Friday, September 17, 2004

"If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading." - Lao Tzu
My mind has been cluttered with interpreting the plenty of shit that was shoveled onto my plate from others the past week or so. I woke up to a heavy day, my shoulders aching from the invisible load of mental baggage I had been slugging around. To remedy my frazzled mind, I wandered the streets of New York City in an attempt to figure those though questions out. I walked the noisome streets without any specific intended destination, sometimes sober, sometimes buzzed, allowing my mind to brainstorm solutions to the pressing problems. All the answers are inside of me. It just takes a while until my brain warms up and my courageous intelligence leaps forward and siezes control of the frantic breakdown in my ability to make proper decisions.

I don't know how I started, but I was on 157th Street and Broadway in Harlem or as the gentrificators and hipsters fondly dub it... Hamilton Heights. I began walking south. One of the routine questions I found myself pondering on was this: Do I worry too much or too little about the direction of my life?

Most of the time, I think I spend too much internal dialogue discussing the day to day worries. But on the tougher days, I can't help but wonder, "You're barely keeping it all together."

We had an expression on Wall Street, "You're only one trade away from humility." Poker players would agree from experience that you can easily go bankrupt on one hand.

To be or not to be? I was on 143rd Street near a bodega, when I muttered, "Hamlet, thank God, I'm not you, you Danish waffler."

Should I stop being a pussy and keep plodding forward? Or should I slow down and realize how lucky I've been living the last decade and a half of my life with brazen recklessness? Have I reached my limits as the prodigal son?

That's when I stopped in my tracks in the middle of a street, a thundering shock of clarity striking my gut. Paralyzed for a second, I narrowly escaped being hit by a speeding gypsy cab and came to my senses amid a barrage of Spanish curse words raining down my way. How foolish was I to even question my agenda? I live how I am, and that's how it shall be.

The quick banishment of those demure thoughts instantly energized my stride. With the usurpation of an onset of sudden depression, I continued walking with more confidence. With my head on straight, the time had come to hunker down and take a quick mental and moral inventory of my profane life.

I failed to use the advantages of my mind and lofty creativity, for years not allowing myself to have the faith that some of my projects could pan out, instead yielding to the stench of fearful bending failure that often leaves behind in it's wake of a dust cloud of failed dreams. For many years that fiery portal of random ideas has been closed and on many occasions I willingly clogged it up with crimson tempests such as work, relationships, drugs, and religion. For God. For pussy. For the Man. For the buzz.

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