1989.06

Tuesday, 06.22:

Found a ledge outside PGH to sit in the shade and try to write. I hung around after class for a few minutes this morning. A few others were talking with Karl at his desk. Pepe was still seated; I admit I wanted to talk with him, even fantasized about asking him to lunch.

I passed around a sheet of paper for those who didn’t mind including their names—thought I could type it up and make copies to give out on Monday. We will have our chapter 8 exam on Monday, and another exam on Thursday (before the holiday weekend begins). I want to take time to write out as many of the exercises as possible—I think I understand the concepts but I need more practice in applying them.

Called James yesterday afternoon and left a short message; also left a message for Tina. Both had called while David and I were in Cincinnati. Tina had apparently overslept and missed our Monday phone shift. I left word that it was no problem.

Hot again today, not much of a breeze, sky very blue, huge cumulus clouds. I lean here and glance up at passing men, look occasionally over at Pepe’s trashy blue station wagon parked in a handicapped space along the curb. I wonder if he’ll get ticketed. I’d like to talk with him—someone in class called him “a poet” last Tuesday—it would be good to meet another writer. I feel it is possible that this may be someone that Michelle knows from her classes.

Writing competition (poetry, I think) deadline this week: I had picked up a flyer on campus in May; now I don’t know where it is. Why not enter? Last week, the James White Review returned my story, “Empathy.” I think it can be whittled down, polished, but I’d like to send it somewhere else first.

Also reading a quarterly, Q, which I’d never heard of before. Many very short pieces, many that I like. Thought about sending “Evidence Unseen.” Also Hanging Loose: I should send some poems again soon.

I feel that I’m doing well in Spanish—the contrast between my performance in the class and my performance against my own standards is interesting. We read aloud today: I had practiced, thought about content and construction and meaning, practiced again this morning, thinking I was doing all right but realizing I had difficulty stringing words together. After hearing several others in class today I see that I’m ahead. But this doesn’t mean that I’m satisfied with my current proficiency.

David last night said that he’d be working late this evening, probably until seven. I’ve thought about going home, changing into my “junk clothes” and working in the yard, in the garden. But the two hours I spent working in the back yard yesterday, in the sun, gave me a headache that lingered all evening. Better to wait until late afternoon to work outside.

There is a stack of unopened mail, two weeks’ worth, to be dealt with. I must send a letter to the music club: they haven’t credited me for a CD I returned, and they sent me the wrong one in the last shipment. What a mess. I figure I owe about $18 but their bill runs close to $50.

I want: I want to hang around campus for a while, sit on this ledge writing, watching men walk past. I know that this is not time used productively—it just focuses my vague horny feelings on unattainable figures. Okay, what if someone were attainable? Obviously if I could be certain of that, I’d want to pursue it. Why allow my energies to be displaced in this way when I’ve spent a half-hour thinking about productive goals? (Because you’re horny, Ron.) But I’m almost always horny. It’s like saying that the sky is blue. There are many days when the sky is blue; this fact doesn’t impel me to make any particular behavioral changes.

Okay, I admit that though I am trying to take more time to write, today—on this ledge—in view of the blue station wagon—I’ve been hanging around hoping to have a chat with Pepe. There’s lots to do, Ron. Go home.