Since we last talked I earned enough general education credits to earn an Associate of Arts in Social and Behavioral Sciences degree at Cuesta College. However, when filling out the application papers to receive it I erred. I was not walked through the process by anybody and had never done it before contributing in my error. By checking the wrong box on a form I did not receive that degree but will do so this coming May. At that time I should pick up a second degree, to wit, an Associate of Arts in History. In the next month I am going to reapply to Cal Poly and see if God really wants me there or not. As you may or may not recall I applied a year ago and was accepted. I did not take Cal Poly up on their offer due to some important logistical issues such as housing and commuting and a desire to pick up additional units less expensively at Cuesta before making the big leap. More importantly, I knew in my bones that God did not want me to make that jump quite yet for whatever reason(s). By next summer there is a strong possibility I will be able to move into my mother's house in Atascadero cutting the commute to Cal Poly in half and cutting down on my housing costs tremendously from where they are now which is already incredibly low for what I'm getting due to the generosity of a dear friend. I've known this friend since junior high school and he is paying forward to me a good deed done him by a long-time friend of his who helped him out during his own transition from being stuck to moving forward. Anywho, I might also apply to Fresno State and UCSB as well just for kicks and see what happens. However, if I do not get into Cal Poly this time around it has occurred to me to perhaps get more heavily employed and take a one-year break from school and then reapply to Cal Poly a year from now. I would need to take that before my Creator and inquire as to His will in this matter.
Lessons From Defeat
I am currently struggling in my college algebra course this semester. I recently achieved my first ever "F" on a test in any subject my entire life from Kindergarten onwards to the present. This happened even after working hard to be prepared for the class as well as consistently working hard in the math lab on my homework. I must confess that over the past several semesters I have been attending Cuesta College either part-time or full-time I have been largely skating along on accumulated smarts and natural talent and not investing the sort of time and effort and focus that is necessary to be successful at the university level. Doing that the past three semesters earned me an A-, and two B's in classes (MATH07 / MATH123 / MATH127, respectively) that were largely refreshers courses for me. However, this semester I'm in MATH232 which is called "College Algebra" but is essentially Pre-Calculus sans a few concepts that would be broached in this class if it were for students planning to go on up the ladder and take more math (in which case it would be MATH242 and be five units). However, this class is a terminus math class for those of us for whom only one three-unit 200-level math course is required to graduate and/or transfer as is the case with me. I have long been haunted by the theme of those in a struggle or conflict whom encounter great setback but lacking the adequate nerve to succeed fail to knuckle down and hang in there and see things through to the brutal end. Most poignantly stuck in my mind as a sterling example of this is the premature panic and errant suicide of Cassius in the Battle of Philippi in 42 B.C.E. when he erroneously heard that Brutus' army had been defeated (when in fact Brutus had soundly defeated Octavian in their first engagement). Cassius' jumping the gun then caused his army and Brutus' in combination to be defeated once and for all. We see this concept repeated time and again in usually less-climactic and realm-changing circumstances all the time. I nearly did that myself in withdrawing from this math class and retaking in the Spring. I'm glad I did not as mom pointed out the folly of it in concept and in practical matters I realized that by simply working harder and doing better on the remaining three unit tests plus the final I can bring my average from three test scores (70, 63, and 47) up. Not only that, but with perfect attendance (which I'm on track for) my instructor will add 20 points and she takes our worst unit test score and replaces it with our score on our cumulative course final if it is superior. By being able to state truthfully that I'm in a 200-level math class when I apply to Cal Poly this month my case will look stronger, too.
I am now officially a licensed security guard employed by Vino Vice, Inc., having passed the mandatory minimum initial eight-hour online no-fail course and submitted my Livescan with the California Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and submitted an application to the California Bureau of Security and Investigation Services (BSIS) which is within the Department of Consumer Affairs. I must now complete online another 16 hours of online instruction in less than a month's time and another 16 hours of online instruction in the next six months in order for my license to be more than merely provisional as it is now. This curriculum is broken up into modules which makes it easier and it also is all non-fail. This weekend I will be working an event (a release party) at Firestone Walker Brewery in Paso Robles, CA, on Saturday and "Giddy Up Round Up" Family Fun Day at Santa Margarita Ranch this Sunday. A week from this Saturday I shall be working perhaps the last public event ever at Windfall Farms (the old Cardiff Stud Farms out in Creston, CA, formerly owned by Alex Trabek of "Jeopardy" fame), to wit, the Garagiste Festival. The corporate owners of the property don't care to do many if any events there in the future as they move in another direction with the property from how it has been managed in its recent history. Soon, however, events will quiet down for the Winter and work will dry up until the Spring so I hope to catch some season work this coming Holiday season.
In the morning I'll be attending the first ever meeting of the North San Luis Obispo County CERT. I'll have to leave early to go work but I hope to catch the first 45 minutes of it and then attend the make-up meeting for those who could not make this one. I plan to join the team having already passed the basic CERT course offered by the North San Luis Obispo County CERT program. At the morrow's meeting I also plan to inquire as to the next CPR & First Aid class offered locally so I can renew my certifications which expired last May. I'm already certified for Mental Health First Aid as of last April as I shared here previously as well.
I'm Not Vina Robles After All
They hired me last spring as you might or might not recall from my initial report. It turns out they intentionally over-hired initially and then simply called a select group out of the total to come work and blew off the rest of us. That is not how I do business nor anything with which I wish to be associated. I'm not willing to ingratiate myself in order to work AFTER I've already been hired nor, for that matter, at all ever under any circumstances. Either hire me or don't hire me but don't jerk me around! I consider working at a venue like Vina Robles an honor and privilege. I likewise feel that it is an honor and privilege for such a place to employ me. It is up to them to see my potential and exploit it to their benefit... or not. Given how a typical concert there means about six hours (max) per concert at starting pay of $8/hour and be jerked around as to if I'm actually employed there versus working with honor and respect and for a longer annual season with starting pay of $11.50/hour at VinoVice with many more hours at stake plus sometimes overtime guess where my loyalty lays? Nonetheless, I'm grateful for the very brief experience I had there and feel honored to have worked the first ever concert there.
I'm Older Than Dad Ever Was
Today my late father, James Gordon Noyes, would have turned 67, but instead died later this month 28 years ago at age 39 and nearly one month. I'm now over 43 and six months of age so I'm in a strange place as I realize dad was never my current age. He is now eternal and immortal and beyond sin and suffering and has avoided all the shit that I have plowed through since his ascension that cold, dark, damp, foggy late November morning early my freshman year of high school. God took him away and I know why which is more than most people take away from such a tragic event. I count myself blessed in this regard. God has used that happenstance and what followed to shape me into the thing He has planned for me to become which metamorphosis is still underway.
My Walk Of Late
This year has been spiritually challenging for me and most of that has been self-inflicted. Simply put, I have not been in God's Word this year to the degree I have been in the past and need to be all the time. My schedule is busy and I tend to rush out of bed and get into my day without setting time aside for God to give to prayer and reading scripture in putting on the armor that will sustain me. It's all about tithing time not just money and making God a priority in this respect and I continue to struggle in this regard. I am a creature of habit which can be to my benefit or my bane. The dearth of "Scripture of the Day" postings here lately directly correlates with this phenomenon. That being said, I have been growing in Christ nonetheless and moving along spiritually, but perhaps not as quickly as if I'd had my nose in the Word every day along the way. I choose to change that. That is my power. All of that refers to my private relationship with God or rather "vertical" worship. My relationship with God through fellow believers or rather "horizonal" worship is doing better than ever after my 20-year hiatus from attending church and being involved with other believers. I continue to worship regularly at North County Christian Fellowship as that is where God has assigned me for now and I am content to be there. A Thursday evening "home group" from that church is my adopted spiritual family. I am also now lately visiting a second bible study group Thursday evenings that is populated by Paso Robles Bible Church members which church I have attended off and on over the past few years.
My wonderful mother Lynda seems to be moving forward in her life and big things seem to be on the near horizon for her which are rather momentous and exciting. She is a private person so I won't divulge much but for what I am willing to share stay tuned! My Grandma Noyes is also doing quite well, but must ambulate with a walker which is a relatively new development. She is thriving in her post-married life and she and I have never gotten along better than now following many troubled years in our relationship both during and after the demise of Grandpa Noyes. Grandma and I love each other as always but now we like each other as well. Her husband was in my estimation a wicked man with a religious facade but no reality of Christ within him. He failed to lead our family and caused me much pain and hurt over the course of my life. I know his son (up until his death) felt that way to the point of tears. Forgiving him has been a spiritual battle for me. Since Grandpa Noyes shed this mortal coil his wife has thrived as I never could have imagined. This follows the pattern her mother followed who after marrying an unsatisfactory man in like manner then thrived following his demise. My brother Andrew continues to live in work in Flagstaff, Arizona. We hardly ever talk as he desires no relationship with either me or his mother. The loss is his as I have formed my own new family. Who says you can't pick your family?
People Can Be Disappointing
A former untermensch roommate of mine from the late 2000's period of my life recently revealed to me the degree to which my ex-girlfriend blabbed very private details of our relationship with people who were even enemies. The same ex-girlfriend also made patently false accusations to a mutual friend regarding my character back nearer the time of the break-up (breakup was in 2009 and the ugliness came out of the blue in 2010). Given that I at no time during or since our breakup disparaged her behind her back to anyone or murdered her reputation in any way, shape, or form as she has done me it seems terribly cruel and unfair a development which it is. However, that merely revealed to me the true nature of the person in question whom I never really knew as well as I believed at the time (nor she, me, I suppose). I hope she is doing much better these days and is not now the same essential person who did those things a few years ago just as I am no longer the same person I once was who at times failed on my part in our relationship causing her hurt. However, from the get-go I took ownership of that shit and fell on my sword in and around the time of the breakup. Unfortunately, there has never been any reciprocity in this respect.
The aforementioned untermensch who shall go unnamed here as he does not deserve to be mentioned continues to stalk this blog (and perhaps beyond that). He periodically trolls in the comments section of specific postings. It was obvious back in the day from fairly early when I lived with him that he had absolutely no class nor character. He manner was so piss-poor that he caused me to start suspecting he is some sort of sociopathic individual. His actions since continue to confirm that suspicion. Someday he will die alone and nobody will care, least of all me. It sucks to be him.
No Love Lost Apparently
At the recent Cayucos Gem & Mineral Show at which I am one of the organizers and was in attendance part of the weekend I inevitably ran into my old boss/former friend with whom I had a falling out earlier this year as I shared on this blog (I'm intentionally not providing links to the postings but you can find them if you really wish to read them). The whole saga is rather sad and actually quite egregious. Anywho, he and I exchanged strained pleasantries and platitudes but that was it. He was too proud and stubborn and selfish to reach out and make any attempt to heal the rift. He, too, will die alone someday and that will be fully on him. He betrayed our friendship and the supposedly inviolable trust that bound it. He is like that you know. So many people get stuck in their own lives and don't even know it. God showed grace on me and delivered me from myself in this regard.