Visualisation. Manifestation. Devastation. Part 1: Hello Chip Goodbye Vibrams…

“You ordered It pal… You also manifested it… I’m just here to remind you to take the time to enjoy it, Dumbass…” I’ve had a lot of that lately from the Universe. You know, that “hey, hey, don’t shoot me I’m just the messenger. You made all this crazy stuff happen and now you wanna complain about it?”  Yeah I’m a complicated guy. I’ve been completely oblivious to how adept I’ve become at manifesting whatever I want into existence. Sure I’ve studied it, read about it night and day, practiced it, talked about it, and I’ve even seen it happening my whole life… but lately it’s been working exactly the way I’ve intended it to… and somehow I’ve been the ungrateful douche rather than the thankful, smiling Zen Pilgrim I sometimes convince myself I am.

What do I mean when I say “lately it’s been working exactly the way I’ve intended it to.”? Simple really – all my life I’ve been the subject of my own script, my own plot, my own twists, and my own scenes. The truth is we are all the subjects of our own movie. Anything that’s ever happened to me has been the product of my own thinking and my own visualisation. Long before I had even heard of The Secret and The Law Of Attraction I was a complete expert at it. The only problem back then was that my thoughts were more worries and my dreams were riddled with anxious thoughts of “It’ll never happen for me. I couldn’t be that lucky.” rather than excited cries of “I’m gonna do this and it’s gonna be awesome.” Some people think all this sort of stuff is total BS and crazy crackpot theology. Ever spent any time worrying about something and that something turned out exactly the way you worried it would? Ever set your sights on something like a new car or a holiday and constantly thought about it until you were actually experiencing the reality of it? Of course you have – we all have – whether or not you are aware of it, care to admit it, or believe it. Your reality exists in your own mind and your own thoughts – it is a non negotiable fact. Say for instance someone brutally heckles me at a gig – to the average punter it might seem like I’m on the receiving end of unwarranted abuse depending on what mood I’m in that night and whether or not I smile and accept it or throw the guitar off and turn green. That reality for some people would be “what an awful way to make a living’ or “that poor singer”. My reality is “what an awesome way to make a living! I’m getting paid more for two hours ‘work’ than this joker probably gets paid for a week of work. While he’s heckling me I get the chance to build my character and practice non-violence. I also get to let off some steam by heckling him back and maybe turning the situation into a right chuckle and making a friend out of the guy.” Your thoughts are your reality, your life is exactly the way you have made it, you are responsible for everything (good or bad) that is going on in your life. The sooner you accept that the sooner you can start to intentionally create your reality… and trust me, when it comes to manifesting your own reality the sky is the limit.

I’m not gonna try and convert anyone to any Law Of Attraction cult, or some after hours secret society that talks about The Secret and wears funny robes accompanied by weird handshakes. No sir. It’s a simple Truth whether you choose to accept it or not. Another simple Truth I’ve learned lately is “Stop Trying To Wake People Up! Just because you’re on a path to Awakening, Enlightenment, Ascension – call it what you will – it doesn’t mean you have the right, or the chops to wake anyone else up!” What I can do is just share how this shit’s been working for me, maybe give someone a laugh, and at the very least let some demons out of the cage to play for a while by simply putting my fingers to the keyboard and seeing what comes out. Incidentally I always saw myself as a writer of sorts, even from a ridiculously young age – and here I am, writing. I also always saw myself on a stage with a guitar, standing behind a microphone – albeit I envisaged myself in limos surrounded by Playboy models after every gig but you gotta take your results how they land at your feet. The point is everything you do in life started out as a thought…

Speaking of letting demons outta the cage – we got a new puppy and his name’s Chip. Let’s deal with that current manifestation and his appetite for destruction in this Blog.

So for a long time I have been plotting to add another Beagle to the household to keep my other Beagle company (they suffer horrendous separation anxiety and it has been getting more and more difficult to take a Beagle with me everywhere I go), to add more mirth and merriment to the home, and because you simply cannot have enough Beagles running around making you laugh and wreaking havoc on your plans. I just love them. They’re tenacious wee brutes, they’re cute, they’re intelligent (but often display great daftness while blinded by the aforementioned tenacity), they’re loyal to the core, they can run for days if that’s what you need of them while still retaining the ability to laze about all day if that’s the mood you’re in, and they just love cuddles and company. Most importantly it’s hard to stay mad at them – that’s their secret weapon and that’s what keeps you hooked on the rollercoaster life that being a Beagle Daddy entails. Ask any Beagle Daddy or Beagle Mommy and they’ll tell you the same thing:

“Don’t they bark and howl a lot?”

“Yeah, it’s f**kin awesome when you hear such a big howl coming from such a little dog.”

“Don’t they take a lot of time and energy?”

“Yeah! But our ancestors domesticated Wolves to become companions and friends. Why would you not want to spend a lot of time with your companion and friend?”

“Don’t they eat anything and everything in sight?”

“Oh they do that alright. You gotta be on point with what how well protected you leave food, or anything remotely resembling food.”

Food? Anything resembling food? How about your favourite Vibrams? Or your favourite Goodwin Smith boots that go with every look imaginable? Or your wife’s laptop power cable (while it was still plugged in and switched on). Or the new sleeping bags you just bought for your daughter’s little sleepover parties? Or your Marvel Avengers Underpants? Or your Odd Sock collection? That’s the reality. That’s one of the things I’ve been lamenting lately. That’s one of the reasons the Universe is looking at me like I should have seen this coming seeing as how I desperately wanted a Beagle Puppy – “Surely you knew what was involved when your desire was so tenacious?” Intelligent, but with great displays of daftness while blinded by the aforementioned tenacity. If I was a dog I would most definitely be a Beagle.

Let me tell you a story about real tenacity, and the instant realisation that every manifestation has consequences. Let me tell you a story about my No.1 Beagle son, Charlie. Now Charlie is quite a softy, although he’s built like an absolute Spartan. He’s the biggest Beagle I have ever seen, and I mean big as in stature and pure muscle. When he runs at you it’s like being hit by a bowling ball. Me, being the Alpha, well I always stand my ground when he charges at me like Ragnar Lothbrook charging through an army to pillage and plunder everything in front of him. I stand my ground with nerves of steel and he always stops right at my feet. The first time he charged at my 6ft2” Brother he almost sent him to casualty. The shock on my kid Bro’s face at how strong this little Beagle was made me almost wet my pants. You see while I know how much of a softy Charlie is I also know that if I show any signs of not being an Alpha it will be game over and Charlie will lead me on a merry dance at every opportunity. When we rehomed him from the kennel he was living in at the time, the kennel owner told me “He needs a lot of love and a firm hand. He’s an affectionate wee dote but as stubborn and strong as a mule.” Challenge accepted and challenge won. Charlie and I bonded and understood each other from the start. He was 18 months old when we welcomed him to the pack and now he’s almost 5 years old. He’s always went everywhere with me. I sold my beloved Jag and bought a beat up old 4×4 so he could ride up front with me everywhere I went. We got some chuckles on the roads and some hilarious looks when pulling into gig venues. We got some lush female attention too which prompted me to tell everyone “If I’d have met Charlie before I met Diane I’d have never got married.” Such was my love for little Charlie right from the start. Charlie has had many escapades that have rendered us helpless with laughter and speechless in shock. He can almost talk. He just looks at me and I know exactly what he’s trying to tell me. He even has his own Vlog where he keeps the family all updated on his antics – My 76 year-old Dad wets himself at every Vlog. But Charlie’s craziest moment? Jeez, it’s a real cracker…

So there we all are, at my Brother’s house for some drinks, some nice food, and a delightful chilled out summer evening of banter. Charlie’s there with us because, well, the separation anxiety thing – he goes everywhere with me. We’re all out in the back garden on a beautiful Summer’s night. My kid Bro and I are talking about some deep spiritual philosophy or on some deep musical trip; our wives are pounding down wine like there’s no tomorrow; our cousin, Beefy has nipped up to the toilet and Charlie has decided to follow him up the stairs. Now lets back up a little bit. My Sister-In-Law has had a pair of walking boots sitting on her bedroom windowsill to dry off from a mucky hike the previous day. Charlie has been eyeing up these boots all night. He’s convinced they are not boots but are indeed a cat, sitting on the windowsill, pretending to be boots, taunting him constantly. I know this because I know his every thought and I know the way his crazy little mind works. I must also add that the bedroom is upstairs, beside the toilet, and the window was open…

So there we are, having a lovely time, when suddenly time stands still and I seem to have this Matrix thing going on where I can see everything happening around me simultaneously and I know what’s coming before it even happens. I hear and see my Sister-In-Law gasp; I see my wife’s eyes widen; I sense a major disturbance in the force; I look up at the bedroom window and there is Charlie, in mid-air, his big ears flapping in the gentle breeze, looking like Dumbo the elephant on his first solo flight… and he makes eye contact with me, as I jump from my seat to try and catch him… and in that split second of eye contact I know exactly what he’s trying to tell me – “Aw shit Daddy, I’ve made a grave error.” I spring up like a gazelle in slow motion to try and catch him; he lands at my feet like a ballet dancer; his chin hits the ground ever so slightly’ and he performs a “drop and roll” like he’s been a Marine for a hundred lifetimes… and then he lay still, shocked, and with a look that said “Sweet Jesus, I’m alive. I made it!” Those few seconds between him lying still and getting up on his feet felt like an eternity. My heart stopped and none of the humans were right for about a week afterwards. He would not settle himself until he investigated this strange cat that was pretending to be a pair of boots, taunting him. His perspective was way off but he had to learn the lesson himself. What strange cat masquerading as a pair of boots is lurking in your conscious at the minute? Change your perspective or take your chances with the two storey drop – either way make sure you learn the lesson rather than repeat it.

That’s the level of mentality and craziness you’re dealing with when you have a Beagle in your pack. Dependable but totally unpredictable – my wife described me in those exact words after a year of living with me. By all accounts, next to Chip, Charlie is a dull, lifeless Saint. Chip is Charlie on steroids and lsd. Chip is a 24/7 chewing machine, talking machine, with the stealth of a ninja and the speed of a cheetah. He’s only 6 months old, is cute as a button and twice as funny. Looking after him, watching him, and settling him into normal society has been a hilarious disaster movie. One night, when Chip was being too out of control for us to deal with we decided to do the only humane thing… we took him out the back and shot him in the head… Of course we didn’t, although Chip reckons it would have been more humane to shoot him. We booked little Chip in for the Snip. They tell me it is the cruel to be kind option for a little male dog, especially one like Chip. One whiff of a lady dog in mating season coming to the nostrils of his supersonic sniffer would have him crash through walls like a wrecking machine until he found (and violated) the object of his desires… and then he’d have a taste for it and it would be like living with a crack addict. If you were incensed at the “we shot him in the head” joke you must never have had a bacon sandwich or a Big Mac… those things don’t grow on trees you know. *insert contemplating emoji*

I was struck by a few things when we got him home from his operation. First of all my wife sent a text asking how he was. My reply to that was “Only a woman would ask such a stupid question. He’s had his toys taken off him and he can’t even get down for a lick down memory lane thanks to the stupid big cone they put on his head! I feel so guilty that I could do this to another dude.” Women ask the strangest questions. Being a guy who’s had a surgeon cutting into places you really don’t want him to (twice!), and being somewhat of an Empath, Chip’s little operation really took it out of me. He was lying there, looking all dazed and confused. He was looking at me with such a glare of confusion, anger, sadness, and betrayal. I could feel every pain the poor wee turd was going through. Then after a day or two it struck me that the little guy was crazier than ever. I started to think they’d given him an extra set of man toys instead of taking the pair he already had away from him. Then it struck me: what a weird thing to do to try and calm a dude down…

“Hey my dog’s crazy wild you know. I don’t know what to do to calm him down.”

“Just cut his nuts off mate! Works a charm!”

“Really? Cut his nuts off? Gee I don’t know if that would calm me down. I’m pretty sure ‘calm’ is the last thing I would be if someone cut my nuts off.”

Nevertheless we chose that path for the greater good. On the plus side I don’t have to worry about him catching anything on the fence when he tries to climb over it. Better to have loved and lost nuts than to be hanging by them from a fence. That’s what I always say.

One morning he woke me up early, as he had done every morning since we brought him home. After a crazy busy weekend I just uttered an annoyed “aw for f**k sake can I not get one lie in?” under my breath and I could hear something, clear as day, saying to me “Is this not what you’ve wanted? To get up super early every morning and make the day your own? And what better way to get you out of bed early than the guarantee of cuddles from a puppy? And did you not want a puppy? Have you not been plotting this and visualising this for months? Did you not realise that visualisation can only lead to manifestation? Are you confused about some aspect of this? We thought we’d kill two birds with one stone – puppy and early mornings – you ordered it bitch so deal with it and take your medicine like a man.” Ah yes, my inappropriate higher self. Always there to talk some cold hearted sense into me.

It was annoying as hell to find my favourite Vibrams chewed to pieces. I had just brought them out of hiding for some super Spring and Summer barefoot walks. I was mega pissed at my favourite boots getting a pasting too. Of course I couldn’t take that out on poor Chip, he’s just a little puppy after all. I took it out on the wife, who was supposed to be looking after him while he carried out his little atrocities on the few material things in life I’m actually half attached to. Jeez I gave her such a hard time. I’m tempted to be ashamed but then I imagine the sheer apocalypse that would emanate from her every pore if she came home to find that I had let little Chiparoo munch his way through one of her Vivienne Westwood dresses. She would sew Chip’s balls back on just for the chance to rip them off him again, with no anaesthetic. Oh yeah, she’d try and unleash some similar medieval fate on me but I’d be on the first flight to Nepal.

Then again, when your rage dust settles, and you start thinking about non attachment and you start realising that you’re still kinda attached to shit that should have no sway over you… that’s when you start looking at the ‘disaster’ in a different light and from a different perspective. That’s when you see the lesson, the benefit, and the reason to be grateful. Like when you can’t find any underpants at all in your drawer, and then you find them all tucked up in little Chip’s bed because he needs a wee comfort blanket and your pants just seem to do the trick. (His nose is never gonna hack the pace if he’s gonna sleep with my pants.) Or how about when you come home from a gig in the middle of the night and you have 8 paws, two waggy tails, and two wee voices whimpering with love and affection at your very presence. How about when you open a cupboard door and you turn around to see two pairs of big brown eyes looking at you, and two big bacon rasher tongues hanging out, wondering what treaty goodness you’re gonna serve up? That’s the good feeling I was looking for all along when I visualised having two Beagles and that’s the good feeling that was always there even when I chose to lament the death of my lie-ins or crack up that a few pairs of shoes had been terrorised. Non attachment is a full time lesson that I think I’ll always be learning. That means more than just detaching from material things – it also means detaching from occurrences and situations that you simply cannot change or control. Gratitude is a lesson I’ll always cling to. Humility is a lesson I’ll always try to avoid and will always end up learning one way or another. I sure did forget how much work a Beagle puppy is… boy did I ever forget… and boy did I ever get a quick catch up course.

“Sleep? Sleep?! Chip doth murder sleep!” But it was love at first sight when I met him… just like it was with Charlie. Chip just seems to have a lot more resistance to the ways of the Alpha than Charlie did… and Chip’s gonna teach me more than I’ll ever teach him.


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