Monday, February 28, 2011

Feeling sick but thinking anyway

So I woke up at midnight, coughing again and wondering if I have the flu. The last two days, while really busy, have also brought along with it the symptoms of the crap I had earlier in the winter. Sore throat, hacking deep cough, aching joints, fever, the whole nine yards. Ugh...I do not need this right now, but what can you do? I am sure walking around in the fog and rain today did not help very much as well, but I had to have some time to think.

I am not sure if my brain is working well at the moment or poorly. I will have to come back and read this later to determine if I am lucid, but knowing that I haven't taken any medication in 24 hours is probably a good sign of coherent thought. Right? I hate this cough. It hurts my abs and throat. They clench all up like tightened fist and then start cramping. Oh well, who cares.

So while sitting in church today with a friend of mine from Australia, who just happens to be the sexiest thing on two legs at the given moment in my humble opinion, I listened to the speaker and something in my head kind of popped. Or maybe it clicked. Anyway, there was some type of mental/physical sensation and I asked myself. "What the hell am I doing here?"

Why do I keep coming back to this building and hanging out with these people? Are they my friends? This is a bunch of crap! It makes no logical sense.  How the hell did I get deluded into this religion? Was I missing something?  How does on go about unbelieving something? Did I need some kind of emotional crutch? Is whatever was wrong all better now? Am I seeing clearly now, or am I just as confused as I always have been?

Let's put it this way. I think I am taking a break from church and all the people in it. I need some time to clear my head and figure out what is really going on. Why does my nose keep running?! Why are guys so beautiful? Terrified and content, all at the same time. What a great post for number 400. *sigh*

Sunday, February 20, 2011


I swear to God that I can hold onto this train of thought before it slips away. Please bear with me. This might be a fucking weird post but I have to get these thoughts down so I apologize of it comes out all jumbled.

What would happen if you took a kid, whom, due to a quirk of nature and chemistry of the brain, gets super obsessed with ideas, concepts and things and introduced him to a couple of different simple ones at a really early age?

What about sex for starters?

Just as his body is growing and waking up to the reality of itself, in a series of events, he discovers that, Damn! This feels good! The complicated world of his body chemistry is just beginning to fire and the neural pathways are being laid down early. If he does this, than this is the reward. If he chooses to make these actions, than this is the pay off. I am not talking just about in terms of physical pleasure, but also in emotions, social acceptance, position, power and as a basis for relationship and friendship to people? Suddenly every single person he meets is being graded in criteria and worth as a bargaining chip in this new game of sexual pursuit. And then you leave him there. You let him go through puberty, with hormones raging, sexual activity unchecked or influenced by the norms and mores of the people and society around him? Anything goes as long as you are happy and get what you want? Friendships always have this built in component of the possibility of sexual activity and the way he learns to relate to others and gain his self worth is through sex. Everything in life revolves around his penis and what he can offer people or they can offer him. It becomes his second language that always speaks louder than words and lives in a silent world of acceptance and in the blind spot of those nearest him who could have offered a different world view.

Second, all those around this little weird kid continually tell him how great he is, how smart, how different, unusual and unique. Due to their love for him, there is nothing they won't do, no thing they deny to give him, no place they will not take him and no opportunity spared from his grasping mind and hands. He is already crippled in the currency of their world and rarely deigns to interact with others. When he pulls himself indoors out of the wild or will look up from a book to engage with reality, whatever catches his attention is seen as the new thing to keep him rooted in the present, if just for a fleeting moment. Nothing but praise is offered him and no misstep or error is corrected for fear of losing him back into his own little world for days, weeks and months to come.

During all this, the kid starts believing his own PR and Marketing Department and slowly starts building his palace and throne room against the possibility that others discover how small and alone he always feels, so cut off from others. Emotional pain and loss is always coped with in some diversionary fashion. Feel bad? Have sex. Don't like how your day went? Disassociate in a new book about something fascinating. Someone hurt your feelings? Wander off into the woods or the city and explore. Never talk about how you feel. Don't you dare reach out and tell people how your insides are knotted.  If you need to hurt, do so alone. Heavy is the head that  will wear the Crown.You will be King. Remember? You are destined for great things! Don't ever forget that! You cannot let us down. You are amazing. You are a genius. Nothing will ever stand in your way. You can do anything you set your mind to.

And this kid becomes King in his own world while living like a Brat Crown Prince. All those layers and trappings of mystery and silence he builds around himself become his protection from the hurtful world and strangers he meets that he knows someday he will rule. The world is his but none of it is ever let in. People are loved and then discarded. They become the back drop to the amazing story he is writing in his head and then living into the reality of the physical world. Since he no longer feels emotions, if he ever did, then certainly all these other humans are the same way. They love having sex, too! They like nice stuff, too! Give them what they want and they love you. Take what you want and they love you even more. Wait...that one is mad or sad or confused. Destroy them or walk away. This world is your playground, your kingdom. Use it or lose it.

So he starts a new religion. It is called everyone bow down and worship ME. I mean, hell, he is the best thing that this world has going on! Everyone tells him so and the evidence seems to point in that direction. Success always finds him. He is a pretty good god! He can do this! He buys into this new religion and becomes its best new convert. No goal is too lofty. There is nothing he will not do for his new god. He moves from Crown Prince to King to a god in a blinding fashion. Others convert, if for a while, and life seems to be well in his new world.

Then one day he wakes up early for church, gets into the shower, looks over at the wall and realizes he has been sold a lie? All of it He is not god. All this stuff. All the people. All the money, success, things, experiences, partners, sex, relationships, love and career have been nothing but sacrifices to the god of Himself. Pride is written on every page of his life. Sure, there were people he loved, but they stood in his way. Of course there were good times and amazing experiences. That is what life is about.


He doesn't want to be the Prince anymore. He doesn't want the throne as King. He hates being such a pitiful god who is in pain and hurts and cries and can't solve any other persons problems, much less his own. He is imprisoned in the dungeon of his life and for the first time he wants to ask for help but realized he never has.

What if that kid was me?


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Long ass day...

Just home from work this morning. What a day! Had three of my servers call in, so I ended up taking care of a sixty person banquet by myself. That was a challenge and feat of organization! I must say, it went rather smoothly and I certainly earned my money today. The group was great and understood that I had my hands full and they had a great lunch and took care of me well. Trying to feed that many people four courses with drinks and dessert was...hard. I ended up sweating so hard that my nipples got chaffed on my undershirt! Took a long shower and feel sooooo much better. I love being clean! :)

I am glad to be home. The sun was out on the drive back and it felt good to roll the windows down and blast some music. Stopped by 54th Street to visit for a minute with some friends and had a beer. That hit the spot. Now I am going to knock out some house keeping and get ready for a day off of work. Tomorrow looks to be interesting as it is filling up fast. Will be meeting with Tom from church about the new guys group he started, lunch with David and his friend who is the director of a youth homeless shelter, hope to squeeze some time with Stephen in there and then a big dinner at church tomorrow night. I bet I will be worn out by tomorrow night! Looking forward to it all, though.

Everything is turned in for school and now the wait for more information begins. If all goes as planned, I will be moving down to the university in August and I have a lot of life and fun to pack in before I take up being a full time college student again. I am excited but terrified all at the same time. It is hard to believe that all the pieces are falling into order for me to pursue this dream I have always had of becoming a Chef. The bachelors degree I am pursuing will be in Hotel and Restaurant Management, but my minor will be in Culinary. How to fit all the trips and stuff into that short of time this spring and summer? I dunno, but I am sure going to try!

Simply having some nice weather helps with my attitude and emotions so much. It has been a long hard winter and I am ready for some shorts and t-shirt weather. Plus, with the warm temps comes the promise of the boys of summer sporting nice legs, easy smiles and bare chests. Sorry...I think I will always be a meat gazer.

So yeah...feeling pretty good about life, at the moment. I think maybe in my next post I am going to tackle something I have been thinking on for a while.


Thoughts, ideas, questions, advice?


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

I knew it! the song is Gay. Get over it! :)

Woke up this morning at 5 am and surveyed the day. Sun to be out, body feels rested, some work for the hands. Caught up on my news, texted a few friends and then hit my to do list. The car is clean! WhooHoo! I was sick and tired of driving dirty machines. For some reason a clean car is like a new hair cut for me. Everything seems right with the world, the sun is brighter, my smile is wider and life is good. I guess it really is the simple things in life that often bring a smile to my face. :)

Now just taking a short break to make some coffee and wrap my head around the banquet I have to captain this morning. These people (a business networking group of young professionals) is a total PITA. (Pain in the Ass) I have to deal with them every week and I usually dread it, but I have now made it my personal mission to master these fools and get them in and out in an orderly and smooth fashion. It basically is like balancing a basket full of cats that are clad in razor blades with gigantic egos on my head while juggling cracked eggs...NAKED! If but for the fact that many of the guys are smoking hot and nice to me, I would walk away and hand them over to another lead server. The money is great, sure, but that is not what motivates me. I see this as a puzzle to solve and I am not giving up until we have one successful week without some of the drama and bullshit that always seems to ensue.

Hmm...time to shower and shave and get my day going. I love this song by Cher that came out in 1998. I still remember where I was on the dance floor in Chicago the first time I heard it and it still speaks to me. Seemed rather fitting after a solitary Valentines day shared with other single friends. I do believe. I hope you do too.

I will catch up on my life here later but time is running thin. I hope you are all well and I have some interesting things going on this week that I will write on later. A new ministry at church to get involved in, a possibility of partnership and service with the homeless youth in my city, all good things to fill my life with until school beckons and I hit the road again. Got some trips booked for this spring and summer, so it is looking like a great year already!

See what a clean car can do for my attitude? Now I have to go dance in the shower! Ciao!


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Eventful Pondering

Today while driving home, with the sun out and the window down despite the winter chill, I reached over and turned the music off and simply listened to the burble of the cars exhaust and my own thoughts for a change. The last few weeks have been quite interesting as they have brought me so many moments and hours of introspection and self examination internally. A few of the things that keep filtering through my head in moments of clarity are as follows.

1. I lost a year digging out of a relationship and then running from the aftermath and emotional fall out of loss. This was not something I was aware of at the time, but I guess it seemed glaringly obvious to my friends around me. After breaking up with Michael, I told myself and others that I was fine and that life would go on while I pulled the emergency brake of life and ran off to the lake and all points distant chasing another guy and hoping to put some space between myself and painful memories. During the events, I simply lived and told myself I was pursuing some fun times, but looking back, I was running. I turned a "weekend vacation" with some buddies into a three season long sabbatical from life, from God, from family and from the very support group of friends that could have helped me to heal during that transition back to being singular.

Along the way, I managed to spend a lot of money on myself and others, lose time towards furthering some life goals, slept with quite an assortment of guys and also played and partied my ass off. Now, I really didn't blog or post much about what was going on at the time, but those are the facts of the matter. During the course of all that, I managed to stay relatively detached from my sexual partners, known and random, but  in the living out of life, I still got attached and even now am feeling the heart pull towards different guys I never knew, even six months ago. The ties and bonds we build, even during recreational sex and sharing, still tangle up the feelings I have inside. I know more time will be needed to straighten out that mess in my head and chest.

2. My spiritual life has been largely neglected over the last years as well, but cannot be ignored. I do not get to un-believe in God, simply due to the fact that I find him largely inconvenient at times.While I have been faithful at church and to my responsibilities to the ministries I am involved in, the things that I do while away from those who are good for me take their toll on my communication with Him. Somewhere along the way, I set my Bible aside, stopped listening to worship music and basically stopped talking to Him. I knew some of the stuff I was up to was wrong. I also had a lot of questions about other things that no one seemed available or willing to answer. In the midst of it all, I went from being a follower of Jesus, to a person who simply admired Jesus.

During this time I have become antagonistic to the things of the Bible, to the concern that Christian friends show towards me and generally an asshole to anyone who confronts or questions the decisions I have been making. I think that behavior came from a place of pain and was also something I used to protect my already fragile emotional state. I came close several times to just walking away from everything that I thought or knew I believed. I am in a state of maintenance and repair of those relationships. I have been forced to reach out to those who love me and seek answers anew. There have been many tears lately that fall like boiling water and wracking sobs that leave my chest and abs sore many days after the fact. Something is stirring in me again, and for that I am thankful.

3. I am still unhappy as a single guy. I have lived the majority of my life partnered in some fashion, either in a long term relationship or at least with a steady boyfriend. With school fast approaching, I know in my head that to start dating again would simply be a stop gap measure in the map of my heart and also would not be fair to whatever great guy decided to share and spend time with me. My mind then immediately jumps to the possibility of dating someone at school for at least four years, but I will not be there to find a boyfriend. I will be there to gain another degree and experience for the next chapter of my life. I also know that life is going to radically change for me in August when I move to school. The long hours of free time, the access to anything that I want and my daily activities are going to make a dramatic shift and I do not know if I have really prepared my mind and heart for that. Simply put, I am going to be working and studying my ass off and there isn't going to be time or space to pursue a relationship or even some fun on the side. It is going to be an incredibly conservative environment politically and socially and I know that is going to be a tough spot for me to be and keep my damned big mouth shut. Am I ready for that? I do not know. Will it be good for me? I am pretty sure it will be.

Those are the first three things that pop into my head now though I may come back and revisit them and explore more of what is going on with me. Suffice it to say, something is stirring and moving within me, and I am pretty sure it is the winds of change. Pray for me of you are called to, think of me if you life and give me a shout if you have any questions. Peace,


Monday, February 7, 2011

Unpacking pain

One late sunny afternoon a little boy woke up from his nap, climbed out of bed and walked down the hallway through his house. Each room that he slowly checked revealed that no one was home with him and the cold, icy fingers of panic began to spread in his heart. His voice echoed over and over again in the house, more mournful and loud each time as he called out to the only people he had known in his short life. Where were they? They had always been here before?

Finally, he sank down silently on the kitchen floor and realized that for the first time ever, he was all alone. They were gone. They had all left while he was asleep and he had been abandoned. In his mind, it only made sense that he had done something wrong and that while they could, they had slipped away from him and left him to be alone for the rest of his life. He began to cry in the pain, for the his loss and for the ones he would miss. What had he done that was so horrible? Why did they stop loving him?

The boy, of course, grew up as little boys do and Dad and Mom that day were really not that far away, merely in the back yard relaxing, but that little boy never forgot that he was left all alone, abandoned and discarded by those he loved for some wrong that he could not even remember. No amount of love and time ever healed that space in his heart and he still cries at night in his sleep. No one wanted him. No one wants him. No one will ever want him.

They all leave. They always leave. You will always be left alone.

How can I possibly feel this way after so many years?

How I wish I could go back and hold that little boy tight to my chest and while rocking with him say softly, "Love is right outside. Have no fear. Hush now...

Love will always be there...

You are not alone."

That little boy is still on the kitchen floor crying.

I can hear him.

How do I reach him?

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Men's Breakfast and Fall Out

This weekend has brought much work. I found myself working three 12 hour shifts in a row. After 4 hours of sleep on Friday night, I found myself waking up at 5 am to drive into the city to join my guys from church in cooking breakfast for the men. It was cold and I was cranky, but something would not let me sleep, even though I had set no alarm and knew that I would have to work the remainder of the day with little rest. As I drove in, under grainy sun light, my mind was restless and I wondered what the day would bring.

Got there early and slowly woke up in the company of my friends as we pitched in and the kitchen came alive with the sights, sounds and smells of men putting their minds to a task in the humorous and diligent way that only guy can. As I looked around the kitchen, I saw all the faces of the people who have invested in my life so heavily these last 5 years. David my mentor, Art a great teacher and example, Marvin with his insane humor and crazy clothes, Gareth from Australia and that voice and smile, Keith and his son, David without his beard now and all the times we have shared, Gerard with his lithesome grace and uncanny wisdom...all the men of my life that make it much richer and real.

The other guys of the church finally dragged in and we ate. It was a simple time as we came together and then spent the next few hours sharing life and examining some interesting things. We had an interesting exercise where we drew our happiest moments and also our moments of great pain. We then went back to those pictures we had all scrawled in our own ways and then attempted to place God in them, where we saw Him. We then all came back together and shared what we cared to with our groups. It was a moving and powerful experience, not just for the exercise, but the the time and space shared in a safe and vulnerable way. I have missed these guys this winter. The Spring and Summer bring the promise of so much more to do together and I am feeling recharged and encouraged in a way I have not felt for months.

Tom announced a new small group that will be meeting for any guys who want to attend where we will attempt to unpack our sexuality in the context of the community, society and its relationship with ourselves spiritually and emotionally. We have such a huge spectrum of guys at my church from the hetero to the homo, married to single, bisexual to divorced and everything in between those spaces. I am interested in checking it out just to see what it is like. This is not a place to try to "fix" ourselves or other people, but rather a safe place to live and dialogue with others what our sexuality is and how it fits into the larger scheme of our life as men. I dunno? I must say I am intrigued by the possibility...

Welp, I have to eat breakfast and get ready for work. My brain isn't awake yet really, but I wanted to jot a few thoughts down here at least, as I have been remiss in blogging and sharing my slice of life with the friends that follow my words here. Enjoy today and GO PACKERS! :)


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Zach has two Mom's. What does he say?

Special to No One

Just woke up from a strange dream filled nap with many things on my mind and a realization of why I have felt muted and off lately. In the last few scenes of my dreams, I tracked down a friend of mine in the deep recesses of a carnival and skee-ball parlor to find him hidden in a locked booth working on a art project that consisted of a shaving cream covered stolen bass boat with a huge Chevy inboard-outboard motor. We had just come from a huge dinner party that was a strange mix of Irish shenanigans and music, pints and steaks and for some reason I was trying desperately to impress the guy I was with, Jarrod, and his father. (who also happened to be one of my first crushes and sexual partners, Jarrod...not his Dad, you sick freak!)

Anyway, I found Jake hidden away working on this illicit art project and sculpture and I spent a lot of time talking to him about the ethics of stealing, the concern I had for him being late to work (which is why I was there in the first place) the message and design of his art and the complete shock I had at discovering that he was so talented. There were a couple other subtexts to the dream, one being that I was and am still completely attracted to Jarrod AND the Jake (which is beside the point) but the one thing my mind fixed upon and brought with it to the surface when I woke up sweating slightly was this...those guys are special to me.

Do you know what I am talking about? Whether it is a best friend, a hard core crush, a close brother, some stranger who just fascinates you, or your current beau, there are people in our lives who consume our attention, call for our passion, fixate us with their different-ness, and give us pause in our lives to ponder and wonder at all that is them. These are the people we meet and share life with that make us go, "Wut?!". The skills that they have and take as natural, the words they use when they are speaking plainly, the music they listen to at their most creative, the way they laugh when they don't care if someone is listening, the art with which their body is put together...everything about that person that hooks you and draws you into that space they carve out of time to make their own for the brief flash we call our life and their spectacle of living entrances and charms all who find themselves with in their orbit. That kind of special.

I realized that right now, for the first time that I can remember in my entire life...I am special to no one. That is what I brought out of my dream with me and had to get off my chest.

That is all.