Thursday, January 8, 2015


You guys, I think I've made a mistake.  I for some reason was very ambitious and was going to shoot for 365 blogs for this year.  For some reason I got it into my head that quantity was more important than quality.  As much as I would like to be a full-time writer, I am a , pretty busy guy.  Between working to pay the bills, taking care of my health, and managing every-day life activities I just don't have the time to dedicate to developing interesting ideas to write about, and when I do sit down to write things I only spend 15 minutes banging out an entry just so I can check it off my list.

So here's the deal-- I still want to write every week.  I'm going to post one entry every Sunday, with a mid-week post thrown in every once in a while.  Once the creative juices start flowing and the concept for this blog becomes more clearly defined, I will hopefully post more content.

My desire for this blog is to put out quality work, and I'm not happy with anything that I've posted over the last week.  It hasn't been well thought out or edited, and if I want to pursue this and make it a bigger part of my life I am going to need to start locking some stuff down and really emphasizing the development of this project.

Please stick with me!  I promise things will get better.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015


Well guys, it's Day Seven.  Today seem like just as good a day as any to publish that list of "Do More/Do Less in 2015" items.  I'm publishing this so that not only the Interwebs can hold me accountable, but also so that I see it written out in front of me as a list of things to do.  And I do love me some lists!  So here we go.

In 2015, I want to
-Sleep more
-Drink more water
-Run more
-Socialize more
-Participate and engage more

On the flipside, in 2015 I want to
-Swear less
-Binge less (mostly food and TV)
-Waste less time at work
-Spend less

Outside of this more/less list which I plan to continue adding items to throughout the year, I have a few tangible and quantifiable items I would like to achieve:
-Purchase skate skis and learn how to use them
-Complete a half-marathon in the Spring
-Complete a full marathon in the Fall
-Earn my Conservation Planning Certification
-Visit somewhere new

This the start of 2015.  Time to embrace The Year of Bryce!  May I not die alone wearing a light up Christmas sweater and talking to a menagerie of parrots.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Five and Six

I haven't decided whether or not doing two blog posts combined together on one day and calling them "Five and Six" is cheating or not.  I guess it would be, but unless this year has 366 days in it I don't see a way around it.  So... ONWARD!

Guess what guys!  I'm HEALTHY.  Well, relatively.  I still have some remnants of disease in my system, and I will feel the aftershock for at least a few more weeks.  I'm afraid to go back to sleeping on my side (I've been forcing myself to sleep on my back the last two nights) and I have a humidifier running all the time when I'm in my apartment.  No more bloody noses, and NO MORE VERTIGO!  It turns out that I had a fever, which morphed into bronchitis, then developed an ear infection, which led to a nasty vertigo that led to many unpleasantries and resulted in me 90% passed out over a bucket in the waiting room of the Urgent Care center on Gull Road.  Let's not that happen ever again.  Ever.

Being sick taught me a few things though, and I even though I've always said I hate New Years posts with resolutions and such, I'm going to be make some observations that might just lead into some desired changes in behavior for 2015.  Vamos a ver.

1.  I have a great job with great co-workers.  I was able to miss five work days in a row (one of them a holiday, thankfully), and not get any flack for it.  Everyone was understanding, I had accrued enough sick leave, and this all happened probably during the best time of year for minimum workload.  It makes me so thankful that I work with such great people and have such great benefits.  I don't want to take any of it for granted.

2.  Kalamazoo is a great place to be.  Those of you who know me have heard me gripe and complain about learning to adjust to the idiosyncrasies of West Michigan.  I think learning to enjoy my work environment has impacted my level of contentment with where I live, and I'm not in a rush to leave.  As long as I'm enjoying the work that I do and the people I work with, why have I been so afraid to settle down a bit?

3.  I've written a lot about the benefits of being alone and not having to be accountable to anyone and how single life is great because I can just travel whenever I want and only have to worry about myself.  These things are true.  But being as sick as I was really knocked me down a few notches on the "pride in my independence: scale.  I've had vertigo more than once and it's not something easily handled alone.  Sometimes in life we need help and even though I managed to drive to a doctor, pick up a prescription, etc., there are scenarios that exist where I wouldn't be able to do that on my own.  Last time I had vertigo I was in Paraguay and it landed me in the hospital.  I'm still so thankful to my friends and for Dr. Luis who all helped me get help.  What a nightmare!  I really need to see an Ear Specialist.

4.  Being sick helped me to identify some goals and is forcing me to change my behavior to meet them.  I have a list of things I want to do more of and less of in 2015, which I will post in a later blog post.  I really want to sleep more and drink more water.  Having to prioritize rest and hydration has been really refreshing for me.  I'm hoping to continue that for the coming year.

So what have I pulled from all of this?  A sense of appreciation and contentment.  I really need to start pursuing some ways to meet new people in this city.  I'm not new here anymore.  It's time for me to start building relationships with the people that I already know, and look for places that I can get involved and meet new people.  It's going to be a struggle, but I'll figure something out.

Part of what I feel like could be a recurring theme in this blog is going to be the subject of how to meet new friends as an adult.  I spent my whole life with the same group of friends.  I've known my best friends for 23 years, and as a 28 year old, that's a rare thing.  Unfortunately when we meet new people as adults, they don't come with a built-in 10 years of backstory and inside jokes.  All that stuff has to be created from scratch, which is a real challenge.

So, officially I just want to wish everyone a happy 2015!  May the force be with you.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Saturday, January 3, 2015


You guys, this is not good.  I knew that by committing to post every day I would have to prioritize this blog, so I don't have any real excuse for not doing it.  I can't wait to post until after 8PM every night to do this either.

This flu has sucked all of the energy, creativity, and motivation out of me, and replaced it with piles of wadded up kleenex, a ridiculous number of mugs in circulation between coffee, lemon tea, and herbal tea, a mountain of other dishes in the sink, and cough drop wrappers ALL OVER THE PLACE.  I need to get myself together.

So I don't know if this counts as a post, or any what I've written so far.  The last three days have all been fuzz for me...  Sorry.  I'll bring my A-Game next week.

Friday, January 2, 2015


Day 2 and I'm already like "oh gosh, what am I going to write about?"  I have not had a face-to-face conversation with another person since Monday, so pretty much the only thing I have to use for inspiration is whatever is going on in my own head.

Let's talk about isolation.  People often talk to me about my experience in the Peace Corps and how I dealt with the isolation.  This is something I've wondered about as well, because as social beings, we're supposed to need to interact with other people.  We aren't supposed to be like snow leopards.  During my time in Paraguay, there were sometimes five or six days in a row of rain, and I very feasibly could go that long without seeing another person unless my host-brother came down to borrow matches or sit and drink yerba mate together.  But for me, honestly, it was kind of refreshing to be cut off from the grind of fast-paced instant gratification and immediate communication.  It's nice to just slow down and enjoy the present moment. 

I remember watching the movie (read the book?  HA!) The Count of Monte Cristo, an the character that Jim Caviezel plays is wrongfully imprisoned and thrown into a gross prison cell in a tower on some far away island.  He is in there for years, counting the stones that make up the walls and floor of his cell.  "Solitary confinement" is a punishment we still use in present-day prison systems.  Why does that have to be a punishment though? What is it about being alone that scares us so much?

I sometimes wonder if being alone does actually turn us into crazy people, and if it does, what is it that drives us crazy?  And when it's all happening and you're losing your mind out of isolation, do you realize what's happening?  I don't know.  I'd like to think you'd be aware, otherwise I might have something to worry about, lol.

It's interesting how everybody in our society spends so much time and effort finding that person to commit to so that they don't have to be alone.  Why is being alone such a bad thing?

I'll come back to this tomorrow...

Thursday, January 1, 2015


2015 has begun, and so has my quest to write 365 blog posts this year.  It's going to be a big job, but I love to write and I don't do it nearly enough.  I'm interested to see how things are going to take shape as time passes.  As of right now, I have no particular targeted ideas or concepts.  Eventually I want to turn this blog into an independent site with it's own domain.  I just need to figure out who my audience is and what I hope to accomplish through my writing.  After that is all settled out I will transfer what I have written here over to that new site. 

Anyways, let's get to it.

I could be super cliché and talk about how it's a brand new year bright with possibilities and opportunities.  But as you'll come to know from reading this, that would not be a correct representation of me.  I'm sort of the human representation of the grumpy cat, but in a fun way.  Right?  Meh.  We'll see.  As my physics teacher told me my senior year in high school, I have an "old man aura about me."  Basically I'm a 90 year old man in the body of a 28 year old, and I'm just fine with that.

Over the next couple of months I will be writing about whatever seems to catch my attention for the day.  A commentary on life, so to speak.  If Seinfeld can write a show about nothing and have it be funny, I think I can do the same thing with this blog... for at least a couple of months.  SO, bear with me as I try to figure it all out.

So that's it for today, January 1, 2015.  I have spent the last three days home from work and semi-passed out on a lazyboy, heavily medicated, and watching every comedy special ever made and put on Netflix.  My brain is working at like 5%.  Expect better from me in the future.