Christian Homeshool Halloween Adventures

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The first time I celebrated Halloween was probably in college. I never got the chance to go trick or treating or dress up when I was a kid because, you know, demons. But that didn’t mean we didn’t have fun! And by fun, I mean nightmares. Here is a collection of short anecdotes: Halloween seen from the perspective of a homeschooled fundamentalist Christian kid.   We bounced around endless churches during my childhood, but one that we spent a considerable length at was Love and Grace Fellowship. It probably had […]

Get Busy Livin’, or Get Busy Dyin’

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It looks like hell outside. The air is orange and the fragile ashy skeletons of leaves that decided to float from the wildfires fifty miles aways and settle on my shirt streak into a paste of dust when I try to wipe them off. It’s a stark reminder of the end of things. I probably spend an average of an hour a day thinking about death. Some days it’s occasional fleeting moments and meanderings. But I’ve also spent ten straight hours obsessing about it. One could say that most of […]

Skweezy and Secrets

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For my birthday this year, I put together a rafting trip and rented a cabin in the wilderness and had a guys trip where we spent a lot of time trying to fart around, near, or on each other. I guess we did other things too. It was three friends and my brother, and I was ecstatic to have him fly in and join us. He’s had a rough life, but he’s doing well now, and I count every chance I get to spend time with him as a gift. […]

I’m Sitting Across From Two Heroin Addicts in Starbucks

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I’m sitting across from two heroin addicts in Starbucks. At this location, you need a code to use the bathroom, and that is only available with purchase. But they need that bathroom. They need to shoot up. So she bought a banana and put it on the table in front of him and he pulled out a large knife and cut it in half and said “There’s your fucking half” like he’s pissed at her about something. He’s wearing the kind of outfit that no one in the city wears […]

We Need to Stop Treating Mental Illness Like It’s a Mysterious Boogeyman

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When I was a kid and I got physically sick, there was always an obvious cause. It didn’t matter if I had a cold, a headache, or I was suffering an asthma attack; by the end of the twentieth century, science and technology had come so far that we no longer had to guess what caused our maladies. I could simply tell my parents what was wrong, and within a few seconds they could ascertain exactly what was wrong with me, no matter what.   Demons. It was always demons. […]

Stop Settling For Yourself

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As I’ve grown older, I don’t understand why adults don’t grow out of thinking that romantic love is like some sort of guaranteed right. They crash through one horrible relationship after another (or none at all) and can’t fathom why. I don’t know, maybe the fact that you’re a drunk, or have mother issues, or won’t make an effort to meet new people may have something to do with it. Wake up, do the routine, wait for the weekend, countdown to vacation, go to sleep, repeat. No changes. No progress. […]

Untitled Novel. Chapter 1.

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The air was still and nasty. Sticky and filled with bugs fucking in flight and smelling like rotting vegetation. Swamp air. Two police officers stood side by side outside the long-abandoned mini-mart. One cop was older. Fiftyish. Balding. Sloppy. Garrett. “That plastic bottle straight across the way,” Garrett said with a point. The other cop was younger. Not young enough to be bright-eyed. Healthy. Sort of. His name was Mike. Garrett tore into a danish. Mike chomped on a stick of jerky with one hand and hoisted his piece with […]

Sex, Drugs, and Rock n Roll. And Tony Partytime.

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The hardest drug I’ve ever ingested is ecstasy. I took it three times over a two month span and then never again. The first time, I took it with a friend to try it out. The second time was at the Ultra Music Festival, which I had flown cross country to get to with two pills in the pocket of my jeans without ever considering how fucking stupid of an idea that was. If I had been checked at the airport, I would have had no defense. But I wasn’t, […]

What, Exactly, is The Goal Here?

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So we had this pro-Trump “free speech rally” down the street from my home and I tuned in to the livestream to watch a guy nicknamed “Stickman” – proudly named so because he beat someone over the head with a stick – talk about “taking over the West Coast and getting rid of all the liberals.” I grew up in a city where black people were openly called “nigger”, gays were ostracized and had their family lives ruined, and I was punished for having pre-marital sex, having a friend with […]

Artificial Intelligence Will Melt Your Face Off

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The impending AI revolution will be the the most fantastic and monumental and mind-meltingly absurd leap we will have experienced in our lifetimes. I don’t think any of us can truly comprehend the scale and speed at which it will occur. But Moore’s law (basically, the exponential evolution of computing power) is going to throw the changes (and keep throwing them) at our faces so hard and fast it’ll feel like a heavyweight boxing match in the eleventh round. We’ll be staggering around, barely able to keep up, confused and trying to […]