Flectere Si Nequeo Superos, Acheronta Movebo. Sorry Princess, Latin Says It Better Without The Translation

I have been up pretty much as long as I normally to tell you the truth.

Got up a little after 5 to get the Elder Duck ready to do the things he needs to do (that means I am the dad that gets him up early so he can play video games before giving up my room all day for him to go to school) and then, normally, even if I don’t fall asleep, I lay in bed for a few hours and gradually acclimate myself to the soul-shattering fact that I need to go a whole day and not be asleep. Sometimes little dude comes up and crashes with me for a bit, which is adorable as it sounds of course.

That was the plan this morning when the power went out.

Now, there isn’t a real reason I couldn’t have stayed in bed, my bedroom is not only cold because I like it that way, but it is also the only room in the house that gets absolutely no direct sunlight into the bedroom proper. It stays cool in there even on the hottest of days, which we are definitely at yet to be sure.

No, the reason I couldn’t stay in there, other than the little squirming child next to me who was bored all of a sudden, was because there was absolutely no noise. I can’t go with absolutely no noise. It freaks the shit out of me and I just don’t do perfectly normal and quiet. Hence the sound machine, the fan when there was one in there, the air conditioner, the diurnal things I listen to. I can’t be absolute silence, it brings up memories of things that I don’t want to have memories of and, regardless of the skills I have learned, it always flips that particular switch.

So I am tired.

Know what else I am?

Soul-crushingly fucking tired.

I don’t have any of the spoons and fucks anymore. There are too many squirrels in my head and I am not going to last much longer if I don’t do anything about it.

So here is what I am going to do.

First, this will be the last thing in here for a bit. Feeling guilty over not writing things that I like to write is idiotic and I refuse to continue on that particular pathway.

Secondly, I love you.

Thirdly, let’s hope this ends sooner rather than later. I do not do myself or any of my people favors when I fo into hermit mode, and I am feeling a pretty strong itch to lay in a quasi-comatose state for 19-23 hours a day with occasional breaks for the food and the bathroom. We all remember what happened the last time I got stupid like that.

So if you know me, text me. If I don’t answer, I probably still think you are awesome?

The title says it all, let’s just hope we can do the former before the latter, yes?

Rawrz

An April Monday Afternoon, Just Shy Of Six P.M., In Which I Beg You To Love One Another With Words That Are Mine That Are Derived From Words That Are Not.

“I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I acted and behold, service was joy.” – Rabindranath Tagore

I spend a lot of my time thinking about that quote. I don’t mean I like the thought of it, I don’t mean it is pretty words, I mean I spend a FUCKING LOT OF TIME thinking on that quote. I am not going to metaphor y’all to death today. I am too tired and I am going to cut straight to it so, sit back and read or leave, it’s all good either way.

It is a simple three-part play. The dream of Utopia, the realization of Dystopia, the acceptance and incorporation of Infinite Compassion. Yup, that is the direction this is taking. I am not a Bengali Nobel Prize winner, like the man quoted above. I am not going to pretend to understand what HE meant when he wrote this passage that etched itself into me the first time I read it. I am going to relate what I understand of that quote to what is going on in the world of filth we see today and, hopefully, maybe shed light where all there was before was a lack thereof.

COVID-19 is a terrifying thing for me as a parent. I have panic attacks when I go out, yet I go and do the things because that is what parents do. I am horrified that something might happen to me, leaving the children I adore to the whims of the court system, or worse, family. So I go out and do the grocery shopping, I go out and get the prescriptions and I even try as hard as I can to bring a little laughter with me as I do it, if you aren’t laughing now, then I can help.

We all have Perfect in our brain. That little slice of reality that we want to be just a certain way at a certain time in a certain place with certain somebodies. That is the dream of joy. We see those gone, those that got away, and all of the other things that would bring us to the brink of happiness overwhelming. We float in this dream and feeds our soul during times like this where all you see is the avarice and horrors of the classes that rule and the betrayed shock of the classes that are made to serve them. We dream of the times WE have the money, WE have the Car, WE have the, well you get the point I am sure.

There is no wrong in wanting the preciousness of perfection. It is the goal of the mind to obtain for the body that which it needs.

Which is where we hit the brick wall.

What we need and what we desire are so very often at nearly opposite sides of the spectrum. I am not saying we are all the greedy savages wanting for us, and us alone. It is just that sometimes even the simplest of the Want is so very far away from the easiest to obtain Need.

So we wake up, and we see that Life is Service.

We see that love is what we need more than anything. Love for ourselves, the loving of others. Learning to love, to foster love in others, to help others. When you love, truly love, you no longer “desire” it int he common use of the word. When you truly have a love for anything, be it a person or even a thing, the physical need of possessing it is infinitesimally small. When you learn to love, you simply love. You do not need to own the sun to love the sunrise, do you? The flowers in a field? The rising full moon in the clear night? You are not so arrogant as to think you have the power to own any of those things, so why would you be so arrogant as to think you can own the love of another? Love is a heartbeat. It pounds through each and every one of us every second of every day and when we focus on it, focus on it and let the world pass away and let the heart fulfill its purpose.

You act, and you behold that Service is Joy.

The ever-present struggle to keep you connected to those things you love. That, in and of itself, is an act of intense love.

I speak to a list of people every day. Every day I send them a text, a message, an email, a phone call. Every day I do this because I want them to know that I care for them, love them and want all the things in life that they love to love them just as strongly as can be felt.

So, that is this. This is me trying to say in overly complicated terms from a guru dead eighty years now. This is me saying that I love you, that I will always love you and that no matter how broken the world may seem, no matter how dark the corners of it may feel, there is never a time without light. Even if it is one person in the depths of our minds walking as freely as a faerie in a forest, there is always light.

Do not ignore the wrongs of the world, no. No instead focus on what YOU can do to make the world the best place it can be. Right now, you know that the best thing most of us can do is? Absolutely nothing. If we stay home, if we do what we need to do to stay safe and sane, then that is the change we can make in the world and let the practitioners of medicine do their nearly thankless jobs as best as they can.

I words good sometimes, I know that. A dragon I know told me I can never fully take off the rose-tinted glasses affixed to my heart, and maybe that is so, but it does not make me wrong.

So much for me not hammering you over the head with metaphors.

Love each other. It isn’t so bad a thought, is it?

Three Years and Ninety-Six Minutes Now That I Think About It For A Second

I have been sitting here a few days and for the life of me, I cannot seem to get the creative juices flowing when I sit down to write, even though I have a story in my head I am pretty sure wants to come out. I will be patient though, forcing the issues just produces a mediocre product that I would be ashamed to let anyone see anyway. Thankfully, this is me and I always have something to talk about, ESPECIALLY when I have nothing to talk about at all.

I am pretty sure you all know I have a baby brother. Well, he is 37 now, but you get the point. I am also fairly certain that y’all know that he and I share the same birthday, last Monday, the 2nd, three years and ninety or so minutes apart.

This is not going to be a rant about things that I thought about ranting about. No, we each walk our path and hopefully, we will find a grassy spot to meet one day. Until then, I want to tell you a story about him. Not one of those embarrassing ones that I am obligated to tell, nor is it one that shines any other light on him than the best. It was simply a thing that occurred to me this morning and I want to talk about it.

Andy, my brother, was put in a tough spot after my dad died. I mean, talk about emotionally devastating for the kid. He was next door at a neighbors house when it happened and I made, not my mother and I as she often told him, the decision to keep him as far in the dark about my father’s worsening conditioning in the months, weeks, and days leading up to his death a few days short of our 18th and 15th birthdays.

He had to grow up almost instantaneously, or as much as a fifteen-year-old is expected to, and do things that no one his age should ever have to do. He sat there strong and powerful the day or the service, he was respectful and kind to everyone who gave their condolences. He waited the agonizing three months until the ground thawed enough, hurray for Western New York, for us to lay him to rest.

I think that is when we went down our divergent roads. I lost myself in writing and the internet after and he found friends and music and tried to fill his life with constant noise to drown out the things that whisper in your head in the dark of the night.

He did so well at it too. I failed fantastically on multiple occasions, but Andy always seemed to hold it together when he needed to and I was so very proud of him for that.

After mom died nearly a decade later, we were essentially strangers. He lived in Kansas and Naomi, the kids, and I were in New York. We didn’t keep in touch at all really, it was just one of those things that I think I assumed he would end eventually.

It simply didn’t happen that way, not that way at all.

I can count on my fingers, with some to spare, the number of times I have heard my brother’s voice in the half-decade since Naomi died. It doesn’t hurt. I suppose it did at the beginning, but it was wrapped in so many other pains I just dealt with it all at once and learned to live the life I needed to with my Ducks and My Tribe.

That’s it, I think I have anted to say a version of all of that for a very long time and I am glad I got it out. It was not a sad or angry thing to write, just a thing that needed to be laid to rest at very long last.

Rawrz

A Slave To False Grief No Longer

Normally, I would start this week by saying that it is one of the worst weeks of my year, I would bemoan it in fact and start to annoy myself, never mind what I mayor may not be doing to other people in my life and the one or two strangers who may read the things that I write here.

Now while I will not go as far as to say that things this week aren’t going to bother me, I think I have hit a new point that I wanted to write about. Plus, since I haven’t written here in a bit I thought I would try to write more than I normally would to shake off the dust and see if I can get something decent put out into the world.

A little backstory to those new to the cluster fuck that was my early adulthood.

My dad died almost exactly two weeks before my eighteenth birthday and my mother, not to be outdone, died about a week before my twenty-fifth birthday. Seeing as I am turning forty here in a few weeks, this wasn’t precisely yesterday by any stretch of the imagination.

For years I would devolve into this puddle of sniveling shit every third week of February. some of you may have been lucky enough to even be with me getting drunk on those auspicious days.

This year though, it isn’t there. The overwhelming feelings, the neato panic attacks at three in the morning, absolutely nothing of that sort at all. This doesn’t mean I won’t be affected on the days in question, it just means I have not been as of yet.

See, my parents were not good people. My brain, finally getting this through to the weird lizard brain part of my psyche, is happy that I am firmly ensconced with the knowledge and while celebrating the death of a parent is beyond what I am going to do, I am not going to mourn the people who systemically abused three children for nearly twenty solid years in one form or another. Do you cry for the mosquito who was stealing your lifeblood when you kill it? Do you weep when the serial killer gets caught and killed?

No, I will do what I need to get through the days in question, be it laugh or drink or do one while doing the other. I will not sit around and muse, wax poetic or romanticize people that I have never once denied despising.

I understand that some people, including wonderful people I deeply respect and love, might be very confused by this, so, breaking with my normally “suck it up and deal” attitude when it comes to these things, I feel a compulsion to tell them that it isn’t that I do not feel thoughts at the mention of their deaths and that I did not weep when it happened. I cannot justify the morality, albeit skewed, that I have developed to celebrate the lives of two people who hurt me in every way imaginable. The people who were supposed to protect me from the world merely hid their crimes from it.

No, no I will not ask them to rage against the dying of the light, just to go to their infinity and leave this world to try and heal from their existence at all.

RAWRZ

Saturday Mornings In The Fall, Oh Yeah, Make Sure To Change Your Clocks Tonight If You Have Anything That Doesn’t Automatically Do It For You

The thing we all hate about winter, myself included I suppose, is the violent weather change from the near summer temperatures we have had to the now winter like temperatures we are experiencing today. The cold doesn’t bother me. My predilection for wearing shorts in a blizzard is an often quoted tale of the bogeyman in the night told to children who don’t think they need to wear warm clothes in the winter. No, what bothers me, and by me I mean specifically the delightful neurological events that are called migraines, is the the air pressure. If it is too high it hurts, if it is too low it hurts, if it switches too fast it hurts, etc.

Yesterday was a delightful example of that kind of day and that is why I didn’t write anything as I was trying to hold my brain in with my left hand and pressing my forehead in with force as to make everything stop. For the record this did nothing at all and only caused me to have an awkward hand-hickey on my forehead for several hours before it faded away, blessedly before I had to go and mingle amongst unwashed masses of geriatrics at Wegmans on a Friday afternoon.

I am not feeling particularly awesome today mind you, but it is a Saturday and I have a few minutes to kill before I zombie-watch college football until I go to bed tonight, so I thought I would fill you in with the salacious smatterings of the world that is me and the thoughts I have on such vastly important things like YouTube videos, old women in grocery stores and, of course, Duck Warfare.

Whilst watching a YouTube video last evening, I had a moment where I needed to talk to my best friend, and, not being able to do so because of the late hour, decided to record a message to them. What was said is not important to anyone but them, but what is important I suppose is that inspiration to tell someone what they mean to you is a magical thing that happens everywhere if you know how to look for it and don’t assume it is a miraculous and once-a-month thing.

There are far too many women who cannot see the items on the shelves wandering about the Wegmans of the world. While I am not suggesting we cast them off on the ice floe, I would like to, perhaps, suggest to people that if they are going to use Wegmans as a babysitter for grandmother while you go and have a few glasses at the bar you tell the poor woman that so she doesn’t look for you like a child in a department store when their parents have told them to not wander far and, well, they’ve wandered.

Now, lastly, Duck Warfare is a subject of which I am intimately knowledgeable. I am, at the best, a decent father. I pay the rent, I get the groceries, they go to doctors when they are sick and all of the base things that I am legally responsible for when it comes to the upbringing of the wee folk. What I am not is the Dad that does the things. I don’t. I never have. I am not the play ball in the back yard, try to build a bird house, anything craft based kind of parent. What I can do, well, they don’t want to learn. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing, we all have likes and dislikes after all. I do computers, sonnets, and philosophy, not exactly the trifecta that will win awards or anything. I try, I do. So do they. I am sure there will be a middle ground at some point, most likely after this whole childhood thing has left them, where we will find a balance and at least get along with one another more than we do now. Ah, the joys of family.

Before I leave this delightfully gray morning, I just want to tell you all that there is nothing I would not do for you if I know you almost at all. Yep that’s it.