Wednesday, August 20, 2014

TELL ME ABOUT HOW YOU LOVE. I APPRECIATE THE RULES FOR HOW YOU LIVE… TELL ME ABOUT HOW YOU LOVE DEEPLY



TACTICAL

I haven’t made much mention of it but I am just as focused on my trip to Indiana as I was my trip to Carolina.  The same anxieties and concerns, but the stress is a slightly less fraught-filled.  The planning and logistics  are not as urgent, but that is why I need to be more exact in my preparations.  The mistakes are ALWAYS made at the easy places, and I don’t want to disappoint anyone else or myself.  So I will be tightening up for my flight to South Bend!!

For those who share my Facebook feed, I have joined a training website called Fitocracy.com, and I have been posting my workout routines on there.  I have linked it up with my other feeds, Twitter, Tumblr, and on Pinterest.  Not like I want to start a big following or anything, but I figure it is just sharing more of myself with those who are interested in me.  As I study for my certification has intensified, I figure it would be appropriate for me to talk about the process.  For instance, we are going to begin doing yoga/stretching more intently as well, seeing how both are critical to overall wellness.  Also, I have begun to think that nutritionist is going to be on my agenda in the future for me as well.  I already imagine that I am going to be in school for a LONG time, which isn’t a problem for me at all.

One of the characters I admired was “Howie” from the Lee Major’s vehicle, “The Fall Guy” television show.  No matter what the situation, he always had taken a class at some institution of higher learning which proffered an educated insight on a specific function of the case… and I can EASILY see myself going from UN-O, to maybe STATE, or even one or both of the “U-Dub’s” in my mind.  That would be a cool way for me to spend my 50’s, and I can stop worrying about my ever shortening bucket list and begin anew with goals to strive for.

My building has gotten Wi-fi that hasn’t worked well… I have thought about getting a wi-fi extender to boost the signal but I am not too sure… I went back to Cox and got my own account turned back on.  Currently, my major issues are making sure I send in the relevant information for my Medicaid and paying $50 to have a double-A battery installed in my smoke detector..!


TRULY, MADLY, AND DEEPLY        

I have returned to a question that was asked of me in one of my comments… “How do you love?”  And while I have struggled with the explanation, there are only three words that consistently come to mind when I ask myself, “How do you love, Mark?”, and that is truly, madly, and deeply.  Even if all of my journal has been a figment of my imagination and these are indeed the rantings of someone who needs both therapy and a life, the intent and passion that I want in a coupling should be clear.  The Adrienne Rich poem, a piece I read in my elementary school years, talks about the excitement of love and going on a journey where there are no directions and no markings to guide us along our way.  I want to be out on a safari, and adventure into the wilderness where maps can’t take you because they are so out-of-date.

See, I like it when emotions spill out like quicksilver, shimmering as it coalesces again in a glistening ball, ready for its next seemingly reckless dash across the paper.  But when things act on and in their true nature, what is observed is usually an illusion…

My pursuit of a person is usually because something on the fringes of my perception (as well as a nice set of hips and big breasts..!) drew me to them… usually, I recall the first time that I met someone I have dated, not because it was memorable for anything, but because of what I saw immediately when we met.  And I know that is not special in and of itself, but it also isn’t something that I take for granted… and I think that may be special.  Anywho, once I meet “someone who might be that someone”, the narrative arc scribbles itself across the paper and the story begins.  Isn’t that just mad?
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I have thought that I have loved someone truly… twice now.  First, the Delta Girl when I was at A&T, then years later when I ran into Tee Jay after I begin to implement my personal philosophy to life rather than let my belief be the fodder for rainy day conversations and Sunday evening reflections.  What I drew from both of those relationships is the concept of “the buy in”.  See, as two become one, there are some things that each will have to either put away or change in such a fashion that they can maintain a desire or belief without compromising it along with remaining faithful to the love that they claim to have expressed and want to share with another.

One of the things that has consistently happened when I have met a candidate for a partnership is the undeniable attraction that I feel for them and the subsequent lift in confidence that I should bring to their lives. It is not unusual for me to hear in a coupling that my partner feels attractive in a way no one had ever made them feel before.  I like to think that the whole “only has eyes for…” thing is what is happens when I meet someone special, and when it happens it is legitimate.

To be honest, I don’t know how many objectively attractive or beautiful women I have been with, though I am certain that I have been with a few of those.  But more importantly, these women that I am with, they are beautiful to me, and I desire them in such a way that casts the impression that I have never loved anyone the way that I love them ever before.  And in all sincerity, it is the truth-- at least it is OUR truth-- that they have become transcendent to me and all that I want, have ever wanted, and ever will want from another person can all be found in them.  And when you are wondering how deep, it’s deep, deeper than Atlantis.
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I was still fighting amateur boxing matches when I met my ex-wife.  I wasn’t sure if I wanted to go  pro, still feeling that I lacked the connection with a decent trainer to teach me to be a fighter.  So when I met her, I was still lacking a little confidence in my ability, to be the next Thomas Hearns.  But really, that was never my goal.  The dreams of professional sports stardom is littered with broken souls, and I never wanted to add mine to them.  But what I did see in boxing is the life of adventure and not only that, the means to my next step in my life.  Though I was never an “at-risk” child, I always had thought that boxing kept me from wandering the streets lost and in search of an identity, so it had already more than delivered for me.  With the modest goals that I had in mind for my professional career, I only needed to have been with a supportive woman to have achieved my goals.  Clearly, I did not meet that woman in my ex-wife.

Superficially, I know I give off the aura of “twee” and that whimsy is the garland around my neck.  I know that I sound lost to the pipe dreams of romanticism, and that my “goal-deficient” outlook does not sit well with the “more mature, realistic outlook” of women.  Whether they have children, looking out for family members, working and going to school, the LITANY of responsibilities that makes them “more responsible”, I think that those like my ex-wife, are doing the “good women” of the world a disservice when they appropriate that particular mantle.

When I look back and think about what I lost in that relationship… the term “deeply” comes to mind.  Not that I am shallow and superficial, because I am not nor have I ever been.  But that when it came to deeply loving, I had a “deep” but it was not “as deep as necessary”.  Apparently, that was a lesson that I had been hard for me to learn, because it happened twice.  And it had to be re-taught because of what happened the very first time I was tested.

My ex-wife did not like me boxing.  Rather than delve into all the insecurities and irrational thinking and behavior that took place, what I want to stress here is that for the good of our marriage, I stopped.  Cold turkey, not unlike what I have done since I retired for good, not even trips to the gyms about town to reminisce.  Nothing ran as deep in me as boxing did, and because I was sworn to an oath, unable to convince her to allow for my dream, I put it off, deferring it, actually, to another place and time in my life’s continuum.  This was the test of how “true” my love was for her.  Because if I truly loved her, why couldn’t I make this sacrifice for the greater good of our marriage?
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Now the past is prologue only if you did not learn the first time… and if it was wrong when you first went at it.  There are some things that needed to be changed and others, well, refined would be a better description for what became of them.  Yes, there were those ideas that needed to be jettisoned, others that needed to be improved upon.  The bottom line is that I have continued to grow and improve, and that I am a better person for it.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

THE CODEFIED LIFE XII

TACTICAL


Many of the things you can count, don't count. Many of the things you can't count really count.”

In researching the above quote, it has been attributed most frequently to Albert Einstein and I am going to roll with that.  I felt that by measuring and identifying the qualities of personal interaction and relationships, I could avoid many of the pitfalls of contradiction that others seem to fear admitting to.

The pursuit of more for the sake of more has never really intrigued me.  In the “ESPN Sportscenter Highlight” of my life, I felt that it was my lack of desire, that burning engine, that has kept me from achieving more in my life.  But even as I pursued my life, I knew that having the most or the best of anything never had any appeal to me. The people for who found meaning in having all that was available to everyone as though they were divinely entitled to everything, they never seemed happy.  I think about Michael Jordan, whose persona in his retirement has changed as he has demonstrated a churlishness that was always present but hidden by the vast public relations apparatus that built “Air Jordan” up and packaged him to the public.

One  of  the  incongruities  of  the Einstein quote is that most of the things that can be  enumerated actually DO count, often their value comes at the expense of the things that can’t be counted.  My ex-wife, who was concerned with the materiel and logistics of our lives, did not fully comprehend, IMO, how the value of the things that you can’t count or place a value judgment on, does mean more than the “things” that she believe had value.  Her perception of my boxing career, for example, did not account for the low-level grinding at the very beginning, the hours on the road  to nowhere and $400 fight purses that did not cover the trip and money lost from missing work.  I could break down example of specific episodes but it always was summed up by her lack of faith in me.  What baffled me was … well, it is one of the more baffling things that I have had with women since I have discontinued the coordination of my intersexual affairs via the “run and shoot” philosophy.

Anywho… maybe the things that count don’t matter… but you should count try to count things anyway, because analysis reveals the patterns as to “why” things are happening.  You count punches in a boxing match and collate them into various categories and from those numbers it is possible to discern the patterns that leads to victory.  It would be observations like this as I repeated behaviors throughout my life that led me to what I have called my “Rules To Live By” and to live a “Quantified Life”.  I decided that I should put numbers to work for me and make very crude predictive models that works on my local, indefensibly small scale, and live a noble and worthy life.

THE DECISION-MAKING FLOW CHART

I actually tried to list my rules in an order but I found myself saying, “this should be higher” after making the choice to adopt a rule into my belief system.  So I simply made a list of rules, using the different quotes that came from the material that I had read or had come across and frequently found myself repeating as wisdom.  Unfortunately, this was often after I had repeated a mistake that I knew was an error before I even begun the endeavor.  I was able to take full control of myself and well-being, and this was shortly after the debut of the Carolina Women. But before I could examine the world through the miscellany of thought, I had to first be sure that I could apply them to myself and qualify as “worthy” of my own ideals.

As I said, trying to put them in an order of importance was a bigger distraction than it was trying to create my philosophy.  But the two that were singled out by Thomas, could themselves be all that a person would need live a better, more meaningful life.

"If you fix your eyes upon details and neglect important things, your spirit will become bewildered, and victory will escape you."     

I mentioned that there are some rules that on the face may contradict one another.  But I never find the juxtaposition, and if anything, I think that like all the things we can count, sometimes it is the things that should be counted but weren’t, that matters the most.  This item to me is for when you are actually engaged in the activity or pursuit you are after.  Once you have decided to make something your goal, whether it is getting an education for a better job, losing weight for whatever reason, improving your relationships, you can’t be worried about all the things that you didn’t account for.  You have to have complete faith in the process that you have chosen and your ability to achieve the ends by your own means.  In fact, rules nos. 13-15 would give a deeper explanation as to why worry is what undoes many plans of the wanting.

The other rule, number 20, is one that has always been a part of my character.  I can never picture myself ever allowing the sadness of another drift into my life.  F*ck that… and that is what makes the “Bizzaro thinking” that many confused souls believe as profound stand out in the light of inspection as idiocy.

You can die from someone else’s misery...emotional states are as infectious as
             diseases.”

Most of my anger was not at broad groups (though I can understand if occasionally it seemed that way!)… that was one way for me to diffuse the emotions that I was feeling living with people who did not possess the ability to do much better than living a “subsistence life”, doing just enough to get to the next day. I can’t submit to that kind of living… thinking so small and narrow… I mean, I guess it is going to happen, inevitably when boxing really catches up to me.  But I am going to give it a run and I can’t imagine doing that when paired with someone who thinks small and has limited vision.

Anywho… I think that I have rambled enough… and to answer, partly at least, to me love is duty, fidelity, and commitment.  More on that later, man..! (I can dig it..!)

Thursday, August 7, 2014

RULES TO LIVE BY


TACTICAL


I am feeling strangely fine… the butterflies present because there are things that are still up in the air that I would have rather not be up in the air, hence the title of this entry.  Everything is still a go for my trip to Nutwood, and I think that I am turning the corner when it comes to my hopes and goals for my life.

Pecan Sandie is still at it with posting on Facebook… “just cause I post something doesn’t mean it is me”, then followed almost immediately by a direct,”why does bullsh*t happen” post that can’t be seen in any other way than as a comment about her then-current condition.  Whatever.  At any rate, she is back in her blame-denial with our daughter, giving me all kinds of sh*t about reconfirming contact information (even with my suspicions that her Mom’s sh*ts on mail from me) and that I can call/email Lexxie at my leisure.  The only thing I could say is, “Thanks!” and follow through with what I can on my end.  If there is one thing that I would want for anyone to get from my experiences with being a sh*tty non-custodial parent, it is this:  Not all parents who aren’t present in the lives of their children are willfully negligent.  They can have help, as is the case with me, with being pushed to the fringes of the lives of their child(ren).  My falling down on my end does not justify others from taking the opportunity to further hamstring a cat, now does it?

My attempts to get information from Pecan Sandie has been the basis for my recent Facebook agonies.  Facebook is my Ennis DeMar… I just cain’t quit it, at least not yet.  I hope that Lexxie emails me back (I’ve already written her) and we can truly have a dialogue.  But I am also aware that my demonization has been a useful tool to assert absolute blame upon, and that there are interests that move to keep the status quo between the three of us.  And enough about that … what about these shoes..?              

RULES TO LIVE BY

It has been nearly 20 years ago that I began to collect a series of quotes and statements that either always had held my attention or that would catch my mind as I found myself in personal and spiritual decline.  When I finally told myself “enough”, I wanted to be able to focus on the things that I could believe in, that could explain the situations that I could not understand, and finally to explain to me with clarity “why am I here?”.

Many of them have been with me for since my adolescence, when I thought that they were “cool to say” especially being a twerpy black kid.  But because they survived through my trip on the choppy seas of life and where I was at when I made the decision to take back my life, I put them to paper, and I would read them over and over, making my plans to find “anywhere that would have been better.”

While there are those “Rules” which lend themselves to absolute, I think that even in the most literal reading that there is room for liberal interpretation.  But the essence of the rule, the fact that the responsibility for its implementation is always with the reader, makes them unbending.

Finally, as smug and self-important as a journal can be, I have thought that by making this a public journal I would seem like an arrogant bullsh*t artist, talking about stuff he barely understood and could not work into his own life.  The redundancy of ideals that are in my rules has emerged from the phrase, “Redundancy saves lives”, ethos picked up in my time in the Army, and it makes perfect sense to me. Again, allowing for the arrogance to take from and promulgate these words as “my own philosophy” that is based on real world observation and not rumour or wish fulfillment, .I think gives me the right to claim what I do… that these ARE my “Rules To Live By”, and that I am doing just that, living by these rules.  It goes without saying that violations of these tenets to my thinking are dealt with most severely, which grew as an outcrop of what I have drawn from living my life.  Make of them what you will… some will be discussed as I am going to make this term off from school a time for internal review and planning for the future.



Rules To Live By


  1. Answer questions on what’s best, never what’s easy.
  2. There is only one decisive victory- the last.
  3. A major victory can only be achieved by positive measures aimed at a decision, never by simply waiting on events.  In short, even in the defense, a major stake alone can bring a major gain.
  4. Victory alone is not everything- but is it not, after all, what counts?
  5. The first favourite was never heard of, the second favourite was never seen after the distance post, all the ten to oner’s were in the rear, and a dark horse, which had never been thought of, and which the careless St. James had never even observed in the list, rushed past the grandstand in sweeping triumph.
  6. This is just the moment not to slacken.  All the races which the calendar holds, or nearly all of them, are won in the last lap; and it is then, when it is most hard, when… the end seems to recede before us- like climbing a hill when there is another peak beyond- it is at that moment we in this Island have have to give that extra sense of exertion, of boundless inexhaustible, dynamic energy that we have shown… tirelessness is what we have to show now.
  7. In every battle there comes a time when both sides consider themselves beaten”  then he who continues the attack wins.
  8. The secret of all victory lies in the organization of the non-obvious.
  9. To ensure victory, the troops must have confidence in themselves as well as their commander.
  10. If you fix your eyes upon details and neglect important things, your spirit will become bewildered, and victory will escape you.
  11. Wise princes and republics should content themselves with victory; for when they aim at more, they generally lose.
  12. If the leader is filled with high ambition and if he pursues his aims with audacity and strength of will, he will reach them in spite of all obstacles.
  13. We cannot take this uncertainty too seriously, and it is important to be prepared for it from the beginning.
  14. The minute we begin carrying out our decision, a thousand doubts arise about the danger which might develop if we have been seriously mistaken in our plan.  A feeling of uneasiness, which often takes hold of a person about to perform something great, will take possession of us, and from this uneasiness to indecision, and from there to half measures…
  15. We must therefore, be confident that the general measures we have adopted will produce the results we expect.  Most important in this connection is the trust which we must have in our lieutenants.  Consequently, it is important to choose men on whom we can rely and to put aside all other considerations.  If we have made appropriate preparations, taking into account all possible misfortunes, so that we should not be lost immediately if they occur, we must boldly advance into the shadows of uncertainty.
  16. After we have thought out everything carefully in advance and have sought and found without prejudice the most plausible plan, we must not be ready to abandon it at the slightest provocation.  Should this certainty be lacking, we must tell ourselves that nothing is accomplished in warfare (life) without daring; that the probable will always be probable though at the moment it may not seem so; and finally, that we cannot be readily ruined by a single error, if we have made reasonable preparations.
  17. The third rule is never to waste time.  Unless important advantages are to be gained from hesitation, it is necessary to set to work at once.  By speed, a hundred enemy measures are nipped in the bud, and public opinion is won most rapidly.
  18. Great men and women have never found the easy road to triumph.  It is the same old route- by way hard work and applied faith.
  19. Discipline is doing what you are supposed to do, when you are supposed to do it, and always being ready to do what you are supposed to do it.
  20. You can die from someone else’s misery, emotional states are as infectious as diseases.
  21. The essence of power is the ability to keep the initiative, to get others to react to your moves.  You, yourself, must learn to master your emotions and never to be influenced by anger; meanwhile, however, you must play on people’s natural tendency to react angrily when pushed and baited.
  22. Self-interest is the lever that will move people.  Once you make them see how you can in some way meet their need or advance their cause, their resistance to your requests for help will magically fall away.
  23. Do nothing without regard to the consequences.
  24. Dying for each other- getting so much more back.
  25. Believe in yourself, have a passion for what you’re doing, and focus on attaining your goal with a laser-like precision… monitor your progress until you have accomplished them.
  26. If in the affairs of the everyday-- the trifles of life… a man is inconsiderate and seeks only what is advantageous or convenient to himself that which belongs to all alike, you may be sure there is no justice in his heart, and that he would be a scoundrel on a wholesale scale, only that law and compulsion bind his hands.
  27. Do not consort with fools, especially those who consider themselves wise.  And be not self-satisfied with your own ignorance.  Let your intercourse be only with men of good repute; for it is by such association that men themselves attain good repute.
  28. Victory is ever worthy of praise, whether obtained by valour or by wisdom.
  29. I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies; for the hardest victory is the victory over self.
  30. All my care will be to gain victory with the least shedding of blood.
  31. what enables a good general to win without fail is always having unfathomable wisdom and a modus operandi that leaves no tracks.
  32. GENERAL ORDERS
1.  I will guard everything within the limits of my post and quit my post only when properly
                relieved.
           2.  I will obey my special orders and perform all of my duties in a military manner.
          3. I will report violations of my special orders, emergencies, and anything not covered in            
               my instructions to the commander of the relief.
   33.  The formula for my happiness, a yes, a no, a straight line, a goal.
   34.  Never begin anything until you have reflected what will be the end of it.
   35.  Mistakes are always made when people get to the easy places.
   36.  Surprise is the fusion of speed and secrecy.
   37.  If we have our own why of life, we shall get along with almost any how…
   38.  The bite of conscious, like the bite of a dog into stone, is a stupidity.
   40.  To realize one’s destiny is a person’s only obligation.
   41.  Get in touch with what you need.  Visualize hour perfect day.  Make a business plan.             
           Take action!  -The four laws from “The Success Trap”
   42.  The three keys to (life) corporate & career acceleration- 1)  Clarify your three highest
          priority outcomes for the next six months.  2)  For each outcome, identify the three things
          you can do that will have the greatest positive impact on achieving it.  3)  Identify the six
          things you will stop doing so that you will have the time and energy to do what you need to
          do what you know you need to do to achieve these three outcomes.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

WERE YOU ALWAYS TRYING TO GET HERE WITH ME..?


TACTICAL


Got my plane ticket to South Bend… hoo-rah..!  So if I continue doing the things that I have been doing that has brought me to this point in my life, and I go on to have another positive shared experience with people I care deeply about, I will have won the year!!

Pell Grant came in..!  Winter term, here I come!!  I will have to calculate whether or not I am going to push myself and finish up junior college this upcoming academic year or not… still undecided on that front.
Biked the Keystone Trail down to Bellevue and snatched  bits and pieces of the air show at Offutt Air Force Base this past Sunday.  It was pretty cool… next year I will have to buy a ticket so I can go on post and check it out! London ended up giving me trouble on the way back… :0( Spokes came loose on the rear wheel and it was suggested by the owner of the repair shop that I might want to invest in a custom-made rear wheel… that is around $300 bucks, so some THOUGHT will go into that purchase.  Being a little bit of a bike snob put me on the slippery slope of spending for that kind of upgrade, and it makes sense.  With the amount of riding I do and the fact that I am a big cat, getting a wheel would make a lot of difference.  We will have to do some more “goat-thinkin’” on that idea.

Finally decided to go with an every-other-day study for my Personal Trainer’s certification.  Informally, I will be doing stuff regarding fitness nearly every day, but specific to the exam is what Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday’s will be for!  So it won’t be long until I am an official fitness professional!  Man, from sitting sleepless in a damp townhouse basement in the depths of early mornings, to making it to professional trainer, with progress to a degree in Exercise Science… HOO-RAH!! AIRBORNE!!!

HAVE YOU BEEN THIS WAY ALL THE TIME -- OR WERE YOU ALWAYS TRYING TO GET HERE WITH ME??

It sounds egoistic when people ascribe to themselves a quality that is there for everyone to utilize, even if the actual employing of said action or thinking is rare, and rarer still is the proper implementation of whatever into appropriate and effective utilization into a philosophy or way of being.  That is only a part of what irritates me with Facebook posts … I just have to question the effort that they have put into change (though with Pecan Sandie, waves of guilt crashes against the docks of my soul)… I mean, how many weeks, months if they can stay focused, will it be until they are back into their “Schleprock” mode, posting the social engineered pictures and memes of the sheep, passing it off as serious thought, sincere declaration of intent to be different?

There hasn’t been reason to mention that “I’ve been reborn so many times that I can’t remember them all”, in a long while as I take a run at explaining how difficult it is to make change in your own life.  The main reason that I find it difficult to do so is my philosophy and belief systems are centered around optimism and a willingness to work hard, traits that seem to low on the list of those who talk about change and not the efforts that go into change.  I don’t know when or why being optimistic got such a bad rap… I used to refer to myself as having a “Pollyanna outlook” (until someone “Big Lizard-ed” my using that term… not mention who or any of the 48 contiguous states that this person resides in but… I am sure you get who) because I can’t ever think of a time that I did not expect the very best of all outcomes in my life’s endeavors.  But thinking the misunderstanding of that term and how it was used speaks volumes about why I am the way that I am when it comes to the people I let into my circle. You can say a-hole things, even occasionally do a-hole things… but if you have a lucid, cogent explanation, I won’t think of you as an a-hole.  But if an a-hole is what you ARE, then I ain’t got no use for you.

Having quantified as much as possible regarding how I understand and interpret my life, I already have parameters established for the roles that are available in for anyone who wants to be an active part of my awareness.  The whole introvert thing, while being used so much that it is more of another of the self-diagnosed character markers for those who seek to belong to something or draw attention to oneself.  For instance, purposely trying to find obscure music to claim an obscure, “cool before it was cool”, to listen and for the desire to be out on the forefront of a wave that has probably already came in… that isn’t because I am trying to be an introvert, but it is just who I am.  “The music that they constantly play,” sings Morrissey, “it says nothing to me about my life.” I can no more help finding myself where I do on the musical spectrum no more than I could on the social spectrum.

...speaking of obscure music…
(at least it is to me..!)


This song has been a pleasant earworm for the past two weeks… the use of the word “space” and its vastness hooked me along with the “space” between the beats and the atmospheric vocals that accompany the musical score, I was taken into the clouds and through the levels of atmosphere and floating about in the never-ending and seemingly visible noise betweens points of light.

I imagine the characters in my mind (and blog) and scrutiny being made on them through the prism of this song.  It solidifies my purpose for me and keeps me from being lost in the woefulness of imagining what anyone is doing, from  Mookie Dee, up to the potential recruit who was on probationary status.  Does it matter in the grand scheme of things why the music affects me the way that it does..?  It isn’t going to reveal any great secret or unveil any of the great mysteries of existence … except that it does, at least, for me.

The song is a validation of a sort… unlocking the answers through subtlety, probing introspection and leaving revealed the bareness of a soul.

YOU USED TO CHECK THE WEATHER AND YOU STOPPED THAT
 
One of the many issues that I have with the “tiny brained folk”, people who have never been anywhere, never being exposed to the variety of life is that “they think so small, they used small words…”.  By that I mean it is likely that they have not pondered about what lies outside of their comfort zone.  Having muscled through Toffler’s “Future Shock” as a kid confirmed for me that whether or not that I was right in an absolute sense was less important than the dimensions of life that I believe that I feel I was correct about.

I knew that I was living in a dying society when I was growing up… the death of the hierarchy.  Not only will I get to see a woman president, I believe that my granddaughters will be the first generation of women for whom the patriarchy will matter less to them as the blunt and crude racism of the first half of the 20th century matters to minorities now. Not that it won’t be a factor or that sexism still won’t matter (because the tiny brained are a hardy species and will lurk in the dark places where light doesn’t reach), but it will matter far, far less than it does now or ever did.  Those granddaughters will have children that will be as unfamiliar with the patriarchy as a children today are as unfamiliar with a rotary phone, blatant racism and rampant sexism.

What will the new society of the future look like?  Well, as an adult that is scruffling along below the poverty level and coping with a wonky brain, not to mention the lack of scholarship to bring a strong argument for anything, I don’t have a clue!!  But I do know if you are holding on to the old mythologies rife with bias and ignorance, you will suffer the fate of the dinosaurs and the cro-magnons.

Falling freely through inner space, it is hard for me to alter my unknown trajectory for a known route that will lead to a dead end.  There are some things that I am simply not wired for… and that is why I went ahead and scratched out the profile to my philosophy and I work to project where I intend to go from “here”.  When it comes to personal relationships, realizing what has be done cannot be undone (but maybe they will find a way through quantum mechanics to do it… my postulation is that change in our reality alters the reality in another future, but I digress..!), I am left with really one option -- and it is not upon me to find and present any alternatives… how could I?  

Friday, July 18, 2014

NON-SEQUITUR


PITY BAIT

I would be surprised if everyone who is reading this, currently or in the far-freakin’-flung future doesn’t have one, possibly more, persons who uses social media as a platform for their bitchin’ and moanin’, pissin’ and cryin’.  I know I have several on my feed who are close to me (as many of my Facebook friends are), and most recently, one who has begun to get under my skin (somewhat, as “Facebook don’t count”) has been my youngest daughter’s Mom, Pecan Sandie.  She is going through “something” and has made a move… which I have never been updated on, and since her comings and goings affect Lexie, I would figure she’d at least given me a heads-up, courtesy message… but nevermind that.

Whenever I have had reason to explain the comings and goings of our relationship, particularly our past, I simply shrug and say, “Hey, I was d*ck,” or something to that effect.  It is simpler and easier that trying to explain the intricacies of why the relationship failed.  But in the past two weeks, she has made some postings that if she wasn’t the Mother of my youngest girl, I would have “trolled”, because they are truly the postings that touch every meme, trope, of social media.  For instance…

MANY FRIENDS

This is among the more frightening kind of posts that go around social media, no matter the platform.  Two words: SOCIAL ENGINEERING.  It makes me shudder a little, in the recesses of my frightened soul for the future of humanity.  I can’t believe that anyone could not see through these kinds of things for what they really are -- someone creating a hook into their mind and forcing them to identify with a statement, that with subtle alterations, would have them and their friends, willingly give up the freedom of independent thought.  Preying on the loneliness and the abject emptiness that is the gulf between the things they feel that they need and what they actually receive in their lives.

GOD IS…

I won’t screed on this picture too much.  I don’t want to go into the questions of theology but what bothers me about this kind of posts is my understanding of prayer and asking of the Creator.  I have always thought that you were supposed to go somewhere quiet and have that discussion and that the preaching in this post is best made by those who are more qualified than you are to make such an observation.  And if you are going through things, I think that my man Winston Churchill said it best… “If one is going through hell, it’s best that one keeps going.”  “Like bait” like this draws attention to “you going through something”, which defeats the theological purposes for making this kind of crap post.

SHE TURNED…

This kind of crap is so freakin’ trite!  Ooh, it is like reading the tones that are nails dragging across a chalkboard and hearing the notes in your brain!!  Make like the classic Nike slogan and JUST DO IT and quit telling everybody that you WANT (because if you are posting this crap, then you are not actively “doing” anything!!) change and get the hell up and BE the change you claim you are making in your life!  What the hell..!?!

DEAR MEN…

I get it… I mean I really, really do.  I get all of this.  BUT, my biggest, maybe the ONLY question I have regarding stuff like this is what obligation is the supposed adherent under?  See, the unspoken contract with this sh*t is that you, the claimant, are fulfilling your end of the bargain ?  I have no freakin’ problem with calling out someone on this, because it is easy to.  My former supervisor who noticed my hand badly swollen from a gout flare, who took her evening and devoted it to my well-being, in spite of prior plans or whatever, has it in her character to make this claim, even as my observation is purely platonic.  So when she needed help moving, I was there and available.  See, that is how that works, not simply saying the right things, but getting up and DOING the right things, when it is time to DO the right things.

If she had said, “Oh Mark, I would have taken you to the hospital if you asked!”, after I lost some of the use of my hand, or if I had told her, “Oh, I could have helped you move,” after the rain ruins her refrigerator that she had to leave out because she needed “one more pair of hands”, to get it inside before the storm, what would have been the use of being ANYTHING, much less a good man/woman is, if all it is to you is a clever post on your feed?

TWO THINGS YOU SHOULD NEVER CHASE …

More stuff from the “I get it” files.  I mean, I do.  See, Mookie Dee and the SFC would not have happened if I was “chasing” something.  Those were calculated steps that I took and now looking back, I see that they were necessary for me to grow and determine the direction to where I was going in my life.

In ways too numerous for me to explain, this should be self-explanatory.  Should one ever find themselves in a position where they feel “compelled” to chase someone or something (as opposed to being willingly engaged in a chase for someone or SOMETHING), then I would expect them to review the purpose of their relationship to the object or goal of their desire.  Whether they should or shouldn’t isn’t for me or anyone outside of the pursuer to say… I know that I would not risk chasing someone who did not want me to catch them, but even in the chase, there are things to be learned about oneself.  Anywho… people who make this a regular part of their attention-seeking pity/talmudic wisdom post on social media seem to me to be destined for continued aimlessness in their lives.

BUT WAIT…

Other than Nebraska and the SFC, I don’t have anyone that I “know” reading my rants.  Though I have begun to count several readers among my intimates, the thing is that they have confirmed for themselves the person that I am, observing that the variance between who I promote here and “the man we all know and love” is far less than “the margin of error”, so to that end, I claim to be who I say I am.  Also, “blog” is still synonymous with “journal”, and that is what I use this for.  Maybe if I weren’t walking around dizzy with issues of cognitive injury, assaulted by the venal and the pettiness of those in my immediate vicinity which drove me to journal, I would have ceased long ago.  Now, I have to wonder how long I am going to keep this up.  I mean, scripted journals go on and on, frequently measuring the length of the author’s lives.  Besides, the utility of my journal has served me well.

The primary reason for this post is to contrast Pecan Sandie’s postings with my interpretation to show how mismatched we were/are.  I cannot fathom of going back to Carolina for Lexxie’s graduation when I would have to lean on someone so unstable for my support.  Better I send our daughter the money and an invitation to Omaha than for me to go back to an area that I feel is declining and risk getting banged around because of indifferent attitude towards my well-being.

I rank self-pity extremely low on my list of desirable traits and qualities in the people in my life.  There is a science to life and not acknowledging this will mean you are likely ignorant of the disciplines that govern living.  One of the things that self-pity does is that it excuses you for your contribution to whatever condition you are in, allows for you to export your grief at your own ineffectualness at living in the hopes of gaining mistaken compassion and understanding for sincere emotion.

Look, the world gives not a sh*t about you and your troubles.  Whatever you have brought to the table is what you have to work with… and if all you have is a bag full of regrets, broken promises, and unfulfilled potential, then you are not going to get much in bartering.  Keep that mess, and figure a way to develop and resource in you the things that will be of value to the world… if not that, then aspire to be SOMETHING that is valued and work from there.

Pecan Sandie is a good kid and I really do carry guilt for our relationship.  Despite me singling out her mania (because she claims that people wonder about me and my comments on her vague “it’s not about me, but it is” posts)-driven Facebooking, I still hope that she somehow can find that missing piece, fill that blank space in her life, to where she knows contentment.  But for most errybody else who makes these kinds of posts… eff ‘em, especially if they can’t take a joke..!

EPILOGUE

Maybe the plane ticket will go back down to its mid-week price… I will be getting my ticket one way or another on Monday morning to South Bend..!  With good things ahead for Mr. Mischief, should there be an excursion to the Motor, the first round is on him, and that means I will be having a Guinness..!  I will let Skye know that I will be in town, and who knows… maybe Tee Jay will take time out of her busy schedule to drink a beer or two with us.!!  Ahh, good times if they happen and if they don’t, well, I still get to hang out in the Junction with Ken and Beth, along with Sheeba and the rest of the critters in Nutwood..!

Monday, July 14, 2014

WHO YOU CAN LIVE WITHOUT


TACTICAL


I guess I will hope to get my plane ticket to South Bend THIS week, as I miscalculated when I was getting paid!  It is a bummer, because I found a ticket for $230, which was the best price ever!!  It would be cool to catch a price like that, which would be a savings of $100 off the prices that I have already scoped out.

Madison, my Trek road bike, has been replaced gratis by the Trek company.The frame was broken, and that isn’t supposed to happen.  I did have to pay for the rear axle which came to about $40.  I decided to keep the name, and along with a refurbished London, I have 2 pretty cool bikes!!

August will likely mark the month I start picking up the pace on my roadwork.  I am kind of experimenting with some interval training, some of which I will have to do something that I dread, going to secondary sites to run.  I am accustomed to opening my door and doing the “left, right, left” down the street as I close my door.  But there are some runs that because of their intended goals, will prolly require me to find a route to properly execute the suggested training.

Right now, I think that I am going to let the fall come and go without any taking classes at Metro Community College. This is going to be an executive decision and that will be that with that.  No need to press myself when it comes to academics, and with adding my certification studying to the mix, I will be better served by getting my certification to be a Personal Trainer. Who knows… maybe I will send my soon-to-be updated resume to a company and get hired in as a part of their wellness program (or something!).
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"You need somebody that really cares about you to tell you you're not remembering like you were"  -former NFL and Notre Dame football player Ricky Waters

I don’t have the kind of drama that plagued my life I first began my journal.  This is not because I have adjusted to my condition (to the contrary, I believe that I push the edges of my abilities in spite of what may be recommended, medically speaking, for someone in my situation ) as time has gone on.  But other than willpower and belief that I can do what I set out to do in life (whatever that may yet be), and having codified my life in the abstract, has kept me from panicking or from losing my way as I go about the world.

Thinking of myself in the abstract has also helped me to remain unique and untroubled by my lack of having a defined identity in society.  My way of thinking is very iconoclastic, and by iconoclastic I mean there are no sacred cows in my world (save for maybe Tommy Hearns :0)).  Everything is up for critique and examination, with new findings to be considered and reconsidered over and again.  I can’t be easily placed, nor can my behavior be reliably predicted.

On Facebook, Beth posted an article about former Notre Dame and NFL star Ricky Watters and his journey back to Notre Dame to finish his bachelor degree.  I was particularly drawn to the segment of the article where he discusses his dealing with concussions problems resulting from his football career.  His wife, Catherina, really nails it when she talks of her experience with her husband and brain injury.  “It’s hard. If you don’t live with that person, you wouldn’t notice. You probably find that he speaks intelligently and speaks well. He remembers the questions that you’re asking. But it’s something that I definitely can tell.”  For me, my co-workers, along with my therapist, reliably serve that purpose for me.  

About two months ago, as the stress began to build around my Carolina trip and finishing school for the spring, one of my supervisors and I were having a discussion about “nothing”, when she asked me a question and I had to consciously “think” about my response.  She waited, patiently I might add, and after I was able to respond, she said, “I get it… sometimes it takes you a second to get things straightened around”, with the unsaid reference to my condition.  It did not bother me… instead, I took it as a sign that she CARES and does so in an active way.  Then, before I went out with Nebraska, after we rescheduled, she overheard me mention that I was going out with an “old friend”, and she shot me a sideways glance.  “You aren’t going back out with Princess again?”, with the same kind of concern that you would expect to hear from someone “who gives a damn plus”.  While I don’t make personal slips like this often, I guess the gossip story from that relationship is that Princess was a crappy person to me.  And, I guess, she was.  She was very crappy at the end, but I had no idea that it mattered in the least to anyone other than me.  I was touched, because I NEVER assume that anyone concerns themselves with my well-being, rather relying on being pleasantly surprised when I am enlightened to the contrary.  The reason for this is quite simple… the people that I should have been able to assume to have a vested interest in my well-being have usually been those who could have actually cared less about me, if I were to judge them by their actions.

Right now my needs demands certain things of people who want to be in my life, particularly if they want to be close to me.  The irony of those who would believe that my requirements are being driven by my disability is that nothing could be, in my mind, further from the truth.  The things that Ricky Watters and his wife speak about aren’t specific to having to deal with brain injury as it is, at least as it appears to me, more about fairness and compassion.  Either you have it for someone or you don’t.  For instance, these were elements that were missing in my relationships with my ex-wife and Mookie Dee.  Neither of them were fair or compassionate in the respective relationships that we had, and I feel that because that lack those two components, the two relationship failed miserably.  It also explains why I find those who engage in the “back and forth” of unstable relationships as intriguing in the same way that a young child is intrigued by the formation of a scab on the knee. The painful process of acquiring the scab and watching its formation is not something that desired again.

Yeah… this is a not-so-veiled indictment of generally recent local developments.  I am a very competitive and I don’t like feeling like I lost a competition (and if you don’t think that one of the key dimensions of life is not driven by competitiveness, then I am sorry, but maybe that means you have “lost” already)... yet another reason that I have never considered trying to actively win back an ex-girlfriend.  My mental image of a "relationship rematch” is immortalized by what I saw in the second Aaron Pryor - Alexis Arguello boxing match.  Their first fight was a classic, but there was controversy despite its conclusive end.  The rematch, a good fight, not classic, was just as conclusive.  It was over, the debate of who was the better fighter.  I believe the same about relationship, only that instead of winners and losers, there is an uneasy truce, that grows to be an observed armistice that defines the limits of that one relationship.

The moments that make a healthy relationship… the growth between the two parties from the start to wherever they are now… all that is gone.  The person that has been evolved to… I missed the process and missed that they have gone through… this was evident in the trio of relationships that I have tried to reconnect to, Mookie Dee, Tee Jay, and the SFC.  This does not mean that the emotions expressed, particularly in the latter two, were not genuine. It is that the  the experiences reconfirmed for me that “where you come from is gone … and where you thought you were goin’ to weren’t never there… and where you are ain’t no good unless you can get away from it…


Nebraska has had experiences that are beyond the scope of my own personal mission, and I would have to wonder how much has being reckless with my life’s opportunities catching up to me… what would be my motivation to even try??  I have matured  to where I find the words of Sgt. Murtaugh “I’m too old for this sh*t” to be very applicable at this time in my life. That is something that is one of the indirect objectives of this year.  There are still mountains to be climbed in my life, but not without following procedure, not without accounting for and evaluation of risk.  Should I fall short, it will not be because of “things that I knew better than”,  and understanding that would eventually be the foundation to why it is doubtful if I go back to Carolina for Lexxie’s graduation.  That is a tale for another time… this entry has run overtime...