Manifest Joy

I love my mom.
I love my dad.
I love my step-mom and step-dad.
I love my siblings, cousins, and distant relatives.
I love humanity and the planet.
I want to share a smile.
I want to distribute love.
I want manifest joy.
I want to generate a little ball of laughter and share it with the world.
Join me and spread a smile 🙂 – Barry

Relationship Placeholder

No one would call me a relationship expert. In fact, no one would call me. Despite this, there is one piece of advice of relationship advice I feel confident giving:

Don’t be a placeholder.

Barry, what in the world do you mean?

A placeholder is an object that is occupies a space until something better can replace it. It is a temporary solution. A relationship placeholder is the same thing, but with a person. The relationship is condemned to fail because there is no emotional investment at stake.

I would never be a placeholder for someone else.

Chronic loneliness can drive people into these types of relationships reluctantly. It is easy to justify being in this arrangement too. The three pseudo relationships I’ve fallen into were filled with thoughts like: Maybe this will actually work out, she’ll see how great I am eventually, we’re so good for each other. Although I reassured myself with these thoughts while never fully believing them.

Okayyy, I still don’t see what the big deal is.

A relationship where you serve as a placeholder will erode your self-esteem and self-respect over time. In the beginning every will thing feel fine. You may even think, being a placeholder is better than being alone! The problems won’t arise until your partner stops fulfilling your needs. In my case, it has always led blatant emotional manipulation. If you decided to stick it out like I did you will accumulate resentment, bitterness, low self-worth, anger and eventually loneliness. The loneliness comes when you refuse to be used any longer. Luckily, loneliness is the better option.

Don’t be a placeholder – Barry


Trash Can Carla

Warm streams of water jetted out the showerhead on my filthy bare body. Purification by water, also known as “showering”, cleansed both skin and soul. Isn’t it strange how simple experiences can feel so enlightening?

This is heaven!

Ten minutes goes by before I force myself out of the purification chamber, also known as a “shower stall”, before grabbing my drying apparatus. I partially dried myself then transformed the towel into makeshift skirt to hide my junk. While leaving the Men’s restroom I formulated my day plans.

Okay, just need to head back to my dorm. Maybe sleep some more, do homework, take a nap, finish up a season of How I Met Your Mother, sleep some more. Yeah, that sounds like a solid Sunday plan.

My shower shoes squeaked loudly as I waddled back to dorm. I was six feet away from my door when- Continue reading

The Underlying Layer

Emotional intelligence grants us access to a hidden layer of the world around us. Humans use logic, but are creatures of great emotion. Understanding the role of emotions allows for better navigation through life. This increased awareness comes with side effects also.

Increased Emotional Stimulus

Greater emotional intelligence leads to high sensitivity to the emotional states of others. You will start noticing things that previously went unnoticed. When meeting new people, I immediately get a sense of what their insecurities are. Without thinking I begin dissecting the true nature of people’s relationships. I can see their stored resentments or unfulfilled needs. My personal experiences with codependency have me wired to avoid anyone who exhibits traits of a manipulator. This additional stimulus can be overwhelming at times.


The temptation to meddle in the lives of others grows once you exposed to the true nature of human relationships. One can drive themselves crazy watching others fumble with their emotional problems. Just remember that unsolicited interference will not help others. People must struggle before they can learn.

Solution? Acceptance

The only way to tame these side effects is through acceptance. Accept other people for their strengths and struggles. Do not try to force your opinions or good ideas on them. Avoid falling into that “I know what’s best” mindset. Let them be and educate by example.

I love you – Barry

Adventures in Learning: Business 101

*beep* *beep*

“Uggggggh shut up”


“Fine! I’ll wake up!”

A crawled out of bed to swipe shut off my phone alarm. Only fifteen minutes till Intro to Business class starts. I hated that class. Sorry let me rephrase that: I HATED that class. Yes, I was still a business major back then. I loved the content in the course. My professor? Not all that much.

I’m soo tired. Maybe I should skip? Just this once.

No. The professor already dislikes you. Don’t give her more reasons.

*Eye roll* Fine. I’ll be a good student, so annoying.

I waited for my roommate Austin and together we trekked uphill from Elwell to Sutliff hall. I set my things down at my desk and Austin plopped down in the sit behind me. Exhaustion continued to pull on my sleep strings.

You can do this! It’s only 50 minutes.

I clung to this thought and whispered, “I got this. Only 50 minutes.”

Austin somehow overheard, “You said something?”

“Hm, me? Nope.”

It’s only 50 minutes. It’s only 50 minutes.

Professor Star stood front in center to address the class:

“Welcome back students. Today I want you to show two short videos related to the topics of Marketing and Branding that we have been discussing in previous class. After each video discuss what you found important or interesting in groups of three”

Videos? Oh no. Continue reading

Food Spills

Whenever I have the misfortune to arrive upon a food spill my heartbreaks. Today a perfectly good bacon cheeseburger lay splattered on the curbside. A classic hit and run case. Ketchup oozing in an unsightly manner as fly feast on the carcass. The perpetrator failed to dispose of the evidence. That innocent burger laid there abandoned, just warm enough to let the bacon scent joyously dance in my nostrils. Unfortunately, no will enjoy that calorie-busting death wish. No one will sink their teeth into the warm sesame sprinkled bun. No one will revel in that playpen of savory flavors. It is lost to eternity.  Nature will carry away that delicious dream into fast food heaven. Do all hot dogs go to heaven? Do neglected ice cream cones ride the eternal banana boat into Valhalla? Do fallen funnel cakes ascend to the big carnival in the sky? Will justice be served (with pickles)?

One can only hope – Barry

You clean up well!

I placed my black framed glasses on the desk and cupped my hands into face. Maybe I could smother myself to death? Sometimes college sucks. A lot. Once again, I found myself in the position of having too much to do in too little time.

Let’s just take a break and look at it later

I slid my student ID into my pocket and headed toward the 2nd floor bathroom. From the lens of my blurred vision I saw a thin girl in an orange-ish dress leaving my coworker’s room.

Wait…. Isn’t Bryan dating Sare? Is that another girl leaving his room? Oh boy he is in trouble! Continue reading

Adventures in Learning: First day of Grad School

Last week marked my first day as a Grad student! The weeks leading up to then were extremely boring. I was itching to get started. My excitement eagerly pushed me to leave an hour early for class.

Okay. It’s five and class starts at six. Better get there early to survey the landscape and pick a good spot.

The entire walk uphill to Sutliff I devised and revised my master seating plan. I arrived at 5:11pm to a room filled with computers. Two girls chatted while I got myself settled down in a desk chair.


Is someone talking to me? Continue reading

Let’s be real

Alright let’s be real for a sec.

Everyone knows a person that believes we are their best friend. From our perspective, this is an audacious claim. We barely know you and may not like you. A decent person doesn’t say this out loud though. Instead we resort to playing social tango. Our interactions with them feel painfully insincere. We entertain their invitations and tolerate their presence.

Here are my questions:

How do you approach a situation like this in a compassionate way? Is it wrong to misled someone about your feelings toward the relationship? Should we give this person a chance if our dislike comes from superficial reasons?

Any advice is greatly appreciated – Barry

“Your girlfriend is crazy!”


*vrrrr* *vrrr* NEW MESSAGE – Cecelia: Hey are you awake?


Me: Hey, I was asleep but I’m awake now. What’s up?

Cecelia: I needed you for something, but nvm! I took care of it 🙂

Me: Alright haha. Proud of you 🙂 See ya tomorrow, goodnight!

Next day mid-afternoon

Welcome to the most boring day in the universe. The weather was exceedingly normal. Not hot and not cold. Nothing interesting on Facebook, Insta, or Snapchat. Students remained strangely quiet on the way to class. What is going on?

I guess today is just one of those days.

I followed the stone walkway that wrapped around and upwards to the Student Service Center instead of the stairs. Still boring. I trudged along at a snail like pace.



From the shadows of my peripheral I saw Sam sprinting in my direction. I think Sam lived on the floor above mine. His eyes reeked of fear.

“Hey Patrick! Your girlfriend is crazy! She tried to kill me!” Continue reading

Facebook’s Secret Weapon


By Barry of NotReal News

Silicon Valley buzzes with speculation this week as Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg announces a new social media platform: Rantbox. In an interview with tech reporters Zuckerberg said this:

“Well, we were looking at the core demographic of Facebook and how people use this amazing social network. While most people use Facebook to connect we stumbled upon an interesting niche: Facebook Ranters.”


Zuckerberg says observing the growing numbers of Facebook Ranters is what inspired his development team to pursue the Rantbox project.

“There’s this growing need for people to mindlessly spew their opinions online. Our studies surrounding this phenomenon revealed three key findings. First off, we discovered rants on Facebook suck. No one wants to read them and they accomplish nothing. Next, we found that there is a diverse range of Facebook ranters. Categories range from “Expert” Political Scientists, Job Complainers, Not-funny Jokesters, Trolls, Keyboard Warriors, and Computer Screen Activists. Rantbox provides us a great opportunity to move these individuals off of Facebook.”

Rantbox certainly has big ambitions to revolutionize online interactions. Many people remain skeptical of the idea for the new platform. I asked how Zuckerberg handled criticisms around the idea.

“Yeah a lot of people are uncertain about it [Rantbox] right now. Ironically, news about Rantbox spurred several thousand Facebook rants about Rantbox. I see that as confirmation that we need this now more ever.”

Rantbox is set to release in 2117 – Barry

Blogger Recognition Award

Today I was nominated by kedawithani, blogger at From My Vantage Point  for the Blogger Recognition Award!

Someone nominated you? Ha!

I’m extremely grateful for this nomination. I think Keda bring a great perspective to her writing so you should definitely check her out! My best piece of advice for other bloggers is to commit to writing consistently. I write on days even when I absolutely hate the thought of touching my keyboard.

This blog originated as Life Blog, which documented my personal development journey. Manifest Joy is a place where I can spread a smile with my short stories and poetry.

Here are my nominations:

  1. XP Nuggets
  2. Sauce Box
  3. Chaotic Shapes
  4. Non-Euclidean Sofa
  5. Tsetsewaa
  6. Silly Old Sod

The Rules:

  1. Create a blog post
  2. Give a short description of the blog that nominated you and add their blog link
  3. Write your best piece of advice for other bloggers
  4. Discuss what made you start your blog
  5. Nominate 15 other blogs that you think people should check out