Archive for Uncategorized

Happy Easter

Hey folks,

A very happy Easter/Passover weekend to you and yours from us and ours.

Sorry I haven’t been around much lately, but some things are starting to come about that have taken me away from blogging for a bit. Some good, some bad, all different.

Now, I’m hoping you all have a great weekend, and I’ll catch you up next Friday.


Happy Halloween!

As with all holidays we love, we’re taking the day off to eat, drink, and be zombies.

Have a wonderful halloween, and stay safe out there!

Another Piece

I just finished an 11 day work week. 7-10 hours, every day, for 11 days. When you add commuting time, it tacks on an average of two hours to my day. The hours add up, and so does the money. But money isn’t everything, and something is missing.

What I learned from my most recent bout with extended hours, is the importance of rest. Taking time to sleep, eat, and unwind is hard sometimes. But, you have t force yourself to make it happen. Without taking time to recharge, your productive hours will be less effective, and you start to wonder why you are working so damn hard.

This is not news to anyone. It’s common sense. But, I have come out from the this hell of a work week, realizing that rest is not enough. Because, no matter how tired I am, if I go a day without pursuing my passions, it is a day wasted.

I am auditioning on Tuesday to get into an acting class, and I have started writing a new story. Not because I “had to.” Because I need to. Because no matter how good I job is, or how much I am paid for it, my passion cannot be fulfilled by mixing drinks for strangers.

As my resolve improves, so does my time management. And with the help of my wife and friends, I am beginning to get back on track. So no matter how tired I am, I can still work on my art.

Stay tuned folks. I believe I am on the verge of a comeback.


Almost There

I’m two hours away from Brooklyn, and I couldn’t be more excited.

My New York family is meeting me at the airport, and soon I’ll get a tour of our new apartment. I’ll even get to look at the city from our rooftop!

So while I’m off meeting Brooklyn, you should check out Dan’s new blog: Tales from Two Cities.

Tales from Two Cities is a public letter exchange between two of the coolest people I know. Adair is a Montana transplant living in Seattle, and Dan is a Montanan in NYC trying to make a name for himself. Together, they tell stories of growth, humor, and big city oddities. They’re off to a great start, and I’m looking forward to reading their stories over the following months.

Thanks for reading, and be prepared for more content, blogs, and experiments in the coming months. With Dan and I in the same city, there’s no telling what could happen next.


With just over two weeks left in Missoula, the time has come to sell and donate most of my possessions. While I have two vehicles to take everything from Missoula to Billings, I only have two suitcases to fill for NYC.

Everything must go.

This is an entirely new situation for me, and I’m not sure how to feel about it. On one hand, I’m excited to remove the excess in my life that has accumulated over the last 7 years. On the other hand, I feel like everything that survived through the years deserves a reverence far exceeding the Goodwill donation bin. I have gadgets, office supplies, and half-finished paintings that shared my space for years, hoping to someday serve a purpose. They act as a hall of fame for well-intentioned beginnings – a shrine for projects that only inspired me for a week or two.

It’s time to admit to myself that these projects will never bear fruit. This is a hard realization to face, but decisions need to be made. What stays? What goes? Simple questions with complicated answers.

Yet amidst the chaos of decision making, I find myself with a second beating heart, one that tells me to look forward instead of backward – to shed my old skin so I can grow even larger. This second heart is stubborn, yet I find it comfort in its authority. I will part with my projects because there are better projects. I will part with my objects because they are replaceable. I will make my decisions because I have a deadline.

It’s time to break the cycle of “maybe tomorrow”s, because I can no longer afford the mental taxation. I’m beginning to feel warmth from the fires of refinement, and I must keep moving forward.

Happy Independence Day

We here at Gold in them Hills would like to wish you all a happy Independence Day!
Let us give thanks for our country  and remember the sacrifices made by those 56 signers, who risked their lives so that ours might free.

-Austin, Clark and Daniel

Sticker Shock

As I continue to take my first steps outside of the grad school world, I have to pause to consider what brought me to this point.

I often imagine there are people who would think that the choices I have made up to this point are bad ones. The idea of having spent more than 80,000 dollars on what is often considered the lowest paying Master’s degree in the country strikes some people as a stupid move.

If I had known that from at the outset of my education, I probably would have agreed with them. Truth be told, the only reason I tried for a Counseling degree was because it was the fastest way to flip my Psychology degree into a paying job. At first.

But luckily for me and my clients, the program I went to challenged me in ways I could have never seen coming. It forced me to take a long hard view at myself, my choices, and the world around me which shaped the two.

We have a societal view, I think, to see a career as something you do during the day that earns you money. There’s no reason for personal growth beyond what you need to do to keep earning a paycheck. But, from this blog and from the struggles I have seen, I am finding firmer footing to challenge that view.

My logic is simple, a person will spend most of their life working in their chosen field. An existence spent in a cubicle waiting for the day to be over doesn’t leave a lot of room for existential fulfillment. Which is probably why it pays so well.

I’ll never be a rich man. This degree is the vow of poverty I’ve taken for the shot at living something real and unique. To me, that’s a bargain at any price.

Of course, this may all be me trying to cope with the shock of the price tag, so take it with a grain of salt.

My takeaway is this: a career should be something that gives us meaning, not just a bank account. At the end of the day, money just does not equal a life well lived.

Finding a deeper meaning to life, however, is the only way to live.

Vatican 3!

(the following is the sketch comedy infomercial I come up with while writing last week’s post. Imagine it being said by Billy Mays as a priest.)

Billy Mays here. Now I know what you’re thinking, “what do you want padre, to make me feel guilty and scare me about hell or confess something about alter boys?”You’ve heard the same old song and dance about sin and damnation for years. So today, instead of the same old Catholic gloom and doom, I’m here to tell you about an exciting new version of this ancient faith.

Introducing, Vatican 3!

What’s Vatican 3? Well, just how Vatican 2 softened some the church’s strictest rules and customs, Vatican 3 is going to chillax us one step closer to cool.

But how? Well, you all know confession, right? In Vatican 3, the confessional has been replaced by the Bragging Booth! Priests will great you and ask to hear about all the awesome stuff you’ve done lately. And rather than Hail Mary’s and genuflection, we’re giving out cool prizes!

Help some across the street?
Get a candy bar!
Save someone from a burning building?
You’ll spend the day with Tim Tebow!

Tired of the same old bread and wine at communion? Vatican 3 offers a number options, including flat bread, naan, pitas, and gluten free communion bread as well as a full bar of holy spirits. An Alabama Slammer made with Holy Amaretto, you say? I can’t wait for it to transubstantiate!

On top of these awesome changes, we are going to build on Vatican 2’s tradition of bring the word of God to the common man. Whereas Vatican 2 no longer required that mass be performed in Latin, we are now going to offer the entire Bible as 144 character Tweets.

@Vat3 posted

“Life in captivity. Yawn. No bows or prayers for a false God. Nebuchadnezzar can deal. #sonotsorry 
Visions of a Messiah, for real. #blessed” -The Book of Daniel 

Need more? Well, our Vatican 3 Priests would love to talk to you about this exciting new version of Catholicism at one of our Church’s open house pool parties! That’s right, we’re trading in our frocks for sunblock! Our Nuns will be lifeguarding, our bishops manning the grill, and you can bet that the priests will start up a chicken fight before the night’s over 

We know you haven’t gone to church for years, unless it’s Christmas and your parents make you. But we promise, if you give Vatican 3 a chance, you will not be disappointed. We are so confident that you will love our new church that all offerings and tithes come with a 30-day money back guarantee. We put the savings in salvation!

So what are you waiting for? Check out one of our open houses today!

Vatican 3!
Second to Nun!

(Paid for by The Pope Francis council for bitchin’ churches.)

Where Everybody Knows Your Name

Martini GlassI work as a bartender now. Because that’s what being an actor in New York means. And like any new job,  it has taught me a few things. Surprisingly though, not about alcohol (I already have a little too much firsthand knowlege.) This job has actually taught me a lot about play writing.

I like this job for a lot of reasons; free food, good pay, flexible schedule. But, number one on the list, is the people watching. It’s really like a non-stop character study. It is truly fascinating to watch people on first dates, next to someone meeting up with a long time business partner. A museum clerk, a lawyer, a grad student, they all come in, and get a little bit drunk; on a Tuesday.

These interactions are how plays are born. I mean, it is like the live taping of a TV show. Each night I work, I get to see all the regular characters and plenty of guest stars. Each night I meet a new face with a different story than the last one, and the old stories continue. Some are millionaires, some are slobs like me.

Each night, my bar is littered with characters to write about.

Some people literally grab my arm, and tell me about their day. Other people talk to each other, and I get to listen in. Either way, it is entertaining and enlightening. And each shift adds a page to my latest play.

People ask if I get to drink for free. And yes, I do. But, most nights I just sit and watch other people drink. And with each beer I pour, I get a little closer to finishing that play.


Life in the Johari Window

Johari WindowIt’s funny. Ever since I started asking people about my blind spots they’ve been telling me about them. Bastards.

Life never comes at you from the direction you’d expect. All my fears and things I never wanted people to find out about me? Perfectly fine with them. But all those things I do automatically because I never thought to do them differently?

In those gaps are the roadblocks keeping you from being truly whole.

Even now, I’m scared to share the things about myself that people keep saying aren’t a big deal. I’m geeky (as if the blog didn’t give that away), I’m selfish, I bore easily, and I withdraw from things more often than I face them head on. The funny thing?

These all contribute to the things people love most about me.

I’m geeky and I bore easily, so the things I do love I love intensely. I’m selfish and I withdraw, so my own knowledge of my own inner workings gives me a wisdom beyond my years. I don’t face things head on often, but when I do, I end up making change, real change. Like now, for instance.

But the things that almost damned me were the things I didn’t even think of.

I keep things to myself. I tend to underplay emotions. I set most of my goals around the expectations of others. Perhaps worst of all, I don’t listen to the things inside me that tell me when I’m struggling.

For the first time in years, my head and my gut agree on where I am and what I want to become. I’m struggling where I’m at right now, and that’s fine. But to struggle alone and deny who I am in those struggles? That’s the blind spot I have to change.