Coffee Log, Year 2, Day 177


Coffee:  Maxwell House Master Blend, Office Coffee

We ended up at a Chinese sit-down that had yellow walls, thick menus, and the word ‘love’ done up in streamers two times across the western wall. They were serving duck. Half the menu was duck, it seemed.

I had a view of the windows. I thought it might be raining but it was just the air-conditioner fogging up. We shared the place with two other tables, bigger groups, and they were speaking Mandarin or maybe Cantonese. The proprietress got excited when E said I was a vegetarian. She was sure to point out the part of the menu just for me.

I don’t often end up at new places on weekdays. We tried getting takeout from our old standby but it’s closed on Mondays, a fact none of us can ever remember. Sometimes it takes poor luck and bad planning to shake the dust and cobwebs off you. I settled on the House Tofu. It was good.

Currently Reading: Queen, Suzanne Crain Miller

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The only time they ever throw anything away is when it’s really and truly broken, and then they make a big deal about it. They save up all their bent pins and broken sewing needles and once a year they do a whole memorial service for them, chanting and then sticking them into a block of tofu so they will have a nice soft place to rest.

Ruth Ozeki, A Tale for the Time-Being

Coffee Log, Day 345


Coffee: Locomotive Blend, PennyCup Coffee

I’m writing this from a Chinese diner. I’m on a few hours of sleep. I’m coming off a ten hour workday. And that’s perfect, because you’ve got to be half-gone and strung out to appreciate a moment like this.

Outside is a bar with two guys smoking a permanent smell into their leather jackets. A busy patio, warmer weather, all their faces have lines even though no one is over forty. Someone lost is pacing the parking lot with his headphones on.

I need you to see this. You can’t see it, so I’ll write it down. It’s the grit and sulfur. It’s the sort of simple-awful reality that we all share. And it’s gorgeous. It’s inevitable: that there will always be a quiet corner of a struggling store to sit and wait to find yourself in. Despite all the times you get lost, the seat in the corner stays open. It’s not warm. It’s not comfortable. But it’s real.

Novel Count: 20,917

Currently Reading: Killing Commendatore, Haruki Murakami

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I feel anger oozing out my family portrait,

Who knew posing in the gutter could turn out so gorgeous.

Earthgang, So Many Feelings (lyrics)