Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Season's Greetings...

I've always loved this time of year & I've gotten all of my Christmas shopping squared away (& an entire 2-weeks ahead of the big day at that). That said, I'm so very thankful for those in my life & look forward to the spirit of the season. Now there's little remaining for me to do besides sit-back & enjoy the time spent with loved ones. 

Thanksgiving was wonderful - I truly hope the vibe continues through to the new year as well, even though I've found this time of year now makes me think of those who have since gone on the most. Still, it's a happy time for me & there's little anyone can do to ruin my spirit - I simply won't allow it :-)

I spent much of 2012 getting rid of some additional cancerous associations & now that I've effectively handled that, I'm ready to move-on to my next chapter in life. I'm hoping others will follow suit & accompany me along the way. Guess that just leaves the many fruits I'm hoping 2013 will bear. 

I expect to make some additional life changes in the coming year; things like buying my 1st home & tightening up the budget (even more, lol)... sh!t - I gotta go, this'll have to be a shortie cuz I just missed my subway stop. In case I don't post again before the 1st, Happy New Year people!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Civic Duties...

Boy... workin the polls is a pretty thankless job - but with the long waits & lines each election, that's certainly to be expected. This year we had about a thousand new voters in my precinct, so that made things a bit more hectic this go-round. 

After being on my feet since 5:30am - I am pooped! So what's my reward? A desk full of sh!t to do just as soon as I get into the office to perform my full-time job tomorrow, lol. Ahhh well, what can ya do. Hopefully my presidential candidate wins the election! 

But at this point, I really don't care, lol. I'm so exhausted, I've got a good mind to lie down right now & just catch the results in the am. On the positive side, there was a steady line all day long, so it definitely seems like there was a really good turn-out.

Both the am & pm rush hours were brutal, but I've never seen the line wrapped around the building like it was this am - people were really committed to getting their votes in! As you'd imagine, I heard quite a few 'interesting' political views today. 

The most controversial issue was easily the proposed gay marriage law here in MD. I've never heard SO many people opposed to something that affects them in no way at all. I'm really curious to see what the public decided on this one.

Definitely thinkin of takin a 'Me Day' at some point next week, been dealing with alot & so have the people close to me, so it'll be nice to take a day - just to focus on MY mental therapy. It's hard when your the rock, most times you're left with nothing to lean upon yourself.

But it's my own fault, so I don't complain - you see, I'm pretty good at concealing my problems. I just hate to burden others with my issues, so most assume that my life is smooth sailing, but uhhhh... lol. In the end, another day, another dollar... hopefully, I'll awake to good news :-) C'mon Obama!!!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Another Sheep, Called Home...

Well damn... certainly didn't expect to follow-up a post as light-hearted as my last with 1 like this, but such is life I've learned. Today, during the wee hours of the morning, my favorite cousin (the 1 closest to me in age) died in her sleep. Don't have any details on what happened at this point, but does it really even matter? 

We went to Howard together for 2 years, I loved her dearly. But admittedly, I'm becoming quite accustomed to losing great people in the midst of their prime. She was just 32 years old, much like my best friend VAM (who died within a week of her birthday), April's birthday is this Thursday.

She lived in LA, but was actually set to return east later this month to move-in with my brother & I until she found a place of her own. I expect she'll most likely be buried in Halifax, VA - where most of our family is from, as we don't have much family in California.

Few things in life prompt people to take inventory & count their blessings like a death will, especially a premature death. It always makes you think of how short life is & how we don't get nearly enough days to enjoy those we love the most. 

I just keep thinking about her mother. April was an only child & her father died years back so this has to be so hard on her to handle alone. My mother is in the air as I type this so atleast she'll have a sister at her side soon.

I'll always treasure the times she & I were afforded on this Earth. I sincerely hope we eventually cross paths again someday, scratch that - I KNOW I'll see you in the next lifetime, just doesn't make today any easier. Until then, know that you are loved hun...

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Smitten (adj.) - marked by foolish or unreasoning fondness...

At the very adamant request of a dear friend earlier, I decided to post, lol. My friend pointed out that it's been over 2 months since I last blogged & I've got the time tonight, so I figured I'd oblige - even though I never intended to publicly express the following at such an early stage. 

Fuckit, it's the only relevant thing I've got going on right now, lol.

You see, I met someone, well sort-of anyway. I've actually known this person all along, but only recently involved myself romantically. It's different, but a good kind of different & better still, nothing about it feels forced. She wants to be here & I certainly desire the company she provides. 

Granted, it hasn't even been 2 full months since we've been dating, still - I'm cautiously optimistic because I believe in her.

It's funny because we're actually quite the opposite of 1 another in many instances, but I think it's the friendship we've forged over the years that makes the realization of such difficult to observe most times. 

It almost seems impossible to express how frustrating it's been to be the 2nd choice of so many women I've fancied in recent years, especially considering how much of an upgrade I would've been to the previous clowns they've dated, lol. I've constantly been ignored & picked-over before most recently being placed on standby.

Well if you know me, than you also probably know that I'm nobody's 2nd option. The mere suggestion of such, or really, ANY form of feet-dragging at all, completely turns me off & I'm instantly disenchanted. The way I see it, you're either with it, or you're not - anything in-between is a waste of everyone's time.

I hold very little respect for folk who have what they claim to ultimately desire, but fear the unknown thereby failing to own what they've already won. I certainly make no apologies for recognizing my own self-worth either. I've grown to be an expressive, dependable partner & I look forward to demonstrating all that I've learned.

Plus she knows me well, so it was nice being able to skip past the initial getting to know 1 another phase & move directly into courtship. Although the friendship we shared before was exclusively plutonic in nature, our current union definitely seems like a no-brainer, so I'm glad we threw caution to the wind. After-all... without risk, there can be no reward.

Monday, July 9, 2012


Despite my best efforts, I was just unable to sleep last night. Don’t know what the deal is, I didn’t take a nap or anything on Sunday.  I did manage to catch about 2 hours of sleep between the hours of 10p & midnight, but when I awoke, I was wired all over again. So rather than watch tv & play video games all night long, I just brought my ass into work for a lil OT, hell I’ll even get some night differential pay out of it.

So here I am blogging from my desk, when I’d rather be home catching some zzz’s. But what can you do? No worries though, there’s always plenty of work to do here, so at the very least, I’ll have a much lighter Monday workload once my normal tour of duty starts at 7a. I haven’t blogged in a while anyway, so this clears an item from my to-do list. I figure I’ll like crash at about 2p, which should be perfect since I’ll  be back out the door by 3p.

Once I do roll for the day, I’m gonna try & force myself to stay awake until it’s time to sleep again tonight – don’t want to end up repeating this same routine by taking a midday nap. Perhaps I’ll go & cut my folks’ lawn once I’m off, now that the weather has finally dipped below 100 degrees again. The grass in desperate need of a cut, fortunately this east coast heat wave has also prevented the grass from getting any taller.

As for the latest happenings in my world - eh, not much of anything goin on to be honest, guess that explains why I haven’t blogged lately. No one's been added to the shit-list since I last posted, so I find myself really reaching for any sort of relevant content to publish here. Sorry, there will be no deep, philosophical insight to share with you this morning, lol. I can only confirm that I’m indeed breathing & still walking the Earth. Hopefully that’ll suffice for now.

Alright, I guess I'll get some work done (while the rest of you sleep, lol).

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Got Dad???

Allow me to preface this post by 1st saying that my Pops is a great dude. In a world where fathers are attacked & slammed daily by abandoned children, mis-stresses, wives, ex-wives & the ever-so-popular: baby mother - it's only right that I take the time to combat the trending twitter topics & various Facebook posts by announcing the fact that my father is indeed the exception to what most certainly seems to have become the rule.

Not only did he beat my ass when appropriately ordered to do so by Ma (lol), he praised each of my individual triumphs, while also managing to support (financially & emotionally) a great number of my unique ventures into the great unknown, which he commonly referred to as - the real world. Recalling my memories of him as a child, I can remember he was an early-riser, I myself, now wake between 5 & 6am daily.

He always left for work while it was still dark outside & very rarely did he ever take leave from work. He always took his lunch with him (a practice Mom & I had long since given up in school, lol) & was home daily by 4:15pm. I swear, you could set your clocks to this guy's daily routine. He handled all the typical maintenance & upkeep any house requires over time. As a former used car salesman, he understood the maintenance required to keep a car running - he was just handy.

As a kid, I just thought he was my personal Mr. Wizard (80s tv reference, lol) - he was a computer specialist at the Pentagon, so I was fascinated by his work early on. Around the house, he could fix/build just about anything it seemed. The day I took over grass-cutting duty was SUCH a big deal - I was finally old enough to start doing man-stuff too, lmao. At age 10 or 11, he & I would come to learn we both shared something in common - the love of football. I think it was then, he knew his blood coursed through my veins, lol.

From that point forward, our campaign to convince Ma to allow me to play was on! Eventually she conceded & the rest is history. I guess it turns out, he was my 1st coach in life & on the field of play as well. I remember he was a tough coach & an even tougher parent, but at the end of each scolding, the life lesson was evident to me & I always walked away a better athlete/person as a result of his taking the time. He didn't try to raise me just as he raised my brother, but instead judged us both on our own individual merit. 

Though he's never been a man of many words, he ALWAYS knew the right time to sit-my-ass-down & put a lil' sumthin in my ear right quick. I'm forever gratetful for the many lessons he taught by way of the example he lead. He showed me exactly what being a devoted husband & loving father entailed, something I've yet to come across in any book, so I certainly recognize the blessing it's been to have him around.

Pops is getting up there in age nowadays, so I find myself spending more time with him, while at the house doing yard work, at family gatherings over holidays, birthdays, or whatever. Guess I just wanna soak up what I can, while I can. Throughout history, the sacrifice of the mother who is forced to be both Mom & Dad has been well-chronicled. But on this day, let it be known that MY father was also my Dad, & you know what? He was fuckin' good at it too...

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Casual Wednesdays...

So tomorrow is the 1st day of an experiment I'm conducting. I'll be telecommuting from home tomorrow & will continue to do so for the next couple of Wednesdays as well. 

If I'm able to stay disciplined & actually complete a day's worth of work from the couch, I'll commit to telecommuting 1 day a week for the foreseeable future. I've got quite a few buddies who love the traditional alternative work schedules they've got at their jobs, but honestly, I'm not really willing to work the 9+ hours per shift required to earn the day-off every-other week. I barely manage to stomach my current 8-hour shift as it is, so I'm positive I'd be ducking-out early, each day, if I was expected to be there for 9 or more, lol.

So we'll see how this works out for me. Kinda reminds me of being back in high school when teacher's would give us those open-book tests. I always felt nervous about 'em, some things are just too good to be true, lol. I'm supposed to document what I've accomplished from home - that ought to be... interesting.

If this new wrinkle does become a regular part of my work schedule, it'd be pretty helpful. I normally ride the subway to work Tuesday thru Thursday, while I drive on Mondays & Fridays. So if I can save subway fare & parking fees each Wednesday simply by drafting documents & responding to emails between loads of laundry, while frying bacon in my underwear, then I'm ALL for it!

Not to mention the freedom it would give me to run many midday errands that might normally be inconvenient or bothersome during rush-hour or weekends. Doctor/dentist appointments, appliance repair service, runs to the cleaners, oil changes, so on & so forth.. could ALL be done on Wednesdays. Then there's the ultimate prize, the extra sleep I'd get :-D

Sure, some supervisors or management might feel like telecommuting would be less productive for worker-bees, but there's actually been a lot of research showing how the quality of work actually improves when employees have alternative work schedules - then there's the money saved on the employer's end, so... why not? 

I guess only the application of said theory remains. At any rate, I've got my secured VPN access squared away, emails & calendar items from the work computer seem to be syncing flawlessly with the home computer & mobile devices - plus, the Sup is very much on-board with everything. I've even installed Microsoft Word on my Mac (forgive me Steve, unfortunately Word remains a necessary evil in the workplace, lol).

Thursday, May 10, 2012


~ 7:13p ~ Admittedly, I haven't gotten a whole lotta use out of the DVD player since having this car, but it sure comes in handy when your waiting for roadside assistance, smh. I'm currently watching 'Hustle & Flow' as I wait on these peoples to come change this tire. Last weekend I cleaned out the trunk, but neglected to put my tool bag (the 1 with the all important tire-iron in it) back into the trunk - so of course, I 'd catch a flat in less than a week of driving without my tools, smh.

It's still pretty much the heart of rush-hour, so who knows how long I'll be here. Talk about God having his own ways of slowing you down, lol. Glad I'm not hungry... I was actually on my way to a function I consider rather important though. I figure I'll still make the tail-end of it, but damn - I really did want to be there for the entirety of the program.

Couple of kats in a wrecker just pulled up & tried to see if they could get some coins outta the kid, actually woulda taken 'em up on their offer if I had some real cash on me - so it turns out fate just screwed me again, lmao. $45 bucks would've gladly been surrendered to get to this event sooner. Oh & guess how much emergency cash I used to keep stashed in my previous ride? Yup, $50... think I'd like to scream right about now, lol. I'll certainly be getting back to that practice very soon to avoid this again.

I'll say 1 thing about my roadside assistance provider, they keep callin back w/ status reports & shit, so at least somebody's actually awake on the other end, I guess. I really hate having to wait on help for something I can absolutely fix myself :-/ But it beats having no power, gas, or climate control - so I'll stop my bitchin' right here, lol. I'm approaching my favorite part of the movie anyway so I'm really not all that conscious of how time has passed. "Whoop that trick!"

A good samaritan pulled-over not long ago. So... good people still exist, eh? Maybe anyway... he kinda had violent, sexual deviant written all over him, so perhaps he was just hoping he'd rolled-up on some possible action, lmao. Needless to say, I sent him on his way. Shit... now I've gotta piss. I'll give it another 20 mins, then I'll be pissin off the side of this highway (it's okay, I'm a stranded motorist, lls).

~ 8:03p ~ okay, just got the call. Supposedly, the guy is about to pull-up on me in as sec...

~ hol-up, there dem peoples go ~

~ currently posted safely on the other side of the car, holdin lugs, while dude braves the rush-hour traffic whipping by us, along side Interstate 495 ~

~ yea, let him earn that bread, while I continue to blog, lol ~

~ it appears dude has his girl ridin' along with him, she's posted in the passenger seat of the truck, guess she's literally a ride or die chick ~

~ dude has got like 4-5 different hustles currently goin-on, think I'll definitely be taking advantage of this highly unorthodox networking session, lol. I meet the most helpful folk, in the strangest of circumstances ~

~ he's just about done, I'll edit & post later tonight ~ 

~ *Update*/ 11:11p ~ so the event ended at 9, I got there at 8:50, lmao. But it's cool, still somehow managed to accomplish what I set out to do this evening, even tho I missed the entire event itself. As a bonus, turns out I didn't even scrape any part of my rim (during the quarter-mile or so I had to drive on a completely flat tire to find a safe place to pull-over). Looking back, I think it's pretty hilarious that my biggest fear through-out the entire ordeal was a scraped rim (lol). All & all, no complaints - another day in the life... now I'm home, watchin' Person of Interest, just can't get enough of Ms. Taraji P. Henson :-D

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Hit the Ground Running...

Last month I officially got back into my jogging routine & after the 1st few tough runs, I finally felt like I was back into the swing of things? This month I even started tracking my runs again, using the RunKeeper app I discovered for my phone last year. Not sure why I'd stopped tracking each run in the 1st place (perhaps I was a bit ashamed of myself for getting out of my normal routine, idk-lol).

I broke in some new footwear in April, very pleased with 'em. More-or-less a New Balance/Vibrams hybrid running shoe, they feel really light & seem to conform to the shape of my feet (I believe they're called 'NB Minimus,' or something to that effect). I try to run 3-4 times a week & it feels sooooo good each week I'm able to accomplish that task - I've got my 2nd 5k race coming up later this month, another race in mid-July & just today, a good friend hipped me to a 5k zombie obstacle course run in late-October. That should be fun, terrifying & exhausting - I'm really looking forward to that one!

Im general, I'm an independent worker by nature & I'm very comfortable with that, so it puzzles me why it took such a long time for me to get into running. I absolutely hated the idea of participating in track & field while involved with other sports as a youth, but I'm so glad I've come across what has become such a therapeutic release for me over the past 2 years.

Whenever I run, it seems I'm able to tune-out the noisy world, including the people in it & whatever it is I think they currently owe me, lol. So my recent return to the roadway actually comes at a great time for me. This is the time of year when I typically remove myself from the social scene & go underground for a bit to re-focus/analyze myself. This year's round of self-analysis has been productive so far... I've tightened up some really loose ends, now I'm on my way!

Though I ran far less this past winter, I didn't stop flagging good music to listen to while jogging. Thusly, I've managed to create several themed playlists to run to - as a general practice, I take the various music playlists I create VERY seriously, so I'm glad I made note of certain songs & artists for such purposes. I think I'll go with my 'hype mix' when I run this evening (today's Vitamin B dosage has me sittin at my desk jittery & really amped to run, lol).

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Thinking of You...

Hey VAM,

While sitting at my desk a few hours back, I couldn't help but constantly think of you on your birthday - so fuck-it, I left. Now I'm back in my car after having just visited your grave for a bit. I played Erykah's "Gone Baby, Don't be Long," a moment ago - never seemed more appropriate than now.

I know it was one of your favorite songs from her. Now I'm playing John Mayer's "Gravity," we both loved that one! Interestingly, this one's appropriate too - but you know all about that, lol. As far as the news goes, Teacy's having a baby girl any day now, & guess what she's gonna name her??? Anise!

She's gonna know so much about the woman she's named after, I'll make sure of it! Oh & Shaun is still VERY much in love with being a daddy. From what I can see, he's a good one too - you'd be proud of him. He's doing all of the right things. Avril seems to be doing well. We don't communicate often, but from what I can tell, she's enjoying life, so I'm happy for her!

Speaking of the old gang, most of us will be gathering for your birthday dinner tonight. We still haven't missed a dinner since keeping the dinner reservations you set just days before your passing 2 years back. So that'll make tonight our 3rd birthday dinner in celebration of your life, doesn't seem this new tradition will change anytime soon, but your friend's birthdays were always so important to you, so I'm all for keeping the dinners going.

Over the past few days at home I kept glancing across the bedroom at a letter I'd avoided opening since Christmas. I certainly never intended to wait so long, but later tuned into the next day, the next day became next week, before I knew it, a month had passed & well... life happened. This morning I opened it.

The letter was from your mother, each time I looked at the letter over the past 3 months, I'd notice your mother's handwriting - its very similar to your own penmanship, perhaps that's part of the reason I found it so difficult to open. It was a Christmas card she'd personalized to both my brother & I.

In case you're wondering he's doing ok, he tries not to show how your sudden passing affects him still, but it's rather clear to me - he misses the hell out of you, we both do! I'll be sure to touch base with your mother in the coming days - perhaps I'll give her a call today.

As for me my dear friend, I struggle daily with your leaving. Though I know you'd very much disapprove, it's made me a cold & rather impatient person. Sometimes I can't help but to think you took a part of me with you when you had to leave, it certainly feels that way - haven't been the same since.

But I'm trying... it's difficult to replace even half of all the love you showed me over the years as my friend, & I doubt I'll ever come close in that regard - but again, I'm trying... to be strong, to keep an open & receptive heart, to see beyond the short-comings of people, shit - just to be more like you.

I love you VAM, always have, always will - Happy 31st.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


Welp... it's official - my 85 year-old grandmother no longer recalls who I am. Its not that I didn't see it coming, just a little saddened by it all. On Monday, I stopped by the nursing home (with my father) to visit her, a task normally performed each week by my mother. But she's in Africa this week, so the job fell to my father & I during her absence.

The last time I saw Gramma was Christmas Day. It was then I realized many of the things & people she loved would soon be locked away in some hidden corner of her mind. I often wonder how frightening an experience it must be for her & whether it'll become more or less terrifying as her state of dementia progresses.

Unfamiliar surroundings, strangers coming & going; all professing to know things about you, the home you recall - nowhere in sight... how agonizing it must be to realize you can't make sense of 'anything' around you. If you ask me, I'd say, "that's a pretty fucked-up way to go."

It's ironic, when people we love experience conditions such as dementia, or any disease, we often selfishly consider ourselves the victims, sometimes even more than our loved ones! Exorbitant assisted living costs, rising medication bills, outrageous insurance premiums - I know... poor-poor us left holding the God-damned bag, lol.

Granted, no one looks forward to shelling-out their hard-earned money to a less-than-deserving healthcare staff or to an insurance company only concerned with the bottom line, but it's a necessary evil right about now & there really doesn't seem to be any way around it.

Suck it up! After all, what else can we really do? As I look deeper into my own situation, I realize I've got to do this at least 2 more times when my parents reach their twilight years. Might as well look at this as an opportunity to observe what does & doesn't work (when it comes to elderly care) in the hope that I can provide the best quality of life possible for the duration of their respective lifetimes...

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Help...

A good friend of mine mentioned that she was reading 'The Help' (by Kathryn Stockett) & I told her I still hadn't seen the movie, then she added that the book was much better (as is often the case with books made into movies), so I said I'd read chapter 1 for free & buy the rest of the ebook if I got hooked - well, I got hooked. Ended up buying the rest of the book that very same night, lol.

A very interesting read so far. The inhumane way blacks were treated, despite the fact that they played such pivotal roles in the rearing of SO many white children truly amazes me. The arrogant sense of entitlement shared by so many whites during that time period is almost too much for me to stomach at times.

But I've enjoyed the character development thus far & must say that I really like reading about both - the whites who ignored current trends & treated blacks with the respect they deserved, as well as the black maids who cared for these white children SO much even though anger & resentment could've easily led them to do otherwise.

I've wanted to see the movie for some time now & this book only makes me more anxious to watch it & do a compare/contrast between the book & film. I'm currently reading the Steve Jobs biography as well & though I really HATE reading two books at 1 time, both are two I can't seem to put down at the moment.

I'll be sure to update this post with my final impressions, once I'm finished reading - hell, perhaps I'll review the Jobs book as well at that time...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

So Much to Do, So Little Time...

In recent years, February thru April has been a pretty busy for me, even busier than the summer months. It seems I have a multitude of family, friends & associates - all celebrating birthdays, babies, weddings, new home purchases, so on & so fourth during this time of year (not to mention the fact that my own birthday was yesterday), so keeping track of social events AND work related functions is at times, difficult.

I often struggle finding ways to attend all of the functions I can, but sometimes it's very easy to spread myself too thin, so I've been working on that lately. I never really used the calendar function of any of my previous cell phones much over the years, but I find doing so nowadays is a must to in order to have any shot at keeping my professional/social life in order.

Right now I've got it worked out so that any e-vites, appointments, meeting request, etc. that get sent to my email accts automatically get added to my work calendar & personal calendars, which both sync with my phone. Whenever I'm on the go, I've got an up-to-the-minute listing of all of my appointments readily available. Even the game schedules for my favorite teams are auto-syncing to my main calendar.

In this fast paced, time is money world we live in today, I'm all about consolidation. So any time I'm able to eliminate steps, or make things simpler - I go for it! Hopefully, organizing/auto-syncing my calendars remains a practical step in getting my life better organized. So far it's been very helpful...

Sunday, March 4, 2012

So I went to church today...

I'd actually been boycotting church for years (never really felt the whole ministers buyin' Benzes using tithe money supplied by poor people), but this morning when I opened my eyes at about 6am, for some reason, I up & decided I needed to be in church. So I got myself together & headed to the church I'd attended for years against my will as a child.

It was a bit different than I'd recalled & definitely much shorter - it's amazing how an hour & a half of church service can seem like 3+ hours of torture when you're not even an adolescent yet, lol. Though I still feel a certain way about many who make money within the field of ministry & religion - I do realize the benefits people (including myself) can take away from worshiping among a group of fellow parishioners.

Today Pastor Davis' sermon focused on identifying chronic problems & attacking them at root-level, versus applying temporary band-aids to surface issues. An interesting topic to say the least & I definitely left with additional knowledge of a few things I could be doing here & there to better address some of those lingering, underlying issues in my life. I'm glad I decided to go!

As I listened to the word, I wondered if my mom was in attendance. Using one of these friends/family gps location apps installed on both of our cell phones, I discovered that she was indeed there & sent her a text letting her know I was there. Shortly afterward, she found me & I went to talk with her & my father for a bit before leaving. She was super-excited to see me there - I could tell it really made her day to see me at church without her constant nagging, lol.

Many improvements have been made & a new pastor now roams the pulpit, but the church hasn't changed all that much. The glass remains stained, the ushers are still there & so is the steeple, lol. As for church folk... well, they're still church folk. A new sanctuary built soon, so it was nice to sit thru a service in the church I remember from my childhood 1 last time.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Day One...

Ok, so yesterday my daily smoke limit finally decreased from 1 to 0, & I'm pretty proud that I was able to make it thru my 1st day without smoking in God knows how many years. I was pretty nervous about how I'd get thru lunch without a smoke break, but even after my meal, it wasn't so bad. As of February 13th, I can say that I've officially quit - now comes the new challenge of staying quit!

I've been coping with down-time better, for instance, driving to various destinations (even to/from work during rush hours) without lighting up, meaning no more ashes in the car or frequent pitstops to buy smokes - definitely positive & welcomed lifestyle changes. I've even managed to somewhat disassociate hard liquor consumption & smoking from 1 another, so I'm no longer afraid to drink, although I'll continue to limit my drinking for the time being.

I must admit, having a real sponsor is making things much easier, & I expect I'll be needing her services alot more in the coming days - hope she doesn't go MIA during any moments of weakness. Until this point, she's been spot-on with advice and suggestions on how to distract myself whenever I'm craving a smoke. Glad I decided to share my efforts to quit with someone else, makes it so much harder to cheat when I have to be accountable.

I've always been rather guarded & private with any new endeavors I chose to take-on, so sharing a commitment like this with someone was definitely a new approach for me. If this were a perfect world, I'd marry my sponsor, no seriously - I would. She reminds me alot of my mother, in that, when she nags - I feel obligated to comply, but I'd NEVER tell her that for obvious reasons, lmao.

It took me 40 days to go from an average of about 6-7 smokes a day to none, & you know what? I'm pretty fuckin impressed with myself too - haven't even been using the e-cigarette either! With a lil support, guess it was just the right time for me to start exercising a little mind over matter. I'll be sure to post another update next month (whether I've fallen off the horse, or not, lol) - wish me luck!

Monday, February 13, 2012

In the Spirit of Valentines Day...

...I thought I'd take some time to post about love of course. Knowing what I now do about relationships & love, mainly 1 woman of my past comes to mind. She truly loved me, even despite my various faults & weaknesses. Looking back, I could always rely upon Ms. Washington, yet I wouldn't come to realize it until later in life. It definitely hurt her alot when I decided to move on, it's something I used to really hate myself for. That was a point in my life when I honestly didn't have a clue what a good women entailed & though I'd do anything to change certain things about the past... I can't - I've since come to accept that.

Sadly, many of the very same superficial trappings that caused me to give up such a woman in the 1st place, led to numerous errors in judgement in regard to the various romantic relationships I would pursue over the next decade - all of which, ended in absolute disaster. Let's just call it... lack of foresight, lol. During those years I actually thought I could make women grow to love me, when in reality, their feelings for me were, at best, luke-warm. As a result, I'd even allow some of these women to enter/exit my life as they pleased, all the while hoping that at some point, they'd see in me, what I thought I'd already seen in each of them.

I know... a rather idiotic approach indeed, but I've never been above humiliating myself all in the name of love & that's what I perceived myself to be doing at the time. I put so much effort into trying to get these women to feel what they didn't, that in time, I forgot to love myself. To be clear, in NO way do I blame any of these women for my bad judgment in character, but collectively speaking, they simply weren't the right women for me & I clearly wasnt the man for any of them. Still, I recognize what I contributed to each failed attempt, so at the end of the day, the blame most definitely lies with me & I've got no equivocations about owning it either.

Quite frankly, it used to be really hard sitting around, picking up the shattered pieces among me, but I've come to learn that those are the breaks in life - fuckit. At any rate, I've paid the shit outta my dues & at this point, I feel my debts to Ms. Washington & society as a whole, have all been paid in full, lol. After more than 10 years of erratic emotional swings, I've gotten past most things & it's much easier to move forward with life. Jaded as this heart may be towards idea of love, I still yearn for it, so I could never give-up the possibility of it. What's next for me? Hell if I know. In the meantime, I'll continue to be the best me I can be, so that I'm ready when she reveals herself & despite the luck I've had in recent years, I know that she will.

Guess I'll end on that (I'll clean-up any typos later), enjoy the special day couples! To those of you with hearts in need of repair - remember to feed it, don't starve it...

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Okay, Let's Try This Again...

Last year I took a shot at quitting tobacco products, but fell off horse at some point. Shortly after the new year, I again made the pledge & decided to take another serious crack at cutting-back on my use of tobacco products. With the help of an iPhone application I downloaded (MyQuit Coach - I track every smoke I take - I can even track each craving where I didn't smoke. The app allows me to set my own custom quit plan. Each week, the app gradually decreases the number smokes I'm allowed to take in a given day.

I chose a 40-day plan starting with a limit of 7 smokes per day & currently. I'm currently on day 19 of the plan, at 4 smokes a day - so I'm just about half-way home! I'll admit that I'm a bit concerned about the next reduction in number of smokes allowed tho. In just a days time, I'll only be allowed 3 smokes per day (less than half the amount of what I'd been used to smoking in a day. I'm hoping I have the strength to remain disciplined. I will say; however, that I'm very pleased with the restraint I've shown thus far.

The app calculates other related stats like the amount of money I've saved by smoking less & there's a companion website where others can follow my progress. The app & website awards various badges based upon personal achievements like not smoking during peak daytime hours or smoking less than the daily limit allows, there's even a support community where I can interact with other people currently fighting the same battle - all & all, I'd say it's a pretty useful app for anyone serious about kicking the habit.

In addition, I've been experimenting with electronic cigarettes over the past few months & I think that's a viable option for me if the daily limit dwindles down to zero but I find myself still having cravings. Since e-cigarettes don't burn, smell, or contain any tar/carbon monoxide, it makes them a completely logical/practical quitting tool for me. That coupled with the fact that I really am committed to a healthier me (& also the support of a really good sponsor) makes me feel good about my chances moving forward...

Sunday, January 1, 2012

January 1st...

Another year has passed & outside of the fact that I'm driving a different car this year, I find myself sitting in pretty much the same position :-/

Sure, folk always say "no news is good news," & perhaps that's true in most cases, but there certainly isn't much of a discernible fun factor associated with no news, either - I'll tall ya that! Long story-short, I'm still bored, lol. But I have noticed the accomplishments of friends or associates in a year's time & I'm happy for them all. Such accolades include new jobs, homes, babies, relationships & even an engagement, so to each of these persons, I'm sending out a huge congratulations! What the hell? Just for kicks, I'll even toss in a great big helping of job well done, lol. Seriously, it's my hope that 2012 proves just as fruitful as 2011 did.

I'll bet you probably thought this was goimg to be a negative post from me, didn't you??? Lol, dont worry, I'm keepin the vibe positive in this post & others moving forward - I'd hate for the majority of my blog entries to consist of nothing but negative/sad woe as me-type stories & I definitely don't want to start 2012 in such fashion.

My 2012 calendar year goals? Well, becoming a homeowner is something I'd like work on this year, securing the necessary down payments & involved closing costs, anyway. I'm completely comfortable with my current situation/neighborhood, so that affords me the benefit of taking my sweet time when it comes to actually making any deal happen.

I'd definitely like to start doing more, as far giving back (writing checks isn't the most fulfilling experience), so both mentoring or coaching are a couple things that have been on my mind in recent years. I think it's about time to stop waiting on my own children & focus more upon helping someone else's child - gotta fill the void, right?

As far a my current employment, I'd always welcome some sort of promotion or merit increase, but in terms of the work I do, I'm rather good at it - plus the job security remains rather decent. I've certainly been blessed so a new job really isn't at the top of my list in 2012, but I always keep my ear to the ground, just in case!

At any rate, I guess those are a few of the things I have in mind for 2012 - not every earth shattering, I know - but I've always been a simple man of modest means (outside of my tech toy addiction of course :-) Happy new year all...