The cliche, nice guys finish last, has become a reoccurring concept in my career, relationship and life. I recognize I must overcome some nice guy tendencies I've developed, despite it's counter-intuitiveness. I have chosen a extremely competitive and highly adversarial career. Being a lawyer requires sternness and confidence. A reason lawyers have become so despised is because these are inherent characteristics of the job. If a lawyer doesn't develop this these traits they will quickly lose respect in the legal community.
Thus far, I have found this to be true within relationships. I am not advocating being an asshole to women, or friends. However, when you become the "yes man", you eventually lose credibly and your kind nature will turn you subservient. Succumbing to others wishes continuously will garnishing your dignity and dilute your identity. Confident people are admired and respected, subservients are treated as such.
I have been writing for weeks about my successful three years in Charlotte. I am leaving the city a more mature, well-rounded and well-versed person. I cannot say the same for all of my excursions. I did make glaring mistakes. I cannot definitively say that I am anywhere close to where I need to be. My original goal was not to move for three years, learn about myself and move on. I desired to integrate into society, develop a local presences and establish a career. As I drove into work today, I saw the pink building that overlooked my old apartment. It doesn't take a genius to realize that a failed relationship was a factor in my decision to move. If I would have landed the a job in the District Attorney's Office or a local law firm, I also quite possibly would not be in this situation.
I reckon it's the perfect time to move North. It will be the summer, the best time to move into Ohio. The potential to secure a sought after legal position is a motivational factor. I have friends, family and new acquaintances that will guide me through the process with my interest at heart. I have their interest at my heart. The mistakes I made in Charlotte must be corrected up North or I will become a victim of the same fate. I will become an increasingly progressive human being, but I will never overcome Wednesday.
I write this blog on the eve of my first trip to Europe. Although this trip was planned just weeks ago, the timing is not coincidental. I am leaving a mere few days after my twenty-ninth birthday. I always believed I would make the trip overseas before turning thirty and that will soon become a reality. The trip is due to take place in a transitional period in my life. I've spent the last year dedicated to relearning history, traveling to new places and tracing roots. I have the ability to culminate those concepts into one superb week and hopefully gain inspiration to write new material. I see symbolism in the trip as I enter a new adventurist stage in my life. I will not submit to false notions that life becomes less exciting as we ascend through its stages.
Friday, April 22, 2011
She was walking a mere three paces ahead with jet black hair that appeared unwashed. Her long patterned skirt looked like it was purchased from an artsy boutique. She had a swagger that conveyed that she was seeking attention but she was intimated by the glances that bestowed upon her. She was twenty-two of twenty-three and wore a backpack that hung loosely from her shoulders. Her sweater was black like her hair and undeniably a consignment. I could see the bottoms of her legs from the tops of her knees to the bottom of her ankles. Although it has been sunny and warm in Charlotte for weeks, her pale skin had not been exposed to the sunlight.
I would have obsessively flaunted over her alternative beauty just a few years ago. I used to view the counter-culture lifestyle and the ability to give mainstream society the middle finger as a virtue. This day, I felt partially indifferent. I once identify with what I thought she represented. She was an introvert on the street, expressing her inner feelings with her outer appearance. I did not have distaste for her style and I haven't turned into a person that scorns the younger generation for their manifestations. I fancied her style, pride and was turned on by her unapologetic tendencies. She represented a time period that played a big role in my development.
I have witnessed social evolution in its purest form. I am not cured of social defects. My ex girlfriend will tell you that and I would agree. When you conform to one school of thought, it becomes easy to shut yourself off to other avenues of possibility. It's not impossible to view the entire galaxy from inside its arms. You must find a way to view yourself from the outside looking in. I still have a hard time venturing from my ways and prescribing to clashing ideals and interest. My indifference led to my recent break up. However, It's elating to know that I possess the ability to evolve.
I didn't know this young lady, I only knew she symbolized a darker time in my life. Upon arriving in Charlotte, I obsessed over gothic, artful women because I felt I identified with them. In reality, I didn't know who I related with, but nevertheless, I became obsessed with alternative personas. I knew that Amy Lee wrote haunting, dark, melodic music and the girls I liked reminded me of her. I knew that Christina Ricci accepted the parts that the mainstream actresses would not. This girl was taking on the role that most others did not touch. However, that didn't mean alternative personalities were the only ones with something special to offer. It wasn't until I began to fuse ideas from the mainstream and counter culture and open my eyes to a broad spectrum was I truly able to grow.
Personal evolution is a slow, daunting process but It's our duty to learn.
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
With only a few weeks left in Charlotte, I watch as my youth disintegrates in a dilapidated office building. The building I have worked in the past three years is one of the oldest offices buildings in Charlotte. I believe it was the second modern high rise built in the city. Although it was once a symbol of prosperity, it is now aging and desolate. The building was never an architectural masterpiece and was not engineered to survive generations of exponential growth. The Bank of America Corporate Center and several other modern skyscrapers now cast a shadow that blocks most sunlight from reaching its surface. The sunshine that once embraced my soul in Charlotte has scattered away again. The time has arrived to move forward, return home and take control of the future.
I was content with starting my law career in this building. I would stare out the windows, waiting to be swept off my feet by the allure of a city's potential. Unbeknownst to me, this potential soon faded away. At first I was happy to weather the great recession. I waited for the city to resurrect and rescue my original dreams. I spent a large amount of time waiting for a career to materialize That is just not how things work anymore. Deep down, I was never ready to grab what I wanted in Charlotte. My level of comfort was never enough to overcome mediocrity. In the end I embraced the vapid personality of 129 W. Trade Street.
This is not another "crisis" like in 2008. I don't believe that there is an ominous cloud hovering over my head. In fact I am more optimistic than I have ever been in my entire life. Over time I allowed myself to become obsolete, like the office building. The building should have been destroyed and rebuilt years ago. There is not a better time to start over. I am writing this on the eve of my twenty-ninth Birthday, hastily descending into my thirties. I have spent too many hours wondering what other people think about me and what makes others happy. I don't know if it's and epiphany, a profound change or simply me being whimsical. Maybe, I just needed a swift kick in the ass…….
Sunday, April 17, 2011
I am going on the record and saying the Iphone is the best invention of all time. I won't recite a laundry list of why it's such a magnificent invention. I would be stating what everyone in developed countries already know. I have heard the argument that people are less intelligent because of their smart phones because they are too dependent on the technology. I emphatically disagree. I have unlimited information at my finger tips instantaneously every minute of everyday. If I don't know what a word means, I look it up, If I need updated on current events, I merely hit a button. I traditionally have been naive to important worldly information. The Iphone actually makes it nearly impossible to be disconnected or oblivious to anything or anybody.
My problem is that I have an iphone addiction. I've become the asshole that is checking email mid-conversation with a co-worker. I can't drive on the highway without the temptation of sending a trivial text message. Social networking has made me dependent on impersonal human interaction. I feel validated by receiving a Facebook post, empowered by posting my location on FourSquare and elated by receiving a reply on Match.com.
Unfortunately, I seriously believe I need Iphone rehab. A thirty-day program that will help ween down the obsessive number of times I check the phone. I am unable to last thirty minutes in between checking emails. I know this because my mail is set to automatically push every thirty minutes. It's a rarity that I actually have a notification that I received an email because I've already intercepted the message. I need to enjoy a block of time during the weekend where I am not co-dependent on this technology. The Iphone is a wonderful tool, regrettably it has become an obsession.
Saturday, April 16, 2011
As I somberly sit at my Aunt's house watching a movie on my Macbook, drinking an amateur Gin Martini and obsessively checking social networks for messages, I wonder, has this venture in Charlotte been successful? Tonight is substantially similar to my first several weekends I spent here. Before the trips to Savannah and Charleston, before the trials, before the girlfriend, I sat here angry and aloof. Tonight I just sit complacent and eager for the next chapter.
I have this ridiculous fear that people will view my exit from Charlotte as an epic failure. Another hopeless sole leaving home only to crawl back. Why should I give a fuck, right? Why do I feel this inner need to vent through a blog? Is it some sort of insecurity? Do I need to make myself feel better? I really don't. I anticipate a smooth transition because I won't be returning as the same person I am no longer apathetic to life, resistant to change or aghast to the unknown.
Leaving Ohio to move to Charlotte did not change me. When I left, I saw moving in itself as being a daring step that most aren't willing to take. I expressed in previous blogs that you could never experience culture without leaving the confines of your home. I still believe this to an extent, but it's not the gospel. I am returning from Charlotte profoundly changed not because I moved but because of the steps I eventually took to mature. Moving elsewhere is not the answer to curing depression or humbling anxiety. It is like the quintessential college students that travels abroad for a semester, only to spend their time getting drunk at the local pub Just being there doesn't mean anything without making an effort. Venturing into the unknown, pushing your boundaries and a wiliness to view the world in the abstract will help you get closer. Yes, I believe this can be assisted by traveling but it's not the end all to becoming well balanced. I am still miles away from being a well rounded person and a few therapy sessions away from achieving serenity. I, however, can adamantly say that I am closer than I was three years ago.
Friday, April 15, 2011
I honestly believed that words would be flying off my keyboard after my break up. Unfortunately, the writing process hasn't been simplistic. I very well could be in disbelief that my relationship ended so abruptly. I also could have a case of writers rust or simply have nothing to say. Regardless, I am going to push through and get some words down and hopefully my ability to produce new interesting material will return. I write as a happier person today than when I stopped posting blogs over a year ago. My cynicism has dissipated and I am more buoyant and cultured. I am still whimsical and neurotic , but hey, I have taken some serious steps.
I originally entitled my blog "Overcoming Wednesday." This was a direct reference to overcoming depression. I still fancy the title, but more these days as a symbol of the struggle of overcoming life.
Despite the ill fate of my latest romance, I generally feel well. If this break up had happened when I was 23, 24 or 25, I would have a mental breakdown of Charlie Sheen proportions. I would metaphorically be stuck on Wednesday. I am a bit somber but mature enough to realize as the initial pain subsides, I will emerge as a stronger person.
I am unclear the boundaries I wish to cross with my blog this time around. For what it's worth, I am an officer of the court, an attorney at law. I very well may be prosecuting cases soon and I don't want to write blogs that put into question my stability or ability to carry out my profession. However, it is unlikely anyone will want to read a diplomatic, watered down, censored blog. Not to mention how counter productive that would be to my own growth. This is an issue I will have to work out of the next several weeks. Short for now. Hopefully, I get my writing mojo back soon!