Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Chin up

I've heard the phrase "Chin Up" quite a few times lately. The first time, I thought it was pretty insensitive, and I wanted to get pissed. Then I heard it again. And again. It started to occur to me that people with the balls to say that to me right now might actually have something to teach me...maybe I should open up my mind a little bit and give this idea some thought. And I did. I thought about who it came from, delivered to me at a time that I didn't really even know which way was up. These people all had some serious love for me...they have been around me a long time. Why wouldn't I trust what they were saying and get my head out of the gravity and lace up the boots, and pull my shit up and smile? I did.

Dad used to tell me to chin up all the time. He had different ways of doing it. When I was in college he actually gave me a set of motivational tapes, and made me promise him I would listen to the whole series, and I did. And it helped. Most people in the world have something good to tell you when you give them a minute to do so.

We move fast these days. Life moves consistently faster. No matter how hard we try to keep up, we will not. We are along for the ride. It's better to keep your eye on the horizon or even the sky on this ride...staring at the ground will just make you sick.

Thursday, December 16, 2010


“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

You got to give-a-whatchya take!!

Things that are amazing about this video:

1. It's the ballsiest coming out song ever.
2. I had no idea about #1 for about 10 years due to my fascination with Cindy Crawford caressing herself in the tub.
3. The message is transcendent of gender or sexuality.
4. Exploding jukeboxes are fucking rad, as are BSA motorcycle jackets. DAMN those gays and their competitive nature...they get everything cool before I hear about it.
5. It's catchy, I don't care who you are, it will hook you...GM is simply a music legend.
6. Freedom comes from truth.

And by the end of this video, if you don't believe that you got to give what you take, then you should probably watch it again. I believe it. I am bearing witness to the truth in that statement every day. I am giving, and I am getting, and the world is a wonderful place to be when you're caught up in a cycle like that.

This song is what I'm waking up to in the morning. That and the Sunshine.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

I remember

I remember this painter's cap I used to wear. And those shades. I still go for those shades all the time. Some things never go out of style. Like summer in Graeagle, those tall trees in the background, the shuffleboard game you can't see behind those chairs over on the right side. Paddy's hair was typically much wilder. It complimented his face pretty well when he would press his lips up against the glass of the window, or the sliding glass door and blow his mouth open so big that you could park a truck in it...and we would all roll over laughing. There weren't any video games up there. Only one TV in the lounge, but we hardly ever wanted to go in and watch. There was a 9-hole golf course that was, at that time, called "The Prep School" to those of us who knew that if you caught it at the right time of the evening, the angelic sounds of the girls choir would float through the air in such a peaceful meander that even a pulled tee shot off of #2, bouncing down the highway, wouldn't phase him or any of us.

Fucking good times, dude.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Turn it up

I finally broke into the slide show my sister made for my dad's wake. I also decided to watch it whilst listening to the mix I put together for the same.


I'm only posting a couple of the shots that grabbed me hardest by the balls and reminded me that I was so blessed to have the best role model in the whole world as my father.

He was a proud parent,
He was a kind man full of compassion,and love,

He was dignified.

I considered, while struggling to get through these pictures, turning the music off and just paging through the them methodically. Then I realized that's not why I'm looking at them. These pictures and this life were FULL of music.

Thanks, Pops.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Eyes are better.

Heart is good.

Head is full.

I'm headed to the game with Sean. Then down to make sure the Santa's behave themselves much as I can ;)

But mostly I'm moving forward, looking up, and stoking the fire to keep warm.

Staying warm.

Thursday, December 9, 2010


I woke up with pink eye today...conjunctivitis, I believe it is called by the people in the know. It doesn't feel good. It makes me squint to see the letters on my computer screen. It filled my eyes up with stuff that resembled cement this morning. Apparently, the drops that the Doc gave me will take effect as early as tomorrow, and everything will be OK. That's cool. Because, to be honest, this is not the best look for me:

But the situation has made me think about something more important. I had this brief moment this morning, when my vision was actually affected, when I considered what it must be like to go blind. Frightening. Not that there's a chance of that here, just that the idea itself made me go "hmmmm". And you know what? I am pretty sure I would be OK. I love the beauty and wonder that I see every day. I love the way the sky lights up with fire during a high sierra sunset. I love the color of my kids' teeth when they laugh out loud...the way their booties shake when we dance around the room. I love the way nature can play tricks on us and change blue to green...I'm looking forward to seeing that kind of thing again. But lately I have started to realize that the most important things in this world exist in another dimension, where there is no physical embodiment for us to dwell on...these things are more like thoughts, ideas, feelings, and they exist in our heads and in our hearts. And If I had to give up my vision, I would still have these things, and I just have to believe that life would still be pretty awesome.

But for now I'm using the drops, and looking forward to some Sunshine in the morning.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Here it comes...

Originally uploaded by daddyisaninja.
I just got my kids bathed and bundled and put into bed. Been catching up on emails, and enjoying the evening. Then I somehow stumbled onto the photostream again...and another stream started running. And I started to think about another day in the office about to hit, another year gone by, and another holiday about to sneak up on all of us. I don't know how I'm going to do at a family dinner where someone very important is missing from the equation. My kids asked me tonight if Santa can go to Heaven.

I am doing good during the days right now. I think someone upstairs is sending me a lot of business, good fortune, and love. There are so many things to be grateful for, and I am, and it keeps me focused and busy and happy. Honestly, I am happy.

But sometimes at night...when it's quiet and calm, and I'm alone with my thoughts and these pictures...I have my moments.

I miss you, Dad. Thank you for all of the beautiful memories that are just a little bit too overwhelming to deal with right now...I wouldn't want it any other way.

Monday, December 6, 2010

March me down to the seven seas

"If music got to free your mind
Just let it go cause you never know,
you never know
If your rythm ever falls out of time,
You can bring it to me and I will
make it alright
And if your soul is let go
Oh you never know, no you never know
And if your heart is beating free
For the very fist time it'll be alright

Day One

Day One
Originally uploaded by daddyisaninja.
I wonder what my dad saw 35 years ago.
Did it look anything like this?

Did it fill his heart with wonder, as it did mine, to see the most precious and amazing thing in the world?

Did it get better or worse over the years?

How will it go for me?

I am confident that this little version in the picture is on the right track.

I am less confident in myself these days. It's a new feeling. One I don't like. One that isolates me. One that makes me want to stay in bed.

But in 6 hours, I'm going to get up, and make it happen for this guy in the picture, and for the new man upstairs.

I love you both.

Sunday, December 5, 2010


A few months ago, a client of mine and I were sitting at The Hub, having coffee, and talking about downtown Reno and life. We somehow got on the subject of Ireland, and he suggested I watch the movie "Once". I remembered, and put it in the queue, but when it showed up a couple of months ago I never really found time to watch it.

I watched it tonight...not sleeping, and thinking it might put me down. Instead, it captivated me. The movie starred the singers/songwriters/band The Swell Season, who I hadn't heard of. I had heard one of their popular songs on the radio...this whole time thinking it might be Cat Stevens. Instead it was a man and woman, star-crossed, and finding their way through Dublin and a short time together while their lives played out and they made music together.

Anyway, Fernando, all I can say is thank you for turning me on to this movie...this was a real treat. The music and the story were both full of complicated love and struggle, and some situations in life that defy description yet beg the poetry of music. I'm stoked to be able to hear it so clearly right now. I've been digging the singer/songwriter these last few days...been turned back on to Ray LaMontagne & Damian Rice, so Glean Hansard & Marketa Irglova of the Swell Season really fit into that mix.

The streets of Dublin, which made up the backdrop for the film, also got me fired up about a trip I will be taking back to that beautiful island some time soon.

To those people that open my eyes every day...whether you have been in my life for 3 decades, 3 years, or 3 days, thank you for sharing the dialogue that you do. Talk to you soon. Goodnight.