Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Inverse Accumulation

Hi Hello Good Gvening!

Well, I'm glad the other night is over with, and I've had some time to calm down. I'm feeling pretty good right now actually!
**Facing His Fear - Kananaskis, Canada - Copyright 2012**

It is in those key moments where we're hanging on by one knuckle of two fingers, stepping out onto a stage in front of 3.5 million people, or starting a new position at a workplace we love that define who we are. There's something about those moments that takes me back to an almost primal stage. There is no thought in my head. I can't afford it. I'm relying purely on what I know and how well I know it. I suppose oddly enough that these moments only occur when you are carving out new boundaries for yourself.

**Cats Tail - Kananaskis, Canada - Copyright 2012**

There's a rush involved - better than anything I can imagine. It's that rush when you're playing paintball and all thought eludes you. It's that rush when you tackle a new move on the climbing wall, and when your hand finally realizes that that hold actually sucks, you fall and thought finds you again.

**Upwards To The Camp - Kananaskis, Canada - Copyright 2012**

Then there's the feeling when the last thing you remember before you fall asleep is how brilliant the stars are. How densely packed the universe is. How beautiful everything around you is. Sleep.

It's a feeling that can't be described in words.

**Such A Beautiful Place I Could Not Have Imagined - Copyright 2012**

I love it.


"You Are Loved. All Is Well"

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Ég ætla að taka stræto


I have lots to say. I have very little time to say it.

Intervention is an awkward idea. I'm not even going to bother. You're not you when you drink. You're not you when you're high. I dunno. Maybe you are and sobriety hides who you really are. Is that what the substances make you think? Just remember that there are a LOT of us who actually love you for the man you are. The man we grew up with. Yes, I said Love, and I mean it in the full strength of the word. Just don't let the bottle get the best of you. Please.

I'll drag the conversation over to somebody totally different... I've thought of you every day. I can't explain it. I wish I could stop. Maybe romance is my alcohol - I just can't buy it.... I was reflecting on an earlier post - and a conversation had one afternoon with a friend. A conversation that brought me back to former lovers. Relationships years gone by. God I'm confused...

I don't even know why I'm writing here.... I feel really full of twisting and turning directionless thought. I wish I could scream it at you. I wish I could tell everybody how I feel. I tried that once, anybody who knows me knows how that turned out. That was almost a year ago today. Huh.

Saw a film I made last night - food for thought.

Christ. I'm going to bed.


"You Are Loved. All Is Well."

The Freckles In Our Eyes

Yup, that's me in an armchair, on the prairies. Photo courtesy Hans Grossman

There is much love for you here.


"You Are Loved. All Is Well."

Monday, August 27, 2012

Ég Tala Ekki Íslensku

Hi, Hello, Good Evening,

**Cycling Mountain Passes - East Fjords, Iceland - Copyright 2012**

I sat by a lake tonight - for the first time in a long time. A very long time. The lake was perfectly still - such a stillness that I have not experienced in many months. The reflections of the mountains painted crisply across the surface in a hundred shades of blue. And just before we left, the moon crept up over the ridge and lit the mountainscape behind us. Sound seemed divided - the subtle bustle of Canmore quieting down for the night, and then such a pure silence coming from the lake that it seemed a sin just to think. Three of us sat there for what felt like blissful eternity. Not a word. Nobody asked to be quiet. Nobody suggested that we stand in awe of the beauty before us. We just did. I felt as if we had been overcome by something greater. Something between the three of us was shared that night - not through language, not through thought.

 **Lupins - East Fjords, Iceland - Copyright 2012**

And as the fish began rising in the splash of moonlight on the lake, I suddenly felt comfortable. I felt at peace. With myself - With mother nature - With my compatriots. I could have stayed for hours. One day I will. But we left - a phenomenal evening of climbing (I did my first lead climb!!! By headlamp in the dark!!), great company, and such an etherial moment to cap it all off.

**Íslenskur hestur - East Fjords, Iceland - Copyright 2012**

Goða Nott


"You Are Loved. All Is Well"

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Economists, Ecotourists, and Eccentrics

Hello Good Evening,

*This post should be read while listening to something epic - something orchestrally triumphant. Something like the Pirates of the Caribbean sound track or the sorts...*

Another beautiful day. Another quiet drive home. It’s nice to be able to walk again - at least sort of. I’m amazed at how fast my body heals. I’m actually shocked that despite the fact that I fried both my legs at last wednesdays dry-land training, I’m still able to climb. It makes no sense, but I enjoy it. It’s like being in the mountains gives me some sort of purpose. Maybe it’s hope. Maybe it’s a distraction. All I know is that I truly do appreciate it. Maybe one day I’ll be okay at it.

What does it mean to be socially awkward? I feel like sometimes my photo is beside the word in the dictionary. Why do I speak when I do? Why do I not just remain silent? I like it when I’m quiet - and yet there is some driving force to say really dumb things that clutter the air space with meaningless sound waves. I’m not trying to sound self-deprecating, but sometimes - particularly in groups of people that I’m starting to feel comfortable with - I say the weirdest things that I don’t even mean to. 

I love just being there and listening to people talk. I love hearing the exchange of ideas. I truly enjoy watching groups of people explore ideas - nobody seeing the same side of it - and yet everybody is legitimate in their view. I love laughing at peoples jokes, and smiling when people say something witty. Face-palming when the puns are particularly bad, and staying quiet while people are discussing. But all in all, there’s a weird thing that happens when finally somebody turns to me and says “Ryley, I don’t think you’ve said a word in the last hour - what do you think?”. And I know that they don’t actually care, and that they probably just want to make me feel involved, but I like being recognized as the quiet one - I don’t know why. Usually when that question comes up, I’ll still refuse to share anything and go back to listening. I feel that I haven’t found myself in that situation for a long time. I look forward to experiencing it again.

So where is the line between listener, and socially awkward? I feel that I have no concrete understanding.

I find lately I’ve been expressing all kinds of really dumb things. Especially in the work environment. Who am I to bring anything up. Usually at this point I would make some wise crack about how I’m too dumb to be worth listening to, but I’m sick of playing that game too. Sometimes I wish I could just not talk about process-improvement, or “how things should be”, because all it does is get me really riled up, and I wind up just adding to the mess. 

I would like to fix bikes and that is all... The processes are the processes. The shop has made it this far, who am I to try to change things. I can’t even distinguish between a front and rear derailleur half the time... I exaggerate for effect, but you know what I mean.

It comes down to social situations too - why am I always saying really dumb things? It drives me crazy. I’m not sharp witted, or cunning by any means. I have very little tact, and I am totally clueless when it comes to any type of conversation. And yet I still open my mouth and try to contribute. 

I kinda wonder if it’s due to some massive insecurities that are built up inside of me. Something that says “if you don’t speak up, nobody will know that you’re there!”. Which is total garbage, and I don’t know if that idea came as a result of gradual socialization, or if that’s something that is fundamental to my being. I feel it’s the former. I think that if I’m all quiet, nobody will see me. Nobody will think I’m even there. Nobody will recognize the small amount of intelligence that I may or may not posses (Myself being a firm believer that all humans are born equally intelligent). I fear that I will be mistaken for just being plain out dumb. That would lead to my exclusion on the many fun things that are being done in the world. 

And Christ don’t even put me in the same square kilometer of somebody I’m attracted to  ‘cause then I say REALLY stupid things.

I dunno. I guess all of this is me saying that I’m going to try to move into a quieter state of being. Finding more things to appreciate, and less things to try to improve. Things will improve if I allow them to. To allow, I must stop pushing against. 

On another note, Logan, thanks a tonne for what you said the other day (other week?)- not many people say stuff like that to me - I feel that you are hands down one of the most socially aware people I know. You are frighteningly emotionally perceptive, and I truly enjoy the time that I spend with you, both at work, and at play. Even though I don’t necessarily believe it, and my fear of women will probably never go away, I will probably reflect on those words until the day I die. You showed me that maybe I do matter. You showed me that even if I’ll never do anything about it, at least the potential is there. 

“Attachment leads to Jealousy - the shadow of Greed that is”.
-Jedi Grand Master Yoda

Your arm lingered a moment too long on my shoulder today. I don’t think I should write this here. But I will. Maybe you’ll see it. Probably not. I am a very big appreciator of you. In fact, I’ve sat here for the last five minutes trying to express how awesome I think you are, and words on a page won’t do it justice. Please just know that. 

Yeah... you do make me speechless.



“You Are Loved. All Is Well”

Monday, July 30, 2012

Inspectors and Sextroverts

A short dissertation on the living of Introversion.

Good evening all,

Tonight I write to you with a sense of relief in my heart. A feeling of dread and fear seems to have been lifted off my chest, and I almost feel like a normal human being. After how many years of this too.

I've never liked parties. In fact, I usually avoid them at all cost. I loath large groups of people, and usually avoid them as well. Fear of judgement? Yup. Hours and hours in the car alone in total silence? Yup. Express my feelings better here on my blog then in face-to-face interaction? Haha yup.

For years I have been convinced that I was mentally handicapped. This is not something I have ever shared with anyone, but it's always been there in the back of my head. Why is Ryley always so awkward at parties? Why am I so terrified (and I mean that in the full, gut wrenching sense of the word) of any social interaction that extends beyond my little circle of close friends? Why am I a TERRIBLE conversationalist (anybody who knows me at all is probably laughing at this point... mostly to hide the pain of the truth). I kept asking myself these questions. Day in day out, always assuming I was suffering a (very) mild case of autism. I'm not even kidding.

That was the most logical solution.

Enter a little gray book called "Quiet".

So the word introvert has always been in my life. But it has always had a sort of reverence, or complimentary definition in my mind. I don't know why, but I've always seen it as this deeper state of being that everybody is trying to achieve. So when my parents would always refer to me as introverted, I never really understood what they meant. Now as I plunge head first into the first book I've read in probably 10 years (that's a lie, but I'll say it for effect) I'm starting to discover a new definition for the word.

What is it to be introverted? Is it normal? What are the long term consequences of this "condition". Little did I know that introversion was actually labeled a mental disease in the 60s' and 70s'. The world began living what is still to this day known as the "extrovert ideal". Introverts were sort of shunned out of business - out of society. It's no fault of anybodies - it just happened.

All of that aside, it's actually kind of liberating to know that I am after all, normal. In fact it is estimated that some 40-50% of the human population is introverted.

But despite this heart warming mug of hot chocolate, what is the advantage... I still struggle to see it. Knowing this doesn't change the fact that I'm socially awkward. That I would rather sit at a table of laughing, joking friends, and not say a word. That I would rather sit in silence with someone, then share meaningless conversation with them for hours on end. Besides that - what is conversation? The smashing of air molecules into one-another, which bounce off our ear drums. Our brain tells us what we want us to hear.

I can say now proudly that I am normal, but that doesn't change the fact that science has proven that we are generally less successful in business, in romance *cough*, in social settings. Extroverts can perform most day-to-day tasks faster, and with more efficiency. They can pool their resources more readily, and score higher on most tests. They are offered jobs more readily, and often become strong leaders.

So if you follow Ryleys (very possibly) messed up idea of wrong and right which suggests that all humans are born equally intelligent, where do the introverts shine? But now I'm getting into the idea of the thoughts' of others I suppose. Ultimately it boils down to what you perceive others think about you. I wonder if extroverts don't care as much? Do they care more? From my understanding, extroverts can shine in the eyes of an introvert, but can an introvert shine in the eyes of an extrovert? No... I think they are too blind. But that's awfully close-minded of me.

Anyways, I've got a tonne to think about.

I met a reeeeeeeeeeealllly cute ice climber the other day. Super adorable.



"You Are Loved. All Is Well"

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

'Nuff Ced


"You Are Loved. All Is Well"

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

**Your Name Here**

Good evening all,

**Ridge Walk - Canmore, AB - Photo by Andrew Brennan**

"A tourist has no idea where he's been. A traveller has no idea where he's going"
                                                -Somebody who isn't me

Tonight I will light up the blog-o-sphere with bright news: Over 3000 views since the blogs inception in 2006. I know that that doesn't seem like a lot to Tina Fe (or however you spell her name) who has millions of myspace friends or something, but to me that's a lot. Short of my short TV career (which lasted 62 seconds), that is the most number of times people have seen anything I have ever said or done. Anyways, I saw that a few minutes ago, and that made me happy, so I thought I'd post it here!

I went for a beautiful drive, out to my lookout point in the foothills to watch the sunset. It's been a long time since I've done that, and even longer since I've done it alone. I have to say it was a stunning sunset tonight, with the sun sinking into a scarlet haze that was settled just over the jagged peaks of our rocky mountains (as opposed to the rubbery mountains we have in the north... bleugh). The final rays dazzled crimson flavoured cotton candy clouds and the towering smoke-stacks of the oil refineries while the rest of the valley bottom fell into magic hour. I do appreciate sunsets.

I saw your silhouette (when I am able to spell this word without the help of spell check, I promise to tell you all) against the sky tonight. I suppose it's there every night seeing as I can't get you out of my head. It's nice. And I thought you were pretty before I saw the tattoo. But you're already taken. Not the first time...

I had a chat with a friend a while ago about the subject of relationships, and the way we deal with them going into, and during. I don't know if it's the echoing voice of my mother, the bland bored voice of a health teacher, or my own Inner Being that keeps telling me to never expect any romantic endeavour to last. (I spelled endeavour right!!!!) No matter how serious the relationship seems, no matter how perfect that person seems - never expect it to last.

**Mjólk fyrir ketti - Calgary, AB - Copyright 2012**

When I was talking with this much spoken-of friend, she seemed to think that one should enter a relationship from the standpoint of "This will last", "This person is perfect" etc... Totally opposite to what I think. It was interesting to hear her say this - this was the first time anybody had said this to me, and then I started to think - do I have it wrong? Is that why I've had the *cough* spectacular *cough not* success that I have had? Am I approaching everything from the wrong angle?

But then I put a few weeks between then and a much more recent then, and I was talking with a different friend, about the same subject, and they presented to me the same opinion that I had. I told them about this other theory (without mentioning who said it of course), and his response seemed interesting to me.

"Date somebody one day at a time. If you're having a blast, laughing lots, and getting that speechless feeling often, then maybe get together again tomorrow. If you're still having fun, get together next weekend. Take it one day at a time."

**Autumn Morning - Calgary, AB - Copyright 2012**

He continued for quite some time and elaborated, but none the less, that idea really stuck with me. It's like the best of both worlds. For myself, coming from a world of fear of being hurt (yes, that's the only reason I don't pursue anything romantic anymore because it's happened too many times), and yet an attitude of spontaneity (didn't spell that one right either) - this suddenly made a tonne of sense to me.

Anyways, thank you to the universe for dropping that one on my plate. It takes a lot of pressure off.

Anyways, it's getting late, and I should get going - alpine start tomorrow.

**A Tiger Sleeps In It's Jungle - Calgary, AB - Copyright 2012**

Ég ætla að taka bill klukkan hálf í sjú í Smith-Dorian á morgun.

Goða Nott!


"You Are Loved. All Is Well"