If Johnny Told June His Biggest Secret Or Regret

The call came late Friday afternoon and a familiar voice asked me if I was interested in moving on a project that had been discussed in general terms and I said absolutely.

It was a pleasant surprise because two hours before I had been sitting in the parking lot of a Home Depot outside of downtown Dallas writing about some ideas in the same general terms.

The air was on in car but it was 98 degrees outside and the vehicle hadn’t been on for very long so as I shared some non specific details I shook my head because what I was writing sounded good until you looked at the details.

Or should I say the lack of details and that frustrates me because we all say things like we want to be rich, thinner, or more this/that but without plans all we have are wishes.

This call is/was part of the beginning of changing wishes and hopes into something actionable.

“Josh, I have something but you have to promise to commit and promise not to share all the details.”

I laughed and said I can carry some secrets to the grave and there is no one who is more committed to chasing fantasies and dreams.

“I can almost believe that.”

“Do you think Johnny told June his biggest secret or regret?”

“Are you saying you can walk the line?”

“I am.”

Fragments Of A Plan

When I hung up the phone my head was spinning with possibilities and I began to see fragments of a plan form on my internal chalkboard.

The timing of the call had been impeccable and it had answered questions they probably had no idea I been wondering about.

It was like the shades had been drawn and I could see inside a room I had noticed many times but never knew what was contained within.

Been thinking about it on and off for the past 24 hours and excitedly wondered where this path might lead because if it goes half as well as I hope it will change much.

“Can I ask you a question? Have you ever thought about writing or doing any sort of marketing. You seem like you might have a knack for that.”

“Technically I have a BA in Journalism. I write every day in a variety of places about a variety of topics. I know how to get some attention with it, but this is very different from what I do.”

“What is different about it?”

“I mess around there. I work on thoughts and ideas, occasionally write about hopes and dreams, but here is different. Here I am much more buttoned down in my writing. Different set of consequences.”

I don’t mention that sometimes I wonder about how I am more of an introvert and how the more time passes the quieter I get, but I think about it.

The caller shares a few more thoughts, asks some questions and asks if I am aware that I pepper my stories and speech with quotes and references to songs/movies.

“I don’t think I am conscious of it, but I am not surprised. I love stories and story telling so I always look for tools that can assist in that. I want weave a multilayered idea in the listener’s head because that leads to good outcomes.”

****

Some days the writing flows more freely and the words feel more natural and other times they feel dishonest.

I find it harder than ever to check myself in certain places and not say exactly what I mean and or am thinking.

But I do it because there are conversations I prefer not to have.

Some ask if that is because I fear to have those and I shake my head, there are no conversations I fear to have but there are I’d rather not.

Rather not because there are people who would get involved in business they have no part of and no reason to engage in but they haven’t found boundaries that are meaningful to them.

Given the benefit of experience I know my response to their lack of awareness isn’t going to be something warm and fuzzy so the outcome of such conversations doesn’t provide me with confidence there won’t be tears.

Also given my confidence that said tears won’t belong to me it seems prudent to avoid such interactions as there is no upside to having them.

****

The email spells out my action items and thoughts. I read it twice to confirm it is clear and press send.

“Holy hell, I asked for help making a few things happen and this happens. Maybe I ought to ask for a bag of money too and see if that doesn’t come. Full moon madness or maybe it is magic.”

No one hears that last part because it is a thought but that is ok with me.

My Facebook feed is still filled with comments and mentions of a teenager gunned down by his father and so many questions tied into it all.

It almost makes me feel guilty for being so excited about this prospective change and yet again it doesn’t.

We have such a tenuous grip upon life and there are these moments where we are shown just how quickly it can turn.

I can empathize and sympathize with others while still feeling kind of elated. I can look at the moon and silently thank dad for doing whatever he did to help, if anything behind the scenes.

He won’t be upset if I do or do not, but I figure doing the best I can to show gratitude for the good things won’t hurt.

It is a funny time and not necessarily in a humorous way. The herky-jerky feel of this post feels right to me because there are a million thoughts and ideas flowing through my skull.

Thank You Mr. Toad

Somewhere in the house there is a boy with a beard not quite as thick as my own and a voice not quite as deep who asks me how I can write like this.

He has seen me run for the bathroom four or five times and wants to know if it impacts my consistency and voice if I keep stopping and starting.

I nod my head and say I can do it but I am not always sure how well I manage it.

“You’ll have to ask the readers if it works for them or not. Writing is always subjective and you never know which way it will go. Sometimes these posts remind me of this video.

If you know the stories and people you can follow it and see how it is composed of different parts and pieces of a larger tale. But if you don’t you might wonder about parts of it, but you can still follow it, provided it sucks you in.”

I don’t know who will or won’t be sucked in. Some might have expectations because of the headline that will or will not be met by the writing.

In other areas I would take a moment to make sure that I did my best to meet those expectations, but not here.

Here you accept me for who I am and that will be good enough or it won’t.”

I watched him nod his head and walk away leaving me to make a mental note to track what I am eating because what is happening now can be spun as a sign of my being good at finding ways to adapt and overcome in any situation.

But that is not what I want or how I want to live so it is time to figure this out and it to the list of coming changes.

Can’t walk the line if you are skipping, fast walking and or sprinting for the restroom now can you. 🙂

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