Another birthday approaches. That can often mean the sort of deep navel dive that requires oxygen tanks, acetylene torches, and a rescue party on stand by. What have I accomplished? What is left to accomplish? Have I reached my potential? Where did all the years go?
Not gonna do it. (Those readers of a certain age should read that sentence in the voice of Dana Carvey imitating George Bush.)
The tide of Yule is ebbing this annus horribilis. (Has the near match between annus and anus ever been more appropriate?) Good riddance, I suppose. Still, I’ve made the best of it. I hope you have as well, dear reader.
Is there a more appropriate book for this year than Boccaccio’s Decameron? Not that I’ve personally holed up in a countryside villa to ride it out. I’m one of those who still goes into the office everyday. But I understand there’s quite a bit of that sort of voluntary seclusion going on. Read even just the first story of TheDecameron: duplicity, corruption, malfeasance rewarded. Timely, right? (I figure I can make such a nebulous comment without offending anyone; it’s applicable enough that you can assume I’m referring to the bugaboos of your choice.)
Anyways, I thought I’d toss that out in case you’re looking for a book recommendation. That’s about all I have time to write today. I’m busy. I’m trying to finish the second draft of my third Karl Thorson novel by the end of next week. Then I hope to complete the third draft of my Cesar the Bravo novel by around the New Year. I generally take Sunday off to write this weekly post, but I can’t do it if I’m going to meet my self-imposed deadlines.
You may have noticed that the West Coast is on fire. I certainly have. My house has been blanketed by an apocalyptic miasma for days. At least the color has shifted, from a Martian orange, to powdered-urine yellow, to what it is now, a sort of dry white fog.
It is Father’s Day. I’m busy enjoying it, so this will be short. Let me just say that I can think of worse ways to burn a couple of hours than heading to woods with a minor arsenal and a hundred bucks or so worth of ammunition.
As with many of you, home improvement projects have played an unusually prominent role in recent weeks. Now, I’ve not had the excuse of being home with time on my hands. I’ve been going to the office every day. Nonetheless, at the behest of MBW, we’ve been buckling down, checking off items on our to-do list.
This web log post brought to by the letter “A” for annoyance. And anger. And abashment.
Yesterday I spent a couple of hours in the afternoon at McMenamins’s Hillsdale Brewpub for the annual Battle for the Belt, wherein the myriad McMenamin’s brewpubs compete for the popular vote of best beer. Each one enters a beer. Trays full of four ounce pours are provided. We drink, we fill out a top three ballot. We drop our ballots in the box. Simple enough.
I grew up in the Northwest. Rain is the norm. Wet weather can limit activities, hinder weekend recreation. I recall one of the go-to choices for a rainy Saturday was a trip to Bonneville Dam. Tour the museum, count the fish, visit the hatchery. Not a lot of pizzazz, perhaps, but it can occupy a kid for a few hours.
Some days you just need to punish innocent steel plates and sheets of paper. And as a writer, it is good to remind yourself of the sounds, smells, and feel of firearms. You think, “I really ought to go back and revise that scene, get in at least a mention of the noise.”