And this is what I learned…

I held my grandma’s hand as she died. She was never supposed to be on life support, but they kept her on until the family could see her. I got there last. I closed the diner up early, got on the motorcycle and hauled ass to the hospital where she was sitting upright, completely unable to move, speak or breath. She was there, however.

I held on to her arm and her hand. I closed my eyes and tried my best to talk to her, but all she could do was point her finger to the door. I knew what that meant. A few minutes later, I felt her leave. Everything in the room got a little brighter… I looked out the window and knew right then that she had left. Her body was no longer struggling to breathe. It was nothing more than a vessel. As we all are.

In trying to figure out what the holy-hell to do with myself, I think back to that day. When she was there, giving every damn thing she had to hold on for even a few more minutes, there is only a few things that really matter. It was what her and grandpa did. It’s what I realized is ultimately the most important thing in my life.

Before I die, I not only want to have a good story to tell I want to accomplish these three things… Build a Family. Build a home for my family. Help others build the same. Everything in-between is just pages in a book.

Tonight, I stopped by to grab a bite to eat from a fast food joint. I saw a homeless guy laying on the ground next to his wheelchair. I bought a few extra burritos and parked in front to give him some food. Looking at his almost empty bottle of vodka, various blankets and random things, I realized everything else in this world didn’t matter to this guy. I got him back in the wheelchair with the help of another passerby that saw me struggling with him.

He was lost. He was scared of the bags of blankets tied to the handles. He had no clue what was happening. In a weird way, it didn’t seem so unfamiliar to me.

As I drove off, I looked back at him and something took a hold of me. This isn’t about realizing that we all need to help one another. Dead horse is beaten… This is about realizing that at the pace I’m going right now in life, I could only hope that a random person would help me if I was ever in a position that I couldn’t help myself.

It’s time to start realizing what’s important for our own lives. Damnit…

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It’s not what to do…

You haven’t truly lived until at least one point you’ve held your head in your hands and asked yourself ‘What… The… Fuck…’

I’m not talking about dealing with stupid people, or a frustrating day. It’s not even about life giving you lemons. It’s about being aware that life is full of uncertainty. You can’t fix it. You feel like you’ll never be able to figure it out. Many of us have resorted to ignoring this heart-wrenching feeling and just plain accepting things as the way they are. Life simply goes on.

I’m guilty of simply accepting things as they are. It’s easier. You don’t have to worry about a broken heart or shattered dreams or a tortured ego. Religious or not, we may tend to rely on fate or chance to determine our path. I guess that will suffice… But what fun is that?

We are not here to accomplish nothing with our lives. We are here to do all those things that make for an amazing story at the end. Some of us get stuck on the idea that we may be doing it alone, or we may not have enough money or we may even be missing out on something awesome within the bubbles that we cocoon ourselves in. Of course you can’t leave out the fact that self-esteem and confidence determines what we ultimately end up doing with ourselves.

You may have at one point asked yourself, ‘What do I do!?’ You hope for some answer to appear or some revelation to manifest in your mind. You may even construct your own half-ass answer simply because you are dying for something to hold on to. You hold on to it as if God himself whispered in your ear and said, ‘This is EXACTLY what you’re supposed to do…’

I asked myself that today… ‘What should I do?’ … Nothing… Nothing at all. All that came to mind was noise and self manifested ideas on what  I would imagine could solve all of my woes. Throughout the last 15 years of my life I have always wondered what to do. Truth is, I’ve never known. It has never made sense. What has made sense is where I’ve been.

This may not be the answer for everyone, but for anyone with a gypsy soul such as mine there is really no better way to leave your sorrows than by getting up and… going. It was when I was 24, I decided to do just that. I went on the hunt for an amazing story. 12 years later I look at what I have and who is by my side. All I see right now is a glass of whiskey and a desire to start what I set out to do.

Why am I an asshole?

Because fuck you. It’s all about me. Actually not really. I often think to myself that karma is paying me back BIG TIME for the things I’ve done that have been less than ‘write-home about’ worthy. Or I could simply be so self absorbed and concerned about nobody except myself that it’s really a cry for attention.

IT’S WHO YOU GO TO BED WITH THAT MATTERS

For those that know me, I don’t see eye to eye with certain members of my family. One of the few things I do agree with is that statement.It may not even literally be who you’re in bed with… or who you’re fucking at the moment. It’s the ones you think about as you turn in for the night. And it’s also for the ones that keep the feeling mutual.

We often fall in a trap of being too concerned with what other people think. Sometimes we bring it on ourselves, and sometimes other people volunteer their criticism and give you a complex that you un-admittedly can’t escape. I have a few. But it’s really not that big of a deal. I usually make a joke out of my shortcomings (pun intended) just in case someone else doesn’t know what to say in an awkward moment of self-realization.

There’s no point in worrying about the opinions of those who have no concern about where you are laying your head at night. Even if the only person is yourself, then you should only be concerned with yourself. There is also no need to be concerned if someone is there with you or not. We are all on our own path so don’t force something that you have no right to. If someone else comes along and says ‘let’s ride’, and you want them to ride then by all means, take them by the hand and live your god damned life. Make it fuckin’ awesome.

PERPETUALLY UN-IMPRESSED

This has been a huge problem for me. It may sound like I’m full of myself. Maybe I am. Fuck off. But for reals….

I can’t stay still in my life. In fact lately I’ve been stagnant for too long. I do however, always look for what’s next. Of all the things I’ve done, I’ve learned about people more than I sometimes care to. People can be disgusting. People can be beautiful. Everything in between as well. Nothing surprises me anymore.

Not being surprised doesn’t mean I don’t find myself amazed at what can come from someone. Garbage or Awesomeness alike. Thing is, I get bored of it… Quick. Maybe because I see too many people do what I’ve done with my life. Something gets started and there’s no follow through. It’s quite frustrating.

DO I HAVE TO???

Dating sucks. Talking to people sucks. Making small-talk sucks. Why is it so damn important? Sometimes I just want to be. Simply BE. Maybe I don’t feel like talking. Maybe I do. Maybe I want to talk shit because stirring the pot is a lot more fun than simply watching the flies collect on the surface.

I feel so out of place if I find myself forcing conversations or actions just to please other people. ‘Oh cool dog, what’s it’s name?’ – ‘Tell me more about your ex’ – ‘Can you please just stab me in the eye?’   I remember a topic of discussion in college Literature class. We were reading short stories by David Sedaris. The professor mentioned about how he loves a good story that doesn’t waste your time with things that don’t need to be said.That comment has actually made me wonder why the hell I even do these blogs.

I have no clue why I do this shit anymore. They say it’s good to write… Keep a journal…. whatever. This is dumb.

A Veteran’s Fuck You

I was abruptly reminded today of what being a Veteran really is. Depression, Pride, Anguish, Resentment, Confusion…

Google all the heartwarming and tear-jerking stories you want… it doesn’t really get rid of what lives inside us once we’ve experienced it.

No matter what kind of story you can tell about your time in, every vet holds their experiences near and dear to their heart. My experience was less of fighting the enemy, and more of how war really changes the human spirit. On both sides.

However stupid war is… and trust us Vets, war is pretty fuckin stupid, there is something to be said about someone who will place their life on the line for something they believe in. To see the barely 17 year old who never has to worry about getting in trouble for not shaving, to the 98 year old who can be brought to his knees at the sound of taps is not to be taken lightly. Everything in between holds just as much value.

Living in Southern California isn’t really the place you go to feel patriotic. Sure, you see some of those ‘support the troops’ things, but it’s usually part of someone’s marketing plan. It’s even part of the personal ‘marketing’ for some. (That last line was motivated by seeing a shit-bag specialist show up in uniform on a Sunday to a venue for dining and drinking.)

I don’t really care if people know I’m a veteran, or what my experiences have given me. No one really cares except for my brothers and sisters who stood toe-to-line with me. I will never ask for special treatment because of what I chose to do. I will never take advantage of a fellow veteran, and I will never disrespect what a veteran works so hard to attain.

This is rambling, I know. maybe someone, somewhere will read it and feed the knowledge that it will never be easy to fit back in to reality when nothing ever seems to be the way it was before. No matter how many years have passed, it can all be brought back in a flash when one, little, thing brings you back down.

Nor-fuckin-mal…

My moral compass has been out of order for quite some time. I think the only thing keeping me from going down a truly horrible path is my blind faith that there is a reason I should try to be good at some level. Let me tell you, it’s no god damned walk in the park.

It seems that there is a monster at my back, breathing ever so lightly on my neck whispering in my ear “just let it happen…” When it’s all said and done I can’t quite come to terms with something that should be so wrong, feels so right. In a twisted way, I think my acceptance of these facts and my openness to damn near anything you can throw at me is what scares people away. And my silence doesn’t seem to help my cause either.

I’m scared right now. This is a fairly dry chapter in my life and I feel it must change. I don’t know how or when I can make that happen. Instead of having that ominous creature known as ‘life’ at my back all the time, I would really like to turn around, grab it by it’s throat and fuck the dog-shit out of it. If I do this however, I’m pretty confident that there isn’t going to be anyone standing by my side, let alone anyone be OK with it in general. I must take baby steps. Slow is smooth, and smooth is fast.

We aren’t here for long so we may as well have some compassion for those around us and not ignore what we know to be true in our hearts. For some, we just want to be really fucking good at our trade or maybe simply be a good person for family. Maybe some people want to live a more reserved life while someone else wants to snort cocaine off a hooker’s ass. Either way, why don’t we all just do it and not worry about the end state. There will be people who are not OK with any of your choices. In fact there will be people unhappy with your choices in life simply for the fact that they are your choices and not theirs.

I don’t quite know how to responsibly break out of my normal-ness right now and still maintain what little credibility I’ve managed to restore. Maybe I’ll just sit quietly and see who comes around. I’m tired of trying to be the one who comes around for others when all they really want is… Normal…

Ooh I saw Stars…

One of the most amazing sights in my life was while sitting in the middle of the Northern Iraqi desert on a border mission with nothing whatsoever as far as the eye could see. What I did see was more stars in one glance than I’d probably ever seen in my whole life combined. And yes, the Milky Way is real. If you can appreciate it, it will in fact, take your breath away.

I’ve come close to seeing it again as I drove a semi-truck route through northern Oregon and stopped for a much needed rest. It was high on a ridge where I pulled off and I crawled up and sat on the top of the trailer to see the asteroid shower come down as if I was in a Star Wars scene.

No matter your position on ‘greater’ things, there is no denying the amazement when you put in perspective the sheer insignificance we have in this universe.

We can comprehend the smell of a loved one’s scent, or the taste of our favorite meal. We can comprehend the reality of something that we purchase with money… but even though the stars are right in front of us, can we really comprehend the truth?

Living in Southern California is not the best place for seeing stars. Period. Even if I drive out into the desert there’s too much light pollution to really see the amazing stuff.

The few times I can look up in traffic at night I may see a star or two (or planet… whatever). I know it’s nothing magical. It’s a tangible ‘thing’ that is there. Science can explain the rest.

What it really does for me is remind me that no matter how much I try to deny it, there is a purpose for this crazy life. I stare at a star as long as I can to try and clear my mind to make sense of it. I put my mind a million miles away to force a disconnect from the constant noise I hear every day in my head. Some days I can’t stop it. Not alcohol, not sleep, nor anything else I’ve done in my past can silence it.

Sometimes I yearn  for the presence of another person but I am constantly smacked in the back of the head with reminders of betrayal over the years. I lose myself in it, and in turn I lose control of what I need to be for everyone else. Tonight, I saw a few stars and it brought me back to reality quicker than I could look away to see the car in front of me slowing down. We really need to take a step back and see the bigger picture. Not just in space, but this life in general.

I miss the stars. I miss going home, sitting outside with a beer (and even a friend) and doing nothing but contemplating what this damn life is all about. I think it’s time for a slight change in my life. I say slight, because it appears my gypsy lifestyle doesn’t scream ‘stable’ to other people. My apparent ‘issues’ from my past are more apparent than I’ve ever given myself credit for. Hurumph…

If we could all just take some time, prop up the camping chair, crack open a cold one, and leave our problems behind we may find something that has been right in front of us this whole time but we haven’t admitted it to be true. Or maybe I’m full of shit and all of this is a joke… Anyone want to take me to the looney bin?

One… More… Day…

Sometimes I question whether or not I can get it right. I’m always misaligned with almost everything in my life. Seems like I’m always the one late to the party only to realize that it isn’t really a party at all.

Can’t seem to get it right with friends, lovers, jobs, traffic… By the time I figure it out the ship has sailed. Lately I’ve had someone really awesome come into my life and I don’t quite know what to do with it. Patience in the sense of time, is not one of my virtues. Mix that with the fact that I know what it feels like to always be ‘unsure’ about things and it’s a recipe for Dave going gypsy again. I’m tired of going it alone. I’m tired of waking up every day wondering if it’s really worth it to me.

I think of the pearls I bought on my first deployment. Still safe in my possession. When I bought them along with another set that went to a dear friend, I didn’t have anyone specific in mind. It’s my own little way of keeping hope that they will be worn by someone truly deserving of not only the pearls themselves, but of what I want to give. Thing is, I sometimes wish that I knew of something special waiting for me to come along. It’s always ‘now’s not the right time’, ‘the timing is just a little off’, ‘let’s just be friends’, ‘come back another day’…

I’m tired of waiting.

We are all tired of waiting even if we don’t know it yet.

Apathy has set in and it’s killing us. It’s killing me.

I’m tired of being tired with nothing to show. I find myself always saying ‘just one more day…’ I’ve had too many one more days…

Here’s to hoping for a good night’s sleep and maybe a kick in the ass to do what I need to be doing…

Fuck Yes…

There is an amazing article I read… Thank you Facebook Sharing.

Fuck Yes, or No By Mark Manson.

Pure genius. Not because it’s revolutionary, but because it’s what has always been true. It’s slightly juvenile in the sense that it is aimed at relationships and the courting process, but still holds more weight than many other things… I’ve thought about this article quite a bit lately.

As much as I would like to say I’m motivated to have a relationship, I find that most of the time I’m in a state of ‘Meh’… I used to think that something was wrong with me when I couldn’t quite figure out what someone else was thinking or feeling. Hence, I turned to straight sex in my past. Now, I turn to plain old ‘ignore-ance.’

For whatever issues I’ve been raised with, this spills over into so many other areas of my life. Jobs, goals, family, … even cars. I go so far and soon realize “This isn’t what I’m supposed to be doing”… and if I catch myself in time, I’ll escape and move along.

This idea of ‘Fuck Yes or No’ is something that I wish more people could understand.

Why on earth should it be ok to pursue something that doesn’t pursue you? I’m not religious in the traditional sense, but I tend to have faith in whatever happens, happens. Truth is, it’s worked out pretty damn well. I still get hurt feelings and my pride gets roughed up a bit but ya know what? Who the fuck cares? If I was able to go back in time and tell myself ten years ago that I would have done everything I did, I’d call bullshit. And if I wouldn’t believe it, how the hell do I expect anyone else to believe that I could do it all over again? And who has the balls to stick around while it happens?

Let’s Fly Away…

The popularity of my blog has waned since I finished up my 365 run last year. I had another weird motivation to write something tonight as I was driving home from work tonight. It’s not really anything to do with a new year resolution… It’s about taking a look inside to what we are most passionate about. For anyone that cares that is…

I was on the Harley quite a few years back when I found something that for some reason I’m still looking for today. It was a post deployment gift to myself. Sixteen thousand dollars of pure sexiness. Of course there are faster bikes out there but there is nothing that can quite compare to over 1500 cc’s of power that erases every care in the world.

I found it at around 130mph on the backroads of North Carolina. A fire was lit inside that I wish I knew how to share with others. After finally ending a toxic relationship and making the leap to join the military in the middle of a ridiculous war, I finally knew what it was to be alive. Everything everyone ever says about the freedom of the open road is true. Solo or not, it’s something I think all of us need to experience one day or another. That feeling is creeping up on me more and more lately.

When you find yourself immersed in the murkiness of a life that you may not totally enjoy, nothing seems to make sense. Friends betray you, lovers leave you, family may shun you… maybe work or your social life just doesn’t seem to be what it should be. I see too many people wasting away their lives on other people’s dreams. Other people’s standards. Other people’s expectations. It’s time to break free.

You know you’re going to die some day right? When you’re finished are you going to be proud of what you’ve done? Was it worth it? Did you waste too many days dwelling on how you want your life to be instead of making it what you want it to be?

No one is going to hand anything to you. You may have people hold a hand out and offer some company along the way but the one who can make you feel the fire inside is you. We can’t stop dreaming or hoping for something better. We shouldn’t waste our time on what some would call the devil’s work. Fear, loathing, depression, apathy, jealousy, envy, egocentrism….

Get off your lazy ass, take a look at those around you… Some people are talk. Some people are walk. Decide who you want to be around and fucking do it already. Quit relying on what everyone else thinks is the cool thing to do. I can’t count how many times I’ve been coerced into doing something I really don’t want to do and I end up regretting it almost every time. It’s partly the reason I have so few friends.

I wake up every day now to an empty pillow beside me so I have to fight to find reasons to keep fighting the good fight. I’ve done my share of bad deeds to make enough people loathe me. I get it. But ya know… when you live your life according to the expectations of others, you end up looking forward to the day it finally comes to an end.

It really is time to start living for yourselves and for the people who really matter. Truth is, you won’t see who really matters until you’ve seen who has walked with you through the hard times. Maybe it’s my own advice that I’m trying to convince myself of, but I’ve done so much with my life and experienced so many things to know this truth… Keep on keepin’ on and one day… You’lll see…

My second greatest love affair…

With my last entry I’m sure I disappointed some who were expecting something juicy about a nefarious encounter with the fairer sex. Though I have plenty of stories hidden away to make the most open-minded people blush, this affair has to do with someone special that I’ve written about a few times before. I figured I’d revisit my thoughts and share them with the bored and easily captivated crowd reading random blogs on a Sunday night.

I’ll cut to the chase… Her name again… Turtle. Turtle Sloop to be exact. The sea slug of sailboats. Fat, Heavy and a little too tender for winds above 10 knots. That being said, there was nothing quite like the feeling I’d get when I’d step outside after a long night of being anchored out in the Puget Sound. Aside from the times of regret of not being aware of what I ate before a venture out into the high seas… err I mean inland waters, There’s not much that can compare. Maybe sex… Maybe flying… Maybe Key Lime Pie…

As I was sitting on the crapper tonight, I was pondering how the fuck I got myself here. My bathroom may very well be as big, if not bigger, than the whole living area on my boat. Some may ask me how I didn’t feel claustrophobic or like a prisoner.

What’s crazy is that the more space I end up having in my living quarters, the more closed off I feel. It was a crazy idea to think that the only real barrier to me not taking off without looking back was a few dock lines and a power cord. Sans the fact that my boat probably wouldn’t survive the open water for long, I literally could go anywhere I want. I’d figure out ways to survive. Fish, hunt, beg… My story would begin. The book would write itself and I would be known as the guy that no one knew because he never stayed.

Even when cozied up in the marina, Turtle was my escape. Every single day. My foot pump sink and musty sleeping berth humbled me. I couldn’t imagine having anything else. Now, I have two faucets in my bathroom and a microwave that doesn’t fall off the wall when it gets windy. What the fuck do I do with two faucets?

I could get teary-eyed thinking about what Turtle did for me… and still does. My story can’t end here. Not like this. There’s more to life than being annoyed at the fact that my cell service doesn’t work in my apartment parking garage.