I wish I were an early riser. I wish I woke up early and went to sleep easily in the evening. Instead, here I am at 12:45am, up after laying in bed for two hours.

Now, I realize if I had gotten up before 10am the past few days, and didn't get my iPod out after a half hour to read about room acoustics, this might not happen. Before you chime in with any relaxation or breathing techniques, facts about how even the light of an alarm clock can stimulate your brain (and obviously, a phone or computer screen would be much worse) or what time of day is best to exercise - I know. I'm well aware of all these things, and have been able to use them to my advantage in some degree, at some point. However, this has always happened.

As long as I can remember, I've always had troubles with being tired during the day, and not sleepy at night. In the years after high school, it became somewhat of a joke. I would get off work about 3pm and tell my friends I'd be over in a little bit. A little bit for me often times turned into quite a while - because I would fall asleep.

I worked in the kitchen of a restaurant, so when I got home I would smell like whatever was made most that day and frier grease. I would be tired and not feel like taking a shower right away, so I would get on the computer and visit my usual websites (this was before Facebook, if you can remember that).. Inevitably, I would get tired enough that I would lay down on my bedroom floor (I didn't want to get my bed dirty) to rest. I probably slept as well like that on the floor with no pillow than I ever did in my bed at night.

For some reason my brain just likes being active at night. As much as I actually do enjoy being up earlier in the mornings on occasion, I am just not as inspired as I can be at night. I actually don't mind the shorter daylight hours of the fall and winter, because I feel like it gets me into my productive time earlier. I am physically and mentally prepared for different things at different times of the day. I could run errands, jog or do yard work all morning (or early afternoon) long. Sitting down and getting some actual "work" (writing, mixing, editing video/photos, etc.) done seems nearly impossible

Which that is the problem. Because the world wakes up early.

And it's not fair. I know I am not alone when it comes to being a bit of a night owl. However, we're not who the world is set up for. Most employers seem to think you aught to show up early, on-time and ready to go. Granted, there are some jobs that have good reason for that (think anything that sells coffee). There are many jobs, where the start of the work day has no need to be early. I'm pretty sure many people are getting paid to be 'waking up" while they're at work. I have fallen asleep at work, multiple times. It has been a problem. I never knew I'd fallen asleep until I woke up. Some days I'd spend all morning just trying not to fall asleep. It seems like many industries aren't very aware of this. You would think they would make an attempt to pay their employees for the time they're most productive.

This troubles me because I worry that most of my life, I will get stuck being forced to fit into a schedule that conflicts with who I am. It is unsettling because I need to keep good, steady employment to help support my family and maintain a reasonable lifestyle. Add to this equation that my main skill set (music, media) tends to be undervalued and under appreciated, has me a bit nervous. Now days, everyone can record their own music and edit their own videos, so obviously paying for my time and talent to do it well, and better, shouldn't be valued too much. After all, they could probably do it just as good or better, you know if they had the time or equipment.

Anyways, all I'm saying is, if you really want the best out of me, it's probably not at 7am.


 
 
A few years back, I had a strange experience when I went to a gas station to fill up my car. I pulled up to a pump and was parked next to a brand new cherry red Mustang Cobra GT. Quite a fancy and fast car - especially for such an old guy. I would say the man was probably at least near his 80's. He was slightly hunched over in his matching red Cobra leather jacket while pumping gas in his car.

I went about my business and had just put the nozzle in my car when from behind me I heard, "Excuse me young man!" I turned around and the old guy was looking at me. He started to talk, but I couldn't hear him over the traffic and wind noise. I walked over to him and said, "Sorry, what was that?" He held up a ten dollar bill and asked me, "I have $5.22 put in my car, would you go in and pay it for me? I have a bad leg." I agreed and went in to pay for him.

Now, it's not everyday that an old guy asks me to take his money and go pay for his gas. Although, it is pretty common for an old guy to have a bad leg and a hard time walking. It was also a very cold windy day, so I don't blame him for not wanting to slowly shift across the parking lot. So that wasn't that out of the ordinary, but $5.22 in gas? That was barely three gallons (at the time). Oh well, whatever.

I pay and walk back out with his change, and think to myself that if he offers to let me keep some of it, I would decline. An elderly person should be able to get a 25 year old to take a minute of time to do something that would be a hassle for an old guy and not have to give anything other than their gratitude.

I get back to his car and he's sitting in the driver's seat with the door open. I look in and the guy is dead. Not really, that would have really freaked me out. Anyways, I hand him back the change and he says "thanks," and then wants me to close the door for him.

It felt kind of weird. At first I felt good - helping the old guy out. Then I felt like I was a valet. I guess I was expecting an old dude with such a nice car to offer me a buck or two for helping him out, even though I didn't think it was necessary. Being asked to close his door took me by surprise.

I finish filling up my car with gas, go in to pay and come back out to my car. I get in and buckle up, look over and see the old guy is still sitting in his car - revved up ready to go, but not moving. He's dead. No, not really. Just kidding again. He happened to be faced my direction and gave me a small 'thanks' nod with a big drip of snot on his nose. I look back to my car, turn it on and reset my trip odometer. Then I hear some "clink" sounds. I look over at the old man again, and see he's now rolling up his window, and I wonder... did he just toss the change out of the window? That might upset me a little. If he didn't want it, he could have offered to let a kind 25 year-old who helped him out keep it. It just confused me even more with this whole situation.

None of this is a big deal, maybe you just had to have been there, but it just gave me a strange feeling. From feeling good and helpful to being moderately used. It was just... strange.

So I drove off. He was still parked in his car. I looked as I drove away and sure enough, I spotted some change on the ground! And there were quarters in there, quarters! Quarters are my favorite coin... 

 
 
It has taken me numerous years, platforms and designs to finally get something online. I have a hardwired need to create and have always needed an outlet. This is it. This is the final fresh start. 

My goal here is to create and collect a body of work. To be a living portfolio of what I can do and what I have done. To showcase not only my own creativity, but also shine a light on the accomplishments of others who have influenced or inspired me as well.

This is as much for my personal use as it is professional. I do not see much difference between the two anymore. Editing video requires it's own rhythm and structure, like a song. Writing and design are much the same way. There is a framework - and underlying structure - to most things in life that is a language all it's own. Every building, piece of art, song and life are their own story. Things that may not seem similar to each other, can be thought of in many of the same ways.  Each element of something has it's own weight, and learning to keep things balanced can be applied to anything in life.

So while my recordings and thoughts on design may not always seem related to my professional career, everything is just practice, more experience - better understanding - for the next step, a new chapter in life.