7:24. Week I turn 41.

Asking self how time flew past me but I know I don’t have any such time to sink into that perception.  Sanguinary, this week.  In a good way, of course.  Haven’t done budget yet, as I saw that becoming a pattern.  Need to do all different, day to day.

Director emailed me and said he did some gardening over the weekend.  I remember my aunt, Linda, had a garden.  That house in Sisters, Oregon where my sister and I spent a few summers.  She would take us into town, buy us seeds and plant them with us when back at the house.  On her deck you could see the three sisters, beyond a considerable stretch of trees that must have extended for ten or so miles.  Maybe less, hard to tell.  Linda would be in her garden every day.  There were actually two, one just on the side of the house which you could see looking down from the kitchen, and then another about twenty or thirty yards from the house, beyond the kitchen-sight garden.  I’m sure it’s relaxing, even with all the labor involved.  Our next house, I’m set on such a project.  PROJECTS.

One of the neighbors rolls our their trash or recycling bin.  Jack tells me it’s going to rain at the end of the week.  WHAT? I thought.  Then he tells me today is going to reach 94 degrees.  Definitely no run today, I tell him.

Setting sights on 200% of quota by week’s end.

OH YEAH…. Jack says in some funny voice with a forced-lower octave.  Be playful, I remind myself again.  Don’t think too much about conversations, or anything.

Sipping coffee made last night. And honestly, I find the odd and off lukewarm temp quite supremely easing and appeasing.  More than that.  It’s perfect with my operational orbit this morning.  Self-appraisal, but not to too extreme of heights.

I’m going to have a contract come in this week.  Two of them.  I’m going to seduce such into tangibility.  Thinking about what to get myself, birthday gift.  Part of me says new camera (just thought of that…) Another says some 15-pound weights and new running shoes (greatest contender), and another says take a massive flight of cash and invest it in something.  Something that has the risk of going up or down.  A little daytrading.. something different. Why not.  That’s the aim here, isn’t it? The GOAL?

Should do budget and finances now, now that I’m settled in.  Approaching 90k words in this new journal written in and around this “new normal” that people keep talking about.  Sick of people saying that, and hearing it, but they are saying it and I do embrace and always step in pursuit of Newness.  Kerouac thoughts, sentences scribbled and typed in the moment….  Sales role, not sales and not a role.  A medium for everything I’m after.

Three full days before I’m 41.  Move quicker… slowed by nothing.


9:04.  Already with three referrals, phone conversation with IT partner, and an appointment scheduled with a potentially large client.  What else can I do… some more finance.  Done…. Kids outside playing, house quiet… haven’t felt this ahead of a day in a bit.

OH, email students.



Back from a Starbucks run with little Emma.  At desk.  First thing, budgeting and money movement.


#prospectesk note … When you transact, do you just transact and acknowledge the numbers? OR, do you study what you did… how you interacted with your prospect, how you found a point or points of connection?

When the contract is signed, is it really all done? Or is that the opportunity to begin a new facet and arrangement in your sales practice?

Ready for my day of organization and going through old leads.  Will be sending out one contract which I hope comes back by EOD….  Going to start writing a sales notebook… not a “coaching” tool, or a how-to… just a sales story compilation, notes.

Into calls, made handful.  Submitted contract, looking through business cards.  Taking a break… Coltrane playing from phone, left… quiet house.  How do I want to approach the next hour, and the one after that, the one after….

Call at 2pm.  Done with latte.  That does it for caffeine, for the day… no coffee in house.

Just off phone from a nice call, nice guy working for the big Art Gallery collective on 4th, San Rafael.


Idea.  Acting on it.  Hard to get on the phone as I want to… so, email.  I swear I had every intention of getting on the phone and calling businesses.  But the kids and–  You know what, don’t care.  I’ll call like I were calling a friend, or my mom.  Just call and say, right?  Didn’t I boast that as my brilliant philosophy?  GO…..                                                                 


Kids threatening to not do anything I say.  What can I do.  No time to write.  Should slam this coffee so my energy speed and movements and franticness with overshadow theirs, collectively and individually.

4:09, back at desk, with last coffee for day.  Going to start getting ready for class shortly…. Writing notes and ideas for the night’s page.  May 3rd, soonest this shelter will be over.  When this new journal ends.  Bored, so now I guess I write my boredom.  Scouting businesses in the East Bay, and now San Rafael… other parts of Marin.  Look right, out the quarantine view, see neighbor walking with dog, possibly to get mail.  Even with the coffee I feel a bit depleted…  So what to now do.  Can’t have any wine, not yet.  Not sure I’m in much a wined mood.  I’m just following my wandering thoughts, entire mind.  Phone, paper towel/napkin, pen, little journal….  This quarantine is opportunity, but for what in this minute.  Hook up camera, after class.  Go through old wine pictures….. for what, I don’t know.  Just to do it.  Feel like one of the kids, protesting “I’m boooooored….” How do I snap self out of such…..?

Researching bars, bar areas, bar counters, for homes.  My/our forever home.  More media, more pictures… Thoughts, and promises to self written in journal as to how to get such.  My knowledge in tech, focusing, a focus… blog, new designs…. Bed earlier, wake earlier.

Feeling like sales and marketing philosophies I need to write and re-write…. Revision is the decision if you’re in sales, marketing, speaking some brand.  Know your Now, from where and who and what you are…

Thoughts, and a Question…

Thinking more and more about business and prospecting, building or growth if you would, and how many ways there are to do it.  More than I can cascade here, obviously, but everything stretches from one principle.  Conversation.  And, genuine, heartfelt conversation at that.  No intention to convert, or sell, just knowing the person, knowing them better.  Right now, I’m calling, from a list of existing prospects.  Now, calling already has the not so much assumed but anatomical and definite insinuation of sale, or at the very least marketing.  I’m doing my best to just de-charge the call.  Call to say hi, and check in.

What do you do, when prospecting?  Do you call?  And if you do, how do you approach?

Minutes before team gets here.  Selling everything like I do wine, I tell myself about something I have approaching.  Selling should never be selling as I’ve noted in the past, in recent entries and if not then recent writings.  Genuine, present, connected communication.  Telling the story while listening to someone else’s narrative and deeply considering that.  An interaction but more.  More rich and textured talk.  Thinking of how the wineries I’ve worked at in the past, and other jobs, how their intention and focus on the sale, on conversion, is far too obvious.

I’ve now elected to embody new motion, a new beat for the purpose of building business and selling.  And that is to do anything but. Talk to people, meet them, know them better than I know what I’m representing.  Wine is life, and I sell life, if anything.  How incredible it is to be here, PRESENT, and with the opportunity to know people, know what they want, help them get there… to their There.

Not many people like to be sold, or want to be.  They want to be happy, they want to enjoy the moment, the conversation.  That’s my focus, their enjoyment of the interaction.  Still developing these notes, but I am developing them and playing with approaches and methods of doing so.  So…. Off into the Field and day, where I put such to practice.

Again catching self in an overthinking maelstrom

I leave the house.  Come to downtown Santa Rosa, to Beer Baron.  A place I’ve only been once.  Ordered a glass of Sauvignon Blanc, one I’ve never had before and don’t think beyond that.  Just enjoying this whim, this sudden cruise downtown.  Not sure where the direction of the writing’s going, and I don’t need know.  To the characters I was thinking of in the tasting room.  Yes…. The two that are behind the bar and want to get out of the industry, starting their own wine gallery.  That’s what they call it at first…. I came here just for this, for new ideas and brainstorming, not be at the drawing board but to draw a board of ideas.

All this before class.  All of it, of this, my new stories and wine thoughts, wines I’ve tasted recently, yesterday with the St. Francis Chardonnay then some Kobler Viognier when home.  Everything in the pages, on them, constituting them.

This place, a serious bar more than a restaurant or any wine bar I could see myself opening.  Earlier thinking of self as failed in some wine aims and dreams.  As the waitress just now puts down the glass, I find I’m not in any way “failed”.  Have I even really started?  What if this could be my office, everyday, I think.  Come here and work from noon to whenever.  Why not.

I stare at the Sauvignon Blanc for a bit before smelling it, and much before tasting.  I let it be a symbol, a reminder of wine’s life in my life, its presence and my past and present, all futures.  I won’t let self take a sip just yet, but rather draw my characters at their winery, at day’s end, having a glass of Pinot on the patio. They talk about just going for it.  Saving whatever they have saved and putting it into some wine business.  A brokerage, they think.

But then I as the writer put the idea on hold and think of how I’ll approach them, this story.  Their stories.  The wine story coupled with their stories and mine.  I stop everything and focus on them, Jane and Elly.  Jane out from somewhere in the midwest, always wanting to work in the wine industry, years ago and now here and tired of being tasting room locked.  Elly, from San Francisco leaving her corporate corner to be in wine’s everything.  She’s worked two harvests, then to tasting room as production for some reason just wasn’t her thing.  She knew why, and didn’t know why.  She loves the winemaking process of course and everything that goes into harvesting and fermentation, barreling-down lots and pressing, even the shoveling of tanks.  But the people in the tasting room and the words they’d say, the interactions with people, called to her and wouldn’t let her ignore.

I take my first sip of the SB and focus on me writing, what brought me here.  Then the two characters.  What we all have in common.  They of course, or maybe not so obviously younger than me.  I keep writing.  Till this is the ONLY thing I do.  Writing about writing and people and what they do for work. How work and our jobs, labor, determines so much of our character and how we estimate the world around us.

Think today is the day I finally killed overthought.  I’m not editing, or measuring, forecasting or worrying about how anything I write, type, is perceived.  I’m just moving and not allowing any stationary sets for this writer or any of his characters.  The two girls start a website, for anyone coming to wine country.  They see themselves as fashionable intel, something to make people more pleased with their choice to come to Sonoma County much the way I’m please with my election to come here and write.  Relax before class.  See me in business with son and daughter, eventually.  I quit the wine industry but am very much back in it on my own accord and set of terms, rules, and I guess some regulatory rattle.

Second sip.  Such real and truthful tropical body and bravado.  Nothing invasive or excessively aggressive.  This is a character that has me more into my characters and these new characters I’m writing.  I return to them and what they want, what would make them happy, what in wine they want to grow toward.  What do I want to be, grow toward.  Wine, travel, speaking on wine both metaphorically and immediately.  Tonight, open something new.  Study it. Let wine dictate my own fate, give me direction and more introspection.  Tempted to take the night off from class.  No.  Use it as speaking practice.  Not practice at all, the second sip says, and I sipped minutes ago.  Can still feel that tropical shock and rush, set of steps. 

I pick up the glass and nose what remains, which is a good two sips I’m guessing.  40 next year.  That’s where my head is.  And then what.  Maybe I’ve overthinking that as well.  Sure I am.  Look at the wine, focus on it… wine writer and journalist, one who actually writes and journals and doesn’t just take a blare of ridiculous shots of himself and other wine “experts” or “writers”.  Glass up again, sip….  Follow the stories, MY story.  Don’t think at all.  Just write.  What I tell the students, every semester.

Talking about writing, tonight. That’s it.  Beyond simple argument, or any attempt to persuade which was the chapter they had to read in that “Prose Reader”.  Or maybe that’s singularly what I should discuss.  I think about taking notes, but the wine says no.  Be in the moment.  Or be above the moment, flying and hovering above simple time and whatever that clock reads, dictates.

Finding that when you write down ideas, they speak back.  They instruct you on possibility and presence.  They talk back, love back, write back.  Thank fun to the Story, and everything, LIFE, for today.  For the embrace and blind subscription to whim.  To not sink into overthink.  To blog and jot against any overthought.

With he glass done, I slow.  Thank of the walk yesterday with my son in the vineyard and showing him the remaining clusters on the canes.  I had him taste a couple….  I thought of us, in business, how our visions of our company will differ and will be surprisingly in some places identical.  All this from wine.  Thinking of wine, living wine, writing wine.  Wine writing me, since my first day in the St. Francis tasting room, 2006.