Monday, January 9, 2017

What I've learned since moving to D.C. (some of which should be obvious):

4951.  When you deny your deep truth to please your woman, everyone will feel your lack of authenticity.  They will sense that your false smile hides an inner division.  Your friends, children and business colleagues may love you, but they won’t trust you since you don’t trust your own core intent.  And, more importantly, your own sense of inauthenticity will burden your capacity to act with clarity.  Your actions won’t jibe with your core;
4952.  If you listen to your woman, taking everything she says into account and making your own best decision then you are acting in accordance with your core.  You are saying, in effect, “My deepest wisdom is leading me to this decision.  If I am wrong, I will learn from it and my wisdom will have deepened.  I’m willing to be wrong and grow from it;
4953.  The attitude of self-trust engenders others’ trust in you.  You may be wrong, but you are willing to find out and, thus, grow from the experience.  You are open to listening to others, but in the end, you will take the responsibility for making your own decision.  There is nobody else to blame;
4954.  If you give up your real decision to follow your woman’s then you will blame her for being wrong, if she is wrong, and you will feel disempowered if she is right, having denied yourself the opportunity to act from your core and grow from your mistakes;
4955.  Be open to changing your feeling based on whatever your woman might reveal to you – through her words or her body language – and then make your own decision based on your deepest intuitive wisdom and knowledge.  You may make the right decision or the wrong one, but whatever happens, it is your best shot and you will strengthen your capacity for future action;
4956.  Every man knows that his highest purpose in life cannot be reduced to any particular relationship.  If a man prioritizes his relationship over his highest purpose, he weakens himself, disserves the universe and cheats his woman of an authentic man, who can offer her full, undivided presence;
4957.  Once you are honest with yourself about your real edge, it is best to lean just beyond it.  Very few men have the guts for this practice.  Most men either settle for the easy path or self-aggrandize themselves by taking the extreme hard path.  Your insecurity may cause you to doubt yourself and so you take the easy way not even approaching your real edge.  Alternatively, your insecurity may lead you to push, push, push, seeking to become victorious over your own sense of lack;
4958.  Your fear is the sharpest definition of yourself;
4959.  Primary fear shows you that you are at your edge;
4960.  Staying with the fear, staying at your edge, allows real transformation to occur;
4961.  Playing your edge allows you to perceive the moment with the least amount of distortion;
4962.  Fear of fear may lead you to hang back, living a lesser life than you are capable.  Fear of fear may lead you to push ahead, living a false life, off center, tense and missing the moment.  But the capacity to feel this moment, including your fear, without trying to escape it, creates a state of alive and humble spontaneity.  You are ready for the unknown as it unfolds since you are not pulled back or pushed forward from the horizon of the moment.  You are hanging right over the edge;
4963.  Own your fear and lean just beyond it in every aspect of your life;
4964.  A man’s capacity to receive another man’s direct criticism is a measure of his capacity to receive masculine energy.  If he doesn’t have a good relationship to masculine energy (e.g., his father) then he will act like a woman and be hurt or defensive rather than make use of other men’s criticism;
4965.  Good friends should not tolerate mediocrity in one another.  If you are at your edge, your men friends should respect that, but not let you off the hook.  They should honor your fears and, in love, continue to goad you beyond them without pushing you;
4966.  If you merely want support from your men friends without challenge, it bespeaks an unresolved issue you may have with your father, whether he is alive or dead;
4967.  Choose men friends, who themselves are living at their edge, facing their fears and living just beyond them.  Men of this kind can love you without protecting you from the necessary confrontation with reality that your life involves.  You should be able to trust that these friends will tell you about your life as they see it, offer you a specific action, which will shed light on your own position, and give you the support necessary to live in the freedom just beyond your edge, which is not always or even usually, comfortable;
4968.  The core of your life is your purpose.  Everything in your life, from your diet to your career, must be aligned with your purpose, if you are to act with coherence and integrity in the world.  If you know your purpose, your deepest desire then the secret of success is to discipline your life so that you support your deepest purpose and minimize distractions and detours;
4969.  If you don’t know your deepest desire then you can’t align your life to it.  Everything in your life is dissociated from your core.  You go to work, but since it’s not connected to your deepest purpose, it is just a job, a way to earn money.  You go through your daily round with your family and friends, but each moment is just another in a long string of moments, going nowhere, not inherently profound;
4970.  When you know your true purpose, which is your core desire in life, each moment can become a full expression of your core desire.  Every instant of career, every instant of intimacy is filled with the power of your purpose.  You are no longer just going through the motions at work and with your woman, but you are living the truth of your life and giving the gifts of your love moment by moment;
4971.  The superior man is not seeking for fulfillment through work and woman because he is already full;
4972.  As you open yourself to living at your edge, your deepest purpose will slowly begin to make itself known.  In the meantime, you will experience layer after layer of purposes, each one getting closer and closer to the fullness of your deepest purpose.  It is as if your deepest purpose is at the center of your being and it is surrounded by layers of concentric circles, each circle being a lesser purpose.  Your life consists of penetrating each circle, from the outside toward the center;
4973.  The outer purposes are often the purposes you have inherited or learned from your parents and your childhood experiences.  The outer circles, the purposes you often apply yourself too early in life, are most likely only distant approximations of your deepest purpose;
4974.  As you dissolve each layer and move toward the center, you will more and more be living from your deeper purposes and then your deepest heart purpose, whatever that is, in every moment.  However, you probably are not living your deepest purpose yet.  You probably need to burn off the karma or fulfill the need, of the present purpose by which you are fascinated and distracted;
4975.  It’s easy to feel disappointed by life; success is never as fulfilling as you think it is going to be.  But there is a reason for this.  Successfully completing a lesser purpose doesn’t feel very good for very long because it is simply preparation for advancing toward a greater embodiment of your deeper purpose.  Each purpose, each mission, is meant to be fully lived to the point where it becomes empty, boring and useless.  Then it should be discarded.  This is a sign of growth, but you may mistake it for a sign of failure;

What I've learned since moving to D.C. (some of which should be obvious):

4901.  Part of Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport used to be Abingdon Plantation, the birthplace of George Washington’s step-granddaughter, Eleanor Parke Custis;
4902.  Apparently, the “holiday turkey and stuffing panini” at Starbucks makes its appearance after Halloween;
4903.  If you want to find a deeper meaning in your life, you won’t find it in the opinions or the beliefs that have been handed to you.  Rather than trying to be what everyone else expects you to be, live your life by your own rules to be happy and find inner peace;
4904.  The bacon maple doughnut at Sugar Shack (Donuts) (SugarShackDonuts.com) is pretty good;
4905.  Calmness does not mean lack of concern; it means the ability to separate the real from the unreal and thereby to take sensible action;
4906.  There are only two possible approaches to dealing with upsetting circumstances in the present.  One is to change the circumstance; the other is to change the mind which is experiencing the upset.  Sometimes finding the appropriate way to change the circumstances is the most sensible, but there is always another option.  S/he can realize that there is no need to give any sight or sound the power to upset her/him.  S/he can choose to see the disturbance as stemming from her/his mind and not from the event.  Then, s/he can find a solution;
4907.  There are always going to be thoughts and events that try to pull our attention away from the here and now.  Each is an opportunity to practice the all-important art of concentration;
4908.  Freedom from mental freak-outs happens as one’s peace of mind becomes more and more a function of inner resources and less and less dependent upon externals;
4909.  Letting go of attachments does not mean losing anything (i.e., a child does not risk losing his thumb when s/he stops sucking it); it does mean releasing our grip on things and our desire to control them (i.e., it is the grip on wealth which makes a miser uptight and unhappy not the wealth itself);
4910.  Letting go means allowing joy to come into your life instead of contriving to have a good time; learning to appreciate the love and beauty already happening around you rather than trying to manufacture something which you think isn’t there; letting problems be solved in the unconscious mind as well as by straining with conscious effort;
4911.  Many people carry around with them an image of the kind of person they wish they were.  When our behavior does not seem to measure up to our ideal, we grow dejected and then start trying hard to correct it (i.e., perhaps I should take a series of lessons, or a course on personality development, or read a book about how to become less self-critical, or undergo therapy, or join an encounter group).  Such steps are not necessarily foolish, but what is needed is not so much the effort to improve ourselves, as the effort to become more aware of the beauty of what we already are.  As we begin to see and appreciate our essential selves, we manifest automatically that beauty and our true capacities, simply by letting them happen;
4912.  “Abandon” is a good word to describe what happens when one feels s/he has nothing to lose.  S/he stops caring about the outcome and goes all out;
4913.  The true meaning of detachment means letting go of the concern of “self 1” and letting the natural concern of a deeper self take over.  It is caring, yet not caring; it is effortless effort.  It happens when one lets go of attachment to the results of one’s actions and allows the increased energy to come to bear on the action itself;
4914.  In the language of karma yoga, this is called action without attachment to the fruits of action, and ironically when the state is achieved the results are the best possible;
4915.  The ghosts of the past and the monsters of the future disappear when all one’s conscious energy is employed in understanding the present;
4916.  The light which dispels the shadows of our mental projections is the light of our own consciousness;
4917.  When we understand something, we may have cause to be wary of it, but there is no fear.  Understanding the present moment, the only time when any action can occur, requires concentration of mind; the ability to keep the mind focused in the here and now;
4918.  Consciousness is the energy of light which makes an experience knowable just as a light bulb in the forest illuminates its surroundings.  The brighter the light, the more that is known or understood about one’s experience.  When the light is dim because some of our energy is leaking into regrets over the past or fears of the future or is in some way wasted in resisting the flow of life, then one’s experience is filled with shadows and distortions.  But when most of our conscious energy is brought to bear on the present with a sincere desire to understand what is before us, then something called “higher consciousness” occurs.  It is called “higher” merely because more is seen and understood than before.  It is something like walking up a mountain and having an increasing view of what is going on in the valley below except that in the case of increased consciousness you are not only able to see more because of your point of view, but you can also see the subtler details with greater clarity;
4919.  The art of concentration is basically the art of experiencing ever more fully whatever is in the here and now for you;
4920.  Concentration is said to be the master art because all other arts depend on it; progress in this, as in any art, is achieved only through practice;
4921.  There is no life situation where one cannot practice focusing one’s full attention on what is happening at the moment.  Normally, we tend to concentrate only when something we consider important is happening, but all moments are important ones and worth paying attention to for each moment can increase her/his understanding of herself/himself and life;
4922.  In the final analysis it is our state of consciousness which is the determining factor in our appreciation of the beautiful, the true or the loving.  A person may own an exquisite oil painting, but if s/he can’t appreciate its beauty, how valuable really is that painting to her/him?  Another person may own nothing beautiful, but if her/his consciousness is attuned to beauty, s/he is rich because s/he will always be surrounded by beauty;
4923.  The fool is a fool because he doesn’t know how to learn from her/his experience; the wise person is wise because s/he does;
4924.  Every heightening of consciousness enables one to appreciate more fully the experiences which life offers;
4925.  Changes in consciousness alter our lives automatically because it is only through consciousness that we experience life;
4926.  Only when a person is paying attention to something s/he really loves can s/he concentrate her/his mind and find true satisfaction;
4927.  We can’t run and we can’t hide from ourselves because everywhere we go, we’re there;
4928.  Apparently, women lie about their age on dating apps (specifically Italian women from Ischia);
4929.  Anxiety is fixated being trapped in the future and depression is being trapped in the past;
4930.  Sexual attraction is based on sexual polarity, which is the force of passion that arcs between masculine and feminine poles.  All natural forces flow between two poles.  Masculine and feminine poles between people create the flow of sexual feeling.  This is sexual polarity;
4931.  It is up to you: you can have a loving friendship between two similars, but you need a more masculine and a more feminine partner in the moments when you want strong sexual polarity;
4932.  The “mission” or the search for freedom is the priority of the masculine, whereas the search for love is the priority of the feminine;
4933.  Even though all people have both masculine and feminine qualities that they could use in any moment, most men and women also have a more masculine or feminine core.  And this shows up in their regularly chosen entertainments, as much as in their preferred sexual play;
4934.  So, about 90% of people have either a more masculine or a more feminine sexual essence.  They would like to be ravished by or to ravish, their intimate partner, at least some of the time, in addition to having a loving friendship.  This holds true for homosexual and heterosexual people alike;
4935.  About 10% of people, men and women, heterosexual and homosexual, have a more balanced sexual essence.  It doesn’t really matter to them whether their lover is physically stronger or more vulnerable than them.  Sexual polarity just isn’t that important to them in relationships;
4936.  Most people are forgetting that the sameness that works in the office does not work in intimacy for about 90% of couples: those couples composed of partners with masculine and feminine essences rather than balanced essences.  If sexual passion is to flow in these polarized intimacies, masculine and feminine differences should be magnified, not diminished, in moments of intimacy.  When these polarities are lessened due to family and work obligations, sexual attraction is diminished, along with spiritual depth and physical health;
4937.  When you deny your true core, you deny the possibility of true and real love.  Love is openness through and through.  And true spirituality is the practice of love, the practice of openness.  A person who denies their own essence and hides their true desires is divided and unable to relax into the full openness of love.  Their spirit becomes cramped and kinked.  Unable to feel the natural ease and unconstrained power of their own core, they feel threatened and frightened.  This fear is the texture of their inability to open fully in love.  Such a person is spiritually handicapped and obstructed at heart even though they may have achieved a safe relationship and a successful career;
4938.  As a culture, we have advanced in terms of personal freedom, sexual equality and social rights, but we have remained spiritually thwarted and afraid.  For the sake of individual autonomy and social fairness, with only good intentions in mind, we have erroneously begun to deny, smooth out and neutralize our masculine and feminine differences.  In doing so, people often end up denying their deepest core desires, which are rooted in their true sexual essence.  A lot of people today think they have a balanced sexual essence, but in most cases they are actually suppressing the natural desires which spring from their real masculine or feminine core;
4939.  Apparently, women don’t read profiles on dating apps either;
4940.  Stop waiting for the good stuff.  As of now, spend a minimum of one hour a day doing whatever you are waiting to do until your finances are more secure, or until the children have grown and left home, or until you have finished your obligations and you feel free to do what you really want to do.  Don’t wait any longer.  Don’t believe in the myth of “one day when everything will be different.”  Do what you love to do, what you are waiting to do, what you’ve been born to do, now;
4941.  Most postponements are excuses for a lack of creative discipline.  Limited money and family obligations have never stopped a person, who really wanted to do something, although they provide excuses for a person, who is not really up to the creative challenge in the first place.  Find out today whether you are willing to do what it takes to give your gift fully.  As a first step, spend at least an hour today giving your fullest gift, whatever that is for today, so that when you go to sleep at night you know you couldn’t have lived your day with more courage, creativity and giving;
4942.  In addition to the myth that one day your life will be fundamentally different, you may believe and hope, that one day your woman will be fundamentally different.  Don’t wait.  Assume she’s going to be however she is, forever.  If your woman’s behavior or mood is truly intolerable to you, you should leave her and don’t look back (since you cannot change her).  However, if you find her behavior or mood is merely distasteful or a hassle, realize that she will always seem this way: The feminine always seems chaotic and complicated from the perspective of the masculine;
4943.  The next time you notice yourself trying to fix your woman so that she will no longer (fill in the blank), relax and give her love by touching her and telling her that you love her when she is this way (whatever you filled in the blank with).  Embrace her, or wrestle with her, or scream and yell for the heck of it, but make no effort to bring an end to that which pisses you off.  Practice love instead of trying to bring an end to the quality that bothers you.  You can’t escape the tussle with the feminine.  Learn to find humor in the unending emotional drama the feminine seems to enjoy so much.  The love that you magnify may realign her behavior, but your effort to fix her and your frustration never will;
4944.  The world and your woman/man will always present you with unforeseen challenges.  You are either living fully, giving your gift in the midst of those challenges, even today, or you are waiting for an imaginary future which will never come;
4945.  Men who have lived significant lives are men who never waited: not for money, security, ease or women;
4946.  Your edge is where you stop short or where you compromise your fullest gift, and, instead, cater to your fears;
4947.  Perhaps you are comfortable with your life and you fear the lifestyle change that might accompany a change in career even though the new career will be closer to what you really want to do with your life.  You’ve spent 15 years developing your career, and you’re afraid to let go of it and start fresh even though you know that you spend most of your life doing things you have no real interest in doing.  You could be making money in more creative ways, but you spend too much time watching TV rather than being creative;
4948.  A fearful man, who still leans into his fear, living at his edge and putting his gift out from there, is more trustworthy and more inspirational than a fearful man, who hangs back in the comfort zone, unwilling to even experience his fear on a day to day level;
4949.  Make your life an ongoing process of being who you are, at your deepest, most easeful levels of being.  Everything other than this process is secondary.  Your job, your children, your wife, your money, your artistic creations, your pleasures, they are all superficial and empty, if they are not floating in the deep sea of your conscious being;
4950.  You should always listen to your woman and then make your own decision.  If you choose to go with your woman’s suggestion even when deep in your heart you feel that another decision is wiser, you are, in effect, saying, “I don’t trust my own wisdom.”  You are weakening yourself by telling yourself this.  You are weakening your woman’s trust in you: why should she trust your wisdom if you don’t?

Monday, December 19, 2016

What I've learned since moving to D.C. (some of which should be obvious):

4851.  There is always something more that you can do . . . always.  There is always a way to get better.  You will never, ever, rest if you want to be the very best at what you do;
4852.  If you’re not doing what you should be doing, you’re literally wasting your life at this very moment;
4853.  Think of one thing you want to do tomorrow that you don’t have the courage to do.  You know what it is.  Go out and do it.  Just know that every moment that you don’t, a piece of life passes you forever and you will never get it back;
4854.  What “settling” really boils down to is fear.  Fear that you won’t find anyone better, fear that you’ll never find another girl like her;
4855.  If you want the best in life, you have to feel that you deserve the best in life;
4856.  It’s a lot easier to hear phone calls outside when you use earphones (especially when it’s windy);
4857.  In the White House garden, there’s a plant bed named after Thomas Jefferson with lettuce, Brussel sprouts, beets, kale and artichoke plants grown from seeds that have been passed down from plants Jefferson planted at Monticello;
4858.  Logic will take you from A to Z.  Imagination will get you everywhere;
4859.  If love and joy are what you want to give and receive then remember that you can’t give away what you don’t have, but you can change your life by changing what’s inside if you’re willing to go that extra mile;
4860.  Your thoughts create your reality because your thoughts determine how you respond to situations in your daily life.  Those responses are the energy you have inside of you to give away.  If you feel anger, it’s because you have anger energy in your body.  Like everything in our universe, your thoughts are a form of energy.  Everything that you feel and experience is the result of “attractor” energies.  This means that you get back what you put out into the world.  Thus, what you’ve attracted to you is what you have to give away to others;
4861.  Low energy attracts low energy.  Some of the low energy thoughts are anger, hate, shame, guilt and fear.  Not only do they weaken you, but they attract more of the same.  By changing your inner thoughts to the higher frequencies of love, harmony, kindness, peace and joy, you’ll attract more of the same and you’ll have those higher energies to give away.  These higher and faster frequencies that empower you will automatically nullify and dissipate the lower energies in the same way that the presence of light makes darkness disappear;
4862.  By becoming more loving toward yourself, you will attract more of the higher, faster energies and begin to change what’s inside of you.  In your thoughts, cultivate an inner voice and attitude that’s 100 percent of the time for you.  Imagine an aspect of yourself that only supports and loves you.  You might schedule a certain time of the day when that’s the only thought that you allow yourself to pay attention to.  Gradually, this attitude will extend to other people even if you can only do it for a minute or two.  You’ll begin to receive this energy back and ultimately be able to send thoughts of love and joy to everyone and everything in your world.  Notice when your thoughts drift into the lower energy of ridicule, hate or guilt, and change the thought at that very moment if at all possible.  If you’re unable to change the thought, then at least love yourself for what you did do – that is, for noticing;
4863.  Make a pact to remind yourself often of this secret of not being able to give away anything you don’t have.  Then work on your personal program of self-love, self-respect and self-empowerment, and create a huge inventory of what you wish to give away;
4864.  The universe responds with the same energy that we send out.  If you attract a lot of people who wish to take advantage of you, you need to consider what you’re doing to attract victimizers into your life.  If you run into anger a lot, explore the angry thoughts you have inside of you.  If your consciousness is a “Gimme!  Gimme!  Gimme!” energy, you’ll attract all manner of demanding energies into your life.  You know if this is true by the number of deadlines not being met, demanding bosses or customers you encounter, and the feeling of being a victim.  Send out “Gimme!  Gimme!  Gimme!” energy to the universe and it will do the same in return;
4865.  If what you give is self-respect and self-love, the universe will return the love and respect you’ve been radiating.  You can’t give away what you don’t have;
4866.  Not failing is the only way to really fail in life.  You don’t become successful without having a slew of failures in your tracks;
4867.  You aren’t going to magically become successful without trying . . . without taking action . . . and especially without failing a few times.  Because failure goes hand in hand with success.  So if you want something, don’t think about.  Don’t dream about it.  And don’t fantasize about it.  That won’t get you anywhere.  And neither will avoiding failure like the plague.  Instead, get out there right now and do something;
4868.  Write down what your motivation in life is.  Why do you want a girlfriend or want confidence, etc.?  Open up a blank page, or a note on your phone, or anything that you have next to you and just write as much as you can down.  Now(, this is the hard part), look at what you wrote.  Then distill it down to one word or one sentence.  Your phrase can be anything, but just think of one.  Then, take an index card or anything that is thicker than a regular piece of paper and write it down.  Then put it in your wallet, right next to one of your credit cards, preferably, the one you use the most.  The hope is that you’ll see it every so often and remind yourself to get off your ass and do something;
4869.  It is impossible to be successful while secretly planning on failure;
4870.  If you want different outcomes, ask yourself different questions;
4871.  If you want something – and I mean really want something – then you need to do whatever it takes to make it happen.  No matter how impossible it seems.  No matter how much time it takes.  No matter how hard it is.  Block out the voices in the back of your head telling you it’s “too insane” and go for it anyway;
4872.  If effectiveness is doing the right things, efficiency is doing things right;
4873.  It doesn’t really make sense to measure ourselves in comparison with other immeasurable beings.  In fact, we are what we are; we are not how well we happen to perform at a given moment.  The grade on a report card may measure an ability in arithmetic, but it doesn’t measure the person’s value;
4874.  It is true that competition for many is merely an arena for venting aggression; it is taken as a proving ground for establishing who is stronger, tougher or smarter.  Each imagines that by beating the other s/he has in some way established her/his superiority over her/him, not just in a game, but as a woman/man.  What is seldom recognized is that the need to prove that you are better than someone else is based on insecurity and self-doubt.  Only to the extent that one is unsure about who and what s/he is does s/he need to prove herself/himself to herself/himself or to others;
4875.  The more challenging the obstacle s/he faces, the greater the opportunity for the surfer to discover and extend her/his true potential.  The potential may have always been within her/him, but until it is manifested in action, it remains a secret hidden from herself/himself.  The obstacles are a very necessary ingredient to this process of self-discovery;
4876.  Winning is overcoming obstacles to reach a goal, but the value in winning is only as great as the value of the goal reached.  Reaching the goal itself may not be as valuable as the experience that can come in making a supreme effort to overcome the obstacles involved.  The process can be more rewarding than the victory itself;
4877.  True competition is identical with true cooperation.  Each player tries her/his hardest to defeat the other, but in this use of competition it isn’t the other person we are defeating; it is simply a matter of overcoming the obstacles s/he presents.  In true competition, no person is defeated.  Both players benefit by their efforts to overcome the obstacles presented by the other;
4878.  When I’m concerned only about winning, I’m caring about something that I can’t wholly control.  Whether I win or lose the external game is a result of my opponent’s skill and effort as well as my own.  When one is emotionally attached to results that s/he can’t control, s/he tends to become anxious and then try too hard.  But one can control the effort s/he puts into winning.  One can always do the best s/he can at any given moment.  Since it is impossible to feel anxiety about an event that one can control, the mere awareness that you are using maximum effort to win each point will carry you past the problem of anxiety.  As a result, the energy which would otherwise have gone into the anxiety and its consequences can then be utilized in one’s effort to win the point.  In this way one’s chances of winning the outer game are maximized;
4879.  Learning to welcome obstacles in competition automatically increases one’s ability to find advantage in all the difficulties one meets in the course of one’s life.  Hence, every inner gain applies immediately and automatically to the full range of one’s activities;
4880.  One U.S. dollar is worth 1.34 Canadian dollars (in October of 2016);
4881.  Apparently, Canadians don’t differentiate condominiums from apartments;
4882.  If you’re a (Wayne) Gretzky fan or a(n ice) hockey fan in general, go to “Wayne Gretzky’s” (Gretzkys.com) in (downtown) Toronto(, Ontario), it’s like a museum (in there);
4883.  Appropriately, “Wayne Gretzky’s” is (located) at “99” Blue Jays Way;
4884.  Tim Hortons (TimHortons.com) is like a cross between Burger King and Dunkin’ Donuts;
4885.  Tim Hortons chili is pretty good.  It’s better than Wendy’s (chili).  It might be my favorite fast food chili;
4886.  Tim Hortons is everywhere in Canada (. . . at least in London, Ontario);
4887.  With a few exceptions, you can only buy alcohol at L.C.B.O. in Ontario;
4888.  I can say I’ve ridden a mechanical bull;
4889.  Riding a mechanical bull (really) hurts your hands;
4890.  Apparently, riding a mechanical bull is all about grip strength;
4891.  I met Dale Hunter (the former captain and head coach of the Washington Capitals) at “The Bull & Barrel Urban Saloon” (London.BullAndBarrel.com) in London(, Ontario);
4892.  Apparently, you can be too drunk to ride a mechanical bull( . . . just ask Matilda);
4893.  Sara (Worth) has an Austrian background;
4894.  (You should) take your belt off when she’s not looking;
4895.  They provide complimentary refreshments (i.e., beverages & snacks) at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport (i.e., Toronto Island Airport);
4896.  Porter Airlines (FlyPorter.com) provides complimentary beer, wine and snacks on their flights;
4897.  I (still) need to work on keeping my head up;
4898.  A high triglyceride count and low H.D.L. (i.e., high-density lipoprotein) is a sign of an increased risk of heart disease;
4899.  Don’t compare your backstage to everyone else’s front stage;
4900.  The reason we struggle with insecurity is because we compare our behind-the-scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel;

Monday, December 12, 2016

What I've learned since moving to D.C. (some of which should be obvious):

4801.  The Swedish meatballs (with cream sauce, lingonberries and potato purée) at Restaurang Riche (Riche.se/en/) in Stockholm(, Sweden) are pretty tasty;
4802.  I can say I’ve had Swedish meatballs in Sweden;
4803.  Unlike in the U.S., a woman counts as a person entering a club in Sweden;
4804.  Most Swedes are unwilling to pay a cover (charge) to get into a club;
4805.  Apparently, the Swedish dating model is (to) have sex a couple of times, find out if you like each other and then go out on a date;
4806.  Apparently, Wednesday is considered “little Saturday” in Sweden;
4807.  (Some) Swedish women can get self-conscious if they’re drinking and you’re not;
4808.  There’s complimentary tailoring if you get your jeans at NK Denim (NK.se/Stockholm/Avdelningar/NK-Denim/);
4809.  A cashless society has got to be rough on panhandlers;
4810.  The Max Grilled chicken salad at Max Burger (Max.se) is (actually) pretty tasty;
4811.  In Sweden, you can only buy liquor at Systembolaget;
4812.  In Sweden, they only sell beer by the can or bottle.  There aren’t any six-packs or cases;
4813.  Liquor is (quite) expensive in Sweden;
4814.  Don’t let me arounds docks when I’ve been drinking;
4815.  It’s not a good idea to shotgun beers after helping to polish off a bottle of Johnnie Walker Red (Label);
4816.  What do you do after taking swigs of Johnnie Walker Red (Label), shotgunning beers and passing out at a lake house in Sweden?  The answer is: Shower, get dressed and go to the club (specifically Café Opera in Stockholm, Sweden);
4817.  Apparently, I’m Ian’s guardian angel;
4818.  The “Insane” (i.e., vertical spinning coaster) is probably the best ride in Gröna Lund (GronaLund.com/en/);
4819.  The “Lustiga Huset” (i.e., walk through fun house) in Gröna Lund is really fun.  Some of the stuff they have in there, you couldn’t get away with it in the U.S.;
4820.  A poached egg is just a soft-boiled egg without the shell;
4821.  I can say I’ve drank from a Midas bottle of champagne;
4822.  Swedish snus is (really) potent;
4823.  Apparently, it’s come full circle. . . . I helped get Andrew laid;
4824.  Mister French (MrFrench.se/en/) is a nice place to get drinks and/or eat in Gamla stan (i.e., “The Old Town”) in Stockholm(, Sweden);
4825.  Self-actualized people never place anything into their imaginations that they don’t want to harden into an objective fact;
4826.  Apparently, (as a U.S. citizen,) the U.S. government doesn’t limit how long you can stay/travel out of the country;
4827.  In Sweden, the traffic lights turn from red to yellow (for a split second) before they turn (to) green;
4828.  I’ll always have fond memories of Stockholm(, Sweden);
4829.  Apparently, you can get your VAT/GST taxes back from purchases made abroad at stores associated with Global Blue (GlobalBlue.com).  (It could save you up to 19 percent);
4830.  Steven (Agarwal) said I seem calmer;
4831.  Flavor Flav can play the bass;
4832.  Apparently, Flavor Flav is against racism and separatism;
4833.  Beluga vodka is very smooth.  When it’s chilled, it’s (almost) like drinking water;
4834.  Steven (Agarwal) said I don’t have any problems talking to women;
4835.  Luisa said I seem happier and that I smile more;
4836.  If you are depressed, you are living in the past.  If you are anxious, you are living in the future.  If you are at peace, you are living in the present;
4837.  The best way to make your dreams come true is to wake up;
4838.  Silence is golden when you can’t think of a good answer;
4839.  The sun is always shining someplace;
4840.  The definition of evil is unfriendliness;
4841.  The more we help others, the more we help ourselves;
4842.  What you are thinking about you are becoming;
4843.  When you’re right, nobody remembers.  When you’re wrong, nobody forgets;
4844.  Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom.  Mastering others is strength, mastering yourself is true power;
4845.  You can’t grow as a person unless you experience adversity.  Just like you can’t get big muscles without first tearing them up at the gym, you can’t have a strong psyche without experiencing psychological and emotional pain;
4846.  Face the pain.  Embrace the challenge.  Go where you’ve never been before.  Do what’s uncomfortable.  This is what a master does.  This is what a king does;
4847.  Not only does pain provide a direct avenue for growth and development, it also gives us the contrast that makes pleasure enjoyable;
4848.  Write down three of the most emotionally jarring experiences you’ve had in your life.  Write down three reasons to be thankful for each experience and three ways each experience made you a better person;
4849.  Allow yourself to scream and cry whenever you face a difficult emotion.  Challenge yourself to be as present as you can during the experience.  The expression of pain is cathartic.  It’s something each of us needs;
4850.  Make a statement of gratitude every time you face a challenging or uncomfortable situation in your life.  It can be directed to yourself, to reality, the universe, existence or God.  It doesn’t matter.  Just make a point to say “thank you,” in some way.  Start doing it even if you have to force it through your teeth at first.  Over time, it will become more and more natural.  In this way, you’ll train yourself to embrace challenges;

Monday, November 21, 2016

What I've learned since moving to D.C. (some of which should be obvious):

4751.  Just make it stop!
4752.  Time slows down when you’re on LSD;
4753.  Songs seem four times as long when you’re on LSD;
4754.  Distances seem a lot further when you’re on acid;
4755.  Coldplay, U2 and “The Who” are the soundtrack to my “trip” in Prague;
4756.  Psychedelic art makes total sense to me now;
4757.  One of the best tasting peaches I’ve ever had was the (one I ate the) morning after taking LSD;
4758.  One of the best tasting chocolate muffins I’ve ever had was the (one I ate the) morning after taking LSD;
4759.  Apparently, tourists invade Prague on the weekends;
4760.  Apparently, the age of consent in Sweden is 15;
4761.  It seems like they only sell tab gum in Europe. . . . I couldn’t find (any) stick gum;
4762.  The cutest(, female,) 7-Eleven(, night) clerk I’ve ever seen was in Stockholm(, Sweden);
4763.  (The) Swedes maintain strong eye contact from the (female,) night clerk at 7-Eleven to the (male,) concierge at the Nobis Hotel;
4764.  People are impeccably dressed in Sweden;
4765.  Swedish women are absolutely stunning (at least in Stockholm);
4766.  The going out/clubbing nights in Sweden are Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays;
4767.  Apparently, “The Wall” in Sturecompagniet (Sturecompagniet.se/The-Wall/) is the club/place to be in Stockholm(, Sweden);
4768.  If you’re looking for outer validation, clubbing in Sweden can be very painful;
4769.  Swedish clubs are pretty small;
4770.  Swedish women (will) pay for their own drinks;
4771.  Sweden is very sexually open;
4772.  Shoving is perfectly normal in Swedish clubs.  It’s not a sign of aggression/hostility;
4773.  Swedish clubs are filled with (really) beautiful women;
4774.  Swedish people are very polite and courteous;
4775.  “Bruce” was born on September 1st, 2016 (at the Nobis Hotel in Stockholm, Sweden);
4776.  Ask for her number afterwards;
4777.  In Stockholm, (Sweden) the after parties are at “Hell’s Kitchen” (in Sturecompagniet) (Sturecompagniet.se/Hells-Kitchen/) and (at) “Solidaritet” (Sldrtt.se);
4778.  I think I’ll always have fond memories of Café Opera (CafeOpera.se/en/) in Stockholm(, Sweden);
4779.  Sweden is largely a cashless society.  Even the street vendors have credit card machines;
4780.  Apparently, “princess cake” (i.e., prinsesstårta) is the official cake of Sweden;
4781.  “Princess cake” is pretty tasty.  It’s not too sweet;
4782.  Expresso House (EspressoHouse.com) in Sweden is like Starbucks in the U.S.  (They’re everywhere);
4783.  The Nobel Prize (except for the Peace Prize) is awarded at the Stockholm Concert Hall followed by an awards banquet at (Stockholm) City Hall;
4784.  The cutest, Starbucks barista I’ve ever seen was in Stockholm(, Sweden);
4785.  I had my first “Wi-Fi” experience on September 4th, 2016 (at the Nobis Hotel in Stockholm, Sweden);
4786.  The Swedes (definitely) like to drink/party;
4787.  Brunettes and redheads stand out in Swedish clubs . . . not the blondes;
4788.  There are a lot of 7-Elevens in Stockholm(, Sweden . . . just like in Hong Kong);
4789.  TGI Friday’s is (actually) pretty nice in Stockholm(, Sweden).  They even have a deejay spinning on Friday and Saturday nights;
4790.  You have to bag your (own) groceries in Sweden;
4791.  Watch out for the six year-old girls when playing laser tag in Stockholm(, Sweden);
4792.  A half Russian, half Swede will drink you under the table;
4793.  Anna (Lasko) likes sour drinks;
4794.  Anna (Lasko) has soft lips;
4795.  The “hand of god” does work!
4796.  The best deal in Stockholm(, Sweden) may be the rotisserie chicken at Hemköp (Hemkop.se);
4797.  The cutest, delicatessen clerk/butcher I’ve ever seen was in Stockholm(, Sweden);
4798.  Apparently, you don’t actually have to say words in a loud environment; you can just “mouth” them;
4799.  Apparently, “fladderfitta” means “floppy pussy” in Swedish;
4800.  Swedish crispbread (i.e., knäckebröd) is rather tasty. . . . It’s like a slightly sweet cracker;

Monday, November 14, 2016

What I've learned since moving to D.C. (some of which should be obvious):

4701.  Monica (Stachowski) has soft lips;
4702.  Tiësto is pretty awesome;
4703.  Apparently, you can scroll through your phone using your nose;
4704.  Apparently, you should never tell a woman that you have a scratchy/sore throat or that you’re not feeling well;
4705.  I’ve had a man kiss me on the lips . . . (damn) Germans;
4706.  One U.S. dollar is worth about 6.75 Croatian Kuna (in August of 2016);
4707.  Concentration is the act of focusing one’s attention.  As the mind is allowed to focus on a single object, it stills.  As the mind is kept in the present, it becomes calm.  Concentration means keeping the mind now and here.  Concentration is the supreme art because no art can be achieved without it, while with it, anything can be achieved;
4708.  Rhythm can never be achieved by being overly purposeful about it; you have to let it happen.  But sensitivity to rhythm developed through concentration helps;
4709.  It is consciousness which makes possible awareness of the sights, sounds, feelings and thoughts which compose what we call “experience.”  It is self-evident that one cannot experience anything outside of consciousness.  Consciousness is that which makes all things and events knowable.  Without consciousness, eyes could not see, ears could not hear and the mind could not think;
4710.  When attention is allowed to rest in one place, it comes to know that place because attention is focused consciousness and consciousness is that power of knowing;
4711.  Awareness – Attention – Concentration – One-Pointed Concentration;
4712.  What is higher consciousness, but seeking more of what is already there?  As one’s ability to focus the light energy of consciousness increases, the effective range of her/his vision increases. S/he seems to see things that are invisible, such as the thoughts of others, the so-called past or the future.  Actually, s/he is only seeing what is already there and is now visible to her/him because s/he can focus the energy of her/his awareness;
4713.  The value of concentration becomes clear as we grow to understand that nothing can be enjoyed or appreciated if it cannot be known.  Beauty cannot be enjoyed unless one can know it.  Peace cannot be enjoyed unless it can be known.  The same goes for love and truth-in fact, anything that is valued by man.  By increasing the effective power of awareness, concentration allows us to throw more light on whatever we value knowing and to that extent enables us to know and enjoy it more;
4714.  But it is also necessary to learn to focus awareness in the now.  This simply means tuning into what is happening in the present.  The greatest lapses in concentration come when we allow our minds to project what is about to happen or to dwell on what has already happened;
4715.  Usually part of our energy is left in the thought world of past or future, so that the present is not seen with all of one’s light awareness;
4716.  Since the mind seems to have a will of its own, how can one learn to keep it in the present?  By practice.  There is no other way.  Every time your mind starts to leak away, simply bring it gently back;
4717.  You become more aware of what is going on as you learn to keep your attention in the now.  The most direct means of increasing one’s ability to concentrate is through the practice of meditation;
4718.  How to stay concentrated in the here and now between points?  Focus your attention on breathing.  Some objector activity which is always present is needed;
4719.  Anxiety is fear about what may happen in the future and it occurs only when the mind is imagining what the future may bring.  But when your attention is on the here and now, the actions which need to be done in the present have their best chance of being successfully accomplished and as a result the future will become the best possible present;
4720.  It is perplexing to wonder why we ever leave the here and now.  Here and now are the only place and time when one ever enjoys herself/himself or accomplishes anything.  Most of our suffering takes place when we allow our minds to imagine the future or mull over the past;
4721.  Our desire that things be different from what they are pulls our minds into an unreal world and, in consequence, we are less able to appreciate what the present has to offer;
4722.  The Pharos Hotel (SuncaniHvar.com/Hotel-Pharos.html) in Hvar(, Croatia) is really nice;
4723.  In Hvar, (Croatia) the after parties are at “Carpe Diem Beach” (Carpe-Diem-Beach-Hvar.com) and (at) “Pink Champagne” (PinkChampagneHvar.com);
4724.  Apparently, “being in your body” feels a lot like being drunk except you’re coordinated and you don’t slur your words;
4725.  It seems that people drink and do drugs (in an attempt) to try and “be in their bodies;”
4726.  There aren’t any Starbucks in Hvar(, Croatia). . . . (Come to think of it,) I don’t think there are any Starbucks in Croatia (period);
4727.  There aren’t many chain stores in Hvar(, Croatia) except the grocery store and (maybe) the drugstore;
4728.  Croatia is a very cash heavy society;
4729.  The pizza in Croatia is awful;
4730.  There are no (international) transaction fees for an international ATM withdrawal from Burke & Herbert Bank;
4731.  You have to meet Molly. . . . She’s your friend;
4732.  “Kinder Bueno” chocolate bars are pretty tasty;
4733.  If you want to go to Yacht Week Croatia, but you don’t want to pay for it, (you might) try being a summer intern (TheYachtWeek.com/summer-internships);
4734.  Sunseekers are really nice boats . . . and, apparently, they’re British;
4735.  I can say I’ve gone diving off a boat;
4736.  It’s (probably) not a good idea to swim (out) to a secluded beach without a life vest, especially when the only way to get there is to swim and you’re not a very good/strong swimmer;
4737.  Lori (Hill) has a (strong) sexual energy/vibe about her when she’s drunk;
4738.  One U.S. dollar is worth 24.4 Czech (Republic) Koruna (in August of 2016);
4739.  Prague (in the Czech Republic) is cheap.  A steak dinner at a nice restaurant is about $20.00 U.S. dollars;
4740.  If you thought the strip club panderers in (Las) Vegas were bad, don’t go to Prague;
4741.  Apparently, the age of consent in the Czech Republic is 15;
4742.  Apparently, “Karlovy Lázně” (KarlovyLazne.cz/en/) (in Prague) is the biggest/largest club in central Europe. . . . It’s five stories;
4743.  With the conversion rate, Uber is really cheap in Prague;
4744.  (I can say) I’ve had beef goulash in the Czech Republic;
4745.  A trdlo is like a cross between a cream horn and a cinnamon roll;
4746.  The pork knuckle at Bredovský Dvůr (RestauraceBredovskyDvur.cz/restaurace/) (in Prague) is pretty tasty . . . and cheap (i.e., about $12.50 U.S. dollars);
4747.  Traditional Czech food is similar to Bavarian cuisine;
4748.  Dark, Czech beer is rather tasty;
4749.  Slovenian women hate it when you confuse their country with Estonia;
4750.  It’s (probably) not a good idea to take LSD (i.e., acid) during a rainstorm in the middle of a busy park (specifically Letná Park in Prague);