Pet Project

There was no transition from the hot breath of the Upper Sonoran Desert to the coastal plains. Not for me or my brother or my sister. One moment, my parents were married and living west of Palm Springs. The next they were not, and one was in Santa Barbara. My parents' battles and divorce had been dramatic. But to be plunked down down in Santa Barbara for a six-week summer visit, however full of emotional undercurrents, was still a relief. An arid land by the sea is a different thing. From my mother's Read more [...]

Hitting the Road

This particular fear is so persistent that even after its source, or apparent source, evaporates...the malady lingers on. It's driving, of course. And it's driving me crazy. Or at least to distraction. As a story...well, there is none. Or it's the same story endlessly recycled, one of those curses like The Flying Dutchman or Groundhog Day. A narrative that keeps eating itself like a mystic snake. Again, my only frame of reference has to do with scale, the very smallness of my disabled world. By Read more [...]

Speed’s Demons

It's the anxiety. Mine. Where does it come from? Is fear a concomitant of age? If so, perhaps it's there for a biological reason. You know, watch the ice on the steps. Try not to topple over in the bathtub. That sort of thing. I don't know, but it's there, and it's part of my daily landscape. That is to say, there is much less running on automatic. Hop in the car and go...well, anywhere? Not now. I have had my Chrysler van for a full year, and I'm still not easy with the thing. In fact, I'm not Read more [...]


How do you know when you're home? In my case, when you sit on a cat. The man who sat on a cat – yes, it sounds straight out of Oliver Sacks – was a man who originally sat in an armchair. He sat there because he was tired, at loose ends, and seeking the nurture of introspection. Staring at the wall, I describe it. So there I was, fresh from the Last Writer's Disruption, a splendid two days in Monterey, ensconced and ready for writerly thoughts. When that other thing happens, writerly distraction. Read more [...]