Some adamantly believe the cup is half full. Others see the majority as empty. Despite this ongoing debate, I think we can all agree & relate on one thing: Positive vibes positively impact lives. It's inspiring to see a fellow human being figuratively, & sometimes quite literally, lift someone else up. Unfortunately, inversely, the same is true for negativity. Pessimism has the power to contagiously bring down everyone in its proximity. If our respective outlooks can potentially have such a profound impact on one another, why not spread the love? Why not maintain an optimistic mindset? Why not keep that proverbial cup full, at all times? So here's a toast, because those who enjoy this life tend to get the most out of it. 


My Boy

Coming home is the hardest part
I always used to look forward to walking through the door
hearing the thud of his tail on the floor
Seeing his face light up when he saw mine
almost as if he was waiting by the door the whole time

Leaving home is the hardest part
I miss my goodbye kisses
I miss the old man's antics
The way he would roll over on his back
his toy in his mouth
radiating happiness
The way he would talk to you when he barked
I could talk to him about anything
He would always listen
Yes, I will miss that old fart
Never thought I'd say it
but I'm even going to miss his farts...

Being at home is the hardest part
He could barely get up or walk toward the end
but I'll be damned if he didn't follow me around every room
everywhere I went
inside or outside, rain or shine
He was my light & my shadow for 14 years
Being at home is the hardest part
Home was wherever I was with him

* * * * *

Even the great ones have to go
I know, some will say, "He was just a dog"
but Buddy was so much more than that to me
Growing up, he was like the brother I never had
As we both got older, he was like my child
I was a proud dad, still am

That dog made me a better man
He taught me a lot about unconditional love & loyalty
About never growing up
never giving up on the life you love
He fought time until the very end
seemingly ignoring the arthritis & nerve damage that wrecked his hips
Simply not paying attention to the congestive heart failure
All he cared about was fetching the ball in the yard
or bringing back the stick in the water
All he cared about was pleasing his family, his best friend
That feeling was mutual
I would do anything for that guy
He probably would've lived for me forever
pretended like he was fine
But I knew he was hurting
& I couldn't stand to see him suffer any longer
The hardest thing I've ever done was say goodbye

* * * * *

I laid down beside him on the floor at the vet's
& I could start to feel the anesthetic take effect
I looked in his eyes & remembered how he would always look at me
always watching out, making sure I was taken care of
I rubbed behind his ears & remembered how scared he would get
every time he heard the vacuum turn on
He was the biggest scaredy cat
He was even scared of cats
I scratched his stomach & remembered the time
when he jumped up on the kitchen counter
& ate a whole family-sized Hawaiian pizza from Papa Murphy's
Needless to say, he slept in the garage that night
I'm still impressed... can't believe he did that
My hand moved down his back, then along his tail
I massaged his bony hind legs
He sure did log a lot of miles on those things
He was just as competitive as I am
We both took our playing very seriously
We'd be out in the backyard for hours
me hitting the baseball & him bringing it back
That guy was an athlete
He could literally catch anything
The best hand-eye...
I mean, mouth-eye coordination
I've ever seen

All these memories came flooding back to me
& it was about then that I leaned down & hugged him
hanging on for dear life
It was about then that the vet took off her stethoscope
"He's gone"

* * * * *

The memories of him slid down my cheeks for weeks
It took awhile
but now I look back, think of him
& smile
They are happy tears now
I found solace the moment I realized he lived a long, happy life
I knew he knew that he was loved

He was a special soul
He was a blast when he was younger
& just as much fun when he was old
His happy-go-lucky, fun-loving, playful personality
captured the hearts of everyone who ever met him
He always put a smile on my face
no matter what was going on in life
no matter what anxieties or burdens dominated my mind
no matter what was on my plate

He was a one-of-a-kind kind of guy
Looking back, there were times in my life
that I simply wouldn't have made it
if not for him always by my side
Looking back, I can honestly say
that I needed him as much as he needed me

* * * * *

Rest in peace, my Buddy boy
I'll never forget all that you did for me
I'll always cherish the memories
You were a blessing & my best friend


Fed Up

F**k you, cancer. I hate you.

For forcefully taking control
& instilling fear & helplessness into some of the bravest, strongest,
most generous people I'll ever know.
For making them & their families
adjust their lives to accommodate your repulsive,
dispicable presence.
For cutting lives short,
& forcing people to say their goodbyes way before  they want to,
way before they should have to.

F**k you, cancer. You sicken me.

What am I supposed to say to my hypochondriac friend
who just found out you have spread to his lymph nodes?
"Your worst nightmare is now your reality,
you must face it with dignity"?

F**k you, cancer. We have had enough.

Those who have died on your behalf did not "lose."
They will live on in the hearts & minds
of those they loved & were loved by.
They are heroes for having to endure what you put them through.
You may think you have won the battle thus far,
but mark my words,
you will lose this war.
You will have to answer to the atrocities you have committed,
& we will rid the world of your filthy existence.
You will be forgotten.

F**k you, cancer. You better watch your back.

Vengeance is coming.



A Drop in the Ocean

The ride up was arduous -
a royal (& literal) pain in the ass.
His legs & lungs burned,
gravity & momentum worked against him...
But he kept his head down,
kept pedaling, one breath at a time,
& he eventually reached the apex of his efforts,
the summit of his struggles.

A break in the trees revealed a sparkling sea beyond the bluff.
The reflecting sunshine gleamed in his eyes
as he looked out at a sailboat journeying onward,
toward a horizon of infinite possibility.

* * * * *

The bike ride up was daunting & exhausting,
but the struggle was worth the view from the top.
The immensity of the sea
shrunk all of his worries & problems
down to actual size.
Once he took the time to reflect & respect the summit he had climbed,
once he realized how small his place was in this brutal,
yet beautiful world,
& that we're all in this together...
it was all downhill from there. 



I turn into Gollum when I can't find my phone.
"Where is it? 
Where has it gone? 
The precious is lost!"
I get freaky like Frodo.
Seriously, I'm only half kidding.
It's pathetic how powerless I am 
when my phone is out of my sight.
A panic comes over me when it isn't in my hand, 
in my pocket or on my nightstand.
I can barely think,
can barely breathe.
It's even more ridiculous how relieved I am 
when I eventually find it. 
It's pitiful how powerful 
this device's vise is on my mind.
It reminds me to think sometimes, 
then causes me not to.
I rely on my phone to make me invisible
in waiting rooms & on buses. 
(Isn't it ironic how a device with so many connecting capabilities
can inevitably leave one feeling so disconnected?) 
I'm attached;
without it, I'm lacking, I feel naked.
This is definitely an obsession I must confront. 
If I don't establish some degree of moderation, 
I honestly believe this touch screen will leave me out of touch with reality. 
I'll be blind to the world beyond my news feed 
& deaf to the people within my vicinity. 

But, you know, I can't lie...
I know I can't let it go.
I know what must be done,
but I also know this battle of dependency will never truly be won. 
I must confront this obsession of mine... at some point in time.
The words of a procrastinating prophet always ring true.

- Sent from my iPhone 


Mainstream Mediocrity

This is a poem (rant) I wrote back in November. The headlines are a little outdated, but the message still remains the same. 

* * * * * * *

I used to be an aspiring journalist
until they taught me at the university that "if it bleeds, it leads."
Negativity above all else, are you kiddin' me?
I remember walking home from class after that & thinking to myself,
This isn't how I want to make my mark. 
I don't want to be a part of this.
So I jumped ship, changed my major,
& I'm sure glad I did.
I turn on the news these days & all I see is drama, trauma...
Obama this... Obama that...
The latest on the most recent ISIS attack ("better watch your back").
Ebola is an epidemic,
but there isn't an outbreak here in the United States.
Stop purposely spreading fear, CNN.
You're revealing your agenda again.
Let's be real, FOX News,
yours was never concealed.
NBC's lead story the other night was a teen's tweet,
you know, the kid who survived the school shooting last week.
Where's the privacy?
At least have the decency to let the victims grieve.
The more I see the more I believe 
that maybe there wouldn't be so many school shootings
if the media didn't make the shooters household names.
But then again, we are a society obsessed with celebrity.
You know how I know the media has lost its class?
The ESA successfully landed on the surface of the comet, 67P,
but that lost air time & took a back seat 
to Kim Kardashian's ass.
Freedom of the press? 
Please, more like power of the paparazzi. 
We all might as well watch TMZ.


Yard Work

I often get reflective when thinking about perspective... 

They say the grass is always greener on the other side.
What the clich├ęs don't say, though,
is that the grass on your side wouldn't be so damn brown
if you just took the time to water it.
The best way to get what you want 
is to put in the effort
& to care about what you already have.

I often get reflective when thinking about perspective...
Reminiscing over resurfacing memories,
feelings or emotions I neglected 
& pushed aside at the time when they occurred...
I've learned that materialistic tendencies 
& extreme objectivity,
can skew our view of reality, 
can blind us to what really matters.

Yes, I often get too reflective when I overthink perspective...
Like an over corrective detective,
desperately searching for the most effective,
least subjective method.
But who am I kidding?
It's not complicated.
It isn't a mystery.
Sometimes it's easiest
to just love,
to just live.

Simplicity really is the key
when putting it all into perspective.