NOTE: I started this blog entry almost a month ago and I’m still not finished writing and editing it… so… I’ve decided to try something different. I am going to post it and then edit as I go. I may alter sentences and add ideas, etc. I may even comment on something I wrote three weeks ago or perhaps make fun of myself for taking so long on this. Sounds like a fun and creative experience… let’s see where it goes.
Welcome Back, Longstreet?!?! (aka S.W.M.)
Well, sort of…
“It’s been a long time, I shouldn’t have left you…”
…and so the lyrics go…
Last we spoke I was rambling on about love, life, and the pursuit of ____________ (insert your funny/witty/dumb/contrived word here).
Look, to be honest, I think this is going to be it for a while (10/15 NOTE: I can’t believe I’m still not done with this entry). I love writing and musing (bloggin’ – a believe the Swedish call byoggin), but my focus needs to be elsewhere – more specifically… my work as well as moving ahead with my life (10/15 NOTE: If I ever finish this!). I spent a lot of the last year thinking about things and giving my insight. It’s been therapeutic, but I think it’s time to stop writing about it and just move ahead. And if I do have time to write there are a few ideas that have been brewing. So for now… let this be our final conversation/therapy session (10/15 NOTE: If I ever FUCKING finish this!!!!).
I know I’ve been quiet the past few months, but it’s not without good reason. It was quite the summer. So many changes and experiences to speak of… or not. From personal to work stuff it was all crammed in there. But, I’m not your open frickin’ book after all. I gotta save something for the novel/script I’m never going to write and make you bitches pay for it at some point.
I (began) writing to you from a hipster coffee spot in Seattle (and SEA-TAC Airport the following day AND back in L.A – woowhee this is a doozy of blog entry), but this entry has taken on a life of its own, so it’s taking more time (10/15 NOTE: As I stated above) … It’s was nice to be out of L.A. (even if for the day) and clear my head. To be able to write (some of) these words (even if they’re not really saying anything yet since I don’t know what I want to touch on) is a great break from the daily routine (I was still in Seattle when I wrote that part).
So, what is there to talk about? What of my experiences in the last two months (10/15 NOTE: NOW THREE MONTHS!!!) do I feel are worth touching on? Even though there were so many separate events that took place between my work and personal life they all relate on some level – the level of growth and evolution of self… and some fun was definitely had.
I can honestly say I’m a different man (or rather I’m becoming one), than I was before. Which I guess brings me to my topic… Being a man… Manhood… Manliness… MADNESS! See how that just came together… and so organically I might add.
And so we’re off…
I’ve learned there is an inherent difference in between being a man and being a boy. Obvious, I know! Nothing groundbreaking… BUT… Are you capable of determining where you’re at on the manhood evolutionary scale? I think that’s what I’m getting at. Because, what I’ve come to learn is that it is possible to perceive yourself as a man when in actuality you are still a boy. This also holds true for girls and women… there is a difference.
I would say that up until recently I was caught somewhere in-between. A “no mans land” if you will… wow, and here I thought “No Mans Land” was just a lesbo porn series (that’s the boy in me talking).
What’s more, while emotionally caught in this awkward stage of perpetual non-growth, I also had (and still have) the appearance of someone who is not the age he is. The grey is coming slowly but surely. So, in essence, it’s almost more socially acceptable for me to behave in such a manor because the outside world looks at me and doesn’t see someone who is… drumroll please…. 41.
Most people think I’m anywhere from late 20s to early 30s.
Yes, it’s a great thing on one hand but I can’t seem to get past the idea that I’m somehow a form of false advertising (especially to girls). And it becomes awkward to go out and meet people (people meaning “girls), learn they are in their 20s, and then have to “break the news” that I am not what I appear to be. I don’t help matters either by shopping at stores like Urban H&M Outfitters and making myself, or should I say attempting to make myself, look like a Los Feliz/Silverlake hipster (gross, I know).
Yes, in general, girls are usually cool with it once my true age is revealed, but it’s also no fun to always be reminded you aren’t what you appear to be. FYI, once my true age comes out, it’s usually followed with the “are you/were you married?” and “do you have kids?” question. And my rule is to always be truthful since I am not ashamed of who I am.
It’s a blessing that I look so young… but I’m not entirely sure these girls would be so willing to talk to me if I “looked” my age. I’ve seen some of the dudes who look their age (my age) and if I was a girl in her mid 20s I sure wouldn’t.
What can I say… but I am trying to find the balance…
So where does this leave me and what does it have to do with a boy becoming a man? I’m not entirely sure – and don’t have a definitive answer. But, it has something to do with holding yourself accountable for what you experience in life.
It’s no longer blaming your parents for who you are? Yes, they raised, or rather attempted to raise you, but at some point you are a free thinking human being and there is enough information out there in the world to make the choice of what it is you want. Parents can do and say horrible things – add to that a genetic code that can predispose you to certain behaviors and you’ve got your work cut out for you… BUT… in the end you only have yourself to blame if you’re not getting where you want in life.
We are confronted with adversity that we can either overcome or succumb to. Being a man means the former and it’s something I’ve gotten quite good at in my life starting at a young age. Granted, this is one piece to a giant man puzzle. Just because I was good at handling adversity does not mean I was conducting my life as a man.
Let me pause and just say that I don’t think anyone can become a 100% man – ultimately we are in a constant struggle for growth. And to be “young” at heart is a good thing. I go back to what I always say… there is a balance.
I’ve found myself going out a lot over the past 8/9 months and hanging out with people (meaning “girls”) who were much younger than I was. They were fun and were nice to me… I had a blast! But then I started to notice something. There was always a point where the fun I was having would fade into the distance and I would become very self aware of my age and what I was doing. I was revisiting my 20s and enjoying it… but then THE CINDERFELLA THEORY came into play.
I felt it all come down a few weeks ago. I was out at a very fun nightspot with a bunch of “hipsters” (young people who were definitely much cooler and at ease with their youth than I was)… I’m 41 for crying out loud! Anywho, I had been noticing for while that when I would go out, there would always be a point in the evening when I would just want to leave. I can only describe the feeling as the moment when the clock strikes midnight and Cinderella (fella, in my case) turns back into a pumpkin (well, the chariot did – you know what I mean).
I could pretend or behave “young” all I wanted, but there was ultimately a point in the evening when the parent inside of me would kick in (don’t forget I have two children) and I would just be at the point where I have to stop and show some level of responsibility because as a man responsibility is an important quality.
(so much more to write AHHHHHHHHHHH!)