Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Beautiful People

A few nights ago I had the chance to witness a wedding of two of the most beautiful people I have ever met in my life. Yeah, it was journal-worthy I must say.

For full effect, download “Bad Kids” by The Black Lips and play at maximum volume throughout the duration of this post. I was going to use the song by Manson, but well, I'm sure you can understand why I didn't. 

You’ll have to forgive the tardiness of this post, sometimes life-altering conversations and 103-degree temperatures for a week take priority over a web journal to my kids. But regardless of my excuses, I apologize for not keeping you entertained. With that being said, can I just tell you that weddings make me laugh? They are the most hectic, stressful, OMG-I-AM-PULLING-MY-HAIR-OUT-FROM-UNDER-THIS-VEIL days in anyone’s life. 24 hours of pure pandemonium with the intent of celebrating the betrothal of two people who somehow met at the right time during the right place at the right instances of their short lives. Weddings are ironic to say the least.

Culturally, weddings are heavily influenced by whatever part of the world the Bride hails from. Predominantly I have seen the Utah culture steer a wedding celebration down the road of a church hall with plastic bouquets tossed in basketball hoops, because that’s what sheltered cornbread people do in these parts. On Saturday however, the Bride gave her claim to fame to the islands of the South Pacific. Cue emotional dancing, loud shrieks of passion, and the nearest relatives doing a mild version of the Haka, all while random people walked up to the Bride and tossed money at her as she performed her celebration dance. I’ve never really known of a culture that enthusiastically promotes the concept of throwing money at girls on a stage, but hey everyone is different.

As the night carried on celebrating this young couple, I sat at a dinner table in between two of the most noble “power couples” I’ve ever had the privilege of gawking over all while ladybug boogers floated around in our drinks. To my left was an all-star Dixie State dream team who sarcastically tell people that yes, it’s crazy they’ve been married for over five years and they almost have enough money for a brand new boat/mind your own damn business on when we’re going to have kids. To my right was a couple who are a few weeks away from welcoming their third little runt into the pack of kids who decide to contract the e.Bola virus or the Black Plague whenever Dad decides to be away from them longer than five hours at a time. That is loyalty, I tell you.

As I sat there on Saturday night getting drunk on raspberry lemonade ladybug boogers, watching 7-year old ring bearers receive the inspiration to one day be pole dancers, I had a small moment of reflection that I will admit did bring a few tears to my eyes. Maybe it was divine inspiration hitting emotions that I didn’t really know existed. Maybe it was Karma touching me in the heart to teach me a life-lesson that you see in Hallmark movies. Maybe it was the concoction of Nyquil, Sudafedrin, and Carbamazepine to combat my week-long bout with the flu, who knows? Whatever it was, I felt grateful to be sitting at that table by four beautiful people sharing their lives with one another. 

You see kids, people are important. People are significant. People are what get us from Point A to Point B, and all the crap that happens in between. People are who we tell stories to, who we tell stories about, and who we make stories with. People are who we put up with, and likewise put up with us. People are the most important facet of our existence, and as a seven-year old dancer had 55-year old women making it rain over him and insects crawled out of my carafe, I came to realize that life lesson yet again, late on a Saturday night.

People are what make everything beautiful.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

30 Something

I'm sitting in church and perhaps about to have a nervous breakdown. 

For full effect, download "Veronica" by Elvis Costello and play at maximum volume throughout the duration of this post. 

When I say I'm about to have a nervous breakdown, I actually mean it. I've never understood the concept of having an anxiety attack, or panicking under the pressure, but I'm not going to lie my palms are sweating, my heart rate has risen, I'm hyperventilating with everyone around me staring back with strange looks. I am in full freak out mode coming to the realization that in a few weeks from now, I'll be 30. 

I know, it's a hard knock life. 

You may chuckle to yourself and shake your head in amusement, but I'm being 100% stone cold serious. I am nearly to the point in my life where any shred of my childhood has been burned at the stake and the ashes spread out over my future funeral plot. I am becoming ancient, decrepit, a young buck turned old stag with streaks of grey starting to show. 

30 means icing your knees after yoga. 30 means bedtimes before 10 pm. 30 means being banned from using emoticons in text messages. 30 means, well 30. It means you're a decade away from 40. And then a few blinks from 50. And then oh my gosh why are you throwing me a retirement party?! For the love of everything sacred please pop those balloons! 30 is the beginning of the end. And I'm a few steps away. 

Time breathes down all of our necks. And for the first time in my life, for the first legitimate moment of my near triple decade existence, I'm starting to feel it. Becoming old is becoming a reality. 

Can someone get me a shot of Metamucil?

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Ain't That The Truth


Normally this post is designed to mock the concept of New Year’s resolutions and the bombardment of gym memberships that will go spiraling down the drain because of the “holiday of rebirth”. You know how cynical your Dad can be at times. But I’ve changed kids, we all change. Today, I want to tell you one of the most significant lessons I have learned over the last few months of my life. And that lesson is a simple, clear phrase that will get you further down the road than anything else ever will.

Be honest.

For full effect, download “I’m Gonna Be” by Sleeping At Last, and play at maximum volume throughout the duration of this post.   

Kids, life is full of deceit. Everyone around you is lying all the time; family, friend, foe, old fart, young fart, genius, idiot, boy, girl, black, white, green, it doesn’t matter. Whether it’s the weight on their scales, the dollar amount attached to their annual salaries, the number of medications they’re popping back as morning cocktails, or even their alibi for where they were on Friday at 2 in the morning. Everybody lies, that’s plain and simple Brocktrine to its core. And if someone says they are not lying, you can bet your next stepson those last four words out of their mouths are laced with slander.

We lie in relationships. All the time. We lie to the people we want to please the most in hopes that someday down the road they will see past our dishonesty and settle for the reality of our disappointment. We tell them we are something special, when really we’re not. We build imaginary edifices of creatures we think will be most appealing to those we are in hot pursuit of attaining. We lie through our teeth, hiding our weaknesses in hopes they will ignore them and won’t view our shortcomings as potential red flags. We lie about who we are every single day to every single person we take out to dinner. Sometimes those lies carry on past engagements and well on into marriages. And those are the lies that seem to hurt the most.

Why do we do this, kids? I really don’t know. Maybe it’s because we think people won’t accept us for having flaws. Maybe it’s because we don’t believe in our true characters, the characters that only we know exist, the characters that have been built through years and years of experience and quietly come out when we are by ourselves and everyone else has left us alone. Maybe it’s because we don’t like ourselves. And we have this clouded perception that if we don’t like ourselves, then how the curse word will anyone else like us either? Maybe it’s because this world is a messed up place, telling us we should be something exceptional, that we should fit some kind of mold, that we should be a cardboard cutout of success, an expectation of brilliance.

The sad thing is, those expectations we have and the reality that ensues, very rarely, if ever, match up.

Now kids, I know over the years I’ve given you points of advice in this blog that I feel are some of the most important life lessons you need to hold on to during the course of your own journeys, and who knows where the Muse for this post of spiritual guidance is coming from. All I can say is this: I don’t care what you do, I don’t care what faults you have, what screw-ups you’ve concocted, or what failures you are ashamed to bring out to the public. If you want to succeed in this life with your academics, with your careers, and most importantly with the relationships of the ones you hold the closest to you, be honest and tell the truth.

You may think you are a complete waste, and that you need to formulate some odd concoction of mistruths that will make your worth look more appealing on the surface for the world to judge you. You may think that lies are what will make you look better and will have you be accepted by someone you want to be with for the rest of your days. But here’s the thing. In the long run, you won’t look better. In the long run, those truths will eventually come out into the open. In the long run, your real character is going to be exposed. And you need to find someone who will L-word the Hell out of who you really, truly are. 

Not for someone you aren’t. 

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

2014

Rather than post a Facebook link with all my useless tagged pictures hosting the tagline, “Thanks for all of the memories” or something else cheesy like that, I’ll go classy on this year to remember business and bombard you with a sarcastic/sentimental recounting of the last year of my life. Go ahead and close this browser now if you don’t want to laugh and cry in a matter of four minutes.  

For full effect, download “Butcher’s Tale” by The Zombies, and play at maximum volume throughout the duration of this post.

I’m actually kind of excited that 2015 is only a few hours away. Mainly because according to Robert Zemeckis and Michael J. Fox, this is the year we all get hoverboards. I’m sure every other kid born in the 80’s has been counting down the years until those glorious contraptions are invented. I know we all can’t wait to have self-drying clothes like the ones Marty Mcfly wears, but before we jump to what the world is going to look like through Back to the Future glasses, lets just take a second to soak in the last 525,600 minutes of my life.

2014 was…well, it was a year I couldn’t have planned any better. At times it almost felt like I was on repeat, cycling through the motions of calendars past, but there were other moments where I encountered paths I have never walked down before, and traveled to places that only existed in my dreams. 2014 had without question some of the best moments I have ever experienced in my 29-year, 9-month history. Moments that intoxicate people like dandelion wine on a hot summer afternoon. It was golden I tell you. Absolutely golden.

In 2014 I was a nomad. On the road and in the sky. On busses, jets, golf carts, L-trains, subways, 15-passenger vans, ski lifts, rental cars, taxis, and on foot. I racked up more miles than a Visa frequent flyer card can keep track of. Journeying to exotic lands such as Cabo San Lucas, Seattle, Chicago, and Duchesne. I traveled more this year than I have ever done before, surrounded by friends, family, audiobooks, and empty bottles of Mt. Dew to keep me company.  

We talk about the defining moments of our lives all the time. And there may have been a few dotting my pages in 2014. Saw my first professional baseball game, four of them for that matter. Took a three-day road trip with a pair of twins born three decades later than they should have been who in turn got me two speeding tickets in under 90 minutes. Slept next to a drug addict on a Greyhound overnight while holding $21,000 in a dufflebag. Ate Mexican tacos at 2 am from a street vendor who used her dog as the waitress. Said goodbye to the greatest sitcom that I’ve been subconsciously modeling my life after. Saw the Grand Canyon for the first time in my life. Yes, it was from the window of a 747, but either way that crevasse Paul Bunyan’s axe dug up sure is spectacular. 

2014 was, well it was incredible. That’s all I can say. Watched my little sister exchange vows on the beaches of Mexico. Went on a Brocation with some fellers and toured the Pacific Northwest, Brooksby’s bowels and all. Ran, swam, and biked like a half-iron lunatic for the second year in a row. Became unintentionally intoxicated and performed the best version of Bohemian Rhapsody a karaoke party has ever witnessed. And I sang “Carmen Ohio” with 108,000 other screaming nutcases in the most decorated football arena I have ever had the privilege of visiting.

Who knows, maybe next year when I’m writing my annual year of remembrance blogpost, I’ll be back there again. Surrounded by a bunch of nuts.

2014 has been the best year of my life. There’s no question about that. Dined like a millionaire, ran like a Kenyan, laughed like a drunk, and cried like a stay at home Mother of four. 2014 was simply, beautiful. That’s the best way to put it.

And I can’t wait to see what happens next… 

Monday, December 29, 2014

Tradition!

You'll have to forgive me for my absence on this blog. Go ahead and blame the egg nog, frosting-smeared sugar cookies, and packages of socks for that. 

Christmas season sure does have its effect on all of us. In fact, that's what I'll write about this afternoon. I...wait....something's off here...I uh...oh yeah...For full effect download "Tradition" from the soundtrack to Fiddler On The Roof and play at maximum volume throughout the duration of this post. There we go, that feels better. 

We all have traditions this time of year, that is a certainty. Some people give out pajamas on Christmas Eve and take pictures in order of their birthing. Others have extravagant parties in trailers involving alcohol and the game Twister. Krystle Bailey's Father once told me he takes their family out for cheap Mexican food and goes out to a movie every year, which honestly I find to be a quirky yet honorable holiday tradition itself. Whatever it is, we've got them. Annual things we do on cue that trigger moments of reminiscing the years past of all the good times we shared with each other. Weird Jell-o recipes, ugly sweater contests, diverse members of your family standing up and singing a horrendous yet beautiful rendition of Feliz Navidad. Traditions are what keep us alive these holidays.They are the moments we look forward to with a cringing eye. They are memories that we shudder over, yet appreciate all in the same sentence. 

My family sure has traditions I'll tell you. Every year we go up to my Uncle's house in Logan, gorge ourselves on some of the finest dining my family can concoct, sit in a giant circle and exchange a bunch of random white elephant gifts to one another, and at the end of the night we all hand over a set of pajamas to the same old fart pretending to be Santa Claus. For the record, don't you dare comment on this blog with the sarcastic question, "There's no such thing as Santa?!" If you do, I will hunt you down and punch you right in the coccyx. That joke stopped being funny back in 1991. At this point we all look around the room and have what most people would misconstrue as a half-empty version of AA, confessing our sins and revelations to each other while the MC of the party makes us feel rather uncomfortable with his chopped up rendition of "The Giving Tree."

Swamp Thing: "Hi, my name is Brock, and I have a problem."

My family: "Merry Christmas Brock! Show us your pajamas!"

From here the night concludes with a Grandmother and her girls singing "The Aaaah Song", my sisters, my mother and yours truly doing our own Partridge Family impersonation, and a random Asian person that no one has ever met before bearing witness to us that Communism is the true light of Christmas. At least that's what I interpret his gibberish to mean every year. After that there are awkward gift exchanges and side hugs aplenty as we all share our love for one another with monetary objects. This year I got a blanket that feels like sex. Sure beats the broken nosehair trimmer from a few years back. 

These are my traditions. Every. Single. Year. And yes, I did just use the formerly popular sequence of periods in between individual words to drive the point home. Don't tell my cousin Alicia about this, she still thinks that punctuation is trending. This is my Christmas festivity on cue the last week of every December of my life thus far. A living room full of bold personalities taking pictures, forgetting names, shedding tears, all while a group of lovely ladies sing their song about vowels, creepy couples dressed in snow suits ask little kids in a semi-pedophiliac tone to come sit on their laps, and random Chinese people bump their faces on barstools. These are my traditions, and this is my family. 

And as odd as they all sound. I sure love 'em.  

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

What Happens In Vegas


Kids, some of the best moments of my life have happened in Vegas.

For full effect, download “Tribute” by Tenacious D, and play at maximum volume throughout the duration of this post.

Please don’t misinterpret my hook line, because I’m not trying to impose in your minds any type of sexual or alcoholic innuendo whatsoever. All I’m saying is that I have been to Sin City many a time in my 10-plus year history in the small town 110 miles north, and some of the best stories I can tell open with the line, “So we all jump in my car and head down to Vegas...”

For the record, I’m not here to tell you that the modern day Sodom has some kind of special place in my heart. Because it doesn’t. I don’t get a warm, fuzzy feeling in my soul when I think about the disgusting amount of life savings that are littered into slot machines and craps tables. That butterfly effect in my stomach doesn’t show up when a taxi drives by broadcasting a topless woman. Seriously, this is a filthy place where good things go away to die, where STD’s are handed out like watermelon Jolly Ranchers. When your motto is don’t tell people what we do here, there has to be something wrong.

With that being said, I have truly had some glorious moments in this city of smut, glorious moments I tell you. I’ve been attacked by a drunk Russian Ambassador, watched the best athletes on the Earth duke it out at the Thomas & Mack, wandered the drunk-laden streets as a sober 21-year old on New Years Eve, sold worthless software in an economy soaked with a depression, and soaked myself in world-class saunas. None of these moments mean anything to you, because none of you were with me, therefore they’re not really part of your stories. But that’s okay. Vegas is a cornucopia of sin and stability. A place where choices are made that instantaneously trigger regret. A place the devil hangs his hat. 

And so here I sit. In a white suburban with five of the finest people in the world, somewhere in the middle of the Nevada desert listening to the most confusing Spotify playlist ranging from “Bone Thugs” to “The Proclaimers”, all of us getting ready to cheer our faces off and convert a room full of people to the gospel of Dixie State University. Seriously kids, some of the best stories of my life have happened in this metropolis of muck, and the reality is that what ever does happen in Vegas doesn’t really stay in Vegas.

And it shouldn’t.