Me, Myself and Why? Please Understand.

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Have you ever done something that made you feel so guilty your sick to your stomach? Because I have, and it’s not the kind of thing that you can make right by telling your parents. I’ve basically ruined a perfectly good relationship by forgetting what was important to me. 

I know I’ve done this dozens of times in the past, and it should be nothing new to me. I should be well aware of my shortcomings by now and realize that eventually I’m going to self destruct. Whether it’s by cheating, or getting trashed and not coming home, arguing, fighting, being selfish or forgetting important anniversaries,

I just seem to figure out a way to turn anyone and everyone who cares about me against me.

If I could turn back the clock and do things over again, I’m usually a big proponent of letting things run their due course. I really try not do anything I really would regret, because that would mean that I’m acknowledging failure. When this happens, something deep down inside gets dragged to the surface over and over again, stuff that I thought I had destroyed, aka: buried under millions of tons of trash in New York City landfill.

But this time is different. Try as I might to ignore everything I’m feeling, a drop has already hit the surface of the water and it’s too late to stop the ripples. Whatever carefully maintained illusion I was under, there is nothing in the world that hurts like a broken heart, not when you know that intrinsically, it’s nobody’s fault but your own.

I could list the mistakes I have made, just over the course of this one relationship, for the next 48 hours and I still could probably think of something to add. I refused to act as an equal partner in paying the bills and expected her to make sure everything turned out alright. I yelled and cussed, treated arguments like warfare, cared more about being right than making her happy and snarled like a wounded animal when treated ‘unfairly.’ I kissed another girl, at the very minimum, took my other friends sides, refused to quit talking to women who were just trying to destroy my happiness and my relationship.

I guess the thing I really wish I could rewind is snapping and cussing at our, her daughter. I know that really hit home, because she is always going to be first priority, regardless of how much she loves me. If I ask myself honestly what caused that pitiful fit, I can only shamefully say that I thought she needed a strong male role-model. 

Since I have never seen or been around one, all I can do is imitate what I think that looks like, even if it feels wrong and is wrong.

If only she could see how I really feel.

She’s not perfect, but she’s perfect in my eyes. She makes mistakes but so does everyone else.   They say hindsight is 20/20, and yes she may be sometimes overly emotional, jealous with self-esteem issues, but she has every right to be.

Every man who has ever been with her has given her reason to doubt herself, including myself.

There are so many things I miss about her that I don’t even know where to begin. Her smell? That smell of fresh laundry (since she always does the laundry) mixed with just a hint of her body, just enough to make my blood stir. Her smile? Her goofy, nerdy, big cat smile that every-so-often would come out just right in pictures. Her laugh would fall in somewhere with that, infectious and able to light up even the worst situations.

I don’t want to get wrapped up in cheese ball poetic feelings, mingled with guilt and a helping of regret. It’s just so hard not to explain when everything is jumbled together with little strings poking out. Just like on your sweater, if you pick at one of the strings you’ll eventually pull it out, but not before two more have surfaced.

Two more that you thought were not interconnected.

I still remember some of the conversations we had, some recently and others way back in the past, where we laughed about how eventually we would grow old. I asked if she’d still like me if I was ugly and fat and old and bald, and she looked at me confused, like what I said had made no sense.

Of course I would still like you. I would still love you.

I think I would still love her too, even if she had liver spots, and one droopy eye, her hair thinned with age and wrinkles hanging off her elbows. It’s amusing to even think about things like that, now that I know that she’s gone. There’s a sense of finality when you look at a closet full of empty hangers, hangers where once she had put all the pretty clothes you bought with her, stuff she had only worn because she wanted to make you happy.

She would have been happy with or without the clothes. She was perfectly content wearing her Kung Fu slippers, a baggy over-sized hoodie, no make up, and no jewelry. 

Maybe her life is better without you. That’s something that will take time to figure out. Maybe it would have been better if you were never involved, never able to hurt her, and never able to touch her heart. Sometimes I wrestle with the idea that the world would be a better place without me, since it seems everything I touch crumbles and turns to ash.

Just like the end of one of your cigarettes.

So what does she want you to do? Maybe work a few more hours, not hide away from the world when you get stressed. Maybe comfort her when she’s stressed, or when she remembers the mistakes you made that involve another girl. Even just not yelling at her when she brings it up, that would be an improvement on what happened in the past. It’s on you if you want to regain her trust, not her.

She can’t help seeing what could or might or did happen when you put it so blatantly in her face.

And above all else, maybe not placing your burdens on her, especially by saying things like this is your fault, or there’s nothing I can do when there’s certainly a million things you can do to make things right. If only she was worth it… which of course she is. Your just too stupid to see any rhyme or reason until things are already out of hand.

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Now if only she could see that you understand.

~M

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Fighting for the Right to Bust Heads.

I’ve had enough with all the bologna about CTE, concussions, etc. and so forth. Quit trying to make me feel bad for wanting to watch football players crack into each other like 200 lb monster trucks. I don’t care about your studies, your clinical trials, the fact that your husband can’t sleep at night after playing pro ball for 15 years, or anything else you might throw in my face.

I just want to watch my professional football. Period.

Forgive me for being blunt, and probably not PC, but this really just feels and sounds like a lame excuse for people to point fingers at the most popular sport in America, or even the world. I wanna know who’s coming up with these bullshit figures. Someone please tell me how the game of football is solely responsible for head injures in the US. It’s not, and before anyone else jumps on that bandwagon, how about I list just a few of the other sports in which players are likely to get a head injury.

Ever watched NASCAR, Formula-One or any other form of professional race car driving? Why do we watch it? It’s inane and boring, stupidly repetitive and perhaps my least favorite professional ‘sport.’ For me, the single thrill of watching a bunch of overpaid rednecks zoom around a track for hours is the crashes. Not the fender benders, and not the jockeying for position, but the spectacular flaming wreckage that occurs when a car flips over repeatedly, car parts and oil scattering like coins across the rubber and asphalt. Do you know what else happens when those cars lose control at over 100 miles an hour? They cause head injuries, even with a helmet and safety gear.

What about MMA, Pankration, Boxing, and all other forms of hand to foot combat? Right after the announcer with the deep, harmonic voice announces the competitors, the various career statistics of each fighter come up on the television screen underneath their picture. These statistics include wins, losses, ties, wins by decision… and wins by KNOCKOUT. Need an example? Go re-watch last month’s fight between Juan Marquez and Manny Pacquiao. To put it plainly, the Pac-man got knocked the FUCK out. This occurs when an extreme amount of force applied by fist or foot to an opponent’s head/neck area causes the brain to go into shutdown mode, ie: Blacking Out. This is usually accompanied by a concussion, which occurs when the brain bounces violently against the sides of the skull causing a bruise. How come nobody is picketing Mandalay Bay or the MGM Grand in Las Vegas? Why don’t we change the rules of Boxing so that fighters can only hit each other with pillows taped around their fists.

While we’re at it, let’s take the Enforcer-role out of NHL Hockey, and permanently ban all fighting on the ice. Let’s remove the baseball from MLB baseball games, and exchange it for a wiffleball instead. This would prevent head injuries from occurring to either the hitter or pitcher, at the expense of changing the entire game of baseball. Bull-Riding, Skateboarding, Snowboarding, BMX, Drag-Racing, Rugby, the list of sports that do/can cause head injuries could go on forever. Even fake sports such as Professional Wrestling can cause real concussions and damaged grey matter. So again, what is it about Football in general that has parents, loved ones and even the President calling for reform?

When asked about the Ravens ability to outhit their opponent, and their reliance on playing physical football in the trenches, Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh had this to say: “That’s what we’re all about. That’s what football is. Ultimately, if you don’t have that foundation, you’re not gonna last. It might look pretty, you might light up the scoreboard, but without that, there’s nothing. That’s what football is in the end. It’s not the off-tackle belly that Woody ran or the power that Bo (Schembechler) ran or Jim runs. Those are plays. It’s the format. It’s hard work and dedication and commitment.” Well said.

These are the defining ideals behind the game of Football, regardless of whether we’re talking about Pop-Warner, Prep, Collegiate, Arena or Professional Football. This is what Football is all about. Not to be callous, or uncaring, but most of the players suing the NFL currently on grounds of irreversible physical/mental damage are almost certainly looking out for number one. You knew the risks involved when you started playing, and if you didn’t want to continue playing after getting your bell rung, you should have quit right then and there.

I’ll give you an example. If you applied to work as a crash-test dummy, would you sue the company after being in an accident? What if they offered to pay you $100,000 dollars per accident? If you wasted that money on hookers and a fleet of expensive handmade convertibles, would it be fair to say that the only reason your attempting to sue the company is because you are broke as shit and are looking for a handout? This is how I feel about many if not all of the dozens of bullshit lawsuits out there. I guarantee if you gave me 30 million dollars over 5 years, I wouldn’t need to beg for charity after my career was over.

I don’t care if you have 6 children by 3 different women, a charity, 3 mortgage payments, there is absolutely NO good reason these players shouldn’t have some money left over from their playing days. Even back in the 50s and 60s, when Football was a side job rather than a career, there were perks and benefits for being a Professional Football player. Women, bonuses, game checks, coaching opportunities, free food, vacations, advertising jobs, and I’m not even talking about anything from the free-agency era. So the next time you hear about a lawsuit against the NFL, or how another ex-player’s suicide is a result of CTE, remember this:

Make them sign a waiver. Make sure they understand the permanent damage that can result from repeated collisions with other gigantic men. If your thinking of entering the NFL Draft, go buy a Fathead (A life-size wall sticker) of J.J. Watt first. Put it up in your room and close your eyes. Imagine yourself getting hit by a ton of bricks, many, many times over the course of a 3 hour game. If your completely OK with that, then DON’T FUCKING COMPLAIN ABOUT IT AT THE END OF YOUR CAREER.