A Short Thought For Short’s Sake

There are some things in life that should never be thought about. Take, for instance, your insides. Yes, your guts. Your actual guts. The ugly, nasty, bloody mess of your insides. No one wants to see that unless they’re paid to or they harbor some horrific fetishes.

Think about it for a second and realize that you don’t think about it.

Unless it causes you problems.

Right now I have a tiny camera working it’s way through my plumbing. You heard that right. I swallowed one of those cameras the size of a gargantuan vitamin used for diagnostic purposes. It’s there, floating around, like a tiny submarine of bad news. If it doesn’t lodge itself in my digestive tract, then it will come out the other side and tell me that I’m either sick or crazy. Trust me, there is a difference. I just never really wanted to find out which side I’m on.

This camera is currently taking pictures of my unseemly side. The inner depths of everything I take in, to be shat out at a later time. It monitors the destruction of creation and the construction of waste. It is gathering information on how well I process shit.

There is something troubling about that. I’ve prided myself on my ability to deal with shit and now this thing, this tiny torpedo of shit stories, is going to grade me. I’m usually so good at being graded but now I find myself closely watching a tiny blinking blue light while I wander aimlessly through a shopping mall in my pajamas. This is my last step before gaining a label of insanity.

Although, some would say I’ve already been breathing that label in, deeply.

My point is this:

We live our lives without acknowledging that what’s inside really exists but the inside cannot live without being aware of us. Some might say, we are it’s world. (Yes, dad, I stole your line.) If we took the time to give it attention every once and a while, would that prevent the need to wait for the blue light to stop blinking?

Or will we always be at the mercy of how well we process shit?

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Fuck You, Pumpkin Spice!

Put simply, I hate pumpkin. Don’t worry. I have an explanation for this.

This time of year brings out the “Pumpkin Spice” everything. People are even saying that it is the one thing that lets us know that it’s truly fall. The one thing. As if the leaves changing color wasn’t a big ass hint. This pumpkin shit is in everything these days and I, whole heartedly, blame Starbucks. That damn Pumpkin Spice Latte ruined everything. Now, I’m all for a stupid gimmick to get me to buy something. It is my right as a consumer to fall into a pit of endless gimmickry. However, I only fall prey to the honest gimmicks. You know, the ones that deliver what they promise are the ones that induce drooling. If I go out of my way to purchase a Back To The Future trilogy set because it’s offering collectable miniature license plates then I expect to see some damn license plates. It’s a gimmick, sure but I enjoy my junk purchases. It makes me smile to see those plates perched atop my other junk purchases and just because Tyler Durden tells me that it’s slowly killing my soul doesn’t detour me from doing so. I enjoy the gimmick like any other consumer as long as it follows through. With that in mind, when I see Pumpkin Spice cookies there better be some form of pumpkin or spice in the ingredients now, shouldn’t there? But there isn’t! Not a trace! They just dye it orange and slap a label on it! There is nothing worse in the world than a junk purchase lying about what it contains. It’s just not right. It’s fall. This is the time for giving and all I’m asking for is a little break.

I get that Pumpkin Spice is mainly about the spice mixture that is added to pumpkin in order to give it a better flavor. This is what you do to it in order to call it edible but, that’s the thing, pumpkin is fucking disgusting! In no way, shape, or form should it be consumed by anyone. The sole purpose of a pumpkin is to rip it’s guts out and carve a face into it so we can point and laugh at someone other than that idiot next to us. It is an artistic medium of fuckery and that’s it. Nothing about it tastes good. The guts are inedible besides the seeds but even those are flat, tasteless sunflower seed rejects. If you added the spice mixture to those it might make you punch your grandmother in the tit. As far as pumpkin pie goes, it’s nothing but a bullying tactic from your great aunt Tilly to ruin a fantastic Thanksgiving meal. The only reason why you eat it every year is because this could possibly be Tilly’s last Thanksgiving but, guess what? That bitch just won’t fucking die! You end up eating that putrid mess every miserable year while she watches with a maniacal gleam in her eyes. That glob of pumpkin in a horribly misrepresented pie crust is just a mushy mass of dirt and she knows it.

I loathe any type of food that resembles the ground I walk on. (I’m looking at you too, mushrooms.) It doesn’t even look appetizing. It’s all just brown and lifeless. It lacks the enthusiasm that an apple or lemon meringue pie does. It just doesn’t care. A pumpkin pie just shows up whether or not it was invited. It reminds me of a backyard after a good rainstorm when the dog crap starts to spread itself into the earth. The shit part isn’t quite incorporated yet but you can feel its presence.

Even more than the shit-dirt resemblance, I loathe anything that falls in the category of mushy. All it ends up being is a lump of leafy dirt that somehow manages to be wet and dry at the same time. It’s mushy without really being mushy. It’s not like risotto; that good-for-nothing destruction of perfectly good rice. Risotto is an oozing smear of disappointment. It’s the confused cousin of rice whereas pumpkin is in a subcategory of mushy all its own. It’s the paste without kindergarten playtime or a mashed potato without exuberance. Pumpkin is the melancholy sweet potato. Why should it bother puffing itself up when it knows how useless it is? That dense, pasty shit-dirt is just a hopeless reminder of how terrible life can be.

Maybe that was Starbucks’ point…

If they slap a hopeless reality label on an uplifting product they can beat you down just enough while lifting you to a level of endless dependency with a smile. Pumpkin Spice is the dark side, but on the other side? Coffee! By the time you realize what you’ve just consumed you’re too jacked up to care. You see, it is not the Pumpkin Spice that draws you in but the delusion of overcoming something terrible by simply ignoring it for what it is.

Pumpkin Spice is a defense mechanism for societal obligations.

The pumpkin is lying to you…

I implore you, do not consume.


How Respect Can Change Your Life

(Warning: extremely vulgar language to follow. If you can’t handle it, the back button is sufficient escape. Dear father, I’m still your little girl but, yes, those words seemed necessary.)

A PSA from yours truly (because it’s a bit of fun):

Alright boys and girls. Today, we are going to talk about respect because if it’s good enough for Aretha Franklin to demand it then it sure as hell is good enough for the rest of us, right? Re-spect. That’s r-e-s-p-e-c-t. Does anyone know what that means? No? Well, that just fucking figures, doesn’t it? Those lazy, good-for-nothing parents of yours have failed you in your early life but that’s okay. I’m here to help. Now, preschool seemed like a good time to explain this to you because, let’s face it, you’re surrounded by strange and ignorant little shits that will grow up to be a smoldering pain in my ass if I don’t so, here goes.

Class, what do you think happens if a grown up tells you to “be quiet” and “pay attention?” What’s that, Timmy? It means to run around in circles while screaming obscenities and offering animal sacrifices to your demonic lord? Well, that’s not the case, Timmy. It means to sit down and shut your fucking mouth before that grown up makes your life a living hell. That’s another, secondary, lesson for you today, kids because us grown ups really can make your life a living hell and, as a collective, we are becoming increasingly impatient with the group of kids that are a little older than you are right now. So, if I were you, I’d get the motherfucking hint because your leash is quite a bit shorter than theirs. Now, one of the most important things you need to remember about this portion of our lesson is that if you don’t stop and listen every once in a while then someone will end up going medieval on your ass and, no matter how much you think you know, you’re still just a bunch of whining, ignorant pussies that don’t know the difference between an actual boyfriend or girlfriend and your left hand.

The second part of our lesson has to do with something called boundaries. Little Suzie over there knows what I’m talking about. Don’t you, Suzie? Stop trying to lick Allison’s face now and fucking listen, you little cunt! See, when Maggie’s mom decides to ask me who I’ve been deep-throating lately I can tell her to get the fuck off my shit and shut her fucking mouth because boun-da-ries should tell her that it’s none of her god damn business. Is it, kids? This, also, doesn’t give you any fucking right to stand unnecessarily close to anyone in any situation and deposit your shit-stained breathe on the back of their neck. Boundaries means to back the hell up, stop asking shit that you need to know nothing about, and removing your pathetic ass from my life if I have asked you, repeatedly, to do so. I’ll say it again, it’s called boun-da-ries.

Alex! Get your finger out of your ass and pay fucking attention! I don’t care if you’re five years old and have two hundred friends on Facebook! It doesn’t mean that any of those people give any fucks about what your asshole feels like or that you had waffles for breakfast!

Lastly, kids, there’s this little problem you seem to be having with other people’s possessions. This is a little bit like boundaries but I feel that it needs it’s own emphasis because all you little shitheads seem to think that everything belongs to you. Let me tell you a secret, children; absolutely nothing belongs to you unless you fucking earn it. If you work your ass off, you can receive damn near anything you want. Valuables and a positive reputation do not come from underneath your couch cushions. However, there are some things that will never belong to you because, simply put, IT IS SOMEONE ELSE’S PROPERTY! Get off your ass and get your own shit. If you borrow something from someone else then you should, not only, return it in pristine condition but, also, put it back in it’s proper place.

If you live a life that hands out respect with every exhale then you will inhale an equal amount. If you don’t shut the fuck up and listen, back the fuck off when necessary, and work your fucking hardest to earn your own possessions and your own way then you will live in a miserable shit storm of endless mockery, paper cuts, and Sriracha-lime juice enemas because fuck you. Life does not reward the fool. No matter who the person is right next to you or what they represent, remember that there is not a single bone in your body that warrants a self righteous, cocksucker attitude. Be it a teacher, parent, police officer, firefighter, or little Timmy who’s picking his nose again, you need to learn right now how living with a high level of respect can change your fucking miserable little existence, children.

Now, go the fuck home. Ms. Atina needs a whiskey-induced nap.


The Torturous Smells of an Apartment Complex

Imagine this:

 

You’ve been living with your parent(s) for… well… damn near your whole life, give or take a year when you thought you were ready even though you had no idea which way was up or why that little bundle of something next to you makes the most adorable cooing sounds followed by blood-curdling screams.

 

Anyway…

 

You move out. That little bundle is now seven years old and you surprise her with a “new” apartment. I use the quotations because the outdated kitchen cabinets and the mediocre temperature capacity of the water heater would suggest otherwise. It’s new to you and that’s all you care about.

 

At least, until you notice a distinct smell. The old kind of smell that tells you that the people before you may have left in a hurry and forgot what the word “clean” actually means. You start to smell the dust and grime left behind to consume every surface area. It’s okay though. You can make this better because you’re borderline obsessive when it comes to clean. After you slave over a couple of days and knock off a few years of your lung capacity, it starts to feel like home here. You breathe as deep as your chemical-ridden lungs will allow and relax. This is your space. Now, sit back on your invisible furniture and bask in the silence.

 

Oh hey, there’s that bundle again… and her abuse of all vocal functionality. (Yes, dad. That word is for you.)

 

A few days pass and you notice your nostrils twitching again. Wait, a smell? You thought you eradicated all bad smells from existence when you moved in. Oh no. There’s one thing you forgot about; you have neighbors. There are people in close proximity behind fragile, deteriorating walls. You can hear everything that they do. Why would you ever think that you wouldn’t smell them?!

 

Thank you, under-maintained apartment complex, for reminding me exactly how “new” you really are.

 

At first, the smell isn’t so bad. The neighbors are frying something it seems. This is fine. You enjoy a little bit of greasy deliciousness yourself. You’re okay with this…until… What the hell is that?! It smelled like chicken at first but now it reeks of the garbage left in the dirt under the hot sun for days before the chicken shit all over it. It assaults every sense you have. Your nostrils close up, causing you to become a mouth breather. Your eyes start watering uncontrollably, everything you touch feels like ten-year-old fryer oil, and the only thing you can hear is your own sobbing. This must be what limbo is like. It teases you with the smell of beautifully fried chicken but ends up reminding you of a time when you threw up in the backseat of your parents’ car on a hot summer day and then couldn’t get all of it out of the creases for weeks. The worst part of this moment is that it lingers for the rest of the night as if the smell has seeped into the walls somehow and exhales itself in short periodic bursts.

 

However, by morning, it seems to have diminished. Alright, that wasn’t too awful. Maybe they just had an off night.

 

But you were wrong, so very wrong. It continues the next night and every night thereafter. It’s like this cruel cycle of making you want to throw up your dinner at the very smell of what your neighbor is cooking. Why would they do such a thing to that poor food?! WHY?!

 

But wait, what’s this? It stops. The horrible smell seems to dissipate. It’s gone for a long time. All of the sudden, the nightmares stop and you sleep peacefully knowing that they quit murdering the culinary lifestyle.

 

This is what the paradise side of limbo feels like.

 

Then, one night, you start to smell something else. This time, it’s not so horrible. Your nostrils stay open and, maybe, even a little wider than they should. You remember that smell. It’s that sweet, delicate, seductive smell of chocolate in fudgy-cake form.

 

BROWNIES!

 

It’s such a beautiful smell. Everything inside of you goes weak and you consider forgetting the last eight months of horror just so you can ask for a piece. Just one delicious piece of perfectly cooked chocolate pillows is all you need…

 

Then…

 

It dawns on you that five days ago you started that doctor recommended gluten-free diet. Why else would your neighbors suddenly figure out that not everything has to be fried in murky oil to taste good? Of course they would pick this exact point in time to produce the most INTOXICATINGLY DELICIOUS SMELL KNOWN TO MAN. You can almost hear the maniacal laughing on the other side of the wall. This feels purposeful.

 

At some point the uncontrollable sobbing will stop.

 

At least, that’s what you tell yourself while you search the vast reaches of the internet for an apartment with thicker walls.


It’s Never Clean Enough

I would like to take a moment to share my woes of being a “maintainer of kitchens”. Well, the woes of cleaning after a long break that is.

 

(Dear Boss, if you happen to come across this little moment of open expression… Eh, just remember who’s writing it and I think you’ll agree.)

 

Was it Macbeth’s wife that said, “Out damn spot”?

 

I feel like I truly understand those words now. Maybe not in her sense but to that degree of losing my fucking mind.

 

It starts with wiping off the stainless steel prep tables at work. At first, all you wish to do is create a workable surface; sanitize the station. However, there’s that pesky little reminder that these surfaces went untouched all summer. (It’s at a school you see… college… no summer classes… yet.) If I clean the top I have to clean the shelf underneath but if I do that then I have to clean every cutting board, utensil, knife case, and stand mixer that goes with it. It is at this very moment, while cleaning the bottom shelf, I can see up-close and personal just how disgusting the floor is but I can’t do that just yet because I need to wipe down the stoves. As I’m wiping down the stoves I see how nasty the shelves are that hold every dish to be used in the kitchen. Those dishes must be washed, I say but in order for them to go back on the shelf the entire shelving area needs to be sanitized. (Yes, this is exactly how my attention wanders.)

 

What about the dishwasher?

 

Oh no… I have to clean the dishwasher before I can wash the dishes after I sanitize the shelves, which I noticed while cleaning the stoves after I wiped down the tables…

 

And the fridges…

 

I can’t clean the fridges without removing every shelf and sanitizing each and every little corner.

 

But wait…

 

The rolling rack of oversized cans of beans that no one ever asked for has grease on every inch of it… And then I look down again.

 

The floor… that fucking floor…

 

There’s a plethora of dried up carcasses of what used to be cockroaches covering its surface and I notice they’re staring at me with their deathly eyes; laughing at how they made themselves “at home” before deciding to stop living at that very spot. I’m reminded of how revolting those little bastards are and it makes me wipe down the tables again. Now, hold on, before I can do that…

 

HOLY SHIT THERE’S A FUCKING SPIDER ON THE GOD DAMN WALL!

 

It’s not one of the little ones either. It’s one of those Sun Spiders that look like they’ve been beaten with an ugly stick before being sent out into the world. This is what my nightmares feel like. I can’t deal with this shit. I start to notice curled up remnants EVERYWHERE. In the corners… under tables… next to the toilet in the bathroom…

 

My bladder creates a dam and my colon swells itself shut.

 

Now I’m looking at the walls. This building is never clean enough. They’ve been crawling all over these walls, I realize. I look down into the sink and find one belly-up, one of its legs extended slightly above the rest as if to give me the middle finger. I loathe you little sideshow freaks.

 

Great… Now I’m scrubbing the sink.

 

While getting a trash bag to dump the little victims into their mass grave I notice the state of the trashcan’s interior. Somehow I forget the moment when I end up shoulder deep in the smelly plastic container. It’s dark in here… but at least I’m alone.

 

After washing my hands I notice the faucet is smudged… And the soap dispenser… As well as the towel dispenser.

 

And I think I’m finished…

 

The last dish is going to it’s home when I turn around to find a brand new, grimy little spot right on the edge of the prep table. I hang my head, exhaling with much exhaustion, and remember that I haven’t done the floors yet. I meander my way to the mop sink to find my lovely mop bucket on its wheels with a slight bit of water in it. Apparently, this is the site of the spider’s pool party and I see that there were some casualties. The floors can wait.

 

When all is accomplished and the day is through, I’m left with a dire need to bathe. After finally getting home, I rest my palms on the sink in the bathroom and allow my face to drop. My eyes become fixated on the surface and I think to myself…

 

I need to clean this place…


Late Night Writing

(A repost after a brief moment of hatred. Being a writer allows me moments of distaste in my own work. Yes, Dad. Maybe you were right.)

 

Step 1: Describe your mood (don’t leave anything out)

 

Honestly, I’m a bit anxious… and I have been for a ridiculously long time with no particular reasoning. It’s followed by a dash of sadness in a pool of exhaustion.

 

Step 2: Describe the motivating factor for said mood

 

The motivating factor in any version of anxiety is fear. Why? Well, if there was nothing to fear then there would not be a need to worry.

 

Step 3: Realization

 

Fear can cause us to do things that we wouldn’t normally do. If you have enough fear in your life it begins to become a normal personality function. Having an overload of fear will eventually erode a normal thought process to cause unrealistic expectations of the worst possible outcome for everyday routines. In other words, you will forget what it means to enjoy the fact that you are alive at this very moment. For a writer, you forget the joy of self-expression.

 

Step 4: Identify the problem

 

I’m too anxious for my own good.

 

Step 5: Identify the solution

 

Stop fucking worrying about every little meaningless thing. (Yes, everything.)

 

Step 6: Utilize your solution

 

Easier said than fucking done…

 

Living with anxiety is like stabbing yourself, over and over again, with tiny needles all over your body. You may never know where the next one will be and it may not even hurt that much but it is the build up to the point of skin contact that is slowly killing you. Anxiety is painful in the subtlest of ways.

 

And the ramifications of trying to ignore it are even worse. So…

 

Step 7: Re-identify the problem and create a personalized solution

 

The real problem is not always the easiest answer. I have anxiety. I have enough anxiety to spare some for profit that would turn me into a billionaire who is riddled with anxiety. (I’m not even sure if that makes sense but that’s the point of anxiety. It never will.) Having anxiety is not my real problem; trying to avoid it is. If I ignore what is a dominating personality trait, I will begin to lose who I really am. The number one reason for unhappiness is denying who we are. Do I declare to the world that I live in a bubble of anxious thoughts so overwhelming that I fear everything and everyone around me including myself? I wouldn’t say so (but I guess I just did). Identifying that I am avoiding my problem is my true problem… I think. The solution is as simple as this: stop fighting myself and allow those moments to wither their way out of my system. I cannot deny them access but I can deny them control.

 

What is my point for writing all of this down? Nothing really. Isn’t this a form of therapy? Not every thought can be a moment of philosophical genius. (I know. This is very unlike me. Isn’t it?) I guess if there was any point it would be that even though I can hide behind the safety of a computer screen to you, there is still a level of humanity in everything I write down. My thoughts can be shared because I allow them to (even though I am anxious about how you perceive them). This does not make them reasonable, factual, or even logical but it does mean that you can comprehend them on some basic level. What you choose to take from it is for you and only you. No one else in the entire world can tell you how to think. It is the one thing that we have that not a single soul out there can expect you to hand over willingly. That’s an amazing thought, isn’t it? The greatest gift that we have is the gift of self-expression. When we offer this out we meet people and are thus given the opportunity to comprehend expression from others. In this instance, we are sharing a moment because we both started with Step 1. This is myself telling myself to write about myself in the hopes of learning about… myself as well as creating an open market for anyone to begin to think. (When you can’t figure out where to begin writing, sometimes it’s good to start with how you feel.) It’s an exercise in expression on my side of the screen and an exercise in comprehension on your side. Telling you I have anxiety is a way of letting you know that, while I chose a digital medium, our time together is humanistic. I am not asking you to agree with anything that I have to say. It is my hope that you begin to realize that, while you stare at an inanimate computer screen, there is a living, breathing human being on the other side. You are only as alone as you allow yourself to be but, sometimes, company cannot be avoided.

 

 

These are not your words; they are mine. You chose to come here…

 

…and I find something beautiful about that. Let’s not waste this.


Catching Death Off Guard

I did write this last night but it has taken this long for me to post it. I haven’t talked about this subject in a while but I felt the need to put out a different voice on the matter.

 

(My dear loving father, Seeing as you are a loyal reader, you might want to skip this one.)

 

Right now, as I write this, it is exactly five minutes until midnight which means that it is still, technically, Robin Williams’ sixty forth birthday… or, at least, it would have been.

 

From the day he was found dead, people all over the world have been singing his praises. They call him a great man, humble, a loving human being who made the world laugh. He taught us many things, they say. He was one of the good ones. This may be true. I would not know. I never had the chance to meet him. Whenever someone dies, the polite thing to do is speak kindly of them. In death, we are not our mistakes but a triumph of our successes. This is what keeps us from speaking ill. Celebrate the life while forgetting the death.

 

What happens when it is suicide?

 

No one dares to speak of the darker side of death. Why would we? Why would we shame them for something they could not control? Depression is an all-consuming force. Is it not? When someone commits suicide society tells us that it was not their fault. They could not stop it. They lost their battle with a raging demon. However, the one thing I have noticed is that no one takes the time to pay attention to the side effects of suicide. There is one thing that no one seems to take notice of. It is the people around them that are left with this cloud over their heads. The ones closest to them, left broken in despair, that are left thanking everyone for their kind words without a single acknowledgement to what they are thinking. Their loved one committed suicide. That person, lying six feet below the ground, took their own life for reasons known only to them. They interrupted Death’s lunch break simply because they felt like it. Yes, suicide is a feeling above all else and for those of us on the other side of the dirt… well, we just have to live with it.

 

Eventually, you stop picking up the phone to call them or going home with the expectation of finding them there. You continue to get up every single day and move forward. The late night crying stops and the memories get pushed back in your mind only to be brought out at the right times. There is a sense of control you take on because the people that are around you at this very moment do not need to know how much it destroyed you. No one wants to hear about how that person left you behind. Those people you pass by everyday lack the desire to be aware of the anguish you feel knowing that your children will never meet that person you once knew. Filling out a medical history form now requires a moment of silence. Holidays with your family will always have an empty seat that not a single person wishes to acknowledge. Every accomplishment you achieve throughout your life is slightly less fulfilling and every time you hear about someone else taking their life it reminds you that, unfortunately, you know how that feels. It is the looks you recieve when asked how they died. It is the pity you never asked for but, most of all, it is the resentment that you hate feeling. You once loved them, dearly, and all they showed you was how much that just did not matter.

 

Being a child of that not only robs you of your childhood but, also, labels you in a way that stabs you deep down in your gut every time the word is even mentioned. My mother committed suicide and everyday I become a little closer to being older than she ever was. This is a fact that will continue to haunt me in the coming years. She never made it past her thirties and I am left fearing the genes that she gave to me. A parent taking their own life gives a brand new meaning to not wanting to become them. Their memories are now tarnished and, somehow, you feel guilty for remembering how they died. We tell ourselves not to let it define us. We forgive and move on but on certain days, after a moment of anger, we laugh at how stupid it all was only to turn around and cry about how selfish it all was.

 

The greatest side effects of suicide are the ones left behind. My mother was my best friend as a child. I held her memory high for a long time only to realize the weight it had placed on my shoulders.

 

My daughter will never meet my mother and, for that, I hold her responsible.

 

Mr. Williams’ birthday has passed now…

 

I think I can put her memory away again.


How Do You Say…?

What happens when there is nothing left to say? At any moment, it could happen to an audience, your family, a friend, or a lover. Eventually, we will have nothing left to express. Our world will become silent and the people will be forgotten. All of which stems from the loss of a word.

 

A word…

 

Words are nothing but a series of lines and curves that make up letters utilized in a sentence to organize expression. We use them to formulate a business plan, terrorize an enemy, or in an attempt to describe love. Without words we would lack education leading to a decline in intelligence. Knowledge would be nothing more than scribbles on our skin. Hate would be synonymous with compassion and acceptance. The lost are simply elsewhere, the established are merely still, and to be in-between would be outside of. Words are nothing that describes everything in which their meaning only exists through interpretation. The improper inflection could lead to misunderstanding causing a revolt against the calm exterior. They are spelled out or plainly put. Accompanied by emphasis or hung on vague motivation. Words can cause confusion, animosity, and self-doubt. All of which can change with a personal choice of whether or not to erase the word “offense”.

 

Offense takes pride within sports as a balance to defense. However, as of late, it is the motto of our society. Without it we feel forgotten, left out, and lonely. We create it to have a voice whether it needs to be heard or not. We embellish it to justify our ever-growing defensive side. The fight comes before the explanation because we misinterpreted the definition. Instead of the balance we allowed it to become all encompassing. Why? Well…

 

You call it bossy but I call it strong. He calls it love but she calls it lust. They call it intolerance but we call it forgettable. Through all of this everyone forgot to listen which is the one word that requires no other words. It is a thought, a courtesy given without expectation. It is the one word that could build bridges and destroy the walls that divide us by offering a simplistic form of compassion. Through the eagerness of speech we end up leaving this courtesy behind without realizing that most of what we say does not warrant this action. The majority of the time it is good to remind ourselves that what we want to say is just not that important. If we think before speaking we can offer up a more intelligible opinion. We can correct our mistakes and respect the ones listening. Most of all, we can be taken seriously. Beyond the misspellings and overuse of slang, we have more words to express. We are not defined by slogans and memes. We are human beings with the ability to utilize the complex yet meaningless system of building expression through speech. Stop trying to express the deeper meaning of you with cute little memes and using “dat” instead of “that”. If you misspell your life’s motto then maybe it is about time you make some changes.

 

Great speeches never skip the proofreading stage. We need to remind ourselves of this every time we find ourselves slipping to the offensive side of life. The abuse of words will lead to the destruction of language. We will fall short on our privileges.

And we will run out of something to say.


My Lazy Apology

I haven’t called in a while. I know. I’m a terrible friend… So sorry.

It’s been far too long, readers. I apologize for that. I’ve been dwelling on uncontrollable life moments. Crap that really doesn’t need to be fussed over.

AND… I’ve been lazy.

We’ve talked about this… I’m sure I mentioned it. Anyway, doesn’t matter. The problem with being a writer is that when you sit down on a regular basis to write something, it can start to feel like homework. Then your words become random letters smashed together because of your forehead making repeated contact with the keyboard. It happens. Actually, it happens quite a bit with me. I’m not gonna lie. I love writing and at some point I convinced myself that I’m vastly more intelligent when I write. I can be anyone I want on paper (or computer screen) but I choose to be myself which means I ramble incoherently until proofreading makes me want to claw out my eyeballs. That’s not something you witness, however. You only see the greatness. Even now, when I swiped “greatness” on my phone’s keyboard it autocorrected with my last name. It’s not coincidence, it’s just fact. (No, I’m not this arrogant in real life.)

The whole point of me writing this right now is to let you know that I haven’t forgotten about you, my five loyal readers. Neglected, yes but not forgotten. Personal issues mixed with a general lack of desire to remove my ass from couch cushions has caused me to ignore this website. I felt bad. I began to long for it. I needed to log in again. I missed you, website. My Netflix game is strong these days… A little too strong.

I can’t promise much but I can tell you that my personality is on a motivated arc right now. It might not last but I’m working on it. I want to come back. It might just take a minute though.

Right now, I’m tired but something will vomit itself from my brain soon. I can feel it.

Maybe it’s just a fart. (Haha… Get it? Because it comes from my brain… Yeah, I’m tired.)

Soon… Though… Stuff…


The Color of Misguided Fear

My dad asked me a question not too long ago. It was a simple question but it held a loaded context, something that has become dangerously hushed for all the wrong reasons. The question was this: If you were walking down the street late at night and a black man was walking towards you, would you be scared? It did not take me long to respond to this. My answer was yes but not because he is black. My answer, while simply worded, has a bit of a longer explanation to it. This explanation has taken me a couple weeks to actually write down which, I have learned, is just another example of the weight of the words I am typing right now. When I told my dad that I wanted to write this particular blog he told me not to. “They will hate you,” he said but that is fine with me. That hate defines my explanation.

 

I live in a cloud of struggle just like anyone else. I have lived off of potatoes and eggs for lack of food money. Government employees monitor my every move not because I am a criminal but because I am a single mother who cannot seem to remove myself from hard times. I graduated with an associates degree but still lack the opportunity to fully utilize it to grow in a career. I have a job that does not offer a decent amount of hours to prevent my daughter and I from living in HUD housing. This job, also, does not offer benefits to allow me to graduate from being a DES dependent into a full-fledged grownup. The HUD housing that I reside in is actually considered to be one of the worst in town because of its reputation of housing some unsavory people. There have been shootings here, a high traffic of drugs, and cops making regular visits. None of this being a reflection of skin color. This is a diverse housing unit of failed youth. At least, that is how this town sees it. I do not enjoy living here but I lack options. At the very least, I do get to call this place my own, which is more than most and I am grateful for that but it does not mean that I wish to settle here. These are things that cause me a great deal of frustration and demoralizing anger but I refuse to use this as an excuse to destroy my town. These are things that I must push past even if it takes my entire lifespan to do so. This is a widespread problem among many different races of people living in America. The thing that makes it personal for me is the refusal I receive from being allowed to agree with you because I am white. Somehow it became about rejecting my struggles because, even though they are the same as most people, it does not recognize a specific race. I get labeled racist for generalizing the financial hardships of everyone in this country. For the first time in my life, I am beginning to see the separation of race not for it’s discriminating factors but it’s lack of unity. This country was founded on immigration. It was a chance to bring people together from all over to offer a unified decision to put freedom above all else. If anything, we are taking a step back.

 

The household that I was raised in did not take the time to discuss race. There was never a moment when my parents pulled me aside and said, “Now, daughter, you need to listen to us. We want you to fear people of a different color because they will cause you great harm simply because they do not look like you.” Skin color was never a factor in my moral upbringing. I was never told to believe that I was better than anyone else because I am white and they are not. We are all human and I believe that this is defined by basic needs as well as moral and ethical responses. We are born with the ability to make choices and to believe in what ever we see fit. My parents chose not to define my societal responses by race and I believe in the unity that they were trying to accomplish. The authority figures in my life never instilled any racial discrimination within my moral compass. I was never taught to hate.

 

However, what I am seeing lately is causing my beliefs to become unstable. Over the past few years I have opened my eyes a bit more to what is going on beyond my town and state. I have looked into this country and have a gained a great deal of respect for the place that I was lucky enough to be born in and this had given me a stronger belief in the unity of America. Well, it was at the time. I can never claim that I know a lot about the world or even my own country but I can say that I know enough. My opinions are based off of my views more so than my knowledge from books. You see, when it comes down to it, unity is where we are currently going wrong but in the sense of fearing our neighbors rather than segregating skin tones. The reason why I would be afraid of the man walking towards me on the street is because we all have caused each other to question the morals of the person next to us regardless of what color they are. There is no trust left within this country. We can blame this on technology all we want but it is us that have allowed it to take over our thought process. Parents have put their children in front of televisions and computers instead of telling them to go outside. More of us are growing up behind a Facebook profile with the instant gratification of misguided opinions. We have allowed ourselves to gain a short attention span because investing a little time in research has become obsolete. We have let technology take over our level of trust in one another because it became easier to look something up on the internet than to just ask someone. The problem with doing so is that the internet puts everyone in categories. It is the new level of segregation. Even now as I write this, I do not want you to simply accept my opinion as your own but to question it’s merit. If only we could go back to asking questions and debating theories and reason. If only we could go back to talking to each other and listening beyond our own comprehensions. Somewhere along to road we forgot to view each other as people.

 

Whether or not this post invokes hate is not my concern. If you read it and brush it off without questioning even the tiniest part of it is what concerns me. I am human and, therefore, fallible but it is within this certainty of human nature that we are unified. There is no other species like us and to belittle anyone else or separate ourselves because of skin color is just a waste of time. We are the only ones to teach each other to hate. If we do not look at ourselves while judging someone else then prejudice will take rule.