One Night Stand

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This was the strangest funeral I had ever attended. The girl in the coffin was not a friend, not family, not even a co worker. We had met a few lonely nights ago at a little underground bar called The Nightcall. She was dressed in a flimsy blue dress and cherry pumps. With a cigarette in one hand and a Jack in the other she looked over at me and nodded. Taking the invitation I bought her a few drinks then we grabbed a cab back to her place.

To be honest I barely remember that night. I remember that she was really kinky and I was to drunk to really process all her little fantasies. All I really know is that the next day I woke up with a splitting headache and her standing over me with a mug of something hot. “I’m going to a party later.” she said as I rolled out of her bed and accepted the mug. “You can come if you want.” Slowly I sipped the brown sludge. Why is she inviting me to a party, I thought to myself. Doesn’t she know this is the last time we’ll see each other? Shrugging to myself I looked up at her. Watery blue eyes stared back. They looked dead. “Sure.” I replied. The girl nodded and walked out of the room.

I sat on her bed staring into space. My body felt like shit. A clock on the wall read 2:30pm. With a sigh I stood and started dressing. “Hey,” I yelled from her room,”Can I use your shower?” If I was going to go back out I might as well smell nice. She yelled a yes back.

After showering and dressing I made my way to her kitchen. It was a bare apartment. There was a table and chair, a couch in the living room and a small television. No pictures hung on the walls. There wasn’t even a cheap piece of artwork. “Like to keep it simple?” I asked trying to break the awkward silence. She nodded.

“So,” she said,”That party begins at 4. And we have to take the train. I’m also hungry so we should probably head out now.” I shrugged. Grabbing a coat she led me out.

We ate at a little hot dog stand before hopping on the light rail to the far side of town. It was a 30 minute ride. To long to sit next to a stranger you slept with and not speak. And yet not a word escaped between us the entire ride. Finally we reached our stop. A soft drizzle had begun outside. We got off the train and I followed the woman down a few blocks. The neighborhood was grungy and falling apart. A few people scurried by in the haze.

She stopped in front of a house that was three stories up and narrow. It was a brick home though the brick was no longer red. Instead it was black with mold. A little nervously I followed her inside. She was wearing a black dress tonight and purple lipstick. “So this is it?” I asked. I hoped she didn’t hear the edge in my voice. All I received in answer was a short nod. Shrugging I followed her up the stoop.

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Inside a dull thump of a stereo resonated through the brick. The hallway was empty save for a thick cloud of smoke hanging in the air. I could hear loud voices and laughter coming from a closed door to the right of us. She led me through the door and down a flight of stairs. A warm glow from several red and blue lamps greeted us. At the bottom was a large room filled with doped up people lounging on scrap sofas. “Hey!” someone yelled,”You made it!” Before I knew it I was swept into a haze of smoke, and smiles, and dreams. I don’t know what I took that night. A hot blonde pushed a few pills in my mouth with her tongue . Whatever they were they made me pass into oblivion. My date didn’t seem to interested in making sure I was ok. I remember seeing her with someone else across the room. They were making out. It didn’t matter. I had found a new hook up, a hook up with pills.

The rest of the afternoon and night passed disappeared in a blob of pulsing music and foggy thoughts. In the morning I woke up in an empty basement. A smell of sweat and urine stung my nose. Without the dim lights you could see the black mold and grime that blanketed the walls and floor. I was sprawled on one of the couches. The air was damp. “Hello?” I called. No answer. My head hurt as I stood up slowly. Unsure of what to do I went upstairs and began to look for the girl I came with. The house was empty. My shoes made an earie click on the hardwood floors. Like my first hook up’s apartment there were no decorations, no lived in feel. Finally I gave up. I had to piss. Finding the bathroom I went in. As I stood there, unloading all the smoke and fog from last night something caught the corner of my eye, a shoe. There was a woman’s shoe laying next to the bathtub. Zipping up my pants I approached the tub. A strange sensation began to bubble in my stomach. With a moist palm I hesitantly pulled the bath curtain back. My breath caught in my throat. Laying with her body twisted in an unnatural angle was the girl I’d come with. Her eyes were open, glazed, staring. Her purple mouth was cracked open. A white residue dusted her upper lip every so gently.

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The ambulance was there within 10 minutes. She was pronounced dead on scene. With some shock and pity I answered the questions and went through the paper work. It wasn’t until late that evening that I finally made it back to my home. Two days later I received the call. It was from the coroner. After exchanging a polite but rather awkward introduction he asked an even more awkward and strange question. “Well sir, it seems as if this young woman has no family or friends that can be found. Usually for these types we hold a small service just to lay the poor soul to rest. Since you’re the one that found her, we would like to possibly invite you to attend. I know it’s a little unorthodox but you are the only person we have in connection with her.” His voice was dry and crackely like paper.

“Sure,” I said,”I’ll come.” I hung up the phone. The next day I went to the strangest funeral I had ever attended. There was a priest, the coroner, and an alter boy. A janitor stood silently in the back ground, broom in one hand, the other wiped the corner of his eye. “Such a shame,” he muttered,”Such a shame to live such an empty life and to die such an empty death.” A chill crawled up my spine.

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Her hair was red and long. It floated like a shroud over her shoulders. A faint rosy blush kissed her cheeks, as if she were not dead but merely asleep. As I stood there, a feeling of tiredness swept over me. I didn’t even know her name. Turning I left the chapel. I spoke to no one. Hailing a cab I climbed in and returned home. Some people haunt you forever. You can’t say why or really understand who they were or their purpose in your life, but they haunt you. She haunts me to this day. Her red hair, her blue dress, her weary nod. The cold way she handed me the coffee mug. She’ll haunt me till death comes to my door and finally frees me from this empty life.

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Jedi in Training

Lately I’ve been doing some thinking on blogging and what it is I’m most interested in sharing and writing about. After reading a few of the other fantastic blogs I follow I’ve come up with a few unoriginal ideas for myself. For the next month I’m going to attempt to write a series of short stories purely fictional for my blog. Next month will be a new series, unless the fiction is wildly popular. This is part of my diabolical plan to get more followers. The blogging world is really beginning to challenge me as a writer. What the hell do people want to read about? I’m trying to earn the title of Blogging Jedi. So prepare yourselves to jump into the world of make believe this month. It’ll be worth it:)

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Ignorance is Bliss But Knowledge Is Power

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The other day as I was taking in the beauty and charm of San Diego CA I was part of a conversation in which one of the participants asked who ISIS was. The rest of the group was quick to reprimand the individual for being so ignorant and careless in their knowledge of world events. The question and tongue lashing were soon forgotten and everyone forgot about the whole event as we moved onto different activities. Everyone that is except for me. I was so shocked and offended that this person, a young 20 something college student, did not know about one of the world’s most dangerous organizations. Not only is ISIS a terrorist group but they have waged a huge war that has effected the lives of thousands all over the world. How could they not know this?

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The whole intercourse renewed a strain of thought that I have been entertaining off and on over the last year. The thought is that the majority of young people today could give a flying F about what is happening outside of their 18 inch bubble. If something is not happening right now right in front of their very eyes then it is of no or little importance.

This obvious lack of interest shows a generation that has grown up so comfortable and secure that they cannot fathom the possibility that something bad could ever happen to them or this country. That is the tragedy of many American youth. The naive notion that wars in other countries, slavery in different parts of the world, or a flawed government within their own country do not effect them is a tragic and destructive mindset. If we are unaware of what is happening else where then how could we prevent it from happening here? How can the freedom of speech be preserved if we refuse to listen to the ones trying to speak?

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Now I realize that the majority of news sources are full of crap. CNN is too left winged, Fox is too right, BBC is perfect, and all the others are whatever. I constantly second guess what I hear and see on the news. There’s a great quote for that, “Believe nothing of what you hear and only half of what you see.” This is true to an extant. But it isn’t an excuse to forgo staying up to date on current events. There is truth being spoken. Truth doesn’t like to hide, so if you look for it you can find it eventually. A good way to do that is have a few different news sources to cross reference with.

The crisis of the world do not have to become a hobby or obsession for you. However, by taking an interest in knowing what is happening you are equipping yourself with knowledge. Yes ISIS is killing people across the sea and Putin is a crazy president from a different country, and North Korea recently discovered how to use computers and it’s all very distant and happening far away from our safe little bubbles. But it affects us. ISIS recruits people from every where even America, we could have a president like Putin if we aren’t careful ourselves, and North Korea for sure wants to blow us to kingdom come. Girls not being viewed as equal members of society in other countries could one day put one of your daughters at risk when she decides to travel and see the world. Children being forced into hard labor and slavery is rampant through out the world and was apart of our recent past. Racism, sexism, homophobia, and hate do not care about borders or oceans or any other kind of barrier. Stay informed. Take an interest. You never know when that knowledge will be the power that saves or helps yourself or another human being.

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A Little Bit About My Epic Road Trip

Somewhere In Chapel NC there is a road sign that follows my blog

Somewhere In Chapel Hill NC there is a road sign that follows my blog

I got tired of the fitness series so decided three posts related to that was more than enough. Instead I decided I would write a little bit about my brush with the nomadic lifestyle and being a little bit homeless.

It all started back in November. I had been planning my epic road trip for a few months and could not wait to say au revoir to the Coast Guard and hit the open highway. Well now I’ve been on the open highway for almost a month (Sunday will be the month mark) and I would love to be in a situation where my butt didn’t feel like it was permanently glued to a car seat. If I’m not driving I’m walking. Just about every place I’ve visited so far I’ve walked till I’ve dropped.  One reason I cut my fitness series short was because I couldn’t keep writing about all the walking I was doing! It’s been grueling and I think I’m ready to walk a marathon.

New Orleans Santa

New Orleans Santa

Now apart from my sore butt and tired feet I’ve really enjoyed this trip. America is incredibly diverse. Cape May NJ is a very different town from New London CT. Philadelphia PA is a different country compared to San Antonio TX. And Boston is a totally different planet from New Orleans. I could spend hours just writing about the differences in the culture and history of each place.

I realize that for a lot of people getting outside of their town is both expensive and terrifying. But I also realize that a lot of people are making weak excuses for not getting out and seeing new places. To travel and open up your eyes to a new world and create a more empathetic heart you don’t have to leave your country. You can benefit greatly just from traveling around the states. It’s a good stepping stone or baby step for anyone considering world travel. It’s easier to plan and budget trips in your country while still being able to see different lifestyles and learn from them.

This San Antonio shop is strangely similar to most of the markets in Mexico

This San Antonio shop is strangely similar to most of the markets in Mexico

My trip is far from over. I’m not scheduled to end my homelessness till Christmas Eve. But so far between my travel in the Coast Guard and this road trip I’ve gotten a very clear picture of how diverse and interesting America is. Go explore for your self and see if I’m wrong. I know you’re curious!

Staying Fit While Traveling Part 2: Holiday Eating

 

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The biggest challenge of fitness and overall health is the kitchen. No matter what your personal goals are food is going to be at least 90% of reaching that goal. The holidays is a popular time to bring up diet and food consumption. That’s because people seriously lose all control and then feel like telling the rest of the world how guilty they feel. We’ve all done it. As you all know by now I love to eat and I don’t deprive myself at all. However, I definitely do not make poor eating habits a regular thing. Even on my travels I am always aware of what I eat. It can be hard to do that when you are out of your element or in a new place. My goal when I’m on the road or in a situation where I don’t have total control over my food is to never over eat. I will eat till I feel satisfied and then stop. Most people over eat, and then discover that they can “never” lose weight. It can be hard training your stretched out stomach to know when enough is enough but it’s worth it. Your body is the gives the best advice on what you should and shouldn’t be eating. Listen to what it’s telling you!

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The holidays suck for trying to listen to your body’s messages, I to fall victim to its siren call.  All that delicious butter, sugar, and salt filled food is just begging to be shoved down your throat. Now at this point I should have a list of tips and tricks to help you stay trim and sexy while still indulging. I don’t. The only trick is your own mind. I don’t know what your personal health goals are. But whatever they are it’s 100% up to you to stick to them. If you don’t have any real goals and you over ate at Thanksgiving or whenever then don’t complain. If you do have goals and you are struggling with your mind I feel your pain! But one mistake will not ruin your chances of succeeding I promise. Learn what your triggers for over eating are and learn to do better next time.

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Staying Fit While Traveling Part 1

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Staying in shape is difficult. It’s literally a pain in the butt and requires time and energy. But it makes you feel good, stay healthy, look hot, and boosts confidence. So what happens when you decided to put yourself in a situation that takes you away from a regular routine?

I am currently on a 1.5 month journey across the states. Fitness is an important part of my life so it’s difficult for me to get thrown out of my usual schedule. That’s why I decided to do this series, staying fit on the road. My on the road fitness journey started this past weekend in Boston, MA. It was my first time visiting, and it was the perfect place to start this little project.

My first order of business was to go to Salem, MA where I had the best Indian food you can find on the East Coast. If you’re ever in Salem go to Passage to India. It’ll be well worth your time. After stuffing my face with nan and curry, my travel buddy and I walked around the main center of Salem. I’ll be honest, Salem sucks. It’s really boring, there’s hardly any history stuff, the witch shops are cheap and gimmicky, and there’s to many brick buildings. However, we did walk for about an hour looking at the few witchy shops Salem has to offer. Workout for the day, done. It is very important after any workout to have some kind of recovery meal. My recovery meal was an asparagus salad, and huge slice of chocolate mousse cheesecake from the Cheesecake factory.

The next workout happened Sunday when we went and explored the City. As a warm up we went to a lovely little coffee shoppe called The Thinking Cup. This cute coffee shoppe sells Stumptown coffee, proud moment from me since that’s THE coffee roaster of Portland OR, and makes delicious nutella filled croissants. Also their baguette sandwiches are pretty tasty.

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After a serious warmup at The Thinking Cup we began the main bulk of our workout. Walking around the city. This was actually a pretty real workout. We walked at least 5 miles, which in winter boots on the old roads of Boston isn’t the easiest task. For a little break we stopped into the Green Dragon for some drinks and the best mussels I’ve ever eaten. And of course we stopped at Mike’s Bakery and had some desert. After replenishing our depleted bodies we braced ourselves for the hardest part of the day’s workout, climbing to the top of the Bunker Hill memorial. In all seriousness that was actually difficult. It’s over 200 steps. I’m in pretty good shape, and I had sore calves the next day. To finish up we went to a delicious Italian restaurant Benevetos. By the end of the day we were completely beat down.

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For those of you shaking your heads because you thought this article would be more helpful I did do a tabata workout on Monday. Tabata is when you take an exercise and perform it for a period of time, usually short, then rest for an even shorter period of time. For example, you could do pushups for 20 seconds then rested for 10. I picked four exercises and did the 20×10 rotation for a minute then switched it up. After 16 minutes you are beat and feel like you did an hour’s worth of working out. Tabata is usually done with body weight exercises. It can be done anywhere easily and without taking up much time while still making you feel great!

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Fitness and staying in shape is great and amazing and everyone should do it. But honestly sometimes it just doesn’t make sense. I happen to love food and traveling and the two together can make a normal hardcore workout routine pretty damn difficult. But it can still be done and we can still have plenty of time for fun along the way.

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