Coffee Log, Year 3, Day 1


Coffee: Organic Medium Roast, Don Pablo’s

I took a walk. I went m old route down the Cary Greenway, the bit of trail that cuts from Seabrook to Maynard. I haven’t had this walk since summer. he trees were green, the dogs were out, but the grass was dead. It’s been raining. I expected to see snakes. I didn’t see any snakes.

I took a week off from the coffee log. I woke up late this morning and didn’t feel like writing. I made coffee and had a big bowl of cereal. I watched the sun go to noon. My apartment felt comfortable, but a little used, like old boxers. This is the longest I’ve lived somewhere other than the house I grew up in, I’m going on four years. I’ve got a lot of memories. The older I get, the more those memories are just lost socks, nothing too important. You can always buy another pair.

And here I am at Year 3. Today’s the anniversary of the Coffee Log and of Livesay Writing. I’ve thought about stopping. Recently, I’ve been preoccupied. Work’s got it’s eyes on me, and my personal life is full. A couple years ago I was burning alive. That fire’s been put out.

I was looking at my bookshelf yesterday. It was early morning, the sky was just a little cloudy. I counted up the books I’d bought for classes back in college, and for pleasure, and the ones I’ve yet to read. I have nicks of personal mementos on the shelf now. A few cards, a lighter. I looked at those too. I thought: ‘here’s a lot of things to talk about.’ And when I thought that, I figured I might as well give it another year.

Welcome to round 3 of the Coffee Log. We all keep changing, and I don’t have the heart for promises, but I appreciate all your company along the ride.

Currently Reading: Giovanni’s Room, James Baldwin

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Thank God for books and music and things I can think about.

Daniel Keyes, Flowers for Algernon

Coffee Log, Day 183


Coffee: Americano from Crema Cafe, Cary, NC; I drank it by the cafe window; the roast was bright for an espresso; girls and boys happened by, old women talked about their grandsons’ first days at school; the environment overpowered the taste.

For the first time in a season, I took a walk around the neighborhood. Farther than the apartments, I crossed the dead Thursday afternoon, cut through beating sun, and found shade on a Cary trail. It was calm. It was good. It brought back memories of talking on the phone to him or her, walking this way last year when I was still a bookstore worker with lots of weekdays off. Dandruff autumn, coming back around to you.

I’ve been doing this blog for six months now, only missed one day. To those of you who’ve read one, two, however many posts: thanks. I’ve grown a lot. Maybe you have too. I started this thing on a whim, no real goal, and I still don’t have a goal, but the whim feels a bit firmer, bread rising.

Here’s something I believe: the everyday is magic. A boring, stinky, uneventful magic, but magic all the same. I finished reading LaRose. It paints real characters in larger-than-life situations. I liked it a lot in the end, but it’s pretty contrary to my vision for the world and my work in it. I think real life is made up of larger-than-life people stuck in toothpaste tubes, two-piece suits, pin-stripe dresses; the gooey caramel core of the mundane. I hope my Coffee Log catches a bit of that – licks the stiff surface, dalliances toward the weird magic inside.

There was a fuzzy bug on the trail. It walked sporadically, caught on concrete. In the bleeding sun, the bug looked melted, wispy, a ghost. I realized it must be the Guardian God of every old phonecall I’d taken on the path. Heartbreaks that crunched like new winter ice, thawed now. I almost touched him. The bug saw me coming and shimmied to a patch of shade. Out of the light, it was just a caterpillar.

Currently Reading: LaRose, Louise Erdrich; FINISHED!! Will have a review soon

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“But nowadays I really miss my fucking idols, so that’s the title.” – Trippie Redd, Missing My Idols


Coffee Log, Day 100


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

I was in a hard place when I started this blog. My work of three years had laid me off. My third attempt at getting into an MFA program had fizzled. Ideas walked my arms like ant-lines but none of them were getting on the page. I was in love.

I’d been meaning to blog for a long time. I’d known that consistency and diligence are like salt and pepper to good work and my writing needed seasoning. Hell, my life was pretty bland at that. There’s a fear, though, in putting yourself out: what if no-one reads? What happens when your blood comes out and there’s no-one there to catch it?

Well, you all caught my blood. I hope you know I’ve caught some of yours. The biggest surprise since February has been all the words I’ve discovered from you. I’ve visited sites by Swedish poets, Filipino fashionistas, American pastors. You’ve taught me good business and good writing. Some of you have tipped me off to good places to eat. And I’ve seen so much coffee I could stay awake only off the fumes.

So here’s to 100, and here’s to 100 more. We’re all in this together. Thanks for helping me feel that. Hope I return the favor.


Currently Reading:
Americanah, by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

The Way of Kings, Brandon Sanderson

“I like people the enjoy life, cause I do the same.” – Lil Wayne



Coffee Log, Day 31


Coffee: Honduras, Cooperativa Raos

One month. One big chunk of a year. Apple pie.

I started this site a month ago. Since then, I’ve had a cup of coffee every day. Well, I probably would have done that anyway, but you know. Thanks for sticking along for the ride. Thanks for reading. As of today, I’m adding a button to the site (to the right if you’re on a PC, down at the bottom of every page if you’re on a phone, and a link at the bottom of every blog post) to send a tip to the coffee jar.

No worries, no pressure, but if you like what you’ve been reading and want more, buy me a cup. Any coffee purchased with these funds will be featured on my blog and I’ll give you all kinds of props and thanks for supporting what I do (unless you’d rather be anonymous of course).

So anyway, cheers. On to month number two. Who can stop after one slice?

Currently Reading:
Tar Baby, Toni Morrison

“Even bad coffee is better than no coffee at all.” – David Lynch

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