Nostalgic Boners and Toxic Fandoms

Warning: The following is an uber nerd rant that might go on for a long time. You’ve been warned. Now it’s time to get my geek on.

I joined up with some fan forums last night. Quite unlike me because I’ve done my best to avoid mingling with fandoms. I used to kick it with the nerd clique which I liked to call “Nerdcore” or “The Nerd Herd” because I figured it’s only natural to want to be around people with similar interests. Did we end up getting along? Yes for the most part. Were there conflicts based on individual tastes, thoughts, and opinions? Yuuuuuuup…..

There are some cancerous people in the nerd community. Straight up. I always end up running into them. It’s an inevitability. It’s a problem when they come in swarms like insects. It becomes an even bigger problem when it seems like you’re under constant attack for the things that you like.

I’m guilty of liking a lot of stuff that’s not popular with other people. Where do I begin?

The anime series, Blood-C. Not for everyone, especially if you’re the squeamish type. It had so much gore that it made Elfen Lied look like a Disney film by comparison. But it actually had a plot that played a good psychological example of Nature vs Nurture and combining it with the whole “Truman Show” scenario. Could it have been executed in a different way? Yes, absolutely. But I think people were so turned off because viewers just had zero patience and didn’t pay attention to what was happening in the episodes that built up toward the end. There were hints everywhere, clear as day. Plus during the last episode there’s a lot more information that’s dropped on everyone’s laps but people don’t get the whole picture. They don’t get the whole picture because they didn’t take the time to put all the puzzle pieces together.

I liked the Ghostbusters and Power Ranger movies that recently came out. Were they perfect? No, of course they’re not perfect. There’s no such thing as perfection. That’s an illusion that people use to set themselves up for disappointment. Are they gonna win any Oscars? I fucking doubt it. But they don’t deserve all the hate that they get from movie viewers and Rotten Tomatoes. The Ghostbusters backlash is purely sexist, nothing more than that. Was it better than the original films back in the 80’s? No, but it wasn’t a complete shit show. It wasn’t a total flop. It could’ve been so much worse than people make it out to be. The same thing with the Power Rangers movie. Rotten Tomatoes labeled it a “box office failure”. Who did the reviewing? Toxic fans who grew up into jaded cynical adults or jaded cynical adults that never watched the original show at all? I loved both those films. I walked out of the movie theater with no regrets and I didn’t feel like my childhood was shat on.

I like some of the more unpopular Final Fantasy titles. My first FF game was Final Fantasy 8 and I fucking loved playing it. It was the second RPG I ever played. That first walkthrough was memorable to me because there was so much trial and error from how I played it and it made the battles especially difficult. Both factors made it all the more gratifying when I finally did beat the game. Is FF8 the best title in the franchise? Does it have the most compelling characters? The biggest replay value? The most amazing plot? No to all of that. But I love FF8 for sentimental reasons. Plus at the time I was playing it I wasn’t looking for any of that in the first place and I didn’t know any of the stuff back then that I know now. So I didn’t label Squall as an emo. Or the romance with Rinoa as uninspired? And I’m not so nerdy that I try to dissect the plot and complain at everything like….”How do you compress time? That doesn’t seem so terrifying…”

Oh yeah and when I was reading the manga, “Claymore”, it pissed someone off so bad that they yelled at me, “That’s just a rip off of Berserk! No, it’s just Berserk with boobs!”

Do you see the pattern here? This is what I call “Pulling a Jon Joel”. Because there was this one asshole in the Nerd Herd circle named Jon Joel who would walk up to you, start up a conversation like so, “What anime/video games are you into?” You proceed to give him an answer and then he responds with, “That’s fucking bullshit! I can’t stand that stuff! I can’t stand those characters! The protagonist is a complete faggot and you’re a faggot for even liking that show!”

Because the whole point of Jon Joel conversing with you is to tear apart everything you love and talk about what he loves because no way he would ever pick a bad anything. He was the sort of extreme weeb who loved to hear the sound of his own voice, bask in the smell of his own shit, and had a butter face that even his own mother would love to throw a brick at. He’s just one of many people who I feel epitomizes that toxic fandom behavior.

Whatever happened with “To each his/her own”? Or common human decency for that matter. I joined up with these forums on some dumb whim and I see so much of that toxic fandom going on just skimming through the site. I almost want to rant in a forum about how the Ghostbusters or Power Rangers movie didn’t suck but I know it’s gonna attract people who will disagree. And the last thing that I want is to have to breathe in more poison than I’ve already have for most of my life.

See? Told ya I was gonna rant. Lately I’ve been indulging myself in a lot of things from my childhood. Nerdy things like Sailor Moon, reading fan fiction, playing retro playstation games, etc. It’s partly depression treatment, going back to my roots and reviving interests that were dying out. The other reason is that naturally they’re all creative fuel for me.

I’m trying to get more serious about my fiction writing. I don’t want to invite anyone else into this fold because past experience tells me that’s not a good idea. People won’t operate on the same wavelength as me and I need to be able to trust myself when I’m writing, especially if I have any chance of making a career out of it. Some of my creative projects are gonna be based off those nerdy nostalgic things that I love so much.

I find myself constantly making a lot of announcements for intentions, but here I go. It won’t be the last time I’ll be doing this. One of the biggest things I’ve struggled with while trying to write is constantly fearing that my ideas aren’t good enough or I’m always giving up on things before I ever truly give them a chance. This is a bad habit that I’m trying to get out of. There’s also the many other facets that come from wanting to write, but that’s the stuff for a whole other blog entry (although I’m fairly certain one of my older posts already covered that). I want to lead a depression free life which I believe can be achieved through writing. I want to write my stories without anymore fear, shame, or self-hate aimed at myself and I need to be comfortable in my own skin to do that. I need to be comfortable with myself by being real with my shit. (Being Real…oh look there’s another throwback to a previous post.)

My New Intentions
1. I want to enjoy the things that make me feel alive.
2. I want to better love myself without reservation.
3. I want to be able to voice my thoughts and opinions without fear.
4. I want to write for me and worry about all the other stuff later.
5. I want to complete at least one creative project before I end up finishing things at App State.
6. I want to break out of self-harming thoughts that have been tying me down.
7. I want to engage with people who aren’t so toxic and leave me to do my own thing without judgement.
8. I want to be comfortable with myself.
9. I want to go after everything that I want without fear in my heart.
10. I want to take better care of myself.
11. I want to live intentionally.
12. I want to forgive myself for never being good enough in the eyes of others or even to myself. Forgive myself for every little thing that I’ve perceived as a failure or defeat. Forgive myself for being different from others. Forgive myself from making progress at my own pace. Finally forgive myself for ever getting lost in life.

I’m done. Later days.

My Own Little World

I’ve been quite the reclusive writer as of late. An escape from reality for me was long overdue anyway. I found a bunch of old drafts and ideas that I had jotted down for the many stories that I never finished or barely started. I feel like I’m reconnecting with old friends whenever I read up on old characters and feeling like I’m reconnecting with my own self as well.

It was always my plan to get back to my writing roots and start back from scratch with my stories and other creative projects. When things in reality turn incredibly ugly like with what’s been happening after the Charlottesville incident and the like it makes it easier to escape. It makes me imagine a world that I’d rather be apart of and people I’d vastly prefer than the people I know.

Of course these escapes can only last for so long. There’s always something in my reality that’s always calling me back against my will; academic responsibilities, people who need me, the fact that I’m going to have my hands filled with other stuff like paying off bills and debts, finding a real job, being a normal functioning member of society….ya’know? All that good stuff.

I’ve been keeping my distance from other people in my life. Including friends I’ve had before I left for Boone. At first I didn’t want to have to deal with people and hear about how great their lives were when I was struggling for the longest time with everything. But now it’s the opposite. Some of them are having their own share of problems as well. If I were the same person I was three years ago then I’d take the time to listen, to help them unload their burden. But I’m not that person anymore. I’ve got problems of my own to worry about. The current state of the world sure doesn’t help either. I don’t need a constant reminder of how horrible things are with Trump in the White House, a bunch of Neo-Nazi shit heads looking to cause trouble, or whatever other issue of the week keeps going on; police brutality, ISIS, and the constant starvation and poverty in Venezuela where my family is from. I see all of this on my social media so I’m forced to disconnect.

The world as I know it now is a toxic place to live in for people like me that deal with depression and anxiety and for those that don’t. I don’t want to run away from reality because I know I have to learn to deal with it all. But I’m only one person with limited means of doing so and my patience can only last for so long.

Normally I’d be questioning myself and overthink things like, “Does this make me a bad person?” “Am I a coward?” Or something to that effect.

But I know that’s not the case. I’m making a choice based on self-preservation. If the world is toxic then it makes sense that someone doesn’t want to be exposed to it. And I genuinely don’t care if anyone disagrees with me on this. This is for me, not for them. Besides even if I wan’t to do something to change the world on an epic scale I can’t do that when I’m not even 100% in the clear with my own issues.

All I have is myself, my writing, and an imagination that’s the closest thing I have to a cure-all. I used to believe that indulging myself in my writing consistently meant that I was just running away from everything; the state of the world, the things that fuel my depression, being single and lonely, drowning in crippling debt, and overall things not going my way. But that doesn’t have to be the case. Losing myself in my own world could be beneficial. I’m not just talking about getting a head start on my writing career. But perhaps in writing I’ll find answers to questions about myself that have bothered me for the longest time and learn how to better understand the reality I live in and better cope with the things that challenge me. That’s what I believe anyway.

In my own little world there are things that come straight from the fantasy novels. Monsters, sorcery, giant mechs, superheroes, etc etc. Sometimes I think a world where these things are included automatically mean I’d be living in a better reality. At least then things would make more sense. There’d be heroes fighting the good fight against the villains and make them pay for their crimes. I wouldn’t be struggling to figure what’s truly right or wrong. I’d know which side to fight on.

In my own little world people are not judged on their religion, their gender, who they’re attracted to, the color of their skin, the languages they speak, or whatever interests they have. People are not defined by their struggles or anything else that makes them feel like dirt about themselves. People are defined by their desires and the actions that they take to make those desires into reality.

People wouldn’t have to struggle over things like money, food, medicine, education, and if anyone or anything gets in the way of these things then they’d go down.

In my own little world that I’m trying to make into a reality…
I’m happy with a man that I love and want to spend the rest of my days with. I’m successful in my career as a writer. I live in a beautiful home. I’ve graduated from App State. I’m depression-free.

Thats all got to say tonight. Later.

No More “Matt Damon”ing through Life

As of now I am free from this summer semester. I finished my final exam for photojournalism which was only 12 questions of matching terms, short answers, and fill in the blanks whereas the review sheet made it look like it was going to be 12 pages worth of shit. I was like, “Ok that was easy….”

Then I pay my tuition for the fall. Holy hell! I hope to God my refund kicks in faster than this private loan did. Speaking of, the loan check finally made it to my Mom. But she can’t do shit about it until I get back home because apparently I have to sign it first. Meanwhile I have -$149.50 in my account. Motherfucker what?!!

I can’t even buy pizza or a cup of coffee with that. Oh and I have little to no food at right now. Once again I’m in that Matt Damon situation, “I got to science the hell out of this shit!”

So I call my Mom and tell her whats up. Mostly to tell her that I need cash now! But also to let her know that I’m done with classes and I’m happy with my new home. I have farm animals that live next door to me. Cows, goats, donkeys!! The goats even stumbled into our front yard and starting eating up the grass. I’m like, “Welp….there’s our lawn maintenance right there!”

I dropped a class that was in my schedule in favor of something better. I got a full schedule that’s worth 12 credit hours, but I put myself on the waiting list for this one class that’s required for my degree. I hope to get into it so I can drop one class that I added as just a filler. Other than that, it’s a nice looking schedule. Tuesdays and Thursdays are going to be my light days and I’ll only have to go to one class on Fridays so that’s almost a free day!

My financial aid is finally back to normal! No obstructions whatsoever! Those guys at the main office had me doing all sorts of circus acts just to get back on their good side! I feel like I did everything except take part of an Pagan orgy just to get that cash to payback my Mom.

Finally I feel like I’m crashing down completely. I’m finally feeling full blown exhaustion from these last three months. I had to power through this shit and act like it wasn’t phasing me one bit. Now is the part where I fall to my bed and feel like dying. Metaphorically, not suicidal.

I miraculously managed to scrounge up what food I did have left over and make some udon noodle soup. Which ended up tasting kinda bland. Not my best work. My defense I had no soy sauce and no money to get some. Oh and I managed to burn my hands with the soup being scalding hot. I was so hungry, I rushed to get the bowl to the table to eat, and the next thing I know I feel the soup splash into my hands. I rushed over to the sink and washed them under cold water. I filled up this large bowl with ice water and kept my left hand plunged in it while eating my bland noodle soup.

The money my Mom deposited doesn’t kick in until tomorrow morning. Who the fuck makes up these stupid processes? Money should be made available ASAP. I’m ranting. Clearly I’m ranting.

Anyone whose read one of my previous posts, “Being Real” will get this reference. The last few days I felt familiar knots being tied up in my stomach and sense of dread hanging over me. I felt like I was getting ready to deal with my personal Babadook again. Remember that? I panicked because I was afraid to open up some emails, go online to pay my tuition, or do anything else that any normal person is able to do without any kind of problems? That’s what was going on in my mind. It didn’t help that I was dealing with one big assignment after another until recently. I had it in my mind that I missed the tuition deadline like I did before even though I have been keeping up with my student email this entire summer. Universities have to deliver a warning that says “Your classes are gonna get dropped if you don’t pay up now.” I didn’t see anything like that in my inbox, but I still felt the dread.

The Babadook is speaking to me, feeding me more distorted lies…

“It’s over…”
“You’ve lost…”
“It was all for nothing…”

In my mind I balled up both my fists and punched the shit out of that son of a bitch and watched him fall down hard like a tower of bricks. Then I went on and did my thing, knocked down every thing that blows my anxieties out of control.

Final exam. Done.
Call up Mommy for money. Done
Return my one textbook. Done
Tuition payment. Done.
Schedule change. Done
Add/wait list another class. Done.
Contact a soul sucking professor that I’m not crazy about so I can make up for bombing her class. Done.

If I could, I’d be eating the biggest slices of pepperoni, mushrooms, black olives, and banana peppers right now. Then chase them down with beer. I still think beer tastes like bottled up piss but it still gets the job done. Makes me chill the fuck out. Until I’m at a point where I can stop pinching pennies I have to hope that my noodle soup keeps me full for the night. Otherwise….I got a box of Cheeze-Its that are somewhat stale that I can down.

I feel like this was the summer that I rocked the cliche of a starving artist and college student. It’s not like I embraced it by choice though.

I go back to my hometown on Thursday. Tomorrow I want to have one day of peace to myself before going back, dealing with parents and cousins that ask one too many questions, a father who sucks the life out of the room and gets pissed off drinking water, and being surrounded by a bunch of kids who are obsessed with bunnies, Skylanders, and fidget spinners. By the way I fucking hate those things. That shit doesn’t kill anxiety. That’s what nutella is for!!

Oooo Nutella…..*finds a jar and digs in*

While I’m at home though I’m gonna chill and finally take the time to enjoy the things that make me fucking happy.

1. Spending time with my cousins and their kids.
2. Playful bickering with my Mom
3. Watching WWE events. I waited a VERY long time for NXT Takeover Brooklyn and that Mae Young Classic goddamnit!!
4. Binge watching Once Upon a Time. I’m working on a story that involves fairy tales for inspiration. So I’m marathoning the show and calling it research. When in reality I’m oogling Captain Hook. Colin O’Donoghue….*fans himself*
5. Going to G Mart. I’ve been craving the Korean food there for weeks. I want bibimbap, gimbap, bulgogi, japchae, all of it!!
6. I want to sit down and keep writing the things I love writing about nonstop without having anything hang over my head for the next two weeks.
7. Get back into gaming. Preferably get into a title that’s not Persona 5.
8. Eat food that I didn’t buy with my own money because parents can’t do shit to stop me so I’m gonna take advantage of it because I’m sick of ‘Matt Damon”ing my way through life!! No!! I want to Homer Simpson through the buffet lines! Shamelessly stuff my face like Pam Poovey! And make food that’s so good that it drives a person into a fevered pitch of uncontrollable ecstasy that’s so intense that their clothes will explode like in Shokugeki no Soma!!! And that’s what will get me a spot on Chef’s Table….

Good times are about to be had. Now is a good time to sign off. I just finished the last of that nutella. Now after all that food talk I’m probably gonna go ahead and finish off those Cheese Its.

Later days

Summer Semester/Sandpaper Dildo

So I was on edge because of this big ass photo story assignment that we were supposed to do. I had ideas on what to do, but things didn’t go as planned. I had a Plan B in case my original idea didn’t work out. And when that didn’t happen I had to resort to a Plan C. Rare situation I find myself into, believe it or not.

So I did the assignment in the best way I knew how. The instructions weren’t so clear and it didn’t help that I had a lot going on in my mind because a day without anxiety and depressing thoughts is asking for too much it seems.

Taking the photos wasn’t the hard part. Once I had something to capture in photos I figured the worse was finally over. But no….we had to take those images and put them in a multimedia slideshow, whatever the fuck. Which was supposed to include a video, music in the background, and images that tell a story.

What was my story? My roommate cutting hair. That’s it. Oh and the music had to be royalty free. So no popular music. I hated all that generic shit that was offered so I opted for a track from one of my many video game OSTs that I have in my collection. The professor said no popular music. Not everyone is into video games the way I am.I know what the track is, they weren’t going to know shit (seeing as though they’re a bunch of mindless zombies anyway). So technically I didn’t break any rules. Besides it’s not as though as I though I’m gonna claim ownership of the music anyway and get anything out of it.

Finally presentation day…

I uploaded my completed assignment. It’s shit, but I uploaded it anyway. I’m trying to keep myself in check. Then everyone else shows their presentations and of course they do a much better job then I did. And that’s when my insecurities are stirring up inside of me like this monstrous whirlpool. Now I’m dreading having my stuff shown to the entire class. But as it turns out I didn’t have to. Because I didn’t upload it properly. Yeah…there’s a proper way to upload it….MOTHERFUCKER WHAT?!

My presentation didn’t include a video of anything. All it was a boring, tacky photo slideshow with music from Shoji Meguro (composer for the Persona game series, for you non-gaming nerds reading this) playing in the background to give it some beat.

So after returning the camera gear the professor opted to let us leave early because what else is there left to do? I was able to upload my assignment in the “proper way” and not have to worry about it being shown to the class. So I dodged a bullet there. I can put it in the back of my mind while I focus on my final exams and finally kiss this summer semester goodbye.

It’s been one thing after another. I’ve been challenged mentally and emotionally. To quote Deadpool, “It’s been as much fun as a sandpaper dildo.”

So I didn’t get to do the good work that I would’ve like to have done on my photo assignment. But at least I tried. At least I turned in something. A half ass, crappy looking something is better than having nothing at all. And during those presentations in class I gave myself a pep-talk inside my mind.

“Yeah yeah, shit happened. So what?”
“This bitch isn’t gonna flay you alive for doing something.”
“You did the best you could have done.”
“Her instructions were complete bullshit anyway.”
“You can beat yourself up and feel like crap about everything or you can just say ‘Fuck it’ and move on.”

So I said “fuck it” and I choose to move on. Plus despite how tough this summer semester has been there’s been a lot of good that’s come out of it. That’s what I choose to focus on.

Let’s list out the highlights of summer 2017.
1. I got the help I needed in counseling.
2. I dealt with the financial crisis and got the money needed to pay back my mom.
3. I came back from my previous failures and I still have a shot at graduating in spring 2018.
4. I made the choice to live even though there were moments where I wanted to curl up into a ball and just die.
5. I’m done with my math. That’s a huge victory for me.
6. I moved out of the Cottages of Boone.
7. I got the house that I wanted and was able to move into it.
8. I have come out of my shell a little bit. I can’t deny this.
9. I didn’t quit or run away from anything despite whatever fears almost crippled me.
10. My academic standing is improving. The probation isn’t gonna stop me now.
11. I did enjoy taking photos. So I brought an old hobby back to life.
12. I’m writing again.
13. I’m still alive.
14. I’m going home to see my family again.
15. I’m getting a clean slate for the fall semester.
16. Fall is coming….pumpkin spice everything, cooler weather, better clothes to wear, new releases of games, new premieres of everything, more WWE events.
17. My new manager whose renting the house is cute….
18. My so called “Demons” have grown weaker. They are losing their power over me.
19. I powered through a lot of things that kept challenging me.
20. I played the shit out of Persona 5. I got the Compendium completed, mastered the social links, beat the shit out of those twins, wasted the reaper, and I’m two trophies away from my first platinum ever.

This second session is about to end. I didn’t do as well as I would’ve liked to in photojournalism, but I stuck it out to the bitter end. I still have the other class that I know I passed. We’re writing op-eds and being given extra credit for submitting it for publication. The professor in that class really likes mine and is encouraging me to submit it. I think I just might because that would be cool for me.

I didn’t get everything I wanted from this summer but I’m going to press on and work even harder than ever.

Here are my intentions that I share with the Universe.

1. I will continue to live.
2. I will graduate in spring 2018.
3. I will keep getting better.
4. I will continue writing.
5. I will keep cooking.
6. I will keep taking photos.
7. I will go back to loving films and anime.
8. I will keep gaming.
9. I will break out of my shell and smash it completely.
10. I will become more beautiful than I already am.
11. I will find that special someone to love and share my life with.
12. I will make my life better than it is now.
13. I will have a life where I don’t have to struggle and fight against myself or anything else.

It won’t be easy. But I know that I have the ability to make it all happen. I refuse to back to the way things were before all this.

Can’t Kill My Chill

Today was my last day of the first summer session here at Appalachian State. I gotta say that these past few weeks have been some of the most nerve wracking ever. But it’s also been very rewarding.

I passed BOTH of my classes. That’s including my more difficult class. It was a math class. I was on edge because I didn’t do so well on two tests and we were told that scoring less than a 60% on a test would mean that we had no chance of passing the course. The teacher was real cool though. She’s not some monster that gets off on other people’s misery. She genuinely cares for all her students and wanted to help out whenever possible.

I took my math final earlier today and I slayed it. On top of that, I hadn’t checked out my score on the class until today. Anyone whose been paying attention to anything that I’ve been writing and posting here can imagine the reason why. I didn’t think I would end up doing so good. I was the last person to finish and turn in my exam after double checking everything for over an hour. I asked my teacher if she was teaching any other class. I figured that I’d have to sign up for another one after that. I said, “Well I don’t know exactly what I’ve made in this class, but I figure it smarts to weigh my options….” And then she shows me my current grade. It turns out I already have a passing grade of 84.6. I have a B!

So it doesn’t matter how bad I do on that final because I’ve already passed the course. All my efforts paid off! It was the only math class that I needed for my degree and it’s out of my way. Math has been a constant source of terror for me for the longest time and now I never have to deal with it again. No more translating word problems, no more geometry, no more quadratic formulas, no more retaining useless facts, and no more beating myself up because of my sucky math skills. I’m free at last!! And it feels so damn good!

I passed my communication law course too. I never have to retain legal facts ever again. It was unbelievably draining to have to retain math formulas, names of cases, knowing how to dance around empirical rules, and memorizing all that legal jargon. There is no future in the legal world for me. Viola Davis makes it look good, but it ain’t for me.

I’ve got my tuition paid for, my financial situation is going to improve, and it’s just a matter of killing time until it’s time to move into the new house. This is all a huge victory to me. I start up a new session in the next few days, but between now and then I can finally be happy. I can celebrate!

Between juggling those classes, counseling sessions, and dealing with my usual crap I am exhausted. Not to mention there was all that stuff with the house, from finding the roommates, waiting for the manager to pick us, and the day of signing that lease. I was on edge! And even when it looked like all was taken care of there seemed to always be something else that stood in the way. There was always another trigger to my anxiety. I did my best to keep this positive momentum going strong, but there times when I thought it would all come a crashing halt.

But nope!! You can’t kill my chill! I’m on my way to meeting my goals. I planned to come back from my failures and it’s happening. I wanted that house and I got it. I’ve got a great thing going on and now I have to work harder to keep it going stronger!!

For now though it’s time for me to be happy and celebrate. I owe myself! Let’s see what a math-free life is like for me. Sweet dreams!

Maximum Effort!!

I swear some assignments are given as a form of torture. One of my current projects involve making a geometric cone out of paper. There are instructions on how to do that. In the real world where normal people rule supreme something like this shouldn’t be a problem, right? It shouldn’t produce a bead of sweat, right? Ideally, yes. But for someone like me who turns into a feeble, crippled, nervous wreck when they so much as a see an text alert about the power bill, don’t have enough rice to cook with, or get a phone call from their mom of all people…..you see where I’m going with this?

This is for my math class too. Which begs a question….when in the hell am I ever going to need this stuff in my life? I want to make a career in writing, no number crunching whatsoever! The only real math I’ll ever need is basic addition and subtraction. Like, “how much do I need to pay for my electric bill?” “how much shopping off Amazon can I afford to treat myself to?” “how many slices of pizza can I eat in one sitting? how many leftover slices do I want to save for tomorrow?”

THAT’S ALL.

Again, I really hope that the grade comes down to effort that’s put into it. Cause like I said before everyone in class is absolutely clueless about what to do. Okay my nerves are dropping from an 11 to something manageable now. I should be able to manage something. It’s going to be a crap job for sure though, but right now all I care about is getting it done.

My current academic problems combined with everyday stress, hemorrhaging my finances, nonexistent love life, and my oh-so-lovely-not-at-all-debilitating-depression has naturally put me in a very foul mood.

I just want to sit down and write fiction! That’s all I’ve ever wanted! I have had little to no time for myself to do anything like it. I got ideas occupying space in my mind like an episode of Hoarders, but I can’t sit down and take the time to put it down on paper because there’s always something that’s in my way. School is my biggest obstruction right now which is funny because the whole point of me going to school in the first place is so I could have a better life for myself. I can blog all day till my heart is content, I could write my most secret of secrets in my little black journals describing what hot dream I had of Charlie Hunnam, but when it comes to writing down fictional characters on fictional adventures fighting a bunch of fictional villains and monsters…..now it’s a problem!

With all that does go in my head there’s plenty of stuff that I can use for my characters to deal with. But now I can’t even make any new characters. I’ve gotten out of touch with my old characters too. I don’t know what makes them tick anymore, what their motivations are, or hell even what their favorite meal is.

I don’t take the time to really do anything for myself other than cooking, gaming, and sleeping. But even when I am doing this stuff there’s always something hanging over my head like, “Am I going to pass this class?” “Will I ever graduate?” “Will I be fortunate enough to score a day job?” “How am I ever going to pay off my student loan debts….?”

Okay….here’s what I’m going to do next.

I’m going to stop ranting and whining.
I’m going to do the stupid projects in the best way I can.
I’m going to pay my power bill.
I’m going to treat myself to some fried chicken or a hamburger steak or something.
I’m going to make it through this last week.
I’m going to pay my tuition…somehow….
I’m going back home for much needed R&R.
I’m going to go buy the new Power Rangers movie on Blu-Ray and probably watch it until I’ve got every line memorized or until I have the strong desire to write some fan fiction.
I’m coming back to keep the positive momentum when the second summer session starts up and then I’m going to move the fuck out of the Cottages of Boone.

Whatever depression and anxiety I feel between now and then I’m just going to power through it and get whatever peace of mind I can have. Yeah I made the choice to get medicated, but even so I know there are gonna be times where I have to bite the bullet and push through.

So here I go with MAXIMUM EFFORT!!

Warrior “Monk”

Anyone remember this show? Tony Shalhoub played this dude named Adrian Monk who suffers from severe Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and an endless list of phobias. He was afraid of everything. Even milk for some reason. Don’t know if they covered the reason why. Maybe it was just a running gag. Despite all this he was a genius detective. He had this attention to detail all the other cops on the show lacked. He was always able to find the clues, piece them together, and finally catch the bad guys. He managed to do all of this despite of the OCD or whatever phobia of the week he had to face head on. He was always being forced into situation that challenged him and he had to seriously nut up and endure.

When my anxiety and depression act up I keep thinking that I’ve suddenly turned into Monk. And I mean that in a negative light. Monk was always driving people up the wall with his fears and obsessive compulsion. Even his therapists had trouble dealing with him sometimes and could only handle him in small doses. I feel like Monk in situations where I feel like I get triggered by stupid shit like the ones I’ve mentioned before, I have difficulties doing what normal people have no problems with at all, and sometimes driving people insane with my issues, be it family or friends.

I shared this with my counselor in a previous session. I vented out my frustrations about it and he was understanding. But then he asked me this, “Why exactly would that be a bad thing?” I thought I had already answered that while I was ranting about it.

Just like when he brought up the analogy on the mind as a muscle something about the Monk analogy I made with him is sticking with me. This was last week and now I’m beginning to seriously think about it and I have all these thoughts about it.

Even though Monk had numerous phobias that would obstruct him he accomplished so many things that I would’ve considered impossible if I were him. He did have friends, good friends. Yeah, he drove them crazy sometimes but they accepted him as he was. Monk’s OCD allowed him to pay better attention to things and made him an excellent detective, it didn’t have to be a bad thing for him. Monk had a wonderful wife in Trudy who loved him just as he was. Monk worked tirelessly for years searching for clues to solve Trudy’s murder and when he did Monk still had his happy ending. He found out that Trudy had a daughter before marrying him and was able to meet her in the very last episode.

Here’s a crazy theory. What if instead of fighting my “Monk-ish” side, I embrace it? I bitch and moan about how I feel like a freak sometimes and unable to be normal like everybody else. But then there’s a part of me that says, “Fuck normal”. BTW I totally have a t-shirt that reads, “Normal People Scare Me”. I saw it on the first episode of American Horror Story and I thought, “Oh yes! It will be mine!” I even got it in purple. Trying to fit in with the mundane crowd is so exhausting and utterly pointless. Nothing about me has ever been “normal”. There are days where I don’t even feel like I live a “quasi-normal” existence.

I come from a Venezuelan family and I grew up as the pet gringo. I refused to speak the language and I barely ate any of the food. I’m still not a fan of some of the food. It’s only interesting and exotic for people who never had to grow up in a Spanish-speaking household and be forced to smell and eat it at every occasion; holidays, birthdays, family gatherings, baby showers, etc. I’m the least tanned in my family too and I see no point in it. I don’t see the appeal in sizzling in the sun and getting cooked like a rotisserie chicken. I mean look at Trump’s complexion. It’s not doing him favors. But then again his skin tone is more what I call “Dorito Raped”.

I’m gay and I am willing embrace only so many cliches. I’m probably the only gay guy who doesn’t give a single, solitary fuck about Rupaul’s Drag Race, quote “Mean Girls”, or own a single Madonna album. Oh I am not gifted with song and dance either. Take one good look at me and you can clearly see that I’m not a gym rat either.

I live in my own world. I find more comfort in the story worlds and characters I create, in WWE, video games, anime, films, cooking, and imagination. I cope with reality through the use of my imagination. I see myself as a warrior, I see my skills as powers that I naturally possess, I see my challenges as monsters that I have to fight and take down. It’s an unorthodox way to deal with stuff, but we all have our ways to cope. I could be coping in ways that are self-destructive with drug habits or self-mutilation or God knows what else. I see what people don’t see or never want to see out of fear, conformity, or sheer laziness. That’s a quote from the movie Patch Adams by the way, when Patch spoke with Arthur Mendelson at the mental institution.

I suffer from depression and anxiety. But there has been some good that comes from it. It’s attributed to my imagination and wicked sense of humor. God only knows that if my entire life was nothing but sugar and rainbows then I’d have absolutely nothing to write about. It’s made me stronger, a lot stronger than I was eight years ago when I wanted to kill myself. It’s made me realize how much I want certain things. And when I say “I want” I mean it in the same way people feel intense hunger. Its helped make me into the person that I am today. Its always made me have to take a good look at myself in the most honest way possible. Whenever I get lost I always take a trip back to me. It’s not always pleasant, but it’s always been instrumental in getting back to the right path.

I’m a warrior in my own right. I fight one battle after another within my mind. I’m a neurotic mess. I’m not normal and I’m tired of trying to be when it’s never been in the cards for me. I feel things more intensely than others, I know things they don’t have any clue of, I can do things that other can’t, and get labeled a “freak” for all of it when I find that to be a lot more preferable than being boring and fake.

If being a “freak” is what separates me from everybody else then I will proudly wave my freak flag. I will happily accept who I am and live with whatever consequences come with it. Because if I act otherwise then I’ll never be able to make peace with myself and not have the true happiness that I’ve been seeking. So I embrace my identity as a Warrior “Monk”.