As I’m writing this (by which I hope to be done with at one point when this piece airs), I have two shortfilm reviews, a screener review and more articles to focus on before the year is out. Throughout all this, I’ve had my mind on what I wanted to post for my annual summation piece knowing I hadn’t gotten to enjoy or accomplish everything I wanted or intended to.
Indeed, I’ve had some amazing times this year between birthdays and singing at Karaoke bars – at least twice this year. I definitely abstained from going to the movies a lot and for a number of reasons – one of which deals with my increasing position where I work and pondering how I’m going to be able to balance it all out so as to keep two ships running – this website being one of them.
Next to this, I have plenty to be thankful for, including Keith Hayward, a fellow blogger who knows and understands the struggles and woes of bloggerlife as well anyone. Without him, Film Combat Syndicate wouldn’t have gotten the much-need facelift that it needed as it was through him I met a lovely person this summer by the name of Eileen, and as such, will be a cornerstone of my year per my website’s evolution. Granted we’ve had to deal with some bugs and setbacks, but to know she has my back makes all the difference.
I also have to thank actresses Laura Aguinaga and Lis LoCasio, actor Jose Manuel, stunt performer Paul Varacchi and his girlfriend Jamie, stunt locals Stephen Koepfer, Evelyn Osorio Vaccaro, Hector Soria, and Dylan Hintz, stunt coordinator and entrepreneur Janell Smith, and any and all parties therein for even looking in my direction, and playing a role in not only boosting my extracurricular enjoyments, but for also rooting their support from a genuine position with respect to my website.
Of course, I can’t continue without thanking the usual gang of artists who went out of their way to convene with me at a diner during one cold November evening for what remains in my memories as one of the best, most jubilant moments of my life; It seems only when singing Karaoke does anyone ever spend time together in the room screaming at the top of their lungs to Huey Lewis & The News, Bon Jovi, Aerosmith or even Go West, and still be seen as acceptable company.
Here’s to crooning even more 80s rock tunes after this! ?
And, of course, I can’t move forward without thanking, and without name credit, certain dissenting types in my life (including folks I used to call friends) for reminding me of how better off I am. I’ve been plagiarized, shamelessly harrassed this year for sharing a differing ideology, and I’ve even been dismissed by somebody who basically thought he could tell me how to do my work; It’s when you use personal vendettas as a metric for your friendships that you lose actual friends who mean you well and have never hurt you. Maybe one day he’ll realize that.
….It’s for this reason that I’ve been able to reflect on myself and where I stand on the need for catharsis and get-even-ness when people wrong me. The sting will always be there for me when I’m grievanced by people, but I’ve learned to be less angry at things and just a little more measured and forgiving (just a little), and mainly because I would rather try and not be the cog that keeps the wheels of embitterment turning.
The past two years have been witness to this in my select experiences. Moreover, the last few weeks have especially proven eventful among a handful of close associates and dear friends in this aspect. I’ve had to consult both friends who’ve been hurt, as well as friends who’ve done the hurting, and if I’m being honest, it does take an emotional toll at times helping mediate situations in which some folks have been wronged. Ideally, I would rather much prefer to see friendships heal, and be healthy and longlasting, as makes what I do here at Film Combat Syndicate much more fun and fulfilling.
Still, as I get older, I’ve come to a point where I simply stopped and had to draw a line with certain people for the sake of my own peace of mind, and again, I say all this without even being too angry – I’m less angry about most things that used to really test me. It burns you out fast, wastes oxygen and in many instances, it weakens you to the point where you all but lose control – especially when that anger gets misappropriated and almost compelling to the point of posing an embarrasing public display.
I’m almost thirty-six, and having spent a good portion of my young adult life pining for things I wasn’t meant to have for one reason or another, I’m starting to look at things a little differently than I used to. I have more responsibilities to weigh, including some that will eventually pull me away from this website at certain moments or periods. That, again, means preserving my peace of mind – conserving my energy as often as possible, going with the ebb and flow of things and, really, enjoying as much as I can in my limited time here in this life save for any restrictions I’m faced with, and all while not letting the words and actions of a sour few dictate my emotions or ruin my friendships and associations.
Between doing what I enjoy without help from the revolving door of contributors over the past five years, to doing what I have to to keep a roof over my head, these are things I have to bear in mind going into the new year, and it’s gonna be a little more tough. Regardless, there’s no question as to how much love I have for this website in all its constant growth and how far I believe there is left to go before seeing it all the way through.
Alas, under rather hampering circumstances in this week-long 4am sun-up-to-sun-down life of mine, I still very much intend to keep my thumbs warmed up and busy with each keystroke. I still plan to nag creators for YouTube links, send friend requests to complete strangers in the entertainment field in hopes of networking, following movies and the festival scene, and essentially, doing my best to meet and greet as many people as this life…this journey will grant me – moreso the latter, which is so damn hard because of my schedule, but the fact is that when I’m not in my cave at home in the evening, I thrive on an active social environment – one with hugs, stupid jokes, great food and the occasional beer.
…I definitely want more of that in 2019 (and karaoke!), but I’ll take what I can get in the spirit of doing my best. It’s all I can do. That, and also keep warm and drink plenty of hot fluids… Because compared to this time in 2016, I am NOT getting sick again. Screw that.