There is no rhyme or reason to any of these blog updates. My philosophy is that if I tap into whatever I feel like writing, I’ll find some root subconscious thing that needs to be shared with whoever stumbles upon/subscribes to this blog and voila, serendipity is at work.
I know I talked a lot about kettlebell last week. Truth is, I’m kind of burnt from my trip right now and I don’t really want to write more about kettlebell right now, only this update: I did exactly what I set out to do. I set a personal record in competition, (100 reps with the 16kg bell) made it onto the Hawaii news (where they totally misreported the rules of a kettlebell competition, saying that you can set down a bell in the middle of your ten-minute set which is not true at all) and was one of the first to get certified as a kettlebell instructor by the fabulous Orange Kettlebell Club, which consists of John Wild Buckley, Jason Dolby and Nazo.
I survived Hawaii…
I am now at home. Spent today alternately sleeping off the cold/cough I caught and proofing some writing I have going live in a little bit: a column for a music trade magazine and 6 poems for Analog Press. (And a poem was accepted in Gutter Eloquence, too. Huzzah!)
One thing on my mind right now is human beings and how every one of us is so odd, and how, me being me, I tend to like to be alone, a lot, because people are hard to be around in large doses. There is not one person I don’t get tired of if I spend too much time with them. But at the same time, I need people, and sometimes they’re OK.
I think a lot of creative people are like this. We need so much space. And we tend to be really hard on ourselves to begin with, constantly doubting our own abilities, so when other people are critical of us, it’s like a double whammy.
I learned a lot about myself in Hawaii–mostly that it doesn’t matter what other people think, it’s important to stand up for yourself, and make sure you take care of your own needs (things I’m not necessarily very good at yet) and that the world isn’t necessarily going to change, that we all have to do some things we don’t like, we have to learn to deal with it and keep doing our thing for the sake of doing our thing.
Most of these lessons came through conversations with a lovely artist/kettlebeller from Colorado, who I had the benefit of spending some time with walking back and forth from the hotel to the gym. Also, I’m a music nerd, and it was nice to be able to chat with someone about sampling and orchestration and I really think she needs to make me a list of obscure bands I’ve never heard of, so I can read up on them.
I also appreciated my walks/car rides with my coach (friend) Juliet–she has these amazing insights that she throws out all nonchalantly while we’re walking and that I end up chewing on for hours afterwards. She’s just a cool person. We were talking about money and the like, and I was saying I felt guilty about coming to Hawaii when it wasn’t really the most responsible thing for me. She told me to a) stfu and enjoy the free hotel and the hefty discount on certification and b) that I’ve chosen music and writing, and it’s not lucrative, and I know this, but I’ve also chosen to be happy, because these things make me happy, so be happy. Stop looking at the glass half empty and all I don’t have. I made a concerted effort, and was partially successful, though I still managed to piss everyone off a couple of times.
It’s what happens. I look all pretty and shiny from far away, but you get to know me and well, I’ll let this poem I like explain the phenomonon:
The Poet’s Lie, by Mike Hilbig
Since the entire island of Hawaii is one giant bottle of soy sauce (made of wheat, and I’ve got a problem it seems, with gluten), it was tough to navigate food. Didn’t even foresee that being a problem, I thought I’d be chowing on pineapple and coconut and mango. Turns out that smoothies are harder to come by than one might think. Everything from “our credit card machine is down, cash only” to “oh, we just ran out of fruit.”
Some local told me the vog (smog from the volcanoes) was really bad this weekend, and a lot of people they knew were having allergies. My nose was alternately pouring snot and/or stuffed up, and my throat sore. But these are kind of normal issues with me, things that happen to me everywhere I go. It was just more intense being thousands of miles away from home without all my creature comforts. I was never so happy to see the signs reading Oakland in my life. Home sweet home. The food here is nowhere near as expensive as Hawaii and it tastes very good. Nothing like a little living without to make you appreciate what you have, right?
I went to the beach two times. Hiked a bit of the pillbox trail with Sarah and Ada and Danielle, two kettlebellers and a crossfit lady I got to know a little better on the trip. Stared at a blue beach on the windward side for a few minutes; took a picture of Sarah on the beach looking all peaceful.
Was happy to go back home. Even happier to be going to Seattle and Portland in May to see Kirsten and also thinking about hitting up the kettlebell competition while I’m there, to get the 106 reps for Master of Sport. I just have to make sure I do the actual freelance work I’m supposed to be doing while I’m there, don’t want to over plan and muck up my paying work.
I’m supposed to go into the studio this week, twice, and also read a piece of writing at East Bay on the Brain on Saturday night.
I’m pretty scattered, still, spent the day in bed mostly, brain fried. Trying to get back on my program. Pick up my guitar, get back into music recording mode…etc. etc.
Life moves on.