Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Free Writing - Take 41

Seems like forever since I visited this silly page. What started out as a way to joke and point fun at all things ludicrous ans absurd, my life included, then turned into movie reviews without any real review and some type of therapy. I realize now, how alone I am. The rain is keeping me awake, tickling my ear drums with it's soft sounds, as it cascades down some metal object out my window. It's ironic it would choose today. I stress, as in four hours I must defend myself against an injustice, I allowed to myself to succumb to. People always seem to be pushing the little guy, figuratively speaking, down. So today I stand up for myself. I feel like a child, asked to stand in front of the class and perform, never truly understanding the question. The once bright future, seems as dim as the light which shines on my weary face. Hiding the torment of the last few years. It truly hit me, when a stranger pointed out my decent. Not in anything other than my choice of words as once happy posts on social media, turned into attacks on levity and happiness.  Today could be a tiny battle, won or lost, or could be
the beginning of something I'm not prepared for. Either way, I need to take a stand. How much easier must it have been in the times of swords and armor, when answers to feuds lay solely in one's own hands. Ah, there I go again, romanticizing a mundane thing. I think
I'll shut my and try and sleep. The simplest pleasure, so foreign to me. When I think about it long and hard I've never slept in this place I call home. It's because it's never felt like a home. Devoid of any of the things that make a house a home; laughter, joy, music love or the most simple of all, a heartbeat.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Easter Morning - I Have Risen (Way Too Early)

Asleep a little after 12. Awake at 2 and now it's 4. Perusing the media outlets that contain friends and strangers. Regrets and possibilities stare at me. Wish I could go back and take that walk and change the course of personal history. Wish I could get that one break that would propel my dimly lit future. I see potential partners everywhere, both romantic and business, but it never comes together. My mind is both 25 and 65, as I approach 45. My body is 85, getting older by the day.

I lay, thinking about my last few hours, of which I have 32. There will be a wonderful meal, shared with my father and some friends. My brother, his wife and the dog will be absent. I miss them. I show my emotions to no-one anymore. Years of pain have taught me that nobody cares for the tears of this clown. My face is covered with grotesque slots and marks, medicines seem ineffective and the stress is tearing at me. I need to be able to look people in the eye. A potential boss or maybe a date, but my confidence, once grandiose, is weak, even shattered in ways. I stay afloat. Kicking, flailing, like a child thrown into the lake, paddling to survive.

I see a smile on the face of a friend and know I put it there. Their pain, momentarily eclipsed by a silly joke or a compliment. I push them over some invisible hurdle, lifting them upon my shoulders, my weakening knees shake, but I hold still. I reach for their hand to assist me, but they're gone. Moved on to some other life event. I believe they said thank you, I couldn't hear, as their back was turned. I sit facing the few true friends, sip my beer, my wine, my soup. I laugh and they laugh with me. They hand me some bread. It crunches and the crumbs fall on my chest. For minutes, I forget, lose myself in a meal, a story, a joke.

It's 4am and I've been here before. In 12 hours I'll be sipping a drink. In 24, I'll be back here thinking, in 36 I'll be on a bus, rolling towards my personal hell. In 48, I'll be alone, hoping for 60, when those who don't know better look up to me for support, guidance and to make them laugh. In 72, I'll be back to my solemn routine, thinking, as I am now, about regrets, missed opportunities and the once shining future.  Maybe it's as simple as changing the batteries, but do I have enough to buy them and will I know where to shine that light?

Saturday, April 19, 2014

2014 NFL DRAFT

YOUR PICKS

1 Jadeveon Clowney
DE, South Carolina
2 Greg Robinson
OT, Auburn
3 Johnny Manziel
QB, Texas A&M
4 Sammy Watkins
WR, Clemson
5 Blake Bortles
QB, UCF
6 Khalil Mack
OLB, Buffalo
7 Jake Matthews
OT, Texas A&M
8 Teddy Bridgewater
QB, Louisville
9 Anthony Barr
OLB, UCLA
10 Ha Ha Clinton-Dix
DS, Alabama
11 Derek Carr
QB, Fresno State
12 Eric Ebron
TE, North Carolina
13 Mike Evans
WR, Texas A&M
14 Taylor Lewan
OT, Michigan
15 Aaron Donald
DT, Pittsburgh
16 Kony Ealy
DE, Missouri
17 Louis Nix III
DT, Notre Dame
18 Marqise Lee
WR, USC
19 Darqueze Dennard
DC, Michigan State
20 Zack Martin
OT, Notre Dame
21 Ryan Shazier
OLB, Ohio State
22 C.J. Mosley
ILB, Alabama
23 Odell Beckham Jr.
WR, LSU
24 Calvin Pryor
DS, Louisville
25 Cody Latimer
WR, Indiana
26 Carlos Hyde
RB, Ohio State
27 Dominique Easley
DT, Florida
28 Jarvis Landry
WR, LSU
29 Kareem Martin
DE, North Carolina
30 Timmy Jernigan
DT, Florida State
31 Martavis Bryant
WR, Clemson
32 Austin Seferian-Jenkins Seattle

Friday, April 18, 2014

2014 MLB Predictions (Yes, I realize it's three weeks late)

I hand wrote my predictions about a month ago and never posted them to my silly blog. So here they are.

American League:
East - New York Yankees
Central - Detroit Tigers*
West - Oakland Athletics
WC - Texas Rangers and Boston Red Sox

The Yankees will bounce back with a healthy Jeter and Tex. The addition of Ellsbury and McCann will help, but Beltran is the key, because he allows for Soriano, Ichiro, Gardner and Ellsbury to rest and/or play DH.  The Tigers will continue their dominance of the Central, due largely to their big 3 again. I know the popular picks are the Rangers and Angels in the West, but I'm loving the A's this season. They dominate at home and in a close division, that will be the difference.  Texas is too strong with their young players not to make the layoffs and Boston squeaks by Baltimore, Anaheim and Tampa Bay to get the last spot.

National League:
East - Atlanta Braves
Central - St. Louis Cardinals*
West - Los Angeles Dodgers
WC - Washington Nationals and Arizona Diamondbacks

Atlanta and Washington will trade the top spot all year long, but the Atlanta crew will take it. St. Louis will dominate the Central, possibly clinching a playoff spot in mid-September.  Los Angeles has too many weapons and if they need something during the season, the money to go out and get it.  Washington's young guns will be tough all season and Arizona has some interesting weapons and a solid bullpen.

Wild Card Game:
Boston over Texas
Washington over Arizona

Divisional Series:
Detroit over Boston 4-3
Yankees over Oakland 4-1
St. Louis over Washington 4-3
Los Angeles over Atlanta 4-2

League Championship Series:
Detroit over Yankees 4-2
Los Angeles over St. Louis 4-2

World Series:
Detroit over Los Angeles 4-2
World Series MVP - Victor Martinez

MVP:
AL: Miguel Cabrera, Detroit
NL: Paul Goldschmidt, Arizona

Cy Young:
AL: Yu Darvish, Texas
NL: Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles

ROY:
AL: Nick Castellanos, Detroit
NL: Chris Owings, Arizona

Free Writing - Take 40

3:31 staggering towards the dimly lit hall, is it age or the coffee. A mid sleep trip to the bathroom that awakens me nightly. I look in the mirror and my tormented skin. My squinted eyes try to deflect the light and the frustration. Acne escaped my teen years, but has come after me with a vengeance. Everyone has their theory, as do I. I shuffle back to bed, sip from the water bedside. I crank the window open and the crisp air touches my warm face. I smile; birds chirp, but not to bother, but to chat, like two close friends, sharing their sorrows or is it their pleasures?  I roll over and reach for something. Am I asleep already or is the dream that preceded my trip coming back. It was pleasant, yet innocent. A trip to a cabin, they're always a cabin. Quiet, desolate, safe. Money, phones and stress have no place here. Two small to stretch out, we pull the blankets over us. She tells me of her fidelity and I tell her of my honor. I embrace her gently and we drift off. The birds talk about how trusting she is and how filled with hope they are for me. They then return to their own lives and my mind begins to settle into a dream. I am startled awake and I quickly ponder the days we shared together, wrapped in each other's arms. I wearily glance over, as the birds laugh. 3:37

Thursday, April 17, 2014

The Pluses & Minuses Of Living Alone

Leaving the toilet seat up whenever you want
Not having anyone to blame when you fall in at 4am

Movie night: Horror
Nobody to protect from the scary parts

One egg omelets
Nobody to remind you to buy eggs

Saturday and Sundays laying in bed without plans
Saturdays and Sundays laying bed without sex

Toilet paper lasts twice as long
See that comment about eggs

Food bills are minuscule
Dining alone is depressing

Dinner is slightly overcooked, but nobody to critique it
Realization you made enough for two meals

None of her friends calling "to chat" at all hours
Nobody for you to chat with at any hour

Not having to clean up after yourself
Not liking the state of your apartment and the depression it causes

Never having to make your bed
Never having it look like a mess for the right reasons

Eating entire meals in bed without any worries
Waking up to food stuck to your leg in the morning

Not having to go to bed because someone else is tired
Staying awake all night because you miss that comfort

All the sheets are yours
OK, so there is no minus in this one

Making a delicious meal and enjoying it
Not being able to see the reaction of someone enjoying it

Being able to dress the way you want and not be criticized
Going out with your sweatshirt on backwards and sleep in your eye

Never being surprised with chores or guests
Never being surprised with coffee, bacon or morning sex

Home is where the heart is
Only having half of it there




Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A-Z Of What Is Pissing Me Off (2014 Edition)

I did this a few years ago and without looking back to see what I wrote then, I'm going to write a new one.  Interesting to see if the same things are on both lists or if I've evolved or devolved.  Here you go.

A- Ads. During the Olympics we hit a new low with 22 minutes of commercials for eight minutes of coverage.
B- Buses. I'm so sick of taking buses.  I used to love long drives.  Buses suck.
C- Climate deniers. Really? This shit seems normal?
D- Dumb people. They  truly are everywhere you look.
E- Envy. For the first time in my life, I've found myself envious of a few people.  It's an ugly feeling.
F- Facebook. It's become the whiniest, bitchiest, attention craving, miserable fucked, weather obsessed piece of shit website ever, but I stay for pics of my friends kids and stories of their accomplishments.
G- Guns. If you still think it's the people that are the problem, you're not educated in the crime rates in other countries.
H- Health obsessed lecturers. Not people who you go to see, but those who tell you that the meal you've waited all day to eat, isn't healthy.
I- Individuality.  Or should I say lack of it.  I used to know 200 people, now I know 40 versions of five.
J- Justice. The more I read about our justice system, the more I realize how flawed our society and it's rules are.
K- Knicks. I don't really hate them, because they're irrelevant, but needed a K.
L- Leaks. If you know the story about my apartment, you know the ordeal.
M- Money. The more I live, the more obsessed people are with it and lose touch with what is really important.  See Facebook for examples.
N- Nigger. Yes, I wrote nigger. I'm so sick of hearing the ignorant racist white people I live near use this word. If this is acceptable, step up and use it in front of a black person.  Yeah, I thought not.
O- Opportunities.  I grew up being spoon fed this false idea that this country was the land of it, but the reality is, it's limited to about 310 million of us.
P- Parents. Kids are growing up to be unintelligent assholes. Yes, even some of my friend's kids, yet everyone else is the problem, but they are the POTY. Makes me sad.
Q- Qualifications. Yes, this could be my fault, but one piece of paper makes so many more qualified than my 20+ years of experience in a field.
R- Republicans. Not them as individuals, but their political agenda to degrade women, keep immigrants and minorities down and let the rich keep getting rich, even if it never helps them at all.
S- Sleep. I don't hate it, but hate that I lack it so often.
T- Television. I can't say I hate it really, because other than sports, I don't watch it.  That being said, when I have the opportunity, I realize it's killing our society's soul.  Making us puppets to capitalism and making us more ignorant.
U- Unemployment. Despite what people may think, my part time job is not my life goal.  I just don't want to be miserable 40 hours a week. I achieve that spending hours listening to my friends talk about their lives.
V- Vehicles. There are just too many cars on the road. The traffic, the noise, the deaths.  It's terrible.
W- Walking. Not because I'm lazy, but nobody understands the pain I experience from simply walking to the bathroom. Pain sucks! Maybe should have been P.
X- Xenophobes. It's just a fancy word for racist, bigot, hater.
Y- YouTube. When did they add ads to every single video?
Z- Zeppole. I was getting desperate and I love zoos, but I hate zeppoles.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Free Writing - Take 39

Today I lost a friend. Well, not exactly a friend, but a follower. A Twitter acquaintance that got fed up with a few days of negativity. It struck a chord. I have been. Do I have the right to be dismayed? Of course, but why should others be bothered? So what did I do? I punished myself. I won't get into how or why, but I neglected myself quietly, in an attempt to come to terms with a strangers annoyance. Silly? I don't think so. If someone that doesn't know me, saw ugliness, what did those close to me feel? Disgust? Should I have posted statuses about a trip in my shoes? For sympathy? Fuck sympathy. I need to man up and make changes happen.  First is to go to sleep before 5am

Quickie Review - Out Of The Furnace

Bleak!!!

This is the feel bad movie of the year. About as gritty and depressing as they come. That being said, the movie contains six of the best actors in the game and the casting is perfect. Harrelson is terrifying from beginning to end, Affleck is perfect as the stubborn younger brother with issues (possibly PTSD), Dafoe is slimy, but sympathetic, Whitaker is shockingly effective in a low key role, Shepard is the voice of reason and Bale is fantastic as the burdened lead. Add the lovely Saldana, as the heartbroken ex, looking fit stability in a world with very little brightness and you have a winner. The only complaint would be one silly scene early on and
a prophetic give away scene halfway through, but minor complaints. Not going to make anyone feel good about the world, but very effective.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Free Writing - Take 38

Money is the root of all evil or so they say. I have to agree. In our quest to attain it, even the smallest amounts more than we started with, some of us block out everything else. We forget the protocol and the rules, with our greed, for $5, $10 more turning us into animals that we keep caged in other cases.

Those are those who win money and freely share it with those around them and then there are the missed. There are those who dismiss the unwritten rules and those who purposely break them.  Those who extend the hand in gratitude, above and beyond are few.

Might seem very cryptic, but when you count on people doing the right thing and they don't, it can become catastrophic and cause stress you don't deserve. $5, $10 or $15 from one or two people isn't the be all end all, but when it becomes 15-20 people, it adds up. Now I have to take fiscal responsibility for their greed. And at a time I'm counting my singles to figure out how to get to work and back and what I'll eat. Maybe it's time that I step away and find people who understand. Or just step away completely.

So sad when people can tarnish something you once loved doing. In many ways, it's like most things in life. Sad.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Stretching Chinese Food

Being frugal, broke and sort of trying to lose weight, I have come to the realization; Chinese food is the most economical way to make take-out a substantial substitute to regular shopping. Of course, you're going to need a few staples at home.

The other night, I was in the mood for wings, but didn't feel like paying $11-13 for a handful. So I called my local take-out joint and made a small order. The chicken wing combo (comes with fried rice & an egg roll), cold noodles with Chef's special sauce and one extra egg roll. One filling meal, but I had other plans. The entire check was $15.

I took the wings out (10) and wiped the rice off. Melted two tablespoons of butter in a skillet and dumped in the hot sauce. I then tossed the wings for about two minutes until completely covered in the sauce, threw them on a plate with some sliced carrots I had and I was enjoying delicious buffalo wings for half the cost of the local bar.

The next morning, I made a poached egg and placed it over half the fried rice that I'd heated up. I did this the following day too. Three meals. For lunch I had an egg roll and the second one the next day. I had the noodles the second night and actually had enough leftover to have a snack, which I added a little chicken I had leftover from a previous homemade meal. $15 of take-out, turned into seven meals with the addition of approximately $2 worth of leftovers and some salad dressing I bought weeks ago.

It might sound silly, but where else can you get seven meals for $17?

Random Thoughts

Been a while since I did this, but they are a plenty.

My dreams have been talking to me lately, both vividly and directly.

Mistakes made the past six weeks have me down, but they are all that kept me going during this time.
.
The kids have been out of control, but the stories are amazing.

If you ever want to know how much more money means to people than friendship, run a pool.

The hardest I've laughed in the last few days has been inside a taxi. Step it up people.

Facebook has me wondering if people honestly believe that their personal and/or family inadequacies are really societal issues. Parents need to be accountable for their children.

A year ago I talked on the phone 2-3 hours a day with friends.  Last month I spoke on the phone less than two hours total.

I've learned over the last year that physical pain is the single most exhausting thing one can endure. It makes me appreciate a few special people even more.

I personally don't believe in two common medical/psychological maladies, but I fit the bill for two of them and they are getting worse.

My greatest passion is actually tearing at me, because I have nobody to share it with, other than my Twitter followers.

Not eating three meals a day, sometimes not even one, does strange things to your body, but even more strange things to your mind. My heart breaks for those affected by famine and food insecurity.

Lack of human touch makes people cold.  Not because they don't crave it, but the fear it will remain true.

The best way to find out how your friends truly feel about you, is to watch how their significant others treat you when they are not there.

Sunrises are rarely as beautiful as sunsets, but the right circumstances mean you've had a hell of a night.








Friday, April 4, 2014

Free Writing - Take 37

Eyes heavy, I take a pill. Sleep hits me immediately, but then the sound of rain awakens me. I stretch, thinking, what time is it? Four? Five? No, it's just midnight. Two hours. That was all and now I stare. Up at a black void. My life? The future is imminent and it's going to hurt. Thinking back to hours before, or was it days? Smiles. That moment when your close, to the point knees touch, one inside the other, but there is no romance, just comfort and trust. My phone's system changing trust to tryst, like it knows. Mocking me, ever so subtly. Two, three friends demand my attention and it is given immediately, without question, I am there. I never fail them, but then when I begin to speak, to look for that same behavior, I see their eyes withdraw, bodies turning, to kook at something, anything. The words fall on ears so deaf, caused by the booming sounds of selfishness. I reach out further, but they are gone. Physically sitting, nodding, performing an act of brilliant deception. My words only background music as they wait for me to stop so they might use my ear for their woes. Mine already forgotten and yet, I thank them and tell them I'm here, as they walk away. Friendship?

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

National Autism Day Is Every Day For Some

A few years ago, I had a class of kids who had all knew each other since kindergarten. They also put a boy from a different grade in who was a little bit different. This class was rambunctious and a bunch of wise-asses and I saw their faces when this other child entered. I was worried.

The first day, the team that received the new guy, was very upset. They ran in front of him to make catches and throws and despite this the boy didn't care. They did. I said nothing. By week three, a few kids realized, despite not being aware of the rules, he could hit, run, catch, kick, etc.

By week five he was getting congratulations and high fives from a few. By week seven, he still couldn't grasp all the rules, but the snickers had turned to encouragement. Then one day we were playing basketball and his team was winning. Everyone on his team had scored, so the other kids stopped trying to win and tried to get him the ball. What was amazing wasn't that his teammates did such s wondrfull thing, but that the other team, even if slightly obvious at times, assisted in this. Eventually, after about seven or eight attempts he scored. They all congratulated him and the game then continued as it began.

 In the final week as the kids said goodbye to him, the mother stood there in disbelief. She thanked me for everything I had done to make it easier for him and for getting through to the others. I explained to her that I never once said anything to the kids and that while it took a few weeks, their acceptance and kindness was in no way a result of sympathy or pity projected by me.

 In week one, I was told G was autistic and had severe processing issues. I was told if his inclusion was a problem to let them know. The thought never crossed my mind and after three weeks, it never crossed the minds of a bunch of eight year olds. Why would it? Being aware doesn't mean you need to change who you are and what you do, you just have to accept it.

Quickie Review - Gravity

Academy award nominee? Despite some beautiful special effects and at times a visual feast, Gravity is nothing more than a cheesy Lifetime movie. A script written in such a scattered way, with plot holes bigger than space's infamous black holes, the movie is so laden with sap, it could have been served with pancakes.

Bullock and Clooney are enjoyable, but this movie has every cliche imaginable. At 91 minutes long, some may accept it's mindlessness, but good grief, it even has a rebirth, a Marvin the Martian sighting and two or three "wait, didn't they just say not to do that?" scenes. Paired with an awful score, the visual experience is lost, by this bungled attempt to create the epic space catastrophe film. Truly an awful experience, that ironically never gets off the ground.