Poetry Packed Out: #TaketheMaskOff

My therapist recently told me that I needed to drop the facade I’ve had throughout my life, which is easier said than done, especially since it’s something that I’ve learned to do over time.

I do understand why she feels like I put the facade up, but, in my defense, I don’t do so thinking that I’m trying to be better than others. I chalk it up to my parents, they always (at least to me) put up the feeling that everything was all right, even when it wasn’t. That said, I couldn’t tell the difference but my Mom always pushed through it as best as she could.

But it’s been hard for me to pull myself away from that facade, mostly since it’s all I’ve known.

All the time, all everyone sees is a successful Autistic person, who has a car, a college degree, a job with supportive family and friends, but very few people know of the struggles, the disappointments, the sacrifices or the journey I had to take to get there, hence where this acrostic came from.

I want to give people hope, but I also want to be honest with the journey I took to get here, I don’t want to lie to anyone, much less myself. It’s hard to do, though, when you don’t know anything other than the facade. With that said, I present yo you the acrostic that is more than meets the eye:

Iceberg

Instant fame; success hides behind journey;

Cold; harsh winter brings forth Springs fortune.

Even as people ask for advice, an ear to hear

Behind the scenes, all he craves for is rest if

Even a moment. The need, want to break vicious

Recurring theme seeping into his core, slowing

Grating in him, nudging him to find a way to act.

I can’t tell you in all honesty how to live your life or how to help you, dear reader, how to take your mask off. I’m honestly figuring out that myself, but I can tell you that you can embrace the wonderful person you are, even with your flaws.

You’ll discover people, friends and family, who will love you and embrace you for all you are. But you need to be open with them, that’s the first step for you to be open with others, so they know that you’re genuine. When you can be open, you’ll find your purpose, your real friends and most importantly, you’ll be able to reach out, help others, and truly….

Shine On!!’

The Power of Words and Actions

I’ve mentioned my Dad on the Super-blog many times before, so now, I’d like to go to something that my Mom has always told me when I’ve done something wrong: “Don’t tell me you love me, show me.” It’s been something that I’ve brushed off in the past, feeling that it wasn’t important, even though I knew it hurt.

I now see how brushing it off as I have was completely self centered of me, but I also see how wise my Mom is, especially in light of recent events.

I won’t bore you, my readers, with any of the details, other to say that I have “lived my life on borrowed wings” as the Late Charles Van Doreen said on Quiz Show. I lived a life of happiness all at the expense of helping my Mom, which I now regret.

This past week, I’ve been driving down to help her at her apartment in order to prove to my brothers that my regret and resolve to make things right is sincere. It’s been tough, but I don’t regret helping out my Mom if I can.

I only now realize the difference between actions, doing what you say, and just bluster. It may be a difference, but the impact that you make is tremendous, something which I can’t overstate anymore.

It’s a wise lesson for us all, hard as it probably will be to take; to help others. But it’s something that we should do, not just during the holidays, but every chance we can. Only then, can we be better people; we can make ourselves better and helps us all….

Shine On!!!

#Throwback Thursday: Who Really Listens to the Listeners?

Recently, , I’ve been watching classic TV, particularly Star Trek simply because I wanted to change my TV habits up a bit. I must admit that I’m a Trekkie, perhaps deep down, I’ve always been a fan and never realized that until recently. The fact that Dr. Temple Grandin is a fan of the classic Star Trek, my hero in the autistic community, helps me so much and, looking into it, it’s not hard to see why, how so, read on….

Inside the Trek universe, there are so many people who I can relate to, that I can say that there’s a part of me in all of them. In Capt. Sisko, I feel the tension that he felt every day, having to keep the peace of so many different species, making those choices that we might flinch at and how he had to keep up appearances as a religious icon and a Commander (later Captain) inside Starfleet. Thus far, I see myself in Sisko, though I have a passion for the arts so much that I can see Picard in me as well.

In Chief O Brien, there’s the obvious connection with our shared heritage and how he had to fix Deep Space 9, a Cardassian space station with Federation technology, not an easy task, which required him to be creative and flexible in his role as Head of Operations, something I’ve had to do countless times in my own work, similar to him and Voyager’s Neelix.

In Voyager’s EMH, known simply as the Doctor, he was a person, an entity which I felt for, simply for the fact that he wanted to belong and his struggles mirror my own, both the triumphs and pitfalls. I also see Data in myself as well for the same reasons, both the Doctor and Data fought for the person (entities, perhaps?) that they are, fought for the respect that they deserved, much like I do to this day.

There was one character that really stood out to me, with Quark being a close second, Guinan, from the Next Generation, it maybe because of the fact that she simply listens. I saw her and felt a connection because, as a former bartender’s son, I’ve always been known for being a good listener. It’s a family trait, I’m feeling, as all of my wonderful brothers are known for being good listeners.

It’s gotten so much so that, when friends have their problems, we are the first people that they can talk to, because like Guinan, we seem to be good at listening. I admit that I’m working on giving advice, but I feel like if listening helps the person vent out possibly pent-up frustrations, then I’m happy to be a help, no matter how small.

It just goes to show that, whatever you find yourself a fan of, you can always find someone to look up to in a postive light, especially when the news is full of bad characters nowadays. That said, in life, there’ll always be the people you can look to for advice, a shoulder to cry on and a character that you can’t help but root for, but with them by your side, you won’t be able to do anything but be like a star and…..

Shine On!!

“The SuperBlog vs….” The 2020 Royal Rumble!

I’ve decided to title this particular segment of the SuperBlog: “The SuperBlog vs…” mostly because I was inspired to give my wrestling opinions based on a wrestling podcast I hear often called The Wrestling Court, which you can all hear on Podomatic (the link for them is here: https://thewrestlingcourt.podomatic.com/) as well as other podcasting forums.

I only hope they I can do as good a job as they do, since they have a lot more experience than I do as far as predictions..

So, here we go!

Daniel Bryan vs. “The Fiend” Bray Wyatt: Strap Match for the Universal Title: This could be a great match, mostly because of whom is involved.

Or maybe, who isn’t involved.

Bray has fully embraced “The Fiend” and has made his own, showing sides to him that we may not have known he has. I feel like the booking could’ve been better early on in his carrer, but now, he’s been a hot thing to talk about.

That said, the same could be said for Daniel Bryan, who has reconnected with the “Yes!” Movement. The fans are getting behind him solidly so this has all the tools to be a good (or even great match.)

The Wild Card could be in the form of The Miz, who has been rattled by “The Fiend” in recent weeks, his involvement could be what makes it interesting, but I feel that Bray will retain.

I mean this for both of the Royal Rumbles, but it’s a wonderful showcase, a place where rookies can get noticed on a big stage. Just historically speaking, Superstars like Bob Holly, Shawn Michaels, HHH, Maven and so many others can make a name for themselves in this match. I fully expect great things from the Superstars from NXT, Kevin Lee, Matt Riddle and Adam Cole (Bay Bay!) immediately come to mind as dark horses. Alastair Black can show himself moreso than he did during his hard hitting matches with Buddy Murphy.

As for who will win, I’ll start with the Women’s Rumble: it could be up to Shayna Bazlier or Rhonda Rousey to win, if the rumors are true, though Nia Jax can win as well and it’d provide a good show at WrestleMania.

On the the Men’s Rumble: I really don’t want to see King Corbin win, since he’s been given so much and working with it, but he shouldn’t win the Rumble. Same goes from Brock Lesnar, since he’s the WWE World Champion (though his elimination gives one lucky Superstar a consolation prize, since he’ll focus on the Superstar who does.) As for who will win, I’m hoping for Samoa Joe or Kevin Owens, since they’ve been on fire as of late.

Raw Women’s Title: Becky Lynch vs. Asuka: This has the makings of a classic, since the storyline has been intense and it’s made Asuka, the Empress of Tomorrow, relevant today. Kairi Saine can be a difference maker in this match, but I feel like Becky Lynch will be victorious, but it’ll be a close one.

Falls Count Anywhere: Roman Reigns vs King Corbin: Honestly, I hope that Roman Reigns beats King Corbin, if only for the fact that it would give this feud and end. I feel that they’ll save that for WrestleMania, but it feels flat, so I’ll go with Roman winning by DQ.

Bayley vs Lacey Evans for the Smackdown Women’s Title: This storyline has been well done by all involved, as you can really feel that this is an important match due to the hype. Bayley has been a great Smackdown Women’s Champion, but I feel like it could come down to one move to end it all.

But it won’t end here, because Bayley retains by DQ to keep this fresh for WrestleMania.

Shorty G vs. Sheamus: I do like how Shorty G has embraced his new character and how he’s trying to be inspirational, but Sheamus just seems to need this win more than he does so Sheamus wins.

Andrade vs Humberto Carrillo for the United States Title: I want to believe the Carrillo is the guy to take the US Title from Andrade, but it seems too soon to do so, even though the hype is there, due to Andrade’s disrespect to Rey Mysterio. Now that I think about it, though, now would be the perfect time to win it, so Humberto wins.

So, there you have my predictions for the 2020 Royal Rumble, like I said, I hope I do a good job on these, feel free to cheer or boo, but whatever you do, always…

Shine On!! (And, like Michael Buffer says, “Let’s Get Ready to Rumble!!”)

#Flashback Friday: A(nother) Poetic Confession

(Writer’s Note: I decided to repost this blog post in order to support those who are in the pro life movement, especially those going to the annual March For Life in Washington DC. I have friends and family who are pro life and I want to support them, in spirit if nothing else during the March.

I consider myself as a pretty liberal kind of person, but killing babies, in my mind, crosses a line that shouldn’t be crossed, under any circumstances. I guess if that makes me a villain because of this, then I’ll accept that scorn, but know I wouldn’t do so unless it was important to me, as the following repost, will hopefully explain.

For those who march and for those who fight for life, know that you aren’t alone, ever, know that we can win, we must win and this repost in made in your support, enjoy and God Bless You all!!)

Watching Unplanned made me realize that it’s one thing to hear about abortion, to only hear of the repercussions of what it does to a person, a family and a community. To see disturbing (I need to be honest, graphic) images that show you the impact is another thing all together. When abortions happen, it leaves scars that don’t really heal, it leaves families broken, as well as trust shattered, taking time (years, perhaps) to fully heal.

It’s the same thing when it comes to being abused, I’m sure we all have been abused in one way or another, be it verbal, physical, sexual, the questions; the pain that comes from dealing with it is brutal. All the doubts, all the questions (some of which are left unanswered) all the put downs people endure (some of them to extremes.) Most of all, it leaves trust, confidence and self esteem shattered like a broken window.

I wouldn’t be speaking about this if I haven’t gone through it myself, for the longest time, I was verbally abused by people I feel were close to me, yes I’ve forgiven them for their words, but it takes time and distance to really piece things back together, which is where this acrostic came from, which builds on both the abuser and the person who has been abused, so with that said, here’s my acrostic:

Abuse

Anarchy on human physche, parasites prowl
Bruising  others, by any means, to build fragile egos.
Under the faults blind only to them.
Strength abounds from deep inside; friends, family uniting
Ever willing to build those wounded with love; kindness.

Just know that if you’re abused, know that you’re not alone in your suffering, there is hope, there is solace in talking about it to those you care about because they care about you and your well being. With hope, time, support and some soul searching, you can transform yourself into the person you want to be, willing and able to be free from the shackles of the past so you can help others in your shoes…

Shine On!!!

#Throwback Thursday: It’s Always been a Matter of Trust

Mary Poppins had it right when she said that some promises are like a pie crust: “Easily made and easily broken.”  Such is similar with a simple thing as Trust. Trust is a black and white thing, you either have it or you don’t. 

 The question that I was struggling with for a long time is what to do when trust is broken? This is the time where family, friends and faith become imperative to survival. It’s normal to panic and want for things to go as you would want them to go, but as I’ve discovered recently, it’s all for naught. 

 All you can really do is rebuild a different type of trust, self confidence, which means looking in the mirror and taking stock of who you are and what you mean to others. For all my troubles, all my problems, all the things that could put me down, I’ve realized that it all changes when someone calls me an inspiration not only to them but others, there’s no better feeling than to know that you matter. We all matter to each other, and that’s something that we all should see, both in ourselves but others, too.

Shine on!!!

The Reason Why I Shine…

Some of you, my readers, might be wondering why I end my blog posts with the expression, “Shine On!” At first, I thought it would be a clever way to end my blog posts; a way for me to make The SuperBlog unique. After thinking about it for some time, however, there is another reason why I use that expression:

To help people feel like they matter.

Hope is available to us all, but very few know that in the moment, especially dark times in their lives, where they feel depressed, alone and discouraged. I know I have at times, but it was only due to wonderful friends and family that helped me overcome those times, helping me see the positive things that are going on in my life.

Another thing that has helped me is my faith.

I’ll get into it later on this week, on Friday during the annual March for Life, but to discount my faith in helping me overcome dark times would be a sacrilege to those friends that I consider a light to me; they overcame their struggles because of their Catholic faith and to say that they inspire me would be very accurate.

In all honesty, both of those things have made a huge difference in my life and I wouldn’t be the person I am without them.

I want to be a hope dealer, I want to make a difference, I want to share and shed light in others dark times, which is why I like to say “Shine On!” I want to be able to be positive and be a positive influence to others; to make sure anyone knows that they matter.

So, whatever anyone’s going through, just know that you matter, you are important and that, with support, you can always find a way to…

Shine On!!! Both now and always!!

Mik Horowitz: This is Your Life!!

The year was 1950.

The place was Brooklyn, New York.

There, on January 18th, around the day when Edgar Poe (or Edgar Allen Poe) was born, another poet was born, though in a different time, but he would make his own mark, all in his own way. That was when the poet I consider “The Godfather of the Hudson Valley Poetry Scene” was born, that person’s name is Mikhail Horowitz.

Known primarily as a prose poet, he’s been a modern day Jack of all trades, dabbling in performance and collages, all of which are handmade. His greatest work was his poetry book Big League Poets, in which he combined his two loves, poetry and baseball, and grafted Major Leaguers heads onto baseball’s bodies. (Satire or not, I think it makes a statement that one need not be great to be successful.)

He also performs with his partner, Gilles Malkine, and does insightfully poignant, factiously funny and watered down classics in such places as the Woodstock Library, Rosendale Cafe, Union Arts in New Paltz and many other places lucky enough to get them, since they’re worth every penny (all 3 cents, lol.) In all seriousness, they are fantastic performers in by themselves or as a duo.

On a personal note, my friendship with Mik goes back several years, all the way back to my college years. Mik was (and still is) a well respected author and poet and he knew a lot of people in the community, especially my late mentor, Larry. He introduced us and he was one of many artists I got to know due to Larry’s influence. At the time, I felt so unworthy, Mik is a respected poet around here, I thought, I’m just a new kid on the block, a feeling that was amplified by Larry’s passing.

After I moved, I still felt that way about my skills as a poet, choosing to look at him as more of a celebrity than I was. Behind all that, however, was a very funny and appreciative person, whom really looked at me as an equal; a friend and it’s something that I don’t take for granted.

And it’s been that way ever since…both with him and his significant other, the fabulous Carol Zaloom, who looks at me as a adoptive son.

So, I realize that I’m kvelling when it comes to Mik, but all that is all genuine admiration and respect for someone I admire as a person and a poet. So, if he gets a chance to read this, I just want to wish Mik a very Happy Birthday, and thank you for being the person you are, helping us laugh and helping me…

Shine On!! Party like a Poet, my friend!!

Poetry Packed Out: The Ugliness Beneath the Beauty

I was inspired to do this diamanté due to something I’ve been watching on YouTube recently, it’s not something for the faint of heart, but rather something I feel should be acknowledged: the crimes of Willowbrook.

To set the scene, long time readers (which include you, dear reader) know about my autism but also should be aware of my battle to advocate for myself as well as for others like myself. I just feel as if it’s the right thing to do.

More like the most merciful thing to do, especially in the light of what conditions were like in earlier years, one where filth, disease and despair were the norm. One such place was inside Willowbrook State School in New York, during its run, the aforementioned adjectives were more prevalent than it could ever have been. Documentaries enough are alone to vouch for that, which you can see on YouTube if you, my readers, are curious. Suffice it to say that they are intense, which is why this recent diamanté was formed, if for no other reason to illustrate this point.

So without further ado, I present for your reading the following diamanté:

Willowbrook

Willowbrook

Cries, wails

Decaying, robbing, demeaning

Those who can’t defend themselves, yet others

Uplift, delight, inspire

Cheers, spirits

Hope.

It is my hope that we can not look at people differently or be condescending to them, but rather, support them and nurture their dreams and lives, so we can all…

Shine On!!!

#Throwback Thursday: Standing Up is (Still) Hard to Do!!

Recently, I had to make a tough decision since my last roommate was moving to another apartment. I was worried that I had played a part even as his Mom told me that it wasn’t the case, but I felt, then as now, that it was the best decision to be made for both of us.

The aftermath, though, made it hard for me to decide who would be my next roommate. The pressure of the two people that were chosen made it harder still, especially because both people had good things going for them. For me, it felt like being on Deal or No Deal, the pressure was that intense.

Long story short, this decision made me realize what was important to me, qualities that I have that I need to sees in others. It made me feel like a leader, which as I mentioned in an earlier post, isn’t something I’m used to being called.

More importantly, it made me stand up for myself, something that I feel like I need to do a lot more of. I was becoming another George McFly from Back to the Future and this ordeal was talking to me, forcing me not to be a doormat. It’s been hard to do but I realize now how important standing up for oneself:

  1. Realize Your Limits: Realize that you’re only human and that you can’t please everyone. Focus on your strengths and don’t dwell on your weaknesses.
  2. Take Time For You: Breathe, recharge your batteries (however you choose to do so) and be creative.
  3. Be (or Re-Discover) Yourself: Don’t be afraid to blaze a trail of your own and learn new things. The best people know how to change things to their advantage. This can also be a way for you to rediscover values you may forget in the moment.
  4. Celebrate Your Victories: When you stand up for yourself, especially if you’re used to be a doormat, you’ll feel a change inside yourself. Celebrate the changes, no matter how small.
  5. Build Up: When you become stronger, one day at a time, one victory at a time, you’ll find yourself stronger over time and that will build up your confidence.

I can’t say that this change will be easy to deal with, in fact this is could be harder than you’ve ever dealt with. But standing up will indeed be the most fulfilling thing you ever do in your life and you’ll become stronger and be able to push forward to your brighter future, one where we can all….

Shine On!!!