Take Care

Some days I feel like I don't give a shit, but I take that feeling, acknowledge it, accept it for what it is, know that it is a valid feeling, and I say, I know I may feel like I don't give a shit but I know deep down inside I do, and I have to go to that place inside, that part of me that deeply cares, that gives lots of shits, big ones, and today I'll go out do my damn best in life.

First Prize

Archery Target_forestpath_DepositPhotos.jpg

I win. I am a winner. I didn't used to be a winner but I changed my whole mindset. I changed my whole outlook on life. I used to feel bad for the losers. Not anymore. I just focus on winning. Beating them. Crushing them. Triumphing over them. Conquering them. Destroying them. Win, win, win.


What I want I ask for. I don't hold back. I go for it. That's my nickname now: Mr. Go For It. That's what I insist others call me. I absolutely insist on it. I tell them that's what I want. It's important to ask for what you really want in life. Very important. Whether it's a new nickname. Or other important things, like coffee cake on a cold autumn day. Yes, I want that.


I am true to myself. So true. I tell the truth, I speak the truth, I disseminate the truth. I tell people how I really feel, about things, God, religion, the state of the country, what I want for breakfast, what TV shows I'm watching, random fun facts that I feel like sharing (last night I dreamed I was transgender and was just about to get a sex change when I woke up). Most importantly, I tell the truth to myself. You're a star! You're going to do great kid! That sweater you're wearing is sexy! That haircut is superb! Really, it's good. It was definitely worth waiting three hours for it. No question. See those people staring at you. They can't take their eyes off you. Seriously, they love it. Everything is fine with the world. Seriously, everything.


I care. I do. Really. I know my face looks like someone who doesn't care, but this is just how I look. I care about life, about living. About people. About animals. About the universe. Even when I feel like all I want to do is stay in bed all day or dissolve into the floor, just sink right in, I make it a point to care. That's right, I scream out the window. I give a shit! I care! I care, you bastards! I care!


I am alert, keyed up, observant. I am aware of what's going on around me, what's happening in my immediate world. Well, at least outside my window. It's raining, for one. There's a man walking outside without an umbrella. He's cursing. There's a woman on a bike who has been cut off by a cab. She's shouting at the cabbie. There's a chain of small children marching down the sidewalk led and followed by adults. The children are all holding hands. They are all shouting. They look happy. I hear them. They're all repeating what the cursing man and woman are saying. Shit! Shit! Fuck you! Damnit! Shit! Fuck you!


The negative thoughts hungrily bite, tear at my soul, but I overcome them. Don't get out of bed, they say. What's the point? Don't get up, they say. It's really a terrible world out there. Don't be kind, these people are out to get you. Don't pursue your dreams, you'll fail. It isn't worth it. No one likes you. Shut up, negative thoughts. Shut up. Leave me alone. Go back to negativeland, where you belong, with all your negative friends. Go eat shit. I know how to deal with these negative thoughts. I've got the retorts that bring them down; the zingers that kill them. Oh yeah.


I am calm, relaxed, chill. Everything is okay. Life is okay. Death is okay. This day is okay. The clouds are okay. The chill in the air is okay. The fall is okay. My job is okay. My friends are okay. This man following me is okay. Many people cannot deal with my rugged handsomeness and have no choice but to follow close behind and furtively take pictures. I understand, sir, I get it. It's okay.


I believe in the goodness of people. Sure, people can be shit, they do terrible things. But sometimes they redeem themselves. Like the other day when I was walking outside and dropped my wallet. I didn't realize it and someone said, Hey, you dropped your wallet, here it is. Thanks, I said, you're a good person. How about a twenty? he said. What? I said. How about you give me a twenty for giving you your wallet? he said. Why would I do that? I said.  Because you would have lost your wallet, he said. I don't have any cash, I said. Buy me a bagel or something, he said. We went into the bagel store. We ordered two bagels. You pay over there, the man said. I have to go to the bathroom, I said. I'll be right back. I planned to slip out the back. There's a crazy man chasing me, I told the guy in the back of the store. I need to escape. He let me out the back and gave me a pat on the butt when I passed by. What a sweet guy. Not everyone is terrible.

Little Things

I celebrate the small details of every day. That glass of water. Oh, it's so delicious. A smile. That smile is lovely. Rain drops. The sound of rain drops are so calming. It's less calming when you're in the middle of the rainstorm and your shoes and socks are getting wet. I hate when that happens, when my socks get wet and soggy. I hate that feeling. I'll just wait here under this awning until the storm passes. Doesn't look like it's passing. Okay, I'll go into this bar for a quick drink. I'll just email my boss to say I'll be late. Rain is still going. I'll just take off my shoes and dry my socks and stay for a while. This rain will not let up. I'll just order a bottle of wine and lunch and take a lovely little nap. It's important to appreciate the little things, I tell the waiter. It's really important.


I rest my mind. I bring it to stillness. I let thoughts and worries pass by. I watch them as they march through my mind. I let emotions, words, phrases, images, and memories come and go without judgement. I don't fight them. I tried fighting a memory once. I got a black eye. Memories can fight. They fight hard. They don't give up. They want you to live in the past. They want you to remember that time you were face down in the public bathroom looking for the number of that girl you met in the bar but dropped somewhere in here. It was written on a piece of paper and you dropped it, somewhere around here. Goddamnit. This was the girl you were going to marry. Then a guy walks into the stall. He steals your wallet. And your phone and keys. And he wants your pants too. So you have to walk home in your boxers across the bridge and bang on the front door until your roommates let you in. And instead of sympathy they film you and put it on the Internet. Your boss calls you. He's seen the video. You're fired, he says. It doesn't have anything to do with the video, it's just that you're not good at your job. It's easy to let memories like these consume you. Instead I let them go by. I let my mind achieve restfulness.


Ballet Dancer_In_2_Eternity_DepositPhotos.jpg

Everything good and necessary is provided. I am fed, clothed, there is warmth in the apartment. It is mostly dry. I have everything I need. Including beer. And wine. And gin and tonics. And music. And dance parties by myself in my underwear. And tutu. For the neighbors' enjoyment. They are strange, let me tell you. Real strange.


I am vigorous, tough, robust. Some even call me strapping. I lift weights, dumbbells, five to ten pounds on each arm, so you know it's serious. I do crunches, push ups, squats. So many squats. All day, doing squats. I need to keep it tight in my line of business. Thank you for keeping it tight, people say. So many people tell me this. Thank you so much for your tightness. We love it. What can I say, I hate to disappoint my fans.


I press on. Even when there doesn't seem to be much of a point. I go on. I proceed. I don't give up. I stay positive. I charge ahead. Up the hill. With gunfire raining down on me. By gunfire I mean negative thoughts that try to tell me it's not worth it, that I should give up. I fire back with my musket. I fix my bayonet. Blood blood blood makes the grass grow. I charge up the hill. Blood blood blood makes the grass grow.

Production Values

I produce. It feels good to produce. It's not always easy. It's easy to sleep in and not get up and feel despondent about things. It's easy to get down about life and my job and that I haven't made much money off my dancing. Yet I must produce. I must continue producing new and creative dances designed to entertain my audience. After I produce money will come to me. It will. That's how life works. Dance, dance.


I get up early. I get lots of things done. I'm productive. I meditate. I write. I eat a healthy breakfast. I prepare for the day. I do stretches. I foam roll. I hydrate. I sit outside and drink tea and breathe in the morning air. The cool morning air. The wonderful morning air. A bird sings. I sing back. A cock crows. I crow back. The traffic starts to rumble. I rumble back. Go ahead, day. Give it to me. I'm ready.


I have cash. So much cash. My pockets are stuffed full of it. My bank account is stuffed. Stuffed to the brim. Usually there is not a brim with bank accounts but I have so much money that they had to invent a brim just for me. My bank doesn't know what to do with all my money. They call me up. You have so much money, they say. What do we do? We're going crazy over here. It's raining in the bank. Your money is raining on us. You have so much money, we don't know what to do.