Well I was just wondering what I should write about today. I haven’t done much, nothing really worth writing about. (Your line: And since when has that stopped you?) I almost called up Harpy to see if he could suggest anything, but changed my mind.
Then something inside, maybe my pancreas, said, ‘Isn’t today an anniversary of sorts?’ I said, I wasn’t sure. Then my Canals of Hering spoke up and said “maybe you should check the date of the first posting for johnozed.” So I reluctantly checked.
I hate it when the Canals of Hering are right. They can be so smug. I know I’ll never hear the end of it. ‘Ooh, we are part of the outflow system of exocrine bile product from the liver. Ooh look at us! We’re so clever!’ Still credit should be given where credit is due.
I looked at the archives and saw that today, October 7 was when I posted my first entry, way back in 2005. The entry was mainly about going with Bill to An Evening of American Satire with Barry Crimmins, Paul Krassner, Lewis Lapham, Kurt Vonnegut and Art Buchwald at the Society for Ethical Culture on Central Park West.
Both Vonnegut and Buchwald have passed away since then. No- I didn’t have anything to do with it.
Bill and I spoke with Lewis Lapham outside the hall where he was having a smoke after the show. He was the one who inspired me with something that a few other people had said before, that a writer should be like a musician.
Basically Lewis Lapham said, Where a musician practices for an hour or so each day, a writer should do something similar. Write for an hour or so, or write 300 words, or 500. Or 1000. I thank him for that and he rattled off that Balzac would write 500 words a day. Not 499 or 501 but 500.
Graham Greene would write only if his favorite parrot, Ozymandias would sing The White Cliffs of Dover in Latin. Impressive things to know. So being a big fan of Latin speaking parrots, I set about writing.
Initially it wasn’t easy and I found myself longing for a parrot of my own. It never came through though I did see a Starling fly into the supermarket. I’m sure I could have caught it and trained it somehow, but the only Latin I know is Tempus Fugit, E Pluribus Unum and that’s about it. Plus I was next in the express line and I wasn’t about to give up my place. It was all about the genius loci, you see.
Still it’s more than I know of Gaelic.
I also wrote about seeing Paul McCartney earlier that week at Madison Square Garden with Julio. That sort of repeated itself this past July and included Bill, Julio’s wife Stine, and Annemarie and Earl out in Flushing.
I know it seems all ab absurdo but it has been 4 years since I’ve started and I’d like to think things have improved. Not that I’ve done that much but I don’t see any of you writing at least 500 words a day. And by you, I mean the 6 people that subscribe to this cyber rag.
Perhaps it’s all cacoethes scribendi so caveat lector.