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My 100th Post!!!!!1111!

Friendships, like all things, are fickle and fleeting. It's said that the beauty of anything in this life is that it is not immortal and boundless, but is indeed bound by the incontrovertible laws of mortality. Romances, the lives of loved ones, even our connections with our closest friends have an expiration date. While this bit of knowledge does its part to shoulder the burden and temper the blow, it still, frankly, hurts when they reach their inevitable demise.

I dont tolerate disrespect kindly. If you were someone Ive liked or trusted and enjoyed the company of in the past, I may bear it for a short while as I feel you out. Anyone that knows me well knows that I love to talk shit. One of my standards for friendship is that you have a thick skin, as I most certainly do. If youre offended by jabs at your sexuality or ridiculous insults, I have no patience for you. But, if after surviving my initial barrage, you inform me that you're proud a midget could do so well for himself, or that it must be hard for me to jerk off guys with such tiny hands, I feel an immediate kinship with you. Fucked up senses of humor abound in my line of work, a necessary adaptation to the hazards and stresses of the profession. However, grow too used to insulting me solely while were in a group, become too comfortable belittling me while overstepping the lines of brotherhood, or prove venemous rather than playful in your attacks, and you will have a major problem on your hands.

Paul "Coach" Wade wrote at the end of Convict Conditioning that he'd always prefer training to spending time with people. His "friends", gained and taken over the course of 2 long prison sentences, had betrayed, cornered and attacked him. But all his training had ever done is bolster him. It empowered and steeled him to handle whatever awaited him devilishly in the long stream of monotonous days. I echo those sentiments wholeheartedly. Alone in my room, whether in Hawaii, Virginia, Bahrain or the Arabian Gulf, my training has done nothing but instill confidence in me. I hold court with myself with every strenuous, struggling rep, reminding myself who I am, what Im made of and where I come from. My training travels with me, wherever I go. It whispers in my ear nurturingly, soothing my angst and repelling my loneliness. As an idyllic Autumn passes and fades into an unknown Summer, Im told, again and again, that Im never alone.

Today I felt freedom for the first time in a month, down to the day. 2 of my friends have a luxurious (relative to my lodgings), condo about a mile away from the nearest town center. The bustling life, barely contained by the myriad shops and restaurants, injected renewed passion into me. Sitting here, drinking fresh iced tea, packed with sweating ice and permeated by tart lemons, Im finishing my customary book of the week. Ive tended as of late to gravitate towards books on fighters from every discipline. Given my love of tomes on prison from both sides of the bars, the biography of Rubin "Hurricane" Carter was akin to a succulent steak dangling in front of me after a prolonged fast. Midway through, serving a bid of 3 to 9 years in Trenton State Prison, he regales the reader with tales of his jailhouse training regimen. 5000 pushups a morning, hands set firmly in a variety of positions, formed the warmup for his strenuous program. While some may, I dont doubt the veracity of his claims at all. Convicts are masters of Calisthenics, and we would do well to mimic their virtuosic performances and monastic dedication. It all bundles together to remind me of the isolation of my daily existence. I cant wait to have my car here, to enjoy the basic creature comforts of my life on more than a monthly basis. But I cant let such thoughts get the best of me. Back to work.

I'm sorry that it had to turn out this way, I really am. We both are shackled to each other by way of passionate love, yet neither of us is willing to let go. We're dedicated to living our lives while maintaining space in our hearts for one another. I honestly have to put forth no work in this area because for me its effortless. I love you, and I always will. Part of me wants to let you go and move through the world unencumbered, but we both know that wont happen. You cant do it either, and for good reason. Because theres still something here, regardless of what either of us do with our newly found freedom. The actions will forever be obfuscated by the fog of necessary secrecy, lest we have another conflict like we did last night. Ill always love you and you'll always love me, that will never change. Your reticence to possibly try again at the end of my tour in Hawaii fueled my need to live. But, if Im being honest, I can only blame myself. Yet I stand by my decision. You wanted to try the first time, and I cast the chance aside thoughtfully. I want to possibly try again for a second go, and you kicked it away with the devotion of the dedicated. Who knows what the future holds baby. Neither of us do. Like you said, either of us could be married. I may embark on that world tour Ive spoken of reverently, or I may return home to the pristine Southern California shores. No one knows. All I know is that Ill always love you, even if one of us falls for another. Good luck out there Bonnie. Outlaws for life.

This cool air kisses the nape of my neck seductively, begging me to sleep. I may do that soon, but the night is young, and for once Im not confined to my solitary cell. Im thinking crisp iced tea and a good book. Mahalo.

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