Tag Archives: marriage


Things have begun moving at a slightly uncomfortable pace, so I’ve decided to take matters into my own hands and slow them down again. I’m still hoping to hear back from Jupiter within the next few days, but, that being said, I’ve come to the end of the line at the Bear’s Lair. I had several reasons ready for walking away, but then something actually important came along and made the decision practically automatic. I may have been dealing with some things deep within my head these past couple of weeks, but all of that soul-searching came abruptly to an end when I spoke to my Wildflower this morning (though really, at that hour, it’s should still be considered night). She’d left work early because she’d been nearly crippled by a headache and an unending bout of dizziness (for those of you who knew me a few years ago, these were the same symptoms she was exhibiting when she had to go to the hospital (the end result of that visit was a night spent uncomfortably in the world’s most expensive hotel room (you try going to a hospital without insurance), absolutely no idea what was causing her discomfort, and a bill larger than my wife’s annual salary after taxes), and which have been reappearing at random intervals since then), but didn’t manage to actually get in to see a doctor at Urgent Care until a little after noon. And by that, I mean that she actually got to see a doctor sometime around two. Sadly, but not at all unexpected, the longest part of her medical journey (in terms of time, at least), was the part where she had to wait almost five hours to get her prescriptions from Walgreen’s (despite having been told that they would be ready in two hours, and then when we arrived two hours after that, being told that nothing had been done for either because her insurance wouldn’t cover one of the prescriptions (which was only $19.99). After I said that money (in that range, anyway) was no object, we were then told that it would be just a few minutes, and her name would be called. An hour later the actual pharmacist (not the register monkey) chided us for not picking up the prescriptions sooner…).

All of that, and the best that this doctor could tell her was that she was suffering from “stress” and that she needed to take a few days and relax. She was told not to return to work until the fifteenth of December, and to try to take it easy at home. Now, to tie this in with the swirling pageant of self-loathing to which I’ve been subjected recently, it did occur to me that it could, in fact, actually be stress, and that, as I wasn’t the lowest maintenance chulo on the block, perhaps I should test the maxim about setting someone free (for the record, when presented this idea, Wildflower informed me in no uncertain terms that she just couldn’t deal with my dramatic bullshit today, and to put a lid on it). Of course, I don’t entirely believe that mere stress is entirely to blame, but I’m no doctor, or at least that’s what they keep screaming at me every time I try to go behind the counter at the Clinic in an attempt to actually provide healthcare for people. Whatever. Of course, none of this explains why I began this post with talk of jobs in both the past and future tense, subtly, yet ubiquitously leaving out the present tense. Not being one for half-measures (the only things I halve are asses (and then, only in regards to determination and/or dedication), sandwiches), I cobbled together a plan in the time between conversations with my wife. If she is to rest, and I mean that she take an actual proper rest, then she cannot be burdened with a duty of care for the Monkey Man. Combine that with the news that my adult children will be house sitting for the next few weeks, and I really had no alternative: I will be looking after David (and subjecting him to Quality Time with Dad) until Flor either feels better, or cannot bear to listen to his whining any longer, and can stand up long enough to actually do something about it.

With only seven more days until the Lair is shut down for nearly one month, its employees subject to Seasonal Layoffs (a whole different column, I promise), I felt that it was unfair of me to have to ditch out for five of them (in the interest of fairness, I would have only been missing three days of work), and even then, not be able to guarantee my return, should my wife’s condition worsen. Couple that with the probability that someone from Jupiter will be calling back within the next three to eleven days (though, as always with my life, the job isn’t a complete lock), and I felt that I’d no choice but to make a clean break. Sure, I could have found some sort of corporate loophole through which to squeeze myself, and stuck it out until we closed, and then, per their instructions, register with the EDD for seasonal unemployment, just in case things didn’t pan out with Jupiter, but that just seems… I don’t know… petty. That, and my boss has been on me since Wednesday in an attempt to secure my commitment to return after the break. No, as much as the thought of repeating the Big! Lots! Boogie sends shivers down my spine (and not the good kind), I think that it was the right time to pull away. There are some good ideas coming to the forefront now, and I think that, after having exhausted almost all possible avenues of failure, there is a decent chance for at least some modest form of success. I do not know how many people will be returning in Mid-January, but I do know that there won’t be many, as most of them (of us) have quit. Again, that is probably for the best, as we have been burnt out, and if there is to be a new chance at success, with a new Captain at the helm, it must necessarily come to pass without us. What the Lair needs now is a Belief In The Ideal, and having seen the sausage made, not that many True Believers still remain. I do, however, wish them the best of luck.

Now, however, I am moving on to bigger and better things. I know that I was saying much the same one year ago, but nothing about my dream has changed, save, perhaps, for the geography. I don’t know how much time I will have before I must return to the daily grind of full-time employment, but I know that I must take advantage of this downtime, and write for all that I am worth. I am inspired once again (well, not at this exact moment, but that may have more to do with a perpetual sense of exhaustion which I have been carrying for the past few days), and there are some things that I know that I must get out while I can. And, as with most things of artistic merit, I really just want to show off a little. There’s nothing like trying to impress new friends to get the creative juices going. Time will tell if I have made the right decision, or if I somehow managed to bollocks it all up again. But since everything this past year happened at exactly the moment in which I needed it to happen, I’m going to keep on rolling with the punches. So here’s to the coming year, and here’s to the once which is coming to an end.


In this most recent push for equality, I am left with a particularly bitter taste in my mouth. It is a source of shame for me that we are living in the twenty-first century and it is only now that we have seen a push for equality in the United States. And, to be fair, it’s only the tiniest bit of equality which we are addressing: marriage. In many states, you can still be fired for being gay, or killed without any repercussions depending upon the color of your skin or your socioeconomic status. Hell, if you are born without a penis, you are forced to go through life subjected to the judgments about your body and your sexuality by people who will never have even the slightest conception of what it means to be a woman. I am a sensitive, intelligent human being (with the soul of a clown, which forces me to blow it at the most crucial moments), and even cannot fully comprehend even the smallest struggles which more than half of the world’s human population must face upon a daily basis. I mean, I can understand them in theory, but I do not truly feel them as my own. With so much injustice left to face, it seems almost ridiculous that we had to waste our time on something so obvious as letting people marry.

Just to be clear: I don’t honestly care about gay marriage, insomuch as I am not gay, and have already gotten married. If two people love each other so much that they want to spend the rest of their lives together, who gives a shit if they make it official? It’s not about what it says in the Bible (unless you also believe that women are property and pork is a bad thing): telling people what they can do together in the privacy of their own homes seems socially retarded to me. Unless you are madly in love with someone (who had not yet reciprocated your amorous displays of affection), and that someone is just about to say, “I do” to someone who isn’t you, then the marriage of two people who aren’t you doesn’t affect you in the slightest. And even if you are suffering from unrequited love, sometimes that’s just how it goes. I’ve been a hopeless, romantic poet for long enough that unrequited love for me is just another way of saying breathing. What believe that it all comes down to is that people don’t approve of sex between two (or more) people of the same gender. I mean, I guess a lot of them don’t believe in any flavor other than vanilla, either, when they go to Baskin-Robbins. But I’ve got something to say about that as well: If you haven’t been invited into the bedroom of a consenting adult, you really don’t get a say about what goes on in there.

That being said, I suppose there are some people who are genuinely disgusted by the notion of anybody having sex. I would imagine that these are the same people who write letters to various representatives, governmental agencies, and applicable corporations to complain about something which they’ve seen on the television, demanding that it be removed from the airwaves, instead of simply changing the channel. I’m not interested in the slightest bit about any of the Kardashians (well, I think that… Kourtney(?)  is moderately adorable, but that’s only because my daughter usually keeps the E! channel on in the living room), but I’m not about to call somebody on the phone and demand that their television program be removed simply because I don’t much care for it. know how to change the channel. I don’t get to decide what other people get to enjoy. As long as what someone else is doing isn’t actually harming anyone (a case could be made for the harm caused by “reality television”, but that argument is for another day, preferably when I demand that everyone should be watching Star Trek), why should it even matter what I think about it? Of course, these people are quick to jump to their inalienable right to discriminate because of what their holiest of scriptures says. They have a duty, you see, to protect us from everything they think their God might have a problem with, as if he were not, in fact, omnipotent, and capable of sorting everything out for Himself.

But here’s the thing (which I’ve said before, and will most likely say again): if people are so against marriage equality because they think that it is a virtual endorsement of the kind of “lifestyle” which they abhor, then I feel that I  must pity them for having been so wrong. The quickest way to stamp out this rash of homosexual coupling is to encourage gay marriage. Sure, the honeymoon will be filled with all sorts of tender moments, but nothing kills the romance like facing down the reality that you’re going to be stuck with the same person and their jiggly bits forever. If you want to end the scourge of homosexual sex, get them to put a ring on it. The same thing goes for all the other “deviants” out there. Nothing puts the flames of adventurous relations like a long-term, monogamous commitment. Or, I suppose, these people could just get over themselves and pick something else to work themselves into a lather about.

It all comes down to whether we believe that we have the right to tell other people who they have to be. I don’t have that right, and I can’t claim that I am being persecuted if no one lets me enforce my vision upon everyone who might disagree. It’s disgusting that we’re even still having this discussion, and the fact that we’re having it at all is progress. I don’t care about gay marriage, because I don’t care about marriages that don’t even tangentially affect me, and if one of my friends gets married, the only thing I care about is if they love each other and treat each other well. End of discussion.

Wicked World

Maybe it’s something in the air, a melody carried along by the summer breeze, lost except for a fragment brushed along the contours of your ear as it plays by before it disappears forever. Perhaps it’s interest carried over on arguments both won and lost over the course of the last decade. When hopelessness encounters its own justifications, it can be nearly impossible to shake it loose again. I wish that I could say that this was some fleeting shred of melancholy tickling up against the edges of my perceptions, but this has been pulling us down, drawing us in for quite some time now, our failures falling into one another, collapsing into a singularity which we cannot escape. Now, I do know that this feels worse because of everything that’s been going on, but it makes me wonder if we’ll manage to survive it this time. I’m not saying that neither of us has managed to avoid having earned our respective blame, but this seems to be an overwhelming pattern in my life. I thought that I had managed to break the cycle of my failures when Flor and I got together. She was supposed to be the one to save me from myself. She was supposed to be the chosen one. Instead, it seems that I’ve managed to corrupt her, poison her beauty as it seems that only I can do, and ruin my chance for salvation through the simple act of being me.

I may have mentioned, a time or two before, that I’m not the easiest person to be around. I mean, in small doses, I’m clever and charming, seductive and sweet, snarky and sincere, but that’s because I’m careful to only let out certain aspects of my wicked and warped damage at a time, so as not to drive off the handful of people I seem to keep around to keep from going completely ’round the bend, cut off from what little human I can consciously tolerate, but apparently require. Living with me seems to bring out the worst in people, or, rather, allows me the privilege of doing it myself. The person who most everybody knows is just a fiction that I’ve lived with since I discovered that it made my life significantly simpler, but even I can’t keep the act up every hour of every day. I need a large quantity of down time before I can put on the mask again, and when I walk in through my front door, the first thing that I do is tear away the pretense and the happiness before it suffocates me. I am mostly content to live a sedentary life, punctuated with random meaningful events, but the rest of the time, I think that I would prefer the company of no one but myself. You know, I really thought that I could do it this time. That by ignoring all the signals which had informed me that the woman who was to be my wife would be woefully ill-equipped to help me destroy myself, and therefore exactly the person who I had to make sure was in my life.

And yet it seems that I cannot stand happiness. It makes me feel cut off from myself. I’ve never learned to let things go, and I have to be right, no matter the cost. It isn’t important to me that time will usually vindicate me, I have to win the argument. Instead of letting my wife pull me up out of the quagmire of the life I seem to have been destined for, I seem to have only torn her down, ripped her apart bit by bit, and shaped her into not only the perfect nemesis, but molded her into a bitter image of myself (which may seem redundant to the few people who have known me since before I learned to hide myself behind the act that I’ve been living for almost the entirety of my adult life). She deserves someone who will build her up, be there for her when she needs someone, and never be a burden around her neck. I have asked her almost weekly for the past nine years if she has faith in me, and every time she answers yes, it takes her a little longer, and she’s less able to contain her disbelief. I think that she only gave me her blessing to embark on this crusade because she knew that I would either make it happen, or I’d wind up worse off for having tried and failed, at which point she could cut her losses and be rid of me forever.

Of course, I’m only able to see what I want to see, read the narrative which I am capable of understanding. You see, it’s easier for me if I can say that we’re arch-nemeses, so that when she finally tires of my bullshit, I can nurture enmity in the place where fondness and love once dwelled to cover for the fact that once again I have become irrevocably broken by my inability to do what must be done, to manage to get the important things done right. I would die for her one thousand times without a moment’s hesitation, or David, or my grandchildren, or even my daughter, who is so much like me that it still confuses me how we aren’t genetically connected, but I cannot bring myself to live for them. Sure, I’ve made an effort, though some would say too little, too late. I just find that I cannot be the person who I would like to be. If I was a better man, I might pack up and leave here in the middle of the night, cut my ties and let those I love begin the process of getting over having known me. I’ve always been far better in theory than in practice, and as a cautionary tale, I’d probably even make a better father. I guess the reason that I haven’t boils down to cowardice, and the hope that maybe I can get it right in time.

I guess that we’ll find out.


I knew this day would come, but I didn’t expect it to take so long in its arrival. I knew that I wouldn’t really start to get going on what I wanted to write until I had no time left to do it. It’s not really a surprise then that everything seems to be blowing up in my face just as I am on the verge of actually getting something accomplished. Not a full-length novel, mind you, but at least something that isn’t just the blog, something that I might be able to convince people to purchase. I thought the day would come sometime back in January, but it seems the gods of apathy had other things in mind for me. Whatever. I’m still going to finishing working on it, and then I’m going to see what I can do to try to make a little money. It’s taking all my will to keep from falling back down into the depths of despair, and every ounce of ego to tell myself that I should keep working at it. A lesser (or smarter) man might have given up by now, with his entire life snowballing into ruin. But not me. I’ve been putting this off for decades, and I don’t think that I’ll ever muster up the courage to try again if I don’t follow through this time.

I asked my wife before I began this little adventure of mine, if she believed in me, if she thought that I could do it. I know that rough Spanish translations are a poor substitute to showcase my abilities, but it was all I had to work with. Even then, she told me that she believed, and for the first time in what seemed like nearly forever and a day, I almost thought that I could do it. I just wish that I had managed to get back into form a little sooner. And that I had socked away some money back when I was making it. I know that I can pull this out (I have always known it), but I cannot seem to adequately explain it to my wife. We are both stressed out about what the near-future holds, and the best that I can offer her is that I’m pretty sure that everything will be okay. I mean, I have a track record of always landing on my feet, but the cynic inside me says that only means that I am due to finally taste the sweet agony of complete and utter failure.

Maybe it’s just a side effect of my mental illness, this delusion that I should, or could, do this for a living. I mean, who’s to say that this isn’t just a particularly deluded fantasy of mine which might better be relegated to the status of a hobby? Except that I have known down to the deepest part of me since I was just a boy that it was going to be this path or nothing. In school, while I saw everyone around me plagued with doubt about the lives they were desperately trying to decide between, I floated by upon a cloud of certainty that I knew what I was doing. Maybe this is my greatest sin of all: pride. Or self-delusion, whatever you want to call it. I have to be right, and more often than not, I am. But now is not the time for me to learn that I am fallible. Or maybe it’s the best time, philosophically, but I can’t let myself think like that. There will be plenty of time to learn that I am just as capable of committing errors when the stakes aren’t quite so high.

On a happier note, if I was forced to guess my progress with the story I am working on, I’d probably have to say that I am almost halfway done. I shot past the roadblock that had been causing me so many problems, and now it’s just a matter of finishing up the flashback and trying it all together with the ending of the story. The only thing that is giving me problems now is the massive tonal shift in the original. I liked the juxtaposition then, but I’m not sure if I can make it work this time. To be fair, I like telling myself that something is impossible when I’m fairly certain that it’s not so that when I finally pull it off, I can pat myself on the back and feel like a miracle worker. I’m relearning how to write fiction again, and I should have started with that from the very beginning, as the odds that someone would read the random things I write about here on the blog and decide that they wanted to pay me to do it for them were always nonexistent. But at least I’ve gotten faster at transferring thought to page, which has helped me with writing in general.

To tie everything back in together, I guess what I’ve been trying to spit out is that I know that the majority of the work that I do when I am writing is nearly indistinguishable from just lounging about. But I am always mulling over what my next move is, or distracting myself from focusing directly on the problem so that the answer comes to me more organically. When I’m reading, I’m actually taking classes in advanced creative writing. When I’m watching television, I’m soaking the interplay of characters and themes. When I’m listening to music, I’m… well I’m usually just grooving to the music, but putting myself in the mood is also important. But none of this is making me a dime, at least not yet. I have nothing to show for my efforts aside from a crumbling relationship and the looming threat of a nervous breakdown. I need to knuckle down and become the little writer who could. I’m pretty sure that I can do it. I mean, what’s the worst that could happen if I’m wrong?

That Time Of Night

I should be asleep, but I’ve learned that after days like this, it’s best not to chance it. I woke up feeling not quite right with the world, in the gastrointestinal department, and by the time that the afternoon had come, my stomach issues had cleared up, but an old man pain within my head had taken hold. It comes on just like a migraine, but this type seems to be inspired by a change in weather, and I can still cram food into my face. It’s been chill and windy all day long, which is a turnabout from how it’s been the past couple of days. Or it could all be because I always feel like crap after spending the night on the sofa because the three of us, Wildflower, the Minkey, and myself, do not fit comfortably in the bed we must all share. David used to have a bed, but it suffered some crippling structural attacks and is no more. And this problem of ours has only been plaguing us for a few months now. Before, when my wife was working nights, my son and I would split the bed, and then I’d give up my forty percent to Wildflower when I went off to work. But ever since she’s been working mornings, it’s been a challenge to our marriage.

I don’t know if you all know this, but it’s hard to get along with your significant other when you have to share a bed with your child. Worse is when you never actually get to sleep with the person whom you married because there are too many distractions in the living room for your child to manage to fall asleep (never mind that he weighs almost nothing, and the sofas he has jumped upon and warped don’t bother him at all). Spend too much time without a little hanky panky, and you wind up with a roommate. Leave it like that for too long, and suddenly you don’t have even that. No, I’m not saying that my marriage is falling apart, though it has certainly seen much better times. But with the both of us in some sort of pain most of the time, and stressed out about finances and the number of people crammed into our two bedroom apartment, there’s not a lot of room for us to pencil in some much-needed quality time. Hell, the last date night we had (outside the apartment) was when we went to see Apocalyptica last month. And the time before that predates this blog by three weeks. I can’t actually remember the time before that, but it has to have been sometime between our third anniversary and last November. Right?

All of this has begun to take its toll. We still make each other laugh, but not as much, and the arguments usually take longer to resolve. And when we do fight, instead of building to the Climax of the Unspeakable, we oftentimes will just start there, and then not speak to one another for a day or two. The thing is, it’s not really anybody’s fault. We both sort of just let it get this way. There are just certain things that aren’t going to happen when I’m stressed out and exhausted, and she is constantly focused on everything which must be done to keep our home remotely livable. Times like this, especially in the dead of night, are what terrify me most. What if this is it? I ask myself, rubbing at my temples, What if we’re not coming back from this one? I sometimes wonder if we stay together out of love, or some sort of dedication to Mutually Assured Destruction. For myself, I can say that, barring domestic violence or infidelity, there will never come a time when I might have had enough to call it quits. What scares me is knowing just how much of a pain in the ass I am while resting in my natural state, and wondering if I’ve managed to destroy her love, just like I’ve done with every other woman whom I’ve dated.

And now those of you who were wondering when I’d bring my mental illness into this can whisper to your friends that you told them so.

Meeting and marrying Wildflower is most likely the best thing which could have happened to me, and I have a nasty tendency to want to get revenge on my happiness. I will find every reason to be unreasonable, and be able to back it up with facts and logic, just so I can drive the wedge a little bit further between us. To the age-old question of being right or being happy, I simply smile a twisted frown and declare that I’d take happiness, but I’m never wrong. I don’t want to think about what that kind of obstinacy must be like to share a marriage with, and if Fallen Catholics could be nominated for sainthood, I’d put up my dear wife’s name. I just wish that I could show her what I see when I tell her that everything will work out fine. I mean, I do have a track record (second only to the Phoenix) for full recoveries (and then some) from ashes of my failures (or, as I like to call them: reminders of why I like to live indoors), but I can understand why she might balk a little at the prospect of putting our future in the hands of maybe.

I just wish that this pain would go away. I know it is nudging me toward explosion, and when I blow, that will be the end of it. Maybe if we had enough money so we wouldn’t have to worry about the little things (like food, shelter, and clothing for three people), I could show her.

Why does it feel like I’m still waiting for something? Like there’s at least one more piece which I am expecting to fall in place. Someone I haven’t met. Something as of yet I haven’t done. I feel closer than ever to life I should be living, yet it seems just out of phase with the reality in which I’m currently stranded. I just wish that I had someone to talk to about all of this, not that I don’t enjoy the company of all of you. I wish that I knew, with the certainty of foreknowledge, exactly what the hell it is that I’m supposed to do. In retrospect, all of this angst will have been pointless, of course. The decision which I make will have been the only one available under the circumstances. I’m just missing the final clue to changing my perspective, so that I can see the bigger picture.

I wish…