[Day 12][Photography | Story]: Sweat, Wristbands, and Breakfast with A Girl

firework photography

I stood in the parking lot of the Chicken Pot Pie shop dressed in day old sweat, and a tank top drenched in Febreeze and cigarette smoke. My hair was styled by my friend’s couch and his cat’s late night cuddle party. Wristbands cling to my wrists like neon bracelets as bright as the sun’s vengeful gaze.

It’s 10 AM and my legs are sore, the slightest movement sent currents of electricity through my already sore stomach. So was pretty much everything was sore as I stood there remembering that I had forgotten my charger at my friend’s house.

My reflection on a blue Honda looked like a twenty year old me in black boots and earth tones–waiting to meet a girl for a breakfast. The events of the night before swirled and  blended together like a music video. Drinks, dancing, sunshine, good friends, and summertime madness in the heart of California.

Then she arrived and didn’t comment on any of the things about me that look questionable. We hugged, except it was more to let each other know what level of tired we were at than a greeting. This was the was the traditional greeting of two people who have managed to turn “exhausted” into a personality trait.

She ordered a Denver omelet for the first time as I laid into some hash browns and my 100th Chicken Pot Pie. The food we eat, as we talk, has been made according to a recipe from the 50’s. The food of a simpler era. Simple in its guarantees and privileges and who should or should not have them. Simple in what was OK and what wasn’t.

A decade long before the one in which Senge wrote “today’s problems come from yesterday’s solutions” in his book “The Fifth Law”.

As we spoke between bites and sips of much-needed ice water, time passed without urgency or anxiety. We talked as two disconnected people living in the most connected period in human history. We talked as people who’ve learned to navigate the daily grind without scars but not without paying the toll. People who were lonely because it had been the solution to a bygone problem.

I paid for the bill and she paid for coffee. Then we walked in the unpleasant heat, made tolerable only by the cool comfort of each other’s company. We spent it pointing out which houses were ugly and which were nice as we walked.

Later as I washed away the sweat and the grime, I feel myself emerge from a trance. A factory reset to the person I am normally. Standing beneath the cold water I listened to the CV for my soul reverberate in my mind.

Khandakar “Khan” Shadid. Occupations,  one too many. Alignment, chaotic neutral. Formerly a dreamer enduring the realities of lucidity. An unremarkable miracle in a world filled with them. A man loved by those he loves and therefore a man closer than ever to the person he’s trying to be.


In Fresno there is a party called “Alleywave” where they stuff all the music, food, and people you can handle in to an alleyway. It’s a hell of a event where you never know who you will run into. The night of this picture their had even been fireworks.


The Promises I kept today were:

  1. Write a simple blog post everyday for 30 days talking honestly about my experiences making changes in my life.  (Do not worry about Gaining Followers)
  2. Program for at least an hour
  3. Be in bed by eleven.

The Promises I will keep tomorrow are:

  1. Focus on building portfolio projects
  2. Outline chapter two of Pray for Armistice
  3. Work out Like Jonah
  4. Apply for New Job.

Today’s addition to the play list is— Anthony Hamilton – “Freedom”

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