I’ve been featured on several other blogs these last few years. Check out my entire guest post collection below, and be sure to follow these awesome blogs too!
Why You Should Run Away | Bedlam Magazine
I’ve been driving around the continent for five months now. I packed up my Mitsubishi Galant and abandoned Orange County in June. And now that the leaves are turning orange in Tennessee, it’s hitting me just how long I’ve been on the road.
Everywhere I go, people ask what inspired such a trek. Adventure, I tell them with the arch of my eyebrows. Inspiration. A fresh start.
But I haven’t been entirely truthful. This nomadic life isn’t all peaches and dreams. Somewhere at the start of my journey was a kernel of fear – fear that remains 15,000 miles later.
Among a myriad of admirable reasons, I’m driving across North America because I’m running away from the life I used to have. ( Read more . . . )
I’m 27 and Afraid to Take Off My Shirt | Bedlam Magazine
As a teenager I was often teased by my family because I avoided the water so much. My Georgia home had a beautiful in-ground swimming pool, but even amid those sweltering Southern summers, I wouldn’t dare be found in that pool.
It’s not that I hated the water. Not that I despised swimming or didn’t know how. Throughout elementary school, I’d taken swim lessons at The Y and rapidly advanced from “guppy” to “shark.” I knew how to swim; I liked swimming.
But like Jerry Seinfeld’s staunch declaration to “choose not to run,” I soon chose not to swim. I told my family I hated swimming, but it was all a lie. The real reason was just too silly and shameful.
I hated taking off my shirt. ( Read more . . . )
Solo Travel Destination: Grand Canyon | Solo Traveler
I visited the Grand Canyon as the very first stop in a 9-month solo expedition around North America. It was the perfect place to break in my road trip while basking in nature’s beauty. Grand Canyon National Park presents the perfect solo excursion for people of all ages and capabilities.
As a 27-year-old with a proclivity for running, hiking, and camping, I embraced the notion of trekking all the way down the Grand Canyon and spending a night at Bright Angel Creek Campground. For just an additional $15 backpacking permit, I experienced the Grand Canyon in ways less than 1% of park visitors do. The campground is first-come, first-serve and centered around a refreshing creek. The neighboring Phantom Ranch is stocked with cabins and a small cafe if you prefer camping with more amenities. ( Read more . . . )
Good Enough for Loneliness | People of the Second Chance
Though blessed by a fantastic family with loving parents, my journey beyond their front door has been long and treacherous. As an introvert, that’s okay some of the time, if not most. But it’s still hard.
I didn’t have many friends growing up. I was the smart, shy guy in high school. Forced to suffer through acne’s onslaught, I felt overwhelming shame from the attention that came with simply opening my mouth. Of course I wanted friends, but I wanted to be ignored too.
I wasn’t loud enough, athletic enough, funny enough, or vulgar enough for friends. This was my reality. My normal. Needless to say, I was ecstatic to graduate and leave high school’s halls far behind. ( Read more . . . )
From Retreat to Redemption | People of the Second Chance
People used to scare me. Not witches or Satanists or axe murderers. Just normal everyday people, with no particular affinity for axes.
My massive people-fear started in middle school. Guys taunted me for my acne. Pointed and laughed inches from my face. Girls said I didn’t act manly enough. Too quiet, too timid, too different from all the others. Guys and girls alike simply ignored me, like the passersby from The Good Samaritan.
From homeroom to the locker room and every room in between, I retreated. When confronted about my pimples or personality, I bit my lip. I passively slid into the back row, back into my usual removal from teenage society.
Retreat, retreat, retreat – that was my daily mantra throughout middle school and high school. ( Read more . . . )
Revelation 2:17 | JaredHollier.com
Today’s drawing is from internet babyface Thomas Mark Zuniga. TMZ (as we like to call him [but not the trashy celebrity gossip kind]) blogs with words, pictures, and videos (but not the trashy celebrity gossip kind). ( Read more . . . )
Baseball is the Greatest Sport of All-Time (Part 1) | The Greatest Blog of All Time
I grew up in the ripple rings of Philadelphia. Not to be confused with nipple rings, which also exist there. I was steeped in the grand Philadelphia sports tradition at an early age, and by “grand Philadelphia sports tradition,” I mean to say that I hated hockey, basketball, and football.
Ah, but baseball. Baseball was different. ( Read more . . . )
Baseball is NOT the Greatest Sport of All-Time (Part 2) | The Greatest Blog of All Time
I recently guest-posted at The GBOAT, proclaiming baseball as the greatest sport of all-time.
Absurd. What was in my chewing tobacco that day?
I only cried twice as a kid, and both times involved baseball. In my last post I explained this statement was actually false, but once again I’ll lie for dramatization purposes. Like Manny Ramirez and an outfield door at Fenway.
By 8 years old, I’d asserted there was simply nothing better than baseball. Remember how God said “it is good” after creating dolphins and puppies, and then “it is very good” after creating man? Pretty sure He also employed the “very” after creating baseball on the third day—the same day He created perfectly patterned outfield grass. ( Read more . . . )
Change is More Than Time Zones | LauraCoulterWrites.com
The first time I changed – really truly deeply changed – I drove 2300 miles across the country. Adventured westward for five consecutive days to escape an old life of twenty-three consecutive years. To start a new life.
My family is great; I love my family. Could not be more blessed by a mother’s love and home-cooked meals, a father’s wisdom, and a couple of younger siblings who I regard more as friends with every passing year.
But there comes a time for every wanderer to awaken. To pack up his Mitsubishi Galant and leave.
To change. ( Read more . . . )
Growing is Unending | JonStolpe.com
Over the last couple years, I’ve endured some especially stretching moments: one vulnerable summer camp position in Milwaukee, another more exposing camp in North Carolina, and not one but two cross-country moves from Georgia to California on either side of those stretching summer camp romps.
That second cross-country trek stretched me even more than the first. ( Read more . . . )
Fiction vs. Nonfiction: Finding My Writer’s Calling | Birth of a Novel
I first found the light of a writer’s calling late into my freshman year of college. Though I’m unsure why the obvious took so long to realize.
After all, I’d been filling giraffe-spotted composition books with fictional creations since I was seven. I “published” a book before my tenth birthday – a handwritten story which my incredibly gracious father printed and stapled for my large family.
Additionally, I’d kept a journal since I was eleven. Written words were always my outlet, my very essence, and yet I never “discovered” my writer’s calling until college. Upon becoming a sophomore, I finally ditched the logic of a “safe degree” and declared myself an English major.
An English major who yearned to be an author. An author of fiction. ( Read more . . . )
On Homosexuality: Let Us Only Handle Love | typewritermonkeytaskforce.com
When my blogging friend, Adam (or as I’ve long regarded him, “That Monkey Guy”), asked me to contribute a post on homosexuality to his blog, I knew I wanted to write something. I just didn’t know where to start. Homosexuality is, after all, a Pandora’s Box of an issue lined with nettles and littered with landmines.
I really latched onto something Adam wrote recently. He talked about how his convictions and sympathies often seem to oppose each other. Oddly enough, I often find myself in a similar stance regarding homosexuality—though from a more unique, complicating perspective. ( Read more . . . )