Category Archives: getting back out there


Wow!  It has been way too long since I’ve last written!

A lot has been going on and I haven;t really allowed myself a chance to come up for air; and when I’ve had down-time, I’ve chosen to do nothing with it.

About 3 weeks ago, I flew The Kid up to Michigan to spend a week with me.  Yes, I was entitled to a whole month with him but with me starting a new job recently, I didn’t think any more time off wold have been very realistic.  It was some time well-spent between The Kid and I.  He had a meltdown when he and I were visiting with the Auteur, and it became a turning point.  It led to Jabba and I having probably the best, longest, most honest discussion since our separation.

We made plans to conduct Facetime discussions among the fours of us:  Me, The Auteur, the Kid and Jabba.  So far, we’ve done only one so I am skeptical about the prospect of doing more.

This past Tuesday I learned that the state has re-certified me to teach in Michigan!  I knew it was coming, but it was still a great feeling.  It has been a long time coming.  Not just for the time that I’ve been back in Michigan, but even for the few years that I bounced around from job-to-job in South Carolina.  I feel vindicated, but it’s going to seem pretty hollow if I don’t land a teaching job soon.

As for the present, this weekend  is the 48 hour film festival.  This year, The Auteur decided to head up her own team and asked me to help write.  I was very flattered that she asked me to be a part of it and I think that the others writers and I came up with a pretty cool script, if I may say so myself.  I’m dying to see how the story evolves through the creative process:  Me and two other writers wrote.  As director, the Auteur has he own take on how she reads the script and what she wants to see on the screen.  In turn, her director of photography is the person who actually films the movie.  Finally, there’s the actors themselves who are the physical manifestations of the characters we’ve put to the page.  and i cannot forget the post-production crew, who takes the pieces we’ve all built and puts together a movie from them.  It’s all very fascinating and all very new to me.  No doubt I will have more to say about it in the days ahead.

Clearly this is a lot to be glossing over.  I’m sure that I will be going into more detail in the entries that will follow…


digging ourselves out

“…nothin’ lasts forever, even cold November rain” – W. Axl Rose


a very familiar sight

The weather is finally breaking and people are starting to come out of their homes and resume their normal lives.  It’s kind of surreal:  local temperatures are about 35 degrees higher than they were 2 and a half days ago. Snow, arctic wind shears, sub-zero temperatures: I got to experience the entire Ice Age in just five days.

It occurred to me today that – and this may sound really melodramatic – that just like the weather, tough times do pass.  The holidays are over, the world is returning to its regularly scheduled routines.  My classes started this week – more or less given the snow days and I am more motivated I’ve been to finish school since I returned to Michigan.  People like  like to talk a lot about how important it is to have goals.  Recently, I have come to the realization that as important as it is to have something to work toward, it is equally important to have things to work for.

But back to my point: Being broke, feeling stuck in a seemingly never-ending divorce, dark skies, shitty weather – all of these things do come to an end.  This isn’t to say that life is perfect.  As always, it continues to be a work in progress. but I definitely feel like I’m turning a corner.

With the start of school and re-certification around the corner, I find myself wondering where I’ll find a job for the fall.  this time of the year inevitably make me look forward…and look back.  i wonder where I’ll be 9 months from now, or even 6 months from now.  The reality is that, just as I did ten years ago, I’m going to raise my proverbial sails to the wind and see where potential employment takes me.  I feel like experience has made me wise in this regard.  I’ve moved ‘cross country before. i know what it’s like; I know what it takes; and I know what I would do differently the second time around.


a screen capture of Winter Storm Ion from a 2 days ago.

a screen capture of Winter Storm Ion from a 2 days ago.

Like most Americans, i’m dealing with the effects of Winter Storm Ion (and when the hell did they start naming winter storms anyway?).  I’ve been more or less staying close to home the last several days due to a combination of the snow amounts, cold temperatures and poor road conditions.  Most local schools have announced that the were closing today (Monday) as well as tomorrow (Tuesday).  Local temperatures have been below-zero for the better part of today.  It’s probably the coldest this area has been in at least 20 years.  Given how long I lived down South, my body is really not used to these temperatures.

It’s been nice to spend some quality time on the home front with The Auteur and 1B.  I’ve already watched probably a half-dozen movies that I hadn’t seen before and I’ve been able to get caught up on some recreational reading.  Today however, I really started suffering from cabin-fever; so I made a much-needed trip to the grocery store. I was able to get out long enough to catch my breath, my bearings and get cold enough that I wanted to get back home.  All in all, it was a good trip.

My new semester was supposed to start today.  I’ve been in touch with my academic advisor, trying to figure out exactly what I need so I can get re-certified to teach and possibly finish my Master’s degree.  I just want to get done.  I’ve talked so much about getting done and accomplishing my goals that I just want to do it.  It’s like the line in When Harry Met Sally… when Billy Crystal says something to the effect of “When you decide what you want to do with the rest of your life, you want the rest of your life to begin as soon as possible”.  I’m ready move forward; now I just need the weather to improve.

the seeds of a revolution

revolution definition

I’m not in the mood for New Year’s resolutions for 2014, I’m looking at starting a New Year’s Revolution.  I’m not interested in making little change to enhance my life.  I’m looking at making the massive modifications necessary to achieve the goals I have been setting for my life.Sadly  have spent the bulk of the 18 months since my separation drifting.  Even for a time after meeting The Auteur, I spent a good amount of time, going through the proverbial motions – half-assing school, work…drifting.

As I have stated before, I got comfortable living with my parents. I wasn’t happy, but I was comfortable.  Since moving in with The Auteur, I’ve had known what I want, but haven’t known how to achieve those goals.    I’m not pretending I have all the answers – or that I even know all the questions – but I feel that I have much more direction to my life than I’ve had in years.

  • I am turning 40 this year.  Forty. FORTY!
  • I need to get my teaching certificate re-instated.  Period.  I would like to have that done by the end of this school year.
  • I need to get a new car.  Not necessarily a new car, but at least a new-to-me car.
  • I need to find a way to get The Kid up to Michigan at least twice this year:  for 1 month during the summer and a week at Christmas time.  I would like to also possibly make a trip to see him down South.
  • I would like to plan at least one vacation with The Auteur this year.  I’m not sure where yet – I do have some ideas – but we need to get outta Dodge for a few days or a week at least once this year.
  • I want to blog much more frequently.
  • I have another idea or two in the works; but quite honestly, they are so cool that  I don’t want to even discuss them in the event that they don’t come together.
  • No more secrets.  no more lies.  No more bullshit.

I’ve spent the last 18 months trying to reassess who I am, where I’ve been and finally what I want.  It is now time for me to GET what I want.  This blog  will most likely take on a more pro-active tone in the days, weeks and months to come.  Stay tuned.

What is past is prologue” – William Shakespeare.  The Tempest


coming clean

As I type this tonight, I am in South Carolina, so that I can pick up The Kid tomorrow for his Christmas visit.  The Old Man and I made the drive down last night.  The weather was about as good as we could have possibly hoped for – especially given the time of year.  

Jabba and I were exchanging e-mails earlier today – making arrangements for tomorrow’s “exchange”.  I think she assumed that The Auteur had made the trip down with me.  In one of her e-mails, she went on a rant about being uncomfortable with the idea of The Kid staying in a hotel room with a stranger.  By “stranger” I assume Jabba meant a person who was a stranger to her; because The Kid and The Auteur obviously know each other.  It was odd. She never came out and said anything about The Auteur directly.  she had voiced her feelings about The Kid being around “my girlfriend” but made no specific mention of The Auteur in today’s e-mail.

It’s been strange.  I know that – at least – since my trip to Myrtle Beach in September, Jabba has been aware of The Auteur. Obviously she doesn’t know how serious we are, or that we’ve been living together – let alone for how long.  But it occurred to me today that the time has come for full disclosure. The proverbial dust is finally settling.  Our divorce is within days of being finalized.  We are at a point where we no longer owe each other anything emotionally. But Jabba does need to know how serious The Auteur and I are.  She has to understand that if The Kid is going to be with me, than he is also going to be around The Auteur.  And in order to do that, Jabba and The Auteur will, inevitably, have to meet someday.  And that is going to have to happen sooner rather than later.

Ideally, this is a conversation that I would rather have face-to-face than via e-mail, but given our current living situations, that is not realistic.  I must admit that even thinking about giving Jabba the rundown has felt extremely liberating; not unlike when I finally made the decision to de-friend her from on Facebook.

lighting the beacons

The beacons have been lit.

As of this posting, Rebuilding Rob is now public.

What hath God wrought?

Home is where you hang your hat.

Ahh, the wit and wisdom of Daniel LaRusso

Ahh, the wit and wisdom of Daniel LaRusso

After spending the last three weeks at The Auteur’s house, I’m back at my parents for a few days – as she is working nights and I have evening classes.  It’s a lot quieter here than I remember it being.

i love living with The Auteur, but it’s difficult in that I’m not working yet, there aren’t a lot of job opportunities and I don’t have a car.  It’s very frustrating.  in a lot of ways, I feel like I’m back to square one.  At the same time, I thought I’d be happy to be back at my parents’ house; i figured this would be an opportunity to tend to matters around the home front. But I miss The Auteur and 1B far more than I expected.  I really want to try and build for a life for myself – for us – there.

Truth be told, i’m starting to feel like the “man without a country”.  Don’t get me wrong, my parents’ house will always be home; but I am starting to feel a bit removed from it.  Furthermore, I’m not 100% past feeling like a guest at The Auteur’s house yet.  This is no fault of here:  she refers to things as “our house”  “our room” and “our car” but outside of her house, i don’t have a life in that area yet.

A big part of the reason i decided to move in with The Auteur was that I feel like i finally have a sense of direction in my life again.   Between her, school, my career – I feel like I finally know what i want out of life again

i’m close.  I’m really close.  i feel like I, like we, are on the cusp of greatness and i just need to keep pushing through.

What a difference one year makes

250px-1_Year_Later_BulletAs I was cutting the lawn Saturday afternoon, it occurred to me that the one year anniversary of this blog came and went with no fanfare from me whatsoever.

Saturday night was the Kenny Chesney concert, roughly one year to the day since the last show in Detroit.  6 months ago all I wanted to do was go tailgate before the show and get sauced.  Instead, i’m working tonight (Saturday night) and think bout The Auteur non-stop.  This is not a complaint, mind you.  Rather, it’s an observation on how much things have changed in the past year.

I’ve been sober for 68 days now and only in a few fleeting moments have I even been tempted to take a drink.  I feel better.  I’m still losing weight.  My relationship with the Auteur has never been better.  She tells me that I even look differently now that I’ve stopped drinking.  We are madly in love and I’m still learning the parameters if unconditional love and pure happiness.

We have the Depeche Mode concert this Thursday and a surprise birthday party for 1B one week from today.  I’m still trying to get my school schedule locked down and finish my necessary paperwork for substitute teaching.

I haven’t mentioned it before – since I haven’t written in so long – but while i was staying with The Auteur earlier this week, she took me to see her old house – the one that her STBX is renting from her.  He was out of town this week, so the Auteur was pet sitting for him.  It was nice to finally see the place – putting a concrete location to an abstract thought – but it felt like a toxic environment; not unlike going back to the STBX’s house in South Carolina.  i felt the need to get out of there as fast as I could.

When I stopped to think about it, it was all pretty surreal.  There I was, still technically a married man hanging out with my girlfriend, who herself is still technically a married woman; in a house that she owns but is renting out to her estranged husband.  All I could say to The Auteur was: “Imagine if this was the other way around and you were in the STBX’s house in South Carolina.  How would you feel?”  In the abstract, it all sounds like someone whom i never even imagined I could possibly become,

A year and a day ago today…

A year and a day ago today…

My brother and The Old Man made the trip to South Carolina to help me move out of my then-home, leaving the STBX and The Boy in the process. I hope never in my life to have to do anything that emotionally draining again. Saying goodbye to The Boy was, BY FAR,  the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do in my life.  I am so grateful that he has taken everything the last year has thrown at him as well as he has.  He is an absolute soldier and he makes me beam with pride.

Back then I was still in the “hurt” mode.  It would be another 3 weeks or so before I became full-on angry with the STBX.  Today, I don’t know that I’m even angry at her anymore.  As I said in a previous blog, her continued existence annoys the shit out of me though.

It was hotter than hell on that trip back to MI.  104 in Columbia and like the traffic on Sunday, it was a mess.  I also remember that literally one-half  of the state of W. Virginia had lost power.  It got a little scary that night as gas stations were hit and miss.  Thankfully, we had no problems.

I also recall coming home and drinking beer, lots of it.  Beer was my coping mechanism.  I remember going to my cousin’s house (whom I shall code name “John Ryan”) for hid annual July 4th get-together, sitting down, and drinking one beer after another – basically until I couldn’t drink anymore.  As of now, I’ve been sober for 24 days and have no plans on hitting the sauce again.

Has it REALLY been a year already?

Back to the present…

UPDATE:  Wednesday, July 3 5:43 PM.

I took The Boy home on Sunday.  Saying goodbye was much easier this time.  He was pretty stoked to be home, see his pets and his mom.  As we said goodbye, he told “Now, don’t you cry Dad”.  I couldn’t help but bust out laughing.  I’ve always known that he would eventually take these goodbyes easier than I would; perhaps he’s already there.

On my way back into town, I spent Monday night at The Auteur’s house.  It was so good to see her and we seriously needed time together.  Since then, we’ve both said that we feel better about the state of our relationship.  Later the next day, I get a Facebook message from her saying that 1B knows that we are sleeping together.  What does one say to that?  Especially when it’s being brought up by their kid???

A question of trust

This is definitely uncharted territory for me.

I know I haven’t been in very many relationships in my life, but this is the most insecure I’ve been in any relationship I’ve ever had.  Not once, not for on second, did I ever question the STBX, or doubt that she loved me, or questioned her fidelity. But then, I also look at how that relationship turned out…

I don’t feel very confident or secure in my relationship with The Auteur. The field she’s going into is overwhelmingly dominated by men. She works and attends classes almost entirely with guys. There are at least three of them that I know of who had feelings for her and are all too willing to express said feelings. To be honest, I’ve seen some of the guys she works with. There’s a part of me that says “if she goes after one of those losers, let her.” They’re dip-shits. They’re nerds. They’re fat, ugly, movie geeks. Besides, I SATISFY her.

And yet, she doesn’t trust me. When I went to a local bar with Sis a few weeks back, she asked me point-blank if I was going there to meet somebody; this on a day when she made a day-trip with a girlfriend of hers and their 2 daughters.

Granted, I do have one strike me in this regard. Very early on in our relationship, I responded to an e-mail I received through I wrote back to this other woman, and it was all innocent enough. This other woman turned out to be a friend of The Auteur’s . Through casual conversation about their match experiences, they realized they were talking about the same guy…me. She denies it, but to this day, I’m convinced that it was a set-up.

The night she found out about it, she called me some pretty horrible things. To put it another way: the only other women who have ever called me such things are no longer a part of my life. Even now, I’m still a little shocked I managed to save this relationship over the few days that followed.

Maybe that’s why I don’t trust her. She doesn’t trust me. I’ve always felt that people who don’t trust you are like that because they have something they themselves are holding back. She doesn’t trust me; so I guess I assume that I shouldn’t trust her either.

I’m sure my impending divorce has a lot to do with it too. The events of the last 12-18 months have jaded me in ways that I just beginning to understand. I’m not a real firm believer in love right now. Hell, I’m not a real firm believer in much anything these days.

This crap with her ex (I call him Mr. Slate) has me second-guessing things too. Their divorce was supposed to be finalized this month. Now he’s just stalling. To make matters worse, she’s getting ready to take part in the local 48 hour student-film project again this year. Just like last year, Rhino is probably going to be THE major financial contributor to the project. He’s got a really good job and no life outside of it; so there’s plenty of money for him to burn. If our roles were reversed, The Auteur would be LIVID at the thought of the STBX being a major benefactor to a project I was working on.

What the hell did I get myself into here? Is this crazy? Am I the crazy one? Am I being too insecure, or was Kurt Cobain on to something when he sang “just because you’re paranoid don’t mean they’re not after you”?

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