Not Drinking Caused Me Problems

I don’t drink. I’m not anti-alcohol, I actually don’t like to drink. I do, on rare occasions such as ceremonies, take a small amount of wine. I have also, when working in the hot sun, enjoyed cold, European beer, like Heineken.

The problems come in when other people like to drink. I was working in advertising creative for 30 years, and drinking is part of the profession. I don’t like to drink, because of the taste, and the effect it has on me. I just don’t feel good after just a sip. I’ve been told that I lack an enzyme that deals with alcohol. No problem – I don’t like to drink anyway.

I know of a man, now deceased, who was president of a large ad agency. He was a prick. I remember during a heat wave, he walked around the offices without his pants. He just went around in his light-blue undershorts. This same asshole liked to drink at the office. He had a small refrigerator in his office, almost filled with his favourite beer. It was all at the back in the fridge, because the agency had a German beer account. The Canadian beer the asshole liked was at the back, and the client’s beer was visible at the front of the shelves.

Most of the guys above plebe level were often required to stay late to have a beer with the pres. They all had trouble with their wives because of the late returns home. I never attended, and this made trouble for me. On one occasion, a junior executive said to me; “What’s the matter, are you too good for us?” Another remarked, “Are you on an AA 12 step program or something?” It’s as though not liking to drink is impossible. On the other hand, when we were away on a company trip, I lit up a joint in their presence. The whole bunch of them shrunk back like they feared the smoke would enter their bodies and render them insane.

I guess it’s each person to its own poison. Those experiences caused me to think about drinking and all its aspects. Many people get mean. Some get weepy. And I also think that many drinkers are ashamed of the habit. Most of the drinking places I’ve seen are dimly lit. Many are populated by hustlers and strippers. The whole environment seems to me like a low-end activity.

I recognize the elegance of good wine with a good dinner, beautifully presented. I’m sure that scene is less than 30% of the alcohol consumption overall. Anyway, I’m glad I never did drink much, and still don’t. Maybe that’s why I’m in pretty good shape at 80. Weed seems to have done me only good; calm moods and reduced pain. Win-win.

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Drinking Caused Me Problems

I don’t drink. I’m not anti-alcohol, I actually just don’t like to drink. I do, on rare occasions such as ceremonies, take a small amount of wine. I have also, when working in the hot sun, enjoyed cold, European beer, like Heineken.

The problems come in when other people like to drink. I was working in advertising creative for 30 years, and drinking is part of the profession. I don’t like to drink, because of the taste, and the effect it has on me. I just don’t feel good after just a sip. I’ve been told that I lack an enzyme that deals with alcohol. No problem – I don’t like to drink anyway.

I know of a man, now deceased, who was president of a large ad agency. He was a prick. I remember during a heat wave, he walked around the offices without his pants. He just went around in his light-blue undershorts. This same asshole liked to drink at the office. He had a small refrigerator in his office, almost filled with his favourite beer. It was all at the back in the fridge, because the agency had a German beer account. The Canadian beer the asshole liked was at the back, and the client’s beer was visible at the front of the shelves.

Most of the guys above plebe level were often required to stay late to have a beer with the pres. They all had trouble with their wives because of the late returns home. I never attended, and this made trouble for me. On one occasion, a junior executive said to me; “What’s the matter, are you too good for us?” Another remarked, “Are you on an AA 12 step program or something?” It’s as though not liking to drink is impossible. On the other hand, when we were away on a company trip, I lit up a joint in their presence. The whole bunch of them shrunk back like they feared the smoke would enter their bodies and render them insane.

I guess it’s each person to its own poison. Those experiences caused me to think about drinking and all its aspects. Many people get mean. Some get weepy. And I also think that many drinkers are ashamed of the habit. Most of the drinking places I’ve seen are dimly lit. Many are populated by hustlers and strippers. The whole environment seems to me like a low-end activity.

I recognize the elegance of good wine with a good dinner, beautifully presented. I’m sure that scene is less than 30% of the alcohol consumption overall. Anyway, I’m glad I never did drink much, and still don’t. I suppose all the alcoholic beverages I’ve had in my long life would not fill a 5 gallon bucket. Maybe that’s why I’m in pretty good shape at 80. Weed seems to have done me only good; calm moods and reduced pain. Win-win.

The Burden of a Creative Spirit

One who is filled with the creative spirit is always alone. When driving to work or riding public transit, the creative spirit is working within the mind. The face of the old woman in her kerchief would be nice to sketch, one’s mind thinks. The kid with the striped beard might be from the city’s wealthiest family. He might have ostracized them because they did not believe in his yet-to-be-discovered talent. The creative mind is relentlessly working, painting pictures or writing stories.

Those creative spirits among us are in inevitable conflict with the surrounding community. That’s why ‘creative communities’ develop, where the eccentricities of bohemian personalities are a comfortable norm. That’s fine for those of us who reside in cities or towns where such a community exists, but what of those who lack access to like-minded companions.

An old woman on a remote farm might be developing some wonderful paintings. A young man in the military might be writing admirable short stories. Those people, in their inappropriate environments, are likely to be regarded by the community around them as ‘peculiar’, or at least ‘different’. The constant desire to experience things of all kinds keeps the creative spirit working within the creative person.

The secret inner life of the creative person is a mystery to the surrounding community. Often, I am presented with problems that need a creative solution. Over the decades, I have learned to trust my instincts and just execute the ideas that form within. I no longer worry that I might have missed the mark.

It is always a bit of a surprise to me that clients don’t think of the same idea on their own. On the contrary, they seem blown away by the idea that is simple and quick for me. I recall a time when I created an entire newspaper campaign in my head, while driving home from the meeting. I presented it to the client the next morning. It was approved and put into production.

Creativity is a mystery to everyone, including those with the creative spirit.

Mosquitoes’ Knees

I work hard from time to time, trying to believe there’s a God or even gods, as there seems to be several. So far, I’ve been unable to do it. I test the concept of this omnipotent something, spirit or… I don’t know what. “Have faith,” they say. “Nonsense” I say. At the same time, there is a large collection of physical evidence that evolution, not god, is the reason for everything.

I think about the mosquito, tiny, annoying, and potentially lethal. When god said Let There Be this and that, were a pair of mosquitoes included in the creation? After all, a mosquito is a very complex creature. It flies, it seeks flesh which it penetrates with a miniscule tube. It takes in the victim’s blood and takes off with it to lay eggs by the thousand. It is only the pregnant female that stings, because it needs blood to procreate.

I think to myself, that’s a hell of a system god designed there. What made him even think of that? And why? What overall function can that have in the balance of the fishes and the creatures of earth? Besides the suction tube, wings, and the body that can balloon full of blood, the mosquito has several legs. Each leg has several knee-like joints. These are tiny appendages – did god design them, or did they simply ‘become’ when god said, “Let there be…”?

The mosquito has equipment to help its species continue. Did god assign the ideal physical characteristics? It’s much more likely that over the span of time from the big bang up to now, that chemicals and conditions of every possible kind, melded and mixed in heat and cold, created all things on earth, including the mosquito’s knees.

Maybe You Can, but Shouldn’t

In most residential areas, people are allowed to have raucous parties with loud music until 11:00 PM. The law says you can, but perhaps you shouldn’t. There might be some ill older people that could suffer from the disturbance. A single mother who needs her rest has a colicky infant that is kept awake and crying. You can make the it if you wish, but I think it’s best to consider it. Of course, most any neighbourhood should be tolerant of a loud party once or twice a year.

Maybe you can stop in front of your girl’s home and honk your horn to call her to hurry to you, but you shouldn’t. You’ll score points all around if you exit the car, go to the door and knock politely, and greet the occupants warmly.

Maybe you can get up from the dinner table without a word and pick your teeth while you wander into the TV room. You flop down on the sofa and turn on the TV while she’s in the kitchen. She’s washing up the dinner dishes and cutlery from the delicious meal she created and served. She received no word of gratitude or appreciation. Maybe you could do something better than take without giving back. Do the dishes yourself, and do them well. You are very likely to be rewarded in a happy way.

There are almost limitless numbers of things that we can do, but shouldn’t. The very least we should feel obliged to do is take a moment to consider the wider ramifications of the act or words we plan to use.

2020 Foresight

I have avoided political commentary so far in my blogs. However, Donald Trump and his cohorts grow increasingly vile, and the republican rabble continues to believe in their hero’s unbelievable lies. I don’t see Trump as the number one villain. The incredibly naïve American voter is number one to blame… each and every one of the stinking bunch of them. Trump is mentally damaged, perhaps by the emotional abuse rained upon him by his greedy German father. What excuse can there be for the voters?

If you Trump voters and continued supporters have any brains at all, you will see that Trump did not actually win, just as Hitler did not actually win. Trump used treason and foreign money to seize the president’s office. Hitler used “Brownshirts” in the streets, beating Jews, smashing their stores and painting words and symbols on their homes and businesses, to make them the subjects of scorn and rejection.

If one takes an analytical look at Trump’s actions, one can see that there is a person guilty of similar activities to Hitler’s. The lies, the support for the white supremacists, the incitement to violence all show that you have a mentally disturbed person in the White House. He is surrounded by similarly sick people. The people who voted for Trump, and continue to support and believe in him, need to be overwhelmed by truth.

If you’re a Trump supporter, SHAME ON YOU!

Homemakers And Husbands

I’m sure there are still more stay-at-home moms than those who have outside jobs. Husbands who are able to have a homemaker wife are very fortunate indeed. Those same, fortunate husbands should not slide into the belief that mom has an easy time at home while he sweats it out in the office or at the plant.

While dad is grinding out his daily labour, his wife might be imagining him chatting up the pretty stenographer. She might see them enjoying lunch together, perhaps with a pitcher of beer. She might be on edge for no reason, while she dusts the furniture, freshens the beds, shops for groceries and plans a week’s meals.

The husband, on the other hand, envisions his wife relaxing on the sofa, watching soap operas. He sees the young man that mows the lawn, asking his wife for a glass of water while he holds her close and caresses her back, toying with her bra clasp. He sees her at a neighbour’s home, sipping coffee, eating snacks and chatting comfortably.

There’s nothing the husband can do to change the wife’s visions of his work day, but he can learn more about her work day. For just one week, do the wife’s job. I share the household chores. Do you know what  it’s like to wash the same dishes you washed yesterday. Do you know the burden of vacuuming the stairs yet again? Do you know what it’s like handling stinking socks and underwear, washing them, drying them and putting them where they belong? Do you know what it’s like to prepare fifteen or twenty meals per week? Can you imagine trying to stay on a budget while presenting a variety of meals to the family?

Mending torn jeans, ironing shirts, stacking dinnerware, sorting cutlery, might all be in a homemaker’s day. It’s not a roll in the hay, it’s a damn tedious, repetitive job, seven days a week and potentially 24 hours a day.

Forgive your wife her edginess. Give her love and gratitude. It will help both of you.