[17 Mar 2021> Flashing back to May 1997, picking up where post #857 left off...]
May 3, 1997 — Tucson
Writing a journal entry to take a break from writing fiction. Fact and fiction merge. We returned from Seattle, the rain depressed me, especially in the wake of Kevin's death. I just wanted to be home with just [our bedder-½]. No company. Just us alone in our own little world. Now we are just waiting it out before we get the hell out of dodge.
I wake up at 6 a.m. and make coffee. She continues to sleep. I write. Force myself to write a chapter a day. The night before I look at my notes about what the chapter is to be about and then think about it as fall asleep, though i haven't been dreaming much. If i do it's more like a feeling. This morning it was a feeling like something was eating me awake around the edges. Like I was on an island and the water was eroding at my banks. I don't make much of en effort in the actual writing, that will come later. For now I just want to get the gist of it down on paper. I hope I'll have the patience and the memory to go back and rework it [we haven't yet], that I won't look at it months from now and think, what was this crap I'm writing? [we probly did]. I think that's why I just keep plodding forward on the first draft. If something holds me up I skip it, I'll go back to it later. I fear getting hung up on details and losing momentum. I have this 2-week chunk of time to take advantage and I want to get most of this down. The details I can pick at in coming months. So far I have probably a hundred pages and I'm on the 5th (of a planned 24 chapters). I only hope that when we get to the east coast we can settle down somewhere nice and our bedder-½ can get a job that would be able to support my writing. She wishes this too. [haha, at least after a decade this definitely came true!]
We are down to less than a week before lift off. Some of our bedder-½'s colleagues came by to take some of our furniture. Funny skinny Chinese guys. Last night we went to dinner at Tommy and Kayo's house. Kayo took our bedder-½'s place at the lab. They are nice people. We talked of Japan a lot. They just have a certain orderliness and innocence and sincerity which is infectious. I hope we can find friends like that on the eastern coast. We're both excited for the move. When our bedder-½ is not busy I think she gets a little anxious. I think this anxiety gets furthur fed when she comes into my room and sees me typing away. But she is very good about not bugging me. And she is doing okay about not succumbing to her packrat instinct to pack everything weeks in advance [some things never change]. But still, I go to cook and all the spices have been put away and we never know what time it is because she has packed the kitchen clock away. We are in limbo waiting. Are days in Tucson are numbered.
It was right about this time three years ago that I also thought my days were numbered and I packed up everything (throwing most everything away) and left for South Dakota. I went full circle, France, Menlo Park, Ajijic and Guanajuato, Menlo Park, Tucson, Safford, Tucson, Salton Sea, Tucson, Eureka, Round Mountain, Tucson, Carson City, the Silverbell days, Beatty, more Silverbell, Patagonia, Tucson, Lac de Gras/Arctic Circle, Florida, Caborca, Ely, Tucson, Winnemucca, Battle Mountain, Tucson, Zacatecas, Tucson, Elko, Tucson, Idaho, Tucson, Superior, Globe, "The Thing", Saric, Tucson, El Cabullona, Tucson, Cananea, Menlo Park (Kevin's death) and then back to Tucson for this last reckoning. With lots of side excursions along the way— Santa Fe, Chiricahuas, Hueco Tanks at least twice, Carlsbad, White Sands, Los Angeles at least three times, San Diego, Joshua Tree, Tahquitz, Vegas at least three or four times, Reno, Salt Lake City on the way to other places, Zion, Prescott, Canyon de Chelly, Phoenix many times, Flagstaff many times, Seattle, and of course a honeymoon all the way down Baja. I'm sure I'm missing some places. But when people ask me where I live (this past few years) I say Tucson.
These years are what "Navigating the Senses" is about [the book we were working on]. The difference in the way I felt then, that feeling of just doing whatever, the wanderings that started off in South Dakota. And the way I feel now. How I seemed to gravitate around Tucson like a satellite in a chaotic orbit. And what have I got out of these years? Our bedder-½. And that's all I need. Not to say that I'm sick of travelling and have been to a lot of exotic places, because, besides France I haven't been off the North American continent (in the past few years). I feel our travels have just begun. They have a new meaning, a new maturity. I look back at journal entries from years ago and I seem a stranger to myself. I want to chronicle this metamorphosis and make sense of it, before I just grow complacent and forget my past.
May 8, 1997 —Tucson
Final day in Tucson. Packing and writing. Throwing away everything I won't be needing in this new life. The rest of our lives. It's going to be tight, dragging a trailer with everything we own with poor 4-cylinder Nandi [our Isuzu Trooper]. Were selling books left and right, throwing away what we can't sell. Throwing away everything we don't use daily. Threw out my crumby backpack and my hiking boots. Went through all my paperwork. Consolidated everything onto my computer. Made copies of all my writings and sent discs to Chapel Hill ahead of us in case the car should blow up with everything in it. (But no one would ever read this as this is only on the computer during our travel.)
Went out with Jesus, Sean and Dave H. last night as a farewell thing. Not too big of a deal as I haven't been seeing too much of them lately. It's nice to be leaving to Tucson and not have anything I'll really be missing, no really good friends that I'll be leaving behind. The best thing is coming with me and that's our bedder-½. Of course I'll miss the mountains, but I'm kind of getting excited about climbing in a new area. Went hiking up on the butterfly on Saturday. Played around in a snow-filled couloir, skiing on our feet. What else? Just been writing a lot. "Navigating the Senses" is going to be a huge project. Sometimes it's overwhelming. Sometimes everything just seems to fall in place and the words spew out of me faster than I can type. Right now our bedder-½ is out doing laundry. I'm sitting on the floor amidst all of our boxes listening to Orbital. We're set to go. All that's really left is to go to the post office and close out my box.
Adios old pueblo! It almost broke 100 yesterday. You're sending us out with style. Here's to new experience. A new backdrop of stars to navigate by.
May 12, 1997 — Pensacola Beach, Florida
We left Tucson on Friday after Our bedder-½ got her last paycheck and I picked up the U-haul. Got kind of a late start. Through Arizona and New Mexico into Texas. The Sonoran desert fading into the flatness of Texas. Ended up spending the first night in Van Horn. Nothing special. We had a flat the next morning and while I was changing it our bedder-½ noticed that the tread was coming off the tire of the trailer tire. So we had to get that changed.
As we got furthur into Texas things got more lush. There were lots of flowers, fields of bluebonnets. We got into Austin around 4. When we got to Sather's house she showed us around and when we got to her patio Mark Eberbach was sitting there smoking a cigarette. What a trip. He was sitting under a saloon chair with the drying hood. He was out for the reunion at RLS and then was in L.A. and was going to Tucson when he heard from Sather that we were on our way to Austin. So he decided to go there and Sather figured she would surprise us. And what a surprise it was! The last person I expected to see there. It was just like the old days, except the four of us were in Austin. We went around town, hanging out in coffeeshops, people watching, then went to eat. Sather's roommates tagged along as well. We ended up at some loungey bar. Austin's hip, actually a pretty cool town. Very lush and green and quiet while at the same time a lot going on. Lots of creeks nestled between the houses, squirrels chasing eachother around the big oak trees, hipsters riding around on vintage bikes,... can't do bars anymore, though. It was so smokey and I'm not into drinking anymore at all. Slept on Sather's floor. Woke up and had migas and then got on the road. Through Houston and into a swampy and muggy landscape. Water everywhere and lush forests. And finally out of Texas and into Louisiana. Texas took two days to get through. We stayed the night in Baton Rouge. Ate Cajun food at Mulate's. It was mother's day and a Zydeco band was playing. We had slimey frog legs, jumbalaya, gumbo-mumbo jumbo, shrimps, catfish, etc... Drove along the historic highland drive. Big plantation style homes. Lush gardens, bermuda grass, huge trees. What's more we saw the Mississippi! Spent the night just to the west of it. Our last night west of the Mississippi.
Next morning we woke up and walked along the levy of the Mississippi watching all that water go by. We went out on one of the casino boats and watched the water. The muddy sweet water. The rain from dozens of states, washing through the land and down to the gulf. The mighty Mississippi. Then we continued on to New Orleans. We had the trailer in tow so that was a major pain. We drove into the French quarter but couldn't find a place to park let alone a decent motel. The parking lots wouldn't let us park with the U-haul. Finally I managed to find two metered spots next ot eachother and managed to parallel park. We walked around the French quarter, down Bourbon street, ate sausage, boiled crawfish and beans and rice in an outdoor cafe. New Orleans is beyond words, completely different than anywhere else in the U.S. Plant-filled wrought-iron balconies hanging right over the streets. Though Bourbon street smells like puke and stale beer and it's nowhere near Mardi Gras. Can't believe this area is even populated. Everything is submerged, they have to put the roads and houses on stilts, and even then it seems the swamp will swallow it up or grow over it in no time (if the hurricanes don't get it.) If you went on vacation for a month, you'd come back and wouldn't be able to find your home. I could live in New Orleans. We would have liked to stay longer but our meter had a limit. So through more swamps and wetlands through Mississippi and Alabama in minutes and into Florida. Pensacloa beach, claims it's one of the nicest beaches in the world. The sand is very white and soft. Not much in the way of waves. But yes, the beach is nice.
[our bedder-½ in New Orleans]
[Nandi + a U-haul w/ all our possessions in the world in New Orleans]
May 14, 1997 — Myrtle Beach, SC
Almost to our destination. Woke up in Pensacola and walked across the street to the perfect white beach. Swam in the turquoise water until it was checkout time and then we pushed on. Through swampy Florida and into the dark piney forest/swamps of Georgia interspersed with the marshy rivers. We stayed the night in Southern Georgia (Brunswick?) Today we stopped in Savannah which was pretty hip. Walked along the historic riverside. Everything made of cobblestones, felt like an old English port. The town itself is organized into plantation blocks so there's these parks on every other block (like the park Forest Gump was sitting in). Matter of fact, Clint Eastwood was shooting some film "Midnight...?" there. We saw him sitting in his director's chair. We continued on into South Carolina. Drove through Charleston without even stopping, not too inspired. And now we're in Myrtle Beach, which is not too impressive. Just a huge strip of fast food restaraunts and condos blocking beach access. I'm not too inspired to write. It's like when you go into a store to sample perfumes... the first few may be inspiring but after that you just can't smell anymore. We were sampling everything in light of living there. The only place I've seen so far that I'd like to live is New Orleans. Maybe Savannah. Now I'm just anxious to get settled. Start paying off our debts. Write. Get into a workout routine and eating good food. Climb and go to the beach, explore around the east coast on the weekends. Tomorrow will be the first day of the rest of our lives, at least our temporary stay in Chapel Hill. I look at a place and try to imagine living there, exploring the countryside. And even along the beautiful beaches I still get this impending claustrophobia of the landscape being impenetrable. And nothing geographically noteworthy that could serve as a destination if you were to go hiking. It's all just flat, nothing to break it up, besides a muggy river, which would only be fun if you had a boat. I guess it's just foreign to me. Someone used to very wide-open spaces with big mountains.
May 18, 1997 — Savannah, Georgia
It's all been a whirlwind, but when the dust cleared we ended up back here in Savannah. From the Harley bike rally and land of miniature golf and Hardees (Myrtle Beach) we continued on. We gradually got out of the tropical lowlands to the less tropical green forests. I was hoping that we would get into some hills or something but we didn't, at least not what i would qualify as a hill. When we pulled into Chapel Hill I literally started to panic. I just had this overwhelming sensation like– "what the hell were we thinking?" It was all spread out suburbia. The trees were nice and everything but it all seemed to easy and comfortable, no culture whatsoever. Just so-called liberals who were really conservative in the true sense of the word. What's more it was a college town and we're sick of that, and yet more is that it's not on the ocean, nor is it in the mountains. Sure, we could probably get decent jobs in the industrial triangle but I just had this sickening panic. I asked our bedder-½—"could you picture yourself living here?"—which is really the bottom line, can you imagine yourself walking those streets and breathing that air. Once she showed apprehension as well I had half a mind to do an about face and head back to Savannah. I guess we were overwhelmed when we went through Savannah. We weren't set on it when we passed through. It wasn’t love at first sight. But it stayed with us after we left. And I could imagine myself there. (Here!) I mean New Orleans or Miami or even New York would be fantastic, but let's face it, that would be hard to just show up pulling a trailer, knowing absolutely nobody, having no job lined up and just say— "here we are!" and be accepted with helping hands. Big cities like that could eat you alive. Savannah seemed a good compromise. It's somewhat big, big enough to have a hip and unique culture, but at the same time not being too big to have all the pitfalls of a big city. It's got beautiful parks on every other block. It's on the river, with the beautiful riverfront. It's near the ocean. What more could you ask for? When I make decisions like this I think about my writing... if we had stayed in Chapel Hill I would have stopped writing or probably started writing hobbyshop crap. I can picture myself being inspired to write here (if we can get back on our feet financially!)
Anyway. Couldn't do an about face, because I had already called Aunt Mary and told her we were in town. We hung out in the only somewhat central area. Maybe a 2-block strip with a few coffeeshops, a gap, etc. Couldn't get a hold of Mary or Donald. So we spent forever trying to find her house (she didn't give me directions because she said it was obvious, that we'd see it when we first got into town or that everybody knew where it was.) But we asked a dozen people with no luck. Driving around a quagmire of suburban roads, thick with big lush trees. Finally we asked a cop and she got out her map and told us. Mary was at the house. Insane house. So many windows and doors (nineteen doors). The lighting's great. But it would be just too overwhelming for me as it's so big. You can get lost in it. She started to give us the tour like we were gonna be living there, so I let her know right away that we were headed back to Savannah. Aunt Mary is starting to remind me more and more of Granini. And she's obsessed with genealogy. She's got family trees on every wall. There's a picture of Granini on her refrigerator that's titled "Our Magnificent Obsession: 1996." We were looking at Ned's death pictures and it was surreal. He was laying on this white bed with his mouth slightly gaping open and his eyes slightly ajar, the color faded out of him, and each picture he was decorated with different things, Koala Bear toys, flowers, his pilot ties, pins, etc. In a bunch of pictures he had this Tibetan looking scarf wrapped around his head like it was keeping his jaw from falling off or he had a toothache. And of course everybody had to have their picture taken with him, like his corpse was a tourist attraction. Or group photos of everybody with him as he was dying, with barely enought energy to point at the sky. It was weird, and weirder still thinking this is what was going on while we were at Kevin's memorial.
We swam in the pool and ate. Then Donald came over with his girlfriend whose name slips my mind. He's got this rambunctious Australian cattle dog whose name was chalky or chuck or something different every time. Donald's the same as he ever was. It's funny, every reason why he liked Chapel Hill (without a doubt he said he would spend the rest of his life there, and had already spent his whole life, except for those four RLS years) was every reason I had for not liking it. It was too comfortable, it was too easy. It's in the south, but its own isolated world. He called it "liberal" but he doesn't know the meaning of the word. "Yuppie" is more like it. It's not like the east coast, or the south. I felt like I was in suburban California which is the last thing I wanted to feel. He's a workaholic. I would ask him what he does and he would say work, come home, eat and sleep. The next morning we saw some of the projects he was working on and went to breakfast with his friend Todd. We couldn't find Brian. After our tour, we headed out. Told them we were anxious to get on to Savannah which was an understatement. We wanted to get settled in so bad. A six or seven hour shot back to Savannah. Stopped at the U-haul, dropped of the trailer and put our stuff in storage. Drove around the historic district and started to get excited. Really incredible houses. I should probably get some sleep now as it is getting light.
10:30 a.m.—so yah, got some numbers and ideas even that first night. We were pressed for a place to stay and everything was booked. Found an Econolodge on the southside that was $70/night. Econolodge not so econo. We found a cheap motel with weekly rates in the yellow pages once we settled in.
Next morning we started looking at places. Kind of thing like you look at the first one and our bedder-½ is getting all excited like "let's take it" and then the next one is even better and she's like—"let's take this one." We saw this one place that was incredible, the kind of house the tour buses go by and point to and give the history of. It was on the top floor, kind of like a Swiss chalet with carpet. Not typical of Savannah, but unique none-the-less. But the people were freaking out saying they needed somebody right away, like we needed to make a decision in less than two hours. All the houses we saw we're starting to meld together, but one stood out. It's in this big 3 or 4 story house that is absolutely incredible. On the bottom floor, this family lives in the other three stories. They own a bed and breakfast that's incredible. These houses are incredible. They are kind of Victorian, kind of European. Classy and old. So anyway we decided on that. It's $750 a month, which is pretty incredible for what you get. And another $750 deposit. I wrote him a credit card check. Then we started thinking about what that balance would be. I mean we've only had the credit card for a month and it had a $7500 limit. But when I called the balance was up at $6200, so the check would bounce. Panic set in. I begged visa to up the limit. Had to wait a half an hour, starting to freak out about how badly we needed to started working. It's hard to pick up and move with no money saved up. Some homeless guy was asking me for money and I just had to laugh. I guess we can just be thankful we have good credit. Credit equals freedom.
Luckily they approved the boost in credit. We seriously have to bite the bullet and get the positive cash flow going. We went by that one weekly hotel and it was a total dive next to some smelly paper plant. We eventually found this other place that is much better, it's just far away. We paid for a week, even though we could move in earlier to the other place. So we'll stay here for a week. We got the housing taken care of so now we can concentrate on getting jobs and hooking up utilities, getting furniture, etc. It should be fun. But today was Sunday, so we went to the beach at Tybee Island. Fifteen minutes out of town, and it's not a bad beach.
May 22, 1997 — Savannah
Still in a dingy hotel. We move into Gaston house on saturday. Been job hunting all week. Our bedder-½ is having more luck than I have. I've sent or delivered about 30 resumes. Positions like geologist, data processing director, survey party chiefs, plumbers, vacuum jet operator, electronic installer, staff reporter, computer tech, design engineer, VTR editor, CAD operator/design, environmental engineer, environmental analyst, camera/plate maker, optical lab tech, bicycle pizza delivery person,... anything basically. Our bedder-½ has already had 3 job offers, as a concierge in a cool inn, as a tech in this metabolic research lab and a clerical job. And she has more interviews.
I hate all this work and no pay. Dressing up when it's 90° and 97% humidity. Having to sell yourself. The same spiel every time. Getting disillusioned. Wishing to be settled in our house and having a steady decent job to start paying off these debts. We'll really love it once we settle in, I'm sure. We walked along the riverfront and I saw the waving girl thinking this would change all our luck. I don't know, I guess I should just have patience. I kind of like the idea of looking for work thinking something interesting might fall into my lap, but so far nothing. I'd really the like the CAD design job because it's for a company that builds yachts. As we were walking along the river I decided I really wanted to work on the river and work on a boat. If only I could make my dreams come true. I'm willing to work, have a lot of valuable skills, but it all amounts to getting your foot in the door. Knowing the lingo, having a specific qualification. It's the same drill every time. Temp Agencies, stopping by companies that already told you they weren't hiring and trying to be pushy to talk to somebody. In the waiting room of the Georgia department of labor, being the only white person in a room full of black people. Definitely big gaps here between black/white, rich/poor.
May 28, 1997 — Savannah
Moved into the Gaston house. Didn't have any furniture so we first bought a queen futon and threw it on the ground. Then a papasan (satellite dish) for the bay window. I pieced together a bunch of boards into a desk/shelving system for both me and our bedder-½. And a futon couch for the living room. So far it's really cool. Lots of empty space and wide wooden floors. The other day I was looking for postcards and one of them had our house on the front!
John (our new landlord— seems to be a trend with landlord names) took us to an auction the other day. They served free shrimp and corn on the cob (there is such thing as free lunch!) Most everything was really expensive but it was an experience just to witness. The auctioneer was going a mile a minute like he was rapping as his assistants would present the pieces.
Still on the job hunt. Went to Atlanta for an interview today. I talked to this guy yesterday and he said he needed people to paint this special sealant on boats and airplanes. He said they start at $11/hr. and quickly raise to more than that, and that's by far better than anything else that's come up, so me the sucker, I agree to go all the way to Atlanta for an interview. What a waste of a day. It's 4 hours each way. I was a little early getting there so I went downtown and ate and some funky diner run by eastern European ladies. I saw the CNN building and the Omni. There was no parking, even the parking garages were full. But the streets were empty. Everybody working. Then I went to my so-called interview. The guy Bill wasn't there but some other women interviewed me. I was starting to have doubts when she quickly glossed over my resume and then went into a spiel about what they do like she was trying to sell me on the product. Some special coating that makes a bad paint job look new (made of sea urchins amongst other things). She had me bring my car around the back. I couldn't take any of this seriously, but what the hell, I drove all the way to Atlanta and it's not like I cared if she ruined my paint job cuz it was already ruined. She buffed just a part of it (at this point I'm wondering if this is a scam to get people to do this $150 wax job to their car—after all, why would you want just part of your car washed?) But what the hell, I'd hear her out. It was kind of surreal. There was a bunch of people there taking the class. I figured the scam was that the class cost money, or it was some sort of pyramic scheme. We went back to her office and she made me sign this confidentiality agreement, and every time I asked her a question to get at what this was all really about she would change the subject.
"You know, someone as bright as you, you could do better as an owner," she sketched out how much I would make as a owner, versus how much I would make strictly hourly, writing it all out and getting me involved by saying— "100 times 5 that's—?" By this time I'm getting livid. Thinking about how far I had to drive just for this (the whole time listening to a talk radio show about how inefficient cars are, that one percent of the gas goes to actually transporting your body. 90 percent is wasted, and most of the other 10 percent goes to carrying itself. Talk about depressing. So I ask her how much it is to be an "owner" and she beats around the bush and I ask her again, and she's all— "it's $1600 for the licensing rights to use the products" and there's a whole list of miscellaneous stuff, the purchasing of all these products. I say— "look. I don't want to invest in this thing I know nothing about. I was told I could get a job starting at $11/hr. and that's what I want. An hourly job. Over the phone back in Savannah you guys said you have more work than you can handle."
But she keeps going on about how after a few cars I would regret not making the investment. Once she gave up and realized I only wanted to be a laborer the truth came out... I would have to wait for whoever gets the ownership rights in Savannah to hire me. It would be up to this person since it was their market. And then I would have to go through this school. When I asked who paid for it she says it's free, like they're doing me a favor. I'd ruined any prospects if I ever had any and start spouting off to her. By this time she's getting pissed, though contained and short. She tells me I don't know what's good for me and that I should just find another job. I just ask her to tell people what they’re getting into before they drive four or more hours to Atlanta and she agreed to that though the bitch was lying and I was pissed and embarrassed at wasting so much time when I could have been following up on other jobs. Then i drove all the way back, what a waste of gas and time. There's no place in this world for honest hard-working people. It seems everything’s a scam. I used to think that bicycle thieves were the worst kind of thieves. But now I think that people scamming people trying to get jobs (selling them information on getting a job, or scams like this) are the worse type of crimes. I'd like to send a mail bomb to this place. You live and you learn. Don't trust anybody.
May 31, 1997 — Savannah
I'm getting increasingly depressed. Feel shitty. I try to run but my calves start to cramp up. They aren't used to the pounding and the humidity. I don't write as I feel I should be looking for work. Though I have exhausted my resources. I think more of Kevin. I sit down to write and start thinking of him sitting in his car. What the person who found him must have thought. Was his door locked? Knowing Kevin it probably was. The window wasn't broken. Everything is a reminder of Kevin. I started to figure out his Newton. At first I couldn't get anything to work because I needed a password to get in. The only way around was to send it back to Apple and have it reset (for a fee). Of course I tried "Jordan" and a bunch of other stuff. I figured Kevin would pick something completely esoteric. Then I punched in "Chalky" and was surprised it didn't work. Then I remembered it was "Chaulky" (his nickname he wrote on his white suit in France). The bell sounded and I was in! There was a notepad dated 3/28/97 (3 or 4 days before he died). It had some scribblings on it. two circles bisected by a line and it said—"Jay 11v q11v a"... which of course is a translation of handwritten text.
[pg 332 of Textiloma where we inklooted an actual screen grab from this newton]
Half of the things you write the Newton translates in nonsense jargon. Kind of interesting actually, a sort of poetry. For example, I just tried to write "Navigating the Senses" and it said— "naviyalinq tho series". Now I'll try "I'm pink therefore I'm spam"... it said— "fln pink these Fove ten span". Granted I'm purposely scribbling sloppily. If I write carefully it's pretty good actually. The only other things in there are his addresses and stuff.
Our bedder-½ has gone to New Hampshire for the weekend. She's got more things going on than she can handle. Two jobs, this trip to check out schools, etc. And I got nothing doing. I should take advantage of this time to write but I can't concentrate. I haven't had a paycheck now for two months. It is going to be a hard hole to climb out of. I don't feel that comfort where I'm financially stable enough to relax and write.
Started reading Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, the book everyone is saying I must read. It has been given full credit for the boost in Savannah's culture and economy, the revival and remodeling of downtown. One book. It's non-fiction, about some murder that happened here in the 80s. I bought it at E. Shaver booksellers. I went there with a resume in my pocket. When I asked the crotchety ladies behind the counter if they were hiring they said—"You'd have to kill one of us first." I have not become selective in my job search. I have resigned myself to accept anything at any wage, but now I'm finding that I can't even get a simple job delivering pizzas or hammering nails, because people either think I'm overqualified or wonder what is wrong with me that I'm desperate enough to wash dishes.
[... June 1997]