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The Dashing Life and Exuberant Times of Brian Harrison....And Other Rare Anecdotes

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Wanderlust; A Poem

I feel the winds assemble together,
Each bearing some shard of thought or dream,
Til they mount up and break the tight tether,
And the heart's gust swoops up from the earth's mean scheme,
Then the settled soul becomes a feather,
And goes gliding on a wandering moonbeam.

My eyes can no longer hide that distant gleam,
Of the wind's whirl, of star-teased gypsy dream.

I've borne the North, South, East, West, on my back,
Til each whispered their own alluring sighs,
So I stuffed them all on an ancient bookrack,
Called, "Stability". -Now, their muffled cries,
Pierce my ears for my world-wafting backpack,
Which holds my confused self, cut off from all ties,

I'm sick of my moved heart telling unmoved lies,
Waiting for that which Fate clearly denies.

I define myself by the moment's hue,
Of what sky hangs, and what clouds swim by,
And now I feel the void of inertia's flu,
Coughing up the sound of some half-heard cry,
This place sulking gray, my heart panting blue,
Pining for some fresh, unknown land to try.

This, my bedazzled soul sprouts wings to fly.
Can it be? Every "Hello"s a "Goodbye"?

Sunday, September 12, 2010

A Questionnaire...This Might Make You Envious...

So here we go. I just did my own questionnaire. But instead of filling one that already existed out. I changed the questions to make the whole piece more exciting and dramatic. Mainly, because I don't think that too many people are concerned about what time I woke up this morning or what I had for breakfast. Or even what music I am currently listening to. No, I needed a challenge. So the following is my list of accomplishments in my life. It may seem that I am bragging. This is because, I guess when you get right down to it...I am. But a man must make his life zing with something and if he gets to tell tales about it afterwards then so be it. Let it be done...with all its madcap mayhem and zany adventures.

All in a Leisure Suit

Rather than ask simple questions about various experiences in my life, I've decided to add the phrase "....in a leisure suit" at the end of the question to make it even more outlandish. For example. Instead of the basic phrase "Have you ever urinated while swimming in a pool"...I would attach .."in a leisure suit?" to make it all the more a challenge. The answer is "no" in this case. But let's see about some other questions.

Have you ever been in a fight...in a leisure suit?

Yes, my senior year of high school with Scott P. He had more licks in, but I delivered the better hits. One was when I kicked him in the head with the cowboy boots I had on to match the leisure suit. Yes, brutal, I know. I'm more a pacifist nowadays.

Have you ever crashed a wedding reception...in a leisure suit?

Yes, it was a Hindu wedding reception. I had a wig with the leisure suit. I owned the dancefloor. All the Indians cleared the floor for me and my moves. Eventually, me and my friend were asked to leave.

Have you ever made out with a girl you hardly knew...in a leisure suit?
Which continent?

Ever done anything both illegal and dangerous....in a leisure suit?

I one time climbed ontop of the roof of the famous Opryland Hotel in Nashville while in a leisure suit. That was probably illegal. And then one time, in a country bumpkin karoake lounge, I butchered the song, "Boot Scootin' Boogie" while donning a leisure suit. Given the roughneck crowd in there, that was pretty dangerous. Now enough of leisure suits. I only remind myself that I can't fit into my favorite one.

Feats of Stealth, Cunning, and Agility

What's the greatest place you ever snuck into?
Either an Alabama and Auburn football game in Auburn, or the Uffizi, and various other high prestigious museums in Italy.

What's the greatest place you tried sneaking into but didn't succeed?
Disney World, and it still irks me.

Impositions While Traveling?

Let's see I was kicked off a train in Spain once. I was almost kicked off a train in the US in the middle of nowhere Texas. And I kicked myself off a train in Italy to keep myself from being fined. And I was really close to getting kicked off a train in the Ukraine, but with my fellow travellers, we negotiated a "certain fee" that allowed us to stay aboard and not go hiking through the cabbage fields.

Greatest Hitchhiking Story?

I was picked up by a member of Parliament in New Zealand. She bought me a meat pie and tea, and even asked me to be her sort of date that same night at some kind of publicity event.
Or possibly, the 3 female bartenders that picked me up in Ireland. For those curious, I wasn't wearing a leisure suit, and I didn't make out with a single one of them.

Acts of Courage and Derring-Do

Ran with the Bulls; Pamplona, Spain

Bungee Jumped in Thailand

Jumped off (a guided jump) the tallest building in the Southern Hemisphere; Auckland, New Zealand

Less exotic...but went sky diving in the US.

Accomplishments of Legendary Hype

-One night, snuck into and drank from Ponce De Leon's fabled Fountain of Youth in St. Augustine, FL. Didn't bother with the touristy one. But trespassed and jumped to the ancient one in the middle of the park. Gives perpetual youth.

-Drank from the Castalian Fountain in Greece near Delphi and Mt. Parnassus. Gives continuous poetic inspiration.

-Kissed the Blarney Stone in Cork, Ireland. Gives the gift of eloquent speech to all who climb up the Irish castle and kiss this stone.

Artifacts Gathered (Probably Illegally) "Indiana Jones Would Have a Fit"
-3 Grecian and Roman coins from Turkey
-Bits and pieces of limestone from one of the Great Pyramids of Egypt.
-A chunk from the Great Wall of China
-Russian Ruble that dated before the Bolshevik Revolution. Imperial Czarist Russia.
-Rocks from an ancient settlement in Ireland.

Ever been in the back of a Police Car?
Yes, once in the US because of a school fight. Once in Moscow right on Red Square simply because they wanted money from me. And once in Turkey because I was helping them.

Run-Ins with Wild Animals?

-Most painful was when I stepped on that sea urchin in Thailand.
-A charging mountain goat came close to knocking me and a friend off a tall precipice in Northern Greece.
-A heifer almost clocked me in the Pamplona arena after running with the bulls.

Run-Ins with Tame Animals?
-Rode an elephant in the jungles of Thailand.
-Rode a camel in the Sahara near the pyramids.
-Raced horses in Egypt and Guatemala. Nearly being hurled off both times.

Run-Ins with People?
-Attacked 3 different times in Russia. Beaten up once in Moscow. Tried to fight off 2 guys at one time. Didn't work. I'm not Jet Li.
-Had dealings with the Polish Mafia in Poland when helping transport a car across Europe.
-Was pickpocketed in Spain. (Fortunately, it was only a sheet off paper I had in my backpocket).
-Stopped a pickpocket in Greece.
-A few fights in high school.
-Was sort of "attacked" or "man-handled" by a mob of African prostitutes in Barcelona. Had to flee from them. It's my blonde hair. What can I say.
-Once an old man in Istanbul tried to grope me.

Places Unwanted and Forbidden?
-Kicked out of the nation of Belarus for not having a proper Visa.
-Almost prohibited from entering Turkey. I was saved by another American.
-As mentioned before...was almost kicked off a train on the border of Russia and the Ukraine.
-Disney World has a ban on me for trespassing.
-The state of Texas once issued out a warrant for my arrest due to a mix up in traffic court. (Their fault...not mine.)
-Possibly Camp Wiregrass...at least, from visiting at 3 am with fireworks.
-Since I didn't pay that ticket in New Zealand, I wonder....

Uncontested Cultural Experiences
-In Tibet, taught Buddhist monks in one of the most sacred temples and monasteries how to play air guitar. We sat around chatting and laughing.
-Was the star guest at a Muslim bar Mitsvah in Turkey. Danced with over a 100 people celebrating. Had many of them mimicking my dance moves.
-Wandered into an obscure village in Fiji and met the chief. Became friends with the entire village so much so that they let me ride their only horse, and let me attend one of their meetings where the men sit around drinking kava and conversing important matters.
-Was offered the hand of a Muslim man's daughter in Fiji. If only I'd convert to Islam.
-Owned the dance floor at a Vampire's Ball in New Orleans on Halloween night. A place where people who really think themselves to be vampires assemble.
-Peanut Festival, Dothan, AL
-Laid eyes on the infamous San Simon in a remote town in the highlands of Guatemala. He's supposedly the spirit of Judas, a Mayan god, and a conquistador rolled into one.
-Worked at Wafflehouse for 2 weeks.

What is the One Thing that People will remember you for from High School?
Someone with a political caricature mask of Bob Dole streaked the marching band once. Many people swear up and down it was me.
-No comment.

What is the One Thing that People will remember you for from College?
Probably my graduation stunt where I toppled all the way off stage.

Any Regrets?
Yes, of course. Who doesn't have them. The question is, do I regret more the things that I did do. Or regret many of the other things that I could've done but didn't do?