It continued to be odd as he just sat there, not doing anything, but blaring music next to us. I had no idea what the music even was. Jazz? Salsa? Fusion Jalzza? He just sat there.
Again, they refuse – not denying that I’m going to miss my connection. They know now I won’t be on that flight. No chance. None. But now it’s too late in the day and there are no options.
I sigh a long sigh and stand frustrated waiting for the boarding to actually begin.
Stephen looked up at her, unsure of what to do next. She was still topless. Her wet, brown hair cascaded down her shoulders, framing her round cheeks, and green eyes. She smiled at him, as their eyes locked. Her smile dimples triggered his nostalgia. The droplets of water rolling down her brown skin, onto her bare breasts triggered his body.
June 20, 2010
How amazing life is.
..sometimes I have to remember to consider all the wealth I have in my life right now. Especially my kids.
Saturday they helped me get the picnic tables and benches out of winter storage at their house. A few of the benches out-weigh the boys but they worked together to move them. As a reward, they got the first of several of my old, steel Tonka trucks that I had when I was their age. They're all still in good shape and have been in storage for ages. A bulldozer. They were excited, even if the weekend's activities prevented them from using it much.
My daughter asked me what she could earn when she helps out. I asked her what she wanted. She said, to spend more time with me.
I cried again today when she gave me her fathers day gift she had been working on. Sea shells glued to a board and a poem. It was beautiful.
She also made the suggestion of getting me a wok for father's day. It amazes me how much she listens to me and knows me.
It amazes me how good all three of them really are. They're young; they will wander, and get distracted so shopping trips are non stop efforts to keep them moving, to stay on task. Of course we take breaks at the samples and demonstration tables - hey, if they're letting you try something new, I'm all for it! But there is never a fight over what we get or don't get. I never have that battle of endless, "I want! Can we get this?" and of course, never the ensuing tantrum when the answer is "not this time," like I see so many other parents deal with.
I see those parents. Sometimes I lose my patience too. Sometimes I have to step back, take a deep breath and remind myself, they're kids. Step back and remind myself to be patient and keep a level head, even when the youngest draws on the side of my car with a rock... *ahem* He's five. It's a car. He is more important.
Yesterday he had a great time at the party we went to with the lady offering face painting. And then he painted her's. Absolute hilarity, but I'm sure in his mind it was a masterpiece.
The middle child is my tough guy, with a sensitive heart. He is the one who stands by me in the rain, helping cut roots of a fallen tree. The one who will join me in tackling a task. The one who will look at a scrape or a cut and say, "Eh, I'm fine... but can I get a band-aid?" But his heart breaks so quickly - like when he's playing a game of kick-ball with his cousins and they won't throw him the ball because they don't trust he can catch it. For those times, we sit and talk, and he listens, and his heart slowly mends.
I'm blessed by these three.
Today we went and took pictures. I love capturing their faces, naturally. Having fun, smiling... today's subject was taste-testing citrus fruits: lemons, limes, grapefruit and oranges, and capturing their reactions. We juggled fruit, we threw them at each other. I captured a lot of amazing pictures.
..but every picture of them to me is amazing.
At the end of it, my daughter and I took the remaining lemons and made lemonade.
I have a lot in life to be thankful for, but little compares to them.
83% of Americans identify themselves as "Christians."
Which means they believe in a god who is usually identified as male when gender typed. They also believe in his son, his living form, who once walked the Earth.
And what is the overriding theme of this religion? Everything will be OK as long as you trust god, do as he says, and give yourself in worship to him. What happens if you don't? Well, then you are punished with a violent, torturous eternity in hell.
Do as I say, or I will HURT YOU. This is what we believe. With no evidence any of it exists.
But we're all flipped out that men treat women this way. Where could they have possibly learned the notion that it's OK for a man to say, "Do what I want, or I will HURT YOU?"
Ladies... you follow this religion, too. You abide by it. You approve of the message.
Why, as a society, do we expect better of flawed humans, when 83% of them believe in a "perfect" deity that acts the same damn way?
Maybe if we want to change how people behave, we need to get past all the crap that they've been taught to believe?
I have had this recurring dream that I am locked up in a prison/mental institution, circa the early 20th century. Conditions are horrible. Everyone around me plots their escape constantly, while the medical staff, and guards do nothing but work to ensure no one escapes. No help. No actual counseling or treatments. Just watching over everyone constantly.
As a secured facility, the institution is deeply flawed. Patients (or prisoners) have unfettered access to corridors, stairwells, and a large industrial receiving area where they reclaim scrap metal, or so it would seem, from disposed industrial machines. Steam powered locomotives dock in open bays where scrap is brought in, and beyond the bays, a rail yard with open spaces, fields, and scrapped vehicles invites dreamers that plot their escape with a temptation only discouraged by the armed guards, and railway workers who are always looking out for escapees.
Within the confines of the institution, large windows in the main common area look out toward other buildings, or other sections on the same building. A glass foyer type entrance way, which was a former gate to the outside world, has been built in, and blocked off, but still used to allow people from the secured outside world into the common room. It has an open ceiling, and sits directly below the only window which can be opened to let in fresh air. All other windows are bolted shut, and secured with out-of-time magnetic alarm triggers.
I spent some time here with another inmate; both of us seeking freedom. We discussed the easiest ways. We climbed the walls of the glass entryway to reach the window, and theorized, with a rope, we might be able to get a hold of the adjacent building, and swing out of the open window. We explored the rail yard beyond the receiving area, carefully avoiding any workers, or guards. We felt the sunlight, and smelled the grass, and knew we could make this work if we could only stay hidden until out of the range of the busy work area. We ran around the interior corridors, up and down stairwells, and found a parking garage, and an elevator, but they only lead to emptiness, darkness, empty rooms, empty spaces, and no hope.
We returned to the common room to discuss our options. I was confident I could make the dangerous leap to the other building from a closer, secured window if we could figure out how to open it without tripping the alarm. We decided to wander back to the receiving area. I became fascinated with the locomotive sitting in the dimly lit bay. I sneaked into the foreman's office to get the schedule of when trains arrive, and depart. I told my friend to go hide by the bay door. I would create a diversion, and then he could make a break for it. I clanged around in some old machines on the floor, and noticed the floor in this area was coated in old, black grease. I decided this was good knowledge, and I played dumb when the guards arrived, but I gave my friend the time her needed to run.
My friend didn't return. It never even seemed like they knew he was gone. I waited days. When no word was heard about his escape, I decided to quietly make my own move. I stole belts from one of the larger men in the lock-up, and made my way back to the train bays. I quietly coated myself in the black grease for camouflage, and then slipped under one of the locomotive tenders. I climbed up into the under-carriage, used the belts to strap myself in, and then waited for the train to depart....
I've been in this institution before. I recognized it. I'm not sure if it was a recurring dream, a distant, artifact memory from another lifetime, or just something my mind is tricking me into seeing as repetition on the spot. Brains are funny things like that. Who can say? What is real in my brain, is just as real as the reality I live in, when it comes down to it. And to use my brain to figure out what my brain is doing... now, isn't that the conundrum?
A quick behind the scenes time-lapse of the preparations, and execution of a 24-model, 2-photographer, 1-designer, in 1-studio holiday shoot.
This was fun to create! And it was all for charity. We raised over $700 for the SPCA Wildlife fund!
Everyone who finds it, finds it in their own way. Everyone who expresses it, expresses it in their own way. But you don’t find it until open your heart, and open your mind, and allow your energy to guide you without allowing those social expectations, and preconceived notions of what life is, and what life should be get in the way.
She said I'm wrong
I said I'm right
She said things are black and white
I said all things can be colored by perspective
She said I have a type
I said my type is people who can love
She said I love too easily
I said love shouldn't be so hard
She said I'm a fixer
I said only for what can be fixed
She said I like to fix people
I said I like to show people how they shine
She said I only love the broken
I said everyone is a little broken
She said I seek out the broken
I said those that need me find me
She said I'll never be happy
I said my happiness grows when others are happy
She said things will never be
I said seeds don't grow if you don't give them water
She said she can't
I said she decided she won't
She said it's impossible
I said she doesn't see the possibilities
She said she is broken
I said everyone is a little broken
She said she is tired
I said sleep and look forward to tomorrow
She said she's afraid
I said she has to face her fears
She said she loves me
I said I love her too
She said I love too easily
I said love shouldn't be so hard
“Yes, I am a dreamer. For a dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world.” – Oscar Wilde
My birthday was Monday, October 16th. Thank you to everyone who took the time to send your well wishes, and to answer back to many of you: Yes, I had a great day. I spent the first half of my day working on a movie, and the second half baking my traditional lasagna, and pumpkin pies, and enjoying it all with my children, my mother, and her husband, and the woman who helps me see the beauty in the world when our world seems to be lacking it.
And to those of you who wished me a happy birthday on Tuesday: all good! If you know me, you know how frequently I'm late for things, so I am far from qualified to hold that against anyone.
I share my birth date of October 16th with Oscar Wilde, the famous, and some would say, infamous author, playwright, and poet. Like many artists who are ahead of their time, the true scope of Wilde's fame didn't become realized until after his death in 1900. Among a controversial life, Wilde disrupted the Victorian societies of his time with brilliant stories such as The Picture of Dorian Gray, The Importance of Being Earnest, and An Ideal Husband. Stories which examined in their time societal morals, norms, hierarchies, and the hypocrisies woven throughout them. Although these stories were written well over a century ago, if written today they would be just as timely, but perhaps less controversial.
Birthdays are often a moment where we pause, and reflect on life. It seems as though most people look upon this reflection in judgment of themselves; their regrets, their mistakes, what they want to change going forward. Like the annual practice of “New Year's Resolutions,” there is a statement of ,“I begin truly living today!” that seems to take place for many. I have never sought to live an ordinary life, I have only sought to live fully. In my past I have let many things prevent me from doing so, but as I've grown, and matured, I find fewer obstacles within myself, fewer inhibitions, fewer reasons to not take risks.
Fewer reasons to not see the good that is all around me, and take in as much of it as I can.
“To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.” – Oscar Wilde
My reflection is not one of regrets. My life, like every life, has been filled with moments of wonder, and moments of despair. I have struggled, succeeded, failed, risked, lost, and continue to pull myself back to my feet, and push forward. I know I have never been perfect, but I cannot change my past self. I accept who I am, who I once was, and all of the growing that has occurred in between. I continue to work diligently to forgive myself for those imperfections, and sometimes the specters of past mistakes still haunt my mortal consciousness, and scream from their subconscious prisons. But where their voices are silent, I focus on living in the moment, and loving everyone in my life as deeply as I am capable.
Everyone that has entered my life, and that includes the many who have only been temporary tenants of my time, and energy, have taught me valuable lessons about myself, and how I create the world I live in. For that, I am grateful to everyone. And as a life lived, much the same as Mr. Wilde's, I intend to continue living mine to the fullest, through my passions, my love, my art, and my creativity, challenging the things that we accept in our collective lives, and hopefully, seeing the world change for the better before my time here is done.
My growth as a person continues. For my children, I will always strive to be a better father, a better guide, a better mentor, and the lighthearted, loving balance they need to deal with the grim seriousness that often envelopes us in our society.
For my love, and my inspiration, Cortney, I will always strive to be the partner that she deserves, give her the best parts of me, and do my best to reflect how she inspires me, and brings beauty into my world. As I once told her, she is both the Sun, and the Moon – shining a light to help others find their way, and reflecting the light of others when they cannot see how they also shine. For me, she is all of this, and more.
“You don't love someone for their looks, or their clothes, or for their fancy car, but because they sing a song only you can hear.” -- Oscar Wilde
What more can be said? I am looking forward to our every adventure together!
Many thanks, again, to all of you for your warm wishes.