Azab Dabaq

If your life is held together with spit and a half a piece of gum, then prepare for that sucker to crumble like feta. Life for me is like a roadster – room for 2 only. Metaphorically speaking of course, I have plenty of room in my life for others but I am quite persnickety about who enters my realm. You’ve got a better chance of getting into Buckingham Palace than you have in getting in my life. I’m funny, oh it’s true, just ask Tracy of Jennifer. I’m funny but I’m a friend for life (if your Chi is right. No Chi, No E!) I think my alter ego is Yosemite Sam. He has the best temperament when he gets upset. I wish I could be so brave, but we have these rules and people tend to frown upon such behavior (eyes rolling). Or better still, Rat from Pearls before Swine. Love that guy. There was this one strip where he would do a long ski jump look (you know the one where you just stare straight ahead, stiff bodied) every time somebody said something stupid or what he thought was stupid. Man, I would be in a constant state of ski jump look. Or even Danae from Non-Sequitur, THAT little girl just rules, kid after my own heart. So I guess that leads to the question, who am I? Answer, whoever I’m required to be at the time required. People ask me, what’s your real name, what does EJ stand for – why? Are you going to do to see if we’re related or are you just asking because you’re nosey? We ARE NOT friends, call me by what I introduced myself to you as, not what you heard someone else call me. Who do you think you are? I don’t say a lot, but my face, it betrays me often. I try to talk to it, but it just blows me off. Sorry, my ADD kicked in and I got off track, forgive me. Roadster, yes. Seems now, I don’t even need that extra seat because I’ve been forsaken. Taylor Swift-ed. Left out in BFE with no H2O. It’s all good, things happen. I don’t eat feta but when you’re starving, left-out, leftover fish is quite appetizing. Beware loose lips lacing promises of … Guess I’ll get me a dog. At least then I’ll be the one to do the forsaking. Who am I? I… am alone but in the words of Mary J., I’ll be JUST FINE FINE FINE FINE FINE FINE HOOOOO.

1,2,3 – Tap Out

I lost my Wilson (think Castaway). No, I take that back, lost implies that you don’t know where something is. I know where Wilson is, Wilson just doesn’t want to be here with me. It’s a funny thing when your life needs mending. Love is unraveling, family is fraying at the seams, it can get pretty raggedy and there’s never a needle and thread handy when you need one. I believe in pray. I pray, not just during the bad times, when things are in a crap-hole dug in the ground, nor do I forget to pray when the sun is shining and the birds are chirping. I pray. All prayer is, is a heartfelt request of hope. Hope that things will get better, directions will be given, right decisions will be made, etc. Remember when Jessie Jackson said “keep hope alive” well, it remains true today. Hope is ever present; it’s the amount of hope that you have that will determine your level of mending. No hope, then you can pretty much toss whatever is unraveling or fraying into the pile marked Goodwill. Life for me Ain’t been no Crystal Stair, but it hasn’t been a candidate for demolition either. I was never promised an ache free, tearless life and let me tell you, life has kept its promise. Images I had in my head about how things would be and how they ultimately turned out, were often times not even in the same galaxy. If life were a friend, we definitely wouldn’t be on speaking terms right now. She’s left me disappointed, hurt, angry, depressed and lacking. I don’t blame her really, she never promised me anything. It was I who had all these expectations and plans so I have no one to blame but myself. She promised me nothing and gave me change everywhere I turned. Change is the requirement to accept something that we weren’t expecting to happen in the first place, be it good or bad. Change isn’t necessarily bad but when the change that happens isn’t bringing any smiles to your face, then in our book, it’s bad. Life for me is changing now, through no fault of my own and to my human credit, I fought against it hard. I tried to deny it at every turn; throwing my best high blocks and punches but alas, I was no match for Change. On Saturday, I surrendered and acknowledged my defeat and skulked away, licking my wounds. I fought a good fight, but I did not win the race. I was no match for the Change that started some 3 years ago. I tried to be accepting, accommodating, and every other action that yields to Change but alas, she proved too much for me. I’ve all but given up Hope that Wilson will return, but I try to keep Hope alive. After this, Change and I won’t be on speaking terms for a little while at least. It’s inevitable that we’ll reunite, but until then, I will climb these stairs; full of nails, splinters, loose footings and handrails. I will climb these stairs, in darkness and in light, alone and unafraid because fear provides no service or assistance here. I will climb and keep climbing; Hoping that with every step Change is there, waiting to make it better. This is my prayer.

“Lost and insecure
You found me, you found me
Lying on the floor
Surrounded, surrounded
Why’d you have to wait?
Where were you? Where were you?
Just a little late
You found me, you found me” (The Fray)

Don’t let the smooth taste fool you.

Nothing irritates me more than when people dismiss you and/or your knowledge because you don’t “look like” you would know what they were talking about. I’m a runner. I’m not long or lean but nevertheless, I’m a runner. I don’t run fast but I do run. I’m also a cyclist and Triathlete but this rant is more about runners and our culture. I don’t like running with people because if they don’t have good energy (meaning, if I don’t get the warm and fuzzies when I talk with you, umm, chances are your Chi is off) then I’m uncomfortable and feel awkward. So, I was at a Sunday run and as I was trotting in, another faster runner came back and ran in with me. While I appreciated the gesture, I didn’t want it but remember the hand over the mouth deal with God, so on we went. When the rest of the runners had returned, there was conversation about the gear myself and another runner was wearing. The runner who ran in with me made the comment, “you probably don’t know Ryan” now, I don’t like to embarrass people because remember, I’m sensitive, so I said, chippily, “no, I know Ryan, he’s the pancake guy in the Nissan ads” her lips said nothing, her eyes did the “look up/down” as if to say, YOU know who he is. See, it’s preconceived notions of what constitutes normal that makes me want to roundhouse kick to head some people. When I set out on a journey, I do my research. In running, I have spring/summer and fall/winter gear, shoes, magazines, articles, in other words, whatever my interest at the time, I immerse myself in the culture. Too bad the culture doesn’t do the same. When MLK gave his speech, he should have included the athletic and non-athletic, fat and skinny, slow and fast, etc. Because I ‘clare fo Lord (circa Bernie Mac) just because I don’t look like what you think I should look like doesn’t mean I’m not getting it done. On race day, when it’s 40 below or pushing 100 degrees, we are all the same. Sweaty, funky, grumpy, hungry gazelles, hippos, and giraffes, spitting, farting and jockeying for position to make it back to our pride. My kick may not be as high, my strides may not hit 180 but I am no less a runner. Doing my best Jay-Z — blasting T.I “you might see in the street but remember you don’t know me. Save all the hatin’ and that poppin’ remember, you don’t know me” as I brush you off my shoulder.

Don’t make me treat you like a 47 percenter!

Well, the Christmas holiday (time off, traditional food, seeing family and friends) is officially over and now it’s time to step back into reality and return to my tart lemonade writing. One of the nice things about writing is that you can pretty much say whatever’s on your mind about pretty much anyone and there be little to no repercussions because people don’t read. It’s true. When I worked in the insurance industry, can’t tell you the number of times people admitted to not reading their policy. Hey, I gave it to you, I can’t make you read it, and so goes life. We THINK we know what things say or contain but we’re just WAGing through life and WAGing is ok until the poo starts flying, then everybody’s ducking for cover. What sparked this post was I had a coupon for BoJangles, BOGO equal or lesser value, so I go in, give the cashier my coupon and place my order. I even ask/tell him that I’ll pay the upcharge for white meat. No problem. No, on to the freebie. Before I could finish my sentence Chicken Little Lena (I’m guessing she was the manager) was shaking her head no. Now, I have a magnet that asks God to keep one hand on my shoulder and the other over my mouth and let me tell you, His hand was clamped down tight. I started to go all Mitt Romney on her but I refrained. What could you(she) possibly have been saying no to when I hadn’t finished my question. I read very well, comprehend even better, so equal or lesser value translates to; if I buy something that costs $10, I can either buy something else at $10 or something less than $10 right? (I know you’re nodding, amening in agreement) So why then did Chicken Little and her slow chick tell me I couldn’t have the same order for free? Don’t know if you’ve ever seen an inside tornado, but the old me would have gone all Linda Blair on her but again – hand over mouth. As I waited for my food I surmised, what I believe to be the reason for the unnecessary clucking. I was looking somewhat of a hot teenaged mess – baggy school logo pants on (GO BEAVERS!), face broke out like a Senior on picture day and uhh, wearing a mink jacket holding a Longchamp purse. Now, I don’t know if that was the real reason, again this is my version so you get my words, but I can’t help but wonder. At one time or another, we’ve all judged another based on appearance. Not saying it’s right, IJS. We all have that “you talking about me” sense and not that I cared, but don’t treat me like I just learned how to read. I started to call the corporate office and ask them if their employees are trained on understanding and applying the term “equal or lesser value” but I refrained. I’m glad I refrained because I’m highly sensitive and well, that doesn’t make for a good confrontation, I’m liable to say anything (I don’t curse but like poots, one will slip out on occasion). So to Chicken Little Lena and her slow chick Sam I say peep when peeped to. No, I don’t look down on people, I treat everyone the same (tell you about another incident later) and if your behavior is warranting some sort of slam (in my opinion of course) then let the slamming commence (cue the mic!).

Three Kings and Princess Lolita

On the Twelfth Day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…
Now it’s time to say goodbye, to all our family. This was my first year celebrating the 12 Days of Christmas and I must say what a treat and honor it has been. I keep the Christmas spirit for the entire season. I did not get caught up in the retail hype and spend money I didn’t intend to spend but rather the gifts I purchased were thoughtful and often necessary. My birthday had more meaning this year because I never realized that the 12 Days of Christmas were real and that I was born during the 12 Days of Christmas. Tomorrow marks the Epiphany – where the visitation of the Magi (Three Kings Day) marks Christ’s divinity revealed to the Gentiles. I have given and received gifts, not only on Christmas Day but on days throughout the 12 Days of Christmas because the gift I received just keeps on giving. A high school friend of mine, Lolita is born on the 12 Day Christmas. How appropriate that her birth/revelation culminates on the day the world received the revelation of Christ. I know the majority of my words have something to do with God but make no mistake, I’m no religious nut, just a spiritual fruit – there is a difference. I recognize the wonder and beauty in everything around me and while creation is a wonderful thing, it doesn’t quite answer the question of where did I come from and how do those things happen. Driving down the street and looking up to see all the building and everyone maintaining solid footing on the Earth. How is that possible? Yeah, yeah, we all studied Sir Isaacs’ theory but HOW is it possible? Believers, non-believers and anyone else who falls in between, we are all dependent on whatever you believe or don’t believe because no matter how hard you try, you can’t pinpoint the exact reason for your existence or continued existence. Evolution is apart of life, it’s the creation part that has no answers. To be created, something has to already be there and where did that something come from. I no longer question, just accept each day that I’m privileged to be here. I’m grateful for the sun’s apparent rising in the East (you do know the Sun doesn’t actually rise or set don’t you) because it marks the dawning of a new day, whether it was created or evolved doesn’t matter. What matters is that you’re here to enjoy it, so just say Thanks and keep it moving.

Happy Birthday Lo!!