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Archive for the tag “blogs”

Starting and Starting Over

walking backwards png

Starting, and starting over, is not the same thing.  They are as different as walking forward, and walking forward, backwards.  Not as clearly different as starting and stopping.  If it was, then you would have no trouble telling them apart.  But make no mistake; people do have trouble telling them apart.

Starting is that thing we do at the beginning of some something we have not done.  Starting over is that thing we do when some something stops us, but just long enough for us to think that maybe we have not really stopped at all.

It is understandable when those who have never really started a something, and seen it to its end, don’t know.  Most books don’t teach it, and most folks have never lived it.  It’s a mystery, on the lines of accepted but incomprehensible things like the laws of gravity, and thermodynamics.  But whether or not someone knows what those names are names for, ask them if a satellite or even a shooting star could fall to earth, and they nod and say, of course those things are true.

And this is where I say that, because those laws say that a body in motion tends to stay in motion, and a body at rest tends to stay at rest, the very same thing can be equally true about the path of a human life, lived in this human world, often at the mercy of the most human of circumstances.

Speed bumps are formed.  Detours are made.  Shit happens.  And sometimes, those obstacles stop the beautiful movement of a body in motion, until it becomes a body at unintended rest.

Have you ever tried to give a falling star a shove to get it back on its course through the heavens?  It’s not as easy as it sounds.  In fact, it’s damn fucking impossible.  Yet when a very human body, with all its complexities of motion and emotion, loses its path through the glory of this world, it is no more easily shoved back on course than the star that fell from the sky.

But we still ask of those who lost all their momentum, sometimes well-intentioned, sometimes with a critical intent, why can’t you just start over?

Maybe it’s in the way they’re walking.  And maybe you’ve been fooled, because you haven’t noticed that they’re walking forward, backwards.  And maybe in walking backwards, they are slowed by looking at the past that was; their past, lost to the speed bumps, the detours, and the shit of something that no longer is, and not the new that waits behind their back, right over their shoulder.  Not in starting over, but in turning around and starting brand new.

So in the same way you would look into the night sky and at the stars within it, look closely at the shining stars before you, and understand.  Because starting over is never easy, and they are doing the best that they can.

 

© Copyright 2017 William S. Friday

The Accidental Prophet

the-prophet-chuck

“A wish is not a goal, and hope is not a plan.”

I have a friend, a very close friend, who says that whenever I speak of the future, I already know what’s going to happen.  One year.  Five years.  Ten.  Every step and every stage, all mapped out, in my head and then, into words.  Thoughtful.  Methodical.  Concise.

Except I swear that, every time it happens, I have no conscious idea that what I’ve just said is, in fact, a plan.

So unbelieving am I that, after my friend who hears recites my future future back to me, I am left scrunch-faced, my head shaking, saying, “What are you talking about?  That wasn’t a plan, that was just wishful thinking.”  And yet, in the two years of our friendship, apparently, I’ve never been wrong. 

And it pisses me off every time.

It would seem that I hate being right.

If I were to put it in terms that I could understand, I would call myself, “The Accidental Prophet”. 

Over the last year alone, I called my shot about creating a job out of two other jobs so that I would have all the time in the world to sit undisturbed and, on company time, with the boss’ blessing, write another book.  That happened.  Before that, I called my shot about taking ten years of chicken-scratched poems, and publishing a first book.  That happened, too.  Somewhere in between the first book and the job, I said something about creating a publishing company and, yeah… yeah… whatever.

Now, says my friend, I’ve been saying things again.  Future kind of things.  The kind that, if you were to ask me, I wouldn’t call anything more than a few nice ideas.  A wish here, a hope there.  Just spitballing into the wind.  And if I didn’t have the big-eared friend with the over-developed sense interpreting irony in all its forms, I might dismiss these, too. 

Except now, I can’t.  Because I know better than to argue with a plan, even when I don’t know it’s a plan until comes true.

And all I can say right now is, if it’s true, 2017 is going to be a hell of a year.  And if none of it comes true, well like I said, I hate being right, so I’ll be the first to tell you I was wrong. But if by accident I was right, I’ll be writing another one of these next year. 

Complete with the “I told you so” from my friend who hears.

 

© Copyright 2017 William S. Friday

Defragging

defrag

Pretty words that writers use

to describe what it is they do. 

Emote. 

Ruminate. 

Bleed. 

I prefer words that find

their form in function. 

Every time I sit,

or stand,

to write,

I always go on much too long,

with words steeped

in antiquation. 

When,

in all reality,

the words bitch in my direction

to be sorted and chopped,

then laid sparse on the page. 

Someone once called what I do in words,

defragging. 

Like a computer,

in desperate need

to sort out its shit,

discard what slows

and corrupts,

and make itself right again. 

I will never hear a better way

to explain me

than they used to explain me

to myself.

 

© Copyright 2016 William S. Friday

In Warmth

in-warmth

I’m sitting on a beach,

an hour before sunset,

in the summertime. 

 

The only shadow on the sand is behind me,

along with every thought and action leading up to this point

in my life. 

 

And before me, only two things show themselves. 

The sun, setting,

and an endless ocean,

with the sun setting into it. 

 

These two are, for me,

not the sun and the ocean, but life and eternity. 

 

The ending of the day, life. 

The ocean,

a soon-black eternity. 

 

Together,

they are all my finite mind can handle,

as I wait, in warmth,

for both.

 

© Copyright 2016 William S. Friday

Dog

dog

I‘m not what people

look for in a blog. 

I don’t write about

my kids,

my wife,

my dog. 

My kids are all grown. 

One has a kid of her own. 

The other is gay. 

With his mother he’ll stay. 

But the dog,

purest love that I’ve known. 

 

© Copyright 2016 William S. Friday

November Is No More

today pic

November is no more.

The frenzy.  The confusion.  The push to the finish.

(and that’s just when you’re sleeping)

Every day a panic where there need be none, all because of a looming, self-imposed midnight deadline that causes content anxiety in the most honored of bloggers.  And gives all wannabe bloggers the only reason they need to disengage from all social media until after the New Year.

So before I go off into blogging witness protection for the next month, here’s a little recap of the November that was.

NaBloPoMo 2016.

 

Where most of my good ideas came from…

urban-lumberjack

 

Where most of my bad ideas came from…

bed

 

My most favorite post…

There Must Be Something More

more

 

Your most favorite post…

Shitheap

 

img_1482

 

The reason I quit every year…

typewriter-bleed

 

The reason I don’t…

cheer-peppers

 

Thank you to the Cheer Peppers, and thank you to their creator, Ra Avis…

ra-avis

 

And as much as it pains me to say this here and now…

I’ll see all of you here again, next year.

 

© Copyright 2016 William S. Friday

Fuck the Future

fuck-the-future-jpg

A day for reflection,

about the past,

sure,

but more about the present. 

I am loved,

and I am hated. 

That doesn’t make me special,

just human. 

All that matters to me now is,

who is doing the loving,

and who is doing the hating. 

And fuck the future,

until tomorrow.

 

© Copyright 2016 William S. Friday

Urban Lumberjack

 

urban-lumberjack

Into the silent night,

I look up.  

A pig iron forest,

rises. 

My feet,

balanced upon soft cement,

a meadow,

grey. 

Red and black checked flannel,

and hemp,

layered above denim,

covering. 

With wool upon my head,

to keep warm,

my thoughts. 

The urban lumberjack,

with fire,

built from circuits,

lit by words,

sparks,

from my fingertips.

 

© Copyright 2016 William S. Friday

If God

nosferatushadow

If God

is like

you,

then

there is

no God.

 

 © Copyright 2016 William S. Friday

If It Makes It Any Easier

evil

 

“If it makes it any easier for you, remember…

…you’re not voting FOR a candidate.  You’re voting AGAINST their followers.”

#vote  #followers  #minions  #crazyassmotherfuckers

(my Facebook post from 7:14am Tuesday, November 8th, 2016)

People took it for a joke.  On Facebook it’s what I’m known for.  Funny post.  Funny comment in a thread.  Always making with the joke in a moment of seriousness.  I explain it as one of many coping mechanisms for dealing with the darker things in life.  I had already written a serious post on my WordPress blog that morning about something historical (historically tragic) that had been on my mind for weeks.  A semi-veiled warning about what happened when good people let bad things happen to other good people in the previous century.  Yes, it was cautionary.  But no, I didn’t think those who were reading that blog post really needed cautioning, did I?

Really?

Guess I was wrong about that.  For the final time.

In the past week, stories, often unconfirmed, have begun to surface.  Not over the acts of the President-Elect and his preliminary choices for cabinet positions and other political appointments.  Given the make-up of the Senate, while those things might be carrying a feeling of urgent dread for about half of America, they are as done a deal as the election itself.  This post isn’t about that, because this post isn’t about politics.

This post is about human beings.

Or should I say what I said in one of the hashtags, above…

#crazyassmotherfuckers

Just in the last 48 hours or so, different stories than those above have begun to surface.  Stories that have gone without media attention.  Stories that, if they were not shared in the context of a Washington political attention grab, would be quickly dismissed as “isolated” incidents from unrelated parts of the country.  But they aren’t unrelated, any more than they are isolated.  Because we are all hearing them.  Not in your Facebook feeds.  Not through some crazy URLs.  Not from total strangers with unknown agendas.

But from our own unimpeachable sources.  Our least crazy, most reliable, always trustworthy, never lied to you about anything before, friends.

If it hasn’t already happened to you.

Two examples.

Example number one…

At a restaurant on the east coast, a middle-aged Caucasian woman was confronted by a (presumably) drunk twenty-something Caucasian man.  As witnessed by one of my least crazy, most reliable, always trustworthy, never lied to me about anything before, unimpeachable sources, the man was clearly heard shouting at the woman,

“Your kind will all be behind the wall soon!”

Then my least crazy, most reliable, always trustworthy, never lied to me about anything before, unimpeachable source told the (presumably) drunk, twenty-something Caucasian man that he was making no sense, and was disrespecting a woman.  His response to this friend was,

“You didn’t see all that went down, cunt!”

Example number two…

In a public business park on the west coast, filled with professional people and families with children, a thirty-something Brown woman of indeterminate national origin was waiting outside before work in this public business park, filled with professional people and families with children, when a (presumably) drunk, twenty-something Caucasian man standing in front of his place of employment, shouted at her from a short distance away,

“Hey, if you go out with me, maybe I’ll marry you, and you can get your green card!”

Little did (presumably) drunk, twenty-something Caucasian man realize was that thirty-something Brown woman of indeterminate national origin is also one of my least crazy, most reliable, always trustworthy, never lied to me about anything before, unimpeachable sources.  As she attempted to go into work, and avoid further confrontation from (presumably) drunk twenty-something Caucasian man standing in front of his place of employment, she was forced to walk in near proximity past him.

As she did, (presumably) drunk, twenty-something, Caucasian man grabbed my least crazy, most reliable, always trustworthy, never lied to me about anything before, unimpeachable source, and shoved her up against a brick wall.  Through her own quiet words, and the distant shout of a third-party witness, this assault was ended before it could escalate into something uglier than should be imagined.

Remember how my original point was that this is not a political post, but a post about human beings?

My point is still my point.

These two incidents, which occurred approximately 3,000 miles apart, and in blue states, have more than a couple of things in common.  The first thing is WHO the initiator was in each of these moments.

Humans.

And before you take a deep breath with which to tell me that these weren’t humans behaving humanly, but instead some kind of inhuman monster, let that breath go.  They’re human alright.  Folks often get carried away trying to label certain aspects of human behavior as something carried out by inhuman monsters.  Sadly, that is not the case.  These are human atrocities carried out by human beings, ACTING atrociously.  Simple as that.  Human atrocities, with their origin in the darkest parts of the human soul.  They show themselves throughout human history… note my continued use of the word “human”… inhumanely done by humans to other humans because, humanity shows us, that this is what humans do.  It is also evil, as the majority of humans will tell you.

Next thing is WHAT these humans were doing.  They were assaulting other humans.  In these two cases, female humans.  Female humans who (presumably) were less physically intimidating than these two male human perpetrators.  In one of the cases, verbal assault.  In the other, verbal AND physical assault.  Crimes, both deeply intimidating, even scarring, to the victims.  This is, however, not new behavior for humans against other humans.  It is, at best, shameful behavior, given the circumstances of who the attackers, and victims, were.  At worst, a preliminary advance by the attackers, possibly leading to even greater danger of violence toward their victims.

Last thing is WHY.

Okay, maybe this is political.

Recall the words that each of these two assaults were predicated upon.  These are familiar words and concepts for anyone who has been alive and conscious in America during the our recently concluded Presidential campaign.  However, until last Tuesday night, these concepts were not thought of as acceptable, let alone encouraged, by any segment of America unless you were one of the rightly-shunned number of humans who believed in institutional violent behavior towards disenfranchised groups, be they ethnic, gender, religious, or preference.  This human behavior was looked down upon, properly ridiculed, and even prosecuted.  Those who would act on such impulses, regardless of motivation, were thought of as aberrant within human society.

Yeah, until last Tuesday.

When less than 50 percent of voting Americans decided that the candidate who vocally encourages this kind of behavior should be in charge of the whole shit show.

And now, this candidate’s #followers, #minions, this President-Elect’s #crazyassmotherfuckers, are feeling empowered by his supposed mandate.

It has begun.

So what is left for decency, which is no longer common, to do?

“If it makes it any easier for you, remember…

…you’re not voting FOR a candidate.  You’re voting AGAINST their followers.”

And that vote is still four years away.

In the meantime, from a previous, serious, cautionary post, that I didn’t think those who were reading really needed cautioning from, I will leave you to interpret these words as you see fit.

“First, they came for the Liberals, and I did not speak out, because I was not a Liberal.

Then, they came for the Working Poor, and I did not speak out, because I was not the Working Poor.

Then, they came for the Browns, and I did not speak out, because I was not Brown.

Then, they came for me, and there was no one left to speak for me.”

Footnote…

Prior to November 8, 2016, I was not who you might have believed me to be after reading this post.  I was a “Silent Republican” living in a very Blue state.  As an artist, I felt it was in my best interest to keep my political leanings to myself.  I did that for more than thirty years.  That silence ended, with my vote AGAINST the choice of the Electoral College, one week ago.  I could not, in good or clean conscience, no matter what my opinions on issues may have once been, voted for a candidate who I believe embodies all of the worst human traits and tendencies we, as Americans, have come to rightly dismiss.  In previously veiled ways and words, and now out in the open, I will stand… I will fight… against this wrong turn in our history, with all the means at my legal disposal.

I hope to God you will too.

 

© Copyright 2016 William S. Friday

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