If on a fall’s afternoon a reader

In aid of preparing to write the novel, I spent a couple of hours at Victrola today writing notes, re-reading bits of Italo Calvino’s Mr. Palomar, but mostly staring out the window. I headed over to Horizon Books to browse. A copy of Calvino’s If on a winter’s night a traveler immediately caught my eye.
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The Shortest Path

Shortly after coming across the National Novel Writing Month site last night, I commited myself to writing a 50,000 word novel in 30 days.

A little number crunching for perspective:

  • Number of pages: About 200

  • Words per day: 1,667
  • Words per hour: 69
  • Seconds per word: 52
  • Number of Words in this weblog’s 11 months of entries: 22,300

I don’t know anyone. I joined too late for the Seattle gathering and the little single-threaded Yahoo message board for the project is practically unnavigable & overwhelmed with noise. Oh well.

Though writing doesn’t start until Thursday, I’d better start cooking up some ideas.

In-Depth Baseball Playoff Analysis

WGN has their broadcast booth right on street level. They were doing a sports show as we walked past, one of the guys rattled off a few scores from games that were in progress. Seattle was beating Cleveland and I showed some mock-enthusiasm. The Chicago-natives and Parisians in our party were bemused.
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Canvas shoes, wool socks

I met a lot of people, renewed a few acquaintances, and was surprised a couple of times. I was able to explain my presence well enough but occasionally had trouble simply justifying my existence. Too much to make sense of right now.

Now I’m back home in Seattle and my socks are wet.

Slacks Make the Man

At an internet cafe in Chicago Mayor, Richard M. Daley. A few doors down from Quimby’s and its Chris Ware designed sign. Things is good. I like the el, we’re on good enough terms that I can call it el instead of “el”.

I walked around yesterday and what did I think of? Perfect Strangers, of course. I ended up down near the Magnificent Mile where there are all these jazz clubs. And I looked at the people and noticed how “well” they were dressed. In Seattle I rarely feel the need to dress up, even when I go to fairly upscale places. I just make sure my shirt tag is tucked in and I’m not even given a second glance.
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That Little Window On My Watch

I was wondering why I’d scheduled my flight for Thursday instead of Wednesday. Oh well, I thought.

Well, I’m supposed to reset the little date window in my watch after months that aren’t 31 days. I didn’t do that this month. It’s good I figured that out today instead of tomorrow.

I’m spending a couple of days in Chicago, then driving to Wisconsin for Mari and Jon’s wedding.

Dandelion Wine

In kindergarten, those of us who couldn’t tie our own shoes were instructed to ask our parents to teach us how. So at home, I started campaigning for a lesson. My family kept putting me off until later and I was a timid kid, so I didn’t complain. Finally, one morning, I put on my shoes and asked my older sister to show me how to tie them.
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