Coffee Log, Year 2, Day 86


Coffee: Maxwell House Drip, Office Coffee

One of my Japanese friends had her birthday this week and is posting pictures on insta about it. There’s a cake, a mother, and a lot of white roses outside a restaurant somewhere, probably Tokyo. I didn’t know this friend too well five years ago, don’t know her any better now, but I like seeing her happy pictures. The same feeling as your father reading you that picture book before you went to bed: there’s all these beautiful stories happening while you sleep, keeps the nightmares away.

I had a long day of doing pretty much nothing at work. Well, I tried to do something – making calls, setting appointments, canceling appointments – but it didn’t go anywhere. There are days like that. Now I’m home and drinking white wine thinking to myself about a lot of different things, but mostly about stories.

I watched the last episode of Game of Thrones. Before that, I’d only seen the first. So now I can say I’ve book-ended that series, which is kind of a good feeling, engaged but guiltless, like 100 calorie angel food cake. There was only one moment that stuck to me in the finale: Tyrion says (and I’m paraphrasing) “Nothing is more powerful than a story.” The monologue surrounding that concept came off a little cheesy, but most obvious, true things are cheesy when you come out and say them.

I talked to an old friend tonight. She sounded the same and not the same, that time-traveling spiral that all old friends get caught in. She’s working at a museum, and more specifically on a project to give tours to the visually impaired. She said a big part of it was telling stories. “You’re still supposed to talk about color, talk about yellow like being out in the sun.” It was poetic. It made a lot of sense to me.

Currently Reading: NOTHING! Couldn’t get back into Bourdain, no matter how much I tried; will pick a new book soon

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She wore her yellow sun-bonnet,
She wore her greenest gown;
She turned to the south wind
And curtsied up and down.
She turned to the sunlight
And shook her yellow head,
And whispered to her neighbor:
“Winter is dead.”

A.A. Milne, When We Were Very Young

Coffee Log, Day 192


Coffee: Sumatra Medium-Dark Roast, Trader Joe’s

An afternoon thunderstorm chased summer away. It was cool for a second, porch weather. I sat on the outside. The water went sideways, some got on me. Trees looked like port authority waving in ships; the gutters spewed like ballast water.

I tried to read a book, Ali Smith’s Autumn. Couldn’t get into it. It’s cheeky. It’s playful. The writing is impressive but in a self-aware way that turns me off. I put the book down and tried writing. I had a yellow legal pad and cheap pen. My father would scrawl notes on endless reams of yellow paper at his law practice. They’d take on their own lives. Late afternoons, playing in office corners while my parents finished work, I’d fence with envelope openers and follow the legal pad fairies into this or that crevice. I tried writing, but nothing came to me today.

Neighbors threw a party in the rain. I heard their umbrellas: ‘pat-pat-pat!’ They brought their kids and camped the gazebo. Kids played in puddles, pink and blue bathing suits. It was nice and busy. Their sounds went well with the storm.

It’s late now. The storm’s gone. I’m full of good food. I’ve had a few beers. Night sticks to me like a messy spiderweb.

Currently Reading: Autumn, Ali Smith

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“A little self-knowledge is a dangerous thing.” – Malcolm Lowry, Under the Volcano