The Past Doesn’t Matter

WARNING: PROFANITY WITH NO APOLOGY

The old proverb of ‘Those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it’ gets trotted out so much that I see it as a tired old horse that needs to be put out to pasture. Because not only are a lot of humans freaking dumb-asses who can’t even learn how to take a shit properly, they don’t care to learn about doing do so in the first place. And most of all, they don’t give a damn about the past when they do awful things like others have done before.

This thought came to me as I see people trotting out tired old horses like the proverb above and also ‘well, this was done by so-and-so’ and ‘they did bad things, too’.

No one can go back and change the past so if anyone throws past shit on the table during a discussion, it needs to be cleared off the table and thrown in the trash. Because bringing up the past is just digging through the garbage to try to bring something back to life that’s dead.

I think people look to the past because they don’t want to face the present in all its’ shitty glory (insert sarcasm here). Yes, I can look back on my past and think fondly of it. But I can also look back and say what my mother used to say: “The good old days sucked.” And there are things in my past that I would rather not talk about, nor relive because I learned some pretty shitty lessons about people and life in general back then. But now I am working my butt off not to live by that shit. Every time in my mind when I feel a bit of regret and start to do ‘would’ve-could’ve-should’ve’ as my father used to call it, I shut it down and tell myself to focus on the here and now.

Yes, I freely admit that I live in the present. I live without a safety net so to speak, and without a lot of money right now, either. I survive, yes, but in that survival I’ve learned more about living than in my previous forty-four years. And I’ve learned that if I want to solve my problems, I need to focus on the here-and-now and what I can do today. Because looking to my past sure as hell hasn’t solved any of my problems so why should I look there for answers to the present?

So in the larger context of the world around us, let’s quit trying to dodge the problem by saying ‘oh we need to learn from the past in order not to do this again’, or ‘someone else did this before so why all the fuss now?’ The second is even more full of bullshit than the first one. How in the freaking hell does a past action by someone cause a present problem? If someone fucked up before, yeah they’ll probably fuck up again. But what if they’re not fucking up now, but someone else is? Why not go after the someone else in the present doing the fucking up?

Now, I will admit here that you can look back at decisions made and decide not to make those same decisions again. I strongly believe that we can all make different decisions than we have before, and that we can make different decisions than those of people around us, even ones that hurt us. And as long as your decision is not causing harm, it’s not wrong. And if someone doesn’t like that, tell them to kiss your ass then fuck off. This tit-for-tat, past-versus-present bullshit is just that, total bullshit because these face-offs over past and present don’t accomplish a damn thing. It’s a tactic used to divert someone from making a decision for themselves, and not facing a present issue head-on.

Yes, I’m sure we’ve all fucked up in the past. I know I sure as hell have. And I could say I did the best I could with what I had to work with, and what I knew then, and blah, blah, blah. But I can’t go back and change things since I haven’t discovered time-travel and you know what, I don’t want to. I know very well that life isn’t perfect, but I believe we can always move forward unless we’re dead and buried.

And I think this is why I’m having trouble looking back on things and writing about them now. I’m so focused on the present that the past is losing its’ hold on me. And it feels good, real good in fact.

So my advice to anyone reading this would be to break those chains that you’ve given to the past, and don’t use the past as a way of avoid dealing with the present.

Mother and Child Reunion

On Sunday evenings I listen to re-broadcasts of the old American Top 40 Countdown shows and if you remember listening to those, you know that there were segments called ‘Long Distance Dedications’. Most were from people wanting to acknowledge individuals who had made a difference in their lives, but one man wrote in with a different story. His dedication was to the men he was imprisoned with, and who were being executed every morning at dawn.

In his letter he told how he’d been arrested on drug-trafficking charges in South Africa (this was the early 1980’s) and while in prison awaiting trial, every night the other prisoners, black South African men, would sing and dance all night long before they were executed in the morning. These men were mostly political prisoners, prisoners of conscience whose only crimes were being black and speaking out against the apartheid system of government in South Africa then. The songs they sang and danced to were by black South African artists except for one: “Mother and Child Reunion” by Paul Simon, a white American artist.

The reason this song and this story come to mind is what’s happening right here and now in the United States with children being taken from their mothers as they arrive at the border fleeing the violence, poverty, and oppression in their home countries. Those men in South Africa had mothers, too, mothers who might not have known where their sons were, or that they were going to die. The pain of a mother knows no limits, yet mothers are the ones who are targeted by the most evil of regimes. Mothers throughout human history have had their children taken from them, from Jewish children in Nazi Germany, to Native children in Australia, Canada, and the United States (yes, there were Stolen Generations here in the US, just like Australia and Canada), and now here at our borders.

But let’s not talk about the past but about the present, the Here and Now we all live in, and the Hell that is the Here and Now for the mothers at the border detention centers hearing the cries of their children, and crying for them in return.

Reunite the Mothers and Children

#KeepFamiliesTogether

And may all who act on this atrocity face justice in this life, and the next.

I Call Myself a Writer (Poem)

I Call Myself a Writer

 

For the longest time, I always said I was something else

Something in addition to being a writer

 

I was a call-center jock who wrote

I was an Uber driver who wrote

I was something else who also wrote

 

But over the last few days when I ask myself what I am

I say to myself ‘I am a Writer’

I’m still working on finding the courage to say this out-loud

As I have not earned enough from my writing to pay any bills

 

Yet paying the bills isn’t what a title is about

It’s a declaration of who you are and what you do

For me, it’s a declaration of my calling

It’s the first word I can use to describe myself

 

Writer

 

I claim the title of ‘Writer’ in my mind, and in my heart and soul

It’s what I hear most in my mind when I think about what I do

And what I want to do not only in a day

But with my life

 

I feel a sense of loss, and of sadness when I don’t write

I know some days I won’t have the strength to write

I know some days the words won’t come to me

And I know I’ll be okay on those days,

Even when they make me sad and lonely

 

But when I’m feeling sad and lonely away from my keyboard

I will tell myself ‘I am a Writer’

I will ask myself what I am and reply with,

‘I am a Writer’

I Call Myself a Writer -pdf

Stories and Trust

Last night I was in downtown San Antonio and I saw two cops with a homeless person. I and the riders I was with began talking about the homeless people and one of them used the term ‘professional panhandler’ to explain why they wouldn’t give money directly to a homeless person.

First, that’s their choice and I can respect that. But as I got to thinking about it, I realized that ‘professional panhandler’ is more of a means of survival than anything. Yes, I’ve heard stories of panhandlers on street corners getting into nice cars and driving off. But what if that nice car is all they have and they’re actually living out of it, or if there is some other circumstance that makes panhandling a means to survive? There is an old saying that appearances can be deceiving, or as I like to say, a single appearance doesn’t tell the whole story.

I was reading an article recently about homeless shelters in which homeless people described the shelters as shittier than the streets they were living on. They said these places were unsafe dumps with rules and people who were more focused on enforcing rules than making these places safe and secure in order to build trust and find solutions. And that got me thinking about how to make these places work better:

Listen to the stories people have to tell and are living, then work to earn their trust by creating a safe environment of people who will listen, and help without shame and guilt.

Because as bad as life on the streets can be, communities can be formed there, too. I’ve read interviews with homeless people who won’t leave the streets because they have people there they can trust, and because the people trying to help them haven’t done anything to earn that trust. Safety isn’t built on four-walls and roof, but from the people that live inside those four-walls-and-a-roof and take care of the people inside. It’s also people not forcing others into a box of their own choosing without listening to what that person needs or wants. And yes, homeless people can have both needs and wants because wants are hopes and dreams. Some people can spout beautiful bullshit about people needing hopes and dreams but will only apply that to people who they deem worthy.

Now another criticism I hear is how people are given a million chances and still piss on them. I know addicts can break trust repeatedly and there is a question of how many chances someone should get. That’s not a question I can answer. But I’ve read how a lot of addicts try to hide their relapses because of the shame and guilt they feel. So if someone is feeling shame and guilt because they’re human and make mistakes, I don’t think we need to pile more shame and guilt on top of that. No one can go back in time and do things over so why do we think that people who fuck up are supposed to do that? Instead, I say focus on the present and move forward because all we can do is learn from the past. We sure as hell don’t need to force someone to stay locked in the past when they’re right here now.

Now I will admit there are people out there who refuse to deal with their issues and use substance abuse or shitty behavior to avoid doing that. This to me is an absence of emotions such as empathy, compassion, and conscience. Because I feel that if you care about the world around you and the people in it, you’ll care about yourself. And caring about yourself does mean dealing with your issues and not projecting your shit about them onto the rest of the world. People who won’t deal with their crap because they can’t feel any empathy, compassion, or conscience may have to be avoided in the need for self-preservation because of that. Emotions and the ability to feel them are what makes a person human, and makes them understand their actions have consequences. So if I can sense emotions in a person and the ability to feel them, I say there is hope, and with enough time and patience, help and solutions might follow.

I think the age-old question of whether we are our brother’s keeper doesn’t have a single answer, or an easy one. But I feel we have to keep asking it, and keep working to find answers to it on an individual basis. And that’s why I always say everyone has a story to tell, a story that they’re living. If we truly listen to these stories then I think we can start to find solutions to some of the problems out there. And in order to help, we need to keep that story in mind and take patience from it when obstacles come onto the road to the answers. Because as long as we can feel empathy, compassion, and conscience in ourselves, and in others, then we can learn to trust. And with trust comes what I believe may the greatest gift to anyone: hope.

Far Enough

Last night I was with a passenger and one of the questions he asked was where I was from. I told him I was born and raised in San Antonio and his reply was, “You didn’t get very far, did you?”

Now I was in traffic so I didn’t have a way of replying to that, and in reality I’m sure for him it was an attempt at humor that he probably forgot about a minute after he said it. But I will admit here, it ticked me off. And just because I haven’t been really been too far from San Antonio doesn’t mean I haven’t gotten very far in life.

My definition of ‘far’ is not physical, but mental and emotional. Those are two things that can’t be measured in miles, or dollar signs, or by any other material means. Yes, I want to see the world and travel but if I don’t, I’ll be just fine. But I know not everyone feels the way I do, and I’m sure a lot of people view themselves as failures for not amassing wealth or travel.

This morning I woke up to the news that Anthony Bourdain, the writer and former restaurant chef had committed suicide. My heart breaks for him and his loved ones but I wonder if his immense travel was a way of trying to run from something. Because years ago, I thought about running away and never coming back. I wasn’t suicidal but thought that I would just be better off by myself as I felt like I was a failure in terms of being around people.

I’ve come to realize that my failure wasn’t entirely my fault. Yes I was, and am still a klutz verbally sometimes, especially with expressing my feelings. But I’ve come to realize that everyone else isn’t perfect either. Yet I wonder how many people struggle so hard to maintain a veneer of perfection, or a certain persona when they don’t feel that way at all. For years, I didn’t know how I was supposed to be in this world. I felt like everything I tried to do I inevitably failed at. But I look back and see that I wasn’t failing, but moving forward from things that weren’t working for me, and leaving some things behind that could have permanently harmed me.

In the eyes of certain people in this world, I’m a raging failure right now because I haven’t been anywhere, and I haven’t done anything really successful. I disagree with that because my definition of success differs from the generally accepted definition and standard, which is an accumulation of property and wealth with a healthy dose of travel thrown in.

And in addition to accumulating wealth, traveling the world doesn’t make you a better person because I’ve met people who have traveled the world and they’re still uptight, self-righteous, judgmental pricks. When they travel, they don’t see things as they are, but as they want them to be, as they think they should be. Anthony Bourdain didn’t see the world that way so when he talked about people needing to travel, it was about learning about other cultures and food. It was about seeing the world as it really is, and not what we think it should be.

And we need to remember to see ourselves as we really are, and not what some assholes in this world think we should be. We need to define success on our own terms, and stand against the voices that tell us otherwise even if we’re scared, hurting, and alone. Because that is far enough to see the light, and live for that.

 

Keep Trying (Even When It’s a Pain In the Neck- Literally)

WARNING: Bad language here today

A few days ago I kinked up my neck muscles and it’s taken me days to fully un-kink them but I still have to watch what I’m doing. This is the long-time consequence of having a seriously-crooked back like mine. Problem is, when the pain is that bad I can’t get comfortable and I can’t find a position to write in. And couple that with having trouble getting a grip on what to write… yeah, I’m sure you can see where this is going.

By the way, my neck is doing much better now.

I’ve told myself sometimes it’s hard to listen to my own advice and not think it’s total bullshit. But ‘Keep Trying’ isn’t bad advice because it’s not promising me anything. I’m not saying ‘Keep Trying and Things Will Get Better’. Some things may get better but shit will still happen. It’s getting through that shit that really counts sometimes. And I sure as hell don’t know all the ways to get through that because sometimes what’s worked in the past doesn’t work in the present.

But somehow I find the strength, fortitude, or just plain old stubborn-pride to keep going. Maybe it’s also the fact that I like a roof over my head and food in my belly that keeps me going, too. And that’s okay, in fact I think it’s more than okay to keep going out of sheer survival sometimes and not some high-and-mighty purpose. I think people should be recognized for just getting through each day in one piece because sometimes that’s all you can do. After time, though, I do believe that moments of clarity will come to show possible changes in direction. But keeping on through each and every day is momentum despite what some a-holes might say isn’t. And it’s not just that we’re all on our way to the grave together, but that until the Earth stops turning and or the sun eats our planet, that’s the way it will always be.

There is a criticism leveled at people who work long hours or multiple jobs for low pay for not doing anything other than just working so hard just to survive. Criticism is leveled at them for not going to school to get more skills, or getting a job that pays more, or not working so many hours to spend more time with their children, or not being involved in political or social activism.

To those critics I will say one thing: Fuck You.

That criticism is such a slap in the face to all those people who just are trying to get through one day at a time. Because trust me, they know there is a world beyond their own and yes, they want to be a part of that, and they want more out of life in general, and they want to do better. But running your mouth at them, hammering them with guilt or condemnation isn’t going to solve their problems. All I can do is just say ‘good job’ with the survival and keep trying to get through every day in one piece. And this is why I feel my advice sometimes is total bullshit because although my words might bring a bit of support to somebody, they’re not really doing enough to solve problems.

Maybe I’m not meant to be a problem-solver on any kind of scale, and that’s a hard thought to deal with sometimes. It’s also hard to deal with the fact that I honestly don’t think I’m reaching anyone outside of a very tiny circle of people. And I’m still afraid some critical-asshole will go after me and say that I should just keep my mouth shut and write stories or work a dead-end job then die. And worst of all, that I will back down. I hope that I won’t in the face of that bullshit but I will have a hell of a fight on my hands.

So this ‘Keep Trying Even If It Is a Pain in the Neck’ advice isn’t just keep going despite the pain, but also keep going as an act of defiance against critical-assholes. My father used to say it was pointless to beat the crap out of a drunk or an idiot and he was right. But I would also add it’s pointless to go after someone who runs their damn mouth at you then walks away and forgets what they said five minutes later. Being afraid to write this down and get that kind of shit is what holds me back. And it’s what I have to ‘Keep Trying’ to fight against.

So I’m posting this now before I can change my mind and edit this down any further.

Little Girl Lost and Found

This is just a bit from something I’m working on, a non-fiction book that’s like a memoire/self-help thing. I’ve been struggling with it for quite a while but I got a little something yesterday that seems to be working for me.

The book is going to be called ‘Breaking Radio Silence’ and this is about something that happened a little while back:

Chapter One:

Pride and Imagination Flashdance-Style

 

Little Girl Lost and Found

 

For the longest time, I couldn’t listen to the song ‘Flashdance (What a Feeling!)’ by Irene Cara. And here’s why:

When I was in elementary school in the early 1980’s, every day in gym class we started out doing exercises to this song. And since I was shy, fat, and so klutzy I gave new meaning to the term, I was always at the back of the class struggling to keep up. So after so long being at the back of the class trying to keep up and failing miserably, I grew to hate this song. But before those awful months in that huge gym, I loved that song and that movie in all its’ cheesy Eighties glory.

So for over thirty years every time that song came on the radio, I immediately changed the station. Because every time that song came on, I was thrown back in that awful gym struggling to keep up with everyone else.

But that all changed about three months ago when I was driving in heavy traffic one morning and I couldn’t change the radio station. The song came on and it brought a smile to my face because I suddenly remembered the movie and hearing the song for the first time instead of being in that shitty gym class. So when I got home I decided to play it again while I made breakfast. I turned it on and when I got to this line in the song, ‘All alone I have cried/Silent tears full of pride’, I lost it.

Yes, I stood over a plate of breakfast tacos listening to a thirty-plus year-old song while bawling my brains out. But that was a moment I needed to go through in order to find my love of this song again, and take back something that had been stolen from me.

And what was stolen from me?

The hope and joy of being a child and feeling like dreams could come true.

Back then, I was terribly shy, fat, and I gave new meaning to the term ‘klutzy’. Right there those three things were not a recipe for social success and from as far back as I could remember, I never fit in anywhere because of that. I knew I was different, and that different wasn’t good. Because no matter how hard I tried to fit in, I could never figure it out and failed miserably.

But in in my imagination, I wasn’t the shy, fat, klutzy little girl that I was. I was a bright shining star who was going to dance her way to a bright future though maybe not literally dance. I loved that imaginary me very much and her world was where I retreated more often than not.

Yet every day in that shit-hole of a gym, I began to lose hold of that imaginary world and that little girl who lived there quit dancing. The song became a daily reminder that I would never fit in, that I would never be a dancer, and that I would always be at the back of the class.

But after that fateful morning in my little kitchen after bawling over my breakfast tacos, I found that little girl inside me. She’d been still and quiet for a long, long time but eventually she trusted me enough to take my hand. I told her it was alright to feel like she could dance in her mind, and that there was nothing wrong with her. And as I began to get to know her again, I realized she had never given up on her dreams even though she’d been silent for so long.

I hadn’t realized my silence went back that far until that day I got that song back in my heart.

Chapter One Intro PDF

Keep Trying

Sometimes all you can do is keep trying, and sometimes that just means getting out of bed and going to work. It’s survival mode sometimes and definitely not how anyone wants to live. And I hate to say it, when I get in that mode it becomes a downward spiral of resentment that creeps into hopelessness.

Case in point: I didn’t make as much money as I wanted to this weekend and I don’t know if my mojo was messed up, or I wasn’t in the right place at the right time. But that was neither here nor there as I just had to shut up and deal with it. I packed it in on Saturday night and woke up early Sunday morning thinking I’d just bury my face in the pillow and wallow in my misery. But I saw the time and remembered the Monaco Grand Prix was on. So I turned the tv on and was so glad I did.

This year’s race was won by Daniel Ricciardo racing for the Red Bull Aston Martin team. Now Daniel had the pole position, fastest times in practice and qualifying and it looked like he was on his smiley-way to the podium. Then around lap 20 he comes over the radio and says he’s losing engine power. I of course screamed, “NO!” at the tv since previous issues with power usually took him out of the race altogether. But he and the team refused to take the car out unless the car died. Instead, they worked together to nurse the car to the finish and the win. It wasn’t the way they wanted to win the race but the result was the same.

So that’s a lesson here: sometimes life may not go the way we want it to, but if we get to where we need to go, or want to go, then it’s worth it. I know life isn’t a race and not all races are won. But the races that are won sometimes aren’t easy. I know hard shit is a pain the ass (pardon the pun here), but that’s the way it goes sometimes.

I’m proud of myself for not getting into a one-legged ass-kicking contest with myself over going radio-silent again and just retreating into a hidey-hole somewhere. I snapped out of that downward spiral last night and I’m feeling better this morning because of it. The boogey-man monsters in my mind aren’t real and I don’t need to give them any energy to try and take over. I live one day at a time with an eye on the future and that’s okay. Things don’t always go to plan but you have to keep on going. It sucks sometimes but I was told from as far back as I could remember that life wasn’t going to be easy.

How to Avoid Info-Dumping By Asking Why

A common problem among writers is info-dumping, which is putting a ton of information on the page that slows your story down. Two common forms of info-dumping are in descriptions and dialogue that doesn’t advance the plot or character development of the story.

Here’s an example of info-dumping that does nothing to advance the story or show the reader anything meaningful about the character:

The house was set back a ways from the road, two-stories of stone with cream-white walls and black trim. The lawns were expansive, lush, and green. In the driveway were two very expensive cars, a Lexus and a Mercedes. He stepped inside the house with its’ high ceilinged foyer and richly-patterned rug underneath him. To his right was a huge living room that was bigger than his entire apartment, and there was the man who had called him to come here in the first place with a job offer.

Why is this considered info-dumping?

It’s a very basic description that doesn’t have any real emotion behind it. The sentence structures are written saying this-and-that with no reason as to why the character notices these details. If the purpose is to set the scene, it needs to be done in order to give the reader an insight into the character.

So how can we rewrite that previous paragraph to keep it from sounding like an info-dump?

Let’s get into our character’s head and see and feel things from his point of view.

He couldn’t believe a house could be set so far back from the road in the heart of San Antonio as he got out of his car and stepped onto the grass, sinking a little into the lush green as he made his way up to the house. He stepped inside and looked up at two-stories of open space then saw off to his right was a single room that was larger than his entire apartment. And in that room was the man who said he had the job of a lifetime to offer him, and by the looks of the house around him, the job could come with more money than he’d ever made before.

 

But at what price?

 

He stepped into the room to find out.

As you can see with the rewrite I started off the first two sentences with ‘He’ so we’re in our character’s POV. So instead of saying ‘The house was set back’ we hear the character’s thought about that (‘He couldn’t believe a house could be set so far back…’).

This first sentence shows that this house won’t be like anything our POV character has seen before. And why would that be? The answer to that needs to be a part of your story and that’s why you need to have not only the physical descriptions, but also your character’s thoughts and feelings about what they’re seeing. And most of all, there needs to be a hook after the initial setup to show WHY the character is in this setting but without stating every detail of that, too.

Another type of info-dumping can happen is when there is a lot of dialogue that has very little to break it up like the example here:

“What’s your name?”

“Mark.” He replied without looking up at her.

“So, what were you doing here?”

“Guarding a group of executives visiting the oil fields down here.”

“Oh, so where are they?”

“They’re safe.”

Here’s a rewrite of the previous set of dialogue to break it up a little and put a little internal reaction to it.

“What’s your name?” Jillian asked as she studied her rescuer.

“Mark.” He didn’t look up at her as he rummaged through the backpack he’d been carrying.

“So, uh, what were you doing here?”

“Guarding a group of executives visiting the oil fields.” Mark sat back a little but still didn’t look up at her.

“Oh, so where are they?”

“They’re safe.”

Well, that was good, Jillian thought to herself. And even though she felt like Mark was being honest with her, she wasn’t sure how much he might be holding back, either .

In my rewrite, I wanted to show was that Jillian was trying to learn more about the situation and Mark was barely cooperating. And though she felt like Mark was being honest with her, she also has a suspicion he might not be telling her everything either. And that suspicion creates a question of WHY that would be, which in turn will keep the story going for the reader.

And that single question, WHY, is the most crucial to ask with anything you write. Because in order to get a reader interested in your story, you want them to be asking WHY things are happening in the story. You want to show them through the character’s actions, thoughts, and feelings what’s going on in the story so if you put something on the page, it has to be the character’s POV, not yours (the author).

In conclusion, here are some points to remember to avoid info-dumping:

Keep things in your character’s POV at all times. Read your sentences back and if they are basic declarative sentences with no POV insight from your character then rewrite.

You can ‘show’ and not ‘tell’ by letting dialogue and your POV character’s reaction set the scene and not inject yourself (the author) into the scene as a third-person narrator.

Make sure your scenes will get your readers asking WHY. This will make them want to know what happens next, which is how you hold your reader’s interest all the way to the end.

How to Avoid Info-Dumping By Asking Why pdf

Not Giving Up, Or Giving In

I had this thought when I got into my car this morning after a trip to HEB (to get a few things and come out $2 under the budget I’d set for this trip). And the reason I started with ‘sometimes’ is that I want anyone reading this to know that it’s okay to have shitty feelings even if you’ve gotten through whatever crap life decided to throw at you. I don’t ever want anyone to feel like they can’t have negative emotions at all, or that they can’t call ‘bullshit’ on the crap that life likes to throw out on a regular basis, too.

But I will say this: don’t gorge yourself on the bad emotions either, or feel like you have to have them more than the good ones. If you feel something good, don’t try and kick it out yourself or let anyone else do that to you. You can’t control anyone else’s mood so don’t let anyone else do the same to you. And don’t feel like you have to be a certain way to fit in with the crowd because the crowd is made up of imperfect people just like you even if they act like they never make a mistake, or take a shit that stinks up the bathroom on occasion.

I will say that in the last few days I’ve been very tired, hurting, and all-around pissed off at damn near everything. And I hate feeling like that even though I know it’s perfectly alright to feel that way and it means I’m human. But I don’t want to walk around feeling like that forever. So getting up today and not feeling so bad helped me and I decided to run with that instead of moping around. My life is far from perfect but it’s on a track I can change speed and direction on, too.

And changing direction and speed was the catalyst to the thought I had for today. My mind doesn’t really ever shut down except if I’m in a deep sleep. It’s a major pain in the ass sometimes to have thoughts and ideas constantly tearing about in my head along with my over-active imagination. But from time to time, a thought of clarity comes out and I really like that feeling.

So it’s okay to think and feel like shit. Just don’t give in to it, and don’t surrender to it either. That’s not an easy thing to do but then my father always used to tell me, life would never be easy for me but it’s worth living through.