1. Wednesday, December 11, 2002

    tony, school is on the phone. 

    school? it was one a.m.

    sure enough it was school. isla vista university.

    tony we want to publish your book.

    God bless you.

    how soon can you be here?

    twenty minutes.

    how are you going to do that?

    i have a flying car. i’ll land on one of the copter pads on the cliffs by the lagoon.

    please dont bring any of those xbi things up here. come alone. show a little class.

    knocked on my neighbor’s door. the old lady. she said i could borrow her 1980 dodge van.

    so it was three on the tree in the middle of the night.

    made it to IV in an hour and a half. knelt at the alter of the college of creative studies and didnt dare look up.

    go to campus point, build a fire, bring your manuscript, and a cup.

    skateboarded through campus turned left at the thunder dome, then took the hill down to the lagoon past the faculty club. found a red wheelbarrow beside some white chickens, gathered wood on my way to the beach, started a fire, a shadowy figure was approaching me with something on his shoulder.

    as it got closer i saw that it wasnt a man, it was a woman, and she had what appeared to be a full keg of beer on her shoulder.

    mind over matter, tp. good to see you.

    it was my creative studies advisor. the reason for everything.

    dont use my name on your blog if you write about this, she said. and tapped the keg and filled up my cup.

    she sat crosslegged at the fire and accepted my manuscript and read it as the waves crashed and the lighthouse kept very slow time and every once in a while she would laugh and look up at me, proudly, and that meant everything in the world to me.

    before we drank very much she was done.

    it starts off slow, but i like that. it shows progress. it shows growth. people might read this and see that with practice you get better as you write and you end up with some very good stories along the way.

    thank you.

    and it has an ending. a real one. and a real begining.

    im so glad you think that.

    you need to take the poems out though.


    this is a book of short stories. some very short stories. you dont need to apologize for it with your poems.

    bukowski put poems and stories together.


    i promised people there would be poems.

    give them their money back if they dont like it.

    did you like the photo essay?

    yes, but it needs to be cut out too.

    you dont understand, people Love the photo essays.

    too bad. this is a book of short stories. dont fuck it up.

    i learned early on that she was right about everything, so we clinked plastic cups that said mgd on it and drank.

    your grammar is bad and there are lots of spelling mistakes.


    no, it’s cute. for some reason when you do it it’s ok. but whats up with the ee cummings all lowercase who-ha?

    its a web thing.

    dont change it. i love it. nobody has been able to tribute ee without completely making everyone think of him. youre on the right path.

    what about the cover?

    the cover needs to be in color. thats gonna cost you.

    cost me?

    you think this is going to be free? youre going to pay for everything. and it wont be cheap.

    will it look like a book at least?

    no, it will look like a college reader. university of isla vista press. get it?

    will it have a spine with the title on it?




    people wont think that it’s a book.

    dont judge a book by its spine.

    when will it be ready?

    friday. come back up here then with a thousand dollars and i’ll give you one hundred books.

    give me ninety nine, i’d like you to have one.

    this is a good thing, tony.

    thank you so much, woman who should be praised.

    thank me by helping me kill this keg.

    17. the comedian

    faster harder deeper