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Friday, July 31, 2015

Sampling the Brazosport Beer and Nightlife

This was pre - La Machina...

This is the best WurstHaus....

Aaron will like that one.

I've been thinking about a blog post based on the whole "What If" concept.

It's coming soon.

Been here my whole life.

Only less so now.

Can you be less Out of Control?

Isn't that like being less pregnant?

Or less dead?

I continue to ponder this question.

I'll let you know when I figure it out.

That my friends is a nice looking grilled pork chop over veggies with fresh strawberries and grapes.

So that's what's wrong.

I'm kinda feeling I'm living this right now.

Pier 30...

Young's Double Chocolate Stout and Gumbo....

Not bad.

That'll do Pig.

That'll do.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Food and Music are a Big Part of My Life!

Been a while since I took an HEB Grocery Basket shot.

I've said several times that you win the Diet and Nutrition aka Battle of the Belt....

At the Grocery Store.

Don't Buy it and You Won't Eat it!

Lots of good stuff in this basket....

Zucchini, Squash, Raisins, Eggs, Avocadoes, Sweet Onions, Poblano Peppers, Jalapeno Peppers, Frozen Strawberries and Bananas, Frozen Brussel Sprouts, Spring Mix, Tomatoes, Radishes, Carrot sticks, BBQ seasoned Pork Chops, Adobo seasoned thin cut Chicken Breast, Wild Cut Salmon, Sweet Potatoes, Skim Milk, Strawberry Flakes, Fish Oil, Blueberries, Grapes, Mixed Nuts, Cabernet and Moscato Wine, Oatmeal and Cantaloupe....

That's a lot of good healthy food.

I was telling a friend of mine the other day that Jimi Hendrix was the foundation for all the music I love to listen to....

Wish they had one of these in Santa Fe NM!

Putting the food I bought to good use.... cast iron skillet grilled Poblano and Jalapeno Peppers and Yellow Squash... No Oil!

Nutribullet full of Fruit Punch Creatine and Chocolate Protein Mix, Frozen Strawberries and Bananas, Kale and Black Grapes.

This is beautiful and incredibly delicious and nutritious.

Thin cut chicken breast....

Boiled brussel sprouts....

Nope.... I'm never gonna stop eating like this.

And people wonder how I got where I am..... 

Food like this can help you do incredible things.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Emotional Outbursts - Losing Control.... What it does to You and Those around You.... and how to fix it

Geez Wills - could you squeeze any more words and controversy into a Title?

Man.... this is a subject that I have a lot of experience with....

Cause I've done it and seen it so many times in my life.... grew up with  it.... lived it.... and still struggle with it.

So there's the full disclosure to all the alcoholics out there..... that I'm a recovering alcoholic.... so to speak.

So where do I begin?

Well... first of all, you have to realize there's a lot of the population out there that has no clue what I'm talking about.

Basically, they grew up in "functional" (whatever the hell that means) households where there was no hollering or screaming or throwing shit....

Which also means there was probably no "genetic" predisposition to express themselves in such a negative way....

And as I said, they have had little or no real world exposure to it.

So.... when these genetically and experientially "calm" people see someone lose their control and start hollering and screaming and cussing.... they just look at each other and go....

"What's this person's problem.... they must be imbalanced".

And the truth is.... they're pretty much right.

If you were to look at 100 people who consistently and frequently lose their cool, it is likely that at least 95 of those grew up in a household where that misbehavior was practiced and demonstrated with some recurring frequency.

The point is that the root of this type of negative Emotional Drama is likely in the genes and in the household.

Like everything else in Life, if you grew up with it, you are likely to practice it in your own Life.

So there's the "Where Did it Come From" Part.

Now.... let's talk about the Real Negative Consequences of Getting Mad, Losing Your Temper, Throwing a Fit, Losing Control or creating Senseless Negative Drama.... there's probably a label in there you recognize.

And while we're talking about that, let's work in the "How you Fix it" part.

There is usually some trigger point for the beginning of any emotional outburst.

For the person susceptible to this sort of misbehavior, it may seem like a Mountain.

To any other non-susceptible person, it likely is a Mole Hill.

This little Trigger Point or Minor Perturbation in the Universe might be something as simple as the male spouse leaving the toilet lid up....  or not washing their coffee cup when they're done with it.... or being late to church....or... you fill in the blank.

Bottom line is that it's not World War, Cancer or Losing Your Job.... in other words not something that you really should get excited about.

And this is the first and best place to cut this whole negative process off before it even gets started.

When you see that trigger point or insignificant event and you feel yourself starting to react to it..... STOP...

STOP right there and ask yourself this....

Is this something significant that I should get upset about?  Is this worth fighting about?

And here's a suggestion as to how to quantitatively decide that.  Notice that I'm forcing you to stop and analyze.... bear with me here.

Here's a random assessment method for measuring whether something is worth getting pissed off about.

Pick a dollar value that is important to you.  Each person of varying net worth and earnings scale will pick a different number.  For me it's $500.

Next, pick a time duration that is important to you, in terms of time it takes to fix something or time that is meaningful to you to spend on a project or working on something.  For me, it's about 4 hours.

So now you have a dollar value and a time value.  What's that for?

Here's how it works....

Here's my suggestion:  If the trigger point, what you're about to get pissed off about, doesn't breach your dollar or time value, then....


For example, let's say you get home late and you see that your husband didn't mow the yard like you asked him to before you left for work.  That starts to piss you off and as you're getting out of the car, you're thinking about how you're about to tear into him about it....

STOP - and realize it will only take about an hour to mow the yard OR you could pay some neighborhood kid $30 to mow the yard.... and the issue would go away.

And this scenario brings up another checkpoint for getting pissed off.... and that is the PROPER TIME AND PLACE.

As you're starting to get pissed off, ask yourself....

"Is this the best time to confront this person about this issue?"

If it's 8:00 at night and you're tired and haven't eaten and the other person is the same way, let me suggest to you....


OR if you're driving to dinner and he changed lanes without signaling and you are about to tear into him about that....

Realize that it's probably not the right time or place either.

Bottom line is that if you filter the Trigger Point or Initial Event through the criteria of:
  • Minimum Dollar Value
  • Minimum time spent to fix the problem or address the issue
  • Appropriate time for an Emotionally heightened event
  • Appropriate place for an Emotionally heightened event
And the Trigger Point trips none of the conditions listed above....then...

Save yourself the energy... and don't get pissed off.

Which brings me to the next point of discussion....

And that is the effect that getting pissed off has on YOU.

There is a physical mechanism to getting pissed off.

When you perceive a potential trigger point through one of your 5 senses, that perception is registered by your brain and something happens in your brain to release some chemicals into your bloodstream.

Those chemicals instantaneously increase your heart rate which raises your blood pressure.

You have a heightened and perhaps hypersensitive awareness of your surroundings.

Let me do a little test with you.... at this point you're reading this post and I'm assuming you're pretty calm.

Try to holler out real loud just spontaneously.... you can do it but it's kinda hard to do.... it requires a moment of preparation to do it.

When your system is getting jacked up with adrenaline and cortisol and all the bad juju that your body secretes when it's in Danger mode,  it is preparing for some significant confrontation, like battle or war or a fistfight or a run for your life cause you're getting shot at.

When you're jacked up like that, the first thing you do is raise your voice.  You holler, it's inevitable, cause your body thinks it's about to go to War.... and you holler in War.

When you holler, your face gets red and contorts in some unattractive and likely threatening way.... your whole body language changes from Calm Human Being to I'm Pissed Off Animal.

The people around you or the Person who is the target of your anger sees that.... and they are affected by it also.... whether they respond in kind or not.

Why?  Because your hollering is recognized by their brain as a threat.... so the same bad juju starts flowing through their body.

Hopefully, they have the good sense to not respond, but God forbid they do....because then now you got 2 unreasonable people hollering at each other....

About dirty dishes or an unmowed yard or buying the wrong mustard or whatever.

Now a professional counselor or psychiatrist at this point would say....

"Well.... there's likely some underlying reason why this person is making such a big deal about these little things".

And they're probably right.... but that's a longer, deeper issue.... and it probably began with You getting pissed off about something little.

The bottom line is getting pissed off regularly is a Hazard to Your Health and everyone's Health subject to it.

So, here's another effect getting Pissed Off continuously has.

When you get pissed off at someone, they don't trust you anymore.... they want to distance themselves from you.... even if you kiss and make up later.

Why?  Because most sane people in the world value Predicatability and Consistency and Calm....

And all that is violated when you get pissed off in the presence of someone else.

So there is a deeper and more long lasting negative effect of losing control of your emotions....

It destroys Relationships and alienates you from those you likely care the most about.

Let's finish up with the most important part..... How to Fix It.... How to Improve on Controlling Your Emotions.

I like lists so here goes:
  • First off, just like with an Alcoholic having to admit they're an Alcoholic, you have to admit and realize you have a Problem Controlling yourself.  Don't put any clinically negative labels on it like BiPolar or Manic-Depressive or whatever.  Just keep it simple... just say you have a problem Losing Your Temper.
  • Second, once you've gone through the Self-Realization phase, you have to Resolve to Change.  You have to want to do something about it.
  • Third, you have to have a Plan for addressing the problem. I've already given you one step in that plan and that is having a cut off point in the process to evaluate the $Value, Time Value, Time, Location and Circumstance of the potential event.  The key here is time and thought.  IF you just stop and think about what you're about to get upset about, it gives your System some time to come off DEFCON 2 and resolve itself in a peaceful manner.
  • Fourth, and this is what I have found to be the most important and effective treatment of all.  Change your Lifestyle - 
  • Exercise Regularly and Intensely as possible.  Believe it or not, in most cases, this will be much more effective than all the Drugs a doctor can give you.  Because it is a Drug treatment in and of itself. When you exercise, your body secretes Endorphins and Enkelphins into your blood stream.  These are the most natural and purest form of opiates.  They are secreted to ease the pain you feel in your muscles after working out and to help your muscles relax to begin the rebuilding process.  Almost any effective treatment plan given to a patient by a Psychiatrist will include Regular Exercise.  The medical industry recognizes the importance of it in regulating critical brain and body chemistry.
  • Eat Right - Get on a Good Diet / Nutrition Plan.  You would be amazed at how much better you will feel and how much more positive your outlook and social exchanges will be when you put the right fuel in the gas tank.  Avoid foods that cause inflammation:  Eat food that fights inflammation:,,20705881,00.html  For me, the Paleo diet is a godsend because it removes all the things that made me feel bad after eating them:  Dairy Products, Bread, Pasta, Rice, Fatty foods, Processed Foods.
  • Get enough sleep.... Most people don't.... at least 8 hours per night.  There is so much that gets fixed when you sleep that you just can't put a high enough value on it.  Make your sleep Priority 1.
  • Seek to Manage Stress and Your Schedule and DON'T OVERCOMMIT, i.e. Learn to Say NO!  This goes back to putting yourself First.... taking care of yourself first before anybody else.  So many people have been brainwashed by their church, their culture and their family to feel guilty if they put themselves first and then they end up destroying everything they're working for and that they value by Going Off on their co-workers, their family or their spouse.  Plan Your Life around You and Taking Care of You and see how much easier it becomes to get the best out of your Life and the Relationships you value most.
I could go on with the list and talk much more about this subject but this is already one of the longest post I've written in a while.

But it's an important subject...of which I am No Expert... just a recovering Rage-aholic.

So, as I say in most of my "Advice" posts, my opinion is worth what you're paying for it.... which is nothing.

Maybe.... Just Maybe.... Something I have said will be of some benefit to somebody and will avoid one argument or one negative interaction....

And that's worth a lot more than anything I can say.

Peace to you World.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

A Weekend on the Texas Gulf Coast

Begins with a kickback on Surfside Beach...

Just me and my shadow...

And one helluva good looking Stang.

Ribeye with Pan Gravy and Salad

That'll put some getup in your go!

And the Texas Mosquito Festival....

Heard Jon Wolff and Jamey Johnson...

Sometimes it's less about

And more about being Out of....

Is Heaven Hoax, Hype or Hope?

Oh boy, Wills, you're really gonna go there?

Yeah.... might as well.  I ain't getting any younger and this topic isn't getting any clearer so might as well throw my hat in the ring and let 'er rip.

First of all.... the qualifications and conditions of this literary purchase:
  • Nothing in this post is meant to be sacrilegious, disrespectful or disdaining of God, Christianity, or any religion or any participant in any religion.
  • This opine will not be scripturally based but may be scripturally influenced and inspired.
  • It is the collection of observations, experiences and deductions of one man and is worth what you are paying for it..... which is nothing.
So, with that out of the way, let's press on.

I wouldn't say I grew up in a Christian environment but I did grow up attending a Christian Church - the Seventh Day Adventist Church - to be specific.

I have been in and out - mostly out of - several Christian churches since then.

The whole concept of heaven has been presented to me throughout life as some sort of Nirvana reward you get for accepting Christ as your personal Savior at some point in your life and developing a Personal Relationship with Him.  

First off, nobody has ever explained to me how you have a personal relationship with a Divine Deity that you cannot perceive with any of the 5 senses. 

And those that claim to have a personal relationship with God cannot explain to me how they got it or how that relationship is conducted and most importantly, how the relationship is experienced or manifested in their own life..... and the key word here is "manifested" which to me means "tangible proof".

About now is where the Bible Scholars hit me with the whole "Live by Faith" thing.  Don't know what to say about that.other than to say I'm a "Show Me" kinda guy.... and they can't.... Show Me, that is.

Now, let me throw you a curve ball at this point.... Not having tangible proof of God or Heaven is not the problem for me.... I can do that Faith dance as good as anybody.

What burns my ass up, besides a fire about yay high, is the fact that people, through the teachings of the church, get so enthralled with the concept of the afterlife, Heaven, whatever, that that's all they look forward to.

I say, F that.

Let me introduce another concept to you that is actually biblically based.... well, at least in my interpretation.

You make your own personal Heaven or Hell.... right here right now.... every day you Live.

Focus on being your best, doing your best, giving your best, conveying your best to others.... every minute of every day.... Focus on turning someone else's Hell into Heaven.  Focus on turning your Faults and Weaknesses into Triumphs and Strengths.

Live that everyday and guess what.... 

You will think less about the Heaven you will go to after dying and enjoy the Heaven you are living in.

The whole takeaway from this argument is that Heaven is just a carrot dangled in front of a Mule tied to a water wheel.

It has the most appeal to those that are nearing the end of their earthly life or those whose earthly life is so miserable that the only way they can survive is to focus on some concept that promises them the perfect life.... once they're done with the miserable life they're living.

Don't know about you, but the more I hear about and think about Heaven, the less appealing it sounds.

I mean come on.... Everything is Perfect. There's no Struggle, no Strife, no Illness, no Pain, no Wars, no Prejudice, No Lieing, Cheating, Stealing, Murder or Adultery.

Take all that away... and you got nothing to resist, overcome, or be tripped up by.... or indulge in.

Hell... that's all the stuff that makes Life worth Living.

My Mistakes, My Failures, My Sins, all the Bad Decisions, all the Pain I have caused and all the Pain I have felt.....

These are all the things that have defined me, that have scarred me, that have sent me Bumbling, Tumbling and Stumbling to the Life Line where I now stand.

Take all that away and just leave the Good and Pure.... and well, I wouldn't want to think about it.

But it would definitely be boring.

So the Good Hype of Heaven doesn't get me all that excited.

Another aspect of Heaven that I don't buy is the Sell job it gets from the Church.

Heaven represents Hope.... and you can sell Hope.

For at least 10% of your gross annual income..... 

A little penance the church calls Tithe or Offering.

As my 2nd Wife explained to me several times, the concept and function of Tithe has been lost in time.

In Biblical times, the Christian Church actually did something for people....

Besides trying to bring in aka "convert" non-believers so that they would become members of the church....

Which brings in more tithe......

See the Money Cycle here?

What the church of yon used to do is basically everything....

That our government and other entities now provide.

The Church of Bible times was a Medical Facility, a Money Bank, a Food Bank, a Legislative Body, Social Security and much much more.

Didn't know that and don't believe me.... just Google "functions of the ancient Christian Church" and start reading some of the links.... like this one...

So, bottom line, your tithe actually benefited YOU tangibly.  

You give tithe now so the Pastor and 10 members of the Church can go on some mission trip to the jungles of Cambodia or Indonesia or the Amazon Rain Forest or wherever.

I can honestly say I have never seen a single dime of the thousands of dollars I have given to the Church ever benefit me in any Tangible Way.... not a penny.

So Heaven doesn't get my Hope vote either.

Finally, does Heaven even exist and if it doesn't what do you do with the whole God thing?

This is where it starts getting a little gray for me.

On one hand, I, personally have not one shred of evidence that God or Heaven exists.

One argument is that God works through others or that evidence of Him is realized in the answers to Prayer for troubles and problems presented to Him.... Fair enough.

Again, personally, I can't say that I have experienced any Miracles or even happenstance where the outcome was so incredible that I could say.....

Holy S*it, I guess God does exist.  There's no way that could ever have happened without Divine Intervention.....

Nope. Never been there or done that.

Now here's what I have seen.... I have seen the Wrath of God....

Or what I perceive to be the Wrath of God.... because that concept has been planted in my mind.

Let me tell you.... that will make me a Believer way faster than some fortuitous outcome to prayer.

Every single time in life, I have gone against whatever you wanna call it,  God's Plan.... God's Instructions.... the Will of God.... or maybe just plain ole Human Common Sense....

I have been struck down by such significant negative consequences that by the time I dug myself out of the hole that God (or just my idiocy) piledrived me into, I swore I'd never do anything like that again.

Now that's Behavior Modification 101 right there!

A Biblically inclined person listening to this little tattletale of Life might say.... Well, however you get there.... just as long as you get there.

To which I say, I'm not really there.

But here's where my natural (or God-given) Human Nature steps up and says....

Hey Stupid - What's the Risk / Reward here?

Whacchu talking about Willis?

It's like this.... I may not have the evidence in hand or experience gained that gives me a certain nod on the existence of God and Heaven.... BUT....

And this is an important BUT....

What if I'm wrong?  What are the consequences if I'm wrong?

Eternal damnation with a bunch of real crazies in a Lake of Fire?

F that.

I'll keep a handful of Faith in my Pocket and give God and Heaven the benefit of the doubt.

Cause the Reward of Believing is so much better than the Risk of Not.

I'll take my chance on God and Heaven not being a Hoax....

And Live my Life like the only Heaven I'll ever see is the one I make out of every day of  My Life.

But I'll keep my Backup Plan.

It works for me.

Now you  know what I think about Heaven.

Find Your Tribe

Was talking with a friend of mine at Family Fitness the other day and relating my efforts to get more permanently located in Santa Fe NM.

I talked about the climate, terrain, but spent more time trying to explain how I seemed to fit in better with the open mindedness, neutral viewpoints, friendly and accepting approach and the general friendliness of people in Santa Fe.

She listened and responded....

"Well, it sounds like you found your tribe."

I had never heard that expression before and it got me to thinking about my own experience.

I grew up on the Texas Gulf Coast in Beaumont, Tx.....

Went to college at Lamar University in Beaumont.

Then came to live in Lake Jackson Tx where I've lived for 30 years.

I began in my mid 30s to travel more and see what the rest of the US looked like.

All the while not fitting in with the kind of restrained and structured life frame that bordered me in the Southern community and culture of the Texas Gulf Coast.

Decisions and Commitments to my Family kept me where I was for a long time.

But recent years have seen my Decisions, Commitments and Family dissolve and I've been freed to Explore and Discover the World around me and my own Self World.

In that Trek, I've learned that Life is Short and getting shorter and that the Path to Happiness  is tread by the footsteps of a good Diet, Exercise and Stress and Sleep Management.

And that the single greatest component of that journey is being in an Environment and Surrounding that nurtures your natural tendencies.

Have I found my Tribe?

I dunno....

But I do know, I'm a lot closer than I've ever been.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Random Thoughts from Random images

Me and Abba and Disco.... 

People poo poo Disco but just let them pull out Donna Summer or Cool and the Gang at any Dance Club and every swinging dick and chick jump up and start dancing.

From Abba to White Zombie.... now that's a segue with a slight gap.

After the bad week with my knee this week is a different animal....

I'm actuall feeling pretty...

Eating to Recover....

Spring Mix with Balsamic and EVOO....

Ground Turkey Breast Patty AND an Ahi Tuna Steak....

That's about 70 g of Protein for about 300 calories in that skillet.

Separate the proteins with some wilted kale....

And you got something to grow on....

Abba to White Zombie to Disturbed to Kid Rock....

I told ya I like all kinds of music!

Keeping the abs where they need to be.... with Paleo.

Yep..... finally got below 170... that's the right place to be for me.

This dude has talent and an attitude.

Kinda reminds me of me.

Maybe I'm the one
Maybe I'm the one who is the schizophrenic psycho (yeah)

Wholy Brontosaurus Ribeye Fred Flintstone.... WTF?

Topped on the left with sauted veggies....
On the right with Spring Mix, tomatoes and strawberries.
With a Fruit Punch Creatine - Chocolate Protein Mix on the top.
Ate 1/2 the ribeye for lunch..... saving the other half for the next meal.

When you eat like this, the results aren't random.

They're real.

I know it.... I'm living it.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

What did Zeus say to Narcissus...

If you wanna look good.... watch what you eat!

Well... not really but that fits this post.

Ground turkey breast mix patty with sweet mustard over home grown tomatoes.

Grilled Pork Chop with cantaloupe and salad and brown rice and sweet potato.

What did Zeus REALLY say to Narcissus?

"You better watch yourself!" 

Love it...

But don't love these Texas Gulf Coast Temps.

Temperature advisory for heat index to 108 for several days....

That's hurting hot!

I'm getting to know knee structure pretty well....

Had to have one of my sister's masterpieces....

Bacon, Egg and Tomato Sandwich!

That's a Work of Art!

And speaking of knees and what goes in your body.....

This is the Protein Mix I drink except in Chocolate.

And it's got all the good amino acids including L-Leucine which is directly involved in the collagen cycle of rebuilding soft tissue damage in the body!

Here's a 5 oz 30g of protein grilled Ahi Tuna Steak over a mass of Spring Mix and other veggies.

Followed by a dessert of Mixed Nuts, dried cranberries, banana chips and fresh red grapes.

Country Boy Rap.... I've talked about it before....

Hey.... Build it and Sell it.

Go Big Smo...

You gotta believe You're Beautiful.....

Otherwise no one else will.

More beauty building.

Prep'd Ground Turkey Breast Mix in the back with all kinds of good veggies in it - including poblano pepper, jalapeno pepper, sweet onion and carrot sticks.

A bed of Spring Mix, tomatoes, radishes, carrots and boiled egg.

Pork and Venison Sausage and baked sweet potato with cinnamon.

And a patty of the Ground Turkey Breast Mix.

Paired with a fruit punch Creatine....

This is a wonderful meal.

Narcissus would eat this.