Category Archives: Opposite Day

On the dotted line.

Look back on all the advice you’ve ever heard. Combine that with the every graduation speech you’ve ever had to sit through. Now pile it all on top of every inspirational article, Podcast or book you’ve ever considered or possessed. Has anyone ever mentioned that getting what you want out of life isn’t just about the hard work you’re willing to put in, but also your willingness to sign contracts?

Take the last four months of my life, for example.

First, we moved to a bigger, better apartment—which came down to negotiating the end of one lease, signing another and preparing to get all of our crap from one address to another all while updating the utilities, the mail and every point of contact we’d ever made. It was all about filling in numerous blanks, on multiple forms for a variety of different people and organizations.

Then, for some unexplainable, impulsive reason I traded one perfectly good Toyota for a newer, bigger Toyota. Buying a new car was exciting, but I quickly discovered that the only thing dealerships do better than attempting to sell people stuff is providing them with a litany of forms to be filled out once the sale is in progress.

In the midst of trading SUVs, we were also planning a wedding. A gathering of friends and family to be remembered forever. And then came the licensing paperwork at the courthouse, cake paperwork, catering paperwork, ring-sizing and insurance paperwork. The number of fill-in-the-blanks required to celebrate our love nearly broke my heart.

And just yesterday, jet lagged but jolly, my coworker and I arrived at a hotel in Dublin. A significant event in my professional life, a week of planning for 2019 began with a form requesting all the details of my identity.

So forget what you’ve heard about higher education, early risers or the benefits of a balanced diet and exercise. If you believe a life well lived is a life of progress and change, you’ve got to be extremely patient when it comes to paperwork.

 

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Chapter two.

Love is such an illogical scenario.

But if I’ve learned anything in the last 40 years, it’s that the best things in life—for the most part—happen to be illogical.

The moment I met Naomi things got illogical real quick.

We each drank enough coffee that afternoon to fuel a small army.

We didn’t talk as much as we were suddenly engulfed in conversation. I found out quickly that I could make her laugh and ALMOST keep up with her quick wit.

She’d traveled the world, I’d traveled the Midwest.

She’d settled down—fully committed to the same job and apartment for nearly seven years.

I was in the process of reinventing myself yet again—fully committed to keeping life interesting with a seemingly constant cycle of change.

She was California with New York roots.

I couldn’t stop talking about Kansas.

It became very clear that we had very little in common except for the mutual desire to keep the magic of that afternoon going. Our chance encounter in Oakland turned into a twelve-hour date.

At the end of the night, we planned to meet again. And each date led to another. Which ultimately led us here. Celebrating love…and a life full of illogical scenarios.

Let's do this

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Nice Shot: Fly Away Edition

Life has been hectic the last couple of months…but not so crazy that I haven’t had time to poke around Craigslist looking for big, beautiful tail fins.

'61 Cadillac'59 Chrysler'57 Lincoln

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Déjà view.

How far are you willing to travel to find a place like the one you left behind?

And with that rhetorical question, I give you my somewhat anti-climactic introduction to Lisbon. With a thriving tourist economy, antique, electrified public transportation and even its own version of the Golden Gate Bridge, Lisbon looks a lot like San Francisco on the surface. It’s also one of the most photogenic places I’ve ever set foot.

While it’s impossible that me and my outdated iPhone captured the true beauty of the place, I certainly tried. So here are a few snapshots from our latest discount overseas adventure. While I was delighted with this bustling little city in Portugal, I’d take my busting little city in California over Lisbon any day. 

The long way home.

The trip began with coffee at 5 am in Lisbon. And somehow led to whiskey shots with friendly strangers at 5 pm in Miami. All with the guarantee that there would be a tidal wave of of long-awaited Labrador love waiting in San Francisco.

It’s been a day and a half of the not-so-fun aspects of travel. Security lines. Customs. Portuguese confusion over a can of Murray’s pomade. Even when flying across the globe goes smoothly, it’s hard not to feel a little rough around the edges as the process drags on.

But I suspect it’s all worth it to witness new things. A gold star on the quest for perspective and great material for conversation at dinner parties. After all, have you ever met an accomplished professional person who didn’t “love” to travel?

I think it’s all loosely connected to some kind of cultural curiosity and the urge to collect experiences. Looking for places with new scenery, different routines and strange habits that we inevitably try to match up with our own. A funny ritual—putting in so many miles (or kilometers) only to wind up looking for things that remind us of where we came from.

Or perhaps going other places serves a far more important purpose. Maybe crossing borders and boundaries is the only way we can truly recognize home for all of its finer qualities. A bold reminder that your own toilet is the greatest throne of all. Your couch cushions are like clouds. And an evening walk around the block is really one of the most spectacular adventures you can have if you’re in the right mindset.

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The big payback.

Imagine if all the things you ever wondered about slowly came true.

If you had the power to turn the curious intrigue around what if my this could ever be that into something tangible.

Is it a matter of endlessly chasing a cheesy dream sequence like some bad graduation speech? Maybe. A little. If you can start with figments of imagination and turn it into objects and situations that make an impression that eventually make a memory you might be on your way.

Your mission, should you choose to get off your ass and do something besides Netflix and chill, is to keep collecting data. Entertain your brain. It does so much for you. It’s time to pay it back for all the times it saved you from pooping your pants. All the times it kept you blinking, standing and those rare occasions it let you know you needed to duck, jump or dive.

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Color study.

Went to a car show on Saturday and took the dog for a hike on Sunday. Not sure if the cars got me thinking about flowers, or if the flowers got me thinking about cars, but I found a few similarities along the way.

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