Resolving Unresolved Resolutions

New Year’s resolutions used to be kind of fun and interesting.

If you were anything like me, these things to be resolved would begin as last minute observations and future hopes I would forge into a mini-contract from me to me. I would actually tally a list of small and/or large goals scrawled on paper and seal them into an envelope. Generally this document of sudden importance included a promise to oneself of some kind improvement over the previous calendar year — which seemingly vanished as quickly as it had appeared.

At year’s end, I would open my envelope to review what I had resolved for the year.

And if you’re like me, not much in any of the to do list got done. Despite the epic failure of the previous promises, I would regroup and assemble my hopes for the ‘New Year’ and write to me again.  Rinse and repeat disappointment adds up pretty fast when reviewing all of those lost opportunities to be a better me and climb those big dreams of a dreamy, bright future.

Life happens and as such it wears down that youthful optimism.  About fifteen years ago, I ripped open the last of my resolution lists and realized the magical turning of the calendar at the end of New Year’s Eve isn’t really magical.

If you’re like me, at some point, you sat down to do a list of those end of year promises and essentially said, “Screw this, I’m going to wing it this year.”

Of course, a decade or so of “winging it” produces eerily similar results lists of resolutions.

So when life gets so busy and begins to pass one by, where does a person go when goals go unmet and the improvement meter hasn’t budged in months or years?

Perhaps an evolving and well thought out personal blog is the place to be. Maybe promises or resolutions made in the public eye or the prying eyes of the ever watchful world wide web will push me to do better and be better.

Or not.

What if the path of western civilization philosophy has led my life strategy astray?

You know the basics. We all need to strive for perfection, be the best, be rich, be the most wise, and be the strongest. Get all A’s in school, be the best society can offer, drive the hot car, buy the biggest house possible and be the boss. The standards are set high, and if you can’t be perfect, try to be as close to it as possible.

No participation trophies in life. Win it all or you are a failure.

Right? I mean that’s not the exact mantra of our current world, but it sure feels like the outline I grew up with.

Many of my resolutions are unresolved. My goals, based on the level of perfection I was taught to aim for are generally unmet.  I got a bunch of A’s in school. But I failed some classes too. The cycle continues through work – promotions, demotions, fired and failed to or impossible health and beauty standards set by photoshopped perfect people on all of the magazine covers. How rich is rich these days? Billionaire or bust?

And yet, with each New Year, we can do a slight if not full reset. A promise of a bigger, brighter more perfect tomorrow.

We should strive for better. We should aim high. I liked all the A’s I got. I enjoyed a quick climb up a corporate ladder. I love winning and when my teams win.

On the flip side, losses happen. Pain happens. Reality can be cruel when our model of ultimate achievement breaks down.

I’ve learned it is okay I didn’t hit all my improvement goals in a timely fashion. It is okay to forgive me for not hitting every goal – yet. Maybe unmet resolutions are a good thing. Perfection sounds great, but maybe it is cool to be human, flaws and all.  I’ve learned from those crazy lists of promises is — not to make any crazy lists of promises to myself or anyone else.

I generally resolve to do better as available.

Improvement still works on a Wednesday morning in the middle of June. Or tomorrow afternoon while stuck in traffic. Better can happen being nice to the cashier at the gas station or a random act of kindness to folks any day of the year.

Little things here and there. No big lists, no big letdowns, and no impossible standards basically means I don’t let myself down with a list of things I hoped to accomplish in a single year. Time flies anyway, is a year enough time to get it all done?

Now I aim for good stuff like love more, forgive often, hug good people and try again the next morning.

If you’re getting older like me, maybe the reality of simply dusting ourselves off after mistakes is a good start. Or the fact that a New Year is a good opportunity to be a best version of ourselves, but so is next Tuesday night.

 

 

 

 

Mile Marker

Memory is a funny thing.

The first chill in the air after a long, hot summer snaps you back into autumn mode and a series of memories associated with the seasonal passage of time.  Another season prepares to turn. Another mile marker of sorts on the road of life.

Add in a specific task from the past with the cold, crisp morning air and the memory goes back to work.  The mind reaches back to assemble relatable images and fragments in order to present a usable flashback segment from this lifespan.

In this case, older me was driving to a swimming pool and the recall shuffled back several decades to younger me doing something very similar. Cold air and swimming find substantive space in my memories of high school swim team mornings.

I was always impressed by the teenage version of me for simply getting out of bed at 4:30 every morning for the late fall early winter high school season.  I would spend several  months crawling out of a heated waterbed into near frigid, rarified mile high air and then into an unreasonably cold recreation center swimming pool.

As an added bonus our coach insisted the team carpool as much as we could for bonding and accountability, team building, etc. Seniors on the team generally had to fit as many underclassmen as they could – or in some cases as many as they could stand, into their vehicles for travel to practice.

In my case, I was able to team up with Steve, my very good friend and fellow junior. A friendly face helped, but our driver was a senior who was not thrilled with the whole carpool concept.  His vehicle was a Subaru Brat. Our driver was Brad.  And Brad was a bit of a brat himself.  At least at the start of the carpool time.

If you’ve never seen a Brat, they are unique and in my mind, very impractical vehicles.  A micro pick-up of sorts, tiny in the front and a tiny open air ‘cargo’ bed fitted with a rear facing jump seat. On a high volume day, the car could uncomfortably fit two in the front and two more in the back.  During the first few weeks of travel to practice, me and Steve got the magical experience of the open air cargo area jump seat, while Brad was nice and warm up front.

Late fall and winter morning air, plus some windchill from a moving vehicle and there were some mornings when that unreasonably cold swimming pool was a welcome end to that journey to practice.  Eventually, Steve and I got to trade time up front with Brad, who eventually saw us as teammates and not cold cargo.  When it was snowing, we even crammed three of us into a space where three humans did not really fit. A mundane trip to practice becomes quite exciting when one has to quickly move their lower extremities out of the way of the driver’s hand trying to shift gears.

It was actually quite a bit of fun.  The whole swim team experience stays with me.  Many of us actually swam on two teams, the local city team and the high school team in order to push our conditioning to the limit.  At the apex of the season, we would hit five miles a day in the water.  I get tired driving five miles these days, much less attempting to swim such a distance.

Fast forward to today, and I still am able to be impressed by what younger me accomplished.  It brings out a series of memories and lifelong milestones or mile markers along the way.  Memories jump back to my first tackle in football, that first day of keeping my bicycle balanced to ride it on a regular basis, my first car, my first kiss, my first love, and my first time…well, like I said, memory is funny thing.  Flashes from the past triggered by a simple change in weather, like the morning with a chill in the air in any given year along the way.

I now hope the younger version of me is slightly impressed.  Three decades later I have found sanctuary again in moving across the water.  I am far slower than before, yet there is peace found in the rhythm of swimming at a reasonable pace.  I can think about what chores I need to get done, the stories I want to write and plan upcoming family events on an invisible mental calendar. And then I hit the wall and turn back, thinking more or less as I continue on my way.

It has only been two weeks back in the water, but it connects to all of those other times I spent moving from one end of the pool to the other.  In my head, five miles a day was once routine as we knocked out 5200-5600 yards in two hours.  Easy mode, right?

Well, old me nearly drowned himself topping 1100 yards in 45 minutes last week. Then I got to 1200 the next time in, then 1250 and this morning, there was something in the air.  It was more than a chill in the air.  There was an air of confidence too.

Young me was taunting the old man a bit.

After a brief warm-up this morning, old me crushed the timed lap by nine seconds compared to previous old guy workouts.  Take that younger me.

The pool this morning was a little bit colder than usual.  And I felt a little stronger.

I pushed along rather nicely and knocked out 1825 yards.  A mere 65-yards over a mile. But I’ll take it.

It is not as exciting as becoming a father or buying that first car, but a literal mile marker in the pool once again. Be it a mile marker in life, or in the pool, I may be hitting a few more new goals in and out of the water.  And maybe I’m just getting warmed up.

You go old me.

Swim on…

 

Hate Needs a Vacation

Some of the best father to son life lessons are accomplished more with subtlety rather than screaming or violence.

All I said was, “I hate the Oakland Raiders.”

I thought my fanatic football fan father would totally agree.  They were the arch rival to our favorite team.  I knew a lot of kids at school hated them too. When playing the Raiders, my favorite team basically had to keep their helmets buckled another heads on a swivel to avoid cheap shots.

His response was, “Really?”

“Yes I hate them. I always have.”

“Do you know what the word hate means?”

“Of course, it means I really do not like this football team.”

“Hate is a stronger word than that, it should not be used lightly.  Or with any kind of a sports team. It is just sports — teams compete,” he explained, and went back to watching the game.

By expressing my strong dislike, I was essentially correct among standard definitions.  However, I grabbed the dictionary off the shelf and read that it also includes descriptions like “extreme aversion” to something or someone.

The word extreme hung with me along after.

And that was the “aha moment” he was hoping would sink in.  I was certainly not converted to cheering for the dread silver and black, the most penalized, push the limits of sportsmanship Oakland Raiders.  I still do not like or appreciate that football club, but the point was made, I didn’t hate them.

The real lesson kicked in after that.  Who or what did I really, truly hate?

There were plenty of my fellow high school students that I was sure I hated.  But when I examined our various disagreements, it was all over silly stuff.  Kids in different clicks, or looked at me weird or thought they were somehow better than me, they all made the list.

I realized it took a lot of mental energy to actively hate someone.  I had to constantly reinforce those extreme feelings and rationalize my intense return stares or the throwing elbows or shoulders in the hallway between classes.  All of it turned out to be a waste of time.

Once I examined each situation, I understood I really didn’t hate anyone at the school.  I’m human, there were still some folks on the list who are never getting invited over for a barbecue, but there was no one horrific enough to earn my permanent, extreme dislike. By the time I graduated, the word hate evolved quite a bit for me.

As the rest of the modern world turns, some other humans need to examine the true meaning of hate.

The current list kicks off with political differences, Democrats hate Republicans, Republicans hate Democrats, continues through specific theological differences, legal questions, race, gender and sexual orientation.  To name a few.

Of course, not everyone in each group hates everyone from the other, but when one tunes into media, social media and other mass communication elements, the haters appear to dominate the bandwidth.

Which leads to the latest horror show in Orlando, Florida where a hateful human massacred at least 50 other humans.  One has to be hateful and maybe a little insane to hurt so many on his way out of this world.

Here is the part of this story where I’m usually supposed to try to solve or soothe the crisis in which we find ourselves.  Or where I scratch my head and wonder how such horrible feelings exist.

I know why.  Ignorance.

It is that simple.  My father called me out on the improper utilization of the word hate.  I was ignorant in my application of the term.  People who hate all gay men and women are flat out ignorant.  People who hate all Muslims because of the action of a fraction of that faith are flat out ignorant.

I understand the argument against my position.  I know there are many very intelligent people who hate on all sides of these issues.  But I didn’t say anyone here was dumb.  My claim is specifically that hate is fueled by ignorance.  A lack of knowledge or education is the simplest way to explain the term.

For example, one has to completely know — absolutely know a substantial number of gay humans or Muslim humans to understand all humans are all unique individuals.  We love to team up and group think, but when push comes to shove, each person has a different perception and approach to each life scenario.  But lumping people in “for or against” columns generates an uninformed extreme dislike of the perceived opposition.

The point being, those who are somehow happy their viewpoint was ‘proven’ that all Muslims are bad, are flat out ignorant about the millions of non-terrorist Muslims.  The people who judged gay people as somehow deserving the horrors of being killed as loving, caring human beings at a night club, are flat out ignorant.

Hate or extreme hate, ignorance and the misery that follows should not be viewed lightly.  If we are to find meaning while we are here, this frightening lack of knowledge about one another needs to be addressed.

Until then, buckle up and keep your head on a swivel.

We Now Return to Our Show Already in Progress

To blog or not to blog is sometimes the question.

When it gets to be nearly two months since the last public writing entry, the question evolves into, “Do you remember how to do this blogging thing?”

Why yes, yes I do.

The substantive absence here was not a severe case of the mind playing tricks on me with a lack of available consonents then organized into words, sentences and paragraphs, and/or more commonly referred to as “writer’s block” was not exactly at fault either.

It couldn’t be writer’s block, like my wise professor taught me, there is no such thing. However, I have discovered there can be some time in between decent ideas to share.

Initially, the blog delay was a refocus on the fiction fun I usually work on after a lovely posting here among the random readers of the world.  The stories, one contest, a couple poems and three hundred edits later, I realized we hadn’t visited here in a while.  And then it became a bit of a subject matter problem.

What to talk about with all the craziness in the world?

Election madness in the good old U.S. of A. seems easy enough, but those opinions appear to be numerous and just as confusing as most of the candidates themselves.  A serious and important batch of issues in the political world, but I’m not seeing a lot of solutions there on the horizon.  Maybe no politics in here for a bit longer.

The world of entertainment is certainly a topic embraced here at the Tymes on a fairly regular basis.  We could throw a virtual hug at the Oscar winners or talk about whether cultural politics need to be included in the movie award business, but that too seems redundant at the moment in the blog-o-verse.  More diversity sounds good to me, I’m just happy C3PO, R2D2 and BB-8 got some live stage time.  Robots and androids are the future, more power to them.

Travel is always fun, and after a couple nice pieces here about last year’s adventures, I could always relay more of those escapees here for you, but the winter has offered few road trips thus far.  We did get to see a Sherlock Holmes exhibit at the museum, and any chance to mention one of my favorite writers, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle is always a good thing, it just does not rise to the worthiness of a full on blog.

The exhibit after all, missed the mark.  Mr. Doyle created Holmes to have a character who could deduce the the clues in front of the audience, and not magically solve a mystery at the end of the book with no rhyme or reason to how the protagonist discovered the answers.  Our exhibit had the interactive clue seeking and then presented a magical answer with no way for the audience to find the actual solution.

It was still fun.  Just not enough to fill up all the empty space here.

There are still plenty of life anecdotes in the arsenal to tell, but after a lengthy absence, it may be too soon to jumpstart things here with a happy or sad recollection.

Best to share some thoughts than none at all.

The writing continues, this is the year to publish items other than the words here in this normally lovable corner of the Internet.  Two short stories are about ready to go, a website to tie all this together nicely (blogs, stories, and requisite social media buttons) is being developed and really 2016 is just getting started.

Time flies, but as a wise online meme described, I am the pilot.

The ‘block’ real or imagined has been removed, and away we go. Again.

Thanks for checking in, please set your tray tables up, and return your seats to their original upright positions, we’re about ready to take off.

 

Some Good Tymes in 2015

First, I need to thank each and every human who discovered this blog over the last 12-months.  Whether you got here by invitation or by accident, the overwhelming kind words, support and feedback are key ingredients moving forward.

The dream of words published beyond my meandering anecdotes here is yet to be realized, but I can safely say, I generated more words here on my stories than any previous year of existence.  At the busiest point of my journalism career, I hit up to 15 bylines a week.  It is vastly different from the creative side.  Some days were editing days only, some days were research only, and then of course, my favorite way to warm up my wordsmith skills happened right here at Lundon Tymes.

By the numbers, I wrote 51 blogs in all.  One shy of the one per week goal I set last January.  Some of them generated interest long after they hit the ‘net, and others barely caught a first glance.  The U.S. of A was the primary source for this year’s audience, but some of you are from far away places.  WordPress noted that the United Kingdom had a few curious readers show up here, and the biggest surprise of all to me, was Russia was third in the list of total readers.

My Russian readers trend in when I talk up one my favorite series by George R.R. Martin.  It is nice to know we can connect on a sword and sorcery kind of level.  Russian readership pushed Canada to fourth place, I will try harder to provide entertaining topics for the Canucks in our studio audience.

Germany, India, Brazil and Australia top out the International readers who visited here in 2015.   Which is pretty cool since many writers suggested starting a new blog could be a wasted effort.  That the world is burned out on this form of communication.  I understand the concern, I only have so many moments in the day to read, and my choices need to be strategic to get the best value out of that time.  All things that help the creative process.

The trick is, all of us have limited time to read, write, work or relax, regardless of vocation.  So again, anyone who wandered in here, I’m grateful and hopefully the stop was worth your time.

The most read topic was the author info, which is kind of fun.  It also might mean I should re-write that and make it more interesting for next year.  The second most read piece for the Tymes was the sixth blog I wrote early in the year, If a blog falls in the forest. In essence, I think that one hit a sweet spot for kindred spirits like me who are trying to build an audience from nothing.

Edged out of first place by a couple views, was the semi-controversial Is HBO Winning the Game of Thrones?  The answer is of course is yes they are. However, I still contend drift further away from source material too often just to throw in spicy misogynistic elements.  I don’t know if my Russian readers agreed with me or not at this point, they are a quiet bunch.

A happy surprise ended up as the third most read topic of 2015, as a simple recollection of one of those days I knew I a storyteller in the making.  A little kid telling other little kids how cool a summertime back yard can really be in The First Story.

One my favorites, another youthful memory, A 12-year old Walks into a Bar somehow made the most read blogs of the year as well.

A remembrance of my very cool Dad jumped in the year’s top five, The Letter Jacket – An Ode to Dad was likely helped a lot by family members and the many family friends who also miss the one and only David Lund.

There are a few more topics that made a late push, but I will leave fate to either discover or ignore those.  I’ve recovered enough ground at this point.  It is time to move forward with the changing calendar.

Another moment to change the writing from a dream to reality, another chance to improve and be a better writer, a better person, husband, father, brother, son or friend.

I was a bit of a recluse in 2015.  Outside of family travel and events, the focus was on getting words down on paper or into computer memory.  I probably need to get out more, continue to overhear real conversations, observe and report on the weird or unique elements that reflect our humanity.

And thus we’re off to new adventures, new stories, new blog bits and another lap around the sun.  Thanks for reading and being, and here are to more joyous Tymes ahead.

Have a very safe and happy New Year!

 

Star Wars Lives

I didn’t get to elbow my way into an opening night viewing, or spend countless hours in a line waiting to see it, but a few days into a new era of Star Wars films, I finally saw the newest chapter.

If you’re hunting for spoilers, this isn’t the place today for it.  Still too many folks on the outside looking just yet.  A more complete spoiler filled review awaits on the horizon like a pair of Tatooine suns.

How pervasive is the George Lucas creation in our society?  Well, Tatooine passes my spellcheck for one, with or without caps the application is able to reference a fictional planet from a fictional film filled with fictional people.

Life imitates art in such a case.

Ultimately, yes, it is a just a film, or as good fortune would have it, a series of films.  In the months leading up to the highly anticipated film release, it was interesting to see some blowback from those souls who had yet to see anything Star Wars on the big or little screen.

I do get it. I know the world never universally agrees on anything. But it gets pretty close with this story.  It has a bit of everything, for all ages including those required elements fans expect from the franchise; a battle of good versus evil, wacky aliens, space ships and light saber battles, oh my.

Time magazine did a recent feature where they attempted to explain the “genius of Star Wars” as they see it.

For me, the genius is George Lucas took bits from his childhood, spiritualistic stuff from eastern philosophy – by accident or on purpose, borrowed from some of the timeless tales we enjoy across genres, and packaged the standard ‘heroes journey’ format in space, complete with updated swords made of light.

It had to be that specific combo, brewed in that creative brain to do it all with a straight face.  A serious approach to serial fiction.  And it literally paid off.  So many directors would have allowed ‘B’ movie cheese to creep in on a space opera.  Others would have cut corners on special effects to save money and have those effects look corny instead of cool.

Star Wars was never a brand new story, it was a uniquely reformatted classic for the big screen and a more modern world. A hero overcomes adversity, learns to be a better being and stays true to a more just existence.  Like Beowulf before him, Luke Skywalker tries his best to defeat a great evil threatening all of society.

As Luke was a bored kid trapped among mundane chores, looking to the stars to find adventure.  What kid hasn’t done that before?  And yet the wise Yoda warns us against such fancy, “Action. Excitement. A Jedi craves not these things.”

A kid has to grow up, be serious and kick some serious bad guy ass against impossible odds to win the day.  Luke had his hands full.

My other big heroes?  Those daring rebels.  Big, bad Darth Vader fills the screen, cutting through doors with an army of stormtroopers behind him, and those rebel troopers hold their ground, well at least as long as they could, to protect their precious cargo.

Nothing complex in the film, but I was hooked.  A dash of Shakespeare with some family tragedy crammed in between action scenes, but again, all of it thrown together really worked.

I was 12-years old in 1977.  I got to see the original feature on a family vacation with my cousins as we visited California for the first time.  In that era of movies, among Jaws and Godfather, it was an instant classic all its own.  But it was science fiction.  More fiction than science, and it didn’t matter.  It was fun that stayed with you.  Star Wars lived well beyond the big screen, it lived through books, comic books, action figures, ships, board games, role playing games, and a really bad Christmas TV special.

Of course, controversy and criticism follows anything that makes a lot of money or gets extremely sewn into the public conscious.  George made some weird changes, re-released new versions every five minutes, went a little wacky at times during follow up films and eventually he tired of the battles beyond the big screen and he sold his baby away.

Hey, at four billion dollars, I’ll listen to just about anyone about anything.

JJ Abrahams got the nod to relaunch the formula. And I think the biggest high pressure hand off in creative history has paid off again.  Younger, more diverse characters to compliment the aging classic characters.  Good guys, bad guys and a plot twist have me back on the edge of my entertained seat.

There are more serious franchises, more critically acclaimed stories, but there are no apologies owed to anyone. I love it.  Star Wars is fun.  If you hate fun, stay away from this stuff.  Escapist fun for a couple hours with the family observing our bold fictional favorites.

Until I can a hold a real life blue hued light saber that doesn’t require batteries, or fly an actual X-Wing fighter, Star Wars lives on the big screen, and the little screen once it comes out on blue ray, digital and DVD formats.  Maybe I can get away with craving some excitement.

When it comes to checking out Star Wars, “Do or do not, there is no try.”

Ignore Yoda’s advice at your own peril. We could use you, as Jedi always seem to be in short supply. Your choice, as we can take down the Death Star with or without you.

After all, the Force is with us…

An Evening With Kevin Smith

We sort of got to hang out with Kevin Smith last night.  Not in the he came over to the house and had a couple beers with the family kind of way.  My wife, youngest son and me walked around the frigid Colorado December air and found Mr. Smith at the Boulder Theater.  Twenty rows back, in an uncomfortable chair and in the noisy bar area, was about as close as we could get in the 850-chair venue.

He passed along some humorous anecdotes, dropped some big time Hollywood names, a substantial pile of f-bombs and some bits I was not expecting.  Dude was throwing down serious wisdom.  Yes, the guy who happily generates genital jokes, rolls around in nerdy comic book references, and rocks the hockey jersey wardrobe worked in some sagely candor to all who would listen in that small theater.

Boiling it all away, it could have been dismissed as a ‘follow your dreams kids’ mantra passed down from high upon a stage to the wannabes below.  But there was more to it than that.  It was a big hearted man, with great empathy for all creative souls to do far more than follow dreams.  He insisted we go and  make those things happen.  Will, perseverance, whimsy, whatever it takes — but go for it without sweating the critics who surround us all in this life.

Some readers who know me may jump in at this point and remind me I can’t write about Kevin Smith objectively. It’s true.  I’m a fan. More than a fan, ever since I watched the movie Clerks in complete awe, I see him more as a brother who I haven’t got to hug yet.

In awe of Clerks?

Yes.

Because he truly made something from nothing.  And he did it by begging, borrowing, selling off personal items, applying for way too many credit cards, all to make a film he knew only he could make.

That was the perspective I learned last night.  The motivation I’d not heard before, despite years of lingering about as a fan of most of his work, and now as a fan of his endless perseverance.

He didn’t make Clerks for me.  Initially, I thought he did.  If you haven’t seen it, in essence it is a long day with two wacky dudes inside convenience stores talking about Star Wars and lame customers, and two crazy dudes outside the store, dealing and dancing. Throw in a little romance, some lasagna and dead guy in the bathroom and you have a fascinating day in the life in Jersey that stays with you.

Easy, right?  Go deep into debt, roll the dice on a little film and live a life of magic and wonder.  I think too many Kevin Smith fans look at it that way and maybe this tour in particular has him trying to explain, it ain’t that easy, but it is worth the hard work and effort.  The stuff people forget is Mr. Smith has had to constantly reload, regroup, and try again.  Create more, do more, sell more, work harder, and as he put it, ‘fail a bunch of times’ before finding more success.

I did laugh at some of the anecdotes.  I love Ben Affleck stories.  And it bums me out Bruce Willis is a complete ass.  But that information was strictly entertainment bits based on personal experience.  The message I heard was loud and clear.  If you have a creative soul, or big story to tell, don’t dream it, do it.

I was going to get in the question line at the theater last night, despite knowing so few questions get answered.  And the fan in me kind wanted the bonding moment to point out all of the places our lives intersect — if presented in those Venn Diagram circles — both of us love to write, love movies, love comics, love Tarantino, worked retail, owned comic shops, love Batman, lost our dads, he’s a Kevin with a brother named Donald, I’m a Donald with a younger brother named Kevin, roller coaster with weight issues, I’ve done radio and he does podcasts.

I keep thinking if I shake the family tree hard enough, a Smith has to drop out of there.  We have to be related.

At least I know we’re kindred spirits.  And the funny part was I started this writing trek this year, to make something from nothing.  It has been equally joyous and frustrating.  I keep looking at my words and thinking, “Yeah, this ain’t Mice and Men.  Or Plato would never waste his time with genre fiction.  Or damn this stuff sucks.”

Sagely Kevin Smith served some wisdom.  It doesn’t matter if my work isn’t meeting a social standard, or an entertainment norm.  I need to finish these stories for me.  I need to tell stories only I am capable of telling.  Send my perspective out into the world and someone may love it, or not.  But the process is worth it.  Fail a bunch, maybe succeed a little, or not at all.

I always feel better writing, so I’m going with that.  Some of the stories I worry about being rejected will now get sent out.  I have a kind, generous loving support from my wife and a pen, which is far more than a lot of folks have.

Just like that. Back on track. Wisdom from my man teaching me to go for it and how not to send inappropriate text messages.  It also does not hurt to know Johnny Depp.  See, I’m smarter already.

A little kick in the butt from hanging out with Kevin Smith.

Nice.