6:42pm.  Of course now the laptop wants to cooperate, after I vented all over the social and bloody space and place about it.  This Rhône blend talking to me as most don’t.  Maybe ‘cause it’s from Monterey and I one day want to secure a dwelling of any size there by the beach.  Pairing the blend—composition of which I have no clue—with Sun Chips, I think sour cream and onion ode.  Yes?  Lifting up bag on side, learning I opened upside-down… and no.  French Onion.  Either way, nice harmony between the two bodies.

French Onion… have I had this before?  Tomorrow to Healdsburg to get a haircut then maybe a little tasting.  Want to put more, more into this, more… this blogging effort and step, how people see me as a blogger.  I’m no longer concerned with books, or at least not now.  It’s about the wine, this story.  This journal.  This ME project.  Who is Mike Madigan and what the fuck does he want?  About to turn 40… ran 9 miles yesterday on tread which he can still feel.  Today the company meeting hearing CEO talk and more than forwarded and fiery from his humility and knowledge, his containment, speak.

I see my office.  Right there.  Healdsburg Square.

Learning from Now that I need to calm down.  Not be so pressuring of self, Mike’s character.  Sun nearly all the way in its down.  Will go on patio and drink the rest of this blend.  Pour Self more.  Tomorrow in Healdsburg.  Where do I go, taste?

Feel like bed’s an option now.  Right now.  Go upstairs, make coffee for morning first, and bed in bed.  Sleep.  The wine doesn’t communicate much to me right now so what’s the point in staying up hoping it gives me some vision… some business counsel.  That’s what I want.. some free counsel for business.  Okay, a side of me says, I’m right here.

What do I do now?

What you’re doing right now.


Amplify, intensity, diversify.

I’ve heard that before from this voice and I follow it, or try.  I’m everywhere in my head after a longer than long week.

Then the red takes a shift.  Becomes more than wine.  Starts spelling certain spells and singing to me in odd octaves, saying that the day has taught me something.  What, it demand.  I try to explain but just take another sip, look left at the couch where I’ll be with babies in the morning, then think of them tonight going to bed, my daughter being silly and bragging about her new bed, and how no one can sit on it but her.

What wines do people want?  I’ve all but given up on wine as a business, saying now I want to be a professional consumer, whatever that is.  Can I start my own store?  Open one. Then another.. then another.  I don’t know.  I’ll play with the idea, but cautiously.

Old videos from my winemaking days, now having me thinking of other approaches.  Need this scattered ness to stop.  Write about everything and have that be your one thing.  Yeah, that could be a plan, right?

Laptop again giving me grief.

So I open the bottle of Monterey Grenache I bought at Bottle Barn a bit ago. Not letting it sour or soil the soul of this sequence of time I have to Self. First sip, and I’m spoken to by subtlety’s illustrative principles.

It’s still not speaking to me, doing what it’s supposed to do. This it. An it. Not capitalizing, not surrounding in any quote marks, even the singular. It’s a thing. A monster. A devil. Guess I have to buy a new laptop.

Throwing myself into this project.  What project?  What is it meant to accomplish I’m not sure but I have something new here, a book, maybe.  Again this morning I see a day ahead of me, one to do something and record everything.  But enough promising, enough cyclical prose, this cold coffee I made last night orders and loudly notes.  This house, like a parallel plain with no kids. The quiet is unnerving, really.  I stay working, productive, typing.  No wine to speak of last night and I’m quite glad if you should know.  Was too tired, too drained from day and wasn’t in any kind of oeno-analytic act or mood, desire.  Not at all.  Building my collection again.  Becoming a “professional consumer” as I told my friend yesterday at lunch.  What the hell is that.  I don’t know.  But it sounds cool.  Sounds like a job I’d want, could designate to self.  Couldn’t I?  Of course.  Where do I start.  One bottle.  When and where do I get it.  How ‘bout Oliver’s on way home.  Done.  Agreed.  Get two.  One for immediate consumption or at least near, proximal drinking and the other for never.  Drink it when you’re fucking 70 or something.  Forget about it.  The project becomes wine-burdened as I knew it would.  It had to.  People call me all kinds of wine names and distinguish as some wine-whatever.  I’m none of that.  I don’t want any of that.  I’m a recorder, recording everything, about wine and all else.  The day in front of me will feed me ideas for this professional consumer curiosity and who knows what else.  Wine leads, I write alongside not following but blindly in tow.  What am I after tonight… Pinot?  Cab?  Have too much of that with regular shelf-pull.  How about a Zin, or a Rhône blend, or a….

Me projected into a project…

Woke at 4am to run and I did, and here I am on campus sipping coffee I took to-go from office.  today, more than eventful and full of story.  One of which training a new hire for Sonic and preparing for a talk I’ll give tomorrow or sales approaches and general narrative of the company.  I feel my business impact and career building.  I see it.  And I excite but also temper my expectations of self, and what to demand of self.  Writing everything on paper today, not taking the literary lunch I wanted to or professed in the Sonic Journal that I would.  I went to Texanita, treated self to a lunch I saw as deserved, where later a friend by the Story’s construction and orchestration walked in, and we talked about business and business ideas, what to do next, and how to be involved in wine’s world and business tangibility but on our terms.

The coffee next to me, getting cold.  I will finish it, only to give this writer enough energy to get through a short meeting with English 1A where I’ll pass back some papers, give a HW assignment, one light and not too strenuous or cruel, then talk a bit if needed, then go somewhere for a glass of wine to celebrate the end to this 9th week of the semester.  The single digit weeks are done.  DONE.  Time flies by me with more hunger and rapidly, cruelty than I can postulate, here profess.  Maybe it’s not cruelty.  No, it’s not. Time is just doing its job, as I am now here on laptop finally recounting my day and thinking of all the coffee I drank, all the tasks I completed and all the notes I took from this morning when I had “open mic” with T to where I was at desk thinking of ideas to tomorrow pose.

22 more minutes budgeted to write in this laptop journal.  Thinking I need a new laptop.  Yes already.  Bought this right after Emma was born.  That’s nearly three years.  Why not get a new one.  Business expense for my #mikemcreate business as well as the #professormikey project.  Wait, ‘pm’ isn’t a project.  But what if I started something called “the #professormikey project”?  Why not.  Okay.. added to list.  First order, the remaining weeks in this semester.  9 more weeks,  I guess you could say.

Tonight…. Urge students to have a ‘ME’ project.  Extending from the idea that I’ve shared with hem and at Sonic, in business, that there’s magic in the meta.  Always in what you already have, what’s right in front of you. 

Have Coltrane playing.  Part of this ME project.  What I’m doing while doing it.  Will get a bottle of wine from Whole Foods.  Something new.  Tonight I’m a wild wine writer, of some shape, shade, sort, sense.  The room I’m in quiet, no surprise.  For being up since 4 I’m surprisingly motioned.  But wait, it’s the coffee.  I can’t take credit.  Less than 15 left… no way I can take credit, not even a teaspoon’s worth.  Love this room, right now.  This song.  Next semester is where my sight goes.  One class.  What was it?  A 100 or 1A?  Doesn’t matter now.  I fixate and focus on me, here in this room, the song coming to its close, me writing and writing, thinking of my book.  When the fuck am I going to finish my book?  Any of them?  At least I’m writing.  At least I’m teaching…. Sharing ideas, more so.

12 or so minutes left.  Need time to post.  A blogger, me.  Maybe I don’t need a goddamn book.  Maybe that’s unnecessary pressure this writer puts on himself that I should just deject, reject, aside set.  Yeah do that.  Don’t want anymore coffee.  Or yes I do.  Tomorrow morning waking at same time not to run 9 miles as I this morning molded but to write.  Try and touch 3000 words before I see any sliver of any sun.  Need in office early be.  Start writing right when there, ready to present ideas, talk to colleagues, listen, build and grow and learn.  All of this at a tech company.  Still can’t believe it—  But now I see it differently.  A creative colony…. An expansive think tank if you would.  It’s not just a tech company.  Not at all.  No.  It’s… something different.  I don’t know.  Don’t want to wait my remaining minutes trying to categorize Sonic.  The office deserves more than a singular room, box, cookie-cutting category.

Approaching the 8-minutes-left steps.  Wine speaking to me, or maybe I’m just more drained than I before forecasted.  Wrote in notes for tonight’s meeting, DO NOT JAIL YOURSELF TO A CATEGORY, in the ME project.  Categories are excessively definition.  Definitely confining.  Using rest of time to write, I’ve decided in these final eight or whatever, how ever many minutes.  I deserve this.. this freewrite, this sensately rain of types and button pushes after this day that’s only as long as it’s been as I decided to wake at 4am, for the second time in two weeks.  I know 4am well, now, and knowing it better, thoroughly and as intimately as I can is a stark stride, aim, vision and conviction.

Leading myself to something, a new story, with aid of external elements and echoes but from my own command and composition.  Stomach quaking a bit, I ignore it.  I focus only on this room and the chairs in it, the books on the shelves, the business I’m operating and other business efforts I myself decide and fly.  Like a new vessel, ship or plane, transporting self to new shelves and books, pages, stories.  Budgeting time no more.  Now just writing, enjoying the story, this ME project.  All me.  Where I am in this day, this cold coffee and the Sonic Journal at right, me in chair thinking about wine and dinner….  Wake early again tomorrow.  Good.  I have to.  I should writer a book about 4am.  No, just blog it.. that’s sexier, right?  Is that my goal, have a ravishing and seductive style and rile to my writing?  I don’t know anymore.  I’m just enjoying myself, ME.

MY project.


As someone who obsesses over work,

and what work he has to do, what I have planned the next day and the remaining hours of this day, I am honestly with nothing.  But I make myself write.  One student tonight saying one of her goals is, was, is to wake at 2am to get ahead in her studies and I assume write a little as she does write poetry and write in short lines, short stanzas, pieces that span only a page.  And I say ‘only’ out of awe, that she does so much to a page in only a page’s pulse.

Was nearly too lazy to write anything tonight.  Told self, “Just a hundred words, per blog.” But I can’t hold self to that.  Should I do what this student plans on doing?  Should I set alarm for 2?  Isn’t that the time of the artist, the writer and poet?  Didn’t I read that somewhere?  On my lunch today grading papers and writing in the Sonic journal as this goddamn laptop didn’t want to let me use it.  Of course, now, I do push the buttons and have a note in my writing normalcy.

Finish the fucking book, I tell myself.  Like my son said tonight as I poised to make his bed with new sheets, “GET TO WORK.” I am.  I say the same to self.  

Sip the Barbera I popped last night. It, she, more calm.  Me the opposite of anything tranquil at the moment.  Working in the home office which isn’t as common as I’d love to tell you it is.  But, WORK.  Work.  What I write about.  Force self to write when I don’t want to.  I do write about wine, but that’s not my only onus and thought light.

Now, I’m like a train with this, these writing thoughts.  I, not failed.  Not failing in my aims.  I won’t allow that.  No one should.  Why would you.  You are here, once.  And I’m not addressing the fact one only lives once…. I’m speaking to myself and you, that where you are, right now, the opportunity and life invitation to bring a project to completion is singular.  You see it once.

You are a train, if you wish be.  Some unknown animal of fruition, bringing works to an offering stage.  There are only stops that persist acknowledged.  So acknowledge none of them.  I see so many of these speakers and motivational-who-be’s profess all this counsel but don’t consider the most apparent reality… the audience member has to decide.  They only elect to act if they bring themselves to movement.  Tonight I could have just as easily poured this red from El Dorado, sat on the floor of this home study, went on phone and scrolled through some photo pour.  No.  We decide to draw, paint new plausible for our Personhood.  Decide to move, be alive, mentally, alive, wildly alive in all movements of your steps and actuating saunter. 

What work does for and to the character is animated in divinely lucrative chant.  Dodge the task, never.  Distractions and suitable sanctions to project-dodge are terminal.  The panacea, always, is preemptive production.  Never, labor deduction. 


On break.

Got through small stack of papers.

This semester and I are now officially feuding. I will be sure there is not a single paper to evaluate.

All papers, graded when handed in.

My assault plan is to halt all before there is any assault, on either end.

Wake earlier. 4am, or face failure.

Sunday will be the grading day for me. Learning learning. More knowledge, more knowledge on knowledge itself.

Week 9…. oh week 9. Today’s lecture, on semester consideration. Noting your progress. I’m doing the exact.

I never thought a tech company would make me more a writer.  Make me love going to work so amiably and loudly.  Make me so vocal and ravenous with new project production, make me more a figure for personal branding, and branding, marketing creatively, more of ME and who I’ve always thought I was.  The work I do at the tech office is dimension and shape-shifting in a way I’ve never known or seen thought I’d be a part of.  I’m creatively present, a wild wine writer more so than I was prior.  “vino tech lit” I have written on a post-it at my desk, on those cubicle-esque walls.  But I’m in no cube.  No box like that Napa wine-pedaling office.  No, this is a the flavorful contrast dreamt before.  And now here.

Yesterday in street with one of the sales leads talking about destiny and where we are, what we do, and if something happened in way of some fortune found us, what we’d do.  We both expressed dreams and of course acquiring something we’ve always wanted be that go back to school and earn multiple doctorates or buy property somewhere, or just rent forever and travel, or something else.

Now on my only day off between both work weeks I compose self and compose here, writing freely thinking about starting a wine business of some kind.  Like what?  I don’t know.  This is the coffee talking.  Definitely the medium roast acting as my medium and meaning for me to finally finish a book.  Not just post tirelessly on this blog.  Travel… sipping something in my hotel room night before a talk on writing or writing about wine, business… something.  Just writing and see what happens.  More free than simply freewriting.  And why does this goddamn laptop want to make that two words, free and writing.  It’s one.  One unified and assembled effort and concert.  Every day very much part of my musical character.

Coffee cold and not that interesting anymore.  Usually don’t mind cold coffee.  After all nearly every night I make coffee and put the pint or mug in fridge as to have iced coffee in morning if I’m planning on writing early, which I always aim to do but rarely actualize.  Tomorrow, a run.  8 miles or maybe just see what I can do in an hour on the tread.  I don’t know.  I don’t know how to gain the most from this time to self.  Wife putting on hero coat and taking our two excessively energetic mini-beats.

Travel… Greece, Spain, France, Russia.  Write everywhere, run everywhere.  Changing habits, intensifying and diversifying certain facets to my story and character modes.  Dishwasher steaming, already done.  Haven’t done any of the chores vowed accomplished by time wife and Emma and little Kerouac return.  Papers to grade as well. Don’t want to think about.  Wont let self.  Rather just listen to music.  Hear the notes.  For all of us.  You, reader… this author.  WE, not merely the ‘I’.  Writing for both of us.  Thought this before, but not too much practice and maintenance of such habit.  That can change realizing in this sitting.

Never wrote so much.  And at a tech company, which seeing now is more a creative firm, a sizable thank tank or education and philosophy colony.  Partner in office showing me the proverbial possibilities of where we are, what we do, what the office’s circulation and respiration relay and rile, realize.  And now, just before 40.  What can anyone do but embrace what they have, use it, kinetically utilize each scenic ingredients.  Taking pause, meditative stall justified in this kitchen, smelling steam from done dishes. 

Work more than about the ‘I’ of anything.  More then inclusive, the aggregate, community and composition.  Story singing, then immediate reaction from one writing this, this writer seeing more in his surroundings and “job” which is anything but.  A life, a story new, making him more a writer and more a wine seer and verse molder than his months before.  His last day in wine’s industry and on some ineffective business model’s clock, 8/23.  Nearly 60 days out.  Seeing more.  Understanding.  People working around him, teaching, making more routes possible in multitudes never before forecasted.

Needing to return to me, I wonder what brought me here.  IS it wine’s laughable conception and abetting of professionalism and you being able to have any type of career there, or is it me understanding who I am.  Finally.  I don’t know.  I have to focus on me, the I of it all for just a minute.  Here in kitchen with wife and babies gone, and coffee colder than I want it to be and about to switch to sparkling water, counting down days and weeks till semester is done.  Setting aside two hours tonight, returning to papers and more of me in this final semester.

My business, my story, the story inclusive, everything eclipsing the other with love and adoration of what the other province does.  The other night at dinner with wife, tasting two new wines, drawing in head what my eventual wine business will look like, what the room will say, narrate.  This new assignment at the tech company which is anything but just a “tech company”, throws my thinking into new throws and destinations, more honed to road that reaching any destination.

Seeing my eventual office, somewhere here in Sonoma County.  Not having left the tech company, but achieving something there which will deliver my own office, somewhere where I can work and there is no toys or other kid articles around my operating space.  Want it in Healdsburg like the one artist studio next to Duke’s, his or her entire work space on display.  Not sure I want to be that accessible, but something like that.  What me and that co-worker yesterday spoke to each other in Berkeley, telling me new possibilities.  Thought of them the whole drive back to the office.  And now here.  Where else, to?



Sonoma County.  A cup of coffee, quiet house finally, and thinking about where I live and all the time I put into the wine industry.  What did it do for me if anything well of course it did something.  What.  What precisely.  To write about wine.  To never again set foot in a tasting room on anyone’s clock but my own.  Transported last night by that Pinot, sitting on the wood floor of this Autumn Walk home, the floor bothering me but me sipping through it and writing through it, seeing my book of some sort of shape being finalized, here and there and taking me from here to there.

And of course it comes on, “In A Sentimental Mood”.  Arguably my one Coltrane track that speaks to me like no wine or tasting room, not even the vineyard walks, did, do.  Seeing me in the late afternoon, on my deck, looking out at my vineyard.  Kids in house waiting for dinner.  There are wines that do that, sometimes.  Last night was one.  The Bernardus.  A Pinot.  2014.  A vintage I’ve always thought was overlooked, or underestimated, underrated.  I just thought, she fly me somewhere.  Back to Burgundy or to some part of a Carmel or Monterey beach.  I should be on a run right now but I couldn’t dismiss what me called, put me in this seat, instructed me to further be instructed and mentored by the Pinot’s physiology and psychology.  She spoke with temperament and tenacity.  She put me on a Road back to Monterey, back to the classroom.  Yes I write about wine but more what wine embodies and connotes more than denoted.  The inference of a Pinot bottle like that, to be in your current clock and time on clock like you’ve never before practiced.

Out of wine’s industry and in another business, one that allows and invokes more wine writing from me.  Wine was the institution, the university if you will, its industry and all the tasting rooms over the years that is, and now I’m here.  Helping build a business and thinking of a vineyard, my vineyard, the one I’ll soon see after achievements or certain goals that become ribbons or laurels.  Laureling myself into new wined pages, here in the kitchen, in the morning, seeing and understanding toward what I’m headed.  That Pinot did this, whirled and wove certain spells around me which I have no intention of dismissing.  Keep me trapped, I beg the notes I remember…. Jazzy cinnamon lanes doused in smiling cherry cirrus, thin but not dismissible.

In Sonoma County, writing about another county and one of its AVA’s, just dreaming and planning, writing way there.  And I ask myself, “What exactly do I want from wine, wine’s character aggregate and dialect.  I don’t know if I know, yet.  That’s what I love.  That’s what wine encircles ideologically to me, for me.  Just seeing where the Road goes, where your narrative’s to be thrown.  So many want you to know that they know so much about wine and wine areas, growing regions, how the industry works and their story in the business….  okay, but then what.  Why not be more professing of exploratory urge rather than advertising your fabricated mastery?  Try going from there to here, where you’re just on your Road, seeing, perceiving, tasting, dreaming, writing and re-writing.


October Saturday Pinot Write

img_8030Just sipping some Monterey Pinot, wishing I’d de facto be sipping it in Monterey.  But I’m here right where I need be.  Babies upstairs in their dreams.  Me with glass left, and thinking about what the wine announces to me.  She’s exuberant, evasive and pensive in the sip contact but when glass is down I’m left reciting something to self with which I’m unfamiliar.  About wine and my eventual vineyard, Jack and Emma laboring, assisting, with block inspections and sorting, even olfactory consideration when in lab.  I look down at the glass and prolong the next kiss.  I seek to wait, fancifully I want her to wait.  Tonight wine principally and this writer have a discussion about us… our past and future the constant current of thoughtful and philosophy currency with me on this wood plank ground.  Wine and I will ne’er be chasm’d, or sent to separate sets.  We’re coherently coded and with each other arrested.  Effusive ebbs in our sittings, walking around juxtaposed enclaves, France and San Francisco, somewhere in Mendocino, Napa, Santa Barbara, Monterey.  This Pinot has me on the beach, there with wife when we’d visit her parents when they there lived.  Monterey has always riles and magnified Pinot Noir for me in ways my county cant.  Not sure why, if its the vocal raspberry and cherry painting or the terrestrial spice equation.  I don’t know.  I’m not trying to know.  I’m caught and I’m smitten, I’m stolen from where I am on this  study floor.

She reminds me to stay in wine’s page and paragraph cascade.  I would never use scores, I will never write those flabby flop-drop reviews the “experts” or wine “writers” cook in popular pubs.  I’m here, with her, this Pinot as she sways and plays in her versified daze, having me in my analytically excessive maze.  This is me, what I write, how I write.  Wines like this do just this to me, and I go to sleep seeing my vineyard and the Madigan babies doing something out there, either hounding the rabbits or counting rocks, vines, or looking up at birds above certain clone blocks.

I’m back in Monterey, on sand, sipping this and scribbling something either significant or just for the moment itself and that’s just what wine should be each occasion, each breath and turn of head and looking at rocks, the seals on the Monterey docks.

The wine now mollifies, has an oceanic framing to its recital and prophesying, perambulation.  Holding the glass to nose and typing with one hand, right, she instructs me to do just this THIS, for relationship’s sake, for understanding composition.  Not just the wine but writing itself.  Wine is writing.  I’m. Not just writing wine or “about” wine but pushing these keys for the writing act itself.  Composition.  A 1A class.  In seat and reading each line for its meteoric assembly and accentuation.  I’m caught, newly coded, shown IT.  What all this around is for, and why I’m here, doing what I’m doing with wine and literature…. Exacted in newly vinified habit.  Monterey, her Pinot Noir rows, me, words, thoughts, sights of years from now, and now.  My newly set Now.  Another moving of puddle, she says more, now singing.  Rocks and sand, sea Highway 1, Carmel, the tasting room, the first time I went to Bernardus.