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Armageddon is Nigh

Neal Grosskopf
11/11/2008 1:08:09 PM

Doesn't it seem like every time you check the news, another company is going out of business or laying off half their employees? Heck, last week my own company laid off 30 corporate employees, 2 which were in my own department! It's really terrible, and I really feel for the people that got let go. It sucks!

I am almost to the point of advocating, people withdraw all of their money from their savings and invest in the 4 G's: Guns, Gold, Groceries & Generators. Yes, no matter how bad of a depression the country gets into, the 4 G's will always be of value even when the US dollar is only worth the paper it is printed on.

Another reason 'Armageddon is Nigh' is that I am getting a divorce. Yes, unfortunately Emily and I can not work out our differences and we're in the process of splitting up all of our possessions. She is no longer living at our house and today she is coming over and removing a lot of her possessions.

If anybody cares, I'm doing alright regarding the whole situation. When I'm alone I sometimes feel bad, other times I'm ok, but I've been trying to stay active with friends and family and other interests as much as possible. I've been playing a lot of guitar lately and that has helped me relieve some stress.

I've pretty much convinced myself already that I'll have to sell the house. I really don't want to but it just seems like it needs to be done. It also makes for one less issue to debate about in these post-marriage times. Things will be rough for both Emily and I, financially and emotionally but hopefully we can get through the process quickly and as painlessly as possible.

Also, something many people probably didn't know, but I had applied for a job in Green Bay. Had I got the job I would have fared a lot better and probably been able to keep my house but I was told today that I won't be getting it. I already told my current employer that I had interviewed so this isn't some double-secret information coming out. I always try to looking on the bright side of whatever lousy situation I'm in, and I guess all I can say about this is that now it's made my future choices a lot easier to make, like whether to keep the house or not, or what city I should live in.

Well probably not the most upbeat blog post I've ever written but I feel like I might as well just get lay it all out there.

Props go out to the Holyland.



Life In Reverse

Neal Grosskopf
11/14/2008 5:00:30 PM

It feels like lately my life is going in reverse. Usually the general course of a life after high school is, go to college, get girlfriend, graduate, get married, buy house etc. Now I feel like I'm sort of back at "graduate college" again which occurred about a year and a half ago for me. I personally feel like getting "back on the horse" and see if I can't get life moving forward again but that will probably be a problem that I can't control 100%.

Last night I met with a realitor to put my house up for sale (I should have a link I can post on my website in a couple of days). The house will officially be up for sale starting next Tuesday. I believe Emily came over today and removed some of her remaining things as well. After that I need to clean my house up, mostly due to damage the dog and cats did to it (or myself in one case). My Mom and Dad are coming over this weekend for a morning to help clean things up. If all goes to plan I'll probably have an open house next weekend while I'm gone deer hunting (or just sitting up in the stand with my Dad). I hope the house doesn't need to be for sale too long, mainly so I can get it behind me and start focusing on other things. It would also be nice to not have to stress my self out everyday about how much money I do or don't have.

For most of this week I've been troubling myself with what I'm going to do this weekend. It just seems like if I'm sitting at home along, nothing positive comes out of it. Usually I'm obssesively checking my email, phone or facebook with no results. I seem to be the happiest when other people are around but I don't have a great deal of friends in the Oshkosh area. As it stands it doesn't look like I'm doing anything this weekend, which sucks. I guess after having such a top notch time last weekend I don't know what I'll do with myself this weekend. So far it seems that just about everybody is busy with one thing or another or would rather not hang out with me.

Yeah, this is quite the self loathing blog isn't it? Well hit me up tonight, Saturday, or Sunday if any of you 5 people out there that read my blog are free.


Wisconsin Marriages and Divorces - 2007 Statistics

Neal Grosskopf
11/10/2008 2:36:38 PM
Wisconsin Marriages and Divorces - 2007 Statistics

Soundtrack of a Divorce

Neal Grosskopf
6/16/2009 5:58:57 PM

Well, it's over (although not really since I've pre-written this blog post). Throughout my entire divorce I've been tracking the music I've been listening to just out of curiosity, via Facebook's iLike application. The app allows me to choose the songs I'm listening to which I've done for the past 7 months now. And now on to this glorious 7 month in the making blog post -

November - The Beginning

It all started November 1st, 2008, the day we went our separate ways. The soundtrack, literally, to this brief moment in time was hands down the CD "Class of 98 by 98 Mute"

The song I listened to on repeat was "Short Fuse" because that's more or less how I felt for that hour or so. I also listened to "Election Year" a lot because, it was after all election time, and that song captured much of the same energy and anger that "Short Fuse" also had. 98 Mute is a 90's hardcore punk band and I usually only listen to them when in a terrible mood.

Class of 98 by 98 Mute

November - Second Half

After a more hardcore styled start to my 7 month journey I moved on to some of Blink-182's more emo-ish songs and also started listening to Creed for the first time in my life. Most of the Creed songs were quite depressing and I've always felt, that to get over depression, you need to "fully go through it" i.e get it all out of your system usually by crying it out. The Creed songs pretty much sucked it right out of me especially "One Last Breath". I also listened to "One" & "My Own Prison" quite a bit.

Weathered by Creed Self Titled by Blink 182


After much of that very depressing music for some reason I moved on to something a bit more upbeat with The Mighty Mighty Bosstones (MMB) & Bob Marley. My MMB CD I was listening to was a CD I owned for a long time but never bothered to listen to. I found that many of the songs on it were really good and this cheered me up briefly.

Then there was my "One Love: The Very Best of Bob Marley & the Wailers" CD which I had got from my brother in-law Nick. This would be a reoccurring CD throughout the entire divorce. Whenever life got hard I turned to my Bob Marley CD. "Three Little Birds", was my theme song and the song Will Smith listens to throughout the movie "I Am Legend". The song also had great, reassuring lyrics such as:

Don't worry, about a thing. Cause every little thing, gonna be alright

Bob Marley calmed me down and kept me straight lined throughout the whole process. This was a CD I listened to pretty much the entire 7 months.

Question the Answers by The Mighty Mighty Bosstones One Love: The Very Best of Bob Marley & the Wailers

December - January

I next moved on to another CD I owned but didn't listen to frequently which was "The Swiss Army Romance by Dashboard Confessional". This is an all acoustic CD which is something I usually don't listen to but the lyrics on this CD are just awesome and the acoustic guitars play in an unusual way. One song that really stuck out was "Turpentine Chaser". At this time I let my guard down and started noticing girls again, which was a huge mistake for me at this juncture. I think the lyrics below explain how I was feeling, essentially just wanting to being with someone just for the sake of it but at the same time, really just wanting to be left alone.

All I want, is not to need you now / All I want are vows of silence now

Another great song was "Again I Go Unnoticed" which ties into what I was talking about above. After my stint with Dashboard Confessional I realized that being single is really the best and only choice for me.

The Swiss Army Romance by Dashboard Confessional

January - February

Now it was January, which was below zero almost the entire month! (Most people seem to forget that now in June and feel like complaining about 60 degree weather). The car I was driving at the time sucked really really bad at playing CDs when it was cold out. For some reason the only CD I was able to get to play was "Full Collapse by Thursday". Thursday is an emo band or more like the emo band. Their music is very depressing, but at the same time I think that accurately describe me during those cold months.

The song I listened to over and over again on this CD was hands down "Standing On The Edge Of Summer". Just the title alone, described me, i.e. waiting for my divorce to be final in summer. This first set of lyrics reminded me how fast the years leading up to my marriage went, and then how quickly it seemed to end:

Driving in your car, Miss the stop sign, fall in love...Just to get knocked down

The next set of lyrics alludes to how fragile my relationship was and the fact that we had recently bought a house:

In this house of cards we're all holding hearts and spades. (One breath, one step could knock it all down)

And more alliterations to "a deck of cards" and the demise of our relationship:

When the people you love get lost in the shuffle, (When you leave, you leave nothing but broken hearts)

I also listened to "Stay What You Are by Saves the Day" a lot during this period. Their lyrics are a bit more angry and less elegant than Thursday's but still a good listen.

Full Collapse by Thursday Stay What You Are by Saves the Day

March & April

For the months of March and April I started listening to some more positive upbeat music in the form of pop-punk. I discovered a great Blink-182-esque CD from Britain called "Welcome to Loserville by Son of Dork". I also started listening to my "Mmhmm CD by Relient K" and later my "A Hangover You Don't Deserve by Bowling for Soup". All of these are really poppy upbeat CDs. I think I was doing this to try to counteract my less than optimistic outlook on my job because it seemed certain that our company was going to go through another set of layoffs. By April the layoffs didn't come but I stuck with the pop-punk music.

Welcome to Loserville by Son of Dork Mmhmm by Relient K A Hangover You Don't Deserve by Bowling for Soup


For the month of May I continued to listen to pop-punk but for this month it was some of my faster, more technical guitar laden music. This was due to the fact that I started playing guitar again, for the first time since early November. Two of my all-time favorite speed pop-punk CDs are "Cheshire Cat by Blink-182" & "Perhaps, I Suppose by Rufio". I admire Tom Delonge's work on Cheshire Cat and still feel that it's the best Blink-182 CD despite some of the more mainstream CDs they have released.

The Month of May was a relatively exciting month because I was getting a lot of movement on my house and the divorce appeared to be moving along smoothly without any problems.

Cheshire Cat by Blink-182 Perhaps, I Suppose by Rufio

June - The Final Month

The countdown to June 15th began but almost as quickly as I started the timer, a giant roadblock appeared. Despite the problems I was facing, unlike earlier in the year when I would have turned to some angrier music I kept my cool and turned to Ska, which is like really fast reggae with horns and is generally very upbeat and happy. I turned to my CDs "Throwing The Game by Lucky Boys Confusion" & "Why Do They Rock So Hard by Reel Big Fish". "Why do they Rock so Hard?" was the first ska CD I ever bought and I still consider it the best. It is also the most upbeat CD I own and it's almost impossible to feel sad or depressed when listening to it. The "Throwing The Game" CD is also very upbeat.

Throwing The Game by Lucky Boys Confusion Why Do They Rock So Hard by Reel Big Fish


And so that brings me to today, 7 months later. Looking back I can see a trend with the style of music I listened to through the 7 months. In the beginning it was angry, hardcore punk. Then depressing emo during the winter months moving on to happier pop-punk during spring and finally upbeat, happy ska once summer hit. The style of music I listened to had less to do with the season and more with me healing from the breakup.

The Soundtrack to My Divorce
  1. 98 Mute - Short Fuse
  2. 98 Mute - Election Year
  3. Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Maps
  4. Creed - One Last Breath
  5. The Mighty Mighty Bosstones - Toxic Toast
  6. Bob Marley - Three Little Birds
  7. Bob Marley - Could You Be Loved?
  8. Dashboard Confessional - Turpentine Chaser
  9. Thursday - Standing On The Edge Of Summer
  10. Thursday - I Am The Killer
  11. Saves The Day - At Your Funeral
  12. Son Of Dork - Slacker
  13. Blink-182 - Touchdown Boy
  14. Rufio - Dipshit
  15. Lucky Boys Confusion - Child's Play
  16. Reel Big Fish - Down In Flames

Well I hope you enjoyed my little research experiment and I applaud you for caring enough to read this far! Perhaps you've even bothered to click-through on a few CDs to get inside my musical psyche. Thanks for reading!


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