The Blog

young

Madonna said, “Don’t treat me like I’m special,
I wouldn’t know what to do with it.”

but you loved her. and she loved you
and the whole world knew it

What It’s Like Growing Up With A Schizophrenic Mother

My mother got diagnosed as a bi-polar, then as a schizophrenic while I was in my last high school years.

The best way I can explain it is that it’s comparable to running through a unending and self-repeating gauntlet of emotions every day of your life: confusion, fear, sadness, disgust, shame, pity and self-pity, anger, envy, indignation, tolerance, patience, surprise, appreciation, hope, and then back to fear again.

Confusion:

How would you feel if you and your younger sister came home in 2008 to your mom telling you she’s on Obama’s head team, and that since she’s been on this team the FBI and CIA have been following her everywhere (while residing in Canada)? How would you feel the next day when you walk in on her treating the living room as if it was bugged, asking her what’s wrong, and being led to her bedroom and she quietly telling you that the people in the TV were watching and listening to her every move? Now, how would you feel if the day after that you came home and found that she had packed all her clothes in suitcases because Obama was apparently sending his men to pick her up that night?

Yeah, confused is the gist of it. So you do what anybody would do, and take her to the hospital to figure out what’s wrong. Continue Reading →

like a chevy in quicksand

Momma never said, “I’m sorry, I’m the parent, but I’m just being baggage.” But her shame was always heavy, always had her head down. Momma said, “You’re the boy that resembled your features, Bo Bo you need a prayer… Come back home.”

What It’s Like Working With Elephants

Elephant Trainer

Though it’s mostly for show, I technically have an elephant trainer’s/ caretaker’s license from Thailand. One could go so far as to call me a Mahout.

The best I can say is that “training” elephants is a complex subject, but living and working with them is… holy.

There are many methods to training elephants and I chose my mentors based on theirs. Most elephants in Thailand are Continue Reading →

What Makes Someone Sane

Of course I’m sane, when trees start talking to me, I don’t talk back. // Terry Pratchett

People are sane when they’re of sound mind, this’s best defined as having the capacity to think, reason, and understand for oneself. Strong emotions are probably the number one hindrance towards sanity. And contrary to popular belief someone can be both sane and mentally ill, it’s just much harder.

The Difference Between Cheap And Expensive Bottled Water

The difference between cheap and expensive bottled water is taste (and texture).

The reason most people don’t taste a difference between tap, cheap, and expensive bottled water is that people, especially in the West, drink water cold and mainly after eating, both which largely cancel out differences of taste.

If you were to regularly drink water at room temperature, as I do, you’d realize that (except for the sense that it seems to always be more aerated than most bottled waters) tap water isn’t that amazing; it leaves a chemical aftertaste because tap water sources are treated with chloramines, and in part because they contain certain quantities of bacteria, tylenol, fluoride, caffeine, unspecified chemicals, and arsenic.

Cheap brands like Aquafina, which originate from “municipal” or “public water” sources aren’t far off from tap water (they, in fact, are tap water – just Continue Reading →

“The More Corrupt The State, The More Numerous The Laws.” What This Implies And Why It Holds True In This Age

This statement’s playing with three evergreen ideas:

  1. That if a state is made of a majority of moral people then they won’t need precise governing.
  2. That if a state is made of a majority of amoral people then they’ll need ever more precise governing.
  3. And that if a state, as an entity itself, becomes too precise in its governing, it will beget more amoral than moral peoples for it’s covered the entire floor with laws and has thus made it impossible to walk without stepping on one.

The statement’s saying that someone’s actions are a simple means of surmising their underlying morality or lack of it, that an organized community isn’t exempt from judgement because it’s also someone, and that someone that acts with the belief that people are inherently lacking in morality is themselves lacking in morality for holding such a belief.

Imagine yourself as kind parent. Imagine Continue Reading →

The Strangest Foods That I Love

chiang mai insects

I like fried insects, with a carbonated soft drink or beer to wash them down.

Not all fried insects are synonymous in taste though. I can still smell the yellowing fried grasshoppers of my very young summers in Kigali, Rwanda thanks to a neighbour who couldn’t get enough of his own outdoor fried particulars, and though he’d offer me a bite on numerous occasions I’d remind him, once again, I didn’t like the stuff (too much work, not enough crunch). But, if he’d cooked up some Maeng Kee Noon beetles or Jing Leed crickets the Thailand way (fried in a wok briefly, with a light coating of Golden Mountain Sauce, and a bit of White Pepper Powder [Prik Thai]) I wouldn’t have had to come to Chiang Mai to figure out that insects, on top of being a great sustainable source of low-fat protein, aren’t that bad afterall.

Lately I’ve been obsessed with the idea that poutine topped with Jing Leed, Non Pai bamboo worm, sautéed mushrooms, caramelized onions, jalapeño peppers, baby green peas, and a dash of black pepper would be absolutely amazing, if not just original.

Speaking The Truth Is Hard

Speaking the truth with a capital T is difficult. Because The truth is both our magnum opus and an earthquake.

By this I mean that most of us have only one truth to clearly speak of and it will take years of flapping our gums and therapy before we ever stumble upon it correctly, if we ever do at all. When we do, when we’re lucky enough to do, skilled enough to fall gracefully (enough to accept pain as process), and healed enough to pay close attention, we will recognize it both instantly and after the fact because our pupils will dilate so quickly we will feel them and because for some strange reason whenever we speak it, of it, the air shakes, the ground shakes, people cling to themselves, to one another, to something, anything, and then, when we’re done speaking, we are kindly told never to do that again. At least, not without a lot of bells and whistles.

To use New York as (another) metaphor, The truth isn’t the street performer we’re rushing to get a glimpse of, but the sleeping homeless man we all stumble upon right before we pick ourselves up and hurry on as if nothing’s happened.

An Obvious Truth That’s Rarely Acknowledged

We’re all mostly driven by hatred, detachment, and longing; because at one point in time we loved or needed someone so intensely it hurt and they never even noticed.