Debilitating Deliberation

6.11.2017

 

I believe this existence is mostly meaningless. It’s by luck that we have consciousness, but that’s it. When this is over, it’s over. It’s both freeing and terrifying. I want to take that knowledge and use it to live a stress free life doing what I like, yet I still buy into the current system of which we are all a part of and find problems everywhere. I admit, I want a life for myself that seems to contradict most of my philosophical outlook. If this life is meaningless then I am free to do anything. Yet, the society we live in makes it seem so god damn important for us do what it wants instead. It’s not involuntary, but it’s pretty damn convincing.

Tomorrow the world may burn and I’m trying to make a dollar. That makes me sick.

A dollar that is meaningless unless one gives it meaning. I hate the dollar. I can’t imagine a world where it doesn’t exist, but god damn is it ridiculous.
It’s fucking paper.
No, it’s not even that anymore.

It’s a fucking number. Whatever.

I wrote an entry nearly a year ago about leaving Los Angeles and hitting the road. I felt stagnant, like I was part of a “Groundhog Day” situation that I wasn’t sure I enjoyed. That urge, fleeing, it’s returning with great weight this time. Not only am I making things I don’t like, but I’m worse off than I was this time last year. I’ve attempted many things to break the cycle but I ended up shooting myself in the foot. Both feet, actually. I’ve had a year’s long steady decline.

It’s becoming increasingly difficult to hide the boredom and discontent from my face. When I am unsatisfied with a conversation or situation, I kind of shut down. As of recent, when people have conversations with me about topics of which I have no interest in, I don’t navigate it well. Instead of being the happy trooper and engaging in the societal norms of conversation, I just remain quiet until there’s an awkward ending. I just give up. It’s weird, because I do listen but all I can think is “Why the fuck do you care about this vapid horse shit?” It seems like the majority of the people in Los Angeles that I come into contact with deeply care about the most tedious and self-indulgent non sense. I can’t tell if I’m an asshole for wanting them to shut the fuck up or if I’m doing the world a disservice by not pointing out to them why they should. Either way, I think I’m in the wrong.

Obviously it’s not everyone or every conversation. My favorite thing on the planet is talking to people. When I find someone interesting or puzzling or even someone I can’t read right away, I get excited. I want to figure them out, understand who they are, and find out why they are different. Meeting someone worth talking to is like a breath of fresh air in a dark and stale room. It’s new. It’s invigorating.

So, that makes me wonder: Would I be happier on the road? I would definitely meet all sorts of people outside my “bubble”. Wouldn’t a new challenge and a new way of thinking be exactly where I would thrive? I could turn into one of those obnoxious traveling types that’s always talking about how travel saves lives, or... whatever? You know the type.

I still think my original idea of driving from state to state meeting new people and documenting it my way would be beneficial. At least for me. But that would mean I’m giving up on the system I still place so much weight in. Do I REALLY want to leave, or am I just unhappy with my current situation? What would happen if I got a job I actually liked? What would happen if I let down my guard and let people in? What would happen if I just left the house or stopped hiding from my friends and answered my god damn phone? Would I be happy?

I’m confused how most people can make decisions. I’m confused on how I should be living my life. The lack of meaning in life should be freeing but when I buy into the system it’s like there’s a weight on my chest every time I do something I genuinely don’t care for, which is most things these days.

The world could end tomorrow, but can I really live that way?

Sincerely,

-Matthew Deliberates

Here, Then No Where

5.13.2017

 

What is that makes one’s consciousness dream of fucking off this planet? Is there an evolutionary reason for it?

I truly don’t understand the root cause. Is it the realization that life, in the end, is sort of meaningless? Is it the quitter’s ultimate “Fuck it”? Is it the romanticizing of others’ demise? Is it lack of purpose?

I think for me it’s a desire for the ultimate numbness.

You see, when I have nothing going on, no motivation, no drive, no “purpose”, or when I’m in a routine that doesn’t benefit, satisfy, or engage me in any way I will feel a need to shut my brain down. On any given night I will walk into my apartment and immediately find a way to quiet my inner monologue. Silence the demons, if you will.

Turn the TV on.
Read.
Check my phone.
Listen to a podcast.
Fucking anything that will grant me alleviation and distraction from the fact that I have one life and I might be wasting it. But shit, I’m not even sure what a good way to spend one’s life is. I try hard not to, but I have nihilistic tendencies that sincerely fuck with my well-being.

Though I literally want to live forever, I would describe myself as “impatient”. That might not seem relevant, but if you take into account that we are merely insignificant specs on the cosmic scale, what’s the fucking point of existing in the first place? Not that I subscribe to this thinking, but if we exist only to die, why wait? Though I don't want to, and I think it's a horrible idea, I struggle with that argument. And people wonder “why?” when I openly talk about my desire to get a vasectomy. I can hardly justify my own existence, how could I ever father another sentient being capable of such thoughts and dilemmas?

And you know what? I’m a hypocrite. I’m only saying this because I’m not content with my current standing and that everything I’ve tried to do to change it has proved fruitless.

{Just for the record: I do NOT want to die. Seriously. I don't want to get a bunch of e-mails or phone calls.}

If you’ve read some of my entries (or if you hang out with me in person) there’s a good chance you’ve heard me refer to myself as “a miserable cunt”. I say this for both comedic effect and because I believe it to be true.

Often it feels like I’m wasting my god damned time.

I’ve felt purpose at times in the past, and what a great numbing device it was. I am deeply jealous of anyone who currently feels they have a purpose. On the other hand, I’m annoyed when people seem content with shitty purpose.

Religion.
A job they actually hate.
Their precious "identity".
Or any calling of any sorts that currently seems ridiculous to me.
Which of course is an absurd position to take because what the fuck do I know? Maybe that purpose is warranted. Shit, I can’t really knock it if I got none.

I guess what bugs me, is that people fail to realize they’re just filling the space of their existence with whatever brand of time-filler that numbs them best. But then again, maybe that’s the point of life?

I think I go back and forth on being happy/content and proud to be a member of the greatest species on this planet, and irrationally annoyed when we fail to realize that this life is temporary, meaningless, and probably shit.

I am full of both Love and Hate.
Good and Evil.
I am rational at times, and completely irrational at others.
I’m a walking talking hypocrite and I’m here to tell you all about it.

I don’t want to die.

Ironically, the only thing that leads me to believe that life might be pointless is that it ends. It’s the great tragedy of existence. I want to live forever, but that’s impossible. You’re here, alive and joking with friends, falling in love, having deep conversation about the current state of the world and then in a blink of the eye you’re not. I understand the desire for there to be an afterlife, but there’s not an ounce of me that believes in it. You’re here, then you die. Cheers.

I guess I don’t hate when people fill their time or numb themselves to the reality that death is coming and there’s not a hope in God that can stop it... I’m just fucking jealous of it. I’m being petty because I want that. I don’t want to think the way I do. I want to experience everything, even all this pointless filler, yet I constantly think about all this shit.

I’ve experienced “purpose” in the past through various means, so why the fuck do I dwell on things that lead me to be such a sad-sack?

For fuck’s sake, I’m a self-made miserable cunt. But at times, aren’t we all?

Maybe it’s just stress, depression, discontent, (insert anything I’m feeling right now), that makes me dwell on such horrible realities. Real they may be, but they’re just as pointless as any other time filler, and a god awful way to spend one’s time here.

OK, that’s enough. I’m clearly still working shit out in my skull, so let me leave you with a little light at the end of the tunnel:

I’ve got plans. I’m working hard. I envision a life for myself that is both full and happy, and just because I can’t see it clearly right now doesn’t mean I don't think it will happen. Just because I wrote this entirely self-indulgent and depressive piece doesn’t mean I think life is pointless. It’s the only thing we got. I love it even through the hardest of times. Though I both accept and struggle with the end, I’m confident I will find what comfortably numbs me and bides my time before I go charging into the oblivion.

Hope is a hell of a drug, but one worth embracing.

Until then, I’m going to go read –shut this shit down for a while.

 

-Matthew Numbs

Layers of an Asshole

5.8.2017

 

Bit of a depressive rant today. Strap in.

Most of the relationships in my life are at least somewhat superficial. I wonder if everyone feels like this? I feel as though even the closest people to me know very little of substance. I occasionally reveal bits of my soul, usually through jokes, but I hardly use language to express key parts of myself. Parts I despise, yet desperately want someone to acknowledge.

Which is ridiculous, because I constantly push the people away who get too close.

I push people away that I fear can alter who I am. I don’t like being affected by another human being, which is why my trust lies with a select few. I don’t want anyone to have the power to rip out my heart and shit in the cavity where it came from. I am afraid of being powerless at the hands of another. I’ve been there in the past and I’ve completely pulled back. I’ve hardened. Become jaded. Very few have that ability now.

That sounds a tad dramatic, yeah? Well... it's not gonna get any better today.

I’m not entirely convinced I should be loved.

I’ve been so fucking introspective all my life that it’s caused me to know exactly who I am. Who I am is not the character I reveal to the world. I, am the narrator within my skull that knows all of my positive and negative attributes. I know my hopes, dreams, fears, my regrets, secrets and my demons. And I am 100 percent honest with myself. The version of me that you get is, in some way, a liar. And I most likely think you’re a liar too.

“How's it going?”
“Great!”
“Top-notch!”

I’ve gotten so good at lying to cover up my flaws and real emotions that I can recognize when others do it. It appears everyone is just meandering through life telling each other lies. I see it. I may not see you just as you may not see me, but I see your lies and that’s a start. I can read you.

I recently noticed a friend changing the way they interact with me. The vocabulary has changed. So has eye contact, mood, topics of conversation, physical interactions and other subtleties that appear obvious. I can only speculate as to why the change has occurred, and I have my theories, but it’s beyond strange to observe it as it’s happening. It puts me in a familiar yet weird predicament. If I am to ask honestly what’s going on, I would incidentally reveal to them a part of me I don’t want them to know. For some reason, which makes zero sense, I don’t want them to know I’ve noticed a change and therefore care. I don’t want to show my hand that I can tell they’re lying. I don’t want them to know they have the ability to make me feel vulnerable which would subsequently allow the whole chest cavity shitting situation.

So, what do I do? Act like a healthy human being, ask what prompted a change and accept what may come? -or- Be a fucking coward, harden and reject these feeling of sleight and pretend I don’t give a fuck until it actually becomes true?

You know which one I’m choosing.


And I despise myself for that. I feel so guilty. It’s lonely.

It’s not just friends. I’ve never revealed my inner self with anyone romantically. And I desperately want to. But, every time I feel like there is a possibility to do so I fuck up, or get let down, or find any reason not to. The truly pitiful thing is that I sometimes judge people who fall in love with the version I allow them to see. I create and internal struggle. If I reveal myself, then the charade is gone forever. But I’m not that interesting, I’m not nearly as funny, most of the time I want to be alone and at half the time I can be a real asshole. The charade is how I fit in. So, the question is: Is it worth letting someone, even momentarily, see that inner version of me?

I see me constantly, and I’m not sure it’s worth it.


The version you know is much more bearable to be around. I assure you. This one in my head is self aware and yet self deprecating to a degree that could only be described as "obnoxious".

Anyways.

 

Sincerely,

-Matthew Hides

Broke Kids

3.23.2017

 

I’m broke as shit.

The nature of my job is inconsistent at best. I freelance, so sometimes it’s good, and sometimes it’s bad.
I haven’t made a dime in nearly two months.
It can be a real struggle in times like these. I’ve been out of town dealing with family issues when my phone has rung for any job I obviously couldn’t take. Call it bad timing, bad luck... or whatever, the point is I haven’t made a dime in months.

And I’m starting a company.

I’ve mentioned it here before, but mostly what I do for a living is dealing with the marketing departments of companies to come up with content for advertising. Of products I may or may not like. Hell, for companies I may or may not like. Regardless, it’s not at all what I want to do.

Last year some close friends and I even had an idea to start a little creative firm. We “tried”, but it obviously didn’t work out. I wanted to do it, we just had creative differences that made it seem hopeless and depressing while we were trying to make things, and then even more so once we stopped. That kind of fucked me up.

No, it did.
I was in a huge rut after that.

Ever since then I’ve had ideas, concepts, goals, and aspirations that I haven’t accomplished or even worked towards. Sometimes I would talk about certain ideas or potential projects, maybe even make half assed plans at the bar with a friend, but I never got around to actually making or working towards anything. I would just float by thinking, “Maybe next month?”.

Well, I decided to bin all that non-sense and start my own company to use as a platform for every idea I’ve ever had. I’m here, now, I don’t see the point in wasting any more time. Broke or not, I have a sense of urgency and drive that I’ve never experienced before in my entire life.

And I’m not doing it alone. In fact, I realized there are loads of talented creators with unlimited imagination and no platform to create. It’s a god damn tragedy if you ask me.

The Yin to my Yang, Kirsti Schroder, who I love to death, is my partner in this. She’s a positive-creative force to be reckoned with, who has a unique ability to control the chaotic nature of my ideas and aspirations. We have been friends for years, and I value her, her friendship and her ideas above most people on this planet. I would not have even made the first step in starting this new venture without her. We are going to do great things together.

The third piece to the initial team is Jordan Francis Perry. Jordan and I went to college together where we did not know each other. This is probably a common thing, as most students at universities don’t know every other student, but we went to a tiny fucking school in an even smaller town. I met Jordan at a Seahawks bar in Hollywood. I recognized his roommate, James. “Oh, I think we had some class or something together”. All that shit. We all exchanged numbers and said we’d hang out, but never really did outside of the bar. But guess what? Jordan and I are both of fans of alcohol and the Seahawks. It was inevitable we would become such close friends. Also, Jordan and James were making ridiculously funny shorts on Instagram, which is how I was introduced to Jordan’s talents. Fun-fact about Jordan: He may be one of the most self- deprecating people I’ve ever known, but his insight into the world around him and at large is unique, refreshing, honest, and beautiful. We are going to do great things together.

So what’s the plan? What is this company? What are my ideas? I’ve noticed some people have a difficult time explaining it.

In short:
It’s a creative-firm and boutique media company.

Yeah, it sounds sort of douchey to me too unless I explain it further.

The first step has been recruiting anyone like us. Anyone who feels like their soul is being sucked away by doing dog shit for a living while a fire in their gut is telling them to create something of substance.

What ideas do they have? How can we help make that happen? What can they do?

We’re using every resource and talent we have to accomplish other people’s goals in order to develop a solid collective. Someone wants to make a fashion film that fits within our world? Let’s make it. Someone needs to a platform to launch their passion project? We’ll give them that.

The idea is to make things. Original things. New things. Things that deserve to be made.

We’re working with clients, bands, small businesses, clothing companies and whoever else to make quality content that fits within our “world”. We make dope shit for people who like the things we create. The ability to say “No” to someone or something I don’t think fits within the creative dimension, direction or aesthetic is key. My soul will be in tact by the work I create. There’s no #blessed around these parts.

As of right now, we’re making a billion different things. I’ve never been busier in my life, and I’m currently not making a dime. The initial costs of birthing multiple new ventures under the umbrella of this one company have been and will be great. Which is exactly how the name was developed; Broke Kids.

Ideally the name will eventually become an ironic reminder of the present.

Or an unfortunate, but accurate reason for why I become homeless.

Either way, I’m going to make dope shit.


-Matthew Bleeds

"Precious Cargo"

In a small country town, in an old-folks home on one of the few "major" highways, there are two small conjoining rooms that are of significance to me. Walking through the door numbered 108 with a name tag that reads “Opal Mitchell”, past the bathroom, one would see a couch, a recliner, a big window, boxes of photographs, a few folding chairs, a table with snacks and sudoku puzzle books on it, a kitchenette with a counter, a small coffee pot, fridge, some cabinets and microwave. But most importantly, one would see people. These people would be my cousins, my aunts, my uncles, my siblings, my father, my mother... essentially a revolving door of a very large and incredibly close family.

If one continued and walked through the door at the back far right corner of the room, one would find the second room to be a mirrored layout of the first –same kitchenette and floorplan. In this second room, one would see bouquets of flowers, an electric recliner, five more chairs (a healthy mix of wicker, wood, and those metal folding ones), a walker, a wheelchair, books, photo albums, a slideshow photo frame featuring images of a very large family, a photo of my brother’s wedding on the cabinet, a photo of a couple from the past, a hand painted sign that proclaims “Jesus is the only way”, and most notably, one would see a bed where my grandmother, the matriarch of my giant family, is dying.

I am fortunate enough to have been able to fly home and say “Goodbye”. It was heart wrenching, hilarious, sad, beautiful, stressful, peaceful, and incredible. I was taking notes all week, trying to remember everything so that I could breakdown anything that was happening later. I’ve never been one for verbally communicating feelings and I am notoriously bad at processing emotions in the moment.

Ask anyone who knows me.

I am now writing this from the Seattle airport where I am leaving the state, heading back home to LA. It was hard trying to find a time to leave, but I need to get back.

Most of the time I spent with my grandma was passed by watching her sleep. She was lying down, and her heart was beating fast and her chest showed every beat. She was growing weaker and weaker, and more and more uncomfortable... that’s the way it goes towards the end. By the time I left, she wasn’t responding anymore, and it appeared she was getting very close to the end. I need to get back, but it could be days of her sleeping.

When I first arrived, she was definitely responding. One of the first things she did was praise Jesus for healing her Parkinson’s for the end stretch. She really hated Parkinson’s, and had been suffering from the nastier aspects of the disease for some time. To my family’s relief, she found extraordinary comfort in the fact that the shaking was muted. She told me that my cousin, Bailey, had read her a passage from the bible that gave her immense peace. She often wanted it read out loud to her. I almost did, but started to choke up and just said I’m bad at reading out loud. This is true.

The passage read:
“Thank Me for the conditions that are requiring you to be still. Do not spoil these 
quiet hours by wishing them away, waiting impatiently to be active again. Some of the greatest works in My kingdom have been done from sickbeds and prison cells. Instead of resenting the limitations of a weakened body, search for My way in the midst of these very circumstances. Limitations can be liberating when your strongest desire is living close to Me.

Quietness and trust enhance your awareness of My Presence with you. Do not despise these simple ways of serving Me. Although you feel cut off from the activity of the world, your quiet trust makes a powerful statement in spiritual realms. My Strength and Power show themselves most effective in weakness. “

She often said that message humbled her. She said she was at first upset and not fully accepting the reality of the situation, but this passage gave her immense strength and acceptance. These words brought her so so much peace. It was beautiful beyond words.

Now, my personal beliefs contradict every single thing that is helping my Grandmother. She even made me a liar. She made me promise that I would “come to Jesus”, which is conflicting and kind of funny. On one hand, I blatantly lied to a dying and beloved figure in my life when I said “I promise.” On the other hand, I’m not going to let a dying and beloved figure in my life down on her literal death bed just because I’m a stubborn ass. Even in that moment, where it is so painfully obvious that the right thing to do is to just agree, I still hated lying. But I loved my Grandmother more. And it was kind of hilarious. I mean, that is a comically massive guilt trip for the situation. I laughed later.

I have to admit, though, I am so relieved (and almost jealous) that she found this intense comfort within her faith. What gave her so much courage to face death, was that she fully believed she is moving towards heaven. For she will soon be reunited with her husband, parents, family, friends, and anyone else she knows who is waiting for her in paradise. She even got her hair done “to look good for Vern” (her husband who died in the early '80s before I was born). The strength and grace this faith has afforded her has completely blown me away. I cannot stress that enough.

God bless religion in moments like these.

Pandora was constantly playing what sounded like a playlist curated for her death, but apparently wasn’t. It was a very religious compilation, where most of the songs were referencing "going home", which she found incredibly comforting. I kept thinking it’s eerie that someone assembled it, but I guess it makes sense. Or maybe it was a station?

“There’s power in the blood of the lamb...”

No one paid for the premium service, which annoyed the hell out of me at first. I kept asking, but for some reason it wasn’t a priority. What was she going to buy? Why interrupt the peace the music is giving for some asshat trying to sell a Dodge pick-up? Any time this harrowing playlist was broken with an ad, it became so "every day" feeling. After a while, it became humorous and my aunt’s took turns turning down the volume every time an ad played. We all cracked a smile every time it happened.

“Please upgrade to Pandora Plus, no ads, unlimited...”

<update: someone paid for the premium service> 

The amount of family and love around her has been incredibly beautiful and inspiring. I’ve been trying to find the words for the overwhelming sense of love, and I can’t. Her kids (and kid-in-laws) have done an amazing job making sure she knows she is loved. Her grandkids and great grandkids have come in droves to let her know how much they loved her. Her kids make her as comfortable as possible and stay by her side 24/7. Before she stopped communicating, they prayed with her, prayed for her, read her stories, told her tales, reminisced, and made it completely beautiful and warm. She, in turn, let everyone know exactly how much she loved them; immensely. She was sharp and quick witted, too. She often traded quips with my father and uncles.

The imagery of my mother, aunts and uncles caring for my grandmother will be burned into my memory forever. It is the most powerful example of love I have ever seen.

“Grace and Peace to you from God our Father...” Grace and Peace. Fitting.

When she entered hospice, they took away all medication other than pain management. She wasn’t able to stomach any food or water, so they had to stop any intake of that as well. Technically, she could have anything she wanted but didn’t want to prolong the inevitable or spend that time in any more discomfort. She was allowed ice chips and liked them when her mouth became dry. She even slyly convinced someone to give her frozen Pepsi chips, which was amusing. Huckleberry flavored chap stick was also regularly applied, to her content. She found joy in the little things on her death bed, cracked jokes constantly, let her family know they were loved, and faced the next stage with courage and confidence. As things got more and more painful, she admitted she would like to go before the First of the new month. That ignited some tears.

I feel horrible for leaving before the end, but I am.
“She is no longer responding.” I told myself.
But I’m honestly already regretting leaving.
I want to be surrounded by my family and that amazing love when it happens.
I wish I could offer any comfort I could to my mother and siblings when the time comes. I just hope everyone knows the decision to leave was hard.

I have a lot more to write about “Grandma Opie”, but I can’t bear to reminisce in this airport. I’m already fighting back tears as it is.

After she passes and I have time to process, I will share a fond memory... or a thousand.

She is a wonderful human who created an amazing family that I am infinitely thankful for. I will miss her very much.

 

-Matthew Leaves

Die Happy

2.11.2017

My neighbor across the hall is an elderly Hispanic woman who speaks very little English. I speak very little Spanish. We can hardly have a meaningful conversation, yet we have a funny relationship. She is very old and has trouble walking without a walker. Every time I see her walking to and from the building’s entrance I lend her my arm (to her delight, as the six stairs can be particularly tricky for her). Her smile (which is always present) and gratitude makes me smile. She seems like a very happy person. We attempt to communicate, mostly about superficial things, usually about the weather. It’s hard to talk about anything else when we don’t share the words. Somehow we both end up laughing. She once insisted I was rich because I own a car. I laughed hard. Perspective is everything.

I have no idea how she gets down those six stairs when I’m not there. Even with my assistance, it takes her a fucking year.

This week she has been rushed to the ER twice. I have heard members of her family crying, bellowing, and wallowing in sadness on multiple occasions. The first time, I thought she was dead. My landlord has had to open the door to check on her while her daughter is freaking out at the lack of response from her mother inside. Whenever I hear commotion, I press my ear to my door and hear everything as if I were outside. I worry, so I listen.

For the past 6 months her daughter (who once told me that her mother refers to me as her boyfriend) has slowly been coming over more and more to check in on her. She yells “Mama! Mama!” repeatedly to wake her up nearly every day now. The frequency of the daughters visits, the ambulances... It appears my neighbor isn't doing so hot. I would bet money that she needs a caretaker but cannot afford it. I haven’t seen her, but I would wager my life that she’s smiling when she can.

One day, her daughter’s calls will not be answered, she will start panicking again, call my landlord, who will unlock the door and they will find my sweet neighbor across the hall dead. And I will probably have my ear pressed to my door. Listening. Probably crying.

I will have to remind myself, “Everyone dies.” And I will hope she was happy.

Sometimes, I think, people would consider my outlook on life lacking in optimism. Throughout my life I have been accused of being pessimistic to the nth degree -the term “grim” has even been thrown around before. My brothers, my sister, my mother and my father will all attest that I have never been the bubbliest person. I often refer to myself as a “moody cunt”, and I think that is an accurate description.

But I’m not pessimistic. Really, I’m not.

I admit to being a moody cunt, I’m working on it, but I am nowhere near a pessimist. I reject that label whole heartedly. I would argue that I am a pragmatist with a healthy level of optimistic influence. I want things to work out, I work on things so that I can better control the likelihood that things will work out, but I would not bury my head in the sand to maintain a belief that things will. Damn things are sometimes out of my control. Such is life.

I do not believe there is a benevolent creator or fate and thinking of an after-life seems like a foolish waste of time to me. When I die, that’s it. My consciousness, what made me, Me... my thoughts, my feelings, my experiences, my memories, my life... will simply end.

I will cease to exist. “That’s it.”

I’ve been told this is a particularly sad and pessimistic thought. Do you feel sad by that?
Why?

If you are religious, and you care for me, you may feel sad I won’t be joining you in your version of an afterlife. I get it, I do, but I don’t want nor need the sentimentality. That is an extremely selfish desire, and one that I wish people would stop bringing up in conversation. I am repulsed by that notion and I’m growing so tired of having to be so fucking considering of everyone’s precious/ridiculous beliefs.

Everyone dies. I have my suspicions that many people don’t actually think about their own death. It is, of course, absurd and unnecessary to constantly think about one’s own demise, but truly understanding its inevitability can alter one’s life for the better.
It can change
your life.
Death will trivialize the bullshit that we think matters, and it will bring things that genuinely do into sharper focus.
You are going to die.
What do you really want to be doing with your time here?
Before you cease to exist, what do you want to be doing most? Working at that unfulfilling job you hate? Being in a horrible relationship? Do you really enjoy your life? Are you really happy? Am I really happy?

I want to die happy.
That is all I want, and all I want for those I love.

By that I don’t mean I want to die with a smile on my face and having my brain flooded with hormones producing happiness, though that would certainly be ideal. I mean I want to shed my ego enough to fully come to terms with death, and have a life chock full of memories to reflect on.

I want my experience here to be full of the things that I hold dear. I want to learn as much as I possibly can, I want to find the truth in every situation, I want to love madly, I want to see beauty, I want to create things from my imagination, I want to help people, teach people, laugh in the face of tragedy and triumph alike, build things that no one else has, add benefit to others, and in the very end, whenever that may be, I want to die happy... and full.

I am not a pessimist, No! I understand we all die and I want to make the journey towards death as slow and as amazing as possible. Just as I hope you all will. I truly think that if everyone embraced their own mortality on a realistic level it would make for a better society. We would definitely treat each other better, we would start practicing the “I don’t give a fuck” Zen-mentality when it comes to minor bullshit, and we would have happier, fuller lives. Because why the fuck wouldn’t you? This is it, baby. Once it’s done, it’s done!

You’re going to die. Make the ride into the abyss a great one.

Die Happy.


-Matthew Dies

Coffee Stained Teeth

2.6.2017

I woke up late. I slowly crawled out of bed and crept into my kitchen to figure out my life. I mean, make coffee.
My garbage is quickly being filled with used coffee grounds in piles of bitter mud that I will most certainly add to today. And the next day.

And the next.


My coffee addiction might be out of control, but I’ll figure that out at a later date.

My morning routine thrives because of the consumption of that hot black goodness. It gives me a moment to reflect before the day starts. The process in which I consume the drink is almost sacred to me.

When I was young my parents consumed the beverage daily. Every morning the scent of a fresh pot would fill the house and usher in a youth full of fond familiarity. The scent of coffee, though, is misleading to a child. For me, it smelled delicious and amazing and I associated it with positive aspects in my life. Reality struck when I tasted it for the first time.

It’s fucking bitter.
Children don’t like bitter things, I reckon.

So why did I keep drinking it? How does one go from repulsion to infatuation? Is my love of coffee based entirely on social constructs that convinced me to develop a taste for it?

America has an interesting relationship with coffee. Rejecting taxation on tea (and the UK in general), mixed with crop failure and convenience gave rise to a culture that consumed more and more coffee. It became American. I wonder if we just convinced ourselves it was great, then dominated the world, and now everyone else is falling in line.

Coffee is great. Say it.
Louder.
Now believe it.

I’m using coffee as a shitty way to introduce what I really want to talk about: I wanted to write something to address the lies I’ve told this week.

With the guidance of the sacred beverage I’m sipping, the period of reflection that goes along with it and the guilt of a formerly religious person, I must confess my sins: I have lied this week.

I don’t enjoy lying one bit.

When I was young I would lie to get my way or to get out of a tricky situation solely for selfish reasons.
Hold the judgement.
We all did.

A lot of people still do.

However, the older I get the more disgusting I find this. I see adults doing it all the time and it freaks me out. I try to refrain. Sure, I still lie, but these days it seems like I’m mostly lying for others’ benefit. I benefit as well, obviously, but I feel like the main goal is to ease others'. But maybe I’m just lying to myself. Am I that naive? I'm not that great of a person.

You be the judge. This week:

I lied that a cat scratched me years ago and that’s how I got the scar on my stomach. I’ve told a few people this. It is a lie. The truth doesn’t necessarily breed any ground breaking conversation and will only make people feel uncomfortable around me. I’m not necessarily embarrassed by the truth, no one can use it against me, but it seems to skew the night. So I lied. And now I feel uncomfortable. Social Norms.

I lied and said that I was working to get out of hanging out with people. This is a common lie and it seems selfish, and I’m sure it is, but I can be a moody prick sometimes and no one deserves to be around that. I don’t think it adds value to others’ lives when I’m in those moods. I’m not one for holding my tongue, and I’ve learned it’s best to just hide away and read. Preservation.

I’ve successfully held the truth back about my feelings for multiple people this week. Constantly not wanting to go any further in personal relationships is either a selfish or selfless venture. I can’t tell yet; the jury is still out. You see, I’m a recovering romantic with a tendency to be overly passionate. I’m impulsive with feelings and I often put them out my mind the second the person they’re directed at is out of sight. This doesn’t seem to be fair to anyone so I remain King Casual, Lord of all Douchebags. This title benefits everyone in the long run. Convenience.

The point is: I’ve lied this week.
I don’t enjoy it.
Convenience, preservation, social norms or any other justification I give for telling a lie doesn’t change the fact that it’s still a lie. Not to be too dramatic, but it feels like each lie starts to eat away at my soul. It gets easier. It starts to taste good. The easier lying becomes the more aware of it I feel I have to be. I have to take note, feel the guilt, and change my behavior so that I don’t continue lying in the future. Sure, I didn’t tell any “big” lies and I’m not out here manipulating others, but what’s the point of putting so much value in honesty if I’m hypocrite at the end of the day?

And I truly value honesty. But god, I would have so few friends were I honest at all times. What does that mean? What does that say about me, about my relationships, about society? Why can’t we all be honest? Why do we worry about others’ feelings so much and why do we get so offended when people think differently about us? It seems so childish. So trivial. So sensitive. It’s detrimental to progress.

My coffee is cold now. I need to make more.

Until next time,

-Matthew Lies

We The People

1.28.2017

Facts are important.

The truth is important.

I’m so over this horse shit.

Regardless of your political stance, religious beliefs, sexuality, gender, ethnicity, or anything else that you identify as, you must concede that your “identity” takes a back seat to the truth. Period.

With this new president, the rise of fake news, and the muddying of seemingly everyone’s grasp on reality, I am constantly disheartened by how many people appear to disregard the importance of the truth.

If I see someone post some horseshit on Facebook, I will do the cunty thing I always do, and show the error of their ways. For instance, if someone posts a fake news article, I will pause my whole day, get as much “evidence” as I can, explain why, how, and what is wrong about it. This should be welcomed! What boggles my mind is that most people don’t seem to give a shit. They would rather preserve their belief, though it’s factually wrong. When confronted with a truth, some people will say “that’s your opinion!”

No Mother Fucker, that’s the truth!

I’m sorry the truth doesn’t align with your team every time, but it’s still the truth.
I’m really trying to keep my contempt for bad ideas in check, but my blood boils when someone chooses ignorance to preserve a provably wrong tribal belief when confronted with reality.

Truth should transcend your fucking tribe. And more and more, it doesn’t.
This is frightening.

We the people, need to grow the fuck up.

It’s not about you, your feelings, or your ridiculous team. It’s about facts.

The Right needs to stop acting like Trump is, in any way, a decent or moral person. The guy goes against every American value you supposedly believe in. Stop doing that thing where you just pretend he’s a good guy and admit he’s a fucking prick. He manipulated the shit out of you!

If your friend was doing any of the shit he does, you would be embarrassed to be in public with them. Hold him accountable. Don’t just argue with the Left because they’re on the opposite team, hold that Orange Cunt accountable. Call him out. Make him

better. He’s fucking lying to you and he has been! Get angry. Your ability to sidestep facts and claim it as another’s opinion is a perversion of reality.

Also, you don’t own “American Values”. You’re not any more American than the Left is, I am, or any American citizen who happens to be of a different belief system than you. Your religion is just as fucking stupid as Islam is, just as Scientology is, and so on and so on. Christianity shouldn’t be the deciding factor in making laws on anything. Especially on women’s health! (Mike Pence, you fucking dog-shit human being!)

I’m so confused by you guys. You claim these beliefs based on faith, yet none of the laws you make, tax systems you set up, healthcare, or even the way you govern go with that of the teachings you hold dearly. Your compartmentalization of Separation of Church and State is astonishing. I’ve never read that part where Jesus made the rich richer, while denying health care to the poor? Just because you dislike the ideals the other side has, doesn’t mean you should push aside your own morality, and it definitely doesn’t mean you should make laws barring truth.
I watched so many of you flip at the last minute to preserve the “team attitude”.
This is fucking disgusting.

Find a back bone.

The Left needs to stop acting like free speech is a bad thing and that encouraging people to have their own goofy fucking beliefs -with zero basis in reality- is at all a good idea. Bad ideas should never be free from criticism. Being professionally offended, and making everyone a victim is detrimental to stomping out stupidity.

Like the Right, I’m so confused by the Left. You guys have a feeling of moral superiority, yet you’re filled with contradictions that you never acknowledge. I have so many examples I could choose from, but I’ll stick with religion because I want to make another point later.

I’ll talk shit about Islam as much as I want, just as I will Christianity. They’re the same brand of ridiculous! I get that the other side implements a disgusting level of Islamophobia mixed with racism, but are you seriously going to give an entire religion a “pass”? It’s an oppressive belief system and should be openly criticized without fear of retaliation from the language police. If someone is being an asshole, call them an asshole. That’s how we get better.

Also: If your friends start spouting hippie bullshit about energy crystals, astrology, being witches or any other nonsensical beliefs, please call them out on it. If you believe in ridiculous magical powers outside of a major religion, I have no fucking patience for you. I can hardly stand the fact that the major religions teach children at such young impressionable ages to believe in the mainstream nonsense, but that at least explains the devotion -It’s brainwashing 101.

But a consenting adult going against all reason, logic, and science by choosing to believe in this laughable horse shit makes my brain hurt. I get that it’s probably fun, that’s what fantasy is, but it’s also the epitome of chosen ignorance when truly believed in. Do you believe in Santa Claus and Dragons too?

Stop being ridiculous.


OK, have I successfully pissed everyone off? Are you all offended? No?

The OA was dumb as shit, Orange is the New Black is overrated, I piss in women’s bathrooms when the men’s is taken, I didn’t vote for Hilary, Donald Trump is a pussy, I think you should have to apply to have a child, I use the word “retarded”, Elon Musk is better than (insert your religious figure head), I hate your favorite band and your mom smells like feet.

Yeah, that should do it.

I feel better now that I got that out. But seriously, I am hopeful for a resurgence in placing truth and logic above personal beliefs.
There’s too much goofy shit to ignore these days.
We will grow.

Love,


Matthew Offends

Fleshy Vessels

11.29.2016

I haven’t written anything in a bit.

I’ve regressed.
I’m not doing “well”.
My routine has failed me -Or maybe it was me who failed my routine?

I’m either drinking too much or thinking too much. Both are equally debilitating.

If I sit down to write something, I have to confront myself and be honest about what’s going on. Sometimes that’s fucking hard when there’s a bottle of fun liquid that helps me forget whatever it is I’m struggling with.
I don’t necessarily think the booze is addictive, but running away from reality definitely is.
So dramatic.

I’m not even drinking that much; I’m just using it wrong. I will drink often enough to temporarily forget my blues and pass the time until the next sunrise, genuinely hoping that tomorrow will magically be different. Like a coward.

I know, obviously that’s not how this works.

I’ve got to grow the fuck up, take responsibility for any negativity, be a fucking man and handle my shit. I’m often far too good at dissociating. Ask anyone who’s ever tried to get a hold of me.

What am I running from? What am I trying so hard to tune out?

I don’t even know. Maybe I’m just generally not fulfilled? I’m not sure, but from what I can gather I have multiple conflicting desires or processes.

  • I’m simultaneously lonely and wanting to be left the fuck alone.
  • I’m both ambitious and able to check the fuck out for a chunks at a time.
  • I am incredibly caring of others and at other times incredibly selfish.


The truth is, I’m not sure what’s next for me. It could go either way.

It feels like I’m on some strange journey trying to find a trail that leads to some life path that guides my way... but I could just be stumbling deeper into the forest of the unknown.
So fucking dramatic.

What do I do next?

My gut tells me I need to get back on a routine that is obsessively healthy and rigorous to live as joyful and as long as possible.

I woke up with a note I wrote on my phone when I was drunk that read:

“This fleshy vessel can be poisoned or prolonged through health and wellness. Neither way has been proved to be better, and in the end it doesn’t really matter, right? So don’t judge others for their poor habits. In fact, fuck you for thinking you know better.”

My drunk self was literally writing to the part of me that is obsessive about routines and health and all that other boring shit.

I don’t know who is right, yet.

I do know that I’m going to write more. A lot of stuff has happened since I last posted here, I’ve got shit to talk about.

Until then,

-Matthew Wonders

You're Going To Die (Let's Go To Mars!)

9.28.2016

 

Today is the day after Elon Musk laid out his plan for Mars colonization. I am still freaking out a bit. I haven’t really been able to focus on anything because I’ve been fantasizing something fierce about a future that I won’t ever see. I understand I will die before Mars ever becomes an equal alternative to Earth, but one day it could be. And I got to witness a detailed presentation that showed the possibilities of how that may happen. That fills me with so much joy. Or, maybe it’s pride? Like, I can imagine how humans will one day do this and even though I’m not personally doing it, I’m proud of us who are alive right now because of what that means for the future of humanity?

Fuck, I don’t know! It’s a complicated feeling.

It’s literally the coolest possible future I could ever imagine for the human species and people right now are working on it. Although, sometimes I get ridiculously excited thinking about what humanity will do long after I’m gone. Then I get ridiculously jealous of future generations that will experience the things I can only dream of. Then I get sad thinking about how I haven’t heard one god damn person talking about it today.

Why the fuck isn’t everyone as excited as I am?
Why can’t I be having this conversation with a friend instead of a fucking computer?

I mean, I sort of understand...
I was waiting for this presentation for a while now, for I am a dumb person who is absolutely fascinated with the future AND space travel.
Plus, I have a giant Man Crush on Elon Musk and his sexy ass brain.

But what I legitimately don’t understand is why no one seems to give a fuck, time and time again, about the future. I get that we are all different and my interests aren’t going to be your interests, but this one seems like EVERYONE should be interested. It’s not just my future, it’s everyone’s.

I don’t think I’m in the wrong here or am I missing something?

As I was watching our Lord and Sav... I mean, "Elon’s" presentation, I honestly thought this would be the most newsworthy and talked about event all year.
And I’m fully aware that it’s an election year.

In fact, watching that presentation the day after the first presidential debate where Fuckhead#1 and the Lesser of Two Evils debated about America and all its policies, I realized how little people seem to think about the distant future in general. It seemed so much more important than the next four years, yet no one gives a shit.

What is that?

Does anyone else feel that excitement, that complicated feeling, that I feel?
Or, I wonder, do people just fear the future because that inevitably makes us think of our own death and we’re just not wired to deal with our own mortality?

If that’s the case, we all need to collectively grow the fuck up. We are all going to die.
Let’s not get hung up on that part.
Deal with it now.

Stop being an asshole.
Get excited about Mars, damnit!

But seriously, I often think back to when I was a child and how much I legitimately feared death. It was almost debilitating. I mean, I still fear death in the sense that I don’t want to die and I avoid it, but I thoroughly understand I will. I accepted my own mortality, which doesn’t make me a slave to it.

That may seem obvious, but I was raised in the Christian faith, so all I could ever fucking think about was how much I did not want to die. So many nights I would lie awake in my bed thinking about the logic of how everyone sins all the fucking time, hundreds of times a day, and if just one little tiny sin happened right before a freak accident that killed me, I would spend a damned eternity in excruciating pain, alone, and separated from my disappointed family.

#guilt
(BTW, please understand that “Hell” is an invention of Man to control people and that a benevolent Creator would never create such a place... Cheers!)

When I started questioning and eventually losing my faith, at such an early age, I had to confront my own mortality. That sounds weird. Actually, it sounds absolutely absurd. But there was genuinely a time where I whole heartedly believed that Hell was real and if I didn’t believe hard enough I would be sent there when I die. This meant I had to very seriously consider my own death and ponder my own existence while trying to fall asleep. THOSE ARE COMPLEX THOUGHTS FOR A FUCKING CHILD.

Now that I think about, I should probably write an entry on that whole debacle. It’s probably one of the biggest “ordeals” from my life that has shaped who I am today.
Whatever.

What am I talking about again? Death? Mars? Future? (Fuck up some commas!)

I suppose I am just getting tired of not having the important conversations because someone “doesn’t like to think about that”.
I’m so fucking sick of that excuse.
What is the point of this irrational fear? We all know that we are all going to die, so what’s the hang up? Why do we have to let the only fact of life be off limits?

That’s so limiting.


I think I know why, I just don’t think I accept it.

It’s very hard for us to picture the world without us in it. We are incredibly selfish beings in that way. It’s scary to think about death, and we sort of think that life shouldn’t go on without us. This is why man creates thousands of flavors of religions and a million versions of an afterlife.

By any definition of the word, it’s not “fun” to talk about or even think about our death, but that’s not fucking good enough of a reason to not deal with shit.
It is absolutely necessary to make decisions now that will shape the future.

Just like how thinking about global warming, or an asteroid, or the AI overlords, or whatever the event is that actually destroys this planet, isn’t “fun”, but it is a fact, and we shouldn’t be ignoring it.
I’m not a “Doomsday-er”, but just like you, this planet will one day die. Ignoring that seems incredibly foolish to me. Especially when if we were to just confront and address these issues humanity can live on!
Wouldn’t it be fucking rad if we all grew the fuck up and made changes to ensure life kept going?
Isn’t that something to take pride in?
Isn’t that sort of an afterlife?

I don’t man, I just know I’m stoked I’m alive right now. I think that colonizing Mars is this beautiful example of human preservation. Humanity will literally SPREAD TO ANOTHER FUCKING PLANET and live on because of the shit that people alive RIGHT NOW are doing.

Long after you and I die, humans will be around... loving, changing, creating new shit, becoming more and more capable within this universe, and just being human! That’s how this shit works, folks! We get better and better every generation and we figure new shit out.

I find that to be the most beautiful thing I could ever imagine.
I get super excited, I am filled with joy, and I am proud to be a human. Or whatever.
It’s a complicated feeling.

This got a bit ‘Ranty’ and (ironically) a little ‘Preachy’, too.

Just please think about the future.
Like, really think about it.
Think about how bad ass you are because you’re a fucking human being who is alive right now, but then think about how that’s all going to end one day.
Embrace that.
Don’t dwell on it, but really understand that humanity will outlive you.
Don’t let your inevitable death cripple yours, or the lives of future generations.

-Matthew Preaches

I Saw Love

9.19.2016

What a strange weekend!

Shit, maybe it wasn’t that strange at all? Actually, yeah... Now that I think about it everything that transpired was an incredibly mundane and normal thing to have happened, I guess.
So why did it feel so alien to me?

What happened?
Well, one of my best friends on this entire planet, Tony, got married!

I had only met his new wife, Steph, once before the wedding and maybe that’s why it felt so strange to me. I can’t be sure. I felt like it was all so quick and spontaneous since I was a thousand miles away the entire duration of their relationship. Plus, a common thing in my life is being absolute shit at keeping in touch with everyone. I feel like a huge asshole at times. I blame social media. I see everyone’s faces so much that I feel like I don’t have to call. Sorry, everyone.

Obviously it wasn’t rushed for Tony and Steph, they planned an entire wedding for fuck’s sake... but I rolled into town and two days later I was standing beside him at the altar watching his soul merge with hers. Or whatever. I know that’s dramatic, but it did feel pretty fucking magical! I just didn’t know anything about the relationship and then I got to discover it so quickly and strongly. I was overwhelmed. I was caught off guard and I cried. A lot.

I didn’t know what to expect.

I knew he was incredibly happy, and I knew she was lovely from the second I met her, but loads of people are lovely! I felt guilty that all I knew about his wife was that she was incredibly pleasant to be around. I feel guilty about absolutely everything in life, so that’s not abnormal, but I was still in awe that someone I was so close with was doing this massive thing with someone who was essentially a stranger to me. By no means was I skeptical, though. I know Tony and I know how his brain works. He’s an incredibly smart and caring person who over analyzes everything but follows his heart. He can be a perfectionist to an annoying extent, but he thinks everything through and he knows exactly what he wants.
He is, also, the best person I know.

To be honest, I still don’t know a TON about Steph. She was busy planning a wedding, then getting married, then off to her honeymoon.
But, holy shit!! I’m confident that if anyone met her and spent even a small amount of time with her they would get a very clear picture of who she is.

It’s pretty freaky, actually. Maybe it was that she knew stuff about me and was very open to showing herself, but I have a sneaking suspicion that she’s just an incredible and confident person who can reveal herself to anyone she chooses to. An absolutely genuine person. A genuinely good person, at that!

My first impression of Steph being “lovely” is a gross understatement. I don’t even know how to describe her without sounding like I’m lying. No one should be that rad right away.

(Insert an unending list of positive attributes here)

She’s a teacher, which makes a lot of sense. I gather that she is the type of person that will inspire little shit head kids to be better people. I’m sure her students will grow to thank her for shaping their world view an endless number of times though out her life and career.

Fuck, I should thank her! She inspired me to be a kinder person within fifteen minutes.

The wedding itself was great. These two amazing people got married and everyone I talked to seemed to agree that there was some strange energy in the air. I’ve never experienced anything like it before. I’m sure there is a logical explanation, but it sure as hell felt like some bizarre-magic-love-dust to me. It felt like everyone in attendance was having a shared psychedelic experience where we got to witness some strange electrified moment where you could literally feel the love of two other people.

It freaked me out.
It was powerful and I loved it.

Talking with some of the other groomsmen, I think it freaked them out too. I know a bunch of us cried like children. While I can’t speak for everyone, I can say that I’m definitely not someone who cries. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge pussy... I just never cry and I was balling like a fucking child. I’m having a hard time figuring out why I was able to be vulnerable enough to cry so much, and I think I was just overwhelmed with whatever was happening.

I was insanely proud of my friend.
I was ecstatic these two amazing people were so happy.
I felt lucky I was able to witness whatever was going on.
I was just floored by the amount of love exhibited the entire weekend.
And honestly, I think I realized a lot about myself just by being in the presence of all the amazing people that I hadn’t seen in so long.

I witnessed true love. It was inspiring. It was beautiful.

I know that sounds corny, but fuck you.

Maybe you had to be there?

-Matthew Cries

The Idiot And The Jellyfish

9.4.2016

As I fly back to LA from a unusual/amazing weekend in my hometown, I am hyper aware of how little I have any of this life figured out.

I’m not sure, but I have a suspicion this may be a more universal feeling. Or maybe I’m just telling myself that to make myself feel better as I walk around with no idea as to what’s supposed to happen next.
Am I fumbling around while everyone else has got a plan?
It sure seems that way at times.
Especially after this weekend.
I saw so many people I hadn’t seen for years. As it always goes, I was asked a bunch of questions about my life. You know, the usual: “What have you been up to?”, “How do you like it?”, “Are you enjoying yourself?”, etc.

It’s strange, but I haven’t had to reflect on these things in a while. It was weird. I was answering them and realizing it at the same time. I felt vulnerable, and a little fucking stupid -Like I should have had these answers figured out in my head before getting into the conversation. Everyone else seemed to know right away.

But the truth is, in LA I am able to isolate myself pretty well. I mostly work from home, I don’t go out often, I only see a few friends on a regular basis and when I do leave my apartment, I put my headphones in and block out the rest of the world like a moody asshole. I am constantly living in my head and thinking about random shit as opposed to figuring this life out. For example, the past couple of weeks I have been thinking non-stop about how fucking cool jellyfish and octopuses are. I came across a video of an octopus exhibiting its camouflage and I freaked out. I didn’t understand how it did it so well and I wanted to know... next thing you know I’m down the rabbit hole learning everything I can about this ability. The more I learned the more I found out how fucking insane these creatures are.

(BTW, “octopuses” is the correct usage, I promise you).

Whatever, my point is: I mostly live in the ‘Lala Land’ that I have created for myself and I don’t really spend much time thinking about what comes next. Should I be? When I do, it just stresses me out. Am I hiding from that?

I have no REAL plans for the future and I’m struggling to decide if that’s either some hippie Zen-like bullshit that works for me, or if I’m a fucking idiot who needs to figure this thing out and do whatever it is I’m ‘supposed’ to be doing. I do feel like I need to do something.

I just watched my brother get married and I was amazed at the whole event. He and his amazing new wife are starting something together. They have, at the very least, somewhat of a plan for their future. I don’t know the extent of their plans, and they might not have it all figured out, but they know they are on a path together. They are moving forward. They are making their once plans a reality and that’s pretty fucking big in my opinion. I don’t even know if I want that future per se, but I found myself envious that they definitely had something figured out. The more I talked to other people, too, the more I realized loads of people have their shit figured out.

What am I doing? Do I like it? Am I enjoying myself?

Man, those questions get tougher and tougher the more I think about em.

Can’t we just talk about how rad Jellyfish are?
Have you ever heard of the Gigantopithecus?
What are your thoughts on the Aquatic Ape Theory? It might be total bullshit, and from my (limited) understanding there isn’t much evidence supporting it... but it’s still pretty fucking interesting to think about!

Is it wrong that I “distract” myself by thinking about stupid shit like this? Is my version of Lala Land really that bad? I mean, I’m genuinely interested, but part of me wonders what the point of learning all this stuff on such a superficial level is. I can’t use this this to better my life or answer any of those questions.

What am I doing these days?
Well, mostly I find myself sitting in my apartment freaking out about how awesome this planet is, how lucky we are that life exists in such diverse ways, that octopuses are probably aliens, the universe is expanding into the unknown, yet somehow not EVERY conversation is about that... and fuck... Now I’m just questioning if my child-like wonder is holding me back from being a productive member of this current version of society.

What are you doing these days?

 

-Matthew Envies

'Til Death

8.31.2016

 

I’m currently on an airplane traveling back home to Washington for the first of two weddings I’m in next month.

I should be writing a speech or two right about now, but I can’t focus on that yet.

I am focused on marriage, though. I’m fascinated by it. I’ve been surrounded by the idea of it, and I’ve been watching how different people experience marriage.

In fact, my dear friends just got engaged last night and I’m super fucking happy for them! It seems like most people I know are on track to be or are already married. Weddings are loads of fun, and celebrating love is something I can definitely get on board with. I’m a big fan of love. Love hard, yo!

BUT,
All I can think about is how fucking weird marriage is as a concept.
It’s 2016 and the majority of marriages fail. It doesn’t seem to be that “permanent” anymore. It’s like a marriage is no longer expected to be “forever”. Obviously it’s expected to be forever for the two involved, but I see people getting married all the time, and occasionally one of my first thoughts is, “They’ll get divorced.”
But of course you can’t say that. That’s horrible.
But statistics don’t really lie...

Divorce is pretty fucking common. I’m on the plane and I’m too much of a cheap ass to buy the Internet, but I think the statistics are something like close to 70% of marriages fail. Don’t quote me on that, but I do know it has risen significantly from the “half of all marriages end in divorce” stat I grew up hearing.

And on top of that, the “sacredness” of marriage is becoming more and more rare. I know plenty of people who have fucked around on their spouse. Plus, there are sites like “Ashley Madison” where married people fuck around on each other which confuses me on a whole other level.

If you choose to get married, why fuck around? I’m not judging, just super confused on the whole thing. I just don’t understand the why the fuck you would stay married if you’re fucking around?

I wonder if anyone has ever come across their spouse’s profile on one of those sites? It’s has to happen. I wonder how the fuck that conversation goes? I recently came across a girl I am sort-of-kind-of-not-really-dating (shut up, I know how that sounds) on tinder and I felt like shit about that! It put me in a funk. I don’t want to be the one to “have the conversation” for a bunch of reasons I don’t need to get into, but it still felt weird. It just felt silly and embarrassing. I would rather be with that person than on tinder, but whatever.. It was weird and it felt ridiculous. I hate my generation. I can only imagine that tiny feeling of awkwardness that I experienced amplified by a billion to create a truly horrible situation with those couples on cheating sites. Must be awful for all parties involved. I’m uncomfortable just thinking about it.

Change subject in 3....2....1

“Why else is marriage weird, Matt?”

I’m so glad you asked my opinion!

MARRIAGE IS A LEGAL CONTRACT BETWEEN TWO PEOPLE IN LOVE AND THE FUCKING GOVERNMENT.

I’ll never be comfortable with that. It’s so bizarre that we celebrate love by getting the government involved.

So why do people get married these days?

I’m guessing it’s because everyone thinks that’s the normal thing to do.
And it IS the normal thing to do.
It’s a great, big, scary commitment to another person (and the government) that everyone does because of some outdated non-sense beliefs and practices that has existed for so fucking long. Old practices like that don’t die easily.

I’m not even against marriage, despite the above ramblings. I would love to have a monogamous partner for a lifetime. That sounds like a connection I would benefit greatly from. I’ve read a bunch of philosophy shit about why people have partners and it’s insanely fascinating how we desire such a deep connection with another soul. It’s fucking beautiful by all accounts. The intricacies of finding a “soul mate” make life exciting.

But how many people find their “soul mate”?

Aren’t most marriages just people who were dating at a certain point in their lives and felt enough societal pressures to make them feel like they had to make that a legally binding contract?

Am I off base here? Is it just me that notices this shit?

It could be that most marriages I grew up around seemed a bit... weird. I think some of the older generations stuck together for tradition, and the ones before them stuck together for appearance. It’s as if these marriages are a life of trying to not piss each other off and just getting by as best as possible. It seems exhausting and hard. Obviously not everyone's marriages are like that, but it is noteworthy. Maybe I’m way off base and that’s just what marriage becomes? God, I hope not. I know I don’t want that.

[Edited]

Fuck, now I’m rambling.

I just know that when I see a married couple (from an older generation) that seems genuinely into each other, and appear to value each others’ honest opinions, I get super fucking excited. It’s a breath of fresh air. It gives me hope! That kind of life-long partnership that I crave exists and I am a witness! (Sup, Schroder’s?)

I’m not being cynical.

Fuck, maybe I am?

You ever notice how many questions I ask in these posts? No one answers them. It’s just me publicly asking questions. Like a fucking crazy person.

This is not the blog I meant to write, but I started drinking on the plane because I turned into a giant pussy about flying two years ago and now I'm drunk.
Maybe I’ll write a more thought provoking post on this later.

Whatever.

Marriage:
It’s weird.
It’s really really bizarre that the government is involved. It can be the most beautiful thing on the planet.
Most of time it’s not what it’s cracked up to be.
It terrifies me completely.
But goddamn, when it’s beautiful it’s got to be worth it.

At the end of the day, I am on board with any occasion where we can celebrate love.

Congrats to the happy couple(s).

-Matthew Drunkenly Contemplates

 

*A previous version of this post included subjects that was asked to be removed by the people I was talking about. While I may disagree with this decision, I did edit it out. I'm not a fan of censoring myself, obviously, but this was an exception. I'm sorry. Always sorry.

 

Invisible Monsters

8.20.2016

I don’t want to bum anyone out, but this one isn’t going to be fun.

Through out my life I have struggled with clinical depression.

It’s almost obnoxious to even write that out. I’m rolling my eyes while releasing an audible, “ugh”, just to so you don’t have to.

It’s so fucking trendy to have a mental disorder these days.

When did that happen, anyways?

Bear with me.

My depression is something I tend to hide. Up until now I’ve only shared this information with a handful people that I thought might benefit from knowing about it. I’ve had a few friends in the past where I notice that they are exhibiting the usual signs and who seem to be in real pain and act as if they are unable to talk about it.
So I talk.
Sometimes it seems to really help.
I think most people attempt to hide it, but if you’ve ever been there yourself, you can tell when other people are in pain.

Let me be clear: I don’t like bringing this up to just anyone. I still struggle with talking about it because it makes me feel weak. It makes me feel powerless. It makes me feel like I’m complaining about something that is just in my head, which is fucking embarrassing.

And yes, that is the right word for it.

The only reason I ever do talk about it to anyone, is because it’s lonely being in your head and feeling like no one understands the pain that you may not even understand yourself. And when I see someone like that, I feel like they should know they’re not alone and there are ways to deal with it.

Depression is a bitch. It’s debilitating, it’s absurd, it’s definitely abnormal, and it’s confusing as fuck.
It’s hell.

It’s not hell in the sense that the world is crumbling around you. In fact, you might not even have any “real” problems yet it feels like the world is resting upon your chest. Complaining about an invisible pain that no one else can see or verify while you don’t have any obvious problems is a really weird situation to be in. You feel like a jackass asking anyone for help, because why would you need help, everything appears to be good? What can they help you with anyways? How could they even help if you asked them?

To be honest, that’s something I have struggled with a lot. I have felt like a whiny little asshole even mentioning my depression to people who haven’t struggled themselves. It’s because in the back of my head I still feel guilty for feeling sad. Right now I am thinking about all the reasons why I should never be sad and why it might seem silly to even write this. I compare myself to people with “real” problems and I try to just push it away. I tell myself the pain isn’t real and that it’s only in my head and I constantly think that no one gives a shit about this silly little thing when so many have visible problems to worry about.

I know, that’s not the healthiest way of thinking about it. But it’s kind of how we treat it, right?

I mean unless you’re an asshole writing a blog post about your depression, for mot people it seems easier to not draw attention to themselves and their debilitating lows so they can quietly figure it out.
That’s what I usually do.

Like I said, it’s embarrassing.

The catch?
Depression is real and it fucking blows.

We all know that one friend who seems to love being sad, right? There’s always that one obnoxious cunt that always has something to complain about and who self sabotages every possible way of making themselves happy and/or picking themselves up out of the infinite rut that they’ve dug themselves into.

(Hi, My name is Matt. Nice to meet you.)

It’s hard to feel sorry for those people. They do it to themselves, right? They just love being sad.

Let me tell you a secret: They don’t.

Their brains are screwy and they’re in pain and probably don’t know how to deal with it. They don’t love being sad at all. They hate it.

It’s a nightmare that doesn’t end when you wake up. It’s a constant awareness of the fact that you’re very down while nothing “real” seems to be wrong. It feels like you’re horribly alone. It feels like no one in the world can understand the constant pain because you don’t understand it yourself. Your heart will slow down then speed up all while it feels like a giant weight is resting on your chest. The demons are within and the brain lacks the ability to keep ‘em at bay. It’s dark. It’s confusing. It’s scary.

Depressed people don’t kill themselves because they love being sad. They don’t even kill themselves because they are sad!
They kill themselves because feeling alone and helpless is worse than being sad. They kill themselves because their brains are tricking them into thinking that it won’t ever end.

And guess what? A lot of people struggling with depression kill themselves.

I know I’ve thought about it. Countless times.

I’ve even lost people to suicide so I’ve seen the trauma it causes to everyone close to that person.
It’s selfish, it’s cowardly, It’s ridiculous and it’s fucking weak.

And yet I’ve thought about it. Countless times.

I flirted with the idea for most of my youth. I even half-assed attempted it a few times. In times of deep depression, I have lived recklessly in a conscious effort to boost the likelihood of my own demise.
I knew better than that, yet a constant pain kept bringing me back to the idea that this was a way out. It was the same imaginary pain that no one could see and that I couldn’t entirely explain.

Multiple times I talked myself off the metaphorical ledge because I couldn’t fathom the amount of hurt that I would have caused my dad. Don’t get me wrong, it would destroy a lot of people and it would have caused a lot of pain, but my dad was the hardest person to think about. I would fantasize about the aftermath and how the rest of the world would eventually move on, but I could never get over the idea of causing my old man any amount of pain.
Shit, I still can’t.

It’s embarrassing to admit any of this, and like I said, it’s incredibly difficult to explain... but that’s the reality.

When you’re depressed, it’s hard to remember what not being depressed is like. You feel trapped. You feel an incredible amount of sadness that seems like it will go on forever. You see other people being happy and you can’t seem to figure out how to get what they have. Smiles become little reminders that something is off and that you’re alone. You begin to think there is no point beyond pain because there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel.

It’s fucking dark.

It’s all a lie though.

The pain is real, there is something wrong, and you can fix it.
Because that’s what depression really is.
It’s a real problem within the brain that is treatable and manageable.
It’s not made up, and it’s not someone seeking attention. It’s a disorder where the brain is acting abnormally and lying to your consciousness telling you all that dark shit. It’s something you can see and it’s something you can fix. It’s in your head only in the sense that your brain isn’t operating correctly. But that isn’t you, is it? The brain is just another body part separated from our consciousness. We can fix body parts.

I know, because I had to ask for help.
And that's the hardest thing I’ve done.

I never wanted to ask anyone for help because I truly didn’t understand that it was a “real” problem. I didn’t want to feel powerless and I didn’t want to admit to myself or anyone else that I had a mental disorder. But, I was alone and I was in a dark place. I scared myself and I figured I should at least try something new.

And it worked.

I may have a screwy fucking brain that lies to me at times, but at least now I know what the lie is. I sought out help and figured out what I was dealing with. More importantly, I learned how to help myself. I have found so many ways to exorcise my demons, and I have learned how to handle myself in ways that mostly prevent them from coming back. It won’t completely die, but when I do feel depression coming on, I’ve learned how to battle it.

That’s something I wish I knew when I was younger. I wish someone had come up to me and let me know I wasn’t alone and that there are many different ways of dealing with it. Fuck, I just wish someone told me it was real. It’s fucking scary being a kid and hating life when everyone else seems to be enjoying themselves. It’s even more terrifying when you feel alone and confused about how everyone else seems to be fine.

Even if they’re not.
I think a lot of people are struggling and they aren’t talking about it.

I’m writing this because I’ve talked to a few people recently who have expressed similar thoughts. No one talks about this shit! No one. It’s a real problem when stuff like this is so hush-hush in society. People kill themselves all the time because they don’t want to burden others with their pain by seeking help or talking about it. They hold it in, don’t seek help, and let it build until they do something drastic. It’s heartbreaking because it’s so fucking preventable.

I’m opening up a lot on this blog, probably more than most people would like... but this is the only one that I hope other people open up about as well.

If you are struggling with depression, find some fucking help. Talk to someone, go to a doctor, Google what to do, get some exercise, make some goals for yourself, e-mail me, do whatever you can do to realize it’s temporary and that you’re not alone. That sounds so fucking cliché, but it’s true. Whatever you’re dealing with is real and there are ways to help yourself and get better. It’s embarrassing, but so is being sad. Try getting help.

And if you know someone struggling with depression, just talk to them. For fuck’s sake, just talk to them. Even if you don’t understand what they’re going through, just talk to them. If they can’t explain it or don’t want to talk, make them get help another way, because they are suffering and they are alone and their brains are telling them there’s no way out and that does scary shit to people.

There are plenty of ways I was able to get a handle on my depression. Anti-depressants aren’t always the answer and I’m definitely not an advocate for any prescription medications. I have used them, I will most likely use them in the future, and I know plenty of people who use them all the time. I’ve had countless conversations about all the different medications with many people who have similarly struggled with depression like me. One thing that I have found, that many others have as well, is that the medications are not all the same. Whatever works for me may not work for you at all. The first medication I was ever on made me feel like dog shit and made me go to darker places. It was terrifying. I felt like if the powerful drugs couldn’t help, I was fucked. It wasn’t true. This is important to remember when trying to curb depression. Just because one thing doesn’t work right away, don’t give up... something will.

For me personally, I’m aware that sometimes I may need to be on medication. I hate being a slave to the pills so I do things in my life to actively avoid needing them. I haven’t taken them in a long time, but I still have them.
I still get embarrassed when someone finds my bottle of pills and asks, “What’s this for?”

It’s OK to be embarrassed.

It’s OK to need help.

It’s OK.

Life is short. Stick around.

-Matthew

The Lesser Of Two Evils

8.13.2016

There is something like 324 million people in this country.
The idea that Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton is going to lead that many people truly terrifies me. They’re both fucking lunatics who are completely out of touch with reality.

Reality isn’t being a life long politician doing shady shit while compromising one’s own morals day in and day out. That’s just creepy. That’s what it takes to be a politician of Clinton’s caliber, by the way. In the current system you have to compromise all the fucking time. Most of the time these politicians start out as a lawyers (just like Hillary did), and being a lawyer is fucking creepy too. There is one case where the future leader or the free world (most likely) got this client off with only two months after he raped a 12-year-old girl... and she fucking knew he was guilty! That’s just being a lawyer. That’s Hillary Clinton. That’s creepy.

And before you say it, I know. Lawyers have to swear an oath to stand by their clients and defend them no matter what, blah blah blah. Ok, so do we really want someone who can compromise that much to lead this country?
Maybe these shady lawyers shouldn’t rule the world.

If you had a friend who lied all the time, who literally changed their accent (depending on who they’re talking to), and who was known for their blatant disregard for the law (even though they know it), would you invite them over for dinner? Would you want them in charge of anything you care about? Would you trust them?

Really? She’s your pick to run this thing?

Reality isn’t being a rich prick whose dad gave ‘em money and blames brown people for all the problems of the world, either. Trump is a fucking idiot. He doesn’t know anything about history, he doesn’t know the basics of how government works, and he’s not going make up for that by “hiring the best people”. He’s just an egomaniac with a Trump sized goal.

That stupid fucking wall won’t work. It just won’t. I’m so sick of people acting like that it’s even a possibility. Do you know what is on the boarder? It’s fucking mountains and canyons and shit. It’s not possible. Let it go.
Banning Muslims is dumb as shit, too! You can’t just ban a religion you fucking Hitler-esque morons. This isn’t a Christian country; this is a country of immigrants with tons of different religions, so shut the fuck up.

Talking about Trump is too easy, though. How anyone can rally behind this guy is beyond me. He’s a spray tanned orange goofball billionaire with a bad attitude that sits in gold chairs and talks about himself all the time.

Again, If you had a friend like that you would you invite them over for dinner? No! You’d avoid them like the plague. And you know what? You would make fun of them all the fucking time.

Really? He’s your guy?

One of these two horrible fucks is about to lead 324 million people.
I don’t get, man. I just don’t.
I won’t choose a lesser of two evils. I won’t be responsible for the shit storm that follows.
I honestly don’t understand how anyone can support either of these candidates.

There was no one better?
What? You mean we’re just stuck with these two? Why?

Yeah, I guess there is Gary Johnson (who I will probably vote for) and Jill Stein, but it doesn’t look like they have any real shot.

It’s probably going to be Hillary. I mean, as long as no more of her shady shit gets released, that is.

It seems like people can lose their faith in Clinton but not in Trump.
It’s kind of fascinating.
The Trump supporters are insane die-hards who blatantly ignore all of the goofy/dangerous/racist shit he does.
Or they like it... in which case, fuck you, you’re a garbage person.
But, to me it seems like Clinton supporters are trying as hard as they can to close their eyes real hard so they don’t have to notice all of her shit.

And I can at least sympathize with them. I get that you feel like if you don’t support her, that orange nutcase is going to win.

They’re both horrible choices for completely different reasons.

It’s a scary time.


Maybe we shouldn’t have a president for a couple years?

 

-Matthew Fears

 

LINKS:

Clinton talking about Rape Case

Hillary Lying for 13 minutes straight.

Hillary lying about e-mails

Donald Trump lying for 13 minutes straight

Donald Trump Washington Post interview. If you can listen to this whole thing without cringing I'll vote for you to be president. The guy is an egomaniac and can't answer basic questions.

I've Had Too Much To Think

8.12.2016

I don't feel like writing today.

I don’t feel like doing anything productive, actually.

I feel like drinking.

For a guy who has been clinging on to self-discipline for the last few months, I sure am fantasizing about being completely out of control and drunk.

Becoming heavily intoxicated is really fucking stupid when you think about it. You lose your inhibitions, it kills brain cells, you make mistakes, you do stupid things and you feel like dog shit the next day. It's all because at end of the day, you’re essentially just poisoning yourself.

I kind of want all of that.

I’m stressed.
I’m uncertain.
I’m nervous and I never get nervous.

I’ve been holding on to the idea that I should feel the whole range of emotions, good or bad, without the numbing filter of booze. Now I’m wondering where the fuck I got that idea from?

This is so typical.
This is my go-to. Something starts to get a little hard and I want to just tune out. If I get too bored, I want to tune out.

The easiest way that I've found to tune out and shut my brain up for the last X amount of years has been drinking alcohol in abundance. Booze has always been a kind friend willing to help me forget about my problems, entertain me, or when I need to, help me avoid reality all together. It is, for sure, my drug of choice.

I’m what you would call a “seasoned drinker”. Up until a few months ago, I was wondering if I was fucked from alcohol dependence. A decade of acting like life is a sad party where booze is a necessity to make it all seem a bit more tolerable was starting to freak me out. At different stages of my life it’s freaked a lot of other people out too. I’m not an alcoholic, but I definitely have a problem with moderation. This is sort of news to me. I mean, obviously I was experiencing it and I was the one pouring the delicious poison down my face hole, but I never stopped to realize how much more I would consume than others. OK, if I’m being completely honest, I think I always realized it but I never accepted it until recently.

Turns out I’m sort of lucky, It’s been incredibly easy to not drink excessively. I’m not actually dependent on it. Once I fully realized that I tended to get out of control I just decided I couldn’t do that anymore. Shit, I got willpower.

I decided I would still partake in social situations, so that I don’t miss out on a huge part of this society, I just wasn’t going to self medicate anymore. This newfound way of life has been great. It’s made me realize some of my faults, it’s opened some doors, allowed me to be in control, and it’s stated me on a path of experimenting with self-discipline. As someone who has a problem with moderation, this has been pretty fucking positive.

I started testing myself in other areas as well. I have always had issues with falling asleep, getting enough sleep, waking up, etc. so I decided I wanted to fix that. Now I go to bed at 11 and wake up at 5:30 every day just to prove I can.
I follow an insane diet that would have seemed ludicrous three months ago.
I have a strict workout routine that could easily be described as “obnoxious”.
I do a bunch of other shit that requires discipline, but I don’t need to get into it here... you get the point.

Shit, am I changing too much?
Is this just another example of me being horrible with moderation? Whatever.

Whether all of these new strict routines stem from my problem with moderation or not, I’ve found huge benefits from being in control of every aspect of my life.

But right I want to pour some Jack down my throat and lose my shit.

My brain has been racing for days.
I’ve had too much to think.

I’m stressed.
I’m uncertain.
I’m fucking nervous and I hate being nervous.

I can’t tell if drinking heavily is ever a good idea?
I could argue that it would definitely help me loosen up and take a much-needed break from worrying about shit.
I could also argue that it’s logically a stupid thing to do and that tomorrow I may have the same worries.

So it comes down to control. Is relinquishing control for a night a good idea? Am I too controlling of everything in my life right now? Or, is this some weird subconscious desire to give in and be self-destructive for a night?

I don’t know.
This is all still new to me.

“Just take a drink, pussy!”

Ah, there’s that voice again.

 

-Matthew Stresses

Fuck The DEA

8.11.2016

(Note: I will be referring to the DEA as “those Fucking Fucks” or “Fuck Heads” for the remainder of this entry. I’m sorry for the excessive use of gratuitous language, Mom.)

Jesus Christ.

I woke up this morning to see that those Fuck Heads refused to reschedule Marijuana. As it is now, Marijuana is classified as a Schedule I drug.

If you don’t immediately know why this angers me, let me put it bluntly (zing!): The Fuck Heads think that Heroin and Marijuana are equally harmful to society.

It’s 2016 and the average person who has access to the Internet will undoubtedly know that this is absolute horseshit.

To me, this is an example of corruption and is the poster child for incompetence by certain government agencies.
This angers me so much that I’m almost at a loss for words.

Almost.

Now, I understand that the entire scheduling system is fucking ridiculous. For example, other drugs listed as Schedule I could be arguable as well (LSD and MDMA have shown potential medicinal benefits but haven’t been made available for research because of said classification), but I’m going to focus on Marijuana here.

From the Department of Fuck Heads’ website:
“Schedule I drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. Schedule I drugs are the most dangers drugs of all the drug schedules with potentially severe psychological or physical dependence.”

SHUT THE FUCK UP.

“...no currently accepted medical use...”

Tell that to the people who find life exponentially better while managing pain sans your (prescribed) schedule II drugs that were fucking up their lives.
Tell that to the fucking poster children with the rare forms of epilepsy who benefit GREATLY from cannabis.

Tell that to anyone who has benefited greatly from cannabis use, myself included.

You Fucking Fucks. The only reason there is hardly any medical research on cannabis is because of your Goddamn ban on researching it for the last 50 fucking years.**

“...the most dangerous drugs of all the drug schedules...”

Ok.
Jesus.
My blood is boiling.
Let me take a moment to compose myself so I can do this one with out cursing.

This is just not true at all. Everyone knows this. Prove that statement. Now. Because guess what, ALL THE FUCKING EVIDENCE POINTS TO THE EXACT FUCKING OPPOSITE... YOU FUCKING FUCKS!

Whoops.

We can all agree that something smells awfully like shit in this situation. Quick, everyone check your shoes.
Anything?
No?

Fuck Heads?
OH, YOU ASSHOLE! Why would you not scrape off all that shit before coming in here and acting like everything is normal?

Who’s shit is it you ask?
Ugh.
Ok, who knows what a lobbyist is?
But I hope most people know what a lobbyist is. Though, assuming most people know these basic things has burned me a lot before.
(See: This election.)
It seems like a lot of people enjoy their ignorance. It makes me feel like a paranoid lunatic for knowing anything about how government works.
(I know very little.)

So,
Lobbyist:

noun
1. A person who tries to influence legislation on behalf of a special interest; a member of a lobby.
-Dictionary.com

Sounds a little sketchy, right?

Lobbyists aren’t inherently bad. They justify doing what they do in order to help their interests. That’s how groups like teachers unions and non-profits are able to be heard by the ones writing the laws. They represent groups to make change happen. Lobbyists make the case (or deals) to implement changes that affect how our country is run. They are a MASSIVE part of the current system.

The problem? They are for hire negotiators.
They make deals with the power structure. Having pull in that system is a commodity. Who has the most interest in owning the best lobbyists? The giant corporations and groups who need to look out for their interests. People who stand to gain or lose the most from any law, will hire the best lobbyists.
Well, that’s not bad, right? Again, not inherently bad... BUT THEY FUCKING LOOK OUT FOR THEIR INTERESTS AND REALLY DON’T GIVE A SHIT ABOUT ANYTHING ELSE.
So if your interest is money, and you stand to lose money by a new law... you lobby against that law, regardless of the data or what the people want.

So who’s lobbying to keep the federal ban on Marijuana? People or groups genuinely concerned with the public health? HAHAHAHAHA Not even remotely close.

-Police unions (A huge part of the criminal justice system’s revenue is policing marijuana use)
-Private Prison Corporations (They make a lot of money housing convicted users)

-Prison Guard Unions (If the prisons don’t have money from the lack of inmates, they will lose their jobs.)
-
Pharmaceutical Corporations (They are scared of losing business form all those “Non medicinal” properties)
-Alcohol and Beer companies (When recreational use in Colorado went up, alcohol related crimes dropped significantly, leading people to believe that use went down. I’m not sure on the sales, but I would wager they dropped.)

I’m not a conspiracy theorist, and I despise when people downplay facts or truths by assuming they are “conspiracy theories” simply because they haven’t looked into it. Just because something sounds so fucking dark and unbelievable doesn’t mean it’s not true.

It is true.
It is unbelievable.
It is fucking dark.
And we should all be screaming about how ludicrous this all is.

 

Fuck you, you Fucking Fucks.

-Matthew Curses

 

Here I am enjoying a Schedule I drug.

Here I am enjoying a Schedule I drug.

 

 

**I know the ban was recently lifted. It was a brutal effort to get that done, and it wasn’t lifted because the Fuck Heads wanted to research it. It was lifted because the people demanded it. Good job, people.

Should I Stay Or Should I Go?

8.10.2016

The desire to pack up and leave LA is strong.

I have been quietly debating on what I want to be doing and where I want to be doing it for a while now.

It’s no secret that I feel "unfulfilled” with my current situation. I think most people my age feel that way. We have insane ambitions and talents that exceed the previous generations. That’s how this world seems to work from what I can gather. Each generation wants more and more and they make better and better shit because of it. It’s progress based around this weird, but completely natural, selfish desire to be the best.
It’s just weird because my generation was told that we could do whatever we want in life and that we are all the best while ignoring the fact that we most likely aren’t. Not everyone can be the best. That’s not how math works.
Yet, we were coddled.
For Christ’s sake, participation awards started with us. We were over nurtured and we were sold on the idea that if we went to college and worked hard, all of our dreams would come true.

It’s a little childish to even think that way now. It’s just not the case. Young people are more educated than the previous generations and there are fewer and fewer jobs. Too many people with dreams, not enough environments to make those dreams a reality. Most people work “filler jobs” just to survive. When you have a degree and a lifetime of being told that you’re the best and that all your dreams will come true, you can only work so hard serving food for minimum wage and some measly tips. Making barely enough to survive while working in a restaurant and getting yelled at for a hard 8 hours by ungrateful customers can really make you question, “Is this is all worth it?”

(Side note: Treat the people serving you better. If someone fucks up your order, don’t make a scene. Don’t act like it’s a mortal wound. Don’t raise your voice. Lose the fucking attitude and politely let them know about the situation and it will be resolved. Oh, and leave a tip!)

I’m not trashing being a server, by the way. I just assume that unless your dream is to advance in that restaurant, working there isn't ideal. It's a hard job and you have to put up with a lot of peoples' shit. So what’s the point of wasting time there? What’s the point of working hard at a job that you probably hate when hardly anyone appreciates it? There is none that I can see. In most cases it seems like it’s the only option. It’s like you have to kill time and make what little money you can just to survive until one day you may or may not be able to get lucky enough to find yourself in a situation that allows you to do what you feel you were meant to do. It’s a horribly depressing position to be in. I’ve been there.

Hell, I sort of am.

I mean, I use a camera for a living, so it’s in the ballpark of what I want to do, but it sure isn’t that rewarding yet.

(And to all the people who have a strong support system that allows you to avoid all of these tiring experiences, fuck you.
I'm just kidding.
But at least acknowledge how fucking lucky you really are. Also, treat the people serving you better. For some reason it seems like y’all are the worst at this.)

Getting a gig here in LA really comes down to who you know. I hate it. The whole system is so weird. You have to network and literally sell yourself every chance you can get. I know how to do it, I might even be good at it, but goddamn I fucking hate networking. I’m over it. I have no desire to go out and meet people and have these boring conversations whilst pretending I don’t want something from whoever I’ve latched on to. It makes my skin crawl. I truly despise it.

“You gotta play the game, Matt!”
Why? So I can get another job taking photos that ends up selling a product I may or may not even agree with? Is that an honorable or honest way to make a living? Is that what I’m on this planet to do? Am I supposed to be another replaceable cog in the machine that just constantly sells bullshit?

“Yeah, but if you play the game, eventually you can get to a point where they will come to you. Then you can be all smug and pretentious and choose the companies that you believe in!”
That’s one way to go about it. It just seems so fucking soul crushing until you get there.

Also, what if this is it? What if by some freak accident I die next week and my greatest accomplishments are selling non-sense for rich people?
What will people say?

If they were being truly honest, it would have to be something like: “Matt sure lived a short and unfulfilling life.”

God, that’s bleak.

Of all the people I know, I would say about 5-10 are truly living their dreams. The ones that come to mind are insanely lucky. Like, INSANELY lucky. It’s incredibly inspiring. They have bad days (we all do), and maybe sometimes they take their position in this world for granted (we all do), but mostly they are fulfilled.

I’m not even sure what my dreams are anymore? It’s a weird feeling.

I try my best to stay in the moment. I’ve come to realize that worrying about the future just wrecks the present, which really doesn’t help anything. I’ve wasted countless days of my life worrying about things that are out of my control. Things that haven’t happened yet, things that could happen, even things that probably won’t, but might happen. It’s not healthy.

So, I give it my best shot to live in the moment. It’s just incredibly hard to be accepting of a shit job if you feel like you're your wasting time. It’s unbelievably hard to stay Zen when you feel you have more to offer.

So, what if I just bailed?
What if I put my money where my mouth is and quit playing this disgusting game?
I could get a storage unit, or sell all my shit and just take off.
I could travel all of the 48 states in the continental US. I could go searching for whatever it is that makes me feel fulfilled. I could meet more people than I could ever dream of; People that won’t want anything from me and I wouldn’t want anything from them. I could take polls and do my own research to see what makes people happy.

I like to use the saying, “Recording Life”, when talking about what I do. But, that's not really true, is it? Most of the work I do is composed shots with the purpose of selling a product. Or, I shoot models and actors whose job is to literally pretend to be doing something else. That's not life.

What if I just quit doing that and actually started Recording Life?
Would I just travel the country searching for something until I run out of money? Then what, would I be fucked? Would I have to be a grown man who moves back into his parent’s house?
Or, is there any money to be made doing that? Maybe I could get sponsors and make rewarding content for them on the road?
Well, that seems farfetched. I imagine someone with some a mount of fame could probably convince people to sponsor an endeavor like that. Who knows.

But wait, does money really even matter?
If I go broke and end up at my parent’s house, is that really a failure?
For most people ,I’m sure it is, but I can’t stop thinking: What if I find something out there that will benefit me beyond any monetary compensation?

I don’t even know if this is all just a fantasy or if I would really have the balls to do it, but it’s all I can think about right now.

Like I said, the desire to leave is strong.


I’ve even started planning how I would go about it..

I figure I could just sleep in my car or a tent.
I would pack light and wash where I could.

I could stay with friends in the cities where I have some.
I would document the entire thing by making videos every day while writing about the people I meet, the places I go, and the things I learn.
It would be my own personal adventure that I could share with anyone who cares to tune in.

I get really excited when I think about it. Almost like I might actually do it.

I just honestly can’t figure out if this desire is present because I’m trying to run from or towards something.

 

-Matthew Wonders

Where Is My Mind?

8.9.2016

The page is blank.


Well, I guess it isn’t anymore.


What am I going to write about today?


I can think of a bunch of things that I want to avoid, still.
I can think of a bunch of things I want to say, but probably shouldn’t.

Am I angry today? Am I upset about anything?
I seem to write the best when I’m one of the two. Those emotions seem to give me the extra bit of courage to be honest with myself and exorcise my demons. Or at least give me the ability to rant like a mf'er.

I guess I feel indifferent today. I'm not in the business of souring this indifferent mood. Better keep it light.

I've noticed that if I’m doing too well I start to feel like I’m bragging. You’d think I would want to share positive stories or aspects of my life here, right? I’m still not sure why it’s difficult to write those.
I guess I am constantly aware of how I don’t want to be perceived. Which now that I think about it, probably isn’t the healthiest thing to do.

Whatever.

I know that I don’t want to be viewed as: Arrogant, egotistical, self-centered, selfish...
(Hold on, let me look up more synonyms to drive point home) ...Conceited or haughty.

How do I want to be perceived? I have no fucking clue.

I think a lot of men my age would want to come across as the “dark and mysterious brooding type.” Ha!
If there is one thing that we can all agree on, is that despite my bitching and moaning, I am a true-blue goofball.

I mean, sometimes it seems like all I do is “brood”, just not in that sexy “I’m super serious” way.
It’s more personal and in private. But I do constantly joke about it. It’s no secret that I’ve always been a little moody. It's just not brooding. I cover all that when around other people.

I don’t want to be perceived like that either. I can brood with the best of them, but I constantly hide it. The "cool-guy" persona doesn't fit well with my personality.

It just seems exhausting. How do those dark mysterious types get anything done? Don’t they know how to compartmentalize this shit?

Jesus.
This is getting ridiculous. This page may have offered more when it was blank; it was at least full of potential way back when.

OK, now what?

Well,

I’m not very good at receiving compliments. Yeah! I can talk about that for a little bit.

Thank Christ! There is a topic! It may not be great, but we found one! A topic that is going to be all about me and therefore can be perceived as (choose adjective from the list above)... But goddammit, we found one!

I don’t have a low self-esteem, I just feel strange when receiving compliments. I’m a fairly confident guy in just about everything I do. Sure, I have my insecurities. We all do.
I just hate getting told things that I don’t necessarily agree with when the social norm dictates to not verbalize my disagreement.

Like when a religious person wants to gab about their beliefs and I whole-heartedly disagree, I just let ‘em talk. It would not be socially acceptable if I just started digging through my arsenal of reasons why it’s all bullshit.
(As long as they aren’t trying to convince me to join or believe, that is.)

It makes them happy. That's OK. I don't have to talk about things that only interest me. As much as I would love to be, I’m not the king of every conversation.

But I just try to look at myself as realistically and as honestly as possible. For example, I’m not a great writer. I’m hyper aware of that. I am pretty OK at conveying my thoughts while getting my voice across.
But... Sentence structure? Non-existent these days.
Typoes? Abundant.
Am I capable of delivering a precise and well thought out message?
Well, I just started this with, “The page is blank.” and now I'm rambling, so I doubt it.

(No one is accusing me of being a great writer, by the way. I’m using that as an example because it’s right here.)
(Also, I rely heavily on these parentheses.)

When people do give me a compliment, whatever it may be, I immediately start pointing out how or why they are incorrect in my head.
Is that self-deprecation or just being honest with myself? I’d like to think it’s honesty, but more than once I have been accused of being self-deprecating.

I think I straddle a fine line in that department.
Of course, I don’t tell the person complimenting me any of this!
Oh god, is there nothing worse than when someone does that? When someone starts offering up reasons why the compliment shouldn’t have been given it just fucks with the flow of conversation. It puts a bad taste in everyone's mouth. Even if they mean it and they are speaking about their ACTUAL insecurities, it just comes across as fishing for another compliment.
It’s strange.

I just say, “Well thanks!” Followed by complimenting them. It’s a sure fire way to divert the conversation away from myself. I’ve gotten fairly good at it, too.
Is that bad? Who am I talking to? What's this post about? Where is my mind?
I feel like those people who are super confident and sure of themselves tend to be happier. Though, I have to admit, sometimes I judge them if it appears they aren’t aware of their flaws.

I definitely don’t judge the people who are super confident AND aware of their flaws. Especially if they are working on them. That shit inspires me to work on myself.
But, we all have flaws, so it's a little gross when people don't see their own. When someone is horrible at things and just acts as if they aren't, it's really weird. That's a flaw in itself.

One of my favorite things to do is finding other peoples’ flaws. It’s kind of a sick game I play inside my head. I just take note when I observe a flaw in someone.
I do it to everyone: Friends, family, strangers at the bar, people walking down the street, literally everyone.
I don’t think I do it in an asshole way, or even a judgmental way, it’s just the same thing I do with myself... It’s honest.

Or maybe I’m just a miserable cunt and by pointing out others’ flaws I’m subconsciously bringing everyone down to my level?

Wait, what am I taking about again? 

Well, shit.

 

-Matthew Broods

Human Shadows

8.6.2016

You ever notice that when you’re dwelling on something for a while, it keeps popping up all around you? You start seeing examples of that exact thing, or conversations end up going in that direction. It’s like the universe is telling you to deal with it.

I haven’t been able to stop thinking about the impressions we leave on the people that we come in to contact with. I’ve had two random conversations about it that I didn’t bring up. And then I found that one song, Dearly Departed, by that Shakey Graves fella. I know, I’m not that fucking hip to the current trends of music. People have been telling me to listen to him for years. Whatever, I finally did this week and that song seems terrifyingly similar to the exact idea.
(I’ll link it at the bottom.)

This life can be summed up as a life-long progression of different experiences. Obviously everything can be considered an experience, but certain things hold more weight than others. When we look back, we look at past moments where something significant happened. Good or bad.

We don’t seem to focus on the mundane or ordinary moments.
I highly doubt anyone is thinking about what they had for lunch in 2006 on August 8
th. So, for this let’s focus on the important ones. Specifically, the ones where other people affect our lives... Those experiences that hold so much weight, that they shape our present and future. The ones that leave a mark, or where there is residue, or there is a shadow of the person that you experienced it with.

There is something left over.

It’s pretty fascinating what shapes our lives to create the person we are today. From what I can gather, we alter our behavior based on the experiences we have had. That’s how you learn, right? As a child you touch a stove and burn the shit out of your hand and you learn not to do that ever again. You will remember for the rest of your life that stove=pain. You may not even remember the time you burned your hand, but you will always remember that lesson. That’s pretty fucking bizarre to me.

What’s even more bizarre to me is how we affect each other.

If someone hurts you to the core, it’s highly likely that you will associate that person with pain. It’s not just that person, though. That association can happen when you meet someone similar to the original wrongdoer or pain-causer. Maybe they look like them, speak like them, are interested in similar things, smell like them, or whatever the case... there is a shadow of that original pain. You can be looking at an entirely different person, with different hopes, dreams, morals, and life experiences; yet, a ghost of the one who wronged you lurks in your mind. It affects you. It can drastically alter how you treat that person.

Is this fair?
No.
Can we help it?
I’m not sure yet.
But I think it’s worth trying.

I think recognizing that they are different is important. Each of us appears to be an individual. Sure, there are some mass amounts of people that seem like clones of whoever the current trendy celebrity is, but I would wager my life that deep down we are all highly unique.

I’ve seen people be complete assholes to another person just because they remind them of someone else. Hell, I’ve done it. For a hot minute in college I associated every sorority girl I ever met with the first few shitty dumb ones I interacted with. I acted superior to them. I thought I was superior to them. I just assumed I was soooo fucking smart in comparison. Ironically, that attitude of being a dick played very well for me. Being a dick got me laid quite a bit back then. It was confusing. I always assumed I was the “nice guy”. I remember seeing all the assholes get the girls in high school and wonder how the fuck anyone could fall for that?

I can remember the day it worked for me. There was this gorgeous girl who just seemed like an airhead. She was hanging around some of my friends and I just started being a cunt for no reason. I would make fun of her, not directly to her face, but right in front of her and everyone else. Once she realized what was going on, she started trying to convince me I was wrong about her. She made it her mission to convince me that she wasn’t what I thought she was. She wanted to prove herself to me. Next thing I know, things were progressing in a strange fashion. I didn’t stick to my guns of calling this beautiful girl an idiot after she seemed hell bent on convincing me that she was not. I accidentally figured out how people can fall for that awful shit. My mind was blown.

We hooked up that night.
I know, I’m not proud of myself.

I look back on that part of my life now, and I’m horrified. I have altered my behavior accordingly. I have changed so much that the idea of doing that to someone is so far from what I would ever want to be doing. It goes against my own morality.
Being cruel to people isn’t my jam.
In that aspect, I have grown up.

But I WAS an asshole. I hurt a lot of people in those years. I left a lot of negative imprints on others and that I wish I hadn’t. Maybe there is a string of people avoiding long-haired, smug, purple-pant-wearing, douche bags who rant about non-sense for the rest of their lives.

(Yeah, I had purple pants. I JUST said that I was an asshole, OK?)

I’d like to pretend there aren’t too many, but I’m guessing there are a few people where a ghost of me still haunts them to this day.
Actually, I know there are.
I’ve even tried reaching out in an attempt to make amends, or at the very least apologize for being such a cock-nugget.

I haven’t had much luck.

So what do we do about this? People grow. I'm not whatever ghost they are still holding on to anymore. Contrary to popular belief, people change ALL the fucking time. People aren’t like the stove. The stove will always be capable of burning the fuck out of you. It’s constant. But people can, and often do, grow.

And before you even think it, I know that some people don’t grow fast enough. I know that some people are dicks. I know this. But they all have the potential to change, and most will.

So is it fair to hold on to these ghosts? Do they help us much? Is it fair to look at a new person with all their individual experiences and only see the shadow of someone else?
I don’t think so.

But, I can see why. I can also see how hard it is to exorcise that ghost from our head, especially if the pain was particularly traumatic.

I just hope we can all be a bit more open with new people. I think remembering that we are all different and unique, is A) Beautiful and B) Super fucking important.


I am not someone else, just as you are unique to your own experiences and life progression.

 

Besides, having ghosts around is never a good thing.

 

-Matthew Ponders

 

Dearly Departed