Oversharing on Facebook 

A friend recently told me that I overshare on fb. While I don’t think it’s healthy to pretend we live perfect lives, I suppose I do go past balance into Oversharing. That’s just a personal decision I’ve made, to let my freak flag fly, just in case someone is dealing with something that they don’t think anyone they know would understand. I have sacrificed some privacy, but so many people have DM ed me in desperation, confusion, shame, suicidal, etc., that I know I’ve made the right choice (for me. I’m also a social worker so I don’t expect everyone to make that decision and self-care is most important when thinking of taking on other people’s difficulties). I have had people who are suicidal, who I don’t even know (a friend of a friend) reach out, and we still text to this day. And though I can’t solve anyone else’s problems, I know from experience, just feeling comfortable telling 1 person is a great start. I’ve had MANY suicidal people reach out for help. And that’s only because I overshared some of my more difficult personal experiences.

So y’all are right, I do overshare, but with purpose. And I don’t mind if normal people think I’m crazy–as long as crazy people think I’m normal😉

Just read this post, it’s for EVERYONE. lol

I’ve heard that younger people tend to be more idealistic and cynical than older people. I have no idea what the numbers are, but my personal experience has been that when I was younger I couldn’t imagine that things were ever going to change–cause I had never known anything different. I was very impatient and confused why people were casually walking about like the world wasn’t on fire?
Well, the world is still on fire, unfortunately, but so many more people are aware of it than 20 years ago, when I started doing activism stuff, it’s unbelievable sometimes. If you would have asked a waiter which options are vegan, they would have asked you “what’s vegan?”. If you would have asked someone which pronouns you should use, they would have thought you were illiterate. If you would have told a date that you are an intersectional feminist, they would have thought you only believe in inequality while crossing the street! I’m being facetious, but seriously if you talk to teenagers today, they will blow your mind! How brilliant and advanced so many of them are! Obviously, we have a super duper long way to go, but we are on that yellow brick road. And there are flying monkey’s, and wicked witches and poppy fields on that road, but there are also friends, and learning experiences, and growth on that road. Ive been around long enough now, that I’ve seen the world change. I’ve seen institutions change, and seen acquaintances change. I’ve seen myself change and culture change. It’s more than possible, it’s inevitable.

Fast Car (inspired by Tracy Chapman)

This is the first installment of a series of stories inspired by Great Songs! Some stories/plots/characters are directly taken from the song’s lyrics. Some are inspired by a general feeling the song gives me. I’ve already received many ideas for songs to “Cover”, But if you know a song that would make a Great Story, Comment below!

I would recommend listening to Fast Car by Tracy Chapman AFTER reading

Fast Car

Tracy is folding laundry as her father watches a World War II documentary on Channel 11. It is a very small apartment on the West Side of Chicago. Light jazz hums from the kitchen radio, which is always on, whether anyone is in the kitchen, not, or the apartment is completely empty. On the wall hangs a diploma from Triton College. It is Tracy’s Associate’s degree for Social Work—she really wanted to be a teacher, but she heard that the Social Work program was much easier and, being the first person in her family to try college, easier seemed smarter. The rest of the walls were exposed brick—accidently trendy, nothing to adorn them. Without air conditioning, the windows were all open, which let a saving breeze steal through their house.
Tracy is a black, Christian, hard-working women. She is also a democrat, convenience-store clerk, and heterosexual, but she didn’t have much input in identities so she didn’t wear them as pridefully. She wasn’t particularly attractive by today’s standards, but there was an undeniable magnetism to her face, with the roundness and sweetness of a batch of brioche.
Tracy’s Father, Troy, was hardly 50 years old, but his rusted, deflated frame made him look 80, if a day. He is on kidney Dialysis, so he never leaves his recliner in front of the TV, which he hoards and never strays from channel 11, WTTW Chicago, and Fox news.
Tracy’s children, Vanessa, lil D (DeAundray), and Tonee, were in 1st, 4th, and 8th grades, respectively. Since Tracy worked most hours of most days, the three of them were almost always together, Tonee helping with his younger siblings as much as possible.
Aundray has been in and out of the house for the past 13 years. Tracy and Aundray have kids together and are currently engaged—for the past two years. Aundray is a very large man and often struggles to manage rooms without looking clumsy. As a high-school football star, his tremendous size was a blessing, but now he often feels self-conscious of looking like an old bear, which was one of the reasons he bought the ’97 Ford Mustang.

Scene I
Tracy: I told you, I’m not gonna change the channel again. I just changed it 10 minutes ago and I ain’t got time to play your remote control…got too much to do around here anyway. If you’d stop throwing those damn remotes every time you get bothered, you could change the channel whenever you want.
Troy: Well, isn’t that what a daughter’s supposed to do, anyway? Serve thy father. I brought you into this world, gave you the precious gift of life…the least you could do is change the channel, time to time.
Tracy: Shoot; I’ve been serving you my whole life. I’m ‘bout ready to serve myself and get the hell out uh this God forsaken city.
Troy: Oh yeah? And where you gonna go—wit your black ass? California? Paris? You always dreamin’
Tracy: And who asked you?!
Troy: I used to make dreams too, you know. Before you was born. I had a clarinet, was gonna be a professional musician, until I met your mother and had you and your brother. Couldn’t go around playin’ my music anymore—had to get a job and stay ‘round and take care of you little niggas. Yeah, I woke up from dreamin’ real quick, and you will too someday.
Tracy: Please, I heard that story a thousand times and you know it ain’t true. You just makin’ excuses. I heard your band when I was a kid and I knew it wasn’t good, even as a child. And I’m serious… I already looked at schools for the kids; I just need to save up $2,300 and we gonna move to Des Plaines. It ain’t far, but they got good schools and we won’t get snapped awake by gunshots every damn night.
Troy: Oh, is that it? Just 23 hundred dollars, well here, I happen to have that in my pocket right now. Pshhh
Tracy: Oh shut your mouth. I already got six fifty saved and…
Troy: And where you gonna get 2 large? The devil? Why don’t you go on down to the liquor store—I think I saw him down there the other day. And pick me up some Canadian Club while you down there.
Tracy: No! I’m gonna make Aundray sell the Mustang. And you know you can’t have no alcohol, you old fool. You’ll kill ya’self.
Troy: Ha! Good luck! Aundray love that car more than anything in the whole world. He love it more than God.
Tracy: Now you stop talking like that—taking our Lord’s name in vain.
Troy: You know it’s true. And YOU love it too; Don’t bother pretending like you don’t. It’s about the only damn thing around here worth a raccoon’s shit.
Tracy: I never said I don’t like it. I said we got priorities, like the kids—not to mention there ain’t no Dialysis centers in Garfield Park—we need to get your broken-ass outta here too.
Troy: Don’t worry ‘bout my ass, just go down to the liquor store and talk to the devil about gettin’ your money and my whiskey, like I told you.
Tracy: Doctor Goldenberg said not to drink no alcohol. I ain’t got time to be taking old, stupid men to the hospital.
Troy: Ah shit. I ain’t scared of death! At least I wouldn’t be stuck in this chair, watchin’ this boring old show!
Tracy audibly exhales, puts down the shirt she’s folding, and walks over to the TV to change the channel. Just then, her children—Vanessa, lil D, and Tonee—get home from school.
Vanessa: Hey Mommy!
Tracy: Hey sweetie!
Tonee: What’s good mom? You got that 20 for school?
Tracy: I’m sorry baby; we can’t afford it this week. Ask your teacher if you can just go on the field trip and I’ll pay it later.
Troy: You just said you got 6-50 in the bank.
Tracy: Shut up, you old fool! That money is for something else. You know that!
Tonnee: Ma! What the fuck, I can’t go to school beggin’ again!
Tracy: Watch your mouth young man! Don’t make me smack some manners into you.
Tonnee: God! I hate this family! And I hate you, ma! Tonee runs to his room. Tracy watches him go, arms akimbo, with a firm face and clenched lips.
Vanessa: I don’t hate you mommy. I love you!
Tracy: Thank you sugar. I love you too, very much. {Tracy picks her up and kisses her head.} DeAundray, how was school today? Did you give miss Davis that letter I gave you to give her?
Lil D: Yes, momma
Tracy: Thank you, dear. {Tracy walks to the back of the room and pulls a plastic bag from her backpack} Guess what mommy got from work?!
Vanessa: a turtle!
Lil D: a puppy!
Troy: Hepatitis.
Tracy: No… All the ice-cream was out-of-date, so the manager said I could take ‘em home.
Lil D &Vanessa exclaim in excitement.
Troy: God, when you gonna quite that raggedy old convenience store? Get bossed around by a bunch of cheap Hindus! What a racket.
Tracy: Oh, hush! Mr. Patel is a very nice man. And he pays me enough to take care of your old black ass. So don’t be foul!
Vanessa: I want some ice-cream mommy. Can I have one? Vanessa tilts her head and designs her most pitifully adorable face.
Tracy: No sugar, you’re too sweet as it is and I don’t want you kids spoilin your dinner.
Lil D: Ahhh, mama! I won’t spoil my dinner! I’ll eat every bite, I promise. Even the plants!
Tracy: Yeeeaaah, right! You two finish every bite of dinner and THEN, I’ll give you some ice-cream.
Vanessa & lil D squeal in excitement.
Tracy goes back to folding laundry, while Vanessa and Lil D run out of the room. (Presumably to their bedroom). While Tracy greeted the kids, Troy fell asleep watching TV and is snoring. All is quiet; a soothing boredom cradles the moment. Soon, the peace is scattered by Aundray clumsily opening the front door, trying to use keys on an already unlocked door.
Aundray: Hey’ey! If it isn’t my beautiful wife!
Troy awakens with a gasp and turns the TV up, ignoring the ensuing discussion.
Tracy: Don’t you “Beautiful wife” me nothin’, Aundray. We ain’t married, and you’re drunk. Good Lord, I can smell it from here.
Aundray: I ain’t drunk! Cain’t I be happy to see my exquisite woman?!
Tracy: I ain’t your woman to own, Aundray. And where was you last night? Why you ain’t come home? I’d’ve been up worried sick all night, if I hadn’t done it too many times before to know better.
Aundray: C’mon. You’re the one who said you didn’t want me drinkin’ n drivin’ anymore. Me and the boys had a few and I didn’t want to drink and drive, so I spent the night at Donnie’s. Ain’t that what you said to do?
Tracy: I didn’t say to stay there till no damn 4 in the afternoon the next day! And y’all are too damn old to be boys. Y’all need to start ackin’ like men. You need to get a job, so we can get out of this place already.
Aundray: I will baby. You know how goddamn hard it is for a Black man to get a job wit a felony on his back.
Tracy: You wouldn’t of had a record at all if you wasn’t sellin’ drugs.
Aundray: If I wasn’t sellin drugs, I wouldn’t of had no money. I wouldn’t have had no car, no food. I wouldn’t uh had you! You know you never would’ve kicked it wit me if I wasn’t driving you around in the Mustang, takin’ you shopping and all that. So don’t get all high and mighty on me now. You weren’t singin’ that tune when I was givin’ you money to get yo hair done.
Tracy: Nigga, I wish you would give me money for rent, right now. That was years ago and I was too young and ignorant to know the difference between a wannabe player and a real man wit a real job.
Aundray: ughhh
Tracy: And that reminds me, we need to sell that wrachet ole Mustang so we can put the deposit on the duplex.
Aundray: Woman, you must be out of your mind! That’s my baby! I wouldn’t sell her if God himself came down and put a lightning bolt to my head.
Tracy: What about your real babies, Aundray? What about me? I thought I was your baby? C’mon Dre, you know we can’t have our kids growin’ up ‘round all this shit. Mr. Patel said he’d give me a raise at the end of the year. And out in the suburbs, there’s jobs. You could get a job out there, easy. Those white folk in the suburbs feel so guilty, they’ll hire you because you been to prison. Please, Aundray, ain’t nothing for us here. Now I need your help, Aundray. I need you to start takin some responsibility ‘round here.
Aundray: Ok. Fine! I’ll take some responsibility. I’m gonna go out and get a job right this instant! And I ain’t comin’ back till I got one! Aundray heads toward his jacket and puts it on.
Tracy: Nigga, you ain’t getting no job right now. You still drunk! Now get your black ass in the shower and get ready for dinner. It’s about time the kids got to have super with their father.
Aundray: Those kids don’t give a damn if I’m here or not. And DeAundray ain’t even mine. Just cause you named him after me don’t make him mine.
Tracy: Oh stop that nonsense and get the shower.
Aundray: No I’m serious! I’m gonna go out and get a job, right, now! And It’s gonna be better than yo job, so don’t bother axin’ me for no spendin’ money. Aundray leaves, still rambling angrily, and slams the door behind him. Tracy wants to cry, but holds it in and goes back to folding laundry.
Troy: Now why you gotta drive the boy away like that. You ain’t never gonna keep a man around, hounding him like that. You’re just like your mother.
Tracy: Oh, Please. Ma left You. Don’t pretend like she was the problem. If you wasn’t livin’ in a bottle, I wouldn’t have had to quit school to take her place takin’ care of you, and I could be a nurse by now, makin’ real money. So don’t you go blamin’ Ma for nothing!
Troy: I’m just sayin’, if you keep riding the boy’s back, it’s not gonna make him want to hang around here any more than he does.
Tracy: Well, I ain’t got no choice. I can’t keep bein’ the only one bringin’ a check anymore. And I ain’t gonna take the kids back to the shelter. I don’t know why he gotta be so selfish? We need the money. The kids need the money. If he’d just sell that ole stupid car and get a job, we’d be all-good, and wouldn’t have to worry about all this basic… stuff (mumbled).
Troy: You don’t understand. It ain’t just a car to the boy. It’s all he got! He ain’t got no job, and he’s right, with that record, he ain’t never gonna get one. He ain’t got no money…no home to call his own. A man’s gotta have his own home or he just don’t feel like a man. He don’t want to say he’s stayin in his woman’s house!
Tracy: He don’t need to say nothin’! He just needs to grow up and start pitchin’ in.
Troy: Ah, you wouldn’t understand… Women…
Tracy: Why don’t you watch your show and leave me to finish folding your laundry.
Troy waves his hand to declare his abandonment of the conversation and focuses on the TV. Things become quiet again as the lights slowly fade.

SCENE II

Tracy is sleeping in bed. Aundray enters the bedroom and slips into bed without turning on the lights.
Tracy: Dre? Is that you? {whispered}
Aundray: Yeah, baby. It’s me. How are you?
Tracy: Awake, now. You get a job?
Aundray: Nah. Ain’t no jobs out there for a strong Black man, specially an intelligent, powerful King like me.
Tracy: You lyin’; You was at the bar, you wasn’t lookin for no job.
Aundray: C’mon baby, can’t you let up for just 2 minutes?
Tracy: Aundray…I know I been hard on you lately, but that’s only because I’m trying to do right by our kids and I need your help. Don’t you wanna get out this trap? I’m not just being hard to be nasty. I want you to have a better life too—move somewhere you can actually get a job. You know I love you, Dre. That’s why it upsets me even more when I don’t see you helping me out here.
Aundray: I know, baby. I’m trying. I really am, I swear. It’s just depressing to go into interview after interview just to get rejected and told I ain’t good enough. Those fucking 20 year olds telling me I ain’t good enough to cook in a kitchen—I should be runnin’ those damn restaurants! I’m the only one who actually knows how to cook in this damn city. Then I get all stressed out and need a drink, and then the drinkin’ makes me think even harder on it, which makes me need another drink even more. It ain’t easy, baby. It ain’t.
Tracy: I know, sweetie. I know it ain’t. But that’s what I’m here for. I’ll do whatever you need. Can I sign you up for detox or an out-patient program? Alice told me about a place she went to get sobered up; she said it was real good, and inexpensive… Can I pour out the vodka you hide under the couch?
Aundray: No, no, no! I gotta do it myself! I don’t need no doctors or babysitters. Only person can get me sober is myself. I need to just buckle down and bite the bullet.
Tracy: But that hasn’t been workin’, baby. We need to get you help, and we will. Whatever it takes.
Aundray: God, I wish shit could just be simple again…I wish I could just grab a beer and chill sometimes, like you can, without getting all fucked up inside. All this kids-shit and house-shit, is just stressin’ me! It’s too much for me. I just wanna relax and chill and not give a fuck, like I used to.
Tracy: I know, Dre. It’s not fair. It’s not fair how you are and where we are and always being broke for no good reason, but it is what it is. We can’t keep pretending or crying about what is—we have to do the best we can with what we got. And at least we got each other, and three beautiful, sweet kids, and a crotchety old man to take care of and criticize everything we do. They both laugh.
Aundray: You right, baby. We ain’t kids no more, and getting so old isn’t all fun, but it’s better than the alternative… Remember when we first met?… I was drivin’ the Mustang down Pulaski, minding my own business, thinkin’ it was just another day, when I happened by the most gorgeous, stunning, perfect Angel in the whole world…
Tracy: Oh stop lying, you just thought you were big pimpin’. You thought I was just another little girl you could pick up with your ugly ass orange car.
Aundray: I was right, wasn’t I?! Here we are…
Tracy: whatever…
They continue to relive the story of how they met. It is clearly a story they have indulged in many times and a tradition they relish in.
Aundray: I said, “Hey sweet thang, it’s too hot for a pretty little thing like you to be walkin’ and getting those clothes all sweaty and stinky.”
Tracy: And I told you to get lost!
Aundray: But I wasn’t gonna give up on the woman of my dreams that easy…
Tracy: Please…
Aundray: I told you, “I’m serious girl. I’ll give you a ride. No need to torture yourself on a hot day like this. You know, I saw a dog chasin’ a cat a minute ago… they were both walkin. C’mon, I won’t hurt ya. I just want to talk to you—get to know ya.” And sure enough, you hopped in.
Tracy: Reluctantly. I still wasn’t sure you wasn’t crazy.
Aundray: You were impressed though—like you’d never been in a car before, least not a real man’s car.
Tracy: My god, I can still remember… you took me on Lake Shore Drive, Speeding like a maniac, scarin’ me half to death. We were flyin’ so fast, I felt like I was drunk. The city lights were rushing past in streaks. And I know what you were doin’… I was so scared, I didn’t notice you slippin’ your arm around my shoulder. I have to admit though; it did feel exciting to be cruising at the speed of light, like nothing could hold me back, like I had a ticket to anywhere… And though I was scared that you were out of your damn mind, it felt good to have your arm around me, like you got me. Something about that fast, powerful car, made me feel like… real, or something—like I could be someone.
Aundray: That’s right, I took you for a ride you’d never forget! And I knew you were mine forever… I love you, baby.
Tracy: I love you too, Dre. Even though you been actin’ like a fool since the day we met.
Aundray: I know, baby. I’m sorry I am the way I am. I’m really gonna change this time, I promise. I’m gonna stop drinkin’. I’m gonna get a job tomorrow, I don’t care if I have to be the fry guy at McDonald’s or clean shit from toilets, I’m gonna start contributing to the bills if it kills me.
Tracy: That sounds wonderful, Aundray, but you always say that. How can I have faith that you’re serious this time?
Aundray: I am serious baby. Tomorrow morning, I’m gonna put a sale sign on the Mustang and put it on Craigslist. I should be able to get at least 3, 4 thousand. Then we can get that place in Des Plaines you been talkin’ ‘bout. I swear, we really gonna do it this time, no matter what!
Tracy: Ah, Dre, you best not be playin’ wit me. This is really important to me and I don’t want you messin’ wit my emotions.
Aundray: Nah, baby. I swear on my life. We gone get it together. If I don’t have that car sold by tomorrow night, you can kick my ass to the curb and never talk to me again.
Tracy: That’s not what I want. I want you to be with us, bein’ a part of the family.
Aundray: I know, baby. I know… Aundray spoons Tracy and they fall asleep.

Scene III
As the whole family sleeps soundly, perhaps too soundly, there is a commotion in the neighborhood. It is 3:00 am when the tranquility of dreams is interrupted by a car-alarm. The alarm is coming from directly in front of the house and immediately awakens Tracy and Aundray.
Tracy: Dre! What is that?
Aundray: Oh shit, I think it’s the car! Aundray walks to the window to see what’s going on. The kids all run into the bedroom, scared.
Vanessa: Mommy, What’s going on?
Tracy: It’s ok, darling. Nothing—it’s fine.
Aundray: Trace, call the police, quick!
Tracy calls the police, while Aundray goes to the closet to grab a metal baseball bat. The alarm isn’t deterring the burglars from trying to get into the car.
Tracy: Hello? Yes. Someone is trying to steal our car. Yes. 4412 West Monroe.
Lil D: Ma, where’s Dad going?
Tracy: Never mind, darling. Everything’s fine. Tracy is apparently reassuring herself more than Lil D. Tonnee follows his father to the front door.
Aundray: Hey! Back the fuck up from my car! I’m finna knock your heads off!
Aundray and the two burglars face each other in a stand off, ready to fight for the car. One burglar rushes in as Aundray swings and misses. The other burglar grabs the wiffed bat and begins a tug-o-war with Aundray, when police sirens sound and the burglars run off. Tracy is now at the front door, where she puts her hands on Tonee’s shoulders as if to say ‘It’s alright. It’s over now.’ Vanessa and Lil D are cowering behind Tracy. Aundray inspects the car for any damages. As he opens the driver’s door, the police arrive.
Police officer 1: Police! Step away from the car! Now!
Police officer 2: Move it! Move it!
Aundray steps back with his hands in the air.
Tracy: What are you doing?! He’s not the robber! That’s our car!
Police officer 2: Shut the Fuck up! You, get on the ground! Now!
Aundray lays facedown on the cement with his hands spread out, as if making a snow-angel. The police officers approach Aundray with handcuffs ready.
Police: Put your hands behind your head! Slowly!
Aundray: Please, that’s my car, officer. I was just checking it for damages.
Police officer 1: Didn’t we tell you to shut the fuck up! I don’t want to hear one more word out of either of you!
Police officer 2 begins to cuff Aundray as Tracy approaches to intercede.
Tracy: What the hell are you doing?! We are the ones that called the cops! That’s our car! Get your hands off of him!
It is a very quiet night—a quite black night. The moon throws just enough light on the neighborhood to transmute most of it to shadows. There is no breeze and the air is so fresh and crisp that the explosion can be heard from miles away, when Tracy pushes the police officer off of Aundray and the other officer fires his 9mm directly into Tracy’s chest. One shot, two shots. Three shots and a barrage that seemed to never end, throwing the entire neighborhood, frightening its dogs and deafening Vanessa, Lil D, and Tonnee. The officer shot 16 bullets into Tracy. She was dead after the first. The family screams and hollers and all rush to hold Tracy’s dead body.
Vanessa: Mommy, mommy! Mommy!
Aundray: Baby! No! It’s ok, baby. You’re gonna be fine, baby doll. You’re gonna be fine.
Tonnee: Mama?! No, no, no, no, mama.
Police officer 1: Step back! Move away from the body!
Tonnee: That body is my mother! You mother fucking Pig!
Vanessa runs over to the police officer that shot her mother and starts punching his leg. The officer points his gun at the 6 year old, then thinks better of it and holsters his gun. Troy appears in the doorway and stares stoically. A few tears escape his eyes, though his face remains hard and still as he’s paralyzed by the sight of his daughter’s inside-out bulk. All the children continue to whale and cry by Tracy’s silhouette. The cops huddle in the background.
Aundray: Knowing better than to move from his face-down surrender, he continues to lay spread-eagle and yells across the crime scene to Tracy, It’s ok, baby! You’re gonna be fine! Don’t worry, baby. Let’s go for a ride! Let’s you and me and the kids hop in the car and drive down Lake Shore Drive at 100 miles an hour! It’s a beautiful night for a ride…We can go anywhere—anywhere in the world you want, baby… Let’s drive to that house in Des Plaines you been talking about! I bet it’s beautiful…C’mon baby, I’m sorry. I know I been a pain in the ass but, but I’m gonna be good now, I promise! C’mon, Trace! Please!!! You’re alright, baby. You’re alright. You’re alright, Trace! You’re alright…baby, you’re alright…

List/Challenge (diary of an unemployed dude [rough draft])

When, you have no income, it’s not just about finding a career. You also have to avoid spending money and find the little ways to get by without a paycheck. Here are some creative ideas I did and you can too!!!

  1. Suggest a Mexican restaurant, then tell your friends “I’m not really hungry, I had a huge lunch” when it’s time to order. Proceed to annihilate three basket of chips with salsa before smoking the “short” from your friend’s cigarette.
  2. Tell your friend that you miss them and would love to cook them dinner and catch up. Ask if they have ingredients for a pasta dish, which everyone does, and proceed to cook them and your self a filling carb fest that will fuel your non-working-ass lifestyle for days.
  3. Go to the library! Not only do they have tons of good books for smart people, they’ve got plenty of dross for the rest of us, too! My last three library items were MAGIC Mike XXL, Pitch Perfect, and origami for dummies. Go rent Orange is the New Black–just cause you don’t have food doesn’t mean you can’t binge on “The Kitchen”.
  4. When out at a bar with friends, tell everyone that you’re “very picky about beer” and taste everyone’s beer until you catch a buzz, then say, “I guess I’m just not feelin’ their selection”. When your friend responds, but you always drink PBR–It’s your favorite beer.”, just say, “Meh, I guess I just grew out of it. I’m developing a more refined palate.” When your friend points out that you just ate three packets of ketchup, just say you have a phosphorus deficiency.
  5. Take a few sugar packets from McDonald’s and a few crackers from Wendy’s, and shake them up with some creamer from Starbucks for a well balanced breakfast shake. I think that’s what Ensure is made of anyway.
  6. Move to Chicago. World class museums, music festivals, mega library, yoga in the park–All free!! Just don’t move in December, if you want to survive. Winter’s Coming!
  7. Get on a bus and tell the bus driver, “I forgot my wallet”. The bus driver will kick you off at the next stop. When she does, get on the next bus and repeat step one. You will eventually get to your destination, one stop at a time, with the side benefit of meeting a bunch of interesting, cool bus drivers!
  8. Be Awesome! I find that most people don’t much mind hanging out with a bum, if said bum is awesome.
  9. Go to events with suggested-donation entrance fees. They’re just suggestions…
  10. Use the money you made donating plasma to buy a six-pack of beer—you can return the bottles for nickels! That’s money in your pocket!
  11. Don’t self medicate with shopping! It’s so easy to buy delicious food or a tasty craft beer, just cause you’re bored, not hungry. Maybe you like to buy beautiful new clothes when you’re sad or a cup of joe from Starbucks when you get writer’s block. There are myriad stores I would frequent, in person or online, to distract myself from the excruciating pain of existence. I self medicated myself into bankruptcy going out every night for dinner and drinks, buying vinyl and books I never read, fashionable suits and shoes. I never knew what I truly couldn’t live without until I had no choice but to choose. When I was making $50,000 a year I was living paycheck to paycheck and felt more broke than I do now, unemployed, no savings account, making and spending about $20-$40 a week, depending on which little jobs I pick up. I am very blessed to have an amazing, loving family who I am living with and eating with, so you can factor those expenses in however you want, but I haven’t bought anything other than food in the past four months, a third of a year—no clothes, no books or movies (The Chicago public library has literally every book and movie and music I’ve ever looked for). The inability to buy alcohol, take woman on dates, shop for relief, distraction, has forced me to sit with my demons face to face, no escaping, and I honestly don’t know if I’d still be alive if I hadn’t. Some of the most beautiful sights in the world are in your imagination. Some of the most moving and heartbreaking dramas unfold solely in your mind. It isn’t easy to just be—sit in a park without entertainment or distraction. No food, no magazine, no phone– with nowhere to go but inward. But if you can, and you survive, I promise you will be stronger, wiser, and happier, for the highest, most treacherous mountain in the world is that of your own mind. I challenge you to go three days without buying anything—eat every last can of beans in your cupboard, ride your bike to work, live without caffeine. What is the hardest thing to not spend money on? How easy or hard is it? Can you keep going for a full week? Keep your wallet at home and see what it’s like to rely on the kindness of strangers and friends, how it feels to ask for help. It’s not just about saving money, but saving intention.

images

CHALLENGE: Don’t buy ANYTHING for three days

Comment below: Was going even 1 day harder than you imagined? Were you able to complete the three days? how did it feel?

#Love First

I asked a good friend on his deathbed, if there was anything I could do for him? He said. “Yes, let yourself love, unconditionally, without fear, as deeply as you can bare it. I wasted my whole life chasing money, and fun, and status, and if I could give all of that up right now to have one more day, to love my family properly, love (my wife) Sara without qualification or condition, to remember my neighbor’s name and care what his kids are up to, I would in a second. I was a shitty person—and not cause I was violent, or mean, or a jerk—but because I thought the people in my life were disposable, and I only used them when I saw benefit in it. I didn’t wake up every morning thanking God that I may have one more time to see a friend, look them in the eye, and genuinely open myself fully for their sake. Nothing I ever won, or bought, or took gives me any solace in this moment. The only things that provide me comfort now are the tiny memories of when I truly gave of myself all I could for others, and when I received such love—and since those moments were so brief and few, I have little of that comfort now.”
Death is scary, not just for me, knowing I’ll never see my friend again, but he was clearly scared—that he was leaving behind unfinished business, that he hadn’t given those he cared for most, all that he should have. I assured him that we would be alright, and hat he should not feel guilty for leaving. I wasn’t there at the moment of death, but I only hope that it was on as good of terms as a permanent goodbye can be.
I imagined how devastating a breakup can be—saying goodbye to someone you loved so much, no matter what the reason. And then imagined having to break up with every person in the world at the same time—your mother, and father, and children, and husband or wife, and every friend, every person you wanted to say sorry to, but didn’t have the time, everyone you meant to tell how proud you were of them, but forgot to. It must be a heartbreak I can’t come close to imagining. But if all that heartbreak was upon him and he only wished for one thing—to give even more of his heart, to be even more vulnerable, and risk even more of his love—then I have to believe him that selfless, unconditional love is the only thing we can bring with us everywhere we go, even death. And not lustful love, or romantic excitement of a new relationship. Not the half-assed love of a family member we know little about or only call during Christmas. Not the easy love, or fun love, but the love that lets the people you care about know—they are never alone, no matter how dismal things may be. We are all fighting painful wars in our lives, each and every one of us. The person you passed on the street this morning just found out her daughter died of a heroin overdose. Your coworker is in the middle of a violent divorce. Your friend just got cancer but hasn’t told anyone yet cause they are still in denial. Your partner can’t figure out how to open to you fully cause of deep-seated fears and pain and shame that have nothing to do with you. But when we muster the courage to let the vast rush of love swallow us whole and flow through us, we can touch those we care for in ways that touch back and light both souls up with the undeniable light of God. And when we lay in our own last bed, we will not regret the difficult times we labored to give another our love when they needed it, nor will we wish we had saved our love in a jar for later, nor will we leave behind an unfinished legacy we had begun with yearning—but a beautiful story that we told with love and ended with peace.
yuka yamaguchi

Endings.

Often, when things come to an end, we see them as failures—especially a marriage, a job, a friendship, college if we don’t graduate. But all things change, which means all things end, at least as we know them. And while those endings may carry the stench of sulfur and the weight of death, we can only loose the beauty of those brief adventures if we choose to. Maybe your marriage is ending because your spouse helped you become the person you always wanted to be, and now you are ready to move in a more specific direction—not better or worse. Maybe you got laid-off because it’s time for you to start a hardwood flooring business of your own, be your own boss. Maybe you couldn’t afford to finish college, but you learned what your true calling was while exploring yourself. Of course, not every ending leaves you with so much, but they rarely leave you with nothing, either. We don’t hate a great movie or book because it ends. Nor should we think we have failed, simply because we’ve completed a story in our lives.
For everyone reading this, whether an old college friend or an ex lover— though I may not see you, or speak with you, or sing with you like we used to, doesn’t mean the time wasn’t invaluable and cherished. I will always love you. That’s one thing that will not end.

#IveBeenThatGuy (after #metoo )

 [please share/reblog/#/etc]

In light of the current #meToo movement (and previously #yesallwomen), many amazing friends and survivors have reminded me that, while pointing out how shamefully prevalent sexism, sexual harassment, and sexual assault are, is terribly important, maybe survivors shouldn’t feel obligated to relive their trauma? Shouldn’t us men feel MORE obligated to take responsibility? The fact is, as both the beneficiaries of privilege and the vast, vast majority of the time—the perpetrators of rape culture—MEN MUST TAKE RESPONSIBILITY. We must bear the burden of the work if the problem will ever be fixed. Helping those heal who have been hurt is terribly important—the only thing that would be even better is if we stop patriarchy, sexual harassment, and sexual assault from happening in the first place—and that can only happen when those of us who are most responsible challenge ourselves to take responsibility.
So I would genuinely Love it if any and everyone who feels comfortable admitting that they have EVER been “that guy”, would share #iveBeenThatGuy
It doesn’t mean you are a predator and it doesn’t mean you are a bad person. It doesn’t mean you haven’t grown and changed since the last time you were “that guy”. It doesn’t even mean you acted out of malice or bad intentions—we live in an all pervasive culture that seeps into our minds and habits, which often makes us support systems of injustice, even when we don’t intend to. And that is really the point: patriarchy, sexism, heterosexism, etc., are not problems because a few bad apples hate all women and think rape is their right—rape culture is still a problem because it’s so pervasive, so insidious, so ingrained that it’s a part of ALL of our lives. Men who work in domestic violence shelters have objectified women, including myself. The best, most kind, woke men in the world have used misogynistic and homophobic language at some point in their lives. Men with strong values have sexually assaulted because they did not know what sexual assault really is, cause our culture teaches that many forms of sexual assault are just “boys being boys”.
The problem is not that women/trans/queer folk are assaulted. The problem is that Men keep assaulting. Of course anybody can be a perpetrator and anyone can be a survivor/victim. But the point of this post and hashtag is to address the specific problem of problematic masculinity that uses privilege and power to make cis-straight-men, not only feel entitled, but Obligated to take advantage of that power and privilege to dominate anyone who is not a heterosexual cis-male. If your friend, brother, boyfriend, father etc. may not be super down with this entire article, maybe copy and paste the middle. Because, while some may get defensive (and understandably so—after all the men I’d like to jump on board are not the monsters who we already know are shit, but all those good guys who have at some point been caught up in the momentum of culture), I think any any honest man can admit that they have at least 1 time in their life, treated a women in a way they wouldn’t want a stranger to treat their daughter.
And let’s not forget that ending problematic masculinity helps us men too; While the overwhelming majority of violence and dehumanization of women is perpetrated by men, the vast majority of violence and dehumanization of Men is also perpetrated by other men.
Let’s also pair our honesty with action:
Step 1: share #ivebeenthatguy
step 2: Share a specific instance of when you have been guilty. Perhaps the time you most regret, if you feel safe and comfortable doing so publicly.
step 3:When you see your friend post #ivebeenthatguy and STILL act/talk disrespectfully,  call them out and point out that pretending to be woke for the Facebook likes, and not backing it up with real world change, is lying and wont be ignored.
 step 4: Encourage the men in your life to share; it doesn’t mean they are bad people, it just means that, unfortunately, if we are honest, at some point in our lives (maybe years ago) we have ALL treated a women in a way we wouldn’t want a stranger to treat our daughters.
 Let’s stop treating Only symptoms. Lets treat the actual cause. Let’s start by admitting that just as pervasive as survivors of rape-culture, are us perpetrators, who, even if we are not aware or didn’t intend to, have participated, and therefore it is OUR responsibility to raise awareness of our own part in the problem.

#ivebeenthatguy

Donating Plasma: Diary of an unemployed dude [true story]

Here’s another “Diary of an Unemployed Dude” story–Very Rough! just a sketch right now

“Donating”

The blood sample will determine how hydrated you are, so I always drink two pints of water before donating plasma so I’m not turned away for insufficient water funds. The six mile bike ride to the clinic is hot, sweaty, so I drink extra for those droplets I’ll sweat out. I also eat chorizo and eggs with bacon and ham because eating a high protein breakfast is claimed to help replenish your plasma–though I’m not positive that isn’t just the pork lobby’s position.

The first time you donate, there is a lengthy screening process, 3-4 hours, to ensure that your blood isn’t rotten and you aren’t a heroin gulping gigolo who sucks dick for bus money. Luckily, I only suck dick for Uber money, so I’m good.

I give them three vials and one straw sample of my blood. The first time I gave the straw sample, the same little prick as a TB test, I unfortunately did it on my left hand so I couldn’t play guitar for a week without tearing open the tiny hole. After the vampires confirm its tastiness, I proceed to a counselor’ s office for an interview: “Do you have AIDS.”

Oh shit, I know this one…”Ummmm, no! No I don’t.”

“Are you sure? You hesitated there a bit.”

“Uhhhh, pretty sure, yeah. I’m mean I’m not dead or anything. That’s gotta be a no-go on the AIDS then, right?”

“You wouldn’t necessarily experience symptoms in the first few months. Have you been recently tested for Sexually Transmitted Infections?”

“Not really. I don’t like to get tested cause it just reminds me of how long it’s been since I got laid. But last year my regular doctor ran some blood-work and everything came back clean. I don’t think I’ve sexed anyone up since then. But don’t tell anybody.”

“Well if you haven’t had sex in the last six months, our tests would pick it up.”

I whispered, “Yeah, it’s definitely been at least six months since I had some sex. Don’t tell anyone, though”

I continue to explain that I haven’t been to Africa, injected crack, worked on a farm, or had sex with an animal in at least two weeks. The counselor checks my arms and legs and feet for track marks, then I put my clothes back on. There is an organic side benefit to giving plasma: Anyone who’s poor enough to donate plasma for $20 cannot afford to see a doctor, but this screening of my body and health is far more thorough than any I’ve even gotten from my doc.

To ensure that I haven’t been tattooed in the past year, the counselor catalogs the location and design of each of my tattoos. Left inner forearm–The Giving Tree; Right leg–book and vine with words, “To live, is to be slowly born”; inside of bottom lip–travel toothbrush (so I can tell my dentist I brush my teeth everyday). She gets to my left bicep and asks, “what is that?”

I answer, “It’s a skateboarder. ”

She disagrees, “No it’s not. What is it?”

I volley back, “Yes. It is. It’s from a book by Austin-based artist Michael Seban. Growing up, before it became normal and cool, skateboarding made you an outcast, a nerd. While everyone was chasing girls and going to parties, we’d skate in the parking lot all night, so he drew the skateboarder real ugly to represent how us skateboarders didn’t fit in.”

“Ok, but I can’t put all that on this short line. You do understand that if someone does your next intake and finds anything even remotely different about any of your tattoos than what I write here, you will be banned for life from this clinic.”

“It’s a zombie.”

“Thank you.”

I sit in the waiting room for my name to be called. I have to pee, but the bathroom is behind the locked door and you aren’t allowed to leave the building once you start the intake process, less you shoot up or get a tattoo while you’re out.

Finally, I am allowed to enter the production line. I walk into the room and see a heard of humans laying in chair-beds with tubes in there arms sucking their blood. It looks like a scene from the Matrix. They only pay you $20-30 per donation, depending on your weight, but they charge hospitals hundreds. Radiolab did a great episode, Blood, which talked about the industry of blood and plasma—It’s a racket. Don’t believe those red cross people if they tell you you’re saving lives. You’re making money, for them.

The technician hands me a piece of foam to squeeze and keep the blood flowing in my arm. She sticks the needle into my arm, which hurts, but not much. The blood flows from me into there machine where the plasma, a water based solution with corpuscles and fat globules, is separated for sale on the biomarket. Once the pint glass is full, the machine returns the plasmaless blood to your vein. As the blood flows through the stainless steel needle it must pick up some of its essence because I can taste metal on my tongue and teeth.

The more blood that reenters my body, the more pain I feel until I can’t take it anymore, so I call for a nurse. She examines my arm and tells me I’ve been “Infiltrated”. This means that during the initial injection, the employee pushed the needle too far, past the back wall of the vein, so that the machine was pumping the blood, not into my vein where it belongs, but aimlessly into my flesh. It is quite painful.

After resticking me, now on my left arm, I sit watching the awful Fox News on the TV in front of me for the next hour. This is very boring, but it’s easy and the only money I can count on, selling my body, permanently, as little as the money may be. They call it Donating plasma, but I’m getting paid and so are they, so that’s a pretty far stretch if you ask me. I think, technically, they are “Donating” money to your bank account for your Time, not your plasma.

For whatever reason, everyone who works here is Slavic, though this isn’t a Slavic neighborhood. Wasn’t Dracula Slavic—I could never place his accent.

They pay you on a credit card, which sucks because, unlike the cash that they used to pay when I was in college, I get charged a usage fee each time I use the card or go to the ATM, so I’m not even getting the full $25!

Oh well, I got a little mullah in pocket, so I’m no longer a bum, no—I’m a hot twenty dollars away. Off to my Heroin Dealer! (jk mom) 😉

images

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to “Donate” plasma? What did I forget to mention? Any questions?

Diary of an Unemployed Dude: Freelance Mason [true story]

I am currently writing a book on the odd jobs and various things I’ve done for coffee money. Here is a ROUGH DRAFT of one of those stories:

A Day in the Life of a Mason

Being someone that will do anything for twenty bucks and someone who can read directions well, I have recently developed quite the reputation for being handy–solely with my grandmother. In an effort to help me scrape together enough money for my coffee addiction, Grandma tells everyone she spends time with about my legendary ability to follow instructions, apropos housework. A month later, this brilliant marketing scheme finally pays off and a little old lady named Cruella requested my services. I gave her a ring. A fast talking stutter answered as if she was hiding from the Gestapo. “Huh Huh Hello who is this hu hu who are you lu lu looking for who are you?”

“Hi, this is Phil. I’m Toni’s grandson. She said you might need some help around the house.”

“Oh?”

I give her a second because I assume she’s old, if she’s been hanging with G-ma—maybe she has to sit down for this. Once politeness turns to awkwardness, I proceed. “Sooooooo, do you need help with anything?”

“Yes?”

“Ok. Do you want to tell me about it?”

“Well I really don’t have much money I told your m m mom I don’t have much money?”

“Actually Toni’s my grandmother and that’s fine if you don’t have much money, just pay me whatever you think is fair. I mainly want experience as much as anything else.”

Cruella responded, “Ok, but it’s supposed to ruh ruh rain this week I need to concrete the cracks in my sidewalk and it cant be raining do you have experience with masonry your grandma said you were handy?”

“I have done little things with cement and caulk. I’m not a professional. But I can read the instructions and follow them”, I repond caustiously and already worried about having to deal with this woman.

“Ok well I’ll call my son and ask him when its gonna rain or not and ill call your mom uh uh uh ok?” Her voice is a constant vibrato like she’s scared of using her words and everything she says sounds like a question, even when it obviously isn’t. I let her go and wait for a clear day to start my career in masonry.

After several calls on several different days—all ending in rejection, I am ultimately able to convince Cruella that it isn’t going to rain and today would be a good day for me to come over and look at the job, so I could at least have an idea of what it will entail. I ride my bike twelve miles to what happens to be one of the nicest neighborhoods in the third biggest US city, across the street from a certain zoo, which will all remain nameless for anonymity and liability purposes.

Luckily, it is only 90 degrees, so I will be sweating profusely, but I wont pass out. I arrive, knock on the medieval lion’s head door-knocker, turquoise paint-chips fall off the door to the crack-striped, wooden porch, and a frantic mouse yells from the basement, “I’m down here the stuff is down here I don’t use the front door?”

I walk down to the sunken basement level and take a look at the broken foundation. “Is this the wall you want me to work on?”

“Yeah I can only pay you $100 though I don’t have much money I have to pay property taxes they’re almost $30,000 I can only pay you $100?”

“That’s fine. I wasn’t even expecting that much. I mostly want the experience. Just pay me at the end whatever you think is fair. I trust you.” The fact that she is apologizing for paying me more than I wanted, made me think that this was going to be more than a minor repair. “Remember, I’m not a mason. I’m not a professional. I am smart though, and hard working, and anything with directions I can figure out, though it may not be pretty.”

“That’s fine I just need this wall sealed up the rain’s getting in and this whole wall is caving in You’re mom said you are handy have you done this before?”

“Toni is my Grandmother, not my mother, and like I said, I’m not a professional. I can seal this up for you, though.”

I explain a few more times that $100 is more than enough and a few more times than that that I am still, in fact, not a professional and Toni is still not my mother. She already has the cement and caulk in her living room. I read the directions and begin to mix the cement to fill the major gaps. I am a little nervous because cement is a pretty permanent thing and what this wall really needs is to be torn down and rebuilt; It is so warped that that the wooden porch is about two feet to the right of where the wall meets the ground. There is no way to fix it, but if I can seal the cracks, hopefully I can prevent further damage.

The cement is fun to mix. I put on my hot pink dishwashing gloves because I’m not sure what deadly effects the cement might have on my skin. I fill a plastic tub with a few scoops of dry cement dust, about two pounds, and add one half cup of water. It only takes the slightest hint of water to turn this dust into rock. The droplets trickle down, bubbling, transforming instantly to what will soon be the new foundation of Cruella’s home.

The cement is very hard to work with. I try to meticulously fill the cracks with a small clean clump of clay, but half of it sticks to my trowel, the other half hangs from the wall like a melting Hershey’s kiss. I can’t seem to swipe an even, flat patch.

Now I take a large glob of putty and slather it on like barbecue sauce on brisket. This excess cement allows me to leave a smooth surface despite the extra sticking to the trowel, but the small bucket Cruella supplied will not come close to solving her problem at this rate. I ask Cruella for more cement or money to get some, to which she responds, “Just pick some up from Home Depot. I’ll add the cost to your bill later.” The 1.6 miles ride to Home Depot is easy, but carrying a bucket of cement on a bike during Chicago rush hour is not. I do make it back—barely, and continue the job.

Every few minutes, Cruella comes out to critique my work and ask for help with another chore. First, I was using too much water in the cement, it was soupy. Then I wasn’t using enough, it was clumpy. I wasn’t spreading it thin enough. It was too thin. She brought out a take-out menu with chicken scratch written on the back. It was her resume, which I edited for her; Surprisingly, there were very few mistakes and it seemed well thought out. Back to masonry. Then her door won’t close, so I removed and replaced the dead-bolt. Back to masonry. Then she asks me to clean her blinds. She doesn’t have any running water and the water bottle isn’t big enough for the cement and the blinds–also, she has no electricity, so seeing the blinds, or anything else inside for that matter, are too difficult to see. I take the blinds down the block, to the park, and wash them in the kiddy water-playground. Back to masonry.

The under belly of the staircase needs to be sealed as well, but the cement isn’t sticky enough to keep from falling down. I use the tacky caulk to build a lip on the wall that the moist concrete can rest on until it dries. It’s not pretty, but it will keep the rain out.

She comes out again to ask me to take a look at her garden. I’d rather get this over with and move on with my day, but I acquiesce to her request. There isn’t actually much to see but weeds and knee-high grass, but whatever. Back to masonry. She follows me back to the front where, after seven hours of back cracking work, she gasps and jumps into a panic attack. “Oh my god! This is Awful! It looks Awful! I thought you said you were a professional?!”IMG_0574

“I know it doesn’t look great, but it will keep the rain out and I told you it wouldn’t be perfect. What you really need is a whole new wall. This is a major project.”

“No no no this is all wrong! I can’t sell my house like this! You said you could fix it.”

“I told you, I’m not a mason. And Toni isn’t my mom either–she’s my grandma. Just pay me whatever you think it is worth—$20. I don’t care.”

“I don’t have any money and this is all wrong. Oh my god, this is so bad. I don’t have any money, but I will get you $50 of food stamps if you want.”

“Ok. Fine. Can I at least get the money for the extra cement I bought?”

“I don’t have any money. And that’s not even the cement I like? Don’t worry. I’ll talk to Toni. Your mom and I’ll work something out.”

“Fine. Let’s just go to the store.”

“Not now, I have to mail something.”

“Ok. I’ll help you mail it”

“No, that’s fine. The mailman is going to pick it up.”

“Ok. Let’s go to the store then.”

“You don’t have a car?”

“I have my bike. And my backpack. I just picked up the cement on my bike.”

“No. You can’t carry groceries without a car.”

“$50 doesn’t get you as much food as it used to. Besides, that’s for me to worry about—what I do with my groceries.”

“No, that’s a lot of food. You can’t carry all that plus I don’t have any food stamps right now. I’ll talk to Toni I’ll talk to your mom We’ll work something out?”

I’m sick of chasing her arguments in circles, so I agree to let her and my G R A N D mother work it out. After a few different brokered deals, Grandma and Cruella agree that next month we will all take a field trip to Aldi’s, with a car, to get some groceries.

I love learning and I love trying new things, so I didn’t mind doing the hard work, for hours, in the heat. I didn’t mind carrying a bucket of concrete on my bike across town. I didn’t even mind that, despite being unemployed, not only did I not make any money on this job, but I spent half of the cash I had from donating plasma on her cement; I actually paid her for the hours of hard work! And that’s just fine with me—It’s a learning experience. What really pissed me off is that she was outside every five minutes, watching me work, observing the process, and waited until I was done to freak out and bail. I don’t like being deceived and I don’t like being dicked around. Just tell me you need help. Don’t bait and switch my good will.

As of the writing of this book, I haven’t seen a dime, or an apple. Though I did go back the next morning to collect the $10 I spent on cement, which she was gracious enough to reimburse. I understand that she is too old to work much and probably has to finagle her way out of a lot of expenses on her fixed income—I mean, she doesn’t even have running water. I don’t harbor any negative feelings about her or the day I spent working there–though I did draw a huge cock in the cement on my way out.

A Brief History of the Universe [poem]

WordPress does not format this preview–Click “Continue Reading” below to see the actual format of the Poem.

 

A Brief History of The Universe

There were electrons

that flew

There were rocks that crashed

There was life that knew

And stuffs that didn’t.

Some could spell well

and some could lift 10 times their weight

And some were ships

And some were freight.

Some said “hello”.

And others were gas in a giant black hole

Life began here

And continued there.

Time itself bent on the turn of a screw.

Scientists discovered

republicans laughed

Lots of us killed

While a lot of us died

And the same rocks made us fight for and give up our lives.

Molecules coalesced and evolved

Rocks became solar systems

And atoms became bodies

And everything, more compex due to entropy

And then people died

Cause that’s what life does.

And rocks still spun

’round their respective suns.

I loved you,

You know,

As I always have—

Before you were born

And after god died.

Energy danced till the illusion of mass

Made it seem as if we were Not just thoughts and gas,

As if objects were real

And the universe was not one

gigantic bullet in the brain of a gun.

The dinosaurs drank tea with Othello

And a fellow who saved the whole world

By hanging from metal.

The planets spun faster to run

From disaster

And the faster we chattered

The more we each mattered.

And each time the needle skipped on the turntable’s platter

We danced as if Coltrane had planned on the clatter.

We waited

For something

To happen.

We waited

To read

A book

That might

Inspire us

Deeply.

But

When

Nothing saved us

We thought it

A good idea

To be lazy.

We fell in love on purpose

Cause we knew how obvious it was

That the only cure

for boredom is love.

So we kissed and

We fucked.

We had sex and more sex

We asked the girl in 3B

To join us in bed.

We fondled each other like wrapped Christmas gifts

And we kissed every hole as if mystery exists.

I Drank so much whiskey

You called the police

Who removed my pistol from my abandoned teeth.

I felt too intensely

the pain was too deep

and suicide was my one last attempt to find peace.

Technology soared into worlds unimagined

Cars flew as if bees

All disease was deceased

And your doctor brought me back to life

–with the help of a priest.

So, even giving in, hadn’t worked after all

Which was fine, cause the sky was beginning to fall.

Milky way was colliding with Andromeda.

The Universe was having a fart

That only effected those who were living–

And some who had passed.

And the ephemeral mass was returning to gas.

And a universe that once flaunted shapes and designs

Was proved just a matrix of concepts of mind.

Nothing Was,

That Was not.

Though we almost forgot,

That stories exist without names, but not without plot.

The universe, god, time and what not

Was all one infinitesimal thought

Only as real as the dimensions we chose to give it

No longer than the moments we crammed into minutes

No more beautiful than the house that we built and lived in.

So that’s why we got up and loved to the limit.

Birds flew

Once again

And cows chose to chew

And again space grew

Blacker and vaster

And everything that just had zero matter

Once again mattered.

The sad teenage scribblers wrote poems in notebooks

The sun burned hotter than before it was extinguished.

And the ATM worked

And the stars formed new pictures

And the poor became poorer

And the rich became richer

And it looked so familiar

But what could we do?

We pretended that everything was different and new.

That we had never met, or died, or cheated

Pretended the hurt that destroyed our hearts

Had never happened or could never.

We pretended that life was as lovely

As we hoped it would be

Cause it was

And is

And it always will be.

Till we all fall apart at the seems

And the dream

We all dared to dream

Gives in to the pressure

Of much lighter

Things

Website Powered by WordPress.com.

Up ↑