Happy New Year!


I wont waste your time. I just wanted to share my appreciation with all you. I can’t express enough how much I appreciate the support, the views, the clicks, and the comments.

I will always do my best to make sure that I make this blog as exciting as possible with topics and humor. I invite you all on this continuing journey through my literary career.

I hope you all have a great night of food, family, and fun.

Below is my 2015 blog year in review.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 5,500 times in 2015. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Tipping the Hat to 2013

2013-12-31 11.32.08Usually I do some sort of year in review post. I think about it now and it may just be a little too self serving. After all, I need to really ask myself what I really did this year. Instead, I thought about being short on this post about how grateful I am for having people support me in all my efforts.

I know that the beginning of the year was bumpy for me and it made me question whether I should even be a writer anymore. I had to take a long hard look at myself to figure out if I indeed was this person that I said I was. Through this personal turmoil, I had friends help me see that I get through the tough times and lo and behold, I started the novel in March.

Since that point, everything has been a lesson for me and I appreciate the encouragement of the people who follow me. My good friends have encouraged and challenged me to get as far as I have. I have yet to figure out ways to thank them.

My family is just realizing how deep this writing game is to me. It almost make me nervous because this book is R rated. Not that we are not all adults here but its not like I have a potty mouth in person. I will have to remind them that they can’t think about me when they read the words and situations. lol

As for everyone else, thank you. I thought the site switch from blogger to word press would have been more of hassle but it turns out that it has worked out well in my favor. I’m glad that this site does get read despite the fact that I haven’t written nearly as much as I should. I look forward to updating everyone on the process of writing and self publishing.

Happy New Year to you all. I hope 2014 provides us all with much success.

Take Risks: The Uncomforted Zone

I have been living a stagnant life. Even before the new year, I was saying this to myself. Some where within the last 3 years I have just stopped and became complacent with my life. I started doing things because they are what you are supposed to do as an adult. Maybe, it started before this blog. Maybe even before I got married. The point is, I cannot recall a real time in which I took a real risk other than moving to Syracuse more than 10 years ago.

I have been in my comfort zone for such a long time that I let fear get in the way of leaving that zone. Is this what happens when you get older? We just go to work everyday and do the same things day in and day out without any thought of what else is there? I cannot deal with this possibility and, quite frankly, I have no one to blame but myself. This blog has been a chronicle of things that I need to think about while I continue this “path.” But where the hell is this journey taking me?

The problem is that I have been talking about how most people are sheep and I am not one of them, but how much of this is really true? I have been leading a great portion of my life in fear thinking that I will not be successful with what I do, yet when it comes to doing those things that are necessary, I find an excuse. I am not willing to think about the risk or not willing to make a sacrifice because I have to keep in mind that I am lucky to still have things like a job, a house, and a car. There is this mentality that it is too risky to rock the boat, but when you see those people out there who are ultra successful, it is because they took risks. Isn’t that what life is about, taking risks and stepping out of the comfort zone?

Monday, I did something that I have never done before. I went ice skating. My girlfriend had been asking me to go with her for a few weeks and it wasn’t that I didn’t want to, I just never been. That is correct, I have never ice skated, roller skated, nor roller bladed at all. This was, in many ways, a big deal for me. Plus, she wanted to go to Central Park and do this which means I will most likely be busting my ass in front of lots of people. Which brings me to another point, I have never been to Central Park. How can a native New Yorker, such as myself, never been to this place? I convinced myself that I have never needed to go (one who lives in the matrix does such things).

So at this point when we are walking up to the ice rink and I am already saying to myself that I have been leading a stagnant life filled with risk-less paths so this will be a great way to start the new year. We get our skates and all I am thinking about is how do people walk on these things? Once I put mine on, I could barely stand up straight and walking was next to impossible. I had to sit down before I looked like a fool. I tied the shoes tighter and I look up to see all these little kids walking around in their ice skates with no issues. I knew then that I could do this. The girlfriend did mention that once on the ice, walking on the floor would become much easier (and it was).

Somehow I made it to the ice. I am proud to say that I did not fall once. I hugged the wall much on my first go round. With every significant lap I seemed to improve and I only used the wall when I needed to. It made me reflect on how nervous I was in the beginning and how I gradually improved. Everything in life starts with baby steps. Was I so afraid to fall in front of people? Normally I do not care what people think or am I just saying that? Perhaps I do care about the image that I portray. However, doing something new like this was very exciting and proved my ultimate point, I have been stagnant.

I begin to realize why sloth is one of the 7 deadly sins. Wasting away and not taking chances is not what life is supposed to be about. Maybe I have been taking gradual risks everyday that I not be aware. Some may say writing and putting myself out there is a risk but I have become so comfortable with that that there is very little risk left. So now what? I am asking all these questions with very little answers, so I guess it is time to start taking the risk and find those answers I need.

My Year in Review

It seems like when we get to the end of every year we talk about how fast this year went. It makes me wonder what everyone else is doing because the last few years have been anything but fast. This past year is no exception and I am okay with that. I feel like I had too many losses this year, however, the successes that I did have outweigh all of that.
I started out the year figuring that I knew what I was doing. I made some resolutions that did not come into fruition. I started on what I felt was a great path into grad school. I chose to put all my eggs in one basket and put in my application to Sarah Lawrence. The Application process included bios, transcripts, and recommendations that lead to my ultimate failure. I am not sure why I was not accepted but I took it all in stride.
This year I gained some friends and I lost some friends and in some cases I regained some only to lose them again. It was not a particularly easy year for me in the friend department. I wonder if I have been misunderstood in certain cases or perhaps I cannot be friends with every woman I meet. There is no coincidence that I lost most of them when my girlfriend came into the picture. Some things can’t be helped eventhough I believe that some friendships are repairable. I do realize I need to do more for my friends in the future.
There have been some affiliations that I very happy to be a part of. The November Media Group made me take my name and my persona on this blog seriously enough to consider myself a brand. So I did a photo shoot in March in order to have some head shots for publicity later. I thought this was a good investment and I am not opposed to doing this again in the future, it was indeed a great experience. Another affiliation that I am really proud of is The LatiNegr@s Project: Being AfroLatino. I was able to bring to together 3 other individuals to form a teams that is completely committed to education of the Afro Latino experience. Together we can do more than I ever could through our sites and on twitter.

Speaking of Twitter, it was a big year for me tweeting. I was able to get a company like Pep Boys to hear my gripes about them and their service. I finally met Frankie Negron when he came to Syracuse University to perform for Fiesta Latina. The best part of this was when I picked him up from the airport and the first thing he says to me is….”You look just like your Twitter pic!” He is an awesome dude and I hope I get to work with him again. I was also nominated for a LATISM (Latinos in Social Media)  Best Latin@ Micro-Blogger award. I didn’t win but it was nice to just be nominated.

I also found what it meant to be truly single. I never really got into what my life has been since the divorce but it is not cake walk. Sure, I may have hinted at things here and there but those who have been through a divorce know that struggle becomes synonymous with surviving a broken marriage. I am not even referring to the institution of marriage, I am talking about dealing with people always asking about your ex-wife because somehow they are the last person in the world to know. There is also the fact that bill collectors give zero fucks that divorce happens.
Being truly single means most of those things you hear about bachelor life that has not been glorified. The fast food diet, the single man laundry day (thank God I do not use a trash bag to carry my clothes), the unshaven beard, the piled up dishes, and other things I wont get into because this is a family show. Needless to say being a divorcee is not a fashion statement and I have learned to deal with everything and to be as open and honest about things as I can be. Surviving a life that was once a two income life is a challenge when it become one. After a full year, I can say that I am a proud survivor.
My truly single days did not last long when I started seeing my girlfriend in July. This is the woman that I wrote all that poetry about. While I will not go into detail about this whole thing since I do enjoy a bit of privacy when it comes to this part of my life, I will say that things are going better than I would have ever imagined. I always take time to reflect and realize that I am a different person than i was years ago and will continue to learn from my past mistakes in relationships
The job prospects always seem bright when they appear, especially since I completed my 10th year at SU. I made it a habit to look at all the job openings I can find each Sunday. I was so confident that I would find a job this year that I bought two suits from Men’s Warehouse not only for work but for some potential interviews I had lined up. In June, I had two interviews with Yeshiva University in Washington Heights. This was following a phone interview I had several weeks before. I was 90% sure this was going to happen. I kept it quiet because the whole thing with Sarah Lawrence made my parents believe that not everyone is on my side and can toss negativity out there into the universe. Needless to say, It did not work out at Yeshiva and neither did it work on at Columbia University when I interviewed there in November. 
Overall, I wanted to write more and complain less. There seems to be a surge in popularity of this blog that I am humbled by. I look at the stats and page views only to see that this year has given me more hits than ever before. In fact, November has been my most popular month. Much of it seems to be past posts that have led to me getting paid a small amount of money for something that I wrote 5 months ago.
More importantly, I still maintained the ability to be creative through either poetry or writing a short story. I am still committed to pointing out racism and injustice where I can, as well as calling out men or boys out on their crap and showing the world the true colors of people or magazines. I look forward to year 3 of this blog as I try to expand myself as a brand and as a writer. 

Being Single

There is something to be said for what happens when you are single and what happens when you are married. I think for most people, they spend their single years either trying to get into a relationship…and when they finally get into one, they think about how great it was to be single. I find myself smiling at many students who tell me how bad their relationship problems are. It is hard to convince many of them that their current boyfriend or girlfriend is just a phase in which they have to go through.

I have made this point before that as a society we expect 18 years old kids to make a decision on their lives starting with picking a major they may not like by the time they graduate. Why is that any different when it comes to love? Love is just like any other subject in school, you have to be educated in it. Sometimes you pass and sometimes you fail, but in each case you learn.

The real problem that I have learned is that when I was single, I was not in the mindset that I need to better myself. Many times the thought process is to maintain a job and to date as many women as possible. Keep in mind, that when I was 25, I did things that I would never do when I am 35. In general, our thought process changes.

I can see how single people in general are afraid to get married. However, marriage is not bad. The problem is that no one ever tells us what marriage is about. I know that sounds strange but, it is very true. The only reference is what we see on TV. Of course their are books about how things should be, but I am a firm believer that we shape what our relationships should be. Society should never dictate anything to us.

I was talking to a fellow writer over the break about true love and marriage. She was amazed about how arranged marriages always seem to work out. Her belief is that love is learned and developed through growing and learning together. That means to me that as single people, we are too busy “trying to get it in” to try to really learn anything. Of course the love learning process is not just a two way thing. Learning to love someone also means you have to learn to love yourself. This is where I think we all get screwed. We think that we can make someone fill that lack of love for ourselves and replace it with theirs…

I have learned that being single means I need to take that time to fix me. I should have done that in my twenties but I was too stupid to even realize it. Being single means means I have to take care of myself. I need to maintain my health and I need to really set my life in order. Not to say that I could not do this when I was married, but what really happens is that when anyone of us gets into a long relationship, we get too comfortable. I got complacent. I let myself go.

On thing that people do not say about marriage is the fact that people no longer feel the need to impress their partner. It just happens. The once tight haircuts do not happen as often. The lack of exercise becomes apparent and before you know it you have let yourself go because the mind set is…there is no one to impress. Granted this is a bad way of thinking, but is it the truth.

So the being single should be about finding the path to our true selves. A relationship should not define us, we need to define our relationships. Marriage is not for everyone and perhaps I was not ready and I can admit that now, but the learning of who I am in the process is something that cannot be replaced or even duplicated.

Being single should be about falling in love. Some people fight this notion because love is a scary thing indeed. What makes us human is the ability to feel. Love is our key to happiness. No one can achieve happiness without love. People are not ready to trust or even to be honest. Some cannot be themselves because love is so hard to deal with. However, I am not talking about love for another person. I am talking about love for self.

I intend on falling in love very hard this year…with myself. (I hope I am ready)

Can’t Read My Poker Face.

I am holding up my end of the bargain I made with myself. While this is not the game of poker the stakes are high. The jackpot is happiness in the game of life. I have my set of chips in all different amounts. Each colored chip represents a different emotion. The higher the emotion the greater the risk. I should never go all in, but often times I do.

The house almost always wins but every so often, you can beat the odds. I intend on beating the odds that are stacked up against me. Sometimes, “I have to hold them like they do in Texas plays”. Other times I have to play with the big boys in order to show that I belong.

Everyday I play with the deck that has been dealt to me. Sometimes I have to fold and other times I have to raise. So far I have been holding as I wait for the dealer to flop. Those cards that he flips up become crucial to my overall plan for the year. I do not expect to win every hand because that would be impossible, but I do except not to lose.

I am taking a gamble. That is what we all do. Life is too short not to take risks. However, I refuse to show weakness in times of great stress. I will buy into this round because I plan on winning it. No one knows what is in my hand. I may have the high card or I may not. I can bluff like a pro, but do not underestimate me in the end because I just may have a royal flush. But, in either case, I will not show my hand until I have to.

So let the dealer shuffle the cards. I post my blind and bet the amount of chips I feel this round is worth. The dealer will place the cards on the table face down, one by one. Once I see what I hand I am playing with the real betting will begin. I do not have a tell. My poker face is solid. The audience will be captivated.

While this is not the World Series of Poker, this is the World Series of life. 52 Cards, 52 Weeks. I am all in.

Mum mum mum mah

Expectations… (Happy New Year)

“Whatever we expect with confidence becomes our own self-fulfilling prophecy.” – Brian Tracy

There is one final thing that I feel I need to adjust in my life. That would be expectations. I know that what I have come to expect of people over the last year and maybe even over the last decade has been to treat me with the same regard and reverence as I treat them. I have come to realize that this is an unrealistic expectation. I may be expecting too much of people.

Perhaps I am expecting too much of myself to think that having faith in people is the best way to go. Now, don’t get what I am saying wrong. I am not becoming this anti social person that would rather be alone. The point I am trying to convey is that trust in people is something that needs to be earned and not given out freely. I think I have done that once too often.

On the other hand, I think that I have come to expect less of family than I really should. Because of my issues, I have come to expect the worse out of people that I am related to. My experiences has always led me to put up a wall when it comes to members of mi familia. There is something twisted about the fact that I may be able to trust or have faith in those who are not related to me rather than trust blood relatives.
My expectations of people simply need to change. Not everyone will have my true intentions at heart. 2010 will be a big year for me in terms of family and it is time that I start thinking about things differently. So far during this vacation, I have been very surprised about how family have dealt with me and my current situation. Where are I thought there would be judgment, there was acceptance. I realized that I should not be surprised when family accepts me.
When it comes down to it, I have to look out for myself now. I have some pretty awesome people in my life but I cannot expect things from anyone. I need to continue to pull myself up when things get rough. I would be lying if I said that I was not scared about what tomorrow will bring. Once I get back to Syracuse, my life becomes real again. There are certain actions and choices that need to taken and made. I am very scared, but it is time to man up.
Not only will it be a new year, but it is a start of a new decade. I plan on starting it with hope. I am throwing all my expectations out the window accept for one. I expect from myself to be a better man. I have my goals in place for 2010. I will be as aggressive as I need to be in order to meet my own expectation. Would I like help? Sure. Do I expect it? No. The only thing I need is for people to have enough faith in me as I have in myself.
Happy New Year!

Reflections of 200 blogs…

I have to give myself some credit here. I am not the type to toot my own horn, but as I look at the numbers, this is my 200th blog entry of the year. I cannot even count anything I have done 200 times in my life, much less what I may have done in one year. Being the type of person I am, I usually get bored with things that happen in repetition, so the ability to keep writing about something new impresses me.

I do continue to reflect on the past year as much as anyone else does and I have taken some time and effort to look back at some of my past blog entries. I have edited them for spelling mistakes and grammar. I would like to take this time to apologize for all of those mistakes because I do try my best to make my blog legible. Some people have told me I need an editor, but since I do not get paid to do this neither would the editor.

My thanks goes out to all those people who have supported me in my efforts. Those people who have been there during my darkest days and have heard my darkest thoughts. I feel that I have bared parts of my soul on here which has allowed most you to really see what is going on inside my head. While I have not written about every last detail of my life, I think I have shown enough for people to get an idea of where my life is headed. If my poetry is any indication of what is going on with me, then you will know that 2010 will indeed be another bumpy year. Of course I am not saying that is a bad thing.

I am really not sure that I will make 200 posts next year. I attribute all this writing to the beginning of the year when I was writing about superficial things. Now that I have found my niche, I will try to focus on the changes that I need to make for myself. There is no secret that I write better when I am emotional or even when I am in pain. In my opinion, that is when I really begin to throw some words together to match the thoughts I have running around.

I also know that I will be more aggressive with my life. I will get back to the running that I so fell in love with over the summer. I need to find that job so I can move out of Syracuse. My upcoming trip to the Dominican Republic is going to be something that will effect me. I know that there will a reconnect with family that I am eagerly awaiting. I am anticipating a rough year and I am willing to roll with it.

I plan on being more private with my social networking. As of the new year, I will be make my twitter private. I am not sure how long that will be, but it will be for as long as it has to be. I have already set my Facebook privacy settings where I think they need to be. Myspace will be done and gone (who really uses it?). I am not sure about this blog in terms of privacy, but I think that I will figure something out. I do intend on keeping up with writing because…that is what I do.

Many people ask me about my love life. Well, I intend of keeping that as private as possible. Some people will make assumptions and some people will talk about whatever they need to. This is area in my life that I have made huge mistakes in. All I can say is that I intend on just being me. I will clean up what I need do and I will be as honest as I possibly can. I am done with much of drama that is my life and will attempt to remain as positive as possible. Everything happens for a reason.

The image above is snapshot of my year in statues on Facebook. It is an accurate depiction of some of the things I have been thinking. I want to thank all you for being there for me and for commenting. I do read all comments and I welcome any feedback. Cheers!

Lessons Learned 3.0

I have done this list 2 times before in other versions of what was once a blog of mine. I decided to do this again. Every Year we should be looking back at some events in our lives to see what we learn from going into the next year. Some of this is parody and some it of is not. So here are the lessons I have learned:

Gmail is awesome…
..so is blogging
Poetry is spontaneous, always carry a pen & paper
People do not get married to get a divorce
Micheal Jackson is irreplaceable
Driving from Florida to Syracuse is one day is possible
Virginia Highways suck…
…Pennsylvania is worse
Giving up soda is a big reason for the weight loss
Running is the most cathartic exercise
It is indeed possible to work 24 hours straight
People lie to themselves all the time
Mi Tia is every but as funny as my dad
Water is the drink from heaven
Syracuse cold toughens you up for any other NY cold there is
LATISM is a force to deal with
Forgive yourself first people, before you forgive others
Lady Gaga is for real
Muse is an awesome band
Alicia Keys…that is all.
Women are ruthless
Men are stupid
Love is complicated
Some people cant take a hint
Starbucks is $5 crack with non fat milk
The iPhone is best phone ever (hush to the BBM users)
I need a Mac
Everything happens for a reason
I miss NYC
The truth will always come out
Every story has 3 versions
Anything is possible
I need to write a book
Twitter saved my life…
Karma is a bitch