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Saturday 4/1/23

Saw something in a baseball game tonight I'd never seen before. Chris Sale got lit up, allowing seven earned runs in three innings, which included three home runs and four stolen bases. Those bases were stolen on Sale--the catcher had no chance. So he was dreadful. The Orioles stole 5 bags in the opener and 5 more today, becoming the first team in MLB history to steal 10 bases in the first two games of the season. They were 10 for 10. I mean...yikes. If teams can just steal at will on you, you have a problem. They also had another guy go 5 for 5, just as they did in the first game. I wonder if a team has ever had two guys do that in the first two games of the season.

But these things aren't what I'm talking about. Having rallied back from an initial 7-1 deficit, the Sox trailed 8-7 in the bottom of the ninth, with two out. They lost what would have been the tying run a little earlier, because of a ground rule double. Ground rule doubles cost the teams that hit them more runs than they get them, have you ever noticed that? No one ever scores who wouldn't have because of a ground rule double. There must be some examples, but it's very rare. You'd need a slow runner who misjudged something badly or fell.

Anyway, Red Sox batter hits a lazy fly ball to shallow left. Orioles right fielder tried to nonchalant it--catch it to the side, like he could barely be bothered. Popped out of his glove. Fortunately, the Red Sox batter hadn't rounded first too far, so he scampered back. Next guy hits a two-run walk off. Baseball, man.

Also a good reminder: play the game until the end. I thought about that as I watched. I always tell myself that there's a lot of game left, a lot of game left to be played.

I was impressed by the Bruins, who won in Pittsburgh. They had three leads and the Penguins tied it each time, but then the Bruins scored late on Pastrnak's third of the game. The Penguins really could have used a win for their playoff chances. The Bruins simply win. They've just been impressive. The whole season. Impressive. What else can you say? No Bergeron in the line-up today.

As I was watching these games, I listened to a delightful episode of The New Adventures of Sherlock Holmes with Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce called "The April Fool's Day Adventure." Quite a clever one by the standards of this show. Not significant, but fun. I won't spoil the ending, but if you're a Holmes person, it'll make you smile.

I was talking to someone today who read the earlier entry about Nashville, publishing, and "Fitty," which caused them to re-read the story. I think what they probably read was an earlier version of it. As I said, I wrote the story in 2019, and it was revised in 2021 and then also last year, before it got into final form when it became the first story in There Is No Doubt: Story Girls, a book in which all of the narrators and/or protagonists are females. It's as good as I can do as a book.

Like the story "Fitty" itself, it remains out there, available, and going through the same hell because of this system. This person said to me that they read it with tears streaming down their face and that they couldn't believe that they story had not been published and shared a million times on social media, but then again, with the world being what it is, it also wasn't surprising.

I have no illusions about what the world is. The world and how people are is what I do. That is my great subject beyond all others. People.

I knew what they meant, but I also said that I don't believe the world is the problem; the problem is the publishing world and situation that I'm in. I have been kept by it from the world. When I get to the world, I don't think "Fitty" will struggle to do what I believe it can do. It's too good. There's a word I use here with myself, that I don't bring up in this journal. And that is magical. It's too magical.

“But you have to admit,” Fitty finalized, the conjunction being her way of conceding the point, the water again at their legs and feet, “I read the absolute fuck out of some of those scenes, don’t I?”

“Of that there is no doubt,” Carlene said, and the child’s laughter lodged in her brain.

Have faith.

Speaking of "Fitty" and other things: the ending of a story is potentially the most amazing thing that can happen in this world.

Hoping to get to the symphony tomorrow. Listening to early, embryonic versions of material from Radiohead's OK Computer now.

Do you know what has never turned up? A recording from the Beatles' 1965 British tour that took place between December 3 and 12, and was their last UK tour. The setlist was fascinating: "I Feel Fine," ""She's a Woman," "If I Needed Someone," "Act Naturally," "Nowhere Man," "Baby's in Black," "Help!", "We Can Work It Out," "Yesterday," "Day Tripper," "I'm Down."

Remember--both Rubber Soul and the "Day Tripper"/"We Can Work It Out" single came out December 3. There are no known surviving live performances of "We Can Work It Out." This is a grail for me.

So: tomorrow is going to happen, and here's what I know about it already. I am going to fight my ass off. And I'm going to make work to last for all-time that will also change this world to the good in my lifetime and that no one else could come close to making. That's what I know about tomorrow. And what I additionally know is I'm going to keep putting tomorrows like that together, one after another. Because that is who I am. And eventually, one of those tomorrows is going to be different. I will still make the art that no one else can come close to on that particular tomorrow. But I won't have to fight, because I will have won. Then it will just be about accountability, so far as these people go.

Total focus. Matchless art. No mercy when we get there.

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