Today's Mighty Oak


Written: 07/08/2010

I haven’t posted any music (or any media for that matter) here yet.  Music is very important to me, I find it very personal, especially to a wide variety of people at once, but for all different reasons, hence the power.  Anyway, this is Daughtry’s new single, that I’m currently loving:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aQJXdzg8Kbk

How the time passed away? All the trouble that we gave
And all those days we spent out by the lake
Has it all gone to waste? All the promises we made
One by one they vanish just the same

Of all the things I still remember
Summer’s never looked the same
The years go by and time just seems to fly by
But the memories remain

In the middle of September we’d still play out in the rain
Nothing to lose but everything to gain
Reflecting now on how things could’ve been
It was worth it in the end

Now it all seems so clear, there’s nothing left to fear
So we made our way by finding what was real
Now the days are so long that summer’s moving on
We reach for something that’s already gone

Of all the things I still remember
Summer’s never looked the same
The years go by and time just seems to fly by
But the memories remain

In the middle of September we’d still play out in the rain
Nothing to lose but everything to gain
Reflecting now on how things could’ve been
It was worth it in the end

We knew we had to leave this town
But we never knew when and we never knew how
We would end up here the way we are
Yeah we knew we had to leave this town
But we never knew when and we never knew how

Of all the things I still remember
Summer’s never looked the same
The years go by and time just seems to fly by
But the memories remain

In the middle of September we’d still play out in the rain
Nothing to lose but everything to gain
Reflecting now on how things could’ve been
It was worth it in the end

Note: Guess we’ll see if the video link still works…

All my best,

The King of Spades



Written: 07/03/2010

It’s been a while, a lot has been bouncing around in my head.  I’m taking a short break from writing my last post, it’s big and unwieldy, and I’m going to need some serious editing time to make it coherent. Ed note: if it’s what I’m thinking, it’s still a giant work in progress that will probably never see the light of day.  Probably better that way.

But I found a little bit of hope at work, and I wanted to write it down before I forgot it.

Sometimes I have to remind myself, that even though the organization is hateful and bigoted, a lot of the volunteers (and even some co-workers) are more sensible, and more often than not, just don’t care what’s going on between my ears (that’s a little bit of a reference to Savage Love).

Case in point, one of my favorite volunteers (and I do have a lot of favorites, actually) and I were talking about a man I used to work with at summer camp.  We reconnected on Facebook and I saw the pictures he posted of him and his boyfriend traveling across the country.  The volunteer was even closer with him, as he was very involved in a project together and they worked on it for years, forming a mentoring relationship.  The volunteer refereed to him as one of his “Chiefs” and they stayed close after his term was done, the volunteer even co-signing a car loan for the Chief.

And so I’m reminded that people really are awesome.  That volunteer didn’t have to co-sign for that car.  He was in no way obligated.  But he did, because he cared about this young man, because he knew he was a positive force in his life, and because together, we all work together and make good things happen.

So back to the conversation.  I mentioned that I had just reconnected with him on Facebook (the Chief had moved out of state for med school and residency and that whole process that I don’t understand), and the volunteer recounted when he told him he was gay:

“I don’t understand it at all, but I knew that I wanted him to be happy.  And he told me, and I asked him, I said, ‘[Chief], are you happy?”

No judgment, just honesty, and concern.  And a wish to be happy.

All my best,

The King of Spades



Written: 6/8/2010

I previously mentioned that I would be fired if I came out, if I told the truth.  I work for the Boy Scouts, and we operate under a pseudo-“Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy (lets keep going and ignore the fact that I think I just butchered grammar).

Working for the Boy Scouts, we don’t have the official DADT, but that is how we operate, and how we reference the policy.  Now, there are a few special circumstances that set our member policy apart from that of the US Military.  First, youth members do not fall under it.  From National’s perspective, a youth member is never gay (or more accurately, non-straight), they are just questioning and experimenting.  At least until they register as an adult, which can be 18, or can be 21. So I did a little bit of digging, and I was wrong (it happens a lot, don’t be surprised), although it was a more recent clarification, which is why I missed it I think.  Youth members cannot come out of the closet either.  Which again, is a shame.  Although I think, at least around here, you would be hard pressed to find a Scoutmaster who would kick a kid out of the program.

All my best,

The King of Spades



Written: 6/5/2010

I am the King of Spades. It’s not a great name, but it will work for now.

Obviously it is not my given name, but a nom de plume. How did I choose that? Do I have an obsession with royalty? Far from it. And besides, Spades is not a country (note to self: buy an island and name it Spades, then proclaim myself King, but you know, a benevolent one). The name came from a series of connections in my head, and I actually keep finding more connections and uses for it, so I’m keeping it.

I don’t want to keep the name though. I don’t want any of this to be hidden, to be a secret. I used to always pride myself on the fact that my life was an open book, at least to my friends. But life has gotten in the way I suppose. And in order to protect myself, I’ve kept myself bottled up, kept myself in the closet. If I were to tell the truth, to say that I am gay, I’ll be fired.

Even in a city with a non-discrimination protection, there are enough loopholes and addendums that for being honest, I would be fired on the spot.

Which leads me to one of the great ironies of my situation: I work for the Boy Scouts. The first point of the Scout Law is trustworthy. But every day, I lie. Every day I live a false life. Every day it feels like I die a little bit more inside.

This leads to all kinds of realizations, thoughts and craziness inside my head. I’ll do my best to get them all out. But first, a quote from one of my favorite authors, the dedication from House of Leaves:

This is not for you.

Sorry to be blunt. But this is for me. Yes, I love writing, and I’m sure part of me wants people to read this and understand me more, maybe even take something positive away from what I’m going through, but it is more important for me to see these words, to put them down on paper so to speak (that’s another conversation, probably best left to The Great and Secret Show).

I think a good portion of this would make more sense if I explained how to came to this place in my life, how I came to understand and accept myself. But that is for another day, I do apologize.

Some people will say that I brought this on myself, and they would be right- if they didn’t know my whole story. So I’m sorry dear reader, I probably will put all that down at some point, but not today, I can only take so much catharsis at a time. I may be strong, but I’m not that strong.

So I carry on, as I must I suppose. To what? Some sort of misguided and self inflated purpose I think. Can I turn this around somehow and make this all into a positive? I like to think so. After all, I am an eternal optimist.

So I write, and I look forward to seeing where this will take me.

All my best,

The King of Spades

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