While riding the Metro-North into Manhattan in late December, I was reading The Science of Getting Rich by Wallace Wattles. I marched through Grand Central and continued downtown on Madison Avenue where I pictured piles of checks handed to me. “Pay to the order of Eric Sazer, Three hundred sixty-five thousand and two-hundred twenty-one dollars”, “Pay to the order of Mister Eric Sazer for the amount of Eighty-eight thousand, nine-hundred and fifty three dollars,” “Dear Eric, Please deposit this check written out to you, Eric Sazer, for the full amount of four-hundred and two thousand, seven-hundred and sixteen dollars. Enjoy it”. Block after block my mere thoughts alone were putting me into the billionaire bracket.
Anyone who knows me personally will attest to the fact that if greed rides though my bones, it does so on extremely low dosages. This desire to be wealthy rides more on the coattails of helping the world while doing the things I love rather than getting sloppy rich, lazy and unconscious. I could write an entire essay or blog post on how I’d use money to positively change the world around me (note to self).
By the time I hit East Thirty-third Street, I had enough funds to purchase Murray Hill. The glow within was so enormous I just couldn’t contain myself. I looked over at a younger man on his cell phone. We exchanged glances and then he asked if I needed any help. Shoving my wad of etheric billions into an unknown abyss, I shrugged. The younger man rushed off the phone with his mother and asked me who I am. I tell him my name and that I’m a writer. Coincidentally, he’s a marketer seeking a writer for a specific project. The nature of this project wasn’t revealed until days later: Ghostwriting the lyrics to a hit song for a fourteen-year-old girl with a golden voice.
Despite my limited experience in songwriting I agreed to the assignment. Why? Spoiler alert—the main character in my novel becomes a lyricist. The excitement working on this ghostwriting project ebbed (due to my insecurities as a lyricist) but mostly flowed (come on, who wouldn’t want to be wealthy after writing a hit song that makes millions happy?). On Thursday, January 28th, my excitement for this assignment came to a screeching halt when the young marketer asked for two first draft verses due on a meeting tentatively set for Sunday afternoon. Terror is what killed the excitement. “Four days isn’t enough time,” I told myself. “I really need to sit with this and let the words seep out naturally.” Oh the lies! The deception!
Later that day, I get on a call with a wonderful woman who used to work in the music industry. When I shared with her this project along with my terrors (which by then had spiraled out of control. “I’m no songwriter! Who am I fooling?), she did what any being would do…she acted as my mirror. At the end of the call, I was 98% sure that I’d have to abandon the ghostwriting project. Then a small voice in my head said, “Eric, stranger things have happened. Who cares that you don’t have years of experience writing songs? What about the novel? How is the main character going to be a lyricist if you don’t know how to write lyrics yourself?”
These past two days, the voices of terror played a grueling match of Ping-Pong against the voices of encouragement. Late this morning the match finally came to an end when I shared my concerns with the music producer on this project. He urged me to ignore those voices of terror. “What’s the worst that will happen,” he argued. “You write a bad song? So what?” The music producer insisted that I give this more than a month’s shot. “If after three months and your lyrics are less then desirable, than we can revisit you moving on.” How wonderful it to see the voices of terror vanish into silence.
I’m no fool. The voice of terror has a way of creeping in when you least expect it. Everything can be honky dory one minute only for seconds later paralysis kicks in. It happens to the best of us. The outcome of this song is unknown. I could write killer lyrics but the girl with the golden voice may not know how deliver it. Another outcome—all the world agrees that the lyrics are God awful but something about the beat, the girl’s voice and a tiny quarter of one verse gets everyone off their seats, dancing, singing along, raising vibrations, ending wars…ooh the possibilities puts a chill down my spine.
So, reader, who do you listen to? Do you play it safe? Do you not get up on that stage during karaoke because you might be so damned good (note to self)? Are you the type to sit in the back row hiding under your winter coat during an interactive theatrical piece (note to self once again)? When finished writing your blog, do you push the ‘delete’ button (if there is one) instead of ‘publish’, reader? Please comment below.
I will leave you with the song that got me dancing at the end of my last blog post. Until next time!
Those readers who have been with me from the very beginning know that I titled this blog Descent Into A Creative Mind. That was all fine and dandy at first as tapping into my creativity did feeling like a spelunking expedition. There was a ton of bullshit to wade through, such as, “What’s this nonsense I’ve tapped out on the page?” or “Does anybody give a crap about what I have written here?” or “Is it descent or descend?” These types of questions went on and on. Underneath all this bullshit (heck let’s just call a spade a spade here. It was my shit. I’m not a bull. I’m a human after all…I think), I finally found myself (Eureka!) along with the subject of my new novel entitled The Admired. The only spoilers you’ll get about this novel is that it’s a satire on obsession and er…it’s slightly autobiographical, emphasis on the word slightly. The rest you’ll have to read when the book comes out (I’m 46,000 or so words into the writing of this novel. That’s about 1/3 of the way through).
I made a decision to give this blog a new look and a retitling. (Those of you who clicked the hyperlink—Welcome back! Where the hell did you think I was going to send you? I was in the middle of a sentence for crying out loud!). Joyously together we can call this blog The Ascent To Our Creative Minds. The intention of this facelift is to inspire, inform, enlighten, ignite passion under our tushies and pull together a community of brilliant souls. Yes, that means you! If any of this interests you, please read on.
When talking about ascension this isn’t some New Age hodgepodge. It’s real folks. I’ve discovered the roots of agelessness and unconditional love. How, you may ask: The expression of creativity. This is the inner child at play. You might say, “Well, I’m too old. I’ll never change” or “How’s this gonna help? I need to make money. Playing is for kids.” Bullshit alert! I mean human shit alert! Whatever-species-you-are-shit alert! I don’t care if you’re two or two thousand years old, all of us have an inner child. There’s tons of literature out there to prove this. Comment below with your doubts and I’ll be pleased to send you a handful of links. Should you still be sitting there bemoaning, “This jerk with this inner child nonsense”, let me ask you, don’t you want to laugh and feel the joys you once had as a child? Heck, I know I do. If you don’t, I’m not judging here but it would absolutely perplex me if you were to respond, “Eric, I actually hate laughing. Nothing beats a good ol’ serious boring day. While the sun rises, I yell at my loved ones. Cut people off on the road. Fire everyone at work. Sue my clients. Heck, they smelled like piss anyway. Then come home. Why eat a delicious dinner when you can munch on a nice microwaved paper towel. At 7:30 PM on the dot I lock myself in a frigid broom closet. Ain’t no mattress there! Why lay down when you can stand up? God gave us two feet for a reason. After some leaning against the icy wall, I do it all over again the next day.” Well, friend, I don’t even know what to say to that one.
Now, since we are all living here on planet Earth, money does need to be made in some capacity. However, why not go about it while having some fun? Get your mind out of the gutter. I’m not talking about something kinky here, although that is not out of the scope of possibilities. There have been worse ways riches have been accrued. What I was getting at is a technique some of the greatest entrepreneurs use called brainstorming. The root of this is creativity.
I’ll go more in detail on all of these topics and more in future posts. In the meantime, regardless of your age, sexuality, economic status, connection with spirit, enjoyment of sleeping in a frigid broom closet, I really hope to learn more about you. Together let’s break through our limitations and soar through our most elevated selves. I suggest after reading this, you put some wild music on and get your dancing feet going. That’s what my plan is once I push the “Publish” button.
Let’s write one another from our own beds. We can spill our hearts out on the pages. Go till we run out of ink or when our fingers cramp up. Then toss the letters out the window with the hopes it will arrive somewhere safe.
The next morning, grounds people will pick up our sad letters. Press it to their chests. Feel bolder than a skyscraper. The grounds people will then lead humanity into a true heart-based culture.
All it takes is one pen and as many pages you’re willing to donate. Go ahead folks. Scribble from your heart.
At Swanson’s, we not only install an X-Ray vision chip into your eye. We guarantee it will work. Take it to your favorite swim park. Share with your shady father the contents of his locked “mysterious” cabinet. You’ll impress people of all races, religions, ages and criminal backgrounds. Swanson’s…wow your eyes before you die.
You were never here but somehow I miss you. It would be easy to just flick you on or off as I lie here, my head pushed deep into the down pillow. Without you I have to get up and shuffle to the light switch six or seven paces from the bed.
Strange how passion drains out the body. I scream in agony for it to stop. People tell me it’s normal to walk about like a zombie, feel nothing, want only to pay bills or have a superficial chuckle with a stranger otherwise known as my brother or cousin or best friend. Then as this passion has found itself deeply embedded outside of my consciousness, the simple act of walking six or seven paces to turn on or off a light becomes a burden. Can’t death just take over. Better yet, please end this nightmare ruled by apathy. Allow me to awaken with lamps all about that are ignited by my mere excitement. This is what I long for.
While out in California, I had attempted to collaborate on a piece that I had entitled “Naked Inn”. Nothing ever came of it. Perhaps the awful title turned my collaborator off. Devoid of any further rambling, here is the piece in its raw form —
When Grandmother retired from the Inn, she demanded I keep it a Christian establishment. This baffled me as she considered herself a Buddhist. In her earlier years, should anyone make mention of Christ or any of His followers, she’d wince, insisting the conversation be changed. The repetition of her retiring wishes that the Inn remain a Christian establishment led me to believe that perhaps this wasn’t a slip of the tongue. Could she be stricken with madness? Events later in her life pointed to early onset of Alzheimer’s. She, however, in this moment, couldn’t be clearer.
One key to the Inn dangling in one hand, a finger on the other hand shaking inches from my nose, Grandmother howled, “Keeping it a Christian establishment means you keep it clean, Edgar! It means you follow the rules. When people check in, you get their payment right away. If they got no cash, show them the door! You hear me?” Before I could answer, she kissed my cheek, shoving the Inn’s keys in my jeans pocket.
As the Inn’s new keeper, business proved rather slow. The phone would ring, the callers surprised to hear a young man’s voice on the other end. Some feared Grandmother had died. I had assured them the woman was sunbathing, winking at cashiers, licking ice cream cones and enjoying every moment of retirement. Regardless, the Inn remained vacant for several weeks—just the creaking floors and me.
The first guests to arrive were two naked twenty-something year old boys. They were naked in clothing, money, vehicle, identification and knowledge of how they got like this. One boy suggested that had they arrived six seconds later, they could have died. How? They didn’t know. Looking at the two, they could have been twins. One, though, had African, maybe Caribbean skin.
“I don’t know what I can do for you two,” I warned. “You got’s no money.”
“You can keep us safe,” insisted one boy.
“Just put us in your worst room and forget about us,” suggested the other.
“Worst room?” That made me laugh. “All the rooms here are great. Majestic, my grandmother would call it. Plus, how the hell can I forget about you two? You’re my first guests as the innkeeper.”
“Don’t you got a closet in the cellar,” asked the African boy.
“You two are nuts. Listen, I promised my Buddhist grandmother I’d keep this a Christian establishment…”
“How does that work?”
“Not sure but I’ll tell you something…”
“What,” they both sung.
“I’ll give you a room.”
“That’s right. One! If it were my grandmother, she’d tell you to get lost, you understand?”
“We understand,” they echoed.
The boys followed me up three flights to a room with two queen beds. They both crawled into a bed each, staring at me like a long lost uncle. I offered them clothing but they said not to worry, they’d figure it out in the morning. Their eyes closed, quickly followed by intense snores.
In the morning the room was immaculate. The sheets smelled fresh, not a single trace of nakedness anywhere (other than my naked confusion). I hollered a bunch of names but realized moments later the boys never gave me their names. Clearly it was time to sit at the front desk and scratch my head.
The words come out faster. You see, I’ve been rather miserable lately. Running around town looking for my right place. Jump into the Pacific Ocean? Return to a land where walking alone seems nearly impossible? Ay, questions just stick their ugly monstrous cocks down my throat mid-fucking-sentence. So, I swat them away with Cutco knives glued to my fingers and then scream, “Screw it, I’m here. This is where I’ll be…at least for now!” Seems to work.
When I’m drunk, I also find myself torn between the words tossed on the page and the eager individuals sending me messages on Facebook. Really, what I wish to say is, “Shut up and when can we make love?” But I don’t. I just play it nice and easy. Flipping back and forth between the massive flow of these words and whatever commonplace thing that leaves my fingertips on that social website.
The urine that builds up during the drunken process infuriates me. I’d piss right here, in your eyes, as you read this but it doesn’t work that way. I’d have to buy a new computer. Who’s got money for that shit these days? So I’ll leave you here, wondering what my urinating experience was like. Did I moan? Was there a knock on the door from a bunch of drunks demanding an orgy?
So, I’m on my merry way now. Unzipping the fly. Standing over the toilet and whistling a tune…
Pop your champagne bottles! Jump through the hills! The long and arduous journey from New York to California has come to an end. Here I am in heaven on Earth–Humboldt county, California.
It’s taken me some time to settle in. The first few days were rough. I’ve had to disconnect from the memories of my super comfy L-shaped house to a solar bus in the middle of the woods. The bed I sleep on is an inch or two too small. The occasional hornet gets stuck in my mini-afro; due to their peaceful ways, they understand, simple mistake. Does a man punch another man for accidentally bumping into another? Some do…not these hornets.
More to write later. I’m at a party and judge myself a bit anti-social.
“Them shrimp burritos, man, they sure as hell just melt in your mouth.” The Gringo stood in the hallway, peering into the kitchen. The chef, a whistling muscleman, plopped a spoonful of guacamole into a stuffed taco. He then meandered over to the deep fryer, yanking out the plantains.
“You must have had the shrimp burritos before, haven’t you?” The Gringo continued. The chef nodded then pushed passed his chatty voyeur. “Ah to Follow the Chef,” sang the Gringo. Had the bathroom door stayed shut, he would have continued on with the song. A hunchbacked woman stumbled past the Gringo, her breath reeking of fecal matter. Once inside the tiled bathroom, rose fragrance permeated the air.
There upon the warm porcelain seat, the Gringo closed his eyes, humming the tune “Ah to Follow The Chef.” Minutes later, nothing had found its way out of his rectum. He was awoken by a pounding on the door. The Gringo leapt up, his genitals flailing about, yanked the door open. There stood the chef. The two uttered their apologizes with cheeks aflame in embarrassment.
My first commercial.