Travelling outside of my country for the first time, solo, and into a place that doesn't speak my language armed only with a credit card. I guess $$ is everyones language as I appeared to have survived.
Driving from Cleveland to Las Vegas. Most fun I've ever had in my life, and so many sites to see that I've only seen in the movies. I remember the Rockies being absolutely mindblowing. Yes, I would do it again, and to other places, but unfortunately, my work schedule gets in the way.
Don't know if this is really exciting for most, but I grew up into a sheltered, overprotective family in the suburbs of Cleveland.
I woke up one morning, looked into the mirror of my wardrobe, and knew I didn't want to go to work. So I didn't.
Instead I went and lived in Lennox House, on a lovely peninsula overlooking Lake Burley Griffin, in the grounds of the Australian National University, for $5 a week.
I didn't enroll but I joined a number of clubs and societies on campus and even founded one myself. I sailed and rowed, went bushwalking and scuba diving, learnt to meditate, and I joined the poetry society. And all the time I was reading, reading in the library and talking in the coffee shop. The Students' Union regarded me as part of the University and made me a Life Member. And all the time I was accompanied by my beautiful girlfriend Ruth.
Put $1k into a forex account, grew it to $3k+ in about a month, mostly trading eur/usd and exxon mobil stocks using an insane leverage. An event caught by me surprise and I lost everything. OPEC had a very important meeting cancelled (they were planning to reduce supply), which led oil prices to rapidly decline, which caused the stock to plummet, which got me screwed.
1. Took a trip alone to Mexico with a bad back that could have left me unable to walk at any moment. Didn't makes plans for said trip at all. Got off plane and had no idea what to do. Plenty of crazy things happened there, too many to talk about. For one, I got utterly destroyed on tequila one night and barfed all over the floor of some bar. For another, I accidentally went to a hostel primarily for gay people and one of them took me out to show me around and tried to make moves on me. Beer was poured surreptitiously on the floor that night. Believe me.
2. Within same trip, outdid myself by getting on a bus to Acapulco, again with no plan whatsoever (and little knowledge about what a dangerous city it is), and unsuccessfully trying to find a hostel there BUT INSTEAD getting on another bus with a random townie who didn't really speak English and allowing him to take me to a slummy part of town and show me a hotel that didn't even have a name, where I partook in some nightlife and stayed until the next day. Also I took a walk on the beach at like 4 AM. That's a big no-no. Oh yeah, and I got chased by wild dogs.
3. Swam a mile out into the ocean at Hilton Head. Crossed horizon line to people on beach, at which point someone I don't even know dialed 911, summoning the coast guard. He yelled at me and my 2 friends (we were all on a swim team back home). Said it was arrogant assholes like us who he spends days looking for their floating bodies from a helicopter or something. We didn't give a fuck. We were actually pretty damn pumped for having been yelled at by the coast guard.
4. Got fired from a lifeguarding job I'd held for 4 or 5 years because I got extremely wasted one night and 2 friends and I went on premises to "camp out there and surprise our boss in the morning" but ended up wrecking a golf cart.
5. Went to the woods of upstate New York when I was 22 and ate ~4-5 grams of some quality psilocybin mushrooms, underwent emotional armaggedon in 5 hours but subjectively experienced an eternity from which I thought I would never return, not that I knew who I was or anything about myself.
6. A million other drug stories. Grew mushrooms, took them like they were cracker jacks. Everywhere. Even in front of my parents without them knowing. Avatar 3d on mushrooms = awesome. Tripped balls one night until like 5 AM then went to work like nothing happened. Used ammonia and lighter fluid to extract dextromethorphan from cough syrup or just drank the whole bottle. Saw god, saw Jesus, saw everything, it was amazing, things you'll never know... blah blah blah. Oh and I smoked salvia about 6 billion times, and tripped my mother fucking nuts off. Smoked it 5 times in a row on multiple occasions. Once I smoked it and completely blacked out, when I came to (after spending a lifetime as a wheel) I was standing paralyze in the doorway of my kitchen drooling. Once I was able to move my arms and legs, the floor and walls came off with them. Oh, and I gave tons of people salvia who had never tried it. Most of them actually liked it. I gave it to the manager of my apartment complex once after this party and she pissed her pants.
7. Taught kids from the projects when I was fresh out of college, 22 years old. More stories than I can tell.
8. As a chemistry teacher, I blew up just about everything, all the time. Huge, enormous balls of fire, like everywhere. There'd be times when half my classroom was on fire. We'd take the natural gas jets and run them through soap water, pile it up or put it in our hands and watched it go FOOOOOM. We'd pour alcohol and acetone all over the place just to see how far we could go. I thought I blew my hand off with some sodium metal one time. And the dry ice bombs... we blew the fuck out some dry ice bombs. I had it down to such a fucking art. I could time them so well they'd go off a second after leaving my hand, it created a spectacular effect. Some other teacher tried to emulate me and broke his hand when one went off in it. If they didn't go off, I'd have kids run up and kick them or throw them against a wall. I just had an ungodly feel for this kind of shit, no one ever got hurt, and I never got in trouble. On the contrary, people fucking loved it. Parents and kids alike. Part of it was made possible due to the fact that this school was ghetto as shit and parents weren't uptight pieces of shit. One time I did think I had exposed everyone to poisonous gas, though. It was a stressful time in my life. Well, a couple times actually. That iodine gas is not toxic is a miracle. That's all I can say.
9. My antics as a teacher, even besides the out of control experiments, were pretty much legendary. When you're a 22-24 year old already crazy person in charge of obviously crazy kids at a school where absolutely no one gives a fuck, it's just gonna be crazy period. There's really too many stories to tell on this one. I was epic as fuck for my first 3 years of teaching. The last 2 I was actually at a nicer school, I was tamer, I was older, and I had blown up everything a million times, I'd seen it all.
10. I became a day trader out of nowhere. Started out trading everyday stuff, then found my precious... VXX, a leveraged ETN that tracks the volatility index (read: danger). Fuck I loved trading that stock. I'd go long, I'd go short, I'd hold it for days, I'd hold it for seconds. Ultimately I broke even off it, but I watched the thing like a hawk all day every day for months. I got crazy over it. Later on in the year I made like 75% in almost no time at all off a 3d printing bubble. I really have no business doing this crap, but maybe I'll get back in sometime.
11. Crazy fucking camping stories/nightmares. There was the time I camped through a 10 degree night with a shitty thin sleeping bag and no ground pad. Didn't even sleep. My toes were white for hours. Then there was the time my friend and I got lost as shit and had to hitchhike off some hillbillies in Kentucky. Or the time another friend and I tried to do an off-trail expedition and wound up getting nowhere for hours. Probably did 0.1 miles per hour for like 10 hours. He was screaming in frustration. I didn't really give a shit, after all I've seen, but when we got back home we had wound up hiking 11 miles (the last couple hours were productive) and the blisters on my feet were catastrophic. One time I went camping alone for 5 days... craziest part about that was hearing coyotes that sounded like they were literally 20 feet from me howling like deranged psychopaths for hours at night. I had a flaming stick in my hand ready to beat the shit out of whatever popped out of the darkness at me.
12. I dunno how crazy this is, but it was recent so.. one night I went out by myself to a bar. I introduced myself to a couple random people and talked to them for a while, I guess they thought I was cool enough to invite to another bar they were going to, we went there and took a lot of shots, I got pretty wasted, we went back to one of their apartments and smoked a bunch of weed and then went back out until 4 AM at which point we returned and crashed at their place, I spent a lot of time in the bathroom trying not to puke, etc. Is that crazy? I dunno. I feel like people don't do that kind of thing.
13. There was the time I quit my career all the sudden. Ya know, decided spring break was too damn nice not to go on, so once I got back, after 5 years of teaching, I decided it was time to cash in on my sick leave and take off the rest of the year. I wound up quitting at the end of that time period, and here I stand. I have not worked in like 8 months at this point. I haven't even bothered to do much of anything.
14. I take that back. I moved to a new apartment. I stayed there for roughly one month, realized I hated it, and promptly moved back to my old place. More hilarious than that, I befriended my old gay landlord and we went out and had some crazy fucking times too. The guy fucking scared me. He was surprised as hell when I told him that I was done with the new place. I hadn't given a single sign of being unhappy, then I told him I was moving out, and I also told him that I wanted to be alone. Moved the fuck out and haven't spoken to him since. Also during that time period I went to college for approximately 1 month, and dropped out of that too.
15. My best friend in Kentucky from 2009 to the beginning of 2013 was 1) a genius and 2) completely fucking insane. He claimed to have an IQ of anywhere between 150 and 200, it depended on the occasion. I will readily believe it was 150, and not the 150 that comes from some stupid online test. He was WAY smarter than me and I am pretty damn smart. Well, first off, he was like Good Will Hunting. His highest held position in all the time I knew him was "waiter." Most of the time he was a pizza driver. He hadn't finished college. He was high all the time, and when he wasn't, he got so paranoid he started talking about stealing tankers, making explosives, and rebelling in the case of a government takeover or apocalypse. To make matters worse we were both huge into Glenn Beck at the time and we really thought the world was about to shit itself and go to hell. I bought a $1200 dollar AR 15, a 9 millimeter, and 1000 rounds of ammo for each one. I stockpiled enough food to last me for months. One time we were on our way to some wilderness to go camping, and some car flashed its lights at us as he was firing up a blunt. I tried to warn him there was a cop, but we wound up hitting a checkpoint and he and his gf got arrested while I did not. I couldn't drive his car, it was stick. So I camped out by the side of the road that night. Tried to look up how to drive it on his smart phone the next morning but accidentally locked the keys in it. Had to call the cops to help me out. The one who showed up was actually really nice and drove me to the jail so I could bail those fuckers out. I just remember his parents coming and driving us back to his car. He was 26 at the time, and his mom never knew he smoked weed and she told him he was going to rot his brain. He replied "I guess I'll just burn up my mensa card now then."
16. His temper was hilariously epic, and what was even funnier was how little he realized how out of control he was. He often called himself "the most even-keel person" he knew. Yet once something set him off, it was always a meltdown. He routinely got in hilarious shouting matches with his 10-year girlfriend and then wife. They were so petty I always just sat there and tried not to laugh. Several times he pulled his badass looking pocket knife out on people. Once he brake-checked someone and they pulled over into some parking lot getting ready to fight and he pulls his knife out, walks over and scratches the dudes car. The guy was screaming and like 'WHAT THE FUCK' and he pulled out his own knife and scratched my friend's car. A crowd was starting to gather, though, and we got the hell out of there. One time, and this was the funniest of all, we pulled into the drivethru at DQ and they gave him everything but ketchup. An epic meltdown ensued. Picture him screaming at the top of his lungs for several minutes, pounding on the glass drivethru window until the people in there gave up and gave him his FUCKING ketchup. What he screamed at them as he drove off was not something I can repeat here.
17. We started 4 or 5 "businesses" that were dead just about as soon as they began, but oh were they some ideas. The first one was inspired by a skeleton of a raccoon he had found while hiking and assembled with Elmer's glue to a pretty badass full skeleton. We decided to drive around, pick up road kill, decompose it in the woods, and sell the skeletons on ebay. We did the first part. We picked up all sorts of dead animals off the side of the road. Sometimes their eyes are popped out! One of them was a skunk. When we took it back to the woods near our apartment, my friend, without even warning me, poked it in the crotch with a long stick and it spewed out a bunch of yellow liquid, and the shit almost hit me. We got the hell away from it, but the entire parking lot smelled strongly of skunk for the next couple months. It hit you in waves. And everyone was talking about it. We never said a word. Some hillbilly kid even said he "seen it, starin' right at him with his beady eyes and everything."
17a. We also collected a bunch of rocks from craters where meteors or asteroids had hit, with the intention of selling them on ebay. We would drive several hours to these sites, fill the trunk with heavy rocks, and drive back. He was too damn lazy to ever do anything with them, though. Ultimately the idiot got evicted from his apartment (well that's another story) and he left it utterly trashed. I happened to be pals with the maintenance guy at my place and he showed it to me. There were huge rocks everywhere (among other mountains of trash and unsightly damages). I lolled.
18. The range of psychotic friends I have is actually kind of extensive. Throughout college, my best friend was an ISTP renowned for his horrendously foul mouth, we are talking ALL sexual, all the time, and no he really never got laid, but whatever. It was hilarious to see him fuck with people. The things he would say... I can't really talk about them that much, they are so offensive. One time he told some story that almost made another friend of mine throw up about a man who left his penis in a vagina and it came out black and moldy or something? Or maybe it was something about jerking someone off with the puss that came off their herpes sores? I don't remember, but that kind of stuff was typical. We smoked a bunch of salvia together too. It was hilarious. One time we took hits at the same time, and he ran away from me screaming and his under his desk.. still screaming like a wild animal. He thought I was a schoolbus, turns out. Another epic best friend of mine is my 46 year old divorced woman neighbor. We are pretty much the unlikeliest of friends, she is an uneducated ISFP and I'm an overeducated INTP. We hang out ALL THE TIME and pretty much have a ball. It's kinda fun 'cause I can tell her about basic science stuff but to her it is really profound because she never knew about it, having dropped out of school at 16 and not even paid attention while in it. It's taken me like 6 months of constant effort, but I think I have finally dismantled her faith in god. The thing about these friends is that I am every bit as crazy as they are. I might even be the enabler who brings out that side of them. I dunno. The thought has crossed my mind.
19. Can't forget about my secret double life as a zen buddhist. I pretty much never told any IRL person about it, but I spent 5 years FUCKING OBSESSED with zen and I meditated for hours and hours and hours, spent most of my free time doing that, reading books and watching youtube videos from every "zen" person I could find. My life was utterly dominated by the quest for enlightenment. I spent just about every waking second expecting it to come in the very next moment. My devotion to "mindfulness" would frequently reach unhealthy proportions. The typical goal was to abolish thought from whatever I was doing.
20. I'm just spouting out random ones now, I'm sure there's some big ones I forgot, but I guess I'll round it out at 20. I got the night shift on a drive home from Daytona beach once, drove from 12 to 5 AM, and god damned if I wasn't falling asleep at the wheel almost the whole time. I was so fucking tired. Luckily the roads were empty, cause I was in and out of my lane, nodding off, the works. Somehow I made it home without incident. It was crazy lol.
Maybe I'll do more sometime. I'm already thinking of a couple. One story I have is too crazy to tell anyone, ever. Oh well. I will say though that it was nothing bad and no one was hurt.
EDIT: ok ok one more, just cause it is 21 and this happened on my 21st birthday..
21. Did I get wasted and throw up on my 21st? Of course I did. Who doesn't? But then again, not many people have the swat team show up to theirs, which I did. It wasn't even anything particularly crazy I did this time. Apparently though someone at the party matched the description of someone on the most wanted list and someone had called it in. We were playing beer pong on the porch and a couple cops walk up and start interrogating this kid out of nowhere. He was confused as fuck. I was a little nervous 'cause we had 50 cases of beer in the basement and it was a college party and all... I walk inside and there's friggen men in black with machine guns walking around the place. We offered them beer. They said maybe later.