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Let us all drink some cold apple cider

Tuesday 5/4/21

* I'm revising a story from fall 2018 called "Pillow Drift." It really needs tightening. I will fix it and get it to where it needs to be. It's about a man who experienced a trauma in youth. He's at a treatment facility in New Hampshire. Love has become only an intellectual conceit to him. An idea. An "in theory." He has lost the ability to experience it. Know what it feels like. His wife comes to pick him up. It's late fall. We're out in the sticks. Rural New England. They're detoured off the highway, driving down this road that has no houses. A long, long road minus residences. The man notices all of these roadside memorials for people who've died on the road. The woman has been looking in the rear view mirror, because it seems that a snow squall--a particular kind--has been following them. The end up trapped on the road, in the snow, in what is called a pillow drift. This is from before cellphones--or before the time when everyone had them. Call it like 1994, 1995, somewhere in there. They have a real problem, and their attempts to get themselves out of the situation don't go so well. The snow appears to have an extra, non-snow like kind of agency. Finally, she does something that he is not aware of, and when he learns what that is, he does it, too. We end in the current time, when another woman--younger--returns to this spot. The spot is much changed. But she knows where the spot is. Her reason for being there, for stopping there, also tells us what had ultimately happened that night in the snow, in the pillow drift. It is very beautiful, and it rocks a person hard, so I must get everything right. This is a story, too, that I've had earmarked for a film treatment.

* Yesterday I walked seven miles and ran the 220 stairs of Summit Path three times.

* Today on the radio I'll talk about what it was like to write three books at once, the father-son relationship at the heart of The Rifleman--the best TV Western--with the death of Johnny Crawford; my on and off again relationship with Triscuits; and what people have long gotten wrong about Roger Clemens' last few seasons with the Red Sox.

* After an honest workout of Zulu proportions, nothing tastes better than cold New England cider.

* I watched 1944's Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo. In this current world of so many invented problems, with the internet/social media being the worst thing to happen to humanity, and the glorification of victim status, with the goal of so many to be seen as a victim, it would do a lot of good if people sat down, sat still, and experienced a film like this one.

* Started a piece on Charlie Christian at Minton's, which I hope to finish today.

* I listened to the Grateful Dead's Workingman's Dead and for the first time I was hit by just how outstanding it is. What a phenomenal piece of music and art. Not only can those guys play, but you think, "damn, they really understand music."

* The mourning doves seem louder this spring. In the early morning they can even distract me if I’m not careful. I let them be a challenge to regather my focus, and drive myself on harder, cognizant of what they portend, and to where I must get in my time.


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