Tuesday, June 17, 2014


I'm as sweaty as a politician taking a lie detector test. Exhausted. Pooped.

That's right... I just got done trying yoga.

Crystal suggested that we attempt a yoga video after our cardio exercises just an short while ago. Let me be perfectly clear...

Heavy people can not do yoga.

Much to Crystal's assertion that it's okay if I can't do the poses, I find the latter to be true. If you're not maintaining the pose as described, is it really yoga at all? Or are you just falling with grace?

The truly hard part though was actually calming myself and sitting in the yoga position. I had to sit in a chair ultimately because my legs would constantly fall asleep. When I'd try to calm my mind and relax, all I could do was laugh. After trying to be calm for what seemed like ten minutes (and fighting off the constant urge to laugh), I finally calmed down. Though, I think I just started to fall asleep.

I'll continue to try and do yoga because Crystal is right. I need to clear my mind and stretch my body out more. My joints are tight and I have no sense of limberness.

But damn if it isn't funny!

Sunday, June 15, 2014


I recently listened to a story by the revered martial artist Enson Inoue. Inoue is a Japanese-American whom has held the Shooto Heavyweight Championship and operates multiple mixed martial arts studios across the globe. Considered one of the progenitors of the MMA sports field, Inoue is highly regarded. Amongst the Japanese people, they call him 'Yamato-Damashii', which in essence means 'Japanese Spirit'. The Japanese consider him to contain and harness all that which makes Japan unique and special. He is a warrior and guide to them, and rightfully so.

In this story, Inoue-san spoke of an altercation he encountered when he was young. To paraphrase, he watched as a young friend was beaten within inches of his life. Already fairly proficient in the martial arts, Inoue locked up from fear. From what, he asked himself? Having a broken rib? Being cut? Perhaps snapping a leg? The anticipation of physical harm scared him from getting involved. Fear conquered him on that day, to which he still regrets as an older man.

At the end of his tale, Inoue-san made a powerful point. Had he of stepped in and helped defend his friend, he most assuredely would have been injured. Yet, physical wounds heal. Bones can become unbroken. The flesh will stop bleeding. Instead... many decades later, he still has an emotional wound by not stepping in to help. Emotionally, he has not healed... and probably never will. Fear damaged him in a way that physical harm can not. Fear cut to his very essence, to forever be left with a scar. The emotional wound proved far more permanent than any physical wound he could have potentially received on that day so long ago.

I can relate to Inoue-san in way that many can not. He understands how emotional trauma can have a lifelong impact.

As a child, I preferred the shoving and beatings over any amount of yelling... any amount of degradation and torture. On multiple occassions, I can directly recall simply asking my dad for a beating, just to get the whole altercation over with. It's disgusting... but it's the truth. At least I can move beyond the pain.

Pain is temporary.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Perfect love.

After putting in a few late night hours packing packages for my business customers this evening, I found myself exhausted. My eyes had that slight tingle that comes from staring at a computer monitor after a few too many hours.

I have burned the midnight oil this evening.

Just a short while ago, I leaned back in my office chair to rest my eyes. Almost instantly, my eyes were closed. I was calm for a short moment... calmer than I've experienced in a long time. My mind began to wander, much like a moth trying to find an ounce of sunshine in a light bulb.

Random thoughts... Reality. Compassion. Humility. Honor.

A few minutes passed. As I sat forward and opened my eyes, I couldn't help but contemplate the love that not all of us encounter. Not just any old love -- the type shared between friends, or the kind proclaimed by a young child about their favorite flavor of ice cream. I mean real love.

True, undeniable, inconceivable, illogical, completely selfless love.

There are indeed plenty of 'fish in the sea', as the old saying goes. Undeniably, we can almost certainly find someone that will share even a brief intimate moment with us. Someone whom will listen to us... share dinner with us... embrace us. While not temporary, these interludes of human compassion at the very least remind us that we are alive. Accordingly, I wouldn't dare level these moments as illicit or petty. The world is a harsh and uncaring realm of existence; any moment of happiness must be cherished and respected. Indeed -- if you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with.

Yet, I want to attest to the power of an even higher degree of love. Such a love that is without conditions but loaded with consequences. Love that will change how you look at the world; how you look at yourself. Love that will make you dive into an ocean with no hope of rescue. Love that will drive you into a burning building, just so your better half won't have to die alone. Love that will inflict a wound so deep, that you may never love again.

Human beings may not be monogamous by nature, but a few of us are damn lucky enough to meet the one person that turns our entire world upside down. Red will change to blue. North will flip to south. Sweet will taste salty and cold will sizzle hot. A loving bond so unique, so perfect... should the two lovers be separated, the entire universe shall be torn asunder.

Yes... THAT kind of love.

We see a love of this caliber often on television or in movies. We sing songs about meeting the one. We write books... nay entire series of novels about eternal love. In every possible creative output humanity has managed to invent, we always elevate the concept of perfect love.

Hemingway did it. So did Van Gogh. Beethoven? Yep, he did as well. Springsteen has done it (and still is). Cusack gushed perfect love as the bumbling Lloyd Dobler. Grant and Hepburn, too.

Perfect love surrounds us. We glide through clouds of wishful wanting, often not evening knowing it. Could these clouds be so thick that we fail to see the love of our life fly by? Are we too caught up in the idea of perfect love that we fail to see it right before our eyes? Maybe yes... maybe no. Who is to say?

I approach the art of perfect love from a different perspective, in such a way that connects to the previously mentioned idea of 'plenty of fish'. Maybe... just maybe... a perfect love isn't inherently natural. As with anything, perfection doesn't exist in an objective sense. Two people, both filled with faults and self-loathing, trust issues and anger; they can create a bond of love that's perfect for them and them alone. But, these two people must be willing to work at it. Love has so much more importance when we work to make it important. A lasting relationship takes effort and dedication. Add to that heaps of trial and error.

Most importantly, loves requires sacrifice. We must not let fear deter us from sacrificing our own pride to the one we love. Once we've conquered the fear of humility, all other agents of destruction pale in comparison. Taking a bullet is but a small price to pay when compared to surrendering your own self-importance for the sake of your relationship. Fear is powerful; I don't foolishly disregard it. To be afraid is perfectly natural. Having the courage to admit you're afraid? That's the hard part. How appropriate that your lover, your best friend, your companion is there to help you along?

Fear is the darkness we follow love into, but never do we enter that darkness alone.