Tag Archives: Champion

How to find a good title for everything that amounts to a “life’s work”?

I think I’ve finally figured out a good way to describe what exactly it is that I’m looking for out of life. It comes down to one word: “profundity”. I want to be moved. I want nature and life to make me cry. I want to be able to cry in front of someone while looking at something beautiful, and be able to say to them “That’s beautiful.”

I’ve always had this sense, for many years, that something was missing in my life. I couldn’t figure out what it was. I think part of the problem is being surrounded by the perspective of the “average” person: dull, and dumb. Not much to look forward to but the next race or ball game (I’m not talking about family, but just being around people in public, overhearing conversations constantly, coworkers, etc.). That’s not what life is about to me. I think that’s why I’ve been going on these solo drives lately. One, just for new environments. But, arguably even more so, because of self-reflection.

I feel like I’ve been beaten down over the years with constant derision of being an “overthinker“. No one could possibly understand the enjoyment that I get from contemplation. I haven’t known how to speak out against it. Now that I’m older, with more responsibility and freedom, I find myself asking: What do I want my perspective to be? What do I want to think about? Where do I want my mind to be? That’s a very deep question. Going through the motions gets you through the day. But is that all my life is? “Getting through the day”? What’s the point in that? You’re telling me that God created our entire universe, the Earth, and US, for Christ’s sake, just for us to “get through the day”? What kind of ultimate purpose is THAT? A fucking pathetic one.

No, there’s something missing in my life, for sure. So much talk revolves around bills and jobs. Not only politically, but just “small talk”. To be fair, I guess when it occupies as much time and energy as it does, that is inevitable. But am I to take certain inevitabilities as the purpose of my life? If I were to get cancer tomorrow, would I treat that cancer as the purpose of my life? Would I talk about it constantly, and think of nothing else but it? Or would I look for profundity in other things? I think the answer is the latter.

I’m tired of listening to well-meaninged people warning about a “life wasted”. I want to be able to say why I disagree with them. In order to do that, I need to use words. I need to “overthink” about words. I’m tired of playing dumb just to keep some sense of “social peace”. Your inferiority complex shouldn’t be my problem. There’s too much profundity to be concerned with some jackass that feels insecure because your vocabulary is deeper than his.

And that should go for myself as well. I shouldn’t dismiss someone just because they speak better than me. Just learn how to speak better, you fucking retard. Learn new words. Become a better listener. It’s not one of the Ten Commandments: just an improvable life skill.

The ultimate problem is that I’m not allowing myself to get lost in my own head enough. I listen to others a lot so that I can learn things for myself. But speaking up for myself is difficult many times. I don’t really allow myself, often enough, to reflect, and contemplate. This makes those times when I do feel like doing those things all the more special. There’s other factors mentally blocking me from fully dedicating myself to creating things. I’ll have to continue to write about those later, even though I’m sure I’ve already touched on them somewhere.

My head is too full of the words of others instead of what feels like my own independent thoughts. Social anxiety is one reason why I can’t tune others out. The other is that responsibility scares me. The unknown future is scary for all of us often. So we focus on our immediate day, where more things are under our control. But I’ve encountered so many people that say “Where in the hell did my life go?” that it scares me, so I try to think more about the future. And I believe that my future would be better if I allowed myself to get more lost inside of my own head, instead of replaying the words of others in my head constantly and doubting my every desire and decision. That ain’t working anymore. I can’t write like that. Writing requires independent thoughts. I love writing. I need independent thoughts. I need MY words. I don’t want my words to just be “Here’s what someone else told me one time.” What’s MY analysis?

But it’s hard to allow myself to get lost in my head. As I’ve said, it’s just scary to be alone inside of your own head. All of your mistakes come at once. All of your uncertainties. Your worst fears. They come storming at you. It’s easier to close the door of your independent mind and let someone else distract you from yourself. Perhaps some music would help?

Going out on a limb like this, of course, poses its own problems. What if I’m wrong? That’s humiliating. Will I just be able to say “I messed up?” Once again, I think that’s, mainly, just a skill that needs to be learned. It’s one thing to realize the power of humility when you feel like you aren’t making a mistake. It’s another when you realize you have.

Another problem is experience. EVERYTHING is “experience”. But the question should be: what kind of experience? I need more experience with linguisticators. I want to figure out why they burn me out so much. I understand that reading, and listening to good speakers, would help me with my own desire to communicate. But I’m always hesitant to do so. Why? Well, for one, language is separate from the subject. I like focusing on a couple of subjects at a time. But then, I get burned out. So in order to keep reading, and not feeling burnt out on the subject, I’d have to read about another subject. But which one? That’s the problem. Reading something and realizing that I don’t enjoy it. Or just getting tired of it, like eating the same food everyday, except with a book. I need to approach reading differently. Instead of focusing on the subject, I need to focus on the language used. That’s not going to be easy. I’m still going to read subjects that I enjoy, of course. But I also need to be able to analyze the use of language separately from the content of the work. Ok, this work is boring me. But is it written well? If so, why? And then, try to learn how to use language better for myself. Once again, this is just a skill that needs to be learned.

Ultimately, the solution will probably come down to reading writers better than I (shouldn’t be too hard to find). I need to have a certain mindset to be open enough to understand what it is exactly that makes their writing better than mine, and how to use that for myself. I guess the question becomes: how much do I want to do that, exactly? I don’t know how much of it will satisfy me yet. I don’t even know how to approach it, really. I anticipate that if I took the advice of someone else that I’d burn out quickly and then get tired of learning how to get better altogether. I think this is a slow, natural, lifetime process that I can’t fully explain yet. It could be the case that I’m lying to myself, and all of this is for naught. But I think it is the only thing that satisfies my heart, and that matters to me (of course). The challenge is being able to explain WHY I believe that it matters.

Another reason that I find language so difficult is that I’ve always associated good speakers with charlatans. It’s easy to tell if an idiot is “good” or “evil“. It’s much harder when someone speaks well. I was so afraid of being evil (thanks, free will baptism) that I just avoided language like the plague. I realize now how stupid that was. But now begins the task of fixing it. And that’s going to be hard, considering how far behind I am because of my old way of thinking. You may say “You write well now,” but you have no idea how good it can become. I do.

For better or worse, ethics consume most of my thoughts. I think this is an evident combination of genes and environment. Certainly, my religious upbringing and journey has a lot to do with why thoughts of ethics almost consume me. But I know there’s definitely a major genetic component as well. Hypocrisy, especially if I do something “evil”, scares me. I just don’t want to do it. I, like everyone else, am torn between doing good and evil. I have, and will, do both throughout my life. And that bothers the fuck out of me. I guess one might say “The fact that it bothers you proves that you’re a good person.” But I will take no solace in that. The thought of being a hypocrite bothers me. Especially the thought of being a hypocrite on a very famous scale (and I desire “fame” only as a measure of success that I wish to have, so that I don’t get stuck in a life that I resent everyday. Maybe one day I’ll just be “content” like everyone else, but I have goals, and I want them. And that’s all I care about. I know that it takes that type of attitude to succeed, so now, all I need is that success, so that I can hand you the check and say “I told you so.” And if it doesn’t work, who cares? I’ll join you at the factory line and you can tell me about all of the time I’ve wasted, whereas I can say “At least I tried” and make fun of you for NOT trying). I find enjoyment in being critical, and that obviously puts a lot of pressure on me. “Just stop being so critical,” you might say. Criticism, especially humorous criticism, is too much fucking fun. I think it’s worth the anxiety of making a mistake. And, once again, I think that’s another reason why humility is a skill that I desperately need to develop.

And that never-ending war of trying to figure out how to “handle” other people. In a way where the advice of others doesn’t deafen my own independent thoughts. Trying to figure out truth is a lifelong battle: as is dealing with the evil of others. It will continue on forever, as you continue to get older, and, eventually, die. We do good, we do evil, then we think about and talk about the evil of others. Then, we listen to others talk about the evil of still yet others. I’m so fucking exhausted with it all. I want to take part in it, but I’m also fucking sick of it. “Hypocrisy”, I guess you’d say. And here comes the advice. And here’s where Cody has to say “Ignore it, because you want to.” And here’s where Cody hears others complaining that he said he’s going to ignore them. And here’s where Cody needs to tell himself “Just continue ignoring them.” And here’s where Cody hears them saying that “Yes, you need to ignore them.” And here’s where Cody realizes they are “them” so he shouldn’t listen to them. And on, and on, and fucking on. “Just stop”- I can’t- “You think too much”-no I don’t shut up haven’t you read fucking anything I’ve written up to this point? Maybe you realize the problem now.

I can’t wait to just become an old grouch. That’s what my heart ultimately longs for. It flies in the face of all “advice” you’ll hear. But who gives a shit. I’m a grumpy old grouch at heart, goddammit, and that’s what I want to be. So it’s going to fucking stay that way. Get out.

You can’t appreciate profundity when a bunch of stupid blabbermouths don’t see it and won’t shut the fuck up about what they do see.

…Stuff like this makes me wish that either I was older or that I end up dying younger. I can’t take 80 years of thinking like this, and I refuse to think like everyone else. I’m hopeful that this will change as time goes by. But, of course, I want it NOW. I already feel about 90. If I ever do make it to 90, I can’t imagine how I’d feel. That’s scary. Maybe I don’t want to make it to 90. But things do change…

Communication, like everything else, is hard. Regardless of what “natural” abilities you may have, everything gets hard at some point. There’s a reason why talented, say, basketball players practice. Michael Jordan has always been, and will always be, a better basketball player than me. And most. So why did he practice? Well……….what ELSE was he going to do? THAT was a question that he had to ask himself. And he ANSWERED it himself. That’s what I need to do. It doesn’t matter that I’ll (probably) never become the “Michael Jordan” of writing. That is so far removed from the point that that thought shouldn’t have even entered your head. The point is what do I want my writing and thoughts to be, and what do I want to do with them?

And that produces a fine line. Writing involves organization, knowing when to lengthen a piece, and knowing when to cut one off. My default position has just been to cut everything off short (because it’s easier). But something has been missing. I knew this day would come eventually, so I have never stressed about today not being around yesterday. But the day has come where I’m no longer satisfied with cutting things off prematurely. I’ve said stuff like this a million times, but it continues to be true. The process of writing is constant. I’ll probably say, throughout my entire life, that “I need to learn how to edit.” It doesn’t matter how much better I get from one year to the next, I anticipate that I’ll still say “I need to learn how to edit.” Why? Well, this is where the “Michael Jordan” analogy comes into play. What in the fuck ELSE am I going to do with my writing? If I don’t do that, but I want to write, the writing is just going to be “WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD WORD”. What’s the point in reading that? There IS none. Michael Jordan won a championship and an MVP one year. Why did he play the next year? It’s all about an attitude, and what one wants to do. I don’t care if I never win a writing MVP, or whatever. I don’t care if I’m not ranked among the 100,000 best writers ever. The point is that I want to write, and what attitude am I going to have while I do so? I pity those that don’t understand what I’m talking about. They’re kind of idiots.

I hope I don’t burn out too quickly. This has been a lifetime coming, but, ultimately, I think everything is. Everything has been leading up to everything. That’s unavoidable. But being able to explain that in certain ways is a skill that I wish to develop. One of the skills that I wish to develop.

I also need to work on the fact that even if someone’s advice doesn’t help me, at least they want to. I can ignore it, but at least I can say “Well, they’re trying to help, even if they aren’t.” At least give them that credit. And then, get back to my alone time as quickly as possible. I’m sure they’ll understand. At least, if I’ve explained myself well enough, they will. I think my main frustration with advice is that I haven’t been able to effectively speak for myself. That’s a pattern that I continue to notice. I’ve never been happy with my ability to speak for myself, and it’s something I’ve worked on for many, many years. And I have a long fucking way to go. It’s all a complicated weave that I have in my head that I want to be able to elaborate. And it’s exasperating. And it just keeps building more and more and more. It’s hard to handle, but this is the best time in my life to handle it financially. I can’t afford to waste this opportunity. I want all of my ideas to come fast, and just get them all done as rapidly as possible. But they need to mature to maintain a quality that I’m happy with. It’s not about writing a bestseller, it’s just about writing good stuff, goddammit. My heart has always hurt when inspiration has hit me and I couldn’t write because I was at work, or had to go to school the next day. Staying up for hours later than I should just because “It hit me.” Feeling frustrated because I had other responsibilities that kept me from writing. So much of that has changed. This is the time that I’ve been desperate for my whole life. SO WHY IN THE FUCK WOULD I EVER STRUGGLE TO WRITE?????????? Write NOW, dammit!!! In truth, there’s still stuff to figure out, as there always has been. But this is, more than likely, the best time I will EVER HAVE to create. EVER. I’ll have more free time now than I’ve ever had. That pressure is terrifying. But if I get in too much of a hurry, the work sucks. And I need to absorb more before I can regurgitate more. I haven’t been happy with much of my writing for a long time now, and it’s mainly because I just didn’t have enough within me to get it done the way I wanted to get done. There’s too much for me to elaborate on here, but I want to do it eventually. All of my work is a tangled weave of my life. It all connects, in the grand scheme of things. I’m a “mad scientist”. It’s a delicate balance. I guess I’ll just have to hope that I don’t see it all as a mistake down the road, and figure out exactly what I’m going to do today, and how.

Technical ability to improve quality (of things like video) is a skill I need to learn without burning myself out trying to do so. Software, camera work, lighting. No, I don’t need to go to school for it. I’ll experiment with it myself eventually. But I need a better outlook of completing good work. A – you guessed it – philosophical approach to quality and effort. I know that probably sounds weird to you. But I want to be able to explain what I mean eventually. I want to be able to explain everything. How I write, etc.

I need to hurry up and get better so I can churn out more stuff, and keep improving it. The gaps in time between my writings are far too fucking long for my taste. But I can’t just type “BLAH BLAH BLAH” and say I’ve written something. It just takes a lot of time. Everything does. And then, I’ll get old and say “Holy fuck. Where did the time go?”

I still have a lot of things that I want to say about the past. About writing. I want to be able to explain what is going on inside of my head. If that doesn’t interest you, that’s fine. If it enrages you, I find that humorous. If it inspires you, that’s terrifying. But the ultimate point is that I want to be lost inside of my own head to find some peace in this world. That’s mainly what I care about at the moment. That, and just learning how to do everything better, such as my attitude and “dealing with” other people. And editing, and organizing, etc.

So that’s what I’m working on, I guess. Lmfao (When to work? When to break? When to write? When to listen to music? Who to listen to? Who to ignore? WHEN WHEN WHEN? It never ends).

The hardest part about all of this is having known, for a long time, that all of this was going to happen (or at least significant parts of it), but having it not happen. Realizing “Yep, this is definitely a waiting game.” As my favorite childhood musician once said, “The waiting is the hardest part.”

Bulleted lists of what I like about writing and what I hate about writing.

Why Express?

Highly Sensitive Mind.

My poetry.


Aspects of competition that I love, hate, and why

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Baseball: I love baseball because my dad let me play when I was younger. I didn’t understand any of the rules or strategy until I was much older, but catching the ball was always exciting to me. Feeling the ball pop in your glove from a pop-fly or making a diving catch or having to run a long way for the ball was always exciting. I liked being at bat because patience was rewarded, and I liked getting walked. It took me a long time to get the gist of hitting, but I had a few really good hits in my career (I’m not claiming to be good by ANY means lol) but the few solid hits that I got were worth my playing career even if I wasn’t as good as my dad was when he played or even my brother. Throwing was always my weakest part, as I didn’t have the confidence in my arm to throw it where I wanted to. I only hind-caught at one practice of my brother’s and I loved every second of it. As I got older, I enjoyed the pitching aspect a lot more, watching people’s windups and the mental aspect of the game as to what pitch to throw and where. I also love seeing teams that are bad because I want to know why they are so bad. In my later years, the camaraderie of the team was something that was irreplaceable. A bunch of guys that you have never been with and friends that were your friends were life coming to play ball was the best part. Goofing off in the dugout while you’re getting blown out were fun times. Everyone was there to have fun and it was great. I wouldn’t trade that for being drafted in the MLB. The only thing that ruined it were a couple of coaches that took the game too seriously, but the camaraderie was just amazing. I hated it when we had to go back out on the field (for a while at least) because the dugout camaraderie was so fun. I hated playing the outfield because people always yelled at you, but as I got older, I loved running after the ball. It was so fun, even in practice. But I hated throwing the ball into the cutoff man. I got to play shortstop one game after someone didn’t show up and I made a diving catch and a throw to second I think to start a double play and that was one of my defensive highlights. I just reacted and didn’t think I could do it lol I hated running the bases though. I was too aggressive for the speed that I had lol I hated a couple of my coaches, too. But a couple of solid hits that I got to right-field a couple of times were exhilarating. I got hit in the chest one time by a line-drive at third base one time at practice, so that was crazy. But I didn’t really think much of it. I couldn’t stand running the bases at practice, though.

Football: The main reason I loved football is because my dad would watch it all the time. I started out circling different names on a piece of paper as a kid that were apparently football teams and it turns out I was selecting who I thought would win, but I enjoyed watching comebacks before I knew any of the rules or strategy. It started out as a bonding experience with my dad, but when I got to school I got ridiculed a lot so I kind of turned against it. I really enjoyed watching the deep passes and catches and I would watch NFL classics all the time. I’ve always enjoyed them for some reason that I’ve never understood. I don’t really care about the big hits, but I love watching quarterbacks throw pretty passes. I would go in the backyard and throw a football all the time pretending I was getting pressured and throwing a perfect pass. I never got to play in any leagues, though. I also enjoyed how excited everyone was who watched the NFL. The weather games are also one of my favorite parts of the game, and I love watching terrible teams play for some reason. I guess I just like to know how a team can be so bad. It’s extremely fascinating. I love running after a pass and trying to catch a throw, but I’d hate wearing all of those pads. I wore a helmet one time and tried to pat myself on the head to see what it felt like and it was too loud for me. I’ve always had sensitive ears and had a lot of problems with them as a kid.

Basketball: Oh, basketball. My first true love. When I first started playing, I just ran around and when someone came into the paint, try to stop them and I usually fouled them. At first, I was afraid of fouls because I knew you could “foul out” and my main goal was to not do that. If I did that, I thought I had won. I usually played forward and my coaches had said “stay between this line and here”, so I just did that over and over. I don’t remember when it happened, but I finally got aggressive and played the center position and scored a lot of points in the paint off of the backboard and guarded anyone who came into the paint as hard as I could and tried to start fast breaks, but I almost always turned the ball over when I did that. I couldn’t handle the ball (I wasn’t confident back then) so I usually just passed it to the ball-handlers on the team. Basketball provided some of the greatest highlights of my playing career. I hit an off-balance three pointer (I think the first I had ever made. I had attempted some before, maybe two or three, but missed them) to either tie or win a game late. I think I saved a ball that was heading out of bounds in the corner or I got passed the ball near the top of the key and tried to dribble open but couldn’t and had to shoot a fade-away shot in the corner as the buzzer sounded. Another highlight though that I’m most proud of (as the shot was mainly luck) was a defensive play I made a couple of years before that. Our team had just hit a basket to put us ahead and everyone on my team was pressing as the clock was winding down. I saw one of their players bolt towards their open net and there was no one back defending a potential open lay-up. So I sprinted as hard as I could and the in- bounder tried to chuck the ball to him. I jumped and tipped the ball away as the buzzer sounded and the whole gym erupted. I was almost deaf. We were playing at home and I was so fucking excited. All of the parents were cheering me and my mom was SO proud of me. When I got to Jr. High, we played basketball almost everyday and that is where my appreciation of the game really blossomed. I really started to develop a good shot. When I was in about ninth or maybe tenth grade, I would go in the backyard and shoot every shot imaginable for hours. I would go to the school or stay in the backyard and sometimes shoot from about 4:30 in the afternoon until almost 10 o’ clock at night: sometimes much later. One of my coaches taught me about the physical nature of basketball, and that was another pivotal moment for me. Before that, I had just guarded whomever came into the paint with the fear of fouling them (by the way, back then I was never confident at free throws and never understood fouls) and I never understood what constituted a travel (got called for a lot of those), but one of my coaches taught me how to be physical. There were only two players, maybe three or four and practice that day. My coach was teaching rebounding, and I was only getting the ball when it was coming right to me. That’s what I thought I was supposed to do. But my coach said “Go get that ball. That ball is yours.” So I went after it. Then he blocked me out (I didn’t know what it was called at the time), and he said “Get around me. That’s still your ball.” So I tried to get around him and I realized that contact was ok. I finally started boxing people out and that was the first time that I had ever gotten aggressive in the paint. That was MY paint and I was going to defend it at all costs, regardless of whether or not I fouled out (and I fouled out several times) and I called for the ball in the paint and hit a lot of bankers. I got fouled quite a bit but my free throw shooting was poor as the pressure got to me most of the time. I finally started getting confident after getting my ass kicked in high-school consistently. I was tired of not handling the ball or getting rebounds and it pissed me off so bad that I kept playing and kept playing because I knew no one thought I could play, and that has fueled me to this day and has developed my passion for the game. Now I can dribble, rebound, and shoot better than I ever could and my knowledge of the game has skyrocketed about the rules and strategy, and it’s a passion that I’m going to take with me up until my deathbed. Coaching is fun and the mental aspect of the game is just as fun as the physical aspect. Trying to get open, hitting teammates, guarding people. The whole game is just a beautiful game, and I thank Jerry Naismith greatly for it.

Ice hockey: I love ice hockey because it’s so foreign. I like different things and, being from the South, ice hockey is EXTREMELY foreign. I love the sounds that it makes (the skating, the slap-shots, the players hitting the boards) and the hockey sticks remind me of eating popsicles and the wooden sticks that they were always frozen on. I like the “kuh” sound that you hear a lot from the game and the sounds are just appealing to me for some reason, and the beautifully orchestrated skating that is interrupted by the violent hits is appealing to me. Football is too regimented for me: I like the freedom that ice hockey provides. Plus I think it would be cool to play a sport in a cold venue.

Golf: I always wanted to play golf. It’s fun because of the judgment you have to use to time your shots just right and I like the way it feels when you swing a golf club.

Poker: I love the psychology that goes on in a poker hand. Bluffing, reading your opponent and determining how much to bet are my FAVORITE parts. I don’t really care about the strengths of the hands.

Auto racing: I hated racing cars myself, but my friend has turned me on to racing. I don’t like it when people try to get me to conform to something, and I always felt like cars were one of those things. I would rather be learning math than fixing a car (or fixing anything mechanical, for that matter. I always thought of it as a chore and never fun), but if I can learn things at my own pace without other people telling me what to do, I enjoy it a lot more). I hated driving go-carts because they were too loud and powerful for my sensitive brain, and I always floored it and got scared so I could never control it. That’s why, to this day, I still hate controlling vehicles. I loved riding in the go-cart with my uncle when I was a kid though. It was so fun.

Soccer: Soccer was always my favorite sport to play before I really got into basketball. It was fun to run around and try to kick the ball. I loved making sliding plays to kick the ball away from someone else, and it was fun to be on the sideline as well. I just loved hanging out with everybody. I enjoyed light-hearted practices, where no one was any good but we all tried, and I hated coaches that took it seriously and wanted to win and ran us to death. But kicking the ball was always fun. I got to play goalie one year and I was pretty decent at it. It was all just reactions, really. One year when I was wearing glasses, it was pouring rain while we were playing and my glasses were fogged up and I got hit right in the face with a shot and it bent my glasses but at least I could see lol (long story). I hated running up the hill at Nebo every practice to the point of exhaustion. That was pointless to me. That wasn’t why I was playing soccer. I wasn’t playing to get better, I was playing to have fun and that season was no fun at ALL.

August 18, 2012.

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