Seven Things About Moi

Alrighty, so I was tagged for an award by my lovely wife/fellow blogger/training partner/life coach and I’m extremely tardy in posting it up.  I am supposed to tag fifteen blogs that I am new to following, which, would be impossible.  I don’t follow fifteen blogs regularly in all of the blog-o-sphere, so fifteen new ones is just not gonna happen.

I am also supposed to list seven things about myself I’ve not mentioned before.

Seriously?  I wrote out “101 Things About Me” twice already with no overlap…I’m tapped out people!

Oh, OK.  Fine.  How hard can seven things be?  Right?

  1. The last movie I saw was “Alice in Wonderland” which qualified as “being stoned by proxy” for two hours.  Also, the movie was good but the ending sucked like a starving man at a crawfish feed.
  2. I saw the band Train in concert in a tiny town in southern Oregon.  Sort of an outdoor music festival type thing.  They KILLED.  Then they resurrected the bodies and KILLED THEM AGAIN just to prove their unending awesome.
  3. Speaking of music, the other day someone said a song on the radio “sounded like high school” and it made me think for a while.  High school for me sounded like a combination of Van Halen, Def Leopard, Bryan Adams, Damn Yankees, Enigma, Richard Marx, Madonna, Michael W Smith, and Amy Grant.  Probably all played at the same time.
  4. I am a manly-man; I like football, baseball, Sportscenter, beer, fast cars, scantily clad women, and all the other manly-man things in the world.  Conversely, Pride and Prejudice remains both my favorite book and favorite movie.  So sue me.
  5. While I’m not much of a cologne wearer, my favorite is Armani.  Not the new Armani, but the original classic Armani Cologne.  The one my daughter said smells like old people (I disagree, I say it smells like a fine men’s store).
  6. Video footage of me doing stupid things can be found on the interwebs, performing the following general activities:  Skiing, falling off the roof of a building, launching a potato more than a mile with a cannon made out of irrigation piping, smoking a cigar while golfing without pants (it’s not a detail captured on film, but rest assured that alcohol WAS a factor).  No, I will not tell you how to find them.
  7. For years (decades actually), I was far more recognized for my artwork than for my writing.  I have literally hundreds if not thousands of dollars in art supplies, a wonderful drawing desk, and a significant investment in digital tools as well.  I won awards, my art was published multiple times, and I was probably a strong enough illustrator to work professionally full time if I’d have wanted to go that route.

    Then two things happened:

    When I started my divorce from wife #1, I ended up giving away 95% of my portfolio stuff and only kept the really awful painting starts that I didn’t want her to destroy out of spite.

    Around the same time I had a series of neurological issues that have left me with minor and intermittent dyskinesia (yes, the same dyskinesia that TB’s wife named her blog after, and which is often seen in Parkinson’s patients after years of Levodopa use) of the limbs and acute focal dystonia (like super powerful writer’s cramp plus spasmodic muscle twitches) in my right hand.

    And about a 70% reduction in my ultra-fine motor control in my wrist and fingers.  Fine motor control is pretty OK, I can type and write notes in handwriting that doesn’t look like mine, and use a screwdriver, etc…but the ultrafine control, the sub centimeter precision movements are gone.  It’s like the brain sends the message but the hand just never gets the delivery.

    Two MRI scans, plus two neurological specialists and a series of medical trials later, and I can officially say “I’m ok, it’s very rare and I just have a loose wire somewhere above my shoulders and below my brainstem.”  No big deal, doesn’t happen more than a couple of times a year, and it doesn’t keep me from working or driving or golfing or rocking out the Guitar Hero or gunning down splicers in Bioshock 2.

    But it does keep me from doing art.  At all.  I struggled with it SO HARD four years ago that I’m too afraid to try again.  I don’t want to KNOW that I can’t do it anymore.  I’d rather just keep setting up my desk, making my workspace ready, keeping all my supplies at hand and pretend that I’ll actually do it again someday.

    Otherwise it’s admitting that the one thing about me that I used to think “made me special” really is dead.

5 thoughts on “Seven Things About Moi

  1. Damn, losing the ability to make art must really hurt. I admit, I’m more than a little afraid of losing whatever musical ability I have with this whole thumb thing, but it’s still way too early to start worrying about that yet. And if I do, I can always try to learn drums or piano or horns or something that doesn’t require so much thumb pressure.

    I regret what you’ve lost, but I celebrate the fact that your writing ability is still there, and still provides the opportunity for folks like me to appreciate your gift and get to know you a little better.

    Thanks. While I’ve been a compulsive writer since I was young, I didn’t bring the same creative energy, the same combination of instinct and intent to the process of writing until after I found I couldn’t spend that energy at the drawing table anymore.

    One thing I’ve realized is that art is an inherently solo activity. Even the consumption and processing of art tends to be so personal and singular that there isn’t a strong community of people who talk in depth about art, the communities you do find tend to be small and local and it can be hard to keep up your presence if you have a day job outside of art.

    Writing is the opposite. Between blogs and writing clubs and NaNoWriMo and book groups and back to blogs, the consumption and creation and distribution of writing is a much more open group mentality. That really helps me feel like I “fit in” if that makes any sense.

    Still, I don’t have much confidence in my writing. I spent two thirds of my life developing my fine art skills and creating a style of my own. Something I refined through feedback and hard work.

    I only have about four years of actually “caring” about my writing. I still ask myself “is that overwrought” and “is this too wordy” and “I wonder if that is clear enough” because I simply don’t trust my voice yet. In time, perhaps, but for now I’m just glad to have friends through writing that appreciate my writing as it is for what it is.

    So, on that note, an extra “thank you” for being one of those friends.

  2. First, let me remind you that you didn’t marry me because I’m nice. And that, as you pointed out, I am NOT in the top 100 nicest people you know.

    With that being said, we will continue with my comment.

    You haven’t found your “voice” yet in writing because you over-analyze things too much. Take blogging for example. This post took you f-o-r-e-v-e-r to write. It was an opportunity handed out to give you a chance to write something light-hearted and fun. Instead, I watched you agonize over it. Your writing here should be unapologetic and whatever happens to dribble out of your brain. Who cares if it’s ten thousand words in length? First and foremost, you should write to please YOU. And you should do it more often. Blogging, in reality is just practice. It’s also sort of your online diary, much like the video camera diary thing we got Doodle for Christmas. This here, this is for YOU. You will only find your voice and get better if you practice and put it out there. BIC- No, wait! You do that too much as it is. JFW- Just Fucking Write. Surfing webcomics gets you nowhere in regards to your writing goals nor does it help you develop your writing voice.

    There! Now I’m sure you feel as though I’ve smacked you around with the Pony Beater and we can move on to actual comments about your post!

    Doodle says Armani smells like “old people” because, let’s face it, you ARE old. And I am older. I am so old that I don’t have birthdays any more. Be glad that in her eyes, you still do.

    You really should elaborate on #6 some more. I bet there are stories waiting to be told there.

    Ok, so, in recap. If your rear is sitting in your office chair, you should be writing. If you’re not writing, your ass better be on the treadmill training for your triathlon. So, suck it up, Buttercup and get busy! After all, writing is as important to you as riding Casey is to me. And the only way I’m going to accomplish that is to “Shut Up and Ride” (soon as the ground is safe, I swear!).

    Did you say “life coach” or “drill sergeant”? 😉

  3. First, a question: what does BIC stand for?

    Butt In Chair

    Second, I’m impressed that you found 209 things to say about yourself. I tried to write 25 things about myself once and tapped out around 10, I think! Now I want to go searching for the “101” posts.

    One can still be found (for now) in the deadcharming archives. The other one was on my first blog, and is not currently “on the interwebs” as they say. Perhaps I’ll touch them up and post them here sometime soon.

  4. Pride and Prejudice, the movie with Keira Knightly, or Pride and Prejudice, the 1995 mini-series with Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth? Curious.

    Honestly, the movie with Keira Knightly. I love the soundtrack, I love the dynamic between Charlotte and Elizabeth, and I love the ending scene on the grounds of Pemberly.

    I do love Colin Firth’s Darcy (hard to believe those words come from a completely heterosexual man, isn’t it?), but overall the movie is a more concise experiance, and I find that easier to indulge in than the mini-series.

    Let the record show that I own both. Multiple times over in multiple formats.


    Thank you very much. And thank you for the meatloaf. And especially thank you for the delicious espresso chip angel food birthday cake!

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