From Hot Mess Express to Happily Ever After

Valentine’s Day is upon us, and I’m not the biggest fan of the corporate nature it has become. But, that doesn’t mean I can’t take a moment to appreciate the woman who has made my heart skip a beat.

After my divorce, I vowed to never get married again. I was in a vulnerable and lonely state of mind and the last thing I wanted was to open myself up to that level of vulnerability again. I did dabble in the dating world, but I made some rookie mistakes.

Firstly, I started dating too soon. I wasn’t over my divorce, and instead of finding meaningful relationships, I ended up just bleeding all over the people I tried to date. Not cool, Adam, not cool. Secondly, I had this idea in my head that I was unworthy of love, so I dated people who were not a good fit for me. Let’s just say it wasn’t a successful strategy.

But, then came “her.” I wasn’t expecting her at all. I was ready to swear off not only marriage, but dating altogether. Then, out of nowhere, she caught my attention. We had known each other for years, but during a late-night chat session, I found myself saying words before my filter could kick in and stop it. Thankfully, my filter failed because having her in my life is the best thing that has ever happened to me.

When we first started dating, I had nothing to my name but a cute puppy dog, nine boxes of books, two garbage bags of clothes, and a mattress on the floor. I was literally a hot mess. But, she chose me, and that’s all that mattered. She saw something in me, and despite having no money, no home, and no place that was mine, she chose me.

She has been by my side through everything. We have gone on adventures to many places, and she has stood by me through unemployment, family hardships, and the death of a friend. She’s even supported me through my bizarre career changes and strange ideas. And, when I didn’t deserve it, she forgave me and reminded me of my self-worth time and time again.

She is my person, my safe place, and the one who makes me believe that love is worth fighting for. Together or not at all, it’s us vs. the world from this day and forever.

So, on this Valentine’s Day, I want to give a shout-out to my lovely lady. Thank you for being mine and for choosing me even when I was a hot mess express. I promise to keep being the weird, quirky, and slightly chaotic partner you fell in love with. Here’s to many more adventures, laughs, and bad jokes together.

Why I Keep Seeking Approval from People Who Don’t Give Me the Time of Day: A Personal Journey

Why do I do this to myself? Why do I put myself through the emotional wringer of seeking the approval of someone who clearly couldn’t care less about me? I mean, seriously, why do we as human beings feel the need to seek validation from people who don’t give us even the smallest bit of effort? It’s a mystery that has plagued me for far too long.

So, I was recently hired to take photos of a product that I’ve been using since I was 15. I was thrilled about the opportunity, thinking that this would be the moment that this person would finally take notice of me and be proud of me. Yeah, I know, I should have known better. But did I listen to that little voice in my head? Of course not. I went ahead and sent this person a sample of my photos, hoping for a response, a reaction, anything. And what did I get? Absolutely nothing. Zilch. Nada. It was like I was sending my photos into the void.

But, you know what they say, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. So, here I am, once again, feeling like a complete moron for seeking the approval of someone who has shown me time and time again that they don’t care. It’s like I can’t help myself.

Why do we as human beings put so much importance on the opinions of people who don’t make an effort in our lives? It’s time to take a step back and ask ourselves what’s really going on here. Our worth and value as individuals come from within, not from the validation of others. So, let’s stop setting ourselves up for disappointment and start focusing on our own self-esteem.

Seeking approval from others is a natural part of being human, but it’s important to understand that our worth doesn’t depend on the validation of others. We must focus on our own self-esteem and recognize that we are valuable and deserving of love and respect, regardless of the opinions of others. And if all else fails, we can always fall back on sarcasm to help us get through the tough times. Because, let’s be real, sometimes sarcasm is the only thing that gets us through life.

A self-portrait – This painting was hanging in The Orlando Museum of Art and I was drawn to it.

The Wedding Weekend

This past weekend I had the opportunity to travel to Woodstock GA with my beautiful wife Leslie to participate in my baby cousin’s wedding. Hannah and her now-husband asked me to even perform the ceremony, and it was my great honor to do so.

This is the second wedding ceremony I have had the honor of performing, and I hope it won’t be the last. As I prepared for these two wedding ceremonies I thought of all the bad advice I have been given and heard over the years. So I wanted to take the bad advice I had received and turn it into good advice for the couples I was marrying. It occurred that some of this advice could benefit others, not just those rare couples who ask me to perform their ceremonies. So below I would like to share some good marriage advice.

  1. Go To Bed Angry – Nope, you all heard me correctly, I said go to bed angry.  In marriage disagreements and fights will happen.  It’s a fact of life, and when these small arguments become a reality, we have a choice to make.  We can either solider on tired, worn out, and arguing into the wee hours of the night, or we can respect our partner’s need for sleep, we can respect their boundaries, and give them time to process.  It has been my experience that things don’t always feel or seem as bleak in morning rays of light.
  2. The little things matter more than the big things. –The moments in my marriage with my partner, that mean the most to me is when she cooks me breakfast because she knows I am exhausted from work. When she agreed to watch all 11 seasons of Frasier bc she knew it was my comfort show. And when she was my safe place when I needed to cry.  Those were the moments that meant the most to me.  You both probably already have some of these small moments together…When you find those small moments…Cherish them.
  3. Communicate – This is the holy grail of all relationships.  Talk to your partner and tell them what you want, need, and feel. Too many people will say something like “If my partner truly cared for me, they would just know______” or they will say “If my partner really knew me they would just know ______” These kinds of thoughts poison relationships.  If you haven’t communicated something it is not your partner’s fault for not being psychic.  If you need something ask for it.  If you want something express it.  You should always feel safe communicating with your partner.

I don’t have very many photos of my parents. OK, that is a lie. I don’t have very many good photos of my parents, and that’s because my parents are very good at making faces whenever a camera is pointing at them. However, during the reception, I was walking around like a Gremlin taking photos, and I am so pleased to have gotten some really nice photos of my parents. I am even happier to know that I was the one to take and create those images.

I Would Like To Introduce My Sister

10801801_10152597162971032_2722940635550611968_nI would like to take a moment & introduce my sister Jennifer. She will be a contributing author here on Geeks Anonymous, and we are very excited to be starting a new project. For several years my sister and I have discussed and talked about writing a story together.

But, like so many things, there is a catch. We have no idea what the story will be, who the characters are, or how the story will play out and end. Why? Because both Jennifer and myself will be writing in such a way as to befuddle, flummox, and annoy the other person.

Still confused? Good! Our plan is working!

Seriously though, the way this story will work is we will each write one chapter at a time. Starting with Jennifer, and then with me. Once a chapter has been written, regardless of where the story goes, the other sibling must continue the story to the best of his or her ability.

I have a feeling that this story will have a lot of interesting plot twists for our impending characters.

So wish us luck, and I hope you all enjoy!

My Trip To Utah

IMG_20140201_104013Last Thursday I drove out to Utah.  I had some scheduled client meetings in Salt Lake City on Friday, so on Thursday I found myself at the rental car agency looking for a mighty steed to take me to Utah and back.

“Well, I have two options for you.” The man behind the counter said “I have a very sensible Kia with good gas mileage and pleaty of leg room, or you can try out the brand new 2014 Chevy Camero”  My heart skipped a beat as I considered my options.  Sadly I decided to be an adult and go with the Sensible Kia, and after I signed my soul away to Enterprise-Rent-A-Car I was off.  Now if you have never driven from Seattle to Slat Lake you might wonder what you will see on such a long drive.  Allow me to enlighten you, and feed your ever growing curiosity.  You will see nothing.  I’m not kidding.  There was nothing but open road, trucks, and fields as far as I could see for 98% of that drive.  Luckily I had book 11 of The Dresden Files on audio and by the time I had arrived in Slat Lake I had completed the novel, and was ready for the next.

My meetings in Salt Lake went well, and I was pleased to finally meet some clients who I have spoken to on the phone for months.  Hopefully we can continue working together far into the future.

IMG_20140201_135924Saturday my brother and I decided to go skiing at Snowbird Ski Resort.  Now James and I are not huge fans of Snowbird, but he had a gift certificate there, so we thought we should be responsible adults and not spend money where we didn’t have to.  So we headed up the canyon and arrived at Snowbird just as a large snow storm hit the mountain.  Since James and I were unfamiliar with Snowbird, and to manly to consult a map, we took the first lift to the top of the mountain.  At the top of the mountain the storm was even worse and visibility was around three feet, but James and I made our way down the mountain.  I can even say we made our way down the mountain well.  None of our runs would have made it on a Warren Miller film, but our skill held and we got to the bottom.


On our second run up the mountain we decided to take a different lift, and were joined on the lift chair by a very talkative and merry Russian.  He was drinking vodka out of a nice custom made flas

k with the old Soviet Union Secret Police emblem engraved on it.  As the chair ascended up the hill he talked to us, and pointed out all the areas of the trail with trees, rocks, cliffs, and called them “playgrounds”.  He encouraged us to try them out, but suggested we go slow because there are rocks and other items along the trail that could kill us.  He then asked us whe

re we had been skiing all day, and told him we just came down Peruvian.  He seemed impressed and showed us a map pointing to the top of Peruvian and asked “You skied that?”  That was when James and I realized that all the trails coming down from Peruvian are double black diamonds.  I couldn’t help but feel a little pride in myself, and my skill when I realized that I had not only made it down the mountain on double black diamond trails, but I had done it well.

Later that night James, Kindra, Jennifer, and myself decided to go play Laser Tag at a local spot near their apartment.  James and I reluctantly agreed, because we are Laser Tag snobs, and if its not Laser Quest we have a


hard time feeling excited.  But we went, and played Laser Tag with Phaser like packs (Those of you who have played Laser Tag at a Laser Quest are feeling my pain right now), and we had a good time.

The night was finished off by watching the movie Hook, which I had been wanting to watch for some time.

Overall it was a pleasant trip to Utah for both business and personal reasons, and I look forward to the next time I can visit.


Weekly Wishes #1

weekly-wishesI mentioned this on Facebook earlier this week, but one of the things I love about social media is being able to connect, and share ideas with creative people.  This week I was introduced to “linkups” through blogs by the wonderfully talented Emily Ryan. She shares in her post her wishes for this coming week. An idea inspired by Melyssa. These beautiful and creative women have inspired me to write my own “Weekly Wishes” list, and I have decided to make it a regular post here each Sunday.

  1. Listen to music for 10 minutes each day uninterrupted  – I have always loved music.  When I was a little boy I tried out for a solo singing edelweiss in my elementary schools music review.  I got the part.  When I got home to tell my parents, they were kind, but they didn’t believe me, and thought I was making it up.  My Mom tells me she was very surprised when I stepped up on stage and sang a beautiful song that put her in tears as she listened.  I have always loved music, but as an adult I have noticed I have not really been listening to music.  Sure I have it on in the car, or while I work, but how often do I just listen to music?  So this week I have a goal to listen to just 10 minutes of uninterrupted music each day.  No phone, computer, internet, TV, or any other distracting activity.  Just me and the music!
  2. Write 4 new blog posts – I really enjoy writing.  There is something soothing about writing, that frees your soul.  So this week I want to write 4 new posts.  They can be for this blog, or for Geek and Gamer Fitness.
  3. Read 70 pages of a good book – I recently read that too many books can be a distraction.  How many of us have read an amazing book cover to cover, put it down, and picked up the next book on our reading list?  When we find a book with thought provoking ideas we should read it over and over again, studying its words.  So this week its my intention to read 70 pages of only one book, and learn from it.
  4. Make progress on my new puzzle I bought a new puzzle in Seattle a few weeks ago.  Its beautiful and I want to glue it together and hang in on my office wall.  The problem is its a VERY hard puzzle, and I am not very good at puzzles.  So I want to just make progress on it.
  5. Write 1000 words in my Dragon Riders novel
  6. Paint my office a new color – I have been slowly organizing my home office again, and want to paint it a new color.  I am thinking a calming sea blue.
  7. Clean my car – Trust me when I say its filthy!  It really needs it!
  8. Go on three 30 minute walks with my wife – Terra and I went on a walk the other day, and it was wonderful.  No phones, computers, or other distractions.  Just me and her.  I really enjoyed talking to her, and holding her hand.  Plus we live in WA so I should take advantage of the nice weather before the rain returns.
  9. Stick to my diet 100% – This includes logging everything into myfitnesspal
  10. Complete 7 workouts this week each lasting 30 minutes or more

135. I Never Thought I would Be Glad A Weekend Was Over

Why you ask? Well its because I spent all weekend MOVING! Thats right Terra and I have given up Apartment life, and moved into a wonderful house. It took all weekend, but we finally got everything into the house. We still have to clean up and repair a few things in the old apartment, but that can be taken care of soon.

To all my friends who came over and helped me this weekend, THANK YOU SO MUCH!!! I could not have done it without you!

51. Alone

So Terra has scampered off to the east coast to spend some much needed time with her family. She has some weddings and a race she is going to run, and will be gone around 3 and a half weeks. While the idea of being aprat from her that long is not thrilling I am happy that she can spend time with family. I have a great deal planned while she is gone. I find staying busy keeps me from watching large amounts of sci-fi shows and movies. I want to finish reading a book, complete the desk I have been refinishing, and maybe get a few other goals crossed off the old check list. There is only one problem with this.

While I have these plans, getting them done will be difficult. The last two nights I have found myself being invited over for dinner at various friends homes. Each night I have had a wonderful time. Tonight my friend Kai and I advanced one more star in the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare game (Go Us!). Last night Jordan and I had a wonderful time killing Zombies in Call of Duty: World at War. (Go Us Again!) I really enjoy my friends out here. They are some of the best friends I have had in ages. Despite that I may need to say no to hanging out a few nights if I am going to accomplish my goals for the next three weeks. Hmmm what to do, what to do…..

49. Music

As I was looking over my friends facebook status updates today my friend Nikki posted a link to Robin Hood: PoT sound track. It brought back several memories. Music was always important in my family, and we listened to a varied range of different kinds of music. My Dad loved classical music, and instrumental movie soundtracks. I can remember good memories of listening to Out of Africa, The Rocketeer, Jurrassic Park, Robin Hood: PoT, and many many more.

It took me a long time to find my musical taste. I always had a love of instumental music, and still do to this day. For a short time I had a great love of country music, but non of the boys my age listened to country, and they teased me about it a lot. So after all the teasing I could take I finally stopped listening. Today I still like certain country music, but I rarley listen to it with others around. Maybe its still some left over feelings from being teased as a kid, but I prefer my country in the pricacy of my own car.

After my country phase I started listening to some of the great Braodway classics. Shows like Phantom of the Opera, and Les Mis. I remember being blow away by the power the songs and music had, and was so eager to share it with my friends. I was a little surprised when once again I got strange looks and a few teasing remarks. A few short years later I found myself at Northwest School of the Arts, and for the first time in my life I was surrounded by other kids who liked the same music as I did. To be honest I didnt think anyone else liked what I did, and was VERY happy to find I was wrong. What was even better is I was introduced to music and shows that I had never heard before, like Cats, Guys and Dolls, The Baccinnal (sp?), Rent, and others.

Around my sophmore year in high school I was introduced to 80’s hair band rock, and let me tell you how awesome I fell for that! Me and my two best friends Donna and Markham loved listening to bands like Poison, White Snake, White Lion, Winger, and more. To this day I love listening to a good hair metal song (much to the dismay of my wife).

Recntly and for no other reason then a few songs popped up on my Pandora radio I have started to like listening to blues music. I think its the guitar instumental parts. I dont really care for the singing, but I do love the guitar.

Over the years my music taste has become sort of a melting pot of different types of music. However there is one type of music that I can not stand. One paticular who has the ability to drive me to commit murder. Lady Ga Ga Must Die!!!!!

46. Out Sick

Been sick since Sunday, and much to my dismay I am still sick. I know this because I sound awful, am coughing every other word, and my co-workers are keeping a healthy distance from me. Good for them! In the mean time please check out my Brother-in-Law Matts new podcast.