Friday, June 10, 2011

Messages from the underground

It's been three months since my fingers attempted to paint any sort of word pictures (or sloppy Photoshops) for you. I did not quit you, my sweet cowgirls and boys. I can't. However the last ninety days have been filled with strange toil and a bit of tragedy, which turned into one of those quests for inner truth that seem ill-suited for a mostly humorous blog about my misadventures as Dread's husband and as an announcer.

In March, shortly after I returned from the Wild West Showdown, my friend Adam died. Adam and I fled the Granite State where we were raised for many of the same reasons. We were looking for a place where we could live our lives on our own terms. Where I often compromised, Adam was a stubborn, brave, and beautiful man who did what he wanted. He also didn't lie. If you weren't worth his time, he wasn't going to bother with you. Thus, those of us whom he loved were showered with a sincere and amazingly positive attention one would reserve for only a few people. Adam, however, had many friends.

He also was really good with baby, plastic guitars.
Adam's death took the wind out of my sails in a way I didn't expect. We hadn't hung out in almost a year. Derby and grad school swallowed my soul, and Adam only got busier. We left voicemails for each other, which is odd as we are texters. Maybe it was a desire just to hear each other's voices. The loss, however, brought me to one of those moments of true introspection, and how some distractions had kept me from my own goals.

I traveled with the Boston B Party a bit this spring, which was awesome. I also got to work lights at the Shriners Circus. Johnny Deep and I both worked with some of the coolest older men on the planet while we shined lights on tigers (who hated it), monkeys (who didn't), and tumblers. There were also elephants. Mostly, there was a bunch of waiting for queues:

Lots and lots of this.

We all love the circus.

But the biggest pressure in life right now hasn't been my work on the mic, but my thesis. The dreaded final act of my grad school experience. It's 115 pages of my own fiction, a half-hour lecture on jerky protagonists, and a commencement speech. Yes, I'm one of the people speaking at my graduation. Weird.

And then there was this:
Enlarge it. That's my name.

I submitted a story, "Monster," to the Crazyhorse literary magazine as part of a contest. A week ago, I received congratulations from two of my friends for being a finalist. I wasn't sure if I believed them until they forwarded me the announcement. Holy hell. I am pretty darn proud of myself. 

After a long, dark series of weeks, great things began happening in quick succession. I go into next week feeling blessed, recharged, and ready to rock the mic this Saturday.

Always hang in there.