Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Things I miss.

Things I miss:

Rock Music: Yeah, I know. Rock and roll will never die. Well, it did. American Idol was the last nail in the coffin. Can you imagine Janis Joplin or Jimmy Hendrix getting up and asking three old pop culture geezers if their music was good enough? Sheesh.  Now you have “stars” that can’t play a note of music on any instrument and segregated radio if they have radio at all. Back in the day we might hear Queen followed by Willie Nelson followed by Otis Redding. Today we have to make sure the “star” walks lockstep with culture and is “woke.” Scuse me while I kiss the  sky and also throw up a little in my mouth at the sorry silly identity politics and political correctness that has ruined pop culture.

Stephen King: Yeah  I know my favorite author is still out there. But, kind of like me he has a problem in my opinion with finding the thread these days. He has always been left of center. So am I. But, lately he has allowed so much political junk to infiltrate his work and he also tends to drift a little when it comes to passionate writing. I think he finished the Dark Tower Series in a rush and then put out some mediocre crime novels and a forgettable collaboration with his son Owen. Still, I will buy anything he puts out just hoping that he finds the thread to Castle Rock or Jerusalem’s Lot or even Derry, Maine again.

Jesus: Yep, back in the day I remember seeing an old playboy cartoon trying to make fun of Jesus. They showed a party and a dude in a robe comes walking up and somebody says oh @#$%& the parties over. Well I always thought they were wrong. The party was just starting because Jesus represented an eternal party with the best wine and the best people to hang out with. But, these days he’s been replaced by a stick up your butt dyed in the wool conservative republican. Angry about abortion but chill as hell with dropping bombs and cutting health care and building prisons.  I think it all started when Jerry Falwell and a few others decided to sell the soul of American evangelical church to the republican party and the republican party sold it’s soul to large corporate interest and the list goes on and on.  Anyway, I miss the one who hung with the prostitutes and afflicted and blessed the poor in spirit and the meek. The one who said if they ask for your coat give em your cloak also.

Guitar: I miss playing my guitar. Maybe I will get back to it some day. I don’t know. But, my hands don’t make the chords or strum the notes the way they did in my youth. I keep feeling aches and pains that I didn’t know I had and on days I can play the guitar I feel  younger and more vital.

Marijuana: Now don’t get excited. But, I’ve seen where studies show that Marijuana actually helps with Parkinson’s and anxiety and I really do think we need to study it and use it the way God intended when he placed it on the earth instead of demonizing it. I admit that my use of it in my youth had nothing to do with my desire to cure disease or provide enlightenment. But, right now I really think we could use all the tools we have to give people some relief from physical and mental pain and it is far superior to Prozac.

Beer: Yep, I miss being 19 and having an 8 pack of Pony Millers. But, those days really are gone. I’m thankful I escaped my youthful idiocy without becoming addicted buy I still would like to go back and have an ice cold Miller and reach up and comb the hair out of my eyes one more time.  I don’t miss the hangovers or the over indulgence or the idiocy of wasting precious days drinking and being an idiot though.

Running: I loved to run. I miss running. I broke the 6 minute mark for the mile in high school and from there I ran just for health. I was still able to run 2 miles at 45 years old and right now after heart surgery and my 61st year I expect that this side of the Jordan I’m not likely to run much.

Family: I don’t even want to start. The years take so much away from us and while I do think death is like moving to Florida and I’ll see them again. It still leaves a hole where they used to be.

Friends: See family.

Religion: My faith always provided parameters for me. I was able to navigate much of my life because I felt the approval of my maker or the disapproval if I strayed too far into excess. Once you find yourself doubting and also pretty much admitting that the dogma of your religion contains a lot of bullshit then it’s hard to go back to where you were. I haven’t abandoned my faith and I still talk to my source but my religion is pretty much toast these days and I don’t see that changing.

Communion: See religion. But, there is a  difference. I know that some people think you have to be a holy roller or a fundamentalist to participate in the sacraments of the church. But, communion to me always seemed to bring me closer to Christ and I do miss the wafer and the juice and holding it in my mouth and breathing a prayer and just feeling connection. I still hope to do Communion again and I don’t apologize for it. Not to fellow liberals, not to bible thumpers and not to anybody. Me and Jesus will work this one out in due time.

Vinyard Worship: I no longer go to the Gadsden Vinyard Church due to distance and also I’m way too liberal to fit in now. But, I really miss the worship. The cool thing about worship in the Vinyard was that you could do your own thing. You could watch the worship leader and sing along and look around. But, for an introvert like me I could just kind of step to the side and close my eyes and meditate and pray and be in communion with God and not worry that I was being watched or judged by the people around me. It wasn’t like the church I grew up in where you sang three verses and stopped. I had plenty of time to float and relax and petition and just be.

Reading: I don’t read as much as I used to do and it takes me longer to read and it’s harder to immerse myself in fiction. I do read non fiction but even then I don’t have the patience or the ability to focus and I find myself reading several books at a time and finishing none of them. I used to just get off by myself and haunt the library and used paperback bookstores and read. I loved horror and some police procedurals and mystery novels with a sports themed book thrown in once in a while. I loved reading about the paranormal. I’m 61 but I find myself fitting right in with the internet age now. Just give me the blurb and the soundbite before I fall asleep.

John Wayne: Also, Clint Eastwood and Charles Bronson and even Arnold. Just action for the sake of action. No political sensitivity. No “woke” crap. No worry about offending people. Bring on the stereotypical criminal and the hero with guns blazing. The men were men and the women were glad of it. Sometimes ya just need a vehicle to vent. I really am concerned that in the next several years the thought police will ban action movies and anything that isn’t considered “culturally acceptable.” Oh well, hopefully there will be a place for fiction and fun in the brave new world.

I just want to go to the country some days. A warm summer morning and it’s just rained and the leaves are glistening with water. The grass is so green and sky blue. The birds are chirping and the road goes on forever. The slight smell of smoke and the taste of herbs burning as I come in sight of a rustic cabin in the woods. Certain folks and companionship and time to walk along and talk and play and explore. The energy of youth running through my body and the wisdom of years in my head.

Cold winter mornings with a fire and hot coffee and good conversation. Spring days when the bees are buzzing and fall days watching the leaves turn.

I had and I think we are eternal. But, anyway I had a friend along the way. We weren’t best friends and we didn’t always hang out. But, he was really cool and we could talk and cuss and blaspheme and never judge each other and when we did it would get in the way. My friend was dying and I didn’t really believe he would but he was. He said to me once “Ya know? I just like to be!” We were discussing life and death and reincarnation and religion and atheism and agnosticism and religion. But, that was the most profound thing he could have said. I just like to be.

So at the end of my life here I will see the river and start across. When I get to the other side I’ll recognize my hope and the early stage of the next leg of my journey. Because when it’s all said and done.

 I like to Be!


Monday, May 14, 2018

everybody is entitled to a piece of my mind!

I got a lot of problems with you people and now you're gonna hear about it...Frank Costanza Seinfeld episode "The Strike." 

I was thinking of this today while on facebook. I came across a post in one of my Stephen King groups. The poster was a grown woman but she was preening over the author like she would do anything and I mean anything to simply meet him. Matter of fact had she been a guy and Stephen King had been female alarm bells would have been going off. I know I'm to damn old to be a fanboy and I really don't understand it anyway. I mean I enjoy reading Stephen King but I also enjoy classic rock, college football and major league  baseball. But, I have no real interest in meeting most or any of the people that play it. Matter of fact what if my sports or cultural hero's are jerks? What if I catch them on a bad day and from then on I think they are jerks. So, no I'll just re-read Salem's Lot and if I were to actually meet Stephen King then I would shake his hand and move on with life and thank him for his work.

I also don't do political absolutes. I consider myself a Democrat these days and somewhat liberal. But, due to identity politics and silly offended safe space seeking idiots I can't just blankly call myself a liberal. But, I sure ain't no conservative. How do you say you are pro life and then vote with people who deny kids clean water and food at lunch and poor people health care? How are you better than an abortionist? But, anyway that's as political as I want to get. People are some kind of angry these days. Even though I agree with much of the left leaning political talking points I am not anti white nor do I buy the "People of Color" b.s.

Bulletin:  Black folks were brought here in chains. Comparing the black experience to the Hispanic or Asian experience is honestly? Dishonest. Some silly little pop singer wanted hotels to stock shampoo for "people of color" WTF does that even mean? African American and Hispanic and Asian hair needs are as different and maybe more so than African American and White people hair needs. Sheesh, hotel shampoo is for folks like me who are not very picky since I'm almost bald and an older guy anyway. Otherwise bring your own and don't depend on free hotel shampoo.

Privilege: Don't get me started. To act like every black person is born worse off than every white person is an idiotic statement. Which "privilege" do I give up? I was born with really weak eyesight. But, I can see just by putting a plastic frame with lenses on my nose. People who are born blind don't have that particular "privilege" So, everybody has something that somebody else doesn't have. I'm not going to get into it right now. But, this separating people by skin or gender or texture of hair is honestly extremely stupid.

A young social warrior the other day posted that not all "people of color" are the same and "white people" should follow some rules. She then lumped all people of color into one basket and stupidly stated rules of how white folks could or could not speak. Insert eye roll here. Also, at my age I will not greet you fondly if you refer to me as a "Dear White People." I'm not a white people. I'm Steve. Glad to meet ya. Now move along.

Conservatives run me crazy these days. First consider this. The "G"od they follow is angry and has a stick up his butt. He loves you but if you don't accept his "free" gift then he will burn you forever and ever. Honestly? You expect me to bow and scrape to a character like that? Let's see first I make this naked ape like creature and call him a man. Then I send an arch angel with more knowledge and smarts than the "man" can ever have and  I say. IF this fallen angel with all his smarts can fool ya then I am going to burn you forever and ever. But, if you happen to say the sinners prayer or if you get aborted which is evil by the way then, I will let ya into heaven. Even if you are a total jerk and abuse women and cheat the poor and don't pay your fair share of taxes while taxing others. Then I will still let you in if you say the magic words. So, Jesus is a get out of jail free card for assholes.

Now, don't get me wrong. My faith has been the bedrock of my sanity for my whole life. I am not even sure how an atheist functions without magical thinking to convince themselves that chemical reactions and meatbots have meaning. But, the conservative church has so watered down faith as to make it nonsensical.

Anyway, I'm not sharing this blog with facebook or twitter just yet if at all. I'm just venting.


Tuesday, May 8, 2018

reeling in the years.

That ship,the writer thought,is called old age. No one particularly wants to cruise on it, but the staterooms are full. The gangholds too, for that matter....The Ballad of the Flexible Bullet...Stephen King.

How did this happen? I still look through these eyes that I've looked through since I've been here. I feel like me. But, young people kind of give me space these days. Deference I guess you would call it. Ain't I still a bad man? But, I look in the mirror and I realize that the years have gone by and I'm not helpless and not sad but I am a little put out by how fast they've gone. 

Just yesterday I was drinking Pony Millers ( anybody under 50 even know what those are?) and maybe toking a doobie and getting ready to see if a certain little lady was around town. But, that was 40 years ago. Just yest

Life, death and

That ship,the writer thought,is called old age. No one particularly wants to cruise on it, but the staterooms are full. The gangholds too, for that matter....The Ballad of the Flexible Bullet...Stephen King.