What Now?

I’ve put this off for too long. After Mom died, I found myself unable to write with any kind of certainty; I had so much to say, but I knew saying it would put me in a dark place, so now I’m wondering how worth it is to be this emotionally honest at this point. Do I say what I need to say and deal with the emotional fallout, or do I keep pretending that I should hold off for another week?

I miss her so much. There’s no getting past that fact, and I worry that my friends may think they have to do something more than just be there for me in order to help me move on. You don’t; just your constant love and support makes it possible for me to get past this relatively easily

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House of Cards

Pardon me while I vent for a minute. I usually don’t like airing out family or personal problems online, but this situation is bothering me so much, I can’t help it.

My older brother, Jason, has had his share of problems in life. For a few years, my family and I had limited seating to what some could fairly call a train wreck of adult realities colliding with unchecked childhood fears and aggressions. Both he and I seemed to have a problem adjusting to the world around us as we grew older, and we both took to various vices to cope with that growing dilemma.

One thing I won’t do is pretend that he was a saint, or free from fault. Hell, for the longest time, being around him infuriated me, because he knew me so well that he could push my buttons with ease. Remembering the friendship we had as kids was painful if only because that person was still inside him, buried beneath the hard exterior shell of an angry, embittered adult who couldn’t cope.

When Jason met Stacy, he was in one of the calmer times of his life: steadily employed, somewhat happy, and getting by. My family took to her pretty quickly, mostly because she seemed to fit in so well with us. Over the years, we had come to embrace our dysfunctions as a family unit – that we would always be more like the Griswolds than the Beavers – something we accepted as long as we took it in stride and knew that, no matter the problems, we all still loved each other deeply.

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In Vino Veritas

I made a decision three weeks ago.

Actually, I made several decisions.

Hastily, and, one, drunkenly, which I highly advise against, but that’s not something I’m going to get into online.

These few decisions, while made in quick succession, have had slow-acting repercussions, and now I’m sitting here wondering just what in the hell I was thinking. Actually, that’s not entirely the case. As much as I loved my job at CPR, and as much as I miss working with the great people I met there, I left for a good reason. While realizing that does take some of the sting away, one of the most difficult adjustments to make has been not seeing those very people on a daily basis.

When I was sitting in my apartment that Tuesday night, going over the same, tired, and never-ending argument my boss and I had hours earlier, I could see the writing on the wall: in spite of how hard my manager, myself, and the other techs there were working to keep that place afloat, the ship was sinking.


And, unfortunately, it wasn’t for a lack of business, because the customer base was there. It was because the captain of this ship was absent ninety percent of the time, and when he was around, most of his time was spent second-guessing every little decision my manager and I had made, shifting his “number one priority” on-the-fly, and then getting upset, and questioning our work ethic, when we didn’t immediately latch on to his new change-of-plans.

It was an exercise in maddening futility, an argument that kept going in circles, and one he and I were having more frequently. We needed more employees to handle the workload, he said there was no money; we needed to order parts more frequently so we could finish repairs on time, he said there was no money; we needed to advertise more, he said there was no money. Yet, in spite of all of this, he still had the audacity to blame my manager and me for the dwindling sales and a piling workload.

His concept of “time management” was do everything. Now. Stop whatever you’re working on and start doing this. Stop doing this and start doing that. Why are you doing that when I clearly said to do this?

He was a nightmare to work for, and while I’m extremely glad to have that stress out of my life now, I still find myself missing that place.

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Life, Silver Creek Productions

The Times Were Always Changing

Still you are blessed, compared with me!

The present only touches you:
But oh! I backward cast my eye,
On prospects dreary!

And forward, though I cannot see, I guess and fear!

Robert Burns – To a Mouse, on Turning Her Up in Her Nest with the Plough (1785)

There have only ever been a few times in my life where I have really questioned where I’m going. Sure, like most people, there were always those moments where I briefly wondered what was next, but actually sitting down and looking at my life subjectively isn’t something I do much. The last time I did, though, I came up with a very detailed plan; an exit strategy for leaving the 9-to-5 life behind for the first time, and finally starting on the path to a career I’ve dreamed of since childhood.

The plan was working, to my surprise, and I knew it was because I was being careful; not taking unnecessary risks, and only putting money into making this plan a reality when I had it. The results I started seeing because of this careful determination were so encouraging that I had to wonder why I waited so long to get started. But I also had to tread carefully. One misstep, and everything I’ve worked toward these last six months would easily be jeopardized.

I just needed to stick to the plan a little while longer, and then I would be safe to chase that dream.

The best laid plans of mice and men, right?