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Speaking of X's
Written by: Darksider
4:49 AM - March 6, 2010

Being single for so long has left me, many times, reflecting on my X's and how things worked out with each of them. My first X I never heard of again after the first time I moved to New Jersey. Last time I did see her, she had become a heavy smoker and pot head. Polar opposite of when we were together. No idea what happened to her after that.

Each of them has their story with me and then without me. Of all the girls I have dated, only one is on speaking terms with me anymore, and that's barely in passing on facebook. The rest have gone off, this way or that. Some of them got married and started their families and all that. One or two actually don't like me, which I find a bit disturbing, but what are ya gunna do?

Now, I don't sit around and play the "what if" game, nor do I wrack myself for "the one who got away" (of all of them, there is definitely one that did), but I do sit around reflecting on their influences on me as a man, a person, and as a boyfriend. Each of them had their own personalities, qualities and quirks, and in turn, those personalities, qualities and quirks have rubbed off on me in some ways. I think back on how this one treated me right or how this one was the most compatible. I had the best adventures with that one, and that one over there was the one my family wanted me to be with. In each case I can think of a strong positive influence I was given and in each case I can think of something wonderful about them (in some cases quite a few wonderful things).

In my pondering and reflections I often wonder what influence I've had on them. Granted break ups leave scars, and people like to block out or push away the things that hurt them, but being that we were human beings interacting with each other at the most personal levels leaves it's mark on the mind and soul. Even the ones who hate me must still have some positive influence from me as part of who they are now. I wonder what that influence is for each of them. That's one of those things that shall forever remain unknown.

Ex's and Music
Written by: Darksider
10:51 PM - March 5, 2010

Back when I was in high school, I flew out to New Jersey for the summer to stay with my dad. It was summer of 88. Great time. Made friends with Rose and her boyfriend, her best friend Kathy and her douchebag boyfriend. Monsters of Rock, Seaside Heights (that's The Jersey Shore for those who don't know) for the week (and the hot girl with the treasure trail hehehe). Drinkin at The American Legion with the gang (and getting my first drunk on).

The one thing I remember the most about that summer was Kathy Neil. Hanging out at Rose's house for most of the summer was awesome in itself. It was great having friends in NJ, but it was even better that they were metal heads. Back then was much like it is today. Thrash kids hated hair bands just like death metal kids hate nu-metal bands. The difference was, back then metal was the bee's knees. It was the king shit of shits. The two greatest metal scenes in the country were Los Angeles and New Jersey. It was powerful as hell and everyone had something they liked. The best part was, some of us liked all kinds of metal, and that's why Kathy liked me. Her douche bag boyfriend was not just a hater, but an angry dick. He'd pick fights with people who liked anything but thrash, just to show he was "metal" (yes that attitude started back then and carries on today). When Rose and Kathy found out that we (my brother and I), liked all the same bands that they did, it was ON! Kathy and I got along really well and eventually ended up getting together. As it is with summer loves, that ended rather abruptly when I had to fly back to San Diego. That was my first girl hurt. What's worse is, that was the first time a song reminded me of a girl.

Summer was over, school back in. I was back with my friends in San Diego hanging out. Scott and Eva were dating and we were all in her car driving back from lunch. Eva puts on Def Leppard and the song Love Bites comes on. As soon as the song came on, I got all sad missing my Kathy. It totally reminded me of the summer fun and the nice times Kathy and I had together. So naturally, I got sad and closed up, but my friends wanted to know what was up. I didn't want to tell them and they made a big ta-do about it. I ended up bailing and going to class by myself. From that day on, I always kept my music and my relationships separate. Never had "our song" and never made "tapes" for girls. Never dedicated songs to girls and never looked to songs to feel when it came to break-ups and loves and what-not. Reason being is, I love my music more than anything (even more than Star Wars), and I knew that for a long time, regardless of how I felt about any girls, I knew that there was always the chance that it wouldn't work out. Once that happened, any songs that were associated with said girl would be instantly black-listed, as being too painful to listen to. Screw that! I love my music and don't want any of my songs getting tainted by darkness and sadness.

That lasted a good long time. I never had songs with any of the girls I've dated or loved. I always managed to keep my music separate and am very happy about that. I did, however, fail at keeping my music separate from some stressful events that I've gone through, so now as much as I love Soilwork, I can't listen to my favorite CDs by them often because it reminds me of those stressful times. Working on bringing that back, as Soilwork is one of my all time favorite bands.

Anyway, this brings me to my latest experiences with music and relationships. Last year was an interesting year for me. I had a doozy of a long distance thing, and it totally imploded. That is what it is, but what's different about it is, in my failure to separate song from matters of the heart, I have a few songs that remind me of that time. Not in the "oh Love BItes reminds me of Kathy *tears*" way, but in the "holy shit, that song completely describes what I did during that time", and "that song describes my thoughts about that bullshit that went on during that time". I have lyrics that I quote all the time, and verses that are word for word spot on about that whole event. I have songs that, where they don't mean the same thing, totally fit the feel of the whole debacle. And then there are songs that describe me, knowing damn well what I was getting into, but going through it anyway. Best part is, none of these songs are painful to hear. Quite the contrary, I listen to them all the time. Sometimes they bring tears, and sometimes they empower me, and other times they just bring me joy by singing them.

The power of music is almost as strong as the power of human emotion. In some ways, it's more powerful, since it can invoke said emotions in us. It is no wonder that music is such an important part of who I am. Looking back on all the girls I've had in my life, I'm glad to say that while we enjoyed so much together, I've done a damn good job of not letting the relationships take music away from me. This may sound selfish and mean, but after reading this, you're already sitting there thinking back on all the songs that you don't like anymore or can't listen to because they remind you of someone you're not with anymore. Selfish, maybe, but I don't lose any of my most precious music. Music is life. :D

Angels and Demons
Written by: Darksider
5:54 AM - February 28, 2010

I just finished watching Angels and Demons. Like The DaVinci Code, I thought the movie did not do justice to the entire adventure. The feeling the book gave was a far stronger sense of urgency and adventure. In both movies, the struggle to solve the puzzles was more elaborate, and the mysteries kept you going. Angels and Demons kept you going to the end, where it is all spelled out. The DaVinci Code was over once you reached the famous climactic revelation. After that, it was predictable and boring.

Tom Hanks is about my favorite actor ever, and he did well as Robert Langden, altho as I read the books, I just didn't see him as that character. Now that I've seen Angels and Demons, I think he was good for the part. I'll have to read both books again and see if I have him or someone else in mind.

As for the themes of the books, The Vatican is portrayed as power hungry and organized. I have always said that The Vatican is the largest mafia in the world, and these stories just illuminate (nice choice of word) that fact.

As is the case with most movies, I am glad I read the books first and allowed my brain to write it own movie for each story. My mental theater always does a better job than Hollywood, even though I can't do special effects. :D

Driving Home From Work
Written by: Darksider
2:09 AM - February 26, 2010

*Originally written Tuesday, April 03, 2007 7:05 PM

**One of my all time favorite Jamie stories. :D

I get in my car to leave work and the radio blasts out metal. Chimaira doing a KICK ASS cover of Matellica's - Disposable Heros. Man, the music was friggin SPOT ON! I couldn't believe how good it sounded. The vocals were Chimaira style, so if you don't like an angry growl, you wouldn't like it.

So I'm driving home and a few more good songs come on. SWEET, I'm in a kick ass mood anyway, because it's Spring and I'm horny and girls are everywhere wearing less clothes because the weather is absolutely beautiful! Life is good.

My ride around the lakes is OK, making good progress despite the slow guy from New York is in front of me. I don't care, it's a beautiful day and I'm in a great mood, and have kick ass metal BLASTING from my truck. So going up Skyline Drive in Ringwood (thats this big stupid mountain that you have to go up an over to get to the freeway), All That Remains comes on.. YES!!!!! I LOVE this song! So I start singin and screaming and waving metal fists in the air...

"and I hear... This calling... still you don't seem so far at all... and i hear... this calling

*growls out angry vocals with total angry metal face and fist on stearing wheel*

"and I hear... This calling... still you don't seem so far at all... and i hear this calling

I'm loving it. almost to the top of skyline drive now...

"and I hear... This calling... still you don't seem so far at all... and i hear... this calling

Song fades and some other song comes on. Now I'm not really paying attention to the next song, cause my thoughts are on something else. maybe WoW, who knows.

All of the sudden, the slow guy from New York slows down VERY abruptly and pulls over to the right. He's still rolling forward, but acting retarded. SO I break hard and slide over to the left a bit, but don't pass. Then the guy edges over even more to the right and slows more. So I drop it to second yelling, "What the fuck is wrong with this asshole?"

As I passed him, he was fucking IRATE!!! He was flipping me off and yelling, "FUCK YOU!" with everything in him... at ME!!!

What the hell did I do? Well, I just passed him and left. Now mind you, It's very fortunate there were no oncoming cars, because that part of Skyline is narrow and only two lanes. no passing.

Anyway, I laugh all the way down the hill wondering why he flipped. Then it dawned on me. This guy is driving slow. he can see me not on his bumper, but behind him. He can see in my window. He can TOTALLY see my angry face screaming at him waving my fist and punching the wheel... all the way up the hill behind him.

OMG I fucking died. He flipped cause he thought I was road raging on him and wanted to kick my ass for it. He road raged on me cause I was SINGING! lmao I literally laughed all the way home (another 20 minutes).

Asshole of the day goes to the angry bully driver for assuming that I was mad at him, moreover, reacting in such an aggressive and unsafe way on a twisty turn mountain road.

Written by: Darksider
2:03 AM - February 26, 2010

*Originally written 12/10/05 09:58 pm

O.K. Today was an anomaly. In a good way, mind you. I decided to go out for food at about 6:30 PM on Saturday, only 2 weeks from Christmas, in Bergen County, New Jersey. (setting up the scene for ya there)

I leave my house and there's nobody blocking the driveway. Sweet!
I get to the corner and make the light. Sweet!
I make the next light and get down to the bend by the gas station. first in line at the light. Sweet!
I make it around Two Bridges Road, and traffic is backed up all the way around the bend... in the LEFT lane. Not one car in my lane. Sweet!
Round the bend at the other gas station and there are no cars in MY lane again at the next light. Sweet!
Merging onto Rt 4 West is seamless with room to spare. Sweet!
Rt 4 / Rt 17 interchange... Traffic backed up half a mile... in the LEFT lane. No cars in my lane. Sweet!
Merge into traffic on 17 Notrh seamlessly with room to spare. Sweet!
Go up and make the u-turn and there are no cars on the bridge. Sweet!
Back onto 17 SOuth, wide open lane. Sweet!
Exit into Barnes and Noble parking lot. The dude in front of me actually moved. Sweet!
Left B&N and merged seemlessly into traffic with room to spare. Sweet!
Rt 17 south traffic left me alone. Sweet!
Rt 17 / Rt 4 interchange. Idiots playing car tag and cutting each other off and almost wrecking... ahead of me but no where near me. Make the exit with room to spare. Sweet!
Merging onto Rt 4 East, not a car near me. Sweet!
Get into Wendy's without so much as a break light in front of me. Sweet!
Merged BACK onto Rt 4 East with my own lane to myself. Sweet!
Got off on Hackensack Ave without having to jam my breaks. Sweet!
Made the light by the gas station and made the light at the circle with no one around me. Sweet!
Home again and even got a Hollywood Spot on a Saturday Night. Sweet!

For those of you who don't know. This is a fucking miricle of man. I one time in a thousand life times event. I live in the densist most heavily populated area of the country. Traffic here is disgusting on a good day. Retardedly disgusting during the holidays. This driving day should go down in the historybooks as nothing short of Spectacular. This ranks right up there with the time when A/J/ and I made it damn near 100 blocks through Manhattan without catching a red light. Unfucking believable!!!

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