Should be grading papers right now, but I’m not in the mood.

I’m doing what I like, what I prefer over pretty much anything else, except being a daddy.  Writing.  In a loud bar, happy hour, some beer I think I tried—no, I didn’t have it the other night. That one was lighter, like a pale ale, something.  I’m doing parts of my story I enjoy.  Not working this weekend at the bloody winery, as they need me on Saturday and I can’t work that day, then me offering to do Sunday as I always do and them—the globby little “man” of a tasting room manager”—telling me I’m not needed Sunday ‘cause it’s going to be raining, and slow, and whatever other excuse suits.  What the fuck—DAMNIT, can’t I just go there, help a couple people, sip and scribble all day as I usually do putting in my consistent 30 minutes of actual work?  How fucking selfish of them.

With this event, the winery, tasting room thing, as it is only a thing, dies.  I, make it a subject worth writing, a story, give it real life.  Speaking of, what wine am I opening tonight?  What do I want?  Better question, what do I have, what I’ve not yet murdered?  Have the Aperture blend… the Williamson Merlot… the Halleck Pinot and SB…. Don’t have to decide now, but looking forward to a night of vino and prose, some wild essay.  I’m in the simplification stride, knowing next year I turn 41.  Oh fuck, I think to myself, mumbling to myself like a writer who just came out of the woods and for weeks only had himself for conversation.

Light just got more dim, or I think they did.  Writing only wine, but I’m drinking beer. It’s cheaper.  The writer’s on a budget.  Wine tonight.  Wait.  Treat yourself when home.  Just again sipped the brown ale. Odd, but I might have another.  People sitting behind me at a tallboy table, they could very well see this screen.  Don’t care, not allowing the inner care button to be pushed.  When would that waitress person come back around?  Should I have another?  Hate when I ask so many goddamn questions, when I go back and forth, and I know I do that but keep doing it. Interesting or annoying.  OR a lesson, a point of study…..  Not determining here.

Need another beer.

That Pinot already me calls.  And I’m not the Pinot person that brags they drink Pinot, in fact I don’t even pursue Pinot.  I enjoy it, but don’t chase or hunt.  I want wine tonight to talk to me and convince me—ORDER ME—to write only wine, or writing.  Writing about writing, why not.  Winemakers making winemakers’ wines is the same thing, at least as I see it. 

Trying to talk myself out of going to class, but I know I have to go.  And I’m going to pass on the second pint, I think.

Or not.  Where is that girl.

Woke up, again thinking of simplicity.

How do I abridge my life to a point where it’s only a walk.  Carrying nothing, certainly no fucking backpack, no papers, no books even.  Just me and a notebook.  Lately I’ve been stepping around the office with just the vino composition book I bought recently, in Windsor, before the Aperture tasting.  Losing track of time.  When was that?

In house, Daddy alone.  Writing and trying to wake up, gather self from Pinot Noir haze and thought.  The Balletto last night singing more than speaking, more jazz than anything else.  Music… more music, that’s it.  Just what I need in my wild wine written life.  Have to get office supplies–  Yes I know I changed the topic quick, but that’s me.  Some say it’s free-flowing, or “stream-of-consciousness” which I hate.  So what is it, from the wine, to the page, from me to the page because of the wine…. Tired of writing wine every other word.  Think I forgot how to write.  Truly what I’m feeling this morning.

You forgot how to write from thinking too much about this page or anything.

So I sequester myself in the morning, that 2017 RRV Pinot Noir.  What do I do with her.  How do I translate her tongue.  Mystery, and a loving obstacle that if I do pass it, overcome or solve, I see more.  More of me and why I’m writing as I do.  About wine.  Doing everything I can NOT to be like them, the other wine journalists and writers lazily tossing overused and I’ll concede slightly catchy adjectives and description-chains to a magazine page and there they are, known wine people.  Disgusting.  I can’t do that.

Simplicity.. me and a notebook.  Where is it?  Did I forget to bring it in?  Did I leave it at the hotel?  Airheaded writer–  NO, it’s over there.  Right there on the table.  Was jotting something in it, I’m sure, actually I’m quite sure and admittedly excited to review my jots, I remember getting onto a new page.  Must have been the Balletto.  What did she say, sing….  More music, more song, more a whisper, something like a tryst of senses and superstition.  I had no expectations, no predictions, no demands.  It was just the ink, and the juice.

8:34 in the morning.  So what then after this entry.  Don’t think about it.  Get cash, go to the office store—no, don’t do that.  Just go get a latte.  This home-brewed shit isn’t saying a thing to me, other than it’s coffee and I need to keep writing.  It has caffeine, yes, but that’s not what I’m out for. Nothing is steering me but me. Maybe I don’t need caffeine.  Maybe I just need this quiet, this still house with no wife or kids.  Just me.  Not even Coltrane is playing, or some echoing slow BPM Lo-Fi beat.  Nothing.  Simplicity.  Finally at my old age tasting it.  And what do I think?  I don’t know.  I don’t want to dumb it down to simplistic descriptors.

Pinot Noir…. Now every Pinot I sip will have that ghost in my vision, all in my being and sight.  Should I be happy, fearful, encourage, curious?  Russian River, its terroir, now writing.  And I try to enjoy this coffee.  That’s all that’s at this kitchen island counter.  The way it should be.



Notes for book….

Simplicity.  Minimalism.  Less.. today I’m obsessed with just that.  That alone and not.  Anything associated with ease, a tranquil progression for the remaining time I have alive.  And who knows how much time the character has left in the story.  No one does.  Brought home work laptop as I conspired, and now cleaning through it.  Should go to  Office supply store, get a memory stick.  Wait.. don’t I have one here, somewhere.  Nearly positive I do.  I have one on my keychain, from Sonic, blend of a memory stick and beer bottle opener.

Wines for tonight… what at dinner, at parents’ house, then something here. No TV.  Keep the night simple.  Wine is about singularity.  Not so much simplicity, but not adding layers or ancillary contents and continents that not need be in that particular world.

Write about every wine you taste, drink, or/and think about tasting and drinking.  With Mom and Dad at Bottle Barn I acquired by way of gift from my still very sweet and motherly mother a bottle, blend, that’s meant to praise and honor, tribute Coffey Park.  “Barn Raiser”, its name.  Saving it.  Not to be opened yet.  Rather, the 2017 RRV Pinot from Balletto.  Had this wine a dozen times, at least.  What will she say to me tonight?  What is her plan?  I have mine, of course to sip and type, finally finish this book on wine and her versified and rhythmic, diarist, literary shapes and sequences.   More than I can handle, nearly.  The ideas, and this book… have three wines from the weekend—no, 4, to note further.  Funny how I sipped more of the Duckhorn SB than I did anything else.  What does that conclude or infer.  Maybe nothing.

Maybe everything.

Day 19


In the office, getting done what I need to.  Think I’m brining this laptop home with me.  To clean it up and add to certain projects that are here, in this whatever and whatever and screen.  Haven’t done a goddamn thing with the second wine essay.  And that’s all I have.  2.  Better than nothing I reassure myself. 

No run today, tomorrow then.  I know, famous last words that are more infamous than famous.  Setting alarm for 4, I swear it.  No big deal, oui?  Woke at 4 yesterday and went downstairs at the Ritz and wrote in the lobby, then the bar area by the window, that fireplace which I’m not sure was real.  Didn’t stick hand in to check or anything.

Wines yesterday, and last night…. Jot my wined notes from last night.  By far the most characterized and distinct, distinctive, the Chateauneuf.  Took a pic, can’t remember vintage or precise location, but it was one of those wines that made me clearer vision’d when it comes to wine and my relationship with her.  What to open tonight… Going to Bottle Barn with parents in a bit, going to cruise, look, hunt for more writing assignments, more essays.  Felt like I could talk forever about the Duckhorn SB I had last night with Jimbo.  Shared my thoughts on her, not so much an assessment but just a reaction and Jim essentially ordered me to write about wine that way and get it out there. Which I do already, but need do more of.  Driving back, as a inseparable ripple from his command, I thought of affiliate marketing, retail, sales and sales consulting…. Not sure where the idea is headed, but it’s headed somewhere.  In tandem with these essays.  Taking a notepad home, meant for quick and in-the-moment scribbles and musings, possibilities and visions however fantastic and fantasy-blown.

Looking at pictures in phone from last night, nearly forgot about the glass of Dashe Zin I had with Jim and Uncle Mike.  I never have Zin, or order it anyway, since I never find anything terribly animated or innovative about it.  But this bottle and is communicative ebb taught me about Zin translation.  There should be not just temperament, but color, shape, an invitingly expressive architecture about her. Maybe I’ll be buying Zinfandel tonight, hearing her speak to me as the Dashe did.  Have to stay in budget, as I need to fire up this wine blog, the one I’ve had for a while but let the url/domain expire. Why’d I do that.  Busy, lazy, one or both.  Doesn’t matter, you delirious planet of a wild wine writer—OH SHIT, have to type that page on DTC, send to SSU professor in wine biz dept. 

You can bet this Sonic laptop is coming home with me.  12:40 now, will leave at 1.  Meeting Mom and Dad at BB at 3, or that’s the plan.  What between now and then… Stop at a winery?  Need to, and want to, get home and have lunch, the leftovers from night last.  Maybe pair with some Rose, the Inspiration Vineyards beat I have open in fridge

12:48, leaving soon.  Just typed I want to say 90-100 words on DTC wine practice.  The drive back, really starting as soon as I pulled away from the Ritz, assembling ideas and Roads in this writer’s head.  Everything I do here at Sonic will get me to MY office.  And even when there, I won’t leave Sonic.  I can’t.

So then what do you want, well past now, with Sonic?

To speak it.  To affiliate sell and market.

I more than believe in what they’re doing here, and that’s just what has me intensifying wine projects, and prospecting in the wine world.  Wineries should NEVER do business with companies like Comcast, or devilish AT&T.  A bit off topic, but not. Not at all.  Sonic has me in wine, and wine has me committed to learn as much as I can as quick as I can at Sonic.

Month 6 of my AE story beginning Monday.  My plan…. Inventory conversations.  All of them.  With people inside the company, as well.                                                                                                                                                                            

Notified that we’re cleared to leave at noon.  NOON.  That’s much sooner than I saw happening.  What do I do.  Where do I go.  Jackson’s?  3rd Street?  Finish the fucking story, an old friend reminded me from HST’s F&LILV.  In the tech office, and no one wants to be here, but I feel perfectly perfect and composed.  Jackson’s could work most optimally, I’m seeing.  Seeing myself working and writing in some tucked away seat, maybe on that mezzanine, sipping an SB at first then a red.  Even if I do a solid 3 hours of wine writing work, that would leave 2 hours till class starts, at least.  Why is the JC making us work today?  Are the trustee idiots working?  The president, the emperor, the VP, the committee chair board wizard or whomever?  I should just cancel class.  Student texted me earlier and asked if her friend from out of town could come to class with her.  Of course I said yes, but she shouldn’t be going to class.  She should be with her friend, enjoying her evening before thnxgiving.  Now gripped by a mood, one where I just want to write and do nothing else. Finish the story.  How…. Wait, an idea.

Time for a break.  Where I’ll touch one of my projects.  Will come into office on Saturday, work for at least 4 hours.  Needed, especially with everything I’m to do.  Writing, finishing a book, taste new wines and write about them, sell wines on blog or at least connect people with bottles…. Find wines for people.  Be not so much a buyer, but… something like that.  Or maybe I shouldn’t let myself work anymore in wine’s world.  Just write.  Only put pages about wine into the world, with literary overlay.

No breaking, just a separation from desk.

Just got off a call, guy was not so eager to talk to me but he did and I just listened, and I landed an appointment.

Wondering if we’ll close early here at the tech office.

Desk somehow a mess this morning, and I’m thinking about it way too much.  So plan for start of day, after this entry—get rid of all paper, and clean computer.  Planning and planning, not anything like doing.  Doing is when you do, when there’s something produced.  Not thinking much about wine this morning, but essays, essays I need write, that I need to wake earlier and start and finish in the same day then maybe later edit.  Just thinking out loud and to self this morning.  Was told we’ll be leaving early, more than likely.  I have papers to grade, which I don’t at all want to do but have a new approach I’ll implement—hate that word, implement.  People around me talking and all I can hear is my own voice.  Lunch at 12, where, here…. Snack before so I don’t have to eat anywhere, go to one of the writing pods, or the zen den in the other building.  Finish another wine essay, the 3rd.  Took notes yesterday in comp book, can’t remember for the life of me what they are.

When let go early, go to new writing spot, where I was with leads group member last Friday.  Jack and Tony’s on RR Square.  Writer in corner, one glass of something, thinking that Sonoma-Cutrer.  The ’16.  That Chardonnay reminds me and will forever of the fires of ’17, when my family was in that hotel, Rohnert Park.  I detest Chardonnay normally but they had the shit on-tap and I couldn’t get enough of it.  And Chardonnay of all things.

Sitting here at my desk and not knowing what the hell to do.  Prospect, of course, or write new letters to prospects, or write something for the tech company.. make movements, make waves, be disruptive.  Disrupt everything.  If we do leave early, that means I have not much time if any time at all to do something, to either “make a difference”, another set of words I loathe, or contribute.

Write letters to prospects….

Re-write company’s thesis…..

Talk about this shit as you do wine, and literature…. Wine and literature—

Dog in other cubicle areas playing with some squeaky toy and I just want to yell for it to shut the fuck up.  Of course I don’t, rather embrace it as a combustive suggestion, to write more…. Write quicker, and with more animation, like little lectures on this company and its theses.  Everything is wine, I remind myself.  Everything.

The sound from that dog’s toy becomes irritating to a wild world and volume, level.  A world to its own particularity and volume.  I can’t stand it.  So I write through it as I tell students to do if ever in a such a seat.  Speaking of, I should write the students from last night, last night’s meeting of course being cancelled from a transformer, or multiple transformers exploding.

Just wrote students.  Stay in that professor, or educator, teacher or instruction, instructor, mode.  I keep telling self that especially after all the remarks, all the not so much praise but acknowledgement.  Find a spot to write, for lunch. Where… where….  That bakery down the street or—Wait, I already decided I’m staying here.  See?  SEE???????????  This is why you should never think as a writer or anyone wanting their own shop, or office.

One idea for an essay, then another… all from red wine varietals.  Cab, blends, the blend I was going to have last night at bloody Steele & Hops before turning into that parking lot from Steele to find the goddamn power was out.

The sounds of the office now make an odd, Wonderland-like orchestra.  Dogs chewing on some wooden, or plastic, or mock-bone thing, talking and typing, footsteps from a woman with boots of some kind or heels that are dull-sharp.  The dog chews again, someone in the NOC typing faster than I ever could hope to.  And it’s not even 9.  Good, I say to myself. More time to write… writing out a plan for day, and I don’t like doing that as I’ve found knowing me that’s the best way to ensure it doesn’t happen.

Wait, I’ll type it here—

= 3000 words before class.  (One essay, two 1000-word entries)

= Letters to prospects.  (1-3 versions)

= Papers graded creatively (1B)

= Lecture notes for tonight

= 1 pages on DTC for SSU contact

8:55.  Latte nearly done.  Moving money around, putting cash into new blog, the wine blog, my ‘vinovinevin’ project.  Approaching wine from more perspectives and perceptions than anyone would expect. 

Should start hitting list now, I guess.  Ugh… sluggish this morning.  New character, dog chewing, ignore it.  It’s more a challenge than I estimated.  So what then.  What to do…  Laptop on.  The other one, the one from her school.  Is it charged?  Hard to tell.  Don’t want to turn around and check and be pulled from this laptop key field.

Afraid I doomed my day’s aims by typing them above.  Shit.  What od I do.  Don’t want to delete them.

Then don’t.

Hear people laughing in other area, wondering what they’re laughing at, about.  I need more comedy, more jokes, joke about the tasting room, what people say, how tasting room managers don’t manage a goddamn thing much less themselves.  Forget about their staff, they can’t see straight nor can they concentrate on issues of gravity, even small microscopic importance.

With a mood you miss opportunity.  That’s why I’m not letting this one put me deeper in its palm.  Wine, writing about it, about HER. Giving her voice no but translating the bewildering and often underestimated extensiveness of her world and tongue.  What if that’s it, to this morning, to what’s around me, what do in writing the prospecting letters and calls to make… definition. Understanding.  Not conceptualization but the philosophy and communication, the life and personality of it.  CHARACTER.  That’s it.  Yeah I’ve written that before but…. This morning it sounds different, feels a new way.  WAIT… ACT ON THIS.

Starting with first letter.

Sipper Journal

Finished essay last night.  Editing tonight, or today at some point.  Meeting at Sonoma State in wine business department.  Day 15 of the Second Pass at 100 Days, the 100 days that will see me to the Road, you know, what I always say.  So much I want to do today, and so much story I want to, hope to put into the world.  In the office as an Account Executive, today, and walking to the building I thought of how this will shoot me to the writing moon, my writing moon.  The caffeine not working, not yet.  I haven’t been risen from the thick of some editions and walks.  Yesterday in the tasting room, not having any tours, but poured for a couple people, sold some bottles, two magnums of the ’15 to one guy, a wine club member.  And this recent invitation to possibly lecture on tasting room operations and hospitality, interesting.  How do I approach it.  Well, of course as me you sill sonofabitch I say to myself here at the desk enjoying the morning and the fact that I’m only in office three days this week.  Not necessarily happy about that, as I get more than much writing done here.  Anymore this is where my dream is, my manuscripts, the book about wine and about whatever, my essay collections, business notes, everything from this desk.

Yesterday Taryn sharing that Pinot Noir with us before any visitors, tasters arrived.  Blinding us on something, didn’t see anything, not the bagged bottle or her pouring it, she just came to the little seated area in the salon with four glasses.  One for me, one for Larissa and Loralei, Taryn with hers..  WE sat around and looked at the Master Somm sheets, something I always mock but being that this tasting I was with friends I’d bd engaged, not rattle off and machine gun in my asshole anti-industry jabs and vocal jots.  I knew it was Pinot, the wine herself was telling me.  It was obvious, loud, beautiful, palate tryst.  Tasting, easy to confirm.  This is Pinot.  Everyone around me agreed.  Taryn with her silence, admiring the color and sharing her notes and individual insinuations from the wine.  I wanted this one, I had to get it right, or not get it right but know that I don’t bullshit when it comes to wine.  Used to do this daily when helping out at Arista, even one time guessing a Tempranillo, vintage and varietal, even the ABV, but I said it was from Amador or something.  It was from Texas.

“Okay, so do you guys wanna guess what it is?” Taryn said.  Everyone said Pinot, but not much beyond that.  I shared my notes, “New World, Pinot Noir, 2016, and either from Sonoma County or Anderson Valley.” T reveals bottle, 2016 Anderson Valley Golden Eye Pinot.  One of my most sought and preferred Pinot producers ever, easily.  Wasn’t proud of myself, but intrigued, finely engaged and interested by what the wine said to me.  What wine herself was saying to me.  I saw something, felt something, more so than tasted.  Confirmed, this is all I should be writing, and the people…. Who sips with you.  What you talk about, where you are.  Here I am, supposed to be working, much as you can work in a tasting room or at a winery, and sharing ideas and interpretations on a voice, what walked from the purple puddle.