Saturday, April 28, 2007

Homesick in a Place I Can Call Home

I've only been here three days, but homesickness just hit.

I had a slight panic yesterday that was exactly what I had anticipated would happen. It was just this realization that I AM ON ANOTHER CONTINENT! It's this claustrophobic feeling of not being able to just get on the subway to reach a friend, or just to make a simple phone call, or take a road trip to family. Everyone is SO FAR AWAY!

It's alright, though. It's pretty normal, as far as I'm concerned. And I am glad I anticipated it, because that allowed me to treat myself more gently and kindly, rather than freak out with shock and reaction.

Yesterday, I wandered around "downtown" Amsterdam and was really surprised at how emotional I got. Some parts were so touristy that it was not really much different from being in an irritating part of Manhattan, where I love it and hate it at the same time, but then I would turn down a narrow street of crooked, gorgeous buildings and feel such a sense of remembering. Not since I found New York City did I ever feel the kind of "oh my god, I'm home" feeling until now.

I absolutely know that reincarnation exists. I've had enough experience with this subject to prove its validity to me, even if I don't really know how it REALLY works; I do know there is enough evidence to at least convince me that the concept is legitimate, even if some of the testimonies and research isn't. There are reasons I say I know reincarnation is valid, but I will go into those another time. For now, I just wanted to mention it because the "remembering feeling" I have in being here in Amsterdam is pretty powerful.

When I turned down a few of those streets, I felt home.

I felt like I was collecting parts of myself left here from ages ago. I've had that feeling of remembering with several people in my life (including Jip), but only once for a PLACE. I had a brief experience of this in Tucson, AZ (but I think it was associated with the person there, not the place), but New York City wins, hands down, for being a PLACE I love as much as I would love a person. It looks like I may be adding Amsterdam to that tiny list!

More observations, later! And Pix!!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

VLOG: Out My Window & The Euro

From where I am staying with my bf, the sounds of children playing dance through the air to bring a lot of spirit, the chirping of birds makes it feel like there is no way to have a bad day, and the smell of flowers forces you to close your eyes for a moment and simply be present. My experience is of such a peace, so far, and I wanted to share that with you as best I can.

This first video is a view from the window. I could have done this better from the balcony, but I happened to be looking out the window and spontaneously recorded what I was seeing.

In this video, I introduce you to the Euro from my inexperienced American angle. I don't MEAN to be such a dumbass, but I am pretty new at being the foreigner, so everything makes me giddy and things that are taken for granted by locals seem exciting and inspiring to me!

Introducing: ONE MINUTE WANDERS (the vlog)

I've decided to document my adventures in Amsterdam through Vlogging (video blogging), so you will now find these videos occasionally! Since my memory card is so small in my camera, I can only create one minute videos (approx), so I decided during this video to create "One Minute Wonders" for my blog! But then, I liked the idea of One-Minute WANDERS better, hence the creation of this collection of videos! YAY!

For those receiving this feed in email or through a feedreader, the videos may not come through, so just use the convenient links provided.

In this video, I have just arrived, feel very tired, sick, have a massive headache, which you can tell by the way I am talking so tightly, trying to minimize the effect on my head.

In this video, I am LOOKING even worse, but I was feeling better...

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The Heart That Flies Never Dies

Well, here I go...

Part of me is in absolute disbelief and shock, while another part of me is happier than ever! I can't believe I decided to make this huge change and then... DID IT! I don't know why I would even be shocked; I always do this.

Follow your hearts, everyone. Keep your wits about you, but follow your heart. It's the most aligned part of you that you have with the universe. It may lead you into confusing and terrifying places, but that's your head trying to make sense of something that really has no logic. There is always meaning and beauty to be found in the places your heart lead you, even if your mind tries to trick you into thinking you've made a "mistake."

There is no such thing.

If I had used logic as my navigation through this, I would find evidence of far more reasons NOT to go than to go; not that the evidence would even be accurate, just easier to find because when you focus on what makes sense, what is tangible, it will always be evidence of where you've come from, not about where you are going. What's around you is what you've created already, so if I had no concept of my moving to another country, that's what I would find... no evidence to support how that could possibly be true.

The intangible future of my creation comes from my desires, my heart, the perceptions that bypass logic and proof, moving into a rare place of creative effort, playful trust, and honest choice.

Yes, I may crash and burn on the plane; I may find this doesn't work in the way I may ultimately imagine; I may be immediately rejected; I may fall flat on my face... but from even those potential experiences, it is up to me as to how I deal with it, and I will NEVER regret following my heart. I never have.

So, there are no guarantees. There is only CHOICE. And I chose this. I created it. I own the responsibilities involved, and I will make new choices as my experiences unfold.

Okay then... here I go...

This is my last blog entry from inside the United States... for a while!

See you on the other side with a whole new adventure and entries about my impressions of Amsterdam, Europe, and my life's potential there.


PS. Please see previous blog entries for ways to keep in contact with me directly and please consider a donation to help keep me from starving. I'm taking big risks, but it's also an investment toward more love and adventure on the planet! YAY!

Friday, April 20, 2007



The Amsterdam Fund Project
Please make a donation to help keep Troy alive and fed while he transitions from America to Amsterdam.

ANYTHING will be helpful.

Thank you so much!!

Please consider one or ALL of these social networks online to help me stay in contact with you more directly while I am in Holland:


FACEBOOK and connect with me @
Once you are a member, please find me as CocteauBoy or search for me using

You can then join the private COCTEAUBOY LOVES YOU Group at FaceBook and everyone in the group can keep in direct contact with me that way! This group connection will allow us to share videos, blog entries, comments, support, links, details, private and personal messages, etc. and f you use FireFox, you can even download the FaceBook Toolbar from the FireFox addons so you can be alerted to any and all activity related to your account!

Troy Tolley's Facebook profile

AND EVEN MORE for the serious friend!

JOIN TWITTER: is a simple, simple user profile that only asks one question: WHAT ARE YOU DOING? This can be updated at any point during your day and all people within your network are then alerted in various real-time ways (including TEXT MSGING!) as to "what I am doing!" If you check out my blog at, you will see the Twitter Widget in the side column is always updated!

FOR additional connection, or as a milder alternative to FaceBook:

and add me as a friend through! When you belong to MySpace, PLEASE SUBSCRIBE to my MySpace blog so you can leave comments to keep me company: YAY!!

For those who just wish to hear the basic updates, but not to be signed up for a network, please subscribe for my SugarHiccupHiccup Blog entries to be sent directly to your inbox and make sure you comment and keep me company as I document my adventure!

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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Linoleum Love

I picked up my passport today, and as I opened the envelope and looked at the book, saw my picture, the pages for visas, the blue and gold binding... I started getting really choked up. Having that in my hand represented so much about what is to come in the months ahead.

I've uprooted my entire life. I've released so many things to make room for this. WHY?

Because... well, I'm really REALLY in love. I'm not just IN love... I FEEL loved.

Why do I feel loved all of a sudden by someone when I have been surrounded by love all of my life?

Well, it's said in metaphysics and self-help philosophies that we only feel love from others to the extent that we truly love ourselves. If I love myself (i.e. truly embrace and accept me) at about 40% and someone else truly loves me at 100%, then I will only allow myself to feel and experience up to 40% of all of that love being freely given to me. It's not that we aren't actually loved 100%, but that we don't integrate all of that life-enriching energy as a part of our structure, our perspectives, our lives.

See, it's one thing for me to feel love for someone. Ohhhh, I am SO good at that. Oh yes, big-hearted me is so perfect at loving others, but what about poor little me? Who loves ME?

For most of my life, the love I do feel from someone seems to have to be manufactured. I intellectually grasp that my friends love me, that my father loves me, that my ex's all love me (well, most of them) and that my best friends truly love me, but in the end, it has always felt like I kind of had to just pretend the love into my life. I didn't really FEEL it. I know it is there, but I just let it glide over the numbness I feel in relation to others. It's a shocking revelation, but yeah... as animated and alive and free and open and loving as I am, if looked into more closely, I carry a beautiful, gorgeous numbness that's glossy, shiny, and perfectly happy to remain untouched.

So, again: why do I feel loved now? Why do I truly feel loved by my boyfriend now when I have always been loved by others in the past?

Because he bravely and lovingly calls me out on my bullshit.

Okay, maybe someone has tried the same in the past, but that was MAYBE one person. This is the first time, though, that someone has a language that can get through to me. What he says to me is not something new to me, but are truths that I have oh-so-carefully found ways of moving around in me like crowded passengers in a subway car. I have them step aside as I move in and I make plenty of room for whatever I need to do and be, but... they are still there; shuffling around me with excuses and courtesies that have become an art.

What my boyfriend does is make absolute room for my insecurities without shaming me, calls me out on my "higher perspectives" and on my oh-so-perfect way of loving that is just a slick effort to sabotage us. He helps me to accept the room and expression needed for the emotions and feelings I may have that are sometimes a contradiction against my intellectual salves.

Seriously, this is AMAZING to me. I have never had such an invitation to safety in my life. Actually... I've never had safety in my life. Ever. I've found my sanctuary in me, in my giving, in my helping people and animals and life, but... I've never felt... SAFE.

God, this means the world to me. It means the world to me because it means something has changed in me. It means I'm starting to embrace these shuffling parts inside me that I've always protected and I'm allowing them to integrate into me. What I've been doing is keeping these parts of me safe, dividing the core of me away from these parts as a form of protection, but never really BEING safe.

It feels a little embarrassing and vulnerable to talk about not feeling safe, not feeling loved, and recognizing a kind of handicap that has gone unattended for so long. It makes me feel like I've been a fraud, or guilty for the efforts others have made in trying to love me in the past, but that's just another form of self-sabotage... and I can let it speak its heart and not lie about it; I can embrace it, and bring it home... safe and sound.

It's not my boyfriend who is doing the work for me. He can't. But he finds the words I need to hear from outside of me so that I have the opportunity to no longer ignore them from inside. I feel such surrender and peace when he calls me out on this stuff, but it's ME who has to do the actual work after that.

And I do.

Because. It. Feels. LIBERATING!

There is a huge age difference between my boyfriend and me, and despite the fact that nearly everyone, including his mom and my dad and my friends and his friends are all being very supportive and encouraging, I still had to question this time difference between us. Of course, I've also questioned the seeming insanity of leaving the country to follow my heart into a gamble that may or may not last in the way we would wish, looking closely at the risks and distance between us that had to be overcome. It turns out that the time and space are not obstacles at all.

When I look at why I am giving us a chance, it's because of the kind of love that is shared between us that I've never really experienced before. It hits me every day. It washes over me like warmth and trust and soothes my feathers of fear as I near my flight of no return. How can I NOT give this a chance? Some people may think it's crazy to uproot your life and move through space to another country, and to find common ground in the time that exists between our age differences... risking everything for the sake of a gamble on Love... but I say:

it's fucking crazy NOT to do so!

We live in a world that doesn't do enough for the sake of Love. We are so quick to develop the art of courtesy and acquaintances, or to devastate another person as a way to fill the vacuum of loneliness we carry, but how often do we take the necessary risks for LOVE? No conditions, no demands, no intent but to experience more love... in the giving and in the receiving.

The Entity I channel, Michael, has said on many occasions that most of what passes for Love is far from what love really is. I've always been able to see that in others, but only recently did I see that I was playing the same games, maybe with more finesse, but the same games, nonetheless. It's only been in the last year that I started seeing clues that I had tricked myself into thinking I was being so loving, when all I was doing was being protective.

I look forward to who I may be in the years ahead because of this recent revelation. I have lived so long the way I am, I almost can't imagine who I will be in a world where I feel safe.

But I am ready to find out.

For the longest time I was doing just fine, as if living from a room that was bright, sunny, warm, and inviting, but what has happened is that I now realize the floor I've been walking on for so long was just a layer of linoleum, dented, pitted, and worn, but working just fine. I may have gone my whole life with this layer, but now... now me and my boyfriend are pulling up the sticky mess and finding this glowing, protected hardwood that I forgot existed in me.


Thursday, April 12, 2007

In a Maybe World

It baffles me to no end to have the closest people to you in your life have a completely, absolutely, utterly different set of memories about your past together than you do. On the one hand, this can be explained by poor memory; it can also be explained by selective memory; and it can be explained by defensive, self-protective memory.

Another explanation is that BOTH lines of memory are valid and that the universe has room for both time lines of experiences that seem to be relevant to the one remembering. This bizarre discrepancy of memory among people is so easily dismissed as such things as pettiness, resentment, romanticizing, poor memory, but... just... what if... it's ALL true?

No more arguing points; no more defending stances; no more dismissal of personal feelings; no more losses of friendship; no more blame; no more over-indulgence against the will of another...

I'm just sayin....

....maybe the universe is more accommodating than we are.

Maybe there is something to learn from that.

Monday, April 09, 2007

How to be my Boyfriend


I am 39 years old now and I have never dated. I've never had to date. I just sort of bumble along and enjoy life, then suddenly I meet a guy with whom I connect strongly and then we discover we'd make great boyfriends and we give it a shot (and then I get dumped 10 months to 4 years later). That's been the way I have found and held every boyfriend relationship, so far.

I've never been one who could "date around," or go out with one guy tonight and another tomorrow night. It's not that I have a weird judgment against dating around, but just that I don't know how to do it very well. I think my heart is too sensitive, or something. I just feel really uncomfortable with the idea of "shopping" for a person, and I prefer for it to happen more organically; unexpectedly. I like the surprise of a wonderful rapport, rather than the search for it. In the meantime I get to work on myself in a way that may make me an even better boyfriend for someone, as well as being a better person for myself. So, "dating," to me, reduces the magic of personal growth and surprise of life to an interviewing process of distraction from self, and is not a natural exchange for me.

Dating around means someone is going to be potentially chosen and many are going to be potentially rejected. I like neither of those options; at least, not with such an emphasis. I'd rather an experience of emergence, discovery, and playfulness (and potential friendship) than an experience of interview and assessment. The interviewing and assessment is going to happen, no matter what, so I'd rather it just be a gentle undercurrent than to have it to be the focus.

Even when I've met someone from online for a "date," I always explain that my first meeting can't really be considered a date. It's just a meeting. It's just a chance to hang out and get to know each other and focus on a friendship and from there we can THEN decide if we'd like to go on a date. I'd rather meet a potential friend than to lose that possibility because we are incompatible as boyfriends; I'd rather make a date with someone in person than to make a date with someone I've never met.

I don't know why I prefer all of these things, but it's the way I work.

Another thing I've always preferred is to never be too rigid in my expectations and wishes for what I would want in a mate. All of my fundamental basics that make up my identity are kept as MY fundamental basics and not something to wish from someone else, or to impose on someone else. I'd rather discover the fundamentals about another person and then create a unique world of combination. For the most part, my most successful and fulfilling relationships were rooted in the mutual respect and exploration of our different identities, even when fundamentals were at odds to each other.

SO... for 20 years of my life of relationships/dating I've not "dated around," and I've experimented with flexibility of fundamentals....

....and now I am ready try something different.

I still don't think I can date around (I just don't have that in me), but I want to enforce a few things that I would consider "fundamental deal makers," instead of being so flexible. In my flexibility, I find that I become very willing to be the invisible person in the relationship. It's a certain sabotage that I've found in me as a pattern. It's not that I deny the things that are fundamental about me, but that I feel a strength in my being able to set mine aside for the importance of someone else's. While this IS a strength to some degree, it is also a contributor to the detriment of a relationship, because when your relationship with yourself becomes compromised by your emphasis on your relationship with someone else, you cut off your own air. You clip your wings while encouraging the flight of another.

And then you wonder why they leave.

So... I've decided to gently hold some of my fundamentals in strong consideration when a potential boyfriend now comes along, and that includes my current relationship that has blossomed out of nowhere. This is 20 years worth of experience that has helped me to discover what is truly important to me and I'm also secure enough with myself now that I don't really feel a need to be so compromised in order to have a relationship. I'd rather be free and single than to feel lonely and invisible in a relationship. I'd rather keep my relationship with myself as healthy and whole than to divide myself into something more digestible for another person.

I've thought about this a lot.

Some people call these things "deal breakers," but I'm trying to emphasize the more inspiring angle of "Deal Makers." The more deal makers being fulfilled in a potential relationship, the more likely that relationship could be profoundly fulfilling for both of us. I would never IMPOSE these on another person, but I am brave enough now to let that person go on his merry way if he is not interested in similar, common grounds.

  • Socially graceful, friendly, and actually likes people
  • Loves reading together (quietly, or out loud to each other)
  • Loves being playful, in general, without thinking he is "too old" or "mature" or "too cool" or "too stupid" for silly playfulness
  • Loves color and brightness and appreciates toys as part of a home
  • Finds laughter to be an intimate bonding factor
  • Vegan, Vegetarian, or on his way to either of those
  • Sees animals as valid, feeling Beings who are not to be exploited, enslaved, farmed, worn, or eaten
  • Questions the very nature of reality and enjoys long, thoughtful conversations about such things
  • Finds benefit in discussing issues that arise as conflicts or differences or insecurities between us
  • Is naturally monogamous and finds that to be exciting, sexual, and sensual, and not a weird, resentful burden
  • Finds it thought-provoking, inspiring, and almost obligatory to question against mainstream conclusions about life, events, and truths
  • Finds insecurities to be something to soothe and heal, not to use against each other, or to feel are burdens
  • Is not religious, but spiritual
  • Is not political, but aware
  • Feels good about considering the impact of his choices on me, and does not feel burdened by that extra step in thinking
  • Does not smoke and understands why it's a violation to be around it in public (I've added this one for two reasons: kissing a smoker is gross, sorry; and if you can't understand why no person's habits should be something another person should be forced to partake in, then you probably don't have a clear idea about appreciating shared space; honoring shared space is NOT the same thing as taking away people's right to choose and do what they want)
So, those are some of the obvious DEAL MAKERS, but here are some deadly deal breakers, because no matter how much is being fulfilled in my deal maker list, these are the things that can ruin EVERYTHING:

These are words that will stop my relationship with you in its tracks, or seriously derail us to the point of needing a very long recovery:
  • "What?! You have got to be kidding me! Animals are MEANT to be used for food and clothing! Humans are carnivores!"
  • "I really don't see what the problem is if I feel like kissing another guy or flirting with him in front of you (or behind your back)... it's JUST a kiss, for god's sake. And we all need that extra attention from time to time."
  • "I've cheated on you." (or finding out that he's cheated on me)
  • "I already know everything I need to know about myself; I'm not really interested in learning more."
  • "Oh my god, get OVER it!"
  • "I lied to you."
Those are just a few of the obvious deal breakers, but the list doesn't include the even-more obvious ones of violating Honesty, Communication, and Integrity, which are basic ingredients to a successful and intimate relationship. If those three things are violated in any way, there is trouble.

And I'd like to point out that I DO understand the need for attention from others, even as flirtation and even while in a monogamous relationship, but there is a way to allow room for that without it being a violation to your honesty, communication, and integrity. I also don't like the word "cheating," but I guess it's the only word to use to describe someone who tells you one thing and then does another thing. If you enter a relationship with me KNOWING what is important to me, and you stand strongly with me to encourage that mutual agreement, and then you cheat (on any level: emotionally, physically, etc), then it's not about the act, itself, but about your level of integrity and honesty that has destroyed our intimacy. If want to have sex with someone else, then leave the relationship with me... FIRST. It's just NOT for me to have that kind of a relationship, and I've been there, done that, and frankly, don't need the experience again. You should have the guts to leave me before you would have to cheat on us.

I don't need to impose my rules on you, but I've accepted that it's okay for me to have some.

So there...

It's on record.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

The World Is In Love With Chris Garneau


Well, at least my world is...

I cannot stop listening to him. There is something deeply moving and important in his voice, in his words, and in his person; an emotional genius capturing an undercurrent in all of us that is at once haunting, familiar, and gorgeous, creating a genre of music many are calling "Sadcore," which is ironic because he is so incredibly inspiring.

Chris already has a huge, world cult following and I have seen it grow exponentially over a very short time, but I am still neck-to-neck with a gal on Last.FM for being Chris Garneau's NUMBER ONE FAN, which is as creepy as it is SO COOL! LOL

I haven't been in this much love with music since COCTEAU TWINS. I mean, I have LOVED some great music over time and I have very important bands that contribute to the soundtrack of my life, but there comes along very few who can cradle everything meaningful to you in life and turn it into kind lullabies of art.

I'm surprised Chris hasn't been compared more often to Lisa Germano, another amazing talent in this world who can scoop up the most painful of experiences into a melody, a soft lull of whisper-songs, making all of it seem so worth it.

My ipod has not played much of anything beyond Chris since I first heard of him several months ago (except my boyfriend's wonderful "mixed tapes" he made for me - sighhh). It makes it even better that Chris is so nice, personable, and friendly... free with hugs when I see him, even as I stand there like a shaking deer in headlights, starstruck like I've never been before (i never even understood the term until meeting Chris).

Tonight marks the last time I will be able to see him perform before leaving New York City for Amsterdam, Holland. Check his websites for future dates as his tour begins in May!

I wish for all of you to be able to experience him live, but until then BUY HIS ALBUM, "Music For Tourists"!!

You will NOT regret it.

I offer these for you to enjoy...



The "I don't have my dog" song
(official title unknown to me)