“-at least don’t hurt them.”


It’s a dark world out there. As we age, we tend to hold more truth to that sentiment. For some, they’ve learned at an early age and sometimes through unfortunate circumstances. So because of that dark absolute, what do we do?

Religion has laid down rules to help ease the uncertainty and lead by example a life worth rewarding in the afterlife and beyond. Different philosophies from greats (and not so greats) have given some the roadmap to life. And some adopt their own way of life crafted and influenced by their experiences and knowledge gained throughout their lifetime.

As for myself, I’ve always felt that our purpose in life, our duty as human beings, is to help others along the way, and if we can’t, at least don’t hurt them.

Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them. – Dalai Lama

For everything we do in life, there is effort behind it. It’s practically science: For every motion, there’s a force behind it. With that being said, why do people put effort into hurting others? Is it all for personal gain? Or acting out on personal insecurities or unresolved inner turmoil? Or the common denominator: because someone had done the same to them?

It could just be the way I was raised, which my mom taught us to always mind ourselves and not give in to those who lash out or take out their frustrations on you. I guess because of that upbringing, I never understood the whole sense of going out of your way just to hurt others.

Now, given there are situations where some could be hurt by grossly ignorant or negligent actions of others, which is still not to be condoned in my personal opinion, but I’m speaking on the conscious intention and effort of hurting others.

I’m a big boy and yes, I understand why some people hurt others but even then. Why? We all have an expiration date on this life we live and no matter how much we like to think the world revolves around us and ourselves only, we are not alone in this world. There are other breathing, thinking, feeling souls in this world going through this crazy journey called life. The world, hell, life itself, is already hard, so why make it harder for somebody else? Why not put that wasted effort on putting others down, towards a positive force for the good of not only yourself or the other party, but the whole world.

Realists pessimists and similar types tend to romanticize the idea of the world being a dog eat dog world. And here’s the thing: it is. It really fucking is. But so fucking what? Why contribute to it? Why add to it? Because you think it’s a moot point to be the bigger person and help others as opposed to bringing them down? Because no matter how much good you put into this world, someone will hurt you and take advantage of your kindness?

You see, that’s where you draw the line. How dare you mistake kindness for naivety. How dare you mistake kindness for weakness. How dare you mistake kindness for a waste of effort when you could be creating a better world not only for yourself but for everyone else.

How dare you chose the easy way of being an asshole instead of a force for selfless, altruistic good.

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…and as always, don’t forget to smile and be happy =)

 

 

 

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Nightmare #572 (It’s a funny and kinda gross post)


It happened again.

A stench so unformidable, yet familiar, lingered in the air.
The chatter of the public heard from a distance was guaranteed not so distant. The pressure of the ticking clock grew as the seconds turned to minutes.

I was taking a dump during my break at work.

 

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Thanks, Howie.

 

I rushed myself, following the procedure I always do when it comes to public dumping (flush beforehand to test the toilet, flush for every dump and after I wipe), and that’s when it happened.

I always laughed at the idea of the situation; the ridiculousness of the scenario…and I finally found myself at the (butt) end of a joke. I came to the last three sheets of toilet paper.

 

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This image haunts me.

 

It was three sheets. Three. Fucking. Sheets. Not necessarily a hail mary (that’s a one sheeter shitter), but definitely a predicament. I folded it for durability and security to not soil my hands.

In my hands, in my hands again. 

With no confidence, I brought the poor excuse for wiping material to my cheeks. But fear stopped me in my tracks. Was I ready to use this? I had to fully plan out every wipe. I had two rounds TOPS with the folded three sheeter, with folding it again, and that’s with a high risk of contaminating my hands.

Then I had the brilliant idea!

Shit, Jerico, just call the store from your phone! It’d be one hell of a funny story but you could get someone to grab you some toilet paper! 

I did the awkward shuffle with my pants down to grab my phone. Not in the right pocket, which is fine cause it’s usually not there. Okay. Check the left pocket…

 

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Swiping left and right as I wipe.

 

Utter. Fear.

Nothing. Not there. My phone is on the table in the backroom.

At this particular moment, the trolling fates have called upon me to partake in their ritual of toilet humor embarrassment. And they’re having a fucking ball.

This is the part where I imagine the scenario I’ve always joked about, where you do the awkward box step with your pants down to your ankles, moving with desperation to a destination that will hopefully have solitude in the form of ass wiping material. And though you move with desperation, you pray that you don’t have any excess fecal matter from your pooper that could run the risk of following the rules of gravity and trickle down your legs.

But I didn’t submit to the box step. I bit the bullet. I looked the fearsome dog that is fear itself in the eye and accepted the possible consequences for my blind recklessness mistaken for pure confidence. I gave myself a pep talk. I became my own hypeman.

 

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Key & Peele. Rap Battle Hype Man sketch. Classic.

 

I was ready to do what needed to be done. It was about to go down. History was going to be made. Books will be written about this exact moment and people will shout my name as a source of inspiration for when they find themselves in the great turmoil of not having toilet paper.

But then by chance, I thought…yup.

There was a backup roll. Just shoved all the way up the dispenser where you can’t see it.

 

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I see you trying to hide and shit.

 

But there was a lesson to be learned here: always have faith. And just like faith…you can’t always see it, but it’s there. And if it’s not, then the last person to poop screwed you over. Or better yet, left you shit out of luck.

 

 

“This is gonna be my last time…”


“This is gonna be my last time,” I told her.

The last time to get checked out, draw blood, get immunizations or prescription without any fear or fiscal burden.

The last time to have assistance in paying the larger parts of medical expenses.

It was going to be my last appointment with Tricare coverage and the last time I’d be seeing the receptionist who always remembered me.

For a good year or so I admitted myself into a journey of therapy and counseling to relieve myself of unnecessary stress and pain. Coming back to writing here is all part of the therapeutic process.

Every appointment I ever had, I was always greeted with a warm smile and a hello. She’d check me in without needing any identification from me. Kinda like jumping the line at an exclusive club, except that club is a sterilized establishment where ailments are taken care of and people are shocked by their actual weight versus what they lie about say.

Afterwards I’d always take a seat and chuckle and smile. As often this occurred, I wondered if it was a good thing or not that receptionists for a clinic knew me on a first name basis and would have me jump the line.

Regardless of that, telling her it was going to be my last time felt like departure from one chapter and embarking on another. Because I was going to lose coverage in the next two days (my twenty-sixth birthday was that Thursday) I couldn’t go to the clinic I was receiving care at. I had to bite the bullet and wade the waters of civilian healthcare coverage.

I was told that it wasn’t going to be that bad, but saying goodbye to providers who’ve taken good care of you made it all the more emotional and sentimental. Even my therapist whom I made a great connection and progress with, couldn’t take my new insurance plan through work. So I have to start over again with a new therapist. Looking forward to that.

But in all honesty…I know I’m gonna be okay. It feels nice doing all of this for myself, being responsible and shit. You know…adulting. It’s definitely empowering and feels good.

Writing again definitely feels good, too.

 

The love we give and the love we receive


Is it possible to receive the love that we give? Is it possible to reap what we sow in the romantic sense? Is it selfish to expect a return in our investment?

These were questions that came to me while I was working on the floor today (Starbucks because I’m on that “two job” grind, but that’s another story for another post).

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I’ve been writing for a local school paper since the new year. This is a courtesy photo from the last article I wrote.

I’d like to think it’s natural to expect some sort of a return when you invest into a relationship, no matter the conditions of the relationship (romantic or platonic). But right away, I played devil’s advocate to my own belief by proposing the notion of it being selfish to have an expectation, or better yet, to act in a particular way because of an expectation (as opposed to selfless actions).

So do I long for the love I give?

I do.

Do I receive it?

Can’t say I do, at least not from where I want it. But of course we can’t have our cake AND eat it.

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You can’t have this.

I like to think that I got over the whole “I need someone to love and who will love me and be my sunshine and source of happiness and will solve all my problems and shit” show. I really do. Because I’ve adopted this new belief of not necessarily finding someone to fix you, but to have someone love you while you fixed yourself.

But Jerico, don’t you believe in fixing one’s self before committing to a relationship? The whole “love yourself before you love others?”

I do…or, at least I’m flexible with that belief now.

I’ve recently went through…one hell of an emotional roller coaster ride, worse than this one and this one (and honestly any post that has gone up in the past couple of years). I confronted demons that have been long overdue and am currently on the road to recovery; rebuilding; reawakening, really. And as I was confronting those demons, all I could think of was how I wished I had someone next to me. I had/have all the support I could ever ask for standing behind me and pushing me along the way…but again, no one beside me.

Yes, eventually it’ll be us vs. our demons…but hell does it make it easier to have someone right next to you.

You know what it is that I miss? Intimacy. Not just on a sexual basis but definitely more on the emotional level. Emotional intimacy in that feeling of an “emotional safety net” you share with someone where you have a complete mutual understanding and affection towards each other. A safety net, meaning that they’re there to catch you when you fall, but it’s all up to you to get back up. Because that how it should be, a healthy romantic relationship, at least I think so. Not where one or the other serves as a safety net AND a ladder AND an emergency climbing rope AND a carabiner that’s about to give way AND a parachute that won’t pull out nor will the emergency because you’ve strained them so much with your constant dependency and fear of loneliness.

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I…I don’t think that’s what you’re supposed to do when you go rock climbing.

Which is why I give the love that I give. Why I give the attention I give. Why I communicate in the way I do with others. Because honestly…I just want it in return. I want someone who would get excited about sharing a story or two, or a thought as soon as they see me because they know that I would greatly appreciate it. I want someone to remember the tiniest irrelevant things about me and then surprise me by remembering something so little yet so meaningful to me. I want someone to ask me the same questions I ask, using bits and pieces of their life story as a pallet to paint the portrait of this amazing being. I want someone to look into my eyes the same way I look into theirs; feeling the same feelings looking into each others’ eyes.

But that’s all it is…wants. At least that’s what my mind tells my heart. It’s all wants, I need to think about what I need right now. What I need to do so that I can finally stand on my own two feet and fully support myself. What I need to say once I’m in that room with a possible employer. What I need to think about when it comes to making decisions for the future.

And it comes back to the wants…while we go through the needs in our lives and figure out how to attain those, it’s sure as hell nice to have someone next to you while they figure our their needs as well.

TLDR; I just want a chick who’s down for serious Netflix and chill and who loves breakfast food. And loves spontaneous outings. Yeah.

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Someone to Netflix and chill with and look at me the same way Leo looks at his cookies.

 

Rooftops And Sunrises And A New Life


It’s quite the common occurrence: shedding a tear or two every Sunday morning at church. Why? Because when I get myself to pray during mass, I feel overwhelmed with all these requests that my heart and mind are screaming out to God, hoping he’ll hear at least one or two of them. I like to formulate actual requests when I pray, whether it be in my heart or verbally, but as of late it gets so hard to do so when I feel like it’s a shouting contest within.

To tell you the truth, my heart has been heavy (what else is new, Jerico) to the point that breaking down and having an episode is a guaranteed weekly event. But with the heavy heart and lowest lows, there have been little highs here and there that pull me from those lows. Whether it’s a healthy perspective or not, life for the past couple of years have consisted of living in anticipation of highs and lows, and both mentally and emotionally preparing for them AND repairing myself afterwards. I don’t know if it’s the scale of the lows that I’ll hit, but whenever I do hit a high, it’s a high worth cherishing and holding dear and close. Sometimes I cherish it so much that I smother it which in turn, the downfall ensues.

Why do you think I do those Smile And Be Happy videos? Well…that’s another post for another time.

I recently posted on Instagram and it perfectly captured just exactly what I’ve been feeling…IMG_3321

“I’ve been up since 4am. And it wasn’t forced. Actually I’ve been waking up early lately, getting usually 2-4 hours of sleep each night with no luck of ever falling back asleep. Because there’s too much on my mind and too much in my heart. I know I am loved but I can’t help but feel so lonely and afraid. And that’s what wakes me up and keeps me up. For a brief period of time I felt like the world was okay again. That everything was going to be alright. Everything was alright. But because of who I am, how I am, what I am, I’m left feeling lost and alone. And everyone around me is getting tired of it, I know you all are. Even my family. But trust me, I hate it just as much as you all do, if not, even more. So I wander around hoping to find an answer in the most natural way possible instead of feigning emotions and forcing situations. But to no avail. So all I can do is get on my roof and enjoy this view, wishing I had someone to enjoy this view with. I’m sorry, but I hate this. I really do.”

So I spend time on my rooftop and enjoy the view…though I wish I had someone to share the view with, I take what very little happiness I can get and hold on to it with clenched fists and tears in my eyes.

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And when I fall into another low, I’m given something to look forward to; something to instill hope. A new life.

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On September 24th, I became Uncle Jerico.

And for a bonus funny post…my sister insisted I posted this picture.

Aye bruh.
Aye bruh.

What Is Happiness: “The embodiment of the simplest things in life.”


In this week’s Smile And Be Happy, happiness can mean “the embodiment of the simplest things in life.”

“To me happiness is the embodiment of the simplest things in life. Why did I choose this environment? Because it’s simple. I like to be connected with the simplest things. Nature to me is what brings my inner happiness. You may not think of it, but as a person I believe that reconnecting with nature is one of the things that will bring me happiness. It may happen [for] others but to me this is what it is: one step closer with nature. In fact, one of my best memories growing up was going to my grandparents ranch in Mexico and it was like this. There was no communication with the world; it was very simple; we cooked on fire; we did everything [in the simplest way] and it’s the little simple things in life that take away the daily stress and in result you get the happiness you need: peace and tranquility. By starting out simple, appreciating and loving and being happy towards the simpler things, it’s a step for me to grow and be happier [with] the other things that come with it. So by starting out liking and being happy with the simple things, I’ll be a lot happier with everything else. “

Tony Ambriz is a San Antonio local who dabbles in cosplay, convention life, and graphic design! To check out his work, Like him over on Facebook and head on over to his website to show him some love!

…and as always, smile and be happy =)

What Is Happiness: “A Yawn”


A couple weeks ago, I had a late lunch with a coworker. Since I have never hung out with this coworker outside of work, I decided to initiate a conversation with my list of introspective questions, one of them being “What is happiness?” After he shared his answer with me, I was inspired to start my “Smile and Be Happy” mini-docu series that I’ve been wanting to get back into since college.

Below is the first video of the series and below the video is the transcript. Enjoy!

“To me, personally: a yawn. You don’t even realize it but you’re doing social interaction then if you’re doing a yawn. Let’s say you’re in public with your friends, otherwise, or even at work, that’s an interaction that you didn’t even realize just like there. I’m scared of being alone so I’m happy when I’m not alone. Honestly, happiness is whatever you choose and whether you realize it or not. I don’t think I even realized I chose a yawn to be my happy thing, but I always perk up whenever someone else yawns. Especially if I got them to, it’s like a little mischievous play.”

Smile And Be Happy is going to be a weekly video posting focused on positive psychology. Stay tuned for next week’s posting =)

...and as always, smile and be happy =) 

What I say and what I do

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