I Survived 2012 & All I Got Was The End of This Blog?!

Tomorrow is the end.

Not the end of the World, you psycho–just the end of this blog.

I think that stopping it on fifty posts seems to be a legitimately logical thing to me.  I’m not going to end it on 51 or 49 or 324,785.22.6358, that is just not my current mindset.

For another thing, why would I end it on any other day?  We’ll discuss the importance(aside the obvious affiliation with the end of the Mayan long-count calendar, and so it has to be the end of the world, right?) of this day & the holiday season in a bit.

The end though.

It definitely isn’t the end of writing for me; by the end of this post I’ll hope to have a new blog set up & ready for posts.  I’m just not sure of a name yet.  Maybe a few hours(I have to take a break for work & my partner’s Xmas party) will help get my brain kick started.  I’m only two cups of coffee & some tofu scramble in so far, don’t expect a lot quite yet.

Alternately, this blog has seen the end of a lot for me.  For instance, I’ve got about three weeks until it has been a full year not smoking cigarettes.  I haven’t intentionally consumed animal products for quite a while.  It has seen so many ends to my ignorance, simply because in writing about something, I find new points that I like to touch on & learn about.  I find that insanely therapeutic.  It helps me to understand the world as much as I wish it understood me, but am I wrong to believe that it already has a full grasp of me and what I am, what I do, why I do it, and when I will do it?

Tangents, tangents.

I was listening to a podcast last night & the host quoted Ajahn Chah:

“If it isn’t good, let it die.  If it doesn’t die, make it good.”

That was just interesting to me in so many ways.  We take the time to get into habits that we eventually see as bad habits & then continue with them even with the knowledge of them being negative to us.  It isn’t meant to be anything but an ever-changing form, whether it be a bad habit, a material want, a toxic relationship, or even a mental view that isn’t conducive to seeing the truth.  It isn’t a Voodoo scripture to hope people into the ground or wish pain on anyone.  Just a way of understanding and letting go.

I hope the things that I have let go over the span of this blog are, at some point, just those type of things.  Enough goes on in my life to have to concern myself with other things that won’t particularly matter in a years, months, weeks, days or even hours.

Hell, almost everything can be construed as a distraction.  The distractions pile up on a daily basis until there is nothing but.  It’s tough to peel away the layers & just be there.

Break time for work.

Aaaaaaaaaand back.

The next morning, mind you.

My partner’s holiday party ran a bit late & we have collided with today.

I should take a bit of time to explain the importance of this day as promised before.

It’s a Solstice.

That’s it.

On a calendar from thousands of years ago, solstices & equinoxes were established.  They were celebrated.  They were, at points, worshipped.

Then religions came.  They chose days of observance & shadowed the days of praise for the planet(ever make the correlation between Easter, Christmas & solstices?).  The most important step the religions made to gaining followers & notoriety is the fact that they embraced the time as a time for worship & prayer.  The extremists carried out Salem, much as extremists protest events for notoriety now(Westboro?).  They aren’t anyone to be looked up to as leaders or teachers, the fact that they are so unilateral make them anything but.  They teach one view & that is fine for those that want the comfort of knowing one view.

Even I have been prone to one-sided views.  They are nothing more than my opinions unless backed by solid facts.

The minor point here in the previous paragraphs is that we should stop thinking so black and white.  See everything with a “beginner’s mind,” a point of view that makes every time you see something the very first time over & over to give a viewpoint of many new points of view.  One thing is anything but one thing to a hundred different eyes.

Maybe that’s where we need to be with wars, with debt, with all of the aspects of our life.  We should be thankful for everything, not thinking what we can have that’s better all of the time.

Well shit.  It’s 11:12.  The end of the Mayan long count calendar.  I see no fireballs from the sky, feel no massive earthquakes, hear no screaming.  Just this damned song from every apartment around me…..:

We’re still here.

I’m still writing, thinking, drinking coffee.

Lots of it–my partner’s holiday party was very……intoxicating.  Yes, that’s the word.

With the end of the world behind us though, I think it’s time to start with a new sheet of paper, if you will.

I’m going to continue drawing comics for Excuse Me Waiter, There’s Some Soup in My Fly, but this blog is done.  The new blog is entitled TerminalOrigin, which you can find here.

I used to never finish books because I despised the idea of them ending.  I never wanted closure, and almost feared it.  I’m not afraid of anything anymore.  I want closure.  The end is as important as the beginning, if not more because of the journey & lessons learned.  You can’t afford life if you can’t pay for it by passing away.

Big thank yous to all of you that read these words.  I’d still write if you didn’t, but I hope it gives you some idea of who I am, what I’m becoming, and maybe inspires you to do something to express yourself as well.  It’s been a fun run, and I’ll leave you with this….

“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”

-Theodor Seuss Geisel

Fear.

I’m not scared too often.

I’m rarely afraid of the future anymore.

I actually find a bit of peace in that.

I’m not worried about tomorrow or the next day or the next, I’m more concerned about the NOW.  After all, next year can change with as little as a couple of seconds today.  We all concern ourselves with something to be afraid of in the near future, but when you think about it, is it really worth the bother?  Why not spend that time considering how to help a situation instead of run away from it?

This will be a quick post, I promise.

I remember the morning I woke up to a friend exclaiming the twin towers got hit by planes.  I stumbled down to the basement bedroom & watched as the second was delivered a fatal blow by a jet so surreal I couldn’t believe it was occurring in front of my eyes.  The night before was just poker and a lot of beers, even a story on how the house was part of the underground railroad.

The President came on, told us who to blame, and we were all angry.

The anger was fueled by fear, by the unknown person that caused the unthinkable to happen.  The fear spread so far across the land that the doors I grew up with unlocked would always be locked forever because people did bad things and it was impossible for them not to do it to us eventually.  We needed caution.  We needed protection.

We needed war.

The problem with the above statement is that we didn’t need anything.  If we needed anything, it was something to throw off the beauty of life, the simple wonder that we were under the umbrella of a world not in war, a country that was great, a vestige that the flowers always dance on a summer day’s breeze.

What we needed & what we had obviously were two different planets.

We are straying from the subject though, and I’d be disappointed if we weren’t(kind of my thing by now, right?).

Fear.  Fear the reaper, fear the unknown, fear strangers, fear pain, fear loss, fear uneasiness, fear happiness, fear everything.

Or don’t.

I’m not saying don’t be afraid of things by any means.  Just don’t be afraid of them now.

My partner is extremely afraid of arthropods of any kind.  They are all around her, she doesn’t notice & prefers not to know.  If she sees one, she freaks the fuck out & gets me so I can catch it & let it go outside.

That’s how fear works, or should work.  If you don’t see something, you don’t fear it.  Somehow we lost the memo & people are trying to scare us constantly now.

I like to not be so scared.  Mainly, because, what is the worst that can happen?

I did the scared thing when I was young.  It doesn’t work so well anymore.

I ran around in Toledo in sketchy neighborhoods at night when I was young.  I’ve taken road trips for weeks by myself across the country.  Hell, I made it in south side Chicago by myself.  Cleveland is easy.  Vegas is simple.  New Orleans is a breeze.  I’m not worried.

The worst that can happen is….

Fear.  That’s the worst thing that can happen.  I can give the antagonist some sort of pleasure of thinking they have one up on me, or I can shed the skin of fear.

I’ll be god damned scared when it happens, but I refuse to live a life cultivated by people that don’t care about me in a corner huddled in a ball.

You should be afraid when something happens too, but never, ever let someone make you fear something as beautiful as life.  We simply don’t have enough time here to worry like that, and everything else is only distraction.

Fear.

The word alone evokes undertones of uneasiness.

It speaks volumes, if you use the word well.

For example:  “The country was left in the grip of fear as yet another attack was perpetrated against many innocent people.”

Danksagung!

Thanksgiving.

I woke up with a scrambled brain(not the usual weekend hangover, just a wine reminiscence.  I drank some coffee and took Cinder on a quick one mile jog on the beach just to be fun, and then took her on an additional walk.  Needless to say, she’s still tired.

On the walk, I managed to find one of the weekly newspapers(Folio weekly here) and read much of it at the dog park at the apartments while Cinder was doing her own thing.  I read that Pete’s bar was having their Thanksgiving party(in which I had been instructed to go to by many before) today, so being it both a bar & a party, I felt I must attend.

I baked all of my goods for my holiday the day before, and did prep work for dinner in the morning.  Beyond that, It’s only Cinder and me here.  My partner is in Ohio with family.  Therefore, my margin of error when it comes to anything is minimized.

So off I went to Pete’s bar for their annual Thanksgiving party.  I didn’t expect it to be any more than the bar being full.

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Not.  Quite.

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It was really cool walking up to this, being it about a couple thousand people drinking on the street in stupid hats that reminded me of turkeys defecating on people’s heads and other fun outfits reminding others of anything but the Native American massacre or the National Day of Mourning.  Here are a couple guys now!!

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It was quite a windy day out and it made the palm trees along the street come alive with a weird enthusiasm that made the party all the more fun.

I found a good vantage point for a couple of pictures and a tiny drunk girl yelled “PBR!!” at me to get my attention.  She screamed “Happy Thanksgiving” and I replied with a simple “Cheers, you too!”  It wasn’t until I flashed my wedding band that she lost interest and started making fun of me to her friends.  The entirety of this happened in the allotment of five seconds.

Now, mind, it is not some cruel delusion that I have of being better looking than most people when I say that I sometimes have to flash my wedding band to people.  I’m by no means a gorgeous guy, but I do reserve the awesome right to walk around like I have a handle on the world while ostensibly not caring about it either.  Maybe that is where I get all of the looks.  Maybe I’m on a perpetual LSD trip as a result of a bit too much when I was younger.

Either way, the look that people give when I have to make the wedding band flash apparent is typically priceless because we have made a mental connection.

See the tangents I get into when left unchecked?!

Oh well, great time over all, perhaps a few thousand people by 1…

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I was about halfway through my second beer when my phone pulled a FC.

When I refer to “FC”, that means Force Close.  The thing is, I rooted my phone & throw new software/ROMs into it on a regular basis.  The purpose is to have fun & find cool new geek stuff that I wouldn’t find on a normal phone.  If you have an Iphone, first off-I’m sorry.  Second, it’s considered “jailbreaking” with the iOS.

Back to the story though.

My phone all fucked up, I walked back to the car because I had my OSB(Oh Shit Bag) in my trunk.  OSB’s are quite handy because you never know when you are going to be totally screwed without something as simple as a box cutter or water purification tablets.  That isn’t me being paranoid, that is me being prepared(anyone reading this an Eagle Scout????  Neither am I.).  Inside the bag was my regular camera.  I like regular cameras.

On my way back to my car, a very drunk girl made a very bad decision on her bicycle & ended up falling over sideways.  Face to concrete style.  Her friend & I were the only ones immediately around.  She was on the ground ten feet in front of me, I asked if she needed any help, to which she gave a very bitter “NO!  I’m fine!!”

I have to stop offering help to people.  I often forget that young people now are constantly scared of their surroundings.  This usually ends up making a situation that could be innocent & helpful become one that is a blown-out-of-proportion accusation.  The drunk girl was not at all good looking unless her sunglasses were hiding topaz eyes, and her general complexion made her seem as though she should spend less money on greasy food.  Not my call though, and thankfully so, because she and her friend started bellowing for a Jason as I walked away.  I’m pretty happy that I didn’t have to return to that mess.

Once I got back into the party with the camera, I bought a beer next to some prick pointing out that some girl was a bit too over her limit inside Pete’s, and she was leaning against the door, making her torso somewhat more prominent than most other things sticking out of the door.

I walked away, only to run into a group of dressed up drunk people, the wife questioning her husband as to whether she could drive or not.  He dismissed her, mainly because her speech was impeded so much it was almost as if she was speaking another language(and butchering even that one).

After that, a couple of ladies were finding each other by playing Marco Polo.  That has got to be the best way to find your friends at such an event.  I commended the one lady and told her that I was stealing that particular idea.

Other cool pictures that I took:

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People were selling Bloody Marys from a truck.

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This shall be my partner & my ideal cars(come on, they’re cute together!!)

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I want one more than almost anything. The bike, not the thing pooping on it.

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I am filming a hippie that is filming stuff. Damn I’m sad.

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people, if you could please refrain from wearing shit like this, it would make you look a lot less worse than how you do already.

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LOTS of people.

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That is a fun hat.

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If you don’t see an irony here, don’t ever talk to me.

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the ground was trashed.

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I spoke with the bartenders briefly & they were having a blast.

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MOBILE ATM???!!!

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Had to thank the security team on the way out, they weren’t buzzed or having fun at all it seemed.

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A quick sketch at Poe’s after the party. Another person I had to do the wedding band flash to.

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dangerous waves today….

I went to Poe’s Tavern after the festival & chatted with Anthony for a bit.  Some of his friends came up & we all had a decent time just drinking and having a grand time.  I got out of there after a couple hours & decided it was time to make dinner, after all, I had a hungry child at home…….

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aaaaaaaaannnd Cinder is hungry.

I made up the Tofurkey & the jalapeno poppers right away & worked on the pita stuffing last.

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Vegan Jalapeno poppers & ranch:)

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Tofurkey & pita stuffing

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Lunch tomorrow.

Both Cinder and I got full within a few minutes(we were eating things while we were cooking…ok, I cooked while she was looking at me with those sad, hungry eyes eating what I dropped or gave her.  It’s a pretty good symbiotic relationship we have), so I/we have some easy leftovers for the weekend.

Mind you, I love going places alone.  It lets me draw odd thoughts and stories that make fun of a lot of boring situations.  That, by no means, means I am more happy that way.  I’ve had quite an irregular holiday work schedule for the past seventeen years.  Meaning, I rarely got holidays off, if at all.  Shit, when my partner and I first got married, I worked almost all of the holidays while my boss took the day off to go out of town or whatever else he did.

Before that, holidays were sporadic.

When I worked at the bars, I worked holidays, but they were fun.

But that was before I found someone.

Unfortunately for you, when that someone is away, you get to read my fun times.  No need to thank me just yet.

I’d love to make the assumption that I make a great point in every one of my posts.  Maybe a great life lesson, perhaps something to inspire another person.

Because I’ve made a hell of a lot of mistakes, but they aren’t mistakes.

They are learning opportunities.

I might not have learned fast in my youth, but who does except for the boring populace?

Teachers would call them brilliant, phenoms, even idiot savants(that was a one time thing, but still entertaining nonetheless).

I hadn’t the time to concern myself with school.  I worried about older, bigger assholes making my world shitty because I had better vocabulary than them in third grade.  I worried for years until I realized I didn’t care.

I didn’t care.

Those were the years that I would run around the school, getting my two foot long wallet chain confiscated by Dr. Smith, the principal, because it was considered a potential weapon.  If you knew me at that point, I would love for someone to come out & say how non-confrontational I was at that point, and thus the factor of me using it as a weapon is negated.

All I wanted to do was get by the principal with all of my apparel intact, learn some art technique, and have some easy time in Home Economics class.

In retrospect, I didn’t learn much until I got out of school.  Most of my scholarly achievements involved Biology or English.

It took some time, but I made sure that I could handle my own.

It came to me the other day that I have been out on my own for 15 years.  Initially, it scared the shit out of me, but after a couple weeks I adapted.  I did something that most can’t do(even though they might call bullshit to that & say they could…It’s really easy, just be smart in the right ways), and made it to the point where I have a decent thing going.

Today’s giant lesson is nothing.  Better yet, today’s giant lesson is that you should make your own lessons.

And don’t go shopping tomorrow.  It’s already a well known fact that America’s consumption rate is higher than any other country in the world.  Chalk another great stat up there with the obesity & prison system population.

American Thanksgiving is being abandoned because of corporate big-box stores being greedy.  Hell, at the downright shitty job that I was at before this one, they required us to work any of the holidays, and sometimes all of them.

Considering so many hordes of idiot consumers are bombarding these stores right now only reinforces the idea that if we all work right now, then we will make more money.  Pretty soon, I could see banks working holidays as long as CEO’s are making money.

Fuck these places.

I know the convenience is awesome so you can trample another person to save ten bucks.

Jimmy Damour, for one(a worker that night).

Learn from your mistakes.

Patience has become boring to most.

If I ever died in a stampede acting along with other consumers, deny my existence.

Goddamnit, if you see me in any of these mobs, take me out.  It isn’t fun.  I’d rather blow the extra cash when these other shits are gone.

So shop on Saturday instead.  Shop the local businesses that don’t force their employees to work holidays.  Maybe it will resonate to the big greedy guys that don’t have to visit stores anymore.

Oh well, I’m pretty thankful that I won’t work an0ther holiday.  Unless I work at the bars again.  Then I could enjoy it.