The Threesome

I mentioned a bit ago that my partner and I had a threesome at Libertine. This was the first time that we have explored our sexuality actively with a third party directly involved, and now that some time has passed I have processed a lot and have some thoughts on the whole experience.

The threesome was with another male. This happened for several reasons. First, it was the easiest first step for us. My partner and I had talked about our fantasies, interests, and what it would look like if we explored things with other people (I hope every couple has at least discussed these things, communication is key). We decided that another male would be the least threatening situation for bringing in a third.

The second reason is my sexual curiosity. I have identified as bisexual, pansexual, or queer depending on the forum and audience, but up to this point that has been really internal for me and it isn’t something I have thoroughly explored. Sure, I’ve given sensual massages to men and women before but it wasn’t particularly sexual. This was an opportunity to explore that curiosity in a direct way.

The final reason is opportunity. Neither my partner nor I feel the drive to pursue diverse sexual experiences in this way, but we are open to them (at least on a theoretical level) if they present themselves. So, when a male approached us that was attracted to both of us and that we had some attraction to we decided to go for it.

After the threesome and some time to process there are two main conclusions for us. First, I am not really bisexual or pansexual. The experience was fun, but it wasn’t sexually arousing. I guess I’m probably a 0-1 on the Kinsey Scale, before this I thought I was closer to a 2. I would totally do this type of thing again, it was fun, but it wasn’t sexual. I enjoyed receiving and giving pleasure, but it wasn’t erotic.

The second conclusion for us was that we can handle this type of experience really well. We communicated well the whole time, and even “paused” the action to step outside and evaluate our boundaries. We ended up being comfortable with a greater level of sexual contact than we originally thought we would. There was no jealousy afterwards, we actually had some amazing sex just the two of us afterwards. Also, it was incredibly interesting and fun to see the sexual patterns that another person goes through. I think most committed couples get into efficient routines and seeing another person (or couples) routine can inspire some variety.

Overall, we had a great time and are really open to the next babystep for us in this sexual direction, a foursome or swap with a couple. We won’t be cruising Craigslist or anything for partners but if we hit it off with a couple we meet on the road at a festival or via Couchsurfing, or if some friends of ours were interested then we would be open to going in that direction. We both value a healthy mix of variety and security, and so far we have been able to have both. I am confident that will continue.

Bicycle Fitness and Beyond

Improved fitness was not one of our goals when we started this three year bike ride, but it has been one of the benefits. It seems that biking for 6ish hours per day, rarely being idle, sleeping 8-10 hours per night, eating a vegan diet with minimal processed foods, and drinking lots of water is good for you. For the first time since middle school I am able to fit into a size 31” waist jeans and my body fat percentage is in a really healthy place. My BMI still says that I am overweight but the BMI is garbage, so I don’t care about that. Overall, I’m pretty happy with my health, but I still want to improve. I’ve plateaued off in my fitness recently so I need to make some changes to see further improvement.

The reasons I want to improve are threefold. First, I’ve never really seen what my body can do. I’ve never seen if I can get well-defined muscles or how strong I can get. I only get one life with this amazing machine, it would be a shame not to see what it can do. Second, when the bike ride ends I don’t want to fall into a fitness slump and get unhealthy again. To do that I need to have routines that don’t rely on my special life right now. Lastly, and kind of most importantly to me, is the Lester Burnham reason: I want to look good naked. I enjoy going to clothing optional events (sexual or otherwise) and my confidence is boosted if I like how I look.

So, to do this I am implementing a 30-day plan to try to get into a routine. I know from personal experience that I tend to work best with 30-day or so challenges, it is short enough for me to see a goal in sight but long enough for some lasting changes. Like most health routine it is going to attack exercise and diet. This should help get rid of the extra fat I want to burn and help build muscle mass. My diet is the easier part, I’ve never had much trouble eating healthy when I put my mind to it, and the changes I need to make are kind of minimal. I need to cut out the occasional soda I have (or at least get a diet one instead of regular), I need to make my nighttime meals a little smaller, cut out the occasional cookie/ice cream/chips, and eat my other meals more slowly instead of scarfing down three hummus wraps before my brain can register my stomach contents. Clearly, I won’t be perfect at all these things for the next month, but hopefully I can be more aware of what I’m doing when I eat and make more conscious decisions.

Working out is going to be a bit more difficult. I don’t have regular access to a gym, which means I am stuck with body weight exercises. Luckily, there is a lot you can do with that. Hell, the entire military workout program expects you to operate without equipment. My legs are in great shape now so I am going to focus on upper body (arms, chest, back) and abdominal muscles. I am going to start doing a 30-day planking program that I found online, as well as a 30-day push-up program. I’m modifying them both due to my current fitness level but using the same pattern to create a challenge fit for me (starting Day 20 for plank and day 17 for pushups). I do need to figure out a way to do a more intense arm workout (particularly biceps), so hopefully I can find a pull-up bar daily or turn my equipment into some weights. I do carry a lot of water and stuff with me so I am sure I can figure something out.

Oh well, we will see how this goes and how sexy I can get myself feeling.



Labor Day Libertine

Over Labor Day weekend my partner and I had a wonderful time at an event in Indiana, Labor Day Libertine. This is actually the first weekend we have had to relax since leaving Missoula in May. Sure, we have days where we aren’t cycling, but we are always working or planning or making repairs. I think a lot of people assume that just because we are biking around the country that means we are relaxing or vacationing. We definitely see some awesome things and I wouldn’t change my life for anything, but it isn’t easy spending every day wondering where you will sleep at night, how you will find WiFi, what you will do when it storms on you, etc etc etc. It was so nice to spend an entire weekend with our phones turned off and just enjoying ourselves.

Labor Day Libertine is a festival put on in Indiana to celebrate polyamory, BDSM, and spiritual hedonism. While my partner and I don’t really fit strictly into any of those categories I knew we would have a good time because of the community involved. This is a group of people whom I met years ago on my bike ride across the US and they are, by far, the most loving and accepting people I’ve ever met. They truly support any lifestyle as long as you aren’t hurting anyone else. To be honest, it is probably more accepting than Burning Man.

Our first day into the festival (for lack of a better word) was pretty relaxed. We set up our tent, went to one of the classes, and then hung out around the bonfire while people danced played drums. We were our normal introverted selves and just kind of sat their and enjoyed the environment. Most of the participants seemed to know each other a little bit and spent the evening catching up, we were a little bit on the outside but it didn’t feel bad. We went to bed around 11pm to recover from the fairly tough bike ride of the day that involved hills, humidity, and heat.

Saturday, after a long night’s sleep, we got up and went to the BDSM 101 class. We aren’t particularly kinky but we do enjoy some unconventional sex from time to time and have an interest in BDSM. The class was good and showed us a wide variety of toys and implements that can be used for pleasure. The rest of the day was kind of relaxed, we chatted with some people, took naps, and recovered from life. That night we were much more social around the fire (thanks Molly) and had our first threesome.

The threesome was an incredible experience. Of course, we have discussed our kinks, fantasies, and interests before Libertine. Communication in the area of sex is absolutely necessary for exploration and satisfaction. Bringing another person into our sex life was something we had a logical interest in but recognized that there could be some jealousy or negative feelings. So, we moved slowly and communicated a lot when this opportunity presented itself. We ended up not having any jealousy or discomfort, it was actually a really good experience where everyone had a good time and looked after each other’s feelings. I think it was a great step for my partner and I, it was a physical example of the words we have often shared… that we love each other, that each other’s comfort comes first, and that neither of us would do something if it could hurt the other. While we aren’t going to actively look for more experiences like this we are open to other multi-partner experiences, a foursome is particularly appealing to even out the numbers. Maybe some day some coupled friends of ours or random strangers will have a mutual interest in exploring.

After the threesome my partner and I felt stronger than ever and we went into the woods to have some more amazing sex under the stars. It was a truly magical night and we feel stronger than ever. The next day, Sunday, we slept in and lounged around a lot. It was quite hot and the Molly hangover had us feeling lazy. At lunch we chatted with a guy who makes his own BDSM toys and he gifted us a flogger. It was incredibly nice of him, though the reason he was in Indiana at all is kind of ridiculous. He was arrested for marijuana possession and sentenced to 2-years probation where he can’t leave the state (he is from California). The police took his care and all of his personal items and sold them, so now he is stuck in Indiana without the means to work and all his family and friends are on the coast. Pretty damn stupid.

Sunday evening we did end up going to a Orgasm Control demo, which was pretty fascinating. We accidentally went to bed after that, we had planned on just taking a nap to rally before another night of partying but we didn’t set an alarm and just slept. Monday morning was mostly just packing and cleaning up. I wish we would have had the energy to go to more demos and workshops, and to party more, but our bodies and mind were beat from months of travel and stress. We will definitely be back though, either to a future Libertine or one of the other festivals put on by this wonderful community. I miss them already.

How Pure Must Allies Be?

I’ve been active in several different political movements in my life. I was raised conservative, became a libertarian, and am now a “left” libertarian who is passionate about LGBT issues, the drug war, and social justice. One common thread throughout the movements on the left, right, and libertarian is that many people demand a certain amount of purity in their allies. Personally, I think that is destructive. Particularly when that purity is demanded of someone’s past actions. Take Dan Savage, for example.

I like Dan Savage*. He did a lot to open my eyes to gender and sexuality issues and I think he is right a lot of the time. Though, in the past he made some harmful comments about transgender individuals and he contributed to the idea that bisexuality doesn’t really exist (Spoiler: We bisexuals exist). Since making those comments years ago he has become more educated and changed his mind. He has even apologized for making the comments. In reality, Savage has done more for the equality movement than most people… but he is often demonized because he wasn’t perfect in the past. Hell, he probably isn’t perfect now by anyone’s definition, but I’ve seen people say he shouldn’t be supported, his posts shouldn’t be shared, and that he shouldn’t be considered part of the equality movement because of the things he said in the past. It raises the question, how pure must someone be for them to get our support? And how long to we ostracize someone who has since apologized and changed their mind?

I didn’t always believe the things I believe now. I didn’t always support marriage equality. I used to think being gay was a sin and I said many hurtful things in the past. It seems that if I was more famous back in my youth I would be shunned by some of the people that I care about today.

All you have to do is watch the GOP debates or read the thread on a Reason Magazine Facebook post and you will see that most political views are filled with purity tests. You aren’t a “real” libertarian if you think a Basic Income Guarantee might be a pragmatic and beneficial initiative. You aren’t a “real” conservative if you don’t want to kill Muslims. Forget all the ways you might agree with a philosophy, if you don’t see eye-to-eye on every issue you are a phone, a RINO, a fraud, and all your opinions are worthless. If you disagree with some people on one issue you become incapable of contributing anything, even if your contributions are unrelated.

It is sad and really ineffective to destroy allies this way. By focusing on our areas of disagreement we only guarantee our movement will get smaller. Pushing people to the margins and cutting them out of the conversation won’t change their mind. Quite the contrary, it will only shrink their circle until they interact only with the people that you disagree with. If someone is wrong on transgender issues, you don’t decide that they aren’t a feminist, liberal, progressive, libertarian, or whatever and ostracize them, instead if you want to change their mind you bring them into the conversation and celebrate the areas you agree.

It is this pursuit of purity that drove me out of most political activism. My chosen identities of anarchist, feminist, libertarian, etc were constantly under fire until I said “fuck it” and just stopped being active. It wasn’t worth the heartache or headache to try and appease everyone. You destroy allies when you demand purity, and eventually you end up alone.

Dream Job

A couple of nights ago Anna and I took a little MDMA while camping. To be honest, it was probably our least favorite roll yet. It was our own fault, we had full stomachs and were pretty tired. We’ve also been rolling quite a bit just the two of us. We love that but some variety would be nice… another couple to roll with (we’ve had great experiences in the past introducing couples to molly) or maybe a festival/rave to explore. To be honest, there wasn’t much euphoria or desire for physical intimacy, it wasn’t a bad experience (can Molly be bad?) but it wasn’t great. There was one highlight for me though, I got to do some internal thinking and fantasizing about my dream job. While rolling, particularly towards the end of the night, you can kind of get stuck in your own head thinking about wonderful things. Your mind kind of wanders in a pseudo-hallucinogenic fashion. During this time of reflection I realized what I would love to do for a living. Sadly, if I tried to do this openly men with guns would kick down my door and put me in a cage.

What I’d love to do is host “Roll Parties” for people. I’d love to provide a set and setting for people to use MDMA carefree. I would provide the location, the MDMA, and whatever extras people desired. It could be completely customizable to the group’s desires. Maybe it is just a couple who want to curl up and talk out their relationship, or maybe a small group want to have a sexy party, or maybe more of a rave is what a group want. I’d love to provide all of that.

For example, maybe a group of six friend’s contact me and want to have a roll party. They don’t have a clear idea for what they want out of the night but want to keep options open. They are fairly sexually liberal but not swingers or poly. To get the night started I would give a briefing on what to expect from taking MDMA, this would happen at every party even if people are used to the drug. After everyone takes their dose we would spend the next hour figuring out what people are comfortable with and what they would want while waiting for the dose to hit. I would have everyone anonymously fill out a “comfort sheet” where they can share their comfort level with certain common occurrences while rolling. Maybe it would look something like this:

How comfortable would you be if the males in this room were nude (unaroused)?

  • Very Comfortable
  • Somewhat Comfortable
  • Unsure
  • Somewhat Uncomfortable
  • Very Uncomfortable
  • Comments:

How comfortable would you be if the females in this room were nude?

  • Very Comfortable
  • Somewhat Comfortable
  • Unsure
  • Somewhat Uncomfortable
  • Very Uncomfortable
  • Comments:

How comfortable would you be if the males in this room were nude (sexually aroused)?

  • Very Comfortable               
  • Somewhat Comfortable
  • Unsure
  • Somewhat Uncomfortable
  • Very Uncomfortable
  • Comments:

How comfortable would you be if the people were giving erotic massages?

  • Very Comfortable
  • Somewhat Comfortable
  • Unsure
  • Somewhat Uncomfortable
  • Very Uncomfortable
  • Comments:

Are there any subjects that you feel uncomfortable discussing or may be triggering for you? Please list or discuss personally with the facilitator?

Are you interested in discussing any of the following subjects more openly?

  • Societies views on sex and nudity
  • Your personal sex life and kinks or interests
  • Spirituality and Religion
  • Politics
  • Your past

This is just a sample of some of the questions and it would be much more thorough. This may seem silly to some but providing a comfortable environment for everyone is important. After gathering all the surveys I would share some rules/guidelines about how the night will go.  If someone said they are uncomfortable with seeing aroused males we could come up with solutions, including getting verbal confirmation of everyone in the room before something like that happens. Or maybe designate a particular room for more sexual activity. I’d also let people know what subjects others are interested in discussing or should be avoided because they can be triggering. Generally people rolling are great about consent and following the kink guidelines (discuss what you like, what you don’t like, any medical issues you may have, what aftercare you desire, etc) but having designated places for activities or guidelines in place at the beginning of the night helps get everyone comfortable. Some groups won’t need this, some groups of friends are completely comfortable with everything or have a lot of experience already but occasionally individuals are in a mental space where they have strong preferences. It is always best to express these things from the beginning to prevent harm or discomfort. The goal is to make the most conservative and/or least experienced person 100% comfortable with how things may go.

I could also provide DJ’s, fire dancers, masseuses, and whatever else the group desired. It would be completely geared to what the group wants. Sadly, this would all be illegal because of the drugs. Sure, I could probably try to host parties like this without the drugs but my passion is really sharing the MDMA experience with others so that their lives and relationships can grow. MDMA destroys jealousy and the unnecessary social walls that have been put up, and it helps spread comfort and love. I’ve rolled with people where all we do is talk and bond, I’ve rolled with people where it gets very sexually intimate with massages and same-room sex, and I’ve had goofy times with people where we explore each other’s bodies in kind of a clinical fashion and just marvel at how beautiful we all are.

I’d love to do this for a living (though, not necessarily for an income). Maybe someday it will be legal… or maybe I’ll just do it anyway and risk it. Providing healing and happiness for other people is the moral thing to do, even it if is illegal.

Out of State Residents, Facebook, and Quotes

7/17 – Out of State Residents

Because we are travelling around the US for a couple of years the idea of a “state residency” is kind of irrelevant to us. Unfortunately, we pay a price for that. Right now in Illinois we are paying nearly double the price to camp in state parks. It is unfortunate that someone can’t just have US residency and be treated equally across the states. The US really isn’t set up for mobile people and many of the institutions encourage a type of state-level nationalism. We can’t find healthcare that is affordable and covers multiple states, and we pay a higher price for things because our IDs are from somewhere else. I recognize the benefits of experimentation among the states and allowing most of the laws to be created and enforced at a local level, but I think that can happen without discriminating against fellow Americans (or really any humans…)

7/21 – Facebook

I’ve been listening to Tim Ferris’ 4-Hour Workweek while biking. It has been fantastic and I’m trying to implement some of the suggestions into my life. One of the things he mentioned that really resonated with me was getting rid of time wasters and things that seem important but really aren’t. For me, the biggest thing in this category is Facebook. While I enjoy Facebook a lot it has a way of sucking hours out of my day (sometimes in big chunks and sometimes in many small chunks) and I am rarely better off in my life. So, for a week I am trying to not really use Facebook. I’m checking the message portion because that is a main form of communication for me but I am not engaging in discussions or reading through the negative sludge that tends to accompany posts. My Instagram is still linked to Facebook though to share personal things in my life with family/friends and such.

Overall it has been a wonderful experience for me. I am happier and a ton more productive. Instead of mindlessly searching Facebook on my app I am engaging in more conversations, taking time to do little spot work-outs (a quick 90-second plank or 30 push-ups or 5 pull-ups or something), and doing more work and writing. I am more productive and happier.

There is something about online social networking that causes people to throw social norms of politeness and kindness out the window. Take, for example, what happened on my wall today. Last night I went out to dinner with my wife and one of her friends, we went to a vegan restaurant in Chicago and I shared a picture of the vegan milkshakes we got. There were a few comments and questions about how a milkshake can be vegan, I don’t mind those because they came from people I know in real life and because they seemed genuinely curious. Then, there was one comment along the lines of “I bet they aren’t really vegan because they probably use refined sugar”, this comment came from someone I don’t know personally… we are only online “friends”. First, this person is making huge assumptions without asking any questions or doing research. Second, he seems to be posting a comment simply to be combative and suck the joy out of anothers experience. I can’t imagine he would do this in “real life”. If he saw a friend of a friend walk out of a vegan ice cream shop and overheard them saying they can’t wait to eat the vegan milkshake I doubt he would interrupt them and say “I bet that’s not vegan”. But online this type of “you are wrong and even though I don’t know you I am going to spew negativity on you and try to establish my own superiority” attitude runs rampant.

I don’t want to give up social networking for good, I think it serves a valuable purpose and is going to be a necessary tool for interacting for a long time. But, I need to find a way that is healthier for me. Maybe I’ll trim my “friends” or maybe I’ll just ignore comments and turn off notifications. I don’t know, but I’m much happier and productive without that blue temptation called Facebook.

7/31 – Quotes

I’ve been listening to and reading “4-Hour Work Week” by Tim Ferriss and it is packed full of quotes that I love. Here are a few:

  • “When you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect” – Mark Twain
  • “The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.” – George Bernard Shaw
  • “Meetings are an addictive, highly self-indulgent activity that corporations and other organizations habitually engage in only because they cannot actually masturbate.” – Dave Barry
  • “The factory of the future will have only two employees, a man and a dog. The man will be there to feed the dog. The dog will be there to keep the man from touching the equipment.” – Warren Bennis
  • “It is far better for a man to go wrong in freedom than go right in chains” – Thomas Huxley
  • “By working faithfully eight hours a day, you may eventually get to be a boss and work twelve hours a day” – Robert Frost
  • “On this path, it is only the first step that counts.” – St. Jean-Baptiste-Marie Vianney
  • “Make mistakes of ambition and not mistakes of sloth. Develop the strength to do bold things, not the strength to suffer” – Niccolo Machiavelli
  • “Thanks to the Interstate Highway System, it is now possible to travel coast to coast without seeing anything.” – Charles Kuralt
  • “For the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: ‘If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?’ And whenever the answer has been ‘No’ for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something… almost everything – all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.” – Steve Jobs

Things I Wrote: One Million Dollars, Thankful, Meditation

$1 Million

On one of the podcasts I listen to the host, Isaac Morehouse, was discussing imagination and mentioned one of the exercises he occasionally does is think long and hard about how he would respond to certain events, including receiving a bunch of money. The amount of money varies from experiment to experiment but the important thing is to give it some real though and itemize instead of just saying “Travel” or “Donate to charity”. Those things can happen but getting into the details allows our imagination to flourish, as well as keep us tethered to reality. This type of thinking (particularly thought experiments about how we would respond to bad events) is very Stoic in nature, so it definitely appeals to me.

So, I am going to itemize how I would spend $1,000,000 (tax free) as best I can. I don’t have internet access to look up particulars but hopefully I can really break it down and go into detail about how I would realistically spend that money.

  1. $67,000 – Pay off student loans. Getting out of debt would be my first move. While I feel no particular ethical obligation to pay back my student loans it does make pragmatic sense to do it.
  2. $250,000 – Set up a personal loan account to buy up my friend and families student loans or other debt. We could make repayment agreements where the payments and interest rate are very low. This is a system that would help me so much right now, it isn’t the minimum payments that kill me, it is the interest rates that basically guarantee I’ll have debt hanging over me for decades. I’d be thrilled if someone offered to consolidate my loans and give me a low (or zero) interest rate, I’d even set up a direct deposit so they are sure they would get their money.
  3. $200,000 – This would go into a safe, conservative (though hopefully interest bearing) account to provide for my future. Right now I can maintain the life I have for about $24,000 per year and this amount would keep me going without a need to work for the next 8 years or so. Not a lifetime but it is something.
  4. $125,000 – One time donations to non-profits I support
    1. $25,000 to DanceSafe to expand their harm reduction program
    2. $25,000 to MAPS for their MDMA therapy program
    3. $25,000 to Karma Rescue to help run the No-Kill Shelter in LA that we adopted Higgins from
    4. $25,000 to SSDP for scholarships to help get students to their conferences
    5. $25,000 to Wikipedia
  5. $100,000 – Provide financial support for 2-3 of my friends who are artists and would like to focus on their craft instead of working to make ends meet. This would probably be monthly payments.
  6. $75,000 – Build a “tiny house” to live in.
  7. $30,000 – Buy a used Subaru Outback
  8. $10,000 – Pay for myself, Anna, and some other friends to go to Burning Man
  9. $100,000 – Provide support for people on GoFundMe (and similar crowdsourcing programs).
    1. $75,000 – Those in financial need
    2. $25,000 – Those advancing technology that I support or have cool inventions
  10. $20,000 – Put aside for moving and set-up costs wherever we go after the bike ride
  11. $20,000 – Honeymoon in Iceland (and maybe other Nordic countries)
  12. $3,000 – Personal Purchases
    1. $500 – Get some really sweet home brewing equipment and start brewing more beer
    2. $1250 – A cool gaming computer
    3. $500 – Books
    4. $1,000 – Health stuff (cooking equipment, weights, nootropics, etc)
    5. $750 – MDMA for a year or more

Post Script: This was more difficult than I expected. $1 million is a lot of money and my estimates are probably a bit conservative here. I’d also like to really nail it down and get accurate in the future.


There are many attributes that make up who I am. Some of them are all beyond my control and some I have a bit of control over. I have made decisions in the past that have lead me to where I am today, but much of my past (particularly in my early life) is, for lack of a better term, luck. I was born a white male in the USA to a stable family, that has given me an advantage over many people. I wasn’t born into money, but I also never wondered if I would have a meal or a safe place to sleep. I think it is important to reflect on the ways I am blessed and remember that other people are fighting through life without some of the advantages I have. So, here is a quick list of specific things that I am thankful for, some of them are a product of my choices but some are not.

  1. Teeth – I have healthy teeth. They aren’t particularly straight or white, but I’ve only had one cavity and I have taken pretty shitty care of my teeth. I rarely brushed daily and never flossed until Anna and I moved in together.
  2. Lack of Risk Aversion – I tend to take risks and not really worry about the downside. I don’t act without thinking, but having a bit of a risk involved in quitting my job or going on a bike journey or whatever doesn’t really deter me. I probably would be a business owner like my grandfather if I knew of something I cared enough about to create.
  3. Upbringing – I don’t see eye-to-eye with my parents on much but they were good parents who did their best. They were both around to support my education and personal development. I knew there would be food to eat and a place to sleep, even though sometimes we crammed several kids into a room. It was a loving and stable family.
  4. Immune System – I very rarely get sick. Part of this is genetics and part of it is lifestyle, I try to exercise regularly and eat fairly healthy.
  5. Stoicism – I tend to easily cope with bad situations. Some of this is natural to me but a big part of it is a combination of using MDMA as medicine and practicing ancient stoic techniques.
  6. Network of Friends – Due to growing up in Oregon, joining the Army, going to college in South Carolina, working in DC, living in Los Angeles, and travelling by bicycle I have a vast and diverse network of friends. We don’t always get along but I know that if I need support someone will be there to lend a hand, and I hope they know they can come to me for the same. Having a network that extends beyond a limited geographic region or political/economic/religious/social/racial bubble is something I am incredibly thankful for. I learn so much from having different viewpoints shared on my Facebook wall or in my life.
  7. Late Bloomer – Despite my current thoughts on sex and recreational drug use I was a late bloomer in these areas. I was a virgin until 23 and never even smoked pot until 24. MDMA wasn’t in my life until I was 28. Other drugs like shrooms, LSD, 2-CB, cocaine, ketamine, and 25-I trickled into my life after that. I am incredibly thankful that was the case. I am able to handle my drugs, and introduce myself to new drugs, in a responsible way. I am afraid that I would have made some pretty terrible mistakes if I had encountered drugs or sex in my teens, I was relatively immature socially. That doesn’t mean that I think the abstinence-only scare tactics that were employed against me is the best option, education in all these areas is a far better choice.
  8. Postponing marriage – I had two opportunities to get married before meeting Anna. The first would have been a disaster. The second could have been great but our life goals didn’t match up well. I am really, really happy I waited until I found someone that matched up with me in the important areas (kids, lifestyle, etc) instead of settling for someone. I don’t think people should have long lists of things they need in a partner, but you also shouldn’t give up things that are important to you. If one of you wants kids and the other one doesn’t then it is probably best to break up, there is no middle ground and guilting someone into doing something they don’t want can lead to resentment. The same can apply to desire to travel, importance of money, recreational drug use, etc. Sometimes love isn’t enough and no matter how much two (or more people) love each other their lives are just not going to match up well long term.
  9. Smoking and Addiction – I never really smoked. I used to carry a pack of Marlboro Reds with me when I went out drinking in DC but it never really materialized into an addiction. I don’t seem to be prone to addiction and have very easily stopped something cold turkey when I wanted to, even beer. Smoking seems like the worst habit in the world to me, and as much as I try not to judge I do tend to get a feeling of “eww” anytime I see someone smoking. It just seems to be the opposite of everything I value, but I recognize I am kind of an asshole for having this type of knee-jerk reaction.
  10. No Sweet Tooth – I don’t have a sweet tooth anymore. At some point in my life I just stopped desiring things like soda, candy, and cookies (except when stoned… then I will all the Oreos). Anytime I occasionally want something sweet I can eat on pop-tart or a handful of raisons. I do crave savory things a lot, but even that can be handled with some hummus or French fries.


Meditation is one of those things that I know I need to add to my daily routine but have a lot of trouble with. I am convinced that the benefits are well worth my time but still keep having trouble doing it. I have the time, I just don’t use it wisely. There are plenty of opportunities throughout my day to spend 10 minutes in meditation. Well, starting at 10 minutes, I do hope to work my way up to more. But, alas, I spend too much damn time in the morning and at night staring at my phone or dicking around on Facebook. I need to find a better way to minimize my time on social networks, they produce a lot of value for me but at some point that value is sucked away and I realize I have been just scrolling and “liking” mindlessly for 30 minutes. I use Facebook to stay informed about the world and share articles that I find interesting, but I usually get that done in the first 10 minutes of logging on. Maybe I should limit myself to 15 minutes on Facebook in any given session, and also limit the sessions per day. In addition to my poor use of time, meditation is difficult for me. I can rarely get through one full breath without my mind wandering. I know I shouldn’t be hard on myself, and I know it will get better with practice, but I still get frustrated at times. Oh well, I am going to keep trying.