don’t need a weatherman…

IMG_4230my apartment was put together one thing at a time – slowly making it mine: a free-spirit so used to living wherever, nesting a home. but when it’s time to go – none of it matters – no attachment, it’s just stuff. from the vintage green shag rug i worked so hard to get clean, to the wallpaper of two hundred and fifty-year-old book pages: just stuff

the buyers of stuff have come on time and everyone’s paid the requested prices. everything sold-off except the mattress -can’t get rid of it. i’ve tried posted several different ads on craigslist: for free, for $50, for $300 but everyone interested’s flaked. no-showed, ghosted, wasted time. it’s become a shackle. decent-person protip: when spiriting, it’s important to try leaving the path behind sewn together with a neat little bow.

i regrouped for two years in st. louis. got whole, or whole(r). i’d daydream being on a farm. being away from all the noise. tending the land; keeping it simple. but after a few trips to chicago, doing what i was doing in st. louis, in chicago – near friends – felt like a bright idea. and when it was finally time to make the move, all the pieces fell into place

sunday morning was my intended go-day and i was still stuck with this mattress, in a now empty apartment. this fucking mattress. no idea what to do with it. i woke up to the soft sound of my next-door neighbor’s door opening. i ran downstairs, “hey! weird question but any chance you wouldn’t need a queen mattress, would you?”

my neighbor looked at me puzzled. pausing with a slight tilt in his head. then he lit up, “yes! this is so weird! yes i do need a mattress! getting one is on the top of my list of things to do this week.”

mattress situation: solved. mise-en-place
if this isn’t a sign of making the right move, i don’t know what is.

in truth, the twenty-fifteen chicago-experiment only lasts a few weeks – i did want to find a farm, after all – these are photos of late summer 2015


listening to jefferson starship’s miracles (1975)

all the way to the sole

“use the world around for one’s adventure” – with core no wall keeps one down, with communication every door’s an invitation. protip: hotels always have restrooms and a place to charge your batteries when you’re ‘waiting for a friend’

the neon merry-go-round isn’t doing it and options for extracurricular activities are turning sideways. there’s always exploring. with this stint i’d walk for hours and wear a few pair of shoes all the way to the sole. oh the people you’ll meet: the freshly proven innocent, the sons of the city. taggers, skaters, transients, users. nosh from the hand of a chef at a gala and go where the cops won’t. scale walls. climb fences. lay the land. touch sole

wrong move you're dead - that girl is...   IMG_5083

listening to föllakzoid’s iii (2015)

the phoenix thing

the phoenix thingthis was difficult to write about, especially at the time
it’s backdated with the gift of hindsight. thanks hindsight

one foot in front of the other. i start with 10 minutes of exercise. im out of shape and constantly checking my pulse. i got fat. not super-fat but fat enough – fat enough that in my ultramarathon of over-thinking my beating heart means “heart attack”. i haven’t moved like this in years, outside of a dance floor anyway. i stick with it and grow with it. a daily routine. my blood flows; i exit stasis

i need more and find meditation impossible with the whole over-thinking ultramarathon thing, i start my yoga practice. my first classes suck: the misery of being lost in a matted sea of others with no idea where we’re at or what we’re doing and i can’t stop thinking: how much longer is this class. this person next to me… wtf. wtf. wahhh my ego. then class is over and i feel satisfaction in its completion. the next day i show back up for the same fight. and the next day and the next and the next and the next. i start understanding the physical: the flows. the poses. the  breath. i stretch a little further than before and for brief moments it’s as if time stops and i think of nothing – which is everything

the second month of my practice my studio holds a month-long challenge: do yoga everyday. i stop counting classes after sixty – i’ve become intermediate. im feeling the connection of the mind and the body; what yoga’s really about. my mood lifts and life is becoming better / more magical: serendpidous, synchronicitous, peaceful

before the first footing i was an ultramarathon of over-thinking. depressed. near the bottom – in the darkness. some time ago i soared the skies of possibility. i was up: a psychedlic glimpse of love, purpose, spirit but now nothing. it was a year since up and my ego was refusing to surrender; the only part of me staying in the fight: a useless war only prolonging what needs to happen. over time and after making tough choices: i let go. the walls, which were keeping me from starting over, crumble. at last in pieces. i build again. first one foot

Screen Shot 2016-08-12 at 12.25.33 PMeverything [this site, this journey] has led me to this point – i understand that what i was doing took me to this rebirth. i had a vision of what’s possible in up, but have to do the work to get there. infinite paths infinite times would still lead to this: life’s boot camp and it takes as long as it takes. yada yada yada im a phoenix

not everyone knows what it’s like to soar the sky. to travel. to be. to feel. heights so high there are no higher. to see all. to feel all. to be all. and thankfully not everyone knows how deep the depths can get. where light is blocked by the dungeon walls of the abyss. where the abyss becomes everything. where everything is nothing.

the highs make the depths ever deeper and the depths make the highs ever more sweeter especially when looking at light after so long in darkness. the short-term key is to stay self-aware and not travel from one extreme to the other too quickly, too swiftly – doing so will always lead to anxiety, paranoia, fear…one must find balance. the long-term goal is to keep soaring without looking down, growing ever higher with each lesson learned…until it’s real

IMG_4239this phoenix thing only works if one works to stay a phoenix. if not, it’s back to the ashes. back to the abyss…until that one foot. at the time of this writing, im a phoenix and im working hard to stay a phoenix, but this is life and one day in this life i may run the emotional saṃsāra again – but with a set of tools more powerful than any i’ve had before

Makin’ Lemonade in Michigan

who brakes for tropical storms? well, i do, or at least i did. the organic blossoming of a road trip into ozark country and crystal bridges museum of american art, a serendipitous year in the making, was canceled at last minute due to flooding and torrential rainfall from tropical storm bill. and so a journey north into michigan seemed a more serene and less-personally-traveled option for myself and this trip’s attorney. this is a simple reminder for how to make lemonade.

the ad campaigns and after party ramblings of the unparalleled beauty of michigan’s coast was always a bit forgettable. lots of places have beauty, how’smichigan any different? well, damn.

we traveled on whim and chatted with everyone- an ever growing game of happenstance all while avoiding the interstate: despite an early blowout and a mid-trip scrap with harmless’ angels

pure michigan.

listening to marika hackman’s before i sleep (2015)

Everyone Loves a Parade

in august police officer darren wilson shot black teen michael brown in a suburb of saint louis, missouri. this kicked off a movement of protests around the city and across the country. at this same time, i started working in the old-money part of town. i’d overhear conversations of the city’s elite making small talk of events happening only a few miles away. but those few miles are vast oceans of difference and divide. resentment is felt by all sides; some with cause, mostly with ignorance – all of it dirty. and in my own detachment: the latest episode in the spiral of my hometown.

some time later, in early october, my flat was abuzz from the vibration of helicopters overhead. it was probably happening for a while but slowly crept into presence. i checked the news: police officer jason flattery shot black teen vonderrit meyers jr right outside my neighborhood. the following night as the sun went down the helicopters returned. i listened to a broadcast of the police scanner and heard that the mourners and protesters from the shooting site were “on the move” and gathering up the street from my home.

my arrival was in the wake of “lite” vandalism. whomever did it, chased off by the community activists. this of course brought more police. the scene was maybe fifty protesters chanting and yelling at the hundred or so police in riot gear. their numbers matched by white hipsters from the neighborhood watching the events through their recording phones.

at an intersection the protestors moved from one corner to another and the police formed lines to split the group into factions who’d relocate and they’d do it all again. after several hours a lenco bearcat rode onto the scene. an officer in a gas mask rode the top, broadcasting an announcement to “disperse”. officers put on their gas masks… and things kinda stood still for a while. a swift arrest here and there but mostly a standoff. the protestors took refuge in a nearby coffee shop. then, rather abruptly, the mass of police left leaving behind the final few protesters and everyone went home.

as horrible as the shootings were; past the serious face of the fronts, this night felt like party – everyone getting something out of it – smiles. laughter on each side. i moved around behind the police lines, the protest lines, near the journalists. i witnessed a general excitement to be there: the protesters yelling freely at the face of their oppression. the police asserting authority over those who disrespect the order they represent. the cameramen and journalists with something fresh for the morning news. the neighborhood hipsters with something to do. there i was: slightly detached repeating a mental wtf wondering wouldn’t everything be easier if everyone agreed to stop acting like assholes but what do i know…


Shopping at the National Mall (WDC)


after europe, returning home to explore america’s capital for the first time was surreal. it felt like walking through a life-sized model. was it even real or had the idea of what it’s “supposed to be” become the reality of what it is? (isn’t this the case for all things?) even after liberating itself from colonization, our founding fathers saw this nation as the new roman republic – i guess i always knew this but seeing it in person was something else entirely. i walked the museums of the national mall to witness our artifacts and treasures with my own eyes, though through a layer of gloss so american the experience felt more more like an amusement park than a history lesson. yet somewhere under the gloss, through the bullet-proof glass, and beyond the interactive-epcotist-buttons, one can see a glimmer of light still shining from the enlightenment… before a guard asks for identification anyway.

there is no auntie ann’s at the national mall | pointing at the white house and asking others what it is is fun | there are no guns allowed at the lincoln memorial (have some respect – back of the head, ya know?) | the national galleries of art have signs reading “do not touch the art” obviously because people were touching the art enough to necessitate the signs | dc metro trains are beat up and ugly. our visiting dignitaries ride above ground in limos with police escorts and don’t have to see the real shit | asians sleep in museums | monica lewinsky’s dress is not part of the smithsonian’s permanent collection |

special thanks to lindsay and max for the incredible hospitality

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 listening to bjm’s and this is our music (2003)

Wild Promise of

i left berlin and returned home to st. louis for thanksgiving. a week’s worth of preparations for a meal that, in my house, lasts less than an hour. god love my mom. the next day i left for new york to stay through the holidays with an escapade to dc and a dreary departure on new years eve.

at the time, i wanted to turn my back on the machine to focus on doing more – but by stepping face first into the lion’s den i’d find myself humbled and heavy by nonsense i’d have to work through, though it wouldn’t happen on this trip. so much for the words of the gypsy… twelve bucks down the drain. everything happens for a reason, right?

listening to the pastel’s leaving this island (1997)