My face is as red as a beet. I worked a long day on black asphalt and earned a monster sunburn.

I don’t wear sunblock when I work. It drives my mom crazy. She probably gives me sunblock as a gift about twice a year but I don’t use it. I like the feeling of the sun penetrating my face when I work; it reminds me that I am alive.

I work hard.

For a guy who is naturally pretty lazy, I have the capacity to work as hard and as long as most. I enjoy exhaustion- it makes it too taxing overcomplicate things. There is freedom in working yourself into a place where all you want in the world is a cup of ice-water and a place to sit down. A long day of work is the only time my mind gets to rest. I will trade worry for a sunburn any day of the week.

I can take the heat. I am not bothered by the sun.

My thoughts, my worries, my concerns, my anxiety- they bother me; the heat of the sun does not.

In most people’s minds it would make sense to wear sunblock but there are those who can understand my unwillingness to apply it. People do odd things to make them feel alive. Some folks wake up feeling alive and stay that way all the time without any help at all; folks like me need all the help we can get.

People like me can think themselves into a hole where we believe that we would rather not be alive at all. This is why I sometimes need my cage to be rattled, the distance to be long, the weight to be heavy, the aid to be scarce, the heat to be unrelenting, the road to be rocky, the trail to be arduous, the situation to be dire, the blisters to be oozing, the muscles to be achy, the dirt to be gritty, the splinters to be jagged, and the sun to be hot.

If I don’t do things that make me feel alive I will spend my time just waiting to die. If I wait long enough, I will want to speed up the process. Sure, sunburn is dangerous but so is stagnancy. I’m willing to exchange the possibility of death if it means the sensation that comes with feeling alive.

Not all good decisions are safe and logical. Sometimes it takes bad decisions to find the best that life has to offer.

I’ll do damn near anything to attain sensation that comes with feeling alive- it’s the only way I know to stay ahead of death.

Peace, Love, and all things Beef related,