Posts Tagged With: Journal

I should just

start an adjunct log, for other adjuncts– start a real movement, maybe I’ll then get “picked up”.  Yeah?  Or just detail my details of my barely detailed day.  Right now, I’m in the cell, the shared office they let us adjuncts use.  How generous.  And yes, I wonder what it’s like to have one of those rooms, those offices to myself.  But I’ll just keep thinking.  Had to take a break from a stack of papers ’cause the writing hurt me so horribly– ears eyes mind and stomach.  But I can’t blame the students for the ill-prescriptions of high school.  And I won’t let this cage, this cell, this shared office I’m in drive me any madder.  We adjuncts forage, but only from letting them, letting them do this to us, and letting US do this to us.  What if I said ‘no more’, that I would only write about the adjunct life, that I don’t want to do it anymore and that I want to write about it to be a voice for us, the ones who aren’t complacent and distant and self-anointed in our cozy little corners, decorated to expose our biases and agendas and be a selfish advertisement; and so many of them are like that– when you’re full-time you sigh, you exhale and you lay down, relax, and if students don’t like your ways and methods and ideas (if they offer any innovative ones, anymore in their career, or even teach, speak with sincerity and connection), then who cares.  You’re full-time.  And if you’re tenured, then fuck the world!  What can it do?  You could light the quad on fire and they can barely engage you in discussion or ask why you did it.  I have too much shape and color for such a fluff cloud.  I’ll stay an adjunct FOR the adjuncts.  For my students.  And if I’m ever full-time, then I’ll still work for them; offer to be voice for them, for us, even if I’m one, technically, of THEM.


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Here at winery and ready somewhat– just from a haircut and with this weather all I want to do is relax before the run tomorrow. Pace self, stress about nothing, nothing– and laugh at those taking any of this seriously. Watch how I react to–

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10/1/14 journal excerpt…

Taking my time with the Spring ’14 adds to the novel.  Don’t want to rush anything.  classes this morning.. eh.  Not as lively as I would have hoped.  Just ran into the FT-er that’ll be evaluating me.  He’s teaching 8 classes this term after picking up some sections from another FT-er who went out on disability.  EIGHT.  Would I rather do that kind of load or work in the industry longer?  Eh…

My mind is blocking me from whoso, and I don’t know why, it’s only letting me write freely in this journal.– Tried working on the lit mag of mine, but am having spacing issues with the computer.  I hate technology.  Why do I want to do this stupid lit mag anyway, why not stick to novels, I mean that’s what I really want to write anyway, I want to be known as a novelist, one with novelizing ideas and notions and entertainments.  My story, someone just wanting to teach, talk about literature, write about it– the classroom, the students of course, and all involved.. but right now this fucking device is holding me back.. I have to calm, and I need more coffee, I’ll pick some up on the way to campus.  Let me try and fool with this program again…  Okay I think I fixed it, I think, now I need to contribute more material.. and I need to release it, sell for $5 a pop, 20pp.  That’s fair, right?  I should contact my writing friend, Amber, as she said in one of her flawlessly sword-sharp letters that she had material to contribute.. now no more second-guessing Self, Mike!  Just write and release!  Took some notes in class for a piece for whoso, but I haven’t decided what to do with it yet.  12:55, I’ll give mySelf a couple more minutes to write.  15 total.  Obviously no students will be coming to this office hour, which saddens me– one thing, or aspect that separates me as a teacher is that I’m ALWAYS here, and always in constant communication with them, or I try.

1:07, leaving in 3.. have to stop by the mail room really quick, and I mean quick.. need to get on the Road, get something in my stomach and head to base campus, or ‘the mainland’ as I used to call it.  The drive this morning, still thinking about it– the lack of light then sudden sun voice.  And the jazz and how it paired with the luminosity of those earliest hours.. A colleague just printed the SSU cred info after I asked her a question about teaching at the high school level with a master’s.. she mentioned subbing and that’s she done that, and the record you can build by doing so, just as Alice did at the grammar school level.  I see my plan thickening, and intensifying in order and voice.  All will soon change for me, my topic: teaching, and how I develop the story and let myself develop with it.

EIGHT classes–  I wouldn’t survive, or maybe I would.  I’ve done seven before, in Fall 2007.. what’s one more?

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And before you ask, yes I remember where I was.  But where I am now, watching a Mickey Mouse show with little Kerouac.  Ms. Alice timed perfectly this morning so I could get our coffees ahead of schedule, so I’m properly caffeinated, ready for day for the most part.  And it happened again last night/early this morning: that inner narrative, about the winery and the wine industry and what my functionality is in IT.  Posted to teaching blog, and I will do nothing during today’s lunch but work.  I’ll eat what Alice packed for me before my scheduled time.  And I’ll write for the novel, bring ‘Road’ with me as well as my teaching Comp Book.  Wish I were in the library.  Wonder what it’s like in there in early morning hours opposed to my usual visits, P.M.

7:42AM.  Should leave in less than ten.  See how Jackie feels about that…  “Jackie we have to go soon,” I said.

“No, five minutes.” He threw back.

Still some coffee left.  Have to start my word count log, the newest that is.  Well as my running log (written).  Don’t want to rely on some device, and that’s not writing, I want all written, ALL.  Just remembered, though, it’s set to be hot today, brutally so, possibly with three digits.  IF that’s the case, then my writing in the park plans may be perished.

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from journal

9/6/14–  Up and I feel better than yester’ that’s for sure.  I’m moving faster as I type and I’m engaging with little Jack.  Could use more sleep but I can only wish so much.  Hoping today isn’t too crazy, I really don’t need that.    Having trouble thinking with Jackie’s cartoon on, but I smile, as he’s more content that I usually am.  The wine from yesterday, not moving me in any way and I wanted it to so badly, for the short stories or vignettes or scenes I have envisioned for Crystal’s character.  The tasting yesterday morning put me in such mood, tasting 12 wines before 10:30, although I didn’t let one touch my tongue or lips or “palate”.  Need a sip of coffee, and stay on my inked toes with observations today; group yesterday, 4, two from NC and the other from New Orleans–  NO!  One couple from GA and the other from ‘Orleans.  So nice, so eager to not so much learn as experience.  And that’s all it should be about, experience.  I guess, if I heard right, the wines we were tasting were pulled to pour for some bigshot critic or something– people were calling him ‘a writer’ to which I just laughed and how can I not if he’s only known for listing descriptors about wine and assigning some insignificantly subjective score.  Makes my head hurt so I stop with the entertainment..

Giving the park another try today, so I’ll eat before going.  I’ll walk away from the bench with one standalone, a piece of micro-fiction, something to toss into a literary magazine somewhere or maybe use for the novel, for my character who has a fascination with the short story and perhaps playing the short story circuit but only wants to be a novelist, or write books, full-length books, ones to be read and reacted to and held, he wants people to hold them and think “I can’t wait to get home and read this.” That park, just what writers use to pull themselves from some lull, or any stall.

Haven’t touched the old entries yet.  And that has to stop.  Have to charge this laptop so I have enough bite to follow through with ideas during those 30 minutes…

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Nothing slipshod. All measured. Take lunch early. Flex your pages’ intensity and gibbosity. I don’t care what I encounter today, how lovely or writhen, I will write it down. I’m a journalist, a spy dans ce jour… and always. New journalism, all panegyric toward what surrounds me. The park on Warm Springs, my meditation plank. I feel rident this morning, renewed. I’m close to the Road… Less than 48 hours near. The campus in my vision:
What if I had nothing? What would you do? How would you make this class your own? Would you have statements, questions? Would you introduce yourself to the characters/colleagues around you?
Write your initial reactions– and only offer sentences that antagonize reaction, discussion– stay composed…


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Entered a page in the new Comp Book.  And I’m tired, sipping the 7UP I bought at the store, just hours ago.  Overwhelmed already by all the work I have before me for the semester, but I’ll keep my life simplified, into one Composition Book.  This laptop, used less and less.  It has to be that way; simple, condensed, fluid, singular.  Feeling not at all pained by the 5 mile run, but more from Jackie’s 1st day of preschool.  How is it that my little Artist is here already?  He grows quicker than I can handle.  Need a cocktail, or something, a sip of this 7UP then one of the Stewart’s Root Beers I bought.  Tomorrow at lunch, going to the Warm Springs park for writing, collection.  And only bringing this Comp Book, layering myself in nothing I have to, but only want to.  tomorrow’s theme, or major subtext note: exploration, true boldly honest exploration.

As I read further into Kerouac’s journals, I find he had the same struggles with the Craft that I do.  Not sure if that has meaning or just something I’m looking for anyway seeing’s how much I love his work, but it’s something I’m here noting.  Becoming renascent in a way I’ve never been, at least in my stepping, what I see, feel.  Going to alter me tomorrow, in some way, and write it all in my little notebook– so I have that one, this new Comp Book, and “Front”, the notebook I took from campus, from the English Dept’s mailroom, me writing “FRONT” on what I believe to be the front side.  Not sure, that’s why I wrote it, so I’d always know how to open.  Somewhere in there’s the key to Road– well that and all the old blog entries.  I hate the blog but then I love it.  We’re richly and tastefully dysfunctional.  We’re to be admired.  Our mutual abuse is like thrown seduction, a loud tryst with unavoidable light and shape and beat.

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12:23; In the new classroom, here in Mendocino.  Already hot outside, and was forced from my quiet spot in the café, if that’s what it’s called, by students eating, laughing, talking, high volume.  It’s fine, I’m new.. already making dent in the syllabus draft.  Tonight I’ll be planning everything out.. was given a very easy-rhythm’d and informative tour by a lady, Mary, from the Office of Instr.  Making a checklist of things to do, get done before the 18th.. have to hand office hours form into HR, then finish work on syllabus– oh, get course catalogue and sched from bookstore.  Ran into fellow adjunct, or former adj’ I should say, Ginnie, who’s now FT here at MC.  Need to tighten my practices in teaching, writing, get free from where I am when not in classroom.  Through much of my checklist.  The drive up here, filling me with ideas for the semester.  I can only win with these classes, and what I’m planning to write, what I’m planning to share with the students.  I’m not going to force mySelf to finish the syllabus here, now, in this room.  I simply wanted a healthy jump, which I do indeed now have.  I can only win.

Write.  Everything.  Down.  Everything.  Even the slightest most seemingly minute thought while driving– but I can’t write while driving, and I won’t do the voice recording with my phone.  If I remember it when I reach the MC parking lot, the it gets jotted.  But I will leave nothing unscribbled.  Took me just slightly over an hour to get here, from hwy 101, just after the 12 merge.  My first class begins at 9:30, so I’ll leave at 7, precisely.  I have to.  I’ll try and prep as much as I can the prior night, but I will leave earlier than need as 1, I drive slow; 2, I need time to collect Self prior to lecture, and 3, I want to be in the room before the students– that’s always been emphasized, for me as a teacher.

Want to go for a run, but I’m afraid it may already be too hot.  And I have grading to do, for Summer.  Going to be a late night, I think.  Will tell Alice not to wait for her writing husband, as I need this semester to be the one that frees me from the bloody clock.  Was going to stop at SRJC on the way back, but am now thinking that’s not needed.  Love the feel of this room; the smaller gray square desks, the blue thin carpeting with swirling black lines and yellow-green subtle intricacies traversing the black entanglements; higher ceiling, two windows that look out at trees, a quaint courtyard.  And the drive up here, again, not rural but carvingly removed; like I’m in a distant part of one of the 4 corner states.  I only thought on the drive, how I was on MY clock, thinking my thoughts and writing my own story, finally.  Hope hasn’t been restored, it’s been trumped.  I’m free, intrinsically, definitively.  THIS, is Artistry.

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Tomorrow, Santa Barbara.  And I may have an opportunity at Sonoma State.  Not sure yet.  Will send my materials by way of email, tomorrow, before I leave, while Alice is on her run.  My first Kerouac book came in the mail today, a collection of his letters.  Didn’t know I bought a used book, once in a library, somewhere, can’t remember where.  I will write the whole time in SB, if not tangibly then mentally.  Bringing my Lagunitas Ale into living room with me; not breaking law of no drinking, anything, on the new couch.  Promised Ms. Alice and I will obey…  The ocean, the sand, that view from our Room down there, just waiting for me.  What can I do but be patient.  I hate that.  HATE it.  The power went out on campus today, interrupting a poetry writing activity, right after we began.  I urged the students to write through it, and they did, after two, both vets, walked around the building, outside, to make sure all was okay– their impulse, prompted by a rumble, heard by everyone in class.  But we wrote on, past it.  It was interesting.

I try to relax, but I stress thinking about the fact I only have, basically– no, less than– 48 hours in SB.  I shouldn’t do that.  Why am  I doing that?  Just enjoy.  Have a run, get one page into the book, and enjoy.  And just because you’re not physically writing doesn’t mean you’re NOT writing.  You are.  Living IS writing, I tell myself.  And my writer friends would agree.  Should sent one of them a note tonight.  I will.  But I doubt she’ll return.  She’s free, flying, a flight attendant, attending flights and her flights attend to her, her pages, her vignettes as she recently told me she’s scribbling.

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Sipping Pinot, the one my friend Ed gave me a couple years ago, or maybe early ’13.  Not sure.  It’s a Pinot; earthy, light fruit, a tad vegetal.  But with a refinement I haven’t encountered before.  9:33p, and little Kerouac very much in his little dreams.  Takeout from up the street, Legends, and I elected my usual, the mushroom/swiss burger with fries.  Not the best pairing with the burger, but that wasn’t my aim, anyway.  And now, I’m truly tired, ready for bed, but I want to research the authors I’ll be using for Fall.. no time.  Can only think, and as I research Kerouac, watch that Big Sur movie, over and over, I understand that the best act I can tell is inaction, just taking it all into character.  So I will, without over-thought.

Tomorrow, I hope something interesting happens, anything, some story, some development.  I don’t know.. I just want something, for the story, so I can be with them.. Scott, Glenn, Bob, Crystal, Dav…  But I can only hope, write, write while I hope and hope while writing.. somewhat deconstructive and destructive.  But that’s Art, strange, and liquified, the more Pinot I sip.  Ed, once a clock-puncher now a wine-wielder.  How?  And why can’t I transcend and time-bend?  I’m not with talent like he.. and he has strategy.  I’m just a fucking writer…

Alice’s shows violate my auditory, like bees, or something that stings, sneaking through screens.  I’m hurt, disrupted, I hate the TV, and anything on it, except for Nat Geo docs.  I can’t wait for my marathon, Santa Cruz, May 2015.

And the Pinot’s gone, thank the good of ness.  What if I could sneak in 3 miles tomorrow morning, or even 2?  I’ll see, and then have more coffee.  And if those devils are reading this, they’re probably laughing, or scratching their heads, ‘cause Literature, true Writing, hurts, as it makes them think, and thinking isn’t for everyone, especially Them.


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