Friday, October 27, 2017

30 for 30

A few years ago, a writer that I look up to turned me on to the idea of reflecting back on things each year and throwing them down in a raw list form. It was a way of checking in and having a quick snapshot of where I stood in life and what I valued. Last year was hectic, it was 29, an "odd year" by the number and by experiences. I learned a lot and I liked writing about it along the way.

Maybe this is just a boring laundry list of ramblings; maybe it's an overdone, extravagant, and self-indulgent way of writing a yearly diary, but I don't care. It's for me, not you... and it's my damn birthday, not yours, alright?

Here are thirty facts, or random thoughts, or incoherent meaningless ramblings about me... for my 30th birthday.

1. At 18, I thought I'd have a lot more things figured out when I turned 30. Now, I know that there's a bit of beauty in not having a clue. The phrase "Follow your heart" is overused and under-understood, but it's not a cliche.

2. Birthdays are overrated. I wish people tracked their age by their maturity level. I've met 12-year-olds with more self-awareness than some 50-year-olds that I have met in the "work force".

3. I will make funny faces at your baby, stranger. I do not care where we are or what brought us together. I will not stop until that little fucker smiles back at me.

4. A properly brewed, German or Czech Pilsner is a thing of beauty.

5. You are constantly getting better at something. Every second spent is a second earned. Cherish them all and take nothing for granted. And if you figure out how to do this, please let me know.

6. Kellog's S'more Pop Tarts are the opposite of a "fine wine" in the fact that they taste better not as they get older, but as the person eating them gets older.

7. On work ethic:
   7a) The only secret to success is consistency.
   7b) I take a lot of pride in efficiency.
   7c) My biggest fear in life is stagnancy.

8. Why does it feel so weird to wear sneakers with pants?

9. I live for awkward moments and dwell in them when they pop up. Don't look to me to end the awkwardness if it's currently happening, because I won't. I am enjoying every second of this weird feeling between humans.

10. I will literally run away from malicious moods, narrow minds, or loud noises. I have no room or time to spare for any of this and I still block my ears when a fire-truck goes by.

11. I don't think humans need to eat animals to flourish. I probably won't start a conversation or preach about this, but if you ask my opinion, I will spill my guts.

12. Silence is extremely underrated. I'll never understand people's awkwardness with just sitting in silence. Small talk is painful.

13. On music:
   13a) Jeremiah was a bullfrog, he was a good friend of mine...
   13b) The ballad of my life is an instrumental by Explosions in the Sky titled "Your Hand in Mine"               Take a listen. Please.
   13c) One of the best things about being a 90's kid is hearing the bridge drop in the unedited version             of Semi-Charmed Life.

14a) Go outside.
14b) Dance

15. The best things in life come when you least expect them. And the only way to practice "not expecting them" is living presently, in the moment. The paradox is that the better I think I am getting at this, the more I realize how much of a clue I don't have. The beauty is the practice.

16. I don't have a musical or artistic bone in my body. This is one of my biggest regrets. However, I appreciate my writing and my wanna-be-ability to tell a story and to convey emotion. If there's one thing I could tell my 40-year-old self it would be, "I hope we keep writing."

17. You can tell a lot about a person by what the have magnetted on their fridge and what apps they keep on their right-most iPhone home screen.

18. Happiness comes best (and only?) when helping others be happy or making the world and/or humankind a better version of itself.

19. I have a love-hate relationship with "fairness" - I believe in the world being a fair and equal place for all humankind. The materialistic things that some people think they are entitled to is absolutely horrendous. But the fact that the world is inherently unfair has brought out the best in some people and humankind throughout history. It's sad that most people have to fight for equality in this world. I, as a white, straight, male, born into a loving middle class family, will never fully understand or appreciate others' struggles, I am jealous of those who have had to fight for what I have been given- and I also realize that's wildly flamboyant and gag-worthy to romanticize this struggle. Though I don't know what else to do about this, the feeling comes from sincerity.

20. Any situation in life can be related to Seinfeld, Always Sunny, or Arrested Development.

21. Fart jokes are still funny. Farts are still funny. Always.

22. I've had way too much fun at gay bars (both accidentally and on purpose).

23. A single emoji sent in a text conversation is the end of the conversation. Whether you sent it or received it. Recognize that there's nothing else to be said and don't drag the (probably awkward) conversation further.

24. If we are talking, I promise I will never be looking at my phone. On the contrary, if you look at your phone while we are talking, I will stop short in the middle of my sentence and make things super awkward.

25. Unless it's completely vital to the conversation, don't show me more than two pictures on your phone per hour, please.

26a) I am quick to Facebook-friend you, but only if we have actually met. I still have friends on Facebook that I've met only once; in a Lyft together, or in South Africa bungee jumping, I love making these connections like these and I love using Facebook for things like this- it's bonkers how many people you are able to have meaningful connections. And it's awesome to keep track of everyone you meet along your way- we live in an amazing time.

26b) On the contrary, I loathe how much I am compelled to check social media on a daily basis.

27. You are the product of the people and thoughts that surround you. Choose your surroundings wisely.

28. I envy people with true patience. I am working on being more patient, but the skill is not developing as fast as I'd like.

29. How do I learn better words to use without using a thesaurus?

30. Telling someone "You are my best friend" is infinitely more powerful of an expression than saying "I love you" to them. I've been in love a few times; love seems to be the easy part, but the friendship aspect is more important.

1 comment:

  1. I really love doing this while wearing my kn95 mask and so really like to get more about this kind of this blog. Wonderful stuff to read and beautiful pictures!