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united states of chaos
i call myself a writer...
Interests: travel, food, running, my dog, baths, pubs, movies, politics, hip hop, people, lounging, wandering, writing (obviously right;)
Recent Activity
"I took the RRCA running coach certification course and then passed the test and took my CPR and First Aid courses." How I did it: This does not take very long, I just had to save up the money for the RRCA course, which is one weekend long. And then everyone can help each other on the test, which my class did by staying in touch through emails. It was an inspiring experience and great to meet lots of other runners from all over the country. My certification has helped my fitness writing as well and given me more credentials.... Continue reading
Posted Apr 21, 2011 at Beautiful Struggle
I just registered for the certification courses with RRCA. It’s a weekend of seminars then a certification test at the end. See more progress on: get certified to be a running coach Continue reading
Posted Jan 3, 2011 at Beautiful Struggle
I’ve signed the agreement to be an apprentice at Divine Body Fitness and am really excited about it. I have been working as a helper at the studio’s dance parties and Level 1 classes and am simultaneously taking the Level 4 class to learn advanced poses, inversions, handstands and other moves. Now I’m also beginning training to teach. See more progress on: Become a Certified Pole Dancing Instructor Continue reading
Posted Oct 18, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
"This was unlike any other race I've done because of the challenging obstacles- there were people from the Army and police departments running the race in uniform, it felt like boot camp. Awesome." How I did it: I did long runs once a week to build up endurance, and usually ran at least one fast tempo run per week. Then on other days I ran an easy 2-5 miles and took one day off a week. I cross trained with pilates, crunches and pole dancing but that wasn't enough. Next time I would do more pull-ups and strenuous arm exercises.... Continue reading
Posted Oct 18, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
Now that I am registered for the race on Oct. 16, I am excited and motivated. Training has been going well, with only a few days off for a minor ankle injury after a long run. We have built up to 13-mile long runs once a week, and do a fast run every Monday with a local running group. I have been doing arm workouts with my pole dancing classes, which have become increasingly intense as I continue to the higher levels. I do need to do some more monkey bars practice and ab workouts, as well as practice arm... Continue reading
Posted Sep 27, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
I am leaning towards the Road Runner’s Club of America certification program, which offers weekend seminar workshops and testing, and they are approved by the American College of Sports Medicine. I need to get my First Aid and CPR certifications first, and then register for a weekend seminar. There is one in St. Louis Feb. 12-13 that would work well. See more progress on: get certified to be a running coach Continue reading
Posted Sep 27, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
I’m currently training for the 9-mile Men’s Urbanathlon race in Chicago in October and then plan on signing up for the Miami Marathon at the end of January. I have never run a race farther than 10K (6.2 miles) so am excited about these new challenges. See more progress on: run a marathon Continue reading
Posted Sep 22, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
"I instantly fell in love with Puerto Rico's beauty, culture, beaches, historic sites and people." How I did it: I planned the trip with a friend who is better at planning than me, so this kept me more on top of things than usual as well as gave me motivation to follow through on the goal. We planned visits to different places on the island, staying about 2-3 nights in each location and booking the hotels all in advance through the Internet and by phone. I also got travel tips and advice from a friend who used to live there,... Continue reading
Posted Sep 22, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
throngs of worshippers flock to your fickle feet, you don't deserve the hype or praise, but we keep returning, hard-wired for carnal cravings, driven by lust, longing for connections, always wanting more, deeper, stronger, sweatier, wild, controlled, tamed and unnamed. insatiable appetites salivating, media up-playing, stringing us along, in a quiet, desperate, clawing, biting scratching, love/hate race. granting you a throne for life. Continue reading
Posted Sep 6, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
what happens when words fail, left unsaid on the kitchen floor, dirty little pieces to be picked up and thrown out once they've expired. sentiments and desires unspoken wadded up, crumbled to the ground like yesterday's dinner crumbs. i wonder what your crumbs would say if i swept them up and kept them, shoving them in my pocket for safekeeping. trash to everyone but me. Continue reading
Posted Aug 13, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
you can take my body, beat my mind, batter my soul with no remorse. but as i lay, ravaged, in rage, my mind is free, my soul's away, floating free, untouched by your stench, your sickness, reeking of hatred, consumed by cowardice, bathed in fear mixed with loathing. in this moment you may think you've won and conquered, but your body and soul are the truly imprisoned. confined by ignorance, caged by illusions, haunted by anger, restricted to misery and killed connections. my soul may be slightly shattered for some time but love lives on, and i am free to... Continue reading
Posted Aug 7, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
Inspiration strikes in many hues in Old San Juan. Continue reading
Posted Aug 1, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
when you see me again, you may wonder why the distant eye, why the sideways shrug, the skeptical glance and nonchalant sigh. but then again, you probably won't notice, because if you had really seen me to begin with, then the shrug, the distant eye and sigh would not need to be. Continue reading
Posted Aug 1, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
wondering where the years turned to limits, when our lives became maps and markers, a series of achievements you measure in money, marriage and your latest career rank. my latest ideas and projects suddenly juvenile in the glare of your adult sensibilities, my enthusiasm an unneccessary garnish on the cake of your well-planned life. each ingredient carefully measured and recorded, no surprise twists or recipe spins. when did your dreams become his dreams, your thoughts echoes of commercials, measured in shiny things and diamond rings, the right coffee table conversations and dinner companions, sprinkled with accumulating accounts, built upon predictability... Continue reading
Posted Jul 26, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
We booked all our hotels and figured out the itinerary, for Old San Juan, Culebra and Rincon. Thanks to everyone who offered helpful travel advice;). I plan on capturing as much of the trip as possible in words and pics. See more progress on: visit Puerto Rico Continue reading
Posted Jul 5, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
something about insanity sets my spirit free shovels away expectations, sparks my curiosity. the humdrum knife of routine, silently stabs at the soul, with Nazi-like consistency, to-do lists, grocery trips, dirty laundry. middle class wares, TV stares and commercial flares, a plague upon America, creeping into homes, dulling the senses, putting price tags on love, limits on affections, medicating pain into apathy, and eroding true pleasure. hacking at desires, twisting them into afflictions to be cured, stuffed in a drawer or indulged in an orgy. but when the mind sheds the skin of social norms, suddenly the truth, love and... Continue reading
Posted Jun 28, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
I come from a long line of nuts. How that ties in the with Luck of the Irish has to do with some ink, a drink and plenty of awkwardness. But let me start from the beginning. The Luck of the Irish is a joke. To those who are not familiar with Irish history, having the British as a neighbor, and that whole "The Sun Never Sets on the British Empire" saying, is apparently kind of a big deal. Let's just say hundreds of years of conquering, taking land, exporting main food supplies, starvation, thwarted uprisings, religious persecution and ruling... Continue reading
Posted Jun 16, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
I'm not your plaything to be tossed aside when you're bored, not your 24-hour therapist, or your knight in shining armor. I can't save you from yourself, or soothe away all pains. i'm not an airbrushed fantasy to be turned on and off at will. i don't take payoffs, glittery gift bribes or fat out lies. i don't play when i'm feeling down. i'm not your cheerleader for every fucking problem. i'm just me, a shattered soul with unending dreams, trying to love as best i can. Continue reading
Posted Jun 9, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
hedonistic tendencies, wrapped up in these memories, fighting with iron discipline, grappling with guilt-laced liquor. i may like you today, tomorrow, last week, but who the fuck knows what i'll think yesterday. what went through my mind last year or next. can't stop my mental dance for you, baby. twists and tumbles, sideways glances, spun on a whim and a will, stronger than my ties to you, feet forced forward whether yours follow, the tunes tumbling out with no refrain. baby don't call me "mine" cause it can't be so, i wouldn't dare call myself "mine," so i'm not fuckin... Continue reading
Posted Jun 6, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
speeding down the highway, careening through the turns, haunted by the memories, pushed on by the purge. tank after tank, swig after swig of gas station concoctions. the trips blur together, thrown out straws, empty containers. highways merge in my mind, Tupac melting into Maxwell, The Roots floating out the window. Green highways with painted skies, mountains rising around me. crossing rivers, looking at lakes, still haunted by the need, to keep my foot on the gas, pressing onward, unsure why, but an old pro at how. Continue reading
Posted May 28, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
My soul sees no end in sight, treading these greasy streets, Stilettos casting shadows in the flickering light. Fuck, I’ve been down this road, it ain’t pretty but it’s familiar. Flickered ashes, well-worn walks, passionate flesh mingling, bathed in hard liquor, hard like the dancers’ eyes, empty like the bottles on table tops. Desires careen throughout the place, some freed from a leash, others habits, demanding nourishment. Souls searching, some on auto, others out for the cash, some for pure pleasure. then there’s the thrill seekers. Searching for something, everybody’s got a fuckin story. The villains come out to play... Continue reading
Posted May 23, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
Ubi and I have only been living with my 95-year-old grandma for a few days but it seems long. Not in a bad way, but in the way that happens when you experience a significant mental shift that makes your time before the shift seem distant already. First, we had to adjust to no Internet and TV for a few days, which felt like two weeks. This was a jolt for me, as I do all my writing and researching online, as well as plan my social life, catch up with friends, check my bank account, and do a million... Continue reading
Posted May 19, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
Ever since I began this blog, when I was on the verge of launching my full-time freelancing biz, my life has been in a constant state of change. Yet it's been strangely settled at the same time. I think working from home adds a quietness and solitude to my daily life that contrasts sharply with the bustle of my previous jobs, at a newspaper, then a big government agency. I've also moved back to my home city, due to Ubi's sickness, thousands in vet bills, emotional drainage and exhaustion and happenstance (finding a reliable subletter at the last minute). I... Continue reading
Posted May 15, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle
The greyed out buildings blend together, broken windows splattered across abandoned warehouses. Driving by on the elevated highway, toward the east side, the strip club mecca and bombed out factories of East St. Louis no longer pangs of shame. Strength settles in, an unexpected companion, as I eye the Arch and neon riverfront casinos. The graffiti bleeding on walls, peeling paint signs and empty streets no longer cause for embarrassment, Still somber but signaling something, Concrete flags of peace and signs of survival littering the streetscape. My ancestors joined the millions who tread these streets, shuffling to work at the... Continue reading
Posted May 14, 2010 at Beautiful Struggle