Notes jotted down on the Milbrae Train

I fear that I may be some kind of chauvinist or sexist because I always seek women for the sole purpose of escapism, which instantly overwhelms any potential lover with an expectation that she can never permanently live up to. So when she first raises her voice to me, or tells me about my inconsiderate ways, or reminds me that I am flawed—when things essentially “get real” then I run.

I just want to be high on a woman, I want to be enamored, I want to be enraptured, I want her to conceal me from the rest of the world should I ever break down and cry. I want to be ensconced by the idea of love but I never want to be reminded of the reality that she is a human being. And I don’t want to deal with the fact that love requires a lot of work. My heart is obdurate, my body is weary, and my soul is jaded.

Alas I do not wish to work. I want to retire at the end of each day. I want to lay my burden’s down. I want to bury my head in her bosom. I do not want her to say the wrong thing. I do not want her to tell me that I have said the wrong thing. I want to break down all of the beautiful potent lies, roll them with cigar paper, and smoke them until I hallucinate.

In my hallucinations I believe I am running forever in a race with no distance or finish line. I am winning and I am not getting tired. She stands on the sidewalk and gives me nectar to drink in a small paper cup as I pass. I drink it fast and throw the cup on the ground beneath my fast-moving feet. I run for her so she cheers for me. We share the glory of our first place position and we appreciate the roles that we play in one another’s lives to keep us here. We love the fame that comes along with success and we love each other. She understands that if I ever stop then we stop. The nectar tastes heavenly and we are forever victorious.

-YB

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Running

February 13, 2012

I’m an avid runner. On average I run about 5-6 times a week. I hit trails, run around Lake Merritt, or spend about an hour on the treadmill. Running is so second nature to me that it wasn’t until very recently that I began to ask myself what exactly am I running from. I mean of course I’m trying to stay in shape and speed up my metabolism a little, which at the age of 30 seems to want to stand still. But I feel like it’s deeper than that.

For example I write to express feelings that are impossible for me to verbalize and I box to blow off steam, however, my reasons for running 5-8 miles a day is something that I don’t have a complete answer to. Perhaps it’s a mixture of both. After all I do blow of a lot of steam when my feet are rhythmically pounding the pavement and I am outwardly expressing my desire to reach the finish line, but really why am I so compelled to run. I’m not training for a marathon and I’m not a slave.

Often times I’ll tell myself that I’m going to spend a whole day writing and the next thing I know I’m on some trail deep in the hills hoping local coyotes don’t smell my sweat and decide to attack me. I don’t know. It’s kind of bizarre. It’s like when I’m running with my I-pod blasting I feel like I’m floating through my own self-contrived galaxy.  It’s definitely a form of escapism; yet I wonder why I need to escape so often. Like this one story I’m working on. It’s very personal but instead of sitting down and cranking it out as soon as I look at it I put on my sweat pants and my sneakers and head out. Lately I’ve been feeling like a shot fighter who sees his opponent’s mistakes but can’t capitalize on them by letting his hands go and throwing a punch. I fear that I’ve become too guarded to be an effective writer. Instead of molding my issues into art I just want them to go away. It’s like I really want peace but I’m no longer willing to fight for it, or in my case I’m no longer willing to write for it. So I run.

When I was a boy I was led to believe that only the most cowardly of men publicly display their emotions. Now that I am a man I feel like a coward for not being able to express what makes me human.

I need to stop running.

-YB