I Took a Long Drive Instead – And Didn’t Regret It

Last night, I posted that I would be heading out for a night hike. The minute I stepped out the door, I knew I had made a bad choice. But, since my life is chock full of bad choices, I wasn’t about to turn back.

The snow was coming down hard. The roads were slick. I got on the highway and watched as cars in front of me spun out in 360’s, the traffic desperately trying to avoid them as they headed toward the ditch. Cars flew past me. I drove about 40 miles per hour the entire time, completely content to live and live well.

As I drove, I listened to Minnesota Public Radio and got to hear the fascinating interview with Ann Kim, the entrepreneurial owner of three pizza joints here in the Twin Cities. She is not only supremely successful, but has an excellent command of that type of humor where you know you’re going to get a laugh, but you feign comedic innocence, which only serves to get an even bigger laugh.

Take a listen…you won’t be disappointed.

Oh…and I simply drove for three hours.

Give A Man a Fish….

You know the saying:

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach him to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.

I hate fishing. Hate it with a passion.

When I was a kid, my dad took me and my older twin brothers to Alexandria, Minnesota. My great aunt Jo lived on Lake Latoka there. She owned a large pontoon boat and had a lot of old dude friends who liked to fish. She made fruit punch slushies, filled up ice cream pails with it, and sent me, my brothers, the old dudes, and my dad off to the lake.

We caught 109 fish that afternoon. I remember running from one full hook to the next, taking off fish and throwing them in the water basket. It was an exhilarating time.

The next year, my dad took the three of us to a lake in St. James, Minnesota. That is the exact opposite direction of the northern city of Alexandria, from Minneapolis, Minnesota. Down there, the lakes are shallow, green, smell like toilets from hell, and give you the runs just for walking past. We had no boat and stood on the dock. There was no wind and it was 98 degrees, with high humidity.

We caught a frog and a bicycle.

On the way home, I asked my dad a very important question that would change the course of my life:

Was our success last year in Alexandria what most fishing trips are like, or is it closer to the misery of St. James?

Dad, not knowing that he was about to give a young gentleman an enormous distaste for an absolutely pointless and boring activity, answered as honestly as every fisherperson should answer:

St. James is the norm.

That was it for me. I never fished again – on purpose.

 

When a Suicidal Friend Comes Calling

“I feel like nobody loves me. My head is telling me I want to die,” she said over Facebook Messenger.

This was the fourth time in two days she said this to me. I was frustrated, because I just don’t understand suicide. I love life, no matter how shitty it is. My mind just never goes there. And it’s not the knowledge that some people can’t stop going down that mental road. Rather, it’s the fact that I can’t fix it. And I want to fix it.

“Well…you’re fucking worthless. You’re good for nothing. Nobody will miss you if you’re gone. You’ve never done one thing for me that I will tell my grandkids about. It’s as if you don’t exist,” I replied.

She became internally angry at my words and responded with a wink and a squeaked out “Thanks for that.”

The reader asks: Hey asshole! What just happened?!

I became her brain, albeit externally, saying the same shit her internal brain was yelling at her, and she reacted angrily toward my words, knowing, of course, that I was being facetious. Her internal brain then attacked the words that her internal brain was telling her, yet attacked the external brain. It wasn’t a solution to the problem, but it did give a little glimmer that there was still life to be lived. Essentially, the fact that she was angry at the external brain for telling her lies, meant that she could somehow re-channel that anger toward the incessant lies of her internal brain.

Except, that was merely the hope for that moment. There will be more lies tomorrow and the next day and the day after that. I won’t be using the same tactic (maybe), but I will still be rooting for her to live. For her success in this life. For her to maybe one day, break away from all the bad memories and thoughts that bring her to the brink, and create new memories and new thought pathways to bring more joy.

 

As Everyone Knows, Roy Moore Lost

Everyone, that is, except Roy Moore.

A few months ago, I posted some predictions on social media, prophesying that Moore was going to win, and win by a landslide. My assumptions were that the deep south of our lovely country was more into the cult of Republicanism than they were into the idea that they so forcefully demanded of their enemies – the Democrats – that everything government must be Constitutional. But, the minute Roy Moore came along, not to mention the Orange Jesus in the White House, power and theocracy trumped any illusion that they lived what they preached.

This was before the Washington Post came out with the well-researched accusations by the women from ~40 years ago.

I’ve never been more happy to be wrong. Also, by Biblical prophet standards, I can now no longer be considered a prophet. You get one wrong, that’s your shot. Sure, it doesn’t work for current era “prophets of the Lord,” but then again, that’s Republicanism.

It’s been almost six months

Short version: I’m getting a divorce.

Now, for all the lurkers who read my blog to get the skinny on my life, have at it. Now you know. For everyone else, I won’t be providing much detail about the proceedings of the divorce for several reasons.

First and foremost, this blog is public. Second and most importantly, I absolutely and unequivocally love and adore the woman I am divorcing. The divorce is a mutual decision. We will both be much happier apart than together. My greatest concerns are also two-fold – that my kids are strong, safe,  and happy, and that the woman that has defined my life for the last 17 years flourishes and becomes better and more successful than I could ever dream of becoming.

Now…onward to more writings…