I thought I closed this chapter on my life. I thought this journal would be forever shelved like a period of life I could look back on. I couldn’t have been more wrong…
Now almost 5 years later, everything is different. I tried to move beyond this journal thinking I had reached a level of proficiency with women that could shed this ‘beginner’ self-styled journal. Instead of progress I become complacent. I didn’t think I had to work for it, it would “just happen naturally”. And it did, for a while. I quit following what worked for lazy ‘do what I felt like’. I quit working out, and I quit sharpening my skills generally. I failed to see my own slow atrophy.
It began with lying to myself. The confidence that I originally was used to approach women now was used to make excuses of why they weren’t good enough. Instead of finding the balls to expand my borders with stories of hilarious triumph and failure, my failures were typified by my inability to even talk to a girl I found attractive.
I became “too good” to run techniques I knew worked. My flirting went from tactical, funny, and bold, to lazy, dry and boring. Instead of light teasing I would dryly poke fun at my own awkwardness or hate on someone else in the room. The decline continued.
Looking back, I can see I am my own worst enemy. The voice in my cranium telling me I’m too good for techniques and failure while same time telling me I’m not good enough for the cute girl in front of me. The last several years have been littered with one night stands, first dates that never panned out, and Trojan horse rejects called “Let’s just be friends”.
Failure hasn’t been everything. There was a fly French girl who I apathetically let slip through my fingers. There was the girl who stayed with me for three nights while I was stuck in New York because of blizzards. There girl was whose father I ran into the morning as I was sneaking out the back (stay tuned because I’m posting that story in a couple days). And there was the Christian girl who I met on the street one day and once in bed asked me if I had ever had my B***s sucked. None of these girls stuck around. I couldn’t find the desire in myself to make them want stay. They couldn’t find a reason to stay with the guy who was at his best 4 years earlier and has been just coasting ever since.
Now almost 5 years since I started this journal, I’m wiping away the fog off the mirror and looking at myself clearly: A gaunt 125lb. muscle-less frame built from eating shit food and misses meals when stressed. I think if someone hit me with a good punch I might split in half. A confidence level so low I desperately clamber for attention from girls on Tinder. A debilitating anxiety about going gym that leads me to drinking or just curling up in bed. Self-over-analysis that means I can’t do anything without picking myself part into little self-hating pieces.
I don’t know how I am going to do it. Fuck, I don’t even feel like I can! It all starts with a choice: either I do or I don’t.
“It ain’t about how hard you can hit. It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward. About how much you can takea hit and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done.” – Ricky Balboa
I thought I closed this chapter on my life. I was wrong. This speech feels like appropriate last words for this first (new) entry.
“I don’t know what to say really.
to the biggest battle of our professional lives
all comes down to today.
as a team
or we are going to crumble.
Inch by inch
play by play
till we’re finished.
We are in hell right now, gentlemen
we can stay here
and get the shit kicked out of us
we can fight our way
back into the light.
We can climb out of hell.
One inch, at a time.
Now I can’t do it for you.
I’m too old.
I look around and I see these young faces
and I think
I made every wrong choice a middle age man could make.
I pissed away all my money
believe it or not.
I chased off
anyone who has ever loved me.
I can’t even stand the face I see in the mirror.
You know when you get old in life
things get taken from you.
That’s, that’s part of life.
you only learn that when you start losing stuff.
You find out that life is just a game of inches.
So is football.
Because in either game
life or football
the margin for error is so small.
one half step too late or to early
you don’t quite make it.
One half second too slow or too fast
and you don’t quite catch it.
The inches we need are everywhere around us.
They are in ever break of the game
every minute, every second.
On this team, we fight for that inch
On this team, we tear ourselves, and everyone around us
to pieces for that inch.
We CLAW with our finger nails for that inch.
Cause we know
when we add up all those inches
that’s going to make the fucking difference
between WINNING and LOSING
between LIVING and DYING.
I’ll tell you this
in any fight
it is the guy who is willing to die
who is going to win that inch.
And I know
if I am going to have any life anymore
it is because, I am still willing to fight, and die for that inch
because that is what LIVING is.
The six inches in front of your face.
Now I can’t make you do it.
You gotta look at the guy next to you.
Look into his eyes.
Now I think you are going to see a guy who will go that inch with you.
You are going to see a guy
who will sacrifice himself for this team
because he knows when it comes down to it,
you are gonna do the same thing for him.
That’s a team, gentlemen
and either we heal now, as a team,
or we will die as individuals.
That’s football guys.
That’s all it is.
Now, whattaya gonna do?”
- Al Pacino (film: Any Given Sunday)
Today, I start clawing my way out of hell. One inch at a time.