Enough

Doesn’t it sound bad? Doesn’t Enough sound spooky-similar to Stop that! and Go Away. or Just Okay and Could Be Better?

Enough sounds like you’ve reached a limit. Please, that’s enough.

Enough sounds like you’re nothing special. All right, you’re good enough.

It sounds like that. It doesn’t have to be that.

Maybe enough is enough. I’m trying to use the word in a positive way.

I want it to sound like you’ve exceeded the expectation. Please, that’s enough.

I want it to sound like you are, in fact, very special. All right, you’re good enough.

Because, you are.

You are enough. Just as you are right now. With your little eyeballs looking at this glowing screen. With your tush in that seat or that bench or that bed, with your face and your hair and your teeth and your elbows and your bellybutton, exactly where they are and in the shape that they are, you are enough.

With that mark on that test and that face-planted job interview and that date that didn’t call you back and that jerk who didn’t favourite your tweet, with all of that, you are enough.

You don’t need to do better or get out of bed or go back to bed or try harder or try less or look handsomer or sit up straighter or brush longer or smile wider or date more or date less. Not unless you want to.

Because, already, right now, you are good enough.

And, that’s good.

Here’s what I had at The King’s Head Pub and Eatery:

Veggie Burger: Grilled vegetable patty, topped with salsa and Jalapeno Monterey Jack cheese. $9.95

 Impressions: It was a sandwich. It was there and it existed and it mattered. Not because I ate it. Not because someone made it. Not for any reason other than it existed.

What made it? All of it. Every little piece of it mattered and made it what it was: Good Enough.

Play

Play is super important.

Not, like, taking a break from work and tuning out or turning off in front of a warmed-up TV. More like imagining you’re the last elephant warrior and you have to find a way into the misty castle to find the big jewel. Or, whatever.

Play is hard work. But, it’s worth it.

We know it’s important for children. It’s important for them to develop social skills, and problem-solving skills, and whatever skills. But, sometimes, we forget that it’s important for big, fancy adults to play, too.

The National Institute for Play says depression, interpersonal violence, addictions, and other health problems can be linked, like a deficiency disease, to the prolonged deprivation of play.

So, you should play more.

Run around and imagine cool shit and make up the rules as you go and just play for the sake of playing. Rejuvenate. Energize. Excite. Relieve stress. Improve relationships. Boost creativity. Increase energy.

Don’t think about winning or losing. Play is about the experience, not the outcome.

Don’t think about the rules. Play has a structure that’s fluid, created and changed constantly by the players.

Do you remember the last time you played? Not a sport or a video game or a slot machine. Think about your poor little brain-patty. That little raw burger chunk. Poor guy.

Go play. Play really hard. Work at it. Take time to do it. Host a game night or throw a ball or buy some paints or jump up and down or spin on one foot.

You’ll feel great.

You’ll probably look stupid.

But, you’ll feel great.

Sometimes, I like to play with my food.

Here’s what I played with at Nick’s on Broadway:

Veg Rambo: Soy-braised portobello, tomatoes, and feta on a Brioche bun. $9.50.

Impression: Stalone probably wouldn’t approve. He isn’t man enough to handle the braised portobello. For a vegetarian sandwich, that’s one thick piece of meat. The feta cuts through the Asian, soy flavour in the tomatoes and mushroom.

What made it:  Brioche bun. A classic.

Time

I did it.

Well, almost. I have almost done it.

Finish school, I mean. Graduate. Transform into full-grown adult. Emerge from my post-secondary chrysalis.

Just a few days left. Which means it’s time to celebrate.

No. It means I have time to celebrate.

There’re always reasons to celebrate if you know where to look. But, now I have the time.

Time to realize how cool my school chums are. Time to fit two years of reshaping, rebuilding my mind into 20 plastic sleeves. Time to go for walks to nowhere to see nothing.

Time to relax. Time to look forward. Time to look around. Time to laugh, cry, sleep.

Time to drink beer and eat more than I should and watch interesting films and watch uninteresting films.

Time to wonder. Time to wander.

Time for my creative writing instructor to bring cloud-like cupcakes to class.

Time to turn those cakes into sandwiches (a trick I learned from the talented, intelligent, confident, and capable Cella Lao Rousseau).

Here’s what I had:

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A cupcake.

Impressions: “How am I going to fit this into my mouth? How did I fit this into my mouth? How can I fit more of this into my mouth?”

What made it? Sprinkles. They rule. They don’t taste like much, but they definitely rule.

Hunt

My weapon is a small piece of folding plastic. A tiny case that holds two years of hard work as tightly as I hold my breath.

My ammunition is paper. It’s strategies and it’s executions and it’s cool, creative concepts.

My armour is flesh. It’s my skin that, when I flex real hard, tightens into a stony hide accustomed to constructive criticism. It’s difficult to penetrate. Still, sometimes, if someone pokes hard enough, it can break and bleed.

I’ve got my gear. I’m hunting for a job.

Or, a career. Whatever.

Wait a minute, didn’t They say my career started on the first day of classes?

Whatever. I’m ready for it now. Finally.

I have my folding-plastic weapon and my paper ammunition and my fleshy armour.

Some of my very talented school chums have finished their hunt. They’ve shot down their prey and sunk their teeth into it.

I look at them, my school chums, and I look at their weapons and I’m excited. I’m excited to meet Future Us. I’m sure that, in a few years, we’ll laugh when we remember the hours spent in EDC’s Agency. I’m sure we’ll roll our eyes when we remember the time spent sweating over portfolios and cover letters and resumes.

Hopefully, we can laugh and roll our eyes together.

To honour a very talented school chum who’s shot down and sunk her teeth into a position at Nuburger, I ate a sandwich.

Here’s what I had at Nuburger:

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Tropic Thunder: Double-smoked free-range nitrate-free candied bacon, Bothwell cheddar, golden pineapple, lettuce and low fat chipotle. $10.50

Impression: This sandwich was stacked perfectly. It was crafted carefully. The spicy mayo was the foundation, holding up the chicken breast which hung on to the pineapple. Above that, the cool lettuce mixed nicely with the fruit’s acidity. The candied bacon and melted cheddar rounded it out with dense, dark flavour on top.

What made it? Pineapple. Sweet and crispy, the pineapple stood out in this stand-out sandwich.

Sick

My head is in a fishbowl.

The world outside the bowl is muddled and muffled and murky.

My eyes won’t open all the way so I settle for squinting at my ceiling instead of staring. It swims overhead. The stucco shifts and stirs in dizzying formations until I give up squinting, give up seeing altogether, and shut my eyes.

I wait.

I’m tired.

My arms are tired. My hands are tired. My goddamn fingers are tired.

A cough climbs it’s way up out of my throat, shaking my chest and my head. My head swirls in the fishbowl. I feel my brain, loose in my expanding skull, bounce against the sides of its container.

Yes, there are many people who’ve been sicker.

I know that, but right now, in this stupid fishbowl in this stupid bed in this stupid room in this stupid house, I am beaten.

The list of things I have to do grows, and I am beaten. This time I’ve spent in my bed with this ceiling is time I should have spent crossing things off that list.

Goddamn lists.

I’m worried I can’t remember every thing that I’m missing. I’m worried I won’t remember every thing that I’m missing.

So, I surrender. I keep my eyes closed and wait for the comfortable nonthoughts of sleep.

I know when I’m beaten.

It’s hard to swallow, but it’s okay. I’ll try even harder tomorrow.

I swear.

Here’s What I had at the Yellow Dog Tavern:

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California Club: There’re, like, avocados in it.

Impression: I’m sure it’s very good. I’ve eaten here before. But, my tastebuds are taking a bit of a break this week.

What made it? Like I said, there’re, like, avocados in it.

Popular

McDonald’s is very popular.

Sandwiches, burgers, fries, shakes, pies, salads, wraps, and holy-shit nuggets.

Some people like to say they’re not fans of Ronald’s all-beef patties.

Usually, those people have one hand behind their back, fingers crossed, the other gripping the soft buns of a Big Mac. And, of course, some people are telling the truth when they say they aren’t excited by all-white nuggets or golden fries.

Still, McDonald’s is very popular.

But, is it good?

If lots and lots of people like it, if they eat it, if they pay money for it, is it good?

I don’t mean healthy. I mean, good.

It’s a successful business. It’s a popular product. That’s good, right?

When Snapchat added it’s new discover tab, the CEO said, “Social media companies tell us what to read based on what’s most recent or most popular…We count on editors and artists,” I was super pumped.

I think, sometimes, popularity doesn’t necessarily mean a thing is good.

Maybe McDonald’s has a lot of likes and shares and favourites and retweets, but doesn’t quite satisfy the taste of the tastemakers. Foodie snobs.

Is it better to be one hundred people’s ninth favourite thing, or nine people’s favourite thing?

I don’t know. I haven’t had McDonald’s in a really long time and am now very, very hungry.

Here’s what I did not have at McDonald’s:

big mac

Big Mac: A double layer of sear-sizzled 100% pure beef mingled with special sauce on a sesame seed bun and topped with melty American cheese, crisp lettuce, minced onions and tangy pickles.

Impression: Yeah, fine, we’re all supposed to hate McDonald’s. I know. It’s bad for you, and me, and the world, and whatever. That’s why I don’t eat it (a lot). Still. Smell that burg. I haven’t had one in years and I can still smell that burg. Now, that’s an impression.

What made it? Special sauce. Whatever that was. Thousand Island dressing? Who cares. Give me more of it. All of it.

Strategy

I think a lot about strategy. School assignments, personal projects, there’s a strategy behind all of it.

Target audiences, market positioning, brand story, whatever, whatever.

I’ve started to think about the things I do – and the things I don’t do – and how they fit into the strategy of my life.

Should I go there?

Should I do that?

Should I say that?

Should I tweet that?

Should I blog this?

I don’t know. It’s exhausting.

I hear people talk about the cool experiences they’ve had. They talk about living in far-away countries. They talk about going on spontaneous road trips and taking classes for the fun of it.

I’ve been following the life path I set for myself over four years ago. Step by freakin’ step. I don’t mean everything has happened as I want it to. But, every major decision I’ve had to make in the last four years, was made by Past Jordan before he graduated high school.

Sometimes, I want to ditch the strategy, ditch the plan, and just bugger off.

Strategy is important. It’s super important. Advertising isn’t advertising without strategy – so I’m glad my thinker is thinking it. I’m glad at least that much has seeped into my slimy, pink skull-filler.

But, sometimes, I want to turn it off.

I want to be impulsive. I just want to go somewhere for the sake of going. I want to do something just to see what happens. I want to say something without thinking it over. I want to tweet something because it’s funny and rude as hell.

I want to do something that surprises myself.

Yikes.

I also want to keep skipping down this path Past Jordan laid down for me. I want to do what he expected me to do. At least, I think I do. It feels pretty good so far.

Here’s what I had at Myer’s Delicatessen:

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This image was stolen from Myer’s Delicatessen’s Instagram feed. There must’ve been some strategy behind the post, so I’ll help them by helping myself.

The Classic: Montreal smoked meat, 100g. $5.99

Impression: I expected a lot of meat. I got a lot of meat. It wasn’t surprising, but it was exactly what I wanted. So, that’s good. Right?

What made it? Meeting expectations is good.