Blog Archives

You’ll Notice some changes around here

Ok, so, you may be noticing some changes to the blog soon if you haven’t already.

  1. I have gone to a “private” setting so I can better mod things on here. (People seem to think I’m a “dbag” and an “ahole.” (My gut response is to say **** you haters, but…well, I’m trying to make money here, lol.)

  2. If you like the changes, let me know.
  3. If you don’t…let me know. *grits teeth*
  4. I have all the things linked. If a link is broken, TELL ME!
  5. If anything at all doesn’t work (a video, a stream, a telekinetically thrown goat, etc. etc. etc.)… LET ME KNOW!
  6. Don’t be a dbag to me or others on here.
  7. I have the final say in who is a douche and who isn’t…MWHAHAHAHA. This isn’t a democracy, this isn’t a “cheerocracy” (as Chuck Wendig put it *wink wink nudge nudge*), this is a Pagan Republic.
  8. All that being said…
  9. HAVE FUN.
  10. BE SAFE.
  11. …VOICE YOUR OPINIONS!

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A White Boy in Downtown – Part 2: At the Trashcan Fire That First Night

I drove my 2001 Chevy Cavalier with the hanging passengerside headlight bulb and smashed bumper to downtown Fresno for the first time (other than for Jury Duty) in late January of 2012.

Why? You might ask. Why would a relatively affluent male WASP (white, anglo saxon, protestant) suddenly decide to go into such a dangerous, impoverished, and crime-ridden area?

Well, I suppose the root cause, dear reader, stretches back deterministically all the way to my childhood. So, because a life-story isn’t really necessary in this context, let’s just leave it at this: I wanted to try LSD or some other kind of “mind-expanding” drug in order to increase my creative and spiritual abilities.

What did I find in Downtown? Well, let’s find out together as I cast myself back in memory and time.


After an initial unsuccessful sojourn yesterday I know pretty much how to find free parking in the heart of Downtown. Passing the drab, dark stature of the Fresno Superior Courthouse and jails, streetlights play beautifully off the white paint of my Cavalier’s butt-imprinted hood. Occupy Fresno tents and signs lay, seemingly abandoned, to my right on the sidewalk of the Courthouse park.

I continue on smoothly thanking the Gods traffic isn’t horrific this time of night in Fresno. Sure, other cars pass by, but I’m so excited and anxious about attempting to buy an illicit substance from a genuine drug dealer for the first time that I just smile and crank the radio.

Brighter lights burst off the windshield and I squint a little before my eyes adjust. “CLUB ONE,” screams the casino sign on the corner of Tulare and old Van Ness. I smile more widely as the Chevy glides past into the relative darkness of Fulton Mall.

Once to H Street, I turn right. Finding an empty parking space is easy in Chinatown. No one really wants to be there other than bangers, hustlers, patrons, residents, and the owners of the shops and restaurants it seems.

I greet and pass by the few that are out in the area at this time. On my way down toward the deep dark of the industrial park on the North I begin to feel even more excited. I walk faster, both to stave off the chill of the night and the jitters of slight fear. Eventually I come across an old black gentleman.

I mention I am looking for LSD and he waves for me to come along. We walk toward the “Pov,” the Poverello House for the homeless and jobless, and I continue to make conversation. The man claims it is only about twenty for the tab of acid and I will have to stop. He succeeds in scaring me into staying away from the Poverello house.

I wait for half an hour just around the corner, hiding in the shadows of houses and trees lining the grungy, trash-heaped sidewalks. When I realize I’ve been played, I decide to venture around the corner.

Passing around the bend in the road to the left I am greeted by a dark street with what appears to be several squat encampments. Closest to me are clearly Mexican and Chicanos. I walk down the street toward the end of the Poverello house and its gates. I am hailed by a large, tall black man who I can’t see properly in the light of a washer-tub fireplace.

Apparently wearing a black leather jacket was a poor choice.

“You a cop white boy?” the man demands in a deep, booming voice.

“Fuck no, man. I’m just trying to score some acid,” I say.

I am invited to join the huddled people around the fire. Subjected to questions and scrutiny I am shortly asked to snort a tiny bump of coke from a key to prove that I am no police officer.

The coke is somewhat gross because of the drip, but it isn’t as repulsive as I heard it was.

After taking the little hit of cocaine, Teardrop, as I now know the first tall man to be, insists that even an undercover cop might snort coke. He demands I try crack. Perhaps it was the cocaine beginning to hit, but I feel very good and invincible. Shrugging, I take the pipe and follow his instructions.

I hold the lighter a little bit from the end of the “horn” and begin to inhale. It doesn’t taste bad at all. Except for a chemical flavor there isn’t much taste at all aside from an afterglow of butteriness.

It hits immediately and I understand why people enjoy the feeling, but the hit was no where near my best of the beginning days of my travels into Downtown. I feel faster, more intelligent, and elated. This is a form of flying.

I spend a few hours with Teardrop, just driving around to various hoods and to the motels. I am not offered another hit of crack the rest of that first night. Teardrop seems to want to keep me off the stuff when he realizes I truly had never tried the junk before.

After around 2 in the morning I announce it is time to go home. Teardrop demands I drop him back off at his particle board shanty and I do so before hitting the freeways to go home.

On Being a Misfit, an Outsider, a Lone Wolf

I saw this post on “vic briggs | a writer adrift” and it inspired me to write on the topic too. I saw that daily prompt (from yesterday the ninth) but didn’t really feel moved to post on the topic with how I was feeling that day. Frankly, yesterday (Thursday, Jan 9th) was just a shit day in most aspects.

In any event, I felt that it would be great to post a sort of personal response to Vic Briggs’ post explaining how I feel about being a writer and a weirdo (“weirdo” is my own addition and shouldn’t be misconstrued as calling all writers “weirdos”… though many are, 😛 neener-neener).

I’ll begin with a bit of a cliche. I always felt different.

In my case, however, that feeling different felt normal and I never felt as if I did not “fit in” as a child. That may not make a whole lot of sense to you presently, but, please, hear me out and I can explain.

You know that feeling, in the summer, when you go inside from the screeching heat? That feeling of complete and utter relief? When the thermostat may be turned up to a mere couple degrees below the outdoor temperature and it doesn’t fucking matter, you still feel relief?

That’s kind of how “feeling different” from all the other kids felt like when I was young.

I accepted the fact that I was different and also the fact that I could still fit into the social groups I was expected to fit in with. I could still “succeed” by the standards of my parents and teachers while remaining true to the fact that I was unique. Yea, even at a young age I could get a little grandiose and overly cocky.

Once, in the Third Grade, another boy and I made a game of prank calling the police from the pay phone (sorry, kids, many of you younger folks probably haven’t even seen one of those 😛 ) just outside the office. It was a blast! We knew deep below the surface that what we were doing was wrong. We knew this was forbidden. Someone had taught us this lesson already: calling the police when there is no danger is dangerous for other people. That was the FUN part about the game!

J.J. and I got away with prank calling for a few days just fine. The office personnel were always inside or far from the office during recesses. We figured as long as no one caught us in the act, it would be fine. Of course that meant I had to go off on my own and push the envelope just a hair too far and get caught in the act. (I usually knew/know when to call something quits, but in that case I completely misjudged the location of the stopping line.)

That was embarrassing! That single event, I’m sure, is the reason I tried so hard in the years stretching from then to now to do whatever I wanted without getting caught doing the things authorities looked poorly upon. I managed to cute-ify* and manipulate my way out of the prank calling incident and if I could do that I figured I could do it again in other situations.

See, from a very young age I was a rebel. A punk. A misfit prince of thieves and deception. Even as a toddler I was 95% pure mischief. Its that outer 5% of cuteness, innocence, and wit that kept me from ever getting into serious trouble.

I always had a relatively large group of friends and never had any trouble getting along with anyone, adult or child. My mother supposes that my learning to talk and read at a young age coupled with her own propensity to speak to me as if I were an adult while I was still in my crib helped me to learn excellent social skills in general. I am grateful (more than I can ever say) for my parents both, for their encouragement and nurturing. It sure wasn’t expected that I’d do anything other than what I wanted within the household. They just did their best to teach me how to want and like the things that would kill me, harm me, and do neither of those things to others.

Upon reaching junior year in High School (I believe it is generally also called “secondary school”, for non-American readers) I met her. That girl that I thought I would marry in my youth and naivete. Yea, well… dedicating everything of myself to anyone at that age and in the ensuing years was a major mistake.

So, it happened, that at the times I wanted to rebel the most I wound up with someone who opened my eyes to many truths I’d never had to face before. We were so different and so bull-headed and determined that somehow the relationship worked for us. Sadly, it didn’t work for any of my large family or enormous friend base.

Now, just over 8 years later, my life is only just beginning to regain some semblance of togetherness and health.

During those 8 years running from 11th grade to November of 2011 I went through the soul crushing experience of morphing from a confident and independent young man into a groveling, lying, thieving, wretched, crack addict. I had no friends. My family had all but given up on me (except my parents, they, of course, always held out hope). I was that lone wolf I always thought I wanted to be. I chose the Wolf and the Wolf chose me.

Moving from conservative Christianity to anti-Christianity to vague neo-paganism to Hellenismos was a hard process alone. I’ve been a Hellenic polytheist since late 2007. (Which happens to be the year I graduated High School and began attending California State University, Fresno and living, for the first time, out of my parent’s home and on campus.) I only just got the courage and fortitude to tell my parents mere weeks ago.

I’ve been a Misfit. I’ve been that Outsider of which true artists and vainglorious frauds speak. I am the Lone Wolf.

The only reason I’ve survived thus far? I also happen to have a pack.

I don’t walk alone as much as I felt I did for so long and as much as I thought I wanted to. Sure, it’s a marvelous feeling to “go your own way,” but humans are social creatures and no amount of lying to yourself will change that. The only way to survive for long as a “misfit,” “outsider,” or “lone wolf” is to find a “pack” of other outliers that you fit in well with.

That’s how I survived when multiple situations should have found me dead or in prison upon reaching their ending.

  • I’ve overdosed on cough syrup (just robo-tripping) and wound up in the hospital on saline IV drips twice then was 5150’d and brought to the Community Behavioral Health Center in east Fresno where I was 5250’d and only released ten days later because my parents signed me out on my own recognizance in their care at my begging and pleading
  • I’ve had guns in the hands of those more than willing to shoot aimed at my car
  • I’ve had people threaten to beat me up or kill me
  • I’ve been surrounded by gang bangers, cutthroats, and dope addicts who might have attacked or murdered me for little more than a sideways glance at the wrong moment
  • I’ve been addicted to opiates (mostly stolen hydrocodone pills, but sometimes oxy if I could get it free) as well as crack cocaine (sometimes using them both within a brief time frame)
  • I’ve been on the verge of murdering other men on more than one occasion (by on the verge I mean “so pissed or otherwise upset that I actually had plans for killing them in cold blood and getting away with it and came very close at least three or four times to actually acting out the plan”)
  • I’ve been handcuffed and arrested (then released) by Clovis PD for having smoking paraphernalia (a little glass crack stem) in my pocket while one of the brake lights in my brother’s jeep was out [NOTE: If you are on or coming down from powerful stimulants, have some drugs or paraphernalia in the car, get pulled over, and have never had to face the police while in such a state before… you’re probably screwed. Sorry, that’s just the way it goes. Those guys are trained to recognize the symptoms.]

I won’t go on here, this post is long enough. Still, if you’ve read this far: Thank you very much.

You few that read this and take something from it…I’d like the message you take from it to be whatever message you need to hear from such a topic at this stage of your life.

In the end, people cannot survive for long or very happily without other people. Even if you never associate with anyone in “mainstream” society somehow and cast yourself out as a misfit/loner/outsider/reject/lone wolf… you need socialization. Sure, you could survive for a while on the company of animals or imaginary friends, but you won’t thrive.

Surviving. is. NOT. living.

So, thanks for reading! I hope you take something out of this even if that one something is the conclusion that I am completely insane! ^_^ I AM!

DING-DING-DING-DING!! We’ve got a winner folks! Give this guy-girl/girl-guy/person (because honestly who can tell these days anyway and why does it really matter in the end when gender is more cultural myth than physical status?) the booby prize for recognizing the obvious!

😛 I learned a few years ago that claiming insanity actually means I’m not crazy. (Run that one through the old noodle and see what shakes out. Bahahahahahahahaha!)

Have an unbelievable day!

In Earnest,

 

King Pollux ~ Adam Kristofer Walkingstick King

King of Delusional Grandeur,

Prince of Thieves on Earth,

Demi-god Son of Zeus and Leda,

did the scribe list “King of Delusional Grandeur”?

Oh…so he did…good

ta-ta for now folks!

*Derp* Here’s the daily prompt!

Nominated for the Sunshine Award – Thank You Afsheen!

As the title suggests, I was nominated for the Sunshine Award by my new friend Afsheen Anjum.

شكرا جزيلا

Thank you very much for selecting my blog as one of your ten nominations. That is amazing for me after only 7 days on WordPress. It means a lot. 😀

Everyone should go look at her blog and her art! She has a big heart and great passion.

So, here is how the award works:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their blog.
  • List 11 facts about YOU!
  • Nominate 10 other blogs to receive the award.
  • Announce the nominations to the nominees.

Facts about me:

  1. I am a writer, poet, novelist, blogger (well d’uh, right?), and freelance writer (I am fairly inexperienced at commission/freelance work but I have samples of my fiction and non-fiction available if anyone is interested in future.)
  2. I am a musician/vocalist
  3. I am a Hellenic Polytheist with Reconstructionist tendencies. If you have no clue what I’m talking about there, check out the Wiki article on it, it isn’t perfect, but its a good overview. Otherwise, if you are more interested, you could check out the Neokoroi, of which I am a member
  4. I have been called an “old soul”
  5. I am an unlicensed Information Systems technician/computer repair tech and amateur web designer
  6. I am a recovering addict (addicted  to crack/cocaine but I would have used anything I could get my hands on)
  7. I am Irish, Scottish, Native American, Welsh, British, Norwegian, Mexican, and all manner of other nationalities/ethnicities so I usually identify (affectionately) as a “mutt”
  8. I can see beauty in just about anything and anyone
  9. I do not believe in “good” and “evil” by any conventional or traditional standard and I do not believe in “sin”
  10. I go by so many names/nicknames I’ve forgotten some (seriously, though: Adam, George, Lykeios, Lyke, Pollux, Georgie Porgie, King, Aam {the way I used to pronounce my name as a baby and, consequently, the way my mom sometimes refers to me to my chagrin}, White Chocolate, Doofus, Spazz, moron, and, recently: Faggot, Asshole, Crackhead, Whore, Man-Whore, and so forth)
  11. I truly adore all the people I’ve met on WordPress thus far and am still blown away by the support and encouragement I have received. At 30 followers, this is the most readership I’ve had for any blog I’ve ever made! You guys are awesome, thank you so much! If it wasn’t for you…I wouldn’t be writing nearly as much as I am. So, as gaeilge: Go raibh míle maith agat!

My Nominations:

  • SFoxWriting – Good poetry, awesome writing, and, he helps his sister get her photography out there. Check it out, Steven deserves a click!
  • I Love Painting – Amazing paintings, good writing, and all around blogging excellence!
  • Let’s Reach Success – I adore this blog as well. Lidiya is kind-hearted and driven and her work is fun to read.
  • Gotta Find a Home – Another very good blog on a topic that is near and dear to me. Give Dennis some more clicks, people! 🙂
  • Writings of a Mrs – More awesome poetry and just plain good writing. Jennifer certainly has a way with words as well. Also, thanks for the re-blogs and the advice on getting more of a readership built up! 😀
  • Megan’s Musings – Yet another epic blog. I enjoy it and she writes so well about difficult topics.
  • Lightning DropletsVery pretty blog with pretty words and pretty pictures. I’m loving this one too, so she can have one of my nomination spots, its well earned.
  • The Vintage Postcard – Awesome pictures and writing from all over the world! Great information for anyone interested in traveling on a working salary. Can’t wait to read more.
  • Margot’s Blog – Still another blog filled with epicness. Each day I look forward to seeing Margot’s pick for the word and pic of the day.
  • Live Simply, Travel Lightly, Love Passionately & Don’t Forget To BreatheDefinitely in my personal Top 3 of Travel Blogs. Elena is inspiring to me and her blog is just plain made of awesome. Живи Россия!

Again, thank you so much for the nomination, Afsheen!

Also, thanks are deserved by all of my followers and readers. You are all the best and biggest audience I’ve ever reached in blog format. Keep looking here for some little rewards. I plan, now that a working computer is on the way from eBay, on cranking out some music and art for you all. Love to all of you beautiful, amazing people!

Stay Frosty, my friends! Oh, and, as always, have an unbelievable day!

In Earnest,

King Pollux ~ Adam Kristofer Walkingstick King

P.S. To anyone I didn’t choose to nominate this time:

I’m sorry! I follow so many amazing blogs through Word Press that it was hard to decide which to nominate. However, if I didn’t choose to nominate you…I still love your blogs! 🙂 Much Love to everyone, here! No hard feelings, huh? 😉

A White Boy in Downtown – Part 1: The Rock

NOTE: This piece of short “fiction” depicts graphic drug use. If you are a recovering addict and are easily triggered, DO NOT read this. If you are trapped in addiction and want to quit (whatever the substance, including alcohol or tobacco) you can check here, or here, or here (this is the program I happened to use when I got sober), or here, or you can just Google search “addiction recovery” or something similar. All links open in new tabs/windows.

This is the beginning of a catalog of my own experiences in Downtown Fresno. I don’t know why I started it in the middle like this, but I did. Though the exact events and occurrences are not necessarily true, these scenes are accurate to what my life became while addicted to crack cocaine. Some of the scenes are jumbled in my mind, so the specific flow is not strictly correct. However, these events, in one way or another, did happen to and around me.

If you are an addict, I hope to hear from you and see what you think. Whoever you are and whatever your circumstances are, thanks for reading. May  you at least find this interesting.

The man stands there staring at the ground as his girl screams at him. I avert my eyes. This shit is sick. Poor guy has no balls at all. Sure, feminism is great, but that isn’t equality. I can’t stand seeing men just laying down like that. Still, I guess it’s better than laying into the harpy.

As I round the corner onto G I wonder if the man will ever get off the dope. Apparently his habit sparked the explosion of vitriol. I am finding it vaguely amusing that an obvious crackwhore is screaming at her “man” for using too much.

Pushing the scene out of my mind I press on through the chilling wind. It rarely gets really cold in Fresno. Still, February is bitter enough for us California raisins. Probably about 43 degrees out and everyone is bundled up for the day.

I check my phone and curse. It’s already 9:45 A.M. The boys expected me half an hour ago. Quickening my pace, I begin to puff. On the upside, I’ll be warm when I get there.

Looking down Florence St. I see that white Ford Explorer brooding in the dirt lot across from the Gables. The Gables Motel is a hovel. As I turn the corner I confirm the identity of the “Exploder.” It’s definitely Rose’s sugar daddy. No seeing Rose for a while.

Blue, that scandalous bitch, waves from the other end of Florence just past the motel. I dismiss her with a slight wave and flit through the open gate in the chainlink. Doomee says “hey” and I smile.

“Doomee, bro, how ya doin?”

I shake his hand. One of those slide-pound deals where there is no actual shaking involved.

“Not bad, not bad, white boy,” he grunts.

Frowning a bit, “aw, come on now, man. I’m just white boy still? I been ’round for three months now.”

Chuckling and shaking his head, Doomee says, “N’aw, dog, I just can’t ever remember your name.”

Even I laugh at that.

“You like ‘White Chocolate,’ though, yea? I could call ya that,” he adds.

Nodding and forcing away the guffaws I try to get a little more serious. D is a good enough guy as far as Bloods go. More laid back than most of the younger crowd, he looks out for me some. Still, the guy must be only in his early thirties. Short and built like an iron worker Doomee sure looks like bad news. His skin is so dark it’s almost purple.

“Yea, that’s fine. I do like White Chocolate,” I say, “but, names aren’t that important. I got somethin’ for you.”

Doomee’s face goes straight. He turns and waves me into the corner apartment reserved for the manager. In the shadows of the covered hallway between the L shaped buildings, the only part of the motel with shade, we pass through the metal screen.

Once inside, D turns to me and grins.

“Alrigh’, dawg, you got my money then?”

“Aw, shit,” I say, smiling widely, “alright, alright, how much is it again?”

We both know I remember exactly how much I owe.

“Bitch, don’t gimme that shit, its forty an’ you know it!” Doomee says.

I snicker and slap two twenties into his hand.

“Chill, bro, chill. I got you, you know I always got you.”

He laughs a little and turns to the kitchen.

“So whatchu want? I know you ain’t comin’ down here just to pay up,” he said, back turned.

My pulse begins to race again. It always does this when it knows I’m about to score.

“Oh, I dunno, man. What you got? Same as last time?” I say, crinkling my face up slightly.

D turns back around after a tiny scraping noise. He’s holding out his hand. Four shining white rocks sit in the pink of his palm. I lick my lips.

Inside, I’m writhing. Every bit of my body is screaming “BUY IT ALL!” The small part of my rational brain that’s left, is whispering a saner refrain. “No, this is bad for all of us. Don’t waste your money. Get off this stuff.”

As I always do, I punch that tiny voice in the face and pull my wallet out.

“Shit, dog. That looks like good shit this time. Last twenty you gave me on that credit was whack,” I say, smiling.

My voice is still calm, but a little strained. This is the voice I hate to hear coming out of my mouth. It’s the addict’s voice. The drop of adrenalin pumping through me says it doesn’t matter. Still, I know that voice. Every dope fiend has it and every dealer knows it.

“Yea, dawg. Waddn’t no good that day. Don’ matter though, this is some cream. I watched Rob cook it, no soda at all,” D says.

I nod. Its bullshit, all crack has some baking soda, but probably not much in this case. Doomee usually gives it to me straight. Besides, I’ve been buying rock long enough to know that the little air holes in this stuff means it’s some good.

“Sick, man. What you askin’ for all of it?”

Doomee looks down and fingers a couple of the pieces. Rolling them over and feeling the weight he looks back up.

“This is dry and its real, White Chocolate. Gimme sixty, its worth eighty, but you always come through,” he says.

I smile, swipe the bills out of my deteriorating wallet, and shake his unoccupied hand with them. D tilts his hand and pours the big rocks into a plastic baggy.

“Thanks, D. This looks awesome. It alright if I step next door with Uncle Armin and hit this shit?”

I always ask. Sometimes Rob doesn’t like me hanging around too much. He’s the boss man ’round the Gables. Doomee shakes his head to show its alright if I stay for now. The younger guys all like me a lot. I guess Rob isn’t too fond of me for some reason. Probably doesn’t want a white boy standing around lookin’ stupid with no money. That’s what I was a couple of times.

After we shake hands and say our goodbyes I slide out the screen door. A breeze frisks me down as I round the corner in the shorter side of the L.

“Hey, Uncle! You there?” I say through the door as I knock on the red, peeling paint.

I hear shuffling from inside and the door pulls open.

“Oh, its you. Yea, I’m here, White Chocolate. Come on in!”

I walk into the little motel room. Armin gestures to the couch and I sit. The thin crescent around his shining dome always makes me smile. This guy is older than most of the people here at the Gables. He sits down in a chair to my left and looks at me then at the table.

Following his gaze, I see a pipe and some crumbs in a clean ash tray. With that little look of his, he’s asking if I brought some favors. I pull a rock out of my pocket and twist the bag back up without revealing how much I have left.

Uncle’s eyes widen a bit and he smiles.

“Damn, son, you got some cream there, huh?” he asks.

Chuckling, I say, “only the best, Uncle. Got a razor? Oh, nevermind, it’s here.”

I pull my own, clean pipe out and set it next to the cracked, blacked one on the table. Cutting four pieces off the large hunk of dope, I pass one to Armin. He loads his pipe and looks around for a Bic.

The lighter flashes into my hand from my jacket pocket and I pass it. Loading my own rock onto the brillo in the pipe, I breathe in relief and get another lighter.

Holding the pipes up toward the ceiling we nod to each other. Our lighters flick on and we begin to melt the pieces into the brass puffs of brillo. That familiar sizzling noise greets me and I wink at Uncle. Thin, tiny wisps of smoke waft up from the two pipes. We both turn the horns to get an even melt.

When that’s done we lift the pipes to our lips. They stick out, horizontal now, and we flick the Bics again. The tip of the flame hovers slightly below and forward of the barely quivering pipe-tip.

I begin to inhale through the pipe. Smooth and deep and the flame is sucked onto the brillo inside my piece. That crackle starts immediately and pure white smoke shoots into my mouth. I take a big hit. After about ten seconds of twisting the pipe and moving the flame to varying distances from the pipe I stop.

This is the best part for me. Holding the smoke in until I see spots and that ringing starts in my ears. It will hit hard when I breath out, for now I just sit back on the couch and look to Uncle. He’s already breathing out a thin cloud of smoke. I nod and he gives me an approving look. That buttery taste hangs in my throat.

My breath explodes with dopesmoke and I am rocketed skyward as the ringing begins in my ears.

How Kimya Dawson Saved My Life.

This song was sent to me by an acquaintance I made in the Over Achievers chat of NaNoWriMo (Thank you Cai, I know you hate me, but I’ll never forget what you did for me simply by sharing this song and being who you are.). It broke me. It made me admit that the 6 months of “recovery” I’d put behind me were a sham. I wasn’t clean. I wasn’t even sober. Sure, I wasn’t smoking crack, but drinking, shrooming, huffing, popping molly, and generally being depressed and suicidal does not equal being sober or in recovery.

Before you listen, know that it is heartbreaking. It will destroy you. If you are easily triggered, please don’t listen to this unless you are very strong now.

If you are struggling with addiction (of ANY kind), depression, bipolar disorder, being in the closet about something, or any other self-destructive issues (some of us struggle with all of the above, I know) please, I beg you, tell someone. I promise you, just getting it off your chest and coming out of your closets will help. You are NOT alone. You are loved. Feel free to email me at kingadam1989@gmail.com or lykeios.lysios@gmail.com OR text/call me (just ask for my number in a comment, in the contact box, or email).

I Walk Like Thunder.

Lyrics

I have this new tattoo of which the story must be told
About the night I almost overdosed ten years ago
I woke up in the hospital with skin clammy and cold
And tubes in my urethra, down my throat and up my nose
My friends and the doctors were all shocked I wasn’t dead
That’s when Katrina looked at me and this is what she said
Walk like thunder
Walk like thunder
Walk like thunder
Walk like thunder
So I walked to the rebel spot, I walked all over uptown
I walked right side up and I walked upside down
I walked to Chetzemoka with my eyes fixed on the ground, yeah
We walked all over Chetze Beach and kept the rocks we found
Then I walked back to my parents’ house, I walked back to my old bed, yeah
I walked back and I walked fast past all the voices in my head
I walked with the sweats and I walked with the chills
I walked in New York City and I walked in Bed-ford Hills
I walked into open mic nights and I walked into the rooms
I walked feeling optimistic and I walked feeling doomed
I walked with some mama’s boys and I walked with some punks
I walked dressed up like a rabbit, I walked dressed up like a skunk
I walked with some givers and I walked with some leeches
I walked all by myself and I walked with the Moldy Peaches
I walked all over the world so I could sing my songs to you
And to your most desperate emails I’d said, “This is what I do”
I walk like thunder
Walk like thunder
Walk like thunder
Walk like thunder
But at some point I got so comfortable
That I didn’t even realize that I’d started to crawl
That my old friend Ammi died at 37 of a heart attack
And I cracked ’cause people my age are not supposed to die like that
No, no, no, no, people my age are not supposed to die like that
He was the old manager of the sidewalk cafe
That place was a second home to me, it’s where I learned to play
And his personality really helped create a space
Where a bunch of honest misfits could all gather and feel safe
He was a cynic, a supporter, he was crazy, he was queer
He’d either yell out, “Cut the bullshit” or he’d say, “I’m glad you’re here”
And it was always such an honor to have Ammi on my side
That’s why it hit me like a Mack truck when I found out that he died
Yeah, it hit me like a Mack trucks when I found out that he died
Then enter Alex, 33 years old and so sick with the cancer
And trapped inside a body that betrayed his real gender
We all hoped and prayed that he would go into remission
At least long enough, just long enough to complete his transition
He said, “Kimya, did you know Eleventeen’s my favorite song?”
I said, “Then get your ass on stage right now and you can sing along”
That’s the very first song I ever wrote all by myself
It’s about angels and recovery and friends and hope and health
By the time we finished singing he was pissed off, he was scared
He said, “I lost my home, my lover, my insurance and my hair
And now I’m about to lose you too, my new friend”
I looked into those big blue eyes and said we’ll meet again
Yeah, I looked into his sad blue eyes and said we’ll meet again
Then I got the phone call from Alyssa and she told me he was dying
By the time I got to his bedside we were both already flying
We held hands and we sang songs, tried to be strong floated around
While I cursed the skin that he was in for all the ways it had let him down
Yeah, I cursed the skin that he was in for all the ways it had let him down
But at the same time I was taking my own body for granted
First I lost sight of my feet then they became un-planted
And I never felt so stupid or so selfish or so sad, yeah
My body had been good to me and I treated it so bad, yeah
My body had been good to me and I treated it so bad
Then he said, “Mama, I don’t want my friends to watch me die”
So I kissed his cheek, made him a shirt and then I said goodbye
And they cremated him in the shirt that I drew
Of the two of us that said they’re flying over you too
Now the silver pink ponies have my homie in their crew
So I tightened up my laces and knew what I had to do
I started walking again, I started walking again, I miss my friends
I started walking again, I started walking again, I miss my friends
Walk like thunder
(Walk like thunder)
Walk like thunder
(Walk like thunder)
Walk like thunder
(Walk like thunder)
Walk like thunder
(Walk like thunder)
Walk like thunder
(Walk like thunder)
Walk like thunder
(Walk like thunder)
Walk like thunder
(Walk like thunder)
Walk like thunder
(Walk like thunder)
Walk like thunder
Walk like thunder
Walk like thunder
Walk like thunder
Even creeps as a habit, predisposed
To systematically clinging together in the cold
Know the measure of a pack, it’s not a question of the whole
The individuals that bottleneck into the fold
On a March blank Sabbath, news from the ministry of make-believe
That reach a tarmac in Minneapolis, middle see
Yesterday the cells inside his chest were growing baby teeth
Today a raven radiated vacancy
Wait, two years ago a friend of mine
Called me to redefine all enemy-kind
I’m at the hospital at twenty-four and no one knew the future
I’ll take it everybody knows the future
Antibodies hatching in a hellaback with no room to maneuver
Like disappearing pills into the masticated fuchsia
I asked you how you feeling, you told me like a robot
I gave you a Nintendo, you gave yourself a Mohawk
You let us will you down beneath the leaning tower of flow charts
To be around your beats without a beeping sound of Bogart
And speak about whatever people speak about
When nobody’s acknowledging the obvious disease about the crowbar
In deep plane slope, comatose of baggage
From king of hearts to carrying for jackals
And never got to sing us all his own swan song right
Coincidentally the rebel in me walk like thunder
Walk like thunder

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