David Everett Fisher

Absurd.

The Wizard Who Wanted To Be A Witch

I watched the tower across the valley as the wizard there became a lich. The black clouds came over the hills and blacken the land as the lich attained perfect power.
A Lich is undead. This a wizard attaining immortality and ultimate power. This has always been the end goal for a wizard. A wizard gets to a certain point in there magic where there is only two choices: die or become a lich.
I am a wizard and this is where I am. I am Rufus the Retched. I either wait to die, or I harness all my powers and studies to call the darkness to grant me immortality.
I was a young boy when I started my journey to become a wizard. I grew up in a small timber village in the forests where the mountains were always in mist. In a clearing on the other side of the river lived an old wizard in a tall crooked tower. Most of the time he would stay to himself.
There were witches that lived in the misty hills above our village. They would stay to themselves except when we needed a healer or a midwife. Sometimes a witch would curse us if one of the woodcutters cut down an oak, birch, ash, or wild apple tree.
I wanted to be a wizard for as long as I could remember. I would try and become the wizard’s apprentice, but he wouldn’t have it.
Then one day he let me in. I hindsight he must have been where I am today: ready to die or become a lich. He had me do small remedial tasks as he experimented and studied books and scrolls. I swept, dusted, cooked, washed dishes, and sometimes washed his robes.
For years he wouldn’t teach me anything. I kept my interest by watching him perform magic. Things floated, disappeared, glowed, and changed. He would disappear and come back changed. He would be older and full of mania.
He kept a giant book. Every time he casted a spell or he would come back from one of his trips, he would write it all down in this tome. I couldn’t decipher what it said anytime I’d steal a peek. All I could make out were his illustrations.
Then one day he called me in to his study. I walked in and he sat in his comfy chair and books floated all around him. He was smoking a pipe.
“Sit down Rufus,” he said, “Here have a toke.”
I took his pipe that he offered me and I took a pull. The smoke was herbal and musty. I was about to say thank you and hand the pipe back, but then I went into a dream.
I saw the very cube that makes up our time and space. I saw that I didn’t need to stay in the very center of the cube if I didn’t want to. I saw other cubes outside mine that had me in the center of almost everyone. I saw some mes in different parts of the cube. I also saw some cubes with many mes. I also come cubes with no me in them.
I saw all my futures and pasts. I saw me dead before today. I saw me immortal.
I saw me in a witches hat lying in a meadow with a witch blowing dandelion blowballs.
I was then back in the study with the wizard circled by floating books.
I think I’m supposed to be a witch,” I said.
The wizard blinked and his face became angry.
“You saw the very universe in all it’s beehive glory and you decide you want to become a witch!?!” He yelled.
All the books fell to the ground.
“A wizard is a master of bending the very rules of nature. We can be in many times at once. We can walk along the very halls between space and time and watch a century as if it is a painting. We can harness the energies of the astral planes and shoot fireballs from our fingertips!
“A witch lives in the mud. She crawls on her belly like a snake. She uses weeds and small animals to make potions. She chooses to stay in the very timeline and space that imprisons all mortals.
“You can either smoke weed and birth babies or you can harness the power that only Gods harness.”
I couldn’t disagree, so I blew out the smoke and handed him his pipe back. He beckoned me to his laboratory.
He led me to his book. When I looked down at it I could read it now. I flipped through the pages and saw the gibberish turn into words and ideas I could understand.
“I must go now. You will now study my book and then begin your own.”
He then vanished.
I spent the next several centuries studying and continuing his book into my own book.
Being a wizard is about knowledge. It’s not enough to know trivial things, but to know the name of a thing. To know a name of a thing requires learning all there is to know in this timeline and in this space.
Knowledge is deeper when learned near a black hole or a near a high energy collision. Several of the mes that became wizards congregate at the edge of a black hole and compare notes. Sometimes we all have the exact note, but a success is when one of us has something new and informative.
I sometimes will travel to a timeline where I don’t become a wizard and see if the dumber me have anything to say. Sometimes I’m crazy enough to think of something brilliant. Most of the time I let myself down. I let me go back to cutting down trees.
I come back to my experiments and spell creations.
So now I am standing at the top of my tower and know that I must become a lich or die.
Becoming a lich means you are energy for ever, but your body still rots away. Most liches I have seen are skeletons draped in strips of cloth and rotting flesh. They try and feed on living energy for more power. Liches spend a lot of energy to keep their awesome powers.
Unless a lich observes his living past, a lich won’t remember it. They spend their centuries playing god. A demi-lich is a lich who has vanquished a god and replaced it.
Choosing to be a lich means the fear of death and the thirst for ultimate power. If I choose to not become a lich, I hang on for another hundred or so years before my body gives up. My timeline ceases.
One day I was floating in the clouds meditating on my decision. I noticed movement in the tall grass down below. It was a tall pointy hat moving through the grass near my old village. It was a witch.
She was a little younger than me (100 years in wizard years is 10 years in human, I must be about 60 now). She was carrying a bag of weeds and looking for more.
“Hello,” I said to her, “What are you doing?”
“I’m looking for more feverfew for a woman in the village.”
“Why?” I asked.
She looked at me like I was a bad person.
“I am trying to help with a woman’s headaches.”
“Why are you helping the woman?”
She sighed and walked off into the tall grass again. All I could see was the top of her pointy hat weaving through towards the misty hills. I felt something I have not felt in over 600 years: loneliness.
I went back to work trying to cure my loneliness. I searched far and wide, and I mean several spaces and several times, for a cure for this awful sickness. I met with myselves on the brink of black holes. None of the notes helped. There became fewer and fewer of us and we one by one decided to become liches.
I went and talked to some of my mundane selves about loneliness. They all talked about their spouses and friends. Some found the cure for loneliness in religion and communities. Once again I disappointed myself.
Spouses and friends took time away from knowledge. They get sick and die. Gods were fickle and demanding. Besides gods also got sick and died and then replaced by the lich that killed them. You can’t rely on anyone or anything else.
A dragon is a perfect being. It can live in simultaneous spaces and times in harmony with itself. I sought Bah-mut the Platinum Dragon for her sage advice.
I asked her about this pain in my heart. She listened as I described the feeling in my stomach and the lump in my throat. I explained the emptiness I felt as I watched the pointy hat disappear into the tall grass.
When a dragon laughs, you can hear the infinite amount of possibilities also laugh. This can be a tad unsettling. Then her voice only echoing in my head she spoke,
“My dear poor child. You are in want of a companion.”
“I don’t want a companion. A companion will slow me down and take time away from my studies and then as I grow fond: die.”
“You are looking at it from the entire timeline. You have the power of seeing outside of your point in space and time, but you have forgotten the single moment.”
And for someone that is considering immortality, a moment can last an eternity. I have complained that a century had gone by too fast.
I spent my next little while watching the little witch. She spent her days in the woods collecting plants and flowers for her potions. She also sang songs which animals would join in. She had a whole singing and dancing number with a black bear named Gus. She spent a lot of times helping animals and the people from my old village with small medical problems.
Villagers would awake her in the middle of the night so that she could come to the village and deliver a baby. She never said no. Between the babies, the sick, and the animals, she didn’t have any time for herself.
She would do rituals deep in the misty woods. She had an oak tree way up in the mountain that had feathers and crystals hang from. All around the trunk were candles and little trinkets. She would draw a sigil in the mud below and speak to the tree as if it could listen.
One day she knelt before the tree and placed her giant pointy hat on the ground. She lit all the candles and drew a sigil in the mud. She sat in silence for a long while.
As she kneeled there in silence I felt that lump in my throat and my eyes began to burn. The bottom of my stomach almost seemed to fall away.
I noticed that she was crying. A wind blew through the tree and the leaves hushed and the crystals clanged. The flames on the candles turned long and showered sparks. Some of them went out. She was crying, but she seemed happy and at peace. She didn’t seem to be suffering from loneliness.
That was the day I decided to become a witch.
The witch was in the tall grass again. Her tall pointy hat the only thing you can see zipping through the tall grass. She came out of the tall grass and rolled her eyes when she noticed me.
“I want to become a witch,” I said, “Will you help me?”
She stood there frozen. She narrowed her eyes at me.
“Why do you want to become a witch? You are a wizard. You understand life, the universe, and everything. You can live forever. You already have magics much more powerful than me.”
“I can’t stand this loneliness deep inside of me. It is eating at me from the inside. Yes, I know life, the universe, and everything, but I can’t seem to rid myself from this loneliness.”
“What makes you think being a witch can cure loneliness?”
He didn’t really know how to answer. He knew in his heart that becoming a witch would cure him of his loneliness.
“You don’t seem lonely,” he finally said.
She laughed, “I am lonely all the time.”
“I see you helping people and the animals all the time. You have birthed all the babies in that village for the last few decades. You have mended, cured, and cared for not just the villagers but the animals in the wood. I have seen you sing with the bears and the birds. I can’t believe that you would ever feel alone.”
I might know what ails you then,” she said, “I will teach you how to be a witch.”
They spent everyday out in the woods. She taught him different plants, roots, berries, and bark that is healing. Everything has magical properties. She also showed him that the magic in things are to help others.
People stopped by her hut all day. They all had ailments. She would mix up a potion and give the person very specific instructions and send them on their way. Everyone was grateful, but they also feared her. They were even more uneasy about his presence.
He had a hard time with such small doses of magic. He had destroyed whole universes and realities only because he could. Now he was spreading forest gunk on a villager’s burn. He was forgoing his practice for little nature tricks to help mortals.
He noticed that time had slowed down. When he looked at the universe from several different dimensions, time went by fast. Now he was looking under logs for a snail. This made a day go by slow. The small purpose had slowed time down.
He was finally living in the moment.
The villagers stopped being these no name actors in his world. They were now real. He got to know them. While their problems were small and petty, he learned to appreciate the villagers.
The witch explained how nature provided enough for life. She made sure that he understood how to repair what he took from the woods. She explained gratitude as an action not a feeling. She did this by worshipping the trees and the moon.
He had stood on the moon and looked at earth, but she gave the giant rock praise. He had floated close to the sun, but she worshipped it’s every sunrise. He knew the blackness between the stars, but she chose to be in awe of it instead. The complex universe was no match for the simple gifts it provided for life.
There was much difference between the magic he knew and the magic she taught him. His magic was harnessing great power and knowledge. Her power was healing and wisdom. She never wanted to know how to create what didn’t already exist. She didn’t want to see the space between atoms.
The witch and the wizard became friends. They had spent everyday together. He started to understand what she was teaching him. He began to become more of a partner instead of a pupil. They shared meals together. She would ask for his advice with a patient. He would make her laugh.
What he felt was love. Not the kind of love one felt for the forest nymphs or village milkmaids, but a unconditional love. He wanted nothing but the best for the witch. He wanted to add to her life and not take from her. He wanted to share life with her.
She had taught him the two things that he never could learn by sitting on the precipice of a black hole: love and purpose. He now saw the wisdom in his alternative selves who fell in love and work rather than take up magic. He had seen the many universes at once and the space between atoms and he had missed those two principles.
One day a black dragon found itself in their time and space. A black dragon is chaotic and evil. It feeds on the souls of the helpless and strengthens with the odor of fear.
At first it was several miles away destroying the seaports and the city. It ate it’s full of innocence and fear. It spewed acid all over the buildings and people fleeing for their lives.
Only the wizard could hear it’s evil laughter echoing across the multiverse.
Each day the dragon drew nearer. The lucky ones that escaped came through the village with horror stories. The dragon only left when all life extinguished. Then they kept moving knowing that the dragon would be there any day. An icy fear struck the village.
The witch didn’t know what to do. She knew that there was no hope. A black dragon is the eater of worlds. She had no solution.
He knew he had to do something. He loved her and the villagers. This was his home. He would lose so much. He knew he would be able to skip to a different dimension until the dragon moved on to a different world to eat. That would leave this world to perish, a world he loved.
He woke the witch up early one morning.
“I have to go,” he said, “I must face this dragon.”
“You will die,” she said with tears in her eyes.
“I know.”
They sat in silence as the world began to wake up. The birds started chirping. There was a morning mist wrapping around the trunks of the trees. It was peaceful. For a few moments there was no dragon. It was just them and a dawn.
The dragon swept over the woods and the mountains in search of new innocence and fear to feed on. It hated so much. It only felt hatred and rage for all things living. It would spot a rabbit in the middle of a forest glen. He would spew acid all over. Life is underserving of these small pointless creatures.
A man was floating in front of the dragon. The dragon could sense the arcane magic pulsing through the man’s blood. This being was no innocent, nor did it exude fear. This was a wizard on the cusp of dying.
“Go to another world, Dragon,” the wizard said, “This is not your world to destroy.”
The laughter shook the very foundation of creation. The dragon had never faced human opposition before. Man has ever slain a few dragons. A dragon usually wins a a fight.
“You are going to die today, Wizard,” the dragon said.
“I know.”
“Then why try?”
“Because I finally learned all I needed. I love this world. I love my village. I love the witch. I would rather die so they can get old and love more than live with the emptiness.”
The dragon considered the wizard’s words. Then the dragon lunged at the wizard with all it’s hatred and rage.
The wizard grabbed the dragon by the snout and they disapeared into the ether. They appeared at the precipice of a black hole. The energy, light, sound, time, and space sucking into the blackness. The dragon watched as it’s color and texture stretched towards the hole’s eye. Then the dragon ceased to exist.
The wizard fell to the earth like a rock. He fell from the atmosphere. He heard the air whistle past his ears. The dread of hitting the ground centered in his stomach, but he couldn’t do anything.
The witch and the villagers watched the wizard fall. They knew that the wizard had sacrificed himself for them. They wished they could save him. All they could do is watch him hit the earth so hard it shook the ground.
The wizard never became a lich. He didn’t get to live for eternity seeking power. He did become immortal. The village never forgot the wizard and the time he saved them from a hungry black dragon. The wizard died knowing love.
 
 

November 17, 2017 Art, Short Story

No One Gives A Fuck

No one gives a fuck. You know that thing you think people should give a fuck about? No one does. They give only fucks about things they give a fuck about and sometimes that thing is the same thing that you do, but if it doesn’t, they don’t give a fuck.

There are a lot of things happening in the world today. The whole internet is full of people claiming that they give a fuck, but they don’t really. It’s one thing to say you give a fuck, but it’s quite another to act like you do.

There are a lot of people men sexually assaulting people. People are saying they give a fuck. Unless of course it is inconvenient to give a fuck. If a comedian is funny, is it sexual assault? We need to accept that artists are truly tortured and is the side effect of creating great works of art. Some people give more of a fuck about politics than a little sexual predatory behavior.

It’s fine that Michael Jackson paid about $200 million to about 20 different victims of his affections for young boys. Billy Jean and Thriller won’t stop people hitting the dance floors at weddings and night clubs everywhere. This is because no one gives a fuck. These same people will bemoan the Catholic church since it’s easy to not go to church.

Uber is a terrible company. They fight laws that protect workers’ rights, and hide and fight sexual assault allegations. They have the ethics that make Enron blush, but yet when people need to get home from dancing to Thriller at the clubs, they will open their Uber app with no fucks given. Then they bitch about how terrible President Trump is for all the same reasons the company they choose to use is guilty of. It’s easier to not give a fuck for convenience, but give a fuck for the person you didn’t vote for.

A person will give a fuck about diamonds being conflict diamonds, but won’t give a fuck snorting a line or two of cocaine in the back of an Uber. All coke is conflict coke.

I’m not in any way trying to say you should stop giving a fuck across the board. I am saying that you should give a fuck across the board. Act like you give a fuck.

Giving a fuck requires actual action and accountability. Writing what people should and shouldn’t say and do on social media doesn’t actually mean you give an actual fuck. It just means you are a lazy person. All your friends who still follow you also think that. They give a fuck about the same things you give a fuck about. No one’s fucks giving has changed.

This “essay” doesn’t even mean that I am really giving a fuck. It might seem like I’m saying I give a fuck, but it’s just words. You have no idea what I say or do that would actually mean I give a fuck.

I want to give a fuck when people are hurt. I want to give a fuck if it’ll make the world a better place. I give a fuck about other people. I give a fuck about people I have never met.

It’s hard to give a fuck when your convenience is jeopardized. Buying from Amazon is really easy, but that means you don’t give a fuck about local businesses. Using Uber is really simple, but then you don’t give a fuck about sexual assault, corporate ethics, worker rights, and cab companies. Dancing to Michael Jackson is really fun and social, but that money from playing that song goes to hush money for the children he molested. Using Facebook to proclaiming your giving a fuck is really a great way to not really do anything, but you are not giving a fuck about political democracy, foreign interference with our sources of information, truth, advertising and marketing, privacy, the hegemony of our culture, the laziness of communication, and being addicted to online attention.

Say whatever you want, no one gives a fuck. Keep pretending you do.

 

November 14, 2017 rant

Logging Off Facebook

At the end of today I will be shutting down my Facebook account. I just don’t feel that there is anything good that happens on here anymore. It is just an advertising and big-media platform.

I think back to a time when I didn’t have Facebook. Some people I would never have relationships with if it weren’t for Facebook, and I’m not unhappy I do, but sometimes running into someone randomly, but already knowing everything about them passively is just gross. It would be awesome to be able to have a full conversation instead of, “Yeah, I saw that on Facebook.” Some people will need to require more work on my part, and their part, to keep a relationship going. Other people are in my life everyday and I want a pure active nourishing relationship with.

Yes, the events function make getting huge people together a lot easier. I just hope that if you really want me to go to your event, you’d ask. If me not being on Facebook is too much work for you to invite me to your event, then your event will have a great time without me.

I have been on the fence about taking myself off Facebook for about a year now. There have been many reasons. I am addicted, it has become too political, it has made the world too small and too fast, on its board sits Peter Thiel who is a supporter and contributed to Donald J. Trump making money off of me, and this last bit of news about Russian Trolls using Facebook to win the presidential election for Russia.

I just can’t in good conscience keep logging on to Facebook to see what opinions you are wrong about or a hundred of you saying the exact same thing. It makes me think the people I know are a herd of sheep. I don’t want that perspective. I want your unique personality when you and I are talking.

I can’t feel good about myself partaking in an advertising & big media platform that is actually changing our society for the worst. The world does look like it’s spinning into oblivion when you are glued to a feed that tells you so. I’m not saying the world is great, but Facebook is a megaphone for humanities’ worse selves.

When a hundred of you post the same link about how terrible something is, it makes it a lot worse than if one of you posted it. I get it, people need to know. There is one thing that I know is people don’t want to know what they don’t know and want to just keep knowing what they already think they know. The link and opinion becomes void except by those who are assholes and argue for funsies and those that feel the same way you do.

If Facebook had the amount of positive impact on society, and it does have some worth there, I would be less inclined to log out, but it doesn’t. Because I like you and you post about antifa, I get ads focused at me about balaclavas from Land’s End. Your struggle now has monetary value for someone else.

I’m going to post this on my blog, http://www.davideverettfisher.com for if you want to read this after today. I’m also going to post my email address, so you can reach me if you don’t already know. dfisher13@gmail.com. I am going to log off tonight.

Hey, I might be back, but until I hear that the pros outweigh the cons, I’ll be on Twitter and Instagram @defisher.

I hope I don’t lose too many friends, but this is a sacrifice I’m willing to make.

September 7, 2017 rant

Marching into Summer a Guilty Man

Somehow I’ve left writing.

It didn’t leave me, but I am a child who waits for the perfect environment.

I need to be alone.

I can’t be tired.

I must have the perfect Jazz album playing.

I have to have had a good day.

I need to feel like I’m not being pressed for time.

Time is really the greatest enemy of mine. I don’t look at it right. It takes four hours to get to work. (It takes 15 minutes on average [but it takes an hour to get home]) I won’t start something I don’t think I can finish. I panic. It’s better to never try then to either miss a deadline or be late for something.

I read these essays on how other writers manage their time. Some writers wrote while working, parenting, spousing, and getting into other parts of life. Others didn’t do anything but write. Some wrote on napkins and small pieces of paper that they compiled into a great work of literature. Others wrote on a typewriter. Others use a MacBook Pro, and they write where the coffee is the color of toffee and the steamer interrupts the hip hop.

I wrote a blog post everyday for a year. None of the above environments ever happened. I wrote a lot of those posts on my back and on my IPhone. It might have helped me write a lot, but it didn’t actually grab me that discipline I thought it would. I stopped.

Now I have rewritten this several times and I feel like everything I write is stupid.

I went from a Joe Henderson album to a James Chance album.

And why do I even care about writing well? No one reads unless it’s boy wizards or a book that vindicates a feeling. No one even reads the hours on a store’s door. No one reads a menu. It has to be obvious.

Sometimes I lie in bed at night and be watching TV or trying to sleep and I just think about how I wish I was doing something creative. I lie there thinking about the process. I see myself writing, drawing, painting, designing, but when I come down to my “office” and open the laptop, I stare at a blank screen for a few minutes before drooling on myself scrolling through Facebook.

Everyone is writing more than me.

So I left writing.

I didn’t have anything to tell you on Facebook.

No opinions.

No declarations of adulting better than you.

No kid pictures.

No selfies.

No links to questionable news sites.

I just hang on to the awful thing to be invited to things. It’s also handy for birthday reminders or any news from my softball team.

Honestly, if I wasn’t on my softball team, I’d quit Facebook forever.

It’s ruining my writing. It’s ruining my reading. It’s ruining the world.

So I lie in bed with my back to my computer while I think of what I want to write instead of writing it.

Some say it is just as easy as just doing it.

Just do it.

No excuses, bro.

Just fucking write!

I will sit and scroll through Twitter or Instagram instead of write. I will stare out the window and stare at the cars driving by. I will turn on TV. I’ve got Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, and I have the MLB package. I am savvy with YouTube. I will watch porn. I will do all of this instead of write. Draw. Paint. Create.

It sickens me. I have turned my back on who I am.

The world spirals and spirals closer to being something I don’t recognize, but I won’t write.

I have thought I was gonna die, but I won’t write.

I am on my second, third, or fourth chance at life, but I won’t write.

I am told on a daily basis that I am creative, but I won’t write.

So here I am trying to find writing again. Or something.

Mostly I am disgusted with myself.

I am better than this.

May 31, 2017 introspection

Sadness in the Time of Post-Reason

When you work in customer service, especially the retail version, a lot of people will point out what kind of weather it is. They will complain that it isn’t what they want or that it’s perfect, but they have to be inside at work. When weather is threatening to be awful, every single person will tell you the forecast.

“It’s supposed to snow on Thursday.”

Nobody wants it to snow on Thursday. One of the main reason that nobody wants it to snow on Thursday is that people will have to change the way they live to deal with the snow.

This is the season of depression. I have it. I have had this deep down melancholy since before I could remember. Life has always felt heavy. I have made peace with it. I try and take care of myself the best I can and know that this too shall pass.

This winter has found me with a different kind of depression. It feels heavier and everyday it is still there not passing. I stare out the window at the falling rain and the grey charcol colored low clouds and I feel the ceiling of reality smothering me like a giant hand. It is a feeling of being trapped with no where to go but the same way as everyone else.

If I look over at other people that are walking under this weight, I see no light in their eyes. What I see is a look of hopelessness and utter lack of self-confidence. I see a darkness in even the jovial of friends.

I think about that extra heaviness, that bonus darkness, and I wonder what it is. I evaluate and research the root of that sadness. I have had to deal with the dimness of light in my soul every year, year after year, so I know how to root around in that mud with skill.

I figured it out: I am mourning.

I am mourning the death of reason. I have watched rational thought expire and fall into the darkness of madness. We live in a world where feelings are marked as 100% fact. If one believes something, this makes it true. I am grieving the word of a person.

When a person used to put their hand on a bible and make an oath, even if that person has no belief in the myths and legends of that book, the person has sworn an oath to be honest and honest that person will be. Now that is either not true, or no one that disagrees with what that person is saying will believe that person. If you don’t agree with an outcome, then the outcome is false.

Belief is a strange and curious curse of consciousness. Philosophers and scientists have speculated for a millennia if what one person sees, all sees it too. Is my green the same green you see? For a long time, excepting those that suffer the hex of color blindness, but even then we can still agree that my green is your green because grass is often green. That has been true until someone needs a different thing to be green so will stop believing grass to be green and then dismiss all who claim grass being green.

Truth has become subjective. Our government and it’s conservative machine are now using the same tactics that hippies use, if I don’t feel that it is true, it isn’t true. Don’t say that, it is false news because I don’t feel good about the truth, so the truth needs to change.

Even with knowledge of all civilization sitting in our pocket, we are more subject to falling for a false narrative than it was when we had to rely on ourselves to be knowledgeable. Books, newspapers, teachers, professionals, and our elders were our guides to how the world was. Now knowledge is prefered to be found on an online forum that was originally built to help ivy school kids party and hook-up.

This land used to have giants walk it. Now there are none. Nobody is great anymore. All people are riddled with fault and sin that smother the greatness in the darkest of shadows. People read all the opinions of what the truth is, but nobody wants to find out what is behind that truth. How did we get to this point?

I am mourning the fact that while people have great intentions, people aren’t wanting to change their life to help change the way our world is now. It is snowing, but people are still leaving their house at the same time to get to work and then get so mad when other drivers are going so slow or that the roads haven’t been plowed or that their car is sliding all over the place or that they grew up having snow days and believe that as an adult should get snow days still!

There is no greatness anymore. It probably happened before I noticed, but it is hard to see that greatness is no longer a goal. We worship rich spoiled brats. There are people with millions of dollars that believe the earth is flat. Instead of outrage, it just becomes a joke. Ignorance is almost rewarded. Mediocrity can earn millions. There is nothing that talent can be showcased anymore.

That sadness is dripping heavy with a thick layer of grief. I am perpetually walking around with a lump in my throat. I want something to blame, but then I would just become them . . . you.

It was hard to disagree with so many, but there wasn’t this fear of the fundamentals ideals of what a human should be being completely disregarded. I am scared that we have turned a direction that we may never come back from.

I just read a book called The Mercy of the Tide by Keith Rosson. In the book there is this fictional book called the The Looming Error which was explaining the impending doom of nuclear annihilation. The argument was that since we dropped the bomb we can’t escape our destiny to drop the bomb again. We can’t take a step back.

This is how I feel about the world today. We have made ourselves a parody of ourselves and now we will never be able to be real or authentic again. Truth and knowledge will never be needed again to justify any decision, just feelings and fear will be the deciding factor. I don’t feel good when that happens so that needs to never happen again. Don’t say those words around me. Your opinion is wrong. I believe that to be true.

I feel extra sad because we are turning our backs on the one thing that actually made us great: Reason. If Reason can’t win, then we are just animals. Animals with religion.

 

 

March 2, 2017 introspection , , , , , , , , ,

You Have Been Bested By Nature Again

One of the best times of year in Portland is the false spring of February. The sun is out, it feels warm after so many cold gray winter days, and the idea of summer begins to be realistic. I love it for two reasons: one, it is the perfect temperature, and two, it is going to get shitty again soon.

There is something about people latching onto the sun like a lifeboat to only find that it has a hole in it and they will have to bob up and down in the shark infested waters that is late winter and early spring before the real lifeboat of actual good weather shows up to pick them up. Maybe it is mean to be so tickled by hope being demolished by heavy spring rains. Maybe I wonder why so many people move here to bitch about the weather day in and day out.

Mud can only be beautified by the crocus, daffodils, and hyacinths that sprout up during this week of sunny day delights. You start to see the little nubs of buds growing on the trees. Sometimes the cherry trees bloom to the delight by all only to be completely destroyed by the heavy downpours of March and April. The little shoots from the mud bulbs drown under the grey sky ocean. The hope of man drown as they stare out of their beautiful craftsman home that they assembled from the help of Kinfolk and Pinterest.

People try and walk the neighborhoods without jackets; instead they rely on hoodies or Pendleton sweaters, but they freeze everytime they pass a shadow. The shops on the dark side of the street wait impatiently for the sun to move across the blue faded sky so the herds of sun worshippers will walk on their side of the street and see their offerings. An hour or two before sunset, people who weren’t dressed for winter retreat to their cars to head home because the temperature has finally become lower than comfortable.

One of the best things about the false spring is that this is the week that coffee is perfect for. You can stand there in the sun only feeling a breath of warmth, but the coffee is keeping you warm. I guess tea can do that too, but I don’t mess with the empires that have risen and fallen to the whims of tea.

Soon the rains will return. Sometimes another winter will hit. Sometimes there is snow in March. It’s hard to put on the puffy vests and stocking caps again after being rewarded with warmth and sun for a week. This is the last straw for a lot of transplants and natives alike, the long stretch of eternal darkness that is a Portland spring. While other locales are worse for weather, the long mild grey spring has saddened even the most happiest of fools.

While those that bemoan the water falling from the sky, the forests become thicker. The sticks that stand straight up begin to show little buds. The ground turns from mud to a carpet of mass and ground cover. The dripping from the trees falls onto small soft fuzzy leaves that are so brightly green. When during late fall and winter you could see all the way across the ravines in the woods, now you can’t see to the bottom of the ravine, for the green is exploding.

Water is the very essential ingredient in life, but no one wants to endure it in there day to day life because it is inconvenient. I doesn’t allow for perfect days. It proves that while we have all this technology, nature still thrives and bests us. Being annoyed by outside is being bested by nature.

I picture people staring outside at the sunny day planning camping trips, trips to the beaches, and all the BBQs they will have in their backyard. I picture so much hope in a time that hope is an actual commodity. This is a blast of hope before we return to our regularly scheduled hopelessness. People are picturing what they will be doing instead of what is happening. People get a lot more out of doing than just having things happen.

I find a lot of delight in this week of hope because it has so much potential for so many, but I can’t help but to feel a little delight in the fact that it will not be for much longer. In fact I just checked the weather and I see that starting tomorrow there will be rain, and on top of that it all starts out with a wind advisory.

Did you do enough with your week of sun? Did you pack all you could in the time between winter weather systems? Did you believe, like so many believe every year, that this was the beginning of what was to become instead of a short commercial break between terrible TV shows? Some of you know to get out and do life like a Mountain Dew commercial, and others know that it is pointless to even try and enjoy what will be taken away so quickly. Other people keep falling for it and others haven’t been here long enough to understand that this is a soul crushing cruel joke played by nature herself.

Maybe you find me bitter with my enjoyment of people getting the happiness pulled from under their feet. Maybe you think I’m an asshole, but I assure you that without the returning of rains and colder temperatures, this false spring would not taste so sweetly as it does. I plan on going downtown and enjoying a cup of coffee and feel the sun on my face.

February 13, 2017 introspection , , , , , , ,

A Grieving Ice Storm

All the email said was 3:18. This is how I found out that the Death with Dignity drugs had finally worked for my grandmother. It seemed all so impersonal. I had just been at her bedside two days before basically saying good-bye and now I just happened to be refreshing my email and seeing 3:18. This impersonal set of numbers was enough to have grief wash over me.

Grief has visited me in so many different ways. Not just death, but heartbreak, loneliness, and seeing the world ignore beauty were other ways that grief had sought me out. I have clenched my jaw in anger, cried, and ignored the pain of loss. I react so many different ways. Best friends’ deaths get the, “you get used to it” stoicism, but a cartoon dog will bring tears to my eyes.

I don’t think anyone really ever gets used to losing someone so permanently. I don’t know how anyone ever could. It’s one thing to wait for someone to come back from a long trip, but the idea of never ever seeing the person again is not an easy task. Some of us act tough, but loss is loss.

I called my grandma granny. She never seemed like a granny. She was young for a grandma, my other grandma was much older, and she and her husband, papa, lived such full exciting lives. They just wanted to be called granny & papa.

When I saw the number 3:18, I thought, “my granny.”

I’m adopted. I have the best adopted family an adopted guy could ask for. There are times where my different blood is very apparent. I can see my differences in my parents, my brother, my grandfather, but for some reason my granny would be my granny no matter whose kid I was. She loved me so unconditionally and so absolute that I would be blind to my origin story when I was drinking cream sodas in the kitchen out on the farm.

Papa died on Father’s Day, 2013. It seemed like in a matter of one year he had turned from a strong man into a withering little body. Granny had taken care of him till the end and he kept saying how much he loved her. It was from the bottom of his heart.

At my brother’s wedding they did this dance thing where they would announce years married and if you hadn’t gotten there yet you would step off the stage. At last my grandparents were still there slow dancing and looking into each others crying eyes. No one that stood there watching could deny the beauty and love that danced on the floor that day. I think that that was the biggest gift to my brother and his wife, this look at long lasting love. This is what Disney means by living happily ever after.

Grandmas are supposed to die. If a grandma lives long enough, she will die. My other grandma lived to be 103. I think that is a little too long for a grandma to live, but on the other hand the world would be a better place if grandma’s never died.

Rationally it makes sense that living things stop living. When other people lose their grandmas, I think to myself how that makes sense that a grandma would die. That rational thought doesn’t extend to my granny. I almost wailed I cried so hard.

Grief is so unpredictable. Sometimes a pile of griefs will collect before some cat dies and all those griefs come out at once. Sometimes the cat is in a movie. Sometimes that cat is Robert Redford not returning to Meryl Streep in Out of Africa. Sometimes that grief is real because your granny just died.

Granny had three kids, my mom, a son, and another daughter. The three of them took turns and together waited for my granny to die. This was their mom. When I came over that evening that she died, they were all in good spirits. They laughed and were sharing this moment. In the other room she was lying in bed with her mouth open. She didn’t look asleep, she looked dead.

My dad decided that this was a good idea to announce an earlier retirement.

They were all in good spirits until her body was finally taken away. This was another moment that reminded all of us that we have lost her. We would never see her again. We only have our photographs and memories to see her.

It seems that a lot of kids movies are made to help kids understand grief. The idea of grief almost seems like it isn’t natural. Why is such a natural and organic thing cause such pain? It almost seems like the discovery of Santa Clause’s fiction is to help kids understand loss. This is the loss of your childlike wonder.

Like a lot of things in this life, grief is so complicated. For such simple jumble of cells, we sure complicate the most simple of things, like the cycle of life. I feel so sad and depleted that I want to smoke a cigarette. Granny was dying of cancer, and she never liked that I smoked, and she sat there while I was in the hospital bed when I had cancer telling me that a grandma should never see a grandchild in a hospital bed, but the sadness makes me want to escape the sadness. I think, “one cigarette.”

I won’t smoke.

Mortality is such a tricky topic. We still live in an age where so many people believe in this life after death. She is looking down at us. She is with papa. She feels no more pain. Did she think life was short?

She was ready, I know that. She didn’t voice regret or how she wished anything. She wanted to go. The pain, the loss of papa, the loss of a few bridge partners were enough to warrant an escape from this world. Her last words to her kids were, “be kind to each other.”

Tomorrow a new president takes office. I don’t care if you hate him or think he is really going to make America great again. Just be kind to each other. It takes a few minutes on Facebook to see how much people are not kind to each other and then in the next breath wonder how the world got this way. We don’t do a good job of being kind to each other.

Granny was a bright light in my life. I was the first grandchild. I was bathed and adored by her. She bought me star wars action figures and told me they’d be mine some day. I would ask if I could have the farm when they, and I’d look up to heaven. I ate shepard pies and helped make cider and watch as she helped birth sheep.

I might be getting sentimental in my old age, but a great lady has passed. The very kindness and compassion I hold in me is from my granny and my mom.

Now the ice has melted away. I feel a huge loss. I grieve. It rains. I still have a job, I still have a girlfriend, I still have responsibilities, I still wake up and eat and drink coffee. All of it seems so dulled.

Be kind to each other.

January 19, 2017 introspection , , , , , , , , , ,

Cracked Pot Meditations – The Last One


Meditation for January 11th, 2017

The Last One

January 11th, 2016 I decided to commit to writing a blog everyday for a year. I was recovering from cancer treatment and my head had taken a heavy blow from chemo. I had cognitive issues and reading and writing, two things that I love, and I struggled to read a sentence or write one. 

So I decided to write a meditation blog making fun of the spiritual, psychobabble, woo-woo, recovery based culture that I see on my Facebook feed all day. 

I had a lot of fun. I got to creatively make fun of things. I’d write it and think, ‘I can’t wait till _______ reads this, they’ll get so bummed.’ I’d also get stoked if someone would like what I wrote. 

All the negative responses were about spelling and grammar and not the actual content, so I rolled my eyes and felt fine. 

I write most of these on my iPhone lying down next to my girlfriend before going to sleep hoping that she’ll read it and laugh. 

As the year went on, my head started to clear and writing got easier, and then reading for easier. Doing this for a year helped me get back on my feet. Words got easier to remember, ideas became more fluid, and I started to feel more confident in my thinking. 

Thank you to all the people that read all of them, a lot of them, or even some of them. I had to give myself a commitment and be accountable for it, and publishing it for all can see was the way I found to be accountable for. 

I don’t know what the future holds for my writing. I want to get more into visual arts. I don’t want this to be the end of my creative process. I’ll still blog. 

I am 40 years old. I don’t want to disappear into my job or creating a family. I want creativity to be a major part of my life. This year has helped me know I can do it. All I need is self-discipline. 

So thank you. I hope that I made you laugh or touched you in some way in these silly little Cracked Pot Meditations. 

January 11, 2017 Meditation , , , , , ,

Cracked Pot Meditations – The Gentrification of Weather


Meditation for January 10th, 2017

The Gentrification of Weather

It is winter here in Portland, Oregon and it has snowed three seperate times and there is a snow coming later this evening.  We aren’t getting feet of snow, this also isn’t a desert or tropical place where snow never happens at all, but just the touch of snow to Portland’s streets is the same as Hurricane Katrina to New Orleans. 

New Orleans is in hurricane territory. Portland is in a place where snow can happen. Both cities have invested in apparatuses that will hopefully help deal with snow and hurricanes, yet too much snow, like too much hurricane, is too much for the city to endure. 

The immigrants from the upper Midwest and New England laugh at us for our inability to deal with our snow. They tout that life goes on in -23 degree Fahrenheit and 13 feet of snow while we close outside at half an inch. 

The southerners, be it California, Texas, or Florida, can’t even handle it if it gets under 70 degree Fahrenheit let alone we do a few days of sun. A southerner will contemplate suicide if we have seven days of sun, but one day of rain. 

Portland has some infrastructure when it comes to snow, but it is built to deal with 399,00 people deal with one day of snow. Since 2010, 40,000 people on average have moved to the city of Portland and immediately demanded the infrastructure of a large northeastern city. 

If we aren’t dealing with snow snobs, we have to endure the endless onslaught of people complaining of the rainy grey weather. Never mind that it is one of the mildest climates in the country, and other than the possibility of a large earthquake, Portland is home to zero natural disasters. 

The human being not only got knowledge of right and wrong from the tree of life in Eden, but humans also got the inability to ignore the weather. You say the exact same thing to your dying relative about the possibility of snow as you do when you are buying Draino and condoms from the corner market. 

We have built climate controlled structures to hide from the weather, yet it is all we notice from our Nest controlled homes is that it is raining outside. 

People who have no business going outside bemoan the lack of sun and warmth as if they are suddenly avid outdoorsmen. Video games happen no matter what the weather is like, so why does it matter to the most dedicated basement dweller?

Here is what helps me. I like all the weathers. If it’s sunny and warm out, I hav things I like to do out there. If it is cold and rainy out, I have enjoulyable things I like to do inside. Snow, wind, thunder, lightning are all things I like to experience. 

My life is not over when it rains. Rain is more beautiful than sun. The sun is trying to kill us with cancer and drying up our drinking water supply. We are 93 million miles away from the sun for a reason. We are less than a mile away from the genisis of a raindrop. 

Sometimes it is cold and that raindrop becomes a snow flake. It does nothing but inconveniencing you. Us who take our lives slow and purposeful don’t mind a little snow now and then. 

January 10, 2017 Meditation , , , , , ,

Cracked Pot Meditations – Ego Reduction


Meditation for January 9th, 2017

Ego Reduction

For most of the life of religion and spiritual practices has been the reduction of the human ego so that one may be humbled in the face of the gods. 

Christians have used self flaggelation to punish oneself for even daring to think about sin (I would like to have sexual intercourse with that person). Christians even fully believed in the torture and ego banishing of others who dared to worship the wrong god or the right god wrong -see Spanish Inquisition. 

The Shi’a Muslims march around while hitting themselves to commemorate a sacrifice and martyrdom of the Imam Hussein. Other sects of Islam believe in martyring themselves for their religion as a whole, and one would need to banish all ego to achieve that kind of sacrifice. 

The entire teaching of Buddhism is the banishment of ego. One must get rid of identity, personality, and ego to achieve enlightenment. Some take it to the point that only physical death can rid a man of his ego. 

Hinduism also have many cases where humiliation and self-harm is used to try and reduce the ego. Fasting, walking backwards for miles, cutting off ones limbs are all methods used. 

Other religions use hard rituals, lifestyle sacrifices, and adherences to religious law to keep the ego in check. 

Even in the 20th century people have tried to find ways to rid self of ego by adapting ancient rites, hallucigenics, and modern psychology therapies. 

Now this need to rid self of ego is disappearing. Modern Christianity has become a prosperity church where god supposedly wants to bless those who worship him with wealth and power. 

Social media is a platform that is all me, me, me, me, me, me, me, and here are some pictures of me. Getting a like on one of your posts stirs up dopamine, the same brain chemical that comes up in alcohol consumption, cocaine, gambling, and sex. Ego is getting us high. 

Most of the message we receive as children are that we are special and unique. We are having our egos inflated. We need to be told good job at work, even if we are just doing our job. We want A grade comments for a C grade performance. 

When people reach out for ancient religions, they are finding ways to make themselves more unique and therefore keep more ego. No one is willing to undergo the ego-deflating sacrifices that most of these old practices require. Yoga has just become an exercise practice and the ‘spiritual’ feeling is just endorphins. 

Ego is everything that has made Culture bland and mediocre. Capitalism is making thee masses narrowolly define themselves, requiring a lot of ego, so that the system can sell to you. 

We have made an ego stroking media, even if that stroking is negative, so that all people do is love or hate a thing. Ego can grow from negativity too. 

We have created a caste system based on ego. We have created recipes for what gets you into different caste levels. You hav those that you can egotistically look down on, and there will always be those that have more than you. You are always climbing or giving up. 

If you want truth, freedom, and peace; give up everything you have including your identity and flog yourself silly for a god. 

January 9, 2017 Meditation , , , , , , , ,