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Nearly fifteen hundred pages to edit. Add another thousand and it’s pretty much everything in book/manuscript form that I’ve written in the last ten years: the first decade in a hopefully long and fruitful career. Cheers!

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Father

Just as Father’s Day is a bullshit day and there should be no special reason for celebrating dads, I am reminded once again of my childhood and everything else related.

I thought a few days ago about saying that only good dads should be celebratef and acknowledged and loved, but all dads should be… not whether or not they do a good job… just because they are people and all people need love. Crave it.

So now, instead of walking around listening to music or on you phone or reading a book (my favorite, when possible), send love to all those who need it. Send it up high to the sky, and perhaps someone nearby, who is down for whatever reason and, looking up, will see the shower and steal just enough before sharing some. When they are ready.

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“…An idea. All writers are unhappy. The picture of the world in books is thus too dark. The wordless are the happy: women in cottage gardens: Mrs. Chavasse. Not a true picture of the world; only a writer’s picture. Are musicians, painters happy? Is their world happier?” Thursday, September 5th, Nineteen Forty. A Writer’s Diary by Virginia Woolf.

While I agree with her sentiments especially regarding journals/diaries, and the brunt of classical literature catches an inherent deep human sadness, I’m writing against that trend with this book. Focused; on fire. And if not this book, then another. And another’s another…

While there is always a present movement and momentum, it seems there is both a nostalgic past pulling us back and an expectant future making us daydream… and the past can’t seem to stay dead, can it?

When I got the smart phone, I figured I should call my old boss and have him cancel the old one as it was in his name and the contract doesn’t finish until September. Didn’t call it, just let it slide…

Come this Monday, I hear from the coordinator of my current job that my old boss called the university about the bill. Unable to contain the rage at the old boss’s audacity, I had my girlfriend ask as the mediator… long story short, someone else paid all but $7 of the outstanding bill… old boss asking the girlfriend if he or I should pay the cancellation fee, she went off and told him that since he fired me, he should eat it. Last night the old coteacher sent me a message: Hey Brian, (smile face), how have you been?

Fuck those conartists! MFs don’t contact a person unless/until they need something. And perhaps “Eye for an eye” is not an ample philosophy, but this is more like tooth for an eye or not even close. Maybe the short-term message here is that every type of distraction will come to take you off the path. Thus the archetypal philosophy of the moment and the current theme song:

Captured!

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While playing with the dog this morning, a woman worker tied a rope to a tree and tried to entice the dog with a piece of breed on the loop. Leaning against a nearby tree, I told her the dog was smart and that she wouldn’t be able to catch it. Twenty minutes later, she untied the rope, said it wasn’t possible, and left.

There were two men crouched in the grass watching the dog watch them from the tiny valley. The dog had recently bit a few girls, so not only was the concensus on campus to catch it, but they’d started to actually try.

Saw the dog again around six tonight and he was so excited, running through and around bushes as he barked.

Suddenly a yelping and a trashing around… then I noticed the wire. Two students offered to help, one leaving to borrow a knife, the other comforting the dog. I investigated the wire, and switched places with the kid comforting the dog. Looking into his eyes and past he first layer of extreme terror, throbbed a palpable sadness. Tried to coax the dog forward to loosen the wire around its throat, but it was resigned to its fate. It was caught, and knew that escaping only postpones the inevitable.

As the first guy returned with the blade and the secind had undone the wire, an officer appeared with a harpoon like device.

“Student,” he said to the kid, “I’m here for the dog. Where is it?”

Holding back tears, I told the man that I loathed him and wanted to say more, but didn’t. Another man appeared, lifted the dog by the neck, dropped it in a tiny cage and took it away.

Failure: zero books finished. Maybe 700 pages, but spread amongst five or six books, and none completed.

Instead I completed another draft (fifteenth and final?) Of a novel that’s taken six years too long.

It’s just about ready. Along with a number of stories. Said I’d send them out this month… April is over. Time to act on those tasks I’ve put off for too long…

Oh, and the typewriter is broken, so it must be fixed before work commences on the newest novel.

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Welcome the next era…

Quitting Metal Bands

It seems like tumultous times for quite a few metal bands.

First, Florida band Kamelot has been touring without Norwegian singer Roy Khan since last September, so that he recently officially quit comes as no surprise to many. He’s been in the band since 1997 and has recorded seven studio and three live albums with the group. Maybe he’ll return to his original band, the godly Conception (their CDs are so rare I actually made a bit of money buying then selling them).

Second, guitarist Jeff Loomis and drummer Van Williams of Seattle’s Nevermore are quitting after founding the band in 1994 and also seven studio albums. The tension could be felts since 2005’s This Godless Endeavor, and it was stated in interviews that the band needed long breaks or they’d a) kill each other or b) break up.

Third, seminal rockers Judas Priest’s founding member KK Downing has announced he will retire from a band that was already on a worldwide farewell tour. He founded the band in 1970 and has been on all sixteen albums. He’s already been replaced, and while the band plans to quit touring, a new album is slated for 2012.

In the case of each of these bands, I feel they should quit. With the exception of Priest and Kamelot, who are already in the middle of tour cycles and would face huge financial penalties to quit midtour, the others should end when the tours are finished. Each of these bands needs to change the name if they’re going to continue, but there’s more money in name recognition, so they won’t.

Took the Test of Proficiency in Korean (basic edition) today for the first time. It’s separated into two sections: expressions, grammar and writing, and listening and reading. Each section is ninety minutes.

There were about five words I didn’t know in the first section, and the short essay question just happened to be about my best friend, something I practiced last night with my girlfriend (who it’s about, of course). So, if a woman grades the writing section (which I really hope), I’ll get a good grade because of the romantic things I wrote. Probably the same if a guy grades it, as this is Korea.

More than ten words I didn’t know in the second section, but the listening was super easy, while reading was a bit more challenging. Both sections took almost an hour each, and afterward I had lunch with a Turkish guy who was in the same group of test takers. Won’t know the grade until 6월 2일, but that’s what, a month and a half away?

Can’t sleep. Thinking about BIG birthday plans… to take a trip. It’ll be expensive, but I think totally worth it. Wanted to go to the Middle East, but that’d be too dangerous now. This place…

Well, we’ll see. Gotta plan and budget hard.

TOPIK in a few hours…