Mortality and kittens

I saw a dead body the other day. It was a traffic accident during a deceptively dangerous snowstorm. This person hit a bridge support and burned to death in the vehicle. What made this hit closer to home was the fact that I passed that exact spot only a half an hour before. It quite literally could have been me, and at the time I had my kid in the car so it would have been him too. My thoughts go out to the families of this as of yet unnamed person (I looked it up but no info has been released).

And this really made me think about life and death and the end to the only journey we as humans get. The person who died had plans. That person had things left undone, had things that have been put off far too long, and had things they were current on. And if it were me and my kid who died that day, the same could have been said of us. I have shit to do, hell, I’m doing it right now. And my kid? He’s got a great brain and a bright future. Loss of life is always tragic but it’s something I don’t really think too much on until it hits home or at least close to it. This was on a purely geographical level, but a level none the less.

I had 50 miles to go before I got home when I saw this and I turned off the radio and drove to the sound of my thoughts. It’s now days later and I haven’t turned on my car stereo yet. I just think when I drive now. Winter is about to set in here, so any short trip to the store could end with my death or disfigurement. Or I could cause that to happen to another person. Ten miles closer to home I realized I’d had all these thoughts before, and very recently.

I’m a cat person, and as cat people know, 2 is the magic number of cats you should have in a home. I have an adult cat who is excellent, but a bit lonely with me having to go to work and do whatever else life begs of me, so I got a kitten about a month ago. I got both cats from the Humane Society, years apart mind you, so I knew she’d be healthy and up to date. But somehow bringing home such a tiny life opens the floodgates and all these macabre thoughts fill my head. Thoughts of life, death, pain, and the rest of the ugly truth about life as sentient bio organism.

I would play with this kitten, this little child, and I would be happy but in the back of my mind I pondered the simple fact that one day, both my cats would die and I would be alone at home. These thoughts are not new to me. I’ve been a cat person since 8 years old and I treat them like family. And things that are treated like family leave a big hole when they go.

It was different when I brought my kid home from the maternity ward. All the terminal thoughts were there, the fear of pain, suffering and mistreatment were all there, but there was more to it. He’s supposed to outlive me. I’m supposed to outlive my cats. And this is neglecting the fact that my son is a human being who will someday tell me to go fuck myself and tell me he at least once that he hates me and in that moment he will mean it more than anything.

And the whole while he will not understand all that goes into raising a child. All the time, all the thought and then the actions to carry out the thoughts. I spend tons of time planning what seeds to plant in my young boy’s head because seeds grow into plants and some are poisonous. Doing right by my boy is me putting all this thought into how to prepare him to be a man. And the only way to do this is to man the fuck up and be the best example of this I can be.

So after I dropped off my kid with his mother, I saw this tragedy and thought about life, death and things left undone all the way home in silence. And then when I got home, I hugged both my cats and called my kid. Then I went to fucking work. Talk about full circle.

Get into the sound

I’m working on an AV section to compliment this project. My aim is to read some of my  posts and fiction and release it in audio and video formats. I will of course be completely naked during every video, in the spirit of a Betazoid wedding.

What? Really? Ok, fine, I will not be naked.

Truth is I’m not ready to release a game plan yet, but it’s on the horizon. I want to access as many people as I can, I want a certain level of audience involvement too. Philip DeFranco of YouTube fame always says he wants his videos to be a conversation. That is kind of what I want to create with this page and other media.

The whole reason this is happening at this point in my life is I need to step outside my comfort zone and really challenge myself. My life has been mundane for a fucking decade because I got comfortable and then I got bored and quit freelancing, then had some personal shit happen that I let ruin me. It was a minute ago now so I’m pretty over it, but I just stagnated through the healing process.

The way out is the way through. This project is all about that.

The road back is full of turns. This is because a straight path is fucking boring. It would be a challenge to like the sound of my own voice. It would also be a challenge because I don’t know how to do a podcast or start a real YouTube channel.

Not gonna lie, I’m not exactly a spring chicken (as evidenced by that bullshit saying) but that does not mean my content or the medium any less valid. Quite the opposite. I love experimenting with content delivery and alternative storytelling methods. So if I start to get bored or if I stagnate, I’m gonna shake things up a bit.

I just wanted to throw these ideas out there for you, the early adopters. I’ll keep you posted.

See you on the page!

Black Friday / Cyber Monday Afterglow

Black Friday, 2016 – $3.34 billion in sales

Cyber Monday, 2016 – $3.45 billion is sales

How much of that was you? I’m sixty bucks strong in that Cyber Monday figure. What? I had a legitimate need. Black Friday all I bought was a Whopper meal and a tank of gas. Anyway, my point is not what I purchased. It’s the sad fact that these retail holidays are the start of hunting season. Not hunting animals for food or sport, I mean the first push of the holiday shopping season. And just how sad this all really is.

We dutifully load our angry selves into our gas guzzling cars to go fight with other angry people for junk we don’t need. I mean really, did you need that 5th TV for the second room in the basement? How many gifts did you buy with the thought, “If (s)he does like it, they can just return it”? And how many brief negative interactions did you have to endure to buy all this garbage?

And sure, you saved a ton, but you had to spend a ton all at once to do it. In the end, the result is more shit in landfills and more cash in the 1%er’s pockets. Also, less savings, less space and the added chance of humiliation if you bought someone the same shitty gift as someone else at one of your four Christmas celebrations. And what if both of you bought it knowing it sucked but a gift like a prepaid debit card is just so impersonal. No, this bullshit sweater that looks like cock is much better than something that can pay rent or buy food or diapers.

The art of the thoughtful gift is dead as disco. Now it’s a numbers game. But not how many gifts or how much they were liked, the talk in the kitchen at every Christmas is about how long ago the gift was bought and how much was saved because of the oasis-in-the-desert sale that was happened upon while shopping for some other shit. This is mainly the women, as we all know men lack the foresight to shop ahead. Any gift from a man is fresh from the store. We won’t go into the differences in gender because both are victims here. See, the advertising agencies know this and target men and women differently. Children too.

And that begs the question about who is the hunter and who is the prey? Humans have the instinct to hunt. Most of us, myself included, have no idea how to hunt animals. All the food I eat comes dead and cleaned and I like to not think about that. But the need is there. No matter what we have we always look for a better one. The need, the act of searching for it, and then the perceived ability to make good on all that effort is what drives us. Fortunately, the end of our hunt doesn’t have to include a murderous bloodletting and consuming raw flesh with our teeth.

Cuz that shit be crazy.

No, we hunt for the perfect better thing. A new watch that does the same shit as the one you’re wearing with the added feature of being a trophy to attract other hunters. Advertisers are trappers who sell our pelts to the big corporations who make the shiny new shit. So our hunt is not so much of hunt after all, is it? No man, we are being hunted and it’s time we wake up.

We’ve all seen the articles about how the size of the American family home is getting larger and the general happiness level of the American family is in decline. That is because all this is built on a bed of bullshit. The consumer market is a trap we all fell into. This more more more mentality is toxic at it’s best, evil at it’s worst.

We need to take a step back as a species and really look at ourselves. This consumerist hunt is a trap. It’s a generated fantasy that is ruining our planet and economies worldwide. It’s the Matrix, but way less cool. It’s time to tumble down the rabbit hole, Neo.

This post is to highlight the problem. Stay tuned, in a couple days we’ll start talking about the fix.

Now that I’ve said my piece, let me ask you this: Did you really need anything you bought on this past Black Friday / Cyber Monday?

 

 

(sales figures from http://www.cnbc.com/2016/11/29/online-sales-hit-another-record-on-cyber-monday-as-shoppers-continue-gobbling-up-deals.html)

Upcoming additions

It’s a lazy Sunday, so I figured I’d give you a simple update post. Nothing heavy, just an idea of what to expect in the near future.

First and foremost, new blog posts will start their normal schedule of  Monday through Friday. The only reason I’m posting this weekend is to get more content up for you early adopters. Topics will vary, but in the beginning, I am planning a fair bit about personal improvement through unconventional means. It’s sort of my deal at he moment.  Stay tuned.

After that, the Writings and Resume pages need to be populated. Each entry will have a small summary of the content and a download link. I’m still ironing out the details on that.

I have a few short stories almost ready for the Writings page. They just need another read and final tweaks. This collection will grow over time as I finalize my body of work and continue to write new joints as well. Protip for the audience – some of the stories I’m uploading will be linked to others and future works. More on that when it’s closer.

The Resume page will have some of my published clips from years ago when I was a freelance writer. These are articles on businesses and bands and other topics that I wrote for print publications as a freelancer. I’ll toss in a few pieces of fiction I’ve had published for good measure.

Then onto other miscellaneous tasks. I need to get this tip jar thing sorted out. I was not prepared for how big a hassle that was going to be. I have some cosmetic tweaks I’m looking into. This site is meant to grow organically, in a holistic sense of the word. A man should walk boldly into the unknown, like he’s got a pair.

So with that thought, enjoy your Sunday! Talk to you tomorrow.

About waiting …

Waiting for something, anything really, is simply a form of procrastination. Waiting to start a project until you have the perfect work space, or putting off cleaning until you have the one perfect thing, or painting the garage because it would be an inconvenience … whatever it is you’re waiting on is bullshit. It’s better to jump in and figure it out along the way.

I can speak on this because it’s plagued me. I always gotta have the right whatever for the next great thing, but then a rage sets in because, for whatever reason, I just never get the damned thing so I project my anger at some object that only has value in my own head.

The answer is simple, and it was always right there. The answer is get off your ass and just fucking do it.

This waiting game has allowed me to let great opportunities pass me by and my brain sours at the hindsight. They’re lost to history now, all of them, because I chose to wait instead. I should’ve had this site up at least a month ago but I was fucking waiting. I kept thinking I was going to need everything before I launched. I kept waiting and doing other shit that was or was not related to this site just to feel like I was doing something.

And I got sick of it and something online inspired me and I posted on my socials that the blog is launching in 2 weeks. The next day I woke up not dreading the day but refreshed and ready. I had a deadline. A socially punishable deadline where if I didn’t have at least a presentable site on that date, well then fuck me.

I put together a shortlist of the essentials needed at launch and I did them. The parts that were way more than I expected got pushed down the road. These are things that will benefit from an established readership. So from an altered perspective the entire situation changed. Instead of thinking people will see me as a hack if this joint isn’t spotless before visitor #1, the opposite was true. It will be better for the readers and the site if I post my fiction a little here, a little there, instead of having this fat lump of stories and shit to try and sort through. Same thing with the resume page. I’m not looking for freelance gigs right now, life things kill that idea until early spring, so it’s a project to pick at until then.

It helps to identify what things really mean to you and adjust your priorities. This is how I plan to do it from now on. Don’t ponder on  what’s opportune, just do it.

I love fall

EDIT: I know the timing of this post seems off since we have snow on the ground now, so please forgive me. I wrote it a couple weeks ago when it was 60 degrees. Now this week it’s below freezing and kids are building snowmen. The sentiment remains valid, it’s just sad fall is over for another year. Anyway, here is the original post.

Fall is truly my favorite season. It’s the energy, the anticipation of winter, and memories of childhood when me and my buddies were all bundled up and trying to pack in our last adventures before snow flew. Summer breathes her dying breaths in a rhythm that inspires change, action.

Fall is mother nature’s way of reminding us it’s time to get shit done, make some real change. And I guess that is what this website is all about.

This I pondered as the winds blew strong and cold and full of leaves and other debris from who knows where. The wind wanted to take the hat off my head so I had it screwed down tight and I stood there leaning up against my car facing a field with an empty playground. It wasn’t exactly quiet, but the backdrop made the mood quite serene.

Fall in  Wisconsin is the truth. A thousand colors line every street and forms the best backdrop imaginable. Some places have mountains or oceans, we have forests. Plenty are evergreen, and while they visibly change, they stay the same color for the most part. They look more sparse, a little eerie too. They tend to look like they would be strong with the dark side of the force. But, there is a place in life for what’s scary, so don’t judge.

But this beauty is followed by a cold beast, and winter here can be pretty unforgiving. You have to batten down the hatches before winter sets in or it’ll have to wait until spring.

So I push myself to do more before winter sets in … even though I never leave the fucking house.

A fresh start

I started writing in my early teens as an escape and a creative outlet. My career since has had some ups and downs, some successes and some failures as well. Check my resume page if you’re curious. Thing is, I been writing for basically my whole life, but I lacked a sound purpose or direction. That brings us to where we are today, on my first official website. So let me explain my current plan and the intent that I have in mind at this time.

I say “at this time” to protect my future self. This site may change, the blog and the fiction will more than likely deviate now and then. This is part of the creative process, and also the keystone I was missing in my process this whole time. More on that later.

This site is a blog first and foremost. As a writer in a world where no one reads, I pondered how to get my work out there. The blog format is great for shorter, punchy prose, which just so happens to be my style, so it’s only logical. I have things to say, and my posts won’t be all that long, so my content will be easy to access within modern life. Seems a clear win win scenario.

For those who like fiction and longer form works, I also will post my short stories, essays, and other writings for anyone to read. You can find it on the “Writings” tab. It’s free, but if you like it, and can afford to, I would appreciate it if you dropped something in the tip jar.

And the final part to this site is my writing resume. It will have my bio and some clips on display. I have a large body of work out there and some of it never went digital (if you can fathom …). I’ll assemble my greatest hits and then when I am looking for freelance gigs, I’ll steer my contact there.

But the blog will be the most active. Expect satire, hyperbole, sarcasm, dark humor and a laundry list of topics. I plan to keep it fresh and remain true to myself while doing so. Clickbait titles, one article spread over 34 pages of ads, gratuitous sexual images, the latest viral challenge, misguiding “news” stories – you will find none of that bullshit here. Just fresh content every weekday at 8 am central time.

Now, my design accommodates changes and adjustments, especially for when I get bored or in a rut, instead of letting the quality of my content deteriorate, I’ll change it up a bit, try something new and experimental. This is a good thing. I want my audience to know me, but not always what to expect.

So in closing, I aim to entertain you for short bursts every day. I plan to have a lot of fun with this and cover topics I feel are relevant to real life. I rep the working poor, so lots of my issues, beliefs and values are spawned of that.

See you on the page.

Hello world!

I had trouble coming up with a central theme for this blog, so it’s going to be about everything and nothing at all. The blog is billed as a slice of life affair, which means the focus will be things of interest or that are relevant to life on this sphere we call Earth. Anything from life hacks to philosophizing, the newest gadgets to ancient perfected technologies. To give you an idea of what what to expect, see below.

-Things I’m NOT into: politics, sports, celebrity news or television. Think of it this way – if a senator, a famous athlete and a reality TV star were in line with me at the grocery store, I wouldn’t even recognize them.

-Things I AM into: humor, parody, hyperbole, the human condition and what it means to be an animal in civilization. It’s harder than you think to remain true to our animal nature in the confines of society.

Humans are predators, never forget that, so it’s in our nature to hunt. My fear is that our prey is the perfect shiny new thing, and our hunt is shopping. This is pathetic. We could be so much more if we would only hunt knowledge and prey on wisdom. Forget about the new Apple this or Samsung that, even though it’s so much better than last year’s model because of the new whatchamawhoseit. It’s all bullshit. It’s fake, created by us, for us. We need to grow as a species, and I’m here to do my part to help that along before it’s too late.

So this blog is about living life as an effective animal in these strange times. I’m a bit of a geek, an urban hermit, always squinting in confusion, and I have some things to say. I welcome you on this journey. feel free to subscribe and comment if you wish.

Coming soon!

This site officially launches on December 1st, 2016. New posts go live Monday through Friday at 8 am central standard time here in the US of A, but I’ll be posting through the first weekend to get more content up for you folks.

Until then, you can subscribe to the blog by entering your email address over there on the right, and underneath that you can follow my socials.

See you on the page!