The Week’s End // A Few of My Favorites from Around the Web

Hello and happy weekend friends! How are you? Got anything fun planned? If not, or if you happen to have a little downtime and you’re looking for some interesting or inspiring reads to check out I’ve got you covered. Here are a few of my favorites from across the web:

A church and the remains of an ancient village rise above the surface of the Sau reservoir in Vilanova de Sau, Spain.
A church and the remains of an ancient village rise above the surface of the Sau reservoir in Vilanova de Sau, Spain.

Pizza cinnamon rolls and sexual misconduct 

What are you?

Shitty media men.

50 Years Ago

Preparing for the Unthinkable

Reminder.

Are we saying happy new year?

Step one is to admit it’s there.

Legalize marijuana by actually legalizing marijuana,

Productivity is for machines

Cooking with Sylvia Plath

January horoscopes

Watch Vox’s Earworm. Listen to the J Dilla Cheat SheetFollow @stoppingoffplace.

 

High Above the Jovian Clouds.
High above the Jovian clouds.

So, have you read, watched, or written an interesting or inspiring thing this week? Has something on the internet made you feel strongly, think deeply, or see the world in a new light? If so, drop a link in the comments, we’d love to check it out!

 

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This list was originally sent out along with today’s newsletter, Our World Isn’t Ours // ZEN AND PI No. 37, along with some existential musings of my own. Check it out and subscribe, or help support what I do by sharing a cup of coffee.

Featured image by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

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The Week’s End // A Roundup of Inspiring Reads

Hello and happy weekend friends! How are you? What are you up to? Anything fun planned? If not, or if you happen to have some downtime and you’re looking for some interesting and inspiring reads to check out I’ve got you covered. Here are my favorites from across the web:

Demonstrators protest the not-guilty verdict in the murder trial of Jason Stockley.
// Atlantic Photos of the Week

We have to help Puerto Rico

The trauma of storms

7 Days of Heroine

Binary language

Feminism: a warning

A few shameful things

So what drives our deceptiveness?

Cure your tree blindness.

You have more than five senses.

Do you even exist?

Watch Overrated. Listen to Bodies. Read The Saturn System Through the Eyes of Cassini. Follow #WOMENSART.

Tinfoil Parachute

Have you read, watched, or written an interesting or inspiring thing this week? Has something on the internet made you feel strongly, think deeply, or see the world in a new light? If so, drop a link in the comments, we’d love to check it out!

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This list was originally sent out along with today’s newsletter, Anxiously Avoiding Anxiety, along with some existential musings of my own. Check it out and subscribe, or help support what I do by sharing a cup of coffee.

Featured image by Andrew Neel on Unsplash

If We Were Having Coffee // The World is Falling Apart, Stay Safe

Hello, dear readers! Thank you so much for stopping by for our weekly coffee and conversation date. I know it hasn’t been so “weekly” lately. Life’s been a little crazy, and my health and energy levels have been suffering because of it, but I’m hoping that we will get back to regular coffee and catching up starting this week. There’s a chance all the crazy may be winding down. I can’t say I promise though since so much of what has happened has been last-minute and unexpected. I just want you to know I’m trying.

“Life is like coffee, the darker it gets, the more it energizes.”

― Ankita Singhal

***

If we were having coffee, I would start by letting everyone in the state of Florida know that my thoughts are with you. I am following the news of Hurricane Irma very closely, and I hope that the worst predictions won’t come true. I hope you all stay safe and that the damage to your homes, schools, streets, and wildlife and lands will be minimal and I hope the recovery and the rebuilding will be a time of coming together in compassion too.

My thoughts are still with Houston and the survivors of Hurricane Harvey. I’m following the news coming out of the West as wildfires burn unchecked, and I am thinking of the people of Mexico dealing with their own hurricane and the strongest earthquake to hit the country in 100 years.

My heart is also breaking for the young men and women who feel so betrayed by the President’s decision to put an end to the DACA program. I faxed all my congressional representatives to let them know just how ugly and cruel this is and that I hoped they would do right by the citizens of this country and protect its most vulnerable.

It feels like the world is falling apart and I am doing my best to be grateful for what I have a where I am and to keep my home safe and my anxiety in check. The news is getting harder and harder to watch every day and the problems around me grow and grow until I feel hopeless and helpless do anything that matters.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the reason we couldn’t meet last week is that we finally got a weekend camping trip in. We found out that our favorite movie theater chain, Alamo Drafthouse, was partnering with SyFy to show Close Encounters of the Third Kind below the Devils Tower Monument in Wyoming. We learned it would be shown in the campsite next to the tower and decided to head on up and make a whole weekend of it for my girlfriend’s birthday.

I went up there remembering very little about the film and knowing next to nothing about the monument, so the trip was a real learning experience for me. The film was amazing, emotional, thought-provoking, and very funny. The tower was like nothing I’ve ever seen. If you haven’t been there, I highly recommend you go at least once in your life. The hike around the base of it is incredible. You get right up next to it, and even without registration you can climb the boulder field around the base and get right up to it.

I learned a ton about the geography and formation of the tower as well as some of the myths and Native American ceremonies that involve the tower that still go on today. The whole experience was just amazing. I want to tell you more, but the words I have just aren’t enough to convey how I felt up there. I’m so glad we went and that I got to see just a miracle of nature up close.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that while getting away from all the problems and expectations of life for a weekend was nice, it wasn’t nearly enough. When you know there is a whole world out there, with no deadlines, no expectations, nothing but beauty and history, you want to leave everything you know, go off grid and just dedicate your life to seeing as much of nature as you can. Sadly, letting go of your life, your connections, and your luxuries isn’t so easy. So, back to the real world, we had to return.

Work has been hard. I had a hectic week both last week and the week before plus I have been trying to squeeze in writing whenever I could, which wasn’t nearly as much as I needed. And even with all I have on my plate, I feel so guilty for complaining because compared to people around me I think I have it pretty easy. My route isn’t that bad. My work hours aren’t so bad either; and at least I have some time, anytime at all, to focus on my passion. At least I have a passion to wish I had more time for, you know?

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that everything hasn’t been all bad. Not only did I accomplish my goal applying for the Bitch Media Writing Fellowship the week before last I also sent my first real pitch to Buzzfeed for their Mental Health Week coverage. I had hoped to send a full draft of the piece but work really got in the way and I just couldn’t finish it. I’m hoping a summary, and a few clips will be strong enough to be considered, if not I’ll have a topic to discuss here instead.

I have a list of other places to send work, and I anticipate lots and lots of rejection, but that’s okay. I want to start pushing myself further. I want to start learning how to become a real writer, one who is paid to write. The only way I can do that is to start putting myself out there. I have to get over this fear of failure and start making mistakes and maybe even embarrassing myself a little so I can improve not just my work but my pitching strategy too.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that as much as I have missed chatting with you, I have to run. Between the long weekend, the busy work weeks, and my girlfriend’s birthday celebrations, I’ve had no time to take care of the house and I still have to get ready to visit my family, who I have also neglected these past few weeks.

I hope these first weeks of September have treated you well and if it hasn’t, I hope things turn around for you soon. Stay safe, make time for the things you enjoy, take care of yourselves and your loved ones too.

Until next time lovelies.

***

Thank you for reading! If you like this post check out my weekly-ish newsletter for inspiring reads + existential musings on life, love, and inevitable human suffering. Or help support what I do by sharing a cup of coffee.

Written for the weekly Weekend Coffee Share link up hosted by Part-Time Monster

Featured image by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

If We Were Having Coffee // Life is Stressful, Life is Good

Hello dear readers. Thank you for stopping by for a bit of caffeine ad catching up. I wasn’t sure we were going to meet today. I have a lot on my mind, and so much I should be doing but it’s all a little overwhelming and when I am overwhelmed I shut down. So, I thought, maybe what I need a cup of strong coffee, a little conversation, and a chance to put my mind to other things before I can try again.

“I have measured out my life with coffee spoons;”

— T. S. Eliot, The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell that like the rest of the country my TV is tuned to the news of Hurricane Harvey and the devastation in Texas. The images I see coming out of the city are shocking. It’s horrifying the amount of damage that has been inflicted along their coastal cities in the course of only a weekend.

Years ago we dealt with flooding here in Denver. It had rained here for days on end and once the ground had become saturated the water began to seep into our homes. Only 13 inches of fell rain over the course of many days here, and only an inch or so of water found its way into my basement, but even that felt devastating. I cannot imagine that amount and more over just one night, or the 50″ forecasted for Houston by the end of this storm. I can’t imagine how those people are feeling or how scared they might be.

I have family living in Houston—my sister, her kids and husband, and his family—and so far they are faring well, but that may not last as the waters are predicted to continue to rise through the middle of the week. I was happy to hear though that they have plenty of food and water, they have a plan should the water start to flood their apartment, and their satellite signal held out long enough to watch the Mayweather/Mcgregor fight last night.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the last couple of weeks have been more than a little crazy around here. The school year started and not only are we dealing with a severe driver shortage there is also new management and district wide problems ranging from students with lice to teachers and coaches charged with sexually assaulting students. We’re only two weeks in and this already feels like the worst year we’ve ever had.

Personally, though I’m doing better than most. My route is a good one, and I like the driver I’m riding with too. My girlfriend isn’t doing so well though. She’s still working up to 14 hours a day but she’s agreed not to work on Sunday’s and even when she goes in on Saturday’s she at least sleeps in a little and comes home in the early afternoon. I’m still worried about her stress levels and her health, but she is trying.

She’s agreed not to work more than 6 days out of the week, and when she goes in on the weekends, I am going to start going in along with her. I can write from there, and we can bring the dog too. It’s better than me sitting at home sad or making her feel bad for something that’s out of her control. When she isn’t working, we do our best go out, to keep off our phones, and keep our attention on each other. This weekend we saw friends for drinks and enjoyed a few movies at the drive-in.

By the way, Dunkirk was boring. Annabelle was creepy, but the plot was kind of dumb, and The Dark Tower was beyond disappointing. We had fun despite the movies.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that it hasn’t been all bad though. I believe the last time we chatted was the week before our 15th anniversary. We kept it simple. Fifteen years together is quite a milestone but for us and we just wanted to enjoy it without any stress of planning or the pressure to make it perfect. That’s how we are though, the more important the milestone in our lives, the simpler we choose to celebrate it. This year it was a seafood dinner at our new favorite restaurant complete with plenty of wine and oysters. That was all.

It may sound boring, but it’s honestly all I ever want. Just to be with her in a place that has memories of us where we can spend a few hours getting to know each other again. The longer you are with someone, the more you realize that having someone listen to you, to laugh at your jokes, to offer advice and reassurance, and tell you all the good things you do and how much you mean to their world means more than any material gift or fancy destination. So that is what we give to each other, these little gifts for anniversaries, for birthdays, or sometimes just on a regular old Friday night after a hard week.

That’s love. That is what 15 years feels like to me.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that we are only 7 months into Trump’s term and I have already come to a point where I have to stop letting him, and his administration take up so much of my time and mental energy. I have to limit how often I read the news, and I will no longer allow myself to watch his speeches, his press releases, or his rallies live. I will watch when I am in a good place, not before bed, not when I am already having a bad day, and not on my bad anxiety days.

I am still committed to resisting his harmful, destructive, and chaotic agenda and I will still work hard to educate those around me and stay informed, but I will do it in my own time and in my own way. I’m tired of starting the day yelling at the TV and fuming on social media over his latest tweets and lies.

This past weekend is when I really began to cut myself off. The last straw, the moment I decided he will never be someone I consider a leader and when I lost the last scrap of hope I had that he might one day become a president I at least won’t be embarrassed by, came when I heard the news that while the entire country was sending thoughts and prayers to the people of Texas as Harvey slammed into the coast he quietly pardoned a racist and banned transgendered people from serving in the military.

He’s a snake and a coward, and he’ll never be my President.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that it is getting late and I really have to get going. There is just too much I have left to do before the weekend is over.

I have been working like hell for the past two weeks to get my application in for the Bitch Media Fellowship for Writers, and I am so close to finishing my cover letter, CV, and gathering my writing samples. I’m going to try to spend the rest of the day working on it. I had hoped to submit it all tonight, but with all the house work I have to do before the big Game of Thrones finale it may have to wait until early tomorrow morning.

I hope you had a wonderful week, and that your weekend was a relaxing one. If you are in Texas or have family near any of the destruction, my thoughts are with you. Please, stay safe.

Until next time.

***

Thank you for reading! If you like this post check out my weekly-ish newsletter for inspiring reads + existential musings on life, love, and inevitable human suffering. Or help support what I do by sharing a cup of coffee.

Written for the weekly Weekend Coffee Share link up hosted by Part-Time Monster

Featured image by Paul on Unsplash

If We Were Having Coffee // Better After a While than Never Again

Hello, dear readers and happy Sunday. Thank you for stopping by for a bit of caffeine and conversation. I know it’s been a few weeks since our last chat and to be honest, I wasn’t sure if I’d be feeling up to returning today but I’ve had my coffee, the weather is bearable, and my mood is stable, so here I am. It feels good to be back.

“Even bad coffee is better than no coffee at all.”

— David Lynch

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I wish I had a good reason for having disappeared for two weeks, but I’m afraid it’s nothing more than anxiety and low self-image around writing, where I am going, and who I am supposed to be. It’s been one of those months in which life’s big question start pestering you and your failures become too apparent until you come to the realization, again, that you have no idea what you are doing and time is running out.

Basically, I’m convinced that I should stop writing entirely. I’m trying to get through that, I have been for a long time now, and of course, the answer is simple but not the one I want to hear. The answer is I am good enough I only have to try harder and find joy in writing rather than trying to be anyone else other than who I am. I have to stop comparing myself to other people. It’s that simple.

Most of the people I look up to online are those who are just out to express themselves. That expression finds a community and that community translates into a dream, a direction, and a career. I may have been going about this all wrong. I need to go back and find community and joy in what I do again.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that next week will be my last one before I have to go back to a regular work schedule and I’m both excited and completely freaked out.

I haven’t completed any of the goals I wanted to this summer and while a lot of that was me being depressed and lazy a lot of it was my work load turning out to be a lot bigger than I expected it would. I thought I would have very little to do in the mornings and would, therefore, have all the time in the world to write. Instead, I spent every morning working, and by the afternoon I was hot and exhausted and spent a lot of time napping through the summer heat.

I miss having a structured schedule. I realize I am not at all ready to manage my schedule or be my own boss. I do not have the discipline or healthy emotional state to be left to my own devices. I can’t trust myself to do what is best for myself. I am the only one standing in my way, every day.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you girlfriend has been super stressed out lately, and I’m really worried about her. A lot of changes are happening around her at work.

She has a new boss, the district we work for has decided to push the bell times of all our schools later, and there is the possibility of promotion, but she has to interview for the position first. There’s also a critical driver shortage and low morale in the workplace we’re dealing with too. All of it is piling up at once, and no matter how hard she works or how fast she gets through the tasks all the changes and expectations continue to pile on top.

Lately, if she isn’t at work she’s working from home, and if she isn’t working, she’s busy bursting into tears from impossible expectations and a serious case of imposter syndrome.

I’m doing my best to take care of her and to remind her to take care of herself, but there is only so much I can do. Most of the time I’m standing on the sideline watching and worrying, holding in my anger over the way I think she should be treated and how much is being asked of her.

We’re both hoping that very soon things we’ll calm down, but our hopes aren’t too high.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that because of all the stress swirling around our home we are making more time to get out and get away together when we can.

It’s been a while since I’ve watched a movie that was purely for entertainment and escape, like action films or comedies. That’s not to say that action films or comedies aren’t art or that they aren’t good. I just mean that they don’t provoke emotion in me, so I usually avoid those types of movies. But this weekend we needed an escape and shooting, spies, and beautiful women felt right. So Atomic Blonde it was.

The plot wasn’t too deep or unpredictable, but visually this film was amazing. The fight scenes felt realistic and Charlize Theron and Sofia Boutella are pretty hot together! I recommend it if the price of a movie ticket in your city isn’t too high, or if the theater you frequent serves alcohol and has a decent food and dessert menu to make the trip worth it.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that there is something I don’t want to talk about, but I probably should get out there because shame and hiding aren’t helping.

I would tell you that my biggest disappointment this summer has been the complete lack of progress on getting over my driving phobia and achieving full adulthood by finally getting my driver’s license.

That’s right, I am 32 years old, and I am so afraid of being behind the wheel that I can’t drive. I’ve talked about it here before but it was a long time ago, and when I did I said I was going to work hard, be brave, and do what I needed to do to be driving by the end of the summer. My anxiety got the best of me, and I conveniently forgot to practice for months. I didn’t avoid it on purpose. My subconscious mind has been sabotaging me that’s all.

There is good news though. I am trying to start again. I went out driving the other night and did well considering how long it’s bee and the fact that I’m not used to our new Jeep. I want to go out again tonight, before Game of Thrones, if I make the time and stop being a coward and just fucking do it.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I’ve just noticed how late it’s getting and remembered how much cleaning, writing, and self-care I have to squeeze in today. I’m so glad we got to catch up today. Hopefully, I can get it together, and you hear from me more often going forward.

I hope you’ve been well these few weeks. I hope this weekend was relaxing and that you found time to do things that make you feel good. Leave a note in the comments if you have time. I’d love to hear some of what you’ve been up to lately.

Until next time…

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If you like this post check out my weekly-ish newsletter for inspiring reads + existential musings on life, love, and inevitable human suffering. Or help support what I do by sharing a cup of coffee.

Written for the weekly Weekend Coffee Share link up hosted by Part-Time Monster

Featured image via Unsplash

If We Were Having Coffee // Winter is Here

Hello, dear readers and thank you for stopping by for a bit of caffeine and catching up. The weather is gorgeous today. Yesterday was all gloom and rain but the sun is back today, and I have all the blinds open to let it in. But I’m still feeling a bit tense and tired. I was up too late last night, and I have too much to do today, but I’m happy to stop for a moment and talk to you about how my week has gone and hear a bit about what you’ve been up to.

“Coffee is a language in itself.”

— Jackie Chan

If we were having coffee, I would wish you a very happy Game of Thrones day! Winter is finally here, and I am so ready! Me and most of my friends, the cool ones anyway, haven’t been able to talk about anything else. We have been counting down, talking up our favorite characters, and sharing rumors we’ve read online. Nothing else really matters today.

If you don’t watch you might feel like my excitement is a little over the top. To you, I say, why the hell aren’t you watching this show? I don’t watch a whole lot of TV, most of the day it’s just CBS News and most evenings its Vice News. I don’t say because I think TV is bad or because I think I’m better in some way for not watching it, it’s just not a lot of shows or movies are more exciting to me than writing. So if I like a show enough to stop writing, then it’s a damn good show, and if it’s a damn good show, it’s worth getting this excited over.

I treat these things like holidays or big sports events. I’ll be heading to the store soon for the drink, snack, and dinner ingredients we need for tonight. On the menu, tonight is a bacon wrapped figs stuffed with goat cheese appetizer, a shrimp and sausage boil/bake for dinner, and a blueberry-lavender chia pudding with a simple bourbon old fashioned for dessert.

If you want to join me in all the hype and excitement, I’ll be on twitter shouting and fangirling and following along with everyone else.

***

If we were having coffee I would tell you that this week I started a Coursera course on Women’s Rights and Human Rights and even though I barely have the time for it, and I’m already falling behind and stressed about having to type up a few paragraphs on the final reading of the week BY TONIGHT, I am loving it!

I love learning and studying in a structured setting and from experts and professors but there aren’t many chances for it when you aren’t going to college. This has been my first experience with anything like being a student and having homework in many, many years but it has been so inspiring and surprisingly fun that I’m already looking forward to taking another course and maybe really going to school one day.

I think it helps too that the subject matter I chose is one I am already interested in. I call myself a feminist and I feel strongly about women’s rights but I am lacking a lot of knowledge and context for the state of women’s rights-or lack thereof-on a global and historical scale. I want to learn more about the reasons why women are treated the way they are and why it’s been so hard to make progress toward a more equal society, worldwide.

Check it out if you want to join, I think you can begin whenever you want but I’d like to have a buddy or two learning along with me right now too.

 

***

If we were having coffee I would tell you that it wasn’t a good writing week, but it wasn’t a bad one either. Work was work and took up more of my time than I wanted it to but I did make progress toward less napping and more writing in my free time. I did manage one post here and I did get my “weekly” newsletter out for the first time in months, but I still didn’t do as well as I hoped.

I am happy to say that I sent my first pitch for an article this week, a piece for Wear Your Voice. I don’t think it was what they were looking for since I haven’t heard back yet but I’m proud of myself for having the courage to try. Now that I’ve sent one and presumably been rejected, I’m ready to jump in and send another.

Oh, by the way, I’m looking for a few guest posting opportunities too, I think. I want to try writing more than just personal essays. I want to get out of just talking about myself for a while. So, if you have a blog that posts a lot of feminist, civil rights, or pop culture type stuff and you are looking for contributors, please let me know in the comments and I’ll se if I can come up with something.

***

If we were having coffee I would tell you that I didn’t get out a whole lot this week. My girlfriend has been working a lot and by the time that she gets home it’s either too late or she’s too mentally and physically exhausted to go. I’m not upset over it, only worried about her. She’s been so stressed and it’s hard not being able to help or take on some of the load myself. I’ve been keeping up with the house the best I can, and I want to start cooking more and finding ways to make our time at home special too.

Last night we did get out for some drinks and bowling for an old friends 30th birthday. It was nice to reconnect and find that none of us are sad about turning thirty. We all agree that everything feels better now. We’re a little less confused and unsure about the world and ourselves, and we are fucking up way less than we used to. It’s been liberating!

We want to try to see each other more. We’re hoping 30 has been good to some other friends we’ve grown away from and we can reach out and reconnect. We are hoping the anger has had time to cool and there is a chance to repair the damage that was done within our group now that we’re all a little more mature and secure in ourselves.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that unfortunately, I have to go. The chia seed pudding needs time to chill before tonight, and there is still laundry that I have to do before leaving for errands and grocery shopping. I hope you all had a wonderful week and that your weekend was as relaxing as you needed it to be before the work week begins again. If you are watching Game of Thrones tonight like me, let me know in the comments and if you aren’t you better have a damn good reason why.

Until next time.

***

If you like this post check out my weekly-ish newsletter for inspiring reads + existential musings on life, love, and inevitable human suffering. Or help support what I do by sharing a cup of coffee.

Written for the weekly Weekend Coffee Share link up hosted, once again by Part-Time Monster

Featured image via Unsplash

The Week’s End // A Roundup of Inspiring Reads

Hello and happy weekend friends! How are you? What are you up to? Anything fun planned? If not, or if you happen to have some down time and are looking for some interesting and inspiring reads to check out I’ve got you covered. Here are my favorites from across the web:

“Wall Fire” in Oroville, California // Atlantic Photos of the Week

12 truths

Have a mental crisis plan in place

Brown girls tell their own stories.

Brown girls retell stories.

A matter of mattering

…or we can punch cops.

Repeat, repeat, repeat

The future of football is…something.

Egg cups are a thing

Winter is here!

Watch Okja. Listen to SZA. Read Stories of Your Life. Follow @Aloebud.

Return to the Upside Down

Have you read, watched, or written an interesting or inspiring thing this week? Has something on the internet made you feel strongly, think deeply, or see the world in a new light? If so, drop a link in the comments, we’d love to check it out!

***

This list was originally sent out along with today’s newsletter, In My Skin, and Yours, along with some existential musings of my own. Check it out and subscribe, or help support what I do by sharing a cup of coffee.

Featured image via Unsplash

If We Were Having Coffee // I’m Always Playing Catch-Up

Hello, dear readers! I’m so happy you’ve stopped by for a bit of caffeine and conversation today. I’m got up early, and I was feeling better, more motivated and hopeful, than I have all week, but I’ve since grown sluggish and apathetic. To be honest with you I’m no fan of Sundays. The mornings are sweet but as the day drags on I grow disappointed and depressed and not even coffee can help now. The work week is approaching fast with its early mornings and expectations.

But here is a bit of light underneath the dread. There is the knowledge that a fresh start has come. I’ll hold tight to that feeling today, and add a bit of cocoa and chili powder to my coffee. That should turn the world around, yeah?

“Coffee tastes better with a side of conversation regarding how the world might end”

— @cybersygh

***

If we were having coffee I would tell you that I continued to make progress this week. I did better than this time last month but not better than the week before. The problem wasn’t from lack of trying, but a lack of knowing how to finish things.

I started a few blog posts, and a newsletter too, but the words got away from me, I couldn’t make my intentions clear and, so, I couldn’t bring anything back around to conclusions. But even that problem is only another symptom. The real disease is not knowing how to manage important vs. urgent tasks.

Lately, I feel like I’m always playing catch up. I’m never looking far enough ahead. I’m not making plans or working toward long-term goals, especially with this blog. I’m writing posts early in the morning that must go up that day rather than having them done and scheduled well in advance like a real blogger. Not that I’m trying to be a real blogger, but I am trying to be a real writer—not that there is a difference—and being a real writer means learning how to plan and manage my time.

I also have to learn to stop and move on to something else when I get stuck. My current strategy is to stop doing anything at all and hope better ideas or a fiery passion will light under my ass and put me back to work. That never happens though because I end up spiraling into a pit of anxiety and disappointment. The longer I spiral, the harder it becomes to get back to doing something, anything again.

Anyway, what I’m trying to say is the first step is always admitting you have a problem and I am now well aware that I have many. I’m working on them, I swear.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that this week wasn’t especially exciting. I’ve been going into work a bit early and heading home for the day at lunch time. Every day I plan to write until evening but nearly every time the couch calls to me. I turn on the fans, turn the tv volume down, and the dog and I sleep soundly through the afternoon heat.

It’s been nice to relax like this every day, and I’m aware I am lucky to be able to. I don’t want to complain too much except to say that while having time to nap every day is nice, having time to work toward your personal goals is even better. I cringe with embarrassment knowing how much a better person than me would be able to accomplish with over a month of free afternoons.

***

If we were having coffee I would tell you that in addition to that embarrassment I have a healthy helping of guilt thrown on top. Evey day my girlfriend comes home with me for lunch, and every day she heads back to work while I nap. She doesn’t seem too resentful of me though. She assures me that if the roles were reversed would sleep the day away too without a shred of guilt. I think she was trying to help, but I only felt more guilty. These past few weeks her job has been even more stressful than usual, and relief is at least a month or two away.

I’ve been worried about her, and I wanted to do something for her, get her out of our work home routine and do something fun. So, Friday night we dressed up and went back to a hidden seafood place we discovered earlier this year. We enjoyed a few drink, a few oysters, and a few hours of real interaction sans phones and social media.

Our usual date night routine is to head to the movies, but I forgot how much fun it can be to just enjoy a good meal and some in-depth conversation and catching up with another person. I’m hoping to have more of that in the coming weeks as I try to introduce a bit of balance into my girlfriend’s life.

 

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that it was getting late and there is laundry to wash and fold and words that must be written elsewhere. Thanks again for dropping by. I hope your week was a productive one and that your weekend was relaxing enough to allow you to reset.

***

If you like this post check out my weekly-ish newsletter for inspiring reads + existential musings on life, love, and inevitable human suffering. Or help support what I do by sharing a cup of coffee.

Written for the weekly Weekend Coffee Share link up hosted, once again by Part-Time Monster

Featured image via Unsplash

If We Were Having Coffee // Hello July, I Have Goals

Hello, dear readers and happy Sunday to you all. Thank you for stopping by for a bit of coffee and catching up on this weird weather, hot and gloomy afternoon. Warm coffee sounds awful right now, so of course, it will be cold brew instead. I need the higher caffeine content anyway. As usual I had plans of cleaning the entire house and writing the tons of blog posts and essays plus reading and drawing and being generally awesome all over the internet, but instead, I’m fighting the urge to lay on the couch, watch Netflix, and drift in and out of naps until dinner time.

“A little coffee. A little sunlight. Your troubles will get smaller.”

— Richard Webber, Grey’s Anatomy

***

If we were having coffee I would tell you that this past week was much more productive than the week before, and the week before that, but no nearly as productive as I had hoped it would be. I’m not all that disappointed though, I’m never as productive as I want to be. I don’t think anyone does as much as they would like to do, ever. We’d all be dead from exhaustion if we were. Laziness does have its evolutionary benefits I suppose.

I ended up having to do more work at my actual work which left me a lot less time for writing than I had hoped. I wrote about letting go of what I haven’t accomplished and start working from where I am. I took some inspiration from Kahlil Gibran and contemplated confronted the recent silence in my soul. And I shared everything I am currently doing and think as the month of June and the first half of the year, came to an end.

I did better than I have all month, but I didn’t get as far as I’d hoped on my, not so secret side project and I didn’t get my latest newsletter out despite having written at least half of it. It is a top priority for the coming week.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that one thing I am proud of is my first attempts at catching up on comments around here. I have been harboring so much guilt for being such a bad blogger. I’ve said it before but for the new followers, I’m already a little awkward socially, but I’m especially so online. I’m probably the only person in the world who thinks it easier to interact with other in real life than on the internet. BUT I’m working on it.

I don’t want to go one feeling like this, and I don’t want any of you to think I don’t appreciate each and every one of you. I don’t want you to think even for a second that every comment left here doesn;t mean the world to me.

All of you have been so supportive and kind, and I probably would have given up long ago if it weren’t for your encouragement. The least I can do is get over myself and say something! Even if it’s just a simple thank you.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I’m a little bummed the first half of the year flew by so quickly. I didn’t accomplish everything I wanted to (story of my life), but I’m hopeful for the second half.

I don’t like to look too far ahead, that’s been part of my problem lately, but I’m taking a moment to think about what 2018 is going to mean. I want next year to be the year I do all the things I’ve wanted to but have been horrible at planning in advance for.

This year I missed the Write On challenge, I failed the A to Z challenge, and I didn’t create any artwork. I figure if I spend a little time every week starting now I can get these project set up and hit the ground running in 2018. A little time every week doesn’t sound like too much at all…I think.

I’m also working on setting up small monthly goals. You may be surprised to learn that I am not very good at all at setting up goals, not the kind that are detailed, clear, or have deadlines. I’ve seen other bloggers sharing their “small goals” every month, and I thought I’d give it a try:

  1. Finish a writing sample for the Bitch Media Fellowship for Writers
  2. Complete 5 pieces for the first issue of Zen and Pi the zine
  3. Gather tutorials and supplies for beginning a lino printing project
  4. Start cleaning out the basement for bulk trash pick up

***

 

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the highlight of my week was date night with my girlfriend. As usual, we went to the movies, a very late night showing of The Beguiled. The film is about an all girls school in the south during the civil war. The girls—and the teachers too—seem to have been a bit sheltered when a wounded Union soldier shows up, and they all go crazy from the testosterone and manliness trust into their presence. It wasn’t good, but it wasn’t bad either. I’d advise waiting until it’s on Amazon or Netflix to check it out.

The reason this was the highlight of my week was that it was the first time in a long time that we’ve had an entire theater to ourselves. We spread out across a few seats, ordered french fries and a couple of old fashions, and giggled and talked through the whole thing. We were the last ones to leave the theater and in fact, couldn’t find one staff member as we made our way out to the parking lot at one in the morning. It was great!

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that as much as I enjoyed this chance to talk exclusively about myself I had better get up and get going. The dishes are waiting to be washed, and there are loads of laundry that need washing and folding. I’m hoping there may still be a nap I can take too if I time everything right.

Thank you for stopping by. I hope your week was more productive than mine and your weekend was as relaxing as you needed it to be. And to my fellow Americans, please stay safe this week as we celebrate being the land of the free and, at least in our own minds, being the best at everything ever.

Until next time…

 

***

If you like this post check out my weekly-ish newsletter for inspiring reads + existential musings on life, love, and inevitable human suffering. Or help support what I do by sharing a cup of coffee.

Written for the weekly Weekend Coffee Share link up hosted by Nerd in the Brain

Featured image via Unsplash

 

If We Were Having Coffee // I Haven’t Been Trying My Best

Hello, dear readers and happy Sunday to you all! Thank you for stopping by for a bit of coffee and conversation. I know it’s been a couple of weeks since we sat down together. June turned out to be a busier month than I had anticipated and I was in no way prepared to keep up here and take care of my other obligations. I hope you will understand once I explain.

“One day you’ll wake up at 11:30 AM on a Sunday with the love of your life and you’ll make some coffee and everything will be alright.”

eyecont4ct

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that these past few weeks have not been good for writing. Part of it was because I was so busy, part of it was because I was so tired, but the rest of it was me not focusing on what’s important.

I had time to write, but I played games on my phone and messed around on Twitter and Facebook instead. The more I wasted time the worst I felt and then I wasted even more time. I couldn’t start again because I couldn’t let go of my disappointment and self-doubt. I didn’t try my best.

I don’t want to be too hard on myself, but I want to recognize where I have been making mistakes. Change has to start with acknowledgment and then a plan. The first thing I have to do is delete games from my phone. I had done this before, and it was a mistake to think I could put them back on and act any differently than I have in the past. I get addicted, and I can’t stop so I can’t have them.

This week I want to begin again and do it without over thinking or worrying about what people think. I need to get back to writing because it is fun and because it feels good, not because I want something back from it. I have to go back to the beginning again and move forward only when my confidence is back.

I’m hoping that means you’ll see more of me here again.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that Pride month is about to come to a close and as usual I don’t feel like I celebrated nearly as much as I wanted to. I had hoped for a whole weekend of partying pretty much, but my friends sucked this time around, and nearly everyone had to back out of the festivities. We made the best of it, and with only four of us we went out for one night of drinks and dancing and had more fun than I thought we would, I’ll admit.

Denver’s Pridefest fell on the 18th, the same day as father’s day, which means we were doing double duty. My girlfriend and I weren’t awake in time for the parade, due to the night of drinks and dancing, but that’s okay, as my friend said, “If you’ve seen one pride parade you’ve seen them all.” We did end up with an almost too good to be true parking space and enjoyed a turkey leg, some ice cream, and lots of sun and fresh air together. It was a good day.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I wasn’t able to see my own father for Father’s day because he had to work, but we did my girlfriends father. I’m glad we did since the rest of her family is off on vacation and he’s been left at home alone. We made burgers and hot dogs, corn, and jalapeno peppers for dinner. We listened while he told us stories about his family and himself growing up. He rarely talks about himself, so my girlfriend was grateful for the time with him and his willingness to open up that day.

I had hoped to see him again this weekend. I hate that he is all alone in her parent’s house with no one to talk to but the dog and the cat. Then again, for all, I know he is enjoying the peace and quiet. Anyway, we’ll have to shoot for next weekend. We were just too tired. We have been recovering from a bit of sleep deprivation and a lot of stress.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that after our father’s day dinner we had to shoot directly back across town to my mother’s house because my sister and her two children had just arrived from Texas for a week-long visit.

From that night on we didn’t get to bed before 11 PM and we still had to work the next day too. Actually, my girlfriend did most of the working, I took off a few days to take care of myself and our house which was severely neglected and still needs tons more attention to feel livable again.

It was a good week tough, I just wish we’d had more notice before her visit so it could have been even better. We went to dinner, we spent time at my mother’s house catching up and playing board games, and we even got tattooed together! We got each got a series of four triangles placed in a row with the one corresponding to our birth order shaded in, for example, I’m the oldest, so the first triangle in my series is filled in, the other three are simple outlines. We even found a way to include our significant others with my and my brother’s girlfriend having the same triangles but shaded in with a tiny heart to represent who they are with. They all turned out perfect.

My sister left Saturday morning and I already miss her and the kids so much. I can’t wait for them to visit again, or maybe I’ll make some time to go see them instead. I’ve never been to Texas after all.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I did take a bit of a break from visiting to have a date night with my girlfriend. If you have been reading this blog for a while, you might have noticed that we enjoy going to the movies very much. It’s been our preferred date night activity since we met as teenagers and for fifteen years we’ve gone to the movie theater just about monthly on average, but there was one movie event we’d wanted to attend but missed every year, Film on the Rocks.

Film on the Rocks is a series of films shown at Colorado’s beautiful Red Rocks Amphitheatre, a natural rock formation turned world-famous concert venue. If you’ve never been here, there really is nothing like it, and I am ashamed I haven’t found more ways to attend events there. In the evening if you are in the right seats you can see both the stars and the city of Denver and surrounding suburbs and counties for miles. It’s beautiful.

This year they were showing The Fifth Element on a day that worked out with my schedule. We packed up Monday afternoon and made the long drive up in the intense summer heat. We sat through a few bands and a comedian that we’re exactly to our tastes and waited for the sun to drop below the horizon. At dusk, the film began, and it was an amazing experience to watch the classic surrounded by the earth and other people who enjoyed film enough to stay out til midnight on a Monday seeing it.

I can’t wait to see what they will be showing next summer.

***

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the time has flown by much too quickly and sadly I have to go. We are planning on heading to Denver Flea today, a huge pop-up event where local business and small breweries come together to sell their awesome stuff. It’s a good time to get gift shopping in and find new makers to support. After that I still have a lot more work to do around the house, and a lot more sleeping to do before work tomorrow.

I hope you had an awesome couple of weeks since we last spoke and I hope your weekend was a relaxing one. Take care of yourself okay? Try to get outside if you can and drink plenty of water too.

Until next time…

***

If you like this post check out my weekly-ish newsletter for inspiring reads + existential musings on life, love, and inevitable human suffering. Or help support what I do by sharing a cup of coffee.

Written for the weekly Weekend Coffee Share link up hosted by Nerd in the Brain

Featured image via Unsplash