incorporate a real voice into the Christian music instead of a canned one.

Christian Worship as a Social Function
Having written all this, I think the bigger problem is a lack of interest in corporate worship within smaller groups. Smaller groups meaning the individual religious functions not associated with Church, the building. We can worship in the guise of a congregation, but when confronted with smaller settings, all of a sudden, things become awkward. Couple that with a lack of intuition to write or improvise music for worship or prayer, and what you get is a repetition of familiar songs played throughout churches everywhere that generates a monotony. Yet, within these smaller worship groups there would be more leeway to advocate nontraditional styles, but we don't take advantage of it.

Worship is simply undervalued, and at times it struggles to truly glorify God's awesome power, grace, and love. Even though we intrinsically know we could never worship in a way that matches His omnipotence, we don't care to match up our callings with our cultural ideals of worship. We simply fit it into our lives when it is socially acceptable and, even then, a number of people in that setting are afraid to open up in worship. We've made worship music too much of a social function and not enough of an intimate function of expression. We don't teach enough about what it means to really worship the Almighty and its significance in our relationship with Christ.

I hope to write a follow-up piece about the solutions to some of the problems mentioned as best as I can offer them however uninformed they may be.

I'm always interested in hearing others thoughts and discussing how badly I've written things today. Drop me a comment or PM on facebook for a bit of intellectual tango. Buh-bye now!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Favorite Listens of 2014 (No Order):

-- Tycho - Awake 
-- Swans - To Be Kind 
-- ODESZA - In Return
-- St. Vincent - St. Vincent 
-- Death From Above 1979 - The Physical World 
-- Aphex Twin - Syro
-- Salt Cathedral - Oom Velt
-- Flying Lotus - You're Dead!
-- Badbadnotgood - III
-- A Sunny Day in Glasgow - Sea When Absent 
-- Tune-Yards - nikki nack
-- My Brightest Diamond - This Is My Hand
-- Adult Jazz - Gist Is
-- Mac DeMarco - Salad Days 
-- Protomartyr - Under Color of Official Right
-- Shabazz Palaces - Lese Majesty
-- Grouper - Ruins 
-- A Winged Victory for the Sullen - Atomos
-- Bibio - The Green EP
-- Bonobo - The Flashlight EP

Seriously - just listen to Flying Lotus's You're Dead! and you will be happy that 2014 was even a thing.

Sunday, September 14, 2014

20 Things I Have Come to Realize

1. No matter how ideal or realistic anyone is, human ideologies are constantly a war waging,  or maybe a negotiation of peace between them - this is where love might be a dance.

2. Comparison to others is a slippery slope where the self-fulfilling prophecy waits at the bottom.

3. The older you become, the more you are aware of just how big the monster of life can get.

4. Non-confrontational people make poor diplomats.

5. Uninformed semantic knowledge leads to some heinous leaps of logic.

6. Everything is in process. Not a thing is static. Every single thing is comprised of molecules, of atoms, of particles, of electrons, shifting in a vast interstellar landscape produced by stardust and physical laws.  Every physical thing is a product of something else, destined to be recycled by means outside of our full comprehension. Not even a blackhole fully destroys everything.

7. Each individual Christian seems to exhibit doubt of an aspect of God's sovereignty. It comes out in their actions at times.

8. People make a great effort to see what they want to see. People double-dip into their delusions long enough to feel comfortable with them because they are commonplace or most convenient, but not because they are loosely correct. Be concerned with the common trend of affirmation in back-patting communities. The list of cognitive biases should also be recognized.

9. Like it or not, your contributions have a monetary worth. Your life is estimated in credit and risk. You have an impact on the economy even after suicide.

10. The best way to corrupt a person is to isolate someone and never have them confer with others until fully indoctrinated. It has been researched that cults use this tactic to bring others in.

11. Correlation does not imply causation.

12. Time is well-spent being upfront about what you want, so figure it out.

13. You have a limit to how kind you can be. No person is a doormat.

14. People make harmful estimations with the value of height and weight in other people and they will subconsciously treat you differently because of them. Be mindful of how people take advantage of you.

15. Dictionaries are descriptive, not prescriptive. Note that every word has its own weight and history in any given culture.

16. Our personality types greatly affect the impact of honest communication.

17. People chase safety or experience, or both - usually both.

18. Perfection is the right degree of imperfection in our human landscape.

19. The ideal Siracha-to-easy mac ratio is determined in the darkness of the orange color produced.

20. Picking your battles is important. Choose wisely.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

The Speech

I don't know why, but I've been pondering the question:

What if for some weird reason everyone that I've ever known was in a room and I had the chance to give a speech to all of them? 

What would I say? Would it be a long speech? Would it be short and to the point? Will it include several $10 Words like "transmogrification", "grandiloquent", "acerbic" and so on (those are just some of my favorite words along with "waffle")?

I mean, what an interesting position to be in. I can just imagine sitting up on some sort of makeshift podium, or at least I call it a podium - it's really a table I'm standing on where I've had just enough to drink to calm my nerves, but I've had just enough to drink to call it a podium (weird how that works out). However, right now sober me is thinking that there's a very strong, apparent theme I would harp on in my sincerest of ramblings to a crowd of unsuspecting individuals who are all collectively trying to figure out how they got teleported into one room in the first place. That theme would be a translation of the past into a coherent understanding of how all the tiny near ignore-able actions between me and everyone else added up to a whole me - present day Antonio.

You see, there are so many people in my life who have cared less than the other guy, or for a more positive spin cared more than the other guy or gal (Not that "gal" matters, I just didn't want to type it twice but I did anyways. Oops!). They have come and gone and have imparted me to me their presence or investment in one way or another, and I wonder to what extent such a speech even matters. Start the scenario: I stare among a vast crowd of maybe thousands of people I've gotten to know in my life.

It's only human to look at some of the individuals and see what their reaction to me getting on a table is in the first place right after I've yelled, "I'd like to tell you all something!". Some faces look sincerely interested in what I have to say (they're anticipating something great) and on the other end you have others sipping from the complementary wine I've provided but are looking for the next available exit (there is none in case you're wondering if I'm an evil genius(I am)). There are polarized reactions and some mixed in there of general blank stares.

 Tensions are high. This is important because at this very moment my empathetic subconscious kicks my brain in the nads yelling, "You owe these people something they can take home with them. They came here all this way!" Ok, Subconscious, you win.

 Again, let me remind you, the theme is about about interpreting the investment of everyone's actions with each other to affect my outcome. I get up to speak, but I think my voice is coming out of the nervous sweat of my brow. Do I start with "LEND ME YOUR EARS, BROTHERS AND SISTERS!"?

Nah, too epic -- keep it casual.

Yea, I know that was much worse. Let me try again...

"I know all of your are wondering why you are here in this very large room. I am also wondering that myself. I promise, once I've said my speech, you will be back from where you ca-"

A heckler interrupts! He demands to know what the hell is going on -- of course he didn't listen to anything I said; he must have hogged all the complementary wine (Bryan has always been kind of a jerk).

I then press on, "It is of great importance to me that you are here and I plan to make it worth your while. You see, I've lived almost 25 years now. That is long enough for America to not only validate me as car renter, but also long enough to to fully reflect on the impact you have had on my life. So I'd like to start with-" 

And then I suddenly stop.

I can't possibly give credit to each of these people for my success or greatest revelations. Do I not also acknowledge their shortcomings? Where have they failed me? Hasn't my life also been a victim of circumstances they have set up themselves for their own agendas?

It's as if suddenly everyone has turned into a disciple of Ayn Rand where everyone has been a co-conspirator in the great petting of egos for the last 25 years. I freeze and start wondering how much easier it would be to start convulsing on the ground and concurrently die from the anxiety, but nothing is that simple. But my brain kicks in. I get the idea that it is the concoction of everyone's shortcomings and successes that generated me -- a learned individual withstanding the apparent test of time.

Do I opt' for the cheesy cop-out of, "I love you." and walk away? NO! I have an important speech to make, right? I have to believe I am the sincerest fighter where I use words like throwing stars. I must identify truth and preach it from my "podium".

"I'm sorry, where was I? Oh, yes..."

"You see after a lot of thought about how everyone has played an influence in my life, I have one revelation about how any of it has mattered. You have at some point or another looked at me with a value judgement in mind. You all have seen me for my heart, my brains, my strength, my work ethic, or my first impression, weighing them against the scale of your indifference."

"At some point I have to wonder who here matters most! But to everyone's credit,  better time is spent to value you all as a whole. There is no objectively accurate scale I could use to measure what actions I perceived as positive or negative. I could not create a list or chart for selecting the Who's Who of Most Positive Impacts on Antonio's Life. I will say, what I will always remember, is those in my life who have believed in all the aspects I mentioned earlier - heart, brain, strength, and work ethic. My memory is glued to the image of perseverance because of those who have stood by me in the best and worst of times."

"You all stand as mental suspensions harnessing me just above the floor of 'rock bottom', and really it's because of a world of people who are all preoccupied with themselves that your investment means the most. I can not quantifiably or qualitatively value people beyond what God mysteriously has, but I can say that it is significant."

"The significance of people with their encouragement and support creates an individual who also believes in those two ideas-- encouragement and support. If we can all learn from our mistakes and successes at once, we should learn that we can all begin to believe in ourselves with others in mind, never treating people as the afterthoughts we create because spare time and opportunity have decided to collide. If we can actively seek out opportunities to love, serve, and support we can create a world less devoted to the idea of wealth in a capitalistic and material economic system. Maybe a world is a better place when we place value in the mental well-being and physical well-being of others, or maybe it is better with the competition of corporations creating for us technologies to make our lives "easier", or maybe we can venture to say both.

"I am no gifted philosopher, or one gifted with prognostic foresight, but wherever we land, what's important to take away is this: that above all tests of time, in whatever circumstance of history, empathetic recognition of our fellow human will reign supreme. So, it's clear to me we've all lived together. We are like college roommates who have come and gone, living through the best and worst of each other's lives."

And then everyone starts to fade slowly, or evaporate, or whatever neat way people can dramatically exit a hypothetical. No smiles, no sense that anyone received my message incredibly well. I may never know what any thought about my speech. It's all I could really think to say at one time unprepared. Will my good intentions matter? Do they ever? I don't know, but it's not important that they do.

Friday, May 24, 2013

I Have Reached That Kind of Single

Within an hour's time, you could find yourself in an amazing succession of moments. Right now I sit with this anxiety. Possibilities populate the night, yet here I am pressing keys contemplating my future, imaging how everyone else's future's are mingling keeping my internal dialogue guessing with gossip.

No way did the conversation I had hours ago really mean anything. None of us learned anything. We simply spouted opinions we've heard over and over during bro-talk 'round the bar after work. It's the same ole, same ole "Dude, you can't be friends first!", "Man, you just need to be intentional!", "You know she's like 2 inches taller than you, right?". I'm not sure if it's really all that old of advice, or it just feels that way because I'm typing about it. Consider me a historian at this point, or some sort of videographer transcribed to words (maybe I would be great at writing in braille?).

But today is no usual day. Nope, I'm writing again with a perspective that feels rich in clarity. And when that happens, well, that means I'm either scared the most with what I know, or still confident enough to yell from a hill, with an audience of two - one person who's deaf, and the other, my biggest fan (No, not my mom, mind you.).

Three paragraphs deep, and you're wondering what I'm on about. Let me say it to you to with a title: I Have Reached That Kind of Single. Oooo, that's juicy, ain't it? Now wait; before you back out of this because you feel a sob story coming on, stick around, there's a story in here and I'm going somewhere with this.

So in a succession of moments, within an hour's time, I found myself in such a sitcom state of singleness I've never felt before. I was attending a wedding with family. I was feeling so fly in my new suit and tie, that I think Justin Timberlake could have introduced himself to me in the most jovial falsetto tone Alan Greene would swoon for, and all because JT just happened to notice how fresh I was that night.

I got sidetracked. Sorry, but I was looking great. This is my blog after all. Let's start a new paragraph below just for laying out what exactly happened.

I got a text message. "How do you feel about going on a blind date?", she asks. I inquire to see this girl's resume as a joke, but I'm not really fond of the idea. "WHAT IF, WHAT IF, WHAT IF, WHAT IF,..." was essentially my train of thought on the tracks of nervous apprehensiveness. Next, while sitting with my favorite human being, my mom, she has taken notice how good I've gotten at dancing from all that two-stepping where I was spinnin' and winnin' at Billy Bob's.

Now, my mom doesn't really say things that embarrass me or piss me off. She's always very thoughtful and is very clear with me how she feels about things, but this comment somehow slipped from the nether-regions of Momdom like no other. "I just don't get it. You can do all these impressive things now. I've gotta get you on". I didn't say it. I DIDN'T. I would never, ever, EVER say it to her, but my gut feeling was "EFF YOU!!". I immediately walked away in such a spinning, internal dizzy spell of disgust as I had been referred to the possible reject-pool of online dating where people are apparently crazy, and not tall or skinny enough. So, not the most appealing avenue, either. Thanks! Anyways, I love my mom; she is my favorite human being. Don't you forget it.

Writer's note: I received a bit of backlash for the above paragraph. Let me make it clear that I was frustrated with the fact that I was referred to a place of online dating. Online dating has historically been treated as a meat market instead of a place to meet some genuinely great people that are looking to forge healthy relationships. Being a male just a quarter of an inch shorter than 5'5'', I get weeded out myself by the vast number of women looking more for a 5'10" and up male. In saying that, let's be clear that choosing to date people based off text and pictures is inherently a superficial practice to start with, so you can imagine why I don't agree with it. Also, did I mention I love my mom? Let's move on.

You see, while attending the wedding I have a bunch of mixed family members and people who related to me purely by some strange expansion of the family tree due to divorce and whatever else. I found myself eyeing this gorgeous girl all night, who is not blood-related to me at all in any way, but she's like my step-step-step-cousin or something stupid. Lame. Why, why, why, why is this person related to me purely by association? No moves to be made, she lives several states away - I can deal. And then, as if that wasn't enough, after these jabs of a pitchfork to my confidence, some egregious form of karma went in for a sizzling dive for my ego. I know this wasn't Mr. Humility giving me a lesson of sorts, because this was just a total jerk move.

She caught the bouquet, I got the elastic garter (second time, now) - WAY COOL. Way to throw me some cosmic future of unrequited feeling, Universe, Karma, Devil, or whoever you are. There's a pictures of us together somewhere with my stupid smirk and her excellent pearly gates glowing form her mouth; however so, it must be awful because you know I'm the one in it thinking, "It just had to be me!". She makes a joke that it means we must get married or something, and like an I D I O T, I ask if it's even legal for us to get married.  I mean, I guess it was an okay question, but just the sheer amount of fumbling for words to actually have a legitimate conversation with the impossible was already self-humiliating, and possibly even pathetic.

Reads: "Remove Before the Night"

Within an hour's time, I had essentially consolidated the plot-lines of at least 3 episodes of Friends and lived to write the story. I suppose that makes me a rerun. I suppose there's essentially this new thing unraveling in my life. I suppose I could call it The Wrath of the 20-Something Dating Scene, where after college all the sweethearts have dried up with their spouses just in time for college graduation so they can dissipate into heavy cuddling and loan-debt-induced romantic living.

A succession of moments was had, but no real success on my end. I sit here still, a beaming individual, just wondering what the possibilities out my door are, and then I get scared again that my confidence doesn't need alcohol if it's already acting drunk and afraid. However, I don't need really reason to quit, or try my hand at pursuing some girl because her spirit gives my heart some stupid grin. These situations seem to present themselves and I suppose if trying is really worth anything, it's to fail and fail again until you find someone who thinks your failure is just a cute flaw that person is willing to accept. That's got to be love. That's got to be an inkling of it, I guess. The prettier they are, the softer they fail. Wait. Did that make sense? I don't know. It's about 12AM, and I'm running purely off the aftertaste of bad farmhouse beer. I'm so very hungry, but I'm still kickin'. Life is beautiful.

P.S. No, I don't think I'm going on that blind ate.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Jurassic Park: The Musical

Really awesome to see my ideas get produced. I can't thank the people enough for getting this accomplished. There are more to come and to be posted throughout the week.

Jurassic Park: The Musical will be performing April 9th @ Hailey's in Denton, TX!

Monday, August 2, 2010

A Recent List of Oddities #7

It's been a little while. But I'm back with one of these.

1. People are more inclined to sneeze their mucous into their own hand than to touch other things that are less dirty.

2. If you get your fingers stuck in a bowling ball, a wonderful option to help get your fingers unstuck is salad dressing. No joke.

3. It is safer to stay in the car of an elevator than to escape from its top when it is falling.

4. It's more dangerous to drink and walk than it is to drink and drive.

5. Psychologists have found that it's the the least capable people who tend to be the most overconfident and speak out in a crowd. Explains some of the group leaders I've worked with.

6. Babies don't produce tears until 3 months.

7. The sharpest knives in the world are not made of stainless steel but of a ceramic that is second in hardness next to diamond. The material to make the blade can only be found in Australia. Metal has been installed in the knife to prevent terrorists from sneaking them through metal detectors.

8. Kellogg invented and served cereal at a mental institution because it doesn't have any properties that stimulates brain activity.

9. The funny thing about democracy is that people vote mostly for what is relevant to them, and not so much what is relevant to the entire country.

10. Alexander Graham Bell first tried to make popular the greeting of "Ahoy" when you answered the phone. Unfortunately, "Hello" snubbed it out.

11. I never had won a game a poker until I walked into my very first tournament. I won the entire tournament not knowing how to play tournament style and never having won a whole poker game. I'm not bragging. It was really weird.

12. George W. Bush and Bill Clinton were cheerleaders. In fact a bunch of famous people were! SAMUEL L. JACKSON even!*

14. The youngest mother to ever be recorded? 5 years old. Her sexual reproductive organs developed crazy-pre-maturely by the age of 3. She did not have a child later until she was 33.

15. Charles Darwin actually graduated from Cambridge University in the Clergy to be a minister.

*A full list of famous cheerleaders can be found here:

Is the real world as real as they say it is? Or is it as strange as it seems? TM