Archives for : Story Time

Story Time: About that New Format

Remember a few months ago when I promised a new format? Well, after weeks of trial and error, technical difficulties, unfocused writing attempts, and negotiating with the Boss, I finally have it for you! The truth is that writer’s block doesn’t even begin to describe what’s been holding me back. I just went through and pulled up all the active drafts I have saved. There were 6 in the last 3 months alone. It wasn’t so much a lack of inspiration–as you’ll see in the coming week and months of posts–but a short attention span coupled with an unsettled mind.

Now, the other reason I decided to make changes to my posting style is because Someone suggested that actually hearing the passion behind the words might help express my point more emphatically. My first reaction was Exit Comfort Zonean absolute “No.” Where I argued that we have podcasts where I guest or host with other folks participating. Who really wants to hear me rant… [He cut me off] “We read your rants don’t we?” he said. “Imagine a Decorum Deficiency Piece as spoken words… oh the lack of chill!” Of course, this was months ago, and I’m taking several verbal liberties, but that’s basically how the conversation went. The thought seed was planted and barely a month later I stared recording.

So now, you’ll have the benefit of hearing my perspective, in addition to reading itNow featuring sound. Let’s consider this first piece a summary explanation of sorts. Remember that I actually recorded this back in October when I first mentioned the new format of my posts. I even did one for Halloween–which I’ll probably hold it for next year because it should still be applicable–and another for my 2nd anniversary, which will probably just get added to the WDDIJ blooper reel for anyone who wants to hear what I had to say. Each blog piece/podcast hybrid will consist of my written introduction to what should be a more complete spoken thought.

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And there we have it! My first hybrid piece of many. Let me know what you think… because you know, the objective is to Do More, and of course Require Better.

The WRATH of Ruthless Holiday Special: The Wrong Kind Of Progress

The WRATH of Ruthless is back!

Before our actual relaunch we got together for a Holiday special with a couple topics and some old friends.

The WRATH of Ruthless Holiday Special: The Wrong Kind Of Progress <-Click this and you can download or listen from our SoundCloud

Here you can listen from our soundcloud right here on WDDIJ. [soundcloud url=”″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”100″ iframe=”true” /]

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CHICAGO - DECEMBER 01: Senator Hillary Clinton (D-NY) listens as President-elect Barack Obama introduces her as his choice for secretary of state during a press conference at the Hilton Hotel December 01, 2008 in Chicago, Illinois. Other members of the National Security Team named by Obama at the press conference include Washington attorney Eric Holder as attorney general, Arizona Governor Janet Napolitano as his choice for homeland security and he said Robert Gates would remain as defense secretary. Retired Marine Gen. James L. Jones was selected for the position of national security adviser and Susan Rice as U.N. ambassador. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Yes our Holiday Special is going to cover all of this.

Story Time: New Beginnings

Months ago, I was in a very unpleasant place. I was living in a hotel after waking up alone to find the kitchen on fire. My father was getting sicker. I had lost hope and couldn’t see anything as positive, or good for myself because so much had fallen apart. One night, with my hotel suite full of friends, all I could do was lay in the dark and cry. Then he came in the room, laid next to me, and offered his
company. I don’t remember him saying much; whether I asked or if he offered, but he held me while I cried. That wasn’t the Not Giving Upfirst time that he was exactly what I needed when I needed it most, but I count that time as one of several turning points that brought me to where I am today. He’ll probably never know how much what he did that night meant to me or why, but I am grateful to him every day.

I’m sitting in a place I feel comfortable calling home. I’m in a new city, a new state, and living a new life that is all mine. A year ago today, I could barely see how I was in to get here, only that I needed to get here. Of course there were other steps and epiphanies; turning points and points of no return. You might find yourself feeling lost, insecure, or all manner of done. Doors will seem to close, and you might think that you’re all out of options and opportunities. Your mind might tell you all kinds of untruths that could cause you to act against your best interests; the kinds that make you think you can’t. I am here to Require you to Do More and Better for yourself. Ask for help. Talk to a friend. Open yourself up and let someone in.  Stop standing in the way of your own new beginning. Doing More and Requiring Better isn’t just about how you interact with the world around you, it’s about Doing More of whatever you can to make everything about your world Better.

So this is it: Do More & Require Better.
Not just because I said so, but because knowing that your life has new meaning, new focus, new purpose, new drive is worth the effort.

Story Time: The Writer’s Block Tis Strong

What kind of writer writes about their writer’s block? This kind. I’ve been sitting here, started 3 different pieces, can’t seem to Writer's Block Kittybe able to get through this one piece I’ve been working on for about 3 or 4 weeks… Every time I think I’ll be able to make some progress, I wake up to find that the world has gone mad, and I’m back at square none. I promise to release the piece I’ve been working on at some time this year… I mean, what’s a blogger to do when the reason she has writer’s block is because there are so many things to write about, and can’t focus long enough to write anything?

Here’s what I mean…

There is no disputing that the shooting in Charleston last week was a hate crime…

1. Why were the news stations reporting it as though the terrorist murderer…

1a. Stop making white criminals out to be troubled youthWriters Blocks and black victims out to be thugs who deserved to be victimized.
1b. The media helps create and feed the negative perception that ails our nation
1b½. This nation was built on the bloodied bodies and poorly buried bodies of slaves and Native Americans…

…did you hear about that hippie group trying to do their annual land destroying, debaucherous demonstration on Sioux territory and how there are Lakota vowing to whoop them like its Little Big Horn all over again?

I mean seriously people… There are so many issues to choose from all of my inner activists are fighting each other to have their say first. I didn’t even get to talk about my
issues with gender… I mean Jenner’s reassignment on a level that has nothing to do with what everyone else is whining about (Go Kaitlyn, I’m happy you’re happy). Gun control, my President saying the N word, appropriation of so-called black culture, the confederate flag, big business making decisions they should have made forever ago… My cup runneth over and the current events worthy of discussion multiply daily. Of course I have writer’s block. There’s just too much to feel about going on at once and I can’t help but wonder why.

Hot in HereHas the world really gone mad, or am I just now noticing how crazy the world has always been? I feel like there is a consorted effort being made toward desensitizing me, and people like me… Like the objective is to overwhelm my sense of justice and righteousness so that I’ll just stop trying and resign to watching the world burn from the comfort of my seat in front of the TV or my laptop saying “SMH” or “lol” while subtly complaining about the heat.

Do More. Require Better.

Life Goes On… So Run.

You’ll have to forgive me as I’ve been pretty single-minded lately… and by single-minded, I mean all over the place, emotional, unhinged, and showing several signs of insanity. Run! Escape! Flee!I’ve started this so many times and written about life, death, the future, the past, my love for white cheddar with Club crackers… when really, the only thing my mind is consistently on: Run.

I know what you’re thinking. “Run where, Reign?” Simple: Away. I want away from everything and everyone that reminds of this life. That’s the funny thing about having lost the first man in my life: nothing seems right without him, so why bother trying to act like it is? Why? That bring us to the title of this story… because life goes on.

One day in the recent past, I woke up feeling almost normal. I inhaled deeply and my chest didn’t feel like it was going to explode. My face wasn’t already moist with tears I cried in my sleep. My head wasn’t pounding. My eyes weren’t burning. The growl in my stomach didn’t trigger memories of meals with my dad sitting on the other side of the table asking me when I was going to go for my Master’s. I thought I had gotten through the grieving process.

When I finished readying myself for the day, I sat with my laptop and started going through emails, scrolling through Facebook, and trying to plan my next moves because Life Goes On. I was going to plan, budget, strategize… everything I normally do when making life changes. The days I spent at my daddy’s side hoping he’d wake up just long enough to say my name in that way he always did–he didn’t–taught me that life was for the living, and that I owed it to myself to live mine. I was determined to show him if he could see me that I’d be fine. That he didn’t have to worry about me. That I’d move on, move forward, and get ahead.

I had to have been at it for 3 hours before someone called, texted, or sent an FB message asking me what has become my least favorite combination of words in the English language: “How you holding up?” In that moment, smacked in the face by confusion and conflicted emotions, I responded with the most sarcastic and snarlyTable Flip response I could muster before the tears took over my ability to think at all: “I don’t know, you tell me.” Trust and believe folks, on a good day my snarky and sarcastic comebacks are trophy worthy; scathing even. So naturally, I got mad at myself too. How dare I fail so horribly at making someone feel like a complete ass for asking such an obviously horrible question?!? I’m pretty sure I excused myself from that conversation before whoever it was (I honestly can’t remember who) had a chance to make me feel guilty for pointing out their thoughtlessness with such a scornful tone.

Needless to say, reality came crashing in on the fantasy land I woke up in and pretty much killed that day for me. Reality check received: life goes on, but you ain’t ready. The struggle continues. Do More. Require Better. Get ahead… Run.

Words Don’t Do It Justice: YOU are Forty Thousand Strong on our 2nd Anniversary

Just a reminder where we started.

Just a reminder where we started.

Words Don’t Do It Justice

“It was all a dream.

I used read word up magazine.”

I could keep going with that, but really I don’t feel like quoting too much of anyone else today. So let me address this with the style most comforting.

When this all began it was an idea.

The thought that we could give the world something in this blog that would be read by our friends, maybe a few co-workers and classmates. And every once in a while I’d get to deal with the issues I have to face on a daily basis by just ranting into a text window for 30 minutes to an hour and let the world read. Certainly if we accomplished that I would have called this a successful idea and when the view dwindled I’d close it up and say I had a good time.

But that isn’t what you did. And I say that isn’t what YOU did, because it is true. You are the reason this fun time didn’t turn into just another thing I used to do. YOU made it worth it to find Rufus, Ronin, Roddo, Rebellionista, Realistic Royalty, Princess Devy, Reign, The Revanchist, The Radical Ref, Carl McPhail, Xion, Driving Misty, Rhapsodic, Reason, Kudo, Rhythmic Journey, Revolution In A Jar, causeandeffect88, Bami O, Render Verdicts, Ruminated Thoughts, Keith Labell, Smooth Phuzion, Bree the V, TEH Bobbo, and all the people who wanted to commit but just didn’t have the time to write, be on the podcast, contribute music, or be interviewed.

That wasn’t just me plodding through on my own. That was you reading. That was you sharing. That was YOU telling the world our little corner of the internet was worth checking out. in the first year we did 3500 views. In 2 years we have done 40,000! Because of all of you. And now things are possible that weren’t not long ago. YOU made this happen. People asked me when I started what I expected. They asked me what I wanted. I just wanted people to listen to my thoughts sometimes. It was so simple back then. Now? Now I want the sky and everything beyond. lol just kidding.

Now I want to give you more of what you come here for. So covering Gaming, and other topics, We’re proud to announce that Nine To Five Gamer will be joining us run by Bami O. Look for the official page as well as forums soon. You’re going to read pieces from many of our alumni writers. And that long-awaited revamp/update to the site. I can’t promise you we’ll turn into a Super Villain run Huffington Post by tomorrow. Heck I can’t even promise that by next year. But I can promise we will keep hitting these hot topics with our cold analysis. I can promise we are committed to giving you what you came here for. And I can promise you I WILL NEVER FORGET what drives Words Don’t Do It Justice. Because what drives us is YOU!

My humanity wants to cry by my Super Villainy is smiling too hard and is too excited. Thank you all. THANK YOU. Every super fan. Every random reader Every casual person who checked us out a few times or just once. THANK YOU FOR ALL OF THIS FROM ALL OF US! We couldn’t have done all this without you. Words Do Not Do YOU Justice!

– THE Ruthless Wonder

Decorum Deficit Disorder: Get Off the Pot

I had a whole different topic picked out for this week, but someone told me I needed to stop paying attention to my feelings and get to work… to stop letting them see me sweat he said. I guess I have been sweating a lot in public lately. What can I say *shrug* It’s been hot in my kitchen.

… So instead we’re going to talk about mixed messages and indecision.

So there I was at work, deep in thought, awake, but not really, listening to the sounds and conversations around me, contemplating my next move. As I was drifting off into another flashback of memories from times I last made decisions and took action, I was interrupted by the fatherly voice of a new coworker and friend… Have you ever been asked a simple question that throws all of your psychic energy into overdrive?

I used to be really good at seeing a path and moving forward, now, not so much. I guess I’m getting old and nervous; now I stop to think and consider my moves like every decision is a critical move in a never-ending game of chess.

Life is not a game. It has a beginning and an end. Every moment of every day could be your last or it could be just another moment. Wasting time vacillating between decisions like you’re a character in some Shakespearean tragedy thinking Shit...“To move, or not to move…. to do or not to do… paper or plastic…” … Dude… Shit or get off the mother fucking pot. That was my message for the day, and in true Reign-esque fashion, I am sharing it with all of you. Whatever it is that you need to do to get to where you want to go, get on it. Eventually you’ll realized that the only person who is responsible for your current position in life is you. Absolutely, we are all the sum and total of every person and interaction, but the result is still ultimately a personal choice. You can bask in accomplishments that have long since passed, or you can move forward to your next goal. Will you be the high school quarterback who hasn’t been shit since high school still recounting stories from his glory days, or will you be the one still making moves, kicking ass, taking names, being the master of your own universe  in spite of anyone who says you can’t? These are choices.

It still makes me feel “some type of way” when I see, hear, or read things that say anything that’s wrong with your life is your fault; that isn’t completely true. Circumstances are often outside of our control, especially when they require input from other humans. Just to clarify, that isn’t what my friend said, but it is what I heard. What he actually said was something much closer to my being responsible for where I am, but instead of dwelling on the part of the message that doesn’t agree with me, I threw the salt over my shoulder and took what I needed. That’s the mixed part of the message. Indecision is about fear. When you send mixed messages out into the universe, that forces the universe to respond to whatever part of the message it prefers, regardless of your intent. So yes, we are responsible for the messages we send. We are responsible for our own actions. However, how those messages are received, interpreted, and the resulting reaction, not always about us. When you go into a job interview looking the part, saying all the right things and shaking all the right hands… is it your fault if the decision had already been made that you would not be the recipient of said job? When you meet someone for the first time, think you’re being pleasant and personable, but somehow that person leaves your interaction thinking negatively of you because you remind them of some jack ass they dealt with once upon a time, is that your fault? No. That’s about them. It isn’t your responsibility to know every factor and potential outcome… that’s chess, this is life. Life is long, short, unpredictable, and everyone knows what’s going to happen at the end. Let that sink in…

Remember that you are only responsible for your 50 percent. You have your own decisions to make, you have your own messages to send and receive. You have to master your universe while playing your role everyone else’s. Mistakes will be made. Lessons will be learned… Life will go on. Indecision will only leave you stagnant, mired in regrets, stuck in glory days long past wondering why things aren’t the way you want them to be. Make your moves with as much certainty as possible without fear of how things might-could turn out. Know that the only direction you can’t go in is backward. You can’t, or at least really shouldn’t take shit back. Shit and get off the fucking pot… and

Do more. Require Better.