I saw someone was mining my archives of December, 2007, so being bored, I went there, scrolled down to the bottom, and read my way up.
After a bit, I said to myself 'Damn! This guy is good!'
My, how things change.
I can't write my way out of a wet paper sack anymore. I'm tempted to threaten to quit again, but that has become boring, too. I can hear everybody saying "Just shut up and quit already, dummy!" And they're right. Writing that used to flow like a breath of warm air over the Fairy Queen's naked belly, now just moves like sludge from a shit-factory.
Ah well, just another inevitability I have to accept.
I note that Rush is taking more and more time off, lately. He used to talk like I used to write...easily, glibly, naturally. Now, he's forcing it. He doesn't take time off because he can, but because he has to. I understand.
On this, the first of many more days of summer, I sit under a sky that God has shaded in graphite, and cool rain spritzes down occasionally. The college students are flying south, and we get to have possession of our little town for a few months, and not risk death at every intersection, or be affronted by rude men and women children in our theatres and restaurants.
When something you love to do becomes work, well, guess what. It's work. All that bullshit talk about 'craft'? Yep. It marks the declination where your hobby, your passion, became work. And then somebody(s) hits my tip jars and I feel obligated to pay a debt.
I find that it is not a bad feeling.
I spoke of this once, some time ago: I was at the Riverfront Farmers Market, where folks sold their wares, and you cannot get any fresher vegetables, or eggs, or honey than they proffer there.
It began to rain (hey, Oregon) and the kids and I took shelter under the cover of a city bus stop, while the wife continued to shop, scuttling from covered vendor to covered vendor.
Sitting on the bench was a boy of perhaps fifteen years, playing a guitar. He was playing classical music, and the kids and I watched him, entranced, as he shifted effortlessly from style to style, song to song, his eyes closed, feeling the music, making us feel it, taking us along for the ride.
Finally, I fished in my pocket (I don't carry a wallet) and pulled out about six bucks, as I recall. All I had on me. And I tossed it into his open guitar case there on the bench beside him. His eyes, slitted, took it in, and though I couldn't imagine him getting any better, he did, playing his heart out, like the caged bird sings.
Finally, his Mom came along and broke the spell, or I'd likely still be standing there now. The wife beckoned to me, completing the exorcism, and the kids and I scampered over to see what she wanted.
Anyway, sorry for the poor fare I have been serving here at my establishment, lately. Things'll get better. Or they won't. We shall see. What there is of my life is just fine. I'm no more morose and unhappy than usual.
Have a great Sunday. Go punch a papist for me.