This is an upstairs window in my house. I sit and look out it quite a bit. Watch the sunrise, think about the future and day dream. Not sure what it is, but I could sit and look out the window for hours. In high school whenever I had a class on the third floor I would sit and daydream throughout the entire class. Became more of a meditation than anything else. I don’t think people take time and daydream enough. Some of my best thoughts have come from daydreaming. Take some time today, sit, relax and daydream. You will thank me for it later.
Went out a couple nights ago to the latest venue in town call The Wave. Saw the Nappy Roots perform. It is always nice to get out and check out the shows around town. Always felt it was important to go and support. I remember the days when there weren’t many places you could go to hear hip-hop much less see a show. Grateful to see more shows and more variety around the town. The turnout looked great and the vibes all totally positive from everyone. I spent most of my time hanging out in the back watching the crowd. I tend to do that more and more. It is interesting to see what type of crowd comes out to a show. Looking froward to the next hip-hop show there!
What keeps some people motivated and others not. I try to ask myself that, and also ask myself what keeps me motivated. What is more important is asking the question why. Why do things keep me motivated. I don’t think people truly ask themselves why when it comes to motivation. Not enough as they should. Some motivation comes from a positive place, but it can also come from negative. Fear, ego, hate, insecurity. All reasons that motivate people. I can say for myself that when my motivations and intentions are positive and come from a good place then the fulfillment is more than if I would have had poor motivations. Ask yourself today or whenever you read this. What motivates you and are the intentions behind the motivation coming from the right place?
Old man winter has definitely been showing up this winter. Seems like it has been snowing a lot more than last year. I don’t too much mind the snow. It doesn’t keep me inside like some people. If anything I will go out because I know there won’t be as many people out as usual. With one week left in January I am counting down the days to warmer weather. The only problem… some of the biggest snows have been in Mach and April the past couple years. So even though I know there is still a couple months (or more) or cold and possible snow, I am hoping warmer weather comes sooner than later.
I could eat candy for breakfast, lunch and dinner. People laugh when I tell them I am a chocolate and candy addict, but it is true in so many ways. I love the way it tastes. The little rush you get when the sugar gets into your blood stream. Nothing better. I was able to quit eating candy for awhile. About 4 months to be exact. I had to do it cold turkey. There is no weening off or having a cheat day. I am all or nothing. The older I get the less I can eat and the less I want to eat. But… it still tastes so good. Getting my mind geared up to get off candy and sweets again. You know what they say… summer bodies are made in the winter.
While I was sitting at home sick with the flu bored out of my mind I decided to start watching Game Of Thrones. Sure beat what was in daytime television. So far, so good. Takes me back to all the times going to the renaissance fairs growing up. I still go! Never dressed up though. Doubt I ever will. Never say never though!
I am reading a new book called, “Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less. It is one of those books that I will most likely break out at minimum once a year from now one. Just to go back and refresh myself on everything that was brought up. So far one of the major points is to stop trying to do everything. A person can make their highest contribution towards the things that really matter to them when they choose not to deal with everything else. Narrow your options to focus on what really matters.
How many people do you know that are trying to do too many things or focus on too much. They end up not getting anything done. When they do, if they were to put all their focus into what they truly cared about the outcome out have been so much better. I think of myself and my own life. How can I focus and narrow what I want to focus on at work and family life. I can not be everything to everybody. Nor would I want to be. I can honestly say that a handful of thing truly matter to me. Not clothes, fame, money or even success. Family, photography, traveling and being a good person. That is what truly matters to me. So I give myself permission to stop trying to pursue everything and just the things that truly matter to me.
My grandfather always used to tell me, “Love, Loves Nobody.” I never quite knew what that meant. It was this three word mystery that only he knew. Almost like he was talking in code. He would say, “One day you will understand.” As I have grown older I have thought about that statement a lot. And I still don’t quite know what he means. Maybe he was saying just because you love someone, doesn’t always mean they will love you back. It could mean that falling in love with someone often has negative outcomes. Who knows? It is a very sad statement though. Tells quite a bit about a person and how they view the people they have loved in their life. I know now that “Love, Loves Nobody” has a different meaning for every person. As for me, I still don’t know if my grandfather’s saying is true. So far I would say no. Thank goodness.
Do you remember your dreams? The older I get the less I do. Every time I wake up I can tell I have been dreaming. But for some reason I can’t remember what or even what the dream pertained to. I do know this, lately I have been dreaming quite a bit. Anymore the dreams I do remember are the ones closest to real life. I will be dreaming I am working and on air at the radio station. The only difference is I will be in a bigger market or different radio station. Every now and then I dream about people from my past. I still have scary dreams. I can tell because I wake up tense or with anxiety. I have also found out that sometimes when I wake up I am still dreaming. I might wake up and ask the most random question or not make sense at all.
The big question is… what are the meaning to our dreams? Is there a meaning at all? Is it tapping into another part of our mind or consciousness.? There is part of me that doesn’t think dreams have any meaning, but then there is a part of me that believes that dreams are deeper than anyone might ever know. It might tell us something about our existence. It could be a way to float into different dimensions or maybe even be a way to pass through time and space itself. Who knows? Hopefully tonight I dream of the answer, I just hope I don’t forget it in the morning.
One thing I love about radio is two days are never the same. You never know what might happen day to day. The fun times are when we as a staff get out and about and do events. We had a fun one at a middle school where we honored the '“Super Car Kid" of he year. 500 screaming kids was a bit intense, but it was fun. Until you get out and do some events you can never quite understand what it is like to be in radio. The bigger the event, the better. Some of my funnest times in radio where standing back stage in an arena watching people enjoy a show that we all planned and worked on for months. Doesn't get any better than that.
That is right. My new place of zen is the laundry mat. Let me start off by saying I hate doing laundry. I don’t just hate it, I despise it. I never take the time to separate whites and colors and I cant fold a t-shirt to save my life. I thin if I were to ever be sentenced to an eternity of hell after my life comes to an end it would be doing laundry with country music playing in the background. So why might you ask is the laundry mat my new zen place? Well for a couple reasons. First, as I stated before I hate doing laundry. It takes me about 4 days to do 3 loads. So by going to the laundry mat it forces me to get it done. I have a perfectly good working washer and dryer in my basement but in 1 quick hour at the laundry mat using multiple washers and dryers I can get done with all my clothes. Second, it gets me out of the house. Today was a nasty cold winter day, but I had to get the laundry done. I hate sitting in the house all day. So if I can kill two birds with one stone, get out the house AND get my laundry done then I consider that a win-win situation. Most importantly it is a little get away. I chill, put in my headphones relax for an hour and people watch. There are always so many interesting people there. Young, old, well to do and poor. Some people are doing an entire months worth bringing in bag after bag of clothes. Others washing there pricey curtains or comforters in the big industrial washers set on delicate. If you haven’t been to the laundry mat in awhile, time some time out of your busy schedule and go. IF you have never been to a laundry mat to wash your clothes… then you just don’t know what you are missing.
I was out shopping with Brandi today when I came across a four foot statue of Buddha. IF I would have had the money and space for it, I would have bought it. Quite often I try to think about Buddha’s four noble truths, and having a four foot statue staring at me every time would help keep it on my mind. I you are not sure up to speed on the Four Noble Truths they are as follows.
Life is suffering. - Are lives are a struggle. And we as humans can not find ultimate happiness or satisfaction in anything we experience.
2. Life is suffering because of craving and attachment. - We will NEVER be able to satisfy all our cravings. A bigger house, more money, always wanting to be the best at something. Our ego is desire and keeps us in a state of constant suffering.
3. Put and end to our ego and craving, we will put and end to our suffering.
4. The path to end suffering is the Eight Fold Path. - Living a balanced life will help end the suffering.
End the desire, end the suffering. Sounds easy. But I find it is extremely hard. But every time time I have ended or tamed my desire and my ego, I have felt so much better in the long run. Do I need a new car? Should I be eating all this candy and junk food? Do I need the most expensive clothes? Do I ned a lot of clothes? OF course the answer is no to all of them. There is so much suffering in the world today. Why shouldn’t we all at least try to end the suffering we can control, which is our own.
Developed some more film over the past couple of days. The first roll isn’t too bad! Looking forward to scanning some more film over the weekend. I have had many questions about developing film. It is a lot easier than one might think. The first experience I had with developing film was in middle school. I was lucky enough to be in the year book class. SO we got to go around and shoot all the photographs for the year book. I can’t remember what type of camera we had or even the film we used. But it was so cool walking around photographing everyone. The next time I set foot in a darkroom was years later when I went to college. Every Mass Communications major had to take photography. I am working now on getting a darkroom together. I have an enlarger and have told myself that I will start making prints this year! The sooner…. the better.
I have been thinking quite a bit lately about choice. Such a huge part of our everyday lives, but something I don’t think people think about often. Looking back at my life, I think about the choices I have made. The good and the bad. What has been intriguing me as of late is the long term effects of our choices and decisions in life. How much would even the littlest decision cause a huge change down the road. Also how the decisions and choices I make can change someone else’s life. I look at myself. So many decisions made by other people… parents, teachers, friends… some big and some little, have all had an outcome to make up the person who I am today. I think of my third grade teacher Mrs. Slack who wanted me to take the behavior disorder test knowing it was the same test to place gifted students. I did well, and that single decision changed my life.
Start thinking about the choices and decisions you are making. You never know what could come of them.
I have always loved traveling. I have always loved traveling shows. I used to watch episodes of Globe Trekker and wonder what it would be like to visit all those places. Of course Anthony Bourdain was a must to watch. Not just Parts Unknown, but going back all the way to A Cook’s Tour and No Reservations. Last night as I was sitting watching old Globe Trekker videos on YouTube, I came to realize how much traveling has become a part of my life and what it means to me.
There is something about traveling and seeing another place and experiencing another culture. It does something to you. It changes you. Now every couple of months I get an itch to travel again. To go explore and see new things. I have been blessed over the past 6 or 7 years to be able to travel internationally. If you can or ever wanted too… DO IT!
But also don’t be afraid to get out and explore. If you don’t feel like traveling to another country or are anxious about it, do what I did. I started taking road trips. Not long, just a couple hours away. Checking out towns and museums all over Kansas. Then, I visited places around the United States. New York, Washington, DC, Seattle, Portland, Houston. The more you see and the learn the more you want to see and learn more. So go out and travel. Explore different places and be a part of different things. I have so many places I want to see, and so little time. The hardest part of traveling is deciding where to go next!
This year I am making an effort to go to more local hip-hop shows. I went to a couple last year, but I see more and more that they are happening and getting larger crowds. I think back 20 years ago and how cool it is to see an entire new generation throwing their own shows and creating music. But recently I feel this energy around the town. I can’t quit put my finger on it but it is an energy I haven’t felt in quite a bit. All the pieces are coming together for some special events this year. I am already hearing about some great shows on the horizon. I took some photos at the concerts and parties when I was younger but not near enough. Around 2014 I made sure to take a camera with me whenever I went to a show. This time around, I want to make sure to document everything!
I often hear people talk about work-life balance. For some reason it has either been in conversations I have had or I have over heard it come up quite a bit in the last couple months. Not sure why. Maybe people are getting over worked. Maybe everyone is looking for more balance in their life. Is there such a thing though? Can you be balanced in both work and life? I guess that depends on each person and how they define it. Work-life balance sounds like once of those scary terms that you can never truly attain. Eternal Bliss… Nirvana… Clear state of mind. I also don’t know what I would do if I had a balanced my work and personal life. I doubt I would like it.
The older I get the less I believe in coincidence. Everything happens for a reason. Sometimes it can be explained, sometimes it can not. I had one of those moments today. I was shopping at Hobby Lobby with my wife. I was walking around looking at some art supplies when I started noticing the music. It was a instrumental version of a old church hymn. It reminded me of a song that my grandmother wanted played at my mother’s memorial service. “To God Be The Glory”. About a minute into the song all the power went out. For 5 seconds it was completely dark in Hobby Lobby. All you could hear was the audible gasp and “Whooooooaaaaaaa”, from everyone who was walking around. The lights came on and I found Brandi. I told her that right before the lights went off a song was playing that reminded me of “To God Be The Glory”. Now, in the time the power came back on and from I found Brandi, no had started to play. Which I figured took some time to get everything up and running again. We walked around a couple more minutes as the music began when I stopped and said, ‘Brandi!”. She looked at me a bit shocked. I pointed to the ceiling where the music was coming from and told her, “That is the song! To God Be The Glory!”. Which it was. Coincidence? I think not.
Every now and then I come across something that makes me stop and think for a bit. I saw this written on the sidewalk in Galveston. MEAT IS MURDER! My first thought had something to do with food. I instantly thought about The Smiths album by the same name. Could this person have great taste in music, or a vegan? Who knows… maybe both. Over the past couple years I have been trying to eat healthier. Some months I east very clean and healthy, others.. not so much. At the high point of good eating I was vegan or a week. It is the best I have felt in the last 20 years. I would love to get back to eating vegan or vegetarian, but the 3-4 weeks of weening off meat is hell. Since the holidays have passed I have been trying to eat better. Only took 48 hours for the headaches from sugar with drawl to kick it. So maybe in the next couple months I will be able to get back to eating vegan again. Yes.. meat is murder… but it does taste damn good.
Got off starting the year in Galveston, Texas. It is wonderful to ring in the new year, but even better when you can wake up and walk the beach! I used to make resolutions for new years, but the older I get the less I do it. I just want to keep focusing on learning and growing as a person. Rang in the beginning of the year shooting quite a lot of film. Want to focus on shooting more and documenting as much as I can. It is always a bit of a struggle getting out and photographing in the winter. Mainly because it is either too cold or not much going on. But no excuses right? There are some events that I want to get out and get some photos. So here are some photos from the very first couple of rolls of film I processed!