1/6/19

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.

from a journal

12/25/18

Kids with opened presents.  Wife and Kerouac left to retrieve cousins.  Preparing for more chaos and sounds loud.  Now, Emma and I play with her new toys and enjoy our Now.  The Now of today, more than yesterday and the same, augmented and magnified.  Me on the floor typing away with daughter behind me, remind me me of life, who this character Mike Madigan is.  What he wants where he is.  Simple.  Toys surround me like mountain ranges that overlap and intersect and criss-cross unconditionally and erratically.

Knowing Now, last days of ’18.  What can I do, what can I fit in in these—how many days?—7 days counting today.  And why not count today.  For just thoughts to new books.  Gifting myself something…. TODAY.  No mood and no stress, nothing but celebration of the Now.  More music, last night listening to atmospheric beats of Thievery Corporation and like-groups and artists, setting mood around the wine sipped and putting me in more sights and belief in the office, pairing wine and music, words poetry voice visual, all.

Music.  Only song I hear now is a kids track, not much I can harness self to.  Or can I… the play of it all, imagination, free liberating qualities and facets, universes transfixed and morphed into something else.  Educating key strokes with Now’s effulgence and expanse.  Daughter tells me to stop working, to sit not he couch with her and cuddle.  I turn the laptop off, and do what she tells me.  Mike can only do what she says, every time.  No exceptions, no variables.  It’s a consistency that not only dominates his day, but makes me more beneficially beat.

Coffee cold, music louder, playing with ideas and interpreting my Now in new ways— the ideology of this current stage and current brings me to new understanding and questions that shed any understanding of understanding.  The aim is to explore, not settle on definition.

“Dada…. I need you…”

Done.

Ideas for next track…

12/24/18

Counting and inventorying everything I do today.  The new year already started in my head and I’m starting my missions not as trite resolution efforts but consideration of my Now, what it wants from me, what I can gain from it.  Everything teaching me.  Doing my budget, seeing how much money I spend in the field on lunch.  Want to count it all, tally it, see what I would have saved but that’d only aggravate me, I’m sure.  So I won’t.  Forward, no lunches in field.  Coffee is fine, and a small bite, but only funded by coins.  Change.  So, carry a bag of with you when going out.  

Thinking about a shop, after and during my run.  I try to get away from wine, but I can’t.  I can sell and narrate wine like no one I know, honestly.  In inventorying everything today, knowing everything in the Now counts, I fixate on me, what I love and what I’ve done for work.  Mostly teaching, wine, blogging, writing.  Why not consolidate.  Would mean I have to start another blog, or restart the ‘vinovinevin’ project.  Going to not think about it, not excessively deliberate.  Just sit on the idea.  Tonight’s wines, writing about each.  The SB, white blend from Imagery I bought yesterday, the Pinot and red blend.  Or should I bring the Malbec….  Just a bit after noon now, and feeling exhaustion from the run.  6.3 miles, where I thought about a wine business and a marketing story, the connection to the Now, how all of this is not necessarily connected by contributing to the momentum of the next frame, place.

Now, everything I need.  More.  The understanding of your reality should always entail celebration.  With each morning and sip, each sight and breath.  The poetry of the Now rises from already-present music.  My music, now, vino scribbles and travel.

Your story

self-emboldened and chosen,

note only your own onus and token–

Ode hardly frozen, dose

Posted, over into a dragon shoulder–

Know it’s only your own aims that

need immediate explain, and solely to you

move true..

…will run from this street, this Autumn Walk horseshoe Drive.  Head up San Miguel, left on Coffey, then back.  Short run, today.  Then more words, then jazz, the new couch, what’s the first thing I’ll write while on it sitting.  What thought will materialize and actualize from those new and unfamiliar seats, cushions.  When I first moved into this house, I saw it with a concerned and cornered eye.  Not sure how to write in the walls— a new house, thinking Do I write differently? And how do I interpret what’s around me.  Not sure where I’m going in this thought walk, but there I am, here I am, again… where I am and what I’m doing.  Running from one sentence to the next, encouraged by Coltrane, his track right now, the fact that I’m writing in this house, still, even past whatever thoughts I had on writing in the house and the spinning spell of that meta….  Present in this identity, seat, roll in thoughts and repeat.

“All Mornin’ Long”, which features Coltrane, is freeing and like an audible freewrite.  If you listen, you’ll sense the liberation and noted pleasure escalation within the music itself.  Coltrane, speaking then letting the other speak.  Not sure who’s on trumpet, but I miss the sax…

No nap, today, fought against pull and push to do so. Thanksgiving over, wife out shopping at one of those shopping special eve whatever’s. Me, home. Wine. Just finished glass of Claret. The night passed with such cruel progression. Indifference. Babies asleep upstairs. What movie do I watch, my dilemma. My life’s trouble. Think of how fortunate I am with my family and to have such family, to be sitting where I am, here on this we seek to shed, new one one the way… Day of giving thanks, I need to show more giving of thanks, being thankful.

Tonight, I do intend exploring more wine. No aim to wake at 4am or 4:10 like this day. No. I may actually just sleep in. I will. What do I mean, “may”? May have to punch out. Take the night as it approaches me, describe and translate it, or in such order reversed… then wake tomorrow with more thought. More story. More ME. Tired now, forgetting I’ve been up since 4-something. Think 4:10. Has it been that long? Yes. It has. Me, that writer. Now. Time to Self and I sip wine and be here, writing. A writer.

Does the writer want apple pie or Chardonnay? Both sound like they sound, their own precise appeal and connection. I’m not torn between both but urge to be curved by both, somehow. 9:08. Feel like bed but I won’t. I can’t. But more, I refuse. Why can’t I be a human, just have dessert or drink wine. Is it that complicated? Are my thoughts the hinderance, the block and or impediment? I think it may be just that. Not in any kind of a writing swoop, and I can’t figure anything of it out. How does pine figure. What type a figure be me, I, this writer.

I feel like I’m not doing a thing, while doing too much. A mess. Should have taken a nap.

11/1/18—

New lunch spot in Berkeley.  Crepevine.  Ordered Denver Omelette with Coke.  Eating by self on a lunch break, finally.  No reps or leads with me.  And I love my crew, truly love.  But I needed a minute or set of minutes to self, to collect.  To write.

Lady brings over Coke and I’m more than content with my choice.  Other lunches I can cite I regret ordering what I did and not spending the time writing or doing something for writing, blogging, business.  Something.  The music of the day is more than just an encouraging nudge, but a direct instruction to make everything of the day I want it to be.  For a minute considering dropping the only class I have for next semester, but then rationalize it a marketing opportunity, and speaking practice.  Or, not so much practice but a training lab or ground for ideas new.  I see the chef or cook making my plate.  This town, as I’ve always seen it, one of activism of course but art, people and poetry, art and music, expression and freedom.  So I write in the same sense and sameness.

Chef brings over brunch.  Looks indescribable, if you must know.  You must know, I tell myself, and you. These Road notes, city to city speaking Sonic engaging the population and principle communities.  I want just a couple more sentences.  Tell self to put down just a couple more, older guy on other side of restaurant with wife and friend, looking at menus while group of younger girls sits outside and laughs, enjoying their mimosas and talking to each potter like they haven’t seen each other in ages.  This is what I do.  Write at cafés, restaurants, random places and what’s happening— Chef tosses a bunch of clean silverware in the holder at distant 12, on the other side of the counter.  Cook is on other side prepping plates, cooking or boiling, simmering something.

My time in Berkeley before working with Sonic is limited, to be brief.  I came here a couple times when I lived in San Ramon, early 2000s.  But now I’m here quite regularly.  And the feel and voice is perfect for where I am in my story.  Looking for more, more stories and more people, more experiences that contribute to my business identity and aims.  Sounds of the restaurant move me, provoke more.  I’m right where I need be.  This is where my story really begins its composition and construction.  If the Roads of Sonic and I never intersected I wouldn’t be here with this view of Shattuck, eating here, with this cold Coke, the omelette, the sliced sourdough toast, the ladies just outside the window at the small table eating salads.

Nearly done with lunch, thinking of getting a refill of Coke so I can write for a bit longer, just stay here and enjoy my time, the time to me to collect.  Lady sees me either getting ready to leave, or that’s what I think she thought I was about to do but I ask her if refills are free, she says yes and rushes to get me another.  All that remains on plate is some of the country potatoes and the sliced sourdough, which is surprisingly sour.  I’ve never found sourdough bread sour, really.  These slices are.  Not to their detriment, just I notice, that’s all

This will be my last meal out, in field, for a while.  That’s what I say now but who knows if I’ll hold to that.  Want to open a store, store front of some kind, or at least have my office set up.  Yeah, that’s what I really mean.  Just my office, my blogging hut, little literary parlor, outside home.  I pick at the bread, again.  I’m unusually relaxed.  And not just here at Crepevine, here in Berkeley, but today.  Today is a day for me like few are.

Catch myself spacing out a bit, and pull myself back to keys.  UPS driver a couple tables behind me having something for his lunch break I calculate, then chef tells one of the girls from outside group that he’s going to bring out some specialty crepe, complimentary.  I look up at see Chef holding crepe on plate with some mint leaves around it and a birthday candle.  Woman comes back in to check on it carrying her little one.  Candle lit and Chef’s daughter, I’m assuming walks it out, carefully.  She looks uncomfortable in each step, like she’s never walked out a candled plate before.  Hear them all singing, then clapping, then nothing but cars on Shattuck and the music they have playing in car.

What’s right in front of me, what I write about.  At least now.  And maybe onward.  Take fork into hand scooping some peppers and bit of onion and potato, bite.  Wonder how I’m still hungry but I only had that cereal at desk this morning.  I look down at a more barren plate and realize I am still hungry.  Need to wait.  Need to write, what’s here for me in Berkeley, my new writing city, the streets and communities and the more collective community of this area.  Couple more bites and push plate forward with napkin atop.  I’m done.  Now, just sipping the Coke refill and typing.  Man walks in and asks questions then leaves, thanks the lady for something.  Directions possibly.  I can see this as me when I’m on the Road, like this but more expansively, in other states and countries.  What’s in front of me, my topic.  Restaurant staff ever-observant of what happens around them, who’s here and who’s walking by and the ones that actually stop here.  And am I ever please with my election to here stop, order the Denver, sit here by window.

Readying to leave.  Walk over to crew in the Safeway parking lot.  Chef talks to hostess, which I think might be his wife.  He jokes with her about a dollar bill, about money or something.  All in fun and good.  Feel a bit tired, sip Coke, more people come in.  Rub right eye once.  Then I tell self not to leave.  I don’t want to leave.  Pies in display case behind me and to left, chef and consistent cook laughing about something.  Wanting a shop of my own…. But of what.

Also today, experimenting with a book selling business.  On eBay.  See how it goes.  So far no one has viewed the books I’ve posted, but I’m not bothered or discouraged.  Not yet.  This inspired by wife selling old clothes of babies, to her mommy mafia partners, or associates.  I don’t know how to define or tag them, give them any moniker or whatever.  Finally quiet in the house.  Of course thoughts from a writing daddy, his only day off with family and no regrets or resentment but I needed this time, this time to write, to do what I do.  Write.  That’s it.  Everything else is a support of this, of me.

If I don’t run then I’ll write, which is much like running intuit you want to hit some mile or distance catch.  Wine, now paired with the last piece from the kids’ side of last night’s pizza.  All cheese.  Paired with now a cold SB glass, perfect.  Wonder if there’s a football game on.  More goals for these closer-to-40 pages… watch more sports.  Write about sports.  Write about music.  Buy more music.  Make more music.  Write about everything.  Next time someone asks you what you write about, just say ‘Whatever I’m in in the mood for.’

The wine and pizza are like music, like a Coltrane code and album, just jam session.  Thinking I may deliberately not work out tomorrow morning and just write.  Or… shit I don’t know.  Not enough time.  No there’s plenty.  Okay then… run, but only for an hour.  Hour and five minutes which includes the belt’s cool-down offering.  Then come home and write at least a hundred words.  I shaved about an hour ago, so all I’d have to do is put out clothes tonight and readying tomorrow morning should be cake’s most loving and jazzy of walks.

2

Sonoma County.  A cup of coffee, quiet house finally, and thinking about where I live and all the time I put into the wine industry.  What did it do for me if anything well of course it did something.  What.  What precisely.  To write about wine.  To never again set foot in a tasting room on anyone’s clock but my own.  Transported last night by that Pinot, sitting on the wood floor of this Autumn Walk home, the floor bothering me but me sipping through it and writing through it, seeing my book of some sort of shape being finalized, here and there and taking me from here to there.

And of course it comes on, “In A Sentimental Mood”.  Arguably my one Coltrane track that speaks to me like no wine or tasting room, not even the vineyard walks, did, do.  Seeing me in the late afternoon, on my deck, looking out at my vineyard.  Kids in house waiting for dinner.  There are wines that do that, sometimes.  Last night was one.  The Bernardus.  A Pinot.  2014.  A vintage I’ve always thought was overlooked, or underestimated, underrated.  I just thought, she fly me somewhere.  Back to Burgundy or to some part of a Carmel or Monterey beach.  I should be on a run right now but I couldn’t dismiss what me called, put me in this seat, instructed me to further be instructed and mentored by the Pinot’s physiology and psychology.  She spoke with temperament and tenacity.  She put me on a Road back to Monterey, back to the classroom.  Yes I write about wine but more what wine embodies and connotes more than denoted.  The inference of a Pinot bottle like that, to be in your current clock and time on clock like you’ve never before practiced.

Out of wine’s industry and in another business, one that allows and invokes more wine writing from me.  Wine was the institution, the university if you will, its industry and all the tasting rooms over the years that is, and now I’m here.  Helping build a business and thinking of a vineyard, my vineyard, the one I’ll soon see after achievements or certain goals that become ribbons or laurels.  Laureling myself into new wined pages, here in the kitchen, in the morning, seeing and understanding toward what I’m headed.  That Pinot did this, whirled and wove certain spells around me which I have no intention of dismissing.  Keep me trapped, I beg the notes I remember…. Jazzy cinnamon lanes doused in smiling cherry cirrus, thin but not dismissible.

In Sonoma County, writing about another county and one of its AVA’s, just dreaming and planning, writing way there.  And I ask myself, “What exactly do I want from wine, wine’s character aggregate and dialect.  I don’t know if I know, yet.  That’s what I love.  That’s what wine encircles ideologically to me, for me.  Just seeing where the Road goes, where your narrative’s to be thrown.  So many want you to know that they know so much about wine and wine areas, growing regions, how the industry works and their story in the business….  okay, but then what.  Why not be more professing of exploratory urge rather than advertising your fabricated mastery?  Try going from there to here, where you’re just on your Road, seeing, perceiving, tasting, dreaming, writing and re-writing.

10/14/18