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“The cruelest lies are often told in silence” – Robert Louis Stevenson


I’m still angry. I still cannot really believe that what happened actually happened and how quickly it was swept under the rug. Worse yet, how it was made to be my problem, like I had been the cause of it.

There hasn’t been so much as a word spoken about it, by either of us, in months and yet I still get visibly upset when I think about it, like this morning.

I was then, and still am now; ready to completely burn the bridge. What I do gain from the relationship is easily trounced by how much side-stepping I have to do to avoid pitfalls.

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I very distinctly remember the first time a girl took off my pants.

At the time I wore Bullhead jeans exclusively, and Bullhead always put a little colored tag on the inside of the fly to demarcate the cut. Well when the girl in question unbuttoned my pants and unzipped my fly the first thing she said was “Oh I didn’t know there was a tag there” as a way to cut the tension mounting in the room.

She must have noticed that I was dying. My heart was pounding so hard it was making my voice quiver. I wasn’t excited, I wasn’t happy, I wasn’t any of the things I thought I would be based on my many viewings of the movies “Animal House” and “Porky’s”. All I wanted was to tell her to stop, to zip me back up and to go back to hanging out and watch a movie and make out or something.

We didn’t do any of those things. She moved forward with her plans to disrobe me and eventually I enjoyed my evening, even though I felt terrified the entire time. By the second time with her I was completely ready and willing, it was just that first encounter.

It happened like that with a few other women in my life too. In fact, I was told a number of times long after the fact that I could’ve had a much broader and more developed sex life if I hadn’t been so scared to dive in.

I guess in a lot of ways I’ve been like that with a lot of things. Too nervous to jam with some musicians, too nervous to join a softball team, too nervous to fix things around my house, too nervous to do what I really wanted with my life.

I think I’ve always wanted to preserve an image of myself as really good at whatever I try. I always wanted to be a “talented person” in many regards instead of so few. People hear that you’ve played guitar since you were 12, you must be pretty damn good, guess again. People hear you love baseball, you must be pretty good at softball, not this time. People hear you lived on honor roll and dean’s list your whole life, you should make something of yourself, keep trying.

Maybe it isn’t lack of talent that kills the masses; it’s the consumption of self by fear, just like a girl unzipped your pants for the first time.

BlogFamilyFriends and Relationships

When I was a child, I remember my Dad, his brother, and my sister’s godfather sitting around at parties riffing. They would crack everybody up. Parties at my house were small and infrequent, but fun. I come from a small family, just one sister, my father with just one brother, my mother was one of four but they were scattered across the country so we never saw them growing up.

My wife’s family is huge. My father in law is one of five, mother in law one of four. Three and four children families are not out of the question and it is cousins galore.

I’ve yet to figure out how I fit into this family.

With my own family I fit with my dad pretty well, and the person I can’t be around him I can definitely be around my sister.

My wife’s family just doesn’t get me. I start from the outside and work in. Her mother’s side knows I like baseball but refuse to talk to me about it, probably because they don’t want to hear my opinions on the sport. But they know nothing else about me at all. They kinda know I play guitar, but not country so it doesn’t matter. On her father’s side I don’t fish or hunt or work with my hands so I don’t really matter. They too know I play guitar, but again, it isn’t country so it isn’t anything worthwhile.

Large families can be smothering. I have no room to shine, there is no spotlight to spread around, and there is always too much going on to land a good joke. And let’s not mention the steep anxiety I feel surrounded by all these people.

Her immediate family is much of the same. They value brawn over brain and outdoors life over a bookworm. They care more for my music but not to the point where they request it honestly.

They all love me. I know it, it is undeniable. From the very first holiday I spent with her family I knew they were an honest, loving and supportive group of people. They love me in spite of me, not because of me. I long for the days of laughing at my Dad and uncle’s as they amuse the small rooms of my childhood.