Welp. It's about that time. I'm tired and have work early tomorrow so I might keep this one nice and short, but let's get the ball rolling!
On a personal level, this year had some ups and downs for me. One thing that it definitely was could be called "a lot." Hell, I could say that all the bad stuff, even personal bad stuff, could be tied to the larger world around me instead of having me as it's origin. I know I ordered things a certain way in the title for the reference but I'll do my usual thing of "bad first."
Okay, I'll elaborate. I had several fights and arguments this year, post-return to Boston. One was because of my own mistakes and I accept responsibility for them. The other is because of Donald "Tiny-Handed Orange Nazi Scrotum" Trump. There are people I am related to that I no longer want anything to do with because, to me, they're now just another batch of Nazi sympathizers. Which kind of ties to something else that isn't necessarily a bad thing but could become one: I've become far more short-tempered and ruthless. My anger, always something that would flare up on me, is now at a constant low burn in my heart and brain. It probably has to do with some turns my life took back in Austin.
Austin was, from start to finish, the best time of my life. Even, or perhaps especially, when things got hard. When I went days without food because my checks from my freelance work were mailed slowly and inconsistently. When I was unexpectedly let go at my old job. When the solitude sank deep into my brain at night, no one but bare walls and roaches for company while the beat thudded from the gang bar next door. It all makes for great stories, but it also changed me. So I find that while my sympathy and empathy is as easily given as it always was it's also become very easy to lose and, if lost, impossible to regain. I find my attitude towards potential death or injury is almost nonexistent, to the point where it's begun to disturb people how nonchalant I am about these things.
But most and worst of all goes back to Trump, alongside those traits. Namely, that I have lost, truly lost, my faith that humans are decent outside of rare exceptions (most of which I assume I know personally and are probably reading this). And I don't think I'll be regaining it, nor do I think I should. At this point I would see it as deliberately entertaining a delusion, a fantasy world with no bearing on reality, just as I believe all Trump voters who aren't wearing Nazism on their sleeves do.
So here I am, in a world I view as doomed but don't really mind, with the fires of anger burning inside, usually masked but always ready to be used.
Don't you see now why I always start with the worst of it? Let me cleanse your mental palette a little.
Like I said, Austin was a wonderful experience from start to finish, even or especially the hard times that forged me. But there were wonderful times as well. My Gold's Gym and RTATX fams all made the solitude of the dark much more bearable because, after a few months when I met them, I knew that come the day the solitude would end if I needed it to.
And then there was Gold's Gym Downtown ATX itself, a fantastic facility with a wonderful staff and community. They stopped the freefall my life had become when they went out of their way to hire me just as my savings and unemployment were about to run dry and through them I made some very good friends. It also started me on the path I now follow as a fitness professional, so even many of the good things that have happened since I returned wouldn't have come to be.
Aside from getting a job right in the heart of downtown Austin I also spent a lot of time with the RT community, which is understandably very strong down there. RTATX is a a lovely group of lovely people that expanded a bit every time events happened, and I miss them all dearly.
Specifically, RTX was a blast and was easily the best one yet. I met a bunch of new friends and got to see many other ones again for the first time since the last one, got good and drunk both when I was and was not supposed to, went to a rave, woke up in parking lots and got to talk to a lot of RT people new and old.
Since I came back I've been to several shows and the cold has worn off the mental chaff so I've become sharper, more direct and blunt again. But make no mistake I can turn on what tricks of Southwestern charm I picked up when needed. I've also got a job as a fitness professional and am working on additional certifications. So for me, outside of things relating to Donald Trump and the relationships I can't morally stand to maintain because of him, this year was the best year I've had.
This might get a bit heavy again for a bit. The future is not bright. One of the most powerful nations in the world has danced without particular hesitation over the line into outright fascism and is to be lead by a buffoon for the remainder of it's existence. The best case scenario is a second American Civil War, if it's won by some anti-Fascist rebel faction. The only alternative, either if that does not happen or if the fascist government wins, is myself and pretty near everyone reading this being consumed in nuclear fire when he starts WWIII. It's not great but yes, I see the world as having two options, both leading to the deaths of millions or billions of people. Because American voters are apparently evil. dumb, scared, easily led or some combination of same. Not sure if that's in 2017, but it doesn't really matter. But as I said, I'm nonchalant and accepting of things like this. "Cattle die, kinsfolk die, we ourselves must die; but one thing I know will never die, a dead man's reputation." So since it doesn't matter to me one way or the other the time or means that I die I'll continue as though it wasn't a factor (even tough much of my everlasting anger is towards the fact that people who aren't ready or undeserving of dying will be caught up in this, like my fourteen year old brother, my five year old cousin or you).
For personal fitness I plan to do a quick 12-week cut on the same program I used during Buff Buddies and before RTX2016 since Christmas did a number on me. I'm still in very good condition and my bodyfat is low (in fact I just look "big" in a good way at the moment) but if I did a real bulk, even a clean one, starting from here I think I'd gain too much extra fat to easily work off before RTX. Because #fit4RTX2017 is just around the corner, after all.
I plan to move upwards and onwards in the fitness industry, both within the Koko brand (Ryan Haywood approved!) and independently. And if the Fimbulwinter should wait long enough to come I may expand into other places again, or perhaps go home to Austin. Because it became my home and always will be. Not this year. Maybe not even next year. But...
"One day, I shall come back. Yes, I shall come back. Until then there must be no regrets, no tears, no anxieties. Just go forward in all your beliefs, and prove to me I am not mistaken in mine." - The First Doctor
Because I may not believe in people anymore but I do believe in you, and I believe in us.
Happy New Year. Keep Moving Forward.
Love n' hugs n' stuff