Wow, this was indeed a year. Stuff happened. I feel better as a person because this stuff happened. I know this year is going to be better however. The changing of the date is likely going to propel me into new changes that never came close to occurring during the last 365 days!
In all seriousness I am really looking forward to this year.
I was at a friend’s house for New Year’s. He has an amazing view of San Jose. On New Year’s everybody lights up the sky with fireworks. From the furthest province in the mountains to the inner city, everyone is firing mortars into the sky. Not for five or ten minutes either, but for more like an hour. This country has to spend more money on fireworks than any country I’ve ever been in.
On that balcony I did the customary “salud” with my non-alcoholic wine (my god) and then I calmed down Mayo, my scraggly male poodle.
For about fifty minutes I just stood there, enjoying the night air, and watching the sky ignite.
No camera could ever do justice to that moment. Any direction I looked was a show. In one corner of the mountains it crackled red. Behind the tree to my right the night sky lit up like lighting. In the deep grid of the science fiction city blue flames spanked off into wayward trajectories.
My Speak N’ Spell virus breathed into me. For how much we overpopulate, for how dumb we are, we can create this colorful rotating fire.
I enjoy when the pine tree gets lit up by Roman candles, especially when I’m safely above in a balcony.
Looking down on the city reminded me of an F-Zero track and all the Star Wars books I read as a kid.
I thought I’d never get back to the hopeful teenage visions, no matter how long I still chewed my fingers. Yet there they were. Bouncing back and forth, threatening to engulf some sheet metal.
When I looked around me again a party of 12 people had left. I guess Ticos don’t appreciate the wind chill as much as I do. Mayo was just sitting quietly by my ankle, reveling in shelter my jeans provided.
If I tried to take a picture of that view I could have never gotten it. No wide angle lens blows your mind like being surrounded in a real vision. No concoction of words I could write on this page would put you in that moment. No movie theater could show me that.
Yet, that’s real life. That’s right there. That’s free. The solvent and drive it puts behind your thoughts. That is God given.
I feel as if I am on that balcony every day of my life. I want to focus on this one pueblo and the kids running around with sparklers in the square. I want to see the professional show a Guatemalan immigrant is putting on outside on the corner Chicken Shack. I want to see the people huddled around the one pulperia in their mountain town, speaking their weird Spanish, as they fire rocket after rocket off.
You can’t focus on all of it at once. You can’t work 16 hours a day, still have a relationship with your kids, learn Portuguese, and have great sex three times a night. You have to pick and choose.
That 24 hour request for a balance should invigorate us. We’re at a buffet and there’s so much to choose from. Instead I feel we all become passive and uncaring with life. It’s just one more fireworks display, I’ve seen it before. It’s just a canyon. Yeah the tide came in, there is sea life, who cares?
You turn on CNN, a leading news network. This show will tell you how to make money. Sanjay Gupta is here to tell you what medical advances could save your well-to-do ass. This vaguely Irish looking woman will say something 96% politically correct and 4% abrasive, and we’ll throw our heads back as if Jesus just denounced Caesar. The Weather man is up in arms, oh my, I’ve never seen anything like this in 26 years of broadcasting. Okay, back to the news you need to know, about how this couple of heroin-addicted anarchists bought an explosive, and this woman stabbed her husband over a yam.
It’s like when a certain drug isn’t working for you anymore and you look for something new. Crack, glue in a plastic bag, infanticide reporting, it all blends till you’re toothlessly seeking rest against a chain link fence.
Who cares? Barney told you it was all about you when you were an infant. In school they taught you how to read Nike’s “Just Do It!” Don’t get it yet, it’s so simple, you just do it! Your parents in high school told you it was still about you, and this degree was going to give you the world.
It’s all so useless if you believe it was all only for you to begin with.
I have no desire to write anything dramatic or self-praising, but in reality, I’m dumbfounded I’m here. I’m in disbelief as to my sobriety, my family life, and how much I enjoy my job.
Nobody says on their death bed, “I wish I spent more time at the office.” That was the one thing I wanted to change this year. I felt very blessed for 2012, but rebuilding is a good time to let go of restraint. At some fork in the road you need to decide to develop again.
Playing Spanish and English scrabble that same night I grabbed for a disposed-of score sheet. I started writing down what I wanted to do, just like I used to do in my notebooks in high school.
I made a work schedule. It’s a strong one, but not all consuming. There is a large portion of time devoted toward teaching, but no more than half a day usually. There are time allotments for articles, Pocketfives Training videos, personal lessons, and consultations. There is time allotted for working out, personal study, cash games, and tournaments.
Then, I did the fun part. I wrote down things I’d been wanting to do but had been putting off, because I’d been working 10+ hours a day. Fix my Casterboard and go ride at this park. Write this one piece I’d always thought of. Take a lesson in this. Learning to cook this dish. Read this book I’ve had for a while. Play through this video game. Travel to this place. Set up this upgrade to the house. Donate time to this good cause.
You really have a chance every day, as cheesy as it sounds, to live out a narrative way more fleshed out than any movie you’ve ever seen or GTA: San Andreas. There is so much to see, taste, or touch.
I never want to preoccupy myself with something that is chemically created in my mind again. There’s so much to do on this Earth, and my God is it fun.
Malcolm Gladwell described his writing as a way to go on adventures. Over the past year I’ve gotten to talk to people from all walks of life through Assassinato Coaching, Twitter, and Facebook. I am excited to see where I could take PokerHeadRush.com with a front page upgrade, and with me having more time for escapades.
Thank you for being a reader. Have a great 2013. Don’t let the feeling leave you by the 11th.