EDM from the room next door but it’s my heart

A few times a day I press my fingers to the left side of my neck to feel my heart rate. I don’t particular care how fast my heart is beating (or even that it’s beating at all), this is just my way of being present with my stress level. Stress, my constant companion, the little ball of terrible black energy that skips across the wakes of my life, waterskiing from a rope attached to my heart.

Or let’s use skateboarding behind a truck, not waterskiing.

All day and night I interrogate myself: Am I doing enough? Am I present enough in the lives of the people I love? Am I a good partner? Am I good dad? Am I challenging my kids enough in the moments that matter? Am I giving them the space they need to to find their own voices? Am I giving enough to my job? Am I doing enough writing? Am I a useful part of the communities I demand attention from? Am I headed in the right direction? Do I use my time on this planet appropriately? Am I putting the right things in and on my body? Am I appropriately heeding (or railing against, as the moment requires) the slow decline of my flesh? Am I paying attention to the things I most need to be paying attention to? Am always I being the me I am most meant to be, in word and thought and action?

No. No! The answer to all these questions, and everything, is always no. Yet I somehow think of myself as a person who continually says Yes, an eternal force for positivity, flinging Yeses in every direction as I wing my way down the street. But somehow never doing enough, or the right thing, ever. In this way I sometimes think of stress as my protector. The glacial crust over the Manhattan-sized cavity of sadness slowly carving itself out deep inside me.

The other day I was behind a skateboarder at a red light on Comm Ave. This really happened: while we were waiting for the light to change a pickup truck drove by, driven by a clown. A literal clown, red nose, painted face, frizzy wig, etc. As he sped past he yelled out at the skateboarder: HEY POP AN OLLIE. That’s me, pressing my fingers to my neck, making sure everything is where it’s supposed to be.

omg hilarious I love it

I was lying in bed thinking about how I have domains that are over 20 years old and then some dumb voice inside my head was like Well why don’t you do anything with them and I was like I do plenty and they were like Blogs are really on the comeback trail just saying and I was like Yeah I know, turns out email newsletters are still just email (and increasingly paid? I pay to receive email now??) and F*cebook posts are sent directly to Russia as I understand and they were like What a world and I was like What an INTERNET and they were like What happened to just making shit and I was like It all became Content and we lost on price and they were like Bruh wordpress install is one click now and I was like HARD PASS and took a melatonin and passed tf out. The end! Happily ever after. Looking forward to starting Russian Doll tonight on Netflix, I’ve heard good things.

The Vanishing Act

A few months ago a fellow by the name of Jim Bennett emailed me asking for permission to turn some of my stories into short films. I said “Sure!” and figured that would be the last I ever heard of it, because I know how it is, with plans and the ladies and so forth. But then a few weeks ago I got an email from him saying “OK, almost done,” and I looked up from the level of Lego Batman I was playing to be all  “Wah???” and then almost right away I got another saying “OK, done, here’s the link.”

So I guess he showed me.

Jim did an amazing job turning The Vanishing Act into a short film. It’s all the more impressive to me in light of the fact that he’s a high school senior, because when I was a senior I did nothing BUT talk about all the movies I wanted to make. And that’s exactly as far as I ever got, talking about it.

Anyways, this made for a great start to the year. Please check out Jim’s version of The Vanishing Act.