3.27.2014

You Dropped A(n F) Bomb On Me

I was recently asked to remove a post of mine from Facebook. Facebook didn't ask. A friend of mine asked. The post had the proverbial f-bomb in it.  At first I was a little bit put off by the request. And then I got to thinking.  People I don't know are looking to me as an example. A role model. A leader.

An example of what? A role model? Are you f...I mean...are you kidding me?

Who am I? I'm just some random dude. Facebook is filled with shlubs like me who rant and rave and cuss in their posts all the time. Heck, at least I only do it when I'm either really pissed off or trying to be funny.

And then I really thought about it. Example/role model/leader aside for another discussion. I'm a writer. At my heart I'm a storyteller. I use music. I use pictures. I use words.

Words are my palette. The colors with which I color the canvas of my tale. And let's face it, the f-bomb is the easiest color to use to get that nervous chuckle. It makes some people nervous. They laugh because it's that naughty word. It's a nervous laughter. It's meant to quickly elicit an emotional response that may or may not have any kind of long term resonance. Those who like my work (I really hope that sentence doesn't read as pretentiously as it sounded in my head...none the less...)  Those who chose to read what I right and be moved by it know that I will sprinkle it in for effect.

And I have to say, it's a gimmick. It's a trick. There really is no place for it in my writing, if I'm being honest. I mean, hell, Shakespeare never used the words in a single one of his plays.  And I'm certainly no Shakespeare (but it always helps to have aspirations).

Now I know you might be thinking that the Shakespeare thing was off-base on two fronts. Don't worry...I know my work isn't as lasting as his (hers?). So there's one of your arguments nullified. And if you are thinking that our little friend the f-bomb came after good Sir William, you'd be incorrect. The etymology of the word actually pre-dates Shakespeare by a good 100 years.

The word is pretty frickin' old. And has come to be a throwaway word in daily conversation of many people. Which is probably why I didn't really think about it when I posted it. It used to be such a novelty to me. I used to use it sparingly. Only for emphasis. Now lately it seems as though it's slipped in to my regular everyday vernacular. And that's not so good.

I forget that it's still offensive to some. Thus, out of respect for the people that I care about, I removed the posts.

I can't help but think that of all the words in our language, there are other ways of conveying the same sentiments I was trying to convey with that slightly vulgar nugget.

I don't know where I'm going with all of this. Maybe I'm trying to get a better grip on my vocabulary. Who knows? We'll see how it all plays out.


3.22.2014

What I Forgot in Nashville

So...yeah. On another flight. And I have to say that the iPad Mini with Lifeproof case is truly the bomb. Still using the Logitech (separate) bluetooth keyboard. For a couple reason, really...it's about the size of my laptop keyboard and keys on the keyboards that are built in to the iPad Mini cases are just a bit too small.

I guess that's really two sides of the same reason, isn't it? I'm really thankful for the aisle seat right about now. What is it about airplanes and busses that makes people think it's ok to just fall asleep on them? I guess subways are the same way. Dunno. But kudos to my rowmate for not dropping his drink as he's napping. And kudos to my other rowmate for not shanking him. He's out of it, it seems. He just ordered a coffee with cream and ten packets of sugar. That's a crapton of sugar. I'm wondering if he's not cleaning up from something. DT's maybe? Not sure. Dont' care (from the sense that I'm not judging him or anything).

Speaking of coffee...what is it about someone that if they're sitting next to you and scratching themselves all over, you suddenly feel like you have an itch.

It's weird, I tell ya.

So...the Queens store is almost ready to open. I think my tasks there are just about wrapped up, so I'm not going back (as far as I know) for work. It's been a long road. But it's cool to see how excited everyone is to get the store open.

Alright...old boy is scratching everywhere...and has a pretty hacking cough. Not sure what that's about, but I hope he's OK.

Now, back to me...

It's been kind of a crazy week.

Seriously...coughing on a plane. Where do those germs go? That's just the worst...isn't it? Or when you're the once coughing.

Fuck. Now I'm starting to itch. Seriously. That's just weird.

So...funny story. I forgot to pack tennis shoes. NBD, I figured. There's a National Wholesale Liquidators next door to MicroCenter. Figured I'd pickup a pair of cheap kicks. I found a cute pair of knock-off Chuck's for $10. They were size 12. Again, No Big Deal...I've worn 12's in Chuck's before. They fit.

Not the Fake Taylor's. I felt like my feet were getting torutured. After wearing them twice. I chucked them. Well, actually, I left them on the hotel bed with a note. "I have worn these twice. They don't fit my feet. If you know someone they will fit, please take them."

When I got back to my room, they were gone. Back at NWL yesterday I found a pair of REAL Chuck Taylor All-Star's. Size 12. They fit famously. I have to say that I'm pretty pumped by it. AND...they're hemp. Which means...what? When I'm done wearing them, we can throw them on the fire and have a nice party? No...dunno. But they are comfortable.

OK. This dude is kinda freaking me out now. Coughing. Sneezing and scratching every square inch. Jeebus.

I've completely lost my train of thought.

I hate that.

Peace out for now.

 

 

-A.T.

 

3.16.2014

Flight 1973

It's always a crap shoot on a plane. You may get that perfect flight where people fit in the 3 (sometimes 2) seats and there are no issues at all. Things just fit. Or you may feel like the human version of Tetris. Arms and elbows knees and what not all contorted and twisted. When that happens, about the best you can do is remind yourself that it's a short flight (even if it isn't). And sometimes your plans to be the mile high blogger are waylaid by something as seemingly insignificant as the fact the in-flight wi-fi is down.


sometimes you cant even use the tray table at all because it's just too fucking awkward.

and that's ok. As humans we find ways of adapting. And in the grand scheme of things, this really is no big deal. I have no illusions of grandeur in this situation. I know that I'm not going to pen the next great American novel at 10,000 feet on an iPad Mini in turbulent skies (but it would be pretty fucking cool if I did).

I have to say that the LifeProof case is proving to be quite a bit more versatile in this kind of setting. I took a picture. that I'll post when i actually copy this over in the blog posting software.

 

Speaking of software. I have to admit that the OmmWriter software for iPad does not disappoint. I was a little hesitant based on some of the reviews. But most of them were based on the fact that people were trying to use the on-screen keyboard. That always cracked me up. I can't imagine using the one screen keyboard for anything more than a tweet or quick hit FB post. I have to have tactile response. I have to feel the keys actually give way under my fingers.

I hope you weren't expecting anything deep in this post. I'm too contorted for anything but random quick hits. And besides that damn drink cart is about to bump my elbow.

My rowmate is giving the tell tale fidgetings of one who is about to excuse himself to go to the lav. We'll see. If he reads this as I'm typing, no harm no foul, eh?

Holy shit. 39,000 feet. I don't know if I've been that high or not. I probably have, I don't recall many of the captains actually telling you how high you are, though. So, there's that.

My co-worker is out. The window serving as the make-shift pillow and the've just given the 'ding you can now move about the cabin' all clear.

And holy shit do I have to fart. I thought I would be safe with the grilled cheese. Apparently not. Don't worry. I'm an expert flatulator. Nothing will escape unless a) its safe or b) I can blame it on someone else (which really is pretty much the same thing as 'a').

It looks like only the left side is getting snacks. Maybe he's just going up and back. Annnnd. Success. He was going up from the back, wrapping around and back again. I'm now the proud owner of 2 little packs of pretzel. Pretty sure Southwest is one of the only ones that still gives you snacks. Sure--they've gotten smaller, but that's ok. It really is the thought that counts.

I really wish I had done more writing last night. It's gonna be weird to blog about the last New York Trip whilst on this one. Last week was such a fuster cluck though.

When it's a full week at the store, I think it works better. My mind is conditioned for that for some reason. Flying out Sunday and coming home on Tuesday was just...odd. And then going back to work on Wednesday was just goofy to me. Not in the sense that I didn't want to go to work (truth be told I could have caught up on some sleep), but moreover, because of the normal way the trips have been flowing, it felt like it should have been a monday.

Damn, they're jamming the shoulder and they don't even have a fucking drink cart.

OK...where was I? Oh yes...brain thinking it's Monday. I guess that's the part that's really odd...is that days really don't have much of a meaning in the sense that one day truly is like the next. Fridays stand out because of the bowling, Thursdays because of the Advocare Nutritional mixers. But other than that, really things just kind of blend. I don't know really how to describe it. I don't watch network TV or cable, so I am not bound by identifying a day of the week by which of my shows is on. So..meh. I don't know.

I am not really sure where I was going with that other than to say that normally I come back from a store trip and have 2 days to rest and then back to work and that's how I mark the beginning of the week. And last week it wasn't that way. Kinda messed me up, I guess.

But I'll live.

I mean, that's what we do, right? Live. Adapt. Survive. And if we tap in to that still, small voice, we actually find our light in this vast universe. We find our way to hear the chords of our song and if we're very very lucky, we get to find someone to play that some for that gets it.

That's the shit right there when that happens.

As it turns out, I was right about my row-mate. I didn't really have to pee (I mean, I did, but I could have held it until LaGuardia), but I got up to hit the lavatory anyway. I noticed as I was again doing my cirque du soleil act, that he also got up and was waiting in queue for me to finish. More often than not, I would rather be happy than right, but it does feel good to know that I have a pretty decent knack for reading people.

And he's a beekeeper. Or wants to be. Or has to read a book about it for some class. Not sure which. Make up a story. Here's the book he left on the seat. You take it from there and run with it.

1100 words...and most of them just inane babbling. What makes me smile is that the 15 or so of you that regularly make your way here actually enjoy reading it. I have to be honest, that kind of floors me, truth be told.

I think there are those who get in to writing as a career. They see the financial potential and just go with with. And then there are those that get in to writing because it's the only way to get their head clear, even for a moment. And for those people, the fact that people enjoy what they write is a by product. I haven't been paid for my writing. I may one day pen that quintessential best-seller, but that's not why I write. I write because I have to. Because there are things in my head that if they don't come out on the page, I literally go bat-shit crazy in small doses. And if those doses add up enough, I do something completely insane like show up to work on a winters day...shoes, pants, winter coat. No shirt...no socks. It was not a good day. For a long time after, I kept a spare shirt and socks in my file cabinet drawer on the off chance that my brain-bucket went to auto-pilot without me.

But that's how I knew I REALLY needed to be writing. I was going through some shite. 1st divorce...job I really couldn't stand (I could tell it was sucking my soul). And I snapped. Granted, it was a small snap, but a snap nonetheless. From that I wrote an autobiography up to that point in my life...as well as a book about job satisfaction.

To my current co-workers, please don't go looking in my file drawers. Said Shirtless Monday happened in 1999. I've pretty much learned when I'm starting to lose my grip these days....so, we're all good.

We're about to land, so this is as good a place as any I suppose to conclude these airborne ramblings.

Peace out yo,

-A.T.

 

 

PostScript: I'm in the hotel room now (the Holiday Inn...which really blows compared to the Springhill Suites)...but on the way from LaGuardia to the Avis facility I noticed this in the shuttle....

Yeah...it's exactly what you think it is. A coat hanger fashioned in to a slim jim. To unlock cars. Not sure what it's doing in the rental car shuttle. But, what a scam...ride the shuttle from LGA to Avis...boost a car....crazy...

 

Alright. I've done my traction for the night...and the TENS units. Time for some sleep. Today turned out to be quite a long day.

 

3.09.2014

The Gravity of the Situation

I don’t often get to blog from the actual plane on any of these work trips. Mostly for a couple of reasons...length of flight is the key...and dammit..I misjudged my time so this post won’t be completed on this flight either.

I’ll get the chance to correct this little time change oversight on the flight home Tuesday. We have approximately a 2 hour flight to Nashville (and I get to add another glass to my airport shot glass collection). We’ll see how that goes.

All time change bullshit aside, today was an insanely calm travel day with little to no mishaps.

I opted out of checking a bag since we were going to be here for such a short period of time. So..there’s a win there (although the one time where bags fly free--and I don’t need to check one...might check it on the way home just because pulling the CPAP out was kind of a pain in the ass).

There was a good 90 minutes between our connecting flights in Chicago. So even if the weather had gone tits up (blame the BBC), we still had time.  We landed and it was still mostly daylight.

I have to say I MUCH rather fly Southwest than any other airline. Sure...there are 3 seats, but somehow there’s still more leg room and more room to do things like actually get my laptop out.

We got the car and got checked in to the hotel with no issues. As I was checking in, they told me my room was upgraded to a suite (thank you Marriott Rewards). Dude...Suite is a misnomer. This room is literally bigger than my whole apartment. I know you think that I am misusing ‘literally’ and you think I should have used ‘figuratively’ instead. But you’re wrong. It’s LITERALLY bigger than my whole apartment. I shit you not, my hotel room has a guest bedroom. I could get used to this (only it would mean I’d be traveling a lot, and I’m not really down with doing that much more than I already have been doing).

Tomorrow I get to do something I have never done...I get to go to a Soft Opening for one of our new stores. It’s pretty cool. Sure, I still have work to do, I’m not just standing around looking pretty, but it’s going to be neat to see what the store looks like when it’s brand new. And the Brooklyn store by far is my favorite. I’ll have pix tomorrow night I’m sure. Or Tuesday on my flight home. However it shakes down.

I had something terribly funny and clever to say, but apparently it was only both of those things at an altitude above 10, 000 feet.  Maybe it will come back to me on the flight home. It was something about gravity..OH...RIGHT...

It was actually as we were landing....

I got to thinking of the number of people that get worried that there will be problems when the plane lands. And I just laugh. The hard bit is take-off. THAT’S the part that really pushing the boundaries of defying physics.  Landing’s easy. That’s Gravity. That’s going to happen one way or the other anyway.

And with that, I’m off to bed....but which one. Maybe I’ll sleep in one bed one night and the other bed tomorrow night.  Oh the opulent life...haha!

OK. Seriously. G’night

-AT

3.07.2014

Not as committed as I should be

I can’t really explain certain things that pop in to my head. It has come to the point where I really stop trying. It doesn’t do any good. And the more I explain things to people the more I realize that a) they either think I’m bat shit crazy; b) they’re not sure if I’m bat shit crazy or just did a lot of drugs at some point in my life; c) possessed by demons; d) all of the above.

And I’m not going to lie-I’ve thought all of those things too. The notable exception being a “lot” of drugs. I haven’t done a lot. And that’s where I’m going to stop that little sidebar. No need to add any more fuel to that fire.

So...thing is...I feel like I have some kind of glimpse in to the universe as a whole. And the fact that there is much more going on around us than simply how many fucking mochaccinos you get this week.

I feel like we are on the precipice of some really weird shit about to go down and there’s some people who know this. And are getting ready for it. I would consider them more of the enlightenened ones. There are others like me, who know...or think they know...and are just hoping to complete the pscyho-sensory-meta-physical boot camp before the darkness swallows our planet and we all have to fight our way out.  Because, if dreams from my childhood are any indication--that’s going to suck ballz.  People are going to lose their ever loving minds.

Which is where I’m lucky. I think I lost mine about 20 years ago...so I’m all good there. You can’t lose what you don’t have. And a ‘normal’ sense of the world and universe at large is something I have never had.

I can hear some of you...’Todd, you’re not crazy. you’re just a little weird.’...or ‘you always did have a strange way of looking at things.’

True.

Why is it people can talk to God...pray to whichever deity they choose and that’s somehow ok. That makes them devout.  But if that same person claims to BE god (or a deity) and that they are (that) god experiencing its creation--somehow that makes them crazy?

I don’t get it.

These thoughts are disjointed. My subconscious knows what I need to say, but something is being the gatekeeper. I’m not quite read to be locked up yet.

Not yet.  LOL.

Have a wonderful Friday and a great weekend my friends.

If you are out and about...try at least one time to be still.

-AT

3.02.2014

The Awareness

I tend to feel it more when I am experiencing intense emotions. Tonight, for example. I was watching “Derek,” quite possibly one of the more intense television shows I’ve ever watched.

It’s just amazing. I can’t really even begin to describe it. The premise is of a care-worker in a nursing home in England. Shot in the ‘mockumentary’ style of The Office that Ricky Gervais made famous (after, of course Rob Reiner did it in This is Spinal Tap, but I digress).

Anyway...it’s amazing. If you have Netflix, stop now and go watch the Pilot episode. It’s 22 minutes, this blog can wait, trust me.

Anyway...the emotions from the show are intense. And I think that’s what triggers the ‘awareness.’

I don’t really know what else to call it at this point. I mean, I know that there have been ‘past lives.’ Only, as I’m becoming more in tune with things, I am realizing that they aren’t really ‘past’ at all. More like...there are an infinite (or may finite) number of universes that co-exist where due to an infinite combination of choicese, different things manifest.

In the ones that I have become aware of, there is also an Andrew Todd Skaggs. These Todds have different lives from the one I’m living now. Very different lives indeed. And I’m getting glimpses of them as I open myself up more to the light and love of the universe (more on that another time).

Seriously, did you go watch Derek yet? What the fuck man? It’s going to help the rest of this make sense. Well, maybe not. but it’s definitely a trigger of intense emotions.

And I think it’s the emotions, that ’s really what fosters the awareness. All these day dreams I’ve had about what my life will be like some time in the future. I think all of those are and have always been me glimpsing in to one of these other universes and tapping in to the memories and experiences of the Todd that’s in that universe.

I mean, that just makes sense. There has to be a common thread in all the Todds that exist in all the universes. I don’t really know how to explain it. Other than to know. Just know that it is so.

And I begin to see, as this happens more and more to me, why some people go crazy on the road to enlightenment. Why some are locked up in nutter butter houses. Not necessarily for what they know, but the fact that those around them are unsure and cannot accept it. I mean I wonder if it were happening to someone else and I had never experienced ‘the awareness,’ if I could listen to someone talk about other ‘thems’ in other universes existing at the same exact time and slipping in to the conciousness of these other ‘thems.’

I can see where it would seem a little far fetched.

It makes me wonder though, if there’s another Todd in one of these universes who has slipped in to my conciousness and seen what I’m going to be in this plane, in this universe.

And if so, is he going, ‘Fuck dude...sort your shit out mate!’ (that’s what watching a lot of the BBC brings me...I’d apologize, but I’d likely say something very much like it anyway...and you already know that or you wouldn’t be here, reading it for this long. You’d have proper fucked off long ago dismissing me as a nutter. But you haven’t. Because part of you thinks I may be on to something with this whole ‘awareness of multiples’ thing).

Yeah. I know. Trust me, I do know full well how it sounds. I’ll pee in a cup if you think I’m on drugs. I’m not. I’m just waking up.

Too long the spirit inside this physical body has been asleep.

It’s time to wake up, Todd(s)...we got shit to do.


-A.T.


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