A little country wisdom for y’all

Two flies were sitting in a corral on a pile of cow manure. They were going to town, eating their fill, just enjoying life. They saw a pitchfork leaning up against the fence. The two flies decided rather than flying up there, they could just leisurely walk right up the handle to the top to bask in the sun for a while.

When they got to the top, they were just about to stretch out and relax, when they saw the farmer walking straight toward them. Continue reading

No more tears.

I launched into a new month-long challenge today. I’m going to stop complaining for the month of February.

And just like Black History Month, I chose the shortest month of the year. Except I am not going to give a speech and tell you all that I’ve noticed what a great job Frederick Douglass is doing (yes, in the present tense).

I am a true believer in the power of our minds to shape our realities. Continue reading

How to survive in Utopia.

“Hard times make strong men,

Strong men make good times,

Good times make weak men,

Weak men make hard times.

Our parents, uncles, aunts, and grandparents fought in Vietnam, Korea, and World War II. The suffered the effects of the Great Depression, or they were raised by survivors of complete economic fallout. They lived through housing booms and bubbles bursting.

They were drafted. They dodged the draft. They went to work, joined unions, got degrees on the G.I. Bill. They started companies. They got married and divorced, opinions be damned. They stayed in marriages they didn’t want to because divorce wasn’t an option for them. They lived fulfilled lives without having kids. They had children they didn’t want to because they didn’t have a choice – or at least not a physically or morally safe one. And they had as many kids as they wanted. Continue reading

I’m a superhero.

What’s your superpower?

Everyone has one. I have many. For instance, when I was a kid I could tell the difference between first-run TV shows and reruns by the audio alone. That is a completely useless superpower, unless the fate of the world depends on whether this is a very special The Facts of Life, or if it’s just a regular one that you’ve already seen.

Continue reading

They call me the working man.

Confession:  I quoted Rush in a paper I wrote in high school completely out of context, but just to do it.  It went something like this:  “If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.  That has literally nothing to do with this paper, but I wanted to cite Rush in my bibliography because I’m a senior.”

That’s what you’re working with here, guys.  But on to actual points that are worth making (maybe):

I’m forever working on myself. I want to be better than I am. I also want to be more content with who I am. Yes, that’s right, one of the things I’m working on is not working on myself so damned much.

Continue reading

I’m a total badass.

I used to be a badass.

I had swagger. I viewed myself as, quite possibly, the best damned thing that had ever happened.  The undisputed heavyweight champion of the world.

Of course, as is the case with anyone with swagger, I was insecure about my possible inadequacies. I had a low grade fever all the time: a fear that my inflated versions of my own reality would be punctured. The fever sapped my energy. The echoes of my own inner voices reverberated in my head on a constant loop until my ears were ringing.

Continue reading

Stairway to Happiness (if not Heaven)

10568762265_75bcdaf265_o

Original by Matthew Perkins

“Yes there are two paths you can go by, but in the long run, there’s still time to change the road you’re on.”

Robert Plant said that, but it just as easily could have been me, except I’m not particularly poetic, and I wasn’t alive in 1971.  I’m glad he said it, though. In addition to being one of the greatest songs ever written, it sums up a major tenet of my life’s philosophy more eloquently than I ever could:

Everyone, ultimately, is seeking the same thing: happiness.

There are two divergent paths in life: the path toward money and “success”, and the path toward happiness. You might achieve monetary success through a life dedicated to happiness…that happens all the time. But if you fail, you’ll at least likely be happy and fulfilled.

Continue reading

Bottom of the 9th, bases loaded…FML.

Five minutes. Five goddamned minutes.

If you took a snapshot of any random five minutes, you’d likely see how freaking awesome he was at his job. How much his team loved him. How “on it” he was. Organized. Clean. Smiles all around.

But no, she came in at the five minutes when the shit had hit the fan. Big boss lady hadn’t been in since July. She’d heard how well everything was going, but her eyes were telling her brain a very different story…in these five minutes.

Continue reading

The Stupidity Vigilante, or: How I Went From Eternally Pissed to (Mostly) Peaceful

You’ve never heard of the Stupidity Vigilante, and that’s ok. He was my alter ego, and I killed him slowly and quietly. The world is better off for it. Trust me.

Here’s the history. I am from the middle of nowhere, raised in an evangelical Christian home in the rural United States. We were not “poor,” I’d say we were lower-middle class if I had to guess. I’ll put it this way – the kids I thought were “rich” turned out, with some perspective, to just be normal suburbanite families with more than a few hundred bucks in the checking account.

Continue reading