The Fragile Human

Have you ever wondered about how one day you can be on top of the world, thinking you are the greatest author the world has seen (move over Faulkner, Shakespeare and Stephen King), love your family, and wish everyone was as lucky as you; and then the next day something stupid happens: you find a dumb mispelling in your greatest novel, or your computer crashes with fifteen short stories, three novels and all your family pictures from the last three years, or whatever—it would be better if you picked—and suddenly you’re ready to eat ice cream until you pop and watch movies all day, or maybe, like Whitney Houston, you take a hot bath and . . . .

Surviving today can sometimes be difficult, even if you’re a great success. Just look at Whitney Houston. Artists might be at the far end of fragile because they put their guts out on the street for people to see, and sometimes trounce upon, with cleats. Artists want people to feel the same way they do about important matters. They look at things differently, and allow us to see the world for what it really is, instead of what it appears to be. They touch us deep inside; make us cry or laugh. They create their intuitive placard about life and hope we “get it.”

The problem arises when almost everyone is moved and praises the artist. It’s not a problem for their art, their placard, but for their very fragile nature, on being a human. The praise is addictive and they want more, each time striving for better, more, sometimes turning to drugs to get that high they got after that first “discovery,” when everyone loved their art and told them so.

Think of hitting notes like Whitney, as clear and steady and heartfelt as a spring sunrise. If you could do that, feel that rush, know how it moved others, wouldn’t you long to do it over and over?

You don’t have to be an artist. Think of the soldier on the battlefield—some might say as far from art as you can get. He is praised for killing others quickly, efficiently, and without complaining. So when he does his job well, he also gains recognition with medals and promotions, parties, and then . . . when it all stops and he comes home, everything hits bottom. It’s no wonder these soldiers have depression and psychiatric problems, aside from the fact that they were committing something that before their military days was considered murder. How in hell can we continue to force young people to do this? Whose idea was THAT?

Bottom line—we are all fragile emotionally, and must practice some self-praise on a daily basis to get through the rough times. Meditate, exercise, pray, do yoga, walk with music in your ears—something positive. If you feel you are doing something wrong, negative, stop it. Change. Love yourself first. And don’t take yourself so seriously. Don’t dwell on yourself; make sure you know you are an okay person, failures or not. Time will prove you right. Maybe even tomorrow.

I’m singing in the rain, just . . . .

mm

Dan’s War is an award-winning techno-thriller with heart, about the end of world oil . . . in two weeks. Cajuns and one lone computer geek try to save us against an ecofanatic and his army.

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My Sunny Valentine

So, here’s the other thing, Dear. (In case you were wondering at the end of the last post–Just Blame Her, She Can Take It.)

 

How do you know when you’ve tapped into true love? Personally, whenever her smile hits me like the morning sun, chasing the ghostly worries of the night and the aches of yesterday over the hills. Flash, they’re gone. Poof. Magic.

No, actually it’s real, and love can do that. I can be sitting in the soup of my sorrowful woes, and she comes in the room, or better yet, she doesn’t even have to be present; all I have to do is think of her jumping out of a warm bed in the wee hours to rescue her daughter who had a flat in a dangerous part of town, or taking her ailing mom to the store for hours and hours, or staying awake to listen to my delusions of failure–any of those will do, or just remembering how she laughed at my joke yesterday, and joy pushes my heart back into position.

She’s my Sunny Valentine. I hope you get one.

I love you, Babe.

Milt

Blame Her, She Can Take it. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Have you ever wondered why someone would do something that was truly on the top of the stupid list, then you do that same idiotic thing yourself, AND THEN (because obviously you are not that stupid!?) you go and blame someone else—someone you love dearly.

Last fall my wife and I were on our way back from the yearly camping trip that we dearly treasure, where I spent two of the best dry-fly fishing evenings of my life on the famed San Juan River, and we explored Mesa Verde, including a fabulous meal at a five-star restaurant. We’d pulled our trailer nine hours from Mesa Verde through the awesome arches country of eastern Utah and the spectacular Colorado River canyon. We ached to go home. But if you’ve ever pulled a trailer, you’ll know that nine hours is long enough. Plus, home was another five hours away. So we pulled into a picturesque camping spot near Rifle, Colorado. We were both tired and ready to have a bite, read a book, and enjoy the views.

That’s when I tried to scrape off a vent cover from the top of our trailer, using a pinion
pine tree. Once I actually saw, with my own two eyes, someone scrape off the side of their trailer on a tree at Yellowstone. Seeing should be the best way to actually learn a lesson without experiencing it. Right? Those pull-through trailer sites can be tricky. But not for me.

Really?

 I have a photo attached you should study, in case this “incident” does not “take.” Yeah, wouldn’t have been so bad if had just been the oven exhaust—one baggie and some duct tape, story over. But no, this had to be the biggest vent in the roof, aside from the AC unit (thank God that tree was just on one side and not overhanging the entire top). Though the hole, if left open to rain, could have ruined the refrigerator, heater and half the kitchen—all big-ticket items (okay, the AC would have been worse, not to mention other things happening to us—much worse—but I precede myself).

Getting back to the “incident.” Did I immediately blame myself for being so stupid? Nah. I jumped out of the truck and blamed my wife for not watching the trees and warning me that any second, if I pulled further forward, that tree limb would scrape off the vent and part of the trailer. I have to train her better.

Really? Would someone actually think that?

I am such a dolt—one with Guilty written into every red corpuscle. Flip each little red blood cell over in that boiling oil you want to fry me in and you will also see a very tiny Stupid tattooed on the back side.

The great thing about it? We both laughed it off. After. She knew I didn’t mean to blame her. Okay, she loves me more than I deserve. Also, I got to saw off the limb because I could not even budge the trailer without more damage. Have you ever sawed a pinion limb? Tough mothers. And perching in a tree like a monkey, but with the balance of on overweight, middle-aged, has-been athlete, I found concentration and sweaty fear took the place of anger. Yeah, pretty quick.

After that, I needed a lot of duct tape and a ladder. Colorado Park Rangers are your friend, by the way. She held the ladder and I taped the covering back on while we talked frankly about the “incident.” She never even let the ladder sway. Not once. She made great bacon and eggs for dinner; I had two beers; and we both slept like babies. After all, worse things could happen, like being in the middle of a twenty-car pileup on I-70 the next day before reaching home.

Just kidding. I was more careful and more awake, so everything went well—no pileup.

Two lessons I hope I learned. Never blame others for your own mistakes—you’d think after all these years I’d have learned that one already. The other thing: Don’t take yourself so seriously. I’m fallible. It was only a vent. My wife and I are still alive
and safe. It’s people that matter. Especially those you love.

So tell someone you love them, before you blow up and blame them for your own stupid mistake.

Happy Valentine’s Day, Baby. I do love you. Now, about that other thing …

Milt

Dan’s War is an award-winning techno-thriller with heart, about the end of world oil . . . in two weeks. Cajuns and one lone computer geek try to save us against an ecofanatic and his army.

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Contact me at www.miltmays@gmail.com

How to End War

After the last post, I got to thinking. My anger at war is getting too much. So here’s a different approach.

If you make a funny face you'll feel better

The Power of Numbers(Oh goody, says Dan)

It’s not so hard, really, to end war. You just have to make that your goal, every day. Get rid of hate and rage; make it your goal to push for love and peace. War is an act of hate. If all of us get rid of our own hate, how can war start? Every day ask yourself what you can do to get rid of any hate or rage and do something that shows your love. You will feel the peace. Others will notice, too. It will catch on. Then one will become many. I need to try this. The other way isn’t working. (So, where’s the numbers? asks Dan. They’re coming.)

Examples of How Love can End Hate:

I’ll bet when your kids won’t do their homework you get angry. So get in there and help. It shows how much you love them, and all those angry arguments will not happen. They will love you for it.

Maybe you hate it that your mother is dying of cancer. Take her places she loves; play games; hug her. Hating the cancer won’t take it away, but loving her more will take away her fear of dying alone.

Are you pissed the bank is going to foreclose on your house? Sit in the rooms you love and talk to the house, tell it how much you will miss it, and what great times you had. Talk to the banker. Ask her how you can help her to make the transition easier for both of you. It’s likely she will fight to keep your home.

You’ve got PTSD from the Iraq War and hate the thought of war? You, most of all, must embrace what has happened to you, realize it was not your fault, that what you feel is natural, but can be turned off. Remember the comraderie of your service, and talk with the men and women you served with, making plans to celebrate peace, and plan for a future of peace. You are our best envoys of peace.

The Economic Cost of Hate: (Finally, numbers! But their not even primes, says Dan.)

Wars have cost the USA over $1.2 trillion since 2001.

http://costofwar.com/en/

If you saved $1 every second (that’s $31.536 million per year-Hello, Mitt Romney),  how many years would it take to pay off $1.2 trillion? 38,051 years (Dan studied that number for a microsecond. Why couldn’t it have been 38053–that’s a great prime!)

However, if 100 million people paid $100 per day, it would take 120 days to pay off $1.2 trillion. The power of numbers works. Hence taxes.

Hate Can Destroy Humanity, Tomorrow

Could hate at sometime cancel out all the love and destroy the world? All it takes is one super hateful person with a few nuclear bombs, a very bad virus or bacteria, or the right wind and poison gas. How about spiders with nanobacteria that eat oil? Surely you jest.

What You Can Do

Show a neighbor how to make love and peace destroy their hate. If everyone does it in the world–7 billion people now–that’s a lot of numbers. Now we’re talking. (Dan beats his fist. Could you at least make it 7 billion and 1–that’s a prime! Yeah, I’m sure we’re there now.)

Bring it to the attention of Congress and the President. Ask them to make a law that compels them to debate ending any war we are in, not once a year, or once a month, but every day we are at war.

Is it possible?

I don’t know if I can do it every day. This peace, love stuff may be too much. What about you. Could you at least start? Would you email your Congressman and the President about passing this law? Is this possible? What do you think?

Dan (Dan’s War) would say, My grandson is worth it. I say the same.

Have a cookie. It will help.

mm

Dan’s War is an award-winning techno-thriller with heart, about the end of world oil . . . in two weeks. Cajuns and one lone computer geek try to save us against an ecofanatic and his army.

All E-book formats on Sale.

Amazon Kindle:http://tiny.cc/5sxjm

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Smashwords for all other e-book formats:http://tiny.cc/o0nh3

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More at my Facebook Author Page:http://tiny.cc/sumdo

Contact me at www.miltmays@gmail.com

Sanitizing War

So, you think by building schools, hospitals, and training all
those soldiers to respect Muslims you can erase all the drilled-in
depersonalization of the enemy, precise killing techniques, and subtle (well, maybe not so subtle) building-up of their anger after 9/11.

I have read the books on war, Sun Tzu to Clausewitz, and more recently, Lt. Col Dave Grossman and Captain Paul K. Chappell,. I have studied war at the Naval Academy. It all sounds very chess-like, until you are there, killing people. No matter how you cut it, war is not kind, not filled with etiquette for the other side. Gentlemen (or ladies) don’t wage wars; barbarians do. If you call the enemy Krauts, Nips, commies, gooks, chinks, or ragheads it allows you to depersonalize it, and keep it okay. And make sure those soldiers know the easiest, quickest, and most lethal way to kill the enemy, and that they actually do it. We don’t want them aiming high to avoid killing another human being. We have to drill that out of them. They must understand that the enemy is not a real person like you and me. They are Yellow Devils, or the Axis of Evil. God does not bless them, like they do Americans. We are right, and always will be.

Cut off and take one of their dead ears and spit on their face. They deserve it. And those ragheads who killed all those innocent people at 9/11? Piss on their dead bodies.

http://atwar.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/01/13/the-urination-video-and-pressures-of-battle/

http://www.mediaite.com/online/howard-stern-on-marines-urinating-on-dead-taliban-fighters-so-what-dave-navarro-agrees/

But go ahead and build your hospitals and schools, and try to help their culture believe that we are right and they are wrong, after you’ve starved them for a decade with an embargo and killed half their neighbors. Spend billions of dollars a month training our soldiers to kill “targets” with machines that are the most lethal in history. You will surely be able to change all those killing habits you’ve cemented in your soldiers, those same soldiers who have tried so hard to do the right thing, preserving our freedoms, but have nightmares and lose families over recurring visions of buddies blown to bits by those @#$& targets.

You think there might be a double message there: Kill those people, but don’t you dare call them a name or piss on their bodies. Double messages don’t mean anything, right? (Except to politicians!) Just do what you are told, soldier. Don’t think about it. Besides, we have psychiatrist who can treat our soldier’s messed up mind.

But, you politicians should try not to focus too much on stopping wars, or keeping them from happening. War is our heritage, our children’s future. Without wars, patriotism would wither. Oh yeah, and where would we spend those billions of dollars?

And the death of all morality? Who cares. If you think you can make war moral, you are indeed a true politician. You think this is the only amoral thing that has happened in war, and that court martialing them will cure it? They just won’t video tape it. First rule of the Naval Academy: You rate what you get away with. Don’t get caught.

No, it’s not the right thing to piss on a dead enemy, rape his daughter, or cut off the breasts of his wife. If we must be at war we should at least kill quickly, and treat the enemy with respect. We are not barbarians, after all. Are we?

Why isn’t there a law passed that states: If the US is in a war, there MUST be a daily debate in Congress about how to get OUT of war, as fast as possible?

Talk about getting priorities straight.

mm