About Giving Up

Sunday, 6 September 2015

Giving up is something I’ve been trying to learn the last couple of years. It doesn’t come naturally to me (or any American, probably), but it does take away some chronic stressors. From a business standpoint, the things I’ve given up on are all things that have had no return on the investment I’ve made trying to achieve them. I’m not saying that the good things in life must be defined in terms of capital, but I have limited means to invest, and so I’ve opted out of markets where I’ve been wasting my time.

Relationships

I’ve given up on dating. My last relationship ended in February, and in that time I’ve gone on 3 dates, and have been canceled on or stood up probably 9 times. I haven’t even tried since June. I’m a 34 year-old single dad, which severely limits both the available time, and the number of women who might be interested in me that I am also interested in. For awhile I was going out by myself, but I became envious of all the couples I saw. For all the time, money, and effort I was expending, I was in the same spot. I keep reviewing past relationships in hindsight and second-guessing my decision-making. In my experience, there’s never a clear answer when it comes to love.

Friends

I threw a party a few weeks ago and invited about a dozen people that I consider friends or see on a regular basis. Most said they’d come, but only three showed up. A year ago I would have invited dozens of people, but in that time I’ve reduced my “friend list” from a couple hundred to about four dozen. I removed everyone who I hadn’t seen or heard from in nine months or more. I’ve also pretty much stopped using Facebook. I unfollowed everyone left on my friends list, and only use it for messenger or events. Drastic, yeah, but if people want my company, they know how to get in touch. The people I’m still in touch with, I was in touch with on the regular before. I have three folks I’d consider good friends. We talk weekly, and did so even before I started radio silence.

Life Goals

By now I was hoping to be married, with a fleet of kids, and living in a nice home that I own. To be settled down. Maybe have air conditioning. I’ve given up on those goals. I made a couple of poor decisions in 2007 that irrevocably changed my life. I’ve resigned myself to being a single dad; to not having any more kids; to renting for the rest of my life. The kids piece is the hardest one for me to reconcile myself with. As an only child, I always swore that I would have more than one child myself. Being a dad is the greatest thing that has ever happened to me, but it’s only going to happen once.

So, what?

Having given up on the above, I am better able to focus and invest my energies on being a dad to Abraham, and working hard at my job. After those items are squared away, I’m fairly monastic. Bike rides, walking my dog, maintaining the house I rent. Trying to simplify. If not happy, at least content; mindful. It is very hard.

6 Ways to Skin a Cat

Wednesday, 26 March 2003

The Direct Approach

  1. Kill Cat.
  2. Make incision from throat to rump.
  3. Peel.

Corollary: That shirt looks very becoming on you, and if I were on you I’d be coming too.*

The Indirect Approach

  1. Obtain kitten.
  2. Raise kitten into cat.
  3. Provide food, toys, veterinary assistance, attention, love.
  4. Wait until cat dies.
  5. Make incision from throat to rump.
  6. Peel.

Corollary: Let her make the first move. Implode.*

The Athletic Approach

  1. Kill cat with golf club.
  2. Make incision from throat to rump.
  3. Peel.
  4. Gut cat.
  5. Take catgut and make tennis racket.
  6. Remove head of cat.
  7. Use as tennis ball.

Corollary: (flexing) Have you seen the weightroom? Nevermind, I’ll find it.*

The Gourmet Approach

  1. Purchase healthy purebred Persian.
  2. Smother with 10M (molar) Trichloromethane (chloroform).
  3. Boil 10 gallons water.
  4. Boil Persian in water for 8 hours.
  5. Make incision from throat to rump.
  6. Peel.
  7. Have skin made into table runner/trivet.
  8. Boil cat into stew with lentils and long-grain rice.
  9. Serve with butter-glazed sweetrolls on table trimmed with cat skin.

An optional New Year’s Day meal. Cat is the new pork.

Corollary: You are my sun, moon, and stars. You are my breath, sight, and life. Each taste, each touch, is nothing compared to the gift that is you. I would gladly sacrifice my goals, aspirations and soul just to get into your pants… shit!*

The Humane Approach

  1. Find feral cat with feline HIV or feline leukemia.
  2. Have cat put down.
  3. Send cat to taxidermist.
  4. Taxidermist will make incision from throat to rump.
  5. Peel.

Corollary: Set promiscuous girl up with horny friend. She’ll get stuffed.*

The Anarchist Approach

  1. Bury cat up to neck in backyard.
  2. Fire up riding lawnmower.
  3. Mow backyard.
  4. Get posthole digger.
  5. Remove cat.
  6. Make incision from throat to rump.
  7. Gut cat.
  8. Fill cavity with black powder.
  9. Light cat’s tail.
  10. Throw at nearest governmental building.

Corollary: Club her on the head and drag her by her hair into your apartment/cave.*

*does not work well.

Dating Race

Friday, 21 February 2003

i often think that i am too far behind in the dating game to ever make a good play of it. resignation fills the air like stale gym socks fill the locker room with that stale gym sock smell. (horrid simile intentional). i’ve still no idea what i’m doing. pretty much ever. everything gets recycled, masticated over and over until this gruel that is bewilderment serves up another helping of ‘whateverness.’ i’m at least competent with every other aspect of my life, and since my life is already one-third finished and settling down for the long haul, why rock the dream-boat by attempting to force my nerdilicious pre-adolescent knowledge of relationships into a semblance of maturity? i’m already too far behind the pack to catch up to the stragglers. how many people do i know who are getting married? a lot. how much confidence do i have? { }. The Null Set. what would confidence get me? perhaps a date in which i would have the chance to parade my ignorance in front of someone relatively close to my age with a quite healthy sex life and a working knowledge of ‘how this thing is done.’ its like that dream when you are naked at school and its really cold out so ‘your boys’ are all shriveled and everyone laughs at you because you are naked at school and have a miniscule penis. except its not really like that. because that is a dream. and this is real.