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Lake Merritt area

April 5th, 2002

Had The Thought
Thursday evening, a trip to the local library book store outlet during the noon hour where all of their books, already cheap, were another 40% off. I bought a copy of Jorge Amado's Gabriela, Clove and Cinnamon and Local Anaesthetic by Gunter Grass, both in hard bound and both, I discover, sitting up on my book shelves in paperback. Oh, well. About $4.50 for the both of them. Maybe their presence will get me to read them again. The third was Jerzy Kosinski's Pinball. I don't think I've read it, but since what few books I own by Kosinski still seem to be packed away somewhere I'll soon find out. If I've read it. Buying books I already own probably means something - growing old, growing careless, growing crazy - but I'll not fret. I'll write about it, I'll write about pretty much anything when I'm desperate, but that's not the same thing.

Another long day, this Thursday, with everyone feeling the pressure and still I haven't done squat to find another job other than to continue getting my personal life in order. They say times are tough out there on the job market, but all times are tough when you don't look. There is always a demand for people who know their stuff (make a mantra of this, my son, a counting of beads and repeat it - repeat it -repeat it) even for old guys in denial, even when times are tough, said he as he rode into the valley with the six hundred. Or does that not make any sense? The hell with it. I'm just too damned tired right now to think about it.

Friday, now, home after a couple of drinks across the street at the convention center.Near Lake Merritt, Oakland Which means, I suppose, with my one drink a night schedule (Except Wednesdays, when I'm allowed three. Or four. Or more.) that I should stop now two Guinness Stouts to the wind. So I will. Stop. Head relatively clear, eyes bright, tired, but not too tired, the sun setting behind the buildings across the street. Life seems OK. Life often seems OK. I complain, of course, but my life of pedestrian turns and hollows has always been OK. The thing about wanting to climb Mt. McKinley in a kangaroo suit with a guitar and a transistor radio turned out to be just a fantasy, one of those things you tell yourself you want, but you really don't. Why would anyone want to climb Mt. McKinley in a kangaroo suit? With a guitar, yes, with a transistor radio, naturally, probably these days with a cell phone, but I realized around the age of 35 or 36 that McKinley wasn't a necessary passage to make life complete. My life was complete, is complete. Really.

Ah, well. The sun is down, it's dark, Wuss is asleep on the chair beside me. I can't let him sit on my lap anymore, although I sometimes break the rule and get the occasional lap full of cat piss, but what the hell, there's a washing machine downstairs and I have plenty of pants and quarters. Don't know what's coming up for the weekend. Meet the truck on Sunday afternoon and move my stuff from the old storage container into the new storage container - excitement, excitement - and maybe a drive up to Napa tomorrow to have lunch with an old friend. Probably not, but I've had the thought.

The photographs were taken at different locations near Lake Merritt in Oakland.