Cater Shop

Photo on 4-19-17 at 9.16 AMDry Creek General Store session.  Sitting at one of the tallboy tables, and I don’t know where to start but everywhere— where I am.  This store, which has become more or less a writing spot.  Part of me was tempted to do the usual Starbucks on Vine Street sitting.  But no.  Not today.  Need something different but still comfortable.  Familiar.  got scone to pair with my coffee— and I’m off in this meditation.  And maybe that’s all this is, just a meditation, just time to self and coffee and blueberry scone— so delicious.  Wish I had a product, like baked goods.  A little shop in downtown Healdsburg where people would come and have their coffee, treat… we’d open early, and stay open till later for wine and beer, and easy cheese and nuts arrangements.  But where would I start.  Maybe one day.  Another bite.. and I think further, further.  Coffee tasting like minty maple herbs and of course very intense coffee ardor.  Stratagem directed at me, and just to enjoy this time to self before the day starts.  Why not?  Why do I have to have a thesis as so many of my college instructors, or professors, or whatever they call themselves wanted to indoctrinate me with?  Am I anti-academic?  And does being anti-academ’ make me more a scholar?  More a thinker?

The store’s relatively quiet this morning, just the way this writer prefers… in my head adducing all the sounds I can hear beyond the jazz in my ears.. the thoughts and poems I recite to this new Me even while I rush through a paragraph.  The store’s music starts to interfere with my station, this track from the Tenor Conclave album.  So now what.  I feel rush and pressure with everything but I think that’s ‘cause I let so transpire.  We as writers and thinkers, readers, and just people let everything happen.  Well, most everything.  Everything is education, educating.  And what I’m being taught from this sitting at the tallboy, is to just enjoy this sitting itself, ALL its ingredients.  Don’t worry about the day, how much wine you’ll sell, what the result from the Monday meeting will be.  Don’t think about any of it.  Don’t think about not thinking about it.  Don’t think.  Just write.  Listen to this track, then the next one— shirts to my left, three heaping shelves of them.  Be a billboard for the store, one that walks, and gets in people’s faces without knowing— or maybe you do know.  You bought the shirt.

I lift my head for a moment to look around the store, and think again about owning a store.  A wine and book store.  We would sell some beer, but the nexus would be wine and literature, an idea my sister-in-law firmly suggested I rush to, write with, years ago, and I have been too many times distracted.  That’s me.  Why.  Who cares.  I’m here now in the heart of wine country hearts, looking right and just over a display of chocolates, pens, wine-honed board games, and antique-themed bottle openers (for beer), I see a vineyard.  Just want to walk around in one. Why don’t I?  Right after this sitting, if I have time.  So if I were being interviewed now, AGAIN, and someone asked me where do I see myself in ten years… fuck, what would I say?  Ten years?!  I’ll be 47… ten days and one month from 48.  That’s two years from 50.  I shouldn’t be allowed to get that old.  But I have babies now.  I can’t talk like that.  I should want to be old, get old, watch my little beatniks age and accrue knowledge and share their observations as Jack now does and Ms. Austen will one day.  One day.  One day I’ll be older, old… but where will I be in 10?  I’ll get to that…

Last night while waiting for takeout order I saw an older man, fair to say mid to late 40s, possibly even early 50s, clearing glasses and pushing in chairs.  May have been restaurant manager, or shift manager, yes, but the restaurant was nothing impressive.  If felt sorry for him, then said inwardly “Who are YOU to feel sorry for him?  He should feel for you, having to eat there, not cooking…” Yes, I thought, I should be cooking.  10 years from now…. I’ll be more culinary for my family, that’s for sure.  Jackie 15 years old?  Fuck.  Want him to tell his friends at whatever high school he attends that his father cooks the most amazing meals.  10 years from this tallboy, this scone and coffee… I will have several books out, a wine and book shop of some form, teaching at Stanford as I’ve always wanted to—class here and there—and traveling.  So in an interview I guess the part they wouldn’t dismiss, or that they’d see as “acceptable” is to have an autonomous business that I own and operate.

The store still quiet, but I heard a door close over the current piano whisking, carrying me away to my shop.. just opening, sipping coffee at my desk, looking over the order of wine I’m about to send off.  Have some time to kill… read the paper… sports, then business, then Arts.  I’m where I want to be, and to think ten years ago I was worried, so concerned about where I’d be in ten years.  Ten years is NOTHING, especially when you have children.  Yes, the cliché proves true.. ‘they grow up so fast’, or ‘it goes by like that’—  Yes.  How can you disagree?  Learning more from the morning, this sitting I’m meant to focus on—yes I’m back in present, 2017—  What now?  I’m taught that I need to be in the vineyard more, even if I don’t know what I’m looking at.  Not knowing and learning makes you not so much an academ’, but a devoted thinker and atmospheric, scenic purveyor— circulating in my self-servitude.  And why not?  Life is short, and it only wants to quickly me pass, and for me to feel it, or maybe not feel it so that ten years later I’m shouting inwardly, or maybe outwardly after too much coffee, “What the fuck happened?”