The corruption of me.

Right now, at this very moment, i’m sitting at this hipster-like sort of coffee shop writing on a Mac. I’m slowly becoming one of them, one of those perpetually tortured souls that linger between the adult world and whatever world they live in. Shit. I think this is the result of having too much latte in me. Latte? My father would disown me for the use of the word alone! Any day now, i’ll find myself listening to the lumineers or bon iver without socks on. Baby Jesus, i need to man up. Quick!

I’m pretty sure this is the result of certain influences. Quoting a lil’ thing called “The Bible” (yeah, that’s right, i’m using the big guns now):

Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character” .

– 1 Corinthians 15:33

I like the fact that i can just look it up online anytime it suits me. All hail GOOGLE.

So, as per the Bible, bad company has corrupted my good character. I would never frequent such places. I dread the day i find myself using crocs. Even worse, with socks on! That’s actually what gets to me. Those fucks wear no socks at all, they show up with them Oxford shoes and way too short trousers from 1824 but as soon as they want to wear crocs, they are reminded that socks exist. Fuck you people. Fuck you and your overgrown yet perfectly maintained beards. Which i like, if i’m being honest but that’s beside the point. Fuck you.

Did i wake up today with a vendetta against hipsters? Well, maybe i did. The urban dictionary tells me that “hipsters are a subculture of American consumer for whom the idea behind the marketing holds more value than the product being marketed”. I’d just remove the american part as theses douchebags seem to be everywhere.

#2 definition of a hipster

Hipsters are people who try too hard to be different (and genuinely do think that they’re being different), by rejecting anything they deem to be too popular.
Ironically, so many other people also try too hard to be different that they all wind up being the exact same, so hipsters aren’t actually different at all, they’re just people who are snobbier and more annoying about their taste in “alternative” things, which are all popular now thanks to the other hipsters.

Haha. Whoever wrote this has a unique vindictive vein against hipsters. As one might expect. They even use the example of Mumford and sons. I don’t like them very much too. I mean, i’m not a fan. Did you know that only one of them is named Mumford and the others are not his sons? Did you? The lying bastards. They also say they are multi-instrumentalists and play drums but do they really? I don’t think drums is a thing for them. Tapping your foot on the floor or knocking on your banjo doesn’t really qualify as drumming. Shit, im rambling about Mumford and sons. That is not the way to start the day.

Anyway, i wanted to say that bad influence led me here. This world where lattes flow and masala brew is a name for coffee and not just a way to cook chicken. Fucked up, i know.

 

Santiago Roque

 

 

 

So I bought a tree.

I know, October isn’t gone yet but i already bought a christmas tree. That’s right. And not just a christmas tree. I bought the “Olive Oil” of christmas trees. Why? ‘Cause i’m married, that’s why. And we have a dog, too. That combination resulted in me buying a tree that looks malnourished. Yeah…

a-vickerman-alpine-best-pencil-christmas-tree
it’s like a pencil with twigs.

But fuck it. It is done. Now, i have a mission to accomplish. We never took last christmas tree down, we just moved it to an area where no one usually goes. So, now i’ll have to remove all the decorations on that one and put it on this new one. But before i do it, i guess, comes the arguing of when to decorate the new tree. For me, after November, 1st it’s on. We should be able to go all out with decorations because christmas is too damn short. So we start now, we get rid of the December rush of “shit to do, no time to do it” and all is well. But again, im married. So i can only guess what comes next. I’ll tell you what doesn’t come next, my decision! That’s a given.

I also bought another christmas tree at a friends requested. A normal looking christmas tree. I tried to get her on the phone but work was terrible so we agreed that, since i was close by, i would leave it by her car and the security guys would keep it for her. So i did. Good thing i was there at that specific time. For no special reason i mean, but it made my day a little bit less poor. I smiled and wished that 2 minutes could turn into 2 hours. But somethings are not meant to happen. Even so, im always there when needed. Even if you don’t know it.

Anyway, i went to the movies and came out disappointed with the balance of things. It just isn’t fair. At all. I mean, is it really fair for the rest of us, men, when somewhere on this earth, the Universe allowed for things to come together to create a fucking Bradley Cooper ?! DAMN IT ! Shit, the guy is like a perfect combination of all good things aesthetically. Not only that, he now directs movies and fucking sings good songs and plays the guitar too?! Fuck off, genetic lottery. I am truly disappointed. I am. I can’t even, you know, just…

The only good thing about going to the movies is that on my way out i saw a bunch of ugly dudes and it made me feel better right away. So that helped.

My wife asked me if i thought the movie was going to be sad. Sad like you cry and shit. I said probably, it isn’t a fucking comedy, that’s for sure. And i thought “people no longer cries at movies”. I was wrong. I had to bite my lip a few times, just like, don’t you go down that path, you sucker, you’ll be crying till you fall asleep. Man, i never cry at movies. This fucking karma is ruining me.

Fuck Bradley Cooper’s genetics and the Universe. I just wanted to be clear about that.

Santiago Roque.

1997

As a kid, I often thought if my parents would ever get a divorce. I didn’t really understand it, i knew they would be living separately but i did not know what a divorce was. As a young kid, i said to myself that i wasn’t prepared for it. Maybe in a few years. So i came up with a year where i would be comfortable with it: 1997. Don’t ask me why, i just came up with it. It seemed far way enough in time that i wouldn’t care about it and i could choose to live with either of them. At least that’s what my only friend with divorced parents told me: “i live with my mom because i chose. i go to my dad’s on weekends or vacations”. My knowledge of divorce was this, having two houses to choose from, having two different bedrooms, having two everything, i thought.

I’d like to point out that my parents never got divorced nor did they ever had arguments that could make someone think that. They got along just fine.

I planned ahead. I’d go with team dad, not because i preferred him over mom, but just because i thought my brother would choose my mom (that momma’s boy) and so i would choose my dad. My sister was too young to choose so she had to stay with mom. That was kid me planning shit. And since everyone kept telling me i was my fathers spitting image, it made sense to me.

I always connected with my dad, we always had a very good relationship. My sister was very close to my mom, being the only girl and my brother always seemed to prefer my mom over my dad. But they got along just fine too. But me and my dad, we clicked. We were tight. He was my example to follow. As little kids, we all think the same, i guess.

He didn’t show his emotions often, my mom was more like that but still, i learned to appreciate the small things. My dad was always very quiet concerning his parents, so even though i met my grandmother, most things i knew about them was through my mom or aunts. So i knew that my grandfather was very strict but once relaxed, he was sort of a prankster, very pleasant to be around. My mom said that he used to joke with her always, that he was funny and very nice. So i supposed i had these references. Everyone kept telling me as i grew up that, in some ways, i was like him. It didn’t really affect me and i didn’t really care as a teen. But then you start to mature and realize that it is a good thing that you remind people of loved ones.

I’m capable of being very stupid. As in, saying the most inappropriate things at the most random moments. It is actually a gift, you see. At a our grandmothers funeral, i made my mom laugh so much that she had to clutch herself to me so it looked like she was sobbing so people just came over to say those overly clichéd lines. All the while, she was laughing.

During a work-meeting, a colleague at the same company but from a different department came to give a sort of welcome speech and she turns to the table where i was sitting and goes like: ” oh god, i feel so emotional being back here and blah, blah, blah … i see my ex-colleagues over there…” and points towards us. So this goes on for awhile, the room is full of people. She ends and asks if there are any questions, so of course, i raise my hand. For a few seconds, it looks like she’s ignoring me but since no one cares enough to ask questions, she looks at me, semi-puzzled look on and goes: “Yes?”. And i must say it. “So, does this mean we’re no longer colleagues?”. She talked for about 30 mins, i retained the “ex-colleagues” line only.

What can i say? There this urge in me and i must go along with it. Sometimes it works fine, other times not so much.

One Christmas my uncle and his family came to spend it with us. My uncle was overjoyed as it was the first Christmas he spent with his side of the family in about 20+ years. He was excited. So we’re preparing for dinner, we pop open a few bottles and my dad and him are just talking about Christmas, how it was when they were little. And my uncle says that he really misses their father, especially during the holidays. My dad turns to him and says: “Oh, you have no idea what Christmas is with us. I, too, miss dad but with him (me) here, its like dad is here with us. He’s funny as dad was and things get very entertaining around here.” My dad had never told me this. I had no idea i made it more enjoyable for him just by reminding him of his dad. So i took it as a big compliment, possibly the best compliment i’ve ever gotten.

When i got married, my dad cried. A lot. Never had i seen him cry like that. I don’t know if it was out of joy or because he knew exactly what awaited me after being married for 35 years.

We have our ups and downs, but i kinda like him.

Santiago Roque

The best experience you can get.

While at work, i had a moment for myself and i thought about this thing, this realization that most people seem unhappy. I have no idea if they’re the sort of person that maybe you need to get to know in order to really form an opinion, but based on first impressions, there is a bunch of unhappy bastards looming around.

I am not one of those. I try to compartmentalize my life, divide things so i don’t need to bother others with my shit at work, for example. There is a certain weight that i carry with me, and probably always will, but i try to hide it. You might catch a glimpse of sadness here or there but i am probably what you would call a happy person.

Mornings are my thing. I don’t sleep a lot so a try to make the most of it. I’m kinda becoming a lazy fuck right now, but per habit, i’d wake up early to go walk the dog, prepare my shit, get to the gym and then off to work. All before 09:00. It was great, it made my day less difficult generally and it made me feel better all around. You know, accomplished, yeah!

Now, though i’ve slightly changed my morning rituals, i’m still pretty chippy in the morning. I walk the dog or he walks me, depending on the days. I like to eat well in the morning so i take my time with breakfast. Which is a good thing for my wife because it gives her more time to linger in bed while i prepare breakfast for her too. She is lazy and not a morning person. Very easy to annoy. I know this because i do it on purpose. Ah, the little joys in life.

But some people don’t seem to yearn for it, not enough to be happy. I’ve got this example in my life of someone who had all the reasons to feel down, truly depressed. The last three years were ruthless towards this person and yet has become the happiest person i know, the most loving and lively. If this person is able to go through one of the most painful experiences in life, absorb the good, pick itself up and get on with life only to find out that perhaps not really. Being diagnosed with an illness, that statistically speaking, at that age, depending of stage, was at its most fatal. Between the age of 15-80, the lowest rate survival was found to be at around 25 to 35. This person was 28 years old. Fucking sad but well, shit happens. What to do? You fight it. You fight it with everything you have. This person did. It’s still a long walk to come out of it but it won’t be for lack of attitude. The best example of happiness in spite of everything else.

So whenever i feel bad, you know, maybe down or so, i think about this. This hero that is part of my life. It can be done. We just have to be prepared to be happy. Could be because you’re having lunch with someone, could be a night out with friends, you know whatever. People say being alive is a blessing. Sure, why not. But i’d like to think that being alive is really the experience that you get out of it. Don’t waste it, grab it wholly and enjoy. The last thing you want is to look back and wish for a different one.

“Life is not a problem to be solved, it is a reality to be experienced.”

Santiago Roque

Too much is barely enough.

There is a song that goes like:

“I used to drink whiskey, now I’m stuck with Perrier
I’m an alcoholic, middle fingers in the air”
It doesn’t really apply to me, i just like the fact that the guy likes his whisky but now he’s stuck with water. I, too, like whisky but haven’t drank it in a while. In fact, exception made to the occasional beer or wine glass, i barely drink alcohol anymore. I don’t necessarily miss it nor did i feel like i couldn’t handle my share of alcohol. I just stopped.
I mean, sure, who doesn’t get wasted and tries to fight a whole bar? Or goes out and blows a shitload of money on high-end whisky when already drunk? Come on, throw the first stone who never! Right? But time comes when a man must say: ” No, i will no longer have that sweet, sweet drip of the divine distilled”. I miss whisky. I miss whisky like you miss a person. If you could buy said person and drink them. Then yes, exactly like that.
I have a thing against those that order whisky and coke. Shit, dude that’s how you fuck up two drinks. Well actually screw coke, i care for the whisky. It’s a gentleman’s drink. Oh, the variety of options! Young or old, on the rocks or straight. Single or double. Sweet baby Jesus, im gonna have myself a little whisky. For good behaviour. I deserved it. Maybe just a little shot. Damn it.
Every year for my birthday, my brother gives me a bottle. Jameson’s which we both like. We usually open it and drink some of it. This year, the bottle remains closed, we didn’t get to open it yet. In fact, i was organizing a trip to Scotland to raid the distilleries but eventually let that idea go when he couldn’t get off work. For a while, i thought about going by myself but nah, another time. I must kilt up and go full Scot for that one so it must take time.
My absolute favorite is Macallan. I buy it every December and every December i finish it. Its expensive compared to my favorite irish but not crazy expensive that i couldn’t buy a case. I just don’t do it because i would drink it faster than recommended. But December is coming and that case may be coming my way. Just so if i feel very christmas-y this year.
I would always recommend Jameson’s for the daily consumption (not literally everyday) and Macallan for that special occasion. But beware, side effects may occur such as:
  • Drinking a real drink
  • Trying to fight
  • Trying to fight a whole bar
  • Spending way more than you should when already wasted
  • Tongue may become numb by glass number 4
  • Tendency to become obnoxiously charming
  • Tendency to become obnoxious
  • Memories are optional
Rinse and repeat. Fuck it. At least you’ll have a proper glass in hand while every one around you holds one of those balloon glasses used for gin (which, by the way, is not the proper glass but that’s a different story).
Let me leave you with the marvelous words of whisky drinker / part-time writer Mark Twain:
Too much of everything is bad, but too much good whisky is barely enough.
Damn right. Fucking nailed.

Santiago Roque

How to ?

ItsComplicated-new

I was wondering: how do you break up with a friend? Can you? I mean, realistically. Like, do you have a talk and tell the other person that this friendship isn’t as healthy as you thought? Or do you just simply allow yourself to drift away ever so gently that the other person barely notices? Is that a thing? I wonder if people actually do this.

So, unable to come to a conclusion, i embrace technology and turn to Google. And the answer to the question “how to break up with a friend” has around 1 420 000 000 results. Shit, that’s a lot. However, if the question is “how to break up with a friend without hurting their feelings”, you obtain 637 000 000 results which tells me that twice as much people don’t really give a fuck about other people’s feelings. Shitty people. I’ll choose the amicable way and go with the latter one.

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That’s one way to do it. Bluntly. Like a man. YEAH ! But seriously. This amicable way isn’t working because the results are too weird. The first result is the Suicide Hotline. That can’t be good. So, i go back to the first round of results. Fuck being nice. I check this one called “Science of People” (this sounds a bit too holistic for my taste). According to them, you have several options. As follows:

Option #1: The Talk

  • To clarify boundaries
  • To define a relationship
  • To see where each person stands
  • To talk about a future

Hm, i don’t know. It doesn’t seem to lead to a break-up if you ask me. This is pretty fucking weak.

Option #2: The Break

  • Give you a fresh perspective
  • Calm down
  • Miss each other
  • Re-evaluate

Well, this one sounds reasonable. I like option #2 so far.

Option #3: The Slow Back Away

  • You worry that they will not accept a break.
  • They will not be honest if you have The Talk.
  • They are bad with boundaries.
  • You hate confrontation.

I’d call this one the Ninja Modus Operandi.

Option #4: The Burst

  • State needs that are not being met
  • Be gentle and kind
  • Talk about how you feel
  • Don’t assign blame
  • Don’t make excuses

I like the name, The Burst. But if you must be gentle and kind and not assign any blame, fuck you, option #4, you don’t deserve that name.

And also this,

When we say no to relationships that don’t serve us, we make room for relationships that do.

Oh snap! Move bitch, get out of the way!

Yeah. I don’t know, all of this seems a lil’ bit too farfetched. Can you really end a meaningful friendship? Hm, let’s put this way: if you don’t talk for a month, i mean if you don’t keep doing what made the friendship work in the first place for a whole month, will you still be able to resume it? Will it be the same? Will you still crave my company? Will you still have lunch with me?

stunning-how-strange-it-is-that-after-all-that-we-are-strangers-again-lang-plus-best-friend-break-up-quotes-of-best-friend-break-up-quotes

Oh, i like this one.

So this was like, ya know, research material. I had this question that needed answering. I have no friends that require breaking-up with. None whatsoever. Well, maybe that one with the … NO. Nope. No-one.

 

Santiago Roque.

The Human Frailty.

I was sitting down, i think. I had this feeling i was waiting for someone. I think i had a book with me or might have been my phone. I was just looking straight ahead, wondering what was i looking for. Across the atrium, someone walks towards me. I have no idea who it is. Maybe it’s coming to sit down and wait for someone too. I don’t know. I get the feeling that hours go by instead of seconds. I feel uneasy, yet calm. Where am i? What is this place?

The person coming towards me carries some files, some documents. I try to take a good look to see if i know this person and i don’t think i do. I mean, there is something familiar about it but i can’t really say what. I see now that it is a lady. She has this thin silhouette, she looks smaller than she actually is and she has this unique scent, this sort of bodycream that one may use to soften the skin. It smells amazing. The lady looks starving, looks like the last meal she had has been months ago. She has a great smile. I know this because as soon as she gets close to me, she stops and smiles the most wide, sincere, heartwarming smile. “Hello” she goes. I say it back out of politeness because i don’t know her. I think she may have me confused with someone else.

“Let’s go?” she says. I don’t know what to say, i feel strange having to tell this lady she has me confused. “Excuse me, i think you have me confused with someone else”. She cocks her head to the side like i’m messing with her and i feel worse. “Are you waiting for someone? Are we waiting for your wife?” It’s getting stranger and i don’t know what to do. “Are you ok? You look confused”. I get up and see how small this lady is. I tower over her, easy. I could embrace her and make her disappear. “Who are you?”, i say as things are starting to become very confusing. And then she says it. She doesn’t tell me her name, she tells me mine.

There is only one person that calls me that name. Doesn’t mind where we are, she rarely uses my real name. As soon as she says it, i know it all. I know why i am here. I know why she looks the way she looks. I know why she smells the way she smells. I know why she smiles the way only she can. Most importantly, i know her. How could i not? How could i not see it? What type of person am i? All this time and i couldn’t recognize her? What is happening to me?

All this time and i never realize who she was up until the moment she said my name. I give her a hug like it’s the last hug we will ever have. I smell her once again and it feels great. I look at her, i am tearing up but i hold it. She has this wonderful look on her like she is here to help me and not the other way around. She kisses me gently on the cheek and i let a tear slip down my face. I feel the happiest i’ve been in months.

“I’m sorry Mom, i don’t feel quite myself today”. She says “Oh, don’t worry, i know. You never did like hospitals”.

For months, i had the same dream. I used to wake up in the middle of the night, my eyes tearing up. I couldn’t sleep afterwards. I just tried to hold on to the memory of my dream. I don’t dream anymore. If i do, i rarely recall. I say it’s for the best. But what do i know?