The Tell-Tale Hose

A true story told in the style of Edgar Allen Poe

‘Twas the third day. The third day that the incessant sound of water being sprayed from a hose onto the echoing metal of the ship stirred me from my sleep and slowly filled my bosom with annoyance. Droplet by droplet, the annoyance accumulated until it was like a Sisyphean boulder made of water that your hands and body can find no purchase to push. Try as you might, the watery gargantuan grows with each watery pebble added to its girth and simply envelopes your hands, arms, body and soul.

How long had it been spraying it’s aquatic taunt? For the previous two days, it must have gone on for several hours, and today seemed to see no end as well. Time skews as I drift in and out of sleep, trying to ignore the aural leviathan. What possibly needs to be sprayed with that much water so often? The walls? The floor? The ceiling? In an echoing metal ship, the sound is impossible to precisely locate and yet sounds as if it comes from within the very walls themselves. It gets softer, as if perhaps they’ve moved on to a section further away. Occasionally it stops, giving me hope that once again slumber might take me in its welcoming embrace, but then it returns and with each subsequent visit, my heart beats faster in my bosom. Is this what going mad feels like?

Each rivulet colliding with a metallic cackle pierces me like a meteor shower to my planetary body leaving me cratered and pock marked and pushing my sanity slowly out of its orbit. Three days of this seemingly perpetual hydrolytic cacophony buffeting my eardrums until my very heart in my bosom has no choice but to fall into a rhythmic duet. This hydra is my master now. I will arise from my bed, giving up my dream of sleep, for the only other choice is madness. I am awake now, resigned to my fate as a slave to the dancing duo of hydrogen molecules in a ménage-a-trois with their oxygen lover, and their countless identical allies. Why, I myself am made primarily of these trios and never stood a chance. They are inside me.

And then silence. Now that I am awake, silence. Where the mocking marine melody once made its music, now an empty, silent, and all too awake space in my bosom, like an empty bed after a lover’s all too abrupt departure. Its work is done. I’m not mad, I’m simply virtually and aurally hydrated. Look into my wide and watery eyes and you will see I’m not mad. The glistening teeth, tongue, and lips of my enveloping smile are well lubricated, but I am not mad. Perhaps you just feel my water calling to yours.

Bosom.

The Story Of Kaylee Ane Me

I’m thinking about my “ex-dog,” Kaylee, tonight for some reason and feel compelled to write about our story together. I’ve always loved animals, but never wanted any myself as I didn’t want the expense or the responsibility. Being a freelance actor and musician, I’m gone a lot as well, so not the best home for an animal. Kaylee belonged to my ex when we started dating and so I started spending a lot of time with her, watching her and walking her a lot (Kaylee, that is…not my ex). When we moved in together (all three of us), Kaylee very much became “our” dog. It was never like “Hey, you need to get your dog some more food,” or anything like that. My ex had a regular day job, and so me being a freelancer, could spend a lot more time with Kaylee at home, on walks, for vet appointments, etc. She was a very quirky dog. Not in any bad way. She was a poop diva. Very particular about where she went, and almost always had to poop twice per walk instead of getting it out all in one go which was slightly annoying and used a lot of doggy bags. She was very enthusiastic and loving in her way but not the most affectionate dog you’d ever meet. Never the less she was sweet, good-natured and I loved her immensely (Kaylee that is, though that also applied to my ex).

When my ex and I broke up, it was the first time I’d ever had to deal with losing a pet in the process (as well as a girlfriend, a home and neighborhood I loved, and such that made it feel like many breakups in one). Now once again, my aim here is not to gain sympathy or paint my ex in a bad light. It was complicated and she had to do what she felt was right so there are no villains in this story, to be clear. My ex soon after got a job traveling a lot so, much to her dismay, was not really in a position to keep Kaylee (and neither was I), so Kaylee went to live with my ex’s parents which is actually a great life for Kaylee. She has another dog to be with who she loves, a great climate, attentive humans, a yard, and wonderful scenery. All in all, her life likely got majorly upgraded.

Maybe all this thinking was prompted by the latest Radiolab episode which had a part about dogs and their behaviors and such (specifically whether they can be “racist”) and it made me wonder how much emotion, thinking, and anthropomorphism we put on them and how much is real. Like, I haven’t seen Kaylee in probably 2 years and I wonder if she would remember me and how much she loved me, or if I would just be like any other stranger to her now. Was it simply that I fed, walked and took care of her? Do we imagine these bonds because we want them to be true? I don’t think so. I do think there’s enough evidence throughout history to support these ideas to some degree, but I just wonder if it goes as deep as we want it to. I hope she would remember me. Sometimes I still send her thoughts. I hope her doggie brain still thinks of me sometimes. You’re a good girl, Kaylee. I know you’re happy. I just hope you don’t forget me. I’ll chew on a squeaky stuffed snake in your honor.

Dream Theatre 50

In last night’s dream, I was doing another western themed immersive activation like the SXSWestworld I did last year with MyCoToo and Giant Spoon. I was a sheriff and Andrew Hunter was in it as well as was his wife, Elizabeth Hunter. Andy played a crotchety town drunk and Liz played his wife. It turned out that their characters were con-artists trying to defraud the town. I remembered that I also needed to take an audition for the next immersive activation (This year’s Game of Thrones activation) that was due at 4pm, so Andy and I went to an upstairs room so he could help me film it. I couldn’t remember if it was due at 4 or if I was supposed to record it at 4, and being that it was almost 4 now, I just decided to hope for the best. In the dream, I was actually remembering the monologue that I recently (in the real non-dream world) had thought would have been good if I had been available to audition for the GoT activation.

Dream Theatre 48 and 49

Dream Theatre 48 guest starred Emily Hahn! In this dream, a bunch of us had just finished performing a play and it was super late so Emily let a few of us crash at her place because we were all there after the show. She had a huge husky-type dog who was the cuddliest ever. He actually liked to snuggle up, put his legs around you and rest his head on yours and lick your face. It was the best thing ever.

Dream Theatre 49 was very busy. As in I had lots of work to do so it didn’t feel like a restful night. One dream I remember was that June Griffin Garcia needed a 41 page voiceover by tomorrow and I said I could do it. Then I had another pending project as well so it looked like it was going to be an all nighter. I seem to also remember doing some work in a computer repair type workshop

My Journey To Atlantis and Beyond

I had an item. The exact details of this item are unimportant, personal, and will not be detailed here. It was a special item to me that I had acquired shortly after my last breakup, over two years ago. It was a totem. A token representing love to me. I have a tendency to anthropomorphize a little too much so this item was alive to me. I spoke to it. Especially when I couldn’t speak to her. It was also a conduit, a connection.

Now, I’m sure many of you at this point are probably thinking that it sounds like something I should have been rid of long ago, but we each have to walk our own path, be true to ourselves and no words will do this item, or my relationship with it, justice. For me, it was a symbol or unconditional, unwavering love, despite any obstacles, storms, logistically unfortunate circumstances. It was a symbol of a promise that I had made. A badge of being a steadfast Love Warrior. I figured I would probably keep it until such time as someone new entered my life, if that is to happen, or else until such time as it felt like it was time to let it go.

A while back, I started using a dice rolling app when I was having a hard time deciding between two things. I would ask the universe which way I should go, and then use the virtual 2 sided “die” to get my answer, choosing to believe that it was universe answering me and not just random digital bits giving me a meaningless random outcome. Over the last two years, I had checked in with this item at least a couple of times to see if it was time to let it go. The last time I remember was just before I left for my six month journey on the cruise ship. When I asked then, it told me that it should come with me, so I brought it. Over the course of my time here (at this point, I’m just about at the halfway point of the 6 month contract), I started to get the feeling that maybe one of the ports of call would be where it would get released.

Yesterday, I stood out on the bow of the ship, held the item in my hand and found myself afraid to ask it the question. In fear that it was time. Part of me laughed at the ridiculousness of all this, but never the less, it was a real feeling. So I told it to show me a “1” if it was time to let it go, or a “2” if I was to keep it around for now. I hesitated tapping the screen, and then willed myself to do it, closing my eyes for just a moment. And there it was on the screen. “1”. Tears filled my eyes. I rushed back to my cabin and cried for a few minutes. Tears that I felt had been just below the surface for quite some time, and yet at least partially surprised me at their appearance. Tears that come back now as I write this. I let the feelings and tears flow until they were done and then made peace with it. I spent lat night, another “Elegant Evening,” walking around the ship with the item in my pocket. Eating, listening to music, just feeling the energy of life and all the people around me.

This morning, after a safety drill, I left the ship with the item. My initial plan was to go to a nearby beach spot behind a hotel and let it go there, but then I remembered that across the water was a popular resort called “Atlantis,” and something about that just called to me. Plus, I liked the fact that it was a bit of a trek. Not much, only a mile or two at most, but still I liked the idea of having a walk and making it feel a little more like a journey and a mission. I walked across the huge Sydney Poitier bridge and as I neared Atlantis is was starting to sprinkle a bit. As I got closer it started raining harder but I would not be deterred. Besides, it’s not like there was anywhere I could really go. I arrived at Atlantis soaking wet. It was impressive. Very cool Atlantean decor. I went inside and wandered around a bit, enjoying some huge indoor aquariums. It very much reminded me of the two posh resorts where I had stayed in Cancun with my ex when we were dating. Unfortunately, I found there was no beach access unless you were a guest so I headed back out. I eventually found out through messaging my band mates and talking to some locals that there was a public beach further down the road in the opposite direction, so I set out that way. Eventually I saw the “Beach Access” signs and followed to a beach (Cabbage Beach, I think).

I was in luck. It was high tide and there were huge, crashing waves. I found a spot a little further down that was less busy where a couple were enjoying playing in the giant waves. They looked about as high as a person not very far out, and were coming way up the beach. I took off my shoes and put my phone, wallet and ID in them, then stuffed my socks in, and wrapped it all up with my NASA shirt, and set the bundle on a beach chair, safe from any incoming waves. I walked just a little way toward the ocean, and each wave would bury my feet up to the ankles in sand, and threaten to pull my legs out from under me. I took the item from my pocket. I had contemplated the ramifications of letting the ocean have it, and determined that I didn’t think it do any harm. Nothing, plastic or harmful. Somehow, this is just what felt right. I thanked the item for its support and comfort over the years, and said it was time to release that energy back into the universe and the largest, most powerful force on the planet, the ocean. I said a lot more to both the item and to the ocean, but those words were just for them. As another huge wave rolled in, I plunged my hands deep into the sand and let the item go. I stood there for a while, with each powerful wave moving lots of sand. I never saw the item go, but I’m fairly positive it would have been carried away powerfully and quickly.

This wasn’t goodbye. This wasn’t a death. This wasn’t grieving or mourning. The item wasn’t her and she wasn’t the item. For better and worse it was too easy to anthropomorphize the item. This wasn’t any admission of defeat or hopelessness. It was simply a step in healing and letting go of the past. Trying to always be more present. This was saying that I trust the universe. Releasing control. Believing that whatever path I am on is always the path I need to be on. This was knowing that even if some crazy timeline brought this woman back into my life in the future, it would be a new beginning and not a continuation of the past. The item was a token of love, but it was also a token of pain and desperation. Too often we hold on to our pain. Swaddle ourselves in it. Weave identities from it. It is a particularly human trait that I’ll never understand. I don’t need the item to be a Love Warrior, or to send wishes of love and happiness to her into the universe. It has no bearing on any connection I may or may not have. Like almost everything in life, I have a choice as to how I view all this. It doesn’t have to “a thing.” It doesn’t have to be painful. It can easily be viewed as positive. A new beginning. Leaving behind pain. Letting go of that which doesn’t serve us. Our perspective is quite often much more in our control than we think. I’ll never forget the item. I’m sure I’ll even miss the item when my ego and pain body starve for food and try to poke the sore places, but its watch is done. As is this step of my spiritual journey. In the end, I walked over severn miles. I hadn’t eaten all day so on my way back, I stopped at Phoenix Chinese food, where I had eaten once before and had some of the best Chinese food I have ever had. As I write this back in my cabin on the ship, I feel like Samwise at the end of Lord of the Rings. Don’t get me wrong, my journey was nothing like his, but it was epic in its own very small way.

“Well, I’m back,” he said.

Dream Theatre 47

Wow. So many crazy dreams last night. Let’s see how much I can remember. 

First I was on a shuttle bus to Disney World. We were almost there and I realized that I had only brought a warm long sleeved shirt and my Indiana Jones leather jacket. I was annoyed because even just the shirt was going to be too hot and now I was going to have to carry this stuff around all day and be shirtless. I thought I would just buy a T-shirt when I got there. Also I was wearing gym shorts so they would look stupid with shorts. 

When we arrived we were all led to a big waiting room that was like a locker room. A worker came in and asked if we had seen the big buildings and spaceships as we approached. Somehow, I had not noticed, probably because I was so preoccupied with my clothing dilemma. 

She (the worker) explained that earth had been invaded buy aliens and we were all needed to fight for our survival. I now realized that this was all part of the totally immersive new experience at the park. A huge sci-fi super advanced laser tag type place with a futuristic city, building sized alien spaceships to fight in, etc. We were each given a gun in a holster that strapped to our thigh with two straps. She asked “How far do you think any one of you would get alone out there?” 

I screamed “Let’s find out!” And I jumped up and ran out the open bunker door into the fray. 

Immediately, robotic aliens resembling the Geth from the Mass Effect video games started appearing and coming toward me. Big silver robotic aliens, with sleek muscle like contours and a face that was one big red glowing circle. I started blasting and quickly realized that you could one or two shot them if you hit the red “eye.” More and more started appearing and it was obvious I wasn’t supposed to take this force on alone. I noticed holographic power ups appear around the ground and the aliens would grab them for shields or other powers. I couldn’t get to them at this point before the aliens so I decided to run and see how far I could get. I dashed into the streets dodging and firing. I eventually made my way to huge alien building (or possibly gargantuan ship). 

Inside was the size of a huge office building with computers and such and a huge staircase built into a slanted floor leading up to another level and then on to another and so on like one side of a pyramid. 

At this point there was a break in the dream, possibly for some other dreams but I can’t remember the order or details exactly. I do remember that at some point I was back here and this time knowing it was a dream decided to count the levels to see how many there were leading up and away in front of me. It was hard to count them as they seemed to change or multiply as I tried but I eventually counted about 15 levels. 

Then suddenly I had a disguise. I activated my disguise and was now dressed as one of the humanoid alien workers in an a white and black uniform and mask. I started fiddling with the computers trying to figure out controls and messing with crystal device that was inserted in one of the computers. Other workers would acknowledge me and I would nod, hoping to not be discovered. Then one worker came up to me and said a phrase, something like “Point 432.” I had a feeling this was a security phrase and I was supposed to issue a particular response. I didn’t know the response of course so in an effort to distract and not get discovered, I started blatantly coming on to her. It seemed to work for the moment. Sadly, I think that’s all there was (or all I remember) to that world. 

Dream 2 involved me and Larry Soileau writing a silly comedy short. We wrote this short skit where I played Rick James and was giving a serious monologue about Rick James’ charity for abused and battered women or something like that. It was all very earnest like “We all know someone who has been abused or gone through hard times,” etc. Then the punchline was that after this heartfelt plea, it ended with Rick James yelling “BITCH!” Because that was his “catch phrase” in this dream world and we thought the dichotomy in tone was hilarious. Look, dreams are weird man. Larry and I actually wrote really funny stuff in the real world. 

In dream 3, I woke up and Larry and I shared a huge house with glass walls on the bottom level. He was a about to leave and I started telling him all about my crazy Disney World Alien Battle dream. I was about half way through when he informed me that he really had to leave to be somewhere, so I didn’t get to finish my story. He grabbed his stuff and went outside and threw down his remote control hover board which was the size of a skateboard with propellers built into the board at the front and back. He had the remote in his left hand with his jacket and stuff, and gave a kick to get going. He hovered off at a very slow pace, probably about half as fast as waking which made me wonder what was the point in using the board if it was that slow. I wondered if maybe it got faster after warming up or something. 

In dream 4, I got an out of the blue text from my ex asking “Enjoying a day off?” I’m not sure if it was dream me, or real me who wondered “How did she know today is my day off?” but I responded with “Very much needed!” She also sent me a video of the condo after it had been cleared out right before she left it for the last time. The video had some text on it like you add after the fact in Instagram saying something like “The condo as of two day ago.” I hadn’t seen this posted on Instagram though so I was puzzled. Maybe she just added the text another way before sending it to some other folks before or something. Or maybe she had some way of hiding posts from me. And though I was shocked to get this message, I thought it was a good sign that she was just texting me like it was normal and that maybe she wouldn’t just be “Somebody that I used to know.” I was glad for the exchange but the video also made me sad. 

I think that’s about all I can recall. My brain had a busy night.

Dream 46

It was a cool Autumn night. I was walking along a sidewalk at some kind of festival or event, dressed fairly nicely, as was everyone here. People bustled by each other on the sidewalk. 2 people passed me going the opposite direction and I stopped in my tracks, thinking “Was that her?” I can’t remember exactly how, but both her face and mine were kind of obscured. Was it a masked event? Maybe just like hat, scarf, glasses, or something? As I wondered if it had been her, I heard her voice, “Heath?” I turned around and we both took off whatever was obscuring our faces. Her partner continued onward. I wondered if it was just a friend or a romantic partner. She was in a beautiful dress. Her hair had grown quite long and was curled. She ran to me and we embraced, that perfect embrace where you fit like puzzle pieces and yet can’t squeeze tight enough. We said so much without saying a thing. We exchanged a few words though I can’t remember what they were. They were warm and comforting and laced with inadequacy, bursting with so much more they wanted to say. She had to go but expressed that she was going to write me the “greatest, longest, most wonderful email,” or something like that. I didn’t want her to go. I thought to myself “No, don’t do that. Not an email. Just talk to me. No written text,” but we only had a moment. She had to go. Then I woke up.

Dream 45

A trio of dreamlets featuring the ex, yet again.

In the first part we were both at a band practice where I was mostly singing backup. The band consisted of a bunch of guys I’d played with in various bands coming together for a sort of “reunion” as a big group jam. Greg Patterson from Midnight Express was singing and aside from that, Sam Walkoviac from AKA, a band I played in during the 90s, was on bass. He was getting back into the swing of things after not having played bass for a long time. He was doing a great job despite discovering that his bass was really screwed up. The lowest string was basically off the neck and unplayable and I think the highest string was missing as well. He discovered some problem with a weird bracket part from deep in the bass. I asked is it was the same bass from back in the day, and it wasn’t. He had got a new bass at some point. He said he wished he had his 12 string bass.

I was singing backups but couldn’t hear myself well. Then I noticed the mic wasn’t plugged in. I figured since we were practicing at a low level, that maybe Greg had figured we didn’t need to use mics or something but when he realized my mic wasn’t plugged in, he was surprised and started to remedy that. My ex was there just hanging out on the couch watching and smiling. In the dream, I think we may have been together and not exes though. It was very happy and loving. Leading to…

Part 2:
She and I were on a grassy area at the side of a highway. She was sitting on a stool. We were smiling, laughing, kissing and hugging and then as we were doing so she sort of toppled backward off the stool and we both tumbled, laughing, into the lush grass. We both just laid there, smiling in silence, enjoying the cool, soft, plush grass and the warm sun in a moment of pure peace and serenity. I remember wondering if people driving by or maybe the police were going to think something was wrong, seeing two people just laying in the grass beside the highway. I decided I didn’t care.

Part 3:
Now we were in her room which seemed like a small dorm room. I was sitting on the bed next to the wall (the bed was in a corner), and she was on the open side of the bed. I noticed what looked like a ribbon wedged between the bed and the wall, so I pulled it, thinking I was retrieving it, but realize it had actually be stuck to the wall with tape or something, like it had been hung intentionally but then trapped when the bed had been moved against the wall. I said something along the lines of “Oops, sorry.” She now had some kind of facial mask on (the kind that cleanse your skin or something) and the mood turned darker and more serious. She said “Can I bum you out?” I knew that she meant she was about to tell me something serious that would bum me out, but I found it a strange thing to say. She then started talking and building up to something that I could tell was not going to be good, but she was taking a long time getting there.

“Brian and I have been really trying to stick to our budget…”

I somehow knew that “Brian” was the person she was dating now (not any Brian I knew, and as far I know this is a purely fictional dream fact), and I wondered how the hell her and “Brian’s” budget had anything to do with me. I realized now that we were not together and also wondered how this all colored our previous, hugging, kissing, snuggling. Did Brian know about this? Did they just have that kind of open relationship? Would he have cared if he known? Had she been inappropriate with me in light of her new relationship? Where was she going with this story? Was she talking about their “budget” because she was about to tell me they were saving for a wedding? Was this finally about to be an opportunity to talk about a lot of unresolved shit in the air?

“Okay, please get to the point here,” I said.

And then I woke up.

Home

I have a few private blogs for different purposes. Kind of private journals. I noticed one today that I had forgotten about. I couldn’t remember why I created it. It had one entry. I quite liked what I’d written so I’m putting it here. I’m not sure why I wrote this in a private blog or what else I thought I’d do with this blog.

There are two truths. Both real. Seemingly at odds, yet here they exist within me. Despite whatever troubles my life may have, I am mostly at peace. Grateful for my many gifts, talents and blessings. Overall, my life is pretty damn great. Yet beneath it all, I feel the gargantuan darkness. Lurking in the depths like some legendary, mythic sea monster. I know it’s there. I feel its presence. The way it changes the pressure around me. Almost imperceptible and undetectable ripples from the deepest depths.

I have a genuine joy, happiness, and love of life, yet I often feel like a ghost walking through this world. An empty, hollow husk of a person, tired and weary of this life. Always tired. Wanting to sleep. Maybe not wake up. I compose suicide notes in my head, though I have no intention of any such thing.

I am genuinely fine on my own and can see a bright and wonderful life ahead, yet I can’t seem to shake the loss. I can’t stop the comparisons. The desire for what I’ve tasted but no longer have. I try to be present and non-resistant. I often succeed. And often fail. It’s like I’ve been ejected into an alternate dimension and it’s not a bad dimension, per se, but it’s not right. It’s off-kilter. I don’t belong here.

So I do the only thing I can do. I just keep swimming. I enjoy the sun on my skin and wind across my face. And I try to enjoy the water and make this new dimension my home despite the unsettling presence I can feel somewhere deep below me. And the undying desire deep within my very being for my real home. Where I belong. Or maybe that’s just resistance again and I should just call it my “previous” home.

Or perhaps it would be most accurate to simply say…”her.”

The Rigidity of Your Hopes and Dreams

11 days into my new adventure and it’s been a wonderful whirlwind. I find myself with a lot to say to say, so buckle in for the signature Heath tome of verbosity.

This adventure is a great catalyst to being present. Naturally, many have asked me what I will do when this contract is over. Will I take another one? As humans, we are almost always far too wrapped up in the past and the future. Worrying about things that did or didn’t happen in the past or what will happen in the future. Planning our path. Trying to make it happen. We have our hopes, dreams and goals, and we need to find the road to them. I haven’t even boarded the ship yet. I have no idea how I will feel in 7 months from now. Maybe I’ll be sick of being confined to a ship and be homesick and miss my friends, my bands, acting, Austin, and my life there. Or maybe I’ll feel like I’ve found the best life ever and never want to stop doing it. I don’t know. So my best choice is to just focus on today and enjoying it. I’ve had conversations about future contracts, and possibilities if I decided to stay on with Carnival for more contracts. Maybe I could become a Music Manager and direct my own band. Who knows where this will lead, who I will meet, or what opportunities may present themselves?

There is, of course, the fear that if I decide that it was fun but I want to resume my life in Austin, that it won’t be easy because I’ve been away from acting and networking and all the bands I played with and I’ll find myself with no way to pay the bills so I’ll have no choice but to take another contract and now I’m trapped just like any other job. Of course, that’s just fear rearing its ugly head like it does. It has also made me think about the rigidity with which we think about our “hopes and dreams” for life. Is this an awesome job? Absolutely. Is it what I’ve always “dreamed” of doing? No. I never thought “Oh man, if only some day I could sing on a cruise ship! That is what I want to do with my life!” Now of course, my dreams have never been super specific. I dreamed of fame and fortune in music and acting. Touring with my own band, playing my originals and being somewhat “famous” for lack of a better term (though “fame” isn’t the goal at all). Or touring as a side man with some big band. Playing for Sheryl Crow or Lady Gaga, or anything like that. Putting out my music and people buying it and coming to see my concerts. Starring in movies, television and theater as a renowned actor and making a good living doing so. Being a sought after voice over actor.

For some reason, I now actually feel more cut off from those dreams. Like being so isolated in this very specific situation, there’s no chance of any of that. Now of course, that’s just fear again as, like I said before, I don’t know what kinds of contacts and opportunities might come along here. But while I was a freelancer in Austin, it felt like I was at least playing “the lottery.” That big audition could come along. Playing in 8 bands might lead to something. Now I feel like I’m not even really playing, so as they say “You can’t win if you don’t play.” I’m not going to be doing any acting, obviously. No auditions. Now, sure, I’ve already met amazing people and will be playing 6 nights a week on the ship, so that’s definitely something.

However, there’s another, slightly darker undertone to all this. Two years ago, I first started pursuing all this because of a devastating breakup that made me just want to run away from everything and turn off my brain. I wanted to curl up and die, but I also didn’t (really) want to literally curl up die (at least not deep down, though sometimes I thought I wanted that). I considered crazy shit like taking some kind of job at a remote post in Antarctica or something. The equivalent of a “living death.” I didn’t want to actually die, but I kind of wanted to just become a vegetable and live out my remaining days as a zombie. In some ways, I saw this cruise ship opportunity as a better version of that. I could at least be doing one of the things I am here on this earth to do, being on stage and playing music, but aside from that, I could just turn off my brain, look at the ocean and let the remaining days of my life slowly wash away with each wave.

This is not my “dream” life. I do however recognize that it has elements of it. I am paying the bills playing music and singing. And again it makes me wonder about the rigidity of our dreams. Are my dreams too rigid? I don’t know, but they are what they are. I know (in very general terms) what I’ve wanted as long as I can remember. What I feel I’m here to do. Do we make ourselves unhappy by being too hard and unbending in “what we want”? Do we perhaps need to let our dreams redefine themselves along our journey? I don’t know. I do know that we are fear-based beings and that a tremendous amount of our decisions are fear-based and probably the vast majority of our energy is spent catering to fear or trying to fend it off.

What am I going to do 7 months from now? I have no idea. I want to spend more of my energy on today. Enjoying this moment. We will never know what the “right” thing to do is, and many times there probably isn’t even a “right” thing to do. The best we can do is relax and let the river take us where it will. Don’t fight the current. Though you might want to at least gently paddle in a particular direction.