Making It Real

Somewhere out there, there is a skate video that has footage of Mike Vallely giving a speech about how he hates it when people say, “Keeping it real,” in response to the question, “What’s up?” He suggested that “Keeping it real” implies that you aren’t really doing anything and that you’re staying in the same place. He suggested that instead of saying “Keeping it real,” one should say “Making it real,” because that implies that you are working hard to make your goals, dreams, whatever- realities.

I’ve decided to write what will undoubtedly be a fairly lengthy post about things that have been going on in my life over the summer and more recently. Some of it will be repetitive and some of it may be new. All of it may not be very interesting to the reader reading this, whoever you are, but I feel like a blog is basically a journal that can be read by anyone. It doesn’t always have to be about “interesting shit” that’s happening. I don’t need to impress or entertain you. If you’re not interested, you don’t have to read it. I just thought that instead of littering my desktop with half baked Text Edit files, or in saved e-mail drafts to myself, that I would put them all in one place, here. Now that that’s out of the way, here is my general update.

Alright, so, one of the things I’ve been working toward all summer is getting a full time job. I am starting to feel like I am closing in on one. I don’t know what it is but I just have a feeling based on the places I’ve applied to, that a full time job is on the horizon. I’ve gotten more realistic about the whole thing. I’ve abandoned, well, not abandoned, but put on the back burner, the dream of getting a “dream job” out of the gate. I’m not cutting it out completely, but I’ve realized that it’s not something you fall in to, it’s something you have to work your way up to.

So, if for now I have to work at a kind of shitty, not my first choice, full time job just to get some experience (and better money), then so be it. I’m still young. Maybe this door will lead to knew ones that will put me on the path towards getting a “dream job.”

Then all of a sudden, the reality of a 9 to 5 sunk in and I started thinking, “Is this really what I want?” It was the same sort of panic I felt when I started dating my ex-girlfriend. I felt locked in. Suddenly I was no longer a “free man.” But then I realized that it’s not like I was getting any ass over the long dry spell leading up to us dating, it’s not like I’m a “playa,” so what was I worried about?

The same sort of thing happened with the potential idea of a full time job. I was thinking, “I’m locked in. I’ll no longer have a social life. I won’t be able to do all the things I’ve wanted to do at this age.” But here’s the thing, I’m not doing all the things I wanted to do at this age. I’m not traveling and going on crazy adventures. I’m not even using my spare time wisely. My days off are spent literally doing nothing.

So, why not have a full time job so that I will have something to fill my time better and put me on a routine schedule. I’m a fan of routine. Plus it will help to a) make me appreciate and make better use of my free time, and b) allow me to earn more money so that when expenses come up, or fun oppertunities present themselves, I won’t be strapped for cash, and in general, I’ll be able to keep more money in my wallet, and I’ll be able to save more.

(This leads me to my next thing) Not that money is everything. (I have Been trying to start to live by the mantra “be happy with less). I am fortunate that I still live at home and that I basically live there rent free. I don’t really have very many bills or monetary responsibilities, but having a little extra cash would certainly make what few expenses I do have be that much easier to deal with.

(Continuing with the idea of “being happy with less”) …because when you think about it, things don’t really make you happy. You covet them and wait until you have enough [money] to buy them and when you get them they bring you transitory pleasure, but at the end of the day it’s not like you’re like, “Oh man, I’m so happy I bought those shoes or that shirt or that motorcycle or that helmet.” Now you own them and they’ve just become another addition to the pile of crap you don’t need in your life.

This idea is very much borrowed from Fight Club, but, there’s a difference between hearing it in the movie (or reading it in the book) and realizing it for yourself.

Moving on, there are three things that have been niggling me over the past few months: getting my motorcycle in order, getting a job, and getting a girlfriend. I told you this would be repetitive. I feel like each one sort of compliments the other. At the top of the list -in terms of importance- is getting a full time job. This will allow me more money to a) work on the bike, or rather get the bike worked on, and b) go out to bars and clubs more often to meet women. Plus, if I roll into a club holding my motorcycle helmet, that is a chick magnet right there. Suddenly I’m the “bad boy” in the bar. Additionally, getting a new job will allow me to meet new people, and perhaps one of them might be a gal that I could start an office romance with; *wink*.

It really all comes down to priorities. Though I’ve been wanting to get on my motorcycle and ride for so long, at the same time I realize that it should be pretty low on my priority list because in the grand scheme of things, it really doesn’t matter. Same with a girlfriend. I’ve been out of the game for so long that I honestly haven’t even tried to mack on girls a Highland. I feel like once the job is knocked off the list in my brain, the others might just fall into place.

Also, in terms of money -and yes I know what I just said about things being just that, things- there are a few things that have been on my mind to buy/spend money on: tailored suit, fix motorcycle, Christmas savings, savings for Disney/Summer 2014 trip(s), general savings, new bicycle, screen printing equipment, and an iPhone.

1) Tailored Suit (~$400) – I have until October 26th to get a tailored suit made. The reason for this deadline is because that is the date of my cousin’s wedding and as it stands now I have nothing that I consider suitable to wear. However, on top of that it would be good to have a suit if I decided to really “dress to impress” for job interviews. Plus, I feel it would be good to have in general. I feel like all men should have at least one good suit because, well, you never know.

2) Fix Motorcycle (~$500) – when my cousin came by the other day, he suggested that I have $500 ready for whenever I end up bringing my motorcycle to a shop (which he suggested should be no sooner than the end of September) and that way I would have -theoretically- more than enough money to take care of the bill, whatever it ends up being.

3) Christmas Savings (~$300) – I don’t want Christmas time to sneak up on me and then, when it arrives, have no money with which to buy gifts. I had said last x-mas that I’d buy presents intermittently throughout the year when I had a little extra cash and that way it would take the stress out of scrambling to buy x-mas gifts in November/December, and would be less of a burden on my wallet. That worked out well. *Eyes Roll* So, now my new plan is to save up the money* between now and November so that I can piss it all away at once.


4) Summer Trip Savings ($1,200) – this is an ongoing payment plan that I have with myself. It’s quite simple really. Basically I have an envelope in my room with every month of the year written on it. The goal is to put in at least 100 dollars a month, so that by the time my family’s 20 Year Anniversary trip to Disney World comes up, I will have $1,200 to put towards paying for it; money that won’t have to come out of my savings. On top of that I might go to Comic Con next sumer so I’ll need to save for that too.

5)  General savings (N/A)- money to put into my Savings, money to put into my Checking, and money to put into my Wallet; this is an ongoing thing that is facilitated bi-weekly by my paycheck. I put in what I can, when I can.


6) New Bicycle (~$400) – getting a new bike is something that has been on my mind for a while now. I feel I keep putting it off because I sort of don’t need it, but at the same time I do use my bike a lot and I’ve had my BMX bike for 10 years and it is really shitty and not really the sort of bike a 24-year-old should be riding on unless he’s a stoner or a BMX Professional, which I am neither. Plus I have a flat tire so that’s reason enough to get one (ell oh ell).

7) Screen Printing Equipment (~$60) – this is pretty low on my priority list. However, this too has been on my mind for a while as I’m always coming up with t-shirt design ideas and am tired of making shitty semi-permanent spray painted ones. Plus screen printing is something that I’ve never done but have always wanted to experiment with. It would be a fun hobby to have to occupy my spare time. Plus, who knows, maybe I could make a side career out of it.

8) iPhone (~$850) – super low on my priority list. I totally don’t need one, but my current phone is shit and literally falling apart. I don’t even covet getting one but it would be nice to always have the internet available, always have my iPod on me, and always have a decent camera with me.

*However, what I realized is that what do I have a savings account for, if not for this very reason. I try so hard and am very good about not dipping into my savings account. However, the way I see it, why stress about taking money out of my next shitty paycheck (which inevitably won’t give me enough to put into all the columns -excluding 4 and 5- and have only a little leftover for myself), when I could take out the money for the aforementioned upcoming expenditures and then, over time, work to pay myself back.

I have more than enough money in my Savings account to cover these costs and when you look at it, it’s really not that much. Combined, columns 1, 2, and 3 -the only ones I currently care about- only total $1,200. Especially if I do end up getting a full time job that pays more than my current job, (but even if it didn’t wouldn’t matter because I’d be getting more hours [and steady hours] and thus would be making more money) it would be very easy to save money -both to spend and to save- and to save more of it.

Oh yeah, as a final bit of info, I’m actively going to try and start a band. I just got in touch with a couple old college buddies of mine who I know play instruments. Not only did I get in touch with them because I want to start chilling with them more, but I also want to see if they’d be down to start a band. One is currently unemployed and was somewhat recently kicked out of the band he was in. The other was in a band but I think is no longer in one.

The thing is, is that I have always wanted to join or start a band but, not being able to play an instrument, never felt I had anything to contribute. However, though I still have only my voice and creativity to contribute, I feel like now might be the perfect time. I don’t care about getting big. I just want to practice, fool around, drink beer in my garage, and see where things go. If we do a couple small local gigs, great. I just really want to have fun with it.

NOTE: This post will undoubtedly be added to, or, there will be more posts like this to come. Perhaps this is once again the re-invention of what Hi Wheel Scene is.

—Random thing I was gonna post earlier this month but decided not to; perhaps deserves it’s own post, but oh well.

Missed Opportunity
[Did I miss a second opportunity at a girl?] Backstory, its 2000/2001 and your boy’s in the 6th Grade. Young, 6th grade version of Kyle finds his natural element… the dance-floor. 11 year old Kyle finds himself dancing with an equally aged, equally skinny gal named Liz. 11 year old Kyle falls hard in like with Liz and a strong friendship develops.
Cut to June of 2001 and it’s your boys birthday. An equally young, equally skinny Liz attends my party. As the nights festivities go on, Liz invites little Kyle to sit on her lap, and, when he does, she promptly grabs his right hand, which is attached to his arm and draped over her right shoulder, and places it on her right mini muffin.
Kyle and Liz never date. They dance and flirt over the years, but never date.
Cut to November/December of 2008 and 19 year old Kyle has just broken up with his girlfriend. He is home for the holidays and invites his old friend Liz to come over and hang out. They chat candidly in his room and eventually, Liz admits to Kyle that in the 6th grade she had a crush on him.
Kyle is stunned to hear this and begins to think of how drastically different his life might be if they had actually dated. Would they have been high school sweethearts. He always liked Liz but was always too much of a pussy to ask her out. Not that she was out of his league, but she was always either dating someone else, or, I don’t know, was too much of a “free spirit” for him. They probably wouldn’t have stayed together, but, either way it would have been interesting.
Back in the present and out of his JD from Scrubs fantasy, Kyle continues to chat with Liz who is currently dating her on-again off-again boyfriend whom she will eventually end up marrying.
Cut to tonight (8/6/13) and Kyle catches the beginning of Something Borrowed on FX. He sees the part where the friend admits to her friends fiance that she had a crush on him in college. They end up going home together that night and it all got me thinking… was that a missed opportunity?
I mean obviously the first one, the putting of the hand on the M&M was a missed sign that couldn’t have been clearer. But the second bit, the bit about her telling me she had had a crush on me back in the day even though in the present she had a boyfriend, should I have jumped out of my chair and kissed her like the fiance does to the friend in the movie? Or was she just telling me to tell me?
I, like most guys, am terrible at reading signs given to me by girls. I either read way in to nothing, or don’t notice what is right in front of my face. However, back then (and probably still now) I was too much of a pussy to act on such signs even if I recognized them. I suppose I can’t sit around feeling sorry for myself and thinking about what could have been. She’s married now and I’m happy for her, but it’s still makes me wonder.

1 Comment

Filed under Random/Thoughts

One response to “Making It Real

  1. Vicky Sanders

    When I moved to NYC I didn’t know anyone and had no family here… it sucked. My coworker showed me and I’m a big fan of that over the others in terms of actually meeting people vs. just entertainment. It has a different approach that feels less sketchy cause you and your friends essentially act as “wingmen”. I like that it helps you find things to do too. Skout’s okay too, but still has it’s fair share of creepers

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