instead i sat in the car and read a map and
spelled out entire sentences with my tongue
on the roof of my mouth where nobody could read them.

another unproductive day that leaves a bad taste. i requested nearly twenty movies from the library. i watched badlands and black narcissus. i deleted all my facebook information, but lacked the will to delete the account entirely. i know that if i did, i would just reactivate once this life picked up again. i emailed random people on craigslist, telling people that their taste in music was terrible, or that they shouldn't shop at wal-mart, just to see if i could get a response. so far, none yet. i read some of kim stafford's the muses among us, and i temporarily remembered why writing mattered. kim stafford once spoke at seattle university, and i was lucky enough to see him. it was one of those things that was so good, i couldn't talk about it. whitney summed it up best when he nodded and said, "sometimes you just gotta know when to throw down." that's the only way to describe kim stafford's performance. in the book, he quotes wordsworth who once said, "the most evocative poetry will be spoken by common people in moments of deep feeling." i'll have to try and remember that whenever i beat myself up over my inability to prepare a decent portfolio for an mfa.

monday through friday, my dad goes to work at uc davis, cleaning classrooms, waxing down halls. he carpools with my uncle mike and another guy named angel. angel never knocks or even honks the horn. my dad just takes his sweet ass time, and comes out when he feels like it. sometimes i catch angel sitting next to the garage and smoking a cigarette. when he greets me, it doesn't sound like an english "hello." it's more like a blend between a tagalog "hoy" and an english "hi," but it sounds mumbled. he reminds me a lot of pagoda. i've often thought about joining them, just to see how lazy my dad claims he gets to be. they leave at 4, arrive at 5, then don't start work 'til 7. he gets a fifteen, then a lunch break at 9, then they wrap up around 11 if they're good, midnight if they're not, but either way, they don't leave until 1. an 8 hour day, but, performed with skill, becomes 3-4 hours at the most. when he walks out the door, sometimes he says, "adios," and other times he says nothing. today, he almost forgot his backpack. he grinned, but didn't say anything. once, i looked in his backpack. he had his lunch, an extra shirt, a beatles book, and the sacramento bee. i don't know why i looked in there. i don't know what i expected to find.

my dad owns a gun. he used to keep it in his closet underneath all his sweaters, but it wasn't there the last time i checked. he never uses it, but still, he keeps it loaded. it earned him a criminal record back in the 70's. "shooting at the moon," my mom likes to call it. some guys were harassing uncle mike back then, so my dad, trying to protect "rep," drew the gun, and fired a couple of rounds into the air. no one was hurt.

this isn't really what i wanted to write about. i don't know why i never edit these entries. i just put down whatever and then click "publish post." things are less complicated that way.

yesterday, walking back from rich's house, a girl wearing a nightmare before christmas t-shirt was walking in the opposite direction. i wanted to say, "cool shirt," or something equally lame, but i held back. it reminded me of the time dave from the zine on subbing wanted to hum a propagandi (or some other terrible punk band) song when he saw some kid wearing the band's shirt. he didn't do it, either.

there was a point in time when a less cynical, less disillusioned, idealistic me would say anything to just about anyone. i summon that power from time to time, but lately, it ain't easy.

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