(Originally appeared in Mutant Renegade Zine #8, Spring 1998)
Yes, it’s time once again for that exciting dive into Grog’s ever changing psyche. The topic tonight (or afternoon, depending on when you’re reading this) is life, death and rebirth. My world has been rapidly going through this process lately. While it is exciting, I usually hate to see things die. So, what has died in my life you ask. Well, my marriage, my job, my label, a relationship, my creativity, my dreams, one of my best friends and this zine. The rebirth has come into play in several areas, the most obvious is this zine. Other aspects of my life have felt this rebirth which has been spurred on by the deaths which I have no control over namely my marriage, the relationship and my friends death. I realize that the situations have occurred and I cannot exert total control over the situation, therefore I must accept reality and carry on with life. The other pieces of my life which died I do have control over and due to all this crap which has happened I have been able to reevaluate my life and get renewed focus on everything.
Maybe it’s just because I’m getting nearer to that unwanted age of thirty. Yes, I look at 30 as being old, and an end to the never-ending optimism the twenties bring. This age also brings on more responsibilities, especially since I’m a single father and I want what’s best for my son. However, by getting depressed about my losses and my upcoming age milestone, I noticed that I lost track of many other meaningful aspects of my life. My creativity, my dreams, the zine, music and my job. After looking at where my life is and where it was heading I have gotten back on track and realized what is truly important to me. I have found renewed enthusiasm in my life and my plans. This is really starting to sound like one of those damned motivational seminars, isn’t it? I guess I have lost my youthful angst or I’ve finally come to an understanding. Do you want to hear what I’ve figured out? OK, so maybe you figured it out years ago, but I’m kinda slow that way.
I have realized that most people either gave up on their dreams by their mid-twenties or that their dreams consisted of getting married and having children. I however am one of those who still has dreams and they involve much more than the average “Leave it to Beaver” scenario. I know that even though punk rock helped my find community and passion within my life, most of the ideas and impressions I received from it have been blended into my own reality. I have come to find myself as a realist after many years of investigating different political and social philosophies. Maybe I have taken punk rock to seriously as many of my friends have pointed out, but I have always acted as I felt within myself. I think any anger I had at the world at large is gone and I have mutated to a new understanding. No one is really trying to hold me down or keep me back. Any failures or successes are directly related to my effort, convictions and skill. I do not blame anyone for the problems I now face in life except for myself. Yes, I feel karma plays a part in life and that as long as you keep your convictions intact you will succeed. I have many goals and I feel that any setbacks I encounter only serve to teach me lessons and make me stronger.
I am not saying good-bye to punk rock, I still feel an attachment to many of the convictions. I can say good-bye to the style since I really haven’t looked the part in years anyway. I am not going to worry about what anyone thinks of me, like I really ever have, I will just continue to represent a part of myself within this publication. What does all of this have to do with human rights? Everything.