I Watched Gilmore Girls and Now I’m Thinking Too Much

I watched the Gilmore Girls revival over the weekend. There. I said it. Laugh at me. Deride me. Label me with your sharpest effeminate nicknames. It’s not like I have masculine issues or anything. I grew up with a little sister who loved Gilmore Girls, and as such, I saw more than a few episodes. I was the older brother “doing homework” in the living room while Gilmore Girls was on, but truthfully I was watching along with the family as Lorelai […]

A Decade Without Annie

The vortex of my loathing for November stems from this date a decade ago. The day I lost my dog, Annie, to a freak accident. An accident I was convinced was connected to my first bout with pornography and God’s judgment. A decade later, I’ve laxed on the whole God punishing me thing; a decade later, I still miss that dog dearly. I hug and cuddle all these other dogs in Asheville, daily at my job and dog-sitting at people’s […]

We’re All the Same Here

The first time I used a laundromat was in Milwaukee the summer of 2011. I worked at a missions camp for three months, and every weekend my team and I would venture to the laundromat down the road to take care of our dirty clothes. I’d always had a washer/dryer wherever I’d lived, so this was a foreign experience for me. I actually enjoyed it. I enjoyed sitting to the side with my laptop while my clothes tumbled in a […]

The Opposite of Addiction

Back when I worked in wilderness therapy last year, I learned an important lesson: the opposite of addiction is not sobriety. The opposite of addiction is connection. I had to think about it for a while. Absorb it. Reflect on it. Think back on the times I’ve experienced addition — pornography, promiscuity, a poor self-image — and realize that the saying is true. In my most desperate times of overwhelming addiction, the only effective counteracting agent wasn’t mere withdrawal or […]

I Got Triggered Today

“Weekend Tom” returned to “Weekday Tom” at school today. One kid struggled with recursive sequences. Another kept falling asleep learning about dear sweet Pythagoras and his most beloved theorem. Yet another needed my step-by-step guidance, only to fizzle out of patience by hour’s end. It wasn’t the flashiest of mornings. No inspirational artist studio visits or personal hand at graffiti art. Just a job and a desk and formulas and lingering frustrations that one day life will feel epic again. […]

Unpacking My 3 Fictional Selves

Every now and then, Twitter messes me up — a 73-character lightning tweet of conviction or a common hashtag stirring genuine conversation. I’m a thinker, I live in my head, I get lost in my head, and if something sparks a thought, I’ll likely be embroiled in a mental forest fire by eventide. Twitter recently trended with the hashtag #DescribeYourselfIn3FictionalCharacters. As soon as I saw people posting their fictional alter egos, I set to work on the forest fire in […]

When the New Man Looks Like the Old Man

“If anyone needs prayer, I invite you to speak with someone at the back of the room before you leave our service today. We’d love to pray with you.” I do need prayer, I think to myself from the back row. I need prayer very much. I need freedom from passivity. I need courage. I need strength to take initiative and step forward again. But therein lies the problem: I need someone to pray for my impulse to move because I […]

What Makes Me a Horrible Friend

I’m a horrible friend. I only want your friendship for your kind words so that I can feel affirmed. I only want your friendship for your favors so that I can do less work or spend less money. I only want your friendship for those one-sided conversations that make me feel less lonely as I completely neglect your goings-on. I’m a horrible friend. I hate texting you and calling you and otherwise trying to squeeze you into my weekly self-absorbed schedule. […]