Always Be Moving Forward: Nine Lessons Learned from Following the Rules

You go along with the checklist. You follow the rules. And you find that you still can’t “make it.”

Replace “you” with “me,” and that’s where I am now. 

You see, I did the pre-approved, Boomer-sanctioned thing: College. Grad school. Safety. Security. Don’t rock the boat. And I still have to get a second job. 

I’m not against working hard. But it is kind of depressing. 

Perhaps “disillusioning” is a better word. But I’m telling you, this is why I do not find it irresponsible to warn as many young people as humanly possible to explore alternatives to college. 

It’s another reason why I warn people away from law school as much as humanly possible. 

Law school provides you with some of the most unmarketable skills in one of the least-demanded fields. 

Every instinct telling you to go to law school? Listen to it, and then do the opposite. 

The same goes, generally, for college. 

Look, I’m no self-improvement guru. I don’t have everything together. But I can tip you off about what not to do. Why make the same mistakes someone else did? Continue reading “Always Be Moving Forward: Nine Lessons Learned from Following the Rules”

I Have Seen The Future, And It Sucks

The world is changing before our eyes. We see it being remade in real-time, and in many ways, these changes are for the worse.

Do you feel sick? I do. Last night in Manchester, England, evil Islamic murders deliberately targeted young kids, primarily girls, at an Ariana Grande concert. At last count, 22 are dead and dozens injured. 

These attacks are happening with increased frequency and brazenness. Whether it’s guns, bombs, trucks, or knives, we are told that this is the price to pay for living in our brave new world. 

It’s nonsense, of course. All of it. Many of these deaths are preventable. But short-sighted bureaucrats who care only for their own power have foisted these conditions upon us. 

Reality must conform to their vision of the world. And when it doesn’t, they double-down on the magical thinking and more people are sacrificed so that they can feel good about themselves. 

I’m pretty steamed, but I’ve calmed down since last night. Here’s where I am:

  • There will be no political solution. 
  • Things will get worse before they get better, if they get better. 
  • This will come to the U.S. if we don’t get serious about two things: Destroying ISIS and similar organizations wherever they pop up, and controlling our own borders and immigration policy. 

I don’t want to write about this. I really don’t. But jihad ruins everything.  

Want to know who else does? The elitist politicians and bureaucrats who insist on importing jihadists into our societies and telling us that it’s good for us. 

Instead, they have wrecked in only a generation or two societies and cultures that have taken centuries of blood and toil to build. 

To hell with all of them. 

I’m ready for our systems to be razed to the ground and be replaced with something that will at least act in service of the people who just want to mind their own business. 

Not with malice, but with the spirit of truth. 

But more than anything, I long for the day when calling something by its name isn’t seen as some dangerous, rebellious act. 

And I’m praying that some kind of peace can descend upon the world instead of all this chaos. 

Improve yourself. 

Improve your community. 

Take care of your family. 

Seek truth. 

And be careful. 

Follow me on Twitter @DaytimeRenegade and Gab.ai @DaytimeRenegade

And check out my Instagram here

Internet-free and Loving It

Hi everyone. It’s me. I’m back again. 

I just spent two weeks in Greece. I’ll write about it later, but suffice it to say, I had a wonderful vacation, my first in about six years. 

You probably noticed that I didn’t publish any blog posts during that time, nor was I on any social media. Nor did I check my emails. This was by design. 

During the trip, I made a conscious decision not to have Internet access, and it was glorious. 

4th century monument to Laomedon, one of Alexander the Great’s trusted generals, Amphipolis, Greece.
Did you know that it can take upwards of 20 minutes to return to the task you were working on after checking your device? Twenty minutes! That’s crazy, isn’t it?

I’ll spare you the talk about our brains not being wired for the modern world or whatever because, quite honestly, no one’s brain could be wired for the cluster-you-know-what we find ourselves in today. But I just want to briefly share some things I noticed during my two-week (ugh, I hate this term, but here it comes) detox from technology:
Continue reading “Internet-free and Loving It”

What Should We Listen To “From the Mouths of Babes”?

Today is Palm Sunday, marking Jesus’ entrance into Jerusalem at the beginning of Passover. It marks the beginning of Holy Week, Jesus’ final ministry, the Last Supper, His passion, crucifixion, and Resurrection. 

It also kicks off the season of “Muslims bombing churches in the Middle East,” but I digress. 

Maybe I should write about this instead of my intended topic–after all, we’re suddenly beating the war drums over Syria because the President was supposedly swayed by his daughter’s heartbreak over the latest gas attack. What about this? This, also, has been going on for years. Is it the type of weapon deployed that makes the difference here?

Yeah, I’m heated. 

But this does tie into what I wanted to write about in a way. 

According to Matthew, as Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey and the people spread palms and their garments on the ground as though he were their king, the children in the Temple cried out, “Hosanna to the son of David!”

Indignant, the chief priests and scribes asked Christ if He heard, and to which He responded,

“[H]ave you never read, ‘Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings, you have brought perfect praise’?”

This has entered the culture as the saying, “From the mouth of babes,” denoting that children have some kind of wisdom to offer. 

So what gives? What does this mean? When do we listen to children? Even adult ones? Continue reading “What Should We Listen To “From the Mouths of Babes”?”

Can’t Shake It

I would love to not pay attention. 

And yet, I feel compelled to do more than while away my time as the world goes on around me. 

So I try to put what’s happening together, to paint a coherent picture, and I usually don’t like the results. And so I worry. 

I worry about how we use history as a how-to guide and not a cautionary tale. No matter the lessons the record provides, we seem to return, like a dog to its vomit, to the worst of what humanity has to offer. 

I worry about what kind of world I’ve brought my son into, what kind of inheritance he and his progeny will have–though I will be dead, I still worry about them. 

I worry about eternity

And I worry if there is any hope for us in the here and now. Continue reading “Can’t Shake It”

Theater of the Mind

There is no more powerful force than the human imagination. People live their lives according to what they think is true more than what actually is. 

No kidding, right? It’s a pretty good heuristic: “That mean-looking son-of-a-bitch over there with the knives and stuff sure looks dangerous…think I’ll stay away from him.”

But there are also those, shall we say, less-than logical manifestations of this tendency. 

Let me provide some context: I work in DC. The presidential inauguration is in a few days. You can imagine the talk swirling across the country finds itself here. 

And I have to laugh at a lot of it, even though a lot of it scares me. 

Scares me?

It absolutely scares me. Because some people’s actions are guided solely by what they imagine is the case. 

There are people with important, high-stakes jobs like airline pilot, doctor, and lawmaker who think that we are one step away from having things like internment camps and death squads. The one-hundred percent think–no, know–that slavery is this close to being reinstated. 

And how many times do people tell you “All X are Y”? “All Christians are bigots. All Muslims are terrorists. All blacks are criminals.” And so on. 

Again, this goes back to heuristics: One bad experience with a group taints one’s view of them, yet one good experience never changes anybody’s mind for the positive. 

Survival. I get this. But letting our imaginations get the best of us has huge implications 

When somebody thinks they’re Napoleon, we sent them to the loony bin. But act like we are all dead if we don’t pass a certain piece of legislation right now, and you become a national hero. 

And back to Inauguration Day: “All Republican voters are evil and Trump is Hitler reincarnate. Let’s throw bricks at them!”

Which leads me to an important point: If we all live based on what we think is going on, who is right? What is what?

I don’t know.  Continue reading “Theater of the Mind”

Don’t Let Go Of Regret

Conventional wisdom says that it’s unhealthy to hold on to regret, that it’s far better to just let things go. Don’t dwell on the past, just move into THE FUTURE. 

Well, you all know how I feel about conventional wisdom

I’m also somewhat of an expert on regret, so I think you can take it easy on that grain of salt when you listen to my opinion. 

See, I think it’s a good thing to hold on to your regrets. 

Without these regrets, you won’t know what it is you’re trying to avoid in life. 

We’ve all heard about the magic of visualization and affirmations, psychological tricks to “program” your mind towards achieving a desired outcome. 

But regret can help focus on what you don’t want to happen. 

When plotting one’s course or embarking on a new endeavor, it’s useful to visualize your ideal desired outcome. 

But the other side of the coin is just as useful: Visualizing the worst-case scenario. You can then work backwards to determine the steps that will take you there so you can avoid them when they arise. 

But more than visualization is that feeling  of regret, that twisting in your gut like a drill that keeps you up at night and makes you sweat with worry. 

Remember that feeling. Hold it in and let it consume you. And then, when you let it out, don’t forget how it felt. And know you never want to feel it again. 

If just the echo is this bad, how much worse will the real thing be?

If your desired ideal outcome is the carrot, then regret is the stick. And what a stick it is. 

Of course, there are things you can’t control. I’m not talking about those things. Let those go. 

But for things in your control, remembering last regret can keep you from re-making the same mistakes.  Continue reading “Don’t Let Go Of Regret”