Archive for April, 2010

  • This is What Spring Looks Like

    Tony and I and a bunch of other people went to the Festival of Colors last Saturday, which was held in Knoch Knolls Park in Naperville. It was, how do you say? A pretty rocking time. Basically I got to spend an afternoon chasing little kids around trying to cover them in green and yellow flour. As you can see, I managed to get quite colorful myself.

    The Festival of Colors is an Indian thing welcoming the coming of Spring. It was really amazing, punctuated by  delicious Indian food. It really made me wish that American culture had more active cultural festivals. Ours are far too passive. It seems that our culture is becoming more divided and making us feel more isolated. Sometimes all I want to do is reach out and touch somebody, make them acknowledge that I exist, and they exist, and we exist.

    How is it that I feel most alive when I play on borrowed time?

    Photos courtesy of Tony Thomas.

  • I've Fallen In Love With a Helmet

    Need I say more? If only I could convince myself the extra $10 over a Bell Faction is truly worth it. Sigh.

  • Of Monsters: How to Take Care

    You smoke two cigarettes. One to mark your sadness. The second is to solidify your anger. There are monsters out there who refuse to recognize their own wickedness. They will believe that niceties are all that is owed. This is, in fact, false. These trolls, who would believe themselves men, refuse to accept the atrocities they have committed, and so insulate themselves with sympathetic but uninformed ears. They will lie and steal if necessary.

    It is this egocentric-ism that becomes offended by these words. They talk themselves into believing that such words are dishonorable because how could anyone dare speak so ill of them? They bury the knowledge that the pain does not come because the words are lies, but because they are actually truth. And it is in this way they continue on through their lives, acutely aware of their misery but still refusing to investigate the true source. Instead, they blame those around them as much as they can, absolving themselves of all responsibility.

    This suffering is their penance. It follows them and will continue to follow them until, in some moment of revelation, they realize blaming external sources will never kill the monster in their hearts and minds. They will never become men of happiness until they make amends for the horror they have sewn. It is the rare breed who recognizes this, I’m afraid.

    How you recognize such pathetic goblins is through observation of behavior. Sadly, this is the only way to identify them so it is hard to keep them out of your life until the damage is already done. It’s always a tragic realization when you come to know someone as a monster. They will treat you terribly and convince you that it is your fault. This wretched species is doomed to repeat the mistakes of their pasts until they acknowledge their own terribleness (you will recall this is a critical part of many 12 Step programs).  They wrap themselves in their selfish blankets and continue on in life wondering why happiness is always eluding them. They will blame you and do everything in their power to dismantle you.

    You cannot let this happen. It is tempting to try and rehabilitate the monster on your own, but this is a therapy that will remain fruitless. This will, in fact, only provide them with more opportunity to destroy you. Often, the best and only thing you can do is cut contact. They will try to apologize furiously when they realize this is the course of your action. False apologies are not to be accepted. True apologies can be considered, but only if they have the critical element: What can I do to make it better? Anything that lacks an offer of amends can only be a continuation of the parasitical behavior. A monster can only help itself, and the only true marker of this stretch for change is the true and complete apology and a cease & desist of tyrannical behavior.

  • Fired

    I lost my job today. Not because of anything I did, but because the economy sucks and there’s a big union working to push me under the bus.

    I’m done playing this game.

  • Guatemala

    Herberth, Wren, and Wilberth

    Okay, okay. I’ve run out excuses. I’ve been back in the country for a week and still have yet to post about my adventures. I’ve had a heck of a time recovering from all that travel and all the horrible things that happened. Namely, my passport disappearing, and then my camera getting stolen. Luckily I had most of my pictures off, but I still lost a bunch.

    The picture of of my Spanish tutor, Herberth, me, and my sister’s instructor, Wilberth. I had such an amazing time in Spanish school, even if I technically only had three days of school. And I made a bunch of friends, including Herberth and Wilberth! And also Mikelle and Nikolaj, friends from Iowa and Denmark respectively. Sadly, their pictures were among those jacked with my camera.

    The good news is that I have all of my pictures from the Aurora Zoo, the zoo in Guatemala City. My sister and I got to go with our hostel owner and his two-year-old son. This is good news because now you get to see the most excellent David Bowie impersonating rooster ever.

    Need I say more?

  • Home!

    I made it home late Monday night. It was a heck of a journey that culminated in landing at O’Hare about 2 seconds before the airport shut down. We got stuck on the tarmac at our destination. Too much lightning apparently; they wouldn’t let the plane get to the gate. The wind was so strong our plane started to lift up again and countermeasures had to be taken. It was ridiculous.

    It was a very philosophical trip. I have lots of thoughts on lots of things, and I’m too tired to get them out at present. Pictures and words will follow soon. I promise.