It was long about 1998. I was only 16, smack in the middle of high school. Mommy and daddy where my invincible crutches…well, mom was a crutch, dad…was a glass of water…regardless, life’s troubles certainly didn’t trouble me. I was a naive innocent soul with pure thoughts. I don’t know how it happened, but bad luck suddenly found me. Bad thing after bad thing happened to me. Even things I thought were good were only a prelude to worse things. Between the years 2001 and 2004…something dark and hateful bloomed inside me. It’s grown now to a majority of who I am. I’ve become cynical and angry. My parents and I have completely split and don’t get along anymore. My cat’s dead. I hate girls. I’m on my own and broke… I never had so much trouble to deal with. Man, 4 years ago, nothing could touch me. I may have been some what of a sweet douche bag kinda guy, but that isn’t so bad. I was full of optimism. Everything that’s happened to me in the last 4 years has given me a grim outlook on things. No longer do I wake up anticipating tomorrow and wondering what the world has in store for me, but dreading my next breath, that something is gonna go wrong. I have to fear a wrench in my gears every hour. One straw breaks my back almost always. It’s horrible. I wake up dreading the future, and thriving on the past, replaying things over and over again and asking myself how I let things happen. I miss myself now. You know, I used to say before I had this epiphany, that if I was to go back in time and I’d meet myself…I hate myself. Now I wonder, seeing as how I was once that person I know I would hate (and not believe) that I was them. The big question is … who would be the hero and who would be the villain? I think I know the answer to that. I’ve lost myself. I’ve lost being proud of myself. I’m now a shell of who I used to be, and filled with anger instead of the bright shining aura I think I once had. When I sit down and realize that…It breaks my heart. I don’t know what it’s gonna take to snap me back into who I used to be. Maybe I felt like the person I used to be was too weak and my way of becoming stronger was becoming distant and abrasive. I think I shoulda been who am I now a long time ago, and I think I should have become who I used to be around now. But I also look at the world as a place where you succeed more when you are more malicious. When you’re selfish and greedy, you get what you want. When you don’t respect anyone, people respect you. People like complain about assholes like that, but the complaining never stops because things never change. I don’t want to live in a world like that anymore, but if I have to, I want to change it somehow. I want the nice guy, the little guy who gets stepped on to somehow succeed, somehow to reach his goal, and not do so because he changed his ways and did what everyone else does, but stuck to who he was and made it by taking the high road. It doesn’t have to be me; I just want it to be SOMEONE just so I can see it IS possible. Every story you read almost of someone rich and successful … always has a story that brings their character in to question. Anyone with a secure bank account has taking a proverbial dagger and jabbed it into someone’s heart. I think this is part of the reason I adore Hulk Hogan so much … he represents all that is right. I’m not talking about the person; I’m talking about the character. He represents goodness in a strong way …I need to know that having a big heart and good soul doesn’t mean you have to be knocked around and stepped on, but you can still have strength and overcome anything. Is it too late for me? Have I lost that part of myself? You know, there’s people I knew back then that I don’t know anymore, and there’s people I know now that didn’t know me then… I would love them to chat one day…and talk about me, and hear one of them say, “Are we definitely talking about the same guy?” I’m 95% sure someone would ask that. Matt I know you’re reading this, wake up! Come back, we miss you.