Don’t Pass to Me!

Growing up I never wanted the ball in my hand when the game was on the line.  I was too afraid to fail.  I liked being a part of the supporting cast, I never wanted to be a leader.  I wanted people to do the hard work for me.

I was afraid I would fuck up and people would see me in the same light I saw myself; a worthless failure who will never be good enough.  Fear of living made me want to die or go to jail so I wouldn’t have to face the reality of actually living life.  I was more afraid of living then I was of sitting in a jail cell having people make my decisions for me.

I never took responsibility for changing my own life, I just expected things to happen.  The problem was, for many years I got by that way.  I floated through life and things just happened for me.  Poor behavior reinforced by reward leads to more poor behavior and unrealistic expectations of life.

Thankfully, life caught up with me and I was fortunate enough to experience a lot of pain because of my choices.  I had to become accountable and make changes in my life.   I can’t stand to think how boring my life would’ve been if everything kept coming easy to me.  I would have no character, no experiences to share and no ability to overcome adversity when it struck.

Three years ago, my business partner and I had an idea to launch a discount business-to-consumer website for cell phone accessories.  I sourced the products, we got the site set up and in a few months we were finally ready to launch.  I expected to do a little advertising and sit back and watch the money pour in.  That wasn’t the case.

I spent 6 months or more casually playing with ads on Facebook expecting to rake in hundreds of thousands of dollars without having to do any real work. It’s absolutely insane to think that, but a part of me really thought it would happen.  My delusions of grandeur were quickly crushed and reality set in. (more…)

Modified Keto and Me

We all know carbs are fucking delicious.  Pizza, Swedish Fish, pasta; I want to rub them all over my body they’re so tasty. But I’m older and my body hates me when I start eating more than 50-100 carbs a day.  Most days I aim for less than 50, but I need a cheat day once every 10 days or so.

I thought my life would suck without carbs.  I figured I’d be starving all the time and miserable.  I mean, how often could I eat meat and nuts or chicken and avocado.  Turns out I can eat these meals way more than I thought without getting bored.

I love going out to eat and housing some delicious gourmet.  However, most of my meals I consume for fuel for my body, nothing more.  Consistently eating the same or similar meals actually makes eating for this purpose much easier and less time consuming.  Which is great for someone like me who’s short on time and indecisive.  Now, making decision about what to eat is no longer taking up space in my day that I can devote elsewhere.

There’s some obvious benefits to cutting carbs, most notably is fat loss. When you start a modified ketogenic diet, your body starts using ketones (fats) for energy instead of sugars.  You can peel off a lot of fat while maintaining lean muscle if you keep your protein and fat intake high.  Somewhere around 250-300g  of protein and 90-110g of fat for someone my size (215-220) seems to be a good starting point.  You can experiment by increasing or decreasing these macros depending on your body goals, but we will talk about that a little later.

It’s important to choose your fats wisely.  I stick to coconut oil, olive oil, whole eggs, avocado, cashews, walnuts, almonds, lean meats and occasionally some cheeses. (more…)

Context

As I walked out of my office to my car, I picked up my dog to put her in the backseat and I noticed someone had smacked into my rear bumper.  There was plastic on the ground from my headlight and my bumper was dented .  I walked around to in hopes of finding a note from the person who hit my unattended car.  I wasn’t shocked when when I didn’t find one.

Now I’m sitting at the auto body shop at 2:30 on a Thursday, waiting for the guy to come out of his meeting and give me an estimate.  I’m bored and annoyed because I have to be here dealing with this.  I had to come in here to do a bunch of shit I could have easily done over the phone with them.  My day could be filled with way more productive activities; who’s the asshole that decided this ridiculous process was worth anyone’s time?

Then it hit me. Why the fuck am I complaining about some first world problems?  My life’s real hard.  I’m getting an estimate for damage on my car when most people would be working.  My life allows me the freedom to take care of life’s annoying little inconveniences whenever I choose.  I make those decisions for me.

At face value, I should be super grateful and realize how fortunate I am to have the time and resources to take care of mishaps like this when they occur.  Others aren’t always that lucky.  My life’s a cakewalk in a lot of ways.

It’s all this kind of bullshit that so many people, including myself, allow to ruin our day or frustrate us.  But life happens, that’s just the way it is.  The sooner we learn that lesson and roll with the bullshit we’re dealt, the sooner we can get on with focusing on how great life is.

A couple of years ago I would have been pissed off and argued with the people at the shop for wasting my time.  Now I accept it and go about my day.  I’m not telling this to prove how mature and well balanced I am, because I’m certainly neither of those things.  I’m saying this to create perspective.

18 months ago I was laying in a hospital bed cut open from my sternum to my stomach, worrying if my cancer had spread.  Now im blessed enough to be here today being annoyed because I lost 20 minutes of my day.  Seems crazy to let this bother me when I frame the situation in that context.

Life’s bullshit will always get in our way, there’s no way around it.  Our problems scale depending on how severe they are and how capable we are of handling them.  The thing to remember is every problem is temporary, even the most serious ones.  Eventually circumstances will change and those problems will no longer be an issue.  Even the sickest person’s problems end once they pass on and become energy again.  That’s the cycle of life.

Stressing and being angry only robs any chance of happiness in the present and possibly the future depending on how we deal with it  Whatever it is, it will pass.  I forget all to often I had cancer 18 months ago.  Sometimes it’s nice to remind myself I’m going to die one day.  It forces me to live and experience all I can today.  That’s the purpose of life, to experience all that we can in the short time we have.  Good and bad, it all writes our story, it’s how life works.

The problem with weed is…..

It gives me all these creative ideas, but makes me too lazy to do anything with them.

When I’m high, I write down every idea in hopes of doing something with them later.  But once I’m sober, the ideas either seem horrible or they lose the creative spark needed to turn them into something tangible.

Trying to turn my thoughts into a post while I’m high is torture.  I can’t focus for more than 15 seconds, I lose track of what I’m writing about and I usually have food splattered all over my keyboard.  That’s pretty close to my normal writing routine, but it’s much more difficult while stoned.

When I’m showering high I come up with comedy routines.  I’m pretty sure my material is hilarious, at least in my head it is.   I can’t be certain that’s a true statement because I forget the whole routine by the time I’ve cleaned myself.  For obvious reasons, I can ‘t write my ideas down because I have no access to a pen or a computer in the shower.   So I have no way to prove any of this or test out my material.

How do so many funny people create great shit while they’re high?  This is the type of thing that keeps me up at night.  Surprisingly, I’m not high while writing this.  Although, it would make more sense if I was.

Pitfalls

It’s so obvious from the outside to see everything falling apart. I pick up on every little detail that will ultimately lead to someone’s demise when I stand back and take it all in.  That’s the easy part.  The hard part is recognizing those character flaws and ominous events in your own life leading to your world collapsing around you.

This weekend, I was watching the movie Legend, with Tom Hardy.  I’m fascinated with British gangster flix.  Every time I watch these movies, all I can think is I was born in the wrong era.  I’m stroking my own ego with these thoughts, but I was always a savvy and resourceful criminal.

I admire the characters meteoric rise to power, then loath the inevitable crash.  I can pinpoint when the characters are going to slip up before it ever happens.  I get emotionally involved and incredibly sad when I realize their fate.  I’ve literally cried at the end of Carlito’s Way, RIP Charlie.  For once I want to see the bad guy make it out unscathed and live a normal life.  I guess it’s wishful thinking for my life and I want some visual evidence to prove it really can happen.

It’s usually the same old story over and over when powerful people lose it all.  Ego and pride are the two main suspects which lead to their downfall.  They think of themselves as bigger than they are, untouchable. I’ve been there before and life certainly has humbled me. Thankfully not to the extent of my demise, I’ve been lucky in that regard.

All these pitfalls seem so obvious and avoidable from the outside.  If they had quit while they were ahead or made a compromise to keep from going to war, everything could have worked out.  But in my own life I often don’t recognize what’s going on until it’s too late and turning back doesn’t feel like an option.  Once I’ve lost control I tend to destroy whatever is good in my life before I regain my composure.

Some days I feel like a slave to my character flaws.  They keep me confined to a life of having to second guess everything I do.  I fear if I don’t, they will run wild and ruin me.  I’m a damaged person.  The only way I can keep my issues at bay is to constantly check myself on a daily basis, otherwise, I’m fucked.

Everyday I have to ground myself with gratitude and humbleness, which is really difficult for someone like me.  Most days I want to be an egocentric asshole and live in a fantasy world where I’m special and great. (more…)

No One Wants the Eggplant

Why the unsolicited Dick pic bro? And why am I the guy telling other guys this?  I’m a fucking moron when it comes to women.  I tell women upfront: I don’t do sleepovers, don’t expect to date me, and this probably wont end well; and even I know better than to send a random chick a dick pic.

What goes through a guys mind when he sees a chicks on IG or Snap and fires away an unwanted pic of his mighty member?  Does he think it will make her wet?  Like somehow, she will see his ugly, veiny dick and instantly want to fuck him.

I can’t imagine anyone ever has sent an unsolicited Dick pick to a chick and she was like, “you know what, this dude seems like he’s got it together.  Not to mention a great hog, I’m gonna bang him tonight.”  What the fuck bro?

I thought guys like me were the bottom of the barrel when it comes to tact and class.  Now I see there’s an heir to that throne.  I’m sure your lonely nights of jacking off to daydreams of the women you will never sleep with will keep feeding your fire to send your piece de resistance of cock pics.  Thinking if you just get the angle right this time, maybe she will fall in love.  Keep up he good work you desperate bastards.

Let Me Cram That In There

I hate feeling the need to fill all the empty spaces in my life.  Worrying about making the best use of my time.  I have a list of things I want to do today and I despise putting things off I claim are important to me.

Writing is one of those things I seem to push off daily.  It gets shuffled to the bottom of my daily to-do list.  It comes after: work, the gym and then all the fucking off I do daily.  I feel better everyday I write and create. It’s cathartic, even if I’m writing nonsense no one else would want to see.

Writing helps me in business and personal life. I feel lighter and less bogged down with the heaviness of racing thoughts.  I can communicate better with everyone I interact with.  My ability to speak peaking with prospective customers and crafting effective emails improves greatly.

Knowing all the benefits, I still find excuses why I can’t do it daily.  I create pressure on myself to create something, which leads to shaming myself when I don’t do it.  This is a theme in my life in general.

I don’t get paid to write, so why should I place those kinds of consequences on whether or not it do it?  It seems the only way I write is when I force myself to do it.

So I’m sitting in the barbershop waiting for a cut, writing down what’s going through my head.  Filling my time with something constructive instead of mentally masturbating to social media or texting friends.  I feel lighter and more content with my day by fitting this in.

Small victories daily compound into larger victories in the future.  Maybe tomorrow I’ll write something worth reading.

Just for today

Today is my 18 month check up at the oncologist.  Every three months I come here for a full day of tests and appointments.  Most of the day I’m sitting in waiting rooms working to keep my mind off the fact I’m surrounded by people who are dying.

I’m one of the fortunate ones.  I only needed two surgeries to get rid of my liver cancer,  no chemo or radiation.  I’ve been given another chance at life. I’d say a second chance, but this is probably my 50th.

When I think about how many chances at life I’ve received I’m grateful. But, I’m also very frustrated with myself.  Life’s precious and I know that, yet I don’t treat it as such.  I continue to make the same mistakes repeatedly, wasting years of my life.

I spend too much time on social media, I do drugs I said I wouldn’t do anymore, I continue relationships that aren’t healthy and run a business that makes me unhappy. I lack passion and kowtow to fear. I settle for the status quo of “good enough.”

What kind of life is that?  From the outside,  people may think I live a good, comfortable and sometimes indulgent life. That may be true in comparison to others.  But, I’m not living the life I truly want to live.

The truth is, I’m not exactly sure what the life I want to live looks like.  I’m still experimenting with what works for me. This could all be a symptom of my age; coming up on the midlife crisis and searching for meaning.  Some existential belief that I need to leave my mark on this world or I won’t have lead a life worthy of my years.  I’m not sure.

But today, I received another clean bill of health and for that, I’m grateful.

Where Your Head Goes, You Go

“Keep your head up and looking forward.  Where your head goes, you go.  If your head’s looking down, guess what, you’re going down.”

I was in the ocean struggling to catch waves as usual.  That simple, but profound advice from a guy watching me surf changed my morning.  From then on, I kept my head up, looking forward and everything got easier.  I had my best day in the water.

The same advice I was given about surfing applies to all aspects of life.  If you’re living life with your head up, focused on where you want to go you have a better chance of getting there.

Ambition is a Bitch

Sometimes ambition is a bitch. I often wonder if a life without ambition would be easier and happier. No stress from worrying about achievements.  No fear of not being enough or creating enough during your life.  No struggling to become more than you are right now.  Instead, simply being happy with where you are with no need to achieve more or be better.

Without getting philosophical or playing devils advocate about what ambition is to other people, I’ll use the dictionary definition for the sake of this post.  Ambition is defined as “a strong desire to do or to achieve something, typically requiring determination and hard work.”

I always viewed those who lacked ambition as lazy or ignorant.  Maybe that’s accurate.  Or maybe they are content with what they have.  Maybe they don’t need anything more than what they have right now to be happy.  It’s possible that people without ambition are able to be the most present and can enjoy life more than others who are working to be more in the future.

I met a guy in Costa Rica who seemed happier than most I know. He told me he had no savings and shared a small apartment with roommates. He didn’t own a car or any sort of transportation. He walked 15 minutes to work everyday from his little house in the jungle.

He had a menial job, from my perspective anyhow, working at the little hotel I was staying at.  He manned the front desk and occasionally helped out at the hotel bar. To paint an accurate picture, the hotel had 8-10 rooms; the bar had 3 stools and 5-6 tables on an outdoor patio.  It wasn’t like he was working at the Ritz-Carlton.

When I spoke with him he was cordial, funny, intelligent and easy to get along with.  During our conversation we briefly discussed careers and aspirations.  When I asked him what he would like to do with his life, he smiled and calmly said “this, why would I want to do anything else with my life. I have a roof over my head, food to eat and people to share my life with.”  Part of me judged him as being unrealistic and full of shit for giving me that answer.  While another part of me was insanely jealous because his answer seemed genuine.

Ambition can, at times, be the root of all my suffering.  Wanting to be more, achieve more, make more.  The constant feeling of needing to work harder to be better.  Being a Type A personality, it’s ingrained in my default setting.

However, ambition can also be the driving force of most of my happiness.  The feeling of making progress in life and bettering myself may be the most addictive drug in the world.  However, too often I allow my happiness and contentment to depend on that feeling.  Needing to always be more can leave me feeling incomplete and dissatisfied with my life. (more…)