All on the adjunct desk with me. Woke this morning at 4:03 and couldn’t back into sleep slide. So I’m here, presently 5:44AM and I only want to write. Was thinking on the way over “What if I had more than just the two to teach today?” Would I be happier, or more content, or more fulfilled somehow with more teaching load? Or is now the Time when I seriously decide and decree that I’m only going to write and blog for my checks, or what I put into my account; what I use to pay for Jackie’s school, the COBRA and the mortgage and my cell phone and gas and….. I can’t now, but that’s where I’m headed. That’s Wellness for me– to be completely Literarily free. Have no idea what I’m doing with the 1A this morning, nor the 1B (but I can plan them when back home). Walked up the stairs thinking about this adjunct life and where it can go and do I even want it to “go” anywhere? Not so much, but I’ll use it, and I’d rather be in the classroom than anywhere in the wine world, having to pour full-time– and I’m not judging those doing so, I’ve done so. If you remember the recent estate that after over 2.5 years or hard work and following orders and doing I don’t know how much social media nonsense for free, executed me as they thought I was unhappy, and my sales weren’t what they wanted them to be with their new budget and– It doesn’t matter. I’m living past those days but I always reflect on them and still find it hard to believe that I don’t have to go there anymore; I don’t have to sit through another of those nonsensical morning meetings where we go over so much that is repeated, condescending, and obvious. A truly moronic wheel; the tasting room manager voicing elements I couldn’t care less about, the clownish and floppy wine club manager giving us information that’s about as valuable as spent tire treads, then the hospitality hippos spending the only breaths they can spend to tell us what’s on a schedule we could just as well look at, before they retire to their cozy overheated offices to zone through the internet till 5, or whenever they decide to leave. So here I am in the adjunct office, planning, and thinking of the day and this coffee, I’m not looking at my phone, and the keys symbolize what I’ll again be doing; flying, freeway, from Santa Rosa to wherever. Each campus is material and each is a story, and I find comfort knowing that I’m getting from it what I wish, using it for the writing. I want to better know the pains of and adjunct, why they’re so angry, and why they don’t just leave ‘the profession’.
Uncle Ross, thoughts of his abominable ebbing, keeping from me the sleep I need. I don’t mind, at all, I just think of him and Dad and the life I have to life, that I have to make for my son and I know that the wine world nor the adjunct world at least immediately will give it to me. The adjunct life is breathing into me a newly electric Life– now I’m sensible and still quite pugilistic. Looking at the clock and it’s still not 6.. 5:58, now ‘9’ precisely. Adjunct.. adjunct….. A fancy word for part-time, but I won’t get devoured by that, I won’t be one of the ever-grieving part-time instructors. I’m fighting, I’m journaling, I’m writing, getting the story of what we do and what we do is expected; it’s dismissed as only part of the whole. My Uncle Ross, starting his own plumbing/contracting business, never having to answer to a higher-up, never having to follow.. he set his own rules, provided for his family, was proud and with reason; I think of him and I think of strength, and I see what his children, my cousins Daniel and Matt, are saying and everything aligns with notions of strength, persistence, and love. I have to keep moving, I can’t stop with the pages even for a minute, this all tells me, and like I noted yesterday in my notes for the Massamen novel, while at work at the beginning of day, behind counter, I need to build; I need to finish my construction project, the novel, and let it take me away from all this. Krystal will be in the body of the work but not the focus, I can’t write about winemaking life truthfully and with stark believability like my sister could, but I can garnish the piece with what I know, and infuse Katie’s/Krystal’s character as a means of lamenting and documenting such admiration.
Think I heard the other adjunct enter the other shared office, just on the other side to this wall, left. Why don’t the full-timers show at this hour? Why are they lining up to teach 7AM 1A’s like us? I was talking to another adjunct, the other day, a guy I work with at the winery, also Mike, instructing Math and Stats at Mendo. He just landed a FT position at a JC in Butte County, but before revealing so he told me about how in meetings the full-timers would always joke about the adjuncts and their grievances and how ‘oh they’ll do it’, and never asked for their input on matters of curriculum, or rubric, or student attrition, or anything. They, these adjuncts, weren’t in the room to the other ‘they’, those measling full-timers.
Put keys in backpack. Don’t know, just didn’t want to look at them anymore. Wrote some more notes for class.. have to update CV for Solano app, forgot to do that the other night, but I had too much wine anyway (night I visited Mom and Dad, the night I wrote soon as I got home, to more wine, but haven’t yet posted those words..). Mom told me to “forget Mendocino”, and I think she’s right, but I need a story, and if ‘J’, my contact there, a more than empathetic FT-er to an adjunct, hasn’t told me what the story is yet for Summer, or Fall. And maybe I should answer the email the SSU Dept Chair sent me, applying for their pool.. what could it hurt? Walking around campus the other day made me think of a lot, roaming around that third floor of Stevenson, then back out to the parking lot, where I used to park when I lived in Colombard, Senior Year. Wow.. that was ’00/’01.. the Time, nowhere to be found. Just gone… I’m seeing something in all this, the remembering and the walk through SSU, being here this morning, the importance of a morning, Uncle Ross, all of it.. Dad.. Mom.. the other night… the wine, me wanting to run today after 1B but more than likely I’ll take a nap but not if I have the momentum I do now… ‘Forced Avarice’, still 360 pages to edit and that’s the only fucking thing from keeping me from releasing that book! What, but what.. WHAT? I’m not tired, I realize. Not at all. Not even a bit, a little bit, the littlest of little bitable bits. No, I’m here and fiery and, as I earlier noted, pugilistic. And what’s the story about? That’s what I’ll ask the students this morning of their writing, the 3 pages typed they brought to share and lightly workshop, and just play with in class.
6:18, and I’m sure all adjuncts do this, too: count the minutes left to themselves before class, before they have to work and talk to students that aren’t at all interested, then some that are, but they feel guilty calling on the same bodies every session. But what else are we to do? Have to print a role sheet… Have to find a word for the day, which I think I already have, maybe.. then a quote– Lights turned off, not enough motion from the writer. My types don’t count? “Ugh,” I say with subversive audibility, then sip the coffee, look at phone but only for a sec. Coffee sip again….. Seeing more again. But I have to hold for the time, just put, in place, me, though it’s hard. Today could be that day I’ve been waiting for, that stupefyingly wondrous day I’ve been hoping for, since the days I was at ‘the box’, with that headset around my temples. Life.. examined.. logged.. not sure I’m looking for answers. Not sure what specifically I’m looking for. I just write. Maybe something’s looking for me. Maybe ‘It’ finds me today.
Did my check get deposited, from the winery? Afraid to look. This writing has to pay, soon.. more classes, more material….. Go DEEPER into the adjunct character. Undercover.. spy.. journalist.. diarist.. novelist.. All.