Wednesday, November 13, 2002

Cannons are like little appointments with God. That little ball of melted lead flying to its fate. Maybe a pile of dirt, microcosms and ants and, of course, the cannon ball itself, affected by the universal flux. Or maybe a smack to the brain of an unsuspecting warmongering fool human. That's my deity. The wormy wriggling complexity of existence.

Got a call from Debra Jensen Dehart at the Beloit Daily News saying she doesn't need my stories for this month's edition. Fine, I say, the deadline for said stories comes at inopportune time as I prepare for Janesville presentation tomorrow. Tonight I will get gear together and write a bunch of notecards about points I want to make. Call my folks and secure slide projector. Blah blah blah. See first paragraph. God is in the details. God is in the movement.

Still dragon ass with this cold, making me all hoarse and coffee and losing my voice. Sound like a smoker. I told old smoker friend Steve it wasn't fair I had to non-smoker suffer while he's all chimney clear-voiced. Maybe this is cancer. Maybe it's the big one. Because of my previous history with the palpitating heart every little episode of heart-burn or over-exuberant stomach gurgle is misconstrued as the big one. (Fred Sanford : "I'm coming to join ya, Elizabeth." He finally did. Grady's dead too. Lamont's still kicking. Esther, the purse weapon sistah, I don't know if she's still kicking. She seemed old in the 70s).

So, why write about my life in this journal? I try to keep a diary of some sort, and this is it. So egotistical, self-centered. Or as Steve Hardt said in an e-mail, "It's all about you." But I'm just a normal, boring meat and potatoes Midwest conservative beer drinking sometimes church-going agnostic overalls wearing coffee stains on his t-shirt hoarse voiced slightly gutted and getting slimmer hiker nature loving fool. ME is all I got. Even with love of wife and family and friends.

I will leave behind a mountain of words behind when I die. And whether I am a published leather patch elbow book touring boddhisatva literati prolifica or not, my heirs will have reams of mouldering print to wade through. And my printed words in newspapers will survive on micro-fiche and Internet databases.

Speaking of posterity, when I went to NIU about a year ago I went to the library and got into their microfiche of the DeKalb Daily Chronicle and found a couple articles and columns I wrote. Stupid conceit, to be sure. But as doubt creeps in, as I falter and hem and haw and procrastinate over the next step I will take this writing, I can go to my in-laws' farmhouse, climb to the rafters of the chicken coop where our stuff is stored, and look through three boxes of clips, remants of 10 years off and on in the newspaper business, from junior college to college to the northwoods and all points in-between. So fricking what if I don't have any major magazine credentials yet? Persistence, boy. And faith in your abilities. And even though you are a procrastinating SOB, you will get around to it. Have patience in yourself. All things in good time and time for all good things. Your journey is just begun. Blah blahy blah

I gotta go make dinner.

Screw that. I'll do Chinese.

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