Leaving

Posted on 1 min read

Despite my best efforts, the anxiety is still real every time I leave Germany. The morning starts like normal: my daughter waking me up and watching Curious George on the laptop while I drift in and out of sleep for 45 minutes. And then we play and eat breakfast, and there’s nothing at that point. But as the day continues, the ache in my chest telling me there’s something wrong (even when there’s nothing wrong), slowly starts to creep in. It grows despite my best efforts to ignore it, starve it to death, so that by the time I’m dropping off my daughter at her mother’s, I’m manic and I …

Evolution of Place

Posted on 2 min read

I like to think that the evolution of Germany for me over the past three years, is like a microcosm of my human experience. What started as an antagonistic place that I tolerated (at best) in order to be with my daughter, has become a place of recovery. It’s a strange place to get clean, but that’s what it’s become for me: I eat well, work out regularly, write, and meditate. And that’s only the time that I don’t spend with my daughter. When I first started coming here, I would leave as a husk of a person. I was mentally and physically demolished, and it took weeks to readjust …

Travel

Posted on 1 min read

You get tangled up with all the travel. You see a clock and you don’t trust it. It should be light outside and it’s not. Today I’m staying on the Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation outside Phoenix (which resembles Phoenix in being one large construction site in the desert), tomorrow I’ll be in Memphis. Last week Aruba. Alien places. But it’s -28 in Minneapolis at the exact moment that I’m writing this, so whatever.  I can’t decide if time moves fast or slow while traveling. The days are more distinct. At home, they can pass without me looking up from my desk. And yet, when traveling, a week somehow gets lost …

Sociopathic Tendencies

Posted on 1 min read

Most of my life, many of my closest friends have been sociopaths.  No. That’s too harsh: a large amount of my good friends have had sociopathic tendencies. They weren’t bad people, emotions just didn’t manifest naturally to the same degree that it does for others. Which is probably why they found someone that is often overwhelmed by their emotions interesting. You’re both off, and even though that doesn’t translate to empathy, you can relate to the confusion of not being able to trust yourself. It also teaches you that emotions are not morality. From a distance, you would have been hard pressed to say who was who. My feelings and …

Flawed Characters

Posted on 1 min read

Everybody wants to like a seriously flawed character. But only as long as they are seriously flawed in a way that appeals to their emotions and personal beliefs. Today this is the cliché unbounded hard living renegade anti-hero. Without their own personal beliefs (which inevitably exist within a larger societal context), you’re just the villain. Mix up these personal beliefs and see how quickly the constructs change.  …

Human

Posted on 3 min read

On the way to Amsterdam I watch a movie called My Generation. It’s a movie that I simultaneously love, and that twists me into mental knots, because of the narrator: Michael Caine.   On the way to Amsterdam I watch a movie called My Generation. It’s a movie that I simultaneously love, and that twists me into mental knots, because of the narrator: Michael Caine.   In the absence of flesh and blood role models growing up, he was one of the replacements. I used to watch and analyze his movie scenes: how he would move through a room, where his eyes would go, and the words he would use. It …

Gravity Fails

Posted on 1 min read

I’m at a coffee shop in RiNo. Looking up from my notebook I notice half the room is taking a picture. The room loses gravity. I’m slipping through the air. They’re not even here, these people who are more concerned with how they look than what they’re doing. It’s like some sick Instagram satire that I’m unwillingly a part of. I look left and right for the cameras. Come to Denver, take pictures, and then leave. Beyond the picture, it’s not clear why they wanted to be here in the first place. They don’t seem to realize that someday the servers will go down and whatever permanence it seems to …

Modern Protestantism

Posted on 1 min read

I thought the culture I was raised in was a five-hundred-year-old version of Protestant restraint and silence, which at the best of times can be described as deeply personal. For all the baggage I drag around, I did often like it, as it was decidedly non-formulaic. But now I wonder how much of that culture is actually a modern version of Nietzche in which we are constantly trying to overcome ourselves (and when it gets ugly, a bastardized version in which we try to overcome others). I thought the Catholics were supposed to be the ones wrestling with guilt? …

Southern Plains

Posted on 1 min read

I’ve always had a fascination with windmills. Including the modern ones. I don’t find them eye sores or obtrusive. They seem gorgeous and eerie to me, solemn signs of human progress. When you enter Minnesota on I-90 there is a massive swath of them. Two hundred or more. The pattern isn’t apparent, but there must be one. Perhaps from the air I could see it. …

Pine Ridge

There are two parts to the Badlands. A North and a South. The North is full of trails and has the infrastructure of a typical national park. The south is in the Pine Ridge Reservation, and there are no trails. The last Ghost Dance took place in a basin there, and you’re free to cut your way to it. There is a road called Sheep Mt. Rd. that ascends to the top of a bluff, which you can use to hike down into the Southern part of the Badlands. I spend a long part of the afternoon on top of Sheep Mt. I write a little, and there are tall …