Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Feeling blocked

I almost always have too much going on, but usually I can push through or at the very least prioritize.  However, I think I ended up taking a week longer than I thought on Lethem's Chronic City (which I did enjoy considerably -- seeing it as sort of a lost DeLillo novel focusing on reality and simulacra -- though DeLillo wouldn't have snuck in quite so many references to PDK's Dr. Bloodmoney) and other things have piled up from the library.

I'm just about to start Kay's Lucky Coin Variety by Ann Choi (and perhaps I am feeling a bit guilty about not pushing through with my own writing, since she has sort of a similar trajectory to be in terms of plotting out a novel decades ago but never quite writing it down until a few years ago in her case).  But also I have Ursula Franklin's Massey lectures on technology, several plays by Edward Albee, O'Casey's Dublin Trilogy, and just recently a few poetry collections by Earle Birney.  In the case of Birney, it should be a relatively easy decision on whether to just buy a used copy of his Selected Poems, but I have to admit I am really weirded out by his last poetry sequence, which was a series of love poems to his last companion -- a young woman 45 years younger than he was at the time.  That's kind of pushing it, in my view.

Part of me wants to just dump all the current lists and only focus on a stack of books downstairs, where at least I would feel I was making tangible progress in getting rid of some books.  But I think I'll try to stick with my current program (though maybe cut slightly back on non-fiction books) at least until January or so, by which point I should have read Vanity Fair (probably the single biggest omission from my reading history, though a few of the Dickens and Thomas Hardy novels I skipped are fairly close).  But what I really need to do is stick to a schedule of writing at least an hour a day (not counting the blogging).  I think I would feel better all the way around.

In any case, I had to work from home today, since the washing machine was being delivered.  I actually had to straighten up a fair bit downstairs (in case we needed access to the water cut-off valve).  Now that I put in the effort, I'll try to maintain this at least until my father-in-law comes to visit.  (You can see the sewing machine in the foreground, which is for another project currently on the back burner.)

It turned out that, yes it had been necessary to dismantle the doorframe just to get the machine through, though fortunately, I only had to take off one side.  That should make it easier to rebuild the door.  We also had to take the outer door off the hinges, though that was easy enough to rehang.

The Fate of a Doorframe?

I suppose I am most grateful that we didn't have to turn off the water to the house, since there is no guarantee that something wouldn't have gone wrong.  It could have been a lot worse, all things considered, though I obviously wish the original washer hadn't broken down so badly in the first place.

But maybe I should have taken a load to the laundromat down the street, just for old times' sake and see if I could get any writing done there.  I don't think I've gone to a coin laundry since 2001 or so when we were living in Brooklyn.

As it happens, this is the nearest laundromat to me, which sort of brings things full circle to the top of the post, though I do not know if this is run by a Korean family or not.  Perhaps someday I will find out.

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