So, I haven’t made a post in a while. But I certainly haven’t been not writing, just writing something else – my goddamn motherfucking liberal arts capstone.
I won’t bother you with the details (though I have an episode about them in my podcast), but it’s been a lot of work and a far more annoyance. I enjoy writing. I dislike having to decode a shoddily written textbook and example capstones that are rife with errors, written by surprisingly unskilled living failures.
However. As of this Sunday, I’m wrapping up the actual creative portion of this so-called creative project, every other chapter of which has been literally by the numbers. I hope my seething rage is showing. To anyone considering it, do not, under any circumstances, do any courses, get any degrees, do anything related to Thomas Edison State University. Every single encounter I’ve had with them has been abysmal. I know the “if everyone you meet is an asshole, you’re the asshole” rule, but it doesn’t apply here – I’ve taken a lot of courses from a lot of different places, and had great experiences with all of them. All of them except TESU.
Anyway, my project consists of shadowing three employees at engineering/R&D/etc. companies and writing up the experience in a narrative style. Something along the lines of new or gonzo journalism. It’s been pretty fun. I wanted to do it at Purdue Pharmaceuticals, since they’re going through major legal trouble and I’ve literally written a novel about a pharmaceutical company who is into shady stuff, but didn’t end up doing it for this project – although I hope to do it eventually regardless.
Anyway, I’ll share a bit of one of the stories here. Also, a chapter of City Intersection is on its way. Probably the penultimate chapter. It should be fun, and I think I’m almost done with it (although I haven’t worked on it in a while, because I’ve been busy with this shit). I’ll leave you with that and Jack White’s new album.
When I woke up that day, I knew it was going to be a bad one. It was going to be one of those days where everything goes too fast, where my vision blurs and head swims and the very tip of my head vibrates and I can feel every heartbeat through my whole body.
Of course, it wasn’t that the outside world had suddenly sped up without me. At least, that explanation seemed incredibly far-fetched to me. It was just that my choices the last night, to take a bit too much to get to sleep a bit faster, and then didn’t get quite enough sleep because of those god damn construction vehicles that drive up and down my street, engine volume cranked up to eleven despite going about two miles per hour.
I didn’t quite trust myself to drive. I hated driving at the best of times, far more when I was the least bit mentally inhibited. So I arranged for someone to drive me, which threw a whole other wrench into the mix, since their schedule didn’t fit perfectly with the one I had arranged, so I sent an email to Joe and told him I’d be a bit late. He said that would be fine.
I took a dose of my “wake up powder” with a cup of tea, a bowl of cereal, and some nicotine. I felt a little revived, although still tired. I got there a few minutes before eleven in the morning, clipped my suspenders back on to the back of my pants – fucking hell, why did I wear these pants with these suspenders, the clips never hold on just right – and stepped through the front door.
The building I entered, the office building, was small. There were only a dozen or so employees there, so not much space was needed. I found Joe pretty quickly, but before we could start, a woman came up to me and asked me to sign in at the front desk. I didn’t even realize they had a sign in form, I had been here dozens of times and had never noticed it, but that was because my dad worked here.
I signed in, somehow remembered the date even though I generally have no idea what day of the month it is, accidentally wrote my name in under the “Company” form, crossed it out and squeezed a “N/A” in the corner, then finished up and turned back to Joe.
He was a young, redheaded guy I had met before. I had had a meal with him, with my parents, and gave him a beer I had made, a coffee stout, probably three or four years back. I had probably interacted with him, in person, other times than that, but that was the main one I remembered. I didn’t really know the guy, but I had a good feeling about him. He gave me some nice tea a while back.