This Thing Called Life!

Good Morning, I’ve been out and about for a little while. I think I expressed what I was up to with the house thing in the “Poor Man” posting. That’s still hanging in the wind as far as closing on the house. I just spent close to 3 weeks working on a house that isn’t mine yet. I posted “Something about Maria” from a hotel room in Muscle Shoals, Alabama. Maria wrote that one and I had a lot of help from housekeeping in posting it before I went off the grid. I hope you found something useful in Maria’s posting, and likewise I hope she’ll allow me to post something for her again. Why am I sharing this with you? Why am I expressing any of this on a website that few know about?

Is that a good question? what about the title? Well, they’re linked you see, I make my expressions and observations right here because I can. This thing called life allows me that benefit, this thing called life allows many of us a lot of benefits that we may not take advantage of. This Thing Called Life can be a thing of beauty or it can be a true cluster fuck! there are many variables involved.

Before we begin, I would like to express that I don’t have the answers, nor do I pretend to. These are observations based mainly on my own personal experiences through first or second hand living. The first hand part being my own experiences, the second hand part being that of others as observed by me. Those can be anyone known or known of, or something expressed in a book, song or movie, or this day and time through one of the various forms of social media. Even The Bible states that wisdom is all around us in various forms not often considered.

This Thing Called Life put me where I am today, likewise it put you where you are today. With that being stated what are you going to do with it? It’s kind of like you got this gift you didn’t ask for, so now what do you do with it? We all have a choice to a certain degree of how and what we do with this thing called life.

Many should know by now I’m a music guy and can draw many perspectives from songs. I’m a big fan of the 90’s music scene, there were 2 bands coming out about the same time in the 90’s that I think really hit the nail on the head with this thing called life in 2 of their songs. Creed, their first album, Three Doors Down, their first album as well, ironically enough I live in the town where Three doors Down originated their namesake (Foley, Alabama) should someone give a damned.

Creed sings about it in “What’s this life for”? Three Doors Down states it best in the song “Smack” with a line repeating “don’t throw your life away”. I can relate to both how about you? Scott Staph of Creed is referring to someone known to him who just died by suicide. Three Doors Down are referring to Smack, aka Heroin, or as popularly known today Opiate addiction. One ask a question the other makes a statement, personally I love both. Having been an alcoholic (that one’s for life you know? it doesn’t just go away) I can relate very well to what’s being stated in the song, likewise I can relate to what’s being asked by Creed.

Creed or Scott ask What’s this life for? Does anyone really know? I’ve heard and read a lot of thoughts and opinions on that topic, but can anyone honestly say? The one I like the most, I can’t recall where it came from? it could have been a movie? It’s pretty simple and states we were put here to create. How would you define that one? What were we put here to create? The Bible states multiply and be fruitful, or is that the Catholics? So, is that referring to creating life? It can be however you interpret it, for me I take it to heart and choose to be creative! That means using my other head, the one for thought. I enjoy this creative nature of mine, and am choosing not to throw it away! The advent of and evolving of digital has made the creative aspects of many somewhat simpler if they can learn how to use digital means?

I just tackled both bands perspective of life in that paragraph alone. To a certain degree life is what you make it and do with it! Ironically enough neither band is still around to banter the topic. Last I heard egos and drugs brought down Creed, Alterbridge is a spin off of the remnants of Creed. Three Doors Down is one in the ground and one in prison, another victim to opiates and alcohol! It’s a shame how many lives are thrown away by creatives of the artistic type. In case you’re missing it? I’m a lover of life and find it to be not something taken for granted, yet so many will.

I look at life as a miraculous thing that took many years to work out the bugs on and evolve into what it is today, yet it’s still evolving. Many will throw that away because they got lost in the nuances of shit! Egos big or small, chemicals, and then just trying to figure out what to do with that precious life you’ve been given without asking?

I’m pushing 50 and there aren’t many benefits at that age! One feels too old to start again, like maybe time is getting short! The thing is, many aren’t financially able to retire at that age, and so that evil work thing must continue.

I’ve often thought this for many years now, and have in some ways addressed it. Wrap your head around this for a moment! Let’s revisit Scott’s musing of “What’s This Life For”? Think about this, here in the states and many other developed countries, what is the learning process? Meaning how are our young lives addressed? What are we taught socially and systematically across the board for the better part of our young lives until we reach adulthood where we have the opportunity to really mess it up? We are taught how to make a living! Here in the states we will spend 12 years of our lives in free education(some will pay for it) the whole time being taught that we should be considering another 4 more years of higher education so we can really make a good living! How many did this? Sixteen or more years of education to make a good living, if you’re among those, are you happy with your place in this thing called life at the moment? Well, are you?

There are many in other nations that don’t or won’t get the same opportunities as you do. Many living in North Korea or parts of Africa probably can’t conceive of the thought of having much choice in anything, yet you do and what will you do with it? Here’s the deal, most folks will spend the majority of their lives learning about work and working for a living. If you’re going to spend the majority of your life doing something, shouldn’t you at least like it? What do you like or enjoy? What floats your boat? Society has advanced so far so fast that we now have a choice in that matter. Just a hundred years ago that would have been a notion considered pretty damned foolish, and many were lucky to finish school on a primary level. Can you see where I’m going with this? there are a lot of ways to throw your life away, how do you choose to do it?

There’s a line in an Iron Maiden song “Holy Smoke” “I’ve lived in filth and I’ve lived in sin and I still smell better than the shit you’re in”. Bruce was referring to bad preachers back then, but that line can be applied to so much more. For me, I’ve lived in shit and squalor, but likewise I’ve known living well too. I’ve experienced both the good life and the bad life, given the choice I’ll take the good life every time. The bad life for me was either directly or indirectly a result of my drinking, as stated, I drank alcoholically for a spell, that sucked pretty damned bad. I threw my good life away the moment I crossed the line from social drinking to alcoholism. That took a number of years to come to terms with and rectify. Life’s punishment for alcoholism can be pretty severe, especially here in the States. I have observed that smackers and meth heads get more respect than a drunk! Rodney Dangerfield thought he got no respect, he should’ve tried life as a drunk and that notion would have changed quickly! I’m not here to talk of my drunken past, that’s in one of the books on the gallery page. I simply wanted to make a statement.

As stated I’m still left of 50, but that will end here shortly, and in looking back, aside from the alcoholic detour, my life hasn’t been terrible! I’ve accomplished a few goals that I had set out to do. There’s one coming up that may get accomplished in an ass backward kind of way. Back before my life was interrupted with the pangs of a drunk. I owned my own business and was striving for that coveted position in life where I didn’t have to work for a living. The emphasis being “didn’t have to”, I wanted to achieve this by the age of 50.

Fifty is coming on like a freight train, and here’s where I am. I look back on a life where I got to do most of what I set out to do, I also did some things I didn’t set out to do! I’ve been to jail twice folks, I mean prison! the big boys house. That takes numerous trips to your local county or city jail to wind up there. I did it twice with my drinking! it seemed I had a problem with this country’s drinking and driving laws. I’m not proud of anything done in those days and am very thankful that I didn’t kill or harm anyone in those days. My numerous trips to jail and prison cost me most everything in life one might consider worthwhile. I recall the guards bringing papers back for me to sign while being completely powerless to do anything about it other than sign. Those were consent papers of acknowledging something else was about to be taken while I was residing in county jail awaiting the trip to prison. That trip can sometimes take a while, and that time doesn’t count toward the sentence given. I got sidetracked there! as stated that’s in a book, but I needed it to get to this!

I was striving in a younger life to reach the point of not having to work by the time I was 50. So, what was it I was wanting to do after turning 50? What was that position in life about? didn’t have to work! That simply meant all my shit was taken care of other than utilities and insurance. What was I going to do with the time after 50? I wanted to pursue the things I really wanted to do! That time spent earning money, I was doing houses and homes, either building them or remodeling them. Truth be told, I hated the money part of working for a living. I didn’t get rich doing what I was doing and lost it all anyway, the money part of it took the fun out of it, but it was a necessary evil. The creativity of building or adding to homes is what I enjoyed about it!

And here we are! I might actually live to see 50, I’m slightly disabled now, so I won’t be working on someone’s home as a means of a living, yet just worked on what I hope will be mine. If I can accomplish this house thing referred to in “Poor man” then I won’t be far from that 50 plan! I will have a home that’s affordable with the things I consider important. Those now being the means to pursue my writing and music with ample space to work on other projects. This thing called life, what have I done with it? Aside from the alcoholic detour, pretty much the things that mattered to me. I’m just starting a new phase of it! Maybe the walk in alcoholic hell provided me with a different insight as well as some content for songs(I have many on addiction). What ever it may have provided, the point is, I’m still here! and pretty much maintained my approach to this thing called life which is simply this!

1)What’s this life really for?

2) If you’re going to have to work for a living, shouldn’t it be something you like?

3) Live within your means financially! You don’t really need all the fancy shit in keeping up with the all the Jones. Provide for yourself and the rest will fall into place!

4) Enjoy the life you’ve been given, if you aren’t enjoying it, change that part!

5) This thing called Life is and can be pretty damned spectacular, don’t and never lose sight of that.

6) Many hold the key to their own lives, but put it in the wrong locks.

7) Don’t Throw your life away!

Those are the points I hope some of you gleaned from this writing. With that being stated I’ve been wanting to share this band with you for a while now. The band is Skating Polly! another YouTube recommendation. I discovered these girls back in August of last year, I’ve found them to be pretty inspirational. No, they don’t sing inspirational songs, but listen to what they are doing and watch their videos. These girls are half sisters, 5 years apart and just recently added little sister’s brother to the band. Listen to what they’re doing production wise, listen to some of their content. They’re singing of things much older than they.

I mentioned my love of some 90’s music earlier, does anyone recall all the girl bands of the 90’s that had some guts? These gals are right in there with them, and I mean some of the better ones. Observe some of the company they keep, you can find those names on their albums. I was so impressed with these chicks I now have 5 of their albums, and it was all I had to listen to while working on what I hope will be my new home. These girls aren’t throwing their lives away, and if one takes note, they may find the same kind of inspiration I found. It isn’t their musical ability to me, it’s the way they do it! They were 9 and 14 when they started this. You would not be wasting your time in checking them out! I tried to give a link to their YouTube video of Hail Mary here. Now do you understand the meaning of the hotel housecleaning staff? Thanks and have a good Day! Robert

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