How I’m Fitting Into A New World (Part 2)


So far what I’ve established in my life is that preparation fuels everything. It’s my basis for confidence and my main anxiety reducer, both creatively and in my personal life. In BLOG 5, I talked about figuring out what works for me as I approach this new year and a new chapter in my life. I’ve settled into a new living situation, been trying out different working environments, and trying to stay productive creatively. Though society is still very uncertain, my objective was to play the hand I am currently dealt in order to be able to move forward. I’ve set goals and shifted priorities, but also stayed committed to certain things in order to plan on what comes next. Halfway through the year, I’m checking in to show my successes and shortcomings. Maybe you can CONTACT ME with some advice, or maybe you can pick up on something that’ll give you an idea on shaping your creative world.

I think the pandemic and other events in the past couple of years showed everyone how tough things can be in the States. Now that this country is moving forward from that, we can still see where things in our society are causing lots of us to struggle. Healthcare, employment, affordability, opportunity, and overall quality of life has become more dependent on government intervention. Resourcefulness is incredibly key. Personally, I am living off of government services such as Medicaid, SNAP, and even utility assistance, all while working a few jobs.

Referring back to Part 1, my decisions were all about having an ideal situation by trying things out to see what will work for me. My outlook on life is largely about efficiency in general–how to be efficient with time, money, food, or anything else that is needed to survive. When I first moved down to South Philadelphia I thought the 2 biggest things that I wanted from the working world were having jobs that were local and flexible. I viewed travel time as a big potential time waster and having the flexibility to take days off to focus on music would be a great asset to have going forward.

I first kept the part-time weekend job that I started in 2021. I added onto that by trying a bunch of different phone apps for delivering food and babysitting from time to time. Lastly, I secured a job serving at a restaurant a couple times a week. No job I took was more than a 15-minute scooter ride away, which cut virtually all travel costs and not much time wasted. I had good days and bad days with all of these options, but I was achieving what I set out to do. I had some jobs on the books to prove I was working to keep my benefits, while also having some side hustles so I could have enough cash to pay for rent and gas.

The first 6 months of 2022 really kept me on my toes with waves of COVID, different government mandates, and fluctuating costs. With the work life I sought after, there was one big weakness: stability. From week to week things would change so much that I really had to learn how to set myself up for success. For example, the winter vaccine mandate brought very slow and inefficient days to waiting tables at the restaurant, however delivering takeout food was a bumping business. Recently, the whole thing flipped around due to the rising gas prices and lack of compensation on the delivery apps and babysitting fell off now that summer camps are happening. Though these months had put some stress on my mentality, I still relied on the fact that I was doing what I wanted to do and I was still flexible to create.

Now if you’re here reading this blog, you’ll also notice the many things I have going on with this website. Between all of those content outlets and the occasional solo acoustic showing, this has been pretty much the extent of my creativity so far this year. In the past, the BANDS and music have always been at the forefront of my creativity, but now this aspect has yet to recover post-COVID restrictions. It feels like it has been harder than ever to find folks that can commit to music projects or to even just communicate effectively in order to schedule anything.

In order to make any progress with music, I’ve just had to dig deeper and deeper into how to do things myself and how to multitask. If you’ve checked out the STREAM you might have seen a sneak peek of me mixing recordings for KNUCKLËHEAD and still trying to practice playing tunes on my own. Getting my stream set up has been holding me accountable for making progress musically and really showing that I haven’t just forgotten about being in a band. There are only so many times when I can lose contact with people in order for me to just realize I have to move forward somehow. Some of the songs I’m working to release go as far back as 2018 and require a lot of retooling. I really wanted to have as many people involved with my next project as possible, but when all the dust settled I was the only one left ready to work.

As an enthusiast of Henry Rollins and the work ethic he stands for, I worked on embracing productivity through isolation. I finally started making progress with music, but found another big weakness: loneliness. Mentally, I put quite a lot on my plate and pressure myself more and more to keep making progress at something. Sometimes I feel like a guy that’s spinning plates, but again what I’m hanging my hat on is the fact that I am doing the things that I want. Ironically enough, my quest for putting out creative stuff to connect with people leaves me mostly in a state of solitude. Instead of waiting on others I just keep moving on to something else and figuring out how to do more and more things myself.

All in all, I will conclude with a sense of bittersweet accomplishment. I’m still trying to figure out how to make progress and accomplish things the best possible way, but realistically I can only do things my way. I’m putting out what I want creatively, but not quite at the level I want to be at yet. But that will just keep me working toward something. I sometimes wonder if I’m just treading water or just slowly swimming to where I want to be.





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