Sweet RetroGrade

Well shit. This is where I gather myself. I just saw something that says expect nothing… I don’t understand this. I don’t get this cowardly lion ass approach to going after nothing and swallowing your wants to serve your fear. Expect gahtdamn everything and appreciate what you end up with. What you earned. What you worked to have. Why is it all so backwards? Why are we so afraid to be accountable to our fucking feelings?? I do not understand this. Is the world full of 14 year olds, afraid to go for class president because it feels weird and my mates might laugh at me. Guess what, there is no might. They are going to laugh. But guess what? There will also be a room full of mates who will support you and cheer you on and those should be the people you push forward for. Those should be the ones who motivate you to say screw the laughers and naysayers because I’m brave enough to do what they won’t. And the ultimate gag is….Those supporters routing for you at some point and time may be nothing more than your heart and your personal drive. So be it. You keep pushing forward and watch the world catch up to you.

I finally met someone I like. Like in real life. And the one thing I want more than anything, she can’t give me. I am not in a space where I can afford to deliberate on what I can and cannot go without where a partner is concerned. I’m passed that. My last two relationships were with individuals who were unable to put me first, speak their feelings, or reciprocate care. I need it. I need to know how you feel. I need to know that you’re afraid. I need to know that in this moment you don’t know what you feel. I need to know you thought about cheating but did or didn’t. I need to know that you want me. Period. I cannot deal with the sole responsibility of deciphering your feelings so that you can remain committed to your fear and past pain. Nah, son. Not me. Not today.

You won’t fight for a person you see value in because why? Because you want them to fight for you. I’ve run this rodeo a thousand times, I know how much to collect at the door. Fighting is code word for catch feelings and own them. I know, I’m being a presumptuous asshole right now, but here’s the gag. I own it. I own my feelings and I stand behind them. I am putting myself out there. I am taking the leap. Because if for no other reason, it means I grow. I refuse, REFUSE I say, to remain stagnant because of fear. I am strong enough to recover. That begins with believing in me. And I believes in me.

Love is a word. We identify a certain group of feelings as love but it is so layered and so multifaceted that WE make it far more complicated than it has to be. We lock it into this ownership contract when really love is the most liberating and freeing feeling there is. We lock ourselves into this turmoil of do or don’t. This restrictive negotiation of will or won’t. That at its core is about fear. The fear of mortality. The fear of difference. The fear of change. The fear of hurt. The fear of letting go. The fear of inadequacy. The fear of vulnerability. All of these fear bottleneck, forcing what we call love to sit and fester at the bottom of our selves losing its depth and purpose. Yall, get over yourselves. Seriously. We’re losing life out here. We must do better.

I’m not in-love. But I want to be. I want to be free to fawn all over the love of my life, my partner, my bestfriend, my lover, my spades partner, my homie, my lego supplier, video game dealer, my Ross to my Rachel. But gahtdamn. Meet me halfway. I would not ever minimize someone else’s experiences. We go through what is painful to us and we have to find the best way to heal so we can move forward in life. The problem is some of us aren’t healing. We’re finding comfortable spots within the pain that don’t hurt so much and making our home there. We venture out just far enough to see the view then run back to hidey hole at the first sign of feeling anything. Anything. That’s not the wave ladies and gentlemen.

When you can no longer decipher between the feelings that hurt and the feelings the free, you’ve lost the whole of the point. And, quite frankly, you should expect better than that from yourself.

love&light

Tidal Making Waves

So, I’m thoroughly confused. Tidal, the music service Jay-Z and other high profile artists initiated yesterday, seems to be stirring up a lot of emotions. Mostly, the debate seems to be over price for the streaming service and how Jay could have better spent his money. His money. HIS MONEY.

So, here’s my, albeit limited, thinking: don’t subscribe. I’ve seen a lot of talk about there being no free option. Also, the price being too high. And, this really being a way to line the pockets of rich artists.

Huh?

I didn’t know there was a cap on the amount of money you were allowed to make. Considering there isn’t, the only way to make more money is to continue to create revenue streams with multiple, hopefully lucrative, ventures. Mostly, I would think, you’d want minimum investment to maximum return. But, somewhere on my credit report, I’m probably still paying off a pizza, so what do I know?

What really has gotten me about this discussion is the idea that we, as the audience, deserve free music. Music is an art form. It’s has superseded other art forms in that we take it with us wherever we go. It’s on our commutes. It’s in our down time. It’s how we avoid family. It’s how we avoid social awkwardness. It’s the reason we dress up and give names to events like spring dance and prom. Just so we can indulge with other people. It’s the back bone to our social experiences, romantic experiences, and memory recall. It is literally our curated soundtrack to everything we do. So I begin to wonder if the fact that it is so ingrained in our day to day lives, could this be why we take it for granted.

We hear a finished product. We benefit from a finished product. Are we still considering that someone sat down and thought of those lyrics? Beat the pads on their AKAI4000 over and over for hours? Recorded that track? Set the eq levels? Cut and paste on fruity loops or protools til their eyes crossed?  That four minutes of audible cinnamon bun is the result of time and thought and someone’s passion ( I didn’t say everyone’s but someone involved in that process was passionate about it).

If someone consistently puts out art that you enjoy-art you benefit from whether visually, emotionally, or audibly – they should be compensated. In the way that they see fit. When your employer deposits your check would you be willing to have them tell you, “we’ve paid you well over the last 5 years. I think it’s only right you find new ways to bring in revenue while continuing to provide us your services.” The level of oh hell no would be completely ravenous. But, this is basically what we are doing to artists.

You have the choice not to subscribe to Tidal. If you cannot afford the service, let be something you aspire to when you have the extra income. If you see no benefit in the service, move on. I personally don’t like the idea of renting music and have, since their inception, had no use in streaming services. I want to own my music. I want control of when and where I play it. I don’t want albums or songs disappearing when copyrights or negotiations expire. However, that’s just me.

We’ve somehow interlaced support with purchase power. Buying albums, concert tickets, t-shirts, lipsticks, books, dvds, it’s all got us feeling like cake daddies. Because we can tie our purchases directly back back to this one (or group of) individuals, we’ve detached from the essence of what we are actually doing. Purchasing a product.

The issue seems to be a bit bigger that just a music streaming service and it’s price points. This seems to be rooted in entitlement. The more money artists make, the less we think they should charge. Because, I helped you buy that Rolls. I probably paid for that iPhone Blue Ivy is using as a teething ring. I helped pay for that private jet. I helped send Apple Blossom to that expensive private school. But the reality is, you paid for a product. No different than the bread you bought from Kroger’s or the bowl of soup from Panera bread. These artists are offering you a product that you have a choice to take advantage of. If the bread costs too much, find cheaper bread. If the bowl of soup isn’t in your budget, accept that you can’t have it and go eat some chunky campbells.

Some of yall just cheap bastids who want everything free. There’s also that. No judgment, though. Carry on.

Me and this Love Shit

I appreciate someone being interested in me. First of all, because I don’t always notice. I may think you’re interested but I will keep that to myself until you confirm or it’s unavoidable. Or, annoying.

But here’s the thing… What I want more than anything is to feel connected to someone. Intimately. Intellectually. Creatively. Just telling me that you think I’m awesome and whatnot doesn’t automatically mean I’m interested. Can you engage me? Can you surprise me? Can you hold a conversation?

Don’t tell. Show.

What do we have to talk about? I need conversation above most other things.

I’ve been charged with unrealistic expectations in the past. I’ve heard that I expect people to read my mind. That’s not the case at all. I listen. When I converse with you, it’s to actually receive the information you give. When someone tells me about themselves, I pay attention. I simply expect the same. I intentionally give pieces of myself. All I want you to do is value them. If that’s beyond the scope of your ability, by all means, relieve yourself of the duty. But, if you take the charge? Take. It. If you tell me you don’t like flowers or that you enjoy chicken over seafood why would I buy you roses or take you to Red Lobster? How personalized is that? Would you feel like I really embraced what you told me?

I’m not doing that again. I’m not putting my everything into someone who is only half listening. How can you know what I want if you haven’t bothered to ask me questions or engage me? At times I have also felt like I want too much. But then I think about it and nahh, that ain’t it. I’ve just allowed what I wanted to be squelched by people who knew they couldn’t give it to me at that time. I know what I offer. I know my value. I know what I bring to the table, if you can’t match that… Turn up for what?

I’m so tired of people telling me what they think I want to hear.  Don’t tell me you read all my books but can’t remember or recognize a single line. Don’t tell me shit you THINK is going to impress me. Tell me the truth. Give me you. Give me your honesty. Give me your vulnerability. Give me your story. If we’re meant to be, we will. Otherwise, at least we have a solid foundation to build a true friendship on. Not a bunch of fuckwad expectations and hurt feelings.

I’m probably rambling at this point because dang, just be who you are. I will not be in a relationship with anybody 60 days from now. Can we build a friendship in that amount of time? No. Can we date in that amount of time? Hell no. It might take my slow ass 45 days just to realize you even like me. So calm the hell down. Show me you’re interested in me as a person and not in claiming me or holding me hostage.

And I will not be dating anyone on more than 6 social sites. And five of those must be Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Tumblr and Skype. I can’t. I cannot and will not deal. What the fuck is a tango? grinder? Snapchat can’t even be on the list. NO. You can call it controlling. I do NOT care. She ain’t got to lie to kick it either. Be on any social network you want. Just do so as my friend not my potential. That’s all I’m saying. I’m not going to demand you not be on anything. It’s an automatic turn off when I find out that you are.

Don’t give me your empty words. Don’t give me a bunch of hot air. Don’t go out of your way to keep from giving me the real shit. Keep it. I want the sincerity. Know what the words mean. Don’t tell me I think too much. Yes, I analyze shit. That’s who I am. Don’t use that against me.

I want someone willing to invest as much as I am. Before it’s too late. Before it’s over. In fact, before it starts. Reciprocity, man. Effing reciprocity. If I invest in your dreams, invest in mine. If I fly out to see you, fly out to see me. Be you all the time. Not just in private. I guess this is all so important to me because I didn’t make choices that demanded that reciprocity from previous relationships. But without those experiences, I wouldn’t understand how much that means to me now. I need the openness. The communication. The engaging. The dialogue. I could take to myself if I wanted one-word answers.

I’m just venting. Dispelling these random thoughts and whatnot as a means of clearing the clutter. Nothing is more important to me than my weight loss journey and my creativity. Still, it’d be nice to crawl into a special person’s head and heart and find home.

love&light

Small Reminder

I’m 35.

I love the saying the more things change, the more they stay the same. Why do I love it? Because it effing applies.

I’m sarcastic. It’s not a thought. It’s not an aim. It’s not a shtick. I’m positive it was a defense mechanism when I was 12. When I was the fat kid in junior high and needed laughs for validation.

I’m 35.

I’m aware that you can’t validate me. I’ve self-assessed by this stage in my life and I choose to hold on to my sarcastic nature. Why? Cause I like it. Like anything in practice for over 20 years, it comes naturally. I don’t think about it. I’m not trying to be sarcastic, I just am. If that bothers you, you have every right to disassociate. I will understand. I recognize that I consequence of holding on to my sarcastic self is that I will turn some people off. I’m ok with that. Your loss, I promise.

I felt that it was time for a reminder. Seems this gets away from people at times. If I love you, I will consider curtailing my sarcasm. I will be more conscious of my nature and hold back, be aware, be mindful of what I’m about to say to avoid offending you – a person whom I love. Liking you is not enough. Liking you is an audition for the grand stage. Liking has a required hazing period to see what you’re made of. Liking you is a job interview where we are feeling each other out to see if this association is a good fit.

Understand, I assume once we graduate to a relationship (of any kind: romantic, friendship, etc…) that you have accepted all the terms and conditions of who I am. As I have, you. However, I understand some shit just don’t work. And in that case, do you boo. By all means. Otherwise, shut that ass up and trust me. Trust my respect for you and know that if I happen to cross a line, it was because I didn’t recognize the line was there. Not, because I’m that asshole. Make no mistake I am an asshole, but I’m the adorable kind. The kind you can’t quite figure out why you love. I’m not the kind that needs to make others feel small so they can feel big. I don’t hate anyone that much, especially myself.

So, a small reminder that sarcasm is a good thing. It’s why you find me charming and witty. It’s why I make you furious and giggly all at the same time. But, it is not ever a tool to degrade, dehumanize or debase anyone. It’s fodder for bonding, expression, and informing. It is also natural. Do you have to remind yourself to step off an elevator?

 

love&light

 

Sidenote 09/04/09

It occured to me the reason the adults are worse than children. It is because where children are learning the divide between right and wrong, fair and unfair, just and unjust; Adults can readily identify these lines and choose, effectively, to cross them at will.

Sidenote

I’m told I have the rare ability to be me at all times.

I thinks its more that I don’t have the energy or intelligence to be anything else.

 

-Dew 2009