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Warm Sunrise

September 27, 2014

Issue 22
Vol 3

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Last month I was exhausted. I ran around all over the state and country. I tried, several times to sit down and writing something. What I did manage to come up with was wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t me. I was forcing narratives and it just felt like crap.

I have been producing, consistently since November 2012, for sometime and I think the well, for at least a month, was dry. I am happy to see the traffic on my blog rose, sharply, around the dates I normally would have posted something. Thanks for checking in and sorry there was nothing new.

Let get this started.

Time and perfection

I think it would be hackneyed to say that ten years ago, 18 years old and an incoming freshmen, I was a different person. My priorities, language, body, mind, fears was different. I was different. Many people say that with age comes confidence and that’s true, certainly for me. At 18 I was terrified at the idea of work and being a professional. I mentioned before that school and so many teachers had shattered, well before my adulthood, my confidence in my ability to enter the working world. The only thing I seemed to believe in was my ability to write. So that’s what I did in December of 2004. It was wild and irreverent and a little off the wall. At the time I thought I was going to be the next famous journalist and writer. I would be on ESPN in two decades, in a black suit arguing on the Sports Reporters.

In the future though there will be more robots.

In the future though there will be more robots.

Then my focus changed and I went more into writing. I majored in English and the idea of working for Intelligence organizations and Spy craft seemed interesting enough for me to really take seriously. Time went on and I did more and more research and what had been calling my name since I was little beckoned me even closer. The easiest way to work in that field is to join the military. I was old though, now 22, and it seemed far fetched. I did the research through and one thing led to another and I made the biggest mistake and the first steps towards the greatest trip into self-discovery I have ever taken.

College though. Man I miss it. I miss the smell of fall and the feeling of promise and hope that accompanied the start of every academic year. I miss my friends and I miss FARC. I planned a reunion this fall but to many people couldn’t make it. Maybe next year? Who knows?

McDavid was the first place I will credit for pushing me into a leadership role. After my first year I was an Arts Advocate and the President of Scam, Student Council at McDavid. I was and am intensely proud that with out even running I was voted into office. The older people, the man and women who had been around trusted me to carry on McDavid’s legacy and that is what I did. With a little help from my droid companion: R2-D2.

A compliment is detected.

A compliment is detected. (and I am not C3PO…I’m Mace Windu).

For 3 years I cut my teeth on leadership, organization and managed people who just wanted to help. As much as I learned about history, literature and political science I learned more about how all of those things. Dealing with attitudes and immaturity. Learning to stand up for myself and to forgive people. That was my biggest lesson, forgiving. More than any one subject in those first few years into adulthood I learned more about myself that I could have ever imagined.

I used to roll my eyes at the idea that anyone, especially me, didn’t “know themselves”. Psh. I knew myself. Addicts and weak people didn’t “know” themselves and it was just an easy excuse, something to blame their failures on. I understood everyone of my motivations and goals. It was so simple. Only a delusional, two-faced, cruel, immature fool didn’t know themselves. Or so I thought.

It turns out I was just moron enough in my early 20s to think I had everything about myself figured out. It took a bloody mouth from the Navy and Nuke School, a lonely wandering desperation and a lot of soul searching just to realize that most, if not all, of my motivations were unknown or even worse they were hallow. I was out to prove something, to anyone, to myself for years and I didn’t know it.

Now it feels like wasted years and time. I feel old, past my prime and fragile. My friends moved away and moved on with their lives. I survived two long deployments and worse yet I buried my Mother and was scarred, changed by all of it. My sense of humor is irreverent as always but my wit is slower not because I am slower but because I am calmer, more patient. I am heavier but understand my health and working out so much more. That’s all true but it is not the truth. I have said it before and it bares repeating. The first truth of my life, and the only one that matters, isn’t my will power, however strong. It isn’t my vision, however wide. It isn’t my luck, however dumb.

The truth is that I am never alone and never was. I always had friends and people who believed in me and my blog has always reflected that.

Resolution Round up: This time its personal

McBain

Running – A

I don’t hate running. Whew. That was close. I almost wrote that that I…um…hated running. And I don’t. I hate sucking at running. I get the runner’s high quickly and I used to be able to just…go. I lost it when I got lazy and with each day that passed that I didn’t run it became harder and harder to start again.

Now the goal is simple. Run. Run as much as I can before the winter comes and when it does come run in the bitter cold. Because that’s what a runner would do.

And that’s what I have been doing. Each step, wheezing and coughing, arms held up above my head I am desperate and exhausted running in the cool autumn mornings. I don’t like running but what I like, love and am addicted to is the knowledge that running is not something I want to do but at least 4 times a week I wake up, lace up my shoes, and push myself.

Dating – F

I don’t care anymore.

Fast Food – A

With my new diet I have one cheat day a week and that cheat day is only really a cheat meal. Fast food is expensive and I have effectively cut most of it out of my diet. I don’t even really have sweets that often either, not that I was a HUGE sweets person. Next year, if I keep this up, I might make another change in my diet.

When I say “diet” I don’t mean cutting out one or more things for a few days, weeks or months only to return to gorge on them again. I mean I have made permanent  changes in the amount of food and the types of food I eat.

I have even done the unthinkable and reduced the amount of bacon I eat.

I am just as shocked as you are Koala.

I am just as shocked as you are Koala.

Certifications – C

This one is hard to grade. The original goal was to get certifications not just for those specific trainings BUT to motivate me to go after what I want. I drug my feet and finally got Network+ back in May. I was working on CCNA but then I was already thinking about another certification. Then I registered for classes. So I am closer to my end goal but have not really kept up with my immediate or mid range goals. There is so much to this world that it is hard to stay focused.

Shitty Weekend

Every Friday night I make the resolution that the next few days, Saturday and Sunday, will be productive. The weekend before last  I dusted everything in my apartment, top to bottom, and cleaned up my room. Finally shelving books and putting away washed clothing and hooking up the dusty Nintendo Gamecube in my room. This weekend I am going to wash my bathroom mat, mop the linoleum floors and vacuum. My house was to be in order.

I am cleaning my toilet with a Clorox wipe and casually flush it down the bowl without thinking twice. I had done it many times before. The flush sounds weak, like its choking. I wait and flush again and still nothing. I stoop down, hand over my mouth and start to worry that my toilet is clogged.

I like for my AC to be on when I sleep but I woke up last night sweating. In the dark of night I turned the temperature down and realized that despite being set at 72 it was a broiling 75 in my apartment. Half asleep I ignore it and stumble back to bed. It is the last days of summer and so in the morning I have my patio door and windows open thinking that if I give it a break everything will be okay. I turn on my air conditioning back on and after running for a few hours it is still a balmy 78 degrees.

I go on cleaning binges but the one thing I hate to do is to take out the trash. This led to the infestation of flies after I forgot to take the trash out of my smallest can and let old cups from Italian ice give birth to Beelzebub’s swarm. At first there was one. Then I realized there was 2 and then 3. Before too long more than I could count or kill.

ENGLISH MAJOR!

ENGLISH MAJOR!

I cleaned, this time with avengeance. Target’s 409 brand knock off was everywhere. I hated flies and I know I had to get rid of them quickly.

If I told you I cared about Missouri Football before my sophomore year in high school I would be lying. My brain had just enough space for the NFL. I went to Mizzou and in the fall of 2003 we beat Nebraska for the first time in my life time, short as it was. My friends and I, doing 50 down a road I am sure was 40 mph, started to cheer and swerve and act like maniacs. In the recent past we have had more ups than downs. Recruiting major talent and winning the SEC East last season. Those were halcyon days. Better than any season I played in NCAA Football. Saturday as I was cleaning, my AC was blowing warm air, flies diving bombing me like P-51s attacking the last Japanese Battleship and my toilet was choked by my failure to realize or understand that Clorox wipes do not break down, my Missouri Tigers played poorly and lost to the Indiana Hoosiers. 31-27, a bitter defeat.

I go to sleep and make a silent promise with, life, fate, God, or whatever that tomorrow would be better. The Rams would play after all.

I woke up the next morning, after biasing in my own juices, to find that the clog went down on its own. Better already. I flush, testing it and watch as the toilet fills with water, choked again. Not after I…attempt to use it again. I won’t give you a blow-by-blow of what happened lets just say that my title of this section, “Shitty Weekend”, was more than a pun. So I break down and drive to the grocery store to buy enough liquid plumber to unclog Ron Jeremy’s shower drain. Over the course of the entire day I bought 5 more bottles of Draino, a plunger, a small toilet snake and a wet dry vac. I lost a bathroom rug and the rest of my Sunday.

I would fight the beast.

I would fight the beast.

Sundays are sacred. Not because of God but because of the NFL. I love watching football. Not as much as I love watching the St. Louis Rams. I find the game on at a local bar and watch my St. Louis Rams run the score up, 21-0, on the Cowboys and I am overjoyed. THERE is no way…NO WAY…they could lose this game. A team with a defense as good as ours is going to hold the Cowboys and we are going to win, asserting our selves as a good team, with some problems BUT a winner none-the-less.

I watch, in public, for the next few hours as my team loses 34-31. I go home, defeated, and attempt to clean my toilet again. After washing my hands long and hard enough to crack the skin on my knuckles and throwing away everything that the toilet water touched and the Draino stained I shower and get ready for the next day.

I’m not sure why I am telling you this. Why I would share such a crappy weekend with you. I had a point but I don’t remember if this was it or not. I did learn that the S-bend for a toilet is too much for the acidic gel of Draino to over come. I learned never to flush what shouldn’t be flushed. I also learned that a combination of Vinegar and fruit scented dish soap will attract and drown flies. Vinegar attracts more flies than honey.

Who knows. Maybe I am getting better at this adulthood/life thing.

Until Next month and thanks for reading.

~ Adam

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