May 23, 2011

Satisfying the Minimum Requirements

Chapter One Hundred


A person's goal in life should be not only be to meet -
but to exceed the absolute bare minimum
expectations demanded of them.

A person's goal in life should be to just try and
make it through
the day.


These two conflicting concepts have been ailing me for as long as I can remember. Even before I had the means of coming up with goals for myself, I was being set down the "right" path with the hope that I may one day "succeed" by "accomplishing" something "worthwhile" in life. Amidst a sea of poverty, class war, judgement & partiality, and competition. Good luck.

For a large portion of my life, I am proud to say that I have adequately achieved at least the minimum requirements for the most important things in my life. I have an adequate social life, adequate education, adequate love life, adequate debt, adequate career prospects, and adequate health. Man, I hate that word now!

What I am getting at here is that maybe a person's own personal standar ds/expectations have a lot to do with his/her personal happiness. And that perhaps a person has only so much will-power OR so much capacity of achieving the standards that they set for them self, say, for a certain time-limit, before that person simply lowers the bar.

Don't do it. Even if you think it's too late for you, stop & think. Really, it's all about perspective, and if you take a few moments to realize your own untapped potential you have just done the hardest part. Once that part is done, the capacity of conquering even your wildest dreams exists inside of you - whether you think you have the time to invest into pursuing those dreams or not.

Don't let sloth, complacency, comfort & security, or fear stop you!!

Recently I finished Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand. It's a story about Do-ers and followers. It's a story about what it means to have conviction and pride and not allowing yourself being taken for granted. Just Get'r Done. And not just with respect to the "workl" world either. Once you get that dream job, don't stop there. Work towards conquering that next big conquest. It doesn't have to even be "exciting". You might decide to witness more sunrises, get a haircut, or maybe even something as dull as reading Atlas Shrugged! Call that long-lost friend. Nail that broad. Marry your soulmate. Have the confidence that you can DEMAND something more from this misery called life.

Set your goals and follow through with a plan to achieve them. Idle chit chat? No thank you. Focus. Every single day. One day at a time.

Are the goals too tough to achieve? Completely unattainable? Maybe then - yes indeed - just go ahead and lower your expectations. s e t t l e. Don't worry about that soul mate, dream job, or 2nd language. Be happy with who you are, and don't try and transform yourself into something you are not. Don't bother being the change you want to see. After all - you're not that great.

"Do what you want, but don't do it around me -
idleness and dissipation breed apathy"

Bad Religion

May 5, 2011

My Affliction

Chapter 93

I wear T-shirts. And jeans. And usually 1 of 2 belts I own. Sometimes I sport a pair of cargo shorts - solid colour. No Hawaii flowers, no plaid please. Socks are about 50/50. Some don't have holes.

I guess you can say for all intent and purposes that I am indeed a hater of fashion . Function is the most pragmatic thing. But that does not necessarily have to mean wearing an UnderArmour long sleeved shirt, for example, in order to go skiing either. And the "Fascinator" that Princess Beatrice was showing off last month maybe has a function unbeknownst to you or me. The Prince of Lichtenstein might have a tele-tubbie fetish or something.

- freak -

Silverchair's Freak Show from 1997 included some lyrics that pleaded, "If only I could be as cool as you" over & over again. If only, eh?! From about 1997 through til ummm let's say present day I know that I will never be as cool as you. Or you. That likely has something to do with why I feel slightly more comfortable around "punk" culture... Heck, punk rock icons The Descendents have a song called "Cool To Be You". Good tune.

Here in Alberta, standard 20s (and 30s?) menswear often includes a pair of $200 jeans and a t-shirt with the words: TapOut, Affliction, Infliction, Fallen, or Suffocation, written in large cryptic calligraphy across the chest - the broader, the manlier. This latest style can be seen as you stroll through Wal-Mart or going to the sickest club on a Saturday night.  Maybe I will try wearing one some day and all the pretty ladies will come flocking towards me...Afterall, I do have a 3 year old pair of Levi's that I got on sale from Sears for something like $85 that could totally complete the look! sidebar: I wonder if UFC is available at the EPL yet...


I have worn suits. I don't mind wearing them on certain occasions even. Especially if there is someone realllllllllllly special that I know enjoys a guy in a suit. But otherwise, lose the collar, screw the sleeves, and let's hope my shoes have laces in them: Daddy's goin' to Town.

Last week I showed up to my trial for a charge that in my opinion was a total load of bullshit. I dressed up all nice, c/w a long sleeved shirt & a tie. I was the best-dressed clean-cut "punkass delinquent" sitting trial that day amongst a sea of sleezy criminal types in the whole Wetaskiwin courthouse.
After about a 30 minute trial, taking the stand, swearing on the bible, n'all, and saying my piece as clearly and concisely as possible, and only a 5 minute deliberation by the Traffic Commissioner, I had my civil self marching proudly out of the court room with a $700 fine and 4 demerits completely dismissed. The sheriff and the prosecutor were shamed and humiliated and I was free from the fucked up system that I've grown to hate so much.

I got to my car, peeled off my suit & tie and slapped on my ever-appropriate SNFU t-shirt and that semi-clean pair of shorts. (Or did I put shorts on at all?!)

You say I'm acting like a kid and one day I'll grow out of it.

Well, I do have an engineering degree. And to work in consulting with this degree, a certain dress code is often required. It's a sign of professionalism in which the consultant hopes to convince his client that he can be trusted. Little does that client know that a 6-pack of Lucky Lager might be sitting in my backpack for the long bus ride home. Who really knows what goes on with any "professional-type" person anymore. Hell - the head of the IMF is being charged with worse things than pounding back a 6-pack right now.

It's true that I am really quite torn. Damaged? Split-down-the-middle/ possibly bi-polar with a lot of my values & actions - a blog for another day. I think that I may even possibly end up with a tattoo one day - as long as I something that I actually feel that passionate about. Whatever that might be, it remains a mystery to me for now. No "Death Skull" for sure though. And no "affliction"-type words in calligraphy, or barbed-wire cuffs  either. No crosses, nothing religious, no band's symbol or slogan, lyrics or naked biker chicks.  I will think of something...

And though I long to embrace, I will not misplace my priorities:

Humour, opinion, a sense of compassion, creativity -

and a distaste for fashion.