Let’s get after it already, shall we?

I suppose I come with a few warning labels. It really depends on the context of our meeting to determine which one gets assigned. Even then, those labels can change. Don’t you wish that you could get an introduction to something before making a commitment to it? Or having the option to find out what some of the warning labels are before you dive in too far?

This is an introduction to the story that is my life, but with it come some warning labels. I talk about God here and faith. I also use profanity and sarcasm liberally. I believe that life is meant to be experienced, not just survived. Nobody makes it out alive anyways. We all have a story, and this is mine. Won’t you share yours with me?

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“The future isn’t just something that happens, it’s a brutal force with a great sense of humor that will steamroll you if you’re not watching.” (movie: ALOHA)

“What good’s the life you were given if all you do is stand in one place?” (“The Ends of the Earth” by Lord Huron)


Life gets stressful & I tend to head into the kitchen when that happens. I fall back on old standards, often recipes written on a scrap of paper or a notecard. I found this one written on a weathered lined yellow notepad paper, tucked in one of my books. It made me smile, because it brings memories of sitting around a kitchen table with my extended family. Whenever our family gets together, my aunt will make two different dips while the rest of us gorge ourselves with chips and veggies. The white dill dip is a recipe for another day, but this–this is one of my favorites.

Jo’s TexMex Salsa

5-6 whole tomatoes (med-lg size)

1 can Rotel tomatoes & green chilis

1 bunch of cilantro (handful)

1/2-1 clove (bulb) of garlic

Cracked pepper & pinch of salt

3-4 large jalepenos (seeds & all)

1 med lime (smush well to get all juice)

If you have a hand chopper, it all gets diced pretty small. If available, throw into a bullet blender or a food processor & liquefy it all.

–some things to add for random extras on different occasions:

1-2 pinches of Cumin

OR (never AND)

1-2 pinches of Mesquite

Suggestion: don’t mix Cumin & Mesquite. I’ve never tried it to know what the result would be, but I’m pretty sure it would be atrocious.


to the guy who introduced me to Star Wars, fast cars, jumping off a floating dock, wearing pink windbreaker and red shorts that match because they both say “NIKE”, conspiracy theories, and catching turtles on float trips: you’re my favorite brother and I’ll love you forever. I’ll miss you forever as well.  

I think of him from time to time / Just what it is he left behind / His life alone I’ll always remind / We’ve all the things we have to look to find / Of the strength we both had to find / Of the strength we both had to find / That’s all that he’s left behind… 

(“Love Can’t Stand Alone” by Bear’s Den)

#loveyouforever #aslongasimliving #mybrotheryoullbe


“Do you ever wonder what your life would be like? What will you wish you would’ve done? Get after it already. What’s life without a little adventure? We get once chance: best live a big life. The exploration of the unknown, the hope of something more–this behavior can be classified as typically hazardous. I call it an adventure. Welcome, let’s get started, shall we?” (Opening intro to Podcast: Typically Hazardous by Hank.)


It’s funny what memories hit you when you realize what day it is. Dear reader, this is something that I wrote on one of the recent July 9th’s.. You see, anniversary days aren’t always easy to make it through, and the right circumstances will push you into a sort of deja vu.

That moment when:

The songs that you listened to (“Iris” by the Goo Goo Dolls) and the weather (it was cool enough to sit outside the hospital doors on the bench when my candy striper/volunteer shift was over). That summer smell of warm air mixed with the flowers planted at the main entrance of the hospital, with hints of cigarettes from the smokers nearby. The surprise of seeing a friend who’d just returned from summer camp—the same camp you skipped so that you could finish your summer school class—jumping out of your sister’s car as they picked you up after volunteering. The disappointment from not getting to drive—I mean, after all, you DID have your driver’s permit—which subsided with the promise of icecream as your friend and your sister heralded you with camp stories from the past week. You wished you had gone after all, and the regret still settles in your chest—even 18 years later. One last hug, one last “drive safe”—it wasn’t enough. Today—18 years ago—wasn’t enough to prepare you for the next two weeks but it would have to do. It’s funny what a memory will do to you… “And the price of a memory is the memory of the sorrow it brings..” 

I’ll always remember you, Brian Michael. Thank you for starting to teach me to say goodbye. I still tell the stories of our Halloween weekends, our binging of Disney’s 3 Musketeers, our movie quoting through out rollercoaster rides. I still drive safe, just like you made me promise. 

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