Non-fiction

Sometimes I wish I wasn’t as dramatic as I am, but whatever whattayado. That last post was kinda vomity. I’m not bitter Tanya, I just miss you. Let’s pretend the letter I left on your doorstep was the last thing I said. See you in a few months (or years.)

Anywaaaay,

I had an epiphany today. I don’t like sketches. I mean I love Louie and Broad City and Key & Peele, but I don’t want to do that. Non-fiction is my calling. Documentaries and interviews (and real pranks, but that chapter’s over). I’m not a character; I’m just myself. I talked about this realization with Chad (aka Cherdleys aka Character Authority) at Coachella. We both laughed at the fact that my ‘comedy’ is a byproduct of my authenticity. If and when I am funny, it’s an accident. I don’t like acting. The amount of mental focus it requires is something I’m nowhere near passionate enough to hone and get good at. If I really did enjoy it, I’d be calling up Chad and Blake every day and scheduling the time to film sketches, but every time I think about doing that I get this uncomfortable feeling of dread and cognitive dissonance. Why bother?

After lucking out on Youtube, somewhere down the road you get all this pressure to better yourself and take your “career” to the next level. “So! What’s next! You’re so funny! You should have Show!” Everyone expects you to grow and be funny or be awkward or whatever and that can be stressful. If you think about it, most of Youtube IS non-fiction. Vlogs are non-fiction. Technically they’re little documentaries of people exposing their lives and personalities to the world. Some things I could do the rest of my life without any dread: Writing. Editing. Interviewing. Directing. Journalism. Non-Fiction.

I’m so relieved the Chatting With series is slowly gaining momentum. I’ll be putting them on the main channel starting next week, shooting for every Wednesday. Chatting With Wednesdays. Bigger guests, better questions.

Thanks for Reading,

Andrew Hales

2:39pm

Los Angeles, CA

Moment of Clarity

Here it is Tanya. I mean Anna. That’s what we’ll say your name was. No one gives a fuck. “Did you write?” Here it fuckin is. This is like crack to you isn’t it. You’ve been waiting for this shit. I’ll write a whole novel for you babe. knock yourself out. “Did you write today?” your face burning pink with irritation. To live is to suffer right Tanya. I’ll write so much your eyes start to droop and you’ll stop reading out of boredom. You know you broke my heart first right. That first weekend in December when we looked at apartments for you in Long Beach. You got mad when I answered “no probably not” to if I’d ever consider just being friends. “You’re the kind of guy that cries aren’t you.” That was a bad day. Damn, this girl doesn’t actually like me. I remember running through all the nasty remarks you made that day in my head and almost sending the epic “let’s take a break” text that night but then decided to sleep on it. Everyone has flaws, she just gets a little moody sometimes. I remember how nervous you used to get when we first started hanging out and how fast you would start talking. I would just sit there and let you get it out of your system. It was so cute. It reminded me of my mom who’s also a loud extrovert as well as a proud goody-two-shoes. I felt so lucky. Here’s this beautiful funny Russian girl and she’s actually nervous around me. Your boisterous unapologetic laugh was music to my ears. Ti ti ti ti ti ti. Ooooook. After 20 minutes the dust would settle and our minds would effortlessly sync up. The inside jokes started piling up from the get-go. True banter. I remember when you slapped me across the face because I let my hands wander too much as we kissed on that first date. Wow, a woman of principleI texted a heart as you uber’d home and you texted one right back. We agreed to hang out a few days later.

“Did you write today?” You took the fun out of writing. “Did you Paint today?” How annoying would that get if I asked that all the time. It’s supposed to be fun. This is a hobby. I don’t make money from this. Do you see any ads on this site? This is a pure hobby. Don’t ruin that for me. Reading and Writing. Leisure. I asked Chris Chann why he didn’t stick to a schedule and he answered because it would take the fun and passion out of it. That makes a lot of sense to me. I work from home. That’s a foreign concept to you. People that work from home. I don’t have a boss. You do. You like having a boss. You like structure. I like structure when I’m on Adderall, but that’s about it. Otherwise, I’m a free-thinking wondering lost spirit soul hipster fuck. Coffee and books and film. Skating and Basketball and running. Fun world. I’ve made it. You have not. You don’t want to make it. You like working for work’s sake. You like that state of mind as an escape from something. Staying busy. Drugs are an easy to way to experience difference perspectives and points of view. I feel like I tap into how every mathematical left-brain person feels when I take Adderall. It makes “work” fun. Do the dishes, cleaning in general, waiting tables, editing, anything that requires focus, it makes it fun. When I’m off it I’m back to my lazy couch potato a.d.d. self that just wants to have normal fun. It’s nearly impossible to sincerely, wholeheartedly laugh on Adderall. Robotic-serious-down-to-business-no-nonsense-fuck. Wacky World is gone. Off it I can relax and have my soul back.

I’m sitting in Starbucks. I don’t care that it’s a corporation. Corporations create jobs. Our environment is wealthier as a whole because of corporations. Fuck off, hippie. Hashtag Capitalism Tangent. Sorry, there’s Pros & Cons of each I didn’t mean to get an argument. I’ve been earning points with my Starbucks app. I’ve earned about 5 free drink rewards now. It’s fun. I’ll do all the little ‘buy 3 lattes before this date and win 100 bonus stars’ games and win the extra points. Then I’ll use the reward (125 stars) on an expensive grande triple shot, almond milk, hazelnut latte with only 1 pump of syrup. Sugar kills. We all need to stop eating sugar, bread, and beef. Sugar though, seriously, sugar addiction is real. I’ve tried to go a few days without it and I’ll start getting this awful seizure like headaches and won’t be able to focus on anything. Try it, you’ll see. We are all addicted to sugar.

I’ve lost weight, though. I run almost every day for at least a mile. Then I’ll do kettlebell swings. I’ll play fetch with Bonnie, who could probably play fetch all day. Hey that could make a funny experiment. Timelapse it. Hey I’m Andrew Hales and today we’re going to see just how long Bonnie is willing to play fetch with me. The key to keep uploading. Keep writing. Keep running. Keep living. I watched three new documentaries over the last few weeks that I really liked. Tickled, Crash Reel, and Exit Through the Gift Shop. Tickled is somewhat like Catfish, Crash Reel is about a professional snowboarder recovering from a terrible crash that left him with a brain injury, and Exit Through the Gift Shop is about whether Art is all hype or actually asthetically beautiful. Something like that. They were all excellent though. I love docs.

Are you still reading, Anna? You want me to talk about you some more don’t you. Of course I do lil stupid. That’s ok, I’m over you now. Maybe someday you’ll get over yourself. That’s not savage, you really are a little too hyped about yourself.

Sometimes I wake up and start writing and have no idea why I’ve been stalling this whole time. and then I think that’s just life running it’s course. Let the chips fall where they may. Enjoy the ride. Stop trying to control everything so much. But we need to believe we have free will right? Meh, I don’t care anymore. Life is a movie. Time will tell. It has been told. On to the next chapter. Onward and upward. That was that and this is this. Don’t live in the past. Be here now. Get excited about the future. Don’t be mad it’s over, be glad it happened. It was fun while it lasted.

Thanks For Reading,

Andrew Hales

3:15pm

Los Angeles, CA

Homeostasis

“What’s that?” My girlfriend asks pointing to the (now open) middle console.

I had strategically placed two Lexapro there to take discreetly while I visited her in Long Beach for the weekend. I take one a day, everyday.

“Oh that’s Lexapro, it’s an anti-depressant, I actually haven’t taken one today,” grabbing one and popping it in my mouth as nonchalantly as I could, as if I wasn’t hiding the fact that I take anti-depressants from her. I watched her face sink as I washed it down with a stray water bottle.

“Wow dang that suucks.” She wasn’t pleased. “What would happen if you stopped taking them?”

“I would just…be more…depressed than I already am!” a raise and smirk in my expression, trying to lighten the mood. She giggled a little.

“You’re not depressed though.”

“I know it’s because I take them.”

“Whatever, it’s a placebo.”

It’s difficult to describe what clinical Depression feels like because once you’re out of it and thinking clearly again, it’s hard to comprehend and remember how bad it really was. Your complete state of mind is in another dimension by itself. You’re entire reality is painted in relentless, ruthless negativity. The glass is half-empty and you simply can’t see it any other way.

I think the reason I started writing this post is because I’ve lately started to feel the Lexapro wearing off. Somewhere in the back of my head I knew it eventually would. Taking a pill to solve your inner struggle/growth?/am I really depressed or not-who knows!) with life is simply too good to be true. The natural laws of the universe won’t allow it.

Ok so I’ll taper off. I’ll be completely ‘sober’ again. Clean. Hell let’s maybe even kick coffee. Maybe if I simply stick to exercising hard as fuck everyday, drink lots of water, sleep, don’t prank people, don’t even worry about Youtube, just hide out and wait it out, write, read, be alone, over time my neurotransmitters will heal. I’ll achieve Homeostasis. 

I won’t laugh as much. I’ll be more serious. Quiet. I’ll stop weed completely. I won’t be able to handle it anymore anyway. I’ll stop drinking, well, I dunno about that. I’ll probably want to drink more. There is this thing people have told me about called self-control though. I should look into that.

I’m not worried. In fact, I’m a little excited. Music will sound better. Movies will be more moving. My orgasms will be more intense. It’s sounds totally backwards but I’ve kind of missed being miserable.

Oh well. Bring it on.

Thanks for reading,

Andrew Hales

3:15am

Los Angeles, CA

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Work

I can’t think. I’m sitting here waiting for inspiration. It’s been 30 minutes now. I guess this is work. I’m doing it. I’m in the thick of it. I’m reading through all my notes and I’m not laughing. Nothing seems funny or interesting to me. It’s annoying. I don’t know what to do. I’m trying to write a web series but I can’t. I guess this is what I’ve been scared of for so long. It’s actually pretty uncomfortable. I just need to keep staring at the screen. Keep sitting here. I was reading a self-help book before this when I suddenly, mysteriously thought, this is a distraction. I’m never going to feel ready. Do it now. So here I am. I’m just waiting here. I guess I’m distracting myself writing down this blog post right now. It’s making me feel a little better. Not really though, this is all fluff. Does Louis C.K. experience this when he writes his sketches? Probably. I hope so. I’m just gonna keep doing this. It’s not fun. I don’t like it. But I wanna do it. This is work. This is exercise. I’m doing it. I’m writing. The same as doing push-ups. I did 40 push-ups today. It wasn’t comfortable. It wasn’t fun. I was glad I did it though. I now get to live with the knowledge of having done the pushups. That’s the reward. Stronger muscles and a better looking body is nice but the real reward is the knowledge that I consciously chose to put forth effort into something. It’s a mental reward. That’s what I’m doing now. I’m working. I’m waiting. I’m writing. This is work. Do the work. Ok, glad I could get that out of my system, back to sitting and waiting. Back to working.

Thanks for Reading,

Andrew Hales

3:55am

Bountiful, Utah

Comfort

“So what’s the next project?” My dad asks as we drive to Costco. “and I don’t mean videos, I mean what’s the next big venture.”

My jaded view towards pranks hasn’t been a secret for some time now. Naturally, my parents inquire what’s next for their day-dreaming, entrepreneurial son.

I go on autopilot, repeating the same variation of things I always say. “Probably documentaries or interviews. Music could be cool.” I’ve used this as an answer for the last couple years now.

“Huh.” He acknowledges. My dad is a very “I’ll believe it when I see it” kind of guy. Realistic and cautious. My mom on the other hand usually responds, “Oh honey you’d be so good at that!” to anything I’ve considered trying. She has more confidence in me than I do.

“A person’s success in life can usually be measured by the number of uncomfortable conversations he or she is willing to have.”

– Tim Ferris

Straight out of my bible, The 4-Hour Work Week, I guess I took that sentence a little too literally. #KingofAwkward

The truth is that progress and growth is uncomfortable. The problem is I’m addicted to comfort. I must break that addiction now.

*Does 30 push-up*

Ok. Hold on. *panting hard and loud* Let me just rest for a second.

*Falls asleep*

*Wakes up, turns on TV to watch Mad Men*

*Drinks Coffee*

*Continues watching Mad Men*

*Kills more time.*

Life is so fucking weird. I don’t know what the hell to make of it. I’m glad I could write this blog post though. Took me a minute to think of what to write but I finally just started writing. Sometimes you just need to sit and stair at the blank white for a while. That’s work. That’s the process.

I’m gonna turn pro. No more Mad Men. Time to work again. Work is fun. Work is life.

To me, what makes art in all it’s different forms beautiful isn’t just it’s appearance but also the knowledge of the honest hours of work and effort that was put into it.

Work is beautiful.

There is no honor in easy. There is no happiness in comfort.

“Many a false step by standing still.” – anon.

Thanks For Reading,

Andrew Hales

5:06am

Los Angeles, CA

 

 

 

Things to Always Remember

I’m not claiming these as my own original thoughts by any means, just little moments of clarity that I’ve jotted down in my notes in my phone over the last year. Enjoy.

(Copied and Pasted)

No one cares as much about your accomplishments as you think, not even your parents. Live your life, do what you want and fuck the rest.

It’s lonely at the top.

Stay Consistent. New Video Every Thursday. Forever. Think Long Term. It’s OK to Stack Videos Weeks Ahead.

Retirement is a Myth. Be Patient. Think Long Term. Work Hard. Enjoy Your Work. What do you want to say? Do the work.

Always be real, Down-to-Earth, Build Emotional Connection & Rapport with Fans, don’t take yourself too seriously,

Stay Active on Social Media. Collaborate long-descriptive titles and thumbnails and comments on the video. Don’t be afraid to be long. Stay in Character. Keep them on the their toes, throw them off. Surprise them. It’s ok to not be funny. Always be interesting.

Do the work. Commit. Turn Pro.

Get Money, Get Paid.

Moderation in All Things.

10 min. CPM

Read, Walk, Weed, Run.

Hugs All Day.

Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish.

Take Nootropics and Coffee.

What are willing to suffer for? What’s your struggle?

I met this beautiful Russian girl 3 months ago. We’ve been hanging out a bit and I’m pretty psyched about it.

I’ve been vegging out in my apartment snuggled on the couch with my big blanket and pillows with Bonnie by my feet. It’s been about…22 hours since I’ve left the apartment. There’s this continuous train of thought that circulates in my head while I stair at the TV. I need to make a video. Naa I’m fine. No I should make a video. meh just do it tomorrow. Then I’ll get up and drink some more coffee, take Bonnie out for a stroll around the block, come back, sit on the couch, watch some more TV. LA has been very Londony lately. Cold and damp. It’s nice to just stay cozy indoors instead of doing anything else. I’ve been trying out a bunch of different supplements lately. I love my pills & potions. Getting high. I’m looking for natural alternatives to Adderall, for focus, and Ativan, for anxiety, but overall, just something fun to take.

You know what makes me feel guilty? Not working.

I went through this mini I-Don’t-Want-To-Get-Recognized-On-The-Street-Anymore phase for the last couple months but I’m over it now. I don’t mind. I’m happy people give a shit lol.

I gotta get back to work.

Thanks For Reading,

Andrew Hales

2:44am

Los Angeles, CA

Contentment

Sup. It’s been a while. Remember that first post talking about how I was kind of against vlogging? Ya fuck that. I like it now. I’m tellin’ stories. Stuff like my DUI, blowing money on strippers, my drug habits, my fapping habits, why I left mormonism, the one that got away. I’m surprised to say I’m quite proud of my vlogs. My wonderfully intimate, youtubey, hand-held vloggy vlogs. For the first time in my life I feel like I’ve truly come out of my shell. I’m just so… and this word’s kind of gay but, happy. Gross. Good ol’ boring, I’m-13-again, quirky & relatable happiness. It’s very strange. Almost like I’m meeting my(jolly)self for the first time. Social Anxiety, what’s that? I actually talk to cashiers and uber drivers now without a care in the world. Is this how normal people feel? I don’t overthink things into a mild panic attack. Especially irrelevant, philosophical things like determinism or death. So. This is what 2 months of Lexapro feels like. My burning curiosity for anti-depressants (happiness in a pill?) is now finally resolved. I’m probably speaking too soon. There’s other factors too. The simple commitment to daily vlogging has probably had a relieving, cathartic effect on me. Not probably, it has. I also just turned 26 in May, signifying the completion of my brain’s natural growth and thus possibly maturing my state of mind and/or spirit to simpler, wiser level. Emotional retirement? Ha. Either way, for now, I’m in a good place.

Remember one of the docs I wanted to put out this year about Adderall and whether I had ADD or not? I drank a bunch of coffee (as well as 10 mg of addy of course) and busted it out over the weekend.

After uploading the nearly 12 minute short film to lahwfextra, I wait about about 5 minutes and then click refresh. The initial response is perfect. 40 likes, 0 dislikes. Ok cool. I play tug of war with Bonnie (my new Boston Terrier puppy) for 10-15 minutes. I click refresh again. 435 likes, 0 dislikes. Wow. They love it. Money can’t buy this feeling. I check up on the Donut Digger Prank on the main channel. Ratings are solid on that one too. Wow, today’s a good day for LAHWF. When my sense of accomplishment & ego gets this stimulated & inflated all I know to do is go for a fast-paced walk around the city. I put in my ipod, smoke a celebratory bowl and just sink into my own world, enjoying the fresh fruit of my labor. Aaaahhhh a pleased audience. Everything is in it’s right place.

“Good times, bad times, you know I’ve had my share…” – Led Zeppelin

Probably the most beautiful and simple lyrics ever written on this necessary fact of life. When I get down, I think of these lyrics and just remember to keep things in perspective, go with the flow, and ride the roller coaster of life. Losing All Hope Was Freedom.

Thanks for reading,

Andrew Hales

5:36am

Los Angeles, CA