About Jeff Cribb DVM, Super Nerd Boy, Warrior Poet, Etc, Etc.

I am a boy who was once terrified to be separated from his parents, a boy who once thought our family might be locked in department stores inadvertently after their closing, a boy who once stuffed pillows over his head to muffle the all night verbal attacks that my mom bombarded my father with. I am a boy who suffered from extreme insecurity and because of such, I vomited every day on a school bus for probably a year or more, and my normal desire and attraction to sex became clouded and confused by religious dogma, feelings of possible inadequacy, and a perpetually destructive guilt of sexual desire that is often and pathologically imprinted upon children. I am a man who chose to open his eyes and see the perpetual cycle of insanity running its crooked course between my parents, and decide that somehow, anyhow, I would break that damn cycle. I am a man who saw and still sees similar cycles of hypocrisy, delusion, dishonesty, and ultimate, infectious self-destructive behavior, applied in extreme prevalence as the glue that supposedly cements most family bonds, the majority of friendships, the employer-employee-customer relationship, governance of any sort, and even most people's relationships with their pets. I am a man who sees almost everyone everywhere trying to convince themselves and one another that the lie that everyone else is living, and obviously suffering from, is still "the only way", still the "best approach", to an existence that reaches its potential for oneself and for all. I am a man who believes that these cycles can be broken and I am a man who will do anything within his power to aid anyone who attempts to do so. I am a man who made the high school All-City football team. I am a man who initially planned to be an English major, so that I could teach the philosophy inherently injected within literature. I am a man who was admitted into the UGA College of Veterinary Medicine, much to the overwhelming surprise of my family, and perhaps many of my limited friends. I am a man who has always been drawn to the untainted, savage beauty of the nude bosom of mother nature. I am a man who skipped many days in veterinary school to white water kayak on the Chattooga River (amongst others) so I could sustain my soul through the process of such "learning". I am a man who one day decided to build a castle, and who then proclaimed to himself that within his castle and on his grounds, life would be different. I say this knowing that I am far from perfect and that I must battle my own imperfections with priority for all of my remaining days, but I also say it nonetheless with truth. In these walls, life is different. I am a dreamer, "but I am not the only one." I am a veterinarian. I am a naturalist. I am a friend. I am a landscape designer. I am a lover. I am a listener. I am a reader. I am a knight. I am someone crazy enough to believe in it all. I am a brat. I am still a moody person (but so much less than previously). I obsess. I misjudge. I am impatient and I still have a temper (also much improved from my past life). I am an alpha-male. I am a person who knows that everything really should contain at least a smidgen of laughter. I am a tuque lover, and an adult, a child, a geriatric, a hero and a villain, all in one, and I might even be a little bit of a dead man or a ghost, or half angel and half devil, trying to save you one moment, just so I can trick you the next. And who really knows what all of that means? It could mean everything or it might mean absolutely nothing. Can I even believe my own self-description? Can others believe my words? What is the true relevance of the letters that are joined to form these words that are supposedly accurate in representing and conveying my thoughts to you? Well, it is my guess that even after I attempted so very diligently to weave together all of those letters and words and postulations in some declaration of profound meaning, the only irrefutable and easy conclusion we might be able to actually agree upon is that now, for better or worse... I am most definitely a writer.

The Relief of Selling Your Soul (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 240)

Pretext Note: This lesser known novel written by George Orwell deals with the constant struggle of the protagonist who is trying to avoid the insanity, destabilization, and bastardization of living in the money world as he also attempts to continue to comfortably interact with others who are of that world and maintain the survival of his own perceived self worth. This passage is essentially the culminating point of the novel. The tragic nature in the outcome of his “relief” of accepting that he must sell his soul if he is to integrate with the money world in any respect is fatalistically depressing, but astoundingly and hauntingly accurate in assessing the impossibility of meshing and melding the worlds of money and non-money prioritization.

He walked rapidly away. What had he done? Chucked up the sponge! Broken all his oaths! His long and lonely war had ended in ignominious defeat. Circumcise ye your foreskins, saith the Lord. He was coming back to the fold, repentant. He seemed to be walking faster than usual. There was a peculiar sensation, an actual physical sensation, in his heart, in his limbs, all over him. What was it? Shame, misery, despair? Rage at being back in the clutch of money? Boredom when he thought of the deadly future? He dragged the sensation forth, faced it, examined it. It was relief.

Yes, that was the truth of it. Now that the thing was done he felt nothing but relief; relief that now at last he had finished with dirt, cold, hunger and loneliness and could get back to decent, fully human life. His resolutions, now that he had broken them, seemed nothing but a frightful weight that he had cast off. Moreover, he was aware that he was only fulfilling his destiny. In some corner of his mind he had always known that this would happen. He thought of the day when he had given them notice at the New Albion; and Mr. Erskine’s kind, red, beefish face, gently counselling him not to chuck up a “good” job for nothing. How bitterly he had sworn, then, that he was done with “good” jobs for ever! Yet it was foredoomed that he should come back, and he had known it even then. And it was not merely because of Rosemary and the baby that he had done it. That was the obvious cause, the precipitating cause, but even without it the end would have been the same; if there had been no baby to think about, something else would have forced his hand. For it was what, in his secret heart, he had desired.

After all he did not lack vitality, and that moneyless existence to which he had condemned himself had thrust him ruthlessly out of the stream of life. He looked back over the last two frightful years. He had blasphemed against money, rebelled against money, tried to live like an anchorite outside the money-world; and it had brought him not only misery, but also a frightful emptiness, an inescapable sense of futility. To abjure money is to abjure life. Be not righteous over much; why shouldst thou die before thy time? Now he was back in the money-world, or soon would be. Tomorrow he would go back to New Albion, in his best suit and overcoat (he must remember to get his overcoat out of pawn at the same time as his suit), in homburg hat of the correct gutter-crawling pattern, neatly shaved and with his hair cut short. He would be as though born anew. The sluttish poet of today would be hardly recognisable in the natty young business man of tomorrow. They would take him back, right enough; he had the talent they needed. He would buckle to work, sell his soul and hold down his job.

Keep the Aspidistra Flying 

George Orwell          1936

Why did you let me? (Love vs Sex 252)

‘Yes, you call it love but I call it torture,’ I said. ‘Why did you let me go into society if you thought it so evil that you ceased to love me because of it?’

‘It was not society, my dear,’ he said.

‘Why did you not use your authority?’ I went on. ‘Why didn’t you lock me up or kill me? I would be better off than I am now, deprived of all that made up my happiness. I should have been very happy, instead of being ashamed.’

I began to sob again and hid my face.

‘Yes,’ he began, as though continuing his thoughts aloud, ‘all of us, and especially you women, must discover for ourselves all the futilities of life in order to come back to life itself: the experience of other people is no good. At that time you were far from having got to the end of that sweet and charming nonsense that I used to enjoy in you, and I left you to have your fill of it, feeling that I had no right to stand in your way, although for me the time for that sort of thing was long past.’

‘If you loved me ,’ I said, ‘why did you stand by and allow me to go through with it?’

‘Because even if you had wanted to accept my experience  you would not have been able to: you had to find out for yourself — and you did.’

‘You thought it all out – thought it all out very carefully,’ I said. ‘You did not love very much.’

We lapsed into silence again.

‘That was harsh, what you said just now, but it is the truth,’ he exclaimed, suddenly rising to his feet and beginning to walk about the veranda. ‘Yes, it’s the truth. I was to blame,’ he added, stopping opposite me. ‘Either I ought not to have allowed myself to love you at all, or I ought to have loved you in a simpler way.’

Happily Ever After

Leo Tolstoy          1859

Cribb Comment: I believe this passage exquisitely portrays a dynamic all too common in any relationship involving one member who is maturely and aptly at peace with themselves and their existence versus another member who is immaturely floundering about in nervous energy anxiety (etc.) and the narcissism of satiating themselves in societal delusion and distraction. The passage is even more profound and relevant for this dynamic when a significant age disparity exists between these two entities. The man of this passage (the more mature entity in this case) profoundly loves this woman and he almost refused to marry her earlier in the book because of his prophetic knowledge of how things were likely to play out. The last sentence in the quote refers to this. His other counter to this tragedy, in this very same sentence, is to say “or I ought to have loved you in a simpler way.” My interpretation is to assume that this simpler way means without such passion or remaining further removed, but it is feasible that he is simply referring to enacting greater patience and personal acceptance of the “cost” involved in remaining unselfish and supremely stable in such a relationship. Any of these behaviors by the man would have required enormous self sacrifice and essentially equate to him moving into a long term yielding (negative) transcendence state (instead of a horizontal or upperward transcendence state) with someone he dearly loved.

At the time of this passage in the book, the female character has already bucked a simple, intimate, and quieter life with her husband, opting instead for the chaotic excitement and thrill which dwells most manicaly in the nervous energy of the fickle societal herd. She has run that course out of her own choice with some component of said choice being related to her utter defiance of her husbands stable posture and contentment which she cannot help but perceive primarily as authoritarian in nature. After profoundly discovering through her own experience and suffering that the societal bosom is never more than a “futility of life,” our female character must look to blame another for the consequences of her own unrelenting egocentric perspective. She must blame him, damn him for being too authoritarian or for not being authoritarian enough, to justify the suffering and consequence that she so proudly chose to march into with such gleeful determination. Our female character now sees all of the wasted and nonrecoverable time that she threw away in the suffering and consequence of her independent choices.

Cribb          2018


A Tempest of Simplicity (Love vs Sex 251)

I lost my heart

to a tempest of simplicity,

and once I was caught

beyond my will and desire

to escape such an odd manifestational paradox,

I realized that there was no tempest before me,

but only the vivacious rippling and vibrational energy

of contact, melding, and attempted integration

of two existences

which are so oft

catastrophically cleaved from one another;

between a soul of heaven and a world of unknowing flesh;

between crucifixion by the many, knowingly or not,

for the grace shown and proffered by the one;

between an attempted revival enacted by empathy and faith upon apathy and despair;

between the primordial forces of chaotic entropy and the stable orchestrations of synergistic and harmonious union.

It wasn’t a tempest at all

but the orbiting gates of heaven spinning, swirling, and dancing upon the earth.

And deeper

within that skin and those bones,

it was a fragment of heaven itself,

grace undulating incarnate.

An aspect of an essence, I now knew that I had always belonged to as well.

There was no fleeing from its path,

no attempted escape,

there needn’t be,

because there was no fear.

There was only a desire to join with it in a yin and yang of the most joyful appreciation imaginable;

to love it for the simple and pure sake of knowing that it also loved freely, respectfully, and without abandon, anything capable of such energy and attention.

My heart,

my soul,

my essence,

my appreciation and desire,

my compulsive joy and laughter,

had once again,

been simply called home to union with my tribe,

to the inclusive energy and bond of heaven’s blessing and it’s amazingly profound grace.

Cribb          2018

The Relativity of Expertise (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 239)

My brother recently adopted a new puppy and my dad has aided and assisted him throughout the process, as well as with some of the follow up veterinary care required. My brother doesn’t talk to me, that’s another lengthy story, but my dad and I are closer than ever and we have real conversations with one another; you know, the ones where both people speak and both people listen.

My dad, to his credit, has learned to listen and abide by the veterinary recommendations and behavioral advice I give him. He has seen the repetitive objective evidence and listened to my observations and justifications for why I approach things the way I do. He has accepted my expertise.

Oddly enough, even after I graduated as a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, my mom would continuously argue with me about the facts of physiology, anatomy, diagnostics, historical case evidence, and behavior. She was discomforted by my knowledge and expertise on the subject, framing these qualities as “my opinion” while framing her own uneducated and unchallenged rationale and comforting delusion as “indisputable fact.” Let’s just summarize and say my brother eventually went down that same wormhole of delusion for the same exact behavior glitch in his psyche.

So, my brother is failing in house training his dog, effectively walking his dog, and in setting up the other proper pack boundaries and structure for his dog which expresses itself in other undesirable manifestations. He had decided his puppy had “physical” issues to explain these failures, which is highly unlikely, up until recently.

My dad tried over and over to pass along my advice to my brother without success, without heed or hesitation, for the longest time. That all met a deaf ear and a closed mind.

My father finally established some breakthrough success getting creative and giving my brother a book written by Cesar Milan (of course, a sensational society approved celebrity). My brother apparently read at least some of the book and since doing so he has improved much of the puppies behavior. He was even proud of his learned knowledge and took the time to show my dad some of the tricks “he knew” about puppy behavior.

My dad and I laughed about this the other day. It wasn’t to be mean and it wasn’t to be ugly. It was to process the stultifying denial and delusion we all tend to inflict upon ourselves in some vain attempt to avoid our fear of one thing or the other. My brother was in fulminant denial until he could twist reality enough to his liking to accept its validity. It seems so bizarre and so backward, but I promise you I see the same behavior from some other pet owners quite often.

At the end of our discussion about this issue, my dad suddenly turned to me and chuckled a good bit as he seemed to stumble upon an internal epiphany. He said “Jeff, can you imagine what kind of reaction or response Steven would have if you strolled into his civil engineering office and started telling him how to build things, manage a project, or compute a critical and complicated engineering formula that carried great liability with it? Can you just imagine what kind of hellacious hissy fit and temper tantrum he would have?”

I smiled back at my dad and I thought “Wow, dad just keeps surprising me with his observations lately, how awesome is that?” But I held the thought silently and only chose to reply “Absolutely, I have no doubt whatsoever how he would react. He would lose his shit like Mount Vesuvius.” And we laughed a little bit more together about all of it because we both knew how profoundly true that statement happens to be.

Jeff Cribb DVM          2018

Maybe You Should Tell Them (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 238)

The most beautiful creatures that I have found in this universe hold the world upside right and keep it from twisting upside down on a constant basis. Their efforts go underappreciated by most despite their endless contribution to all and their filling of everyone else’s bucket but their own. It seems natural for them as if they might be an angel of existence hellbent on spreading their light and love to any corner of the universe that is particularly in need at any given moment. So few truly, genuinely, and devoutly lift others up, even their own flesh and blood, but these angels do and they do it without question. They are rare. They are exquisite. They are beyond beautiful. They shine like a wayward comet streaking through a dark night to stir up all of the moon glow, fairy dust, and other precious particles of primordial light that normally swirl about our souls too silently in their radiance and energy for us to acknowledge and to accept; too silently for us to believe, to have complete and utter faith in. These gorgeous creatures awaken all of us from such silence, disbelief, and despair. They shine undeniable and unassailable light and love throughout all the realms of existence. That’s just what they do and if you happen to be fortunate enough to cross paths with one of these extraordinary angels, maybe you should tell them, break your own silence for them as they have done for you in their essence and existence. Maybe you should tell them that you see them, that you really do see them, for who and what they choose to be.

Cribb          2018

An Affectation of Simplicity: Tolstoy on Insecurity and Misperception (Love vs Sex 250)

Another thing that used to rile me but which I afterwards enjoyed was his complete indifference and, almost, disdain for my appearance. Never, either by word or look, was there a hint that he thought me pretty : on the contrary, he would make a wry face and laugh when people complimented me on my looks in front of him. He took a positive pleasure in picking out my defects and teasing me about them. The fashionable clothes on which Katya liked to dress me up and the way she did my hair for festive occasions only provoked his mockery, mortifying the kind-hearted Katya and at first disconcerting me. Katya, having made up her mind that he admired me, was quite unable to understand his not liking to see a woman he admired shown off to the best advantage. But I quickly came to see what was behind it. He wanted to be sure that I was devoid of vanity. And so soon as I realized this, I actually was quite free from any trace of affection in the clothes I wore, or the way I did my hair, or how I moved; but a very obvious form of affectation took its place – an affectation of simplicity, at a time when I could not yet be really simple. I knew that he loved me; but whether as a child or a woman I had not then asked myself; I prized his love and, feeling that he considered me better than all the other young women in the world, I could not help wishing him to continue in the illusion. And involuntarily I deceived him. But in deceiving him I became a better person myself. I felt how much better and more worthy it was for me to show him the finer side of my nature than any of the physical attractions. My hair, my hands, my face, my ways – whether good or bad, it seemed to me he had appraised them all at a glance and knew them so well that I could add nothing to them except the wish to deceive him. But my inner self he did not know, because he loved it and because it was in the very midst of growth and development; and there I could – and did – deceive him. And how easy my relations with him became once I understood this clearly! My groundless confusion and awkwardness of movement completely disappeared. I felt that from whatever angle he saw me, whether sitting or standing, with my hair up or down, all of me was known to him and, I fancied, satisfied him. If, contrary to his practice, he had suddenly told me, as other people did, that I was beautiful, I believe I should have been anything but pleased. But, on the other hand, how happy and light-hearted I would feel when, after something I said, he would gaze at me intently and say in a voice charged with emotion which he would try to hide with a humorous note : ‘Yes, oh yes, there is something about you. You’re a fine girl, that I must admit.’

Happily Ever After

Leo Tolstoy          1859

Cribb Comment:

In this passage Tolstoy writes from the perspective of Masha or Marya who is married to Sergei. Masha’s description of her own feelings is intended to display her inaccurate perception and interpretation of the behavior of her husband Sergei due to the insecurity and immaturity which plagues her soul. Sergei finds Masha to be the most attractive woman that he has ever known, but his profound love for her originates even more so in his awareness and appreciation of her drive and inner spirit. Sergei perceives and appreciates the unique exquisiteness of the totality of Masha’s essence far beyond any other person mentioned within the novel.

I would suggest that the conundrum and potentiated expression of Masha’s insecurity and misperception is buried within the “dominance challenge” created by the union of these two special souls. Masha’s unusually profound love for Sergei is both a supreme blessing and a curse to her as it bombards her relentlessly. Due to her youth and her lack of mature comprehension of the “simplicity” of genuine love and genuine life, she throws herself into an undulating and unstable fear-love pendulum of  perception and assumption. Her fear of losing Sergei’s love, which is too simple and too unexcitable to satiate her preconceived notion of such things, leads her to subconsciously exert efforts to justify her own attempt to dominate and/or demonize him.

The first third of the passage ends with a clarifying explanation. Sergei’s befuddling behavior has been focused primarily on a true appreciation of Masha’s exquisite beauty and, because of such awareness, not wanting her to run to ruin via the all too temptible sin of such exceptional attractiveness, vanity. Masha goes on to state that she “could not yet be really simple” and that she wasn’t sure if he “loved her more as a child or a woman.” She continues by saying that nonetheless “she prized his love” no matter how unfounded it might be and that she could not help herself from wanting to enable “this illusion” of his. To paraphrase, she is saying that she is scared and unable to comprehend how a man of such worth could love her in such simplicity. This fear leads her to doubt the true nature of his love, and though she cannot escape that insecurity, she also cannot let go of the possibility that his love could actually be genuine. Thus, she must continue down her undulating path of uncertainty by “wishing the illusion to continue.”

Masha’s many references to Sergei knowing, seeing, and perceiving her in every respect, also illustrates a dynamic rift in her psyche which she is unable to resolve at this time. On one hand, she is enamoured and overjoyed by his attentions, but on the other, she feels looked down upon, pitied, and too exposed by her vulnerability to be a worthy equal. As a result, she focuses on the mental triumph of “deceiving him” in order to raise herself up in confidence and self worth. That deception takes place secretly or passive aggressively in her psyche to avoid the direct or natural correction that would confront such behavior if she employed it directly or consciously.

Masha’s unwarranted fear and confusion turns into an undulating mind game which is then used to justify her passive aggressive need and employment of willful deception to bolster her self worth and confidence. Because she cannot fathom how Sergei might love her otherwise in simplicity, she attempts to turn herself into the exact opposite of such simplicity and/or his direct opponent. She cannot sustain the vision of how Sergei sees her. She can only sustain the vision of how she sees herself.

In the last line of the passage, we swing back once more into the slight glimmer of a faint flame of hope. Paradoxically, a simplicity is displayed in that sentence by Sergei that seems to somehow slip through all of Masha’s defenses to keep a tiny lingering tendril of her love for him enduringly intact.

Cribb          2018

Monster (Warrior Poet Mental Yoga 237)


So we were up
Throwin’ dice in the dark
I saw you late, last night, come to harm
I saw you dance in the devil’s arms

The night kept coming
Really nothing I could do
Eyes with a fire, unquenched, by peace
Curse the beauty, curse the queen

So we come
To a place of no return
Yours is the face, that makes my body burn
And here is the name that our sons will learn
Curse the beauty, curse the queen
Curse the beauty, leave me

So when you’re weak
When you are on your knees
I’ll do my best, with the time, that’s left
Sworn with your spirit, you’re fully fleshed

So fuck your dreams
And don’t you pick at our seams
I’ll turn into a monster for you, If you pay me enough
None of this counts, if you do, cloud up

So we come
To a place of no return
Yours is the face, which makes my body burn
And here is the name, that our sons will learn
Curse the beauty, curse the queen
Curse the beauty, leave me

Mumford and Sons

Songwriters: Benjamin Walter David Lovett / Edward James Milton Dwane / Marcus Oliver Johnstone Mumford / Winston Aubrey Aladar Marshall
Monster lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group