Archive for December, 2014


The 3AM World of Mine


I acknowledge suffering from two mental conditions; insomnia and some form of a deep, cyclical depression-actually other issues but I wont go into that as its not as relevant to the point I’m trying to get across with this post. If you’ve ever been caught having to drive home in the wee hours of the night when most everyone is asleep and you see some stranger meandering down the road alone and wondered what the hell someone was doing out there at this hour, that was me. Perhaps not me specifically but it could be me.
As hard as I try I cannot get to bed before an uncommon hour. I will allow myself only so many nights tossing with my eyes pasted to the ceiling or reading a book or drinking warm milk before getting up, putting on some clothes and taking a jaunt on the chilled dark streets, alone and in thought. My fits of depression typically have me out the most and although past posts to the Church have shown what happens on more jovial occasions, I don’t really write on those alone moments that draw no conclusions but rather act as a time needed before convincing myself to go lay my head on the pillow and rest. I am one of lone souls out there in the wee hours.
A few people have asked me why I don’t seek professional help from some qualified Head Specialist and I tell myself the suggestion is meant well and it might even help-but the gut instinct in me flinches when I actually try to search out a specialist. Up until recently I didn’t feel I knew why but now I’m beginning to hone in on my skepticism. Medical professionals, like car mechanics and tech support people, range from great to disastrous and walking down the road of emotional instability is a rocky road folks. I’m reminded of two incidents I went through with medical doctors that had results for me ending in loss of support to their craft. The first incident happened in Colorado when a doctor told me the x-ray they took of my lung showed a huge growth that was cancer and that it was in an inoperable location. The diagnosis was not good-fatal in fact-and the size of the thing showed there not to be much time. I was reeling from this naturally and they wanted to see about starting me up on a program to do some such shit but I thought what the hell, if this thing is not curable, why bother? I left it at that and a while later when I had to go to the doctor again, they took another x-ray which revealed nothing was in my lung at all. No cancer.
The second incident happened very recently when I went in the hospital and was diagnosed with pneumonia. After draining a small investment of blood to screen out of me a doctor came back and told me they had found that I had type II diabetes. Well this one floored me as well and the ball started rolling with me having to talk with dieticians, use one of those annoying machines to cut me and grab blood on a medical slab and trying to fathom a life from this point on wondering if I was going to be the needle in the thigh person or could get away with pills. I was still trying to cope and swallow all that down when the doctor came back in some hours later and told me to disregard all that stuff they had said about diabetes-they were not saying I had diabetes.
The limited exposure I’ve had to mental health professionals has led me to highlights like the doctor who told me what I should do is try and find something I enjoy doing and schedule a time to make sure I do it..brilliant. Here’s my fifty dollars for those words of wisdom. Another one called child services on me. Most people I know who have gone to health specialists (aside from the truly disturbed chemical imbalance folks) have been left with a wallet bending mind numbing dose of the latest psychoactive social mediator and if that’s what its about, I can find my own mind numbing drugs out there at a fraction of the cost. I don’t have all the answers by any stretch of the imagination, but I know the difference between the gut instinct revelation that hits me and a reasonable facsimile trying to be shoved up my ass.
I’ll have to take it slow and continuous, the way I always have. I find it funny that the only instrument I took lessons on was the violin, the one instrument I struggled with constantly and never learned well. All other instruments I taught myself-the guitar, harmonica, flute, some keyboard and some drums. It has to ring true from me or I just wont get it. That’s the same with these depressive states. That’s why I have to do it this way. That’s why I’m out there walking the streets at 3AM…..thats where the Church is.


State of the Union


As we enter the eleventh hour of two thousand fourteen I felt the need to take time from here behind the pulpit and lay out my observations on how the world is turning for us here in these United States of Never NeverLand. In order to collect my thoughts on the overall, I typically do better to weed out-purge out-the myopic fog brought on by work and every day nonsense to focus in on the things I see, read and hear. This procedure can sometimes involve ingesting good amounts of liquors and drugs to ferret the insignificant, which is what took place this weekend. I contemplate very deep while in this numbed state but always wait a day or so to sober up and make sure the evaluations I come to are not mere delusions from a chemical imbalance.
Dormans, my favorite haunt here in Sleepytown, is a quaint bar that has an old school jukebox and a pool table which only costs a quarter to play. I ran into a trio of young gents who took up on some pool with me; Jeremy, who I have seen in there on a number of occasions, Freddy, an energetic skilled pool player and Zack, a twenty something mechanical engineer who is the spitting image of Johnny Depp (from his younger days). Freddy suggested we play for shots and after six games, I needed to deviate from the Jameson and go for some scotch. After the scotch came some mescal. I also threw in a joint to buffer the whole thing.
My take on the generation these three represent leave me with continued hope and assurance that our future is paved with great people out there who do care about the world and people in general. To paraphrase Freddy, who paraphrased some French writer, all we need to live is love and water. That’s a far cry different mantra than the young twenties generation of the Ronald Reagan era who followed the credo I don’t care about anyone else, as long as I can pay my bills. The upcoming generations of voters and laborers have good hearts and are realistic in knowing that they are in a shithole of financial woes but they will help their fellow American wherever and whenever they can.
About the time Zack and I were contemplating finding a dog outside to set on fire so we could eat it (we understood the social faux pax and dropped the idea) he decided to leave and a group of suits came in to play pool. They were of the thirty-something clan and worked for some sports organization which was in town for some tournament deviant ritual that I didn’t care about. They were the jock sprites with six figure incomes and wives they left on a regular basis. They seemed to fit in Dormans like a square peg fits in a round hole. They stood as a symbol to remind me that this country still has a long fucking way to go. Images of the racial tensions which have torn our country apart have flared tempers and caused people to act like wanton animals pissing where they eat. So many people still want to insist there is no racial problem in this country and they are dead wrong. There are a lot of thug punks out there who prey on any given situation they can get over on someone, and that is not a problem with race, it is a problem from within the community of thieves. Any person, regardless the color of their skin, who takes to a life of crime, lives among those who have no valor, no redeeming quality to stop them from screwing anyone over. There is a difference between a person, frustrated with the roadblocks society has placed before him, and an all out sociopath who has no regard for anyone but themselves. That type individual can be found in all walks of life but who wants to help the people caught in the same community as these thieves? Certainly not the six figure income suits.
Now I don’t want to appear as if I think these men are evil because they make a decent wage- I would love to be making that kind of money. What seems to be so lopsided is that our country tends to invest large satchels of money into sports, wars and pharmaceuticals that keep you dependent on them, not cured. Why is it we have so few constructive moguls nowadays investing in product to build the waning infrastructure of America? Why do we continue to let our legislatures make bank (on our dime) just to sit and bicker with one another? Why are we charging college students outlandish tuition fees which they wont be able to pay back in one lifetime? These are the question which should be on the table right now before our dictators of law, not how to covertly bumrush the creation of a giant pipeline to choke fossil fuel through the middle of our country. The system used to govern the U.S. is becoming outdated as technology advances. We need to update our voting procedures for a more rapid response to quarterly issues. We’ve got the cart before the horse and all we have to do is turn the fucking thing around.
As Zack was leaving he wanted to let his story be known; how he had risen from a household with a drug runner as a peer to become a working stiff stuck in a country that seems to care more about keeping up with the Kardashians than much else and just like so many-not all-he probably wants to keep his job, work on his bike, maybe get a family but this seems to be increasingly more difficult as we suffer through existing in a workplace that runs off Apple computers being governed by lethargic politicians who still work at the speed of a pencil and slide ruler.
So now with the chemicals out of my system and a chance to think on it a while, what is my call on the state of the Union? Fixable, so dont let it the opportunity slip out of our hands.


Eastbound and Really Down


My more recent project undertakings have had my head racing between creating and marketing. I finished writing and publishing a book that had been developing in my head for decades and after finally blowing that load out of my skull, the next step to take was to promote it. This is not an easy task and time marches at a standstill when it comes to getting work recognized or persuading someone to rush out and read your work. Hence a depression developed. One can either hole up in a room with a needle full of smack or take a deep breath and look around to put things in perspective.
So far I have been lucky enough to recognize a sign, as it were, pop up and make me take notice when I have these periods of melancholy. Today my lesson was brought to me from Burt Reynolds. A quick story on the internet told how he is currently going through rough financial times and had to file for bankruptcy. His ex-wife, Loni Anderson, is selling some items he gave her in an effort to raise funds to help him out. When I read this my mind instantly slapped me across the face and made me take notice of the lesson being taught here. Younger people will not get it because time marched on and replaced the super stars of the 70s and 80s with today’s choice performers and media hacks.
Long before Miley Cyrus was even conceived (or her Achy Breaky dad, Billy Ray), the Burt Reynolds saga began as the Florida State running back pounded the gridiron with enough tenacity to earn him a penciled in spot with the then Baltimore Colts. A severe knee injury from playing and more complications from a car wreck ended his football career. From there Reynolds went into acting and started appearing on television westerns and b class movies. Next he became the first man to pose nude in the commercially successful women’s magazine, Cosmopolitan, which rocketed him into stardom as Americas newest sex symbol. He became the number one box office draw for years hopping from cult cop movies to good old boy comedies like Smokey and the Bandit. He didn’t stop there. His constant air time on the Tonight Show and his highly successful television game show, Win Lose or Draw brought him bank from the television studios and the public never seemed to tire of him. This man had it all, did it all and now he sits on the verge of losing it all; an obscure reference that few-if any-of the younger generation recognize. It really is not what you did yesterday, but what you did today that keeps you relevant to so many.
So as an older generation of dusty freaks like me have the ability to revisit the movie Deliverance or read the works of Kurt Vonnegut Jr. or put vinyl on a turntable, time marches on and new fanfare draws around the spectacle of the day. Far be it from me to say how stupid it may be for honing in on the Kardashians of the world, that is for each of us to decide on our own: The lesson reaffirmed within me  upon hearing of Burt Reynolds recent problems is that money and fame are fleeting and it isn’t about making a fortune of money, its about accumulating a wealth of experience. My book has been written and I do hope a number of people read and enjoy it, but if not, I have at least had the experience of writing it and will carry THAT story with me the rest of my life. Bucket lists should be filled with accomplishments, not coffers. Granted if I were to stumble upon a few million tomorrow, I certainly wouldn’t turn it down-I would have a party that put Caligula to shame but all in all, life can be pretty fucking amazing if you just go out there and let it happen. 

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