RAIN!!

Such a great song

It rained for the first time in a long time today. Beach rain is nice. I like desert rain too. Rain is nice in the woods… ok fine, I just love the rain.

I don’t go out in it much because humans are gross and have made it all dirty, but I still love it.

We are cooking the planet too and we have pretty well-tested and precise models for what the world is going to look like if we stay on the present course. So I enjoy the rain while it lasts.

I might’ve shared this already. A wave crashed hard over the beachhead and made really cool reflections and patterns.

I laughed way too hard at this.

That’s about it for tonight. Going to make dinner. There are some projects finally getting released soon I am very excited to share! One last thing before I go.

We should all maximize our Funkometer more often.

Labor Day Weekend

The beach was absolutely packed all weekend and it was muggy as balls out. Crazy good time though. It has been a busy couple of months and just checking out the last couple days has been wonderful.

It was great energy all weekend and let me just tell you who stole the show.

Y’ALL!!!! These two were so stinking cute I almost fell over. The guy looked like he had just been watching golf and the woman was wearing a soft white beach dress. They dragged a whole ass table to the beach. Flowers in a vase and little electric candles and a teapot. They were having pasta with red sauce.

It was super hazy and made for a gorgeous sunset. From this distance you can hear the screams and cheers from the rollercoasters. The pier always sounds so happy. I love it.

The sunset was a cooker and just begged to have its picture taken. So here ya go.

It has been almost a year out here. I was going through an old notebook and I came across some goals i had written when the idea of moving to L.A. had only just started to rattle around. Ideas and goals of what I would do if I had the courage to chase my dreams. It has never felt so good to cross every goal off of a goal list. Every single thing on that list has been accomplished and then some. I am so very grateful and had a bit of emotional overwhelm when I randomly came across something so validating. Maybe this will all work out after all.

8/4/22 A Good Day at the Beach

World Famous Gold’s Gym Venice

The sunset was beautiful and the clouds offered a particular color palette uncommon to the beach. Scattered clouds picked up pinks and purples and scattered them across the sky. The beach has exquisite sunsets but this one was uncommon here. I know this because I am familiar with this particular sunset style.

Arizona Style Sunset

This is a sunset you see in Arizona. This hit me in the feels. I left 30 years of my life back in Arizona. A large portion of family, a lifetime of familiarity, and a million nights looking in awe at skies exactly like this. I watched these sunsets at the end of grueling football practices and at the end of first dates. Dates at a mall which was torn down last year. Or at a movie theater erased even more recently.

So many nights in the pool with family and friends celebrating anything and everything just for an excuse to hang. A light show like no other. It was nice to see something so magical remind me of home, even if it got me a little homesick.

This intersection has been hopping for over 100 years. The epicenter of the first city in America created for the sole purpose of having a wonderful time. I have seen concerts and multi-million dollar fashion shows completely take the place over and then be gone like a circus in the wind. It’s dripping with art and the music never stops. You can hear the heart of Venice beating.

Lot’s of big things cooking. I am excited to share them.

August 1, 2022: Where to sit?

New situations always bring with them an inevitable decision. Where to sit? Not always in the literal “ass in a chair” sense. More of a, where is the best place for me to be at any given moment?

A good answer for me is always, “between the next smartest and next dumbest person in the room”. The dumber person shows me what I do know, and the smarter person shows me what I don’t”.

*being “dumber” does not make one dumb. Being dumb in an intentional choice. Being “dumber” is part of the learning process.*

I find myself in the luckiest of situations at the moment. I spend my days with brilliant creatives. Martial arts masters, acrobats, singers, writers, and all sorts of computer wizards weaponizing technology into creative tools.

I feel overwhelmed by my good fortune. But I also DO NOT feel it came easy. There was I time I would have described myself as having “bad luck”. And since I was not ready to accept that “bad luck” was 101% the consequences of my own actions yet, I went on the pursuit of good luck.

Good luck is formulaic. It can easily be increased. But here is how I did it.

  1. I showed up.
  2. I kept showing up.
  3. I read a lot.

I know. I was pissed too. I wanted it to be a spell or something.

I will elaborate in the next article and ask any questions if you want them answered.

Here are some more pretty pictures.

I DON”T CARE

The beach was absolutely beautiful today. I was watching a most magnificent sunset.

No filter or edits

The crashing waves had formed the beach into a steep berm. So steep you could hang your legs over. A mother was running around getting as much video of her absolutely adorable girls running from the waves. You could hear their anticipation build as they chased the receding waves back to see, only to burst into screaming laughter as the next wave gave chase as it crashed. A young girl was leaning back into her boyfriend’s lap and warming embrace. They laughed watching the girls taunt the waves. Very well could have been the moment they decided to one day have their own and bring them to this very spot.

And do you know what intruding thoughts I had to wrestle these moments back from? The typical stuff. What time is it? Where am I supposed to be? Why am I not being productive? Etc. Etc.

I DON’T CARE!!!!!

I looked it up. There is no law. You can say this to absolutely anything. None of us are under any obligation to care about anything. So why does it never seem that way?

If I had screamed out loud “I DON’T CARE” as loud as I screamed in my head, it would have stopped the waves. I don’t care. Nobody’s beating heart was going to stop if I just sat there and took pictures of this sunset.

Look how pretty this is!!

I have unthinkably ambitious goals for my time in California. But I don’t care. Does that make any sense?

I put shots on goal every single day, but it’s not my favorite part. I am absolutely in love with every second of my life. The goals I set just inform my day. They do not control it anymore. If I achieved every single goal I have ever set for myself. If was content with a life well lived spent doing wonderful things with amazing people, do you know what I would do with my remaining time? I would sit on the beach soaking up sunsets watching people in love holding each other with eyes reflecting sunshine while listening to children laugh their hearts out petting other people’s dogs!!!

So I do not care.

I don’t care if I get cut off in traffic. I don’t care if have unproductive days. I don’t care…

I don’t know who needs to hear this but not caring is the real self-care. Every time we choose our peace over the illusory fight against personal slights, we look younger. Every time we choose peace over the trauma response that is the compulsion towards productivity a wrinkle goes away. Every time we permit ourselves to not care about things we do not actually care about, we preserve the opportunity to use that time for things we actually DO care about.

I saw this today. I liked it. I stoled it. (dm me for credit).

I defended my attention and allowed myself to enjoy a mystical moment.

I saw this today too. I don’t get it. But I love it. and this is by Jules Much @muckrock.

I highly recommend training the brain to sense when happy moments get ambushed by anxiety in any form and defend joy at all costs.

*as always the disclaimer that this was not proofread so please forgive any errors.

7/20/2022 Venice Beach, California

I always loved lifting weights. Here is a picture of me throwing a caber at what I believe was the Flagstaff Highland games circa 2013ish. It is my least favorite event of the games because it is difficult and I am not that good at it. Guns look good tho.

The weightlifting culture has deep roots in Venice with places like Muscle Beach and the most iconic Gold’s Gym. It is one of the things that drew me to this city at such a young age. Now that I am here I have memberships to both of those places and I use both almost daily. If the fitness culture was the only thing I loved about this city I would still be content. But it is not.

It is not the fantastical light show the sun puts on more nights than not as it sets. The temperature is perfect for a tank top or a hoodie. The music from every direction and art in creation wherever the eyes fall. It is not it either.

@muckrock is a street artist/muralist and all-around local hero named Jules Muck. She contributes to the recovery community and is also an exquisite artist. The city has some rough edges but it shines beautifully with the help of street artists like Jules. Check my Instagram and you will see that I absolutely love the street art in Venice. But it is not my favorite thing about the community.

This isn’t even art, this is a rough edge and it still reflects mightily in the sunset. It looks like an old punk rock album cover of the garage the band first played in. Once they moved on the dad reclaimed the garage to work on his motorcycle in peace. They probably had a deaf bulldog that liked to hang out to feel the vibrations of the drums. It shows its resilience and experience in being weathered with class. Or something… I don’t know. But it is not my favorite part either.

Honestly, my favorite part is all of the imperfections. Venice is insane. There are street gangs and a large homeless population. The boardwalk is constantly prowled by scam artists and hustlers. The occasional scuffle happens at some point most days. Someone has jumped or fallen from my building twice since I lived here. Once it was caught on camera. Super gnarly. The imperfections are the cost of an open door policy in a radically tolerant community. The Venice culture shows that it is very possible to thrive under these principles. The art, and the music, and the sports, and the scenery, would all seem so out of place if Venice looked down her nose at anyone. So much magic happens just by taking inclusion to the extreme.

If there were any typos or inconsistencies I apologize, I am just publishing this without proofreading and going to bed. Love to you all.

It has been a moment since last we spoke…

I have lost count of the times I sat to write a “catch up” to be overcome by overwhelm.

Things have been beautiful out here. It is summertime and the beach is an absolute circus on the daily. Kids are out for summer and the beach is scattered with “surf camps” and “lifeguard camps” and all sorts of group activities. It is cuteness overwhelm on contact.

The sun sets behind the mountains in the summer. Kinda sucks. It kills the winter afterburn that can last hours. I know. Boo hoo right!

I love this clown. It is the patron saint of Rose Ave. and Main.

A beautiful homage to the man who calculated the bridge of reality.

The symbolism of the ocean’s edge is profound. There is no feeling like it. The energy of the water scratching away at footprinted sand. Gorgeous mountains, ruining the afterburn, but not entirely ruining the world’s most enchanting sunsets.

My absolute favorite movie theater on Earth is now officially the Alamo Drafthouse. This is simply the top of the escalator and look at it! Fucking look at it!! I was vibrating.

They serve food to your seat but it is really really good food. A refreshing change.

A dear friend took a leap of faith with me and went and saw a Tollywood film titled simply RRR. It was hands down the most exciting theater experience I have ever had. I lost count how many times the crowd erupted into cheers and applause. If a theater near you is playing this, GO AND SEE IT NOW!!! You will not regret it.

Stupid mountains.

I don’t mean to brag but more than 2 places in the Venice area are giving me the “local” discount. So I guess you could say it’s official. This place is still insane and I love it more and more every day. The people are so kind and fun-loving. I see lots of people looking out for one another. Manny, sells sugar skulls, dream catchers him and his wife make, and beautiful paintings on wooden boards. He has always been super friendly I am going to get his Instagram and post it in a future article. Keep your eyes open and don’t gamble with money you do not want to lose. Yes, you will lose.

That is all for now.

5/24/22 It’s Time to Put Down the Guns.

I didn’t edit this or even reread it. Here is my impulsive first reaction to this edition of Shooting of the Day.

I still remember the first time I heard a news story of a shooting. It was at a Luby’s in Texas when I was very young. I don’t remember the year and I don’t care to look it up. I was very young. I heard the story of a man barging into the restaurant and killing people with a shotgun. I had shot a shotgun at that point in my life. I knew how shocking the blast was when one was fired. The next several times I was in a restaurant I remember thinking “what if someone just came in now and starting shooting us all?”. What a horrible thing for a child to sit in fear of while having dinner out with their family.

As awful as that is, what is far worse is that I stopped worrying about it. You can’t actively fear something very long. I just accepted the reality and became numb to it. I remember a kid bringing a pistol to school in elementary school. It was Texas after all. I have been in multiple situations where gunfire broke out. An absolute angel of a human was taken at a high school desert party close to prom my senior year. Then soon thereafter Columbine happened. An athlete on the track team was in her freshman year when she learned the coach who helped her become a collegiate athlete was shot to death back at the school she had just graduated from. She realized that she would have been at school that day had she been 1 year younger.

Since then it is just commonplace for these incidents to occur. I can’t remember a significant number of details about any of them anymore. I absolutely fucking refuse to learn anymore of these cretins names.

Guns exist and America has a massive fetish for them. There are 120 guns for every person in the United States and we are a massive outlier in terms of how many children get murdered at school per month. There has also been zero effort to do anything about it at any time whatsoever. How much longer is this going to be the reality in the self proclaimed Land of Liberty?

The history of the United States from the year 2000 and on is going to be a time where the entire country was notified of fruequent incidents where children were murdered at school and responded with complete inaction. One side argueing passionately in defense of the guns. The other side aquiescing under the weight of a coalition. An association of people comfortable with chldren dying whilst being educated as the cost of freedom.

There have been bills presented for decades that would enact reasonable measures allowing the fagile men in this country to keep their phallic pride sticks while building and improving a system based on responsibility and accountability. I do not see an argument for being against reasonable systems of responsibility and accountability.

So what is reasonable? I would prefer it be whatever level keeps people alive while there are at school, places of worship, and grocery stores. Is that not reasonable? How is that not the most reasonable standard to live up to? What kind of psychopath wants to keep the boundary more narrow than that?

One of the saddest bars I have had to lower my entire life is how much a have to accept that guns are just a thing where I live. People are going to die everyday doing mundane things because our standards of responsibility and accountability are so low.

Guns will evolve away eventually. American kids already know we are the only country with this problem. They already know the cost. They are not going to accept a society in which sending their children to school is to risk them being in the next American Shooting of the Day.

A Special Sunday

The Meaning of Life

In the grand scheme of things is becomes clear that life is meaningless and makes no sense. I also find it a such a relief to know this. Does that sound weird? Why? Does it sound discomforting? Why? 

What comfort comes from believing life has some mysterious meaning? Think of all that implies. That the whole point of all of this is a mystery yet unsolved. Everyone who has passed away what?… failed the test? What would happen when we figured it out? 

I think we are free to give life the meaning it gives us room to make. There is so much out of our control but we are not what happens to us. We are what we choose to do in the moment. The adventures we seek and the stories we live are everything. Spending time with loved ones and like minded people. Petting a strangers dog at the beach. Watching a sunset listening to waves crash into sand. These moments are not the meaning of life, but they sure do give life meaning. 

It is a bit surreal to see a country celebrating Mother’s Day when the powers that be are still attempting to keep women subjugated. We have come farther in securing the rights of pets and passwords than we have the humans that bear children. If you have a good mother celebrate her. The cards were stacked against her. If you have a shitty mother, I am very sorry. You owe them nothing and I wish you peace. Hopefully someday soon we will have a Mother’s Day celebrating the idea of motherhood and appropriately honoring those who bring life. 

5.1.2022 Back at the Beach

“And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who couldn’t hear the music.”

-Frederick Nietzshe

A vibrant woman was consulting a client on the boardwalk today. She wore a whimsical hat and had organic shapes painted on her face in bright green with black accents. Her sign said “medicine woman”. She had a paying client with her and they were deep in conversation. My first impulsive thought was to classifythe interaction as a sucker being taken by a fraudster. I did not like that thought, so I thought more.

I observed them only for a short time but the interaction seemed very positive. Who gives a shit what this medicine woman advertises herself as? I didn’t see any potions for sale or anything that spoke of danger. If that client left the interaction happier or uplifted in any way why object? What possible reason could I have to interfere with that? Even having the audacity to classify the interaction in a negative way was silly. Who tha fuck am I to have an opinion on it? Nothing about it seemed negative. The client may have just needed an ear from someone who wouldn’t judge. There was nothing to signal the need for intolerance in any way. There so rarely is.

Venice is the pinnacle of tolerance and acceptance. It blows my mind how broad the range of the alternative lifestyles represented. Just a moment’s walk further there was a group of men who come out and shout the bible aggressively at passers-by, and encourage people to come up and question/confront them. Then they rage recite bible verses. Something for everyone I guess. Again it is not my place to understand or have an opinion, but I love how much it proves that a diversity of people can struggle together and make a fantastic community.

Tangent Alert:

Why doesn’t weird stuff seem weird for very long? How did we come to have such high expectations for the advancement of technology that when it arrives it goes from woah to meh overnight.? Just having a smart device that answers questions when asked should be enough to break reality. But it’s not. Rockets land vertically on robot boats at sea and in a world with no shortage of mass panic over nonsense, we do not question reality when it seems to flex and bend too far.