Today was a Monday, hard like so many. After dropping my son off with his mom, I went back home and then to bed to catch up on the sleep I didn’t get that night. My mind racing, regurgitating the upcoming week in a quiet house. Things like court dates coming up, deadlines, all sorts of other things. It can be overwhelming, and sometimes the result is just to lie down and sleep for a bit.
Mondays are often a wasted day. Especially after quarantine. Especially after recent unemployment. It’s easy to overthink the week. Sometimes it’s hard to get motivated. I binge watched Hanna on Amazon for a bit. Checked out the REI sale, which turned out to not be much of a sale at all. I caught up with a friend as we do every couple of months. It was good to talk to another person, to hear their voice.
Today, I got a compliment about my writing. This was good, yet also illustrated something that I have come to terms with in my writing. In the last few weeks I have gotten many compliments, usually on my blog. Sometimes through comments here or on facebook where the majority of readers catch the new links. Thank you to all who continue to read. I think lately too, my ex wife or someone connected to her have been reading as well. No doubt screen capping my words as if to catch me in some upcoming courtroom moment. If so, there is nothing here I wouldn’t repeat to her face or to a judge. This is happening either as the result of cyberstalking or any number of people who think they are helping her cause by stalking me. If that is the case, it just affirms my recent revelation about why I write.
A year ago
Last year at this time, I was getting lots of attention for the content I was producing, not only here but on my travel blog as well. I’m still in the process of rebooting my travel blog, or else I would link it here. I made a few friends. I impressed a girl whom I was dating with my skills of the written word and the emotions that delivered those words–for awhile. Another woman I used to date said she couldn’t read my posts because they were too emotional. She was of the ilk of having to hide behind a mask of what you wanted others to know about you versus the truth.
I talk to a lot of people who have read my work, and though many of them think they know me, they really don’t. I would say that they learn more about themselves, seeing their world through the lens I hand them. I’m not Woke. I can be a bit of an asshole at times. I make tasteless jokes on occasion. And I’m by no means perfect.
I am constantly reassessing who I am and what is important to me. Last year I made a list of things I like and don’t like. It drew many questions from people close to me. It seems like I keep doing this.
Things I like
Meeting new people
Cool breezy days
Fourth of July fireworks
Things I don’t like
Cable news channels
Keeping my opinions to myself
Fourth of July Fireworks displays
Things I’m not doing anymore
One of the new things that made my con list is why I write. Last year it was nice to get attention, gather followers, and get compliments for my writing. It made me feel valued, because work sure as hell didn’t do that. In the last few days, I have come to the realization that I care less and less about what other people think about my writing. If you like it, I’m glad you like it. If not, then that’s okay too. I’m not doing it to make friends or win any popularity contests. Like many others who came before me and will come long after I am gone, I do it because I have no choice. I have to put these words together or they will start to eat my mind.
If I don’t write, I don’t sleep. Sometimes if I write, I don’t sleep. The words crawl around in my head as I lie awake, my eyes shut in some semblance of rest. But it’s a lie. I’m not sleeping. I’m not dreaming. I’m thinking of what to say next, the best way to structure a sentence. The ideal way a story will flow.
I’m not writing anymore to make friends or impress anyone. I’m writing because the story demands to be told. It has chosen me. The words that will eventually find their way to the page will not make friends. They might even make some people mad, especially those who thought they knew me. There’s a good chance you probably don’t. Only about half a dozen people have come close to that, and their mileage may vary depending on their opinion of me as a result.
But I’m going to try to tell my stories with as much truth as possible. Most of the time, I honestly question whether or not anyone will even be interested in what I have to say one it is all done. But as I have said before, who cares? I’m not here to win any congeniality contests.
My strange condition is literally how little of a fuck I give anymore what people have to think about what I write these days. Some days the words are all I’ve got. When the house is empty. The night is hot. I have no kids making racket in another room. No faithful dog to eat the fried eggs I accidentally drop on the floor. Not really any companionship or partnership to speak of. This is it. A very topical representation of a man you think you know, but you probably don’t.
Who really knows anybody? If you read my words, maybe you’ll know even less about me than you thought you knew? Maybe you’ll learn more about yourself than you ever will me.
This book is about love, family, heartarche, disillusionment from a lifetime of work, and the triumph of the human spirit when facing all of these challenges. I think it’s going to be good. It feels good to get the words down. That’s all I really know.