Saturday, March 28, 2015

That Damn Thing on My Arm

You may have noticed I haven't been posting or tweeting as much lately. Okay, you haven't, because your life doesn't center around what I do or don't do. Good. I'd be concerned if it did. ANYWAY I keep getting reminded by the stupid tattoo on my arm that I need to be a man worth knowing. Thing is always there, man, announcing itself in ye olde English and just NAGGING at me. One of the ways I'm trying to get it to shut up - you don't hear it talking? Really? - is by doing my best to erase negativity from flowing out of me. Easier said than done, that.

It's easy to criticize, isn't it? So easy to attack the likes of others to belittle them and make yourself feel better. I am super, super guilty of that in my past. It's a sad way to trick yourself into thinking you're improving your self-worth. You're not, though, or at least I wasn't. Negativity is just that - negative. There's nothing good or positive that can come from it when you're knocking something down with no real benefit for anyone involved. So now before I post anything, I try to take a step back and think, 'Does this do any good at all?' If it doesn't, it gets vaporized. In theory, at least.

Example? Sure. Terry Pratchett died. For whatever reason his work never resounded with me. I know, heresy. It's weird because I like silly stuff like Monty Python and League of Gentleman (well, dark as well) and I tried and tried but he just didn't grab me. I never fell in love with Good Omens - put down the pitchforks and torches - because his parts just seem labored. When he died the net was filled with my friends lamenting his loss and commenting on how much they loves his work. There was a part of me that wanted to acknowledge their grief but also voice my dissenting voice, just for the sake of discussion. It wasn't the right time.It wasn't about me or my opinion. It was about letting my friends be sad and share their grief to lessen it. So I shut up. I almost didn't write this because, well, it's a wee bit passive-aggressive, no? Here, I'll offer this to my Pratchett-loving friends - I'll give it one more try, so think hard and suggest his very best book, the one that's going to change my mind. I'm surprisingly open to being corrected. Hell, I tossed aside the first Game of Thrones after 50 pages until my wife suggested I try it again. She was right.

I'm not perfect at this. I am still going to watch The Soup and laugh my ass off because if you're going to hang a target on yourself, I'm going to enjoy the shot. I'm still going to make political comments mocking the stupidity and greed of our politicians because that's spreading the word, hoping for change. I'm still going to hatefollow a couple of people on Twitter because every time I don't reply to one of their manipulative/self-centered/myopic tweets I feel better about myself for allowing them to continue to live in their world as is. If requested I will offer constructive criticism instead of bashing, support instead of derision, positive feelings instead of a black cloud.

I can't change the world. But I can change my role in it, and maybe that'll help. ::shrug::

Woo! Heavy stuff, dewwwwwwwwd. Ya ever gonna finish that book? Soon. On chapter 34 of 42 with some stuff to add, but it's getting there. The fact that DAW has started accepting unsolicited manuscripts presents me with an interesting dilemma - submit to the slush pile or look for an agent instead. Decisions, decisions.

Coaching both my son's baseball team and my daughter's softball team. Working full time. Playing in two hockey leagues. Trying to finish my book and waiting on others to finish editing theirs. Draconis weekend coming up as well as an MS Walk. That right there is a full plate, my friends.

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