wine sketchez

Ramey Wine Cellars – 2014 – Syrah – Sonoma Coast

Laid-back Syrah…  Just what I needed after a long day.  Light, foggy, coastal fruit with that flirtatious ghostly edge.  Something you need to just speak to you with light blueberry and caramel carousels.  I sipped and just thought about the day, honestly, and I have this wine to credit for that.  One of the few times where the wine made me forget about the wine–  It ORDERED me to forget, just resign myself to the Now I was in.  I heard the bottle’s dialogue sing and speak to me through light but convincing texture.  It’s a song, a saunter, charm and atmosphere to itself.  There was something there in that bottle, in that translation of Syrah, that calculated my consciousness and flew past and around my rationale with unusually understated but poignant dynamism and capability.  After three sips I noticed a cherry-like subtle smatter but then it away skipped like a coquettishly phantasmic vixen.  I kept sipping.  I was done with my day and more relaxed than I could have measured.


With night’s cap, home, at desk, not watching news or some movie as I’ve the habit adopted over last few nights.  Quiet in home office, surprisingly, Jack’s best friend sleeping upstairs with him.  My last glass, this Boekenoogen Syrah, ’13, reacting to day with strange calm, composure, composition.  Coffee already positioned, whether I wake at 4, or 5, 6 whenever.  I’ll be at ready, to write, even after all this Carmel Valley wine.

I’ll be in Dry Creek come morrow, to meet with new winery, taste at a couple others, gather more wine stories, “content”.  Starting to hate that word.

MOCK SOMM, quick sips.

IMG_96962013 Cartograph Wines Pinot Noir, Choate Vineyard, Green Valley:  Seraphic from the first contact to palate’s end.  Thick and melodic chords of strawberry and cherry, coupled with some unexpected plum and minted chocolate; but what separates this Pinot from others is the pervasive equilibrium of each sip.  I wouldn’t wait on this one, I’d pop it now, but if you forgot about one or two in the cellar and run into those bottles down the line, you’ll be fine.  (MM92)

IMG_96802013 Boekenoogen Winery Syrah, Bell Ranch, Carmel Valley:  Wholehearted and robust, encompassing and persuasive in its interplanetary intonations.  Not too heavy, nor at all passive, more rounded and capturing than any Syrah I’ve tasted in the last few years.  Musical and tempered, audacious but somehow savory in its coy taste equator.  Its own language of Syrah, dactylically delicious.  (MM93)

IMG_9723-02011 Valdez Family Winery Zinfandel, St. Peter’s Church Vineyard, Alexander Valley:  This wine is just fun to be around, dark and with a sexy weight to its texture and motion.  Nothing like I’ve had from Zin’s all-too-excessive of a world.  Nothing astringent or sharp or tart about her.  Just in line with every fruit suggestion and smokey/charcoal/chocolate wink.  Had it with a slow-roasted chicken and well-done sourdough garlic bread and was only smitten by the synergy.  I’ll be going back for a couple more of these, and what a brilliant object to all those boo-hoo-ing the ’11 vintage.  (MM92)

The next morning, odd

vibes and vertices about the day’s development.  Just came from the crush pad where Glenn showed me the Syrah pressing, next to the Grenache and Mourvedre add, for their Rosé project.  The first press or “rain” as I thought of it of Syrah was darker than you or anyone would expect from a Rosé effort, nice thick strawberry and cherry, wild berry rile to its presence, while the second rain was IMG_8662lighter and with more wildness to its fruit quality, almost like a (though I hate the word) tartness.  Britt and I went to see what the brix was on the GR/MV co-ferment.  About 24.6, if I remember right.  Then they press that and add to tank, but it seems this vintage there is a concern with juice.. all the more to my winemaking momentum.

At the Starbuck on Hopper, which had the longest line I’d ever seen here, so far, since my consistency of visits, taking nearly 15 minutes to get my mocha and sit here for my morning words and expressions, musings or whatever you’d want them to be tagged– my visions and dreams wander sitting here thinking about the wines I’ll make and how I’ll write about them, what my sister and parents and everyone would think.  What Doug, my lunching friend from yesterday, would think.  And my other projects…  Would love the whole day to just STOP, focus, get done what I need.  But now I head to Arista where for sure there’s only more content.. more and more and more than I can handle but somehow I’ll find a way to press it out like this morning’s Syrah and have it settle in my barreled prognostications, measurements of a literary life and winemaking anchor-theme..  Like I always say, I’ll write everything for the day, everything and show my readers, you, what I see in this wine world, the conversations and what’s said, everything from a worker’s worry of what’s on the schedule, who they have coming in, do we have enough bottles open, to what time does the wedding start and when do we close (if we have a wedding).

The slow nature and character of this coffee hole continues, with people collecting and pocketing just in front of me, mostly with scowls about, wondering what the hell is taking so long and will they be late to whatever.  And many have the day to themselves today, normal people unlike me as it’s Saturday, and they frown and frown, and roll their eyes when name called.  I sit here and laugh below the moving characterization of surface, wondering how the rest of my day’s to go.

Now all these flies fly around me for torment or amusement, I’m not sure, but I’m annoyed and wonder what else the day plans on throwing at me–  Started with the sun in my eyes, so much I had to lean my head out, on San Miguel.  Then again on Hopper causing me to nearly miss the crush pad– 

And now someone sits next to me.  Leaving.

Tired and lazy,

cluedknot and sluggish, after dinner at Mom and Dad’s, and after viewing the house that we both want ours. I sip my night’s cap, Racer obviously and try to push through my tired talk inner; today, wishing I would have run earlier but I didn’t– BUT I did get over 1,000 words into novel, mostly dialogue, developing further Mr. Massamen’s character well’s his friend’s. And for the first time in my writing Life, a character taught me something, as I was writing his lines; what I should do and how I should view wine.. tonight, two wines tasted, a SyrahIMG_5286 made by my sister’s friend (PRIDE) and the Pinot my sister bottled.. both with song and vibrant message, but I have to say the ’11 Syrah from Pride had me more observant, attentive, attracted. And then I ask myself, “Which could I sell easier through words, through posts to this blog, or just ‘period’?” I’d say the Pinot, on varietal alone and the body and progression of the wine is such that the pedestrian palate would be more reactive, conversant with its notes. But, that Syrah, to a learned sipper, which I somewhat see my Self, has more magnetism, more.. wine on mind, and what I can do with it; how I can write about it, bend it, drink more of it to become more unified in its IMG_5285symphonic sorcery, and why me? ‘Cause I want to write, and about it, about wine, sip it and think about it and sing from it.. and when on the Road, in my hotel room I won’t go out but stay in the room and write down singular words, whatever comes to mind while I sip, thinking of my son and my wife and any other child we have and what they’re doing while I’m out, on that Road, making money to pay for our new home.
I’ve decided, I do want to make wine this vintage, some Cab or Pinot.. thinking Cab. I love Pinot and yes I am currently in a Pinot basilica, but I’m one of the Bordeaux ball, and I have to dance so.. so….. I’ll again talk to Mark soon and see if I can secure a bit over a ton of Cab, maybe from Dry Creek.. or AV. And I’ll take notes each step, type and print and document my trail as a winemaker, even thought I’m nothing of a winemaker, just a writer wishing to make wine to write about the process and how his character changes– to get close to wine as principle.IMG_5287

I look at the wine, in the glass I hold angularly and think about all the time that went into what I’m about to sip, write about then forget. Those picking these grapes left their families at who knows how early, worked harder than most of us ever will (certainly this writer!). Want to write about that, too, I realize.. the vineyard crew. One think I can thank K—- for is the chance to film that, in ’12, waking early and leaving my family, but not to pick, just to point a camera and shoot.. need to revisit that footage; how they moved and the way the lights picked the certain scenes from the estate, the rounded landscape.. I’m again seeing, and it started this morning, in the dark, while my allergies me pummeled.


Sipping the ’12 Syrah, Carmel Valley Winery, that I sipped last night, only one glass.  Today at estate, tasted through several tanks with winemaker friend, showing wine developments, different stages, strategies, dilemmas during fermentation…  I should definitely make something this year, but where do I store it?  Should I start saving for custom crush, see if Katie has a connection somewhere?  Yes, and yes.. but if ‘no’ to latter, I need start saving more viciously, no more takeout like tonight with Alice…

The order change in tasting room, for reserve flight, and ‘estate’…  I don’t agree with it, but I think it’s an interesting exercise, see how tasters react to the new order, not that many of them would be privy to the former.  And “tannin”…  Why do people always have to remark on ‘tannin’?  How does the bloody wine taste?  What fruits, spices, textures, suggestions greet you?

Jackie upstairs, asleep with Alice.  Looks like I’m sleeping down here again.  Which is fine, long as my little Artists sleeps.


I have to concede: this wine, this 2012 Syrah, freezing me still with its seductiveness; its dizzying palate gusts.  This is not the first time Boekenoogen’s done this, so why am I surprised.  2243, time for the final glass, the night’s cap–  Poe, on brain, planning on sewing him into the already selected writers for summer session, as he’ll be one of the chosen study cliffs for Fall.  I want the students to truly find themselves; to understand what it is THEY want.. to free themselves as I wish to free my Self from the devilish wine world.  But I still sip, wavering never, entrenched as ever.. that’s the type of writer I am, have always been since those rainy ’98 afternoons at Foothill where I’d write the first Massanello poems in my ’74 Super Beatle, closer to what I am.


I sip, and envision mySelf on the deck of some vessel, in the North Atlantic, as Dad would always say he saw on his international flights.  But I imagine the odd, the ghostly, the mysteries out there, what we don’t know; what we can’t solve from equation, or prescribed mathematics.  Not sure if it’s the sun I see or the moon.  What do I want to see, from this wood border?  I don’t know, don’t what to over-think the time, so I just sip, look at that thin claw-like cloud, and paint pictures, scenes, write more stories…

Syrah, usually roaring with a repugnant gamy or meaty, or sludgy motor to its call.  But not this Boekenoogen bottle.  It’s of poise and a promising pool; thick blackberry and cherry, and chocolate (but I always look for that)–  A relief in the Syrah world.  I remember when I first came into the wine industry, meaning on someone’s payroll (St. Francis’), someone called me a ‘Syrah snob’.  Okay, well, if that’s true, then I guess it could mean something to someone that I spin so unhingedly in this project, these sips.

What Want

Back in the classRoom tomorrow.  And I can’t wait.  After a meeting with a student from last term, which should be incredibly, impressively, brief, I’ll head to the 4th & D spot again.  And tomorrow, or actually tonight (just, I won’t print), I’ll begin the 40 poems in less than 2 weeks effort.  Thought of this today, just walking around the tasting room, doing nothing, thinking “Pen, paper, poem, print…”.  Will have to wait till closer to bed.  Now, the dishwasher runs, clumsily, and I can barely concentrate on this casual confessional prose.

Wrote a quick 500 words, a little more really, this morning in Annadel.  And where does that go?  To this semester Master Project.  Really getting sick of all this writing, and no book.  BOOK.  BOOK…  I love that word, and I want one– no, that sounds immature–  I’ve always set out to write books, since 1997, in high school.  Not once did I then envision writing a bloody blog.

Bills paid, money fading.. need to vend these poems.  And I need another beer.  But will wait for dinner.  Only having two, then stopping.  Waking at my cruel 5AM, or 5:30.


Now it’s quiet.  Washing, done.  Think it may be drying.  But either way, these key touches sound loud.  And today at winery, nothing significant to convey, or report.  2013 SB being bottled.  Was going to shoot footage, but decided against.  I did, however, shoot some footage of the vineyard crews pruning Chardonnay vines, which was dramatically interesting, especially with how dry everything is out there.  


Would write, but there’s nothing of note around me, or about me, not now.  I’m in pajama pants, waiting for Alice to come downstairs from sitting next to Kerouac while he falls asleep.  That’s what he demands, now.. one of us in the room with him, often.  Yes, need a beer, to keep this domestic scene interesting.  I’m on the verse of saying ‘to the stars with it all’, these scribbles… just bloody gather pages and release!  You’re an old man!’

But I hate when I’m that brash with myself.  Need to calm down.  Hemingway’s chapters that we review tomorrow, need to be thoroughly excavated; we will be looking for the gems.  Yes, there are many, but I want the students to look for those points in H’s details that contribute to a thesis, or point.  Should write that down in KnoComp, right now…  Done.

The poetry will pay for the prose, I’m thinking.  OR maybe the reverse.  Why do I continue to pressure Self?  It’s interesting.  That’s been my habit.  And how many books has it produced?  None.  But that changes.  Poems, in all objects.  Even this plastic garbage container to my right, next to the three cases of my wine.  My son loves going to it, throwing things away, showing me he can do what I do.  Actually, he can do much more than I, and I’m reminded every time I pass the fridge, with his two standalone paintings magnet’d to its divot’d surface.  In less than two years of Life, my little one has surpassed me, proudly displaying his work.  He often walks over to it, points up, gives some type of explanation.  He’s my mentor.  Now, always, forwarding eagerly into his lecture stream.



1/23/14–  Have a 2008 Petaluma Gap Syrah open.  Haven’t poured glass first, not yet.  savoring this anticipatory roar.  What happened today?  Nothing much, just nice tour on mountain with a couple from S. Lake Tahoe.  And after that, monotone.  Funny when I think this b/log only has 11 months, 8 days left to live.  Then, only the maddened reads…

Wonder what this bottle has…  Thinking of short stories, Poe’s work, as always, what I lectured last semester with his collection.  


Just took first sip.. lovely.  Everything’s punctuated perfectly.  I don’t know I have any critiques, it’s an amazing Syrah.  I’m not familiar with that pseudo-AVA, but I don’t need to be.  I’ll keep sipping.  Should email Doug, the winemaker, tell him what I think, that I’m sipping his creation (which was payment for helping harvest his 2013 Syrah, in a small vineyard right by his house).  I remember that morning: foggy, cool, quiet, fictional nearly; I wish I brought a notebook, or something to write with, but I had to be in the bloody tasting room, of course, shortly thereafter.


Today, day 2 of the 2week poetry binge.  Finished a 3verse piece.. want to read soon.  And why would I delay?  Poetry’s about the moment.. little editing, perfecting…  Just writing, releasing, reciting.  That’s how I’ve always understood the form, since Gillian’s class at SSU.

What do I want, from all this, Life?  Freedom.  Writing.  Wine.. only a garnisher, at best.  On couch.. should I turn on music, put Self in Paris, or study a writer or two?  Don’t know, but I need more wine.  My writer friend, still not yet returning my last note.  Wonder what she does now.  Probably at work, at the bar.  Want to work late, at a bar, just once, for the experience.. like a ride-along.  See what happens.  Imagine the material.  Speaking of ‘material’, I still have to edit the 30-day project, then the few writings around it.  Maybe I should take a day off, edit the whole thing in 1 sitting.  I could do that.. then I’d be less stressed.

Jack, upstairs asleep.  But who knows how long that’ll last.  Lately, he’s been waking at odd hours, last night 12:44[AM].  Should have another glass of this ’08, jus to make sure it’s safe…  That’s what I say in the tasting Room, with the more amiable guests, in humor, to encourage their enjoyment in tasting our wines.


This Syrah, distracting me, with its songs.  Only 1 more glass, as I’m quite convinced that the little Artist will be waking at some harsh hour.  My lecture on Monday, will not only shake the students, but define a new direction in my diction, teaching philosophy.  I want the students to be like this Syrah; bold, confident, distinguished, defiant.  And yes, that’s just how I view this wine; unlike any Syrah I’ve sipped.


New stories,


with certain shades,


I’m thinking,



Tumult tumbles toward

shore, the grip roars


moving to another town

where voices ebb to wandering


Apis Onus

Not ready for formal writing, for submission, project.  Not yet.  Just want to enjoy the practice, the process.  This Syrah, 2010.  Not my favorite wine that I’ve recently pulled from collection, but certainly a sipping sword.  Two mountaintop tours, both enjoyable.  Then, with day’s end, tasting from tanks with Sam, Mindy.  Also had chance to taste Sam’s wines, the Grenache, Carignane.  Still far too early to tell what’ll happen in their respective stories, but the Grenache shows the most promise, easily.  This Syrah, the more oxygen it sees, and more I swirl, the more life greets a writer’s palate.  And on writing’s chord: tomorrow’s my retreat day– complete escape into writing, teaching, writing about and for teaching.  Will have to write at café, for at least two hours.  How about I plan like this, loosely, as I don’t want to overplan, certainly not OVERthink: 2 hours at PC, two at café, FOUR in Santa Rosa [either on mainland or nearby café, bar.. but you have to finish three standalones in the day’s plain].

Two more lines to write for the poem I started… either yesterday or a couple day’s ago.  Can’t remember.  Wrote a letter at lunch, in newJournal, to Kelly.  I’ll rack it into second chapbook, when I edit it down.  So many I want to write letters.  Poe, Mom, Dad, cousins, Grandma, Bob Coleman, my Self, other professors.  Again, I don’t care if it’s just a note, four to ten lines or whatever.. just have to discipline Self to write a letter a day.  Yes, a letter a DAY.  Purpose: not so much communication, more the act, the ART of epistolary delivery.  Personalized, directed writing.

Looking at tip money from today, recent shifts.  Putting all into SELF-publishing acct.  $76.  If I budget $5/chap, that’d bring me to 15 copies.  And I only want my first run to be ten copies– well, 11, counting mine.  So I could start my succession with this little stack.  But, even more a boon, it’s to be blended into the already plentiful pile upstairs, in my Philosophy Encyclopedia.


A run tomorrow.  It has to happen.  But I can’t expect much from Self, as I haven’t been running as I used to.  Just put in a solid hour.  30 out, 30 back.  Don’t care about miles logged, or avg mile time.  Just want to run.  One.  Solid.


Thinking I might reconnect with ‘Sun Also Rises’ next semester, with the English 100 section.  Copy some of these letters, see if I can gently introduce students to Authorial consideration, intent.  And OH…  Just thought: what if I could wake early tomorrow, circa 5am.  Fit in a thousand words before little Kerouac’s first stir.  What if I write tomorrow, from 5a, off-and-through 7pm?  What if I hit 5,000 words in one day?  Never even come close to such, not that I know.


Note: older neighbor, I learned this evening from Alice, passed away.  He’d gone to the hospital before, but came home soon after.  Always saw his in house, sitting in chair, watching TV.  Near window, a small table, two wine bottles atop.  Didn’t see him walking outside much, in his final days, or backing out in that magenta van.  He always said, “Morning,” to me, anyone who him passed.  Fear I was to him sometimes rude, or curt.  Time, another round won.  Especially with my little regret, that I might have been a tad more neighborly.  My glass, empty.  Feel like having one, another, for him.  And I never knew the gent’s name.  Doesn’t matter.  He’s gone.  And he need be acknowledged, even by people not directly in his know.  Perfect time for rain to come, with this news.  But it won’t.  It wants to taunt the writer.  Devil.  Looking at stills from today’s vineyard walk.  There again.  Imagined.

Poured Self another glass, this one quite full, of the Syrah.  More perfume-y notes throwing themselves at senses.  On palate: blackberry, dark cherry, cinnamon, lowered mint and/or eucalyptus.  Next vintage, the one I’ll sell.  So I have to save, AND most importantly: force this writing.  Force its hand.  Many times I feel this way, like I’m in constant combat with my own pages, past and present.  Lately, more so past.  They taunt me from that plastic tomb, all three actually, upstairs in closet.  Many of the chapbooks to come have to be completely comprised of forgotten written fits [I like that].


How relaxed the writer is tonight.  Awaiting my day of writing, morrow.  What if I voided the run?  Should I?  Should I start my jaunt-before-work-on-Tuesdays/Thursdays, this Thursday?  Imagine how much MORE writing I could catalogue…  I’ll take it with scrutiny, measured thought, projection.

What do I want to produce in ’14, if druthers full found my figure?  Well.. certainly a Merlot.  And white…  I guess Sauv Blanc.  Blending different lots, from different AVAs in Sonoma County.  Could work, right?  For the SB, that approach.. not Merlot.

This Syrah, suddenly speaking to me with collected might, accumulated fury.  Love it!  How Literary, this glass!  Just what I need before a most narrative day.


Doing a quick skim of pages preceding Hemingway’s letters.  How he was studied, IS studied, followed, researched.  A Writer.  Just want I want be.

Nothing more.




No obey.

My letters, beginning today, will continue into my Life’s surplus.  All my minutes should be spent in front of page.  And I need toughen, to Mr. Hemingway’s stratum.  And I need another glass of wine, as I know he would have at La Coupole…  Oh, my city, and what yarn it strung, spun around my most admired Author.

Again acknowledging Veterans Day, looking at the photo of Mr. Hemingway in his uniform, book’s cover.  What war must do to the man, the writer, or eventual writer.  OR what about a journalist, surveying the happenings of war, firsthand?  Could I do that?  Probably not.  Guess I’ll stick to research, if I want my imagistic inner-brush to circle in such sway.

Last glass, poured.  9:44pm.  Ready for 5,000 words.  How do I want that allocated?  Yes, I’m OVERthinking.  But I’m also exercising a certain playfulness that I don’t want to lose as I age.  1,000 for morning blog entry; 500 for flash fiction; 500 for flash fiction, again; 1,000 for another blog post; 1,000 for chapbook contribution [taking any form]; 500, flash fict’, piece intended for submission; 500 for blog, closing day.  Huh.. let’s see if this wandering writer sticks to such restrictive regiment.  Well it’s not THAT restrictive, is it?  No.  So what now.. music, or movie?


Mike closed his diary, for now.  Just sat, sipped his Syrah with a certain serrated syncopation.  His thoughts, like cognitive trampoline spins; up, down.. hardly mattering.  His book was near fruition, near its bound/bottled form.  Papers needed grading, but he had towers crucial to construct; ones that assured measure.  (11/11/13)


Still at home.  Jackie, asleep.  Haven’t had a chance to go out and write.  When I do, only bringing Comp Book.  And only writing verse, poetry.. three standalones in 2 hours.  My goal.

Tonight, opening something good, in wine’s way.  But what?  One of the championing Merlots.  I think the Duckhorn– no, the Trefethen.  Think it’s an ’09.

The 3 standalones today will go into book2, to be done before 7/20.  Topping that project, or I’m hoping to, at 101 pages.  Starting to feel the mocha’s scaffolding leave me.  Hard to continue writing with no momentum.  Have to remember to print pages at some point, today.  Should probably also do a backup of my work on this devilish laptop.  When out for coffee, will pretend I’m a tourist, traveling light, and can only speak in verse.  No sentences, no conventionality.. only written music.  Again, 3 pieces, standalones.. spoken word songs.

Hungry, but not in mood to eat.  How does that work itSelf out with any logic?  Bored…  Going to research travel targets.. Barcelona, Rome, Belgium, Thailand, Australia.  And on road, I’d only bring with me the Comp Book.  Or legal sheets.  But then I can’t post immediately.  And I think that’s why I find this blog so addictive– that I can record thoughts, instantly release, sent immediately to book/bottle.  No aging.

Thinking the next book SHOULD be 200+ pages.  And the next, next, the next…  Want to have ALL my writings in world when I’m gone.  Or at the horrible least: printed, bound, prepared.

The element of Travel in Literature.. possibly something to explore in Fall, especially with Capote.  And Faulkner.  Maybe wine, too, as an address.  Not as a beverage, but as a scene shifter.  Again, possibly.. just thinking about it.  Set on Fall being my best term to date.. especially after my conversation with the IL English Professor yesterday in tasting Room.

3:58pm.  Printing book.  All 120 pages.  Nervous, for some reason.  Well, no.. not “some.” It’s MY book.  Only doing 2 prints of this ms, or planning on it anyway.  This draft, and the final.  My assignment, 40 pages a night, read.  Keeping it as raw and rough as possible.  So you know: want to capture how I was feeling, precisely what I was thinking at the time.  Refuse to get frightened by this editing.  I’m looking forward it, really.  And when I get discouraged or exhausted.. I’m forcing Self to stay in that bloody chair.

This definitely calls for that bottle of Trefethen Merlot.  Radically warrants it.  Not leaving house, decided.  And three standlones… by night’s end.  Think that’s fair.  Yes, it’ll be spoken song.  Ready to start writing, now, soon as this printing’s done.

Maybe I should go get a mocha, then return.  Yes, that’d be okay.  Feeling alive, monstrously Literary, watching my book print.  Need to practice this more.  Know I sound silly, juvenile.  Book2.. can’t wait.  40 pages, 80 more…

Continuing in print.  Will get coffee downstairs after whole of book’s on paper.  Well, should really get fresh air.  Crazily stirred.. stirring in crazy.

And all this junk on my desk doesn’t help, tell you that.  Ugh, looks like ink fades already.  You know what, I’m only printing first 80 pages.  I’ll do the last 40 in two nights [again, as I’m setting on reading forty pages/night].  Yes, going to get a mocha.  May skip on the wine, so I can get through my 40 pages.  Or maybe I should do what I can tonight, then finish tomorrow– setting Self to go for long run AND edit.  What a V-Day that’d be.

5:09pm.  Back in home.  Edited first standalone in book, to get started.  Surprised how much I liked it.  Feeling unusually confident.  Will read another piece tonight, or two, so I can’t rush with the Trefethen.

IMG_32146:50pm.  Started sipping rest of ’08 Syrah I popped night before last.  Tastes a bit oxidized, but still with those darker notes I like, that I know pretty much all ’08 Sonoma Valley Syrahs to have.  Decided against opening the Trefethen, and rather elected unleashing the reverse GSM my immeasurably charming friend Sarah gifted me on the 29th, my birthday, at that Naked Wines & Tasting Lounge mixer.  Thinking of that event reminds me how disgustingly calescent it was, the weather in Sonoma’s homely valley.  If I were on vacation, at a resort with a pool nearby it wouldn’t have been so troubling.. but since I just clocked out, in familiar surroundings, it bothered me.  Anyway, back from tangent.. thanks to my sister Sarah, and I can’t wait to free this Rhône juice.  Oh, and to add even more specificity to this evening’s unfoldings: I’ll be pairing it with a Whole Foods burrito.  Humorous, or genius?

IMG_3215Revisiting Midnight in Paris tonight, for the first time in weeks.  Think its today’s printing of my book’s pages that has the writer so inclined to do so.  Thinking of Hemingway’s emphasis on truth, bravery.  That’s exactly what this book is, all 120 pages.  Disappointed I didn’t write even 1 of the standalones in Comp Book– no matter.. I’ll do so tonight.  One of my former students, texting how excited she is about Poe, for the 1A section come Fall.  I’ll again demonstrate honesty in this prose: Fall, 2B my strongest semester.  Ever.  For a number of reasons I’ll later disclose, when the term’s in tow, throw.

That Syrah, swirling my head a bit.  Looking at an old still I shot at the Dry Creek Winery, which I just learned is AGAIN for sale.  Serves them right, frankly.  But anyway, this picture of all the lined barrels, just after rain, makes me think of tasting in France.  Not where I did in ’09, but where I WILL taste, in futures near.

Little Kerouac, again asleep.  Complete quiet in condo.  But this music’s volume, barely breaking audible barrier, or “threshold” as winemakers love saying.  Finally in relaxed mode, mood.  No worries, I’m told.  Thankful.  Thinking of Grandma, what she must be thinking tonight.. what she today entertained.  Opening bottle.



8:45pm.  First glass, small pour.  Earthy, herbal red fruit, pepper, wild.. gorgeous.  Just the kind of wine I need tonight.  Thinking about Grandma.  Hope she’s comfortable.  Need to go visit her, tomorrow, before my run.  Part of me’s afraid, the other viciously eager.  She’s done so much for me, throughout Life.  She recalled the days in the Bayview house, when I visited her in the hospital the other night, how she used to care for my sister and I– prepare our lunches, provide for us when sick.  This is difficult, the present platform with her, my sweet grandmother.  Pouring a glass for Her.