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Friday, November 19, 2010

When you come to a fork in the road pick it up...

He realized that slow, sluggish starts were simply the backwash of messy endings. For something to begin, something needed to end, and for him, it was never clear and concise.

He was at one of those places, the universe doing it's thing, bringing him to a new chapter, while throwing the last chapter into a shredder. It was increasingly difficult to hang on to shreds. A few crumpled pieces in his tightly clenched fists, with the rest collecting around his feet, and blowing intermittently across a pebbled parking lot.

He knew what he needed to do. Just couldn't bring himself to do it. He wanted a neat, surgical ending and a bright and shining beginning, which was impossible while chasing confetti.

Clutching and grasping, he would collect some remnants, and chase the rest, missing most, and losing the few he held on to while grabbing at the remains.

It had been his experience that when things fall apart, they were in fact falling together, but this time the ride was losing bolts and screws and shaking apart and there wasn't much in his power to stop it.

So he relaxed, stood tall, put his head back and arms out and unclenched his fists.

He allowed the winds of change to wash over him.

He let go.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

...fall begins.

He wanted to shake his ego like a baby in mid-tantrum. It was causing him no end of grief.

For whatever reason, his brain was telling him his present circumstances were probably permanent, and that he was in fact, a grade-A fucking loser.

H wanted to change careers, in an economy that was driving degreed professionals into the fast food industry. Every day, resumes out and no responses in. He worked with undocumented Latins, who thought it was pretty great to have a middle aged white guy to abuse daily, and who took home less money than they did.

He drove a twelve year old truck-in various stages of decay- and rented a room in a two bedroom apartment, with three other middle aged roommates, all on their own medication schedules.

He was pretty sure his daughters were embarrassed by him so they kept a distance and he continued to be attracted to women he knew deep down were out of his league. He was good for one cheap date, then the financial bitch he was in generally brought any further developments to halting text messages and phone calls that grew less and less frequent.

His hopes and redeeming values included being sober for over a year and a half, and beginning to get into some kind of middle aged shape, through a drastic diet change and real exercise. His mirror in the shared bathroom was crueler than his three ex-wives going over his will.

Recently, after a boring shift at work, preparing over priced food for people with too much money, he had come home and started to read. That was still a pleasure he could count on, and he came across a quote from Dean Koontz that in an odd way, comforted him and gave him pause because it was alarmingly close to home.

"Of all the things I am, a killer is one of them. Not a murderer, but still a killer. And a fool. The only child of a mad mother and a narcissistic father. A failed hero. A confused boy. A troubled man. A guy who makes up his life as he goes along. A seeker who cannot find his way."

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The wheel is turning but the hamster is clearly dead...

He awoke one day, shortly after his birthday, to a sense of clarity. The image he viewed in the mirror was suddenly uncluttered of past illusions.

His self knowledge, which often times availed him very little substance, had been ratcheted up a few notches.

He was able to take stock of who he was and where he was and the thought came to him very clearly.

"You, are fucked." But the difference in this moment was he knew his overt fuckedness could be changed, but would take courage, and sacrifice to unfuck himself.

He saw, with detached horror, the him he would be at sixty if something drastic did not occur.

Drastic moments required drastic action, which was why he remembered kicking the giant rat at Chuckee Cheese squarely in the giblets.

This, he determined, was a giblet kicking moment.

He immediately changed his diet and started the painful process of getting into shape. He even shaved his moustache. No sense in hiding behind it any longer.

And he also set about changing his career. Updated the resume, and sent it out, to jobs that were far different than anything he had ever done.

Soon (he hoped)it would be time to strike out on his own again, new, gently used furniture and an apartment to himself. A vehicle that he could count on, and a job that he could actually have weekends off from.

At least that was the plan.

And plans always made the God of his understanding giggle...he was glad he could amuse.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I don't want my hubris crushed, it sounds really painful.

I am ready to retire. Yep, hang it up. I've worked since I was fourteen years old and I am ready to slide into older age with grace.

Is retirement possible? Do I have the 401K, the investment portfolio, the business to sell?

No. I have fuck all. Which admittedly I have brought upon myself.

But my pride tells me I'm getting too old, too weary, to bang it out much longer. My pride doesn't know shit.

So instead of retirement, I'm seeking more, new, or different employment. So that this financial dead zone I'm in will narrow a bit and I can afford my own place, a better vehicle, a place to call my own.

How I would love to go away for a weekend with a special lady, you know, ring her up and casually invite her to the Beach, or Seattle, just because. At this point I have to try and save money for three weeks for dinner and a movie.

Point of fact- I did just that last night. Dinner and a movie with a great woman, whom I suspect was and may be a bit out of my league, yet she went out with me, and looked as though she enjoyed herself. I know I did. But then again I usually do, love the company of women, and as I have recently found the joys of woman closer to my age to be far better than the younger crowd I pursued for so long, I wish to enjoy more of it, and this requires cash. And possibly a vehicle that doesn't creak, whine and rattle, although if I turn the radio up loud enough one doesn't really notice.

So, that's the idea at least, of which I have had many, and none have ever turned out the way I thought they would, or should, but they turned out the way they were supposed to, I guess and lessons have been learned.

And I continue to play the lottery...

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Hey shorty-it's my birthday...

My birthday. Fifty one trips around the sun. Christ, are we there yet?

I'm tired. Physically and emotionally. I am now closer to sixty than I am to forty and frankly, it's pissing me off. Inside there is a young man looking in the mirror saying "What the fuck? Who are you?"

I have not won the lottery; the girl of my dreams, my childrens undying affection, or a place where everything is rainbows and puppies.

I work as a line cook; a hot, demanding, thankless job- the only Anglo in an entirely Hispanic kitchen and the daily reverse racism is taking it's toll. Like working in the kitchen at the Alamo, the day after the fall.

I have three room mates and negative credit. I drive a 12 year old truck and buy my Polo shirts at Goodwill.

My body is shot, my face reflects a terribly misspent youth and my hair is thinning and greyer by the day. When I have to pee, there is no grace period, I have to go right then. I creak in the morning and moan at night. I am also single, as in not dating, no girlfriend, etc, and my sex drive is in high gear. "Dear Whoever is in charge of irony, Fuck you."

But on Saturday, I will have eighteen months clean and sober. Again, after succumbing to chronic depression (meds not working) and losing everything on a month long binge eighteen months ago.

And I am very, very grateful for that, I realize the jist of this rant seems pretty negative, but they are simply the facts. I am not feeling sorry for myself for I am on the upswing after the fall and am a work in progress.

I have learned a lot about me during this period and change is almost daily. Little by little, I learn to let go, and achieve a small amount of serenity, based on my spiritual condition.

My oldest brother died of a heart attack in a muggy Houston parking lot when he was fifty seven.

Six more years.

Check please...

Thursday, September 9, 2010

...there is real value in just standing there, being still, being sad...

There was no denying it had been a week of loss. One could say it had also been a week of change, but then, when is it not?

Nothing remains the same; life ebbs and flows and the pendulum swings. The difference as he saw it, was in just how he saw it.

He sadly ended a wonderful little romance because it was the honest and true thing to do. That was certainly new, especially for one whom romance had meant everything, in the time before. But the time before was gone, the man he used to be a faint reflection, turned ashen, along with what he thought passed for his youth.

The man he had become had gotten the face he deserved at fifty; it told the story, in laugh lines and wrinkles and sun damage, of a man whose spirit was forever young, but whose body had paid the price of excess. It spoke of his failures; his dreams that he had forgotten, and his daughters, whom he loved tremendously but could never convince them of that fact, because his selfishness had separated him from them, quite when they needed him most.

The terribly broken heart of a decade past had healed, but was not without it's scars. His heart had begun to hope again, and life was pumping through it, but in his hope he had gotten lost. It whimpered a bit at this fresh ache, but the hope he had been given soothed the pain and allowed it to rest until it passed.

He was forced to work two jobs, to pay for his past transgressions, and he lost one of them. In the other time there would have been much gnashing of teeth and pulling of hair and railing at God.

But in this time, he believed it was part of the plan, to go and do and stay on the path he had agreed to, to arrive at the place, or places, God had in mind, for whatever reason. He figured it really wasn't his business anymore, to know the why, he just had to gladly keep marching.

Seventeen months before, his addictions had brought him to the edge of suicide,and told him to stop believing in God, and their voices were loud. The next day he prayed, on his knees, for the first time in a very long time, and his prayer was heard.

His addictions and monsters had been taken from him, in agreement that he would do certain things to help himself and others, and he was keeping that agreement.

How he loathed his addiction to drugs and alcohol. It had destroyed everything good he had ever had. His friends in recovery were not without their battles either, and two of them had recently lost the fight. One drank himself to death and the other ended his life with a gunshot, and neither death would ever make sense.

But now he was able to sleep, most of the time without the chattering monkey of his failures keeping him awake, and he was grateful, because he had a chance, one more chance to live, and do it right.

Unless of course he fucked it up.

Friday, July 30, 2010


After I settled in and allowed myself to hear her, instead of simply feel overwhelmed, I learned some things. I suppose I knew them, at one time, but my mind files things in a haphazard manner, sometimes sticking memories in drawers they don't belong.

I learned my maternal Grandmother was a practicing alcoholic who sobered up in time to watch my Mom get sober, and my Grandfather was a beaten man.

I learned I was a little older than I remembered when my parents divorced, and remembered doing my second grade homework in a beer joint my Mom had bought.

I learned that when we moved to Las Vegas, when I was seven, McDonald's was new. When my Fathers child support check arrived, weekly, I went with my Mom to cash it, and we would pass McDonald's, and their new .15 cent hamburger. I would always ask for one, and she would always say, "No honey, not today." She needed the money for wine.

I learned of her pain, her denial, and her running across the country from herself.

And I learned of her death wish, every time she drank.

She had also been sold on the American Dream, husband and house bullshit, and she craved it as much as she ever craved a morning drink.

Above all I suppose, I learned how much alike we were, in denial and circumstance.

And when she was on husband number four, an outlaw Indian in Guyman, Oklahoma, she had a black banty rooster for a pet. She kept it in an oriental birdcage, and she would take it for drives in her rusted out, 65 Ford pickup.

I have not done her story justice with this, my head is too full of conflict, still processing, I suppose.

I think I want a rooster.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

I wish I had known her Rooster...

I recently heard my dead Mother's voice after fifteen years.

She had been a circuit speaker in recovery, and told her story at conferences and conventions. Through the years I contacted the people who make cd's and tapes of speakers in hopes of finding one, but I never could. Figured she was lost to the ages.

I had been contracted to do some writing for a friend, who is also a circuit speaker, and he needed to find his first taped talk. He made a phone call to Oklahoma, found his tape, and mentioned my Mother. The voice on the phone said he'd look.

He called me last week and asked, "Was your Mother Patty Palmer?" I said she was.
"I have her tape."

I became lost for a moment. Then excited. Then frightened. Could I hear her again, and retain my composure? Could I hear her again and feel anything at all?

I spend Mondays working on my friends story, transcribing, writing, getting into his head. Last Monday I sat on his couch, armed with coffee and he took a little black and white cassette, inserted it into the tape player and I waited.

A brief bit of static then a little twangy, East Texas drawel, with a laugh behind every sentence covered my world. My Mom, and she was talking to me.

It took me fifteen years to be ready to hear her again. I resented her death, I resented her drinking again wich led to her death and I resented her abandoning me, for the last and final time.

In my minds eye I could see her at the podium at the Missouri State Conference she was speaking for and see the twinkle in her eyes.

She related what she had been like, what happened and what she was like then. At the time she had been sober nine years, and was in love with life.

It wasn't always that way.

to be continued...

Monday, July 5, 2010

A friend goes queitly into that good night...

I never expected him to go quietly. It was unimaginable.

Blood in his throat, a gun in his hand and a scream in his mouth was more his speed.

The horrors that life could throw at you, well, at least he could wrap his hands around those. But the ones in his head, the slippery, faint whispers only he could hear? He would pin them in a corner and give them the rush and he would have nothing more than smoke in his hands. Eventually the whispers grew louder.

His larger than life heart broke in stages, as I remember. Fifteen years of marriage, all of it, gone in the time it took for his wife to screw a carpenter and smoke crack.

His ten year old son was all he kept from the union. That and memories.

He tried to hate her, and publicly managed quite well, but in those long, dark nights of the soul he would have forgiven her in a blink, just to hold her one more time.

He had given her almost all of him-the rest he gave to The Army. Eighteen years, a bootstrap Major, risen from the ranks, and they turned him out, two years before his twenty. The Army had an image, and he didn't fit it, not anymore.

The booze, the depression, the suicide attempts-none of these made for good public relations. Sure, they sent him to counseling, and treatment, and hospitals, and of course medication. But the damage was done.

The week before he left Texas to retire in his home town in Wisconsin, I pulled a loaded forty five from his hand. We were standing outside his apartment on the second floor landing, two police cars and an ambulance parked below. The cops were letting me try to talk him down. I threw it behind me and the cops made it to where we were. It was never pointed at me, just his head. "I would never hurt you," he said, and started to cry. I was impressed with the officers, they were gentle and calm, and allowed him to make it to the ambulance without handcuffs and on his own.

I don't know what hurt worse, another drunken suicide attempt, or a 6 foot 5, 250 lb. warrior, breaking down and crying because he thought I might be in danger.

He went back to his small, Wisconsin farm town a broken man. He tried rehab, again, and more medication. He went to a few recovery meetings but he just couldn't handle asking for help. I don't know if self-reliance failed him or he failed it, but he was a man, a soldier, and he felt he should get it together on his own. It never happened.

He tried to date, to ease the loneliness but it ended ugly, leaving him even more alone. The only solace he found was helping his son grow up. They would hunt, and watch British comedy and he introduced his son to my writing, "See son, I'm not the only one that's completely screwed up," and he would laugh.

A few years passed and the drinking escalated. He would go to the local tavern, to be with adults, but he would drink alone. The medications would change and he would forget to take them, or take too many and wind up screwed to the floor.

His son had gotten older and more world wise. He could see the problems and he missed his Dad. The boy moved in with his grandparents because he never knew when the upswings would spiral downward into an abysmal downswing, and he had gotten scared.

He wound up on full mental disability, and it crushed his spirit.

The last time I spoke with him, a week before his death, I knew he had been drinking but he said, "I may be a lot of things, a blackout drunk-manic depressive and a failed husband...but I'm glad I'm still you're friend."

He showed up at his parent's house to take his son to get his scout gear for camp. The boy was leaving in the morning. He had been drinking and the boy knew it and his son decided not to go with him.

The boy told him goodbye and he left, wounded, one more time.

A few days later his Father tried to call, but got no answer. Over the next six days he kept getting voice mail. Eventually he got the duplex manager to meet him and together they entered the duplex. It was silent. Completely, and the pungent, sweet- sick odor of death was in the air.

They found him in the kitchen, on his knees, head and torso forward, with his face resting on the tile. Rigor had come and gone, but the blood had pooled in the lower portions of his arms and face.

His Father called me that night and left a sobbing message. When I heard it, the rest of the world went silent and all I could think was "No..."

The autopsy revealed nothing, no aneurysm, no heart attack, not suicide. The were waiting on the toxicology report.

They ruled the cause of death "accidental."

It's what they always say when one dies of a broken heart.

Monday, June 14, 2010

"Who wants flowers when you're dead? Nobody." - J.D. Salinger

His sense of the dramatic was unfulfilled.

After fifteen years he had decided it was time to visit his parents graves. He would have preferred a cold, rainy day.

He settled on a hot, dry day in June.

On the drive over he thought about what he may feel. He even wondered if he would feel anything. After fifteen years...

Yet something told him it was time, time to reopen the closet without his eye's being closed.

After pulling into a parking place he noticed a family exiting a mini-van, Mom and Dad and four kids in tow. All were dressed in shorts and t-shirts. They were headed to the Chapel, looking as if they were embarking on a day at Six-Flags.

Welcome to Dead-land, no lines, no waiting, and you don't have to be this tall to ride this ride.

He walked towards the building that wasn't hawking flowers at an exaggerated price, preying on the guilt of the bereaved.

Vultures, he thought.

The sign read information and he needed some. His parents had been on their fifth respective spouses when they died, so they were in different locations. Nothing side by side-no holding hands for eternity.

He had made it to his Mother's funeral, stoned on cheap weed and crazed with grief.

He was dimly aware of a bright, cold, windy graveside service. His stepfather glared at him across the open ground, his Mother laying between them, the sun sparkling on the polished wood of her coffin. He glared back, although it was decidedly hard to glare while sobbing.

His brother was there, two cousins, and he knew some friends of the family. He was such a mess no one could console him. He remembered he didn't care to be consoled.
He wanted to feel, wanted to rage and cry and curse God. So he did.

But now, he needed a map to find the spot. He remembered nothing about it.

He entered the building and a sense of whispering became evident. Out of respect? Not like loud conversation was going to disturb the deceased, but he did it anyway.

The older, large, florid faced man behind the counter asked in somber tones if he could help him. Yes, he whispered, I'm looking for my parents. The way he said it made him think he was six again, and had lost them in the grocery store.

Names? Of course. He told him and added he needed to find his grandmother and Mom's parents too. The look said, oh, another one who was too busy with whatever passed for his life to keep up with his dead family. His return look agreed.

This way please. The man ushered him into a private room with a round, glassed-top table and two reasonably comfortable chairs. If you'll wait here?

Sure. Not like he wanted to wander around the building-his imagination was way too developed for that.

The walls advertised styles and makes of headstones, fonts for lettering, and pretty, snappy colors, to cheer things up. Pictures of the deceased were apparently now in vogue and could be placed in some type of weatherproofing so one could view Aunt Selma in her Bolero outfit for eons.

The man returned. Not once, but three times. His Father was placed beside his father's Mom and her sister and could be easily found. His Mom, well, she was listed as deceased, but the plot she was reserved for had never been utilized. What? Her irresponsible, alcoholic behavior was evident even in death. Just like her, he thought.

He called his brother on his cell. After explaining the situation, and agreeing it was just like her, he thought maybe her husband had purchased a plot for them both. He had died two years after she.

He gave the man his name. Bingo, there they were.

His grandparents were in a section that had recently been re-plotted and the man apologized, the maps of the re-plotting were not available quite yet. They would be difficult to find.

Dude, he thought, they're dead...they couldn't have gotten far. But he held his tongue.

They were in three completely different sections of the cemetery.

OK, who was he going to piss off first? No, not Dad. Of course, he should visit him first or he would never-and around here never was a really long time-hear the end of it.

He consulted his map and began to wind through the acreage. He found the section, consulted the map again, and parked.

He looked, and wandered and looked some more. Nothing. So he began walking, no rhyme or reason, just reading names on markers. His eye caught a familiar name on a marker. A name from his childhood, the woman who rented them his childhood home, a friend of his Grandmother. Odd, he thought, but it gave him a sign he was close.

A woman in a small white compact pulled in behind his truck. She got out, smiling in that way that told him she worked there and it was obvious he was not finding what he had come for.

As she approached he noticed her smile even more. Her teeth reminded him of stars, yellow and very far apart.

He explained himself and she began assisting in the search. Then he found it. His Grandmother and her sister side by side. But a large, old tree was where his Father was supposed to be.

He explained the problem and she dropped to her knees, digging in the ground next to his Grandmother. He wondered if he should help, but his imagination said are you kidding? Dig in a graveyard? Hello? Have you never seen a George Romero film?

And after all, she worked there. Let her get grabbed by a bony, undead hand. Screw that.

Sometimes, she said, these markers get overgrown and can be hard to find. But she was helpful and digging like crazy. It was when she began flinging worms over her shoulder that he asked her to stop. It was obvious, and way too creepy, that his Father wasn't there.

She took his name and number and said she would research it and not to worry, although this hardly ever happens, we haven't completely lost one yet.

I'll bet, he thought.

The woman, now with grass stained knees,returned to her car and sputtered away.

He talked to his Grandmother for a bit, explaining he had been in the Army and in Germany when she died and he tried to come home, but they wouldn't let him. He really was sorry.

He talked to his great Aunt, who at one time had been a dancer in the Ziegfeld Follies. All he could remember was when he was six and she was babysitting him and her robe came open. She was nude beneath the robe. She was also in her sixties.

Thanks for the memories.

He returned to his truck and made his way to the plot where his Mom and her husband were. He found them, quite easily, side by side in a sun baked, shade free spot. Their markers weathered, and obviously forgotten. He felt like shit.

He was the one that had forgotten, or couldn't be bothered to bring flowers. Not once.

He knelt and touched her marker, softly...almost a caress, and he said what he needed to say.

He really wished it had been raining.

It would have explained his face being wet.

Monday, June 7, 2010

...the last attraction.

He met her online.

Meeting a woman in the "wild" had grown to be too much work. In cyberspace he could see what she looked like, read her hopes and dreams, likes and dislikes and not have to tap-dance through an awkward meeting. It was safer.

But she contacted him first. He had seen her profile before and he thought, "yeah...if only," but there it was, a message from her.

So he wrote back. And the correspondence started.

Said she was a counselor, helping people with addictions. Said she was also Spiritual and really felt the need to give something back. She even called him cute.

He thought it was a God shot, being in recovery himself. Who better? She might actually "get" him, and he could understand her. So they set up a date.

The ubiquitous Starbucks,have coffee, run it up the flagpole and see if there's a spark.

She was tiny and blond. Her pictures were from a few years back. Her jeans had a couple of very well placed worn spots. Wild curly hair, worn up, exposing a very graceful neck, cute ears and a cool tattoo below one ear...oh yeah, he thought, that would do nicely.

If she wasn't quite starting to slide down the other side of pretty she would soon, yet she was still sexy. Sexy enough to illicit from him a couple of low pitched throat noises, and that hadn't happened lately.

She wasn't a counselor, she was in recovery too, coming back after a relapse. He should have run, but he chalked it up to "recovery embarrassment." A little white lie. He supposed it could be forgiven. After all, he was coming back too.

She was staying in a sober living house for women. Mom paying the rent and buying her cigarettes. He had lived the same way over the summer, in a house for men, while he was getting it together again. But he worked for his money.

She had no car, so he picked her up when he could and they got along great. They would go to meetings, and talk about all the past fucked up stuff their respective lifestyles shared. What they had walked away from, the blackouts, the broken relationships. And they started to share hope for a better future, a sober future.

Said she had been a Dallas Cowboys Cheerleader, for a month, but she showed up at practice on acid so they let her go.

Then she became a paralegal but got blacklisted for doing cocaine in the courthouse bathroom.

She was waiting on a verdict from the folks at Social Security disability. "Not for my alcoholism," she said, with an almost hurt sound in her voice, " for mental, manic depressive and I just got diagnosed with borderline personality disorder." Oh, that made sense.

He had kids, she had kids, but she wasn't allowed to see them. Bad break, he thought. She was so tiny, with a honey like drawl and she told him everything he so wanted to hear. In fact several of her personalities did.

He tried not to feel sorry for her but he just wasn't wired that way.

She needed a favor, a ride to pick up some meds. Hell, he was on anti-depressants, so he figured it was just another common bond.

Her medicaid was still in force so he took her to the pharmacy. She picked up a bunch of medication. So what, she was cute and often funny. Who was he to judge?

They would spend afternoons in his rented room. The sex was phenomenal. She had a gorgeous flower tattoo above a heart shaped ass and it just got better, and wilder and got to the kind of intensity where if they were alone in the same room for more than a minute, BAM, it was on.

He shouldn't have been able to get a good look at her for the amount of red-flags popping up, but the scent was in the air, and he was steadily pawing ground.

Her Mom gave her $1,000 to buy a car. She was turning her life around. He thought it great.

She went missing for three days. She went through the grand on crack and tequila, in East Dallas and Harry Hines and called him quite incoherent after the second day. He hung up, crushed, after begging her to get help.

She called again after the fourth day, sick, weak and afraid. She said she wanted help, didn't understand what had happened. She had nowhere to go after a nasty drunken scene at her recovery house.

He let her stay the night, and fed her and kept her safe. He thought his armor far too dented and rusty for this kind of rescue.

He took her to a meeting and she said she wanted to get better.

In the morning it killed him to do it but he cut her loose. His sponsor had called him an idiot in no uncertain terms, as well as co-dependent and a few other unhealthy phrases, and he supposed he was right. His recovery came first.

She called him a few weeks later and said she was much better, she wanted to apologize and asked if she could see him. Said she missed him and the way he touched her.

He should have run again...

...and we continue.

Waited till after midnight to write this. Feels better.

Not that the writing is any better, but my thoughts seem to come out of the shadows more readily, like they just got invited to the dance.

So the band is setting up and my thoughts are hanging out by the punch, wearing clothes they ordinarily wouldn't, hoping they don't slip and fall on their ass, when the girl they keep staring at gives them the "wanna dance?" look. And they take a few tentative steps toward her.

Realized today this is the one thing I can do, that no one can put a stop to. Oh sure, people can stop reading, I may never be published, but tonight none of that really matters. I don't have to check in with anyone about the things I write, no approval needed, thanks very much.

I could blather on, and have, obviously if you've read this blog, but some people keep reading it.

Doesn't matter if it's pieces of memory; or my notes on how I spent my day, my dreams, my loveless failures. I could write a story about a middle aged man who snaps and chops his spouse into manageable bits while singing, "I've got pieces of April," and no one would really care.

There's freedom in that.

I may be a middle-aged man in a fistfight with poverty, who chases a teenagers ideal of finding perfect love and redemption around the next corner, (see-silly bastard) but once I begin to write...I'm me again.

And as long as I have that, as long as that avenue is open to me, I choose to believe...anything is possible.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The "why"...

I have no solid idea as to why I have a need to write. Yet it is a need as it fulfills something. I suppose the actuality could provide yet another therapist with a down payment on a lake house but it's really not important.

I guess it began with reading. I learned to read very early and found a wonderful escape in books and stories. As my reality in childhood was something I escaped at any given opportunity, reading was an acceptable departure.

Books; stories, comics-didn't matter-all of them took me places I would certainly rather be.

My earliest attempts at writing were what one could call, odd. I remember writing a story about a boy who was so scared of girls he would vomit every time one would one would speak to him. It was only two pages and I showed my Dad, in hindsight never a good idea, and he wadded the pages up and called them "shit".

"Hemingway never wrote shit like this!" I was eleven. No pressure.

So I wrote in secret.

I don't think I showed anyone. But I kept reading. And the more I read, the more I had to. Once puberty hit I learned that girls liked poetry. Never could get behind the rhyming verse, but free style was more my thing. Plus there were no rules to follow. If there were I would have broken them readily.

There is nothing so angsty and ridiculous as a male teen writing morose "no one understand me" poetry." I shudder at the memory and apologize to anyone that ever had the misfortune of reading any.

Then came the "literary outlaws" that defined me in my twenties. I almost killed myself with drugs and alcohol trying to keep up. But to be honest, I never wrote anything of any substance until I got sober. I think it was more the "I'm a creative rebel, no one understands me, fuck convention," posture that females of a certain type found attractive.

Do I detect a theme? Probably.

Writing is something I've always done. Even when making a living for a wife and family by living a life I hated, it was still my safety valve.

Made my living for a couple of years a a journalist. In reality one of the most stifling, pressure filled careers I could think of. But I was published. And on the front page. That in itself kept me going long after the politics and rules had choked the creative side of me into a blue, twitching, mess.

If I could make a living writing what I wanted, it would be a perfect world, but until then...

I'll sleep late, cook for a living, and keep living, one day at a time.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Never say never...ok, almost never.

Screw it. While it may trivialize my daily existence, it keeps the weasels from finding purchase. I suppose one could say..."I'm back."

I have mellowed somewhat since beginning and ending this blog, and have learned some valuable lessons.

The most important is that I get bull goose loony when I don't write, and no one really needs that. Not anymore at least.

And so, we continue...

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The last one...

I've decided I have lived my life publicly by writing about it for long enough.

Nothing really comes of it and I fear I am simply trivializing my daily existence by doing so.

I will leave both my blogs up but am retiring from writing them.

I don't know how much time I have left in life and think I would like to keep the rest of it to myself.

Thanks for reading. G

Tuesday, February 2, 2010


Hello to all who still read this, or those of you who may be new.

I have been inspired to attempt to find a literary agent to turn this jumbled mess into something worth reading in hardcover form. When enough people tell me something is good, I finally get the message.

Action has been taken. But if anyone knows of an agent or publisher who would have time for this...I am certainly open to it.


My new disclaimer...yeah I know.

Okay, the old disclaimer was tired. The ideas were outdated and keeping me stuck in a place I don't want to be now for something more refreshing.

I have recently changed my views regarding women. Seems I had some issues with the fairer sex due to past pain and self- centered fear. (Yes...duh applies.)

I'm done with that.

Being in recovery has helped me change my entire life, perceptions and attitudes. I cannot change my history but I can change my today and my future.

I recently realized that the women I know in recovery are some of the strongest, bravest, most gentle and kind teachers I have ever had. You exemplify integrity and spiritual growth, and I hope you know who you are.

Some may know of my past marital and relationship history and been a participant in them as well. It's past and that's where it the past.

I own my part in those failures but claim no more responsibility in any misery you may be experiencing. I am sorry, but it's time to get off the cross. We need the wood.

Thank you all...