Running Out of Steam

Trigger Warnings – Nothing.

The title has probably given this much away but I’m running low on steam for this blog using my phone. Still, the computer is on the mend and I can always try getting to a library computer and doing it that way. That said, with this blow to the blog, getting back in order will be a task alright, not one that’s beyond me but still.

Truth be told, I think the biggest problem for the blog at the moment is me, not my facilities. If I was really determined, I could make do, type through the pain, stop my whinging and so on. I’m not doing the best mood wise really, hitting some real lows of late and it shows in my behaviour, particularly social.

I’m somewhere between reaching out and backing away, weird as that sounds. I can be very keen to start conversations, particularly at the wee early hours of the morning after midnight has passed, but I will also abruptly leave conversations or neglect to reply to people. I get annoyed or upset when people don’t reply to me though, as selfish as that seems, thankfully logic kicks sense into me after a while but there are nameless individuals who I seek validation from to get none. I’m not angry or bitter, just flat. To anyone who deals with me in their life, I apologise for everything, bear with me if you can.

I don’t know what I am after here, people could say I just want sympathy likes and shit but truth be told that has long since stopped mattering, I just have this blog and make use of it whenever. I like to think these posts are helpful to those close to me but that isn’t always the case, some people will claim to care and want to know the full story but if I direct them to my blog for the details, they suddenly have a lot less to say. Sorry, that probably sounds quite rude, I should be grateful these near strangers even give a flip but it can be a bit of a bitch considering how much of my soul I invest into this blog only to find a great deal of my friends don’t actually follow it, invalidates my work.

I know this post isn’t much, trying to keep up but struggling with my mood, my dreams, my social life, finding work… My blog sorta suffers as I do. Plus, phone typing makes my hands ache… Bleh. See you soon guys.

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Cheer Up Sunshine!

Trigger Warnings –

I’ve probably covered this topic before but I am not a sunny man, my disposition, whilst perfectly hospitable, is one of a stone faced man who can only just about force a smile onto his face most of the time. I’m capable of having a laugh and enjoying myself, don’t get me wrong, but my cheeriness is generally quite reserved and softly spoken.

With Christmas fast approaching, I feel I should be excited for it, it’s been a generally good year for me, I have a tight social circle, I know I’ll be receiving some nice gifts and I have gifts lining up for a number of friends and family members, quite good ones too. However, I struggle to feel excited, I always have in all honesty and I’m not 100% sure why but I have theories.

Contrary to the impression given by the number of personal posts I make on this blog, my innermost feelings are really quite valuable to me and I tend to keep them under my hat, which has advantages and disadvantages. The advantage is strength, I can plough on through personal dilemmas and get stuff done. I can suffer indignation and still be driven to rise from the ashes like the metaphorical firebird of legend. Disadvantages are that I give off this impression of never enjoying anything and when people comment on it, I internalise it and so here I am, unable to be excited because everyone has to ask why I never am.

I guess this is a standard of masculinity forced upon me by being a male, the eldest brother of the household at that, everything was about strength and resolve, weakness was not an option. I went out of my way to be a strong person, I had to prove it at every opportunity. Feelings, or at least feelings like excitement, were weak, they were childish and unnecessary to a fighter. All of this loops back to my teenage years of anger and fire, I’ve overcome that part of myself but there is so much more to it than just learning not to resolve problems by punching them in the face, you have to rethink everything.

Overcoming that anger was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done and even now there a handful of people I’d love to do some damage to if there were no consequences to it. However, such things exist only as petty fantasies like we all have, we all know that one guy you would like to see get what’s coming to them, for me I used to do just that by mashing their faces into walls, now I just mumble. The trouble for me was learning to walk away or breathe slowly but also the process of changing because I think only one person ever really had any faith in me, everyone else seemed to label me even after months without so much as a raised voice. Change is like that though, a painter isn’t paid for holding brushes, they’re paid for a painted wall and any substantial change is the same, nobody will applaud you for saying it will happen, only when it has happened and even then they’ll remind you how much of an asshole you used to be. I don’t mind people bringing up my past but when it’s in the context of “You used to be a real sack of shit”, how do I respond adequately?

Anyway, rambling on, this sorta wandered across a broad spectrum. I meant to say I feel too exposed when I’m visibly displaying a passionate emotion and open to mockery so don’t take it personally if I don’t jump up and down grinning when you say you’ve got me a Christmas present. If you ever see me opening up, don’t take it for granted and don’t call attention to it or I will clam up right away.

Final note to anyone struggling to change, don’t give up. People will doubt you, deny you, resent you and maybe try to break you but we are all capable of great things if we have but the courage and resources to try. I used to be a hyperaggressive super jerk with delusions of grandeur, now I’m just me, I’ll leave you to your own descriptions of me from there.

Until Next Time

Trigger Warnings – Mentions of suicide

My blog’s been thriving, apparently my comments on Band-Aid really stuck with people because the traffic for that article has been pretty much non-stop, might have to work on making it into a vlog or podcast for people if I can get the resources to do so, still only a nice idea at this stage. Anyway, tonight’s post is just a personal update for people, I couldn’t find anything blog worthy in today’s news and the current idea I have in the wings deserves a proper effort, not some slap dash rambling thrown out there before it gets too late (Prime time for my blog is between 1900 and 2200 hours GMT/UTC) and it is already getting late so I figured I’d just keep you all up to date with the life of Jacob Wolfe

So what’s been going on? Well, I started that mood journal, too soon for it to reflect much but I’ve noticed my mood peaks at lunch time and just after I finish work but crashes after dinner and I start everyday in a bad mood, which might be the bad dreams, might be an uncomfortable bed, who knows? I’m using a 1 to 10 scale, 1 being wanting to die and 10 being jumping and clapping my feet together as I skip home and I note this down every hour, on the hour (or as close as possible to that time) and for the sake of the chart, any hour in which I am sleep is recorded as a 5, meaning no strong feeling either way, unless I had very disturbing dreams in which case I’ll note how I felt in the dream. I keep a dream and activity record as well and I’ve been told of a good dream analyst to visit, perhaps a bit Freudian but anything that might help, I’m willing to try… well, unless you approach me in robes holding up crystals and pushing them into my hands, I might be a bit iffy about that sort of thing

I realise a numerical scale is probably not the best measurement but its easy to monitor and notice trends in, thus how I was able to tell you my moods peak and plummet at certain times. I’ve yet to hit a 1, not sure I’m even capable of 10 but today notes the first 8 and 2 on the record, well the first two 2s. I’m glad this is a written article, this would be hell to read aloud. As for the dreams, well the past two have been weird but no deaths involved thankfully, rather more themes of boredom and isolation and I can’t even remember last night’s dream, you know how it can be with dreams.

I bet you’re asking what I’m hoping to see and hoping to achieve with the number scale hey? Well initially I thought I’d be marking down all 2s and 3s all day long but lately I’ve had moments of spontaneous joy so I’m expecting to bounce between 2/3 and 7/8, so far it’s been hovering around 3/4 with moments of 7. I realise this is a weird article, it looks like I spilt spaghetti numbers over everything. I don’t mind the 6/7/8s but if they’re not gonna last, it’s a bit of a pain, especially as they’re not tapered off, they crash so I’d want something to stabilise the bouncing back-and-forth of my moods because in an ideal world I’d be 10 all the time but that’s unrealistic, I’d like to just float around 5/6 personally, maybe deal with a 4 and a 3. I should be thankful, no 1s, I’m rarely that low to be honest but we’ll see

Sorry if that was weird to read, it matters to some of you though and it’s surprising how much of a following the personal posts get, maybe people just like the reminder I’m still a thinking, feeling creature and take an interest in that? Would explain why some of the most popular vloggers are just genuine people talking about general stuff and not crazy charades made for attention (Some are but when you think of the likes to Tomska and Laci Green, they’re popular for their honesty and human demeanour as well as their actual content, unlike celebrities or actors that don elaborate personae to perform for us before going back to being who they actually are)

Anyway, I’ll try to get out a proper post tomorrow, I know if I get lax with them then my views suffer but for now, hope this little update on all things Jake was somewhat interesting

Yo-Yo In An Elevator

Trigger Warnings – Mentions of death, self-harm, suicide, cannibalism

British people, calm down, I know to us it is “Yo-Yo In A Lift” but that didn’t have the same ring to it. In case the title leaves something to be desired, this is a personal post, insert the standard apology for doing more personal blogging than political or topical stuff, lord knows my view stats are taking the bullet for that one, the past week has seen a steady decline in my reader base but when I have an agenda, I don’t want to make a hack job of it by blogging about it when I don’t feel up to it so tonight is some more personal stuff.

My mood has been fluctuating again. Remember recently I did a post about being really content with my life and having this sense of well-being? And remember how I enjoyed my birthday celebrations and stuff and was happy then? Yeah well I feel flat now, perhaps there’s more to my mood issues than I thought, it had previously just been a constant crushing sadness but now it temporarily vanishes and clears away to blue skies before coming back as one hell of a storm. I’ve decided as of next week I shall keep a mood diary listing my mood each hour, on the hour, and what I was doing at the time, see if I notice any patterns and I’ll take this journal to a doctor, who will probably dismiss it as needing more sleep or a job I enjoy more than the one I have but hey, worth a shot, maybe one day one doctor will actually admit there is something wrong and help.

I’ve been having some weird dreams lately, some are pleasant and normal enough but some are very disturbing. Last night, I dreamt I asked someone out, won’t say who, but I was so overjoyed they said yes that I wasn’t looking where I was going and stepped out in front of a bus. Yes, Doctor Who-ey I know, your dreams are influenced by that kind of thing but anyway, I didn’t wake up. Well I did, I woke up in the dream and found myself in a rundown abandoned military building with some friends and strangers, who told me the place was safe except for the West Wing, which is full of cannibals and the only reason the cannibals are kept at bay is the sacrifice of one of the group once a week. We couldn’t escape, we had no weapons, we had limited supplies and we were all scared. I dreamt I was being told to go give the cannibals their sacrifice, they’d chosen someone, but when we turned up there the sacrifice attacked me and locked me in the wing with them so I was eaten alive. Then I woke up for real, confused, horrified and nervously lying still in bed for half an hour.

I do not self-harm, I kicked that habit when I was fourteen (Roughly, can’t remember exactly) and I don’t contemplate suicide. I looked into it, it can mean either a crushing realisation the pursuit of happiness through wealth is impossible or it can be a metaphor for feeling overwhelmed by sexual desires. I don’t sit well with those ideas, the wealth thing sounds silly and my sex drive hasn’t been this low in a long time, the desires I have in my heart aren’t lustful and depraved, I desire someone to be with, to laugh with, to hold close, to enjoy a relationship with, not a fuckfest. I’m still jaded about all that though, I see a pretty face now and then but otherwise I’m resigned to being single for some time now, I accept that fact

Anyway, my other dreams have mostly been along two themes – my own death or a new romantic relationship. The romantic dreams are fairly standard, they’re clearly subconscious, well… conscious fantasies playing themselves out but the death dreams? I’ve been eaten, shot, hit by traffic, stabbed, pushed off a cliff, drowned, it’s disturbing that I’m dreaming about such things and it’s one main reason I don’t sleep very well lately, I’m not sure what awaits me, a dream so perfect I don’t want to wake up or a nightmare so horrific I’m scared straight for half an hour when I wake up

I realise this is deeply personal and very disturbing, I’ll have to look into professional help I can afford but I need to talk about this stuff but actually forming words on how I feel and think is incredibly hard, I’ve never been very good at it. I struggle to express emotions through my own personal behaviour, I can barely cry unless it is something overwhelming and even when I lose people I care about, my face doesn’t budge an inch, I haven’t wept for a loss in so long. I’ve heard it’s a common male issue of being pressured to be tough, so tough you struggle to allow yourself to be vulnerable and being a boy who lost a lot as a child whilst being the elder brother of two young boys and having male role models who were never shown to be weak, I guess I’ve internalised the constant rule of never admitting to weakness or need so the written word is how I do just that. Heck, even romantically, I struggle to say the words out loud and some feelings have remained unspoken forever because I just can’t face the rejection and humiliation

Urgh, that was a huge emotional dump and after all that, I feel no better really. I’ll keep this diary as of Monday and track my mood up until the New Year then see a doctor about it, see what they say. Here’s hoping they’ll take action this time

No Half Measures

Hello everyone, this is a personal post so this may well be less funny or less interesting than a lot of my other posts but I write these mostly for myself and for those who care about what goes on in my head on an emotional level, rather than just poking at my throbbing satire gland (it’s a part of the brain found almost exclusively in bemused British people like myself or David Mitchell). Now as some of you may well be aware, I fight an ever-shifting war in my head against the forces of anger and misery, two emotions that want total dominion over me as a person and to completely eradicate all feelings of joy, hope or ambition. I can often keep these two demons at bay with some macho gusto and a dose of laughter but then sometimes it comes on like a surge, as if turning the taps to get a glass of water and instead causing a flood that sinks half the country. I can’t fully explain why this happens but I’m going to attempt to do so on this page, mostly for my own benefit if I am honest.

Going back to little Jacob, ages twelve and under, my emotional scale was not really that vast, as expected of a child, but it was always dramatic. I couldn’t be slightly happy, I had to be really happy. I couldn’t be slightly upset, I had to be bawling with tears and so on and so on. Whilst this made it easier to tell what mood I was in when, it meant I could switch and overreact for no apparent reason but to me it felt like the world wasn’t reacting enough, making me feel like I was an anime character in a stage production of Pride and Prejudice – jarring, inappropriate, misplaced. As I grew older and wiser and started to develop feelings such as sympathy and affection, I tried to learn what it meant to be human, to react like a human being to certain scenarios but the emotions that eluded me the most were anger and empathy. I had no empathy and too much anger and I was essentially selfish; I maintained these personal relationships because these people could offer me things I wanted like praise, an audience or they were the ones who shared their food with me. I know that sounds horrid but this is the basis upon which relationships are formed, I just didn’t know how to make those relationships more meaningful. You all do it, you are attracted to people that can offer you things you want, like love, companionship, shared interests and so on, you don’t form relationships based on what you can give other people, you give people things because you expect something in return even if it’s the satisfying feeling of being a good person.

Move on ahead to age sixteen and I’ve developed past a world dictated by my selfish desires and my anger, swearing to wash my hands of my previously violent nature. I reacted with such anger because I was confused and scared by the conflicts, by criticism and anger gave me power, it scared the people who used to scare me. However, anger is not a way to live in a world of adults and as a man legally responsible for his own actions, I had to settle down. I also became more and more confident in romantic affairs, having learnt from a long run of failures and whilst I’m currently single, the relationships after I left school lasted longer and I still talk to those ex-girlfriends because I was more emotionally mature in my decisions, rather than a selfish fool. Love is complex, undoubtedly, and I’m no expert now and I have my drawbacks as a lover of course but I like to think I’m much wiser now and if I were looking for a long-term relationship, it’d work out much better now than it would if I was looking four years ago. Incidentally, if one of my ex-girlfriends is reading this, don’t this as me saying “Our relationship was meaningless”, take it more as “I have matured since our relationship and the fact things didn’t work out between us helped me to learn more about myself”. I imagine I could probably maintain healthy relationships with one of my ex-girlfriends if they met me now as this Jacob and not as the respective version of myself they dated X number of years ago.

Today, I have become much more aware of my emotions and can slide into them to a certain degree, rather than switch and jump around like a teleporting pogo stick on a roundabout. I can be slightly annoyed, really annoyed, pretty angry and then furious, rather than “Back off now or I snap… YOU WISH TO CONTINUE? THEN YOU WISH TO DIE!”. By the same token, I can now be pleased and then happy, rather than just very happy provided you did something I really wanted. I still suck at gratitude though, comes off as sarcasm but then when you’re as sarcastic as I am, I think people just struggle to tell what’s sincere and what isn’t. The only more British sounding curse is “He must drink tea to survive… but cannot stand the taste!”. However, a difficulty I now face is once I’m set onto a mood scale, from annoyed to angry or displeased to abysmal, I struggle to switch unless something happens to dramatically pull me off the scale. For example, say I receive some bad news – If I am not met with good news that puts the bad news into a realm of obscurity, I get more and more depressed about my situation in really, a rather stupid way.
“Oh, another person is ignoring me on Facebook. Oh god, this is typical, I get attached to someone and then they start hating me. I bet they tell their friends I’m a twat, maybe they want me to die in a hole so I can’t keep messaging them, asking them to come have a drink with me. I have no friends really, they all hate me. I hate me. I’m going to try and hide in the corner until I become one with the wall and cease to exist”
Now logically, I know this is stupid and the logic centre of my brain is shaking me vigorously as it tries to suggest that said person is busy, or in a bad mood, or left their Facebook logged on but isn’t at the computer. However, the nasty little gremlins take this scrap and stretch it into a full on reason to want to disappear off the face of the planet. So unless this person responds with big smiles and hugs and we get really chatty pronto or similarly, someone else I want to talk to chimes in and gets cosy with me, the gremlins win. I know this is stupid but I can’t help it and need to find a way out of it.

Far be it from me to lean on a loser’s limp but I’ve been dealt a bad hand in the emotional aspect of my brain. Sure, I have a natural talent for writing and constructing great sentences off the top of my head but I lack natural empathy, I cannot grasp complex emotions except by emulating them through intelligent guessing and I seem to have unreasonable senses of guilt despite not feeling the pain of others. Allow me to explain, empathy works by putting yourself in someone else’s shoes and internally reacting how you would in their situation to then share their pain and guide them through it. You help someone grieve the loss of a loved one by internally creating the emotions you would feel if you lost a loved one, or remembering an instance in which you did. By doing this, you share the pain but you know it is a hypothetical scenario you only created very briefly in your subconscious to give you a sense of understanding. I can’t do that. I use logic to emulate empathy by making an intelligent guess. Oh your dog died? You must be… sad… yes, that’d make you sad. What helps sad people? Sad people want food right? I will fetch biscuits and then this will make them better. Only in cases where I have been in their shoes (losing a loved one, being bullied for being different, having rotten siblings) can I feel their pain but otherwise I’m just guessing. I can’t read faces either, unless I’ve known the person and interacted with them physically on a regular basis for a few months. I know it, I’m terrible. Despite all this and knowing my limitations logically, I feel guilt. If you’re crying and in pain and my advice has been useless and you don’t want biscuits, I want to cry because I’m useless to you. I blame myself that the person isn’t happy. As a result, I often put up with a lot of abuse on an emotional level out of guilt, and admittedly, the desperate hope that I’ll get the respect I deserve one day.

Emotions are hard and if you read this thinking “The fuck is this guy saying? Is he a robot or just thick?” then you’re a lucky sod, your emotional register is as sound as a pound sterling. However, you might somehow relate to this article, perhaps you have AS like myself or maybe you are just very very intelligent on a number of levels and if so then you’ll understand why I’ve written this and why I act the way I do at times. I want to conclude by apologising for people who feel they are inadequate when they can’t “make me smile”, it’s a near impossible task and it is not your fault, gremlins have just got into the works again and I usually come out of it given time and quiet support (or the sudden realisation something great is about to happen to me)

Arrogance and Apathy (Originally Published – 8th February 2013)

Oh it’s a funny old life being Jacob Wolfe, self-confessed arrogant twat who rules his own little world but falls flat on his face at every hurdle. I recently triggered a massive debate when expressing my views on gay marriage, by which I mean I said I support it, a few people said they didn’t and I explained my argument before they buggered off then someone more intelligent tried to argue with me and it ended in agreeing to disagree, though with some discrepencies along the way. I won’t change my mind on core beliefs no matter how hard you try, and frankly my opponents weren’t trying to convince me they were right but rather tell me what I believed in was wrong, so to speak. I found the debate dis-satisfying though, the only intelligent counter argument to mine was that of religion and to me, talking to religious people about their beliefs is like signing up for being fucked in every orifice by a power drill, it’s a long and painful process that I don’t willingly agree to. I have my own personal religion so whenever anyone else brings up their religion, I’m offended by it, usually because it’s without me asking. However, with the topic being homosexuality, I should have been prepared for such. I’m arrogant, I admit it, and there are many reasons for that so I’m inclined to think I held my ground pretty well and did so with civility but being me, I never feel any sense of accomplishment in these confrontations. I boil in my own negative juices it seems, forever spiralling downwards because alongside intellect and arrogance, I decided to mix in pessimism and a general loathing for things that breathe… Great mixture. So, whilst I can often engage with the intellectual aspects of a person, their spiritual beliefs leave me with a bitter taste in my mouth and any stupid comments of any kind whatsoever instantly ring the prick alarm bells in my head. I can’t help it though, I think it’s just my character.

I worry about my cynical side sometimes, as humourous as he is with his massive vocabulary and the ability to outwit almost anyone who tries to challenge him but as much fun as he can be, he’s a miserable mother fucker and he’s quick to judgment. Internal arguments with myself have led me to believe I’d be a nicer person if there were less human beings crowding around him and doing stuff he hates, like existing. I guess I’m walking this tightrope between nice guy and total cunt but I’m doing the stunt whilst drunk and balancing on one foot with my arms cut off so it’s a bit hit and miss which side of the rope I fall off, the side where I pick you up off the floor or the side where I shoot puppies in the face… that’s a metaphor, I have no ill will for any puppy on the planet. The probable explanation for this is somewhere along the line, a younger me said ‘Fuck it’ and it just kinda stuck and honestly I swear that is the logic my brain goes by at times. Fuck it, I’ll tell them that they’re irritating. Fuck it, I’ll do a little extra work. Fuck it, I’ll go back to bed and grumble off to sleep. I realise I’m complaining a lot but it needs to come out and if you’ve read this far, you’re probably interested anyway which is kinda weird as effectively you’re just listening to the grumpy ramblings of an old man, so to speak. I’m bored, I’m broke and my body has developed the ‘Fuck it’ logic too, spontaneously deciding to make my spine feel like it’s made of uncooked spaghetti or my head feel like I’m lying on the road during a car crash. I spoke to my doctor, said it’s all just stress and depression. Thanks a bunch, you useless imbecile. The doctor also suggested my mood could be explained as the development of a sense of apathy that my body is reinforcing by periodically shutting down the systems at moments where it should be working. Oh well, I shan’t give up because I can’t give up and I haven’t done so previously so I’m not gonna start because of a few aches and pains in the joints. You’ll find I’m man enough to shoulder any burden I’m needed to, and then ask for more, because whilst I may be struggling at times, I still have that voice in my head that thinks I can run up waterfalls or punch the face of the non-existant God I don’t worship and that voice is what drives me to fight through each day

I was going to use this paragraph to tie things up nicely, or round it off with a positive note and a joke, but if I had a strong note to end on, I’d act on it myself. Besides, conciliatory endings don’t always have the same impact do they? In that regard, until my next rant, go away.