It was weird. When I realized it was my birthday, waking up in the morning realizing that I was a year older, I had no clue how old I was.

Remember when we were kids? Birthdays were a huge freaking deal, remember that? You were counting the days until you were 10 years old because for some reason entering the double digits was some how important. I can’t think of anything making double digits important in our childhood, but I do remember being excited that I was about to turn 10.

13 was a big one because we no longer needed parents to go to PG-13 movies (that having been said, I doubt they would have given a flying crap if I was 7 and going to see a PG-13) and we’re in Jr. High and girlfriends and boyfriends are a real concept at this point. This age normally contains within it the first make out session, or kiss that isn’t some random childish thing you do under the monkey bars and then yelled “cooties” (I didn’t kiss a girl until I was 15).

14 is another milestone and mostly because of the movies thing again. And at this age, your parents have probably given you enough rope to hang yourself with so that’s pretty exciting. It’s an interesting age… You have this feeling of moving out of childhood and into adulthood but still not actually doing either (of course we deny this fervently). Alcohol sampling might also occur here. A little more wine at the Christmas table, and perhaps a slightly older friend who sneaks some beer from dad’s fridge. The right of passage has most definitely begun.

16. We’re definately well beyond playing with toys at this point (admittedly I didn’t stop building with lego until I was… well… I still… am… shut up!) and have our minds solely set on girls/boys, stuff/clothes, and cars(motorcycles)/cars(riding on the back of motorcycles). State or Province depending you’re probably also learning how to drive at this point. And while Mom’s mini-van is “uncool” and we take every opportunity to slide that in, we some how forget this fact when we want to drive it. This is a magical age full of increased milleage on the car, minor fender benders, and whiplash.

18 is the penultimate milestone, or ultimate if you live in Alberta. Not only can you opperate a vehicle without your parents present you probably have enough cash saved up to buy one. One more year (or this year if you’re a red plate) and you can get boozed and nobody can get mad at you for it (except your parents when you’re up all night barfing). Your own apartment? Paying your own cell phone? College? MasterCard? At this point you really are entering into adult hood and you are wanting to create your own identity. And you realize at this point your parents were 50% right. Yes it is harder on the outside, paying your own food, buying your own gas, maintaining your own car… But my God the freedom is worth the cost. Don’t want to do laundry today?… don’t. Want to eat Kraft dinner for a week? Have at ‘er. Want to play video games all day? It’s your TV! Go ahead! It is a life with more responsibility, more stuff you have to take care of, but it is your life.

19/21. Welcome to wherever you are. This is your life, you’ve made it thus far. You’ve gotta believe, right here right now, you’re exactly where you’re supposed to be (Bon Jovi). The milestones are pretty much done at this point. You’ve got some things left to learn, a mortgage to take out (which is nothing more than a moderately larger car payment) and a few other minor bugs to work out… But you’ve arrived in the world.

We’re so glad you made it.

Where was this going? Oh yeah! I’m 23 years old today.

errr, yesterday.

Beware the Bear

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I wrote something…

“The Sacrifice” – By OSTBear

          He can feel her warmth as he gently presses his hand against her, an illogical fear that she might break under his touch. He runs his hand over the smooth and almost soft surface, amazed at her vibrance even in this dark, damp, and humid place. He realizes as he moves his hand along her side that this appendage is leading him on, urging him to continue to her entrance. His body yearns for the feel of her underneath him and in his nose and beneath his eyes. The knuckles on his hand turn white as they grip her, preparing to enter her embrace once more.
          “If you step foot on that ship,” a voice, strong and ancient, echoes from his left, “you’ll never want to leave.” A man, much like the first but with more time folded into his skin, smiles stepping forward ever so slowly into the faint light of the lamp hanging from above. “And what would Alicia think?”
          He grins a mournful grin and releases the railing, taking a step back. “I miss it Dad. I miss it so much I can hear her calling me some times.” His voice begins to tremble and his body begins to quiver as he releases the railing of the gangway. It’s been like this for a while now; the medicine men call it ‘redeeming’ when the body aches so much for something that it shakes. But this redeeming is normally reserved for the weed, not for this.
          “She calls to me too,” the older man bows his head, and leaning heavily on his cane, “good times, bad, it doesn’t matter. Adrianna sings her song and I long to feel her warmth and the wind in my hair.”
          “Men like us were never meant to live on solid ground.” He sighs moving toward his father offering his arm. His father takes it without protest, something he used to give plenty of. Always independent and the source of strength for others; after the fall that obliterated his knee he found it difficult to adjust to relying on his friends rather than having them rely on him.
          “Perhaps not, but we were always meant to be men who serve the people. They have asked us to remain with our feet firmly planted on the ground.”
          “Then they ask too much of us Father.” The statement, full of irony, personifies their woe. To ask a man forged by adventure and danger and the four corners of the world to give that up is the same as asking an average man to take it on. Every day they feel the burden, and every day it kills them a little more. “I long to teach my son of our family and what it means to be born into it. It is all I have ever thought about since he came into this world, all that I ever wanted for him, and now the people insist I must deny myself of this? Deny my son of his heritage?”
          “I remember,” his father, ever conscious of his son’s emotional pitch, tries to calm him. “I remember when you first started to build the Tyconderosa. You were always dreaming, even when you were barely old enough to stay on your feet you were dreaming. It didn’t change after you built her either; faster, higher, more maneuverable your ship didn’t go a month without some kind of modification. People view us as masters of the gun, the sword, and the sky but they almost never remember that we created and maintained our sky chariots. You were the best engineer our family had ever seen, but in some ways I think that did you a disservice.”
          “How so?”
          “I can remember when you redesigned the engines on Adrianna. Wasn’t more than five minutes after they were installed in the ship that you were on to the next thing to be improved.” His father laughs to himself.
          “I don’t understand father.”
          “You could never sit still for long enough to enjoy anything you had done. It was always off to the next thing, never any time taken for the present, for the world around you. Always the future. Always what could be never what has been or what is.” He looks admonished as his father attempts to pass on this wisdom, which brings a smile to his father’s face.
          “I’m… I’m sorry-”
          “My son.” His father stops and turns his son towards him holding him by the upper arms. “I am ever so proud of you. Being mindful of the future is not the worst thing a man could do. Your family will forever be served by it. But it is important son that you take the time to enjoy what you have in front of you once in a while.” He embraces his son then, and the boy feels his father’s love.
          “James? Edward? Are you down here?” Drucilla Nemo calls down after her husband and son.
          “We’ll be up in a moment.” Edward calls back with a smile.
          “Well hurry, supper’s getting cold!” James smiles at the sound of his mother’s voice, thick with love much like his father’s.
          “Come then Captain Nemo, we wouldn’t want supper to get cold.” James smiles offering his arm to his father.
 He takes his son’s arm and smiles warmly, “No Captain Nemo, we most certainly would not.”

That time of year

October 2, 2008

There is something truly surreal about this birthday – for lack of a better phrase – season for me. Normally I have this build up of excitement, of anticipation. See birthdays are perfect excuses for me to drag people out of their homes to go have some fun with me. I use it as a social tool because people feel obligated when it’s somebody’s birthday. It’s true. Think about it, how many times have you ignored someone because you don’t like hanging out with them that much? But when it’s their birthday you are obligated to go or you’ll forever be that douche bag that didn’t go to Phil’s birthday party… douche bag.
But for me, this year… I just don’t know. With large and rather drastic problems still looming in my family between my mother and I, I’m not sure I could get excited about it without feeling guilty. Last year had no major party, my ex-girlfriend’s family kind of surprised me with one, and I had a dinner with her. I did have a birthday dinner with my family, but that went to shit for a large variety of reasons.
I’ve normally had my brother around to get my excited about my birthday (that having been said last year he was late phoning me by a week) but now… meh. I want to. I want to use my birthday as an excuse to go out and do something crazy, but I just can’t seem to work it up. In fact, I’m kind of at a point where I’d like my birthday to go largely un-remarked. These are probably feelings of guilt left over from the happenings between myself and my parents during our last go around. I was made to feel extremely guilty for having a family that loved me and that I called family in return. Made to feel guilty for a lot of stuff actually, a lot of things that I didn’t really have control over, and I think my mother’s winning this round.

Scratch that. No way that bitch takes me out of the game. Let’s celebrate us a Birthday.