Okay, hands on keys…write. Self Pity: The act of feeling sorry for one's self. Got it. I'm all hooked up on that one today. I've got those low down, rainy day, remember when, broken hearted, forlorn, double dealing, aces and eights kind of blues today. I got up this morning early and I fought, I really did, I fought hard but got knocked down in the first round, cut my lip and never really recovered. I prayed extra hard too, like an evangelist with a church full of people, just getting ready to make the walk to the pulpit. I fixed some coffee after I walked away from the pulpit (the sermon didn't go well) and went to shake hands (at least) with the rest of the day. I filled out a job application to work at Allen's Boots, before I left, because I love boots and because when you walk in the store it smells like fresh leather. I looked online for other jobs, but there wasn't much in the job market today. I went and dropped off the application at Allen's Boots. Note: Ironic that I applied for a job at Allen's Boots with holes in my socks. For a moment, I thought they were going to say, "Mister Shurtz, can you take off your boots please? We'd like to examine your socks." (Don't worry, I have other socks without holes, it was just one of those things, I mean, they were clean!). They didn't of course, but they looked at me suspiciously, "We'll call you," they said. I smiled, "Yes, I hope you do, I really do, I love boots…" (stupid response, but what did you expect from me today?)
Afterwards, I went to my noon meeting on Bouldin Avenue. I had one of those meetings (self pity) where I wanted to leave every five minutes. The first one in a long time when I felt this way, like no one liked me, like my hair was screwed up, like my breath was bad, like my socks had holes in them that no one could see really, but that's—what I thought. Everyone here knows that I have holes in my socks. I did stay in my chair, though I was a little upset that Lisa sat in Bob's old chair and I couldn't sit there. I especially wanted to sit in Bob's chair today. After she got her two year chip at the end of the meeting I felt a little guilty. I went to the dog park afterwards but because it was on again off again rain, no one was there. Baby ran around playing with invisible dogs while I braved the cold and windy day. She kept running over to sit and look at me, as if to say, "Can you whip up some dogs for me to play with?"
I'm really trying to think of some profound things to say, but there isn't anything profound about me today, perhaps there never really was, perhaps I'm faking being a writer, just shut up and write, the writer says. I think that public journal writing is a little insane, but it forces me into the writing just like a production date of a play forces me to finally write a play. Okay, I have to have an audience, I have to display my thoughts if I am to write them down. Ego driven. Self Serving. See the kind of mess I've made of myself today? I came home from the dog park, made some lunch and read out of 'The Musician's Handbook'. What a mistake that was, the eighth round and I'm almost TKO'd by that one. It’s a very readable book, but not one that is encouraging to a musician like me, longer on years and shorter on business knowledge. Jesus, would someone just walk by my door, hear me playing a song from inside and discover me? What's the deal? I'll tell you what. If I had that job to go out and discover people I would look for the most obscure ways to do it. I'd want a story behind every genius I found. I'd find that girl slinging syrup at The Waffle House. I'd find that kid on the street, tattooed with rhymes that roll. I'd sign that guy in the park with holes in his socks. I'd find a guy playing his guitar, isolated in a little apartment in the North of Austin. I'd put my ear to the door and really listen to those lyrics. I'd slide a contract under the door, sight unseen. I'd sign that older woman, who had to take to whorin' to pay for her kid's piano lessons. See, I'd look for the story behind the music. Whose that guy who went up in The Appalachian Mountains and discovered Doc Watson? I want to talk to that guy.
Okay, I feel really old today. I went to an improvisation class tonight with mostly twenty somethings. I could keep up with the references but couldn't really get my head around the silliness of an improvisation class. The teacher, though, was really good. He felt for me, maybe a little to much so, Jesus, how many times have I had to go into a situation and prove myself again? I don't know if everyone didn't laugh at my improvisations because I was an old guy or if I just wasn't funny tonight. That's the worse thing in an improv class, silence. I'm a drama guy, Okay? I don't do silly unless I'm talking to my dog. I mean, I thought, "Do you smell bacon?" was really funny! Silence. Bacon smell fell flat. Everything today and tonight seems like such a struggle. I know struggling with a day behooves us all, but I just feel plain weird today. Like I'm up above, watching myself bump my head against the wall because it will feel good when I stop. Shit, this is going no where. I was going to work on a poem but really, that's not going to happen. I could probably write a haiku about bacon, but I don't really do haiku. I really like the long form poems, the ones where people get part way through and think, "Christ, this poem is really to long." The same thing I thought when I started to read Whitman, I thought, "What in the hell is this guy even talking about?" Then one day, I started to get it. Sometimes, you just have to keep at it. I started reading Proust again, 'Remembrance of Things Past', thinking, I just finished 'Crime and Punishment' I can certainly take on Proust. Jesus! How many pages can a guy talk about going to sleep!? Many, that's how many. I threw the book across the room, I'm done with the second round of Proust.
I can't really return to the pulpit because I got thrown out of the church. I'll be forgiven eventually, but probably not tonight, everyone has gone home… this day is shot to hell…