A History of Typing (Spontaneous Exercise New Writing 2020)


I stayed up all night reading the stranger, that’s when and that’s how, it happened. I think. It’s a fog and maybe a dream, maybe it’s all a dream, the act of writing, why we write, why any of us write. It’s been a while since I learned how to write, and maybe there’s a such thing as a writer, the concept of a writer, I don’t know whatever we are…

All I can think about is, I’m a funny human with a mop of hair. And in the morning, I wanted to learn how to write, the night after I read the stranger. It was assigned by a criminology professor my baccalaureate class at western Michigan university. And some body like me having a criminology degree is almost as funny as somebody like me being a writer, I think, maybe it’s not funny, just a dream, right, whatever you want to call it. Right? What do you want to call it? Please decide.

And in the morning after the stranger, devoured in one night, my future had been changed and I was going to be a writer, and nothing else just a writer, but the thing is nobody is just a writer, and that’s how we become writers. Through life, learning and being whoever … we become; we become artists after we become people, independent thinking and learning who we are. Even now at the age of however old I am (I know, I’m actually thirty¬ seven) even now I’m still learning how to write and still discovering how to be me, and that might take the rest of my life. I hope it takes forever too, because I want to be growing as a person, nicer, and more Zen like, until my last day on this earth. That’s sounds like a grand plan man isn’t I right. Spontaneous and true like the thunder in the sky. A mash up tambourine with a song of the power of youth, a nightlight in the day so bright so heavy you need a drink to calm your shit down; writing you fools as the days go by, and it took along time to get in the mood because editing takes its toll, life wears you like an old sock, holes and all, and I say this just … make it up as you go, that’s what I’ve said all along. Back at it ya dig you heard you want to believe in the present tense of all this madness? Here’s a recap…

The year is twenty twenty and we have a clown prince as a president, and upcoming from the laundry shoot of democracy we have a senior citizen home of worthy applicants that all have high marks but might not make it through the first term. Facts are facts and the population of mice don’t know them the truth, or want to believe the truth, because religions are too angry at other raging zealots. The gonzo journalist and the spontaneous beat novelist, the howling poet and literary second coming born in a workshop maybe in Iowa or in Brooklyn, and the other summer I was in the east village, reading some poetry that maybe a few liked, drinking with the likes where the young hip pray, where the changing of times meets with the wall street decay, and I stood hunched over a microphone at the KGB, and I heard so much laughter because we were telling jokes, but the only thing that was funny was that we paid off our deal, make us 500 dollars and you can read anywhere you like as long as the bartenders get paid. So now…

I’m a long time departed from the first days of the dream, hanging upside down reading albert Camus like a missionary reading the psalms, the morning after the stranger pause and slow down, let’s go back to those days.

I’m there and … I’m Reading Kerouac and Bukowski and falling in love with an air-conditioned nightmare. I don’t know if I ever became a writer but I think that I did. I did the same as all of us do, I dreamed, I bought a typewriter, I quit work and studied and read and typed and typed and typed and I typed and typed and typed…

I … typed and typed and typed and typed, years of typing and then decades of typing, and I ended up here, working in a bookstore having readings and being me, doing the same thing but getting paid enough to be me. I love it all even though I wake up to the anxiety of being surrounded by too much stuff, and it’s not just the stuff, the clothes, the shoes, the family, the cats; it’s not just the stuff but so many plans in my head, so many books to be read, so much typing and typing still so much typing to do, and that’s how I got here, I think anyway, I said I’m going to be a writer and this is just chapter one of how and why and what happened to me to become, me, whoever I am, today…
1000 words. That’s the plan. Maybe this will be good. Maybe nothing was good. It goes in waves that’s how ideas evolve. Like the water and the blood and the history, it all goes in waves. Humans don’t matter, in the galaxy it’s too big. So get nicer, wiser, type your barbarism away. Some of us never get there, we grind ourselves into nothing, we drink too much, we dream too much, we sex too much, we simple … be … too much; we type and type and type, and some of us don’t amount to a thing. But that’s not the plan, the plan is to be kinder, wiser, happier, at least once in a while.

So check check, let’s spit the story out: 1000 words a day. That’s the plan. Dig in the sand. It’s all in your brain. It happened after the stranger, the travels down to the ocean, from the great lakes, living in the woods on the Appalachian trail, and I woke up in Boston, as I hiked on the road, crying down in the train stop, you could hear Fenway letting the pastime out. Sun going down. All alone with dead bugs, and YOU; you did what you said you’d do, you went on the road, for longer than jack did. You became a dead man dreaming but instead of actually dying … you pulled your shit together and made it home and made it here and today, typing and typing and typing; the point will be worked out, not now, later; the clock will decide, a reflection and … a kiss, goodbye.

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