Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Things I am Afraid Of: Part One

Fear. It is one of those words that is hard to define and is probably different for each person. Try it with yourself. What does fear, to be afraid mean to you? Sure you may be afraid of snakes, death, horror movies; but what about failure, love, losing love, God? People are afraid of both the tangible and the intangible, and some fear quickens the heart while others plunge the stomach. But for me it all boils down to a few things.

Very few things make me panic, which I consider to be the extreme display of fear, but certain things make me uncomfortable. I made a list of these things and want to flesh them out as much as possible in a best attempt to understand the source of each. If you have ever read Dune, you will remember this quote about Fear: “I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.” Dense at first glance, but simple at its core. To paraphrase: Fear binds and limits freedom, destroying the potential a person can obtain. Fear is real and must not be avoided, instead embrace it so that you might understand it. With understanding comes control, and you can dissolve the fear through an act of will leaving only a stronger version of yourself. We do this often, but mostly subconsciously and on a small scale. Consider the fear of going to the doctor. You quickly see the limitations on your health and well being that your fear poses, you conquer it by analyzing the risks and accepting them. The fear is like background noise if you do it right, a caged animal that even if free could never threaten you again. Having said all of that, I will confess that there are still areas in my life that I am afraid.

The first on the list is Sex. ** Sister Warning: Explicit Content ** I am uncomfortable with sex. I get that funny feeling of being naked when I am well… naked. And it has proven totally emasculating. I have such a grounded hold on life 99% of the time, that when something knocks me off balance, I do not know what to with myself. Sex is one of those things that happen in that 1%. My Christian upbringing, failed past relationships, and my relatively conservative nature have done nothing to help my anxiety with sex. I once had a girlfriend who asked me to do something I considered ‘freaky’ and I was so nervous… well lets just say it was a failure. I did not know it then, but am slowly coming to this realization, but I have been only scratching the surface of sex all along. I have been entirely too immune from vulnerability to get into the thick of it. By immune, I should say mentally isolated from vulnerability, I would simply not allow myself to step into that realm. It is funny that my greatest weakness in life is revealed through one of the most primitive acts. I have been building a damn strong fortress for a long time, and I always saw acts of vulnerability (confessions of love, crying, true intimacy, complete honesty) as potential cracks. For a while I have been on a road in the opposite direction tearing down the bricks piece by piece. It takes practice and effort to successfully tear down what took practice and effort to put up. Sex can be a power tool in breaking down those walls. I need someone to release the inner bedroom tiger. The tiger images on my bed sheet simply don’t supplant the real thing, and I am on a search to bring it to fruition. But I am going to tell you now that it will not be easy. For this to be successful, I need to someone patient enough to work me through my issues of vulnerability, and I need someone freaky enough to push me towards the edge of my fears. I gotta jump. I’ve got a lot of awesome sex to have.

P.S. I have gratefully had some amazing sex at times, and each time the trait was marked by intense emotion. Those emotions helped me be vulnerable when it was hard to do so. Now I need to work on making this a full time thing.

P.P.S. I have built a great me throughout my life, but I have been so protective of myself that I have been afraid to let it out to the general public. Thus I keep to myself and share my feelings and thoughts with only the selected few who will accept me as I am. The stage of life that I am in now is one marked by openness. I open myself up to rejection, love, hate, and expressing to others who I am. Strangely a lyric from Joe springs to mind, “What good is a diamond, nobody can seee-ee.”

Next Fear: Asserting my will on others…

Anthony the Sellout?

I don’t play Basketball; I don’t read Zane; I think T-Pain is garbage…catchy, but garbage; I think OJ did it; I like Hilary just about as much as Obama; I hated The Coldest Winter Ever; R. Kelly should go to jail; I don’t watch BET, ANTM, The Bernie Mac Show, or any TV for that matter; I play soccer; I prefer old school over new school in virtually any category; and I eat Watermelon and Fried Chicken about as often as the average American.

It’s funny how the simple things define a person… especially if those things are linked to the color of your skin. I just finished watching a YouTube video of Smokey Robinson really making fun of the context we put on race. His message of race being an inside thing and not an outside thing made a good deal of since. So what’s on the inside of me. A lot of gray. Not black or white, just gray. Which leaves me in a tough spot. Black people see that I am black, but also treat me as the black guy who has not ‘embraced’ what it means to be black. With my black peers that usually involves the obvious rap music, club frequenting, woman chasing, white people avoiding, dressing fly, inherent Christianity, and hating on various things. As much as I do not fit those blatant group tendencies, I also lack the more subtle sense of entitlement, anger at the system, fear of homosexuality, and materialistic priorities. Yet I still love Motown, BBQ’s, dancing, and generally having a good time. Like most things in life, I consider I took the good and discarded the bad. But that has left me fairly disconnected.

So now I am in my state of limbo. My new work environment dunked me in the cold water of whiteness, and it was a shock to the system at first. The constant drinking, the lack of music, the silence of interactions (white people are soooo much more silent than black folks), the college sense of humor, and the obsession of sports left me without solid ground to stand on. For the previous six years, I was surrounded by black folks (more or less black folks that shared my racial complexity), and I had no recollection of how to behave in this new world. But instead of running back to black folks, which proved rather dissatisfying, I adjusted. Soon, I could sit out the silences and drink with the best of them. But also, I was eating healthier, having more positive conversations, and trying stuff I never would have done before. Pink Floyd, Camping, Beer, Dave Matthews Band, Dance Clubs (as in Techno), have all been some pretty awesome additions.

I am actually much more at peace with my racial identity now than I can ever recall in my past. It’s primarily because I gave up the baggage that came along with associating with any one race, and just did what felt right to me. And whatever persons had those similar interest, those are my crew. Currently, I primarily hang out with a Guatemalan, Jordanian, Mexican, Nigerian, White, Black crew, and am loving it. The only thing I wish is that more black folks would let go of their roles. This is not a movie where your character is determined by a script. It was like in middle school when you realized sagging your pants was just silly no matter how many of your black friends were doing it. That is the way you have to approach your habits now. If your eating, acting, taking in stuff that is bad for you, change that. If you are not accepting things just because ‘black people don’t do that’, you might want to change that too. The middle is a great place to be, and there is plenty of room. Strangely everyone wants to keep things black and white.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Danger! Danger!

This was pretty good. A bridge in the wind with 'dramatic' commentary.


Thursday, May 08, 2008

I'm Really Smart

Clearly I have an issue with spacing out my posts. Maybe B.I.G. (R.I.P.) gets me in the writing mood.

So it turns out I am a genius... well technically I am nine points short of that title. But according to the IQ test at I am in the top 2% of the population when it comes to intelligence. So, for all that no me, I am about to get that much more unbearable. If you thought I was never wrong before, just wait... my assurance in areas where I am completely ignorant will increase ten fold. You know why, because even if I know nothing about a topic, I know more about it than 98% of the people I am talking to. Now you may think that is flawed logic, but you would be wrong, because I am always right (reference high IQ).

Well that's pretty much it. If you want to test your brain power against mine, take the test and try and beat a 135. It's 15 minutes and not crazy difficult. However if you don't beat me, you may never want to mention it because you will never live it down. Actually, I am so smart, I know your score without you having to tell me.

The Golden Ticket

It was brought up to me today that meditation is probably not the best way to find your destiny or your purpose in life. It is designed for deciding who you are. Well I for one feel relatively content in my purpose and decided that I should probably do a little bit of narrative to put it into context. After all, the vast majority of leaders only have one thing in common, they write their goals down.

I explained to my friend that my purpose in life is best described by relating to the Golden Ticket of Willy Wonka. I am a boy with a dream and an innate sense of purpose that is following a path that should lead him to his destiny. Charlie (the boy who eventually wins the Golden Ticket) simply led his life according to his philosophy and believed in what felt right in his heart. Despite towering circumstances, his dreams ended up coming true and he went on to accomplish all the things that were meant for him.

So how naïve is it for a grown man (sort of) to believe that he is living a fairy tale. Pretty naïve, but at the same time, I cannot lose. The beautiful thing about destiny, or fate, is that it is inescapable. There should be no sense of failure or disappointment, there can only be the satisfaction of pursuing the path that feels right to you. If you fail and fall into mediocrity, that was indeed your destiny in the first place, and you never really failed at all.

So where does that leave me? Waiting. I must wait for my Golden Ticket to arrive, and like an athlete waiting for the big race, I will train as hard as I can. I know what I need to be good at. It is the talents that have gotten me this far. The ability to relate, the need to make connections, the power of unifying opposing forces, the sense of moderation between extremes. All of these things are the skills that have been given to me for fulfilling my purpose. The ability to write, to discern character in others, to remain optimistic despite the perils of the world, all these will come in handy like a tool belt at a home improvement site.

I know that I feel destined to change the world for the better, the only question is to what scale. I sincerely believe that I can lead people towards a better way of treating each other, loving each other, and respecting each other, but how I am to be used in that path is beyond me. The only fear that I have is that there is no guiding force and that I am supposed to surge forward on my own initiative. Instead I feel that there is a time and a place designated for my usefulness, and for that I wait. I wait for the golden moment, the Golden Ticket.

My job now is to train. Experience other cultures. Learn as much about the world as you can, despite personal desires of comfort and familiarity. I have prepared for a long time to give up a life of personal amenities for that of a life of service, and when that time comes the road will be long and hard. If this torch passes me by, so be it, I will live a happy life, but my purpose seems not for the simple road. I was built for the purpose of uniting those around me, and I can only hope to make that circle of influence as wide as possible.

Monday, May 05, 2008

When Money Is no Issue

Despite some people's opinion that lists are stupid, I am still going to list the makings of a perfect day.


The mornings and me are not the best of friends when it comes to using the brain, so the morning would be dedicated to the body. Perhaps an hour of Yoga and Pilates teamed with an Hour of team sport or lifting to get the day going. If it could be outdoors, I would not complain.


A healthy dose of productivity: Getting something accomplished is honestly what must make up the bulk of a satisfactory day. For me, my perfect 'job' would be solving problems that effect people unnecessarily. Tackling those huge issues like hunger, poverty, inequality, hate piece by piece would do it. Now I know myself, and I would not want to be on the ground finding people jobs, or putting a sandwich in someone's mouth... I would feel more at home influencing the masses to do that. My ideal job would use my abilities of influence and manipulation for a good cause. It is my sincere belief that people are generally stupid but forgivably so. I simply want to educate where possible and supplant where necessary.


Add liberal amounts of good company: No good day is complete without good people and good conversation. Preferably the conversation would not be about something of substance where differing opinions are expressed in intelligible ways.

Marinate in Red Wine: A bottle or three of some quality vino is good for getting people out of their comfort zone and into a more entertaining state of honesty and instinct.

Season with Music: A soundtrack of good rhythms in the background just gets me in a feel good mood.

Dessert: After I kick all (save one) the good company out...bow chikka bow wow...

*Good food is implied throughout the entire day

Anonymously Correct

Maybe I should right about relationships more often because I seem to actually get comments from these kinds of posts. Well here is a quote from Anonymous person, who, seems to hit the nail on the head. So lets talk about it... Here is the Quote and what follows is the response.


I assume that someone who claims to want such a female will have complementary characters. Don't you think that you know at least one girl who is at least [borderline] attractive, has a great sense of humor, loves music, can cook, is inspired, etc? You should perhaps stop and mentally list out your female friends and think of those (or that one) that make you laugh, enjoys cooking, attending concerts/ enjoys music, etc. These lists of what I want in a person can be tiresome especially as in the end, this ideal girl is usually right in front of you.


First, yes I do claim to have complimentary characters. One of my favorite features, and man its hard to say that statement without arrogance, is to hold others to a standard no less to my own. Second, of course I know many such women...well not many, but certainly more than a couple. This post is really to you ladies, and to the friends in general in my life. If you consider youself to be my friend and I do the same, most likely I hold you in the highest of esteem. And most likely, especially the women, you meet the requirements put into the previous post.

The women in my life are cultured, intelligent, diverse, understanding, creative, and spontaneous... all that most men could ask for and more. So if I were to stand the women of my life in front of me and ask if they meet these qualities, the answer is yes.

The truth is that I have been fortunate to have many women in my life of a supreme standard that I have simply not considered to be 'the one' . One of the oddest of statements to come out of my life begins with "I would be happy to spend my life with you...but", and although I have seldomly said that, I know that it is true for a few females that I have had the pleasure of knowing. For me, the minimum that I expect is to be simply "ABLE" to live with someone. What I look for is that rocketship love that propels a person to a place they have never been before. And perhaps that is a consequence of being me... I truly am happy with myself. I could live with myself, my thoughts and my friends for the foreseeable future with no problems. And that contentedness is what prevents me from settling with 'good'. Its spectacular or nothing! Maybe I am dooming myself to be alone forever, but the sad part is, I think I would be okay with that for the most part. I suspect the dying years of the 70's and 80's will be rough, but maybe God will sustain me then... All I know is, a partner will not serve to complete me, they would serve to transform me.

Back on track (it's cinco de mayo, and I have margarita's for blood). The list that I put forward for the perfect girl was doomed from the start. Not only can you not dictate who and what qualities you want in a person, but even if a person has that, there is no garuntee that you will fall for said person. From what I have experienced and observed from love, 50% comes from luck/fate/chance/destiny and the other 50% comes from the you and your state in life. Never is it as simple as this is what I want, this is what i will accept.

So do women that I know meet the criteria... YES. I would not name them here, because it would give yall on the list big heads, and hurt the feelings of those not listed, but you should know who you are. The only thing that the anonymous writer was wrong about was the right person being right in front of me. The right person should use the list I mentioned as a floor and not a ceiling. Meaning, it is the minimum to start off with. And even then, there are probably exceptions. So I confess that my list was incomplete and not indicitave of what I expect in a women. But maybe this is why guys never write such silly lists in the first place, we know they are hodge podge when put up against the test of the real world.