Sunday, October 30, 2011

Walking Contradiction

I could have sworn I have written about this already, but I suppose not…. Better now than never.

     Today, a 22 year-old girl at work said something like “I never would have pictured you as a (The)Devil Wears Prada fan”, as I was listening to their new album. This brought to mind another conversation and overall a culmination of my traits that make me into one odd character in some peoples’ eyes. So, I am a father, husband, car enthusiast, gun collector, aspiring gunsmith, war protester, an environmentally-conscious hiker and camper and do enjoy a game of Starcraft II from time to time.

     Here is the part that weirds people out: After my past life, many people expect me to be a chest thumping, Right-wing, gun-snuggling, patriotic warmonger… this is so far from the truth that it’s hilarious. I think personal freedom should be the number one most important thing in anyone’s life; I could care less if someone likes to do recreational drugs or wants to vote a certain way. I love my garden, my chickens (the two remaining ducks can go fuck themselves), my camping gear and my iPhone. Any of these things seem to clash against the “norm” yet? They don’t to me, but I get called out a lot.

     I am clean cut (mostly) and dress in a low-attention style and am usually armed to the teeth with a pistol and at least 7 rounds of hollow-point ammunition. I love to play poker or pool, but I’m only lucky at both. Watching MMA fights once in a while is fun and spending time with my family is the most important thing to me. Man, this is sounding like a pointless post… ugh.

     Anyway, as I stack up all my interests I can almost draw a comic that would be fitting for The Oatmeal. It would look something like this:

     I would be the guy with an assault rifle (or two) slung, with chickens walking around him while I work in the garden. I’d have headphones in and be listening to some metal-core band or The Joe Rogan Experience podcast (listen to it!). Around me would be my family and maybe a fire in the burn pit. I’d have a craft beer such as Deschutes Jubleale or Dogfish Head (damn, how ‘bout those name drops) 90 minute IPA sitting near me. It sounds like something you’d never see at a hippie convention, but I’d get along okay there. Maybe I’ll take a crack at a comic… nah.. probably won’t happen.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

My First Alpha Brain Dream. PTSD heavy.

After hearing about it on The Joe Rogan Experience (best podcast ever), I started taking Alpha Brain from Onnit labs ** a month ago or so and it, along with eating better has given me the best sleep in years. Along with this good, fully-satisfying sleep are the most lucid dreams ever. I was afraid at first that it would make me have horrible dreams that terrified me, but Joe Rogan is a smart dude and it’s worth a shot. Here is the first dream that I remembered in every detail. Enjoy.

I felt my heart pounding in my chest as I readied myself to confront whoever just broke into my house. I heard the rustling downstairs and then footsteps coming up. I squeezed hard on the grip of my Taurus .45; the rough texture of the plastic grip was digging into my hands. Suddenly, I saw a figure pop its head over the stairwell divider. I recognized a man’s face and a pistol; he did not fire and ducked down. I fired one round through the wall at the location he should have been.
I proceeded to slowly walk downstairs toward where this guy was and as I rounded the corner, I recognized a former teacher of mine (this guy wasn’t really a former teacher, but I knew him as such in the dream) and for some stupid reason he had a gun in my house and had broke in. I leveled the pistol at him and squeezed off round after round into his chest. I could feel the Taurus’ sloppy trigger breaking with each pull and the violent recoil from the +P ammo I carry. I could not hear the shots as I fired, but I felt the all-too-familiar overpressure in my ears.
The man was not falling down or returning fire and was actually trying to escape. After the tenth round, the slide locked to the rear and I dropped the magazine with one hand as I reached to my left rear pocket for the second. I felt the stitching of my jeans and the panic as I realized there was no mag there. I immediately wheeled around and sprinted up the 12 stairs to the kitchen; I felt the burning in my thighs as I reached the top.
I reached high atop the cupboard, searching for the second magazine. I felt the drywall dust and grease from the stove stick to my fingers as I found the magazine. The metal body was cool and it slid easily into the pistol. I released the slide to chamber the round and went back down to make sure I took care of business…..

That is the last I recall….
What a wild thing to experience this again in VIVID detail. It was the most real dream I’ve had in many years. It had all the sensations, visual impact and horrible panic of combat, but I experienced this as I would have about 6 years ago. Back then, I did not think about the now per se, I was more concerned with making people incapable of killing me.
I told my friend about this and he told me to write it down. If you want to enhance your dreams and REM sleep, check out the Alpha Brain from Onnit Labs. The stuff is legit.

I hope this was not a waste of time for you readers. Thanks.  

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Due By Midnight or You Fail!

So there I was. true story: I was sitting in bed talking to my wife on the laptop and had just sent off the draft of my group project to a classmate and I set the laptop down. I was laying there talking and suddenly I found myself waking up gasping. I was freaking out because that paper was due midnight. As I scrambled for my phone, I saw 2:39am and panic set in hard. I grabbed the laptop and tried to power it on by feel in the dark room. Unsuccessful at that, I unplugged it and ran out to the living room. I opened the course site, typed a fast explanation and hoped the instructor would accept the late work. To make matters worse, in my panic I attached an old version of the project. I resubmitted the assignment with the right one this time.
I could not possibly sleep after that, so I sat on the couch awake reading various shenanigans on the internet; I contemplated busting out some Starcraft 2, but decided against it.
Well, as it turns out, we did not receive a failing grade due to my passing out, but it is a good lesson for the future.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Huntin' Results *drum roll*

So we got skunked. Not a huge shocker on our first go at it, but still a little disappointing. We did it right though, taking care to select prime spots to hide, masking our scent as much as possible and keeping still and quiet. One time I had a group of three Does about twenty feet from me, but not having permission to hunt the King’s Does left me waiting for a big Buck.

The Buck wisely decided not to come out. It could be chance or perhaps the impatient hunters who drove up and got out of their trucks right as the sun came up and proceeded to crash through the woods like rabid Wookies. Those schmucks scared any potential game right away. Well, that sucks for us, but we at least didn’t see something and let it get away.

I’ll be heading out again to try to get a Black Tail near my place soon. I guess we shall see what happens.

The scenery was beautiful though.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Hunt

Next week I’ll be embarking on my first hunting trip of my life. I take no special pleasure in the thought of killing another living being, but I do enjoy fresh meat and I’m not an idiot; something has to die to make my dinner. Justin, Kris and I are all packing up and heading out to harvest game. If we are lucky, and shoot straight, we all stand to come back with several months worth of deer.
I’ll be bringing one of my 30-06s and all the usual camping amenities. My wife has been gracious enough to let me go on this trip; I hope I do not come home empty-handed. Not the sort of guys to go out and down a bunch of beers, Justin and Kris are the ideal type of hunting partners. I can trust them not to shoot me and they can expect the same from me. My worst thought is getting shot by another hunter just being careless.
I taught my son why we fish and this, I hope, will be the type of thing which I can use to get him to appreciate many things. Hard work, respect for living creatures, the danger of a rifle, the usefulness of being an expert marksman and more are all lessons I hope to glean for him. I will take pictures to show him the steps, but none to glorify the deed. People should do whatever they feel inclined to do, but you won’t catch me mounting some poor beast on my wall… unless it was a Wampa. That would go right beside my collection of Sarlak eggs.
Anyways, it should be a good experience for me and my comrades to partake in this event. I plan to go out bird hunting too, but baby steps. My wife is patient, so I won’t push my luck.
Also, thanks to everyone who is supporting me on this trip. Many folks have lent me gear, covered me at work and gave me advice. Hell, the rifle I’m using was a gift…  I have a good life.