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Monthly Archives: July 2013

consistent digital pollution…

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Hey there…

So, jumping right into it, I suppose I should acknowledge my sin of lameness that I committed last week while writing and posting in haste. Last week’s most recent post crossed a cheesy line. I should have thought more about it before posting it because when I began I didn’t set out with the sole intent of writing to my unborn child for all the world to see. Because it raises the question, “If it was really for the baby, and not for all the world to witness and feed my massive ego by marveling at my brave and candid “sensitivity” then why post it in the first place? Which is a very, very, good question… To be honest with you, I didn’t feel like there was any audience there in the first place so I didn’t think it would matter and I have to admit that line of thinking was naive and in itself rather egocentric. But you gotta understand, I’m going through a personal soul searching process that kinda freaks people OUT, man.

I’ve got so much to do. SO much to think about. I’ve mentioned it before but it’s very important to me that I see my commitments through. Of the self help fatherhood reading material I have been going through. I’m finding that the most important thing is setting an example of consistency. Consistent consistency. I’m going to make mistakes, yes. And I should be prepared to accept that. But evidently, as long as I try to be consistent, I can forgive myself and be forgiven of those mistakes just a little easier. So I have to be consistent. However, I can’t help but wonder if the odds of my successful example of consistency are stacked against me. I mean, I grew up the same as about half the population of Oklahoma, with the husks and carcasses of old tractors and automobiles casually littered in neighbors yards, fostering teaming wasp nests and tangles of vines, accentuated with old faded beer cans bleached by YEARS in the sun.  Even I myself have a broken down scooter in my garage that has yet to be fixed and returned to its once running form, and it’s been that way for almost a year now! (It needs a new muffler, muffler pin, and probably needs the fluids flushed and replaced.)

I used to have a pretty solid following on facebook, but I burnt out on maintaining that after I got married. The ego feed didn’t seem fair to my obligation to communicate clearly with my wife, Melanie. Plus by the time I walked away from regular hourly posts of self indulgent wit accompanied with an audio file or song by some obscure punk band, it had become so much less about saying anything honest, and more about a shameful and childish need for attention. It all turned out to be just some form of digital pollution. And I honestly wonder if this exercise isn’t far off from that. Anyway, I told myself and my wife when I started this blog that it would be a venue for me to get some writing chops back in fighting form and to tell a story I’ve been working on and showcase some art for it. (Continental Boy is the name of the main character) But all I’ve ended up doing so far is sharing self indulgent confessions of my current life struggles. So right there is another huge inconsistency that I have already begun. So I’m not sure what to do because while I probably only have a handful of readers now, I’m thankful for them and don’t want to confuse them by posting sequential chunks of fiction. I’ve got to be consistent… even for my own personal goals. I need my kid to see me accomplish something in this midwestern sandbox we’re stuck in, not only so they have a reason to be proud of their father, but more so they feel capable of doing the same for themselves.

So… I’m not sure what to do about what I should post on here. Creative fiction? Or real time updates? That being said… Melanie and I have our appointment for an ultrasound this friday and with a little luck we will learn the sex of our baby. Honestly, I’ve become so impatient for this appointment and knowing how he/she is developing, that I don’t even care what the gender or sex is anymore. As long as it is genetically and chromosomally healthy and sound. BUT, once we know what we’re having, we’re going to go buy it’s first set of little clothes! YEAH! That’ll be fun. (I doubt we’ll be having any sort of shower beyond my own parents gushing, but that’s actually kind of ideal.) It’s developed a pattern of kicking and punching around inside mamma right before bed every night and I have tried to play back by feeling it and speaking to it a little. I find myself laughing much heartier and more often lately and while the laughter is entirely sincere, I wonder if I am subconsciously trying  to provide a happy ambiance for the little bugger. But whatever the case, the little person has been heavy on my prayers for it’s health, and if you are reading this, I can only hope you will think to include us in your prayers as well.

Welp, I suppose that’s it for this installment of the Continental Blog… Take care. Maybe I’ll figure out more about what I should post on here next week. PLUS we might know what we’re having!… anyway, here’s one for old times sake.

C.

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4 Comments

Posted by on July 30, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

With Great Power….

asm700

Hello.
Everything is still pretty abstract. I’m not sure of what is happening on the other side of much at all. Who’s reading this? I don’t know. Who’s growing inside my wife? I don’t know. Are we having a boy or a girl? I don’t know. Will our plans work out? If so, which ones? I don’t know. Are any of my prayers for the future being answered? I don’t know. I don’t know who to address this to, but I do know that I want someone to read it. And as far as that is concerned there is only one person who has the most questions centered around them, so I suppose I’ll aim my voice that way.
Hello… you. I’m your dad… yep. how’s it goin. I don’t know much about you yet but that’s okay cuz you don’t either. I’m in my 30’s and I only know a little bit about myself. So there’s no rush for you to figure out much right off the bat. Sometimes living is hard to do. So, just know that I’m always gonna do my best to take the lead for you and be swingin, and learning my hardest right beside you. No sir, or ma’am. Don’t you worry about THAT my friend. You’ve got my true blue word on that.
I really look forward to talking with you. I can’t imagine what you might want to talk about. I hope you like cool stuff like morality tales of truth and justice and real life triumph in the face of real life adversity. And Spider-Man! Yeah, I know- One of these things is not like the others. But that’s just because other entities have adulterated it with corporate interests and product placements so the original tone, coloring, and message has been bogged in the mire of numbers. (Oh god I hope you’re better with numbers than I am) And while he is a fictional character, the message is very real. Let you’re young father tell you about Spider-Man.
First of all his name is hyphenated. Second of all Spider-Man got me through some lonely times growing up and I hope you never have to feel like I did then… but like I said earlier, sometimes living is hard to do. So we all need somebody there beside us, taking the lead and swinging hard. And for me, growing up, it was Spider-Man. I have to accept the inevitability that at some point in your life you may feel some loneliness as well, (it’s a part of the human condition) so I hope that I can be that source of support for you. But I also must accept that there is only so much a Dad can console or reconcile, so if there’s some other source of support you may need, I assure we will find it for you. You won’t have to hide alone in the woods or under a chapel pew searching the contents of a silly comic book to try and find the inner strength to face bullies and jerks or understand why people do HALF The things they do. We’ll talk more about all that later, but for now let’s get back to Spider-Man.
He’s a regular guy with regular problems that regular guys can relate to. Spider-Man is a flawed person. He has bad days just like everyone else. People in his world look at him in his mask and marvel at his amazing abilities. However, most of them have no idea that the only reason he is wearing that mask and doing what he does is because he made a shameful, relatable, human mistake. In one instant of foolish pride, he lost someone very close to him because he chose to act (or rather not to act) on selfish anger. He had the ability and power to do the right thing but he was irresponsible with that power and his uncle died as a result. As horrible as it was, and as heavy as the burden has been for him, he chose to learn a lesson and build his life around that lesson, and he became a better person as a result. “With great power comes great responsibility.” As lame as it may sound I am actually going to rely heavily on that adage in my time with you. Because when I boil it down to the nitty gritty… I too am a flawed person- and I want to be, and will desperately try to be, your hero.
-dad.
p.s. wow. that was kinda heavy.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on July 25, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

pseudo man no more…

skyrim_daedric_armor-wallpaper-1024x768Well hello there.
You just caught me in the middle of another batch of bath tub grade pseudo intellectual nonsense. Pull up a seat, and have some won’t you?
It’s been a pretty good week and weekend I suppose. I don’t really have much to report sorry to say. At the moment I have every intention of making this a weekly report and gradually providing some visual content to accompany the literal. BUT… pickins’ is slim this week kids and I feel a bit like a negligent preacher as a result. Not much of a moral to not much of a story I’m afraid.
Got the lawn mowed and laundry done and all is well on the homefront.
In two weeks Melanie and I have an appointment for an ultrasound. At which point we will know the gender of our little one. We’re both hoping it’s a girl to be honest. I don’t want to speak for anyone else’s identity but my own, and I’m not afraid to say that a baby girl would just elicit a bit more mature masculinity from me in the respect that it would just be naturally expected.
If it’s a boy then it’s just another one of us, running around here, nerding out with little regard to anyone else around him. That’s what we do. I mean right now, at this very moment, while i’m typing this, I am also power leveling my Skyrim character’s conjuration ability in order to activate a quest for a sigil stone to obtain some Daedric Armor. (If you’re a female you might need a translation for that last statement- and here it is.) I’m killing time, playing a video game. Daedric armor is like some of the BEST armor you can get in the game and my step son was playing the game recently and showed me a trick the other night that allows you to get your avatar hands on some. Case in point.
But if the baby is a girl, I feel like I would be naturally compelled to maybe spend a little less time trying to one up the boys, and step into a more active and protective role of paternity. A happy playful little girl would make me want to build little doll houses by day and at night I would take up a real life sword and stand vigil all night by a fire, waiting to chase away any ne’er do wells with just a grizzled stare and a snarl of my teeth. I mean I’m sure a little boy would also elicit the same feeling just by the fact that he would still be just as innocent and helpless. But eventually we could both be found dumbly picking our noses in our underwear and waiting to guffaw ourselves senseless over the next digitally enhanced heavily armored decapitation or draemora banishment. If it was a girl, I just think I would I feel like a more developed MAN because I would be required to be one. She would need me to be. And that would be nice….
Yet, I realize that the baby is not responsible for my view of myself or how I conduct myself. Quite the opposite in fact. But the effect it has on my self awareness is an undeniable and ironic expectation… but who knows? Some girls like video games too I guess.
I just hope it’s a happy healthy baby and as smart and beautiful as it’s mom, and that its only developmental problems are because it is just as smartmouthed and stubborn as it’s dad. I think the most important thing I can do though… in all perfect honesty… is to just FOLLOW THROUGH with my commitments… I don’t think my own archetype met the mark for me in that regard and I think it messed me up a little bit in my own decision making as an adult. So I think that is where I will definitely need to rise where my predecessor fell… No slight to my parents, but the example that I set is required to be better than what was set for me- and that need, that requirement will be present for me regardless of the baby’s gender.
But for the moment, I need to finish up on this soul trap power leveling in order to succesfully banish the unbound draemoras from the roof of the hall of attainment. And I need to put some pants on before my wife gets home. Until next time True Believers!
C.

 
3 Comments

Posted by on July 21, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

ice breaker, introduction, first impression, mission statement, bleh…

Chris-Melanie

Hi… whoever you are… How’s it goin?

I am a newly married 34 year old step father with a baby on the way. I’ve recently made the transition between living single and married with children and it hasn’t always been the most graceful of transformations. To be perfectly honest, I think it’s only begun and I am still in the process… It’s a hard thing to do man. It’s the most complicated, intricate, and daring balancing act over the most infamous bottomless gorge of life that’s ever been conceived and I’M the one doing it… Not some expert daredevil olympic circus bad ass performer… there are no practice runs, and no training. Just learning as you go and literally flying by the seat of your pants…

To my credit I have quit smoking (which was an all but impossible feat in itself) and I only drink about once a month. Which consist of four 16 oz., 3 point beers.

I’m a step father of two teenage boys and I have one child of my own consequence on the way. I like to think that I am by nature a pretty considerate and conscientious person, but when you throw kids into it, as a first time parent I think that any inherent ability of consideration kind of goes out the window a little bit… or maybe it’s just grossly dwarfed… I dunno.

It’s especially difficult to manage if one is as vocationally or professionally unsatisfied as I am. Almost fifteen years ago I decided to pursue an “education” and career as a graphic designer. At the time I thought it made sense and that it was actually the most responsible direction I could take since I grew up wanting to be a cartoonist or comic book artist… long story short, It is painfully obvious to me that I should have pursued my initial passion instead getting burned out in a dying, dime-a-dozen profession.

I currently work in a dead end butt hole known as a newspaper. I hate my job. Hate it. Hate it. Hate it. I work in the advertising portion, laying out ads for local car lots so that every mega-monday truck month sale, black friday madness sale, and god knows what other sale can help churn out the allmighty american dollar and over sexualize the under-aged population. It’s awful work, with unforgiving deadlines and client needs to be met on a daily basis, only to have your hard work end up in a landfill or gutter in less than a week.

Now days, the majority of graphic designers do not work in print (like I do) and are resigned to working primarily on web based platforms. But if you could guess how much I love working in the print venue of my chosen vocation. I’ll bet you can fathom just how much interest I have working in the faster digital venue… Yes, that’s right… NONE. WHAT. SO. EVER.

In my free time I maintain aspirations of self publishing a graphic novel, but that particular project has been in the works for a few years now, and has been on hold for about two. I would kill for just one friend to bounce ideas off of in an active pursuit of this… dream. So, for now I’m just getting back into the swing of writing and flexing my individual voice until the works and words are nimble and quick once more.

But… I’m getting old and already in the last couple of years my obligations have literally quadrupled. My wife and I are soon approaching our one year anniversary and recently bought a house- PLUS we have a baby on the way which is my first child and her third. I can’t even begin to express how excited I am to be a father of a child. To articulate the intricate ratio of overwhelming joy and crippling emotional terror is a whole other discussion. One in which I will touch quite frequently in the future, I assure you. But all digression aside, Thats FOUR people’s needs that I am required by law of man AND God to put above my own, and that’s especially difficult and stressful right now, in the beginning, because I’m still learning how to communicate appropriately with everyone involved, while not trying to feel completely inadequate and worthless about my stupid pointless job at some local midwestern newspaper, and yearning for the satisfaction of writing and illustrating and BELIEVING in my own great american graphic novel and being my own boss… Can you imagine that? All while trying to be the model father knowing (if your own misdirected life goals are any indication) how short you will fall… So here I am…

Don’t get me wrong. My wife is wonderful and just as smart as she is drop dead gorgeous- I am completely in love with her. Our home is beautiful and perfect in every way and my step kids are a couple of incredibly articulate geniuses well beyond their years. My baby, I have no doubt is the personification of my every ideal… and despite my gratitude for them, whether I like it or not, at some point I am going to fail them all.

Let this be an account of my pride and triumphs and catharsis for my shortcomings.

C.

 
8 Comments

Posted by on July 17, 2013 in Uncategorized