Coffee Log, Year 2, Day 274


Coffee: Maxwell House Master Blend, Office Coffee

I read an article about a fake university in Michigan. It was called ‘Farmington,’ was set up by the US Government, by ICE, and was designed to find foreign students who were looking to exploit college-based exceptions to immigration laws to retain stay in the country. That’s the propaganda, anyway. There’s more: it had an ad budget. ICE took taxpayer dollars to fund recruitment campaigns. They targeted Indian immigrants and current people on US soil whose visas were close to running out. They touted Farmington as a career-focused option, a way to move forward, a few breaks of light behind a long tunnel. So people signed up.

The funny thing is, there weren’t any classes on campus. Everything was online, and even these courses were taught sparingly. Some students thought this was strange, others rolled with the punches. Those that were worried reached out to the administration (read: secretly ICE) who ducked and dodged their questions and encouraged them to stay on. Fears were abated, worry turned into the most common of emotions, a resigned disappointment, and the young men and women trying to better themselves in America carried on.

That’s when the trap sprung. ICE cut off the veil and sent in the troops. They arrested dozens of the students, deported more. When the students asked why they were being deported, ICE told them their student Visas were invalid because they were not attending a real school. When the students asked why they were being put into prisons the ICE agents told them they should have known better, and locked the doors.

Amidst all this, at least, us taxpayers recouped some of our money – ICE charged the immigrant students $12k a semester tuition to attend; the students all paid; no news yet about them getting their money back.

There’s a thin margin between a modern government and the mob.

Currently Reading: Another Country, James Baldwin

Support Relief for Family Suffering at the Border  – RAICES DONATION CAMPAIGN

‘It is not necessary to accept everything as true, one must only accept it as necessary.’ ‘A melancholy conclusion,’ said K. ‘It turns lying into a universal principle.’

Kafka, The Trial

Coffee Log, Year 2, Day 178


Coffee:  Maxwell House Master Blend, Office Coffee

My roommate was skinning chicken on the kitchen counter. She had a long sharp knife, a pair of rubber gloves, and a trashbag for the bones. Little pink lumps like a bunch of beetles turned inside-out. They crawled around the counter and registered for a one-night residency teaching anatomy classes in my head.

I’d been thinking about cooking something tonight, but instead I went with cereal.

My thumb’s mostly healed from where I’d cut it chopping onions two weeks ago. The skin’s a little lower like a crater and it’s very red and smooth. I imagine I’ll have a scar for a while. Call me twisted, but there’s something seductive to me about having small scars. Knicks and marks that only you and people closest to you will ever notice – notching on the wall of a body prison.

I talked to a man today who’s moving to Wilmington. It’s got good business for him and he wanted to be closer to the ocean. Eventually, that plastic bag full of chicken bones might find itself in the same Atlantic waters. It’ll travel on the back of a garbage truck, settle in a landfill, let in enough light and moisture for the bones to decompose (but only partially), then, during a bad thunderstorm or errant hurricane, it will wash off the heaps of trash and run from creek to creek to the nearest river, tumbling in the waves, occasionally getting caught on overturned trees or submerged boulders, but finally – inevitably – it’ll get swept out to sea. One morning, years from now, the man who moved to Wilmington might find it, but will he recognize it for what it was? Or will all that time in the ocean have stripped it so clean that it’s barely a trashbag, much less a bag of chicken bones?

There’s no telling what comes back to you. And often, we don’t even recognize it when it does.

Currently Reading: Queen, Suzanne Crain Miller

Support Relief for Family Suffering at the Border  – RAICES DONATION CAMPAIGN\

I am always trying to convey something that can’t be conveyed, to explain something which is inexplicable, to tell about something I have in my bones, something which can be expressed only in the bones.

Franz Kafka, Letters to Milena

Coffee Log, Day 343


Coffee: Locomotive Blend, PennyCup Coffee

Today I put a little bit of tapenade in my reheated pasta. It spiced it up a bit. It was nice.

I don’t have much to say. It was a long, busy day. The kind of day where you do so much you don’t feel like you’ve done anything. And now that it’s almost over there’s that panic like you’re going to lose something you can’t get back. I end a lot of days like that: lying in bed thinking about what I must have done wrong.

There’s two edges to pressure: you need it if you’re going to become anything; but it eats away at you every step.

I talked to a couple guys who didn’t believe in government for religious reasons. I thought that was a little ominous, but then one of them told me a story about how he saved a cockroach from getting squished by his wife. He took it outside. That made me feel a little better, or maybe just confused.

Novel Count: 20,733

Currently Reading: Killing Commendatore, Haruki Murakami

Support Relief for Family Suffering at the Border – RAICES DONATION CAMPAIGN

As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect.

Franz Kafka, The Metamorphosis