TEXT

POETRY + PAINTINGS + PHOTOGRAPHY + DRAWINGS + LISTS + BIO + MUSIC + SHOP

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

NEW BOOK.

as many of you banana bread lovers know i'm taking a break from this life-gobbling blog.  that being said, i'm using the time wisely to work on my new book, tentatively-titled, "gold as ice" ...which i will attempt to squeeze out before i deploy in june and hopefully sell 4 copies of before i die.

i love all of your faces.  some more than others because well...some are just nicer to look at.  :)  haha...


xx-sk


GOTTA RUN CINNABUNS!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

REST.

taking a bit (or a chunk) of a hiatus from the blog (or a goodbye).  no, i'm not having some wildly exciting meltdown or anything of the sort.  just wearing down really.  as deployment continues to creep up on me, my life continues to get busier by the day and i'm falling over to be honest.  anyone who knows me knows i don't get tired and i don't like sleep, so that's saying something for sure, shirley.  it's not like this is some essential daily vitamin in everyone's diet...like waffles are mine.  i think of it more like banana slices on your cereal.  

anyway, i have so many fun ideas & directions i want to go, just dunno if i'll have the time/energy?  who knows.  gonna disappear off the map for a couple of days, step out of town & recharge.

for anyone who has sent me love, sincere encouragement or support...i'm in debt to you and i'm seriously grateful for your words.

if you sent me a novel thanking me for helping you through a rough spot in your life or what not...i owe you as well and am on my way to remedying that as we speak (though we're not actually speaking).

and so...it never stops.


xx-sk


extra special love to- mr.white,staslie,danielle,paulwalt,gma,gpa

BEING THANKFUL FOR IT ALL.

everyday i feel like we overlook 99% of the things we should be thankful for.  i too am so outrageously guilty of this.  bad steven.

that being said...with thanksgiving around the corner and love pouring in from all directions, i think now is a great time to feel this out.  let's hug this baby out.  let's talk turkey, life & the difference between loving something and being thankful for it.  huge difference!

not everyone knows my story and most could care less, but a huge part of why i joined the army was because i'd gone totally numb.  besides my perfect little dog, i was going thru my daily motions without really being that grateful for anything.  i wasn't grateful for my food, shelter, family (not enough!), my then girlfriend, my job, my clothes, my health, my friends, my church, my education, my nothing.  i had become so numb that i'd have been lucky to feel anything if i got run over by a mack truck with spiked tires and just married cans dragging along its tail.    i was near dead to the world.  i was miserable.

hmm...i sense a correlation!  epiphany!  i wasn't all that thankful for anything i had going on in my life...and likewise, i was dreadfully depressed and at times borderline emotionless.  me emotionless!  nuts!  i'm an emotional guy...but..(insert big-eyed pause)...i hadn't realized the fortune of my very own life.  is this starting to sound like a dr. phil episode?  oh no!  someone punch me in the face with infected brass knuckles!  better stay on point.

i guess now...being in my shoes, where i am...going thru the day-to-day challenges and frustrations of the military, my perspective has changed drastically.  who in the world cares right???  ha!  well...i care about you, so i'm writing this.  so eat it! i also like your face...but that's a whole 'nother note.  

the truth is that i think so many of us close happyness out of our lives because we don't open our hearts wide enough to see how fortunate we are.  seriously...if you read this, you're already more fortunate than 90% of the world (because you can afford the sweet technology).  ON PAPER.

the thing is...who cares about money right?  money doesn't help you realize how lucky you are.  it pays your bills and keeps you comfortable, but it doesn’t measure true fortune.  luck isn't derived from financial status.  luck is falling into a family who loves you inconditionally.  luck is finding the career that inspires you every single day.  luck is excellent, God-given health.  

so we have money...woo woo.  the U.S. has buckets of money to throw around in the air and dance in...and then add to the national debt...lol.  we make it rain!  and then add up our credit card bills.  dang!  i could be so gangsta!  oh wait...i am.  haha...

back to it.

the bit that i'm chomping at here is that the majority of us probably take the bulk of our lives' blessings for granted.  i for one took almost EVERYTHING i had for granted.  people included!  bad bad steven.  that's a terrible thing to do.  in army terms...this would be a perfect place to say, "beat your face private".  i needed to be shook out of this state.  do you?  

DO YOU?

are you stuck like i was stuck?  if so, why not choose this thanksgiving to pull your beautiful little head out of the sand, wipe your crusty eyes and be TRULY thankful for what you have.

thanksgiving is not a day to celebrate a dumb bird's flesh.  

don't get me wrong...i can eat some turkey!  turkey lurkey!  but...i'm not getting 2 days off of work and traveling halfway across the country to worship some animal that doesn't even get a shoe box-sized exhibit at the zoo.  i mean...even the peahens and billy goats get space depending on where you are.  goats aren't even that cool.  they’re like an 8 on a 1-100 scale of zoo animal coolness.  

on with it.  i guess this is just me taking my experience and encouraging all of you to be absolutely thankful for what you have.  not just loving it.  love is good.  don't get me wrong.  you know me...i am the first person who'll step up as an ambassador of love.  sometimes i think i see in pink & red.  that's beside the point though.  the point is this:

take a second to acknowledge what/who you have and be downright grateful for it.  you can love someone on accident.  you can love people just by being your daily version of you.  being thankful though - takes effort.  it takes a conscious, acknowledged thought to be genuinely thankful.

maybe this year's the year we all look at how blessed we are and smile a little brighter.  if you have bad teeth...maybe scale it back a notch.  just kidding.  :)  seriously though.  for me personally, sometimes it takes someone who i love or respect to get in my face and say "steven...how can you ever be down?, look at everything you have!  look at your this and that and blah and etcetera".  it's true this.

sometimes we get lost in the blur of the day's motion and forget what we have.  that's just gotta stop.  if you want to really embrace this holiday...if you want to make it more than cranberry sauce (weird) and spandex pilgrim costumes (or am i the only one who has one of these?)...then take a step back and BE THANKFUL for what you have.  

if it takes writing it down...write it down.  make a list.  check it twice?  why not?  it helps me.  :)  the more i do this...the more i accept my blessings and cherish them, the easier it is for me to draw the connection line from gratefulness to joyfulness.  the more i find myself glowing.  do it i dare you.  i dare you so much that i would never even consider truthing you.  plus, writing it down is a better way to focus and take time to kind of...i don't know, dedicate your energy to center yourself on what matters most.  

so we must then wait no longer and make GREAT LISTS!!!  us listers will enjoy this.  many others will say, "oh, i don't have the time for that" (bah you!  go dive off a skyscraper onto a bed of sharp sticks!  jk)...but why not all take 5 minutes out of our busy lives and embrace what we've got.  some would say perhaps, “shake what our mamas gave us”?  oh no.  :(


okay okay…

without further ado, here is my list.  because i can't be some tie-dye wearing, ooey gooey hippy loudspeaker and then turn around and not complete the exercise.  

Things That I am Wildly Thankful For (2010 Edition).  

1.  a perfectly folded stack of t-shirts
2.  my family because they are amazzzzzzing (6 z's worth = highly impressive)
3.  the constant opportunity to grow at work from constantly wanting to chop my head off (literally)
4.  my unsquashable faith!  
5.  my cardboard consistency Kashi cereal that i eat 2x day even though i know it tastes like wet trash
6.  my body's ability to heal when busted, and the legendary 170 yr. old doctor who has helped me thru the process
7.  your face because i love the way it moves
8.  my electrifying sense of touch (yow yow!)
9.  long, crazy hair on a girl
10.  Christmas music because it makes me happy even when i feel like death itself
11.  painting because it helps me maintain sanity when the army makes me want to drink AIDS blood (too graphic?  sorrrrrrrry)
12.  under armour
13.  osu football even though they break my heart at least 1x every season
14.  1000x new friends.  man i never thought i'd love so many knuckleheads
15.  Andrew Belle's voice - this guy man...just brings me peace & hope & makes me feel like i'm slow dancing in a non-sticking vat of light blue cotton candy
16.  king gussie because he's the perfect mammal & he's my only son - likely forever
17.  airplanes

now, i only did 17 because that is my favorite number and anyone who knows me knows i could go forever.  students, lovers, fighters & friends...there is no limit to this exercise.  regardless of what master p or silkk the shocker say...i promise you there is no limit.  you can go up to 17,000,000 if you want, but i'm not responsible for your unemployment claims.  

now that i've dumped this heap of unfortunately sappy word syrup on you, i hope you share the love.  it makes me sad when people think of thanksgiving as a day to celebrate eating (we're not fat enough yet USA!?!?)...so this is our chance to turn it around and right the holiday ship.  

if you agree with anything i've said, or just want to do a list of things you're thankful for, i would positively encourage you to re-post this w/ or w/out my personal message.   but it's your turn to spread the thankful butter (no trans fat, low in carbs)...

show some love.  be thankful for what you have.  cherish your days.  it's not just about eating anymore.

i love all of you.  and your smiles.



xx-steven

THE BEST OF NANCY. VOL. 1

as promised, or mentioned...i can't remember and i'm not clicking back...here comes gramma.  


mind you, i'm only posting these tonight because it's easier to dig around on her facebook, copy & paste than actually think...AND, people seem to like my grandparents more than me or my sense of humor, so there's that.  


i already told the tale of francis.  he is a wise and embattled knight hailing from harsh Lima, Ohio.  as is the the Chief (gramma).  


i know a little girl who likes to party,
and her name is nancy.
i won't add much more (what do i look like a Casio?) other than to say that she has more spark than a fireworks store and isn't afraid to tell it like it is.  she's sweet, extremely small and gets her perm re-did every couple of weeks.  gramma antsy as the littlin's call her, is thug passion when people thought that lifestyle wasn't cool anymore...but is.


you have to be patient with the Chief because she's a lot more aggressive than grandpa (think of a dainty little hawk with nail polish and a huge trout in its beak)...refuses to use lowercase letters and will talk to absolutely anybody.  which i love about her.  she's been like that her whole life and i definitely wouldn't change it.  


for what it's worth, over Christmas, i tried explaining to her the whole CAPS is like SHOUTING EVERYTHING and she laughed and then i'm not sure she got it.  she hasn't changed a thing, so who knows.  probably my favorite thing about gramma is that she knows she sucks at technology and isn't afraid to admit it.  you will see this in very many of her posts and status updates that i put here to share.  she thinks it's cute i guess to be one of her 4 friends on "the facebook" and she will tell you that within the first 5 minutes of your conversation in you ever meet her.  i promise you that.  promise.  at the same time, she makes funnies on everyone's pages about not knowing how to use the computer, so there's a bit of confusion there, but it's pretty great.  
someone likes to get a little crunk with the grandsons.


so, i give you the best of NANCY vol.1 (mind you a lot of these are wall posts to practical strangers...priceless)...oh, and please fall in love with the excessive exclamation marks and repetitive posts.  if she thinks something is funny, she'll go and post that exact thing on 10 people's wall...even though mom said she refuses to learn copy and paste...haha.  awesome.  some of the posts i've found of hers, i have found literally 20 times.  


it's pretty easy to see why i say i have the most amazing g-rents on the planet.  and it's also easy to see why they're (frank&nance) perfect for each other.  if you know a goofier pair of 78 year olds, you let me know.  and i'll call you a liar to your face.


remember, the whole fam is like this.  so you see how it spreads then...




THE BEST OF NANCY.


1)  HEY!!! WAIT!!! WHO HERE IS ITALIAN!?!?!?!


2)  HEY!!! HEY!!! WHOSE BIG IDEA WAS IT TO HIDE MY PORTABLE COMPUTER MACHINE ON TOP OF THE REFRIGERATOR!?!?!?  TOOK ME 3 MONTHS TO FIND IT!!! HA!!!


3)  HEY!!! HEY WAIT!!! WHERE DO THEY PUT THE SPACE BAR ON THESE SPACE MACHINES!?!??!?!


4)  HEY WHOA!!! IS THIS ONLINE DATING!?!?!


5)  HEY!!! YOU'RE FUNNY!!! COME HERE!!!


6)  HEY!!! HEY!!! WAIT!!! I FORGOT WHAT I WAS GONNA ASK!!! HA!!!


7)  HEY!!!  ARE YOU THE ASIAN ONE!?!?!?


8)    WHO SAYS KNITTING ISN'T A REAL SPORT!?!?!?


9)  WAIT!!! VICKS VAPORUB TESTS THEIR PRODUCTS ON DOGS!?!?!? I'M SO LOST!!! HA!!!


10)  HEY!!! HEY!!! ANYONE HERE EVER HEARD OF THE SUDOKU!?!?!? DO I HAVE TO BE JAPANESE TO LIKE IT??? HA!!!


11)  HEY!!! HEY!!! YOU LOOK NICE!!! ANYONE HERE LIKE JUDO!?!?!? HA!!!


12)  HEY YOU!!! HEY!!! LISTEN!!! IS THIS MYSPACE!?!??! WHOSE IDEA WAS THIS!?!?!?


13)  HEY!!! WAIT!!! IS THIS MATCH.COM!?!?!? WHOSE IDEA WAS THIS!?!?!


14)  HEY!!! WAIT!!! DO I KNOW YOU??? ARE YOU THE POLISH ONE!?!?!


15)  HEY!!! WAIT!!! I'VE SEEN YOU BEFORE!!! HEY!!! WHO HERE LIKES GOOD LIP GLOSS??? I KNOW I DO!!! HA!!!


16)  HEY WAIT!!! WHO ARE YOU!!?!?! YOU LOOK LIKE A BRONCO TO ME!!!


17)  HEY!!! WAIT!!! DO I KNOW YOU!?!?! ARE YOU THE ONE WITH WITH THE SMALL HANDS!?!?!? HA!!!


18)  HEY!!! WAIT!!! WHO HERE'S FRENCH!?!?! I LIKE TOAST TOO!!! HA!!!


19)  WAIT!!! THERE'S A HORSE ON THE TEAM!??!?!?


20)  HEY!!! I WISH YOU LOOKED MORE LIKE TOM SELLECK!!! HA!!!


21)  AM I THE ONLY ONE HERE WHO CAN'T SAY NO TO A KEANU REEVES MARATHON?!?!? HOT FUSS!!! HA!!!


22)  HEY!!!  WHAT IS THIS RAP MUSIC EVERYONE'S TALKING ABOUT???


23)  WHOSE IDEA WAS THIS THE FACEBOOK ACCOUNT ANYWAYS!?!? I CAN'T KEEP UP WITH ALL THE FRIEND REQUESTS AND FARMVILLE THINGS!!!


24)  MICHAEL JACKSON??? IS THAT THE SAME THING AS SAMMY DAVIS JR???


25)  LISTEN HERE BLONDIE!!! HE WAS BORN FROM A PACKAGE OF FIRECRACKERS JUST LIKE HIS MOM!!! EXCEPT THEY DIDN'T ACTUALLY EXPLODE!!! HA!!!


26)  HEY!!! AM I THE ONLY ONE WHO CAN'T STOP WATCHING WHITE GIRLS!?!? INSTANT CLASSIC!!! HA!!!


27)  HEY!!!  SHAWN!!! NO CHRISTMAS BINGO FOR YOU!! 


28)  HEY!!!  YOU TALL ONE!!!  GO FLY A KITE!!!!!!! HA!!!!!!!!!


29)  HEY!!! HEY!!! IS THIS THE INTERNETS??? WHO PUT MY PROFILE ON HERE??? HA!!!


30)  HEY!!! HEY!!! DO YOU LIKE SKATING??? YOU LOOK LIKE YOU'D BE GOOD AT IT!!! YOU SEEM GREAT!!!


31)  HEY!!!  WHO HERE LIKES IRISH PEOPLE!?!?!?!?






and there you have it.  a small sample size of the Chief.  mind you, she has posted a lot more than Francis and says a lot of the same stuff again & again & again (i found the "HEY IS THIS MYSPACE" post over 20 times)...but she's easy to love and quote.  as you can see she also likes making friends and always asks where people are from.  incredible in my book.  


i love my gramma.  anyone who's ever talked to me about her knows how much she means to me.  anytime you can ask an 80 year old gal questions like, "Grandma, if grandpa was a vampire with no arms, would you still love him just as much?"...and get an actual response...you know you've found yourself a legend.  


here's to you gramma antsy, you perfect 10 you.  keep on truckin & lovin, servin mcgriddles & channel surfing like it's nobody business.  




goodnight all, xx-sk




p.s.  if you see nance walking down the street, you have to ask her 2 questions...because it's been our running thing for about a decade now. 


1.)  gramma, are you shrinking?  (which she'll say "probably" to)
2.)  gramma, are you losing weight?  (which she'll laugh and say, "i wish" to)




(photo tribute)


mean muggin.  would you mess with this 5' 1" woman?
or this sweatshirt?  i sure wouldn't!


gramma flexin on walt.  rockin the tneck hard for xmas.


on the verge of raising the roof.
don't hurt your back Chief!


'nuff said.


she's still got it boys.  watch out!  


gramma talks three things;
mcgriddles, jive & bridge tournaments.  


this was the night when she had 4 and we had to chase her
around the house to get her to bed by 9.


ABSOLUTELY LOST.


GRANDMA IS A CYBORG!  LOOK AT HER!


look how tiny she is in her fleece vest!!!!!!!!!  i love it!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

MILLION $ NCAA BRACKETS.

the brackets waiteth not another second my ticking clocks.  here i present you with four brackets from four gigantic (and highly-evolved) cerebellums.  well, some would argue mine.  but...brian, brandon & chris i wouldn't argue with.  if you don't take their tourney advice based on their selections, maybe consider adopting their picks based on their extreme good looks?  really not that bad of an idea.

i wanted to put little pictures of each of their beaming faces next to their brackets, but i forgot to ask, so out of politeness...and mindfulness to chris' shy character, brandon's married status (can't have all the women fighting about) & brian's selection of duke, i have refrained.

les braquettes.  compare, contrast, mock the other 3, and make some hot finance off of this blog.


(click to enlarge, of course)

brandon - a lousiville fan.

chris - a purdue fan.

myself - a buckeye fan.

brian - an admitted duke fan.


oops, part of mr. brian's got chopped off.  :(  that's why i don't like screenshot pdf's!  ...ok, enough enough.


goodbye & goodnight.
xx-sk

21 ABSOLUTELY GENIUS BUSINESS IDEAS.

before i get the ball rolling here my agile little globetrotters, i should confess that i am not the smartest man alive.  i am also not an entrepreneuer of any sort.  even though i can spell that without having to check it or look it up...which i feel is worth at least 2 credibility points.  GIVE ME THE POINTS.

so i'm brainstorming on what to write and it occurred to me that i have at least 500 mind-blowing business concepts that are nothing more than alaskan gold mines ready to be tapped.  i kid you not.  get out your pocketbooks and prepare to take the world by financial storm.  put that rolls-royce on layaway...go ahead.  GO AHEAD.

Personalized plates.  :(

i should prelude all of this by saying that combo businesses tend to creep me out and i never trust them.  i trust a mcdonalds inside a wal-mart about as much as i trust the last bite of a sandwich.  i heavily distrust taco bell/pizza hut combos and am okay admitting that i can be fearful of any KFC/whatever pairing...which is generally some creepy gas station in central kentucky with one guy working named Clark who has a very shiny hair part, is 20lbs. under suggested weight for his age/ht and talks without separating his teeth.  either way...

so i don't believe in combo things in general.  i especially don't believe in the snack Combos because i think they're nastier than cat aids.  i don't believe in singers who like to act.  i don't dig chicken from a pizza place and i don't want to go to a jiffy lube for chiropractic work.

all of this being said, i am about to turn the tides.  i am putting this concept on its head because i think it has potential.  and i think you have potential too.  not too much though, just some.  well, a little more than some but not a good bit.  actually, a shade below a good bit but a baby hair above some.  probably right in between a tad and a fair amount.  definitely somewhere between none and all of it.  moving on.

i am going to turn this bus around (p.s. i would love to be the driver who screams at the top of his lungs and takes fast corners to get the kids to sit down).  after wasting my life away in my currently not amazing hazmat class, it stumbled upon me.

there are business combos that can work.  there really are.

so what i've done with this gently fabric-softened laundry list is this.  i have provided an excellent and catchy, as well as sensible & practical business name.  on top of that, i am giving these sprouting new companies a slogan so that they will take off just as soon as anyone chooses to tap into these honey money trees.  you like that eh?  you do don't you?  the rest is self-explanatory.

you will notice a theme or two as i was on a single track (in my head i was a big black steam engine, which i'm unfortunately not)...so there is some consistency here.

MY 21 GENIUS BUSINESS IDEAS (that you can have the licensing to for $200 american, six boxes of frosted flakes and a newborn of your choice...it doesn't have to be yours.)


business name, then pitch/description.



1)  HANGING BY A THREAD - "Fine suit tailoring & psychiatric help."

2)  JUMPING FOR JOY - "Big-time inflatables for big-time leaps & psychiatric assistance."

3.  A CUT ABOVE - "Today's most current razored hairstyles & psychiatric aid."

4.  LOSING "IT" - "Herbal libido vitamin enhancers for the delicately aging & psychiatric care."

5.  THE SHIP IS SINKING - "Lifesavers, Anchors, Psychiatric Advice & More."

6.  OFF YOUR ROCKER - "Quality Amish furniture featruing hand-crafted chairs, ceiling fans & psychiatric guidance."  

you can tell this guy had bad cell service.
7.  DON'T TALK ME DOWN - "Resilient cell phone service for those desolate places & top of the line psychiatric support."

8.  ON THE EDGE - "Durable rappelling gear and psychiatric guidance to keep you around a little longer."

9.  CRAZY ABOUT PSYCHIATRY - "We're passionate about fixing your mess."

10.  HOLD YOURSELF TOGETHER - "Bodycast suppliers & psychiatric help for those big "accidents"."

11.  INTERNAL MELTDOWN - "Elite welding services and psychiatric connections."

12.  BLOWING A GASKET - "Speedy engine repair & mental tune-ups."

13.  VOICES IN MY HEAD - "Multi-stage karaoke studios and psychiatric coaching since 1979."

14.  GONE NUTS - "The coasts' leader in pistachio delights & soft-shelled psychiatric nights."

15.  LOSING MY RELIGION - "Antique Christian book sellers & psychiatric friends."


bonus dept. - a few from another theme.

16.  SPLITTING UP - "Damaged hair repair, salon products and divorce services."

17.   DONE FOR GOOD - "Reliable meat thermometers & speedy divorce settlements."

18.  PARTING WAYS - "Leading comb sales and divorce assistance."

19.  WE'RE THROUGH - "The mountains' most-experienced tunnel builders and divorce lawyers."

20.  SHE'S TAKING HALF - "Pre-cut sandwiches for those who like to share & divorce settlements."

21.  IT'S OVER - "Specializing in shot clock sales and separation papers."



and that's all she...no, ...that's all i wrote folks.  :)  i hope at least one of these future fortune 500's got a good chuckle out of you.  i much like taking the heavyness out of serious things and turning them into a funny.

DOUBLE BONUS DEPT.  - later tonight i will be posting a scan of my NCAA tournament bracket (a one-of-a-kind i promise), as well as a few from some of my great friends, Chris, Brandon & Brian.  that way you can get edumucated on the tournament, and help yourself win some cash money dividends at the work spot.


enjoy, share the laughs...you never know who's having a rubbish day.
xx-sk


sorry nathan, east side til i die.
RIP sailor.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

THE BEST OF FRANCIS. VOL.1

i'm not so sure many of you know, but i'm very sure that i have the two coolest grandparents on the planet. i don't care what you say.  if they wanted to become pro surfers or post-hardcore rockers tomorrow, they could.  they simply choose not to.  


the PERFECT LOOKING COUPLE w/ walt & i.
instead, my grandpa (FRANCIS) is an all-star at the factory fixing everything from radiators to co-workers' destroyed married lives and my gramma (NANCY) is busy slaving at mcdonald's selling the mcfoods and telling perfect strangers how fat they are (because she can get away with it) and that they don't need it.  it sounds mean, but she really does have a deep interest in nutrition and healthy weight loss.  either way...


seriously though, my g-rents are rad to the bone and i wish you could meet them.  they would like to meet you too.  they are both level 70 huggers (it only goes to 71) and grandma will sometimes forget to let go after 5 or 10 minutes which is interesting and sometimes kind of awkward.


recently (Oct. last year), my very tiny cousin walt (Paul Walter Crumrine the 3) and i found out that gma and gpa got themselves a pair of new computers for each other and are getting internet savvy to try to keep up with the rest of our family which is spread all over the country.  we indeed have a huge fam and frank & nance really do want to keep in touch with everyone the best they can.  so, after some brief web cruising lessons from my mom (the Donna), they both caught on...even though it took the Chief (gramma's nickname) a little longer than it would most (3 weeks just to click Internet Explorer...give or take).  


either way, walt and i saw that as a prize opportunity to have some fun.  he and i have a way of getting those two sassed up more than anyone else in the family so we boiled a brew.  we are not witches though.  so don't cross that line fancypants.  


gpa in a gangsta lean w/pwc3
probably talking driveby tactics.

as the g-rents became more cozy with the www, we took it upon ourselves to introduce them to facebook.  grandpa was reluctant because he is kinda weird about online affairs (not like love affairs weirdo...but like financial info & what not) and grandma i think had no idea what was going on during the entire tutorial.  and she still is kinda out there to be truthful.  lovely little space cadet she is.  :)


all of this intro to tell you that grandpa knows we (walt &i) are watching his account closely so we're pretty sure he's cranking up the comedy a notch.  but who cares!?!?  the guy is hilarious and he knows how to get us laughing like champs.  after not using his account at all the first couple of weeks, he has warmed to "the facebook" as he calls it and now enjoys playing around and being a bit of a ham sandwich.  you will also see that he has a playful obsession with enrique iglesias...i'm guessing because he's the only post 50's musician he knows?  not real sure, but he mentions him a lot, which i love.  


ta-da!


to honor grandpa...not only for his stunning good looks (recently rated a perfect 10 by Cosmopolitan magazine), but also for his child-like and outrageous sense of humor, i am posting some of his best Status Updates yet.  he isn't on all that much, but if you see Francis looming, nudge him and see what you get back.  the man is on another level for his age, and that's why we love him.  


you will perhaps see where i get some of my humor from.  or you definitely will.  and it's not just me.  it's my entire family.  except my sister sam, she has no personality.  love you sis!


here i leave you, "THE BEST OF FRANCIS", thus far, 2011.  mind you, the man is 78.


(my apologies for any misspellings or hideous ALLCAPS typing, he's kinda new to the keyboard and online etiquette...and wait til you see Gma's...even worse.)




1) "THANKSGIVING AFTER PARTY STARTS AT 2 AM!!! SCRABBLE, EUCHRE, SPOONS, AND CALL OF DUTY ALL NIGHT LONG. BRING YOUR OWN ROCKSTARS!!!! I GOT THE MICHAEL JACKSON RECORDS!!! NANCY WILL BE OUT SHOPPING SO THE AIR CONDITIONER WILL BE ON BLAST!!"


2)  "Breaking out the tap shoes. Michael Jackson meets Fred Astaire and Shirly Temple. Christmas Eve with my kids and grandkids will never see it coming. THRILLER MEETS WHITE CHRISTMAS!!! Nance get out the face paint!"


3)  "I wish I could sound like Enrique. Only thing better would be Sinatra."


4)  "Grandson you didn't know? I invented the first primitive iPad in 1976 in dedication to our Nation's Bicentenial year."


5)  "Actually my grandson Stephen is single! And he will be back in Ohio the 16th - 31st. You should visit him and hold hands and get married. Other than that my friend Floyd Henderson is single but he is 79 and is confined to a wheel chair and only speaks in mumble."


6)  "Can't wait for Nancy to dress up like an elf and hand out berries and ginger ale to the grandchildren on Christmas Eve! And don't forget the all night disco bingo game!"


7)  "Yes because under the elf costume Nancy has her 1983 Soviet Union Olympic Ski Team Suit! Go Commies!"


8)  "I wish the Enrique Iglasius had been born pre-WWII so that he could have sang for Nancy and I's first dance at our wedding!!!"


9)  "SOMEONE PLEASE... Get me the new Enrique Iglesias Sweat in a Bottle cologne!!! NANCY LOVES IT!!!"


10)  "HOLY HAT!!! Nancy accidentally used miracle grow on the fir tree last night and we woke up to Christmas tree that's 7 feet too tall for our ceiling! I guess I will be using my power tools this morning. Anyone got advice as to the best way to cut a 4" x 4" hole in the roof?"


11)  "Beavis and Butthead Do Christmas!!"


12)  "SORRY I HAVE NOT BEEN ON THE FACE BOOK FOR A COUPLE MONTHS! I JUST GOT BACK FROM A VACATION IN EGYPT. IT WAS GORGEOUS!!!"


13)  "Oh it is beautiful this time of year! And we didn't have to wait in any line to see the pyramids.
That's funny you mentioned Iran because Nancy was thinking about going to Iran so she can wear a burqa. Her pretty eyes just gleam when that's all I can see."



grandpa, you salted rascal!
14)  "VANNA WHITE HAS NOTHING ON NANCE MANGETTES!!!"


15)  "Kokomo Baby! Go Beach Boys! Nancy in a tankini!"


16)  "Sometimes I wish I were Pat and other days Bob, but today I wish I were Charlie Sheen."


17)  "I miss Keith Sweat, a fireplace, and Nancy in Aspen."




and that is all my friends.  remember, this guy is going on 79.  what a stud.  


if you want to add him on facebook, just let me or walt know and we'll give you a link to him.  just send him a message prior to friend requesting to let him know that you're a friend of Paul or Stevie's and you should be good.


hope you're not mad for this gpa!  we love ya you old stack of bricks!




xx-sk


(P.S. keep an eye out for the BEST OF NANCY.  hers are totally dif't, but equally hilarious in a whole, lost online kind of way.)

Monday, March 14, 2011

ABOUT FORGIVENESS.

before you 9's & 10's go clicking the x at the top corner (bird brains), hear me out for at least one line.

every single one of us has someone in our lives who we could forgive, or do a better job of hemming the torn seams with.  everyone, very much including myself.  and that's okay, but here's your golden egg opportunity to turn things around.

i must admit that this is the first time i've come out of the gates writing something personally for a friend.  she didn't ask for it, so i won't pin her for that, but i can feel it in my chest all the way in texas.  not only that,  but i know what it's like to be crushed and want nothing more than to just find the internal strength to forgive someone for what they've done. 


"The Tree of Forgiveness" by
Edward Coley Burne-Jones
it's probably a good thing i write something kind of substantial tonight because i think my funny brain shut off about 3 hours ago or so?  or maybe when i woke up?  i dunno, i forgot to log it in my nifty mood time clock 2000 and sometimes i just don't talk to that many people after work to even know what kind of mood i'm in...lol.  so, sorry for the lack of humor.  i'm lame.  BUT, tomorrow this pretty much guarantees some nonsense and/or aggressively jokester.

before you get to dribbling about in this message, maybe focus on someone you've been holding a grudge against, or you know...maybe just kind of giving the frozen shoulder blade.  and of course you can always pass the word.  personally, off the top of my head, i can only think of about 70 million people who could really take a forgiveness pill and move along.  so get a tall glass of water and prepare to push these meds down gently.

alas...and my apologies if this is scrambled, lacks direction or quality...i'm writing on a whim and going off the top of my melon.  also, to be fair, i'm going to try to steer my message away from my heavy faith directives because i hate to tune people out and anyone who wants the belief-based version can always cal me for a little extra personal butter.  this can be hard to do, but you'll see.  nom nom nom...


ABOUT FORGIVENESS.  - by me, because i'm the only one who really writes around here.


we can all say "life is too short not to forgive", but i think we can do better than that.

that's not so bad, but i think a lot of people take the whole "life is too short to (insert cliche' phrase)" in one ear and it quickly escorts itself out the other.  it never sticks.  so what will stick?  what can possibly be said to help people get over years of angst and distrust and heartbreak?  whatever the case.  how do you go from point Grudge to point Forgive and know that you're doing the right thing?  that's an excellent question.

i'm asking myself the same thing as i type and wander through my own mind and experiences.

i think the best way to start is to know that there is freedom in letting go.  the amount of focus and energy some people exhaust by hanging onto bitter and harsh emotions is incredible.  what a massive waste.  sometimes i imagine what we could accomplish if we took all of that negative vibe, translated it into positivity and added it to the good jones that's already in our bones.  i think we'd all surprise ourselves.

i should take a step back.  certainly some of us have much deeper-planted feelings here than others, but i'm trying to level the playing field as i go.  it's important to come heavy with it though because people don't like change to begin with.  so it's a double uphill battle really.  nobody likes change.  i read a great quote once passed along by a dear friend that said, "the only person who likes change is a wet baby".  classic.  a little off the path, but not too much.

so you first have to address the fact that a change is about to occur.  you're going to do something huge that you never thought you could do.  that's inspiring right?  you're not changing who you are entirely, but maybe it's better to look at it as, you're wishing farewell to your less pretty side.  your less attractive side. sour feelings and harbored funk is never attractive.  bonus point.

then you might to say to yourself, what is the point?  how can i let someone just "get away" with what they did?

it doesn't matter.  seriously.  that sounds like a really watered down and trivializing blanket statement, but it's true.  it doesn't matter.

it never actually matters how far someone crosses you.  in the long term, it is always in your heart, quality of life & soul's best interest to put uglyness in the past.  like i said before, of course this is much easier for some than others, but when you throw it all in the sky, at the end of the day, it all has the gravity to come back down.

if someone who has had their entire family intentionally murdered by a malicious person can find it in their heart to forgive...then so can you.

that stuff happens more than you'd think.  so there are no excuses.  and it's not fair to the other person or yoruself to just keel over and say you're not "strong enough".  i hate that.  you are.  you are if you want to be i say.  you are strong enough.  it's not always easy, and it doesn't always happen overnight, but we all have it inside of ourselves to put the past in the past.

i have a terrible memory, so when a quote sticks to me, it really has to be glowing.  i say that because one of my all-time favorites deals with forgiveness and goes like this.  "you can never get ahead trying to get even".  how true is that?  seriously though.  you can't.  you're doing yourself a huge diservice by clinging to that anger/frustration/resentment that you refuse to let go of.  that's extra baggage your life probably doesn't need.  no, it is.  you carry that with you you know?  that garbage you collect from every bitter note circumstance or relationship that didn't quite pan out the way you had imagined.  think of yourself as a snowball.  not a nice white one either.  you're a sickly gray looking one.  think about it though.  you're essentially snowballing in your own grudging muck.  you really do carry that with you.  i see it in people that i know and love all the time.  it gets to them.  it will get to you too.

so is it just as easy as saying, "okay, fine i'm over it"?  never.  never that.

i'm not going to try to fool you or myself with that fairytale.  but.  but, it isn't as hard as anyone makes it out to be.  i don't think.  why should it be?  it's up to you right?  you are the one making the conscious decision to let that negative thing stay with you and effect you.  or not.

i realize that we're not all emotional brickhouses, but you don't have to be to forgive.  mostly because you're crumbling your own foundation by hanging onto these energy-draining threads.  some of you are white-knuckled, fist-clinching hanging onto this stuff for dear life and why?  why?  there isn't a good answer.  you're stuck.  and you can't deny that.

yes, there is the whole, well i don't want to let this or that happen to me again.  i understand that and won't do battle with you there.  there's nothing wrong with learning from a mistake.  there's nothing wrong with stepping away from someone or something that has hurt you over and over again.  but there's a huge division between walking away with a wise heart and shoving back to create separation.  if you're shoving back, you're not creating separation.  because it's still in you.  you didn't let go of anything.  you're wasting energy again.  step away from that universe and move onto another.

it's okay for me to be personal here i think.  just a bit...so,

i am not perfect.  i am outrageously sorry if this is news to any of you...hahaha.  okay, for real.  i'm not and i definitely wasn't in my last relationship.  but neither was she.  we fought way too much.  we argued about stuff that didn't even make sense to argue about.  it even got creative.  sometimes i would stop and say, how in the world did we come to this hideous place?  we fought so much.  and on top of that, we did some very hurtful things to each other.  and i know for me, i did them with absolutely zero remorse.  that's how bad it got.  that's horrible.  i hate that i was in that place.  moving along though...

i forgive her.  i'm pretty sure she hasn't forgiven me to be truthful, but that's life.  i can only hope and pray she finds it in herself to let go of stuff that essentially does not matter at all anymore.  for her own good if nothing else.  we're in different stages of life now and i wish her the best.  holding onto those ugly nights and crushing words does me no good at this point.  nor her.  don't get me wrong...i can learn from them.  i have and i will continue to do so.  but, what good does it do me to keep that stuff inside?  it does nothing.  if you're one of those who refuse to let go...just do it.  it's like quitting a bad habit.  sometimes you just have to pull the trigger, break free from the rusty shackles and walk on.

you don't try to forgive, you do or you don't.

one thing i almost forgot.

when you cling to these negative emotions associated with whoever/whatever, technically you're letting them win over you.  what they did to you or said or whatever...is still effecting you.  and that's probably what they want.  and if it's not what they want, the linger is still there, and they're dominating your feelings.  you don't want that.  you don't.  that is such a weak thing...to let someone damage you and continue to let them do so - when it doesn't have to be anymore.  muscle up huh?  i dare you to see how amazing it feels to get past those treacherous people or moments.  it's worth every bit of effort one time (to move forward), than to let it wear on you day-by-day and keep stepping in place.  that's what you're doing.  you're treading in bitter water.  you're sitting still.  you're rotting in angst.  was that one too dark?

okay okay...

so the moral of the story is that you have a chance to grow and become free.

the most unforgiving people i know are generally the most sullen, pessimistic and nasty people to be around.  of course i forgive them, but i avoid them like the plague.  unless they need to chat of course!

that being said, you can see where all of this is going.  and hopefully you can see that forgiveness truly is the best option.  i don't care if it was murder, adultery, or someone taking your last red skittle.  it doesn't matter.  it just doesn't.  surely the most severe cases of harm could take a bit longer to stumble past, but it's worth the fight.  i promise.

you don't want to be the person who looks back on their life and says, "wow, i never got rid of that" or  "i lived with that my entire life".  it's not worth it.  it's not.

don't be defined by something bad that happened to you.  we're all victims at one point or another for God knows what reason.  so stop wasting your energy on him/her.  channel it into goodness and use it on him/her.   the next person who walks into your life and plays a big role deserves all of you.  not 98% of you...only to have the other 2% stuck on ex-Y or ex-Z.  now you're being unfair to everyone involved.  especially the person you're with now.  friend or whoever.  give them 100% of you when  you're with them.  that's fair.  and more attractive.

the ugliest people i know (not looks-based, shame) are the most bitter.  i will jump off a bridge onto jagged rocks to dodge some of the knifing conversations and monologues i sometimes hear.  don't be that ugly person.  just don't.

and we come to a halt.

it only makes sense to forgive.  just writing this makes it that much more transparent in my own mind and i felt like i was already fairly strong in the forgiveness dept., but we can all grow all the time.  forgiving is one of those trained life skills that you can never be too good at.  like kissing or cooking.

i hope this clears the air for some of you.  i know it's easier to let things stay the same than to make a big change, but this one is worth it.

if there's someone out there who you know still feels resentment from you, even if they're out of your life, maybe it's worth giving them a call or email just to let them know you want to let it all go.  don't say you're "willing to forgive" them because that implies guilt and you're kind of defeating your purpose.  just say you want to forgive them and move along.  you don't have to be sappy or fall in love all over or anything like that.  just let them know you're free of that ugly emotion and you want to make big strides forward.  they'll respect you for it and you'll feel the difference in your chest.  if they don't, they have their own big issues to deal with.

love is the center of it all really.  if you can forgive like a pro, it's likely that you know how to love like one too.  because you know how to give someone 100%, and that's the best.  i know i wouldn't settle for less.  neither should you.

forgive until it hurts.  forgive until the hurt heals.  and then get ready to do it again because it's an ongoing exercise.  the better you become at it, the lighter you'll feel.

it's good to let go.

there's a lot of beauty in forgiveness, but you have to want it.  and you have to mean it.

get back to your 100%.  do it for yourself, and don't wait forever.

today is best.  go strong.  only the brave.


xx-sk


(and i hope you feel this all the way into your bones).

gents, don't let screwing up be the only reason you buy
her flowers you silly wankas.  the florist is open all year.