kansas

Kansas

So I’ve been out in Kansas all week since my Grandpa has been sick.  I wanted to come out and see him, and my work was awesome enough to let me work from here for the week so I could come spend some time with him and the rest of my family out here.  All of my extended family live in Kansas, my parents and my aunt (mom’s sister) are the only ones who live out of the state.  The entire family on both sides goes back many generations of attending KU and being Jayhawks, and have a long line of being technical engineers of one form or another (my brother carries on this tradition at least).

 

Anyway, my grandfather, who I’m named after (Charles is my middle name and his first name)  has got prostate cancer that has moved into his bones, and he’s just not doing well at all right now.  It has spread throughout most of his body, even into his jaw making it hard for him to eat or drink anything because his jaw is completely numb.  At Christmas time, he was around 175 pounds, and just since then he has decreased to nearly 130 because he just isn’t able to eat enough to survive.  We helped him get a new electric bed and chair set up in the living room and bed room that raise and lower to help him stand up, and some days he’s been feeling well enough to sit around and talk with us for a while.  Other days it seems hard enough for him to just move from his bed to the living room.  It’s been extremely hard seeing him like this in such poor condition because he has always been such a badass.

 

My grandfather came from nothing, extremely poor roots, and worked his ass of his entire life to end up  being an extremely successful petroleum engineer and farmer.  One of the most knowledgeable and down to earth people I know.  He served his country in WWII (both of my grandfathers did), and I consider him a hero.  He was stationed in the Pacific, and fought the Japanese on many of those islands, ended up being a Staff Seargent before the war ended.  I have always looked up to this man just because he was one of the most honest, self made, grassroots badasses I have ever known.  I’m just so thankful to have had him and all of my grandparents in my life for nearly 30 years, and it breaks my heart to see him in such bad shape.

 

I’ll never forget for the rest of my life going in to his bedroom to help my grandma get him in bed so he could rest, and he had laid down in bed with his feet sticking off the end.  We needed to get him to slide up a bit so his feet would be comfortable, and the only way to do this was to put a sheet underneath him so we could grab that and slide him up.  But just the small pressure of moving him and sliding him up the bed hurt him so much he was yelling with pain.  It just completely broke my heart to see such a strong man so frail and in so much pain.  I just hope to god that he can at least not suffer any more.

 

One of the hardest things this week was getting him on hospice care.  My grandmother recently (last year) had a fall and broke her hip.  She is fine and fully healed, but ever since then she is not very stable and can’t support herself that well.  It just isn’t safe to have her trying to help him walk around and get in and out of bed, and in the shower.  So we really made the right decision bringing in additional care with a hospice company, but it was unbearably hard seeing my strong, proud, grandfather come to terms with the fact that he now needs this help.  They were interviewing him and asked him all sorts of questions about his current state, and when they asked him if he felt that his life was valuable and worthwhile, he replied that he didn’t really feel that way.  He has always been a strong, and independent man, and it’s so hard for him to realize that he can’t do much on his own anymore and he needs the help of others to do just the most basic tasks.  I think overall, it was the right decision and at least he will get the care and dedication that he needs in order to live a comfortable life from here on out, but it was a really hard decision to make for everyone.  It was very hard watching my mom interact with him and for her to see her father in such bad shape.

 

It wasn’t all bad, however, as Evan and I got to spend a lot of quality time with grandpa, and talked with him for hours.  He’s so interesting and knowledgeable about just about everything, that when we were asking him about some lamps that made out solid blocks of wood on a lathe, he really wanted to get up and take us into his office to show some of the pieces he had carved.  Even though it caused him so much pain just to get up and walk into the other room, he just wanted so badly to go in there and show us.  We talked with him about everything: farming, engineering, oil drilling, woodworking…it was great and definitely conversations that I will hold with me for the rest of my life.

 

Leaving was the hardest part knowing that I might not ever see him again.  But at least I left knowing that I got to spend some time with him and have awesome memories that will never leave me.

 

Me, Mom, Evan, Grandpa
Me, Mom, Evan, Grandpa

 

Me, Grandpa, Evan
Me, Grandpa, Evan

 

It has been really hard coming home to being alone and realizing I have no one here  for me to go through this.  I haven’t really lost anyone close to me like this before, and it’s as hard as when my mom was going through cancer.  I mean, I have my family and my brother close by, but ever since Jess up and left, it’s really hard at night sleeping alone and having all these horrible thoughts on your mind and no one to talk to about it at 3am when you can’t stop thinking about all of it.  Fuck.  I just feel extremely alone and unwanted that sometimes I’m not sure how in the world I managed to screw up getting engaged to the woman I thought would love me for the rest of my life.  It’s very sad and confusing to me.  Nothing to do but to move on I suppose.

 

The trip was great though, and gave me a lot to think about.  I managed to be able to go visit my grandpa’s farm, which holds so many memories from me growing up.  Every trip to Kansas from my childhood featured a trip to his 100+ acre farm, and I just remember running all around there, driving tractors, swimming, fishing, exploring, running through cornfields, and having so much fun.  Evan and I got to go out there with our cousin Billie and mowed all the lawn around the farmhouse for grandpa so that it would be easier to walk around there.  He was able to make a trip out to the farm too with a friend of his, and was actually able to get out and walk around the property to check on things, which I know made him so happy because that farm has been his passion for the past 40 years.

 

The Farm House
The Farm House

 

The Shed
The Shed

 

Evan and I also managed to get his old farm truck running.  “Old Blackie” was an awesome truck, a 1970 dodge pickup with a ’68 hood and an inline slant 6.  We all remember driving around sitting in the bed of this truck when we were little kids.  It has been sitting out at the farm for a number of years, so evan and i wrenched on it a bit and got it fired up and drove her around for a bit.  All it needs is a new battery to get back on the road.  Such a cool truck, I would love to restore it someday!

 

Old Blackie
Old Blackie

 

We even towed up my Uncle Kim’s MAX 6×6 amphibious buggy.  This thing is awesome, with a Briggs & Stratton 14hp engine, and 6 wheels, it will go just about anywhere.  We bombed the shit out of this thing all around the farmlands.  Check out this video:

 



 

On the way out, we stopped by the artesian spring at the edge of the property that I always remember stopping at to get a drink of the freshest water I’ve ever tasted, straight out of the ground.  Then, we passed through the tiny town of Cedar Point, which has this awesome old mill from the 1800’s that the city is trying to save.  We went over and explored around inside it for a bit before taking off.  Got some great pictures of it too:

 

 

Finally, before leaving, we stopped by my Uncle’s (My dads brother) house and checked out his neighbor’s cars and bikes.  My uncle is restoring a pretty sweet 1963 Pontiac Tempest, and his neighbor is also a big Pontiac guy with 2 GTO’s and some awesome bikes.  He had a 1974 Triumph, and a 1970 and 1968 GTO.  The triumph he had bought when he was 20, with 1,800 miles on it, and still had it in perfect condition:

1970 Triumph
1970 Triumph

 

 

1970 GTO
1970 GTO

 

 

So overall, it was a good trip, it was a bad trip…but it was great to see my family and help me remember my roots.  I don’t get to see my family often, and it really helped to at least get to spend an awesome week with my grandfather, as I dont’ know if I’ll ever have that opportunity again.

 

I have a feeling that our family is in for a rough upcoming year.  But I wouldn’t change the time I had with him for the world.

 

This post is dedicated to Charles Forrester.

dad_5-0

Another Notch in the Championship Belt

If you know anything about my Dad, you know that from during March Madness, he cannot be bothered.  He runs the infamous “Hoop Heavyweights” Final Four brackets, a magical place where him and all his KU frat brothers get together every year to talk shit (you thought the D Street Crew talks some good shit?  These guys have been doing it since THEY were in college!) and place bets.  During the month of March he’s known only as “The Commish” where he sends out his weekly bracket updates that I eagerly look forward to.  And of course, he’s always got his tickets booked to head to final weekend where (hopefully) KU is battling it out for another Final Four championship.

If you think for one second I’m playing up the dedication here…just check out the final bracket-busting message The Commish sent out to the group upon returning from NOLA and most recent Final Four spent partying on Bourbon Street (names changed to protect the guilty):

 

Subject:  HHW (Hoop Heavyweights) Representatives Report from NOLA FFour Trip

Sorry for the delays due to tornadoes at the DFW Airport
(that’s my story and I’m sticking to it….AAir made me stay
extra days in NOLA); here is our HHW Trip report on NOLA, as
is required by being a member of this illustrious group.

4 HHW members including John “CINN” Smith, KU Johnson, KU
Stevens, and the Commish (plus 1 adjunct member also last
name Stevens) attended the festivities in NOLA and
represented this group, so to speak.  We attended various
NABC events including the Coaches Cocktail Party; convention
exhibits; bus rides, etc. as well as numerous fan events.
Note that your designated HHW attendees spoke with several
Coaches and imparted HHW wisdom to them for their future
use.

4 HHW members stayed over in Algiers across the Mississippi
via Ferry on an old military base where 2 were tossed in the
back of an NOPD squad car for a free ride to meet the ferry
(southern hospitality).  Great free concerts were provided
by Jimmy Buffet and KISS plus a lot of “local flavor”
events.  The KU Bar was Walk-ons & Happy’s (attached) which
was a designated meeting site for the HHWs.  You’ll be
pleased to note that the HHWs stayed well above the fray on
Bourbon St by frequenting the balcony at BeerFest.  No
details will be provided, but the HHWs are now proud owners
of the NCAA welcome banner hanging on that balcony; along
with the BudLight flags from inside the bar area.  2 members
of the HHWs were also interviewed at the Team Practice
session and Reeses All Star game by the Wichita KS NBC
station and put on local TV but no fears; NO HHW secrets
were divulged.

Oh yes, there were some games and the outcome of the Semi’s
were outstanding; however the storm clouds came up and the
KU parade was rained on in the Finals by essentially an NBA
Team stacked with a bunch of BigMacs and 6 future NBA picks.
It was a great run for the Jayhawks and we’ll see how long
it stays in the NCAA recordbook.   At least the Hawks
essentially were defacto Champs of the Big 10; Pac 12; ACC;
Big East; etc when you review their thread of victories this
past yr!

Footnote:  It appeared that most BBfans west of the Rockies
were banned from attending this year.   As for next year;
UCLA appears to be stacked with the ShaBAZZ road show and
maybe some west coast teams will make it back to the other
side of the Rockies to Atlanta.

Good Luck & remember “there’s always next year”!  Comments?
Additions from the other HHW attendees?

The Commish

 

And if you are possibly doubting his dedication for one second…check  out this years pic of “The Commish” in the back of a cop car on the way to the tournament…

 

 

Gotta love my old man!

DrizzyDre

The Continued Adventures of Drizzy Swagtacular Dre

If you remember an old post from a little over a year ago regarding the “Swagtacular” adventures of two strapping young gentlemen: Yung Joose and Dre Dollas, then you are sure to enjoy today’s long-awaited sequel.  That’s right, today we’ll investigate the goings-on of Joose and Dollas partner-in-crime, Drizzy Swagtacular Dre.  Now don’t let the names confuse you, just because both of these lads go by Dre does not necessarily mean they have anything in common.  Let’s take a look and see what the boys are up to, shall we?

 

I stumbled across Drizzy Dre (my nickname for him) as I was searching Facebook to find out what Yung J and Dre$ had been to up.  I immediately abandoned my search when I found this hidden internet gem.  I gotta be honest, sometimes the tubes that power the intarwebz align, and everything is right in the online world.  The discovery of this gentleman on Facebook was definitely one of those times, similar to my first viewing of (WARNING: NSFW LINKS) 2 girls 1 cup, my first RickRoll, or the first time I was link hijacked and shanghaied onto a Goatse page or accidentally stumbled across the Lemon Party.   You get what I’m saying – sometimes shit is just funny as hell…and this was one of those times.

 

I think the most obvious place to start here is with the pictures.  For some reason, this gentleman has quite the obsession with posting pictures of himself holding copious amounts of cash.  Since his profile states that he is gainfully employed at Foot Locker, I can only wonder where he came across such a serious amount of money other than he cashed an entire paycheck…literally…and took a ton of pictures of him holding $500 in $20 bills in various Myspace-type angles.  Although I suppose that for a person whose middle name is “Stackin Dollas” that this lifestyle is only fitting…

 

After further perusal, I found other interesting pictures.  It seems that not only does Dre have copious amounts of cash money, but he also prides himself on having a nice whip.

 

Notice a few interesting things about this picture…Dre has obviously spent some of that hard earned cash on upgrading the rims on his ride.  He’s installed some 20’s that look pretty dope on this Caddy.  Not only did he upgrade them joints, but he has also installed a Lambo door kit on the car (highlighted for your easy identification).  However, he apparently ran out out money halfway through this project, as the rear door was apparently removed in anticipation of the door upgrade, and never reattached.  That, or it just fell off.   Which is maybe what the guy sitting on the roof of the car is pointing at?  Regardless, we can see that these gentlemen enjoy a lifestyle that the rest of us can only dream of.

 

Next, I started looking through the internet wasteland that is Drizzy Dre’s page, and the first thing that became readily obvious to me was the fact that this man has an astounding command of the English language.  I thought I was impressed with the conversation I read between Joose and Dollas a year ago…but those two didn’t scratch the surface of content that Drizzy Dre is pumping out.  Now I can only hope to somewhat understand what is going on here, I don’t claim to truly know what he is saying…but I’ll do my best to understand:

 

 

 

 

 

Translation:  “I would rather not attend my classes today.  However, I am concerned that I do not have anything else to do and might find myself bored if I am not in class.  If you are interested in hanging out, please feel free to contact me.”

Note:  WTF why was this posted at 4am?  What time does his school start?!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Translation:  I have no fucking clue.  Although the line “so much money on my mind I need a memory card” is hilarious!

 

 

 

 

 

Translation:  Fuck I’m 1 for 3, I have no idea what he is trying to say here other than he is “Fresh tu Death”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I give up.  I have no idea what this means.  It’s not even a complete sentence.  There’s a Star Wars reference in there but things seem to fall apart after the Bill Gates reference…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
Finally.  This puts it all in perspective for me.  He’s been rapping!  I thought this was all nonsense, but now in the context of fresh beats and dope rhymes, it all makes sense!  Drizzy Dre is a lyrical poet.  All is right in the world.

 

I was really wondering for a while there as I suffered through some of those status updates…it reminded me of the 13 year girls on AIM who must have painstakingly typed every other letter as a capital.  How in the world did they do that?!  Would those girls literally switch off hitting shift in between each letter?  How LoNg WoUlD iT tAkE tHeM tO wRiTe EvEn ThE sHoRtEsT oF sEnTeNcEs?!?!  (Answer:  A long time.  Even concentrating on what I was doing it took me a full minute to type out that sentence alternating shift every other letter.

 

Well, there you have it.  It’s good to make new friends online every now and then, and I feel proud to add Drizzy Swagtacular Dre to my online stable of pals.  Keep an eye out for his rap game, you can tell from the proof I just posted – he’s about to blow up!

 

 

IMAG0079

200 Miles of Therapy

Maybe due to recent events, I can’t seem to make myself feel comfortable anywhere  lately around most people  and in most places.  I start getting anxious, can’t concentrate, can’t sit and relax.  My back feels like a physical question mark regardless of where or how I’m sitting, and I just don’t feel right most of the time.  But maybe because of this, I’ve started to feel more and more comfortable on my bike.  Knowing that my fucking back is going to feel like I just finished a chiropractic appointment with a team of burly construction workers regardless of what I’m doing, I have started riding more and more.  I figure – it’s going to hurt if I sit in my truck and drive anywhere, and being out in the open is so much more fun…

 

It’s one of the things I told myself I wanted to change recently.  Seeing as how I have recently acquired a whole new degree of freedom in my choices (although not necessarily by choice), I decided I was going to start riding my bike every day.  I’ve always had motorcycles, usually more than 1 at a time, but I was just riding them occasionally on weekends.  So one thing I decided when I started thinking of some things I wanted to change in my life, was to get on the damn bike every morning at at least ride to work.  My initial goal was to just do it for a month straight, but I’ve already blown waayyyy past that.  Plus, seeing as how expensive gas is, and at $5 per gallon my 35 gallon truck is about $150 to fill up – I’d say the Ninja is a more economical alternative.  I’d like to say I’m also doing this to do my part in reducing my carbon footprint and helping the environment out, but seriously – if I gave a shit about that would I have the biggest, most badass F-150 ever? haha

 

I guess i just found that I really enjoy riding every day, and in some small way it’s providing me with some therapeutic sense of relief.  I’ve started to really enjoy crankin some Skynrd, CCR, or Motley Crue and just ripping down the highway.  Maybe some other part of it has to do with “Fuckin’ Polito” rolling into town a month ago and getting me really amped up to do some serious riding.  This guy is kind of an inspiration (dare I compliment this shiftless hobo?) because he’s rollin’ around the country with nothing more than the belongings strapped to his KLR.  Eventually I’d like to do the same thing because I’m getting closer and closer to needing to get the fuck out of dodge for a while, and the open road seems to be calling my name.

 

Which brings me to a current event.  On Sunday, Polito and I woke up and just the road with no real goal in mind.  He needed a good shakedown run on the KLR after rebuilding most of the engine post head-gasket disaster which brought him back to town, and I was needed a good ride to call the “Case of the Failing Starter” closed.  Well after tearing my bike down all morning and pulling the starter, not figuring out what was wrong with it and putting it back together, we set out to see what else we could break.  A quick shot straight out east on the 8 led us to one of my favorite little rips through Harbison Canyon.  We took this detour and hit the twisties until it dumped us back at the 8 again.  Eager for more mountain fun, we tore up more tarmac until we passed the turnout littered with dual sports at Pine Valley and then turned off on Sunrise Highway on our way to Julian.

 

For some reason, the SPOT tracker didn't kick on until we hit Harbison?
For some reason, the SPOT tracker didn't kick on until we hit Harbison?

 

We ripped up Sunrise Highway like bats out of hell, eager to get knee deep in the shit and rip some twisties.  I have been watching and reading Keith Code’s “Twist of the Wrist” and have been really trying to focus on throttle control and steering techniques, so I figured this ride would be a great opportunity to rubber-fuck some twisties as we laid tread.   As we were mobbing up that mountain, we got in the groove, leaning hard into turns and dragging knees  (I’m lying.  You know.  I know it.  But it’s my blog so fuck you).  Anyway, we had a great ride up there and stopped to take a few awesome shots at one of the most epic turnouts.

The Man.  The Legend.
The Man. The Legend.

 

What you don’t see in this picture was with Polito and I were doing right before we took it.  That’s right, prior to this, us two dirtbags were standing on this rock screaming obscenities as loud as our smoke-addled, oxygen deprived lungs would allow.  I gotta say, there is nothing more satisfying than screaming:

F

U

C

K

!

At the top of your lungs across a huge canyon and hear it echo back.  After tweaking our approach and employing some advanced techniques, we had some pretty interesting echoes coming back to us – something about Evan gumming balls and/or some other similar content.

 

What really put the icing on this cake was the realization that somewhere deep in that valley probably was a family who was out on a nice Sunday picnic.  Unpacking the minivan, I envision that they set up a huge blanket and a big spread of lunchables and capri suns, and were eagerly looking forward to a nice day out in the sun and enjoying nature to its fullest.  I can imagine little Chip Junior trying his darndest to poke that shitty yellow straw through the bottom of his Ecto Cooler, when he hears an odd sound come rumbling through the valley.

“GUM MY BALLS”

mmm  mmMom, what’s that?  he asks.  “nothing honey, here, have a cracker.”  His mom answers, right as

“POLITO FELLATES MARTIANS”

thunders across the horizon, the booming echo making tiny ripples in mom’s plastic wine glass of half chilled chardonay like the T-rex scene in Jurassic Park.

I suppose there is a special level of hell reserved for assholes such as we, but at least we’ll be roommates, and I’m sure shit echoes down there too.

 

I wish I had two tablets in my hands like the 10 commandments
I wish I had two tablets in my hands like the 10 commandments. This is also me showing how big my dick is.

 

 

Anyway, from there it was time to saddle up and hit the road again.  We rode hard all the way to Julian, hitting that one sweet straightaway stretch right before the Julian turnout or Left to lake Cuyamaca where I had the ZX9 pegged in 6th gear and broke the land speed record hitting 145mph with an epic sonic boom who’s reverberating shockwave tore Polito’s tires to shreds and was instantly incinerated into a cloud of hobo dust.

 

I’m sorry, my mind wanders when I’m trying to focus on creative writing.  Anyway, we  hit Julian and had some awesome Bison burgers.  I’ve never had Bison before, but it was actually delicious, and I would highly recommend visiting Bison Bobs Bison Shack or whatever such eatery we tried.  It was here that I witnessed one of the most interesting phenomenons of my motorcycle-riding life.  We pulled up into Julian which is chrome heaven.  There are $20,000 Harley’s parked everywhere.  There was so much chrome around there that we couldn’t take our sunglasses off at risk of needing immediate Lasik surgery to counteract all that shine.  This place is like where these fruit cakes go to practice spit-shining their bikes for Sturgis.  It was pathetic the amount of weekend warriors that crowd the streets of this town – accountants by weekday, douchebag’s covered in every piece of Harley gear imagineable by weekend.  Ugh, it makes me sick.

 

Anyway, Polito and I pull up on our raggedy ass rides.  Well, my bike is pretty badass, but his has a tractor muffler.  Come on.

The Red Rocket
The Red Rocket

 

And get off in search of a Bison Burger.  Within seconds, Polito’s bike is mobbed by a crowd of people.  I overhear snippets of conversations and words like “Mad Max”, “did he just escape from the Thunderdome”…”Is it on fire?”…..”is this a joke?”….”How did it make it up here?”…..   by this point we had walked away a few feet and were just acting like we were tourists and watching people swarm his bike in awe.  I seriously could not believe we were surrounded by douchebag chrome show bikes and no one was giving those trailer queens a second look as they were all drooling over Polito’s road warrior.  Alex pulled out his camera and snagged a few pics of this phenomenon, and I couldn’t stop laughing.  No joke, check this out:

 

The Road Warrior Draws Attention
The Road Warrior Draws Attention

 

We walked around trying to stay out of the way while taking candid pics of people swarming his bike.  Of the most interest was the rope wrapped around the desert tank.  Everyone wanted to know what the hell this was for.  Most had the same initial guess I did – tow rope  – but apparently Alex just has such a passion for crashing, he wound it around there to save his IMS tank.

 

Check out another cover shot of the mob:

 

See the crowd in the backround...
See the crowd in the backround...

 

Finally, after an entire afternoon of shenanigans, we decided to head out of there and make our way back to coast.  I really wish we had a picture of the guy we passed at a gas station in Santa Ysabel who was wearing a complete Easter Bunny outfit while riding around on his BMW Adventure GS. hahahaha

 

Overall, it was a great trip that brings me full circle to my initial point.  I’m really stoked on riding every day, and it’s something that I plan on continuing into the foreseeable future.  I don’t want to deal with all the bullshit going on, or people bitching at me, or ungrateful people dragging me down.  I’m just gonna pull a Polito and get the fuck out there and ride.

 

Easy Riders taking a pit stop to piss off a cliff
Easy Riders taking a pit stop to piss off a cliff
FuckYou

FUCK

Excuse this post being emo in advance (go ahead, comment, call me a pussy, I’ll just be stoked that someone commented here) because honestly…I just don’t see any way around it.

 

You know when you are at your peak, life is working out flawlessly, things are going your way and you are so confident that it ain’t ever gonna end?  Why is it that’s when every fucking thing comes crashing down around you?  It’s like a cruel joke that the universe plays on you to see how content and happy you can get before some cosmic force knocks you back down to the ground, kind of like Jesus Christ pulling the table cloth out from underneath all the place settings at the last supper but instead of doing it perfectly like you see in the movies, he fucks it up and spills wine all over the nice table.  Yeah…just like that.

 
I guess I have to admit – she won.  She was always mad that whenever we got into it, I was the one who was hard, unmoving, uncaring, and could give the cold shoulder and not be affected for an endless amount of time after a fight until she broke down and came back first wanting to make things right.  Well the tables have turned since she’s the one on her back having a good time while I’m in pieces.  I’m sure this is Karma for something, but I’ve been such an asshole so many times that to figure out which incident I’m paying for it would be like Tucker Max trying to remember which midget he first did anal with.

 

As if the fact that I grew up enough to find a woman I was completely, uncompromisingly, selflessly in love with and was so sure and so committed that I was ready to propose, get married, buy a house, and begin the rest of my life with wasn’t enough…everything else compounds itself on top of that.  I’m still sort of in shock and awe by the fact that I was so sure of our relationship and believed in us so much that I put my money where my mouth was and had the ring of her dreams designed exactly the way I knew she would love it.  I was so proud of myself for becoming the man I thought she wanted me to be, that I even decided to overlook the other signs that hurt me so much.

 

I guess most people would have seen it coming a mile away – things like the fact that I was so proud of myself for getting the best and most unique Christmas gift in the world (a DNA test for her dog, so that when people asked what kind it was, she would finally have an answer…and when this happened daily, she could think of how cool it was that she knew the answer to that recurring question because she had an awesome, caring, significant other).  In my mind, this was so personal and targeted exactly what she wanted on such a personal level that I couldn’t have done any better, certainly more thoughtful than some piece of metal with Tiffany’s engraved on it.  (FUTURE NOTE TO SELF:  they don’t give a fuck about you being thoughtful – just throw tacky, expensive jewelry at them and you’ll win every time)  But I let my love blind me to the point of forgiving and forgetting that when I gave her the gift I was so proud of, she literally asked me to take it back, or to just keep the gift as something for me and her, and for me to spend an additional $100 on the jewelry that she really wanted.  She cried and told me that she has promised herself that I was going to be getting her jewelry for Christmas, and the fact that I got something for the dog (which I was rightly convinced she was more interested in that me by that point) showed that I was thoughtless.   Yet again – how in the world can I be so sure, so undoubtedly, rock-hard sure that I’m doing something right and awesome, and be derailed in an instant?

 

I guess even all those things weren’t important enough for me to realize that – hey something might not be right here.  When we “discussed” getting a dog and I in no uncertain terms said that I wasn’t comfortable with it and wasn’t ready to have a dog until we had our own house, and then found out the next day that, Hey – I’ve got a new dog!  I guess in retrospect it was like I wasn’t a part of the relationship, I was just there to be told what to do.  Didn’t really stop to think that maybe that might mean something that the one thing I said flat out NO to ended up happening regardless of my feelings or concerns.  But love will make you see past all those things.  I ended up loving the dog anyway, but always knew in the back of my mind that he was born of flat-out defiance – a reminder to me that I am not really in control (Control?  Hell, even INVOLVED!) of any of the decisions that might be made around here.

 

But I can see through all those things, I can see past them to the big picture.  I’m in love and ready to commit and I’m 100% sure of it.  It’s not surprise to her or anyone what I’m doing – I’m looking at rings, I’m planning the future, I’m laying the foundation for the rest of my life.  It’s not happening overnight, but it’s happening slowly yet surely, and I’m so focused on it that I don’t see anything else going on around me.  Going on right in front of me.

 

Is it odd that suddenly she’s gone increasingly more often with a “new” friend that I haven’t met, dont’ know her name, apparently doing yoga?  Some girl who recently moved to town unannounced and suddenly every Thursday night becomes “Yoga and Wine girls night”…why didn’t this seem odd?  Because I’m in love of course!  I’m busy planning a proposal, securing parental approval, and designing a ring!  What could go wrong!?!

 

Did I stop to think back to the recent Facebook conversation I saw from an ex-boyfriend referring to how they really should have got to together when he was recently in town like they had planned on.  Or the note from her telling him how good he was looking in recent pictures?  No – why would I?  I had a ring with her name on it, what the fuck could go wrong.  I’m not insinuating infidelity here because 1. I hate to think that she could do that to me, and 2. I don’t have any proof, but who the fuck knows, huh.  I didn’t even want to stop to consider what the facts of past failed relationships of both us might tell me…I had love on my side.

 

So of course when I find out two days before my 29th birthday that, Hey – I no longer want to be with you.  You and I are no longer compatible for the following reasons:

 

  1. I want to travel the world.  It is my passion.  You do not like to travel.  Therefore, we have nothing in common.
  2. I want 3 kids.  Immediately.  You do not.  Therefore, we do not have the same life goals.
  3. Your back is irreparably hurt.  It is beginning to impact my life because you cannot do all of the activities that I enjoy, and since you have not been able to fix it in a reasonable amount of time, I would rather give up on you than try to help you through it.  Therefore – you are a burden to me.

 

I was shocked and numb and dumbfounded and could only think a few things in response to these concrete examples of proof as to why we were no longer compatible.  Logical things of course, I was still not quite able to accept the fact that my heart had just been gang banged by a group of Hells Angels:

 

  1. How will you travel the world when you have 3 kids?
  2. How in the world are you sure you need 3 kids?  Wouldn’t you like to start with 1 and see how that goes, and let the future decide itself what’s right for your family?  And wouldn’t you rather have them when you and your partner are ready for that, rather than making it happen immediately and forcing everyone into it?
  3. I guess its good to know now that you wouldn’t have stood by me should I develop cancer or stub my toe or anything else that might get in the way of attending a farmers market.

 

What the fuck just happened?  Did my fairy tale just write its own ending?  I suppose so.  Now that I have had some time to reflect on all aspects, one of the material ones really gets to me.  The fact that I was introduced to the sheer superficiality of someone who made such an effort to show everyone just how organic they were – someone who ended up demanding Jewelry over a gift that might someday end up helping the well-being of her own pet – when I realized that I dropped a couple hundo on a new Kindle Fire a month before her birthday, just because I thought it might be cool that she have her own tablet to read in bed…and I find out as I’m being broken up with a few days before my birthday and I’m left all alone to have all my friends over on my birthday evening that she invited, yet she specifically left the house that morning and never showed up, left me without a gift (not that I needed one, its just the point of how superficial this was), without a cake that she had been talking up for weeks, and leaving me with nothing but my entire group of friends who were wondering where my girlfriend of two years was on the night of my birthday party when she had invited them all over….who were also wondering why I was humbly blowing out a few candles hastily jammed into the side of the cake with my twin brother’s name on it specifically made for him.  There are very few more-humbling experiences than that…but I tell you that it really sets in at that point that you have been completely abandoned by someone who you thought you could count on forever.  Enough to bet thousands of dollars and your life on them, only to find out that they didn’t find you adequate enough anymore, and they just leave you to be the pathetic center of attention at a birthday party you never asked for.  One of the lowest moments of my life, I’ll tell you that much.  I was the kid who was so pathetic that someone else gave him the half of the oreo without the frosting just because he looked so left out.  For the rest of my fucking life, I will never forget that moment, and that birthday.

 

So I move on.  Dazed, confused, trying to figure out how my life just hit this patch of ice and is starting to spin out of control.  What in the fuck is happening?!  I can’t bear to look at these rings that I had made months in advance, all they do is remind of how fucked up everything just got.  Next I get to find out that the trip to Cancun we were taking the week after my birthday, you know – the one for our two year anniversary – you know, the one where I was going to propose?  The one that I had spent so much time planning and preparing and jokingly telling her to STOP LOOKING whenever I was glancing at a website on rings and dropping hints.  Oh that trip, it’s been canceled.  Why the fuck would you still want to go with me? I’ve got a hurt back, don’t want kids for a year until after the wedding, and I don’t plan trips to hike Mount Everest.  What a fucking asshole I am.  Now instead of spending the night determining which knee I’m going to go down on, I’m spending it setting up a mattress in my office so I don’t get in her way.  Oh that trip I had said I had to go to my parents house to help them with some stuff – the one where I actually had scheduled time with her parents to ask for permission for her (second) hand in marriage?  Oh yeah that trip had to be canceled too.  Wait, why the fuck am I un-planning all of the things I spent months and months working so hard on?  I dedicated more time to making this perfect than I did on getting my MBA.  That deposit I put down on at the hotel in Cancun to set up the romantic dinner on the beach where this whole thing was gonna go down.  Fuck that was really un-refundable?  How do you say refund in Spanish?!  They don’t teach you that shit in B-school.  I know how to manage everything but my fucking life and I have the degree to prove it.  That limo to pick us up from the airport to celebrate the trip of our lifetime that we’ll never forget?  Who am I kidding, I don’t belong in a limo…the next nice black car I’m will most likely be my funeral.  Fuck, how plans can so easily go awry.

 

What is there to do other than to just move through each day like I’m in a haze.  God damn my back hurts, I can barely stand, sit, sleep, or do anything – but I was told a long time ago that someone was no longer interested in hearing about how bad my back hurts if I’m not willing to follow a strict daily regimen of Bikram Yoga and Quinoa.  So I’ll keep it to myself.  Fuck things are really starting to suck.  Hey, I’m sure its rough for everyone right – she’s gotta be torn up after losing the love of her life too, right?  Right? RIGHT?  What’s that on facebook though? – what is this conversation from the night she dumped me between her and that guy she was dating right before me?  Wait – you made plans to hang out with this guy that very same night?  What?!  You didn’t waste any time, you had your phone number in his hands that quickly!  Oh man what a fool I am.  Two months down the road here I am with my dick in my hands, getting text messages from friends that are running in to who should have been my next-ex-wife already out on the town with her new boyfriend, and I’m sitting here honing my creative writing skills.  I’d like to think I’m better off for something because of all this, but I’m still waiting for fate to pull its dick out of my ass and tell me just what that might be.  There are still two 14k white-gold rings with 30 fucking diamonds on them and an amethyst as big as my nuts sitting on my shelf that I can’t bring myself to look at, but which mocks me every single morning when I wake up and every single night when I go to bed.  It’s like a trophy dedicated to the most epic failure of my life…a trophy that’s so unique – no one else will ever want it.  It will probably just sit there, collecting dust, depreciating, and mocking me until I get even more emo and do something dramatic like walk to the end of Crystal Pier and throw it into the ocean at sunset in slow motion while some shitty 80’s montage music plays in the background.

 

Well, I’d like to say I’ve learned all sorts of introspective life lessons from this.  I guess, sure I have definitely learned some, but they’re going to probably take some deeper reflection to figure out exactly what they are.  In the meantime, I guess I’ll try to put my energy towards better uses like trying to go visit my grandfather in Kansas in a few weeks before cancer claims the rest of him, or maybe fixing my truck that got broken into, or maybe even trying to figure out why I was denied that raise and promotion I have been working my ass off for the past year, or even do some research and figure out what the fucking cure for crushed discs, degenerative disc disease, and ankylosing spondylitis might be so I can sit for 5 minutes without feeling like a brontosaurus is fucking my spine.  I don’t know who the fuck I pissed off, but 2012 is seriously not starting as intended.  For now, I’m just going to go smoke a cigarette because there’s no longer anyone for me to disappoint with my actions

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