BennyEast.Com/Blog The official blog of Kenny West

16Oct/170

Outta My Hair

I'm not exactly sure what I just watched...

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14Oct/170

Backseat Passenger Seat Driver’s Seat

This post is going to get a little weird.  Most of my posts are weird, so that's not much out of the norm.  But today was definitely strange.

Now, I know, we all perceive things from our own view in life.  And our mind has ways of playing tricks on us to make us see things that are there, or see patterns where there are not patterns... But, in my own view, the following is just what I've perceived to have observed.

So... As we know, there's this girl, Kara... Miss Daylight... A girl that, for whatever reason, has taken up lots of time in my brain.

Well... There's also this guy, Eddie.  He and my mom went to highschool together, they went to grade school together... They basically were born in the same crib together.

So, Eddie's son Dan... is a kid I used to babysit.  Basically Eddie and his family and our family have been intertwined in life since I was a little kid.

Well, in 2009/2010 Kara entered my life path.  Previously our lives had not been intertwined... ANNNND then... I met her.

Now, Eddie was a super busy guy... Giving himself to the world and basically being everywhere and all over helping so many people, being a positive light in so many lives.  Because of this he would kind of pop into my life every so often, but the be super busy again and I wouldn't hear from him or see him for many months or what have you.

I'm trying to convey what I've experienced in words... Which is not easy, but, I'm sort of trying to figure out the best way to put it.

In 2010 basically I dated Kara for a very little sliver of time... During that time we dated she referred to dating me as kind of like dating Michael Cera... I'll come back to this.

So, basically Kara and I entered each other's lives... Then... For all intents and purposes we had these periods of time where we wouldn't talk.  And then we would.  And then we wouldn't.  And then we would...

Here's what's weird... So, with all that quick backstory... Right before Kara Daylight and I would start talking again... Eddie would contact me.

Never failed.  Always.  If I got a phone call from Eddie... I knew Kara was going to start talking to me again.

And this is going to get EXTRA weird here... But while Kara and I were actually dating, she sent me a photo via email of her and her dad and mom and sister on a beach from when she was young.  It's probably still somewhere in my email archive.  But the thing I noticed was that her dad and Eddie... Looked a lot alike.

I told you this was going to be weird.  It's true though.  Eddie and her dad just had a similar look about them.  If you compared photos of both of them at the same ages... They definitely looked a quite similar to one another.

Anyways... so each time Eddie would say hello... Kara would say hello.

Then in 2013... Kara and I stopped talking.  Shortly there after, Eddie passed.  Kara and I haven't really talked since.  We talked a little bit once more but that was kind of it...

So, I'm at this movie today that Dan, Eddie's son, directed.  And a music video was made for the movie... Michael Cera made the music for the music video.  I find it weird that Kara had said dating me felt like dating Michael Cera and here's a connection to Eddie through his son's movie, where Michael Cera made a song and music video for the movie.

I don't know...

The whole movie came about because the main star of the movie was one of Eddie's students and Dan and her were friends and remained friends after Eddie passed.  There's a lot more to it than that... I mean... But the movie came kind of out of an idea when Eddie passed.

But it was just something weird that has always boggled my mind... Why were experiences with Eddie, our longtime family friend, usually intertwined with experiences involving Kara?

There's a lot more that happened, but basically that's the gist of it.

Now that all backstory is there...

Today was definitely extra weird though because today I drove Eddie's car.  See when Eddie passed he left the car to Dan and Dan drives it, but today Dan had a dizzy spell and so I drove his car for him back to his Aunt and Uncle's house so he could get checked out.

The last time I was at their house was Eddie's funeral.

And the time before that it was for a Thanksgiving dinner because my mom was in the hospital and Eddie invited me to have dinner there.

But the last time I rode in his car, the car that I was driving today, I rode in the backseat to take my mom down to the hospital, and then rode the passenger seat while he drove and was talking to him about Kara.

So I guess it's just been a strange day.

One of the things I think about often though is that in the summer of 2013, Kara and I were talking....

Then my sister came up to visit and we had a small scuffle, and that's kind of when Kara and I stopped talking.

Shortly after that I decided not to go to my sister's wedding because I kind of blamed her for the reason why Kara and I weren't talking to one another.

I was supposed share a hotel room with Eddie.

The morning of my sister's wedding, Eddie woke up with stroke symptoms.  He went to my mom's room and her friend's room and they called 911.

If I had been in the room with him when he had the first symptom and called 911 maybe even 5 minutes earlier... Would he still be alive today?

I guess I wonder that.

But if Eddie were still alive, would my mom still be alive?  When he passed, she got really sad, and maybe her health declined faster because he was gone.

Like I said, this post probably won't make any sense to anyone but me... And it's all about how we perceive the world.  And maybe things aren't there that I THINK are there.

Same car, different seats.

Maybe it's a weird mystery.  Maybe it's meant to teach me something.  I'm not sure really.  But what I know is that there was definitely some kind of connection between Eddie and Kara... And that communication with both ended that summer in 2013 when Kara and I stopped talking and shortly after Eddie passed.

Maybe it's all connected, maybe it's not.

But it was definitely weird to be driving Eddie's car today when the last time I had been in the car I was in the passenger seat talking to him about Miss Daylight.  Maybe I was supposed to be there to help Eddie in that hotel room that day in 2013... Or maybe I was supposed to be there today to help Dan instead.

Maybe I just think about things too much.

Oh, and tonight I'm going to Malvern out to a bar there to have drinks for a friend's birthday party...

Guess where Kara lived when we first met?  Malvern.

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10Oct/170

Get It When You Get There In Life

So, today is my birthday... Woo.  35.  Eh, just another day as far as I'm concerned.

I was chatting with someone who was going on and on about holidays and birthdays and whatever... I tried to explain that when you don't have one or both parents... They aren't joyful days, they are painful, and you just kind of count the minutes until it's over.

They were all like, "But I LOVE holidays and birthdays!"

I was like... "Okay, question, are both your parents living?"

They were like, "Yes, but I don't see what difference that makes."

I was like, "Let's put this conversation on pause.  When you lose one or both of your parents... Come back and tell me how you feel."

They said, "Okay.  But I think I'll still feel the same as I do now about holidays and birthdays."

I said, "You'll get it when you get there in life."

It's just something that people with living parents can't understand until their parents pass.  And you try to explain it to them, but there's no possible way to do that.

There are two types of people... Those who have lost a parent or both, and those who haven't.  Those who have, get it, those who haven't... Maintain that "Holidays are great!  Birthdays are awesome!  Why would my parents not being around change anything?"

It does though.  It's not their fault though... To be fair... I was one of those people who had no clue.  I was on that side of the fence.  And now I do.  It's just something you don't get until you are at that place in life.  And then you get it.  Anyways... A birthday is just another day.  Hopefully it goes quickly.

I do have some plans for the night... But to be honest, it's mostly just an excuse to drink some good beer to raise some money for a good cause.  I feel like you can't go wrong throwing back a couple cold ones and having the proceeds go towards a charitable cause.

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8Oct/170

Another 5K!

Today I ran another 5K.  I'm EXHAUSTED!

I've been up since 5am.

Anyway, I ran the Oktoberfest 5K up at Steelstacks.  It was pretty awesome.  It was raining cats and dogs this morning when I went to leave the house but  by the time the race was about to start the rain had stopped.  I met a few of my friends at the 5K and we ran it all together.  Although we each had different finish times.

I ran an 11 ish minute mile at about 36 minutes or so.

After the 5K we enjoyed the festival and had a couple of beers.  They gave out shirts, and mugs...

We also got some bananas and kind bars and bottles of water at the finish line.

It was a pretty good event.  My friends and I sat around and had some beers and food, all the traditional german Oktoberfest type foods... Strudel and Bratwurst.  Good stuff.

Anyway, I'm super tired.  SO, even though I don't have work tomorrow, I'm going to call it an early one.

Song of the day is a song from my running mix...

 

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4Oct/170

Waiting

I'm waiting to post more blogs until I see that Kara... AKA "Miss Daylight" AKA "Miss Plantation Florida" has read the previous blog post.

Stay tuned for more posts until I know that she's caught up on the previous posts.

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3Oct/170

There’s Only One Reason I Write Blogs

One.  That's it.  It's so that Miss Daylight in Plantation, Florida can read them.  Weird I guess.  But, she's the only reason I write these things.

I know other people read them... But there's really no reason for anyone else to read them because I'm not writing them for you.

If I had my way?  I'd just write personal emails to Miss Daylight.  I mean, IF I had my way... I'd just talk to her 24/7.

Obviously if I REALLY had my way... I'd be married to her.  Haha.  Or, at least in a relationship with her.

But, she doesn't want that, or we would never have broken up when we started dating.  She never would have started dating the other guy she started dating that made me stop reading her online stuff.

I mean... SO, I still do write these blogs even though she's already PROBABLY married and all kinds of in love at this point.

Who knows really.  Maybe she's not.  I don't know.  I still can't bring myself to read her stuff because I don't want to see that she's all sorts of 100 percent in love with some other dude and married.

Or whatever.

Anyways, though, real talk, that's the ONLY reason I write all these blogs.  I write blogs, then I check for the Google Analytics hit to see that she still reads it.

I see that other people read my posts though, which I guess is fine, but I don't really see any point in anyone else reading my posts.  The only point of this blog is that I'm looking for hits from one individual...

And no one else.  Just thought I would write that out as a disclaimer.

These blogs are REALLY only for Miss Daylight's eyes to read.

So if other people are reading my posts, just know that everything in these posts isn't meant for your eyes to read, but because of the way things are where I can't PERSONALLY contact her... I have to write posts for her to then publicly stumble upon and read.

Otherwise I'd just write her personal emails and not post at all.

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2Oct/170

So Much Harder For Guys To Date

It's so much harder for guys to date than women to date, all a woman has to do is just decide to not reject a guy... Guys have to constantly be rejected until one finally decides to not reject him. It's just really defeating. It makes you feel like crap all the time. Until you finally get to the point of... Why even bother to hit on her... She's just going to end up rejecting me anyway.

It's just frustrating really.  I mean, for one most women aren't single.  Even the ones who ARE single... There's usually some guy she's kind of sort of dating but keeping it on the down low and not really telling anyone.

Like, me?  I'm ACTUALLY single.  I'm not with anyone.  I'm not sleeping with anyone.  I'm just single.  I haven't even kissed a girl in over a year.

I'm ACTUALLY single.

But the thing about women is, it's just so much easier.  They get hit on everywhere they go.  All she has to do is go out to a bar and let guys hit on her and take the free drinks... And decide finally to let ONE guy in.

But a guy has to go out, and chat up a girl, and try to get her attention and keep her attention... And buy her the drinks... and maybe eventually she just decides she's not interested.

And then it was all for nothing.  Pointless.  A waste of time.

It's just SO much harder for a guy to date than a girl to date.  It really is.

It's frustrating, it's a lot of work for nothing with no real guarantee that she'll even be around tomorrow... You just kind of keep getting your hopes up... For nothing.

But that's dating I guess.  Just have to keep trying, hoping that one day... I get the attention of one girl and she decides not to go with another guy also trying to give her attention.

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2Oct/170

Waiting, trying, starting over and trying again

So, I'm still waiting for that special someone to come into my life.  I don't know.  I mean, she's out there somewhere.  Just have to keep waiting it out.

My thing is, I always try really hard... It's always the dates that I go on that don't give me the time of day.  Or there's always some other guy who they have an interest in.  Or they end up moving away.

Someone tonight was basically like... It's not about meeting someone, it's about basically going after someone.

I'm like... And if everyone you meet is married already?  Really?  Go after someone?  Who are you going to go after if they are all already married?

Exactly.

Part of it IS luck.  You can't say it's NOT luck, and then everyone you meet isn't single.  So, basically you're saying you are supposed to break up a marriage?

Yeah ok.

Anyways... So, I'm still just waiting for her to come into my life.  You can't fall for someone you never cross paths with.  That's my argument.  Plus it has to be mutual.  Obviously, I TRY with women... They don't try back.  They don't give me the time of day.

I try, they don't.

But, to me... That just says I haven't met the right one yet.  If you meet the right person, both people will be interested mutually.  It won't be one person trying to convince another person to be with you.

I do a lot of that.  I go on dates, I basically try hard, and then she sits there like... "Yeah, I don't know.... Maybe?  I guess?  I mean... I'm just not sure."

And then you have to figure out how to figure out how to keep her attention...

But, in the end, it's impossible to keep it.  There's some other guy eventually and she's like "Oh!  Who's THAT guy over there!"

And then I start all over with someone new.

There's always the starting over part.  But, I just have to keep hoping that one day... She'll stick around and decide I'm the one that she wants.  Until then...

Just have to keep trying.  Try and fail and start over... Again and again.  Eventually... She'll come along.

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1Oct/170

Jamming Of The Can

Yesterday I went to Can Jam.  It was pretty good.  Definitely had too much though, not TOOOO much, just a little more than I had planned.

I'm at Panera Bread now having some of their mac and cheese.  I just cleaned out some old oil containers from the garage.  It's crazy the amount of stuff I've throw out or recycled or donated, and there's STILL so much stuff.  Most of it is not actually my mom's stuff.  It's mostly because my mom would often let people store stuff at her house, or bring things over to have garage sales.  She loved having garage sales.

So, I went to Can Jam yesterday.  It's good fun.  My friend Cara always works the one food booth.  We chatted some.  I know her from Improv.

The music was good... Someone won the Kan Jam tournament.  Someone always does.  That wouldn't be a very good tournament if no one won!

Yesterday was weird actually... So, at the festival, I was standing near this one family and I had ear plugs in.  My ear plugs were visible to people because they were purple and sticking out of my ears.  Well, this teenage girl comes up to me and wanted to know where I got the ear plugs.  I said that I brought them from home.  She was disappointed because she wanted to buy a pair if they had them there.

Her dad then started talking to me saying how she had been saying it was too loud since they got there.  To be fair... It is too loud.  All concerts and clubs and bars are.  I bring ear plugs everywhere I go.  I can't tell you the number of times I've put ear plugs in.  Hundreds of times at least?  I told the dad that I got these ear plugs at Giant.  I said, "if there's one near here, you can run and get them real quick".

They all sat back down in the spot they were sitting on their chairs and blankets.  The girl pulled a blanket over her head in the chair she was sitting in.  I felt bad.  So, I started to pull up the nearest Giant on my phone.  There was one only about two miles away.  I decided that I was going to go get a box and give her a pair.

Just then the song ended and the band currently on stage had completed their set.  Her parents started packing things up.  I guess they had finally decided to just head home.  That was thing number one.

Number one part B was as I was leaving there was a lady with her dog and her car was broken down.  Triple A was having trouble finding her.  Or the guy was a new driver.  I offered to give her a jump.  She told me that it wasn't the battery.  I said okay and then went on my way.

Number two happened after the concert when I decided on my way home to stop in Phoenixville to work on my book a little.  The scene I'm working on now is a conversation about nails.  The main character is asking her friend's advice about painting her nails.  Because what romantic comedy is complete without a conversation about getting nails painted?

Anyway, I write a little, then my food comes and I have my burger and beer.  Well, these two kids sit down who are Bloomsburg University students.  I start chatting with them, or rather they started chatting with me.  They are both seniors and are IT related majors wanting to get jobs in IT.  I said that I've been in IT for ten years now.  They started asking me all about what it's like to work in IT.  I answered their questions for a while and we talked about information tech related things.  Then the one guy started to kind of pass out sitting up.  He kept putting his head down.  They ordered an Uber but the one guy wasn't sure if it actually was coming since the guy who was nearly passed out, but was mostly just kind of sleepy, was the one who had Uber.  The other guy had never used it before.  The bar tender helped them outside to wait.  I kind of ended up going with them.  While we were waiting... The Uber just didn't seem to be showing up.  He then asked if I would be able to give them a ride if it never showed.

I said sure... We waited some more, still a no show and the other kid was out cold in the chair.  He asked me if I could give them a ride.  I said I'd go get my car.  When I came back they were gone.  It was weird, the second time my attempt to help has been foiled.

Well, I went down after that to see if some friends were at the Pickering Creek Inn.  I ended up chatting with one guy about yoga.  He'd gotten into it years and years ago.  We shared our experiences about the benefits of the practice and such.  We were outside enjoying the cool air and chatting.  As we were leaving we walked back into the bar to find a few guys carrying a passed out drunk lady.  Now, I started suggesting that maybe if she's that badly out cold, maybe she should be taken to the hospital.  Alcohol poising is scary and real.

The one guy got really upset.  He was like running around kind of getting in people's faces about no one say anything.  He said that he was her husband and that he didn't want anyone telling him what he should do with his wife.

He kind of came up to me when I said to consider just having her checked out since she wasn't conscious.  He basically just kept saying they had been at a wedding and she had too much to drink.  But he was going around to people saying that no one saw anything.

I mean, I'm fairly certain nothing illegal was really happening, if it was indeed his wife.  But, it was a little fishy.  He came up to me and kind of chest butted me and gave me a quick dead arm, a weak one at that, but he was trying to flex his nutsac I guess.

I hate guys like that.  But it's interesting that apparently his wife must love guys like that, since they are married.

My thing is though, how I was the only person who was kind of like, I don't know about this.  Everyone else gladly helped to put her in the backseat of the SUV he and his friend had pulled up.

I'm just like... SO, no one else has an issue with this?  I was the only one.

But it was attempt three to help that was foiled.

I think this is why I tend to date the Resident Assistant type of girl.  I like to be a helper.  I'm certainly not the kind of guy who goes around telling people  to keep their mouths shut and they didn't see anything.

I mean, heck, generally I like to tell the world about things.  To me... If you're not doing anything shady... Why hide things?  You know?  I mean, if your wife passed out because she had too much to drink.  Why are you going around threatening to beat people up?  Seems shady.  Maybe he just does that for everything though.  I've met people like that.  Just the macho guy who wants to pick fights for no reason.

Well, anyways... After that I just headed home.

Weird night for sure.  I didn't meet the love of my life... But I did meet some interesting people.  I think it's funny how a guy who stuffs his passed out drunk wife into the backseat of an SUV and runs around punching people and telling them that "they didn't see nothing" is married... I guess there's someone for everyone.  Who knows...  I feel like if I ever get married, and my wife loses consciousness in a bar... I'd probably want an ambulance called.  I would want someone to do the same for me.

My worry is what if she wasn't his wife?  That she was maybe just someone he picked up at the wedding.  Or, another bar.  And here she is passed out unconscious, and here's a guy with a few of his friends taking this woman who is not conscious... Off away in his SUV.  That's a scary thought.  And then I did nothing.  I did write down the license plate just in case.  You never know.

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29Sep/170

Just Start Using It

Today I was testing out a thing called "Zello" with some people at work.  It's pretty neat.  Basically we used to have a million walkie talkies that we used.  Those have been slowly dying out.  Since it's costly to get them repaired, the head of the A/V department wanted to use an app called Zello.  We all already have phones.

So, I downloaded the app to my iPhone today and we used it a little bit around campus.

It works like a walkie talkie.  It's pretty cool.  It saves the audio bits to give you a history of what you are saying to the person.  That's something a regular walkie doesn't do.  It also gives you the time that you walkie with the person.

It's a pretty good app.  You can have it in the background and still get the message.  You can turn it off, and on, and what not.  It doesn't seem to kill the battery life.

So far I like it.

Now, my boss and coworker aren't super interested in it.  I put it on my personal phone.  They're not big on personal and work things mingling.  Which is understandable.  I get that.

Like my coworker is big on work and personal life separation.  He comes in when work starts, goes home when it ends.  Doesn't even want to think about work outside of work.  No remotely connected.  No work talk with coworkers.  Work stays at work, and home stays at home.  Some people are like that, and that's cool.

Some people like to have work attached 24/7.  I feel like I'm more along the lines of, as long as the work gets done I guess.  I mean, here's the thing... My Grandfather always said, "Whatever gets the job done".

So, if putting an app on your personal phone gets the job done for one person, but not doing that gets it done for another person... That's fair.

If connecting remotely from home for an hour in the evening helps one person get their work done... And if another person gets all their work done during business hours.  That's fair too.

I mean, some people take longer to do the same tasks.  That just means that some people have to do extra work in the evening where other people might be able to get the same amount of work done in 5 or 6 hours.

I mean, heck, some people can get the same work done in an hour that it takes someone else a whole week to do.  That's kind of how our society works.

I don't think if I'd say anything is really better.  Whatever works or fits for one person, fits for them and what works or fits for another works for them.

Like, for example for me, I don't like open ended things.  I like things well tracked, documented.  I like to know what the status is all the time on stuff to confirm communication.

So, for example, if someone wants to know the status of a projector in a classroom, I want to be able to bring up this Zello app and find out from the A/V people, since they are in another office. Some people are more like, radio the A/V guys, if they don't answer, they don't answer.  We'll find out eventually, no big deal.

I just hate to have people walk away with their question unanswered.  If there's a better way to communicate but it requires putting an app on my phone, I'm okay with that.

With the Zello app, even if the A/V people aren't in range of the walkie talkie, they can still get the message.  Even if they miss the message, when they turn the app back on, they get my missed message.  A traditional walkie talkie won't do that.

There is definitely a line with work though, like how much do you do.  I mean, after all, every company or organization basically if they had it their way would want all their employees working 24/7 and working for free too.

So, if you give a little bit... Then the organization will think that's the new norm.  That's sort of my bosses view.  He's big on keeping boundaries.  Which I think is cool.

I guess I feel like work boundaries are needed for sure, you can't just be working 24/7.  But then also, if there are lots of people who can't do what they need to do without your help... How much do you give?  Like, if someone can't log into their account to do homework, and they need a password reset, and offices are closed.  Is it acceptable to reset a password or two in the evening after hours?

I feel like there isn't really an answer to that.  Is putting a walkie talkie app on a personal phone going over work boundaries?  I guess it's up to the employee.  Basically what we're doing is, myself and the A/V guy have the app, and then my coworker and boss don't.  So, each of us has kind of decided on our personal choice and level of boundaries.

BUT here's the big question, does having the app even add value to the workplace?  I mean, for example... Can we quantify that even having the app on our phones and having that ability to communicate with one another during working hours no matter where we are on campus... Does it yield more work?

That's kind of what my boss and coworker argue.  That it's actually more of something to distract from doing work.  Could be.  I can see that.  The more things you have in front of you, the less time you can devote to one thing.

I feel like it's an interesting argument from both sides.  I like that.

Here's the question, does working more hours in general, such as remoting from home, actually make you a more productive employee?  Or, does the use of personal things for work make you more productive?

It might not, I mean, like I said, you could have two people at an organization who work very different amounts of hours, but get the same exact amount of work done.

But, my argument to all of it is, the only way to tell if something might add value, is to just start using it!  You never know until you try it out.  If it flops, then it flops... But you never know, like today, I thought it was a pretty useful app, and I think it's a very small gesture to add it to my phone, since if I do find it to be a distraction in the future, I can always just delete it.

 

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