Friday, November 24, 2017

In the end, we all die. Unless you change.

Four months since I almost died for nothing and I haven’t had a drink. Things are exactly where they need to be at this point.

It kind of came as a shock to me  when my life flashed before my eyes and all I could muster was a weak, “No.” A plaintive and pointless cry into the abyss followed by lights out and pain of various and sundry types. I saw my son playing baseball but he was an adult. I saw my daughter crying but couldn’t tell how old she was. I saw my wife smoking a cigarette and laughing. I was dead, of course, and sorely saddend by that fact as I was causing pain and missing so much life.

It’s four months later and I meditate, work, skate, and try to be present for those around me. It’s not easy as I feel myself changing while several around me seem dead set on staying the same. I have no control over any of it but that is o-fucking-k and simply the way of the world.

I heard Bill wither’s “Lovely Day” while skating and dedicated it to my skateboard, one of the few constants in my life. Make of that what you will.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

When Griff and I were little, we went to school in the same sea. And the master was an old turtle; we used to call him "tortoise."

I often look at the turtle and realize that he and the dog are remnants of my past life and I love them so much more for that fact. Of all the things in life that are ephemeral they have, despite themselves and their biology, remained constants for me. I've often been told to ditch them both but that will never happen. I will, one day, bury them both (perhaps they'll witness my burial and curse my name) and sing drunken songs of their glory and worth. I hope on that day I will finally become a man.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Aww, lookie here. Looks like somebody threw away a perfectly good white boy!

I have not published in several years. I have been busy with The Fam.

I am moved to publish because tonight I very much wanted to beat a cracker to death. That's not at all a nice thing to think or say or write but it is the truth.

In my defense, a number of crackers have been asking for it of late. Loudly. Incessantly. In typical cracker fashion they've acted like they haven't earned a beating, what with their White Privilege/Tears/Fragility/Entitlement they should just keep on keeping on.

But they're wrong.

Case in point: While having a drink with my friend we were treated to a voluble and spirited cracker discussion of Mr. Kapernick and his (awesome) protest. One cracker decided to go on a monologue about cornbread and how he "sho 'nuff luuuvs cornbread," while the others did there best impersonations of some race-based memory of Amos 'n Andy.

You see where this is going, right?

I held my tongue. I drank my beer. My friend and I began talking about our deep and sudden desire to be somewhere else. I wanted to say something but what was the use? If you can't silently protest and you can't protest on the street and you can't be the President and say that *maybe* there's a problem... If POTUS isn't supposed to talk about race relations because it makes crackers feel icky then what can you do?

I'm depressed. I'm a POC and I've had enough.

There's no good way to wrap this up. Black Lives Matter.

Peace out, bitches!

Saturday, July 13, 2013

I mean, I've seen men stabbed, didn't mean shit to me. I've seen guns, guns too, they don't mean shit. But that's when you gotta watch yourself.

I  received a backhanded compliment at work this week,went to two funerals, and came home to find that the prick who murdered a black teenager was acquitted. You will, of course, forgive me when I say I've fucking had enough.

What's that quote? "Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans." Not particularly profound but popped into my head when my boss told me, "You're too good a focus puller for me to let you operate," which in English means I'm not getting promoted because I might take his job. One day. Or not. Either way I'm apparently not making any more money anytime soon with this guy. It's a good way to finish a job. I get to work with him again in a week. Not as the operator, of course, since I'm so good translating what he wants into actual action from the crew. It happens. You get good, you get pigeonholed, you say fuck you and burn the place down, dynamite the bridge, and move on to the next gig.

People die. People die every day, every minute, every second. Someone, some where died while I was typing this and while you were reading this. It just happens. It's the inevitable result of being born. If you're really lucky you live a long healthy life of relative happiness and success and you don't bury your children or your grandchildren. That was the first funeral and it was sad and beautiful and felt like the right conclusion to an awesome story, you know the kind that when it ends you feel full and content and sigh to yourself, "Well, of course it ended like that."

When you're not lucky and Life decides to kick your ass you die well before your time and your kids and their kids have to bury you and it's a damn miserable business. It's the kind of thing that makes you believe quite resolutely that every religious person you've ever met is a lying asshole and that if Gawd exists you'd like to kick it in the balls. That was the second funeral. There was crying, there was gnashing of teeth, there was wailing to the heavens and there was, of course, the funny little man in the white smock talking out of his ass about someone he barely knew. At least there were some good memories shared at the reception of a truly wonderful person who I was lucky to know.

Just to cement the whole suckage of it all Florida reassured white America that black lives are worthless. Progress is un-American, dontchaknow?

Fuck Florida.

Fuck a judicial system so blinded to its own prejudices and assumptions about class and race that out of six jurors and four alternates not one person was black. It's fucking ridiculous and it happens all the time and all of the centuries old assumptions about black cocks and sexual desires and the fecundity of black women and the inability of any black person to do anything positive are constantly at work against black defendants. Chips stacked and waiting against. Always.

I'm sick of this shit. I'm sick of chickenshit fucks running around with guns looking for people to push around. I'm sick of white people insisting that we live in a post-racial society while they simultaneously gush about dumb shit like gangster rap and say, "YOLO!" I'm sick of chronic underfunding of schools in economically depressed areas while the police department gets to arm itself to the teeth with weapons better suited for combat than "Protecting and Serving." I'm sick of it all.

Peace out, bitches!

Monday, April 1, 2013

If you can dodge a wrench you can dodge a ball.

Work. Lots of work. Pain. Lots of pain. The two seem to go together more and more often with every passing year.

It's been fifteen years of The Suck. At any point along the timeline of my service to The Suck you could have found me wanting to quit and yet here I am fifteen years later. How? Why? What? Or there're the alternates to this: Dammit! How the Fuck did this happen? Goddammit! Why the fuck did this happen? and Fucking goddammit sonofabitch! What the fuck happened?

I have a very bad and persistent case of tendonitis in my right elbow and my right knee is starting to show signs of wanting to secede from the rest of my body. At least I still have all of my hair and can ollie a curb and chew my own food. I'm not completely useless just yet. I had the elbow looked at today. It was humbling. A very pretty therapist massaged my forearm (I'm still not sure this was part of the treatment) while asking me questions about work. In the end, she wrapped my arm with a compression sock and applied kinesio tape from my wrist up to my bicep. I'm to stop trying to lift things with my right arm. I'm to stop having anything in my right arm. I am, in short, to stop thinking that I even have a right arm. It must rest. I must ice it throughout the day. I've already had two Cortisone shots, one more and then the only option is surgery. Whacky doctors.

I may be falling apart slowly but surely I am still nimble enough to dodge the wrench, pull the focus, collect the check, and go home to my hot wife and my kids. That's all you really need anyway.

Well, that and some good surf now and again and duck season.

Peace out, bitches.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

For too long I've been parched of thirst and unable to quench it. Too long I've been starving to death and haven't died. I feel nothing. Not the wind on my face nor the spray of the sea. Nor the warmth of a woman's flesh.

It's 5:30 in the morning and I'm coming apart at the seams. This is not a good thing.

I'm in Spain for work but it feels like I've been kidnapped. We've been down for almost a week. Contracts have changed. Sponsors have dropped out. We have no one to shoot.

I've been trying to keep it together, filling the hours with yoga, weights, running, skateboarding, beer and cigarettes. It's not quite working as I'm beginning to feel the thin veil of sanity that I'm wearing begin to fray. It will tear soon. This is not a good thing.

I've come to realize that among my legion of character defects is the inability to do nothing. Some of the guys on the crew are content with drinking heavily and hitting on whatever woman is unfortunate enough to be near them. Others are diligently working the Interwebs trying to set up next month's jobs. No one is having a good time.

I no longer want to be here. This job is falling apart. I haven't been able to sleep for days now no matter how hard I break myself during the day. Beer? Over it. Smoking? Over it. Skateboarding? Almost over it. Sight seeing? We're not exactly here during the season where anything is actually open. Alicante has been interesting though but...

I'm  not on a vacation. If I were on a vacation I'd have my kids here and my wife and I wouldn't be rambling at 5:30 in the morning. I'm here to work. If there's no work then why am I here?

The added fuck you bonus of the whole thing is that The Company is sure to try and renegotiate our contract to reflect a decline in my take home money due to all of our down days. I'm gone all month and I will have made less than had I stayed home? Fuck you. Send me back now.

In theory we have everything set so that in another day or two (please, blessed holy unicorn don't let it be two days!) we will grind straight through until it's time to leave. All I can think of right now is how much I want to be in my bed with Stretch and Ghost sleeping at our feet and the kids in their beds and what do you guys want to do tomorrow?

It's the down time that's fucking killing me. I can't take the nothing.

Peace out, bitches!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Suddenly someone'll say, like, plate, or shrimp, or plate o' shrimp out of the blue, no explanation. No point in lookin' for one, either. It's all part of a cosmic unconciousness.

(There are going to be quite a lot of references, or possibly one, to drunk driving through the streets of LA and I'm not at all interested in dealing with your problems with that. Read on or fuck off and know that I love you in the way that only a disgruntled old LA skate punk can "love" another human being. Mostly just fuck off and read on if you want.)

An old man walks down the street and finds himself in front of what once was a glorious jazz club. He blinks. He remembers. He sees himself as a goddamn golden god of the LA night life. He is a fucking king of the night and the city is his. He blinks again and he wonders if he can pry any of the plywood off the doors of this dilapidated building because if he can he will be young again.

An hour later he is standing in a cavernous room. He is dwarfed and old and grey and blind and probably mostly crazy but he is there. And there is where it's at.

The tables and chairs are covered in dusty white linens. The cheap carpet is worn thin and hard and desperate by the waitstaff's countless rounds. Chandeliers once glorious and stunning are strung into macabre beauty by generations of spider webs. The old man, however, is happy and lost in his memories of big bands as a teen and bebop as a man.

I drive through Los Angeles late at night, after work of course as I'm a family man now, and think about the crevices of this city and my mind. They are entwined. My favorite thing to do while drunk-esque and winding my way home is to listen to the soundtrack to "Repo Man." It's perfect for this type of work, really.

The opening track should be a primer for BEING in LA. Not living here. Not visiting. BEING. Being in LA is a daunting task for most people and I think that's because most people lack the creative juice to BE here. Now. Right now. Wherever you are and whatever you are doing in LA you must, at all times BE here. It's hard, I know, and you came here feeling so entitled to be here so really it should be easier.

But it's not.

That's why LA is my favorite. Sure, native born, remember what what with the who who back in the day. OG, triple OG, gangsta whatnot and so on. Fuck me. I'm just a guy who was lucky enough to be born here so I know nothing but I BE. In LA.

So, I was driving drunk-esque through LA and listening to "Repo Man" and feeling like a king. Why? How? Are you sure that's safe, what, with the two kids and the mortgage and the wife and the career? Go fuck yourself for asking. We do this here more than anyone wants to admit but we're quite good at it so... Anyone who tells you this doesn't happen amongst "polite" society here probably doesn't think matronly women didn't earn their Mardi Gra beads the old fashioned way. Go figure.

When you drive through LA listening to "El Clavo y la Cruz" by The Plugz you realize that you rule, that you get it, that you are LA. I say this because I've loved this song forever and it is LA. Don't believe me? Go listen.

Don't get it? I understand.

There was a point to this but I've lost the thread. No. That's not true. I've hit the point where the beers and tequila are making me not give a shit about explaining this to you.

You get it or you don't at this point. Go watch "Repo Man" right now and watch it knowing that it's a quintessential LA movie, right up there with "Chinatown." Or don't. We don't care. We're all going to fall into the Pacific or Angelina's vampire cleavage so fuck us, right?

Point: I love LA and I love watching the bent obsessions of the legions of star fuckers get dashed upon the rocks of reality in LA.

And I think it's time to get a new job as working in Hollywood for the last 14 years has killed me.

Peace out, bitches!