BY Michael

10/01 Direct Link
The sun is definitely shining brightly and it is now I realize that I most likely will go for a walk today, most likely before I play piano. I will just have to figure out whether to wear a jacket or not. It will be easy enough to look at the thermometer. If the temperature is below say seventy degrees I will wear a jacket. I have a jacket in mind. A dark blue London Fog. It is a light jacket. Possibly my favorite jacket these days. I wonder what will happen to my favorite jacket when I am dead.
10/02 Direct Link
We bought pumpkins at the store yesterday. Youíve been wanting to buy pumpkins for several days now. I could tell we had pumpkins in our future. Next you will want me to carve a pumpkin. I have a plan for the pumpkin carving this year. This year I will use the jig saw to carve the pumpkin. I will draw a face on the pumpkin first and then I will cut out the eyes, nose, mouth, teeth, whiskers and what all with the jig saw. No fighting with the steak knife. Iím sure it will work. What could go wrong?
10/03 Direct Link
You burn in the wind. You burn where you were born. You come crashing down like tall pine charcoal, sparks flying as your arms hit the ground. You burn. You are fuel for fire. Piled high like cordwood against the frost you are used up a stick at a time. You sweat into the ashes on the hearth and are swept up in the spring. You burner you. You burn like a rocket, lit fuse and moving out so fast that no eye can follow and like some solid pellet of fuel you eat away from the inside. You burn.
10/04 Direct Link
The night is squatting over the earth, houses aglow against her thighs. I see the sky through the tree tops, angled and splintered. Shapes are reflected against the glass from inside and they appear to be on the other side. And I am soaring maybe a little bit. Just a little bit but sometimes just a little bit of soar is all that is needed. Oh look! The earth is green. It is such a darkness that it cannot be seen. It is alight from the reflection of the wall behind. It is all hidden by the sloping night spine.
10/05 Direct Link
My eyelids fall like shutters across the upper half of my eyes. The glasses surround and bits of darkness intrude against the white glare. Am I mistaken? Do I see the pattern of veins from the backside of my eyeball? Were I at the office this would make me nauseous. A gaseous residue floating out beyond any nearby star. There is a trembling in my cursor. My thumbs must be hovering too close to the touchpad. This is stupidity. All this electronica will pass away with no paper trail to mark my passing. It is the parting of the thread.
10/06 Direct Link
100 Words Words for October 2016

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10/07 Direct Link
I was going somewhere but I forgot where it was. Maybe up against the hard concrete walls of my fatherís house. It is falling apart after sixty years. Maybe not falling apart but certainly in need of significant repairs. Just like my house was when I left it. It seems that all houses are just money pits. They scare me. I donít want my parentís house. I would like my parents to just live forever, fighting daily, my father throwing my mother out once a week. His house he says. As I remember he built it for her. Something happened.
10/08 Direct Link
I look at a book on my shelf. Race, Language and Culture by Franz Boaz. It was first published in 1940. It is the book on my shelf. I have no memory of how it got there and I am considering reading it because it is the book on my shelf. There are many books but this is the first one, top left. I wonder if I should invest the time in reading it since it is so oldÖseventy-six years by my reckoning. It is older than I am. Still it is the book on my shelf. Top left side.
10/09 Direct Link
Itís raining outside. A leaf falls lazy slipping this way and that on the heavy wet air. It has been getting cold with temperatures falling close to freezing overnight. The flowers are still blooming though. They have not yet been hit by the frost that will kill them. I picked up the Boaz book and opened it to a random page. It was about death and how it is viewed in an Indian culture. He looked at the language which referred to death indirectly. They did not have a specific word for death. You see it coming from the side.
10/10 Direct Link
You are in the bathroom preparing yourself. In our culture it is accepted that women are required to do more to prepare themselves for the day. This is not as bad as it was, say fifty years ago but it is still true. Your daughterís dog is wedged against the door waiting for you to come out. I am tempted by the news feed. I want to read about Clinton and Trump, but scanning the headlines seems to do the job. There is not much substance behind the headlines and the consensus seems to be that Clinton has already won.
10/11 Direct Link
I have five minutes until my next student shows up as I peer out through the smear on my glasses and over the top of the computer. There is a thin green line of park and trees. The temperature dropped below freezing last night. I should soon be seeing signs of dead flowers and other plants that were not designed to survive the frost. Such a beautiful time of year. I see the colors on the trees and I just think death. I donít see much beauty in all this. I once liked this time of year. I could breathe.
10/12 Direct Link
Rain slicks over the deck boards outside. Thunder darkens the sky. And the cars on the street go swish swish swish. Swish swish swish. Swish, swish, swish. all though the town. And the wheels on the bus go round and round, round and round. The wheels on the bus go round and round, all through the town. My spell checker is waving red flags at me over my repetition of the word, ďswish.Ē I suppose if I had inserted ďandísĒ between the swishings everything would have been fine. But everything fine is not how things were going to work out.
10/13 Direct Link
Like a red spot in the green. Like a flower in the rain. I donít want cheese on mine although Iíll take a piece of cheese on the side. Like a red spot in the green, partially hidden from view. Like a flower in the rain, an orange flower in a field of blue. You are fixing burgers and ask whether I want cheese on mine. I am considering the lifestyle of a vegetarian again. Considering is as far as I ever get. Like a red spot in the green it shows up but does not spread. It goes nowhere.
10/14 Direct Link
I was cold, so I put a shirt on. I got warm playing the piano and took the shirt off. Later I sat down and got cold again. I got up and put the shirt back on. Now I am cold again but I already have the shirt on. Even the soles of my feet feel cold. The top of my head doesnít feel cold; it feels sort of numb, and there is that persistent ringing in my ears, almost in my teeth. I already have the shirt on so there is nothing I can do to dull the ringing.
10/15 Direct Link
The pounding is coming through the walls. It may be coming to get me, I donít know. The pounding comes over the wall like a shaggy beast, teeth first, feet poised in mid leap. No, I stop that picture. It is not helpful. The pounding creeps, seeping slowly through the bathroom wall where it re-forms itself into a shaggy beast, feel poised to leap. I stop that picture too. There is too much of this shaggy beast thing. It looks like something from the Muppets and would not be threatening if it didnít move so quickly and with such purpose.
10/16 Direct Link
Iím walking down the river, feet pressed against the smooth stones, the current piling up around my shins. I can feel the sun on my back and can see the shadows clearly marked along the canyon walls here. At hand is a large bolder and I rest on it watching the flow widen around me. It is shallow here. The river grows deeper and darker farther ahead. Up. I am walking upstream. Now I can feel the bottom falling off behind me and feel the tug growing fierce around my ankles. Soon it will be time to fall and swim.
10/17 Direct Link
I am wearing my favorite winter shirt, a blue Carhart. I am tempted to take the shirt off to check the spelling of the name, but it is easier to do a web search on the name. And I discover that Carhartt is spelled with two ďTísĒ. Neither spelling passes the spell checker here. More issues for me to take care of when I get done here. Once was I didnít care for Carhartt clothing. Part of this may have been that it was strongly advocated by Bud, a brother-in-law who was a farrier and who I didnít care for.
10/18 Direct Link
I suspected I wouldnít be able to write Carhartt shirt in a single entry. Bud could take up several all by himself. I bought the shirt at an upscale feed store, Green Acres. They sold Carhartt clothing and the muck boots I also bought and still use although I donít do that much mucking. I was put off by the Carhartt jackets which seemed overly stiff. I bought the shirt on a whim. It is a 2XL and fits perfectly, which is odd because I am normally only XL. The shirt wears like iron even the pocket buttons staying on.
10/19 Direct Link
Now I have to decide whether Iím going to do a third Carhartt entry. Why not? I have had this shirt a long time. Ten years Iím guessing and it is still without rips or holes. It is not even wearing thin around the neck where my beard likes to slice the collars off shirts. And this shirt is warm. I put it on like a cardigan when the weather is getting cold. I wear it when the weather gets colder. It is the first shirt I pull out of the closet on laundry day and itís worn a lot.
10/20 Direct Link
This music makes me something. Maybe I was already something. I am wondering the connection between the words music and muse. I could look them up in my OED and find out. Possibly a web search would turn up the same. It is a dreary day outside with splashes of color all over the trees. I get up to let you out of the garage. You are going to the store and are in a mood to go by yourself. There is construction dust all over my car from next door so I park at the end of the street.
10/21 Direct Link
I took my medicine and then I took yet another medicine. Now I sit semi-quietly waiting for something to change. This is my reality. This is what I always delete after I write it down. The dog sits facing the door waiting for you to come home. Personally I am afraid you will come home before I pull myself together and do something semi-useful. So in a way I am facing the door too. I have given myself fifteen minutes to pull things together. I donít think that is going to be enough time. Maybe another ten minutes added on.
10/22 Direct Link
It tripped in slowly on tip toe, on padded feet. The sky was purple. I remember the purple sky and the way the wind slipped up beneath my jacket stealing the heat from my body. I could hear the leaves rustling in the oaks that held on tightly to theirs longer than the other trees. Off in the distance I heard the hoot of a train and I thought about the rails circling through the woods coming to me. This would not be tip toe or padded feet. This would be an explosive entrance shrieking and rumbling along the rails.
10/23 Direct Link
The neighbors are playing with their bird feeders again. They like to move them around. They move all sorts of things around, but especially plants and bird feeders. Almost daily the feeders are either moved or changed out for ones of different design. The squirrel shields go on and off and get rotated among the three or four feeders they are likely to have at any given time. Why they expend so much energy moving things around is a mystery to me but I like things stable. I get upset if someone moves my chair. It is just how I am.
10/24 Direct Link
Sure Iíll take another cup of coffee. It will go down nicely even though I have no place to sit the cup while the laptop is in my lap. I suppose I should light a candle rather than to continue to curse this darkness. Like the clock you got for me at the Salvation Army store. Now I can see the time at night. It is useful for nights when I cannot get to sleep so I know when to get up and take some Benadryl. The coffee arrives complete with cream. We put the lid on. It is hot.
10/25 Direct Link
There is an endless array of things to be done before I sit back down to type. I empty the trash and blow my nose, debating whether to use one or two tissues. One is never quite enough but two seems to be wasteful. I use one and then find I need to do the job again and go for two. The dog nuzzles up against the couch, its muzzle held high. I donít know whether he is trying to catch the sun there or your scent. It occurs to me he may be going for both. That makes sense.
10/26 Direct Link
The stair balusters climb relentlessly up the side of the room. The thing is that some of the balusters are upside down. It is how the stair rail was put together. Iím guessing the man who built the stair didnít notice that the balusters had a top and a bottom. The top and bottom were just decorative and the way the balusters are cut they can fit in either way. And I doubt that anyone but me has noticed this about the stairway ever. Now why would I notice such a thing? I think I mentioned it to you though.
10/27 Direct Link
We are going to Planet Fatness today. You suggested 2:00 as the time. I like this. It gives me time to write and possibly even to play the piano before we go. I have my Spartan shirt on. It is for Chandler Crossing Apartments in the fine and faint print. I was given the shirt one day while bicycling through East Lansing. I think that was about a ten-mile ride. Our workout today will be very light compared to that. I recognize even a light workout is better than no workout at all. I plan to live a long time.
10/28 Direct Link
I plan to live a very long time. My father is 93 and my mother is 92, and both of them are in good health still. I donít know why my father and mother have lived so long and as I think about it there is little reason for me to believe I will last that long. My father was the oldest of seven or so children and has outlived most of them. I think the same is true for my mother. I suppose most people go along thinking they will last forever, right up until they are convinced otherwise.
10/29 Direct Link
I must have done something yesterday. I didnít teach. I think we went out to resale shops. You bought a bunch of stuff, including a bedroom clock that you gave to me. The clock had nice crisp numerals on it, easy to read even without my glasses. You also found a spaghetti pan for your daughter. She had seen mine and wanted one like it. The one you found looks to be unused, still in the original box with the packing. The handles lock the strainer lid in place. I hope they are secure and your daughter doesnít get hurt.
10/30 Direct Link
Why canít I talk to my father? Why canít I talk with my children for that matter? I can barely talk to you. Now I can talk to my mother, but she, like you, does most of the talking needing only someone to agree or to respond at appropriate intervals to indicate they are listening. I have learned to do this for you. My children, however, are like me and like my father. They have never learned to talk, to be the initiator of conversation. They must be like me in that matter. Every conversation needs at least one talker.
10/31 Direct Link
You are in the kitchen making chicken salad. I can hear the crisp click click of your knife as you slice up apples or possibly grapes. You make delicious chicken salad. I especially love it on a croissant or on bread. Unfortunately, I am back on the Atkins diet and cannot have either of them. But the chicken salad is good enough to eat by itself without any bread. It sure beats eating the chicken alone which gets pretty old after a few days. Kentucky fried chicken is a nice break of pace too although it is cheating a little.