The Second Side

I could put something really witty here if I wanted.

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When you stop believing in coincidence, paranoia is only a heartbeat away.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Advising Myself

  1. You see those ripples on your abdomen? It would be pretty cool to still have those at 35, so stay active.
  2. Right now, the world is a pretty safe and cozy place. You have lots of friends. Grandma and Grandma live in their house in Holdrege, the cookie jar fully stocked. Granny is in her trailer, waiting to tell you interesting stories. Some day all of this will be gone. Cherish it.
  3. Remember that story you wrote about an underwater city, and the dome covering the city collapses and causes a giant whirlpool in the ocean? And all the James Bond rip-off stories? And all the campy comic books you drew? And all the audio tapes of you and Davis doing your own radio show? Keep those, will you?
  4. There is no such thing as "fate," but there are "many futures." Take time to look and listen, and signs will appear, showing you a path. Take it and run.
  5. There are two sides to every story, and I mean every story.
  6. Friends will come and go. Don't fight it. Sometimes, people grow apart and become different people. Do your part to maintain friendships that mean a lot to you, and they'll endure if they're supposed to.
  7. As you turn your dimpled mug toward Mr. Achteburg to take your 3rd grade picture, the year is 1979. You have recently chosen the Los Angeles Rams as your favorite football team. They will lose this year's Super Bowl to the Steelers. It's going to be a while, but the Rams will win a Super Bowl . . . after they've moved to St. Louis.
  8. Love the pink vest.
  9. You and Davis will get the great idea to run and jump off the roof to land in Dad's pick-up as he drives through the alley. This is a very, very bad idea. Yes, even if you're wearing capes (and they aren't capes, they're bath towels).
  10. In the distant future, you'll be working in a retail store, minding your own business and trying to make a buck, and an angry customer will come up to you and insult you because the store doesn't carry an item he wants. My advice: screw the job. Follow that asshole into the parking lot and beat the shit out of him.
  11. Voltaire wrote—speaking of religion——that what all sects agree on is true, and what they disagree on is false. Therefore, if all sects agree that "there is a God, and one must be just," then you can probably take it to the bank. Don't join "sects" though. Make your spiritual journey a personal one. Let it take you wherever it will.
  12. Do the best you can in school. The system isn't perfect, but do your best. Just remember that sometimes teachers have dull, disagreeable personalities that make them ill-suited to the job of teaching. That ain't your fault.
  13. It hurts your fingers when you play the guitar for the first time. Just keep at it, and eventually it won't hurt anymore.
  14. You're going to be a father to twins someday. Wait . . . where are you going? Stop!
  15. Someday you'll have a crush on a bank teller, but your boss will tell you it's useless to ask her out because such a classy lady would never go for a blue-collar type like you. I'd tell you to go for it anyway, but you will eventually meet someone very special, and she'll prove that you can get a classy lady who's out of your league. Be patient. The nice girls don't always go for jerks, although it seems that way.
  16. That big box of letters and cards and pictures from friends and girlfriends and family that you'll throw out to have more room? For Christ's sake, don't do that.
  17. You love to read and write. Nurture both of these hobbies. Devote yourself to them completely, starting now.
  18. Stand up straight. Stop slouching. Walk like you're going somewhere.
  19. The world can change quickly. Be ready and willing for upheaval, and you'll be one step ahead of the changes when they come.
  20. Always respect yourself, and demand that others do the same.
It was Kristin's idea.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jimmy has invented our time machine........

What I wouldn't give to have that cookie jar again...

It's Davis...sorry I forgot my password...........

10:47 PM  
Blogger Fletcher said...

I was 5. woke up in the ambulance. Had cracked my head on the dining room table (they were real wood in those days) leaping from sofa to table and back again. Those bathtowels around the neck just don't seem to help.

Word Verification: rhoielwc roy-A-look
I can't find it in my Welsh dictionary.


12:06 AM  
Blogger Defiantly Damned said...

Jimmy, this was absolutely one of the most wonderful and cathartic things I have ever read. Although I didn't know you as a child - I wish I had however - I can see you, Davis, your friends, the cookie jar, the capes, all of it so very clearly, almost like it was my own life. What a wonderful celebration of the little boy you once were as well as the man you have become. You (and Kristen) have inspired me, yet again, to do the same exploration of advice that I might have offered "little Stacey" had I had the chance. Absolutely loved it, Jimmy... thank you for sharing.

12:48 PM  
Blogger Tricia said...

A little glimpse into how Jimmy became Jimmy. I love it!

And for God's sake-- Do NOT throw out that box of letters. Gah!

5:51 AM  
Blogger Jimmy said...

Davis: Yes, how were we to know, way back when, what that cookie jar would mean to us later.

Fletcher: If only we had formed a supertrio, it just might've worked . . .

DD: Why, thank you, Luv. I'm glad you enjoyed it. It was quite cathartic for me, too. That little boy still lives.

Tricia: I'm glad you enjoyed the glimpse. Alas, the box did get away from me.

1:40 AM  
Blogger Tree said...

Oh, I loved this. We would have been friends back then, I'm sure of it. I'll have to try this exercise myself as soon as I have the time.

Thanks for sharing it.

11:43 AM  
Blogger Jimmy said...

You're quite welcome.

Yes, we would have been good friends . . . but good enough to jump off the garage together??

2:00 PM  

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