Simply Carforo

The other day - it struck me.

The 1/2 point of 2015 snuck past me, I started to recount the events that swallowed half of my year. Possibly to assuage my reflex to think that yet again that yet again, I was struggling with my two demons - time efficiency and efficacy. 

I recall January and February and most of March. I fell ill somewhere between Nashville, Manhattan, Palo Alto and Washington DC. I suppose that my childhood dream of being an empathetic superhero was not only alive but causing me delusions that I was well.  At any rate, the exhaustive jaunt around the country, my mostly quiet bout with Multiple Sclerosis, and the grueling task of training myself to be a proactive entrepreneur, all while my artistic spontaneity made a solid effort to assert its authority; had finally claimed residence in my immune system and promptly shut my entire body down.

I know, I know that I need to rest.

To take care of myself.

That the world will continue on its axis spin should I not respond to email, check my phone for rampant arson in the form of text messages.

I know all of that.

But what I can never seem to explain, or find the words for, is that - this career that I have stubbornly manifested by God's grace alone is the only thing I've got. Yes, I have phenomenal intimate family. I have discovered the kind of love that I know Shakespeare, Clifton and Hughes lived. However, the work, the business of living by your craft - I NEED THAT.

When the thought turns manic, turns over analyze, then lands in panic; I think that, "if this doesn't work, if I cannot manage to be my mantra, then not only will I be just one more human being included in the cadre of social media/millennial/startup stardom foolishness; I will have missed the entire reason I was placed on this earth."

My path is to speak, to encourage others to do the same. Be it a poetry, building, engineering, design or flea market artisanal passion turned legit brick and mortar.

I have yet to discover the language that conveys how much I enjoy the view of watching others discover their own lane. How much I value those before me, that have managed to flourish in authenticity before it was a trend.

It is humbling to get so many notes in email and social media, some days I am even blessed enough to get hand written notes amongst the bills that need remittances. Inside, people tell of how my work has motivated or blessed them in some way. I never quite know what to say, because my main feeling or triumphant fear is that I am not adequate enough to solicit praise. I am a mortal, some days, a lack representation of the human condition. It is customarily during this self induced pity sabbaticals that these timely notes arrive - I should say thank you, but I am too stuck in my own self reflection.

{As far as well executed transitions in narrative, well - this isn't one. So judge if you will.}

This past December I began working with a 25 year old designer, who has single handedly changed the way I view, taste and feel identity design. She is fiercely herself, steeped in her personal ideals of excellence and has the kind of delivery that could re-establish the hope that people can truly do what they say they are going to do. However, the thing I find more brilliant than her work, (which I have no modesty in saying she is going to be the name of a font family one day soon), is her personal commitment to her health. 

It was inspiring to see someone years younger - not afraid to say no. To stand for what she believed in, to take it for what it is and not what she would like it to be.

Learning from people my junior doesn't intimidate me, I prefer it. The reality started to land for me. I am not living, I am preserving. I am keeping alive the misconception that artists are bad with money, that deadlines are "boxes", that we are consoled by a cyclical life of chaos. 

I know better, in the midnight, in the mid day, and the early mornings that I awake from the habit of worry, but tell myself - you just like mornings.

As a creative, it is easy to see the goal, the andromeda of it, the true copper of a dream - and get so lost in the texture, the allure, the glow, that we disappear in the fantasy and ignore the reality.

We then are confronted with the magnitude of our desires, simultaneously being heartbroken at our own human incapacity to complete even the simplest of tasks. For me, Christine is the most articulate blend of matter of fact and ethos. 

This is not a plug - and I know her well enough to know she probably hates this. But as a CEO in training, the most educated decisions I have made in this elusive yet gorgeous year, has been hiring people that won't give me a forecast of sunshine while a tornado is just past the human eye line.

Although uncomfortable, I can unequivocally, state that having the poetry removed from the infrastructure of a burgeoning idea-lead collective has changed my life. 

And I am a better poem for it.

My advice:

Go out, find someone who has the ability to respectfully break your creative heart. 

Because when they put it back together - you will have a fully flushed identity.

You will have a disrespectful thirst for elegance, ingenuity and prestige.

And a brand that will make you feel as if you can not only survive the 3rd and 4th quarter of your fiscal year, but forecast for the next 5 with calculated ease, vetted confidence and a clean bill of health.

We could use it, an apple a day, someone to manicure our identity and make tailored adjustments to our flawed characters. If you are adept, you will find your Carforo. You will ask to be held accountable. The kind of hold that makes you want to beg to be let go, but in the deepest part of your dark and the unprotected fluidity of your impulsive mouth you say, "I'm alright - hold me tighter…".

Talk soon, 

aa