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So I Was There With Forman and Asher

This is going to be a short post, but I could probably write a book… except I am not an author. (Sometimes I forget that I am not an author and I write too much.)

  (Bryan Farley)

Last week I attended an event where two best-selling authors, Gayle Forman and Jay Asher, promoted suicide awareness and I remembered that I am a survivor of suicide. It is not as though I had forgotten, but sometimes I become disconnected to that part of my life. It is easy to forget because I belong to many other families and I am involved with all of them. Besides, there are times when I forget that any of this is real. I listened to a couple fathers who lost daughters to suicide. That made it a little more real too.

 (Bryan Farley)

One of my college friends recently posted an Abraham Lincoln quote (or maybe it was attributed to Mark Twain) that people too easily accept that which is posted on the internet. Of course it was a joke, but I could go further. I question that which I read in books and see in newspapers. I am not a mere doubter, I question everything now.

 (Bryan Farley)

My sense of normal shifted when my dad committed suicide… and that wasn’t the strangest thing my dad did. The two years preceding his death were often stranger. Stranger things have happened in my life since my dad shot himself, not all bad.

 (Bryan Farley)

Strange can be good, even if it is disorienting. Some people wonder how I wander into a new tribe. Last week was a good example. I (re) connected with another one of my communities that I did not realize I had missed.

 (Bryan Farley)

So, I was home.

 

2015 National Epilepsy Walk

I traveled to Washington, D.C. again for another epilepsy event. The Ninth Annual Walk for Epilepsy was held near the Washington Monument on Saturday morning April 11, 2015.

The 9th National Walk for Epilepsy was held on Saturday, April 11 2015 in Washington, D.C. (bryan farley)

After I received my t-shirt at the walk headquarters downtown, I walked another block to a bookstore where Tavis Miley was speaking about his new book, “My Journey With Maya.” He explained how Maya Angelou had helped him find his way when he was lost. At one point when he was especially lost, he asked her how to find his way. He remembers her response: “We find our path by walking it.”

 (bryan farley)

There are many reasons that I walk. I walk because others can’t. Some people from my community have died suddenly. Some have died slowly. I walk because some are unable to do so. I walk because some day I will not be able to do so.

The 9th National Walk for Epilepsy was held on Saturday, April 11 2015 in Washington, D.C. (bryan farley)

I walk because others have gone before me so that my path is easier. I walk so that others may find their path easier than mine has been. I walk to be inspired and to inspire others.

The 9th National Walk for Epilepsy was held on Saturday, April 11 2015 in Washington, D.C. (bryan farley)

I walk to keep myself honest. I walk to keep companies and organizations honest, because as much as I believe in the goodwill of humanity, I know that companies have not always operated as partners. I walk so that other people with epilepsy will find a beacon, if necessary, when feeling lonely (or alone.) Many of us already feel as though we are chased by invisible aliens who use lethal Tasers. We don’t need to hide behind false promises.

The 9th National Walk for Epilepsy was held on Saturday, April 11 2015 in Washington, D.C. (bryan farley)We still have much work to do. Today is the 68th anniversary of the Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier in Major League baseball, and while I know a little about being the first at something, I am no Jackie Robinson so if I ever stop walking, I hope it is because I have started dancing.

So while we remember those who have gone before us, let us not forget our ABC’s. Always Build Community.

BAD International Pi Day

The Bay Area Derby Girls opened the 2015 regular season on International Pi Day. Berkeley won the first bout against San Francisco (photo gallery here), and Oakland defeated Richmond in the second bout. (photos here.) Four people competed in a pie eating contest, which the audience won. The derby and sunset were grand, as was the marching band. I searched for circles.

The San Francisco ShEvil Dead and the Berkeley Resistance  opened the Bay Area Derby Girls 2015 season at the Craneway Pavilion in Richmond, CA on March 14, 2015. Berkeley won 259-122. (bryan farley)

Pi Day is a real thing. In case you forgot the formula for measuring the area of a circle or cylinder, you can find it on the page International Pi Day page. I learned the origin of the joke that “Pies aren’t square; they are round.” I also learned that there was a such a thing as a Pi joke.

The San Francisco ShEvil Dead and the Berkeley Resistance  opened the Bay Area Derby Girls 2015 season at the Craneway Pavilion in Richmond, CA on March 14, 2015. Berkeley won 259-122. (bryan farley)

I am too literal to laugh at math jokes. I tried to photograph the first several numbers of Pi, but I couldn’t find the necessary skaters after #31. (I wanted a series of skaters so that I could reproduce 3.14159…..

The San Francisco ShEvil Dead and the Berkeley Resistance  opened the Bay Area Derby Girls 2015 season at the Craneway Pavilion in Richmond, CA on March 14, 2015. Berkeley won 259-122. (bryan farley)

When my daughter walked outside, I found a series of squares (see 25 and 49 on the sail), but we have already learned that pies are not squares. The painted bicycle wheels seemed more lonely next to squares. You can’t fit squares into circles, especially on International Pi Day.

 Richmond Wrecking Belles hosted the Oakland Outlaws in the 2015 season opener for both Bay Area Derby Girl teams at The Craneway Pavilion on Saturday March 14, 2015. Oakland won 131-127. (bryan farley)

During the second bout, I found more circles and squares. Demanda Riot is sandwiched by two squares. This time 36 and 64 surround 000.

The San Francisco ShEvil Dead and the Berkeley Resistance  opened the Bay Area Derby Girls 2015 season at the Craneway Pavilion in Richmond, CA on March 14, 2015. Berkeley won 259-122. (bryan farley)

At the Fist of Flour Pizza vendor booth, I found a Fresh Hot Pi. Is this a round pie?

The San Francisco ShEvil Dead and the Berkeley Resistance  opened the Bay Area Derby Girls 2015 season at the Craneway Pavilion in Richmond, CA on March 14, 2015. Berkeley won 259-122. (bryan farley)

The Greek letter Pi and the number 3.14 change shape in a mirror. People who study these things claim that 3.14 spells pie when reflected in a mirror. The Greek letter creates a slice of pie. I do not understand it, but I not very smart about these things. I was disappointed that my daughter did not enter the pie eating contest…  until I photographed it.

Richmond Wrecking Belles hosted the Oakland Outlaws in the 2015 season opener for both Bay Area Derby Girl teams at The Craneway Pavilion on Saturday March 14, 2015. Oakland won 131-127. (bryan farley)

When we celebrate the next big International Pi Day in 100 years, I hope this guy competes… and the next time, I hope he wins. After he wins, I hope he does a “Craneway Leap” into the crowd. It was our victory, but mostly because we remained clean.

Richmond Wrecking Belles hosted the Oakland Outlaws in the 2015 season opener for both Bay Area Derby Girl teams at The Craneway Pavilion on Saturday March 14, 2015. Oakland won 131-127. (bryan farley)

When I was younger, I loved math, but I do not know if I saw the world as a mathematician. Yesterday was Emmy Noether’s 133rd birthday. (You may have noticed her when you opened your Google browser.) She visualized the world in a way that I cannot begin to understand. I see circles, numbers and square roots; she sees a sonnet or symphony.

Or maybe I can hear music and she sees numbers. Regardless, I like my numbers simple and slightly dyslexic (like my favorite Taylor Swift song titles). I love that my son and daughter enjoy going to roller derby.

 

EDIT ALERT!!!:!:!:!: As if to prove my point that “I like my numbers simple and slightly dyslexic,” originally I planned to conclude with a comment about yesterday being “International Poker Wheel Day” (or International “Inside Straight Day.”) I inserted a photo with 8 skates and the number 8 (for 8 wheels) AND I started writing how the date (with the numbers 1,2,3,4, and 5) created a straight called a “wheel.” (It’s in Wikipedia, so it must be true.) THEN my slight dyslexia kicked in. Instead of writing 3/24/15 I wrote 1/24/15 and assumed that I had been wrong while preparing the post. This morning I realized I had been correct. Sometimes life is like a circle; other times it is like a crazy 8… now that would be a cool song.