Perspective And Inspiration

I don’t know how it happens but every so often in life I stray off the path and get a little lost. I lose the big picture¬† and the priority of people who should mean the most. I basically lose my map on where to go from here.

Sure there are my own theories for these times of discombobulation but one has to ask, why? Am I running toward something or running away? What are my true fears in life; failing or being alone? Is there really something more to all this?

I guess I am just reaching for perspective and inspiration.

I sent this poem to a dear friend of mine. These immortal words were written by the ALS warrior, Jon Blais.  I keep this poem in my wallet and read it whenever I need to center my thoughts.

“It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living,
I want to know what you paid for.
It doesn’t interest me how old you are,
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love,
For your dreams,
For the adventure of being a live.

I want to know if you can live with failure,
Yours and mine,
And still shout at the edges of a lake, river or mountain,
Yes, I am a warrior.

It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have,
I want to know if you can get up after a night of grief and despair,
Warry and bruised to the bone,
To do what needs to be done for someone you love,

I want to know if you can be alone with yourself,
And truly like the company you keep
In the empty moments of your life
And remember me,
Your friend.”

It never ceases to amaze me how people confuse kindness and love for weakness. I guess nice guys do finish last but I didn’t know we were racing. George, you said it best.

“What do we live for if not to make life less difficult for each other.

-George Eliot

calvin-n-hobbes-733953 You need to be with people who get you. To be able to accept someone through faults, imperfections and quirky little peccadilloes with no thoughts of selfish gains is what life should be about. It’s tough to put your honest self out there and minuscule imperfections weigh heavy on people you care about. That’s a great sign to pack the car and head for better abodes. Life is too short for that.

neda-iran-videoSee? Life is short and every time you think it’s hard or dull remember, there are people who see it end every single second of the day. I saw this video the other day and it brought me right back to Bosnia and other war experiences I have had. These images change you and they should. Good people in your life understand that and are sensitive to it. These images should invoke passion about ending violence or at least touch something in you other that chalking it up to a buzz-kill. Be with those who know and care where you have been. RIP Neda.

I guess this post was a little more self absorbed than I wanted it to be. There are times I believe we all stray and need to realign in both body and mind. I do believe that happiness is a choice but man, it’s choice that hides in the most odd places. Judas Priest said you don’t have to be old to be wise. I believe that and strive for it each day. Even on days when I need a nudge from the Blazeman.

This is how I choose to live my life.

  • Being alone doesn’t have to be lonely.
  • True strength is hard to quantify. It is invisible physically but it shows when it counts and everyone will see it.
  • Ask for a shoulder and don’t hold back on giving one.
  • Honesty is never regrettable. It is when people love you for someone who you are not. Be you. God made you and last time I checked He was perfect… or something like that.
  • Tell people you love them. And do it often.
  • Don’t dwell on what should have been, concentrate on what can be.
  • Apathy sucks. Be passionate because it inspires.
  • Run like you are not planning a return trip. Always look ahead.
  • Don’t use those around you for gain unless you can give it back to them.
  • Compassion is why we are alive. Truly, it is the only reason we are breathing right this very minute. So don’t hold back on giving it.
  • Complacency, rejection and even major hurts happen. Don’t let it harden you and don’t let it weaken you. This too shall pass.
  • Never drink milk before or after an intense cardio session. They lied. It does a body no good.
  • Hold out your hand if you need to. Someone will grab it. I believe in that.
  • Smile at people.
  • It is true that there are few people that have your best interest in mind. That’s no reason to be a dick.
  • Never be ashamed of being you and don’t feel sorry for yourself. Just try to do better each day.
  • Call your parents. And if you can not, pray to them. They love you no matter where they are.
  • Admit to being wrong and never hold back an apology.
  • Share.

Ok, that was a preachy list. But I felt I needed to write that. Life is a series of choices. Those are mine. Love ya.

British Metal and Punk: The Story Of My Life

I have to confess that I have a few weaknesses in life. I eat Reduced Fat Triscuts everyday and there is no telling when I will get tired of them. It’s more of an addiction really. The chance of me watching an episode of Benson without the deafening crunch every other minute may result in a moment of clearity when I relieze that the show isn’t funny after all. I also can’t function right without coffee. Like most working people, this is a neccessary part of the day and without it, there is a real possibility of a pink slip. But I think my obsession with British Metal and Punk is the least known among my peers. Currently I am working as an instructor for 737 flight systems and you can imagine the Dudley Do-Rights I work with. So here are a few songs, the stories of my life that pop in my head when they are played and count the number of times I say “awesome” and “kick ass” because it may be alot.

Judas Priest. I don’t care what people think about this band they ‘kick ass” and everytime Rob Halford hits that screaming note people should remove all eyeware because they may shatter causing eye problems. Between the speed of K.K. Downing’s guitar and lyrics that can coerse idiot teens to blow their heads off, this band is on my top ten.

I really got into Priest when I was stationed in Bosnia. There was long periods of extreme boredom and to keep our spirits up we took part in multi-country competions which includes many mile rucksack marches and military exercise drills. One particular one was called the Dancon race that was hosted by the Danish army. This race was a 30 mile ruck race that scaled two mountains on the hottest and dryest day of the year. I will tell you that I was rocking Judas Priest’s, Green Manilishi when I noticed Jesus himself walking right next to me. I have to admit he was taller than I expected someone to be from 25 A.D. Whether it was a halucination or not we had a great talk about pizza, socks and why in All In The Family did Archy Bunker’s wife run and never walk. I can’t listen to Green Manilishi without the need to go to church.

The Clash. I think everyone has a Clash favorite and a story to go with it. They started a new chapter in not just punk but in music as a whole. I think music critics were about as speechless as The Clash’s dentists were. One thing is for sure, rock/ punk/ blues/ reagge/ R&B/ polka/ chant/ gossple/ and country were turned on their ear when The Clash came on the scene.

My best pal in high school was Simon Hollier. Even though we went to different schools, we hung out everyday after school and drove around in his Dodge Shadow singing to any classic rock song that was on Z93 or 96 Rock. One particular day we were driving through a nieghborhood and came to an intersection, screaming The Clash’s “Tommy Gun” from the top of our lungs when a car full of nare do wells pulled behind us and honked. With out thinking (which is typical of Simon) Simon gave the middle finger and it was about that time I noticed they were the guys from the local Exon garage and above all there were five of them. Well, we took off and they of course chased us. One thing about Simon is that his flight skills are pretty bad and he hit a curb and blew out his front right tire. We coasted into a Methodist church parking lot and before I knew it I was being pulled out the window by the neck. I’m pretty sure these guys were the typical mechanic high school drop outs and we were most likely going to die. After a few well placed socks to my face irony took control and out of the church a class of black belts came to our rescue and beat the snot out of the mechanics and it was a merciless beating too. I like to think it was divine intervetion. Having a Methodist karate teacher demand the beaten mechanics to apologize to us and repeat the line, “We are losers and we stink” was priceless. I still can’t listen to “Tommy Gun” without my neck hurting.

Iron Maiden. Even the most musically declined person can recognize Iron Maiden for what it is and that is British metal at its’ zenith. Their arena performances are the greatest in the world and anyone who has been to a show will leave both deaf and speechless. I know and I still have a ring in my left ear after 15 years.

I was on the wrong end of a disciplin hearing in high school when I thought it would be a good idea to share the album “666 Number Of The Beast” with Mr. Patino’s English class. We began each class with a favorite song of the day and everyone had their turn. I went to a Catholic high school so my choice was definitly a conflict of interest. The speech about the origions of the number 666 at the beginning of the song was enough to get me excused from the class and two days of detension. But there was method to my madness because I skipped my English homework the night before and this gamble paid off. From that day on my class mates saw me in a whole new rebelious light. Either that or they thought I was a Satanist.

Motorhead. There are few rockers I would rather have a pint with than Lemmy. He embodies metal in in every form. From his ability to never drink whiskey from a glass but rather straight from the bottle to that weird mole thing on his face, he rocks harder than any other. In interviews he maybe a little hard to understand but when he is on stage you know exactly what he says; tell your parents to stick it, nail hot chicks, drink an inordanant amount of booze and eat the rich. “Awesome and kick ass.”

I wish I had a good story about Motorhead but I don’t. I just couldn’t leave a British metal/punk post without including Lemmy. I would be afraid he may hunt me down in my sleep.

Well, I have shared what few know about me. Just don’t tell anyone. I don’t want them to find out about my leather pants or my Camaro. There will be more added later but i have to get back to work. I wish this was work.

*Not proofread so it has a number of errors I am sure.*

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