Keep writing, have your story speaking louder and reaching far.
Find lesson in what’s around you.
The place is your place, where you are self-placed and paced.
Keep writing, have your story speaking louder and reaching far.
Find lesson in what’s around you.
The place is your place, where you are self-placed and paced.
Notes to catch up on, and other directions pushing and pulling this morning. On a fast, for I believe 16 hours. For no other reason than discipline. Last night the discussion with students on Wright’s Black Boy coerced me to re-think memoir, to rethink writing in its principle territory. Writing, especially memoir or personal essay, or “creative nonfiction” a genre or type tag that I frankly loathe as what nonfiction isn’t in some degree and walk creative?—Demands more honestly. More boldness, more rawness and the moment itself in all its obtrusiveness and oscillation of concentration and code.
People walk into the room, this breakroom, I think new hires as I’ve never seen them before. Or– Friend Taj walks in. I tell him what I’m writing about more or less and what we spoke of last night in class on Wright. The Human dimension and collection of facets, emotions, observations. I tell him about the student last night who said he can’t relate to the characters in the book as he didn’t live as they did, or didn’t see what they saw. I disclose to Taj how I asked the student “Do you love anything?…Have you ever felt pain?…Do you have a mother?” The student I think felt a bit overwhelmed or confused maybe by my response, but I stood by my point and I at least wanted him to consider it. Taj sees where I’m going with the thought framing and delivery. He’s since left the room, after getting his tea. Now a lady makes coffee or something from one of the machines, and I think fixes it or installs a new filter, something.
I’d be not much a memoirist or narrator if I didn’t put to page I was again sparring, fencing, or just plain boxing with a mood this morning. Similar to the one I felt yesterday before the Pinballing piece, and very akin to what was over me last week. And, honestly, I’m bored of feeling like that. I need Newness. I need be crazy and more wild and flight-prone. Just taking off and not asking permission from any control tower. The JPR project here at work very much was not so much a cause of the mood but a set presence in the mood’s movement. I stop it all, taking this 30 minutes or so to this seat, these keys, going over in head what was discusses last night, and that one student, AGAIN, reading for class and having us wanting more of the words, more story, wherever it was going. And that’s just it, he had us not knowing but wanting to know. There was not so much excitement but obvious atmosphere and personality in the characters and what they may have been doing, or not doing. This student not only shows promise as a memoirist, essayist, but as a teller, narrator, truth-teller.
Now, I plan the day. This fast I’m on, what notes I have to input, and how the book’s going to tell EVERYTHING.
-Coffee cooling in old tumbler, black, bought as xmas present
-More people walk in for either eats or free coffee—eats, as I can’t see them, obstructed by newly-built wall which denies view of fridges
-Me, Mike Madigan, only one in here, certainly the only one writing memoir, story, any poetic effort to capture a Now
-No more oscillation, new code
-Sip coffee again
This. This morning. This is for you. This is yours. You have the morning, day, week, month, everything you want by deciding so. Candle going, at laptop’s side. Meditation with latte. Wife deciding on snow gear for kids, upcoming trip. Me, with the candle, something never near me when writing, seeing more Newness.
Fire, tempting me to try new avenues and expressive streams. Morning, a bit sluggish from last night going to bed late and after dinner and wine with wife. Melissa on couch listing prices to me for their snow trip approaching. Tahoe. Morning telling me to write faster, morning telling me to write more in Germany Journal, map how you get There.
Kids should be home, soon. More photos of them. Their steps in life, my story, the story itself. More thoughts and considerations this morning than I forecasted. What do you want? I keep asking self. Above everything, not citing health of me and all near and loved, travel. It has to be travel. Every continent. As many cultures as I can see, feel.
What’s the plan, wife asks, for day. Good question. No plan. And maybe that’s what needs to be. Life isn’t excessive deliberation, but deciding more in what’s already present. Yesterday, not in Field with sales squad, I replayed repeatedly the walks on all streets. Blocks. Districts and meta-districts. Truly wanted to be out there with them but couldn’t as that would’ve been day 6 in a row. Which I don’t at all mind, but is against Sonic’s stances. No quarrel, only putting myself there with them, imaginarily. People in San Francisco, the battle to find a parking spot and the daily inner-problem solve of where for lunch. The plan for today is today, to not plan but to live, talk to both babies, ask them questions, learn from them. Being with them is the demand satisfied, wanting them to teach me, instruct me how to get to those travels.
They already have, but I need more.
You get it.
Wrote 1111 words to start day. Relaxed in my nook at Sonic. My Sonic jots, becoming more energetic and consistent, more enlivened and electric. Sonic is not a platform but a page set for me to fill…. New identity for me to explore. Why Sonic works, from such encouragement. The wine industry and all the tasting rooms with which I collaborated never did this, or anything encroaching on such. MY wine business, approaching. I’m not giving up on wine business, and certainly not wine or my vineyards, my vineyard walks. This morning’s writing, telling me to have a conversation with wine, with self on the relationship with wine, wines story and the words that play from wined thoughts. The Robert Hall Cab from last night and night before, telling me to relax and be more eased in my wined chimes and lines, when I sip and to stay away from analysis but throw more height and color, more energy and effort into reaction, speaking wine. Not for the wine, but with her.
New blog started, soon. The u-sentence. No quote marks needed. More and more I hate punctuation. Anyway, this new blog is so closely associate with this blog, bottledaux, where the intention is to know your Now better, so I can know MINE more closely and intimately. Be FREED. You need start the day with YOU…. A proclamation, or thesis, or assurance, or provocation. So many words to choose but the intention is the same.
Face feeling itchy and uncomfortable. Now I wish I did leave time to shave, or somehow budget twenty or twenty-five minutes for such. But if I would’ve done that then I wouldn’t be seeing the word count of this morning. And yes, I’m giving word count attention. Why not.
Where am I driving today, with team? Hoping for SF. Berkeley’s fine, but anyone knowing me knows SF holds my heart.
Work early. 8am now, clocking in at 8:50 or so. Forgot headphones adaptor in car. Tempted to run out and get but why I then think, just take in the breakroom voices you hear from the nook. Work with what you have, with what you have, Mikey…. If I’m to know the Now and be freed from it, this is what I’m utilizing and implementing into the morning’s prose.
Out in the Field, today. In office all day yesterday and in knowing where I am and what I’m doing, I ignore time. The ten post-it notes to self I brought to class last night and shared, hours after lecturing on Kerouac and Madness here at Sonic, I’m in a different place. And in this different place wondering how I place the beaming benefit of the contrast, and finish my two essays. Didn’t make the deadlines I put before self. I know. Month over in two weeks, the time I have to finish my book. Different movements will manifest different Me’s. So, one different act—didn’t get the headphone piece. Usually I would have, as you might know, especially with music become more and more a demand and decided direction in my story.
Rain, light. Room now completely quiet. I’m not at work but in an office of my own, for more pulses in this page set than I can tally. The breakroom, now, has intermittent landers. People coming in for coffee, or some breakfast they pull from the fridge and pay for with that self-checkout box standing to the left of the refrigerating storage. What do I want from the day—or more immediately and tangibly what do I demand from now. The, Now. We all need to have this discussion. So I’m having it. Again. In Santa Rosa, Ca. Just 15 or so minutes from my house. Narrating to self, SELF, for sakes of more Self, more understanding and questioning where I am, what I’m doing, why I’m doing it. No qualms or quibbles, none at all, but I maintain the conversation.
Yesterday I spoke on Madness and how madness is love and creative, how it’s its own form of freedom, accentuation, its own manuscript. Vowing to live more madly, right now in this nook. What I want is what I have, and what’s before me will supply and sequence more proliferation of ideas, get me to my travels. Why travel. Why not. Why not see the world and have sittings like this in cities like Prague, or Lisbon, Cairo, New York…. Montreal, and of course my love-city, Paris. I need it. I need more. To understand self, narrator of and to self, share my findings with other so they can see what I see, in themselves and what’s around them.
Someone walks in, laughing, obviously content where he is, “Good morning, guys.” Followed by a few more warm ha-ha’s. Today a day of the Valentines, where you’re to love everything, everyone. My babies this morning, excited to be allowed to eat a little candy their mother bought them, and have some party in class. I step back, did this morning earlier and do know, to see what’s evolving in this day of love, or cards, candy, smiles, balloons and parties. The Now, estimating it, appraising it, deconstructing it and the Now you want to have. The reality that you have that reality is a reality to love and celebrate. I start laughing to myself.
I look out the window to parking lot see a delivery truck. Think they deliver linens or supplies, or something health-oriented for businesses. Abraham, my good buddy, my workout buddy whom I astronomically admire for his early wakes and workout routine walks in. I ask him if he went this morning and he offers “Hell yeah, e’ryday!”I again smile and see a new possibility in waking early. If not to workout then to write, finally finish my essays, and if not that then make a dent, one substantial and meaningful in the book. Writing I did in field day before yesterday on tablet emailed to self, one page, possibly the first page in book, tonight edited. Or, tomorrow. We need difference, we need contrast if we’re to pass the envisioned and land at the actual.
Just saw someone peek their head in. They were gone before I could see any face or eyes or right ear. Could only see a collar and shoulder. My breakfast sandwich, gone. Will fast for day’s remainder. Write for book in lunch’s hour, wherever in the city I’ll be. Possibly the Castro, or Noe Valley. Not sure yet. And, observe. Yesterday talking to Tasha for our mid-month check-in we talked about the power of observation and how not always one needs to be directly involved, interacting, present and talking, but watching. Cataloguing observations and reacting from there, an idea I echoed and argued last night in class with the 100 group.
People see me writing, say hello, walk out class door after scanning their badge, her badge, nice young girl from Inside Sales. I observe them, they me possibly, then time persists in its insistence. Amplifying from where I am, observing the little contained mess I made on this table with the sandwich bag, napkins from Starbucks, my phone and keys. I arrange, re-arrange, make my writing space more spacious. Done. Now with the time I have left, set aims and visions for day—Writing at lunch, at desk more post-it notes to self like yester’, and notes for field today. Set an observation template, if you would. For the Sales Leads that I observe daily but as well for the day itself. Everything from words I hear, people seen in streets, street lights and stores, cars and crosswalks, what bags people carry, what sounds steps make, everything.
I’m at work early writing because that’s what I do. That’s what I have to do. That’s my story. That’s what keeps me healthy, you could say. Alive and mentally alive and living and exploring my character and the story the character’s given. Passing the visions, and about to land in rooms actual. The travel, the hotels, lobbies, airplanes, tickets, engine sounds, taxis…. The story sows a new narrative. And in that, I better know the current Now, and soon step pervasively and definitively free, freed.
By a proxy, proxy of this keyboard I plugged in, if that’s a proxy. Never much understood the proxy thing. But, my laptop is functioning. Conditionally. Sipping the Sanglier Pinot I bought the other day, my day off, but not wanting to lay it down. “I’m gonna lay it down for a while, uuuuuhhhhhh…” I hear so many say, like they know so much about wine, and and what wine wants to say and how it’s to be read, and tasted.
You know what, I much like this more, this keyboard— Have to stop addressing tech, writing about it. May have saved self something like, I don’t know… $2000, something like that. I definitely need celebrate tonight. Not running on morning but hoping I wake to write, or do something literary, writing something of some sentence sowing, that I can sell and “market” or, I don’t know….
Company event tomorrow. No idea what to expect or see. I’ll take it all as it presents itself to my story, to me, the one narrating. No music, I walk on eggshells with this goddamn device…. How many battles have I had with devices, with technology itself. And why do I keep having them. ‘Cause I put myself there, in that arena, gladiator me on the sand or whatever that terrain versus the lion with saliva portrait-style jaws, for me, the writer expecting it to work. I’ve been had, I ‘got took’ as I was once told. Yeah, so….Need another glass of that Sanglier Pinot. Need stay closer to wine and paper. The journal doesn’t need another journal plugged into it to work, that I know. Feel like a wobbling jester typing on this fucking thing. Not so much a fault, but a result. A behavioral outcome that need be studied, clinically.
The first thought of the day is a window, a door…. A beacon, a shore. I’m with voyage out, sailing to something. Coffee, in office early. Didn’t wake as early as I’d hoped, no surprise, but I’m not letting that decay the day, or pull at my loudness of yay-saying yodel. Class tonight. Maybe I’ll share this, how the day started, how one can shape the day. Over and over the morning precipitates the like-motions and thought shapes. Today, something different. Say that a lot as well, but oh well.
Raining on way in, soon’s I stepped outside. In office all day. Take lunch early, go to coffee shop or whatever that café’s called down the street. Shit, are they open today? Maybe I should stay in office, or write at Texanita. Why am I overthinking this, or even thinking about it at all.
Notes to self, they’ll tell you something. Writing notes to YOU, so you can form and frame another you. It’s not setting “goals” that on one should fixate, but aims. True visions. Seeing something then not merely ‘going for it’, but composing a Road to that There. You start this morning…. You begin where you are in with what you’re doing. You see the opportunity in where you sit, at that desk and in that office. It’s not an ‘I’ address but a YOU singularity. Seeing you as not you but another You. The you that you reduce to a dream, or some fantasy, some vision. More than possible or plausibly, but near, nearing.
Time in its motion disregards us. But YOU, embrace it. You challenge it. You control it, you capture it on page. There’s nothing in time’s pervasive placement that eclipses what you see for you. Stop preoccupying in a task list. Write it again, re-write it. See the There, leave the shore, rush through the door, always create and You-compose more.
Been writing in more than one place for the ’19 story. Oh well I say to myself with another glass of sparkling, Jackie over there playing on the tablet my mom and dad bought him this past xmas. Nothing I’m writing lately I’m liking. Certainly not loving. So what’s the bandage for that? One part of me says just write free, with less shackle and inner-hassle. What’s that mean I don’t know so I re-focus on Jack. The day he and I have had, his sister too. She now off with wife and wife’s friend and wife’s friend’s daughter to Target to get who knows what. Kerouac has some inner dialogue with himself regarding the game, if it’s a game or some scholastic, learning program…. “Jack, what are you doing? What are you playing with?” He gives a bit of a mumble but I’m not convinced that was directed at me. He goes back to doing that, whatever that is. He rests the right side of his face in his right palm, right elbow on right inner-thigh as he sits on floor, legs crossed and lightly locked. We just spent the past couple hours watching football. Playoffs. Or postseason. Chicago versus Eagles, in Chicago. Eagles pulled it by a point. Just one. I of course was on CHI’s side for various reasons—none of which I’ve told you so I guess I shouldn’t write “of course”—and so was Jack. Both us disappointed in the result. But we move on. He with his game, or learning program, me with words and this morning before our together time, and time with his sister, a 7-mile run which I now feel.
Hoping to get some reading in, tonight. Hemingway, Coelho, Plath, Hughes…. Not sure I’ll touch all four books, but one of them I’m rather confident. Need to write more poetry, read Hughes more, and other poets like Cummings, Plath of course, Yeats, and from that collection of several poets I was gifted years ago. Today teaches me to not work against existing momentum, ever. What you want to do with the day is one matter, what you’re able to do and what you can do with what is present is quite another write.
Writing everything down…. Jack, quite poised and careful how he touches that screen. Face Ibn right palm, again. He says nothing to me on his own, and I don’t want to break his connection to his current action so I just push these buttons while I look at him. My little boy who daily loses his littleness to time— Time, that fucking animal, devouring all of us as a matter of duty and functionality, normalcy. Why I deplore normalcy, the patterns. The expected. The unavoidable tumult of the clock. I look at reflection, mine, and can see changes in my face, around the mouth and eyes. Forty this year— fuck. Have I lost some of my awareness and writing ability? Am I starting to fade? Looking over at little Kerouac, my little beat. He’ll keep me young. His sister, too.
Three days left in year. Today counted. Coffee in nook at work. Break before work, or work before work depending on how it’s looked at. As I noted yesterday, again I caved, having lunch at a nice spot actually on I believe 4th and Balboa— sorry, 5th and Balboa. Don’t regret the chicken sandwich and fries I had with co-workers, friends. But I should have gone to café. Of course today I set out for same, but I dismiss the dilemma and set self in now where I’m set in this nook, at this new table and chair, writing spot for a writer going into a new year, on his second cup, made in the back office where you proceed down a somewhat sizable hall with glass offices on either side, then that one magical room with the coffee.
Phone, journal on desk, or table, right now it’s my desk or that’s what I have self convinced of. Writing meditation, the morning, Saturday, next three days off with the new year cartwheeling toward my pages. Not only learning, I always say that— but instructed by the intersection of one year, then another. Me growing in story and character… we all grow, or don’t. That’s a decision. Yesterday at California and 7th, “Not everyday’s a treasure chest but work feverishly to get what you get.” Jotted before crossing street to next block where reps were speaking to people at their doors, remembering Plath’s words in Bell Jar chanting ‘I am I am I am’ in every street pavement square and at every stoplight.
Music in everything. If we don’t see IT that way, then we’re only living, going to work then coming home and sleeping. The worker shouldn’t see work as work— they shouldn’t work, they should be passion explorers, and if they don’t like their job, their “work”, make it something’s that not only liked but layered in love, loved.