How To Be A Modern Day Slave

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I admit it. I was jealous. I was envious. I wanted my peers to succeed as long as they didn’t see more success than I did. I envy the people who are truly happy for the people around them when they succeed. That’s not me. I'm competitive to a fault. Other people’s success makes me feel insecure. Other people’s success makes me think about my mistakes and my failures … [Read more...]

No Love In The Heart Of The City

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"But how? How the fuck do you know?" "You just know." I laughed. I didn't believe her. I couldn't believe her. It sounded like bullshit to me. Maybe it was a mother's way of protecting her youngest from the wild and harsh realities of life. I smiled and said, "OK, mom." But in reality, I made a vow to stay the man who could only love himself. Lust? Sure. Love? … [Read more...]

How to Conquer the World

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No one threw us a life jacket. They let us drown. I kept kicking and clawing because my teacher once told me, "A person only floats when they're dead." But it didn't work. The water was pulling me down. A brick was strapped to my foot. My mom looked at me with water in her eyes. But then something great happened. The mailman delivered the welfare check and he saved … [Read more...]

When I Grow Up, I Want To Be…

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"Your son has lost it. You gave birth to a fucking idiot." My Uncle told my mother, only half jokingly. "Go tell her what you just told me, tell her what you want to go do.."  "I want to go to the slums and live with the poor." I replied. "Haaaaaaaaa." She laughed. My Uncle laughed. My Aunt laughed. Even my 10 year old cousin laughed. Everyone laughed...at me. I … [Read more...]

How To Deal With Failure

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My business tanked and crumbled to the ground. I was left feeling sad and miserable and anxious. Then my cell phone started ringing. It was the doubters and haters calling, the people who had warned me to not start up such a "risky" venture in the first place. I could already hear the laughter coming from the other side of the phone. I could hear them telling me, "I TOLD … [Read more...]

The 70 or 80 Year Old Grandma

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I saw a little girl with eyes full of life. She was holding hands with an older woman who had grey hair and a wrinkled forehead. It was her grandma. She appeared to be in her 70's or 80's. But whether she was 70 or 80 didn't matter because either way she was lifeless. She could barely walk. As the little girl tugged on her grandma's lifeless arms, the sad yet motivating … [Read more...]

If Only You Could See Yourself Like I See You…

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Dedicated to: You and all my friends who don't see how great they truly are.  -- If you could see yourself like I see you... You would never shed a tear. You would never feel a fear. But you don't see... What I see. I tell you about your feats, you focus on your flaws. I applaud, but you hear demons throughout it all. I can tell you've been crying... From the look in … [Read more...]

How A Drug Dealer Changed My Life

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He slapped me on the back of my neck. The pain ran through my body. I bit my lip to keep from crying. It didn't work. My front lip trembled. I guess I wasn't going to be a drug dealer after all. I was 15 and weak as fuck. I didn't grow up to be a drug dealer, but my friend did. Maybe he didn't get slapped on the back of his neck as hard as I did or maybe his life was just … [Read more...]

How To Deal With Naysayers

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She asked, "where do you see yourself ten years from now?" I said, "retired." She laughed. I wasn't joking. She repeated the question. I replied with the same answer. She didn't like it. She was a nice lady. She asked another question. "OK. Where do you see yourself five years from now?"  "Owner of a successful business that is going to retire me." She gave … [Read more...]

How Alcohol Poisoning Changed My Life Forever

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I wasted five years of my life, waiting for the eighth day of the week. Monday-Sunday came and went, but “One Day” never showed up. And that's a shame because that's when my life was supposed to begin. My real life. The life of my dreams. My friends would ask if I wanted to backpack across Europe. I’d sit on my LazyBoy and say, “Nah...not right now...but one day … [Read more...]