What Goes 'Round
I returned from Portland this afternoon after attending aunt Vivienne's funeral with my mother and sister in Seattle . A good flight, a good and cathartic family reunion under less than happy circumstances. I don't like writing about it, not through any particular reticence or embarrassment, but because in the writing I must mix calculation and artifice with the not just personal to me, but that which is personal to my entire family, and serve it up in a sense, like any other narrative I might write here looking for a response. That's not what a death in the family is about, although I believe that writing, the very process of writing it down, audience or not, is a good and necessary way for a writer to work himself through troubling events.
This isn't, by the way, some stinky little back handed slap at the writings of other journalers who have worked through their grief in their journals after the death of a child, a parent, a brother, a sister. As I said, for a writer, writing it down is a powerful tool to examine your own pain and suffering. No tears when I first heard the news from my sister, but tears when I wrote a very short entry later that evening. I found myself calculating, writing in some sense for effect, and stopped, and cut it down to a short bare bones statement of fact and thought "what a fuck head" and removed it from the index.
Still, writing, attempting to put down on the page what I hoped were honest sentiments, even though I was consciously writing and rewriting those thoughts and sentiments for what was essentially effect, perhaps because I was trying to write honestly and for effect, as every writer must always write, was helpful. It made me think and rethink my history and relationship with my aunt and in the process let out pain and hurt I only dimly understood. Best, for me, at least for now, to not do it here.
My aunt is fine, a good woman who lived a long and successful life in both the public and the private sense of success. It's the kids who have to suck it in and figure it out, who have always had to suck it in and figure it out. And carry on. As they should.
A photographer who lives in Alaska signed my guestbook, thanking me for some information I'd posted in 1997
about a purchase I made from a mail order camera company located in New York City. Thanked me because he didn't place the order he'd been contemplating after he'd done an Internet search and found my review. I did a search on C.C.I. Camera City on Google and my negative review popped up about sixth on the list, right below three links to the company's own web site. I'm willing to bet my review, written long ago and posted in a neglected basement of this site (I assumed at the time I wrote it that it might be read, if I were lucky, by three or four people, none of whom giving a damn about mail order cameras), has obviously cost C.C.I. orders, certainly from anyone searching for them on Google. What goes 'round comes 'round.