10:38AM, Jackie still sniffling. Please and content with my decision to stay home. Found a couple more targets for my articles, and I’m aiming high: SF Chron, New York Times, Washington Post– I’m thinking like a serious journalist, mimicking one, looking for stories and specifics. Looking on P&W for flash fic mags now, as Jackie tries to overrun my attention, focus.. he jumps and sings and sniffles–
In Howarth Park. Drove to Annadel, up Hoen, but was told by the lady at the booth that it costs $7 to park there. I told her I was just hoping to park and write, do a little work. “Sorry, yeah, it’s always seven dollars,” she said. Fine, I thought. Wrote a 1,000+ word piece this morning, a narrative essay on adjunct life (I swear this is the last one!), just edited it, and plan to send it to New Yorker, McSweeny’s, and maybe one other mag. Want to write a short piece for the Chronicle, either on wine or running in the park here.. I’m thinking differently as a writer, and I think this return to Hemingway’s memoir is the wheel that rolled me into a more productive character. And the more standalones I complete the more material I have for the next whoso issue.
Wine I’m opening tonight. Don’t know. Don’t want to plan. Look upstairs? OR, I could stop by Safeway or Whole Foods– definitely Whole Foods– and get a bottle. Giants tonight could win everything, for the third time in my lifetime. That’s all I want. An even three. So what would pair with this type of game, with this much riding, and with the reality that I’m playing hooky right now, Mom watching the little Artist– or actually standing guard as he naps. I needed this day, time with Kerouac, this session in my car in the park, and the jazz, and this 3-shot mocha. The weather, nothing to cite or critique. It feels like a Sunday, or how they used to feel to me when I had them off. Can’t remember when that was. All around me people walking, mothers with their strollers, older couples strolling, and kids playing; wonder if they’re playing hooky too, or are from out of town, or there’s some in-service day at their school that left them with this freedom in the week’s median.
Jackie still asleep according to Mom. I inhale the air let in from the lowered windows and realize the change about me as a writer and Human. Stories, I need stories, and there’s one here somewhere in this park, from where I’m parked. What can I see? Not much now. Where’d everyone go? A lady far to the left, getting in her SUV after a run or walk.. she looks like a runner. Tonight’s run needs to be monumental for me. My story, training for a marathon, but there’s only so much running I can muster from my time at the moment given my schedule, and that commute to Ukiah. I’ll “steal time”, if that’s possible. Tonight’s run: 7 miles, and quick. Thursday, another 7. Saturday– oh I can’t. Dinner with Blair, whom I’m sure will give me plenty of winemaking and harvest stories, which I need.
And why was I in such a rush to produce a standalone this morning? Who cares, I did. Yes, true, but I shouldn’t produce too many. Stay connected to this journal and cook here; build here; log observations and captures here– lady walking in lot, on phone, pink shirt hold her hooded sweatshirt. It’s warm but not too much. Should I get out and walk around? Need a restroom. Forgot I had a cup at home before this outing.. coffee relentless antagonizing functioning. Have to write through it.
I feel a piece coming tonight, from the wine I drink. 750 words or less, for a magazine I found. And so what if I write for a mag, or have their guidelines guide me down a more pleasing and profitable line? And again, why I’m only seeing this now, at 35, is past my comprehension’s net. So…..
14% on laptop and I can only think of a bathroom break. but the jazz tells me I have to finish the song. I will I promise– but oh! When will I get that bottle of wine? Maybe I should leave now, go to Whole Foods and look around. Yes. Shop. I feel a story, putting myself in the place of the consumer who has no industry ties, is just a consumer– that sounds more interesting and more like a story that an audience sizable would read. But I have to target something.. so what… Cab? yes. But with Pizza? No. How about a Pinot? Already started writing my piece and I haven’t even left Howarth’s lot.
Should go. Grandmother putting her grands in the Toyota sudan’s back seats. She’s leaving. I should too, honestly this time.
Home. Got my wine from Whole Foods. a ’12 Shug Carneros Pinot. Normally I go for RR Pinots but I couldn’t find one. And I’ve enjoyed Shug’s wines before so why not again, and paired with the SFG’s. Strategy, if there is one: My followed team and my followed varietal. OH I know.. genius.
Lunch. Just a snack. Jackie seems to be feeling much better and quite rested from his 2-hour calm and still. The microwave beeps, lets me know it’s ready and that I should eat and take a break from the typing and journaling and obsession over story and getting the story–
Later in day, don’t even want to specify time or relay what happened to the Giants. Watching a movie, one Alice and I like, watched recently for the first time, sipping my night’s cap, this ’12 Shug Pinot, and I’m thinking about the Road and freedom, not being in that hallway downstairs, grading at the last minute. Tomorrow morning, coffee, lots of coffee, and when home, whether the Giants win or lose, write about the wine I tonight sipped, the Pinot with a virile epistle to every note it billows. This wine corners me pleasurably, deepens my waving quasar of curiosity. Now I need another sip, imagine myself back to Burgundy with my family, in the basement of Louis Jadot, tasting from those barrels and spitting on the floor– well the others were I wasn’t.
So the dinner with Blair this weekend, needs to be material. Yes he’s my friend, but it need hastily hasten prose, paragraphs, elliptically, with burning echo. Wine, so many questions why I react the way I do to it, back and forth, love and hate and then a mirroring confusion that I can never centrifuge or de-amalgamate. Have to be in bed soon. This is the life of an BEAT adjunct. And there’s so many of us. And onto…..
Sleep. But another sip of Shug’s Pinot first–