"Undermining my electoral viability since 2001."


I'm back in the old homestead. It turned out I did have some kind of flu back there in NYC. Suxxorz. I spent a couple days laid up at my sisters, which meant no socializing to speak of. My apologies to all the folks I missed. I'll be back, and I'll make it up.

Still, on Thursday I was feeling about 80% ok, and it was a beautiful day, and it made me realize how I do miss New York. There's something so very evocative about it as a place, makes a young man dream. Perhaps someday I'll make it back for another run at Glory.

For now, I'm totally exhausted and looking forward to a weekend of doing very little, though maybe some writing will be in order.

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Well, I'm back in the Big City, trading off two days and a night in the air-conditioning of Bablylon -- corporate HQs, Chilli's bar'n'grill, hotel room, places where people are comfortable with a certain amount of bureaucracy -- for the kind of specific swelter that you only get when your rubbing up hot and raw against eight million or so of your fellow monkeys.

Indian Lake is burnin'
New York's skyline is hazy
The River Thames is turnin'dry
The whole world is a-blazin'

It actually made me sick. Maybe it was my cafeteria salad lunch, but when I got back to trendy trendy Williamsburg and Atlas Cafe, I started feeling ill. When I finally got up to walk to the park and lie down, I made it about a block and a half before bending over and puking down a storm drain. It all happened so fast, and I felt immediately better. So I called up Frank -- who this made me think of thanks to a little bit of shared history -- and drank 1.5L of new water in the park while relaxing sans-shoes and watching the McCarren pick-up softball practice (a random mix of Poles, Hipsters, Dominicans and Orthodox Jews, which made me happy).

New York seems good. The heat brings out some of the best, as does the cold. I suppose we thrive on adversity here. Inexplicably, I don't feel so outraged by hipsters here as opposed to San Francisco. They're less pretentious and somehow more butch; more beards and sweaty white t-shirts, less designer printed long-sleeves.

I'm looking forward to a few more days here and then another weekend in Weshaven. The way things are going, I'm gonna need it!

...adding, I seem to be running a persistent fever even now that it's cooled down and I'm all hydrated. That's not good, even if it does make me feel a little tripped-out. Now would not be a good time to succumb to some damn airplane flu. Bleah.

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He's On Fire!

So another long post, but this one because I stumbled upon an old cache of never-blogged textfiles from 2003 and before. Dynamite stuff from the archives -- like these old artistic source texts -- and some of it still topical!

Here's a bit from deep inside my mind back when I was still a Young Buck, and right before I fell in love again, it's interesting to note. Borderline arrogant, true, but that kind of free and open state of mind is something I think it would be very positive for me to reconnect with.

h4. Dancing.txt (1/27/2003)

There was dancing, and I overheard a fairly nubile 20-year-old tell some lucky chump. "I want sex. I like it. It feels good to me. I don't do it a lot, but I want someone who will give it to me now."

He seemed at first to be too much of a weify wannabe hipster/jock hybrid to step up to what she was pitching, and for a moment I entertained a fantasy of "cutting in" so to speak. She and I had been dancing somewhat in sync earlier, and lustful thoughts had been propagating for some time. But I hesitated. In the moment I became plagued with doubt; about who I was and what I was doing; about who she was and if I really wanted her; doubt about the very nature of my own desire.

During the intervening doubtful minute, the lucky chump realizes the what score is and decides he knows what to do. Soon they are gone, and thinking it over I'm not all that bothered. You see, I realized if I were going to try it with her, it would have to be something like this:

Josh: Sorry, I couldn't help but notice the proposition you just made to this gentleman, and I'd like to make my services available to you this evening, should you be so inclined. I'm good, and I'm leaving town for New York City in two days. There will be no complecations.

20-y-o: Ummm ok. [resumes talking to other guy]

[But then... 20 minutes later]

20-y-o: Ok, are you game?

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Haulin' Ass, Gettin' Paid

Man, I loved that little bit from Idiocracy That's what I'm talkin' about! Lol. Anyway, uhhh...

Wake up, Wake up, Wake up
It's the first of the month

Well, as alluded to below with work seeming to progress well, I've reached another milestone in my quest for financial freedom. I'm square with the tax-man, the last big fiduciary obligation. My bank account is low, but I'm free and clear of serfdom: it's all gravy from here on out!

Translated to more realistic terms, that means I'm now in the novel situation of having only low-interest consolidated student loans as debt, and consistently (reliably?) earning more a month than I need to survive.

I feel like quoting Deadwood -- Ellsworth's line -- "I’ll tell you what: I may have fucked my life up flatter than hammered shit, but I stand here before you today beholden to no human cocksucker."

Part of me wants to take this opportunity to settle things down, cut down on my bills and cut down on my work too. The hippy thing: simplifyyyyy. But I think for now this is unlikely.

I'm too ambitious for that just yet, not ready to take the "one big score and I'm out" thought into action. It seems much more likely to try to work a simplicity/tranquility component module into a more complex life. Like building a cabin on top of a mountain in Lawless Trinity County and keeping my home-base in Westhaven while holding down an apartment in the Bay. These things can be done, if I want to do them. I could also make other choices.

Freedom; terrible terrible freedom.

Giving free reign to my inner project-manager voice for a moment, let's take stock of things.

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It's been a big week at the office. Unless I miss my guess, we may be set through the end of the calendar year for work, which is an intersting and good situation to be in. It's bringing the "what's next" kind of pressure to a whole new level, putting our interpersonal management skills to the test and generally upping the stress level another notch.

It's looking like a roller-coaster ride of a summer too. Next week I'm off into the hills for some Independence Day celebration, then to a 7/7/07 wedding in the HC, then flying to NYC to close out a project, then back to Cali where I transition to my Berkeley sublet, then back to NYC for a family visit w/the mom and sis, then back to Cali, then out to Chicago for another wedding and maybe some convention crashing, then back to the Bay/HC for a couple weeks, then Burning Man, then down to Mexico for two weeks for a long-postponed work retreat, in the middle of which I'll fly to Oregon and back for yet another wedding.

That's me through mid September. It's exciting and suits my rambling nature, but it also sounds very exhausting and overwhelmingly work-related. All work and no play makes Josh a dull boy.

So, grappling with the problems of "success" is another weighty luxury. A big part of me still wants to find a little woman and hide out in the HC, the old Hank Stamper dream. Still nothing doing on that front either, naturally, so it's all dreams and fantasies for now, but dreams and fantasies are important.

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On the Run

First of all, a big shout out to my man LGD in Alemania: Crackademic, bitches. He doesn't smoke crack, but he does need money.

I've been on the run lately. Worked through the weekend with more office improvements and have been down in Palo Alto the past two days working on speccing out one of our next big (cross-fingers) clients. Too busy to really worry about much, and happy to note that my urban biking skills are returning with a vengeance.

It is getting to the point with everything being all work all the time that I miss the old homestead. Called back and talked to Mark to try and work out plans for next week, and it made me kind of want to bail on the city. I'm having serious dog-envy, at least.

Tying a few threads together from recent life, I'm feeling an acute lack of community. Coupled with a (arguably snobby) disinterest in making new friends or social connections, I've created a little catch-22 for myself. It's the Westhaven mental disease; on the phone the other night I literally said, "but, man, I don't want to go out and like meet people or do things." I can try and dress it up with paeans to my existing roster of friends and comrades and bemoan my over-booked schedule, but the truth is that's a strongly anti-social statement. Which is not really something I like.

These things are connected: community, identity, sociability, self-esteem and some bedrock notion of what the hell I'm doing here. I don't have any problems with professional networking, and indeed I'm pretty good at it when I'm in the mood, but outside of my worklife things are tattered and lone.

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The Girth

In case you forgot.

The man and I went out last night to a birthday party for one of the principles at one of Chapter Three's first clients. Them being a high-end furniture operation and the place being a yuppie/hipster crossover bar we figured maybe we'd meet some girls. Turns out the old law-school posse was in attendance, which provided a nice diversion as neither of us really turned out to be in the mood to try and talk to strange women.

It's an interesting turn. I'd sort of hoped that being in the City would coax me back into action on that front, but the whole concept feels tiring, like work. That tells me for whatever reason that I'm just not ready, but I'm finding that to be annoying. It's, ahh, been a little while since there was any sexy zing in my life and while I don't feel hard-up or sexually frustrated per se, I do miss it; and in those "I'm getting old" moments I sometimes worry that it's all down hill from here.

Will there ever be guilt-free casual unhurried adult physical fun again? This makes me think: Keep hope alive!. Heh.

For now I'm just tired. After we'd done the crossover bar thing to death, we repaired to the Zeitgeist -- where some other clients were hanging, also coincidentally: SF is a big small-town -- and stayed until closing, yelling about the nature of the state, and my round of Powers and Pabsts at the end was probably unnecessary.

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Rock Me Mama

Just click that and let it play.

The friends you keep up with over time are the ones that matter, and I always feel sorry for people who seem surprised when I tell them I live with a best friend who I've known since we were 14, and I get even older friends I've known since wee-boy childhood coming through touring with their bands and what have you. That whole scene.

We all reinvent ourselves; we all go through changes; for all the excessively individualistic ideology we grow up with about identity in America, I think it's our connections in many ways define us as people. I'm proud to have history, maybe more loosely tied to my flesh-and-blood family than some, but rich with a pretty wonderful array of souls all around this great blue-green earth. My own world-wide-web. Ho ho ho.

I dunno; it feels like everyone is waiting for something. Sometimes it's that undercurrent of doom -- when will the other shoe finally drop? -- and sometimes it's just that fleeting, unprovable, but totally undeniably unshakably true feeling that there's more to life than this. I most often feel like I'm waiting on revelations, for some kind of heavenly inspired moment of clarity or strike of lightning or burning bush to show me the way.

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...And No Boogin' Picture Either

(added later: ok, here's some video of the road)

Pushing though a milestone at work and up past my bedtime making the final, riveting conclusion of Sometimes A Great Notion, I'm too charged up to drop off just yet, even though I likely need the Z's. This kind of clarity doesn't lend itself to sleep.

It's been a packed week. My life is eventful again after a long, slow period. The whipsaw action is a little disturbing on the meta-level -- can this kind of binge-purge lifestyle really be sustainable? -- but it's the only way I've ever known. My breed thrives on pressure, force, velocity, or more precisely change in velocity, which is to say acceleration in one form or another. Delta-v over t, Hocken would say; my AP Physics teacher from good old South Eugene High.

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Why I Write

So I've been reflecting a bit on my reasons for engaging in this hellfired pursuit we call "blogging." The last post I made was written, like a lot of my posts over the years (and personal paper journal entries too), in a fit of confusion and uncertainty and unhappiness. Expunging angst through sheer exposure is one of the benefits I get from the whole thing, a kind of cleansing exhibitionism.

And indeed, after putting it out there and deciding to take care of myself and rest easy for an evening, my attitudinal gyroscope corrected; by Sunday I was feeling quite alright. Mission accomplished.

My original reasons for starting this up were to let people keep up with me, to help provide an easy way to keep those stretchy/elastic social ties over the years, and to nudge myself lead a more honest and open existence. My intended audience is my friends and family and comrades, who (I think) appreciate the perspective I articulate, or at least get a kick out of my stories, even though I'm sure at times they're shaking their heads thinking, "oh no, honey. Noooo..."

Over the years, the exhibitionism angle has come and gone; activism has waxed and wained; and I've come to really deeply appreciate the outlet and daily practice of simply writing. It's a muscle, and it gets better with exercise. That's a constant value, and one I didn't really think of when I started.

So I'm happy to cast my words into the ether, and sometimes the ether answers back. It's flattering really, that I can string sentences together good enough to provoke a response, and more often than not I find nuance and insight from the contributions of others.

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