Work Distractions

An Island Life

I had an idea awhile ago; I should try and write a book. I’ve always loved them, and I think I have a halfway decent story to tell, and I think I’m a decent enough writer to make something passable.

It’s hard though. I didn’t realize how hard it would be, which sounds like such a stupid thing to say. I need to change a few names and details to keep from getting in legal trouble, because the book is about 4 summers of my life on Frye Island, and I was kind of a little shit back then.

I’m about 4 pages in, and already I’m struggling. I’m not crazy enough to think that I’ll be able to write a 200-page book in a couple days, and even then, I’m not sure it’s going to be a story worth telling. I’m struggling to place all of the stories of my life into a palatable form that other people will read, and that won’t piss off the people involved in the story. Maybe I’ll just call it fiction and add enough wild shit that nobody will notice.

I love making things, and I want to create in different mediums, so maybe this book will be something great, maybe it will be abandoned in the pursuit of another medium, but I can’t say for sure right now. One thing’s for sure: if this pans out, you’ll all be inundated with my half-assed attempts to market it and see if people like it.

Musical Motivation: A Story of Productivity

Today was a good day, I actually finished everything I wanted to get done. Usually, I only get to two or three things on my To-Do List, and get distracted and end up doing something completely different. What changed? That’s simple: music choice and medication.

I woke up at 7:30, which wasn’t planned, but super useful because I forgot to take the trash bins out, and I’m not too fond of letting this week’s trash become next week’s partially-decomposed sludge. After rushing outside in my sweatpants, I tried to go back to sleep, because why not, it’s my day off, I deserve to get some beauty rest. I was unsuccessful. 8:30 rolls around, and my Adderall is starting to kick in, so all hopes of sleep fly out the window.

I had no idea what I wanted to do today, so I do my usual job search, typing in “marketing internships” and “content writer” into Glassdoor, and applied to every job I think I could do. Now, usually, I get about 4 pages into the suggested jobs before getting distracted. Not today. I went into a groove, which was helped by the groovy tunes I had in the background (Mississippi Mud by Black Blood & the Chocolate Pickles), and next thing I knew, I was on page 36, and had applied to more than 20 jobs.

Now, I can tell the difference between “hyper-focus productive” and “Medicated productive”, and this wasn’t either, I think this might be the start of something new for me, I might not be a slacker anymore. I hope this continues, and I hope I continue to crush this job search, because if there’s anything that I’ve learned over these last 5 years, it’s that I never want to work fast-food again, and I’ll do whatever it takes to make that happen.

Now, this post is called “Musical Motivation” for a reason: I’ve been switching up my music choices, and I think it’s actually doing things other than broadening my sonic horizons, I think it’s actually improving my mood and how I think about things. Usually, I listen to super depressing music, which probably isn’t good for me, but it feels incredible to listen to someone who understands how you feel, and connects with that. My favorite time to listen to music is that time of night between 12am and 2am, I think there’s something about that time that brings out a different side of music, especially sad music. I think my late-night listening, mixed with sleep deprivation, has taken me off my A-game, but I think I’ve found a great replacement for it: morning music.

Now, I’m terrible at getting up in the morning, I usually sit in bed until I absolutely have to get up, or if I have to go to the bathroom, but today, I was wide awake, and had nothing better to do than get things done. I think that if I go to bed early, and wake up early, not only will I get better sleep, I’ll get better results from my job hunt, my gym time, and my relaxation time, because what could be better than completing all your To-Do’s for the day at noon?

Community

Since I have a boring job and abundant free time, I do a lot of thinking. Recently, I came to the conclusion that a sense of community is so important to your mental health.

I work at a townie liquor store that is visited by a vast assortment of blue collar workers, hipsters, and outlaw bikers who open-carry firearms and have “cop killer” face tattoos. These people, as different as they may seem, all have one thing in common: where they’re from. They all support their community, and the people in it. I’ve had multiple people drop me off food, or slide me some reefer, or coffee, or offer to give me job references, or just shoot the shit with me to pass the time. They all interact with each other, and offer to help each other as needed. I think that’s so neccessary in a world where I can look at YouTube videos of people rioting and killing each other. I have a sick fascination with comment sections: I like to see humanity at its most base. Years of reading hateful comments and watching people get killed on camera have probably made me the jaded asshole I am today, but recently I’ve started to think that I might’ve been wrong. I spend too much time absorbing content online, and not enough time talking to real people.

I get why Stan communities form. Everyone wants to feel like they belong. Everyone wants to feel like their voice matters, even when it doesn’t. The problem with these online communities is that they’re so disconnected from real people and real life that they forget how real life works. If the people who troll Instagram models tried that shit with the bartender at the biker bar down the street, that person would be shot before they finished patting themselves on the back for being “edgy”. That same person would be a hero in their community.

Maybe it’s because I feel like I’ve never belonged anywhere, but I’m surprised on the effect that being part of a community has on me. I offered to help one of my customers do his taxes because he was stressed out about making money in a foreign country, and when I told him that that’s just a quick Foreign Income Exclusion form, he was so thankful, I could literally see the weight lifted off his shoulders. If you’ve read my blog at all, you know I hate people, so this was a surprising revelation for me. I’m not used to feeling good, and helping this guy made me feel good for a change. That same guy came in a few days ago, saw that I needed a coffee, bought me my favorite Italian roast blend from the hipster shop down the street, and when I tried to pay him, he refused. I’m really not used to that kind of thing, so at first I felt awkward, and that turned to anger for a brief moment, but that anger quickly dissipated and turned into gratitude.

I think that most of the people who are involved with these radical movements are just looking for a community to accept them. Sure, they may be awful pieces of shit who deserve to be alone, but deep down, they just want to belong somewhere, and I understand that now. This might seem like an obvious observation of the human experience, but fuck off, I’m still learning how to be a person.

Just One of Those Days

I’ve taken a bit of a break from writing recently because I don’t think I have anything interesting left to say. I still feel that way, but that’s probably because my brain doesn’t work right, and has taken a beating from 17 years of microdosing amphetamines in the name of “treatment” This is just my way of trying to communicate better, because I’ve heard that I’m not great at that.

I feel numb most of the time. I’ve been more active in my investments lately. Recently, I made more than a weeks pay in one day, and the shitty part is: I didn’t feel anything. I just looked at other investment opportunities, and went about my day like nothing happened. What the fuck is so wrong with me that I can’t take even a minute to feel any pride in my accomplishments?

I tell myself “It’s just one of those days, it’ll be over soon, and I’ll wake up tomorrow and feel different.” It works, for the most part, but I still feel like I’ve peaked, and that my life will only get worse from here on. Objectively, I know I’m smart, that I’ve achieved things that matter, but there’s also this nagging part of my brain that looks deeper into things and realizes that no matter how much I talk myself up, I won’t ever really feel like I deserve the things I’ve been given, even if I do. Maybe that’s why I feel the need to work myself to death in order to prove to myself that I’m worthy of the life I live.

The Real World

Now that we’ve given up on the whole “pandemic” thing, I’m really not ready to go back to the way things were. I liked the way things were in March 2020: I had time off for the first time in years, I had an excuse to not talk to people or leave my house, I had the greatest gift of all: time.

Now that all that is over, I miss not having people come up to me in public and asking me questions about shit I don’t care about. No, I don’t want to sign your petition. No, I don’t want to donate to your fundraiser that definitely isn’t just an upper-class way to beg for money. No, I don’t care that you’ve seen me in other places and want to talk to me about them. I enjoyed being a crotchety old man that didn’t engage with anyone, and it’s a shame to see that stop being acceptable.

I work at a dusty liquor store that closes late, so I’ve met some interesting people, to say the least. Compared to Dunks, this place is a much better work environment, but the customers are much crazier. I had a guy come in and trap me in a conversation about how much he hates dogs, and how he would kill one if it came close to him. What do you even say to that? “Word, I definitely feel that killing a dog that just wants to love you is a rational response.” People like that are why I want the ‘Rona to finish what it started. I guarantee that guy isn’t vaccinated.

A New Leaf

I’m not the same man I was in 2020: I’m not 2 bad days away from sticking a shotgun in my mouth, I’m eating healthy, I’m kinda sober, and I’m a morning person now, it’s crazy.

I had a good week for the first time in forever. It was crazy, everything seemed to work out for me. I got a 91 on my accounting midterm, I bodied my Fed Tax test, and I finally felt comfortable at work. Everything seemed to work out.

I’m not sure why I felt the need to let people know that I’m ok, but I also feel the need to record the fact that for a brief moment in time, everything didn’t suck, and that all the times I told myself “It’ll get better” weren’t just lies I had to tell myself to keep existing.

I’ve been making music lately. Not anything I’d ever share, but it’s something that started to allow me to express myself through another medium, which I think is super important. I really hate that feeling where you have all this creative energy, and no outlet to remove it, and that usually ends up manifesting in more destructive ways. I don’t know how often I’ll be back because I really don’t have anything else to say, but if I do, you’ll know.

Tears of a Clown

It’s kind of wild to watch yourself lose control. It’s like being trapped in a sound-proof glass box while someone else controls your body; you see yourself say and do all these things that you hate, and no matter how hard you punch and kick and yell at the box, you can’t break out of it and stop yourself.

I haven’t worn pants since Sunday. I haven’t eaten much, and I definitely haven’t gone outside. Sometimes I don’t do anything but sit in bed and stare at the wall, hoping that I’ll fall asleep, and that today will be over.

It’s getting worse. Usually I can fight it off, but I’m getting tired now. I know that I should stop drinking, that I should find a job, that I should work out like I used to, that I should reach out to my friends and see if they’re okay, even if I’m not. I know I should do all of these things, but I can’t for some reason. It’s like my car is out of gas, and the nearest gas station is 20 miles away, and I’ve got to crawl there.

I really just want to pretend I’m okay. My mom told me the other day that she feels pain when I’m hurt, even from small things. I don’t have the heart to hurt her by telling her how miserable I am. My parents are amazing, they’ve given me every advantage they could, they’ve loved me even though I’ve been a piece of shit, and they deserve to live the rest of their lives in happiness.

I want to be better. I want to make my family and friends proud, but I don’t know if I can. My friends haven’t noticed that I’m slowly losing my mind, but I’ve worked very hard to keep it that way. I don’t want them to worry about me, and I definitely don’t want them to tell my parents, there’s already enough pain in the world today, I don’t want to add any more to it.

Today, I Wrote About Nothing

I haven’t been posting for a while for a very simple reason: I don’t have anything left to say.

There are thousands and thousands of people who do exactly what I do, and I have enough self-awareness to realize that bitching about my problems on the internet isn’t a good look, so I’ve backed off a bit recently.

What the fuck have I even said here? I’ve had maybe 3 good ideas in the last half-decade, and one of them is already being done by people more capable than I am.

I’m trying to be more honest with people, which is hard because I’m kind of a piece of shit. I don’t really understand the whole “personal boundaries” thing, so I’ll make a really awful joke that I think is funny, but in reality, I would get the shit smacked out of me if I were anyone else. It’s hard to judge the situations where I can just be wild sarcastic and move on, and the situations where I need to actually be nice to this person so that I don’t make things worse for myself. I wonder what my life would be like if I could actually maintain relationships, and wasn’t terrified of the outside world.

This is starting to get all boo-hooey and gross, so I’ll just end it here.

The Yellow Room

I’ve written most of these posts in one of two places, either while clocked in at Dunkin’, or locked in my room. It’s funny for me to go back and read my posts, because I can see which ones were made where.

Usually, the wild depressing ones are made in my room, isolated from everything else in my life. The yellow walls of my room are sometimes the closest I get to seeing sunlight, so I’m sure that contributes to the overall vibe of my writing.

I love my room. It’s where I feel most comfortable. It has all my books, my records, my laptop and speakers, my reefer, and an incredibly comfortable bed that I use as a couch most of the time. I think I write my best work here, because when I’m comfortable, I’m less likely to be self-conscious, and more likely to trust my ideas.

My room isn’t much. It’s not as big as the other rooms in my parent’s house, it doesn’t have it’s own bathroom or any architectural significance, but it’s mine, and has been as long as I can remember. I use my room to escape from a world I don’t think I belong in, so by surrounding myself with things that make sense to me (books and music), I made a place that feels like a sanctuary for me.

My time in The Yellow Room is running out. As life moves on for me, I’m starting the process of moving out of my house and becoming a real person, which scares the shit out of me. Sometimes I don’t know if I can function, or even survive without this place. It’s been my creative oasis for so many years, I don’t know if any other space will stimulate my brain the same way, and that makes me sad.

I’m definitely overthinking this, but the shitty thing about constantly being stuck in your head is that you can never tell if you’re right to think the way you do.

The Release of Writing

Why is writing so helpful for so many people? Does it work for everyone, or is there something that makes you gravitate to writing to decipher your thoughts and feelings? I’m in a really weird place in life right now, I thought I knew what I wanted and how my life was going to turn out, but I’ve been wrong every time it mattered. I thought I was going to work in Advertising, that hasn’t worked, no matter how many campaigns I make. I thought I would be happy, that’s not happening. I thought I’d understand the world around me, which is the most laughable of all the ideas I’ve had.

I have so many questions that won’t get answered, and I’m starting to think that that’s okay.

I’ve been super depressed lately, and it’s definitely fucking with me, but I need to muscle through and try to be a person for a bit. I’m scared, but I think that just means I’m on the right path.

I think having all this time to myself has helped, or at least helped more than it’s hurt. I’ve had time to take stock of what’s important to me, I’ve cut down on my drinking, and I also have an incredible reason to not socialize with people I don’t like.

If it weren’t for this blog, Spotify, and vinyl records, I’d probably be be writing my manifesto in blood mixed with bourbon. Either that, or I’d be writing Tito’s campaigns and drinking scotch out the bottle in my bathrobe. Actually, that sounds like fun, I’m going to go do that now.

Creature Comforts

I tend to revisit things. I’ve been thinking about why, and I think it’s because I know what to expect. I know how the book ends, or how the album sounds, or what the dish tastes like. It’s comforting, and right now I kinda need comfort.

I try to try new things, but it’s really hard for me. I need to know what I’m getting myself into before I jump into something. Whenever I want to try something, I have to research the hell out of it before I try it, so I can mitigate any potential issues, and so I’m not going in blind. Now, that might sound boring to some people, but those people also say that you should just jump into things, and I think that’s fucking crazy. We’ve evolved as a species so that we don’t have to die because we ate a random plant that turned out to be toxic. We have to technology to research things, so what’s the harm in using it?

It’s important to be comfortable. It’s the time where we fully relax, and let our minds wander. That is super important right now. With thousands of people dying every day to something we can’t fight, we’ve been on edge for the last 9 months, so it’s important to find comfort wherever and whenever you can. Those few moments where we can sit back and take a breather might be the one thing that keeps us from doing something permanent.

So what makes you comfortable? I’m trying to start a discussion here, so comment below and share the wealth. You never know how much someone might need it.

10 Bukowski Quotes To Live By

Charles Bukowski was the fucking man. He was a drunk, crotchety old man that just wanted to be left alone, and I respect the hell out of him, and his writing style. Let’s see the hits.

1) “Find what you love, and let it kill you.”

2) “An intellectual says a simple thing in a hard way. An artist says a hard thing in a simple way.”

3) “The problem with the world is that the intelligent people are full of doubts, while the stupid ones are full of confidence.”

4) “Things get bad fir all of us, almost continually, and what we do under the constant stress reveals who we are.”

5) “Stop insisting on clearing your head-clear your fucking heart instead.”

6) “If you have the ability to love, love yourself first.”

7) “I wanted the whole world, or nothing.”

8) “Beware of those who seek constant crowds; they are nothing alone.”

9) “We’re all going to die, all of us, what a circus! That alone shoukd make us love each other, but it doesn’t. We are terrorized and flattened by trivialities, we are eaten up by nothing.”

10) ” I want so much that is not here and do not know where to go.”