Tuesday, September 9, 2014

The Eternal Tangent

"What happened to you?"

"I guess you think I'm weird, and if you're asking that question, then you think I acknowledge my own weirdness."

"Sorry, I don't want to say you're weird,..."

"Some people just look too long into the abyss, you know."

"Come on, speak to me like I'm an idiot here; I don't want to misunderstand anything."

"It's not that hard to understand... Look, everyone knows the poem about the road not taken, right? I mean, you know it, I'm sure of that."

"I know it."

"Well, if you go off the beaten path and travel too far, for too long... there's a good chance you're not going to make it back. Maybe you forgot how to get back. Maybe you don't want to go back... Maybe you don't even remember what "back there" is."

"So, you're saying you lost your way somehow?"

"No... No, I'm not saying that. I'm saying I'm one of those who don't want to go back. My eyes are wide open, brother."


"Look, lots of people go on a journey of self discovery, and at some point, maybe because they didn't like what they learned, or maybe because they didn't learn anything at all,... they just give up and go back to being the same old cunts they always were. I guess most people who embark on such a journey end up that way."

"So, you're saying you've reached some point of enlightenment?"

"I believe there are two rules everyone should follow...

  1. Know thyself, and
  2. To thine own self be true.
Most people think they've accomplished rule number one and just go about following rule number two. Most of the time, anyway...
But, those who really accomplish number one are few and far between. Many come close, but when they see themselves for what they are, it scares the shit out of them, and they end up denying it."

"So, you're one of the few who actually figured himself out, and the rest of us are just walking around blind?"

"I wouldn't say 'blind'... self delusional, yes. We spend so much time focusing on the self. Through years of accretion of sensory experiences, we have come to the conclusion that each and every one of us is somebody, when in fact, each of us is actually nobody. Of course, most people would deny that with every fiber of their being and go on following the programming."

"So, then what's the point? Why bother?"

"A kid doesn't turn down a trip to Disneyland just because it'll be over eight hours after it gets started. I enjoy falling asleep in a kayak on a calm lake on a summer day. I enjoy sexual experiences, I..."

"OK, I get it. Is there any Scotch left in that bottle?"

"Not much, but I've got another in the cupboard."

"You better get it out then..."

Sunday, September 7, 2014

The Way of the Spartan

Nice and pretentious, that title...

But, the spartan spirit I do carry with me. Unfortunately, I set it down by the side of the road and forget it sometimes, and the trip to go back and get it can be quite arduous.

Having opened my own bar, I've become more of an alcoholic than I would have ever imagined, and this has me feeling that I need to go back and pick up what I've left behind. It's not easy, though, when you're a highly functional alcoholic; I manage my affairs quite well and still find time for my running and strength-training routines. But, overdoing it is overdoing it, and 4 beers, 2-3 scotch & sodas, and 1-2 cocktails per night on average is overdoing it.

It's not just the physical aspect either, but the mental one as well; I've always prided myself on my ability to not only live a minimalist lifestyle, but to be quite content doing so.

So, it's back to the basics.
Back to the way of the spartan.

Week one goals:

  • Run 30 km in total (8 km Monday, 12 km Tuesday, 10 km Thursday)
  • Cut way down on carbs (no bread, rice or pasta after 8 p.m. either)
  • No more than 3 drinks per night (except weekends)
  • Spend less than ¥1000 per day on food and liquids (funny how I would have written 'fewer' rather than 'less' if we were talking dollars instead of yen. Correct me if I'm mistaken...)
For me, the 'less is more' approach has always been the most satisfying one. Does it make you happier to cut things out of your life? And, if so, what have you cut out lately?...