Sunday, February 24, 2008


After years and years of playing my old, beat-up guitar, I decided it was time to upgrade. This is the new object of my affection, my beautiful Taylor acoustic guitar. Oh how I love it. I have already spent many an hour sitting with it on my old couch, quietly humming along to its melodies while gazing out the window at a cloud laced sky. It seems to heighten my senses, bring me closer to a state of peace and calm where nothing matters but the notes sung from its wooden frame.

Friday, February 15, 2008

truth & risk

"If something inside you is real, we will probably find it interesting, and it will probably be universal. So you must risk placing real emotion at the center of your work. Write straight into the emotional center of things. Write toward vulnerability. Don’t worry about appearing sentimental. Worry about being unavailable; worry about being absent or fraudulent. Risk being unliked. Tell the truth as you understand it. If you’re a writer you have a moral obligation to do this. And it is a revolutionary act - - truth is always subversive."

Anne Lamott in Bird By Bird

Thursday, February 14, 2008

The Moment Between Certainties

I find life to be a funny thing. Funny in a sideways, masochistic and occasionally uplifting kind of way. It seems to be full of contradictions, funny little nuances that might not be noticed unless one is willing to deeply think, deliberate, and eventually become confused. In that way thinking too hard will kill you. I am convinced of that. There are a million different problems and a million ways to solve them and there is simply no way that you or I can find the right solution to the right problem every time. Or even most of the time. And that is where I have a real problem, because, not only am I a constant thinker, I am constantly seeking to solve the problems of my life quickly and efficiently. Both of which are completely impossible.

I have tried, recently, to alter my lifestyle so it is more conducive to making good decisions and forging a palpable direction. I have tried exercise, I have tried something that resembles meditation, I have tried song writing and poetry and several other things to calm myself and carve out a positive niche. Which reminds me; a couple of days ago I found out that I have an ulcer. A stress-induced ulcer, to be precise. I know, so much for calming myself. It sucks, now I feel sick a lot, I occasionally feel light headed and I am generally mad at myself for allowing such an inconvenience to occur, which, of course, only aggravates my ulcer. Freak. I feel like one of those fat New Yorkers, running around in their ill-fitting suits yelling at whomever they can, only to stop momentarily and croak, “ack! my ulcer!” pop a few white pills and continue with their ranting. I’m too young for this. So this leaves me with a few options. My health insurance hasn’t kicked in yet, so I can’t take care of it the medicinal rout, thus, I am forced to keep myself at as low an excitement level as I can, and force myself not to worry about life. Ugh. I suppose in some ways its good, it will force me to slow down a bit, to stop worrying about everything. Which is a strange thing in and of itself. If you were to ask me if I feel stressed often, I would probable tell you no. But the truth of this is that there is some thing, some dark beast of a thing that lives inside me and denies me the luxury of relaxation and a guilt-free existence. I really need to work on taming that beast.

I just heard about a week ago that I am a finalist for the Fulbright Scholarship, which, I guess, is a big deal. If I am accepted into the program I will spend a year living in South Korea teaching English to Elementary School kids, bit of an environment change, I know. Both of my applications are off to ASU Law and Pepperdine Law, both great schools. I am still working full-time as a valet at the Esplanade, parking the cars, having a good time. Recently I have been restless, I guess ever since I graduated, and I feel torn between the inevitable change that I so crave and the safety and serenity that home provides. Subsequently, I have been into Bob Dylan lately, and I love his song “the times they are a changing.” So simple, so true.

I love how Don Miller puts it in one of his books, when talking about his relationship with God. He describes it as Jesus walking down a dirt road toward him, and as he comes closer he can see him with increasing clarity. At first only general things, the way he walks, the way he carries himself; then, as he comes closer he can see more detail, his complexion, the lines on his face. This is how I feel about God most of the time, he is on a dirt road, walking toward me. It takes time for me to understand him as I watch from a distance, studying his movements. And as I come closer to him, step by step, I can see more. I long to walk side-by-side him, as I would a friend. I think the beauty of life becomes more real, more tangible, when I stop trying to understand and predict it. When I sit back and try to live in the unknown, in that moment between certainties. I think that is where God lives.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Super Tuesday

I attended John McCain's Super Tuesday party at the Biltmore on Tuesday. It was an awesome and crazy time. It reminded me a lot of my time in Washington DC; people running here and there, trying to meet and impress anyone and everyone who might advance a career. I can't say that I was completely comfortable with it, I have had enough of that kind of lifestyle, but, nevertheless, there is a strange attraction that pulls me like a magnet to such things. I don't know what it is. Anyway, the event was loads of fun. Here are a few pics.

After McCain's speech, I was able to meet and talk with one of my long-time favorite news anchors, Tucker Carlson. He is one of the most down to earth, likable guys you will ever meet in the political world. I was really impressed with him.

Well, it looks as though McCain is going to be the nominee. Crazy. Only months ago it looked as though he was going to drop out of the race, and now he is the only plausible nominee. Thats politics for you. I, of course, couldn't be happier to see my old boss where he is. I think, as I have since working for him, that he is a great man, a man of conviction, and the only man who could possibly win against a Democratic challenger.