Category Archives: Writing

Hi-fi Friday! Def Leppard Edition!

I had an email conversation today in which the word “fool” was written in a response. Now here’s how weird my brain is wired. Even though it was a semi serious conversation, after seeing “fool” my next thought was Def Leppard’s huge hit, Foolin’, off their third album, Pyromania.. That tune immediately became stuck in my head… Now I’ll attempt to firmly implant it in your grey matter:

….hoo boy they had jacked up videos back in 1983! FUN FACT: The girl playing the harp in the video was Billy Idol’s girlfriend at the time, Perri Lister…

Billy Idol & Perri Lister

…. and I swear to God the other girl is that hot girl, Ariel, from the original Footloose, though I couldn’t confirm it… Oh, and drummer Rick Allen HAS BOTH OF HIS ARMS! And he’s playing while wearing British flag Underoos! In case you didn’t know, a year after that video came out, Rick lost his left arm in a horrible car accident. He eventually recovered, determined to remain the drummer of Def Leppard, and became skilled with an electronic drum kit that allowed him to play with his feet via extra pedals… in addition to his remaining arm.

DID YOU KNOW? Pyromania sold 6,000,000 copies in 1983; putting it number two behind serial child molester Michael Jackson’s Thriller? The lead single from Pyro, Photograph, ultimately beat out pee pee toucher Jackson’s Beat It to become  the most requested video that year on MTV! Relive Photograph with me here:

…. I WANNA TOUCH YOU!…. Damn, I’m having a lot of fun writing this post… forgot how much I liked Def Leppard!

Man…I feel like a… OH this post is filled with FUN FACTS… Def Leppard’s producer for Pyromania and their previous album High ‘n’ Dry was Mutt Lange, a.k.a “the guy who married, and got to have sex with…

Shania Twain

… Shania Twain for 15 years! Then he screwed up! Try to follow me here, and I may screw this up, but I believe Mutt cheated on Shania with her best friend, Marie, thus causing their divorce and now Shania is married to Marie’s ex-husband, Frederic, and I think Mutt is now married to Marie. Holy shit! Talk about a wife swap! Moral of the story? Never mix South Africans & rock and roll with Canadians & country music!

Okay… I got a bit off track there.. back to Def Leppard! In 1984, Mutt dropped out due to probably cheating exhaustion, and a former Meat Loaf producer stepped in and then the album Hysteria happened in 1987… and this…

… that’s widely known as Def Leppard’s biggest hit… though they’re much deeper than that song. Okay… this one is no deeper, but was, and always has been, one of my favorite tunes…

In 1991, the band was once again stricken by tragedy when long time guitarist Steve Clark died from an overindulgence in alcohol and prescription drugs. That shit was sad back then and I feared the loss of one of my favorite bands, but they all persevered and moved on from Steve’s death, releasing their 5th studio album, Adrenalize, in 1992.

I went to see Def Leppard live for their Adrenalize tour back then and it was fuckin’ awesome! They had a diamond shaped stage and they all worked the hell out of it!

Since then, however, they have done little, so I’m left with one of their best singles ever….

… with lyrics right now…

I believe, that there’s something deep inside
That shouldn’t be from time to time.
I sure found out, thought love was such a crime
The more you care, the more you fall
No need to worry, no need to turn away
‘Cause it don’t matter, anyway

(oohh oohh oohh)
I miss you in a heartbeat
(oohh oohh oohh)
I miss you right away
(oohh oohh oohh)
I miss you in a heartbeat
’cause it ain’t love, if it don’t feel that way
oh no

When we touch, I just lose my self control
A sad sensation I can’t hide
To love is easy, it ain’t easy to walk away
I keep the faith and there’s a reason why, yeah
No need to worry, no need to turn away
‘Cause it don’t matter, anyway
baby

(oohh oohh oohh)
I miss you in a heartbeat
(oohh oohh oohh)
Yeah I miss you right away
(oohh oohh oohh)
I miss you in a heartbeat
’cause it ain’t love, if it don’t feel that way

Now, I ain’t big on promises, I’ll be true to you
‘Cause I’d do ’bout anything, yeah
for some one like, baby for you

(oohh oohh oohh)
I miss you in a heartbeat
(oohh oohh oohh)
yeah I miss you right away
(oohh oohh oohh)
oh, I’m gonna miss you in a heartbeat
’cause it ain’t love, if it don’t feel that way

Yeah…. I sorta miss you, D.

Happy Birthday Dad…

Some of you may wonder why I am the way I am. Well, a lot of it has to do with that guy right there. That’s my Dad, Richard Charles Barnes! He would have been 65 years young today had we not lost him on July 25th, 1998 after a battle with brain cancer. He ain’t gone, though, because he’s in me. I’m thankful to have the following qualities… because of him…

I’m humorous…

I’m incredibly stubborn…

I know how to build stuff…

I work hard…

I play hard…

I argue when I know I’m right…

I’m a goofball…

I love technology and gadgets…

I’m charming…

I’m a Browns fan

I love classic cars…

I love new cars…

I snore…

I’m an honest salesman…

I’m chivalrous…

I love the U.S. military…

I grew up with two beautiful sisters…

I love to grill…

I love to eat…

I like beer…

I love to do yardwork…

I’m a math whiz…

I’m a spelling and grammar nazi…

I help others…

I fight for what’s right…

I’m always optimistic…

I cry when Goose dies in ‘Top Gun’…

I strive to make others laugh…

I’m creative…

I love with all I’ve got…

I love to drive…fast…

I put everyone else before me…

I love you and miss you, Dad…

The Browns Locker Room Gets a Surprise Visitor!

Location: Cleveland Browns locker room after their 7-6 win over the Chargers.

Coach Shurmer: Someone turn up the thermostat, it’s chilly in here…

Colt McCoy: (scrambling towards the thermostat) Got it coach!

Coach Shurmer: Aww man, hey… Fellas! How ‘bout that defense?

The Cleveland Browns: (cheering and clapping)

Coach Shurmer: For all the people that like to watch people play defense, you guys did a hell of a job! To keep them out of the endzone? I don’t care what the conditions, to keep them outta the endzone that’s impressive as hell!

Congratulations!

The Cleveland Browns: (sort of clapping)

Coach Shurmer: I’ll tell ya what… it was fun to watch y’all play. It was fun, and enjoyable, to come outta this thing with a victory.

You guys earned it; it was hard fought. It wasn’t pretty in a lot of ways but that’s okay.

There are no ugly victories!

So enjoy this feeling as we get ready to play our next one, ya got that?

I’m proud of ya, ’cause ya embraced the process, ya practiced great, ya came out here and we did what we had to do to win a game… and that’s a credit to you guys.

We got a couple game balls to give away here…

(soft knock on locker room door)

Coach Shurmer: Hey Colt, go see who that is…

Colt McCoy: Oh okay…you know I can’t reach the doorknob, coach…

Coach Shurmer: Dammit, Colt, answer the door! You can do it! Stand on your tippy toes!

Colt McCoy: (stretching to reach doorknob) My dad’s gonna be mad at you for saying that!

(Colt gets door open)

Enter Randolph D. Lerner…

Randy Lerner: Oh hello, gentlemen… nice match on the pitch today.

The Cleveland Browns: (awkward silence)

Trent Richardson: Tha fuck is that? And tha fuck he just say?

D’Qwell Jackson: That’s Randy Lerner, Trent. He owned the team until last week, when Mr. Haslam took over. He’s speaking soccer.

Randy Lerner: Don’t you mean English football, D’Quain?

D’Qwell Jackson: Aww man… I told you before, it’s D’QWELL! and that shit ain’t football…..

Randy Lerner: Hush hush, D’Quain. My Aston Villa Football Club is an elite squad, quite unlike what I see here before me.

D’Qwell Jackson: (approaching Lerner) Aight! Shit’s ’bout to get real! I’m ’bout to choke you with that silly little scarf, Mr. Lerner. You don’t come in here and disrespe…..

Coach Shurmer: (grabs D’Qwell to restrain him) WHOA! Hold up D’Qwell…

D’Qwell Jackson: Nah, coach, this little guy has the nerve to come into our house and disrespect us after a win over the Chargers I’m beatin’ his litt…

Randy Lerner: (pointing at coach Shurmer) Silence! You just called that man coach? Who are you and what have you done with Eric Mangini? I hand picked Mangini and wanted to stop by today to bid him farewell.

Coach Shurmer: I’m Pat Shurmer, head coach. This organization bid farewell to Mr. Mangini after the 2010 season. He was a terrible coach; played loud music at practice and made the guys run laps if they screwed up. We don’t do that any more and are much better off…. er… forget that. What can we do for you?

Randy Lerner (exiting locker room): That was it. I wanted to bid farewell to Eric, as I miss him so. He was a fantastic coach, I think, though I’m not sure because I’m not into American football. Anyway, I have to catch a flight to England in a bit, so perhaps I’ll be going. Good luck, gentlemen and cheerio!

The Cleveland Browns: (awkward silence)

Coach Shurmer: That was weird fellas, amiright? Anyway, like I said, got game balls to give away here…

(locker room door flies open ~ knocks Colt McCoy off milk crate he’s standing on to see over Brandon Weeden)

Enter Jimmy Haslam III

Jimmy Haslam: Sorry Colt! Told ya not to put your step stool so close to the door!

The Cleveland Browns: (entire locker room erupts into cheers, clapping and chanting SPEECH! SPEECH!)

Coach Shurmer: We gotta new owner, Jimmy Haslam, this game ball’s for you!

(throws ball across locker room, bounces off Greg Little’s hands and into Jimmy Haslam’s)

 

Jimmy Haslam: (has hardon) Great, great win! Great job! Outstanding, OUTSTANDING!

I’ll tell ya… It was not the prettiest win, right Joe (Haden)?

Joe Haden: Nah, man!

Jimmy Haslam: (rubbing crotch) But a wins a win! It was a great win and good teams find a way to win at the end. And that’s what we did.

We held tough and Buster (Skrine)… great play there at the end! Great job but lets don’t be satisfied! What’d Pat talk after the first game? Gotta be what, Pat?

Coach Shurmer: Gotta be GREEDY!

Jimmy Haslam: (grabs dick) Now I’m not happy with just two wins, are you Sheldon (Brown)?  So let’s get number three next week! Great job and enjoy this night! Where’s the lavatory in here?

So there ya have it… the difference between a Browns owner who was indifferent about being the owner, and one who is clearly excited to own this legendary franchise.

GO BROWNS!

~ G

Thursday Night Football’s Comin’ Up ~ So I’ll Let Bob Marley do the Talkin’

Years ago I spent a week in Jamaica. It was the most beautiful place I’ve ever seen. One day I hope to return. Until then, from time to time, I go there in my mind. When life seems unbearably crazy, I envision buying a one way ticket and making a life there. That’s just a mental escape, of course…

Obviously, I heard a lot of Bob Marley when I was there. I definitely wasn’t a fan of reggae when I went, but most certainly was when I left… and still am to this day.

After a rough week or so, I’ve had the Jamaica vision dancing around my brain, so I’ve been listening to Marley. I figured I’d look up some of his quotes because he’s got some good ones.

I stumbled across the following and, to be quite honest, I wasn’t able to verify that it’s an authentic Bob Marley writing. My first thought was, “All smoked up, how could Bob possibly write all this without heading out for some munchies thus ruining the thought?” Anyway, it’s quite beautiful, so I felt a need to share it. Enjoy…

Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around.

You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more. You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you.When something wonderful happens, you can’t wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement.

They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself. Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful.

There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are.

The things that seem insignificant to most people such as a note, song or walk become invaluable treasures kept safe in your heart to cherish forever. Memories of your childhood come back and are so clear and vivid it’s like being young again. Colors seem brighter and more brilliant.

Laughter seems part of daily life where before it was infrequent or didn’t exist at all. A phone call or two during the day helps to get you through a long day’s work and always brings a smile to your face.

In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, but you find you’re quite content in just having them nearby.

Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you.

You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind or even a storm cloud on the horizon.

You open your heart knowing that there’s a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that’s so real it scares you.

You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are a part of your life.

I’m All Pissed Off Because My Ex-Wife is Online Dating…

Let me elaborate on that a bit more… I couldn’t care less that my ex-wife is dating.  She deserves to be happy just like the rest of us. She’s plowed through a bunch of guys recently, with little success, and apparently each one of them is the problem.

Here’s what bothers me… a friend of mine who subscribes to a popular dating website stumbled across her online profile a little bit ago. If a dating website is gonna be the place for her to meet a man who’s into sociopaths, then God bless her, and GOD BLESS HIM! Not my friend… he knows her; he was just scrolling through.

He let me know that all three of my daughters were pictured on her dating profile. He sent me a screenshot and it made me sick. There are some really crazy people on those sites, and my daughters are right there in front of them.

Unfortunately, my ex and I haven’t been on speaking terms lately, and the last thing I’m gonna do is give her a call with online dating advice because somehow she’ll  twist it around and try to make it like I’m jealous. So I texted her:

ME: I just heard you have pictures of the girls on a dating website. You need to take them off there…

HER: You need to stop creeping on me.

UGH! Right off the bat, implying I’m checking her out. I’m not creeping on you. Brunswick ain’t that big of a city. People know us. But she ignores my concerns about our children.

ME: Duly noted. I wasn’t creeping on you. I was told you have pictures, of my daughters, on a dating website. I was just sent a screenshot. Not smart.

Oh man… I did see her profile in the screenshot. She is so lying about who she is. I have almost 15 years of experience with her…

HER: (this is verbatim from her text ~ pretty easily translated, however) Tell ur friends to drop.creeping on me. So what who cares…..stop being an Ass, and go drink ur beers…and talk to Diane, it will make u feel better to vent vent to her because I don’t give a shit what u think, I am no longer a part of your controlling life. Have a great night.

Now I’m pissed. Again… no mention at all about our kids pictures in a dating profile, or my concerns about the same. At least I’m an ass with a capital ‘A’, though technically I’m not being an ass; just wanna keep my children safe. So I try to be more clear and less Ass-y.

ME: It’s not smart to have your children pictured on a dating website. It’s dangerous, actually. There are crazy people on those sites. I’m just looking out for the girls.

I figured that was pretty clear and might get her to think a bit… but nope!

Her: I am sure you will right a post now… good for u.

Actually… I am righting writing a post about this. If you were more reasonable I wouldn’t right write smart ass posts about you. Prolly even say nice things about you, as the mother of my children, like I have in the past. Again, though, you ignore my concerns about the children. So now I’m gettin’ antsy…

ME: You don’t see the danger in having our female children on a site where a good percentage of crazy dudes are present?

HER: Post about it, u will feel better.

UGGHHHH! This is, again, a normal conversation with her lately… I’m trying to be rational… but she refuses. I’m pretty much done at this point ’cause I’m not getting through to her. And then…

HER: U no longer tell me what to do or how I do things. So please leave me alone. Go talk to Diane…if u need someone to be critical with, u can do it with her, because u don’t want to miss a thing…remember.

Apparently she reads this blog… very selectively… She skips over the posts where I brag about my girls or profess to fiercely protect them and reads the ones about Diane, even mentioning an Aerosmith song ‘I Don’t Wanna Miss A Thing’ that has a special meaning to me, because Diane LIVES 362 MILES AWAY! That’s really what you’re worried about?? Damn… but I continue to play the game…

ME: When my girls are pictured on a dating website… that’s a big deal. You haven’t addressed that; only insulted me.

HER: I have nothing to say to u, nor do I need to explain my self and what I do to u. So good night to you….good night sweet heart its time to go…and please tell your friends not to worry about what I do, and what I post…really none of their business, and I would never put the girls in any harm. And please do not text me anymore tonight. U have ur girls and if it makes u happy to fight with me so be it.

THANK GOD… she finally mentioned the girls; and not putting them in any harm. Hopefully, she follows through and removes their pictures from her dating profile.

Here’s an idea:

I may just make up a fake dating profile, with some hot sexy man pictures on it, and reach out to her via email. Really lay on the charm and work on her for a couple weeks… tell her everything she wants to hear, in the meantime figuring out her schedule with her children. Find out who watches ’em if she leaves the house; or if she leaves them alone. Then I’ll schedule a time to meet with her, a decent distance from where she lives. While she’s going to meet “Jason” I’ll go to her place and grab my girls… take ’em out for ice cream or something; let her know what I did.

Hey… mother of my children… If you follow my blog this closely, read the above paragraph… and think about how easily you could be tricked.

And now, more than ever, with all the crazies out there… remember, life is short…

Hug your children and love them every day

My Filter is Gone ~ So Expect a More Controversial Forshiggles…

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: I really hate airing my dirty laundry but, dammit, I gotta vent sometimes. This week has provided an up and down struggle and, ultimately, my best friend decided that it’s best if she and I don’t talk any more. But she was my touchstone. I could tell her anything and she would either support me or correct me. She was my filter. Well… I lost her yesterday. I blame myself because I’m a jealous asshole. Unfiltered, this site is gonna get pretty nasty. My humorous posts will continue and so will the endless pictures of hot women… just expect a bit more ass-holery from me for the time being…

This weekend has been absolute HELL dealing with my ex-wife.

Why?

Our only goal as ex-spouses should be the welfare of our girls. Period.

We went for a long stretch at one point in which we got along really well. We would communicate daily about the girls via text, email or phone calls. It was great; and great for our girls.

It hasn’t been that way for a couple months, however, because she’s become vindictive and confrontational. Don’t get me wrong; she’s always been that way, but it’s become exponentially worse lately.

This weekend was a prime example of that. It all started when I picked the girls up Friday. Brookie didn’t have her soccer bag for today’s game as her mom let the coach take it home from practice last week. Brooke texted her to see if she could get it yesterday but mom said something like: It’s your weekend with your Dad, so if you need anything, he has to get it for you.

UGH! Not a huge deal I suppose. Brooke can dress for her game and, when we get  there she can throw on her cleats and shin guards.

This morning I asked Brooke where her soccer jersey and shorts were and she said she didn’t have them; they were probably at mom’s. There goes THAT plan… now she can’t even dress for her game. It’s gonna be way too much for her to get to the game and change her clothes prior to it.

Now… I don’t like preaching the terms of the paperwork we received as a result of our divorce. That’s just micro managing… But I had to go there this time, because I was frustrated..

One of the stacks of paper we received is called a shared parenting plan. The very beginning of it basically says: The parent giving up the children must provide clothing and anything else necessary to complete school work and, if participating in sports, fulfill any extracurricular activities. This includes the aforementioned soccer uniform and bag.

So I called Brooke’s mom to find out if she could get ALL of Brooke’s stuff together and bring it to me so Brooke will be prepared for her game. Here’s how it went:

ME: Hey, Brookie doesn’t have any of her stuff for her game, can you go get her bag from her coach and bring it, and her uniform, over here?

HER: You need to talk to Brooke about that. It’s not my problem.

ME: Actually, it’s not your problem, but it is your responsibility to make sure they have all their stuff when I pick them up.

HER (yelling): BROOKE IS TWELVE. SHE CAN GET HER STUFF READY BEFORE YOU PICK THEM UP. TALK TO HER ABOUT IT. I’M NOT TAKING ANYTHING ANYWHERE.

ME: I know she’s twelve, but this is ultimately your responsibility. You’re a parent. I’m not blaming the child for anything.

HER: (yelling): IN…CO…HER…ENT!

I hung up. I don’t like hanging up on anyone. But no one’s gonna yell and swear at me. I’m just trying to solve a challenge here.

But it continues via text message… I’m so glad we’re communicating for the good of our children…

HER: I will be there at noon to get Brooke to her game, don’t worry about it. And before u start yelling at me think about what u are saying. I am done with u blaming me for things, I am not your child, nor your wife anymore… u need to remember she is not five and is able to have her things ready. I would be more then happy to quit my job and make sure they are ready for u when u have them. Your bullying with me does not work anymore. [sic erat scriptum of course]

I was not bullying on the phone, and I definitely wasn’t yelling. I only yell at the television when the Browns are losing winning playing.

ME: I’m gonna pick up all her stuff. It’s not about bullying. It’s about parental responsibility.

Oops… guess I got too cocky there.

HER: This parent works, if this is becoming an issue, u can start picking up the girls at six instead of five, so I am here to make sure they have what they need. [again… sic erat scriptum]

Unfortunately, this is a normal conversation with my girls’ mom. There is no rationalizing with her. Attempting to solve a challenge can quickly devolve into a full blown argument… So I stopped communicating with her.

Wanna know the funny part? I pulled up the coaches address and saw that they live right up the street from me. I called to let them know I’d be over in a few minutes to get Brookie’s bag. When I got there they told me THERE WAS NO GAME TODAY… the final game is next Sunday!

All the stress of this weekend could’ve been avoided had I simply called the coach Friday evening.

The verdict is in… I’m the one who causes all the problems challenges…

Hug your children and love them every day…Even you crazy women!

Forshiggles is Gettin’ Serious for a Minute…Wanna Kill Yourself?

It was September 26th, 1993. I was hanging out with my girlfriend and some friends, drinkin’ some beers. Life couldn’t have been simpler; go to work, hang out with friends, rinse.. repeat!

Even though I was 20, because I lived at my Mom’s at the time, I had a loose sort of curfew; so I had to get home.

I parked the car on the street and was walking up the driveway when I heard the most blood curdling scream I’d ever heard. It was my younger sister, Kathy, screaming. Now Kathy was, and still is, way over dramatic. I figured she saw a spider or something… like a big one!

But this scream was different… it wasn’t Kathy’s usual acting… it sounded painful… and as I opened the door, I heard my Mom sobbing… My first thought was, “What now… what could be this bad?”

It was the worst possible scenario: Mom and Kathy had just gotten word, via my Dad, that my older sister, Michelle, had taken her own life.

I’ve never recovered from that night… See, Michelle had been bugging me to come out to Beale Air Force Base, where she was living at the time, for awhile. I was too involved with my friends to spend my money to fly out to CA to hang out with my sister. Had I gone out there, would things have been different? Would she still be alive?

Every. Fucking. Day… I struggle with the answers to those questions.

So when I stumble across stuff about suicide, it hits me in the chest like a ton of bricks. The following commentary was shared by someone on Facebook. It really touched me. If I knew who the original author was I’d give them credit, but I’ve no clue who they are.

This is clearly written to teenagers, but the basic concept is that you need to realize how many people are affected by you and care about you.

Wanna kill yourself? Imagine this. You come home from school one day. You’ve had yet another horrible day. You’re just ready to give up. So you go to your room, close the door, and take out that suicide note you’ve written and rewritten over and over and over. You take out those razor blades, and cut for the very last time. You grab that bottle of pills and take them all. Laying down, holding the letter to your chest, you close your eyes for the very last time.

A few hours later, your little brother knocks on your door to come tell you dinners ready. You don’t answer, so he walks in. All he sees is you laying on your bed, so he thinks you’re asleep. He tells your mom this. Your mom goes to your room to wake you up. She notices something is odd. She grabs the paper in your hand and reads it. Sobbing, she tries to wake you up. She’s screaming your name. Your brother, so confused, runs to go tell Dad that, “Mommy is crying and sissy won’t wake up.”

Your dad runs to your room. He looks at your mom, crying, holding the letter to her chest, sitting next to your lifeless body. It hits him, what’s going on, and he screams. He screams and throws something at the wall. And then, falling to his knees, he starts to cry. Your mom crawls over to him, and they sit there, holding each other, crying.

The next day at school, there’s an announcement. The principal tells everyone about your suicide. It takes a few seconds for it to sink in, and once it does, everyone goes silent. Everyone blames themselves.

Your teachers think they were too hard on you.

Those mean popular girls, they think of all the things they’ve said to you.

That boy that used to tease you and call you names, he can’t help but hate himself for never telling you how beautiful you really are.

Your ex boyfriend, the one that you told everything to, that broke up with you.. He can’t handle it. He breaks down and starts crying, and runs out of the school.

Your friends? They’re sobbing too, wondering how they could never see that anything was wrong, wishing they could have helped you before it was too late.

And your best friend? She’s in shock. She can’t believe it. She knew what you were going through, but she never thought it would get that bad… Bad enough for you to end it. She can’t cry, she can’t feel anything. She stands up, walks out of the classroom, and just sinks to the floor. Shaking, screaming, but no tears coming out.

It’s a few days later, at your funeral. The whole town came. Everyone knew you, that girl with the bright smile and bubbly personality. The one that was always there for them, the shoulder to cry on. Lots of people talk about all the good memories they had with you, there were a lot. Everyone’s crying.

Your little brother still doesn’t know you killed yourself, he’s too young. Your parents just said you died. It hurts him, a lot. You were his big sister, you were supposed to always be there for him.

Your best friend, she stays strong through the entire service, but as soon as they start lowering your casket into the ground, she just loses it. She cries and cries and doesn’t stop for days.

It’s two years later. The whole school talks to a counselor/therapist at least once a week. Your teachers all quit their jobs. Those mean girls have eating disorders now. That boy that used to tease you cuts himself. Your ex boyfriend doesn’t know how to love anymore and just sleeps around with girls. Your friends all go into depression.

Your best friend? She tried to kill herself. She didn’t succeed like you did, but she tried…

Your brother? He finally found out the truth about your death. He self harms, he cries at night, he does exactly what you did for years leading up to your suicide.

Your parents? Their marriage fell apart. Your dad became a workaholic to distract himself from your death. Your mom got diagnosed with depression and just lays in bed all day.

People care. You may not think so, but they do. Your choices don’t just effect you. They effect everyone. Don’t end your life, you have so much to live for. Things can’t get better if you give up. I’m here for absolutely anyone that needs to talk, no matter who you are. Even if we’ve NEVER talked before, i’m here for you. 

Life isn’t that bad people, and this life is short enough… let alone considering shortening it even more. I know that everyone thinks that their problems are worse than anyone else’s. You’re not the only one struggling with life, trust me.

I’ve provided a ‘contact me’ page on here for a reason. If ya need help, let me know… chances are I can’t help you, but I’ll certainly put you in contact with someone who can…

Do me a favor… share the shit out of this! Re-blog it… copy and paste it… but, at the very least, put it in front of people, people who may think there’s no one that cares…

Much love,

~ Greg

Another Bitter Sweet Weekend Comes to an End…

IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: This post is about this past weekend. It’s really my heart talking so may not make a lot of sense to a lot of you. I’m sort of emotional right now, so if you don’t like that just bear with me…

Several hours ago, I drove home from Parma in complete silence. Normally when I’m in the Jetta race car by myself I blast the tunes and attempt to sing and hang with Vince Neil, Steven Tyler, Paul Stanley or whoever is the frontman for whatever band I’m listening to. Drove home without music, though, because I was happy… and sad… at the same time.

We’ll start with why I was happy…

Anyone who knows me personally or follows this blog closely knows about my feelings for Diane and her girls; who I love like they’re my own kids.

Well, Diane and her two younger girls, Nikki and Gabrielle, came to Ohio this weekend so the her girls could meet their new cousin; the seven week old, beautiful little girl Lucia!

Whenever they come here, I offer my townhouse as a place for them to stay… so, thankfully, they stayed here!

Here’s the recap of the weekend…

They got to my place around 1:15 am Saturday morning. We all sort of tiredly reconnected, hung out a little bit and then went to bed.

We got up several hours later for breakfast… and breakfast was FUN! I made my signature homemade biscuits and Diane cooked sausage and made her heavenly sausage gravy. We’re a great team that made one hell of a great breakfast!

After breakfast, we headed over to Diane’s sister’s house, so her girls could meet Lucia, and see their cousins Lily & Luigi, in addition to their Uncle Nick, Aunt Susie and their Grandma!

I enjoy watching their family interact… such a loving family!

Here was the really cool part for me this weekend. They had a family reunion Saturday afternoon and wanted me to join them for it! I was honored to go!

Well check this out! The reunion was at Buckin’ Ohio (Check out and like their Facebook page HERE) in Burbank, where they have real live bull riding. There was no bull riding Saturday… but there were bulls!

This dude was AWESOME!

…And some others…

 

Anyway… for the reunion, the main dish was pig, because it was a pig roast! I guess I shoulda got more pictures, as that was a nice lookin’ dead pig; cooked to perfection. And ohmyfreakin’God was that pig tasty! I had about 1/2 pound of pig on a bun, with cheesy potatoes, potato salad and some beans that had to have been  sent straight from heaven! As usual, I ate too much.

When the dessert was made available, I passed… but Diane’s Mom brought me one of her homemade lady locks to try. It was delightful!

 

NOTE TO SELF: Start losing weight, like now, Greg! Also… get back to the gym!

The kids also got to see horses…

That’s Gabrielle, trying not to stick her tongue on the electric fence!

L to R… Lily, Luigi and Gabrielle

I had so much fun with Diane and her family, as I always do. This, however, was an all day affair. In wrestling with Lily & Gabrielle throughout the day, I was missing my girls. Having them there with us, and Diane’s oldest daughter, Jordan, would’ve made things just perfect.

After the reunion, we all went to Nick & Susie’s for a little bit to hang out and unwind. Diane’s girls stayed with Grandma for the night so she and I had a chance to have a date!

We went to Panini’s here in Brunswick, had some wings and a couple drinks (anybody ever hear of Jager not being served chilled? Because our waitress asked if that’s how we wanted it…), and just talked… and talked… and laughed… a lot!

So this morning, after a good night’s sleep, Diane went to her Mom’s to gather up Nikki and Gabrielle so they could go back to Pennsylvania. I followed, only so I could spend more time and make every second count while they were here.

But they had to go…

And that’s the reason I left Parma this morning and didn’t turn the radio on in the race car…

Everything would be so perfect if we all could be together… all the time. So my dumb ass drives around and tries to figure out a solution. Unfortunately, there is no solution… and when my brain can’t figure out something… it gets angry and then sad… So I became sad…

All I can do is look forward to the next time we can all hang out… and we’re workin’ on that as I speak…

Hug your children and love them every day

In Which I Write a Love Letter…..

It’s sort of been a rough couple days, so my brain has been pretty fried. I figured I’d go old school here at forshiggles and write a good, old fashioned love letter!

Fear

Very well said, my friend. I believe you just motivated me…

Articles & Novelettes for the Discerning Martial Citizen

I have been writing articles on Active Shooter scenarios since this blog began. I have made it my mission to equip the average civilian with the tools and information needed to defeat these animals. My Civilian Operator course has specific modules so every day people can counter acts like these. In saying all that, when things like this happen, it pisses me off; It angers me to no end. More than that, It saddens me. I will admit, that day me and my wife as we watched the news and looked at the faces of the parents who had lost a child, or a wife who had lost a husband, we both wept. As I held my wife close, trying to console her fear, I told her “Everything gonna be OK” but something deep down in my heart knew that was a lie…because anomalies like James Holmes can strike out…

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