Wednesday, November 30, 2005

the nature of tattoos

like you
Originally uploaded by steakbellie.
long long day
boy was sick last night so I was up all night
worked all day
ran 5 miles
dealt with boss
dealt with guy who thinks he boss
commute (ughhh)
took oldest to wrestling practice
found out practice was cancelled
went to store for food shopping
worked with middle son on trumpet lesson
worked with youngest on drawing batman and robin
watched some 'professional wrestling' on tv with the boys
talked with vp of possible new job

now it's 10:30pm and everybody's asleep
i still have my own freelance work to do tonight

and all i can think about is how freaking bad
I want to scratch the new tattoo
it's driving me crazy
all I'm allowed to do is rub it with lotion
If I scratch it, It's fucked for life

The first set of scabs have come off
but she used soooooo much ink to make it super black
that the letters are still raised off the skin like it's a sticker
you can actually FEEL the raised letters like it was braille
the skin is still shiny too, like it's a burn
which would make sense

when they put the tattoo on you
it feels like someone is burning you with a cigarette
for two hours

whats funny is that brand new tattoos
will bleed black for a few days
there is an exact mirror image of this tattoo
on TWO of my couches
in india ink
that my wife hasnt seen yet

The Little Things

Originally uploaded by steakbellie.
I'm looking back on what was a tumultuous part of my life. These last few months have held alot of good and bad. All of it living. Hopefully these experiences will help me make better decisions in the future. It's certainly embarrassing when you realize that you've made a fool of yourself, and that you cant go back to make amends. You gotta go forwards.

I realize that it's the little things that steer your life one way or another. Small opportunities that you take advantage of, or not.

We can read our kids a book or put on the tv, say something kind to a friend or be silent, go for a walk at lunch or surf the web. Wear the Black Shoes or the Brown, Paper or Plastic. All of these thing compound like interest over time.

It's these tiny choices that you make that can decide if you are skinny or fat, smart or stupid, rich or poor, happy or sad. Isnt that crazy? In the end, you really do control your own destiny, but not because of a single decision. It was a long line of tiny ones that brought you here!

And if you wake up one morning to realize, that you've ended up somewhere that you never intended? Start paying attention to those details, have some vigilence on a daily'll get somewhere new...I'm certainly counting on it....

so...I have to ask....would you like bacon? Seriously!

50lbs of Blonde Fury

the disinfectant is drying on resolite mats
as he laces his tiger split sole shoes

the room is near 100 degrees
and soon everyone will be sweating into their eyes

in this room his brothers learned pride
tempered by humility, respect


the drills are the same they were
all those years ago for me too

jumping jacks, running, sprouls,
sit-thoughs, stand-ups

but their moves are 'the whammer', 'double-leg', 'the stack'
I knew 'the pancake', 'the tilt' 'the spladel'

it's funny how moves come into fashion
like clothes do

we're down on the mat together, warming up
me and my boys

it's gonna be a good year....

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

a kick in the ass (haiku)

can be a good thing
it opens your eyes again
look to the future

What breed dog are you?

Thanx to GroovyGrrrl for this one. German Shepards are my favorite type of dog, and this website said I'm just like one. I think I'm more of a mutt that just shit in the house though....

discover your dog breed @ quiz meme

sometimes i gotta wonder
what planet am i from

i look like a man
but am i really

i bleed, laugh and cry
i get cold

i can love with all my heart
i can be blind with jealousy

i can be compassionate
i can bring the temple down around me

i can sleep like a baby
or lay awake all night alone

yet something's wrong
or different or weird

would you know it if you were crazy
like really crazy?

Monday, November 28, 2005

turn the page

did you ever have one of those weeks
where at the end you realize
you're not a good father or friend or even a person
where you're the last person you want to be near
and you just cant get away from yourself?

i want to start all over
do over....

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

digging my own private subway

the center-city girls have on their leather boots
and it's an artificial heat for me

I'm soaked in the rain again
with an old leather jacket
and sunglasses to protect me
from the passing umbrella spikes

my face is wet and hard from the wind
and the cold
i have gloves
but i dont wear them

I reach my building but I dont go in
I'm waiting for the song to finish

dressed in black
on a grey day

Monday, November 21, 2005

a view into my dining room last night

I'm working on some self improvement and identifying things I need to get done before I die. I've have a list of short term (year or two) things that would be fun to check off. The new tattoo was one of them.

One of the biggest things on my list I cant talk about here because I dont want anybody finding it through a search yet. I've been training for two months for this secret event. I've lost 20lbs through running, biking and weighhtlifting. and I intend to loose 27lbs more before gametime. The below story is a peak into some of the other training that is necessary.

A Haggis is a traditional Scottish food. It's a sheeps stomach, that has been stuffed with the sheeps heart, kidneys, and other guts. It's tied off with a string and cooked or steamed.

Some oatmeal is mixed in to keep you regular.

The Haggis comes out of the steamer and is placed on a big black plate in front of me. The lights are slightly dimmed and I'm sitting at the head of the table. Around me are my three sons, my friend, and his two children...everyone is staring at the large steaming organ in front of me.

I have a knife and two forks

I cut open the sheep stomach and a dark thick spreadable material oozes out of the bag. Everyone makes a noise.

I scrape all of the goo out of the baginto a huge pile. This is enough 'food' for a 3 person meal. 3 Americans even.

I close my eyes and exhale.
My buddy counts down from five.
At one he clicks the timer and I'm in the zone.

Five children are screaming, and i am using TWO forks to shove the haggis into my mouth
'WHAT DOES IT TASTE LIKE?!?!' someone is yelling in my ear
but their is no time to talk

I try not to shove too fast but I am driven
I want this

The nicest thing I can say about this meal is that it is warm.

I work my way accross the plate and drop my forks on the last mouthful

one pound of haggis
2 minutes and forty seconds
a good time

Saturday, November 19, 2005


Originally uploaded by steakbellie.

Alcoholique Internationale (triple haiku action!)

pour me another!
a stein! a mug! a bottle!
two of each for me!

pour me another!
lets laugh! lets sing! lets forget!
i'm here! lets party!

pour me another!
please let me buy some for you!
my wallet is full!

Friday, November 18, 2005

The Dance

I just picked up my 11 year old, C@leb from his first dance in 6th Grade.
"How was the dance?"
"Dance with any girls?"
(he gives me a mortified dirty stare....dont go there Dad)

My first dance was in 7th grade in the school gym. There was girl Nicole in my homeroom that I wanted to ask, but was scared to even look at her. She was almost as tall as me and had short brown hair. She had the longest neck ever measured, which got even longer because she wore these V-Neck sweaters. She looked like an osterich (but in a good way) ha!

I never asked her and I dont think she went with someone else. I just remember a month of homerooms trying to get the guts to talk to her and the bell ringing to go to first period.

Some of my friends drank peach schnapps in the parking lot, threw up and got caught by the principal. Another friend of mine wore an earing and got kicked out.

I left my painted Iron Maiden jacket at home and wore:
Grey Parachute Pants
A Grey and White striped button up shirt
A skinny black leather tie
Black Capeseo's

My hair was all wacked out because I was growing out a mohawk that I had gotten that summer, and I had one of those 'rat-tails' in the back. (it was dyed blonde)

Amazingly all of the things I was wearing were actually 'in' at the time, but didnt seem to do much good for me.

I danced with a bunch of girls,( in that I danced in acrowd of like 12 girls), but never asked this chick to dance I was frozen whenever she was near...i must have been the only boy on the dance floor as the girls danced in the fog machine and the boys punched each other in their shoulders on the bleachers.....

The Wrestler who cried Wolf

The Hulkster
Originally uploaded by steakbellie
"M@x, Eddie Guerrero died."
I'm watching him carefully. M@x is only 6 and Eddie Guerrero was one of his heros.

Eddie's a professional wrestler and M@x knows all his moves, his entrance song, and never misses his performance on Friday Night SmackDown.

He's standing in front of me with his mouth open. I almost laugh at his intial response.
"Batista's not going to have a tag-team partner!"
he follows it up a million questions

"How do you know he's dead?", "Did somebody kill him?", "Was it the Undertaker?"

He's seen Eddie get thrown out of a ring, get clocked in the head with a chair, and punched in the face. He's seen him come back from beating after beating to win a crucial matchup.

"They found him dead in his Hotel Room" I say

"Somebody must have choked him" he says

"We talked about this before. These wrestlers dont really live like that. They are all best friends once the show is over. They arent violent people. He probably had a heart attack or something"

he doesnt believe me, and why should he believe that an inshape muscular man of my age should just kick over of a measly heart attack?

"How do they know he's dead? Maybe he's just sick? Maybe he's pretending"

"No baby, I'm sorry...Eddie's dead....The paper said that Chavo found him" I say holding his face

"I think somebody snuck in his room....."

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Enjoy the Ride

Originally uploaded by steakbellie.
Here's a photo I took on a Rollercoaster last week. It shows 2 people having very different reactions to the exact same experience. I guess life is alot like this photo.

I got a call from an old client of mine right before I left for vacation. They want to interview me for a fulltime job there. I know and like all the people I'd be working with and the work itself is enough to fill my head. I'd get to travel abit and just enjoy making things happen.

There's alot that needs to be worked out in order for it to be reality, but I have to tell feels good to know that somebody out there wants you...enjoy the ride.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Orlando Saved!

Orlando Saved!
Originally uploaded by steakbellie.
I'm back from an incredible vacation. M@x, Captain America, and I cleaned up the rough streets of Orlando Florida, putting all sorts of holligans behind bars. In the coming days I will recount every dreadful detail.....

Somehow I took 835 photographs on this trip and this is one of the 2 of me. I look damn good. I need a skinsuit just like Captain America. He may have bigger muscles, but I'm hung like a bear.


Tuesday, November 08, 2005


vacation, babe, vacation....

Monday, November 07, 2005


Originally uploaded by steakbellie.
photo i took of a friend that night somebody let me drink all that whiskey and I developed a Scottish Accent in an Irish Bar.

Look at it large, it has alot of nice subtle things happening in it.

faithless (haiku)

i will run til dawn
give me something to believe
i will do the rest

take a break

broken arm
Originally uploaded by steakbellie.
I planned I writing about my theory of raising boys this weekend. One of the things I planned on talking about was the role of 'rough-housing'. Ironically, that's how my middle son broke his arm this weekend.

I feel terrible for him, he was in a pretty good amount of pain and will now miss all of wrestling season which begins tonite. He also wont be able to write as he is right-handed.

fortunatly we leave for vacation in two days anyway.....

Friday, November 04, 2005

move on

some very good discussions here the last few days. I'm going to try some of Jenne's ideas. I also plan to make some tweaks in my direction career-wise and personally. Nobody's gonna change it for me. There's acouple things I gotta do before I die, and I'm gonna do them. I started outlining the list yesterday. Alot of them I can have doen by this time next year.

thankyou friends and virtual friends for your very kind words and for compassion.

Birdy, stock up on the electrolytes....I need some new tattoos....

For Today

I stood in line for 3 hours at the viewing. The line snaked out into the parking lot for hundreds of yards. It was a testiment to who he was and the many many lives he touched. They burried him in his football coaches jersey, and the wrestling hat my wife handed him this summer.

Everyone was smoking

I also understood that I wont have a third of that number at my own funeral. I dont make deep connections easily. I can care about many people, but I prevent most of them from making a deep connection with me. Everyone at arms length where they cant do much damage......Thats ok with me for now.

I cried my last and drank myself to sleep. With little rest and probably some beer still pumping through me,I made it to work in my fastest time ever. All my stress goes into that big 52T Chain ring

I'm solid today

I even feel like fighting

the road ahead

happiness is at the bottom of the next bottle
salvation can be chased with running shoes
redemption bought with sweat and strain

Thursday, November 03, 2005

i want to run away

i know why this death is bothering me so much. It was somebody I saw often and made small talk with, but not a best friend or anything. It's because on paper, we're almost the guy. We've both been married a Brazillion years, have the same age kids in the same schools.

We both spend all of our free time supporting our kids interests...not just dropping them at practice, but actually changing our clothes and getting dirty with them.

He's dead because he wasnt wearing a seat-belt. I always wear one, but how many other stupid things are there that I do that could get me killed?

So am I ready to die? Have I forgotten to do something? Will my family survive it? Is it ok to waste my time at a job I hate? Everybody knows I love them, right? (i say that often)

People always talk about 'living life to the fullest, but honestly that doesnt fully jibe with being a good father and husband. I understand the mentality in a temporary sense, but I dont know how to adapt it to long term responsible living. I enjoy my life, but should i be enjoying it more? If I have more fun, someone else MUST be having less fun. (Isnt that part of the law of Thermodynamics?)

honestly I dont want to face these things, i want to run away.....(or maybe bike)

Grande Odalisque

Grande Odalisque
My Dog Lucky. Click for bigger....


i couldnt sleep last night
i'm going to jimmy's viewing tonight
and it's going to suck

wrestling season starts on tuesday
and he wont be there
it's just weird
he's always been there

he wont be there for baseball this spring

or football next fall

on sunday the football team had his intials on their helmets
and they painted them in the endzone
and chanted his name

one of jimmy's sons came to the game
and stood alone on the sideline
completely bewildered

I picked up the local paper early this morning
and he's on the cover
i sat on the toilet weeping again
this is stupid

the ride home

The ride home is alot harder for several reasons.

For one it's more uphill on the way home. My pack weighs 17 lbs (with clothes and locks) and anyone who's ever biked up a mountain, weight matters.

I'm tired and hungry and my brain isnt as sharp.

All of the drivers are tired and frustrated with the extra traffic. They will take extra risks to get home faster, I need to anticipate that.

It's dark. This is my least favorite thing about biking in the winter. I cant see puddles, potholes, sand, dirt or glass. My tires are only 23 Centimeters wide, they are fast but will slide out on the tiniest bit of debris.

The same asshole in a Lexus SUV almost hit me twice last night. His side view mirror just missed my shoulder. I cursed at him but his radio was too loud to even hear me.

I barely aweat on the ride in....on the ride home I'm soaked...My family watches the clock and worries, so I grind it out to make it home faster and faster.

My Mom called last night to see if I made it home ok. I make her feel ok, I dont want her to worry. "It's 8.5 Miles you have any idea how much further I've ridden? These drivers are afraid of me!" I promise her that I wont get hit by a bus but she doesnt get the joke. All of the bus drivers are striking.

This morning I get pressed to the curb by a charter bus that doesnt see me. Damn...

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

the best part

the best part about commuting is that in 5 minutes I will close my office door take off every piece of clothing and put on my stretchy bike clothes. I will do all of this giggling.

Why will I be giggling? I have four enourmous windows that I wont close the blinds on, and three complete floors of employees of PA Blue Cross accross the alley will get an eyefull of my fabulousness.

I'm a modest person, but I find this to be hilarious.......

a good day

i feel pretty good today. i feel alive.

just within the last hour, the exhileration from riding my bike during the SEPTA strike began to fade. It's so much better than a standard long bike ride. Rather than going at a consistant pace, I'm trying to sprint each block, to make it to the momentary gaps between moving and parked cars.

There's no opportunity to let off for most of the trip, going fast gives them less time to hit me, and less force from their intial impact. My eyes are wide and my ears tuned and my mind is forced to be silent, I'm so happy when I arrive. I've been swamped in a l-mild-luke depression, and this have given me hours of reprieve. like being drunk, I sit and smile at everybody.

I leave at sunset tonight to go home, I hate riding in the dark, and I will have to go even faster to get home before I am completely invisible.

kick out the jams, mother fuckers

Black Heart, Pink Toes

Originally uploaded by steakbellie

is it more than you
bargained for

years and years pass
and I'm still doing laps

thats what I have to do
i cant stop myself

and again
one more time


why arent you sick of me
like i am

Seventh Paragraph

got interviewed yesterday when I was getting ready to commute home on my bike.