The Art of Storytelling

I’ve been writing for 20 years.

I always knew I wanted writing to be involved in my life, but up until high school, I didn’t believe that I would actually make a career out of it because becoming a successful writer, especially back when I first considering it was a bit difficult.* So I always had a “proper” career in mind (pediatrician, orthopedic surgeon, psychologist), but, I was a writer.

I am a writer.

Even after deciding to really do it and putting the medical stuff aside*, I would still also say, I want to be a writer instead of saying I am a writer, because for the longest time I believed that to be a writer, I had to be published by a big publishing house, book on the New York Times best sellers list and thousands or even millions of people reading your work.

As long as I put pen to paper or type on a keyboard, I am a writer.

With that being said, when it comes to my fiction work, because fiction is what I want to write, I haven’t placed myself in one category and I’m not going to because there are a variety of stories I want to tell, and have been wanting to tell for the last 20 years.

However, that is where we are now. I came up with a lot of my ideas when I was in middle school, high school and college, and many of these ideas have evolved and mutated beyond what they initally were, but, even with their evolution, now being 31 years old, do I still want to tell these stories? Is my constant shifting and changing of a lot of these stories due to growing older, gaining more experience and living life a bit more as a self-sufficient** adult instead of a dependant child or is it now because I no longer can relate to the story?

What kind of stories do I want to tell? I still lean on the old ideas because deep in my heart I still believe in them, but do I still want to tell those stories? On the flip side, I am at a point in my life where coming up with new stories to tell has stagnanted a bit because my life admittedly is a bit stagnant. I work jobs that don’t really stimulate my creative muscles, my current position keeps me in my house so I’m not getting out as much as I would working in another location*** and I’m not really doing anything – no new friends, no parties, not of the stuff that I would occasionally**** do back home. I’m inside, tending to plants, eating, playing video games, watching YouTube and simply existing. Even on the rare occasions I get out, I’m not exposed to novel things and it’s very quick and easy for me to get back into a rut.

So what kind of stories do I want to tell? Do I still want to do space epics? A fictionalized version of the final years of my 20s leading into my washed 30s? Sinister neighbors and family members? Or do I want to tell stories about what I’m going through currently with being a bit older, navigating life in a new city away from my family and friends, working another job that drains me of vitality?

Time will tell, I suppose. I recently pulled out all of my old handwritten works to look back through some of them. I can definitely evolve some of those works. The stories still have power and potential. Maybe this is more about getting out of this extended rut than anything. That might prove a bit harder now because it isn’t just me. I have to find the stories again.

*I am also prone to taking the easy way out and choosing the path of least resistance. I am working on that.

**As self-sufficient as one can be while living with their parents rent free.

***My car also said fuck you for leaving your check engine light on for two years. I’m in the market for a new one so I can at least go to the library.

****I was a homebody at home. I still had options. Here, not so much. In addition to it being a smaller city, from what my fiance has told me, they shoot a lot around here. The news confirms this.

Featured photo by Reetha Ferguson, give her a follow on Instagram.

Quickie: We Actually Give A Damn About Our Reputations

Obvious title is obvious.

We absolutely care about what people think about us, and to me at least, the sad part about it is that we have to, because of the fact that even when you are in a zone, blocking out the world and focusing on one thing, someone else may even just be looking at you and make a value judgment based on what they see. They will make a value judgment if they hear you say something that doesn’t mesh with their values or even their perception of you. Thems the breaks.

This is desire to maintain the appearance of being trustworthy/good/respectful/professional/(insert adjective here), to keep the word of mouth as positve as possible even permeates online spaces. One bad word about you in an online space can have wide reaching implications for your personal and professional life. You’re not quick enough with shipping out an item while running an online business? You may lose out on customers due to that one person having a bad experience. Threaten to fight someone over Kobe Bryant (God rest his soul)? That’s what you’re going to be known as for now on, even if you attempt a rebrand.

I wanted to write about this because I see this quite often, and once I take myself out of it (because my modus operandi is usually to keep it pushing whether people say good or bad things about me), I am learning to see why it does bother other people, and learning is about growth, right?

Featured photo by Daria Shevtsova, give them a follow on IG.

Work and Stuff

I work for a pretty big company.

No, I’m not telling you what that company is.

I answer the phone for them.

This is position comes with its own set of parameters – my calls should be a certain length, I shouldn’t do outbounds a lot, they damn near don’t want me to take the frequent bathroom breaks I like to take just to take a fucking breather and I should direct people to the website for help.

The thing is, a huge majority of the people calling in don’t want to do anything on the website. They don’t want a machine, they want a person. This person (me) is going to tell them what to do…on the website.

I have become convinced, using a non-scientific approach (because my science talents went the way of the dodo bird soon as it no longer benefitted me to display them) that my employer has given me this job to do as little of the job as possible. Like they want people there to do the job, but they don’t necessarily want people calling in, because a good 95% (and I’m am totally pulling that number out of my ass) of the shit that people call in for is shit that they could do on their own, if they knew how to use a computer or a phone, or if they cared to. The other 5% is shit that I can’t do in my current capacity because I’m new.

A good amount of my conversations go like this:
Customer: “I need to (do something they can do on the site).”
Me: “Okay, are you on the site right now?”
Customer: (after getting frustrated) “Can you do it for me?”
Me: (smiling gleefully because I am convinced I work for petty people): “I won’t be able to do that for you for (security reasons/bullshit them), but….”

I’m sure that there is some pschological/sociological/biological reason for why humans love to have another human that they can bounce off of, especially when it comes time to complain (and a good amount of the people I talk to love to complain and make empty threats) and even though I really dislike this aspect of my job*, it is still fascinating to me. People and how they behave when it comes to their money and their possessions or potential possessions fascinate me.

I’m not going to lie and say I don’t enjoy buying stuff and having stuff, but as I have done with alcohol, I am also re-evaluating my relationship with stuff, especially after the few months I’ve worked this job. How do I relate to my stuff? What stuff do I relate to? What kind of stuff do I want around me?** I ask myself these questions because although I like my stuff and aquiring stuff, the way I see other people trip over their stuff? It makes me feel dirty, in a sense, to have and want stuff. I want to get rid of stuff now, especially stuff that no longer serves me. Granted, you have to know the reasons behind why people flip out over their stuff and potential stuff and some reasons are understandable, but at the end of the fucking day, it’s just stuff and maybe we need to stop placing so much value in stuff…because we can’t take it with us at the end. You can leave it to others, but they’ll just probably sell it off and take the money to buy more stuff that means something to them and the cycle continues.

Man that got dark.

Don’t sell your grandmother’s house.

Featured image courtesy of Anna Shvets, give her a follow: https://www.instagram.com/sh.vets/ I wish I looked this good while working.

*I’ve never made it a secret that I don’t like dealing with people. I don’t mind helping people and I like to solve problems, but if I can just get to a point where I can do that without having to have people in my ear or watching me, amongst other things that I want from what I do for a living, I’d be more okay with working.

**The answer to that last question is Mary Jane, books, writing gear/stationary, plants and crochet supplies.

The Slow Goodbye

I come from alcoholism. Real live alcoholism. I come from drunken parties, drunken fights, drunken nights in the house. Once upon a time, I believed that this was my fate, and for at least the last ten years, since I turned 21 and could buy it myself, I accepted it as my fate.

I drank. I drank when I was happy, I drank when I was furious, I drank when I was in fear of my life, I drank just because. Sometimes, even now, I drink before work just to calm the dread forming in my chest at having to perform the duties of my public facing jobs.

I started smoking weed about two years after I started drinking. I had tried it before, but I never smoked right, but when I finally learned, needless to say I was converted.

I spent many nights over the last several years in various states of cross faded states of mind, or even just gone off of one or the other. A lot of it was to mask the despair I felt inside.

Anyway, I gave this little backstory just to get around to my overarching point – I really am getting away from alcohol.

I moved to a state where weed is only medically cleared, and good luck with getting approved for that if you’re mental like me, because these red state authoritarians aren’t approving shit that makes people feel good and that they can grow themselves. Booze, however, runs aplenty down here, hell, I can drive up to a window and purchase a frozen daiquiri in a styrofoam cop or a gallon bag like it’s a Happy Meal, and to some people, it really is.

That’s great and all, but alcohol doesn’t agree with me anymore. It never really did, but now it really doesn’t agree with me. I’ve started to get headaches soon as I drink some liquor, but then it don’t give me the buzz that I’m craving, but then it also makes me angry and sullen and down. Depending on the strain, weed doesn’t do that to me.

Plus, after going home over the winter holidays and getting reaquainted with some good Cali weed, I prefer the feeling that weed gives me over alcohol. Yeah, weed makes me want to sleep a bit longer and eat everything, but the high is so much better than the lows of alcohol.

I don’t know if there will ever come a day where I will completely leave alcohol alone. I probably will. I’ve reevaluated my relationship with it and it and I just ain’t friends the way we used to be. Of course, one of the battle cries of the millenial is letting go of toxic relationships, so why not let this literally toxic relationship go?

Featured photo by Terricks Noah, find his work here: https://www.pexels.com/@terricks-noah-282960

Inline photo by Yash Lucid, find his work here: https://www.instagram.com/thatlucidguy/

Wrestling with Wrestling

I don’t claim to be woke. Anymore.

I’ve come to despise the term because it’s been co-opted by so many different people in so many different ways that it’s lost all it’s original meaning. Anyone who displays a Hooked on Phonics level of knowledge and compassion for the plight of the marginalized gets labeled as “Woke” or “Woke Bae” or whatever other goofy ass term of endearment gets passed around on the internet.

An aside, I have yet to hear anyone outside of an electronic medium talk like this. If you’ve ever physically heard me say anything about being woke, I’m usually saying it tongue in cheek. Reality is a cruel bitch.

Continue reading “Wrestling with Wrestling”

Bored Ambition Reads: Toxicology…

Once upon a time, I was a young, hopeful student at UCLA, working in one of the student stores to keep some money in my pockets. It was in this store that I struck up a relationship with one S. Latria, a relationship that had and continues to, stretch well into the years since we’ve both left the campus.

Several years ago, I had the pleasure of speaking over the telephone to S. Latria, who was conducting field research for what eventually became her debut work Toxicology: Transform Your Unhealthy Relationships by Becoming Your Own Best Friend and provide some of my own insight to my experiences with my relationships with other women, which, outside of my own family (and even still) were a bit lacking at the time.

The book has been released and as soon as I was able to, I purchased a physical copy (e-book just wouldn’t do) of the book and got down to reading it in what free time I currently have in my life. I’m not going to lie and say this review isn’t slightly biased, but looking at this as objectively as I possibly could, I recommend this book to those of you who are into self-help and improving the relationships in your life.

Speaking from a purely technical point of view, the way the books is structured makes it easy to absorb the information and advice that is being presented. The author starts off by relaying a story of her own toxicity and gives us the Toxic R.U.L.E, then she goes into the various toxic types (and there are quite a few), and finally ends it with another story in which she handled herself with more grace than she did in her first story. Interspersed in the explanations of the toxic types are various stories of women engaged in or dealing with people displaying the toxic personality types to help hammer home exactly how those types manifest in your life.

Content wise, I found myself seeing myself in many of the toxic types and I thought back to many of the friendships that I have and how I displayed toxic behavior, from enabling other people’s bullshit, to telling little white lies, to being both an optimist and a pessimist (it’s possible to be both, trust me). I have been a love enthusiast with men. I’ve joined a pack online. Of course, my ultimate takeway from the book wasn’t that I’m a terrible person, no, but that I am a person who is in a constant state of improvement, and while I have displayed these traits in the past, and may even do so currently, I don’t have to hold on to that past behavior or down myself if I’m anything less than perfect today.

I implore you, to purchase this book, a hard copy if need be. It is available on Amazon and I’m not receiving anything for reviewing this except the pleasure of spreading the word about an excellent piece of work.

I Got What I Wanted

You know, I really dislike having a fucking job.

I like making money, but I dislike having a fucking job.

I say that because it’s fucking December and my last post was in February and I had this whole plan to be posting at least once a month this year and yet here the hell we are. And that is because in February, I got a job, a temporary job, but a job none the less, and said job sapped the energy I was going to use to write.

Then that job ended in June and by then, I didn’t want to think about doing anything and then I got a permanent job that started in September, a job where I’m talking to people all damn day and my energy is yet again being taken up by a fucking job.

As much as I dislike having a job, I also dislike not having a job too.

Of course, it’s very easy to blame the job, but I have to take some responsibility myself, blah blah blah, lack of discipline, lack of a stronger work ethic, I just want to zone out in front of YouTube and Twitter all day.

I don’t know what this has to do with anything.

Oh yeah, so in between February and now, and it’s been a year since I’ve written this post, I realized that I’ve actually got what I wanted…what I wanted 10+ years ago.

Manifestation can be a slow process. You can ask God or the Universe for some shit and they hear you, they totally hear you, they just might not get it to you right away, and that could be because you’re not ready for it, and they knew I wasn’t ready for the shit I wanted back then.

I asked to be away from my upbringing. I have gotten away from my upbringing.
I asked for quiet. I have gotten quiet.
I asked for my depression to at least be lifted more than draped on my shoulders, and I don’t wear it as much as I have in the past.
It’s like once I was granted these things, everything else has slowly fallen into place and will continue to do so.

So I still don’t know what I want to do, but I do know that when I figure it out, it will come.

The next decade is looking bright.

Featured Photo by Dark Indigo from Pexels

We’re on Ko-fi!!!!/A Thank You Post

For a while, I struggled with whether or not I should do like so many other creators and post a link to a PayPal or CashApp or Patreon link so that the people who read this site could send me money in support of the work that I do. I’ll admit that is was mostly pride that made me feel like to do so would cheapen the work and make me look like I’m begging for charity.

I have pushed my pride aside and recently signed up with Ko-fi. Their benefits seem to work more in line with how I work, unlike Patreon and if you would ever like to support the Bored Ambition team in any way shape or form, or just like the work that is done here, you can click here or click on the link in the left footer of the site to buy me a coffee.

I thank you very much in advance if you do deceide to donate. I also thank and appreciate all those who have stuck with the blog since we’ve been live, through the numerous changes, mental shifts and breakdowns and rebranding. I’ve often thought about giving up this site, but you never know who might be reading and could really use the words that I type here. So again, I thank you all.

New Year, Same Me?

I don’t like making New Year’s resolutions. I don’t like them because I don’t keep them and I don’t keep them because the pressure to make and keep them becomes too much and I end up saying fuck it at least a week into the new year. The act of making resolutions for me is mostly for show, to appear to be like other human beings, but I gave that up for Lent* one year and never looked back.

So I came into this year the same way I’ve come into the past five or six or seven years – with a renewed sense of optimism for what the days might bring, but with no plan on how to be a better or different person or to adjust my lot in life. I’m the living Kermit meme.

Nigga hush.

I might have to change that though.

Wait, let’s let the lightning strike and the thunder rumble and finish getting your chuckles out.

Don’t worry, I’m not making resolutions, because again, there’s just a bit too much pressure with trying to achieve them, especially if you put a timeframe on it like I am prone to do. But there are old habits that I need to break, old patterns of behavior that once again I need to reexamine how they fit into my life at this point in time (spoiler alert: they fucking don’t).

Stay tuned.