Gluten-Free Jesus

The title of this post is obviously just a scam to make you confused and read my blog. In the words of Will Ferrell and/or Jay-Z and Kanye, “No one knows what it means, but it’s provocative. It gets the people goin’!” But trust me, it’s not an entirely irrelevant title. Cool, let’s begin. No, I don’t think Jesus was allergic to gluten. If he had pulled out some bread made of almond meal or coconut flour instead of wheat to feed the five thousand, he would have been crucified a lot sooner. Hint: Bread made without grain is not bread. It is the work of the devil. Continue reading

What is Love? (Baby Don’t Hurt Me)

In the post I wrote most recently, “Loving the Unloveable,” I said to do just that. In a real way. Figure out the most challenging people in your life to love, and love them, truly.

I’m a jerk. Intellectually, I understand what I believe myself and others are told to do: love everyone. Okay, got it. Now I’ll write some pretentious blog post about how everyone should be like me, super loving and awesome.

I have no idea what love is.

Like any normal twenty-three year old person, I Googled it. “What is Love?” was the fourth most popular search term beginning with “What is…”, behind “What is the fiscal cliff?”, “What is my IP?”, and, “What is gluten?”. I would venture to say it is also the fourth most important question of those to which apparently the majority of America desperately wants answers. Continue reading

A Tourist Stole My Soul

Disclaimer: This is an old post, from my old blog. I don’t write on that blog anymore, so I’m moving some of my posts to this site. I figure I wrote them, I own them, and I want to make it look like I write as much as I wish I did.

I’ve been known to have some out-of-the-ordinary religious beliefs and ideas, an amalgamation of things I like and things I make up off the top of my head.  There was the time I was going to worship the sun, and the time I was going to refuse to vote for religious reasons, and most recently, when I decided that the afterlife consisted of being shown pictures in which you are accidentally in the background.  I always look at my pictures and see people in the background, who I captured on film rather unintentionally.  I wonder how many strangers have pictures of me, though I am not the main focus of the photo.  I decided that all this must mean something, and that when you die you are presented with all of those strangers’ photos where you are in the background, or the blurry person to the left, or the bypasser on the sidewalk.  That will be the reflection of a life well-lived–not how many pictures you took of yourself and put on Facebook, but what you were doing when you did not know you were being photographed.  It will be like seeing your entire life from the perspective of someone else, except that someone else  happens to be thousands of strangers who shared space with you, took pictures of you, but never knew you.  And I have to imagine that those accidental pictures will reveal more about the life you led than any posed photograph ever could. Continue reading

The Problem with Getting Attached

Disclaimer: This is an old post, from my old blog. I don’t write on that blog anymore, so I’m moving some of my posts to this site. I figure I wrote them, I own them, and I want to make it look like I write as much as I wish I did.

I look around my apartment–boxes, crates, piles of things that don’t quite fit into those boxes and crates and instead are precariously stacked on top and around them.  A mental map guides the chaos: mine behind the couch, Weston’s by the door, donate by the window, sort against the wall.  Sort is always the hardest. It’s never simply garbage or donate.  It’s the bag of costumes from the Halloween we all dressed up as mythological characters (dragon, unicorn, griffin).  It’s the free poster we got from the American Indian Arts Museum on our road trip through Santa Fe.  It’s the ceramic giraffe we stole from Weston’s mom’s bathroom and proudly displayed on top of the television until it fell and the legs broke off.  It’s all the things heavy with memory, things we love but can’t bring with us, things we can’t bear to leave behind. Continue reading

Attachment Disorder

Disclaimer: This is an old post, from my old blog. I don’t write on that blog anymore, so I’m moving some of my posts to this site. I figure I wrote them, I own them, and I want to make it look like I write as much as I wish I did.

I’m not sure why people are so interested in my sleeping arrangements. I’ve had more conversations in the last two months about sleeping on an air mattress  than I thought would happen in a lifetime. There seems to be a plethora of real beds going around the Greater Kansas City area, and everyone knows someone with an extra. But at the end of the day, I am devoted to my air mattress. I like to say it’s because I can deflate it at a moment’s notice, stuff it in my backpack and just take off, but in all actuality I think I have just perfected the inflation ratio. Continue reading

Hence, Coincidence

Disclaimer: This is an old post, from my old blog. I don’t write on that blog anymore, so I’m moving some of my posts to this site. I figure I wrote them, I own them, and I want to make it look like I write as much as I wish I did.

I met my neighbor Nick on Wednesday. I was on my front porch reading the Westword and drinking a Sierra Nevada; he was on his front porch two houses down, spitting tobacco into a Great Divide Yeti bomber. I walked over and sat in one of the plastic lawn chairs on his porch and we talked for a while about how he was moving back to Philadelphia in May to go to PA school. Then Nick told me he was moving out of his house on Saturday because he hated our landlord and wanted to move in with his friend for his last two months in Denver.

“Well, I guess I’ll never see you again,” I said as I started walking back to my own porch. “But it was good to meet you.”

*** Continue reading

Writers are Liars

Disclaimer: This is an old post, from my old blog. I don’t write on that blog anymore, so I’m moving some of my posts to this site. I figure I wrote them, I own them, and I want to make it look like I write as much as I wish I did.

I like writing. I like the process of writing. It makes my brain feel good. But sometimes I get discouraged about writing, especially descriptions, because I feel like I never know what the hell I’m talking about.

I read really great pieces by authors who describe everything in so. much. detail. They talk about the subtle shades of juniper berries and the composition of concrete sidewalks. They describe the veins in beech tree leaves and the faint crows feet around their mothers’ eyes. They write raw and real things about blood and sex and history. But they’re making it all up. Continue reading

Couchsurfing as Commandment: Don’t Get Comfortable

Disclaimer: This is an old post, from my old blog. I don’t write on that blog anymore, so I’m moving some of my posts to this site. I figure I wrote them, I own them, and I want to make it look like I write as much as I wish I did.

Once, in a job interview, I told the truth. The supervisor interviewing me asked what I wanted to do in the future, and I told him I wanted to write a Sex-and-the-City-style blog, but about religion. I’m not sure how sexy this blog is, but I find myself thinking and writing about religion quite a bit. Life goal achieved, apparently. Continue reading

People Who Love Me

Disclaimer: This is an old post, from my old blog. I don’t write on that blog anymore, so I’m moving some of my posts to this site. I figure I wrote them, I own them, and I want to make it look like I write as much as I wish I did.

So I go to church. In a bar. But I still refuse to call it church because church and religion and Christians have broken my heart. So when people ask me what I do on Monday nights I mumble something about going to a bar where this guy talks and stuff…

A few weeks back, the pastor asked us to talk in small groups about what kind of home we grew up in, what kind of love we experienced as children. Most of the people in my group were older than me, and a lot of their sentiments were similar. Their dads were brisque and distant, but when they said, “I love you,” or “I’m proud of you,” it really meant something. Most everyone’s mom was more verbal with her love and praise, but some people never even received that. During this conversation, I stayed pretty quiet. Not because I never received love from my parents or something; on the contrary. I didn’t think it was appropriate to brag in church, but I guess I can’t lie, either: My parents think I’m the shit. Continue reading

Loving the Unloveable

My pastor, when citing his main inspiration for handing out peanut butter and jelly sandwiches every day in Civic Center Park, likes to quote the scripture about “the least of these”. He says, “We’re just trying to love the unloveable.”

And the people who line up in the park each day at noon to get their sack lunches often seem unloveable, very much the least of these. They’re ex-convicts, ex-dealers, ex-junkies. Sometimes they’re current convicts, dealers, and junkies. They are the prostitutes, thieves, and people who run from the tax collector. It makes us feel good to be an example of love to these people who live in conditions it’s hard to imagine. We don’t know them or even see them all that regularly. We say here you go and they say thank you and maybe even God bless and we are pleased. Then we go home and they go wherever and we have loved the unloveable, or so they say. Continue reading