Update…Again

Once again, it’s been a long, long time since I’ve been on here.  It’s really hard to stay with this writing thing, but I haven’t given up yet.  My first novel is nearing completion, and don’t ask me how long it’s been near completion.  I’ll try to sum things up for you in a quick paragraph.

If I didn’t already say so last time, I became engaged while in Cancun with Rachel.  Fat Sandwich closed down…what a surprise.  For the last six months I’ve been unemployed, which isn’t nearly as fun as it sounds.  In March, whilst brandishing a replica of William Wallace’s sword, dressed in Elven clothing, I married the beautiful Lady Rachel.  We went to Estes Park, Colorado for our honeymoon and had a great time.  I built a tiny house for my wife, and I am on the verge of being accepted to the Norman Police Academy.

That should catch you up on things.  More to come soon.

Published in: Uncategorized on July 9, 2011 at 10:43 pm  Leave a Comment  

Update on the life of Kendall

I need to write here more often. I don’t know if anybody still reads this.  If so, I  apologize for my slothery and I apologize for  making up the word “slothery.”  Unless that is actually a word.  In the case that slothery is a word, I don’t apologize at all.  Just assume I am well read.

Since I last updated, many events have happened.  I graduated from OU. I don’t so much feel like I accomplished something great, but I do feel relieved now that I won’t be pissing away a lifetime of money and accumulating a massive debt.

In a couple of weeks, I will be the new General Manager of the Norman Fat Sandwich Company.  I will finally be making salary, which is cool.

I recently checked off several items on my bucket list.  I have now seen Las Vegas,  the state of California, and the Grand Canyon in one exhausting yet exhilarating voyage with my girlfriend and a couple of buddies.  Those places truly are majestic in their own way.  Check them out. You won’t be let down.

I also have an amazing girlfriend by the name of Rachel Chapman.  She’s something else.  I like her for many reasons, but one of the best things about her is that she’s not your average girl.  She doesn’t play head games, she’s honest, and she likes me for who I am.  The last perk is especially hard for me to wrap my head around. I spent far too much time playing the game with women, trying to convince them that I had it all.  I feel a majority of men are caught up in that game.  In Rachel’s eyes, I’m everything she could want in a man, although she is mistaken.  I’m a badly flawed fellow, but I do the best I can, and I treat her right.  I’m lucky to have her.

Furthermore, Rachel is smokin’ hot.  She’s my kind of woman, physically and mentally. We don’t fight about useless crap just to kill time and feel like we belong in a movie.  We have been dating close to five months, and I hope we continue to date.  I’m sure we will.

I would like to take a moment to pass on some of my observations regarding women/relationships to fellow men and opposing women.  Dudes out there, don’t waste your time with complicated women. Find you a simple girl that doesn’t plan to ruin your life.  Simple girls do exist, but they are hard to find.  Be patient.  If you feel like you’re not going to find said girl, go try your luck with one of these complicated women.  May the force be with you.  You’re going to need it.  Screwing with them is like doing twelve rounds against Emperor Palpatine and Darth Vader.  People in relationships, don’t ruin each others’ lives.  That seems to be all that I see out there in the real world.  Ruins.

I would like to take a moment to address the women I have dealt with in the past.  You know who you are, though I doubt you even read my blog, but I’ll pretend that you do.  For those of you who have turned me down, I want to thank you.  You weren’t right for me.  For those of you who led me on and turned me down on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays then pretended I had a chance with you the other days, I want to thank you.  You screwed my head up so bad that I wasn’t suitable for a relationship for a very long time.  During this time, I learned a lot and matured a lot, and now I am ready for one.  Had I been in a serious relationship earlier, I would probably be trapped in a piss-poor life right now with a mediocre girlfriend.  I know this seems bitter/sarcastic, but it’s not. I really think things turned out for the better, and I’m glad you had a part in that.   I’m just being positive.  I have no hard feelings toward any of you, and I wish to continue being your friends if that is what we are at this time.  Just because I have a girlfriend, that doesn’t mean that we can’t talk on the phone and stay in touch.  This last statement applies to a few young ladies.

So yeah…Life is good…Except for the whole getting old thing.  I’m still dealing with that.

–Kendall

Published in: on June 16, 2009 at 2:10 am  Comments (3)  

The Roommate

I decided to pack up my roommate’s belongings today. He left all of a sudden, and never said why. He told us we could pack up his stuff and use his room.

I stepped into his room, and for the first time, I contemplated the man that once lived there. He was a mysterious guy. He showed selflessness in all aspects of his life. I never understood him.

Bookshelves lined the walls of his room, and the shelves were filled with volumes of literature. I decided to start there. As I placed each book in one of three boxes, I read its title. Most of the books were about Religion. Others were about less deep topics such as politics and business management. He was well studied.

I ran out of boxes, because there were so many books. I felt tired, so I sat in his old grandma-like wooden chair. It faced the window. He spent so many hours sitting in that chair, reading a book, and admiring the view. His door was always closed, but I’m sure that was what he did. It was a nice chair.

I felt uneasy sitting there. It was like wearing a dead man’s jacket, except my roommate isn’t dead. He just moved away. I turned the chair a little to the left until it formed a 45 degree angle with the window. If you suck at math, I apologize. Look it up. After moving the chair, I felt a little more comfortable.

I took in the view from the window. I could see a tree to the left. Directly in front of me, a sidewalk snaked its way throughout the apartment complex. Beyond that, only 30 yards away, was a dark, brick wall. There were shrubs at its base. A vine spread in all directions and threatened to cover the wall.

I shrugged. The view was okay at best. For some reason, I expected to look out that window and see the Great Pyramids of Egypt or the Himalayas. If I were to place a chair in front of a window, it would have to show me something remarkable. Instead, I saw a brick wall. For my roommate, that wall was enough. That sliver of life tracing its way up that wall made my roommate smile and in turn made others smile.

I think happiness is different for everyone.

I don’t know if that discovery helped me to understand him more or less. I felt compelled to write about it. So there it was. I admire the man and wish him the best.

Published in: on June 19, 2008 at 10:18 pm  Comments (1)  

That Shiny Red Jeep

I am a little homesick. I know what you’re thinking. I’m not talking about Quinton, Oklahoma. I hate that place. When I think of “home,” I imagine a place where I once lived.

I remember living on Beaver Mountain. The first time. I was in Kindergarten, I think. We eventually moved away and came back to Beaver Mountain in the third grade, but that’s a different story. When I lived there the first time, my parents bought me a shiny red battery-operated jeep. Me and my brother drove it around until it stopped working. We put a lot of mileage on that jeep.

We imagined we were construction workers. We would fill that jeep with buckets of dirt and transport the cargo to the other side of the yard. We felt important. I honestly can’t tell you what was so fun about hauling around dirt, but I know that it made us happy.

I had no fears, hopes, dreams, or even any concept of time. I was just a little punk. I didn’t understand life. I don’t say this because I feel I have achieved a higher level of thinking since then. I feel I have only achieved a different level of thinking.

Now, I am afraid. I am afraid of waking up one day an old man that constantly looks to the past for assurance that his life wasn’t a waste. I’m afraid of being alone. I’m afraid of going insane.

Now, I have a firm understanding of time. I have hopes. I have dreams. Mostly, I am just homesick. “Home” was the point in my life where I was the most happy. I was “home” when we were riding around in that jeep, just me and my brother.

Life is too complicated. I am a long way from home. Last week, one of my teachers called me out in the middle of class and asked me why I was always so happy. He said that every time he sees me, I have a big smile on my face. I was startled. I don’t think I smile any more than the next person. Apparently I do.

Life is rough right now, but I’m still smiling. I don’t know why. Maybe I smile because I can still feel that plastic steering wheel in my hands. I can see the sparkle of that shiny red jeep. I can still look back to make sure my “cargo” is okay.

When the sun would go down, my mother would stand on the porch and tell us to come inside. We would protest. “Just one more load of dirt, mom! Just one more load!”

Sixteen years later, I sometimes feel like giving up. When the sun is barely there, I remind myself.

“Just one more load!”

Published in: on February 3, 2008 at 1:23 am  Comments (2)  

A little frustrated.

I’m a little frustrated right now. Life is so complex. Each day is a blank slate. I used to think I was bipolar. Some days I am completely happy and cheerful. Those are the good days. Sometimes I wake up in the morning and I just feel alone.

It’s almost like waking up to discover that the Zombie Invasion happened and you’re the only survivor. By the way, if that happens, The human race is in good hands. I just have to find some frozen female eggs and somehow figure out a way to grow a baby inside an artificial womb. My genes will become the foundation of the human race. All my children may be crazy, but at least they’ll look good.

Anyway, sometimes I feel alone. My life is great, but I’m missing something. I’m missing a companion. Everywhere I go, I find couples holding hands and saying how much they love each other. It kinda sucks, but during those days, I feel alive. I feel completely aware of the wind, the heat of the sun, the taste of an ice-cold Mountain Dew. When the Mountain Dew caresses my throat (more like eats away at my throat which may give me cancer one day) I know everything is going to be alright.

Girls are frustrating. Maybe it’s just the one I’m dealing with, but I think this applies to most girls. You never know what they’re thinking. No matter how bad they make you feel, you just can’t write them off. I’ve learned to embrace those feelings and let them take over. I’m not afraid of being alone. It will work out. It just takes work.

That reminds me of a story about my grandpa. He first saw my grandma at a drive-in restaurant. Kinda like Sonic, but really old. He was with his best friend when he saw her. She was beautiful. He said she was built like a Coke bottle (whatever that means).

“I have to talk to her,” my grandpa said. “I can’t leave without talking to her.”

My grandma left before he could approach her. She went home and was getting ready for bed when she saw two men walking down the road toward her house. My grandpa walked up to the house and asked her out on a date. She said no.

Every day after that, my grandpa went to my grandma’s house. He would have coffee with her brother-in-law and her sister. He would tell them how much he liked my grandma, and ask for their help.

One day, many days later, my grandma gave in and agreed to go on a date with him. The rest was history.

All of his stories have a moral. Here is what I get from that one. He found someone special. He couldn’t tell you how he knew that, but he just did. It’s a feeling you get. I can relate. I’ve been thinking about it a lot.

Although he didn’t show it, I know my grandpa must have been frustrated. He probably felt like giving up, but he didn’t. He knew that there was a chance she would come around. He took a risk, and it paid off. So, I guess we are a lot alike. If he were here, he would tell me to be strong.

Oh yeah, the moral…If something is important to you, then don’t let go of it. Resist the temptation to take the easy road.

I ‘ll end with a quote from a random wall in my crappy high school. I don’t know who put it on the wall, but for some reason, I’ve always remembered it.

“If you come to a road with no obstacles, it probably doesn’t lead anywhere.”

Published in: on December 17, 2007 at 8:01 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Mexican

            His parents named him Chale.  His name meant strength, and Chale Cruz would need a lot of it in the years to come.  Chale sat in a corner booth of a Mexican restaurant named Los Tres Caballos devouring a fried burrito and reflecting on the series of events that landed him in Central Oklahoma.

Two missionaries had smuggled him across the Mexican-American border  three years ago and Chale was thankful for that.  A week later, a small construction company hired him to lay bricks for three dollars an hour.  Within a month, Chale had saved enough money to support his family in Juarez.

            Chale wore painted Wrangler jeans and a baggy gray T-shirt.  His  white Fila sneakers were stained the color of Oklahoma’s red dirt and his big toe protruded from the torn leather.  He could afford a new pair, but his family came first.  In Mexico, his nephews didn’t even have shoes.

            The bricklayer’s hands were calloused and thick veins traced their way up his forearms.  He sported a thick black mustache and ate with his head down.  He didn’t want to make waves.  As long as he blended in, he could continue to work.

            When a blonde college girl dressed in designer clothing told the waiter she wanted a table away from “the Mexican”, Chale gave her a toothy grin and pretended to be oblivious to the insult.  Beyond the dark skin, dirty clothes, and permanently squinted eyes, was a caring man that worked 60 hours a week to feed his starving family.  Who was she to judge him? She had never worked a day in her life.

            Chale checked his sport watch.  It’s face was cracked, but it kept time all the same. Chale took in a deep breath, muttered something in Spanish, and rose from the booth.  The boss would be expecting him soon. Chale tossed ten dollars on the table and walked out the door.  When he broke away from the shade of the restaurant, sunlight illuminated his face and warmed him to the bone.  The Mexican closed his eyes, taking in the moment.  Here in America, the sun couldn’t stop shining.

Published in: on October 24, 2007 at 7:55 pm  Comments (1)  

Old Man

Kenny stood atop the tallest hill in all of Beaver Mountain. As a child, Kenny called it Old Man. His grandpa once told him nothing escaped its gaze. This idea always made Kenny feel uneasy. No matter what he did, Old Man was watching.

His grandpa was right. Kenny could see everything from up here. From the foot of the hill, a canyon wound its way through the northern pasture. In this canyon was a damp cave, and in this cave Kenny had hidden from his abusive father on drunken Saturday nights.

He killed his first deer from the branches of a gnarled Oak tree just east of the canyon. Kenny tracked the blood trail late into the night. The buck finally collapsed in a rocky stream two miles away. He would never forget the way he found it lying in the stream, waiting for death. He could still see the swirls of dark blood wrapping around his camouflage boots as he crouched down to finish the beast.

To the west, Kenny could see the fish-shaped pond he swam in with his best friend Scotty. When a cottonmouth bite nearly killed Scotty, they abandoned their hobby and became fishermen. The murky water was home to the biggest snapper turtle they had ever seen. He was a relentless bait thief, and Kenny shot him on three occasions with his twenty-two. The snapper wouldn’t die. Turtle Hell had no vacancy.

From the back side of Old Man, he could see the cows grazing in the southern pasture. It was there he lost his virginity on a bed of sunflowers to a fiery redhead named Susie O’Claire. Kenny was only 14 and uneducated, but Susie knew what she was doing. Kenny chuckled when he remembered they weren’t alone. Old Man had always been watching. He watched a child become a man. That was more than his father could ever say.

Published in: on October 22, 2007 at 5:24 pm  Leave a Comment  

Fat Sandwich Company

I work at Fat Sandwich Company. I’m the fastest delivery driver this state has ever seen. Order the Fat Milf and some Waffle Fries with Cheez Whiz, and you will hear me knocking at your front door before you can heat up a TV dinner.

I usually arrive at work ten minutes late. The boss forces me to wear an old lady’s night gown, because he thinks it will discourage my tardiness. The gown doesn’t bother me. I like the way its puke-green color brings out my eyes.

Each delivery is an adventure. Sometimes the street lights are out in the neighborhood and I can’t see the house numbers. If this happens, I look for the house with interior lights on. Let’s face it, not many people are awake at 2 a.m.

I don’t like knocking on doors. Unfortunately, I have to knock on many doors in my line of work. I didn’t always have a problem knocking. At first, I thought it was exciting. Is Sarah Goddington of Bishop’s Landing apartment 27C going to be hot? I wonder what she’s going to be wearing.

Sarah Goddington wasn’t hot. She weighed 350 pounds and had a mustache that made me jealous. She was wearing a low-cut cut-off Slayer T-Shirt and reeked of pot smoke.

After my first three weeks at Fat Sandwich Company, I abandoned all hope. If a girl orders a sandwich called the Fat Dutchie at two in the morning, fitness isn’t a big part of her life. For this reason, my fantasies never come true.

Overweight stoners are the least of my concerns. I sometimes wonder what my mom would say if she saw the places I went while on the job. She called me one night while I was working to tell me they’re recalling all Rodeo hotdog wieners and to make sure I haven’t eaten any. Ironically, when she called, I was on the wrong side of the tracks, so to speak. I have no problem with other ethnicities. If seven white men covered in tattoos and chains were gathered around my car checking out the stereo and rims, I would feel just as scared. Maybe they were going to check the air in my tires and investigate the sound quality of my stereo. I’m probably just being silly.

Every week, I have to deliver to a complex on the other side of Highway Nine. I’ll never forget the first time I went there. When I knocked on the door, a man answered. Pot smoke poured out of the apartment. There was so much of it that contact high was a threat just standing in the doorway. The food was 40 dollars.

I peeked past the man and into the apartment, though I knew I shouldn’t. A woman was lying on the couch with a different man. A blanket was draped over them. She was wearing an old T-shirt and probably nothing else. A third man sat three feet away in a recliner. The next time I delivered there, a fourth man was present. I guess it depends on how much money they can pay the woman. The men don’t live there. Just the woman. They are all business.

Now, here’s the heartbreaker. When the door opened, a four-year-old girl wearing only a diaper rushed to the door. She was clearly high. Her eyes weren’t focused. She tried to talk to me but it came out as a mumble. I dropped to one knee to ask her name. Her body was covered with a rash. Mommy can’t take you to the doctor because she’s working on the couch.

I wanted to cry. Every week they order food. Every week I have to look into those eyes. There’s not much I can do. People only call me when their sandwich contains unwanted condiments. I’m just a delivery guy.

Published in: on September 25, 2007 at 4:25 pm  Comments (1)  

My grandpa

My grandpa died this summer. He was killed working on his farm on a place called Beaver Mountain in Southeast Oklahoma. A tractor ran over him. He was old though, and that was the way he would have wanted it to go down.

I called him Papaw. As far back as I can remember, he always told me stories about his life. I’m 21 now, and the stories never got old. When he told a story, he had a way about him that made you block everything else out and listen.

He taught me what it meant to “work.” If you’ve never spent an entire day performing manual labor with a man that lived through the depression, I highly recommend the experience. The farm was always a mysterious place that brought things into focus for me. Whether it was the open pasture covered with ponds and grazing cattle or the stories he told me that always had a hidden moral, I do not know. Maybe it was a combination of the two.

The last time I saw him was a week before he died. I felt compelled to come see him. It was almost like God was telling me it would be my last chance. We talked for hours. He told me several more stories…but only one has dominated my mind since that day.

A preacher came to a new church that had a reputation for scaring off pastors. The new preacher was young and determined. Many people warned the preacher of two nasty brothers who had assaulted the last two preachers in the middle of their sermons. It was time for the young preacher to give his sermon. He opened his Bible and immediately noticed two men walking to the front. He knew these were the brothers they warned him about. The young preacher pulled a .45 from beneath the podium and said, “Today I’m gonna preach about hell and if you two boys don’t sit down, you’re about to go there.”

The story was amusing. I’ve been thinking a lot about it. I don’t know what to make of it. When the time is right, I’ll know. I told my grandpa goodbye and leaned down toward his massive recliner to hug him. He looked me in the eye as I leaned in. His eyes were the only part of his body that never aged. They were as clear as the day he was born.

“Kendall, I’m proud of you. I want you to know that. Keep doing what you’ve been doing.”

Those were the last words I ever heard him speak. I couldn’t ask for a better goodbye.

Published in: on September 6, 2007 at 11:25 pm  Comments (3)  

Fire

Fire

I went camping last night with my friend Adam. Kinda like Men vs. Wild. A challenge if you will. Before we traveled into the woods, my grandpa gave us a jug of diesel “in case the wood was wet and we couldn’t ignite it.” That wasn’t the case. He thought we were green. Those boys can’t survive without modern conveniences.

We foraged for pine cones and pine needles, scoured the area for dead trees, chopped the wood with a rusty ole axe, and ignited the needles. Fifteen minutes later, we were shielding our eyes against the blaze of the pyre. We didn’t stop there. We needed to dry out wet wood to maintain the fire. The heat of the fire would dry the damp logs.

As I watched the embers float into the air and submit to the darkness, the lonely jug of diesel lost in the void, I related this experience to life.

I’ll admit I was tempted to jump right into this fire-making, grab some wood, soak it with diesel, light it, and watch the flames quench everything around me. It was rough, building the foundation. Sometimes, wondering in the darkness in search of pine cones, I questioned my decision. We always have that option to take away the pain, the loneliness, the feeling, and quench that wood with drugs, alcohol, and random hookups. I discovered something recently about that diesel. It will catch and burn hot, but if the wood isn’t dry, the diesel will burn away. All you have is a cold damp log, with signs of burn damage.

So…the moral…Start the fire by building a foundation that will last. The wind may blow, the rain may fall, but still, this fire will persevere.

Published in: on August 31, 2007 at 8:07 pm  Leave a Comment  
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