Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Irony of Dozing Off in Starbucks

I had two cups of coffee when I got up at 6:30 this morning (my day off).  I headed out to a local deli for breakfast and had another cup with my eggs and hashbrowns.  But since I couldn't get their free wifi to cooperate, I walked down the block to Starbucks.  And I've had a large (Tall? Venti?  Hell I still don't understand their post-modern metric system they use here) hazelnut latte, and I swear I could doze off in this chair right now, but I worry that the people in here might draw on me with Sharpies.

I don't know why I'm so tired today, but the caffeine just ain't cuttin' it for me this morning.  It may be the last month of work catching up to me, but I'm not sure.  I'm still fighting mild cold, and I guess that has worn me down a bit too.

Aside from being tired, I'm feeling pretty damn good today. I got a lot done at the house this morning--every stitch of clothing I own is clean, hung up, or folded and put away (except for what I'm wearing right now), I organized my closet, and my to-do list is surprisingly short.  The afternoon is mine!  Of course, I had to vacate the house for a few hours--the maid service is there, and while they do a GREAT job, their approach to housecleaning is to burn down the village in order to save it, and I want no part of the chaos that goes down while they work.  So I grabbed my laptop and backpack and I'm taking advantage of the free wifi at my local Starbucks.

Of course, I'd rather be sitting in the Fireside Lounge at the Peppermill, smoking a cigar and tapping the keys while Krista the bartender pours me free drinks, but Monday mornings in Vegas were a lifetime ago. 

At least then, things were settled, well, as far as I could tell.  My life right now is completely unsettled.  I have no idea what I'll be doing or where I'll be living in May.  I may still be here doing the same job for the same company, I may be in another city working for them, or I may be looking for something else.  I may be back in Nashville, I may be back in Vegas, or hell, I may even become an honorary Canadian and move to British Columbia.  I just don't know.  My life is like a spinning plate right now--lots of movement but not really going anywhere, and it's gonna fall off this balancing stick in a few months.  I just have no idea where it's gonna land when it does.

Kind of unsettling, but I always manage to land on my feet.

On the other hand, I have something good to look forward to in the meantime.  My gal Nancy arrives in less than two weeks for a nice lengthy visit and we're going to narrow down our choices as to where life is going to go from here.  It'll be great to have her here instead of 3500 miles away, and maybe, just maybe, we can get a clearer picture of the future.

Those of you that know me know that I always wanted to live by the ocean, but now that I do, I really miss the mountains and the woods.  Besides, life in Florida is TOUGH.  Jobs are hard to come by, and well-paying jobs are EXTREMELY hard to come by.  I really like my job a lot, but it's the least amount of money I've made in almost 20 years.  I need to have a better income.  It really makes me miss the short hours and the good money that came from dealing poker in Vegas.  I easily work ten times harder now for about a third of the money.

That being said, my job at the airport has been a wonderful blessing for me.  I'm on my feet literally all day, and I use that Ten Thousand Steps app on my phone to measure how much walking I do every day.  Most days are at least seven or eight miles, some days stretch out to thirteen or fourteen.  It sure beats sitting on my ass in an office cube or even at a poker table.  I've got to find a better balance of income and exercise somehow, although I'd love to stay with my current company forever.  So who knows how it's all gonna happen.

But at the very least, it has improved my health--I posted a couple of pictures on Facebook of me wearing a coat I bought last year.  I thought I was in good shape last year (well, compared to what I was before 2012), but this coat was a 2XL down jacket I needed for hiking.  It didn't fit very well--I couldn't zip it up, and in fact, it wasn't even close--the gap was at least six inches across the front when I wore it last spring up in the mountains in Georgia.

Today I took it out of the closet and tried it on for the first time in almost nine months.  And I could finally zip it up.  Although it's still a bit snug, it's quite a victory.  I haven't fit in *anything* size 2XL since like 1992.  Of course I still have a ways to go, but I'm getting there.

Maybe on my next attempt of the AT, my knee won't blow out like it did this past year.

Yeah, that's still on the horizon, and I still have that book I want to write, so wherever I land, it may be just temporary again.  My outlook on life/work/career has been completely turned upside down by the events of the past few years.  While it's nice to make good money and live comfortably, I now look at life differently.  Work is just a means to an end and I don't let it define me.  Back in the day, I absolutely loved loved loved working at Charles Schwab.  Great people, a great company, and I enjoyed my daily routine immensely.  But when push came to shove and times got tough, I was kicked to the curb, with no consideration given to my dedication or the fact that I gave my heart and soul to them.  Every other job since then hasn't been quite as enjoyable, although I really liked the poker gig in Vegas.  But even then, five years of dedicated service doesn't mean too much when the people in charge were complete buffoons.  The poker room I worked in doesn't even exist any more.

Nowadays, I just do my best and remember that loyalty is a one-way street.  I try to make myself an asset instead of a liability, and then I suppose I'll move on when the time is right.  Besides, you'll never get rich punching the clock for somebody else.  I just need to make enough of a stake to do the things I want and still be able to invest a bit.  So while whatever lays beyond my horizon is a big unknown, I'm pretty sure that it'll all work out okay.

At the very least, I'll be able to sleep at night, no matter how much caffeine is in my system.



George Lorch said...

What's that sound? I think I hear the mountains of Arizona calling out "Mikey...Mikey...Mikey..." ;)

Jay said...

Mikey - try your link to your wishlist. Even when signed out of Amazon it doesn't bring up your list when I use that link.

I also tried to paste the URL behind your link in my browser - but no luck.

Anonymous said...

I was going to do a little Vegas research, so I came to your blog site (I use it from time to time). I was happily surprised that you have started to write again. Truly looking forward to it! I'm also glad you do like your job and I wish you all the luck in the world with when May comes around.

Jay from Ohio

par88 said...

Glad to see your back on the air Mikey! Been following you ever since your Vegas days. Looking forward to the story of how you wound up in Florida (hope you know it gets muggy down there in the summers).

Dave T said...

Mikey, You wandered off again?