Giving This Up

I tried.  I really did.

I tried to give up this blog.

I cancelled the account.  I voided the renewal payment.  I tried…

And it lasted all of three days.  Shit, even my one pathetic attempt to give up coffee lasted longer than that!

Look, for most of my adult life I’ve lived according to DeNiro’s wisdom in Heat: “Don’t let yourself get attached to anything you are not willing to walk out on in 30 seconds flat if you feel the heat around the corner.”

I talk and joke about not buying in to nostalgia.  I talk and joke about being the hobo who just ups and abandons everything from time to time.  I will even occasionally talk — but not joke — about the very real fact that I never let get myself too attached…to anything, or anyone. Yeah, yeah, I know — some aspiring therapist could probably put the next five generations through college trying to fix me…

Look, I’ve lost everything before.  I’ve lost everything, and I decided in the aftermath that I would never again give in to the weakness of having anything or anyone I was afraid to lose.

Okay, fine, so those were the sentiments of a hurt, terrified idiot trying to be all edgy and emo, but still…

Yeah, they were pure bullshit then, too.

I just can’t give it up.  I would love to say something pseudo-insightful like “I have poured too much of my heart and my psyche — of my self — into the hundreds of thousands of words I’ve written on this site to give it up.”  I would love to say that, but not even my ex-marketing-weasel soul could write that without an overwhelming dose of irony.

Oh, you and I both know just how much of me goes into my words here.  Just like we both know just how much I need these words to keep my sanity.  In almost every story/piece I write, I allude in one way or another to that demon I fear so much, to that lonely night and the rope…

I’ve held that demon off for a long time now.  I’ve held it off, and the words are a big part of how, but that still ain’t the whole story.

Writing is a rush.  Even when you miss and struggle, there is still that dopamine-flood that is so addictive.  When you nail it?  Oh fuck, when you nail it…

Look, I stopped counting countries a while ago because it got to be too much.  Forget countries, I’ve chased fun — chased sex and drugs and abandon — in more than half of this world’s fucking time zones.  I’ve played hockey against NHL players.  I’ve dived on WW2 wrecks.  Crawled into occupied bear dens.  Successfully completed itemized tax returns.

I’ve done all of that and more.  Far, far more.  And still, even with all of that, there ain’t much that can compare to the feeling of nailing it with my words.  It doesn’t happen often, but when it does…

When it all really works…

Shit, like a heroin junkie, you just need more.  The more you get, the more you need.  The more you need, the harder it is to get.

The number of times I’ve legit hit that high…

The number of times I’ve really nailed it…

I don’t care how few those are, how could I ever give that up?

{Musical Note — yep, it’s an old Simon & Garfunkel tune. Nope, I don’t like their version. Gaslight Anthem has a couple of versions that I really do like, however. The album version that I’m using here works best with the post above…}

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