On lunch,

and in no mood for where I am. And I hate saying that. What am I afraid of, I keep asking. There is no cause for a timid form. When back from lunch, I’ll be a new and renewed character. I swear, I swear this time… this time I’m going to make this my time, my time where I’m in no way held in any one place. Why did it take me so long? Don’t think like that… this is perfect timing. More than perfect.

With a glass of ‘14

Merlot in tow, I measure everything. Seeing more of me, my future, forgetting about age for a minute which I know will make certain readers quite happy, but here.. now… right now with this wine, the grape that pulled me further into it all. Not much a writer, right now, after the taxing tasting room tale that was today, with my little vino sis Taylor. 21:25, should just clock out, shouldn’t I… watch some writer show and note in the Burgundy Journal, something. Something that will get me to the Road– fuck I’m tired of wishing. So stop. Do. Ceasing these types. Wine and ink, a page– now.

Much later in the day, tempted to just be lazy and watch some writer show,

img_5853a show that a writer like me would like and always watches, sipping the red blend I took home from Roth, a bottle today opened, I’m here.  Present.  Thinking about what this blend says to me but then not, just drinking and thinking, meditating in the room I’m in, the Now of it all, quiet house with babies upstairs asleep, me still a bit hungry but the words and wine suffice.  More than so do.  Tired, and getting more so, needing to just relax and thinking I may give in to this pull to that writer show.  Coffee for morning made, asked wife to wake me when she does for her ‘mommy bootcamp’ or whatever it is that has me more than emulous, in what she does— how she just gets up when her alarm goes off and drives to that studio when it’s still dark.  Okay, seriously, more than seriously, more than merely “seriously”…. I’m doing it tomorrow, waking at 04:00 or whenever she does, and writing, like I do now, to music, to these beats, see my tasting room, corner, or “nook” as I earlier in the week wrote.  The blend now assumes and percusses more a maple-sent send of a note.  2015, a vintage that had so many wondering where’s the yield, where’s the fruit, but what was pulled was prophetic and describing more a moment and character, conviction than those vintages that the wine “critics” and “experts” besieged you genuflect. 

Exhaustion from a day in the tasting room catches the writer but he refuses to slow in fact he entertains getting another glass of the ’15 blend when this sentence is done.  OR, maybe the paragraph.  19 days left in this project hat tis July ’18, and what a project, what a time to write wine, start my own label, invitation-only, asking family and friends only to come over and assure I comfort my hobby.  And that’s all it is, all it should be… me consulting winemakers and somehow convincing Katie make the Cabs, Chards… two of each.  Will start with one barrel of Cab, of course, then build or do whatever from there.  Not looking to ask for any permissions or any invitation, promotion, or any such bar.

Closing the night, this writer.  The blend now telling me to stop writing, to relax and enjoy the night and prepare for earlier writing as that’s where answers are, wine responses and solution, no dilution and only profitable profusion.  My sight is in this sitting clear, a fitting fearing nothing…. The components of what I sip each autonomously actuate and dictate a juxtaposed take of my current slate.  More to forward, more to the next line, and glass if I choose so.  The wine now, just looking at me, with her darker than gothic add of an etch.  Poe, in head, his poetic lectures, what I’m to do with characters that me unnerve or, and, insult.

071218

This morning, telling self the day I want to have is the one I WILL have. 

Photo on 7-12-18 at 9.04 AMCompletely a wine thing to say… defiance and independence, freedom in expression and practice.  The same group of older humans at the table across from me, the long rectangular.  One of the looks particularly worn today, tired and nearly ready for death it seems.  Morning teaching me to live more freely, wildly… what are we afraid of?  Just write freely, let wine’s memories and stories echo and play in your inner thought plates, plains and rains.  With the journal Mom bought me in Beaune a couple weeks ago to my right, and a former student messaging me from England, showing me certain times of night and how they’re perfect for writing, this morning I’m particular intentioned, into what I’m doing right here in this seat, for my wined life.  I’m not meant to be contained and compressed in that goddamn tasting room.  But I’ve said that before, I know I know.

No tasting in the lab yesterday with brother Chris, as I’d hoped, so I just strolled around the crush pad and thought about my life in the industry, where I want to go, where I’ve been, the trek and seafaring of it all.  From the first tasting room day to today working for a bigger corporation, with multiple properties, just wanting to sell wine but still confronted with unnecessary befuddle and kerfuffle, in a rumor puddle that I as I age have no more fortitude for.  Tired of my equanimity being cut like a piece of paper in some workshop in my son’s kindergarten class.  No such thing will materialize today, as I write from one end of the winery to the next, from one part of the schedule to day’s close.  I’ll taste through each wine and write differently.  Wine is not a symbol of pattern and the expected, but the random, the whim, the alchemical sight and sense of what’s around you.

Didn’t taste anything that exciting last night, just the remainder of the St. Francis Sonoma County Chardonnay, and the ’14 Claret.  Can’t remember the vintage on the CH, I think ’15 or ’16, but I sipped only about a glass, all that was left in the Burgundy glass.  I thought about Chardonnay and how my sister’s style of Chardonnay is much what not only persuaded me to enjoy Chards a little more and be more open to their characters and directions expressively, but built her career.  Catch myself staring out the window of this Windsor Starbucks and thinking about wine and what I’m doing… if I didn’t write about it what would I do in its business, ‘the industry’?  You’re not going to make that much unless you’re some executive, upper management, or a winemaker.  But even with that, would I be appeased?  My only choice is to write… about the wines I taste and what I see in the tasting room from employee interaction to what visitors say, to my seemingly aimless and senseless walks through Cabernet blocks.

Wine sings in and from everything I do this morning.  With so many I know traveling, getting outside their boxes.  Wine lassos me to mobility, to not being stuck anywhere, to not having to hear about what this person says about this one, and what management wants and what the sales goal is, what has to be done to inventory and… all of it.  I’m in wine for the stories, for the words, for the recital of everything…  Was sad last night when the Claret was done.  Didn’t know how to feel, and didn’t want to open anything else in hopes I could get to bed earlier which I did and wake earlier which I of course didn’t.  On a mission, notably with this month and all noted in the Burgundy Journal, for preeminent happiness.  Noted a bit ago that I will have precisely the type of day I wish.  It’s no one’s choice but mine, this morning teaches me, in concert with my 4-shot mocha.  Ready to see more in wine, today.  Exercise my defiance, my interpretation of each wine in 500+ word songs.  The ’16 Pinot Gris, even, deserving of a track… the stainless Chardonnay and my single-vineyard AV Cab.  Everything.  Everything in a vino skip, today and forever.  I know what wine is from being consciously aware of what she’s not.  I know what my first sip’s to be, in terms of the poetic whip of it.  The words, ready and eager to be on page.. not feeling the block or thought sludge of previous mornings.  My writing has to perpetuate in a promising breath and breadth limitlessness.  ‘Do it like this… Do it like that…’ You’ll hear management say.  My response, what if I don’t in my pages?  Then what?  What if I write from the wines and not about them… or better, TO the wine herself?  What if I stop calling wine ‘it’ and recognize her for what she is… Mythic, incorporeal, music… atmospheric, mystery, more question marks than declaratives?  What would these other wine “writers” and “critics” have to say? Not sure I’m concerned, not this morning… go this morning to what I want, what I see overseas, in Paris and the Czech Republic, South Africa, Australia, everywhere.

Wine molds my consciousness and ethical composition, from kindness and invitation, free state of thought and immediate and meditative presence.  Shared my thought again yesterday that nothing punctuates the brevity of life like wine, to 4 Texans that came to property for a tour and tasting, which included the wine-cheese thing we do (which needs massive improvement in term of the experience itself).  See self getting older, closer to 40.. now I really act.  Wine’s ordering me to do just that. Don’t accept the tasting room as any finality, don’t accept any finality in fact, in fact.  That’s not what wine is.  Wine is the last day working with your favorite industry person, sipping what you choose, and writing how the moment realizes itself, you, her, everything around you.  As, it’s not forever.  None of this is.

7/12/18

Decision. 

Photo on 3-14-17 at 10.47 AMI will go forward with this re-focusing on my teaching for a number of reasons.  One, is selfish, of course, wanting to feel that sensation of satisfaction, the feeling at the end of the day that reminds you you’re doing something significant.  Second, the students.  Maybe they should be first, but either way they are what keep me coming back to teaching, to the classroom, to grading papers and reacting to what they write for sakes of strengthening them, helping them feel more confident and comfortable in their reading and writing.  And, to explore the act of teaching.  The past few semesters I questioned if I was even teaching students anything, suggesting that I’, ore of an idea and motivation generator than anything.  But, maybe I’m not crediting myself enough.  Maybe I do actually teach.  Huh….

When I was a high school student, my English teachers were a bit above average, looking back now more critically and as an educator of over 10 years.  But one, Mr. Sullivan, my Creative Writing teacher as it happens, was the sole teaching character and presence that convinced me that teaching should be what I do.  And, do forever, professionally and personally.

So I start a new trek, I guess.  I’ve said this before, I know.  But this is different.  This time, it’s altogether unlike the others.  Is it because I’m so close to 40?  I don’t know.  Maybe.  But, just know, I’m leaving the wine world, industry and business, all of it, to teach.  “He’s just in the moment, he’ll change his mind.” I can hear someone saying.  No, sorry.  Not this occasion.  This isn’t just another occasion of self-realization or actualization.  This is a decision.  One definite, defining, final. 

Still have my sections for Fall, at the JC.  Have to order books, or select them first.  If I WERE to get onto a high school campus by Fall, of course things could change.  But, I would like to keep that evening 1A section, get more of my instructional fix.

Cabernet, speaking to me more

than other varietals, and across days, with more intention and decision.  Instructing me on precisely how to appreciate and deliver self to a moment, and from it to page.  How to better imbue self in wine’s perpetual prose and place, the scene itself with the glass on the floor, wanting more, a ’13 AV from Roth.  Doing a tasting tomorrow at 1pm, at St. Francis, the wine-food piece in the dining hall, and I will be more in writer mode than I’ve been ever.  More voices and colors, ways the wines move in glass when pushed and swirled, danced with…. What Cabernet do they plan on pouring this Left Bank-captured composer?