I Would Have to Build One, First

How would you improve your community?

If you are one of the three people dying laughing right now because you know what an inside joke I’ve just made, you’re welcome. Tell the others, except Steve. Nobody does shit to David like that.

You have to go back decades with me to understand that paragraph, because it originated when Lindsay and I ended up in the same Constitutional Law class at University of Houston (I had a full time job and she was five years behind me, so she caught up easily). Not for nothing, she got a better grade in the class than me and I destroyed her on three of the four tests. The only one I blew was after my girlfriend had been an asshole to me that day and I couldn’t refocus. I came back with like a 102 on the final, which is the only reason we’re still cool. Between that fight and teaching my cat to wake me up at 0530 by sticking one claw up my nose (yes, really), I would have had good authority to leave well enough alone… and missed all the good things she brought into my life later.

It’s why I held my own beautiful girl in my heart for so long, but the writing prompt today reminds me that I put her down to make room for community improvement. If she does the work, the key to my clubhouse still unlocks everything. If she doesn’t, she’s not dumb enough to show up regardless. We both know it will end up exactly the same way…. But showing up scared, willing to be weird until it’s not? That’s not the clown shoes, that’s the tent. That’s the whole show, and I am the world’s best audience.

My job now is to find someone who does have emotional bravery and isn’t afraid to use it, because I think she just thought that she could go back to being a fan, just dropping in and out like people I’ve known for five minutes. I can’t do that. If you know me at all, you know I can’t do that. My love for my friends is gigantic, and I don’t give it freely because it’s too much energy to spend on anyone who doesn’t want it. I want friends that want me. Be a fan. Just don’t tell me you’re reading and what you liked, because it will cut me like a knife thinking of all the times I wished you were my sous…. And that line goes out to quite a few more people than you might think. Didn’t Tony Bourdain say something like “a sous chef with a criminal mind is a thing of beauty?” If you’re my ride or die, this description probably fits, and has for a lot more years than this blog has existed. But it’s not NOT about my beautiful girl, either.

Keeping in mind that my analyses of our problems are likely stupid assumptions because they’re all I have to go on, my guesses are educated. That’s because I have analyzed the problem through heuristics that have come at me since I was born- patterns that people follow regardless of income, social status, job, seniority at job, etc. Communities and people are universal. You can be President of the United States and a hurt child simultaneously, because every adult that does anything is a hurt child, just bigger.

That whole idea is how I am helping my community. With all that divides us, we’re just all frightened, hurt children who need each other while at the same time, insisting we don’t.


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