The glacial shift to optimism and healthier habits.
What’s it going to be today?
I wrote an article for Salt Baked City Magazine about the political history of cannabis in Utah and other states, and how to use your voice and your vote to improve medical cannabis access in Utah. It comes out in about a week, and you can get it for free at any of the Utah Medical Cannabis Pharmacies, as well as a lot of other places.
My target was 1,500 words. First draft was 3,600 words. There’s a lot off bullshit in the history of cannabis in the United States and 99% of it is racist and classist. While I was able to wrestle the article down to a manageable size, there was a whole bunch left out.
The last time I was published was in 2008 in Catalyst Magazine in defense of a Love Guru and Rabbi who was in trouble for behaving exactly the way an Eros touting LOVE GURU is expected to act.
My life is weird.
I was blogging back then … remember blogging? I don’t consider blogging to be publishing. Not at all. Too freeform, no supervision, no peer review outside of the comments sections, just too easy, to be honest.
I say all that, even knowing how much work I put into blogging. I would check sources, do research, write draft after draft, most of the time. It was a lot of work, but there was no one between me and the PUBLISH button.
When I ran my political blog, it was a knee jerk to getting fired from the Utah Democratic Party for either upsetting a sitting congressman for taking a shitty position on a child abuse bill or upsetting a shitty radio host for pointing out his repeatedly lying about my boss on his show. I called him out, he got upset, and the guy who told me to defend him against the conservative radio man’s attacks fired me. It was vague as to which of these two events was the cause. I’m sure it was the radio shill … or the congressman. One of the two. Who really knows, since no one was being honest about what happened.
2008 was the year the the sitting Vice Chair of the Utah Democratic Party stole the win in a blogger’s contest to get press access to the 2008 DNCC in Denver. As a contender for the win, I was pretty pissed, as were the other participants. He broke down and invited a few of us to share his stolen win, and, desperate to get to Denver and do some actual reporting, we acquiesced and went.
In spite of the fighting over a single press pass with a guy who stole the rights to it and therefore didn’t feel like sharing, it was a great event. I did interviews with CNN, CSPAN, MSNBC, and CBS. What I didn’t do was any reporting for KSL News Radio, where I had my very own radio show, because the shitty radio man I mentioned earlier, locked me out of our station’s press area because he was still bitter about being proved a lying, GOP-sycophantic, mouthpiece for the electoral right. This dude was an all-star Star Fucker for elected Republicans. He was good at it, and had been doing it for years. Seniority and Career Weight squashed me. The LEFT of the DIAL story is a long one that will someday have it’s own post.
I still had a lot of fun Photoshopping our Congressman’s head onto people who actually showed up at the DNCC instead of cowering in fear of being accused of supporting the idea of our first black President.
The cancellation of Left of the Dial on KSL News Radio (again, I’ll do this one later) the week after I was awarded a City Weekly Best of Utah nod for The Best 168th Hour of Radio, led to what is now 575 episodes of The LEFT Show and 472 episodes of the World’s Greatest Comic Book Podcast - along with a shitton of other mini-series shows. The shift from blogging to podcasting was a no-brainer at the time. Still a no-brainer now, even though the amount of podcasts has increased 100 fold and more over the last 11 years.
I’ve written before about writing, my love of writing, and how much I’ve written for other people, setting aside my own dreams to help people achieve theirs. I’m trying to change that habit, but it is difficult.
So … I’m pretty happy about the Salt Baked City article coming out next week. It’s a first step toward getting back to me as a person, and less of me as a handy tool for others to get ahead.
Make no mistake - I still work three jobs. I still can’t make the ends meet. RRent looms like a fucking threat every month. I still get chronic migraines that I can’t find medication for, I still have this damned toothache (they gave me antibiotics because I can’t afford the root canal), and I’m still a psychological mess. Things, however, are getting slowly better. I’m feeling the sprout of little buds of optimism (which feels weird), and I’m starting to miss the high-stress, long hours work of political campaigning (nope, not doing that again. You can miss something bad for you that you have no intention of doing again - like smoking). I’m in the healthiest relationship I’ve even been in. Things ARE looking up.
I’m still feeling the count-down clock of mortality tick-tick-ticking its unstoppable progression, so, now I’m in more of a hurry like I wasn’t before.
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