In Search of a Cure

Something has infected my life but I’m not sure if it’s the people, places or things to blame. I’ve become but a grey shell of the man I envisioned myself becoming. Maybe I should blame myself, for allowing the infection to spread. Perhaps, the cause would have been more easily identified had I paid more attention during the onset. I remember when the symptoms first started. First there was a depletion of energy and desire, to do the things I’ve always enjoyed. Then came the irritability, the annoyance at others and shortening of patience. The infection has slowly become a disease. It should be cut out. But the problem is, I’m not sure where to start, however, my lack of action has only served to bolster the affliction.

I could start with the people, at least the ones I don’t work with, since I regrettably cannot fire all of my coworkers. The stagnant, motivation-less associates whose presence continue to find ways to seep into my bubble of tranquility. The devices they use to infiltrate, are ones I enjoy myself. I wish not to disconnect myself from all contact, only from the contagious. The ones whom are affected themselves and wish to spread their disease, their misery onto others.

Or I could start with the place I’m at. This job, this stumbled into sort of career I have. My days consist of sitting at my desk, usually for only about 6 or 7 of the expected 8 hours, pretending to do work. In actuality, I’m reading theories on Game of Thrones and tweeting. Being forced to sit here everyday is a sort of paid prison experience, without the free meals and anal sex. In fact, the guy in the cubicle next to me, who clears his throat all day long, actually does sound very similar to forced anal sex. The way everyone runs around with their priorities and timelines and projects and meetings, only to have them be delayed or forgotten, makes me sick. Maybe I was infected before I came here, but this environment has surely exasperated my condition.

I used to think it was this generation, I was born into, of Facebook and Snapchat that was making me sick. But I got rid of them for a bit and my condition didn’t improve. I still found myself, dragging day in and day out, struggling to accomplish all the things I’d hoped. Maybe I just need a vacation. But to vacate, is to leave a place that you previously occupied. Is it really a vacation if you return to the place from which you’ve come? I fear that I’ll cure what afflicts me, only to have the symptoms return upon my reintegration with the diseased population.

Love & Loyalty

Two of the ancient pillars of civilization are love & loyalty. Over the years, in my life, I’ve seen both crumble and left in ruins. However, in some small pockets, they continue to exist.

It was about a year ago when I got a phone call from a high school friend. He told me he was getting married & asked if I would be his best man. As each year has passed, I’ve seen the number of weddings I attend increase, but he was the first of my true homies to make the leap. And I jumped at the opportunity to be there to support him.

It means a lot to be invited to anyone’s wedding, simply as a guest, but to be apart of the ceremony is an entirely different honor. I couldn’t help but question, why me? We hadn’t seen one another in years, hell, we don’t even live in the same city anymore. We’d both gone off to college, made new friends, he’d even joined a Greek organization. So why me? Honestly, I still have no idea, but it meant the world to me.

I didn’t meet his bride until the day before the wedding, at rehearsal and I instantly could tell she was an amazing person. She was cool as a fan and her presence emitted positivity and jubilation. I instantly felt a calm come over myself, seeing how the bride and groom to be interacted with one another. The rest of the rehearsal & night only continued to strengthen my happiness for the broski.

The day of the wedding came and everything went off without a hitch. There was a sense of relief in the room we’d all settled into after the ceremony. Bottles of liquor were being opened, Snapchat videos were being recorded, it was becoming a party. After taking more snaps, we headed over to the reception hall to really turn up. Some of the groomsman were late, due to a pit stop at the liquor store. It was all love.

During the bride & groom’s first dance that everything sort of came together for me. This was a REAL LOVE they share, as genuine of one as I’ve seen in my generation’s era. And this was a LOYAL friend, to allow me to be apart of this special day, a day neither of us will soon forget. Watching them inspired me and gave me hope for my own future. It was a reminder of what can be and I do not take the example they set lightly.

So bro, to you & your bride, thank you again for allowing me to be apart of your wedding day. Thank you for asking me to be your best man. And thank you for the reminder, that I need to get MY shit together!

Zones

Let’s be real for a bit..

Your defensive schemes all out of wack. The area your covering isn’t even the most vulnerable, you’re looking at it from the wrong perspective. You’re looking outside – in, when you should be looking inside – out. Guarding against the run, as if you didn’t just allow me to pass.

Man to man coverage. Worry about who’s in front of you. That’s your responsibilty. Don’t depend on any sort of safety coverage and no don’t peeking into the backfield. But it takes a certain type to be able to do this. Some can, some cannot.

The end zone is the end goal, of course scoring is important, but so is time of possession. The longer you hold on, the better your chances of winning.

Should you choose to bend the rules, play without dignity or outright cheat, you will be caught & punished. Once word gets out, free agents won’t even respond to your messages and you’ll lose future picks.

I mean, it is all sort of a game anyway, right? We mask it as a playful activity, something for amusement, but in reality it’s so much more. We all want to win and hold up our trophy.

And after you’ve gotten that trophy every living being desires, you also get a ring.

That zone defense you’ve been playing got you here, but it won’t win you a ring. Come here. Do your job and only be concerned about the man in front of you.

And I promise the same.

 

4 Your Eyez Only

Nobody died around me lately. The city’s been heating up but my circle stays cool, mostly. It’s hard though, trying to do the right thing and stay out-of-the-way. I logged onto Facebook the other day, I know somebody who knew somebody that was killed. And another somebody who knew somebody did it. Both sides of the story, right in front of my eyez. One real nigga and one bitch nigga, depending on who you ask… the roles reverse. Both families, attempting to preserve their loved one’s legacy in the court of public opinion. In all actuality, the only thing that occurred was each post serving as an accelerant to the opposing side.

Mediators posting subliminal statuses about what may or may not have occurred. Speculation turned into acceptance and acceptance into anger/hatred. And I just watched. And would do the same again, if I had a 2nd chance. Why? Because I scrolled through the feed of the victim and the accused…

That confirmed the shit I learned in the streets was true
That real niggas don’t speak when they beef with you
They just pull up on your street, let the heat achoo
And if a real nigga hungry he gon’ eat your food

J Cole – 4 Your Eyez Only

One page, for months leading up to the events… full of fight reposts and “real nigga” status updates about “fucking other niggas bitches” amongst other things. The overwhelming insolence was but the buds of a more deeply rooted problem. Maybe he was a product of his environment or more likely, a victim of the circumstances within that environment.

The other page, as silent after the murder as before. Nothing but spam posts, for years leading up to what occurred. The dude definitely had the means to be more active on Facebook, yet he chose to separate. Right, wrong or indifferent he completely immersed himself and remained committed to the streets in every aspect. He was dedicated to the omerta lifestyle.

From what I’ve seen afterwards, I don’t see an end or resolution in sight. The people who’ve chosen certain paths, will lead to similar, unavoidable destinations. Their family members will speak of how great they were. The truth hidden amongst an intertwined web of grayish, mixed, black and white reality.  The cycle will continue to repeat itself. My only hope is, for our childrens’ sakes, myself & my homies can avoid being on either side.

See world, you’re no good.

Convince & Repeat

I’ve been away…

To deal with my affliction, as self diagnosed. However, I believe any clinical psychiatrist would agree. I don’t hear voices, but I must be insane. Truly, I must be. I mean, lots of artists & writers have dealt with mental illness. All the symptoms are there. The feelings of deja vu, repeating the same actions and expecting different results.

The adversity arises, year after year. I defeat it, send it back into the depths of obscurity and celebrate myself as cured. Things return to status quo for months, quarters at a time until the affliction returns to my realm.

Upon each return, it is more difficult to defeat than the last time. I’ve reached a point where I almost need it in my life, to feel normal, otherwise I’m a zombie…. lifeless and emotionless everyday, until it returns.

I receive nothing from it, instead I sacrifice who I am, my sanity as a whole… to appease…

… and to return to distant memories of when the affliction was but a flutter of naivety. Things weren’t always this way. But they have been, for quite some time now, the same. And as the affliction comes and goes, as does a piece of me each transition.

 

Photo Cred: Damian Michaels – The Road to Madness

Defense Tactics

I do not pray for my enemies.

I besiege their walls & wait for their downfall.

I will not love those, who do not love me.

I remember and will not forgive the lies until you’ve returned my wasted time.

Even still,

I bear no ill will,

But I won’t forgive,

I’ll just pretend.. the way you did.

Lifeless

All them likes, media fame & street cred
Behind closed doors he’s a deadbeat to his 3 kids
A weak man,
Far less than I see where there’s a mirror to peak in
But every weekend, he’s the street’s friend
I’ll pass
Rather,
cherish the moments
heretics have avoided
Guess at this point, I sort of built up a tolerance
seems that the only thing these niggas built up lately is followers
Pardon, bruh, I’ll try to meet you between proper use & ebonics
seems that the only thing some people built up lately is followers…
Speaking generally as a topic
more specifically these awful ass, terrible fathers
You know,
the one that hasn’t seen his son since he was still in diapers
Y’all are like zombies, literally deadbeats
Lifeless.