Posts Tagged With: Creative Writing

Winding down from a sixth day of 3 pages.

That means 94 more.  Thinking like I always do about what I want from my professional life, and I mean complete idealism is what I’m entertaining on this couch.  No wine tonight, I need the thoughts clearer than they’ve been.  French.. I need to get back to my French studies, and completely immerse myself in the language.  That’s one thing.  Another, I want to have another writing session in that second floor of Palooza tomorrow.  And talk to Jeff, see what he has planned in the way of events.  How do you build a business like that without hitting a wall?  Have to write it out, think, and talk to him.  Tired.  And more grading to do tomorrow.  This, note, will be the last time in my life I’m in this position.  And the cold or whatever’s about me, remaining; sore throat, slight sniffle, and tired.  But tomorrow I’ll be renewed.  And writing.  And upstairs I’m walking ready for new day but also needing rest.  Conflicted not so much as I’m eager, eager for Newness and for a new book, and for December, days of no class and more runs, running during daylight and not on a treadmill as I now HAVE to do.

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Not yet started on the three pages but I will be editing the novel today, quite a bit of it.  It’s just sitting there and I hate that, HATE IT.  Coffee ready but not one sip.  Surprised I have this much fire pre-cup.  Alice called me upstairs a bit ago, since Jack booted me from bed at around 4-something, to see a sunset and the pink-bent orange that it threw to each of the sky’s provinces.  Today, I’m bound for material and for fruition; the novel, the papers I have to grade.  Everything.  [sigh]  If only I could stay home, imagine how much progress I’d make.  Have to do on the clock.  I’m outside in that lounge area today.  Foot left still smarts from last night’s treadmill run.  If I do that marathon in Santa Cruz, which I’m quite convinced I will, it’s 182 days at the front, so I have time to ready.

Jackie showing off how much more energy he has than papa.  Fine, he wins, and he knows it.

Distracted at the moment, coffee and Jack and what I have to grade and the rest of the semester and the goddamn drive tomorrow–  Be back.  Not sure when.  Need exploration.  Need Newness.  Life.  Art.  quiet.

organize before leaving for winery

one poem  havent written one in a while

i hate punctuation and capitals

more music in prose

where the papers and pages from novel

disorganized

ofcourse

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Read a page of the novel, actually got onto page 4.  Here with medium Sumatra and blueberry muffin.  5:09PM.  First 1A class went well, quite well.  This entire day has been DOMINATED by my attitude.  And 12 hours from now, I’ll still be running.  I want to fit in 8 miles, like my wife does.  But how do I do that in the bloody dark?  OH,  I know.. go down to Farmers by way of Montgomery and turn left, then up Hoen, then run up Yulupa, then do a lap around that lake with the mean goose, or swam.  Whatever that thing is, it’s mean.  White, angelic and pristine-looking but a winged bastard that THING is.  Love moments like this, alone to thoughts, meditation, collection and Self-gather.  First bite of muffin, and I see that this is nowhere close to what I should be eating, any kind of marathon diet.  Foolish of me to buy it, I know but here I am enjoying it immensely.  Two instructors in the mailroom, can’t tell if they’re full-time or adjunct, but they’re bitching about everything, everything, students and textbooks and lessons and lecturing and students that don’t show even the ones that do and do well.  Sick of listening to them, trying to drown them out with my own thinking, but I can’t.  Shit I’m in trouble.  One of the also adjuncts at SSU.  Lucky bitch, I think.  Why is she complaining?  I can’t assignments there anymore, and I taught there quite a bit.  4 sections of 101 in 2008.  FOUR!  And now nothing.  She said that she has health benefits through SSU as well, now I really want to know why she’s complaining.  Then she expresses something with which I identify: “Next semester I’m only doing two classes, four is just too much.” Does she have another job, I wonder, outside of teaching?  Who knows.  But the principle thought reaches me.  I agree.  Can’t wait for next term.  And what my life yields, what the readings and writings do– the students–  Now another teachers enters, one of the first two leaves.  Now they talk about which texts to select for 1A.  Think they’re both full-timers, and they know everything, I mean listen to how they talk, talk, “…then we went to another text, not page-turning, but…” the redhead said.  Ugh, go to your stupid office, I’m trying to work!

Next up, the 6PM. My favorite of all the sections this semester, as you know.  This coffee, life-saving.  Now one of the full-timers leave and another walks in.  I think they both left, ‘cause I hear no conversation– oh now I do.  Why can’t I get quiet.  If I were a FT-er I’d just slither to my cozy hole.  But no.  I let the coffee speak to me in its black soft palate tongue; coaxing, woven, colorful, mentoring.  I’m being advised by this moment, here in the building of “my” department.  But they don’t care about the adjuncts, trust me.  After applying to that FT post earlier this year, the chair sent me an email thanking me for applying (what the fuck?) and that I’m valued as a colleague.  Okay, yeah, I feel valued, is that what you want to hear?  I supposed but incommodes me most is the expectedness of us, the adjuncts.  “Oh they’ll always be there,” I’m sure they think, or something like that.  But I’m moving on– and how they are convinced they know what strong writing is, and how to write, and what students should say; “No, you want to say this,” or, “It’d be better if you said…” What?  What ever happened to student empowerment, I mean student advocacy, encouraging them to develop their own voice and venom?  Now the coffee’s singing to me.  Glad this is only my second of day.  Yeah, can you believe that?

Former adjunct, ‘AMI’, says hello, greets me, asks me how Jackie is.  She’s always been sweet, and since going FT she’s proven to still be one of us, understand our scowl.  She asks me what I’m reading, I slightly fib and tell her The New Yorker, that I’m more interested in the smaller standalone pieces, the 300-400-500 word pieces.  Which is all true, but I’m not consistent.  Hence, ‘slight‘ fib.  The last issue of the NYT I bought, I barely read a 17th of it, I told her, and I remarked how guilty I felt, still do.  My lie in my disclosure:  I’m not fucking consistent!  This has to change.  So when back from my run tomorrow morning, I write I read I edit I be the Literary me.  5:33– how did that happen?  My coffee?  …  Wow, I drank that fast.  Oh well.  Don’t think I’ll finish this muffin which is fine, don’t want to ruin dinner.  Looking forward to a cherry 7UP.  Okay, details useless, thank Mike…

File cabinets, pictured on the wall, back issue of lit mags and recorded lectures…  This room is so boring.  I’d rather be at the winery, frankly, writing on their dime, observing the reactions to wine and what my coworkers say to people.  “Welcome,” they always say.  I hate that.  “Welcome.” Yuck.  Why can’t you just say ‘hello’ or ‘hi, how are you?’ I blame my captiousness with writing, words, language, so there I have many faults, one being I’m a red faultfinder.  5:38, off to class.  Going to dump the rest of this coffee.  12 hours from now I’ll be done with my run, writing I hope, or reading, don’t think I’ll be editing the novel, but who knows.  The sun will just be coming up.  A stealth run, dark, can’t wait.  26.1 doesn’t scare me at all, not even with minuscule might.  Re-focus, re-gather…

Maybe I shouldn’t spill this out.  I’m feeling a little tired.  Oh no!  Not now, not before the last class!  What do I do?  A mint!  Yeah, one of those mints.  That fresh sense will shake me, hopefully.

7:52PM.  And the day over.  Finally.  Just came here to the conference room to edit the day’s 3 pages.  99 more to go.  So when day 100’s over, I’ll have a book.  No read-through, just put it out there, like jazz.  Can’t wait to be home with Alice, and my little boy.  Tomorrow, the run, the winery, 3 pages somehow.  Should say it like that.  I’ll do it, no problem.  And if I don’t so it after the run, I’ll write from the Kenwood lot.  I’ll win either way.

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Expedition’d

No wine tonight.  Aiming to wake early tomorrow to read more of the novel and write in journal, experience the early hours with rabid indulgence.  And keep my books flying from my thinkings like a virulent pulse, never halting for anyone or anything.  Had a conversation with a coworker the other day, talking about how we’d be on our last day, and so many are having their last days, moving on.  Why not me?  If I put my faith in education to get me out, I’ll be there for ever.  And teaching high school, I don’t see myself happy doing that, especially with this most recent rejection of academia, the current-day student habits.  I keep writing, hoping something will land, or explode, or that metaphor of throwing mud or something at a wall, “something has to stick” I think it goes.  But I could be wrong.  On my last day at the winery, I’ll be silent, write everything down before I go.. have either the end or beginning of a book, a novel of course.  Or a memoir.  I don’t know.  But something.

I want to drive across the country.  By myself.  Take notes of all people, gas stations, hotels and motels, meals and wines and form that into a manuscript somehow.  I don’t want to have a “bucket list”.  I want to have a target list, and just take what I want, attack the target and have definitiveness within days.  So first target: The Road.  Second: my second novel, getting more into the character of Mike Massamen, but this time with “the nucleus” as he puts it, taking about Art, living Art, and seeing everything as material, paying more attention to the motions of his son and the little guy’s character development; putting words together, the new sentences (nearly two or three everyday), and his total lack of stress or over-concern.  Mike wishes he could be more like his son, in everything from daily habits to running to writing, obviously.  Speaking of running, I’m registering for the Santa Cruz 26.1 at some point this week.  Again today I associated half-marathons with works that aren’t book-length.  Can’t remember what I was doing when I made this connection, but I–  Now I remember!  I was at the doctor’s with Jack and Alice, listening to the doctor make funny sounds to Jack, and my little boy laughing, joking back at the doc.  They’re half-efforts, only half notable, any run shorter than  a 26.1.  I want to write novels, BOOKS, not chapbooks or newsletters or literary magazines.  NOVELS.  Meaty manuscripts that feel heavy when lifted, and demand investment from the reader, in terms of time, to get through.  My books will be challenges and rewarding, mostly for me but hopefully my readers as well.

Tomorrow morning, I want my mind wandering, roaming and acting oddly.  I think of Dav when he used to talk about waking early to get the right light for his shots, and how the light makes everything, and that harsh A.M. sun that takes so much discipline to go meet is more rewarding that most moments, to an Artist.  The Artist HAS to be extreme.  So on my last day at the winery, I’ll be extreme in my silence, scribbling, and people around me, all my coworkers, will be thinking something to the presumption of, “Why is he so quiet today?  Isn’t he happy he’s leaving?” Or simply, “What’s Mikey’s problem?” If only they knew.  You’d probably expect me to get drunker than drunk, be dismissive and confrontational with management.  Well, I don’t need wine to do that, have that mentality, and I don’t want to give Them or anyone the glory of seeing me that way.  And that day, my glorious last, will be here before anyone expects.  And I’m not counting on this indentured adjunct life to shape and shift the ingredients so such is possible.

Over a thousand for day.  And I won’t have the papers graded before the 24 is up.  But no matter.  I’ll grade some of those in the morning also.  Here, and in the loaner the car shop offers me.  Yes, again taking the Passat in.  That goddamn car…  But it’s old, and I drive it a lot to Mendo, so…  This is all an expedition.  A mental hike, or climb if you will.  Looking around, at mountains, and the clouds that compete with the peaks.  I stay in my tent that’s only inches from a fatal fall, but I don’t let it rattle me at all.  There’s a cold quiet here that doesn’t need to be captured but felt–  Sorry.  Looking at a picture of Everest, or one of the peaks around it, on the Nat Geo site, and it reminds me of how much I need to see, still, and what I’d write if I were on such a mission, up those slopes and mountains, and camping by that jagged rock, and the clouds that quickly change shape and fly against my cheek at certain points and turns in their lives.

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Zin, I’m back to

And I’m hardly surprised in this case as my sister was the maker of this wine.  Quick notes, as more specifics are to be later typed: dark, heavier body than most Zin pursuers will be used to; dark notes, chocolate, maple, cedar– balanced, playful, and antagonistic.  I won’t lie, I’m a fan of my sister’s wines.  While at St. Francis, I tasted the only Chard they were pouring, the SoCo, and three Zins.  This is the one I brought home.  Was proud of myself for only getting one bottle, as I’m such a wine bagger.  Paired this bottle with carne asada tacos.  Now I want to research winemaking more, get myself to a knowledge level where I have the choice of starting my own “label” and knowing it’d be successful, profitable in the first year.  But then I choose to write about it.  Why spend all that money when I could just find one of my legal sheet blocks?

Another sip…  a little hot.  Think the alc is 15.5 or 15.8.  A little higher than I’d like, but I can’t think that way as a consumer; winemakers won’t make wines for you.  There’s a balance of expressiveness and artistic integrity, and then vintage/varietal representation and its marketability.  She has a tough job, my little sister, one demanding and changing and unexpected, and around-the-clock.  I used to be obsessed with Zinfandel, the only wine type I’d pull from shelves, but then I found bottles that were too fruity and too everest in alc, unbalanced and barbaric.  But not this RR fruit; there’s a poise to its personality that would overshadow the alc even if it were in the 16’s.  It’s hard for me to calculate and solve, but then maybe it’s not meant to.

I look at what’s left int he glass.  And I don’t want to sip it–  wait, am I writing my review right now?  No.  I don’t write reviews.  I react.  And this wine is vocal and elementally enigmatic about its accentedness.  And it’s a Zin.  Russian River’s known mostly for Pinot and Chardonnay, I guess.  So with that little capsule of sagacity I can only be somewhat stunned with a Zin from their AVA.  I keep staring.  The color.  How’d she get it to such fuliginous, and with oak-woven notes that can only a palate provoke–  Ugh, I sound like a wine blogger now.  This is the kind of wine I’d write to, that I’d finish a novel to.  That’s I’d have in my hotel room, writing, watching unfamiliar streets from a high floor as I did in Paris, with my wife asleep behind me.

I’m just playing with the vampiric cloud in the glass, turning it clockwise, then counter, seeing how its shape changes and varied intentions become even more postmodern.  Now, more smoke; then chocolate covered cherry.  I used to write about a character who sipped this very form of red.  What would she say?  She sip slower than me.  I’m a writer, a Beat– undisciplined and rattling– an incensed mamba.  “Understand the voice,” she’d urge, then go back to painting.

(11/6/14)

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A Thursday, somewhat off

IMG_090060 items to grade today.  This should take me to about noon, I’m hoping.  Not sure if the writer’s ready to run– but who cares.  I’m in an investigative mode, with wine.  What’s out there, my thought.  Go up the street to Matanzas Creek.  Photograph what’s left of the lavender.

Second coffee in cue, Jackie playing with toys everywhere.  Think my energy level  might rival his, but it’s hard to tell just yet.  My story, now, at 35: embittered adjunct trying to recenter self as writer and wine lover, and father, and husband, and son, and brother– balance in aspects all.  Find my Zenful gallop through the world, no more stress, not with money or the commute or anything.  Going to take pictures of the Bennett Valley AVA, get where I can for as I remember many or most or maybe all of the vineyards are fenced in or off.

12:30PM.. breaking from grading to write.  Today’s already had me stressed with the car, getting that goddamn new key and the shit with Jackie’s health insurance, which we worked out, and work drama.. my heart rate went up I felt, and I mean it really did so I just had a couple sips of that Zin, the old vine stuff from the winery.  And that helped a little.  Not having any more but I needed some kind of ease.  This morning after the car visit I went up the street to Matanzas.  No tasting, just a load of photography.  So centering that part of this small valley, with the lavender and the colors, Fall, the vines in rest and the wind playing with the leaves and me as one trying to just take their picture.  I’m in Zen mode now, trying to maintain it.  Think I need to write offsite.  Was in a grading mode but no longer.  I will have all these items graded and recorded before next Wednesday.  That’ll be easy, more than easy.. so, 12:39PM, my present time, I ask you: What do I do now?  Lunch?  Possibility.. but where?  A sandwich?  Safeway?  Cheap, budget friendly for the writer.. have to print some pages, now I feel sleepy, the problem with days off, you get lazy, sluggish and heavy, but I have no regrets about taking my days.  I more than deserve them.  And while at the car place I began to feel the stress sink in, about writing, making a living as a writer, becoming a failed writer, having to work at the goddamn winery for the rest of my life, and being dragged around campus to campus as a bled adjunct.  So no.. photography saving me, which I never thought would happen, well in this morning’s session anyway.  It was the red leaves that dominated me.  They stopped my gentle trot about that one row.  “Go slow,” they suggested, not getting too firm or forceful.  It was a conversation between the Art itself and one admiring it, trying comically to capture its modality, somehow, and for some reason.  The Artist doesn’t know.

IMG_0901

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Scanning

A punchdown from a previous harvest, possibly '12.....

A punchdown from a previous harvest, possibly ’12…..

Classes over and I’m going through old writings.  About to send McSweeney’s what I wrote yesterday as well as an old friend, Andrea, who also writes great narrative pieces as she has more life experience than most her age.  Most my age.  Both sessions this morning went well, probably from my nearly excess preparation.  And Hemingway has always done that for me; motivate, antagonize and teach.  Watching the David Sedaris interviews and reading he did at ‘The Village Voice’ showed me possibly new routes for my writing.  I’m always learning and I’ve never denied that– in fact that’s one of the character traits of Mike Madigan that I most admire, really.  Starting to get a bit hungry, Alice ordered me to pack snackage for Self, and I obeyed.  Glad I did.  The Special K with strawberry bits appeals at the moment, but I have to see if any students show.  Bet I can answer that for myself.

Had a talk at the end of the 11AM section with ‘I’, I’ll call him.  He wanted to toss around some ideas for the thousand word Hem response and I offered my insight, what I could and how I felt about certain topics.  I then asked him where he was transferring, he told me he was 19 and that he didn’t do well his first semester here at Mendo.  He also told me that his major had been changed from Econ to Comms (Communications), and that he might transfer to Long Beach or.. what was it.. I think UC Irvine, maybe.  Either way he told me that he wanted a job like mine, that he could tell how passionate I was about teaching and about literature and my students and he wanted exactly the same thing.  I felt ashamed and unworthy as I haven’t really felt so about my campuses of late, especially Mendocino.  But I was gracious and nodded and thanked him.  ‘I’ is a strong student, always vocal and eager to share ideas, which is acutely why it didn’t shock me when he said he wanted to get into, possibly, sports recruiting or sports journalism or broadcasting.  I envy that he’s in the age arena where no decision need be hastily made.  I’m losing what I have left of any whimming, at 35.

About to send Andrea my piece.  Hope she likes it.  And I think I’ll send it to McS’ right after.  Tomorrow, more grading.  Have to get more done than I did yesterday.  Scanning other priorities in this writer’s wheelhouse– hate that term.  So what do I have?  Nothing now.  I’m simplifying everything.  Even my money handling, and my coffee buying habits.  This morning, only a grande medium roast.  I think the final tag was like $2.10 if I remember right.  But whatever, I’m stable as a writer, and further centered after yesterday, especially yesterday’s 10-miler.  So only joy and furtherance.

2:36, and in the conference room here in Emeritus.  About to have one of those cold Starbucks coffee drinks you can get in that cafeteria café here.  And then, my interest leaves me, for the day.  I don’t know why, but I’m robbed of propellant, the inner.  C’mon, I tell myself, just two more classes.  Then I settle down.  I think it’s the election results bringing me down, the Republicans taking everything but the napkins, and the pens at the voting booths, and the crumbs from lobby cookies.  But that’s democracy.  I did what I could, I voted.

Going to send yesterday’s thousand-worder to a magazine called Anobium.  See how that turns out– but I was thinking coming down here from Ukiah, that I should only submit to mags that pay, wine or literature, or contemporary, whatever.. so that starts after this submission…

Have to review notes for class, see if there’s any Hemingway quotes I forgot to include in prep..  Took a hug swig of this coffee thing and I already experience shock.  Love.  Love it!  Tomorrow more than likely just a wee run.  Nothing major, and then the rest of that Zin, 2012, I opened last night.  More focus on WINE!  Maybe open a second bottle, just something to taste.  Like what.  Don’t know.  Get further into wine.. that is your BEAT.. politics is your drug, guilty pleasure.  And right now the politics drive me to sip more wine, more and more, more WINE!

4:54.  Eating a blueberry muffin, having a coffee, a hot Sumatra blend from the library’s café.  Stressing over marketing my writing.  Sent yesterday’s piece to Anobium or whatever it’s called, but I need to see money from this practice of mine– this all-consuming passion of mine, this religion of mine.  I have to, now!  I won’t give up, that’s not what I’m saying, but I need the blog, the writings in and on this log to get me out of the winery, out of the working world where I’m dependent on a ‘Them’ for a paycheck.  No.. that’s not living.. that’s just the purest most expected of deaths.  So I’ll target publications– first on such a list of hits: The New Yorker, which I’ve already sent a couple pieces, and the NYT.. but I’m sure they get TONS of submissions, and I mean several tons of letters and stories and whatever–

My muffin, nearly dead.  One more class to go, and there I go.. now I’m thinking about whoso, but I can’t spend the money and that goes against my centralizing philosophy, it does so I have to re-adjust.  And in such.. I’ll post the contributing writers’ works on bottledaux, my blog.. and more images.. that’s okay.. if it pays I don’t give a shit.  So yes there’s a concession.  And this isn’t a wine blog!  It’s a writer’s blog, and yes he likes wine.  A lot.

Every so often I’ll think of Grandma, and remember what she said: “It’s YOUR life…you have YOUR choice.” And in everything being mine and up to me, such onus and ownership, I decide to go a different route.  Again seeking safety in this journal and being lethally selective with where I send my pages…  And I don’t know where I was going with that, just that I’m changing, and I might even say maturing but let’s see how much of this new scope I actually enact and practice and roll with.

Muffin gone, now only coffee, and it’s much more pleasant now that it doesn’t carry hell’s temperature.  Why does coffee always have to be that hot?  Is that enjoyable to some?  Who, crazy people?  Anyway, I look at the time, 5:04PM, right next to the battery indicator, which has me at 26%.  Have to throw away this frail little white bag the muffin came in.  Wasn’t bad, but I didn’t see a single goddamn blueberry!  After all I’ve done for the students of this college, this is the thanks I get?

Thinking of wine, more wine, but no wine tonight.. rest of Zin and a surprise bottle, a surprise bottle for ME, tomorrow night.

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1NOV, another thought.

Something I have to follow, but what?  Find something to follow, today, something, and not yourself as a story, you’ve been doing that too long.  Jeff, the Palooza owner, certainly a candidate, but consider something else.. like what?  UGH.  Maybe.. a winemaker.  Yes.  My sister.  But could I be impartial?  Sure I could.  We’ve always had a bit of a rivalry.  Friendly, yes, but it’s there.  Some don’t want to talk about it, but it’s in the pool, in the air, on all columns of any building we’re concurrently in.  That’s what makes Katie, my sister, such an Artist.  Not just the brilliant wine she produces, but her undervoiced competitive voraciousness.  As far as I gather, she’s untouched and unreachable in a flurry of regards.  She, my little baby sister, a candidate.

I have to be interested in someone to follow them, and I mean much more than interested like I find something, a story, interesting, or some coincidence slightly capturing.  I need to be short of enamored, or taken.  I’ll be looking today, looking everywhere.  And for lunch…?

IDEA: stop at St. Francis, buy some of Katie’s bottles, but it’s hard to tell which are truly hers.. I’ll do some investigation or ask gentle questions, they’ll never know what I’m doing.  They’ll just think, “oh how cute, Mike’s here tasting, asking questions about his sister..” Or just, “Oh it’s Mike Madigan.” I prefer latter.

6:46AM, what a morning.  This HST interview is fascinating, and motivating.  I love his statement: “This was my ticket to ride, my ticket to get out of that damn place.” How I feel with the winery and adjuncting.  And I will get out.  I’ll show that mammering horn-beast full-timer at Mendocino what’s in my pen.  Again I’ll say, what a morning.  So awake that I’m alarmed, really.  I’ve pleasantly alerted myself and no I’m not just rambling at the moment even though it may seem like that’s what I’m doing okay maybe a little bit– the day, not even open, book unread.  No sign of sun.  Fall, confusing everyone, everything.  No birds yet.  Alice’s alarm goes, time for her early run as she said.  Good for her.  She deserves her sprints around Bennett Valley, whatever time she chooses.  She’s a hard worker, educator, obsessed nearly.  She needs her time, my wife, a break indeed.

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10/30 journal excerpt…

…maybe I shouldn’t be so judgmental or presupposing.  Maybe he owns his own business, contracts this work and does quite well.  I don’t have for– that’s at the peak, the highest and most atmospheric of my wish list.  So cheers to this man carrying that plastic can.  If that is in fact the story with him.

8:57, and I agree with my pace this morning.  About to head to the small postoffice and mail Dav’s materials, finally.  Idea for short: teacher that thinks of retiring after hearing back from an education journal, asking him to speak at a school near its office.  He accepts the invitation, speaks, then is asked to consult at that school and others nearby.  He doesn’t but wishes he would have.  Writes several lectures and talks to be given to his high school teaching colleagues.  First, at a meeting.  Average reception.. second, typed and printed and put into mailboxes.. then…  not sure where it goes from there.  Just something I’m thinking of.  Staying in journal for now.

Burrito done.  Weedblower right behind my car.  Annoying.  But I shouldn’t be writing here, truth told.  Time to mail Dav’s papers.  Where are they?…  Somewhere in that workbag of mine.  And that’s another part of teaching–or adjuncting–that I deplore, carrying that goddamn bag around.  No wonder my lower back hurts from time to time.  It’s not the running.  Now quiet.  No groundsmen around me.  Strangely I feel alone, ignored, left to my word warpings and idea slab.

9:21PM.  Just went outside to laundry room to see if clothes were ready, and no– boring, I know.  But rain is coming, and the run for tomorrow morning, around 4 or 4:15 is still on.  No wine tonight.  And no ice cream.  About to have 7UP as night’s cap.  Tomorrow night I’ll open a Lancaster, probably an SB.  More than likely will be raining while I run in the dark.  Never done so and only have one such early morning run under belt, so I have no idea what to expect maybe some odd sounds or other early runners, hope I see one or two, no way I’ll see three.  I’ll be charging phone tonight and ready for this run– nearly feel like I do the night before a race.  Honestly.  And when back in home, I’ll write, hopefully a couple hundred words in journal, maybe start a standalone from the notes I took today at Palooza.  Only had one beer, wrote at counter instead of my upstairs safehouse or office.  Need to bring Jeff a bottle of wine sometime, show him how much I appreciate his pervasive and steadfast hospitality.  Thought of starting a series of standalones rooted in that beer room, something like ‘The Palooza Pages’, or ‘Pub Sketches’, or.. ‘beer writes’.  Again, just playing with ideas at the moment.  whoso due tomorrow, basically, but I won’t make deadline.  Goddamnit!  I’ll finish editing on the night of Nov 1st, my writing retreat night, and bring to printer the next morning.  That’s what must be done for me to move on and out of wine industry grips.

7UP open.  Only taking a couple sips then I quit.  Don’t want to be in constant visit to the bathroom, so like I said, only a couple extractions.  My anterior caprice…

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10/29/14

Finished another standalone piece.  This one an article, an opinion piece on wine and tasting it.  No title, no edits as of yet, very rough.  Game 7 on right now and I just want to go home.  Should I dismiss the class, would that be wrong?  Looks like the Giants are up 2-0 in the second.  Want to leave but I can’t.  Goddamnit!  Ready for fourth class of the day, can’t wait till semester ends…

And the article I wrote, or just finished typing, was all handwritten this morning in that devilish Mendocino office.  All in the Comp Book.  Not sure if I’m running tomorrow.  Maybe just a calming 3 miles.  Bringing only my Comp Book with me to work, no laptop– no I can’t do that.  I’ll only bring my Comp Book to lunch, if I don’t go with Dwight.

5:43.. maybe I should ask the students what they want to do.. not sure there’s too many of them that care about baseball.  But I do.  And this is my only true team.  Okay, calm down…  Go to class.

10/30, 7:15AM, up with Jackie ready for day.  New writing approach: “groundhog rolls”.  Write only in journal then rise or appear for certain standalone project.  I don’t want too many pieces just floating around in this laptop or the boxes upstairs in the home office, an office I rarely use, but will this Saturday night on the writing retreat.  MY first cup of coffee, done, and Jackie’s had his breakfast and is mostly dressed, just no socks, sweater.  We’re on a roll so far, and hope the day’s progression in the tasting room conforms.  No running after work today but hopefully tomorrow at mother-in-law hour, 4-something.  It may be raining but I don’t care, I want a run that’s an adventure, one that’ll spook me slightly, have me more attentive, and into my stompings.  I do plan on tasting today a little and talking with who I can to get quotes on the ’14 vintage, see what type of collective character it’s propelling at the winemakers in their lab, in the tanks, or in barrel if it was situated straight to oak.

No dinner with Blair come Saturday.  I have to get my desk upstairs organized and the writings in some kind of order.  Pushing the release date of whoso as I won’t be able to print– oh wait, yes I can!  After I drop off Jackie, tomorrow!  So today’s priority is to edit that first issue, each line, and if there’s a couple mistakes, then so what.  IT’s my first issue– or OUR first issue, the other writers and I– and we’re out there now, for the world to read.  So, Saturday night I read my novel, ten pages at a time, and PRINT!  No new standalones, lest they be quit short and darted.  If I’m to be the journalist type, I must sequester my Self in the journal itself.  Hunter S. said ‘the crazy never die’, and I’m the foxiest of foxes now, with my journal and logging of all these details and characters and sounds, season shifts, grapes being made to wine, the wine I drink, sober or drunk [haven’t been drunk in a while, fortunately, or unfortunately, not sure how I’d write if drunk now], tired or caffeinated.  I need more coffee.  One more cup after this one.  To the day, writing away….

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