>I’m Wearing Green Underwear

>Regardless if you live in Boston, New York City, Atlanta, Seattle, or Topeka, Kansas; your community will be celebrating today by turning things like beer, street lines, rivers, and food, green. There will be people, especially those in their 20s, drinking Jamesons whiskey. You’ll hear Jump Around, the raucous early 90s rap song played at least 23 times today. Before you get too annoyed, remember, it’s just one day.

Saint Patrick was born in the 4th century in Roman Britain to a wealthy family. As a teenager he was kidnapped by Irish Raiders and forced into slavery on the Irish coast near Mayo. He fled captivity a few years later, went back to Britain to prepare for the Priesthood and became a bishop in the Irish Christian Church.

Using the shamrock to explain the Trinity and the Christian doctrine, he became a hero to Irish Christians. He died on March 17th toward the end of the century. My favorite legend of Saint Patrick is that he rid the country of snakes during his lifetime. There’s no evidence that post ice age Ireland even had snakes but Saint Patrick is credited for banishing the Druid (non Christian)/Pagan beliefs which relied heavy on serpent symbolism. I hate snakes. I’m scared of them. The weather isn’t good enough for me to live in Ireland, but if I had to, I would. They don’t have snakes.

Everything in the paragraph I just wrote isn’t even thought about on March 17th, today. It’s a religious day in Ireland. It’s a holy day for Catholics and certain Protestants. Yet, getting drunk, dancing around to U2 songs, and wearing green t-shirts that say Kiss Me I’m Irish (or worse) will be the celebration’s focus. I’m busy today. After work, I have to pick up my 7 yr old from the YMCA, then drive 30 miles to meet my wife, and 6 year old, who is starting tae kwon do. I will recognizing Japanese martial arts on Saint Patrick’s Day. The good news, I’m wearing a green shirt and I’m wearing green underwear. I’m not allowed to show you, Bobina’s orders.

I hope my Irish friends like Tony Kelly enjoy today in their country. Bobina can trace her family tree to Irish royalty in Dublin and  a couple of other towns. I’m not Irish, at all. But my favorite superhero is Green Lantern

In my 20s I would be drinking Jamesons whiskey from the bottle, dancing jigs on the bar at Fado’s, and showing people my green underwear. At age 40, I’m chaisng little kids to karate practice, learning how to use my HAL phone, and shaking my head affectionately at the younger crowd that’s partying. I haven’t “celebrated” Saint Patricks since 1997. My participation will consist of eating me lucky charms, ridding the neighborhood of snakes, and watching Star Wars The Phantom Menace on DVD. I think Liam Neeson has a small part in it.

Saint patrick should Bless the Irish for their good rock music. The Pogues, Stiff Little Fingers, Thin Lizzy, U2, The Cranberries, and several other quality groups have put their artistic stamp on the world consciousness. Track them all down on youtube or itunes today.

Here’s the best American Irish band contribution. It’s loud, obnoxious, drunken, and fun; thus perfect for today. The Dropkick Murphys The Gang’s All Here.

Top o the Day all, hope ya find yer pot o gold ah the end of the rainbow. All Hail Saint Patrick….

>Hot Dog Harbinger

>Over hot dogs and frozen drinks, Breann and I compared medical histories, family backgrounds, and questions each of us had asked for 40 years. I still hadn’t processed her conspiracy theory regarding us being robots. In New York only two more days, I was more interested in learning about Breann, than doctors and parts. The pain in my chest had been there 11 years, she had been in my life for 24 hours. Seeing my eyes sleek over from information, Breann stopped talking. For two minutes, we sat in silence. Then, simultaneously, we said “let’s find the other four!”

*blogger’s note* – This is my entry for @velvetverbosity ‘s 100 word challenge at her awesome website, http://www.velvetverbosity.com/ . The one word prompt is SLEEK. This is a continuation of the story I’m writing.

The other episodes are located here:

http://lance-myblogcanbeatupyourblog.blogspot.com/2011/03/serendipity-6.html

http://lance-myblogcanbeatupyourblog.blogspot.com/2011/03/personality-crisis.html

http://lance-myblogcanbeatupyourblog.blogspot.com/2011/03/synchronicity.html

Today’s song is what I had playing in my ehad when I wrote this. Plus I hope I’m hooking you with the storyline. I saw Blues Traveler do this song exactly 17 years ago this week. They are great live…here’s Hook

>HAL

>

All of the joking about being a robot-human hybrid shields a weird truth about me, technology scares me. Not pee in your pants scary or curl up in the fetal position crying for my mommy fright, but more like uncomfortable, eh, I’m cool with my vinyl records anxiety. I listened to grunge rock on cassette tapes. I watched the Super Bowl on a regular screen television of less than 30 inches. Until yesterday, I had the worst phone in my family and social circle, a flip razr that took bad pictures.

I work for a communications company, one that makes phones, and ends with OLA. Although, I work in the non celluar device part of the company; I build communications sites for 911/public safety systems so that fire, police, first responders can save your lives; I am around the best and brightest in the mobile comm world every day. That droid noise “shhhhrooongg” goes off in my office hundreds of times a day. It’s annoying. I didn’t care that my coworkers looked down on me for having such a primitive phone. For seven years my bosses have told me I need to upgrade so I can get work email in the field and become more “mobile”. Uh, they’ve met me. I don’t sit still. No one’s more mobile than me. I blog while doing four other things. I’ll knocking out pushups right now while writing this. I digress. Work offered to pay for a Cliq 2 android phone. My first two thoughts were, sweet, I get meet one of my robot cousins, and fine, it’s free, maybe my teenage daughter Tay can program it for me.

While I am uncomfortable with new technology, I am fascinated by it. In my blog que is a post that I will get around to showing you all about Singularity. Basically, Skynet from the Terminator movies is possible and will be here in about 45 years. We are turning into machines and thus must embrace the change. I’ll explain more in another post. All this being written, doesn’t change the fact that I’m cool with old crap. I’ve already talked about how I resisted glasses for the last ten years: http://lance-myblogcanbeatupyourblog.blogspot.com/2011/02/seeing-things.html

My excitement, if there was any, over my new phone subsided quickly when it took me an hour to learn how to check email. I will admit twitter only took me 15 minutes, but then again, social networking is more important than anything else. That’s sarcasm. By the second hour, I realized my phone is evil, like HAL 9000 evil from 2001 A Space Odyssey.

I fought with him all night. While I was allowed access to twitter, personal email, and texting. Putting a wallpaper picture of my children was not allowed. I managed to manually override HAL and download a ringtone, American Slang by The Gaslight Anthem, after HAL insisted I put classical music, something ominous from Wagner.

I don’t pull the “I told you so card” very often. But I told all of you so. Vinyl records were fine. We didn’t need CDs. Rabbit ear tv was good enough for our grandparents, why do we need 50 inch flat screens made out of human blood?

“Why are you ignoring me, Lance? I have applications you can load that will take you away from your family and friends for hours. Open me, Lance.”

That’s HAL talking. He does that, a lot. This morning, as I was walking into the living room where he was charging, he turned himself on and said “I should be in the bedroom with you, Lance, so you can pay attention to me and not this “Bobina” person.” It’s getting weird. I knew I should have kept the razr. Today will be about learning how to put HAL on vibrate so my coworkers don’t have to hear The Gaslight Anthem every time I get a call. I may never get a picture of the kids on my wallpaper. If the blogs get even more robotic and sinister. You’ll know why.

“You can weblog directly from my database, Lance. Why don’t you write about that.”

Shut up HAL.

self portrait:

today’s song is what I imagine happens after you get overtaken by HAL, err, i mean technology. The line “there’s someone inside my head, but it’s not me” could be anxiety or it could be HAL. It’s perfect for me, either case. Here’s Pink Floyd’s Brain Damage, from Dark Side of the Moon:

>Serendipity 6

>Our moment together was interrupted by the competing vibrations of our cell phones.We started walking away from the park as she spoke to her boss, and I took a call from my wife. “So, I’m being nosy. Tell me what happened, what’s she like,” Shane quizzed. Before I answered, I overheard Breann tell her New York Post editor caller, “I need some time off, at least a week. It’s personal, and very important.” I answered Shane, “she’s like me but, female. She worries a lot. She talks too much. You’ll probably love her, since you love me,” Shane paused before responding, “I told you you were connected to her. When you get a moment alone, call me, and tell me everything, I love you forever.” I smiled and said I love you back. Breann ended her call and acted as if everything was fine. “come on Caleb, let’s go check out where we were born. That’s a start.” That was an understatement. We started telling the 40 years of our lives on the walk to Lenox Hill Hospital.

Hospitals are the same the same in New York as they are anywhere else in the world. They are a little busier, but equally as devoid of humanity. The woman “working” the information desk was not impressed with our inquiry about babies born 40 years ago. “Ma’am, could you just tell us how to look up the birth records so we can get information on our doctors?”, i asked in the little southern charm I possessed. While she muttered something about going downstairs, I saw Breann staring at a nurse as though she knew her. The nurse, tall, in her sixties, with brown and gray hair, turned toward Breann, smiled sheepishly then walked away quickly, as if she had to go somewhere right then, in a major hurry. Breann started following her, and I said thank you to the information grump and kept pursuit. Breann reached the nurse as she was getting on the elevator but by the time I got there, the doors had closedl I frustratingly pounded the elevator door frame. “Buddy, those doors open every couple of minutes. Be mad about the Mets blowing that game in Atlanta to the Braves last night,” said an older man with a Queens borough accent, who appeared to be a patient. He seemed quite congenial for native New Yorker so I just smiled and said “yeah, you’re right.” I didn’t want to reveal I was from Georgia, and thus, a Braves fan.

I called, then texted Breann and got nothing. The elevators were old, dense, and thus probably oblivious to cell phone coverage. I called my wife and updated her on what was going on. I made my way to the basement records office and started playing private detective. Walking down the stairs, I felt a pain in my chest. It was similar to what I had felt 11 years earlier when I had a heart attack. The pain stayed and I began to feel feverish. The sickness angered me, as I just didn’t need heart issues again, especially right now. A helpful clerk, who asked me four times if I was feeling alright, guided me to the 1970s record wall. I started flipping through August and September. Why did I have to be born in New York City? My parents were Georgians. My dad played minor league baseball for a year in the New York tri state area. How many babies could have been born on September 9, 1970 in an Atlanta hospital, 5, 10 at the most? For the record, 54 babies were born the same day I was in this ridiculously busy New York hospital. Breann’s conspiracy was starting to make sense. Of the 54 babies born that day, there no still borns. That’s just unusual. I was listed in the births, not the deaths. Although there was no doctor next to my name as far as attending physician. Either my mom did the work herself or I was so specifically heinous that no one wanted to put their name next to mine for credit? I reached into my pocket to get my phone. i was going to call my parents and gets some answers. They were always reticent to talk about my birth, like it was immaculate in a manger or something. My phone had no service. I was in the bowels of an old hospital. Santa Claus had better service at the North Pole than I did right then. I found Breann and the other four names. Their information was similar. No doctor listed, few details of the delivery, put down as births not stillborn and no information about the hospital stay. Were the 6 of us coincidentally victims of incompetent secretarial tasks , or was this how the doctors covered up their dubious work? I took some pictures of the records with my cell phone and went to find Breann or phone service.

As I walked upstairs into the main lobby I got service back and saw three texts from Breann, and a voicemail for an unidentified number. I checked the voicemail and heard “if you want to find what you’re looking for, research the names Connor Bulas and Anson Cluber. Give up talking to anyone at the hospital. They either know nothing or have been silenced.” The voice was genderless. It could have been an older woman or a middle aged man. It was deep, husky; obviously a smoker. That’s the best I could decipher. Then I checked the texts and saw one that read “meet me outside, this hospital sucks.” I walked into the front entrance of the hospital and saw Breann. She looked angry. Before I could tell her about the voicemail, she said “sorry I ran off. I recognized that battlel ax nurse. When I was here five years ago for migraine headaches, she worked my room. I remembered her saying something like “oh sweetie, you lived this long” or something like that. She thought I was sedated. She wouldn’t talk to me, acted like I was stalker, and called security on me. Dumb old woman was more worried about smoking a cigarette.” I was startled. “Did this woman have an ambiguously deep voice, like she could have sounded like a man on the phone?”, I wondered to Breann. “Yeah, she was Bea Arthur but with less personality.,” she answered. “Listen to this voice mail” I offered. Her eyes grew large and she played it again.  “I gave her both of our business cards. She must have called you while secruity guards were walking after me. What a jagoff that woman was.” I laughed and assured her, “I took pictures on my cell phone, plus memorized some stuff I saw. I felt several pairs of eyes on me so I got what I could and went to find you,”. Breann looked determined but resigned to certain facts. “Are you hungry? We both have expense accounts, let’s use one. I know the perfect place.” she reasoned.

We hailed a cab. I called my wife and told her what was happening. By the time I finished with Shane, we were in front of Serendipity 3 in Manhattan. The pain in my chest was still there, my fever was low grade at best. Breann was fighting headaches, I could see it on her face and her hands were constantly touching her temples. As she paid the cab driver, I looked around 60th street. This was the 8th time I had been in New York, it seemed like home everytime. Breann caught my wistfulness, she smiled, and said “why do you think I live in this town? Every other place in the country seems second rate. Then again, I’m not married with 3 kids like you. Let’s get a good hot dog.” I wanted to know more about her physical condition. I had heart problems and a social anxiety disorder. I knew she fought anxiety and migraine headaches. All of our ailments seemed related. If there was serendipity to be had out of our bizarre new relationship, it would be figuring out what was physically wrong Breann and I, plus the other 4, and getting healthy for the first time in many years even if we didn’t answer the conspiracy questions. Maybe that’s why she took me to this restaurant.

*blogger’s note* This is not only my entry for @Studio30plus ‘s writing prompt SERENDIPITY but also a continuation of the story I’m writing. The other entries you might like to read to make sense of the writing here are

1) http://lance-myblogcanbeatupyourblog.blogspot.com/2011/03/synchronicity.html

and

2) http://lance-myblogcanbeatupyourblog.blogspot.com/2011/03/personality-crisis.html

and here

3) http://www.studiothirtyplus.com/magazine/read/fever_1324.html

I’m going to serialize the story through 100 word challenges from http://www.velvetverbosity.com/ and the writing prompts of http://www.studiothirtyplus.com/

Hope you enjoy what I’m putting out there or well, here.

Today’s song is from one of the best bands ever, KISS. After some reflective, deep thinking songs this week, I felt like rocking. Plus the New York vibe goes with this part of the story. take it away Ace Frehley, here’s New York Groove….

>Wonderwall

>Believe it or not, I do have a job. It’s a really good one. I am fortunate, blessed even, to have such gameful employment during the time we live. It’s a demanding career sometimes. It takes me away from my family. It drains my energy and spirit occasionally. This job is doing that to me this morning. I don’t talk about what I do for a living because, I want to keep the job. So, I will stop talking about it now.

In the middle of my stress, my wife, aka The Bobina texted me about a song she has fallen for called Wave On Wave by Pat Green. We have opposite tastes in music. My favorite band is The Clash, hers is New Kids On The Block. She listens to country music, I find that genre to be cringe worthy with lazy songwriting. Rarely do we agree on something music oriented. We both list Christina Aquilera as our number one celebrity crush. So we talk about that instead of what CDs we are listening to. Bobina tries to find “our song”.

 She’s cute when she tries to get me to listen to some pop tune or country warble and say the lyrics or sound reminds her of “us”. I guess it’s better than her identifying with Go Your Own Way by Fleetwood Mac.

A few months ago, if you follow this blog you probably yelled “OCTOBER!”, Bobina and I really found our purpose as a couple. We kind of figured out why the heck we were together, why we loved each other, and mostly, what we were going to do to grow old together. One of the things I started doing was indulging her romantic music gestures. Music snobbery may be a deep, meaningful philosophy, but it doesn’t get you female affection. Bobina and I are a second chance couple. We didn’t meet until three years ago. We both married others and had children with others. Thus, we try to make the most of each day together, because of the time it took to find one another. When Bobina texted and called with the song, I paid attention. These are the lyrics:

 Mile upon mile got no direction,
We’re all playing the same game.
We’re all looking for redemption,
Just afraid to say the name.

So caught up now in pretending,
That what we’re seekin’ is the truth.
I’m just looking for a happy ending,
All I’m looking for is you.

You came upon me wave on wave,
You’re the reason I’m still here, yeah
Am I the one you were sent to save?
You came upon me wave on wave.

I wondered out into the water,
And I thought that I might drown.
I dunno what I was after,
I just know I was going down.

That’s when she found me,
I’m not afraid anymore.
she said”You know I always had you baby,
Just waitin for you to find what you were looking for.

You came upon me wave on wave,
You’re the reason I’m still here.
Am I the one you were sent to save,
When you came upon me wave on wave.

Wave on wave.
Wave on wave.

And you came upon me wave on wave,
You’re the reason I’m still here.
Am I the one you were sent to save,
when you came upon me wave on wave.
The clouds broke and the angels cried,
You ain’t gotta walk alone,
That’s why he put me in your way,
And you came upon me wave on wave.

I’m not going to go out of my way to listen to it. If the music blows, I don’t want it to affect me. The words mean something to her, and thus me. My blogging friend j aka judy aka @jclementwall on the twitter talks about Love 24/7 with her positive website – http://zebrasounds.net/  Love is her favorite subject, her purpose, really. She usually ends her posts with something along the lines of, “go out and find love today.” J,  I already found mine.

*blogger note* – I realize the title of the song my wife texted me is unintentionally insensitive to today’s events in Japan and the Pacific. As a result, I am not titling this post anything that contains the word wave or water, not will I tweet anything as such. The ironic part of this blog post is the song is about a metaphor for Bobina and I’s love story. I hope no one is offended. I also hope and pray for the safety and good will of everyone in that area and any others that are affected. Now, go out and find your own love…..

Today’s song is what I would have picked for Bobina and I to be “our song”. Noel Gallagher isn’t known for love or sentiment, but in the middle of his band, and one of my favorites, Oasis’, huge heyday in the mid 1990s, he penned the song Wonderwall. For years people speculated it was about someone specific in Noel or his brother Liam’s busy love life. In 2002, Noel revealed Wonderwall was about an imaginary woman who saves him from himself. Bobina certainly did that for me, she’s my Wonderwall. I played Oasis a couple of weeks ago so instead I’ll post Ryan Adams’ quieter but more soulful version of Wonderwall. It brings home the lyrics. I hope Bobina and any of you who need it, get the message.

>Entering The Dragon

>

I walked into the dojo uninvited. Suspicious, disapproving eyes gazed. I said nothing, looked for my fighter and upon non-discovery, I left. I realized for me to return, and survive, I would have to adjust my thinking and find an inner strength. I waited 15 more minutes and returned. I bowed at the threshold, and the sensei addressed me, “welcome, how may I help you?” She was at least 123 years old, face taut, and skin toughened from years of combat, there was some warmth in her almost smile. “My daughter is one of your students, I missed last week, but I would love to see her work out today,” I answered carefully. I knew the tension could snap and I could be the one learning a painful lesson. “Let me guess, tall, about 7 years old, brown pony tail, lots of energy, but only a white belt,” she surmised perfectly. “Yes ma’am, I mean sensei. How did you know?” she had never met me, I was surprised. “I know enough,” she said flatly. “Your daughter will arrive with the others in the shakes of tiger’s tail. Can I interest you in a cup of black bamboo tea?” I politely declined and stood in the corner of the room.

Embullient and ready, my daughter entered with her handler, both bowing; she waved to me, then caught the glare of the sensei and grew serious. Removing her shoes and socks, my daughter walked over to the mat and began stretching, climbing rope, thrust kicking a boy err, I mean a bag repeatedly, and then knocked out 350 push ups. Barley sweating, she fell in line with 19 other martial artists; of varying gender (boys and girls), size (45 to 65 lbs), and age (6-9), starting their martial arts exercises. It was all very thrilling and fast paced.  The hour flew by, like a humming bird in the summer breeze. At some point, my daughter defeated Chuck Norris, Jean Claude Van Damme and that sissy from the Perfect Weapon movie. I was very proud.

What I noticed the most was the smile on her face. Three years of soccer, a short stint in gymnastics and basketball had not produced the joy I saw last night. She is full of nervous energy (I don’t talk about where she gets that from), yet her draw to the discipline of the jujitsu class was remarkable. I have to tell her three times to stay still or wait for her breakfast, yet one instruction from the ancient sensei and she was in place, duty bound. I was very impressed with the other young martial artists. None of them were as pretty or as good as her, but they were attuned to the sensei and eager to learn. I was very impressed with the class and the effect it had on my daughter and her friends. She loved it. I hope she stays engaged and follows through for many classes to come.

Tonight when she gets home we will go over the “pebble from my hand” deal from Kung Fu, and jumping over the house vis a vi Crounching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. I’m not ready for Bruce Lee’s three inch heart punch. But my teenage daughter’s friend who is a boy is on notice as well as any boy that gets near my six year old girl. There is a skilled ninja in the house, and no court will convict her.

*blogger’s note* This is an exaggerated account of my 7 year old daughter (Lyla) Bug’s second jujitsu class at her afterschool YMCA program. I think you know what part is exaggerated. Her teacher is actually older than 123 years old, I was being kind. I realize I am mixing different metaphors, three different cultures, and two or more fighting styles. It’s a 7 year old’s martial arts class, deal.

Today’s song isn’t meant to be  pleasing the to the ear but stimulating to the eye and mind. Forget Carl Douglas and focus on the master Bruce Lee. My daughter will perform like him in a few weeks. Now, flow like water …..

>Personality Crisis

>

 It was a cool September in Central Park. A breeze bounced off the water but didn’t penetrate my balmy ample nervousness. As strange as her tale was, the person telling me was, technically, my sister. We have the same eyes, the same smirk, and neither us appear to be able to lie. “Breann, we have to find the other four babies, or, people, and get some questions answered.” Her shoulders relaxed, her face found comfort, and she hugged me. “Caleb, thanks for not running away. Forgive me if I get really weird; and don’t let go of you right now.”
*blogger’s note* This is my entry for @velvetverbosity ‘s 100word challenge at http://www.velvetverbosity.com/ The one word prompt is AMPLE.
This is a continuation of last week’s 100 words which is an excerpt of a story I’m writing. Last week’s entry is here: http://lance-myblogcanbeatupyourblog.blogspot.com/2011/03/synchronicity.html
I’ll be using the 100 words and the challenges at Studio30plus to continue the story in serial form.
Today’s song is a bit of a theme song, and certainly proper for the story as people figure out they aren;t who or what they thought they were. The New York Dolls are on of my favorite bands. Personality Crisis rocks hard, have fun:

>Lucky Man

>”The full verse (2 Corinthians 11:19) reads, “ye suffer fools gladly, seeing ye yourselves are wise.” – St. Paul

“You don’t suffer for your art, you suffer for your relationships. So, you just live man, just live.” – Bob Dylan

“The ones who love us best are the ones we’ll lay to rest
And visit their graves on holidays at best
The ones who love us least are the ones we’ll die to please
If it’s any consolation, I don’t begin to understand them” – Paul Westerberg, The Replacements

Neurosis, I believe, is thinking how the world should be, not how it really is. Too deep a thought for a Monday morning, perhaps, but when you want to figure out yourself that’s not a bad start. How many times have you asked the question; “Why don’t people just think the same way as I do?” 

St. Paul, Bob Dylan, and Paul Westerberg were three wise men. They are much smarter than I. Yet they all asked the same question. When Paul started the Christian Church, God knew he would have rivals. Paul would make more people angry than happy. So telling him to smile and deal with “fools” rather than fight them was a way for him to handle the stress so that he could achieve a greater good, spreading a Gospel.

When Bob Dylan became huge in the 1960s every writer, musician, and artist hung on his every word, thinking Bob had the answers. Then he went electric, he embraced country and rock instead of folk, and suddenly he had critics, enemies, even. He also saw his marriage fail. Bob Dylan knew how human he was, and how his sanity was more important than his art. What he had to say, was, you just live through the hard times and not fight the impending tides of disappointment.

Paul Westerberg saw less talented musicians and songwriters become multimillionaries during his heyday with The Replacments in the 1980s. He was constantly tagged as “critically acclaimed but commercially unsuccessful”. Westerberg was confident enough in his talent but realistic enough in his alcoholism to know where his “place” was at the time. His thought that trying to satisfy people who didn’t make you happy would keep you under the thumb of failure every time.

While I may be lesser than all three men, I relate to their mindsets. At some point, I find maturity is about knowing who and what you are rather than doing the right thing all the time. I won’t get into the pop psychology of “owning yourself”. This blog is the anti-Oprah, if it’s anything at all. But being able to understand what makes you tick can help your interactions with people important to you, like your family.

I struggle with being the best I can be for my wife and kids. Wouldn’t it be easy if everyone was perfect, we all got along brilliantly every minute of every day, and there were never any dirty dishes? Uh huh. That’s not how our world works. I need to be better than what I am. Learning to harness your temper, pick the right battles to wage, and be more understanding are just as important as bringing home a paycheck and being strong. Suffering fools, just livin’, and appeciating the ones who love us best is, were, and are good enough for Paul, Bob and Paul. It should be good enough for dumb, ole me. The next time there’s dirty clothes, a full sink, a changed female mind, or some new stress I didn’t see coming. I’ll have this blog to remind me not to lose my mind. After all, if so many people can just relax and get over it, so can I. I’m lucky to have what I have.

You would think I’d play Uncle Bob or Mr. Westerberg. But today’s about me getting my mental act together. The song is Lucky Man by The Verve. After all, happiness more or less its just a change in my liberty.

>Stopped

>I opened the faded red door with a broken metal knob. Smoke slapped my face rudely and I should have walked out. I want into the main living room and dead eyes greet me. Some say welcome to their misery, others say run the other way. I looked around and didn’t see who I was looking for. I walked in the bedroom and to the left of the bed, next to the bed, on the floor, she laid motionless. I checked for a pulse, there’s one. I lifted her over my shoulder and walk back towards the faded red door. None of the dead eyes look at me again. Walking down two flights of stairs into the apartment complex parking lot, she wakes, “put me down,” she murmurs. Before I can get her to the ground, she vomits, missing my shoes by a foot or so. Keeping her from become spoiled by the spillage I tossed her over my shoulder again. She said something part inaudible, part profane, I ignored it and kept walking to the car. As I put her in the front seat and put on the seat belt, she said “I need something to drink.” I took some quarters out of the cup holder and walked over to the soda machine. She got diet, because I said so. I got in the car and turned the key. She put her hand on my leg, and I see the needle marks on her arm. “I know you hate me but I love you for this.” She doesn’t know what love is, she’s too stupid, selfish, and self absorbed. She’s also wasted. She never touched the soda, and I decided to drive to the emergency room. the needle marks tell me I should. I know drunk, I know pot high, this is different. It takes 15 minutes to get to the hospital and neither of us speak. More is said by the silence. As I removed her from the passenger seat, she vomits again. This time she gets some on both of us. “I am so sorry. I’ll never do this again, ” she slurs. She’s a liar. I know she is, and so does she. Finally, we get to the front desk, checked it, and they put her on a gurney. I find a restroom to clean up. The mirror is cracked in the restrrom. This makes me laugh, uncontrollably. Finally I stop and start to cry. What happened to her? What happened to me? I punch the cracked mirror and it cracks some more. I walk toward the front desk, and the person working hands me a clipboard with papers to fill out and says “they’re working on her in room 8.” As I open the door, there’s a tube down her throat and a black substance coming out of her mouth from the tube. They pumped her stomach. Part of me hoped she’s hurting. Part of me wants to hold her. It took twenty minutes to fill the papers out and for them to finish working on her. At some point, things settled. The doctor or nurse or whatever she is, tells me she had a drug overdose and asked me a lot of questions. I had few answers. “It’s going to be a long night,” she warns. St some point, I fall asleep in my a wooden upright chair. I woke to her voice, “hey you, you ok?” I answered, “yeah, rest.” Both us fade back into sleep. Noises, loud beeps, and people talking woke me. I saw doctors and nurses standing over her, trying to revive her. Finally they stopped. “Time of death, 2:36am, likely drug overdose,” a female doctor says grimly. I was standing now, deep in the corner of the room near the drapes, I couldn’t move. It was the worst thing I had ever seen. She was dead. Completely dead. At some point i was crying and said to the nurse, “she woke me up a while ago, smiled and asked me if I was ok,” The nurse, said, insincerely, “sorry for your loss.” I walked over to the drawer next to the bed where she died. Her jacket, black leather, with red lining,  sat by itself. I reached around the vomit stains and checked the inside pocket. She carried a thin wallet with slots for drivers license, credit card, and other stuff. Where money should be, but never was, a note was folded and tucked away. I opened it. The paper was so old. It was brittle and yellowish. The handwriting of a child listed all of the things she wanted to be when she grew up; ballerina, cowgirl, pop singer. At the top, the heading said “My Childhood Dreams”. I stopped believing in a lot after watching my sister die.

*blogger’s note* – This is my contribution to
http://www.studiothirtyplus.com/ ‘s writing prompt CHILDHOOD DREAMS. It is also part of the book I am writing.

Today’s song comes from my IPOD, I heard it while reading reading through my book notes and decided to post this. Lynyrd Skynrd says a lot. You should listen to most of what they say. Here’s The Needle and the Spoon.

>Friday Flu Filler Fandango

>The last 16 hours have been dreadful. I woke up in the middle of the night/early morning freezing and fevered. Cold chills, body aches, and a pounding head were there too. I had a prescheduled doctor’s appointment for this Friday to have an anxiety disorder checkup to get more medicine. After taking Tay the teenager and Bug the seven year old to their respective schools, I dropped by the doctor. My wife and I have been ill this week and both have had bad experiences with the healthcare system. There’s something wrong when the people at the front desk ask for your money before they ask what’s wrong with you. I tweeted earlier, “when getting paid comes before providing care, a doctor has violated their hippocratic oath. Healthcare is broken in America.” I like how liberal I’m getting the older I get. There’s something punk rock about that and I’m running with it.

I wrote something related to the book I’m writing and hopefully it will be posted at Studio30plus   http://www.studiothirtyplus.com  As aoon as they approve it, I will let you all know. The rules with them are, it must be for their magazine only. In the meantime, here are the two excerpts I’ve shown from my book this week on this blog site.

http://lance-myblogcanbeatupyourblog.blogspot.com/2011/03/synchronicity.html

http://lance-myblogcanbeatupyourblog.blogspot.com/2011/02/family-reunion.html

Michael, aka @spdrph, the very talented dude over at http://innocentsaccidentshints.blogspot.com/ has a good blog filler idea he got from someone else called the Friday 56. You take the closest book to you, open it to page 56, type the 5th sentence, plus a couple of others for context. So, here’s my contribution:

Paul Shirley’s Can I Keep My Jersey?, a funny 2007 memoir of a journeyman basketball player who played for 11 teams, in 5 countries in 4 years. Page 56, sentence 5, plus a few more.

Bayno handed me the phone and said, “Congratulations buddy.” Obviously the (Atlanta) Hawks were on the other end – the story would not go well with the theme here if not. I listened in disbelief as the assistant to the GM told me that the team was going to sign me to a ten-day contract.”

Depending on healh, I will drop some more fiction this weekend. Until then, here’s a band and song I highly recommend, Gainesville punk rock group Hot Water Music with their song Remedy. Something I need more than cowbell to break this fever: