Archive for the ‘Prose’ Category

Second Chance: An opportunity to try again.

Second Chance: Just Ahead

The world is full of opportunities. The multitude of possibilities lay out in front of us like water in the ocean, but many of us are afraid to swim. We see wave after wave of chance crash upon the sands of our present, washing away the sand castles of previous attempts with each pass. Seeing the destruction, we remain paralyzed in fear and doubt.  The waves take no notice. They continue their rhythmic roll, reminding you that so long as you can see the water, you can walk into the ocean of opportunities, and take a chance. Build a raft if you have to. The waves will use their might to push you back to the shore from whence you came. Recall that every breath you take is another chance to stand and fight, to swim and row and sail with all your strength, to navigate your raft until that fateful moment  you reach a new shore, with new prospects and see the dawn in a new light. The second chances we need are all around us, we only need to learn to swim.

Your Existence

Posted: September 21, 2014 in Prose
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The world will judge you. That is a given. It’s a fact of life. It doesn’t matter what you say, or how you act. You cannot avoid it. Your silence will be judged as ignorance, your words as foolishness. Your actions shall be defined as selfish or self-serving. Thus, do not exist for the acceptance of others. Exists for the acceptance of yourself and let your own existence justify itself. Be bold in that existence such that your very existence is an act of defiance against all who grant themselves the right to judge you. Be brave in that existence, such that no barrier can stand between your true nature and the manifestation of that nature in your existence. Your existence shall then be louder than anyone’s opinion of this existence for the existence is pure, and everything else is but a byproduct of the existence, unable to exist without your existence existing first. Thus, speak your mind, act your heart, and live as only you can. Go Forth, Be awesome. No Zero Days.

They sit there

Posted: September 10, 2014 in Prose
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https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4100/4742979094_a5b1bf8b64_z.jpgThey sit there on the couch, just the two of them. They ran out of small talk hours ago, yet they still sit. He glares at the steaming cup of tea that sits on the table before him. She puffs her cigarette, smoke billowing around her dark hair. He glances over at her, trying hard not to stare. She doesn’t know, he thinks to himself. No, she knows, she just doesn’t care. In the end, does it really matter? For months, she has been all he could think about. Every morning, he wished her a good day. And every night, Sweet dreams. There was nothing she could ask for that he wouldn’t do for her. Anything. For her.

He was doing just fine before her. Perfectly alright. Moved home after school. A fancy degree on the wall. A job lined up. Even the car was working. Every day was simple. Functional. Like a clock. His life operated like clockwork. Up at 6, work at 8, off at 6, two hours at the gym, sleep, rinse, repeat. No need for differentiation. Just fine. He was perfectly alright. Then, one day, which quite frankly began just like any other, she appeared. Out of no where. No one asked her to show up. No one requested her presence. Yet, there she was. Slender, dark, fair, with bright eyes which lit the world around her. He was struck. So the adventure began.

His days still operated like clockwork, if the clocks were assembled by a team of rabbits from wonderland under the supervision of Salvador Dali himself. The monotony was broken as his days became consumed with her. All time, effort, energy, were spent. If not with her, then for her. Whether it was planning the next outing, or sitting at the coffee-house talking, she engulfed his existence.

Days passed. Then weeks. Finally months came and went. He told her she was important, of course. One should be a fool not to have noticed that. He told her he cared. He showed her with every action, every word, every breath. All she said was thank you. A simple acknowledgement. She didn’t care for him. Not the way he cared for her. Although it is rather rare that anyone care quite the way he did. He knew that. Yet he hoped for more. More than a simple acknowledgement of the fact. She told him not now. Not today. And so he thought perhaps tomorrow. Perhaps another day. There is a chance.  But the next day came, and went. And the next one after. And the months rolled on. Still he tried, to no avail.

So they sit there, on the couch. Just the two of them. They share a space. A solitary room in which they have spent the last few hours. She has told him of her troubles, without really saying anything at all. Trouble at home, difficulty in class, tough day at work. The usual tribulations of daily life. Many words exhausted, saying nothing of value at all. And he sat there, with his cup of tea in hand and listened, throwing tidbits of commentary here and there. He also said little of value. As she spoke, his head raced. It always raced, but this time it raced with sharp pangs of pain surging through his being as he ached to tell her the battles that go on inside of him. As he ached to ask her of her true battles. He cared little for the soap opera found at home and work. He wanted to know the battles of her soul. The scars that are hidden away from everyone. He wanted to break down the walls and see what is held sacred. That which is truly private. He wanted to be a part of her. Even more, he wanted her to want the same from him.

And yet they sit. In silence at last, having run out of the trivial long ago. She doesn’t want the walls to come down, he thinks to himself, after all this time, that much is clear. He glances at her again. Their eyes meet, and they both look down. He glares at the coffee. She examines the cigarette’s smoke. They are sitting on the same couch, yet they are eons apart. They are not together.  He turns away. If only, he muses, if only I had a way to tell her that she would understand. If I could open my heart to her and have her see what I have been hiding inside. If she could feel the fire, things would be different. But they just sit. The two of them on the same couch. Together, and yet both alone.

Lies

Posted: June 28, 2014 in Prose
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To-Thine-Ownself-be-true-2
Lies are poisonous to our existence. It’s a flight mechanism built to protect our ego from being injured by the harsh reality of the world around us. They create a temporary sense of comfort, make one think they’ve postponed having to deal with reality just a little more. We have no control over the lies told to us. Those are just a fact of life. However we do have control over the lies we tell. There are two kinds of lies we tell. Lies we tell others, and the lies we tell ourselves. The lies we tell others will always be revealed, putting important relationships in long-term jeopardy for that sort term comfort. Worse than those, however, are the lies we tell ourselves. We know them to be false and yet we keep telling ourselves these lies. We keep hoping that by repeating the lie enough times it would become true. Like a cancer, these lies grow and consume us. There is no peace until we are truthful and honest with ourselves. Be yourself shamelessly and fearlessly. The world will accept you at your own reckoning. Now go forth, be awesome. No zero days.


little-moments
Life is made up of small moments that happen one after the other. Each moment is an opportunity. Normally I talk about taking each opportunity to better yourself. Today I’m on a different tack. Today I want to talk about others. You see, we all know our own demons. However we often forget that everyone ride in our lives has their own to contend with. No matter how bad ours might be, we don’t know 
if the person next to us has it worse. External appearance tells only a fragment of the whole story. The good news is this: it takes very little effort to make someone’s day better. It’s just the little things that will put a smile on their faces and make them forget, if only for one moment, the darkness that haunts them. Little things. Asking them how their day is going. They’ll rarely tell you the truth, but they’ll know you care. An honest compliment. Paying for their drink at the coffeehouse. Remembering important events. Small gifts. They don’t need to be fancy or expensive. Small handwritten notes. A few kind words of encouragement. A good morning text. So many little things we can do everyday that take almost no effort but make a huge impact on someone’s day. So go forth. Be kind. And be awesome. No zero days.

Life

Posted: June 28, 2014 in Prose
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Infinity-Time1Life doesn’t stop. It doesn’t care if you are lazy, active, intelligent, stupid. It goes on from birth to death. What you need to decide is how you spend that period between the endpoints. Every moment is a chance. An opportunity to do something great. Do not mourn the moments you’ve already missed. They are gone. You cannot recover them. Instead move forward and make the best of the moments coming at you every second of every day. Imagine what you could accomplish, if you stopped worrying, stopped being afraid, stopped rationalizing your inaction, but actually got up and acted. You only get one chance. Make the most of it. Get up, go forth and be awesome. No zero days.

Ready

Posted: June 28, 2014 in Prose
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watermark_ARE_YOU_READY_-_SCRNS_-_c_-_xl_-_pstReady is a myth. It is an excuse used by the weak to convince them that inaction is the best course for them. It is just a concept we create, a safety net that serves to protect us in the comfort zone. It justifies procrastinating. One day, you tell yourself. One day, when I’m ready, I’ll make a move. I will take a big step. I will live my dreams. One day. When I am ready.

Don’t wait till you are ready. You never will be Ready. No matter how much you wait, it won’t happen.  Just get up, lace up and do it. Whatever is that’s on your mind. Whatever you’ve been thinking about. You know what it is. You dream about it every night, wake up and say when I am ready. Well, that day is today. That time, is right now. Get up and do it. This is as good a moment to start as any. No zero days.

Hello again. Here we are once more on the final pages of this chapter in our lives. The pages scrawled over with the tales of times we’ve lived.  As you can see, the new chapter, those pale blank white pages up ahead are already unfolding. They are beckoning us to move forward and greet them with open arms. However before we move on, we must as all humans do, reminisce on that which was. We stand here on the spine between the chapters, trying to move forward but those memories are holding us back.

Those memories. Those wonderful happy times . The hours spent in laughter with friends, family, significant others. Those terrible times of pain or sorrow. The moments we wish never to think of again. But here we stand between the then and the now and we see all those moments once more.

The chapter behind us will forever be a part of us. We will never lose it. The lessons it taught will help in defining who we are. However we cannot allow it to dominate our existence. Our existence lies in that chapter ahead. Its blank pages staring us in the eyes. Frightening us to our very core as we know not what will soon fill those pages.

But HALT! not all is grim in that which is not known. The unknown, if we embrace it, tends to be the most exciting experience of our lives. What lies ahead my as yet better all that came before. What lies behind was merely there in preparation for what awaits us in these pages to come.

Here are again, old friend, just the two of us. Sitting and dreaming of where we’ve been and where we are going.  We’ve shared plenty moments of great laughter, and quite a few filled with tears. And in all of that we had each other. Without the support of each other we would never have made it to where we are.

And here, as we go ahead I make this promise to you, old friend. Wherever these next pages take us, wherever we may land, whatever may be scrawled to fill the blanks, when the time comes, and you need to sit together once more, I will be at your service.

So go forth, my friend. Go forth and take care. Embrace the adventure that lies ahead and know that you do not walk the streets alone. I share in your experiences, both good and bad, and I support your endeavours. I believe in your capacity to succeed and I believe in your ability to make the most of this fine new chapter.

One day we will look back upon the chapter that now only lies ahead, and we will recall fondly all that we have done. Until that day, hold your head high, and go forth.

 

Wishing you all a happy new year,

With love and affection for all,

Daniel Allen

There is little in life that is more important the keeping a positive and happy outlook and spreading the happiness to those around you. It doesn’t take much. Greet people with a smile. Remember their names. Remind them not only of how important they are to you but why they are important as well. Compliment the Batista who serves you your morning coffee, buy the drink for the person in line who looks like they need a pick-me-up. Share a happy tale with the people around you. The difference you will make may not be noticeable to you, but you may have just made someones day. Perhaps drastically changed someones life. All it Takes is a kind word and a smile. No Zero Days. Make every moment count.

You may not always win. You might not always score. But so long as there is oxygen in your lungs, blood in your veins, and a beat in your heart, you haven’t lost yet. So long as you press on, working hard every day, you will get the prize in the end. Nothing happens overnight. It isn’t easy. If it was easy, everyone would do it. This is what separates you from everyone else. 99% of people strive to be average. If you are working towards a goal, any goal, you are already ahead of them. With every day you keep working, you are one day closer to the win. One step closer to scoring. The day you stop, you die, for your life ends the day you stop working towards improvement. Nobody is perfect. No one ever will be. But so long as you keep going, like a dynamo in the winter, you create the energy that fuels life, and bring light to the world. Remember, No Zero Days.

We all have those days when we are certain we are at maximum capacity. When we cannot possibly take anything on top of what is already going on in our lives. Those are the days when you need to step up and give it all you’ve got. The wheels don’t take days off. You will get more on your plate no matter how hard you try not to. Instead of running from it, go with it. Make a plan. Coordinate you day in such a way that you can pull it of. We are all capable of far more than we allow ourselves to believe. We can do it. One just has to trust in themselves. No Zero Days. One step at a time, anything is possible. You just have to take that one single step, every single day.

The first step to improvement is the recognition of who what to improve. You cannot fix a problem you refuse to admit exists. It is no shame to have shortcomings, everyone has them. They are different for each person, but they are there. Each and every one of us has something they can work on. Be it the inch of belly fat, or 2.5 in chemistry, it’s there. And it wont go away on its own. However, if you stop running from them, if you admit and embrace them as your own, you can overcome them. As long as you deny their existence, they will forever haunt you. Take a step, admit the shortcoming and work towards improving them. Every day will be far more fulfilling when you are busy with improvement as opposed to sulking in stagnation. No Zero Days. Take one step towards the solution right now. Take one step tomorrow. Every step you take is one step closer to accomplishment.

I’m Tired…

Posted: November 6, 2013 in Prose
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“You look good today, Kevin”, Claire chirped, handing him the usual.

“I’m tired”, he said with a sigh.

Kevin, his head low, eyes staring at the drink sitting in front of him, barely glanced at her as she appraised his disposition from across the bar.

“Long day at work?” she asked.

“No, Work was fine.”

“What’s wrong then?”

She looked him over again. His suit: sharp. His shirt: Ironed. His hair and beard: neatly trimmed and kept. Kevin wasn’t here for his daily gin and tonic. Normally he came in after the gym, in jeans and t-shirt. His corporate job required business dress, but he always changed before coming in for his drink. No, she thought, something else was up here.

“Nothing”. He pulled out his cellphone and gave the screen a few taps. Shaking his head, he put it back in the front pocket of his black jacket and reached for his drink.  “Nothing at all, just tired”.

It’s more than that, thought Claire, as she continued her deductions. The cellphone was a clear clue. He was expecting something. A message from someone. In a tidal wave, the image became clear.

(more…)