Coffee Log, Day 177


Coffee: Cafe Pajaro, Extra Dark Roast, Trader Joe’s Brand

I watched a Twitch stream put on by the #1 ranked Elder Scrolls Legends player, recorded this afternoon. Elder Scrolls Legends is a competitive digital card game.

#1 was a young man in a nice chair in a white room. He was calm. He won some games then he lost one. He was less calm. #1’s opponent got good cards. He played them better. A few minutes and it was over.

I’m not one to watch ESL streams but tonight was special. I sat on the carpet, R (my roommate) sat in the chair. A couple plays later #1 was done. As it turns out, his opponent – for both of his two losses – was R.

It’s nice to know a celebrity. Strange to know that in 2018 you can be famous for five seconds before everyone forgets about you. Well, everyone except your friends.

There’s joy in a good game. These days, juggling work and writing, red-eyed aspirations, it’s easy to feel guilty about picking up a controller. But there’s joy in a good game, simple pride in a good competition. We’re cubs in a jungle wrestling with each other; something just as savage but less brutal than what you see on the news.

Congrats, buddy. Thanks for reminding me how important it is to sit down some days to play.

Currently Reading: LaRose, Louise Erdrich

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“Life is more fun if you play games.” – Roald Dahl


Coffee Log, Day 128


Coffee: Fair Trade Ethiopian Medium Dark, Harris Teeter Brand

I read two articles:

1) reading for leisure in America has hit an all time low.

2) attention is directly related to motivation

These articles confirmed a bias I’ve held for some time: writers don’t know how to swagger anymore, to be cool. Think of your favorite authors; find a book, their dust-jacket photo – more than likely you see a close-cut portrait, crossed arms, your grand-aunt-or-uncle at Bridge night – a bad bridge night, where no-one’s drinking, no-one’s betting, the TV’s suffering 700 Club re-runs, and Peter’s on a diet so he brought celery sticks instead of his famous brownies – where the hell’s my motivation?

But then, the old artist’s life is unsustainable. Lots of great men and women put salt and pepper on a .45. And really, who’s got the money or time or optimism to live in cynical abandon? Writers need a swagger, but one that works in 2018.

What does that look like?

The student in me says: look at hip-hop, Twitch streams.

The writer in me says: well, look at me.

Currently Reading:

History of Wolves, Emily Fridlund (2017 Man Booker Prize Shortlist) (FINISHED!!! Unforgettable; will post a review this weekend)

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“A word after a word after a word is power.”  – Margaret Atwood