Feb 022015
 

BillyJoel_AnInnocentMan

I wrote the following as one of my assignments in my Orientation to Graduate Studies class at the University of Maryland University College. The goal was to write an article in the style of the “This I Believe” series by Edward R. Murrow. Unfortunately after I finished my essay and turned it in I realized that the assignment had been to write something about our professional beliefs and not a personal one, so I had to scrap the assignment and write another one in about 10 minutes (which, for the record, I got a 98% on). I really liked what I wrote in my original essay, though, and I wanted to share it here.

Fair warning – It’s mushy.

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Aug 272014
 

I’d love to say I have some kind of well thought out, eloquent post in me. I do not. My sad, neglected blog is likely to remain just that for the foreseeable future, and this post won’t break that trend. This is just a thought dump. A “what’s going on with me” that most of you will likely gloss over if you even bother to read it in the first place.

Man, that sure sounded emo.

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Feb 122001
 

I made my bed this morning.

This may not seem like a very monumental thing to you, but it’s important to me. It has been for over a year now.

Valentine’s Day is two days from now, and while I understand that it is a largely commercial holiday with no real significance in the grand scheme of things, I always tried to make a big deal out of it for my wife. I wanted it to be special. Romantic. The first Valentine’s Day we spent together, I made her a white pizza with fresh vegetables from scratch. I went out and bought some wine and new candles. I fed her dinner on the floor of my room with the candles burning and soft music gently playing in the background. When we were done eating, I read her some of my favorite poetry.

She gave me a t-shirt with “horny devils” having sex all over it.

The last Valentine’s Day we spent together was during the midst of our eventual breakup, when she was having an ongoing relationship with me and her current lover. I really tried. Really wanted it to be significant. I wanted her to see how important she was to me, in the hopes that she might decide that, once again, I was enough for her. I spent days looking for the right gift. In the end, I bought her a gold necklace that had three gold animals on it, one for each of the three animal totems that she believes influence her life. I made her a card that expressed my feelings, my love for her. I took her out to dinner.

She gave me a card and a necklace with my animal totem on it. Funny coincidence, that. She gave the exact same thing to her lover. Thing was, the poem she put in the card she made for the lover had some sort of personal meaning that was so deep I wasn’t allowed to read it. The one she put in mine was something common and forgettable. I think it was the Browning “How Do I Love Thee?” poem.

Ed. Note – Thanks to my always watchful buddy Eve for pointing out the proper source of “How Do I Love Thee?” In my first posting I had improperly credited Shakespeare for writing it. My bad!

I knew then, of course, that we were destined to fail. That in the end she was going to abandon everything we had and run off to be with him. Even if he didn’t get her anything for Valentine’s Day. Sure enough, she did. When I finally asked her to choose between us because I couldn’t handle being second fiddle anymore, she left me. One month before our 5th anniversary.

The day after she left, I made my bed. I’ve done so every morning since.

You see, my marriage to her was full of compromises. Mostly on my part. Of course, I’m sure that if you ask her opinion on the subject, you will get quite a different story, but that doesn’t bother me. I know the truth, and I’ve been told it enough by the friends who didn’t come around when I was with her that I believe it. I don’t think I asked for much. I helped with the cooking and the cleaning. I did more than my share of taking care of our son. I let her decide what movies we were going to see or what television shows we were going to watch. I let her decide where we were going to live. I gave her as much control as I possibly could.

One of the only things I ever asked her to do for me was to make the bed. Before I met her, I made my bed every day. I find it very comforting to get into a made bed at night, and I really think it sets the tone for your home. If you make the bed every day, it’s easier to keep the rest of the house clean. Call me crazy, but I really think this is true. I almost always was out of bed before her every day, so it’s only natural to assume that she would be the one to make the bed.

In our almost seven years together, I don’t think she made the bed once.

I cite this as an example of how little give and take there was in our relationship. Everything was her way or else. Ironically, I was content with that. I didn’t mind giving up control or compromising on my ideals as long as the family stayed together. That, unfortunately, wasn’t enough to keep her happy, and she moved on.

So here comes Valentine’s Day. My first one “alone” since 1994. I’ll probably be moody about it, and I’m sure I’ll dwell on what “they” are doing and how unfair the whole situation. I will eventually remember, though, that I am happier without her. That for the first time in years I am in control of my destiny again. That I do not have to compromise who I am or what I love in order to make someone happy. That I was simply not meant to be with her.

And that when I get home that night, my bed will be made.


Some news for those of you that are curious…

The weight loss is going very well. I have been on Weight Watchers for a little over 3 weeks now, and I’ve already lost 19.6 pounds! Hooray for me!

I GOT A NEW JOB! Yes, I’m finally out from under the oppressive yoke of Auction Broker Software. I have almost doubled my income, and I’m working for a company that actually conducts themselves in a professional manner. Go figure! More on this one later…

Aug 212000
 

I’m almost 100% certain at this point that absolutely nobody is reading my rant pages. I know my site isn’t getting any traffic. This has a lot to do with the fact that I registered on several major search engines months ago and I’m still not showing up. Makes you wonder who you have to kill to get listed on a search engine these days.

Note how this doesn’t stop me from writing something here anyway. Call is a small bit of mental masturbation, if you will. Maybe I like to see my “oh so deep” rants up on the web, even if it is just for me.

I want to talk about freedom here for a minute. I’m not talking about political freedom, or religious freedom, or freedom of the press (all of which are very important and dear to me). I’m talking about personal freedom. I’m talking about the ability to be the person you want to be without having to compromise your ideals. I’m talking about the ability to do what you want, when you want to, and not have someone tell you that you shouldn’t be doing it.

I’m talking about the kind of freedom that a teenager encounters when first moving out of their parents home.

I’m talking about the kind of freedom you remember when your wife leaves you.

Now, I know there are a lot of people who would read this and say “MY wife doesn’t do that to me. MY wife let’s me be my own person.” You know what? That’s great for you. MY wife didn’t. My wife constantly put herself and her desires and her tastes in front of mine and, being the person that I am, I let her do it. I spent five years being walked on. Five years of not being able to listen to music as loud as I want when I’m at home. Five years of being told that some of the movies that I like are “ugly.” Five years of not being able to express my political beliefs without it becoming an attack on her and having it start a big fight. Five years of my friends not inviting me to do things because “we knew she wouldn’t LET you go.”

Five years of my life.

I’m thinking about this now because there is a woman in Ft. Lauderdale who loves me. A woman who wants nothing more than to take care of me. A woman who has already expressed a desire to live with me for the rest of my days and who would want nothing more than to be Mrs. Michael McGreevy.

And a woman who I have almost nothing in common with.

I knew we didn’t have a lot in common before going into things, and in retrospect I should have spent more time dwelling on that before we got together. I thought my feelings were going to overcome our differences, though. I was wrong.

I realized this was going to be a problem after meeting her and, unfortunately, being intimate with her. This of course makes it look like all I was after was sex, which is entirely not the case. It wasn’t the sex that made me start thinking of things. It was the time we spent together when we weren’t having sex. It was the conversations, the observations, the subtle things that I wouldn’t have noticed before I was married.

I’m not going to go into detail about what I saw here. It really doesn’t matter, and it will probably come off as me trying to justify why I feel the way that I do. Suffice it to say that we come from some radically different backgrounds.

I feel like I’m not making much sense here. I hope that maybe she reads this one day, and that she understands. That’s probably more than I can expect, but it’s what I hope for.

Maybe one day I won’t feel like a complete asshole.

Won’t be any time soon, though.

Jul 312000
 

I’ve been given a lot of shit for not following up to the reunion as soon as I could have. Ok, I wasn’t given a lot of shit, but one of you sent me an email asking about it, and since I have about 6 people that have visited the site, that is a pretty high percentage. So, with respect to those visitors, I now present MY REVIEW OF THE REUNION!

It was actually a lot of fun. I went with my old pal and web mistress, Eve. Who looked fabulous, by the way. In fact, if I can, I’ll post a picture of the two of us there. I have to get one from her.

I saw Bill Stanely, and he looks great. He’s doing great. Same with Christine Lavender (now McCellum). In fact, Eve and I went to her house afterwards. We spent most of the evening with her and Amy Allen, truth be told. It was nice. It was beyond nice. It was FUN! So for those of you who didn’t go from the class of 1990, you should make sure you go to the next one. It’s worth it.

In other news…

I’m sure several of you were expecting to see me go off here about the fact that my wife recently left here. I don’t have the energy. All I’m going to do to cover that particular area in my life you will find on my Ravings Of A Madman page. My feelings are summed up pretty well there.

And that’s all I’ve got to say about that…