This is 7 acres in Wilderness Ranch, an area that at one point was going to be the next great ski village, and it's really damn cheap. It's zoned for hunting and recreation. People build cabins and use it for mostly summer and fall activities. I bought it sight unseen but was thrilled once we got to see it. It's really beautiful country and this piece of property is great for hiding out. Roy McAnally with American Northwest Realty has it listed for $15,000. It's pretty much a hunter's paradise. And, yes, a place in Colorado that's still affordable.
This is the view from the top part of the property and looking north out towards Wyoming. This land can be accessed through Rawlins if you're coming from the north, and of course from Craig to the south.
This is looking up from the riverbed and south towards a dormant volcano.
This is look across the property. It's in a horseshoe between two roads.
Craig is about 40 miles from Steamboat, and this land is about 25 miles north of Craig. You can see below how the land is enveloped by two access roads, and then opens up to the north.
The address is 225 Falcon Drive.
The property has a ravine that runs through it.
Up from either side of the riverbed are inclines where a building space could be carved. My original intention was too bulldoze right off of Falcon Drive a driveway and small lot.
So Sarah let me escape to a diner for a bit.. What's a mofo supposed to do in 20 minutes? I'll write 750 words to you so I can lay out this plan. Damn planning, I say, but for eff's sake I'm writing every day; creating every day under the auspices of something coming out of it. Now, sure, I could write for me and me alone, and there goes the pressure. I reap all of the fun. But if I'm going to do it, and I'm doing it in a world where the same platforms for success that spawned Google and Reddit are available, well then hell. I'd better make it a thing.
First, there's writing. I have categories. Kids. Wives. Sex. Family. Moms. Dirty youth. Shady adulthood. Climate Change. Marketing. Radio.
I need to narrow those down, or maybe not. I also need to get an intern. I can make this happen. I'll just tell them that they might be reading some horrible things, like when I had a threesome with two hot and married sales ladies in Aztec, NM. At first it was awkward (like too many people on a bike) but then everyone figures out their roles until nookie is the last possible thing you want for like an hour.
So I'm keeping my Squarespace (jaredewy.com) blog and stepping it up with some fanciness and actual marketing. What? yes. I still remember being at that hotel seminar with a room of desperate people--or so I thought they were desperate--who turned out to be actually making money speaking and writing. And this guy who could have been a step-father rapist (I really need to turn off the judgment) sits next to me and says this simple quip: "You can be as talented as you want, but it's all about the marketing."
What he'd said in so many ways was that he saw this douchey 20-something thinking he knew everything, and probably thinking he was more talented than anyone there, and he helped remind me that players who don't play will not be playing. You gotta play. All I've been doing is practicing. HELLO EVERYBODY I JUST WROTE A BLOG I say to my couch of pets. Paco farts and, ashamed, walks out of the room. Allie cat licks herself.
So it's time. It's been time, but now I've fully realized that it's time. At least three times; in 2004, 2007 and as recent as 2011, I've wanted to stand up in our favorite diner and shout, "I'm going to do it. I'm going to write a bunch and tell people about it and in a year I'll be back to buy everyone breakfast!" But I haven't wanted to commit myself. I haven't wanted to walk out on the plank and take the dive. The saddest part is that I'VE DONE THIS BEFORE. I've been out there, jumped, and unwittingly swam for my dear life. But that was before i had too. When you don't have to you don't think about it in terms of necessity. However, I've waited until I've had to. fuckenpeople.
(And actually there was this article in the Fort Lewis College alumni publication [smoke signals?] where this guy said, "don't wait until you have to" about writing [he'd just written a play] and instead of heeding those words and getting to work, I checked his graduation date, surmised that he was three years older than me, and figured I had at least that much time not to do anything. That was in 2005)
OK, step 1. Make Squarespace blog (jaredewy.com) fancier and more organized. Monetize it. Get my Youtube monetized. Fix up my facebook and twitter.
and do comedy. yah, do comedy. I'm scared of it because it's been so long but for eff's sake I did 100 shows in 10 days in people's homes and offices and cars and classrooms and i was mostly terrible but, dammit, I did it. I just need to keep doing it.
And then the blog, the new fancy Squarespace, will feature things that I'm doing. I emcee shows, mostly for progressive groups doing something about climate change. There will be a fancy video demonstrating my skill and testimonials of those who have hired me. They've all been happy. Or so they'll say (I'll buy them breakfast in a year.)
And on that page for the speaking there will videos about what we can do about climate change. As well as my borken, Southern alter ego, Vic Dixon, posting as a spokesperson for climate change deniers in Congress. So...in short:
Squarespace fix up -categories -emcee pitch page -climate change Intern -organize current writing Twitter Facebook Youtube marketing! And apoligies for any unwanted visuals.
I'm going to do something that could be unusual. I'm going to write a piece about school shootings even though there hasn’t been one in recent weeks. It's pretty hard to do since there's been over two dozen just since the December 2012 disaster at Sandy Hook. But this story begins at my dinner table where my second grader was telling us about his day. He had a lockdown drill. This is where in schools they pretend they're being invaded and they all assume the position that is supposed to best protect them from injury or death. It sounds to me like the teachers and faculty did a good job of making it sound less dire; at least my son's enthusiasm made it seem that way. It's just another part of their responsibility.
And that's when I got physically ill. I thought about responsibility and I wanted to grab the neck of every good 'ol boy politician and share with him/her about an obligation to our children. You see, when the offspring of a species are dying, it's a pretty telling sign as to what that community does about it. And so far, the only people doing anything are the kids. You'd better hone your hiding places, children, as the rest of us aren't doing a thing.
I know there are a lot of players on the wheel of Who's Responsible for Shooting Deaths. As far as I've seen, most of them have washed their hands of having anything to do with 20 splattered babies in Connecticut. Or a dozen beating hearts in Littleton. Most of them--most of us--are living this stupid lie hoping that it doesn't happen again.
Here's the deal: this kid who's wide-eyed and regaling me about the excitement of a fire drill isn't just my kid. He's all of ours. How he fares is how our society succeeds (or not.) I'd like to say I'm doing my best, but what am I doing to end senseless and tragic violence? Am I making sure I'm raising a child that doesn't feel so entitled that average teenage trauma doesn't send him into a gunning rampage? Are you raising your kid to be strong and responsible in the face of adversity?
And how about you, say, video game and movie makers? You've pointed to studies that say you're not at fault, that your single-shooter games and wild romanticism of violence don't have an effect. That's crap. It's not entertainment if it doesn't have an effect. You wouldn't be a ballooning billion dollar industry if your product didn’t have an effect. Otherwise we could let our kids enjoy some hard core porn.
NRA. Ridiculous, hijacked NRA. An organization that was once known for teaching kids how to be responsible. But once people started dying you ran for the money. Still, I'm in awe of your power. You've generated enough fear to become invincible in the hail of kid-bound bullets. You've organized and plied every politician in and out of the Potomac, and you've managed to make grown men jump and throw cash at your every word. That's awesome. You're the kind of towering idol we'd all expect to keep our kids safe.
Yet no entity is bigger with more reach than the media. The MEDIA, that growing glob of everyone and everything that’s broadcasting across the air and the web. With that kind of juggernaut we should be able to create discussion that makes us think rather than recoil, retreat, and hope apathy solves the problem. If the big media makes money with scintillating details of suspects pumping rounds into our kids, then they owe us a couple of things.
For one, the desperate, sadistic ideologues of political web, radio and TV do not get to drive the conversation. Any group that makes a living frightening the unstable, well they’re out. Secondly, the big media need to unite us, and not just when there’s death. America has already become like a dysfunctional family that only gets together when somebody dies. It’s time we’re inspired to do something for the living.
It's going to take everyone. Every party, every person...every entity that makes money off of violence or the threat of it. Every parent needs to make sure they're sending safe kids to school, and learn to be aware when they might not be. I'd implicate the schools, but as of right now they seem to be the only party doing anything.
Yet we all have this sick feeling that it won't be long before we're all gathered again, holding hands over a candlelight vigil for the deceased. I hope we start doing our part. I hope the responsibility to thwart killers doesn’t lie solely on the shoulders of our children.
I SHOULD WARN YOU THAT THIS CONTAINS INFORMATION YOU REALLY COULD DO WITHOUT.
I told Sarah my plan and then, as she does, she reiterated it back to me slowly and with some overlooked detail. "Jared," she began, ensuring she had one of my fleeting 5-second windows. "You're telling me that you're going to--Jared! Jared, You've Internet stalked a cute female doctor and will drive through three suburbs just to tell her that you get headaches when you masturbate?"
I hadn't seen it that way. I never see all the things that Sarah sees, which has me wincing at the pain she must endure. Bliss is my friend and it was certainly a helpful partner in hatching my health care agenda.
I get headaches. Extreme, full-sized brain rumblers that make drilling a tiny hole to release the pressure a sensible idea. These are exertion headaches. They go off when I exert. I'd told my long-time doctor about the pain, but he said a brain scan wasn't worth it. Go get some exercise I'm told and then I end up cradling my skull and wondering if I'm going to go blind.
This is not good for me. I need physical activity. Even before the skull-rattling reality of a thousand hammers mining my sanity, I have to move or I'll go nuts. Push ups on the floor. Riding my bike to work. Running around the park. If I were in the 3rd grade I'd most likely be tranquilized with a thousand prescription solutions. The worse worse part? And it gets worse. I can't...I can't have. Sex. I've fought through the pain, but I thought I was having a stroke. I told Sarah that my grabbing my face and screaming like William Wallace should not deter her from further interactions. It was one of my most romantic gestures yet.
As you can imagine, after stuffing my mom in countless MRI tubes, I'm a little shy about head pain. And by shy I mean if I feel even so much as a wandering itch I'm preparing my epitaph. I'm my own Web MD, a frequent self-diagnosing paranoia machine with the morbidity of a search engine apparently written by depressed teens. The only thing worse than than health problems is Googling them. Typing in "exertion headache" I get articles with bullet points like this:
-hemorrhaging that features pain and death and cancer -TUMORS TUMORS TUMORS -Poorly chewed Dorito wedged in capillary
-Death by testicle
Aneurism, as you now, is a medical term that's short for "He was like, 'I'm just going to piddle and be right back to continue my amazing life!' And then poof. Dead."
So I left to find another opinion. I was reminded of one of my favorite health care workers, a physician's assistant named Mitowski, who showed great empathy and depth of knowledge around repercussions from my broken back. She had once worked at the clinic with the cheapskate doctor but had left. So I set off to find her, and eventually came across her name at a clinic in Parker.
Now to go and do the thing my wife is thinking maybe I shouldn't do. This is not unusual.
And I apologize. I may have told you too much, but it's therapeutic. It keeps me from grabbing strangers in the street and shouting I CAN'T MASTURBATE! I've already made the mistake of telling my boss all about it. So when I'm wincing from walking up the stairs, she's wondering what reprehensible things I did for lunch.
I’m lying under my daughter’s crib and uncontrollably smiling at a life culminating in hiding from a one year old. I’d be there for about fifteen minutes, waiting for her to finally succumb to a big, fat Saturday of toddling and wheezing. I’d just put her down, slumbering, but then, like a creepy doll, her eyes popped open. That’s when I hit the floor. She’s got a cold and going horizontal stuffs her up, and then she gets crazy. If she sees me, then it’s game on. I can’t ignore this woman. Sarah is tougher in her interactions, but me…she takes me out with her baby ballistics. I don’t stand a chance, so I’m hiding.
She’s up there talking and being so damn cute. She’s dropping her “da da da” with an occasional “dad” and I wanna launch and surprise her with the biggest baby hug ever. She squeaks a few times and then pauses. She’s waiting for a reaction. Waiting for someone to come running in and return the favor. Someone to reaffirm that what she’s doing is right. I think of her future and how this will somehow mess her up. She’ll drop out of school because no one ever validated her that winter night in 2014. She’ll have trust issues and withdraw from society. Cats all over the damn place.
There have been times when I’m pretty certain my twenty-year-old me would be very disappointed in the current model. I can’t drink beer anymore as my giant bald head turns into a burning bulb of allergic malfeasance, I often can’t stay awake through Bronco games (c’mon 5 field goals?) and the biggest part of my week is taking my boys out for hot chocolate every Wednesday. What happened to radio in New York City…or cocaine strippers or a black belt in night life asskickery?
I bet, though, once I’m able to get younger me over the shock, I could show off these kids of mine and tell him that these are the coolest humans you’ll ever meet. And guess what? They actually like spending time with you. Remember all that hassle conjuring kegs at 19 just so the pretty people would descend from on high and hang out with you? Dude, you’ve made it. One day this kid, Otto, will take your hand and tell you he wants to be you. Not be like you, but BE you. And you’ll have to do your best not to reel backwards and scold him. And this other boy, Quin, is the smallest 2nd grader you’ll ever meet, but he’s at the ready to play football at any moment. Sure, right now, you’re lying under a crib hoping not to be discovered by a 14-pound infant, but of all the people on the planet; the cool kids, the rich kids, the magicians and Kobe Bryants and Louis CKs…the presidents and debutantes, the billionaires, the badasses and the break dancers…it’s you she’s hoping to see.
Plus, you have three kids so that means you’ve already been laid several more times than most of the 90s.
That’ll get him. He’ll be stoked. Especially since it’s with that hottie he spotted in Taco Bell in 1994. I think what I’ll avoid telling him is that—among other things—his second grader’s homework is already too confusing for him and that his five year old can see through his flesh and examine is soul. I won’t mention some stuff about the little girl, too. Like that she’s an emotional terrorist. Those boys are his best buds and he can throw them in the car like a sack of soccer balls and go off to the park for hours. This girl, however, is hanging off a heart string and he’ll find himself staring at her and loathing that something so beautiful is made from something so vile. Yes. Sex is vile. I can’t tell him I think sex is vile. When you have a baby girl everything nookie is dangerous; every motive suspicious.
Of course he probably won’t want to hear that I know a lot about yogurt now. And that several times I’ve drank out of a sippie cup on the way to work. And that one of the biggest victories isn’t on the gridiron, but getting her to daycare before she has her morning poop. And he definitely wouldn’t care to hear that there’s a grown woman in the house drinking wine by herself as I army crawl out of a baby’s bedroom.
I’m hiding under a bed on a Saturday night.
No matter if you’ve read Gift of the Magi and were touched by its poor-people holiday motif—actually you’ll have to excuse any comparisons to the Magi as it’s much more poignant and powerful. If you don’t know the Magi, it’s the tale of a couple in love. To buy her husband a chain for his watch, she sells her hair, and to buy her some accessories for her beautiful hair, he sells his watch. The point being that their love is a gift greater than all gifts ever. And I wish we’d all read it and believe it and stop buying crap just because we feel we must buy crap. Crapmas.
It was the holiday season of 2004, and I stayed home from work to surprise Sarah by putting up lights around the house. It’s something I don’t do because it’s a waste of electricity, but I wanted to show her that I had the spirit and would bring to life a holiday she’d never forget. What I didn’t know is that while I took the day to string some lights, she went out and bought some luggage. This luggage was to be a surprise, which meant she’d have to lug it onto a commuter train and then drag it a quarter mile home.
I guess I should add that my mom lived with us. And she was so happy to see me put up some decor and was so excited to surprise Sarah. We bounded around and added little touches to the holiday house. That night, my hope was to watch through the window to see Sarah’s shadow hurry home in the streetlights. At that moment, I’d plug in our display and the front yard would light up.
Of course Sarah was later than usual because she was conjuring luggage somewhere along her daily downtown Denver route. I’d call her office a few times but get no answer, and this was before she had a cell phone so finding her would be futile. My mom’s sister was in town, too, so it was getting pretty estrogeny (new word) around the house. The ladies and I sat by the window and watched…and watched. I paced around, checked the lights over and over, walked to the end of the block and back but nothing. Finally, my mom whispered from the window, “I think she’s coming!” I sprinted to the switch and confirmed a sighting. We waited for her to get right in front of the yard before illuminating our maple tree. That’s where Sarah stood, exhausted from a day at work and a night of sneaking luggage. She slunk low, as if ducking the glow, and glanced around as to wonder what had happened to her usual darkened sidewalk. A passage that would have allowed her to sneak undetected into the garage to hide my new luggage.
I still wasn’t sure as to what she was dragging. And I was a little sad she didn’t seem all that excited.
I stepped out onto the front porch and into the clandestine plan of my gift-bearing spouse. “Hi,” I said and left room for a question. “Are you a dragging a body?”
“I was planning on surprising you with some luggage,” she shared, defeated.
“Well, I finally put up some lights,” and she nodded to the obvious.
“Merry Christmas,” she said. And I replied with the same.