The day begins with the dive out to Solano, and my mood falling from the distance of the last caffeine sip. Already nearing 90 outside, and I’m dreading what the heat will feel taste smell look like in Ukiah. But what can I do? What can I do but be an adjunct… Mom wrote me this morning saying I appear scattered and her assessment is fair– need to consolidate more.. so away with the teaching blog, and away with the distance-campuses. Back on this computer I consolidate everything and have all writings in one spot, the adjunct in one spot– isn’t that contradictory? Shouldn’t we be all over the place and at like four different campuses teaching eight different courses? That’s what they want for us but not what this writer wants for himself. A little less than 90 minutes to myself and I use it for collection. Going to write out the plan for class, for the 370 meeting where we’re set to go over outlines, talk about a piece of writing we read (in theory) for homework, then back on the Road for the adjunct/writer– or WRITER/(adjunct).
Could use more coffee, but I’m letting the innate and intrinsic fire about Mike Madigan push him forward in this sitting and I know just what I want from this sitting and this day– tomorrow more than likely I’ll be in the vineyard, but I’m going to approach it differently.. touching more the soil the vines, the clusters if any, and asking Glenn or whomever I’m with what they think the vines want to say in such a challenging vintage.
An adjunct sits at the table next to me, takes out her laptop and earphones.. I should do the same with the phones but I like for some reason the chatter and bustle of the copy room on the other side of the door, right– the employees or techs singing and joking with each other, the roar and waving pulsating sounds of the machines as they spit out stack after stack.. collate, collate.. job done. “Here, come get this one!” one of the techs shouts. “I don’t want anyone else to…” couldn’t hear the rest of what the tech said, but she sounds annoyed, or bothered by one of the others, then she starts talking about how she left an iron on a table cloth. Then the conversation stops. And I’m waiting again for more material and motivation, some propulsion for me, “Hurry! Hurry!” she says to one of the other techs. And all on the other side of that door. Would they mind if I just watched them and wrote every single word they exchange? Just wishing.. what the job does to the character, how can you not find that interesting and want to write about it– the people that love their jobs and those that loathe. Again, just interesting and rewarding for me as the one typing what they say.. “OH, perhaps.. PER. HAPS.” she says.
The day has started but hasn’t. I haven’t “taught” yet. I’ve wrote a little, two poems this morning, ones short, while sitting next to little Kerouac on the couch whilst he watches one of his cartoons. One part of this commute that I hate is that I’m so far from him and Alice– just focus on next term, I tell myself. Only two classes, my little girl, writing. — There, organized desktop of this devil device.. finally. Now to type the poems from this morning. I look at the adjuncts around me, the lady to my left and the two in front of me at the terminals (lady on left with a stack of papers.. I should be grading, but…), and they look so tired, obligated and stretched, commanded and confused. I don’t want– no, I WON’T HAVE my babies see me like that. I’ll be int he vineyards writing, in the barrel room or cave, WRITING; monitoring my wines making notes then writing more what the wine tells me. Putting all the wined stories into the world and when my label’s aloft and people are in my Room tasting MY wines, they’ll see me as self-crafted, SELF-written.. my own story and direction. They’ll be proud of me, seeing me as anything but lazy. No, an animal, not NOT writing, always with pen and little pages in my hand like Jackie this morning: “Wh’ you doing, Daddy?” he said leaning over the little lines, me holding the pen to them. “I’m writing, buddy.”
“Oh.” And he smiled.