Zola Story – It’s Funny, Until You REALLY Think About It

Today, while cleaning my apartment (I.e playing Madden and tweeting) I ran across a story from knowyourmeme about a woman meeting another woman while working and their wild weekend together. I’d honestly suggest you read it yourself here (just scroll down and click EXPAND STORY) than me tell you everything because, quite honestly, it’s a doozy.

Apart from the hilarity of the entire piece (Zola has an amazing voice) I found myself sitting back and thinking about what I was actually laughing about: Kidnap, prostitution,violence, murder etc. I kept thinking to myself, especially when Jerett went to commit suicide, but was miraculously saved by a blunder, “Is this hyperbole!? This can’t be real!”

But, it’s not so far-fetched.

I’ve come across people in my life, some very close to my heart, that have been caught up in “the Game.” I’ve seen people caught up and coming out a survivor, but more often than not I’ve seen it destroy lives and destroy families. Zola’s story highlights many aspects that are common in the game: trap phones, tricks, drugs, and, most important, money. Some people look at this life and wonder what in the hell makes it so appealing. Money is the answer to every question that follows. The fast money, the fast cars, the fast life.

What bothers me most about the story is the violence throughout. This is REAL! (Isn’t it?) Real people got hurt. Real relationships were destroyed. Real people died. What is so funny about that? The young woman Jess was beaten and battered and though she had someone who cared for her very much, she went with the pimp. The Stockholm Syndrome-like effects of a pimp to prostitute relationship is astonishing.

Prostitution is illegal throughout most of our country, but of course you can always find something to fix your vices. Whether that be on the backpage, as mentioned in the story, on the corner or a dating website, the options are seemingly endless. While going to school and participating in a debate class, I posed the question wondering why prostitution isn’t legal. It’s self-proclaimed “oldest job in the world” title shows that it won’t ever be going away. So, why isn’t it legalized!? Some believe that STI’s would run rampant, some believe that it’d make MANY more people flock to the profession, and others believe that it is just plain wrong, and it’d ruin marriages/relationships. The irony about all of this, is that it’d probably do way more good than bad to society.

**DISCLAIMER** GROSSLY FICTIONAL IDEALISTIC PROPOSITION COMING UP **DISCLAIMER**

Sex is already thrown into the faces of American’s EVERY day, so why would more sex be a problem? A government mandated sex house (or club, or bar, or what have you) would be taxed and health would obviously need to be regulated. Much like cannibus, there’d be required licenses and cards needed to purchase the goods, and you need to be tested and put into a database if you were to ever WANT to use the goods. The pimp, in its notorious form, would be all but eliminated. The violence and abuse would  be edged out as well. The women and men in the profession would actually be able to set up a 401K, have health benefits fr themselves and their families. The industry would be taxed and the state would make huge profits just like marijuana. And, even though it is legal, it’d only be legal in the government houses, anywhere else would be fined HEAVILY.

**DISCLAIMER** GROSSLY FICTIONAL IDEALISTIC PROPOSITION ENDED **DISCLAIMER**

Now, I did not write this to submit my position for legalizing prostitution, it kinda just fit in here, but the message is coming from the heart. If, and it’s still a big IF, this story is true it’s absolutely heartbreaking for all parties involved.

The story is told in a matter-of-factly way, and it has its charm, for sure. But, the message beneath the humor is sickening. The world provides us humor and laughter daily, but this isn’t one of those times.

Tweet me @kamikazejd or tumbl with me @thejoshuadavisexperience

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Chasing a Dream

Since graduating from Linfield College in McMinnville, Oregon a few months ago I’ve done a lot of soul searching. I’ve worked some jobs that I have absolutely loved, and some that I absolutely loathed. One trait that I’ve always been proud of having is that of perseverance. I’ve been knocked down a lot and many times I could have just given up there. Life isn’t supposed to be easy, but I also don’t believe that you’re not supposed to put yourself through too much hell, either. I have persevered through some tough challenges, but I think my biggest hurdles are still ahead. In order to continue to follow the passion of writing, I will have to put myself through a little hell in order to come out successful, but I don’t mind that.

Currently, I am working at a job that I can easily be content with. I make a decent amount of money, I am in a leadership position and it is very close to where I reside, but it isn’t fulfilling. I’ve woken up every day not only dreading going into work, but also constantly trying to figure out what makes the job worthwhile, besides the paycheck. Not only does the job stress me out, but because of the stress and the hours, I don’t find the time to write like I should. And that’s just not going to fly anymore.

After graduation I moved from Oregon back to Vacaville, California. Vacaville is a hop and a skip away from both Sacramento and San Francisco, so there were many opportunities for work, but not for the kind of writing that I want to do. I went onto twitter one morning while bored and contacted numerous sketch and television writers about how I should kick start my career. There was a consensus on those that did reply to me and that was:

  1. Continue writing. Never stop writing.
  2. Move to Los Angeles or New York.

That stuck with me. The advice planted seeds deeply into my mind and into my gut. The seeds in my mind sprouted ideas and a curiosity that soon made the seeds in my gut erupt and burn. There were times where I’d lay awake at night and stare at my white ceiling. The muted colors from the television would dance on the darkened ceiling but I would just stare blankly.

“What if?” I’d sit and wonder. “What if I did move down there, would I be a success? Could I make something of myself?”

In July of this year, I decided to take that chance. I moved from the comfort of my home city and moved to Downey, California. I took that chance and moved and, for the moment, I thought that was enough. I got the job that I am in now and for that moment I was content. I was okay with the steps that I took. But, I sit here frustrated and stressed, because I didn’t come out here just to live, I came out here following a dream. I have years ahead of me to be content, but, today won’t be that day where I settle for anything less than what I have worked the majority of my life. I’m going to quit my job and work towards my career. I don’t mind betting on myself. In fact, I’ll take those odds any day of the week.

I don’t want to look back and wish that I hadn’t pursued something. I don’t want to look back and wish that I could have done more. I want to be able to look back and smile, and tell my story with pride.

WRITING SAMPLE – Spring is in the Air

SPRING IS IN THE AIR

GODDAMN IT!

Once again,

as it happens. always happens.

The sickness is in the air.

The virus, the plague, the malicious attempt at humor from

God.

The smallest,

and yet,

most vile ATOMS produced on this

Earth.

Pollen

Earth’s greatest weapon.

This “Pollen Pollution”

[(Which for now and forever will be referred to as PP, just in case “they” are listening…..)(Who is “they,” “you” may be wondering. “They “ is “Them”. The conservatives? Maybe. The liberals? Possibly. The hippies? Most likely. The eccentric? Getting warmer. Anyone who disagrees with “me”? Damn straight, bitch. “You”? If any one of the above applies, yes.)]

is something that some are immune to

(Call them Springwalkers, if you will)

And these Springwalkers were blessed, somehow, some way, and are able to

WALK AROUND A PARK

without fear of plant reproductive juices fuckin up their orifices.

I,

too,

Was once a Springwalker. But the PP somehow changed.

Its formula

Decided to target me

ME GODDAMN IT!

So now, when I walk outside

I fear the PP.

People in my shoes, these sad, dilapidated,  defeated shoes

Are what we call–

the forsaken.

One night, deep into the War of the Spring time I laid upon my bed

Crying.

My eyes squinting as if the sun were too bright,

Burning as if infected by lice

Red as if….tomato.

My nose was useless,

clogged by its own mess

tender from all of the prodding

My skin crawled from the effects of the potent PP

My throat,

if you could even call it that anymore

felt as if ants were called upon my larynx ,

to Party.

And what a festive party it was, and always is.

No amount of scratching with the back of my tongue

or the ill-fated journey of mine own finger

could quell the PP beast.

I prayed that night. I prayed for

SALVATION!

Salvation came in the form of a cocktail of,

(Allegra, benadryl, zyrtec, nasacort, claritin-nondrowsy, claritin-yesdrowsy, local honey,  nonlocal honey, drowsy honey.)

I became a shell of my former self whenever I took this cocktail

But GODDAMN

it felt good to breathe clearly for five minutes.

Though I’d usually sleep for days at a time afterwards and would wake up in a

drunken- maybe dreamlike, or possibly even cracked out

state.

It was better than having to deal with PP.

Spring is in the air, plant sperm and eggs.

Spring is in the air, Earths’ attempt at a massive orgy

Spring is in the air

GODDAMN IT!

Writing Sample – Bored Games

Bored Games

I stand before the ostentatiously jeweled gates of Drandsmiore,

The frigid mountain air sweeps down and howls in sweet jubilation

as if powered by the souls of those who once accompanied me.

I breathe slowly.

My body aches from my previous battle with the Cyclops of Eyron,

its blood still fresh and dripping from my Sword of Disparage.

I journeyed through it’s dungeon to find the Jeweled key, which was attached to the Diamond Skull Armour in which I am wearing now.

Even though I lost my fateful companion, Travis, in the Plains of Exasperation to the wicked flying demoness spawned, Aerophineas I eradicated it and erected a Mound of Prayer to grieve Travis’ loss.

I battled my way through The Cavern of the Verbose and harangued the Verbinator to deaf to retrieve–

“Wait, you harangued the Verbinator to deaf? Dude, what the fuck?”

The Dungeon Master, Peterominous, (Peter, to the uninitiated) interrupts my heroic speech, per usual.

“Define harangued or it shall be struck’en from the Book of Records, you plebian!”

Bastard… He knows my weakness is word knowledge…

-Harangue means to strike down egregiously with your tongue!-

My plus 19 Pendant of Eternal Wisdom must have aided me because Peterominous thinks for a second and nods, allowing the word.

“Just hurry up, dude. You know Travis has work at 9. You have to roll a 6 in order to break through the Jeweled Gate of Drandsmiore and recapture the captured princess of Seitnap… Tee hee.”

I expel a primal roar as I thrust the Jeweled key into the gate’s orifice.

The tremendous force behind the penetrating key shatters it and the explosion of color momentarily paints the frozen air.

Jades mixing with azures, mixing with ruby, mixing with mauve, mixing with brown. And orange.

Though the key shatters I feel the sudden urge to attack the wall with my mighty sword!

Attack! (with twenty-sided die)

(Roll)

I rolled an eleven so I bash the gate eleven times.

(Roll)

Hit twice.

(Roll)

Strike it thrice.

(Roll)

I slice at the gate.

(Roll)

one.

“Dude, mathematically, you should have hit 6 at least four times accidentally by now.”

Peterominous is right. No matter how much time passes by, I will continue to strike the gate!

Though my hand is bloodied and my wrist aches like a chronic masturba… master of.. Masters, I will continue to attempt to get in!

(Roll)

God damn it.

(Roll)

HOLY SHIT! The gate finally opens!

I rush inside with a newfound vigor!

“You lose. The recaptured princess is already dead. She’s been dead for over an hour now. You took too long, plebian. Travis is late for work and I must accompany him so I can ask his boss for a job.”

I fall to the ground. My beloved recaptured princess of Seitnap, felled by the unluckiness of my throwing hand. And that bastard Peter…

Writing Sample – Vile Revision

Vile Revision

Revision is the bane of all writing. Throughout high school and through my college education I have found that revision is easily one of the hardest and most unenjoyable aspects of writing. Revision is essential, I do understand that, but I don’t like having to revisit many of my pieces because a lot are done “in the moment.” One fear that I have had with revision (though my Linfield Professor’s have definitely hammered on me that my belief is false) is that I will lose the essence of what I wrote while in that particular moment. I understand the need for revision in an academic setting. I understand it as well, to an extent, in creative writing, especially in the form of prose, scripts, etc. I do find, and have found, that when I look back at a piece that I wrote years ago I become nit-picky about everything on the page. I want to change so much of my writing and the techniques I used before that the piece becomes more of “who I am now,” rather than “who I was then.”

One problem that I have had since before coming to Linfield was the lack of a solid foundation of writers and editors that are friends of mine. Most people that I have shown my work to will often say, “Oh, great job. Way to go” and that doesn’t help me out. I have refused to show any of my work to my family or friends because they don’t have the “critical eye” that I have been looking for. I wouldn’t mind if a person, metaphorically, “tore me a new one” because I know that I can take the criticism. I want to better myself as a writer, but people being overly positive of my work doesn’t help me. I have sit in writing classes in high school and community college and have gone through entire workshops not knowing what I should change because people didn’t want to step on toes, and although I understand that one’s writing can be extremely personal and close to the heart, it isn’t all too helpful in the long run just to hear positives. One of my biggest problems as far as writing comes with staying in the correct tense. Sometimes I bounce from a certain tense, not purposefully, and I would get docked for going from past to present, etc. and they would advise me to read over a paper in order to spot the problems, but sometimes the slips are so few and far between that I don’t even trip over them. This is why I know that careful editing and revision is important.

In the classes that I have taken in community college I found that whether it was a creative writing class or not, my first draft was always my only draft. Professor Wilkins, in the English department, would often quote Ernest Hemingway, “The first draft of anything is shit.” My thoughts, and response one particular day was, “Well, that’s only if you’re not a good writer.” I have worked on revising more of my papers though, especially my prose, because I know that it is an essential act that all writers must slog through. Much like puberty and the awkwardness that comes with it, revision is just something that people have to go through.