I am calling “bullshit” on a lot of stuff……

Posted in Friendship, Uncategorized on May 2, 2010 by inyourview

I have a friend who has gone AWOL, and I can’t figure out why.  Nothing makes sense in this situation.  We had a very respectful relationship.  There was a big age difference so it was more like a father/daughter relationship in many ways, but we were friends.  We discussed business, I acted as a mentor in some conversations, and the student in many others.  It really was a special relationship.  I enjoyed her company.  I would take her out to eat and learn what was going on in her life.

We discussed relationships.  She knew my wife and now she knows my ex-wife.  I knew her ex-husband, and when they broke up, I discussed this change with both of them.  I felt like my world was affected by their life change as well.  She and I continued being friends and we spent a lot of time at the local Mexican restaurant.  Our visits were so intense with conversation that we closed down whatever restaurant we chose to visit in. 

I had a great deal of respect for her abilities in her chosen profession, but especially in her writing.  She is an awesome young woman that has seen what she wanted and then went for it.  She has an amazing position and an uncanny understanding of that position.   I was as proud of her as if she was my own daughter.  But her real talent, in my mind, was/is her unbelievable talent to write.  Her perspective is beyond my comprehension.  Her life experiences have come together in a way that it has made her a blogger of distinction with a great following of new friends and people that appreciate her perspective and ability to translate that into the written word.

What she does not have yet, apparently, is the perspective beyond herself.  She is concerned only with the world as it affects her, and does not have a grasp on what her actions do to others.  I read her blogs and understand her life so clearly, as she writes beautifully.  However, many of the things she demands from her other friends and relationships, she is not willing to give to those that love her and want to be in her life.  I think it is sad, because she is losing the joy of giving, of being a friend, and of making a difference.  I know this because I needed her ear, her empathies, her perspective of a specific problem that I was going through, the comfort of her friendship.  I didn’t get it back.

Now I understand the need to build your self esteem, to prove worth of yourself again, to yourself and to people around you.  Especially after a trauma such as divorce.  It is important to build your self image back so that you can be productive in all your relationships.  What I don’t understand is the concept of disposable friendships.  The friend that you keep for as long as things are going your way, or that they are useful to your well being.

I have done something to be disposable.  I am clueless.  One evening we are texting, making plans to get together, and the next, phone calls are not being returned, text messages are not answered, and there has been a shut off of the friendship faucet.  It was a loss.  I have mourned.

Friendship to me is something deep.  It is the familiarity with a person, understanding their attributes, good and bad.  I try to pick my friends carefully, because they will be with me forever.  I don’t throw them away.  I have many friends that even though we don’t see each other often, we pick up where we left off and we treasure our memories and certainly look to make new ones.  But I always know they are there for me, and they have the same assurance.

So I am calling “bullshit” on a lot of stuff.  I think to maintain respect in a relationship, you have to demand it, but you also have to give it.  If you want to find quality relationships, you have to put forth the effort, not just take the effort of others.  If one is going to end a relationship, one should at least be big enough to explain why that is being done.

I don’t know what I have done, but I do know that I once had a friend that I respected and loved.  And now that is gone.  I am still here for that friend, should she ever decide that she wants our friendship.  I will be here catching a free fall, or here to assist when needed, as I don’t make disposable friends.


Life is so full of unfair turns and twisted paths….

Posted in Uncategorized on February 1, 2010 by inyourview

I live my life honestly.  I love my friends.  I show them that I do.  I tell them that I love them and try to show that in the way that I interact with them.

I am continuously disappointed in the way that I am able to give to many of my friends and rarely get anything back.  I call and check up on them, I offer to help them, I take them out to eat, and try to show my appreciation for them.  But, almost across the board I rarely get anything back.  I never have anyone call me just to see if I am ok.  I live a very solitary life.  I don’t necessarily mind that, I like myself.  But to go through life and not make an impact in other people’s lives deep enough that when you are obviously hurting, or going through a rough time, that they don’t check on you, or call to chat, or do something totally unexpected to let you know that you have created impressions in life, is something that hurts very deeply.

I am not one that worries about my own feelings too often.  I am not a martyr, I am not without my ways, but I do try to put others first in most situations and have only learned, in the last bit, that being selfish sometimes is the healthier way to go.  At least that is the lesson that I am learning from my friends.

I am still in a battle with my bank.  They are going to take my house.  The pressure of that is so great that I can barely breathe sometimes from the weight of it all.  I love my house, but it is not that that’s keeping me from wanting to lose it.  It is the house I raised my children in, it is a house I designed and chose the perfect lot with the perfect view to spend my retirement years in, it is the house that would have housed my elderly mother when it was time for her to not live alone. 

I don’t want to lose my house.  But if I must sell it, it would be fun if a group of friends would come and help me get my house in a saleable condition.  I can’t even get my kids to do that.

I have had a couple of marriages that did not work out.  One, my wife was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder, and there was nothing I could do to help her.  I tried desperately, but the beauty of the marriage and our relationship had slowly dissipated for her into a veil of deceit, mistrust, and paranoia.  I tried to bring her back, but deceit and deception had an ally in our marriage counselor (who was a minister) and he wanted her for himself.  He had a relationship with my wife while we were in counseling.  Let me make that perfectly clear. HE WAS FUCKING MY WIFE WHILE GIVING THE IMPRESSION THAT HE WAS TRYING TO SAVE OUR MARRIAGE.  It was a blow I was not able to fully recover from. 

When I was ready to remarry I found someone fun and different in many ways from my first wife.  I was looking forward to a new life and new adventures.  But I went from wading through years of blissful lack of understanding about the condition my relationship was in, to full-out CRAZY right out of the shoot.  When the vows completed, and the guests went home, she immediately, I mean immediately, showed her stripes.  She hated my kids, she wasn’t a good mother to hers, and she was a gold digger that wasn’t in the marriage, but for the ability to take my home from me.  Thank goodness it had been protected by a prenuptial agreement

My business has been sorely affected by the economy and will be for a long time.  I am a real estate broker and that has been my profession for so long that other options for making a living have long since disappeared.

I have been single for almost two years.  I am very lonely.  The responsibility of making sure my kids are all right, that my mother is healthy and self-sufficient, and that my business is on track is sometimes overwhelming.  I sit at home most nights, alone, working, or trying to get some social life by playing Facebook Scrabble.  I never hear from my friends.   Don’t even have many to call to ask out to eat or go to their house to hang out, or have them come to mine to watch a movie or anything.  Friends from church have seen me lately and tell me that they miss me and want me to come back.  I am very frank with them and tell them I am selfishly disappointed that no one has called me from the church.  My good friends from church still have not called.

Financially I am strapped.  Life is not the best it has been.

I still find that I have to keep on.  It will not get better worrying about it.  I am a doer.  I like to produce.  I am an optimist and I guess I always think that big deal is going to come through.  I am not one to sit around and feel sorry for myself, so this rant is more observation than true concern. 

I won’t lie, it would be very nice to know that sometimes I will get a call from a friend, or that the one that promises to call the next day will keep their word, or that someone cares about me.  I am very afraid that when it is my time to leave this world that there will be more empty seats in the church than full ones, to say goodbye.  Not where I thought I would be at this age, but life has been full of surprises.

I should have been born a cowboy…

Posted in Uncategorized on May 16, 2009 by inyourview

I am not the smartest guy in the world,  but I am smart enough to recognize that I was born in a time that is about 100 years later than I should have been.

The world does not work well for someone that has my mentality and personality make up.  I love the out of doors, love to hike, camp, and ride horses.  I am very independent and not a lot of patience with bullshit, which may be one of the reasons that I have been through a few marriages.  I am a perfectionist in my work and other aspects of my life and tolerate, generally poorly, the lack of striving from other people.  I don’t want to bother anyone about it, but it really gets under my skin to a point that I cannot react positively to the antics.  It wastes time and delays the final outcome, which in many instances, is inevitable anyway.

All  that to say this.  I find in my last marriage that I had some good times outside the bullshit.  When I look back, the best times, in my life, were around the discovery of my love for the horses.  I have always enjoyed being around them, but to learn how to groom, to saddle up and ride, to recognize when one of them is not feeling well, to jump a log in the trail, to travel twenty miles away from home or camp with a picnic lunch packed in the saddlebags, all are experiences that framed my most enjoyable life around the horses.  I can thank the last Mrs. B. for that exposure to the life that I always wanted.

It is the reaction of the horses to me that has really educated me and has allowed me to learn not only about them, but about myself too.  They have taught me about leadership.  They have taught me to see them for what they are and what their needs are and how to take care of them.  I have become the leader of the herd.  I find this extremely interesting and something that I can take into my work. 

Why would horses be looking to me for any leadership?  I don’t have enough knowledge to be the leader.  But I guess if you have some basic leadership skills and maintain a strong presence, that those traits go a long way.  I think the horses are hungry for leadership and for someone to take control.  The same way a child feels more comfortable knowing boundaries, the horses need boundaries and someone to maintain those boundaries. 

I don’t think it is much different in life and particularly in the work environment.  I think that people are looking for leadership desperately.  I think that every environment is looking for someone to step up and become the “leader of the herd”.  Without someone willing to take that position, there is chaos or at least a muddled mess.  There needs to be accountability, there needs to be someone that keeps things moving in the direction that is productive.  It is hard to manage by committee.  Someone has to be responsible.

I am getting away from my experiences of the horses, and I apologize, but I have learned so much from them.  I have enjoyed my time with them in a way that is difficult to convey, unless you have been there.  I love trailriding with them and seeing things that I would never see without the ability to cover so much territory.  What a feeling of freedom.  What a way to get back to basics, and to make a passage back into time.  I love the way if feels to pack the saddlebags with a thermos of hot soup, sandwiches, and cold drinks then going out on a cold, frosty morning to parts unknown for an adventure.  Every trail I have ever been on has provided just that.  What a great way to spend the day.  Not only are the horses professors of life to me, they provide so much pleasure.  More to come……

“The man on top of the mountain didn’t fall there.” Anonymous—

Posted in Uncategorized on March 20, 2009 by inyourview

I am so distressed at the attitude of my kids, the people at work, wanna be celebrities, all looking for the easy way to the top.  The fact of the matter is, no one succeeds without hard work.  You may fall into an opportunity, but to take advantage of it, you must put forth EFFORT!  I live in a world of whiners.  I have been doing what I do for a long time.  Thirty years, to be exact.  Well, if I am going to be exact, probably more like 28 years.  However, a lot longer than I want to remember.  In that period, I have been educated, with classes and schools, as well as just plain old experience.  I was “lucky” enough to work for a company that exposed me to a lifetime of experience in my field in about 10 years.  It was an awesome training ground.  Since then, I have spent the last twenty years, sharing my knowledge with clients and co-workers, educating them in the business that I have chosen.  I continually find clients and co-workers, new to the arena, thinking they know everything about this business.  Many times, I get called in later to clean up a mess.  It is frustrating, at best, and wasteful at worst.

 Because I have worked hard to be at the top of my field, I was recently asked to be on an international committee with other experts to form a division to service others like me.  It was a very rewarding experience.  I hope that I continue on that committee and contribute to that cause.

 I feel we are a nation of complaining, under educated (by practical experience) individuals that want everything good to happen to them without being willing to walk through some fire for better understanding.  It frustrates me.  I was talking to a young co-worker the other day, when he saw me working on a court case where I had been called as an expert witness. 

 “What are you doing?” 

“I have been called as an expert witness and I am working on my case, doing research so I don’t embarrass myself.”

“Do they pay you to do that?”

“Yes, there is a fee involved.  I charge $150 an hour.”

“That is a lot of money, that is what I want to do.  I am going to call some attorney friends and let them know I am available.”

“I think, son, that it will probably be helpful to them if you concentrate on one area so that you are actually an expert in some particular field.”

“Oh, it can’t be that hard, I will just put my name out there and then worry about the specific case.”

The shortcuts don’t work that well, but if he doesn’t mind finding that out in front of the judge and jury, I applaud his spirit.  I think he will find he needs to work to get up the mountain, though.  We will see.


Posted in Friendship, sex on March 17, 2009 by inyourview

How is it that the enduring relationships are destined to be enjoyed from a distance.  I suppose that it somehow has to do with not knowing each other to the same level as when you live with each other 24/7.  I had the opportunity to see a love recently, that I had not had the chance to sit and visit with for probably 15 years.   Oh, we had seen each other, but had not had the time to visit with just the two of us.  Below is the synopsis of that meeting…….

I could not wait to see her alone and to talk to her about everything. We had a lot of catching up to do. The murmur of the other restaurant patrons seemed to disappear when she walked in the door. No sounds, just a silent picture. Backlit by the bright noon sun, she was a striking silhouette, tall, slim, regal. The view, from where I sat in a front booth, was resplendent.

My relationship with this woman was complicated. I had known her for a long time. I was friends with her husband. I respected both of them, but there was something special between the two of us. I am not sure either one of us could ever explain it to an outside party. But she and I knew it. It had rarely been verbalized between the two of us, but we felt it and lived with it.

Beginning twenty-two years ago, it revealed itself behind a telescope in her front yard. My wife and her husband were inside the house practicing a song, him singing, my wife playing the piano. She and I had stepped into the front yard to look at some stars, maybe spot some planets, with her husband’s new telescope. She looked through the telescope and made mention that she was cool, from the fall evening. Without hesitation, but to this day not understanding why I did it, involuntarily, I wrapped my arms around her, crossed them underneath her breasts, and held her, hoping to warm her. The cool air made her body seem warmer. I relished the moment. She surprised me by slowly moving into me, laying her head backwards onto my shoulder, and resting her arms on mine. For only a brief instant we molded to each other. No kiss, no inappropriate touching, nothing…just two people in a time that was forever emblazoned in my mind as one of those superlatives in my life. It only lasted a minute, and we broke the embrace, thinking that surely the neighborhood could see the fireworks and sparks that we knew were shooting all around us.

The feelings were real; we discussed them several times, in person and on the phone, and established between each other, that they were genuine and mutual. We had a lot to lose, including self respect, as we both tried to live lives that were models of right. We could not pursue, but there was no denying it was present.

If there was a city that I would compare her to, it would have to be my favorite grand, southern city. For the purposes of this writing, I will refer to her as Savannah. Like the extraordinary city, the pleasure of the woman is in the details. On first vision, the city is so organized and attractive with its town squares, wrought iron fences, and formal gardens, that it can take your breath away. But there are parts of the city with lots of diversity and adventure, less structured. That is the way I have come to know, Savannah, the woman. She is so attractive and lady-like, always appropriate, but there is another side of her that she is slow to reveal, but it is always adventurous, diverse and complex. She is the one that secretly wants to explore those things that others would never suspect. I admire that about her.

Our relationship was more cerebral than any relationship in which I had ever found myself. I enjoyed her mind and how she expressed herself. She was clearly the most intellectual woman to whom I had been attracted. I, for many years, had loved to hear her views on life, religion, and relationships. Savannah’s point of view was always stimulating and important to me. Sometimes I think that contributed to her attraction to me. She liked that I was interested in her mind. But, even though she may feign shock, she would also be secretly excited that I found her sexually attractive.

Savannah sat across from me, her smile radiated from the booth and throughout the room. I caught others looking at her also and it made me proud to be there, in that moment. The uncomfortable small talk included family, work, church, friends, and our lives and the turns they had taken. The conversation was awkward, not from the content, nor springing from our comfort levels with each other, but was uneasy because we knew we only had an hour to say what needed to be said, and with every word that passed, we knew we were closer to the conversation that we had postponed and detoured around for over twenty years. We both knew things were waiting to be said.

Finally, with a deep inner breath, I brought up the relationship. Neither of us denied its existence. Both knew it could not be pursued. In a way, it was both comforting and satisfying, just knowing it was there and it being able to be discussed, taking appropriate course, yet savoring its presence. To be able to acknowledge and go forward was reward enough. Well, and to be able to admire her without interruption, was pretty good too.

We were both relieved to be able to express our thoughts. I think that it was good to have a mutual understanding of where we were and a renewed resolve to not complicate the relationship. We were the best of friends, trusting each other with a serious secret. We rose to leave, hugged each other close for a moment, I whispered to her, “I will always love you.” She held me tighter, acknowledged my comment, pulled back, and looking me in the eye said, “I love you, too”. We separated; I took care of the tip, and watched briefly as she left the building.

I walked slowly behind her, as we moved to the cars patiently waiting for our return. I admired the view and savored the moment. I was happy that I had seen her, but glad nothing regrettable had come from it. 

Did I mention she was hot?

What is going on……..

Posted in Family, Work on March 3, 2009 by inyourview

I am unsettled today, not sure why.  I have been offended by others today with no real reason.  At least none that should have been issues.  I am generally a gentle spirit, not wanting to push anyone, but at the same time a hard charger in my business.  I am beginning to think that my financial stress is taking me to other places that I do not want to go; impatience, intolerance, feelings of unstableness, and seeing incompetence.  I am usually very tolerant, extremely patient with others and life, I can be the most stable person I know (to the point of being boring)  and see the good in almost everyone.  Such is not the case today.  I think the financial thing has created a sense of urgency to my life that I hate.  That contributes to the uncomfortable place in which I find myself.  I have an apppointment to talk to the bank about my options (my house is being foreclosed upon), I received a check today from a little deal, but by the time I paid my assistant, my office bill, and a computer guy, I was in the red again.  I work almost 24/7 and cannot get ahead in this economy.  Coming off of a bad marriage, and nearly finished divorce, was not a great way to start this recession for me anyway. 

So what if I lose my house.  It is not the house, although I would really hate to move.  It is the thousands of dollars of equity,  that would give me a good start somewhere else, that I absolutely don’t want to lose.  Life throws us curves, and there is some comfort that I am not alone in this economy.  My income is directly dependent on the banking industry and that has gone to pot.  And to top it all off, the government, our representation, is so intent on creating pork, that they have lost sight of who actually needs to bring home the bacon.  I am pissed with a capital P.  Can’t we learn from history what does not work?  Both sides of the isle are being so stupid and self centered that nothing is being accomplished for the small business person, the factory worker, the people trying to make ends meet unsuccessfully.  I have broken my last $100 bill and that is all I have.  I am pretty resourceful but no quick fixes up my sleeve, until this passes.  I am frustrated as hell, but don’t know what to do other than keep trying to step forward.  I was at this conference last week and what one of the speakers said was, “The way to stay alive is to keep breathing”.  Pretty profound, huh!  I don’t know anything else to do but to “keep breathing”.  I must continue to take those steps that will get me a little closer to my ultimate goals and hope that I can ride this out.  My breathing is getting a little gaspy though!

“Not all who wander are lost.” J.R.Tolkien

Posted in Leisure on February 17, 2009 by inyourview

“Nomadic people are wanderers. The word nomad comes from the Greek nomados, which means ‘wandering around in search of fresh pasture'”

As Tolkien said, some who wander, do so with purpose.  I enjoy wandering aimlessly.  Those times are usually restricted to  Sunday afternoon drives and enjoying the scenery and the journey, not really concerned with the destination so much.  It is in these times that, in a relaxed way, I can learn more about the place I live, going down the unbeaten paths of my world and exploring.  I suspect that Daniel Boone and Davey Crockett were of this type of wanderer at times, seeing where this river goes, or where it originates.  I would guess that this country would look much different if we did not have those types of wanderers.

We have those that have wandered aimlessly with purpose, finding themselves along the way.  Many college kids, after they have worked so hard to get their degree, do this to find themselves, to give their life direction before they are saddled with responsibilities that will ride them for years to come.  It helps to get them focused on what they want to do with the rest of their lives perhaps, or maybe it is an excuse to postpone the inevitable, work.  I tend to believe the latter, a reason draped in uncertainty, fear, or just plain don’t want to’s. 

I wish I had had the ability to put off work.  I have been working since I was fourteen, after school, full time during the summers.  I have never had that break, since that time, in my routine.  I resent that to some degree.  I think I have earned the right to wander some.  Unfortunately, in this economy that is not an option.  Continue to grind away, trying to stay ahead.  However, if the bank comes and gets the house because I cannot make sales in this economy, I may actually get my chance to wander.  Long way around to get what I wanted in the first place, isn’t it? 

I would love to just ride off into the sunset leaving all the responsibilities of the day, on the bank’s new doorstep.  My wanderings would take a different turn than most perhaps.  I would love to go across country, as inexpensively as possible, using my wits and ability to work in short term jobs to carry me through this journey.  I have long wanted to try this.  Not because I couldn’t afford to go across country, but I want to do this in a way that it creates memories rich with experience that one is not likely to get on the interstate.  Where would I sleep?  How would I eat?  Would I work at some locations along the way?  These are all questions that I have thought about for years.  It would be fun, for once, to go off on a trip without having every stop and accommodations planned and reserved.  To interact with locals in trying to learn more about the place where you decided to pull off the road for the night, or the week, or maybe the month, if the mood struck.

Sleeping seems to bring troublesome thoughts.  One wants to be safe, so campgrounds can be one answer, or sleeping in your car if you feel safe.  One place to feel safe in your car if you are discreet is the emergency room parking lot, or the parking lot of a busy police station.  Always personnel coming and going to keep an eye out for anyone attempting to break into your vehicle.  I wondered why anyone would stay in their cold car when you can go into the hospital waiting room.  If the hospital is large enough, no one will pay you any attention.  In fact, they will go out of their way to not make eye contact with you.  However, if you look sad enough, while you are watching your favorite show on television (which by the way I would not have in my car), a nice nurse will bring you a pillow and blanket while you are waiting on your loved one.  This is particularly the case, most often in the surgery waiting rooms or the intensive care waiting rooms.  This can be dangerous, as they may get a little personal and want to know who you are waiting for as well.  I prefer, in my thoughts (understand I have never done this, except when I was legitimately waiting for someone), to remain anonymous.  Not exactly the Hilton, but warm and TV and vending machines, or even the cafeteria with reasonably priced food.

I would love to put this into practice one day and see if I could pull it off.  Showers are a bit of trouble for me, as I have to be clean.  I have camped for several days and have gotten by, but having a hot shower, or even a cold bath would be beneficial and I haven’t really figured this one out yet.

I am sure that I could find a job, washing dishes, working on a ranch, helping with odd jobs somewhere along the way.  Restaurants would be a good place to work to earn for the next leg of the trip, as they will feed you.  But I am not really talented in much of anything except what I am doing presently.  That would be a challenge, but one that I would not stress over.

It would be interesting to try this.  My great grandmother, told me many times, at my request, about the trip she took from Tennessee to north Florida in a covered wagon.  It took her and her family three months.  A trip we take in a day or less took them three months!  They were not exactly wandering aimlessly, but during the weeks that they had to stop and work to get enough money to travel for another couple of weeks, they got to know the area that they stopped at, the people, and their lives were richer for it. 

We have gotten too fast to build experiences like that.  We don’t know our next door neighbors often times.  With email, at work we are pressed to make decisions or create product quickly and without the thought that should go into either.  We have lost relationships with people at places we shop or work.  Life is too fast many times.  We have to go with the flow, but one can dream of what wandering would be like with no time pressures. 

“Could you hand me that magazine, please ma’am?”