Hear me out before you start to panic. Moving to New York City is not the big mistake, however, so far mistakes that should be long omitted from my repertoire have been peeking their little heads up.
Human beings have many immunities that our bodies have conjured up in order to protect us from harm, however, fucking up is not one of them. No one is immune to making mistakes. Whether it be forgetting to pay a bill on time, being late for work, not locking the door when you rub one out and a family member comes in…the possibilities are endless and we’re all guilty. Even worse are big mistakes. Ones that the curse of personality masks with a layer of stubbornness causing a false interpretation of what is right and what is wrong. If you don’t realize this, you are ever doomed with a downward spiral in your life, career, and relationships…
I am the biggest perpetrator of masking my fears with stubbornness. I tend to have an idea of how something should be and don’t step outside the circle of comfort to just let things happen. For instance, I have not been attending regular open mics in the city as I felt I didn’t need to go through that process anymore. However, when show time came around, my lack of rehearsal and rust shown through as bright as the reflection of the sun off of Joan Rivers waxy face. I was very ashamed of myself for acting that way. Sure open mics are brutal, but the lack of reciting my set regularly proved to be even more brutal. Struggling to remember tags, transitions, punch lines, and entire jokes made me sick to my stomach (which to be honest isn’t that hard as I’m pretty squeamish.). The audience responded well to my act, however, if it were an audition spot at one of the bigger clubs I fear I would have been passed on immediately. What if it had been a show that counted toward something bigger? What if industry people had been there to scout out new talent? How the FUCK could I let this happen? I’ll tell you how, because I allowed my stubborn mask, whether I knew it or not, blind me and I paid the consequences for it. Oh, but that’s not all…
Let’s get hypothetical for a moment. I think it’s safe to say that the older one gets the more inclined they are to spend time with people closer to their age. More often than not they have a preconceived notion in their head that anyone, say seven or so years younger than them does not posses the maturity level to carry on a relationship regardless of its level. But who are we to make such a judgment without giving it a chance? Just because science dictates the brain’s full functionality is not finished developing until age 25 does not mean that someone who is 19-20 cannot match or exceed their older counterparts maturity level. Having these preconceived notions will only cause damage to what could have been something great, all because the “older” one was too blind, scared, and immature to just let it be. Now one is left to suffer for their mistake; and even if they choose to end the cycle, they still missed their opportunity unless said younger counterpart can forgive. This is one of the biggest mistakes one can make…hypothetically, of course.
New York City is a lonely place. Those who know me well would say that’s a perfect fit for someone such as myself, but making big mistakes makes it that much lonelier. The daily routine here consists of commuting beside thousands of people in a small aluminum box, though eye contact is seldom made. Most of the commuters are staring down or reading or drowning himself or herself in their iphone screen trying to figure out a way to get more lives on Candy Crush Saga without a connection to the Internet. Point A to point B, that’s all that matters.
People often accuse me of having an old soul, telling me I have wisdom beyond my years or that my hyper sense of awareness has caused me to break the fourth wall and expose our lives for the meta-fictional series of errors it really is, however these accusations prove false as I am just a boy. A boy who tries to make the decisions of a man and ends up making mistakes that may hurt the ones around me.
I suppose the moral of the story is don’t underestimate the amount of work it takes to be good at something, and don’t underestimate another human being because of a number, especially in a city where human interaction is all but an accident. Hopefully these lessons will help me be a better man, but in the words of every woman ever…”Men Suck.” I’m most definitely not immune to sucking…
Monday, February 18, 2013
Experiences are what drive creativity. Whether it is happy, sad, traumatic, or wonderful; the result is always the same: an imagination sparked by reality. Maybe you use these experiences to create something, or simply relate to something that is created; that light bulb still shines bright whether you know it or not. Children seem to have the concept of creativity down to perfection, an art that’s often lost among us “grown” folk…
Recently I had an experience that got me thinking, as almost everything does (because I suck and over think using my brain which was created for thinking, as you all know). I was watching a football game at a friend’s house and their nine year old son swiftly jumped from his comfortable corner of the couch and ran as fast as he could to the restroom. I paid no mind as we all have to go, right? But what happened next brought out the beast that is my mind and put it into full motion. The boy emerged from the restroom, smiled from ear to ear, looked me straight in the eyes and said “I almost sharted!”
Sharted: a combination of the words “Shit” and “Farted” implying that one has just farted and a small amount of shit accompanied the gassy discharge.
Needless to say I, my friend, and her son all burst into an uncontrollable laughter. Though the term sharted was not an original creation, the boy still had the know how to creatively combine two words into one hilarious instance that he damn well knew would spark the reaction that it did. A child, using his imagination to elicit a response from adults that could end in two possible scenarios: a. He’s scolded for being inappropriate, or b. we laugh our asses off; a risk worth taking for the fifty-fifty chance of a big pay off that’s worth every effort. At this very moment we were all children living in a fantasy world full of shit, farts, and laughter. It was fantastic and the boy succeeded in entertaining others through creativity.
Ridiculous and immature? Hmm…perhaps, but where would we be without such things? If you aren't able to tap into your inner child, how could you accomplish anything? Believe it or not, everything great in this world at one point was just a fantasy in someone’s imagination. Bringing those fantasies to life for our benefit is the difference between those who are successful and those who are not. That begs the question: who is immature? The one who embraces their immaturity? Or the one who isn’t mature enough to recognize its significance?
Take the comedy world for example. Most comics rely on humor to get a huge point across to their audience. An underlying message surrounded by creative, and often immature twists on real life situations. For some of us it’s even a means of taking our deepest, darkest pain and finding a way to creatively find the humor in it and relay that to an audience. A kind of therapy that helps us get it all out an laugh instead of cry.
When you drive over a bridge, or step into an elevator, or hop on a rollercoaster have you ever stopped to think who of how could someone have possibly thought to create these things? Someone had to tap into their imagination and shart out the ideas. Though technologically complex breakthroughs, they still required someone to tap into that side of their brain that never grew up; that side of their brain that can still play and create impossible images and bring them to life.
Even when things aren’t possible to actually create in the living world, they can still be created in other formats for us to get lost in; books, movies, tv shows, videogames, comics, etc. Where would we be without Spielberg, Lucas, Cameron, Tolkein, Steinbeck, Clark, Kane, Ball, Letterman, Rodenberry, etc? We would be a group of bored individuals I tell you what. We indulge in these things because we like to escape to a reality that doesn’t exist because, for lack of a better word, it’s fun.
I have a friend; beautiful as the anything you could imagine and smarter than the average, or even above average human being. A scholar in social justice, a mother, and is destined for greatness. She’s stern and to the point; to try and argue anything with her his suicide and your balls are bound to be verbally cut off. That being said when we sit down to watch a movie she fidgets, yells, laughs, talks to the screen…she get’s fully emerged in what she’s watching and embraces the experience to the full effect. Her inner child comes out completely and isn’t held back. Seeing someone who is otherwise quite intimidating to the average person become a nine year old is one of the greatest things I have ever laid my eyes on and there’s no one I would rather enjoy a movie with. Her imagination is fully intact and I can only imagine the great things that will be accomplished by combining that and her social justice prerogatives.
I really want to keep going on and on as I have a lot more to say, but I’ll spare you anymore rant and get to the point, which is this: if your kid tells you they sharted, laugh, it’s funny. Don’t hold them back from enjoying their own creativity, you never know when that shart will lead them to building a bridge or a rollercoaster. And don’t hold yourself back either. We may be adults, but don’t for one second underestimate a child’s genius, they have it figured out a lot better than we do. Embrace your inner child from time to time, because in the midst of all the bullshit we have to deal with on a daily basis and important adult decisions we have to make, there will always be a part of us that’s at the second star to the right, and straight on til morning. We owe it to ourselves to spend time there to stay sane.
Now with all that being said I must now excuse myself as I have indeed just sharted because I do indeed…suck. (new FUCKING underwear…)
Saturday, September 22, 2012
Sometimes, a man doesn't act much like a man. In my case, that would be majority of the time. When a man wants something he can't have he tends to act a fool. For example: I want to be able to eat in the shower, but no! I can't due to the problems that will arise if attempted; however I tried anyway and needless to say it was a disaster of great proportions.
It all started while I was watching television the other day and “Seinfeld” came on. It was the episode where George decided to implement food into the bedroom, meaning he wanted to eat while having sex. This gave me an idea. What if I could incorporate food into something I love? I happen to love taking showers; it’s quite relaxing. I want to eat in the shower! Is it possible to pull off? I wanted this more than anything.
I began planning. I thought that Lean Pockets would be the best choice of food as they’re delicious and easy to make. Attempt number one was about to take place! I cooked two lean pockets and went into my bathroom. I started running the water and waited for the mirrors to steam to make sure the water was nice and hot before I went in. I slowly removed my clothes, only for the purposes of a sexy/traumatizing description I could later write down in blog format. I stepped in and operation shower eater was a go!
As soon as I stepped in, the lean pocket began to get soggy and gross. I attempted to take a bite out of it and it slipped from my hand and into the water below (as there’s always a clog since I don’t clean my tub often). Attempt one had failed. No matter, I can always try again right?
I cooked two more lean pockets. I decided to try and cover them with a plastic grocery bag in order to keep them from getting soggy. The idea was to stick my head into the bag and eat them. I did just that and the water from the shower head caused the bag to collapse as it’s a high pressure head, then the bag filled with water and the lean pockets were destroyed. I was upset, very upset.
I left the shower and walked into the kitchen. There, at the table, was my Mother eating a lean pocket with ease. I got extremely jealous and upset. I grabbed her plate and began to yell at the food: “Fuck you!! After I’ll I’ve done for you this is how you repay me?? I’m always there for you and you can’t even allow yourself to be eaten in the shower! You’re ugly and stupid and you don’t deserve a man as good as me!” Tears began to spill from my eyes as I instantly regretted what I had said to my microwavable companion. “I’m sorry!” I said, “I just got a little crazy, please forgive me. It won’t happen again I promise, I’m just not myself right now.” I was hoping the lean pocket would forgive me for my behavior; all the while my Mother was staring at me in horror as I cried and begged to the the meat filled, low calorie pastry.
I took the half eaten lean pocket back into the shower with me so I could smooth things over, however it did not go as planned. The processed turkey and broccoli slipped from the bread crust and onto the bathtub floor then washed down the drain…I was alone.
The lean pocket had left me, and who could blame it? Not only was I going to eat it and digest it into pure liquid, uncomfortable fecal matter, but I had exhibited unwarranted jealous and irrational behavior. I wanted something I couldn’t have, and unfortunately could not accept that. That’s what men do; we act like maniacs when we are denied what we believe should be ours. In reality, I should give up my pursuit of lean pocket shower bliss and move on, but I won’t. “Why?” you may ask yourselves; because I am a man, and because I am a man I do indeed…suck.
Tuesday, September 4, 2012
I hate being in this situation. It’s happened before, and the result is always the same; it hurts. This time however something different happened…I had a great epiphany.
It all started when my bladder was full. I made haste to the restroom in order to relieve myself. I was in such a hurry that I paid little attention as to where certain things were placed, and zipped up quite quickly. That’s when it happened. I had done the unthinkable. I zipped my penis into my pant zipper. Needless to say, I was in a predicament of great proportion (no pun intended).
As I stood there in agonizing pain, staring down at my pathetically injured man hood, things began to rush into my head a million miles an hour; experiences I had that may have led to this very moment of self doubt and loathing.
“Look at yourself”, I said allowed, ”You spend the majority of your time daydreaming of a fantasy that someday you’ll have the one you love yet you can’t even take a proper piss without getting your tally whacker caught in your trousers!” I couldn’t help but agree with myself. I know that if I were a woman I would not want to invest in a man who cannot even go to the bathroom without causing serious injury. Even Benjamin Button could go pee pee like a normal person, and he was, for all intensive purposes, a fucking freak.
“Shouldn’t you be on stage tonight practicing rather than messing about with that pathetic little termite you call a cock?” I said to me. I was right again, though I could not understand why I was yelling at me in such a hard manner when I could have really used some support right about then. Never the less, I was right. Why on Earth am I not in downtown Salt Lake City right now performing and getting stage time? The epiphany was beginning to come to fruition.
I remembered an experience I had at a bar months earlier. I was sitting on the back patio smoking a cigarette. I man was setting up his guitar getting ready to play. His dog was laying down beside him in the shade. When the man sat on the stool, guitar in hand, and approached the microphone, my eyes were amazed! This man was blind. His eyes were pure white with scars around them and it was obvious by the harness on his canine companion that this was his helper. The man began to play his guitar flawlessly, better than I could have ever hoped to play. The most amazing part was not his ability to play, however it was his smile. This man did not break smile once. He was happy, and so was his dog. They did not have any cares in the world. It was as if nothing else existed to this man other than music and his dog. He was having a transcendental experience, like Thoreau floating along Walden Pond, or Siddhartha climbing from Samsara and reaching nirvana. This man and his dog were at peace, and I now think back on it in envy. Here I am walking around with a pseudo intellectual ruse, wanting a woman I can’t have, drinking profusely and throwing up in peoples lawns, bitching about how the world owes me just because I can’t afford the new apple product this month, not finishing my homework because I played way too much world of warcraft and thinking it’s not my fault, yelling at myself in my bathroom in a British accent for some fucked up reason, and getting my penis caught in my own zipper…yet this blind man was just happy to be alive!
As I stared at my sad, injured member looking back on these things the epiphany came. It wasn’t some philosophical revelation that I need to change, or an "I found God because I almost lost my penis to a prison of copper and denim" type of moment. No. It was a simple fact that at that very moment I came to except. I, Brian Nathaniel Pope, do indeed….suck.