What matters most
Wednesday September 21st 2016, 12:07 am
Filed under: Miscellaneous, Truly Tags:

What matters most is how well you walk through the fire.

Maybe those things that once seemed deep,and then seemed to be childish things, are returning, newly or differently profound.



Eleventh Fall
Monday September 19th 2016, 9:24 pm
Filed under: calendars,can't make that shit up,nextish,seasonal,tired Tags:

Having been shopping for child seats for a bike, not a great title, perhaps. But so it goes. 10 fucking years. 11 fall quarters. Thousands of students. And today, the 8th volunteer day, sorting canned goods at a food bank. The kids are alright (though, I know I wasn’t a kid at 18. Nope. Not at all.). Amusing that one of them was a junior-year-abroad from London, via TCD, who when I was describing my current book to a crowd tilted his head and said “Ashburnham House”?

Playing with the finally-upgraded new version of Logic, messing with vocals from North Oxford two? three? life-times ago.Double-tracking, re-pitching for harmonies and counter-lines, fiddling with pitch and timing for realism. Oh, the things you can do. Technology. Kids today. Etc.

Mostly, tired. But I try to begin fall with something more than the baseline of requisite enthusiasm. A few days in DC getting actual work done were a nice push to slough off the summertime sadness of another 6 weeks sold for money in a compromise I will always resent. Gonna be a busy year. It always is, but this one looks like more work and less ohmygodchildicanthelpfuckitivegotanexcusesorrybye.



headphones, and a few days
Thursday September 01st 2016, 11:53 pm
Filed under: nextish Tags:

Good-ish ones. Loud. Thumping with Massive Attack from 20 fucking years ago. Disconcerting for it to be so loud in my head and so quiet in the house. A sense that someone must notice how loud it is, someone will wake.

Redwoods. A grove. Needles and resin and leaves crunching underfoot amidst not-too-well-groomed paths. The smell Proustian, powerfully evoking a not dissimilar grove 400 miles away. Minus the Marlboro Reds to cut through the nature. Minus the girl in the wraparound skirt. Plus the little boy with mischief in his happy bright eyes.

A movie. Bad. A hero wearing eyeliner and a stony sulk.

A girl. In a little black dress and oxblood Docs, with a cigarette. Early 20s. It made me want to wear a gauzy black skirt and Docs and have a smoke. Though the lack of pockets always foxed me.

A friend, one of the few added late. Lapsing, losing, lost. So it goes. A visit apparently too much for the relationship to bear.

A friend’s wife’s teenage daughter. Wondering about scholasticism and syllogistic logic, humanism and the introduction of paper, trying to see a way through an infinite number of trees (or, more accurately, linen rags) that died for a contested God and were promptly printed upon. A spiral. A gentle suggestion that confusion means you understand what’s going on.

A wife. Offered a career. Years of building and doing and creating. Earned on her own, for her self, by her self. In a space that was mine but has become, limitedly, ours. But will with this become equally ours. Mansplaining, departmentsplaining, and churlish possessiveness not helpful. Champagne required, repeatedly.

A future, a little less contingent than the thin loose edges of contingency I prayed for. How things change. I should ride my bike and take the train, even if it means showing up to work a bit sweaty. Better sweaty than soulless, yielding the last few screams of protest against everything that’s wrong with this city. This city that it will be a long time before I don’t live in. This city that I can never quite escape.

Maybe a gauzy skirt, some eyeliner, and a bicycle. Or maybe a way of making sense of all the happinesses. The peace of the redwoods and the crunch of his little feet in green shoes on dried oak leaves. A California day that made sense, even though it always feels like I’m just visiting it against my will.