Sunday, June 28, 2009

She called me Harvey Dent... Two-face... and I laughed...

It was a hot, humid day, but the penetrating heat from the sun held nothing over the blistering fire that rose from the grill in front of him. He thought he was done with this line of work, but this business had a sinister way of creeping back into his life.
“No matter”, he thought as he mechanically performed his duties, ”the pay was good and it was only a short-term contract”.
The restaurant was unexpectedly busy that day. People from near and far showed up for that day’s festivities and, since he was left to tend to a good part of the restaurant’s operations, his day got just a bit more hectic. He held no doubt that he could handle the responsibility, and he worked through the rush without complaint. Quickly and efficiently, he held the line steady and consistent. With nothing more than minor hurdles through the day and into the night, things were going well. But the sinister hand of fate held more for this day, and just the right circumstances arose in just the right order, and catastrophe was introduced to this almost typical day.
He did not realize that the large oven was turned onto the steam setting, nor that the temperature of that steam was set a bit too high. The restaurant was packed and he was alone on the front line. He needed one of the items in that oven and, in his haste, he pulled the oven door open just a bit too quickly.
The sudden and quick movement of the door forced the burning steam out and onto his face and he instinctively recoiled. The heat was terrifying but he thought the burn was no worse than he was used to.
He was wrong.
His hand went to his forehead to wipe the water from his brow and came back full of a nauseating mixture of boiled skin. At first he felt no pain save for the initial burn. Then the persistent agony of the burn came; subtle, but increasingly torturous as the night went on…

Yeah, my faced was burned off. Luckily for me, scars provide character, at least, that’s what they tell me…

Monday, December 15, 2008

Confessions of a non-criminal.

I fear my life is leading me towards a dark alley where the bad people dwell and are waiting to pummel me into a bloody pulp. Everyday, I find myself in a situation where I must carry a fa├žade of content and, at times, lie in order to maintain working relationships with people who would not hesitate to ram a jagged knife in my spine if it would gain them some slight accreditation with others higher in the food chain; these people who speak to me with the greatest of respect when I am directly in their presence, but spit fire at me the moment I am out of sight. Over the past year or so, this constant need to pretend has made me do things of which, I would have thought, I would never be capable. I am fighting to avoid being transformed into the type of person I have always despised and I realize that I have been losing the battle. I have had to uphold some of these lies with others who hold no consequence to the politics these foul untruths are intended. In the past few weeks, I have found myself treating those whom I adore and respect as though their friendships held no more meaning to me than the people that I loathe. I cannot fight the constant nagging from my inner voice, telling me that this has to stop or I will face the consequences. I have lost much in the past few years, all of which I deserved for my past maledictions; my comeuppances have been dealt to me without mercy. I could blame my behavior on a baser instinct of survival, but that would be a coward's play. I know that there are those out there who would suggest that there is no such thing as a point of no return when it comes to changing one's life, and I hope this holds truth. Breaking this habit of conformity for the sake of avoiding conflict will not be an easy task since I must continue this charade to some degree for lack of a better opportunity elsewhere. I am guilt ridden with the thought that I have hurt anyone by my selfishness and I am ashamed that I fell to the same level as these criminals and miscreants that I so despise. This self satisfying confession is not intended for anyone who is a part of the humble list of people that are included in my "friend's list"; it applies to those who are not or will never be a part of my niche in this social networking site. The reason behind this rant is simple; I have no other outlets in which to comment on things of this nature, and, since I have a fondness for the dramatic… Well, anyone who reads this can figure out the rest

Thursday, December 11, 2008

The story continues...

I must admit, it is such a great feeling to be in the company of great people. Regardless of age, there are those out there who are genuinely true to themselves and others. They do not try to constantly manipulate others simply to increase their own position in the happiness queue. This night away from my drama was a great eye opener. I sit here, on this couch, with a diverse group of people. A girl from Argentina who has more stories about her life’s misadventures than anyone I have ever met sits to my left, as comfortable as she is, with her legs draped over mine sipping her chilled vodka. I look over at her and realize that this girl, as hectic as her life may have been with me, truly enjoys my company. She is content in this moment and so am I. We both know that this relationship is not meant to be anything long term but our friendship will last. Although we have had our disagreements, I know most of what concerns her simply does so because she does not want to see me get hurt by ignorance; mine and others’. This is the virtue of a true friend.
Across the coffee table and slightly to the left sits a couple who could not be more diverse in physical appearance, but also could not be happier in this moment. They too are content. And as I listen to their stories with a slight mock of enthusiasm brought on by my state of “unwinding”, I realize that my own life’s drama is in fact insignificant. All of my current conflicts, foul attitudes and overall discontent can be attributed to one thing; my unwillingness to accept defeat, move on, and embrace my own destiny as it stands.
Did I fall for the wrong girl in hopes of a life of happiness that was not meant to be? Yes, I did. Should I wonder why things fell apart and constantly try to hold onto a relationship that will never be? That answer should be a simple one, but as many may realize, I have a problem letting go without a real reason. Sometimes, bad things happen. Should I dwell on the particulars and live in a state of disillusionment while my life slips by?
In my current fully inebriated state of mind I would believe almost anything, and I think to myself that I would willingly make a sacrifice to the heathen gods of Time for a few more hours in this state of contentment. But the night will not persist for much longer.
The casual banter that started off the night has now led to more of a loud drunken repartee between me and the behemoth of a girl who sits caressing her lover like a mother gorilla would groom her child. We both have come to the realization that our comments are in good fun and have until now disregarded the beckoning from our significant others to stop, or at least tone it down a bit. Before one of us get hurt, or at the very least, before I get pummeled to the ground by this giant’s enormous meat hooks, I begin to let my self restraint settle back in and I ease off the quips and quarrels. I will, however, pronounce that I did have a few great one-liners… All praise the might of the fermented potato!
At well past the end of the witching hour, our guests finally leave and I find myself alone again with a girl who is everything I needed, if only for this night. I will not bore anyone with particulars, but I will say that this “fun-sized” girl and I spent the remainder of the morning working off our intoxication.
And now, as I drive back to the real world, with less sleep than a chronic insomniac, I find myself unwilling to pull myself back into my typical routine. This is the reason for my current state of mind. I know I have told many people that I have wanted to move on and find a better life. The difference this time is that I actually believe it myself.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

A night away.

Given recent events, I just have to rant about something for the sake of my own sanity. This is a story with no real moral… enjoy!

“Hey, I know we haven’t talked for a while, but I miss you.” I hear from a familiar voice at an hour where most people have found their dreams. Her voice is soft and subtle. She has always had the kind of voice that is intoxicating to me and she knows it. She has used this blessed virtue on many occasions to convince me to do things that I would normally either shy away from or outright refuse. I listen intently to her next few comments about stopping by and I find myself trying to cipher out any hints of an ulterior motive. Finding none, at least none as blatantly apparent as the foreboding scream of a haunted mansion telling me to “get out”, I agreed to meet this girl from not too long ago for a night out.
Due to recent drama that has led me to leave my current position as “chef d’ nothing in particular” at the local family Italian restaurant, I felt I was due for a good toasting to. I knew I would have to make a trip to Orlando in order to satisfy both my want of alcohol and guiltless mischievousness and it was getting late. I just left my apartment and the clock in my car told me that I had only nine hours of playtime before I had to get to work. Trips like these are usually best suited for adolescent teens with no real responsibility. I rationalized my behavior both vocally and in my head as I drove the short distance to a girl who was already halfway to a hangover.
I arrive in record time, which is no real feat given that there were more than a few motivations for me to drive well above the posted speed limit. As I make my way up to the entryway, I am already bracing myself for the quizzical looks I will get from those who see that my driver’s side window does not work, forcing me to open my door at the gate as reach out like an idiot as I punch in the code. Luckily no one was around at this hour so I am saved this small humiliation. I am surprised however, when the number that I punch onto the clunky control box used to get in the complex does not work. After a few moments of looking like a criminal trying to hack this ancient console, I break down and call my friend. In my defense, the number was changed when they recently “upgraded” this console to a newer 1980s model. A tad frustrating yes, but in my state of mind, nothing could bring me down. Reinforcing my point, this former “good time friend” answers the door wearing less clothes than the new little hooker line of kid’s toys. I would guess that the look on my face tells her that her appearance had the desired effect. I recover quickly from the initial shock of this vision and I make my way through her condo like it was my own home.
After settling on an exquisitely comfortable couch, I notice the biggest bottle of Stolichnaya vodka that I have ever seen. I ask her if the two of us are going to consume this jug-o’-hooch alone, or would there be more guests. She laughs. She must have seen the ignorantly quizzical look on my face and she assured me that yes, two more friends will be joining us. She tells me that one of her good friends, whom I have not yet met, and her friend’s boyfriend would be stopping by soon.
She then tells me that she has to finish getting ready and I make a witty comment about nothing worth remembering. Before the ending of yet another song by her favorite band, she emerges from her kitchen with two tumblers full of ice. I guess it is my turn for a drink. I was right. I drink the first glass full of fermented potatoes in record time and immediately pour another. The doorbell rings before a discussion is started about my drama to date.
As I look at the doorway, I can make out the shadows cast by the outdoor light. Nothing out of the ordinary I think to myself as the door is opened. Nature is kind to most, I am no real catch. I have quite a few physical flaws and I usually am the last one to judge. However, as I watch what is coming through the door, I force myself to maintain composure and decency. I would hope that my perception of this girl is enhanced by my alcoholic consumption, but I cannot stop myself from not so casually taking in all that stands before me. This girl is not grotesque; this girl is by no means sideshow worthy. I am standing in the presence of one of the tallest Amazonian women I have ever seen. The shocking part was not simply her height, it was her girth. She was easily seven foot tall and weighed in at more than twice her boyfriend’s bodyweight. Even with all she was carrying in her glory, she was a very feminine giant. I think to myself, and later make a comment to my friend, that I am glad that there are no Englishmen or golden geese lying about. I force myself into a more courteous sate of mind and finally relax as the introductions are over and we find ourselves settling onto the couches.
The two guests have brought their own favorite alcoholic beverage and my not-so-ex-girlfriend and I are left to drink the vodka. Neither of us objects and I pour myself another glass of the fire water.
The night starts off with the normal banter that people have when new acquaintances are made. The who, what, where and even whys of our lives are strummed out in a nice harmony and the melody is occasionally interrupted, mostly by me, with a humorous comment. Luckily these new friends share in my fondness of witty off topic banter and I finally came to terms with the fact that I am in the presence of a mythical creature of yore. The night continues smoothly…

Ok, I have to stop now, I have been writing for a while and I am finding myself lost in other things. I do not want to mess up this story so I will pick it up where I left off the next time…

Saturday, November 22, 2008

All human beings are equal in both their desire for happiness and their right to obtain it.

Ah, the pursuit of happiness; the infinite quest during which people strive to find their own personal paradise. That which makes them content in their own nightmare so they need not believe the life that has been dealt to them is meaningless. Even I, the paradoxical chimera of stubborn realist and distant dreamer, believe that there are some things worth fighting for; even if it means admitting to defeat, without regard to fault. Some may ask why I do the things I do and act the way I act. The answer does not lie in some long psychological analysis of my inner person. The answer is as simple as any answer can be. I have a disobedient character flaw that is fixated on the problems of others and an inherent desire to fix those problems. I am not sure what criterion must be met that ignites this craving. I know that I do not act this way with everyone. Perhaps it is a reaction to a mysterious pheromone imbedded in the select few by whom I have been so struck since all have been of the fairer sex. Whatever the circumstances, those who have been placed within my grace have had to endure my certain, let's be nice and say, eccentricities. I feel sorry for those who have tolerated my personality since I am quite aware at how mulish and difficult I can be at times
But this entry was not meant to quench the thirst of my own self motivation or apologize for my sometimes misanthropic behavior. No, this was meant to be a post on the very concept of happiness. I have digressed, as is typical with my blog posts, into a rambling self psychoanalysis. Now, back on topic…
Most of us pay homage to the idea of happiness. But other than a few diehard optimists, few subscribe to the principle of persistent or continuous happiness. After a few days spent experiencing this imperfect world as it is, people soon realize that pain and fear have a way of creeping into our lives and sometimes breaking our hold on the morsel of happiness that was granted us. To some, human happiness is an unattainable goal. Some suggest that our minds do not require great education to understand that there is no real and lasting satisfaction; that our pleasures are only vanity; that our evils are infinite; and, lastly, that death, which threatens us every moment, places us in the presence of unending misery. These pessimistic rationales are a poison to the human spirit. Attaining happiness does require some realizations, but does not necessarily require such a negative outlook. As a person is subjected to the tests of life, given enough time, that person must realize that not all options given to them are plausible. So, in order to achieve happiness, it is necessary to acknowledge our limitations to an extent and understand that many of our dreams will never come to pass. By no means does this imply an abolishment to all of our hopes and dreams. It simply means that given a multitude of options, a person must choose one. Otherwise, the precious years of a person's life will pass while they are mulling over the decision to choose the best or worst path and, in doing so, their lives will have been wasting away.
In order for anyone to be truly happy, they must make decisions that will impact their lives, for better or otherwise. By not taking chances and living our lives in a state of unfailing indecision, the only thing that will be realized, too late as it may be, is that misery is the default setting on our lives and true happiness requires effort.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Hello to all. Goodbye to everyone else!

It seems that I am finally taking the big step and leaving behind this life that does not want me. I have overstayed my welcome here in Port Orange, Florida and I am finally ready to move on to other things. There are a couple of things that I must clear up with a few people here. To all of the people in my life here, at work, and otherwise, I want you all to know that I appreciate your friendships and hope to keep in touch with all of you. I will always have a fondness for drama; that aspect of my character is what keeps me on the correct side of sanity, for now. So, I will always welcome any and all stories from anyone, about anyone or anything. For those who wish to know my story as it has developed up to this moment, I offer this recap…

The moment she entered my life, I knew she was trouble. She stood at the door, soaking wet, with a Turkish newspaper tucked neatly under her arm. It was a hot day, but the rain persisted through the thick air like an angry mob. We stared at each other for enough time that it should have been awkward; it wasn't. In that moment, I realized a few things. As I looked into her eyes that seemed to be made of pure, unrefined crystal, I noticed a subtle glint of perfection. Not the absolute perfection of a fine painting, the kind of satisfaction you feel in your soul when you successfully ram that square peg into the round hole using whatever means necessary. It was a time in my life where I didn't know much, but I knew, in that moment, what I wanted. I needed a drink. As I took out the hip flask that was filled with nothing short of liquid courage, she made a whimpering sound that penetrated my very core. Her vocal discontent woke me from my dream state and I asked her to come over, out of the rain. She walked with such determination that I knew she was a woman who seldom heard the word "no". I assumed that she was finished reading the newspaper because she threw it in the garbage without missing a step. I didn't know at the time, but this day would be the day that changed my life forever.

I was expecting this girl. The last fortune teller that owed me money told me I would be meeting someone new. She just failed to mention that the girl I was destined to meet would be so damned irresistible.

So, there she was. Standing in front of me, tending to her rain soaked hair, attempting to look more presentable. She asked my name. For a moment, I forgot and stammered, wondering whether I should tell her my first name or just cut through the formalities and let her in the not so exclusive club of those who call me by my middle name. I finally got it out and I was shocked to hear myself ask her the same question. I lived the next few minutes in an out of body experience. I felt as though I was listening to someone else speaking to this woman since I was quite sure that I did not hold that amount of charm. The introductory chitchat lasted only a few moments and she quickly changed the subject to matters of consequence. As she spoke, I realized she was not here for any service I could provide. She asked where the boss was and I told her.

That guy gets all the action.

She left as fast and as gracefully as she arrived. Although the rain had stopped, she grabbed one of the umbrellas that were kept by the door and walked out of my life, if only for the day.

Ok, maybe it didn't really happen exactly that way, but I think it sounds better than the truth…

If I have the time, when I settle into my newfangled life and it loses some of its new-life smell, I will write more, and maybe a more truthful version.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Just a story...

This is a story of love lost and heartache; one that spans over many years without skipping a beat. It is a story of a man whose name is of no importance but whose story is one that should be told. This man, it seems, carries with him a curse. Not a curse that can be found in any horror film or one that brings with it any sort of physical plight, but a curse nonetheless. Since reaching the age where he left behind his childhood to pursue his dreams and attempt to realize his aspirations of grandeur, he found himself not seeking fame and fortune, but rather the elusive and unattainable.
This man has talent, more than he realizes but far less than he uses. He is a craftsman of many sorts, an intellectual with what could be profound knowledge if he applied himself more, and a potentially great artist with a penchant for procrastination. But given all of his blessings and all of his gifts, this man is obsessed with one thing; his quest to find the aspect of life that is held so dear by everyone around him. It is the one thing that he sees people around him have found, but he, himself, cannot obtain. He is exposed to it everywhere. In the local market, as it flows through the hands of a couple who have been married for countless years, and even at his workplace, where it resides in even the apparently more tortured of souls than his own. This mysterious facet of life surrounds him and taunts him with its inherent perfection. It lies on the outskirts of being for this man. But every so often, in a spiteful act of mockery, it has lead itself in to just within reach of this fool who blindly grasps for it like a starving animal.
It is not to say that those who have discovered and cherished this feeling of feelings have all been able to hold onto it forever. It is, however, quite proper to say that this fellow, the one who has been destroyed and rebuilt many a time, has never had the privilege of stepping through the wall that separates him from that for which he so yearns.
The curse, as it stands, manifests itself at the exact moment of admission. Once those undeniably magnificent words are spoken to this man, doom settles itself in and slowly destroys all hope for anything beyond that moment in time. All he is left with is the memories of those few great moments where happiness was in sight and seemingly within reach. Will this fool of a man ever break such a horrible curse? Time, although a terrifying remedy, is the only cure… So, what are a few more years of loneliness…?
The rest of the story will be posted here as I find time to write more...