Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Two, if by me...

In my ongoing journey toward positive change of the personal variety (you already know of my professional struggles), I've decided to do some exercises in introspection. Below are two lists of qualities/aspects of life. The initial list was written using my memory of childhood as a perspective. It contains ten words I thought related to childhood, which is in my opinion a state of mind where a lot of happiness comes from. The other is my less positive psyche's interpretation of the first list...

Hopeful Aubrey (Inner Child)

1. Innocence: Hang-ups, Issues and prejudice be gone

2. Wonderment: Appreciating the everyday as well as the unique

3. Imagination: Magic exists where life isn't based solely on rules

4. Joy: Pure and unfettered, regardless of past or present

5. Discovery: Adventures in experience

6. Optimism: You can, and will...

7. Home: Safe, welcoming and loving

8. Holidays: Festivities, fun and enchantment for all

9. Freedom: Unchained from worldly worries and responsibility

10. Immortality: An end, so far off as to be unimaginable

Cynical Aubrey (Inner Old Man)

1. Debauchery: Boobies and doobies and booze, oh my.

2. Complacency: Nada nu: Aubreyese for sick (of) home; evil stepbrother of homesick

3. Pragmatism: Magic? How bout making these damn bills disappear, Houdini?

4. Joy: Tainted and finite; as misery, pre-experienced or anticipated, is often used to define it

5. Discovery: A television channel featuring crazy Australians getting attacked by dingoes

6. Realism: If you could have, you would have

7. Home: Double locked, close to work and affordable

8. Holidays: Crowds, fruitcake, insatiable children and the empty wallets they leave in their wake

9. Slavery: Bills, bills, bills... Can't live with em'... Won't die without them

10. Death: Aches, gray hairs and suspicious lumps...reminders of your future as compost

After reviewing the lists, I decided I must find a way to successfully marry these two states of mind. They're definitely both a part of me, but they tend to take separate turns in the control room. One allows me to experience the beautiful things that life has to offer and reflect on them in a way that has personal meaning. One keeps me safe, out of trouble and (usually) gainfully employed. Lately I feel this duality has gotten a little one-sided in favor of the cane-shaker, and is consequently making a crap situation that much more unpleasant. Scrooge is depriving me of what little joy that is available to me at this juncture in my life. He's a sour, cantankerous bastard and I wish he would learn to lighten up or go away.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Thanks given

I'd like to thank everyone who expressed concern over my not-so-brief hiatus. I really appreciate everyone's concern and good advice. I'm trying to work my way back into writing shape and I'm still not very inspired. Don't fret if I lapse into longer than a day periods of inactivity...I won't bail again.

Obviously I haven't had the best start to fall. I imagine joblessness feels something like impotence. Hopefully I'll never be able to say that with certainty. They say misery loves company, and if that idiom were true, my life could currently be labeled a lovefest. I have three friends who were also laid off in the past two months with jobs ranging from real estate agent to pool cleaner. Bummerific.

Anyhow, the search continues. It would be nice if I could at least get a callback for some of these gigs. If things continue like this, I'm probably going to have to resort to kicking in company HR doors and forcing employers to screen me at butterknifepoint. I wonder if I can make the lead story on the 10 o'clock news for forcible interview.

Well there's always the circus.

Have a good weekend everyone. And don't dread Sunday. Trust me, if everyday was a Saturday, then you um, probably need a job.

Monday, September 29, 2008

The Prodigal Bum...

Dear fellow bloggers,


Since August 8, 2008, much has happened in my world. In those 53 days since I last wrote anything here an infinite amount of world events, have transpired. And even while being aware of this I felt as if only one thing of note had happened. As a result of it, I lost the direction I thought I had in life. I lost my creative spark. I lost my my confidence. I was laid off, which is something I never thought would happen to me for some reason. So, I'm no longer in radio, and I just don't see any real future in journalism. Bills are piling up. Applications keep going out, and I wait for a ringtone that never comes. I know...more important things have happened in the world. Boo-hoo, right?

Since August 8, over 19 million lives began, while over 7.8 million individual stories completed their final earthly chapter. Approximately 4.24 billion barrels of oil have been consumed worldwide. A fair share of this leaked out of my Pontiac onto my landlord's driveway. Despite of, or perhaps spurred by unspeakable ugliness in a world of abject poverty and trillion dollar economies, there's always time for frivolity. An average of 3.1 gallons of beer has been consumed per person worldwide since my last entry. And in my ongoing funk, I have personally done everything possible to make sure that every man, woman and child on earth statistically looks like a suds-swilling drunk. That's not a point of pride.

Certainly not my finest days...

I'm not writing this to inspire pity; only to illustrate my mind state during what has been during a truly tough period for me. This is honestly and truthfully, the very first time I have logged into this website since the last comment I wrote back in early August. Just prior to my vanishing act, I was down about my job and spent much of the time I would spend writing to look for a better situation. Fate provided me a hilarious cure for malcontentedness. My radio station was dissolved. The news was broken unceremoniously and suddenly. And company stock jumped three quarters of a point. I always wanted to use this blog as a vehicle to inspire laughter and original thought...not to lament personal failures. I didn't want to write bummer entries like this, and that's the reason I'm literally on a digital milk carton (very impressive work, Sus).

I don't know what I want to do anymore. My boss told me this type of thing will happen again if I try to stay in radio. Much of the same is going on in the newspaper industry. I wrote a post a while back about considering other lines of work, and now I have no choice but to do just that. To be honest, it's a scary situation; not knowing what you're gonna do with your life. Everything seems different after the really big plans don't pan out. It happens to most folks, I suppose.

I promise it won't be another 53 days until I write again. I also promise this dreary edition - which is my first outright bummer post - will be my last of that sort. I'm working hard to get things going and come out of this better than before. And I will. For those of you that checked and wondered or even left comments of concern, thanks. So many of you write such wonderful stories, and believe it or not, you became as much a typically anticipated part of my day as that first cup of hot coffee. Maybe looking at life through a perspective other than my own would be good for me. I know the past 53 days have felt like a lifetime in terms of what I've been missing.

Sorry this wasn't more entertaining. I'm not quite there yet.


Thursday, August 14, 2008

Shrink Gangs

I played around with a Jungian personality test online this morning and got an unsurprising result. In college I took Myers- Briggs tests like this twice and got the same "ENFP" summation of my personality. It's funny how people love to classify and categorize. I mean, it almost seems silly to think that one would even try to group anything as random as the average human being.

But, I've learned to come to terms with the banal, Maxim/Cosmo side of human nature that just looooves lists and categories. So, in keeping with the current theme of human categorization, I'll call the psychoanalytical versions of these groupings "shrink gangs."

Here we are...

Jung Test Results

Extroverted (E) 63.41% Introverted (I) 36.59%Intuitive (N) 65% Sensing (S) 35%Feeling (F) 58.33% Thinking (T) 41.67%Perceiving (P) 70.27% Judging (J) 29.73% Your type is: ENFP

Accuracy: - 5 high 4 3 2 1 low

ENFP - "Journalist". Uncanny sense of the motivations of others. Life is an exciting drama. 8.1% of total population.

Take the test for what you will. I know there are plenty of people out there who believe psychology is definitely less real than Falcor. Perhaps the tests are not quite as legitimate a process as say, guessing interpreting human events on the basis of star alignment. But at least the test collects and considers real data in making its assessment.

ENFPs are extremely empathetic, socially dynamic people. And if I may be so bold as to make an inference (using myself as an example), I'd suspect most of us are a bit cuckoo as well. Being the extremely social creature I am, I'm always looking for ways to network and connect with others. So...

How would YOU like to be a part of the ENFP team? You and your fellow ENFPs will be a part of a world-wide family of folks who love nothing more than to repeatedly whack themselves in the forehead with plastic toy hammers, then ask observers why they appear uncomfortable. Can you hack it? Let's see. Are you the type who...

  • LOVES the company of others, but can easily get so irritated with them you want to strangle them with your own underwear?

  • easily reads people's emotions, but can't hide your own to save your life (meaning you SUCK at lying...and consequently, poker)?

  • gets bored easily...but is creative enough to think up a fun activity, like painting your own skeleton onto your naked body?

  • can make friends with anyone, to include automatons and ultra-conservatives?

  • is uncomfortable with negative vibes, unless they're constructive, meaning you're the one putting them out?

  • is possibly suffering from sensory addiction? Yeah? Would you put hot sauce on a banana, or kick your own ass just to change things up?

  • can tell, almost without fail, which characters will die in the movie... or which people you meet are inwardly hating you and which ones are mentally raping you?

  • love to be surprised with new-ish, against-the-grain ideas and concepts (the actually not-so-new "backwards" movie; getting sex out of the way, then going out on the first date; the urban sombrero, etc.)?

If you answered "yes" to more than one of these questions, stop by your nearest psychoanalysing Website and take a Meyers-Briggs test for your free ENFP membership TODAY! Of course, if you're not an ENFP you suck, but there are plenty of other shrink gangs you can join including the scaredy-cat INFPs, anal retentive ISTJs or Mr./Ms. bossy-pants ENTJs.

So go examine your head today! And find out which one of the butt-load of shrink gangs out there YOU belong to.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Sir Francis Food Lion, Duke of Dumbtat

The danger of telling your children they CAN'T get that fad-ish haircut...or have those $200 shoes (that don't feature velcro strapping or kangaroo logo)...or you won't buy them an authentic NFL team Starter jacket...or let them get their ears (or possibly nose) pierced is...

(see picture)

...that they'll be too immature to understand that you're trying to teach them the value of money and not spoil them with petty, needless shit...then in a fit of "I'll fix their wagon" teen exuberance, they'll go get a large tattoo of an ancient, magical creature etched prominently onto their right arm. Hope - for your child's sake - it's not a liger.

They just may end up being known as Food Lion. Or better yet...Food Dog.