Yet another reason to count my blessings

Our prior gym was open 24-7. I got insomnia, so I’d work out whenever I wanted to. Sometimes at ungodly hours.

One time, I witnessed a young man really struggling to deadlift 115 pounds. He dropped the bar twice.

At first, I thought “what an a-hole” but then put 2 and 2 together.

This poor kid was in the beginning stages of Muscular Dystrophy. Bless his heart.

Whereas 315 pounds is easy for me, I’m blessed. I never had (knock on wood) any degenerative disease. And for that, I count my blessings.

Jason Becker

In the late 1980s, I was convinced that I’d make it as a musician. I had the work ethic. The dexterity. All I needed was to put in the work and find the right band.

I took a lesson from the best young Metal guitarist on the planet – Jason Becker. He was on top of the world at the time, completing his second album with Cacophony and about to join David Lee Roth’s band.

Well, during his time with David Lee Roth, he developed ALS.

Whereas I’d starve as a musician and eventually have to pull in the plug and join the corporate world, Jason Becker lost control of every part of his physical body except his eyes.

Kind of puts things in perspective.

I threw in the towel, but at least I can still play. In fact, I’m still an elite guitarist to this day.

Becker on the other hand had to finish recording that David Lee Roth album with light gauge strings and by the time they went on tour, he was already too crippled to play. Joe Holmes replaced Becker and Becker was given only a few years to live.

Miraculously, he’s still alive today, composing music with his eyeballs.

Yes, seriously.

His father setup a speech program for him where he can communicate with his eyes. The program eventually got so advanced that he’s now able to compose music with his eyes.

People nowadays complain too much

You know what it comes down to?

The lack of gratitude. I can usually tell when someone’s an ungrateful piece of shit. They’ll take huge things for granted while complaining about trivial matters.

I like to put things in perspective.

We’re in America. I got a roof over my head. A beautiful wife. A successful son. Food in the fridge, the freezer, and full cupboards.

Five good looking models, of whom two are such close friends of ours that we vacation with them.

I got the same close friends from the late 80s and some from the 90s.

I got a car with 122k miles on it. Still runs well.

I got three electric guitars, one genuine Flamenco guitar, a piano, and tons of painting supplies. I got over a dozen framed paintings ready to sell.

And looking up from this computer, I got a bunch of nude women that I photographed up on my wall. I’m also a hobbyist photographer (not a good one, but I still enjoyed it).

What are you grateful for?

This Post Has 4 Comments

  1. freemattpodcast

    Not kidding:

    My mostly functional right hand.
    I helped a guy at the hardware store that had nubs where his hand had been once. He even had bloody bandages.

    Dude built a house with poorly functioning hands. The other day I decided to not complain about deadlifting with straps.

    I am blessed.

    1. admin

      Ah yes. I remember you mentioning that guy before.

      I would have gone nuts had I been in his shoes (again – knock on wood). No painting. No guitar. No piano.

      You and I are both blessed Sir.

  2. At my age (shaking hands with 52) and seeing the state of many of my peer’s lives, I am grateful I chose wisely. A good wife, a good career, debt free, choices in child rearing, to remain in my native state of Florida. A lot of times I could have made bad moves. And who knows, maybe I could have made some better choices. However, I am happy with my life and a great majority of people nowadays cannot say the same thing. I can’t say all of my choices were with some great knowledge, many were made when I was a kid and didn’t know shit. But I always followed my gut. I knew enough to look around at the poor bastards around me and tried to see where they screwed up. Divorced or sexless, in debt up to their eyeballs, shitty ungrateful kids unable to function as adults, living in some shithole state. Working a job that literally sucks the life out of you rather than a career that may kill you, but at least you know you’re alive. I always tell people, I’m not ready to die but I’ve had a damn good run and would be okay with it if the reaper comes calling.

    1. admin

      It’s quite sad to see how many parents our age (I’m Gen X as well) have shitty ungrateful kids who are unable to function as adults.

      They never said no. Never put their foot down. And just as bad – never made their kids work for anything.

      Yeah, I’ve had a good run too. But I feel I’m just getting started.

      And good job remaining in Florida. Man, what a great place to be.

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