Please Stand By

Well, that last post ended abruptly.

I’m currently battling a stretch of hurry up and wait so fraught that I have no idea what to say. Or, rather, I have plenty to say but it’s all coming out in a jumble that is of no use to either of us.

At the moment my financial, creative, and career futures are up in the air. Naturally, I’m refusing to acknowledge my financial, creative, and career futures. Which, I’m sure, is healthy and helpful.

Long story short:  Tomorrow, I may or may not get a job which I didn’t even know I wanted? My stomach would be in knots but I’m not certain I exist anymore? So here’s a video?

No, there’s definitely a video.

Please, hold tight for a moment longer while I get these things sorted out. With any luck, things may start falling into place by the end of this coming week. Then all of the bottled up what could be’s and what will be’s can come tumbling out. What fun for both of you, my dear readers. For now, here’s the ocean set to a tune.

Take care and talk soon!

(Psst, I made the video below. Watching it would be much appreciated.)

Journey West, Part Six

Journey West, Part Six

This post was originally written on 12/09/17

Into California

Drove into California via Death Valley National Park.  It’s actually quite gorgeous in a searing, scorched sort of way.  A lot of gas stations in the area charge $4+/gallon so I made sure to gas up every time I saw prices dip below $3.99.  There was a lot of silent driving for this portion of my journey as I lost all cell reception for the majority of it.

I stopped at Furnace Creek visitor center for postcards and a sticker.  Still not sure if I was supposed to pay for parking at the visitor center, or where/when I was supposed to check in with my parks pass.  I’m putting the odd, yet friendly, disorganization on it being the off-season.

I considered driving over to Sequoia National Park but chose instead to drive the back (very back) roads down to Angeles National Forest.  I lost reception again during this part of the trip and really got to sit with my thoughts.  What happened inside my mind was frustrating and sad.  I thought about driving further south and going to Joshua Tree.  I thought about Palm Springs, Big Bear, and even Twentynine Palms.  I considered every option that wasn’t driving into Los Angeles.

I was actively seeking obstacles to divert myself from the place I’ve wanted to live for over fifteen years.  The place I decided to move to in order to re-start my career.  The place I’m realizing I’ve been avoiding because I don’t believe I’m good enough to succeed there.

That car ride got really dark.

Journey West, Part Five

Journey West, Part Five

This post was originally written on 12/08/17

Vegas, Baby

I don’t have much to say about Las Vegas.  Riveting, I know.

It’s shiny and crowded, smokey and grimy.  I bet it’s worth a visit if you have money, worth the walk around if you don’t mind crowds.  I don’t have money, I’m not overly fond of crowds, and standing around in unrelenting clouds of cigarette smoke has yet to make my bucket list.

I managed to not spend a dime while there.  Tropicana parking is still free at the time of the post, so I opted for parking there and walking the strip.  I’ve never experienced more severely inebriated people attempting to speak to me in my life and I’ve a) lived next to a bar in Boston during St. Patrick’s day and b) worked in a bar in Chicago on St. Patrick’s day.  The clearest statement made to me was by a young man who either really liked my haircut or was terribly offended by my haircut.  Mid slur he fell over and took his friends to the ground with him.

I kept walking.

I wandered through Tropicana, MGM Grand, New York-New York, Monte Carlo, ARIA, and Bellagio.  The Bellagio’s fountain is fine.  The Chihuly sculpture inside the Bellagio was poorly lit and largely ignored which is a real shame.

I don’t remember much about any casino except the Bellagio because it was the only place I was able to stop moving.  I kept getting pushed and pulled around by the current of over-hyped out-of-towners.  In my memory, the casinos were all varying degrees of dark, loud, but also muffled, smoke-filled, disorienting pits.  Perfect places for panic attacks.  So I left.

I lasted two hours.

Staving off a panic attack is almost as exhausting as having one, so I went back to my car and fell asleep.  I slept in my car for several hours before Tropicana security asked me to leave.  Admittedly, a car nap wasn’t a great idea but I was tired, tense and needed to decompress.  I’m certain they’ll recoup the losses incurred by my bogarting a parking space.

Journey West, Part Four

Journey West, Part Four

This post was originally written on 12/06/17

Drive to Utah

I drove a lot today.  A lot a lot.  Thinking about it now, I’m not actually sure how I spent the entire day driving.  According to the map, my trip should’ve taken around four hours and yet I didn’t get into Springdale, UT until sunset.  Granted, I did putz around at a hotel near the Grand Canyon’s south rim until the last minute before check out.  I still wasn’t ready to be out in below freezing weather.

Remember yesterday when I remembered science?  Sure enough, as I was packing up my car, I found all the water jugs frozen solid but still intact.  My sunscreen was also a nice chemical-y slush which was an invigorating way to start the morning.

Much like last night when I fell onto my bed and cursed at it for being so comfortable, I also cursed unreasonably at the Utah landscape for daring to exist in such a glorious way.  It was mind-boggling to see and I might have cried if my brain had been able to catch up to what it was witnessing.

I stopped by the Grand Staircase and stared, awed, and then got really mad. 1   By this time the sun was already setting and there was a lot of road construction so I wasn’t able to stop for long.  I really hope I don’t regret that.  Then I drove down into Zion National Park.  Like, drove down into it, which I didn’t know you could do.  Let’s be honest, the only part of this trip that was ever planned was the endpoint… even the starting point was undecided until two weeks before I left.

There was very little light in the depths of Zion NP by the time I made it through the long tunnel 2 and I was only able to get a little bit of usable footage.  I encountered a herd of reportedly elusive Bighorn Sheep gathered on the other side of a tight corner so please take those 20 mph signs seriously.  A light horn tap will usually send them on their way.

And then I was standing at the bottom of Zion, in off-season silence, watching the last of the sun’s rays sink behind towering red cliffs.

I think this is what I want to do.

I’ve known I was leaving my directionless “career” to get back into digital media but before I couldn’t tell you what, why, or where.  Sometimes I would say “to work for Buzzfeed” as a goal 3  but I didn’t know what that meant.  As I drove and took in the landscape, made choices on what to video and not video, reviewed footage at the end of the day and wrote blurbs, I realized:  this is what I want to do.

I want to work for a docu-style travel series.  Photo, video, writing – you’ve got your triple-threat right here.  So, here I am, putting that want out into the universe.

Anyone know where they keep those job posts?

  1. Mad, you say?  But why?  Angry click here for anger.
  2. There’s a long f’ing tunnel by the way, with no lights and no lay-bys and it feels like you’re driving into the center of the earth.  Incredible, yes!  Horrifying when unexpected, YES!
  3. What’s up, Buzzfeed?

Journey West, Part Three

Journey West, Part Three

 

This post was originally written on 12/05/17 in a state of pure exhaustion.  What follows is an attempt to piece together whatever it was I thought I was writing.

Grand Canyon National Park

I smell awful.

I’m in a hotel and I just washed myself (twice) and then all of my clothes in the massive-room-upgrade bathtub.  This is the 1st bath I’ve had in three days and I was ripe.  My thoughts and prayers are with all who encountered me yesterday and today.  Also, thoughts and prayers to all the actual section and thru-hikers because what the hell?  I never smell this bad, not even after I’ve run, but lo and behold hiking laid bare something rank from the depths of my own perspiring hell.

Still, this peak grossness is not the reason for bailing on car camping.  The temperature is dropping to 10 degrees Fahrenheit (around -12 Celsius) tonight.  I just can’t do it.  Which is a lie; I could do it.  I’ve got the gear, the shelter.  I’m just in a state of “don’t wanna, not gonna”.  I want a bed and immediate access to a bathroom.  I want a roof and central heating and air.  I want to order in and put the leftovers in a fridge.

I want and I did.

After checking into the hotel, I was awake enough to remember science exists.  Remembering this prompted me to move all of my bottled water into my back floorboard but only after opening all of them and drinking enough to lower the water levels.  There are five and they are definitely going to freeze and/or burst.  I really hope that they don’t burst.  I’ll deal with it tomorrow.

How do you know you are too tired?  When you lie down on a bed and demand aloud and angrily to no one to explain why the bed is so comfortable.

Don’t hold back your thoughts on privilege here because it reeks as much as I do.  I can come inside and shower and eat and sleep whenever I want and so can you.  Acknowledge this, learn from it, do what you can to help.