The November Project

Friday, November 03, 2006

(written 11.02.06--1:13 a.m.)

thank you for the toner cartridge
my sister
and for the paper i needed too
i’d been volunteering for your start-up magazine
i call it working for free
and one issue’s ok
even with my free days
but i didn’t want to do issue two
but you dropped like two bills on my toner
and the paper, too
and though i was going to help you out
(’cause that’s what a brother should do)
this makes it a bit more palatable
thank you.

(written 11.03.06--11:22 a.m.)

no computer today
all day
don’t know why it’s not working
have to wait for UPS
9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
and then a boog event
so i can’t go to tekserve
to see what’s wrong.
i hope it’s just the adapter, again,
it’s on warranty,
’cause much more than nothing i can’t afford.

(written 11.04.06--1:26 p.m.)

i wait all day
for my doc to renew my meds
can’t go off my good friend lithium
i guess i could
but it’s been so long
since before i took it
and the manic-d it kind of went away.

finally after calls all day
the nurse calls back at almost five o’clock
to confirm my scrips
then she calls them in to my local pharmacy
i don’t use a real chain so they close in like an hour
then i call
into the pharmacy
the scrips are in
i’ll be there in half an hour.

(written 11.09.06--10:26 a.m.)

it’s been tough
booking the eagles classic albums show
hotel california
so i try again
but move on to nirvana,
kids like them best
i know that.

(written 11.09.06--10:28 a.m.)

sean is late
to go to our reading
because he was up at a party
until 430 in the morning
so now instead of just meeting him and his lady
and going to dinner
he says he’d like to rehearse
which i wasn’t too concerned about
but he was
so i did
’cause it didn’t bother me either way
50 minutes later
no time for relaxing dinner
i like to relax before any event I do
i like to nap
i like to get a massage
and though I’m broke
i can still nap and eat anyhow
so we grab some pizza
get in a cab to the zinc bar
arrive at the time the reading’s to start,
and all that’s there is curator jim.

(written 11.09.06--10:32 a.m.)

i’m watching election returns
won’t watch cbs,
didn’t like the way they did dan rather
i just want to see
actual vote breakdowns
for the new york state governor’s race
to see how malachy mccourt is doing
he needs 50,000 votes to the green party their line back
so i call ian, ex-co green party head
before the polls closed,
ask him to call me when he knows something
nothing on the tickers
at the bottom of the screen
anywhere i look,
ian forgets,
so i call him later,
says long island is looking good,
but doesn’t know yet,
says it’ll be a long night.

(written 11.09.06--10:36 a.m.)

brenda iijima called me
or did i call her
we don’t talk too often
like once a month or two
but i always enjoy it when we do
we’re talking about nathaniel
when i get call waiting
it’s nathaniel
asking if i’m going tonight
it sounds like i should know
so i think for a sec,
remember it’s alice notley at cuny,
give an emphatic no,
still a bit drained from how the reading went,
he says he’ll call after
and i go back to brenda,
tell her nathaniel’s ears must’ve been burning,
explain to her my rock act theory to event going,
how once you’ve seen them, you’ve seen them,
and i took a killer workshop with alice at the church once,
heard her read before
and though like any good band
the work’s evolving
i’ve seen her once
and that’s cool by me,
lotta bands you know.

(written 11.09.06--10:44 a.m.)

pouring rain,
i kinda missed it,
but still coming down
striding ’round puddle corners
just to get my lithium
get to new doc
who tells me no continuing psychopharm patients
in this clinic
nobody told me that on the phone
out a $90 intake
which i’ll have to do in a month
somewhere else with someone new
but i got me a scrip
for some more lithium.

(written 11.13.06--3:08 p.m.)

me and ryan
used to play this game when we worked together
i would say i was going out tonight
name all the television shows on the networks,
major and minor,
tell him i was taping one program in the 8 o’clock hour and one in the 10 o’clock hour
what were they?
and it got so that after a while he would almost always nail them
while we talked about what he’d be watching that night
and whatever major sports were in season.

this television season
the mass-confusion timeslot is thursday’s at 8 o’clock
there’s survivor on cbs
my name is earl and the office on nbc
ugly betty on abc
and smallville on the cw,
i’m going out tonight,
what am i taping?

(written 11.20.06--1:08 a.m.)

shea stadium going away
new name leaked for the mets new park
citifield for citi bank
i’ve got no problem with that
not a jackie robinson field sentimentalist
besides, he never played for the mets,
and as corporate names go citifield has a nice ring
and the mets will need the money they’re to get
to go and pay down their debt.


I went to your memorial service
Even though I really didn’t know you
Though I knew you for 12+ years,
Went in part to honor what you died for,
A good fight in a line of good fights,
But if you died of an enlarged heart
While visiting friends out west
I probably wdn’t have come
And I’d say the same of you for me
And know we meant no disrespect to each other
And that this was us

(written 11.19.06--4:48 p.m.)

get a call from my dad
a revival of the old world book game we’d play at the dinner table
where one of us five in conversation
would mention something none of us really knew quite right
so dad would hop up and go into the world book room

which from the late seventies on would be my bedroom
and grab one of the world books mom had earned
by going door-to-door selling for them
grab the book
and bring it to the kitchen table
and read us all what the world book said.

tonight he called to find out the name of that nba player who stuttered and got his life back together after fixing his speech
and getting a job with his old team
and i searched for awhile,
changed the wording,
and stumbled upon bob love,
the former chicago bulls star of the ’60s and ’70s,
i knew this was who he meant
as we had talked of love before,
seen a profile of him on the tv,
and so I called him back.
bob love dad, bob love.

11.13.06—9:10 a.m.


at this big play
that takes like a week
my folks in row front of me
my sis by me
by her is tina fey of snl
tina knows me from when i was on the show
tina gives me a written-on piece of paper
with some jokes about chanukah
i can read them better when i adjust the paper to the light
and we laugh
my sis asks her where she can get tina’s shirt,
an snl t-shirt she’d never seen.
tina said leave a message on the hotline
and she’ll be sure to get her one.
i want to ask tina if i can get a job on the show
i’ll do anything,
would start at the bottom
even though i was once in the cast for a year.
the lights have dimmed
and that kid from the apple computer commercials
is sitting on the aisle
around my bag,
so i move it.
i give tina the jokecard back,
and we smile in the darkness.
i start to open a bag of m&m’s,
get hushed by the ushers dressed as prison guards
shrug my shoulders to tina
and we laugh again.
the prisoners on the boat are all naked,
their asses joined to each other
by giant flesh-piercing metal hooks.

(written 11.13.06--3:08 p.m.)

it’s still going on with the gilmore girls
this hatred i have for the gilmore girls
how i used to look forward to it all the time
even watch the reruns cycle again and again
but another plot point that’s ridiculous
lorelai goes to paris and marries chris
why be so elaborate if when the show ends in may
it’ll be luke and lorelai to stay.

(written 11.20.06--3:08 a.m.)

your paranoia doesn’t suit you anymore
you don’t even like yrself that way
i can’t tell you anything you don’t already know
just take it easy,
take it easy.

(written 11.17.06--12:47 p.m.)

had to leave the house today
to give my editor my red-penned pages
defeating the plans i had
to not leave until thanksgiving eve
had marked 11 days.

11.17.06—1:23 p.m.

my dad called me during a break
at the school where he works.
“i thought of something that might help you send a resume out,” he said.
“i might die before you get a chance to send one out.”

11.18.06—1:04 p.m.


what are you doing lithium
i’m feeling real manic today
on the phone with joe
i rat-tat-tat-tat
then pull back and say “how are you?”
i let him talk for a moment
then i rat-tat-tat-tat more about me

i know i shouldn’t doubt you lithium
’cause you’ve been a good friend to me
but i can’t sleep through the liquids i consume through the night
and bad sleep feeds the manic-d.

(written 11.20.06--3:40 a.m.)

commercial for the movie bobby

voiceover: “america's top critics agree”

the critics whose names are in the smallest type ever?
larry king and some dude from maxim.

(written 12.03.06--1:01 p.m.)

big files are getting kicked out
of my email program
it’s getting harder to help my sister’s pub
getting harder to help my own
what’s a boy to do about big files
what’s a boy to do

(written 12.03.06--1:01 p.m.)

it’s weird being the treatee
instead of the being treated
and i never order drinks
and you just ordered a beer
and you just ordered another
and then i think you saw
to not order a third
as i kept getting my water with lemon refilled.

(written 12.03.06--1:53 p.m.)

facefirst into the wall is how i fell
down the inside steps of my parents’ house
i was wearing my recently repaired new glasses
and it was a long few seconds
i thought about my mom falling down these steps
slipping on something my big brother left on them
and then i was facefirst into the wall
two feet depth to compress six-three me,
i let out an oww and then laid still
my legs would be black and blue
and yellow, too.

(written 12.03.06--2:03 p.m.)

we ganged up on my brother en masse
the rest of us nuclear five
talking about his eldest daughter’s choice for college next year
a trade-type school way beneath her a average
but she wants to stay near her beau,
who’s going to a top state school,
and come freshman fall semester they’ll be over

(written 12.06.06--1:07 p.m.)

don’t show me your house
i want to see it
but that’s ’cause i’m a nice guy and can’t can’t stop it

you don’t even know me
as much as the boys your kids may sleep with
so don’t reprimand me
don’t finger scan me
i’ll see see you at the cemetery and not after that.

(written 12.06.06--1:18 p.m.)

for an entire summer
you said napoleon dynamite was the shit
so i swore that one day i’d believe you
and today was the day, this was it

with my parents in my sister’s basement
her daughter at a bat mitzvah
dad and i were too tired to see the new bond film
and the times meant too much running around
(and no dinner, too)

so i pulled out the videotape
where i’d recorded it during the free showtime weekend earlier this year
and said “this is napoleon dynamite, i heard real good things about it from some friends. i don’t know what it’s about it, and if it sucks we can stop it,”
so my folks agreed to give it a chance.

my parents began to mock it,
almost from the time the credits unfurled
(wait, mom liked the credits’ design)
and i gave it a chance
slow as it was
it was slow and it was ok.

but i kept trying to make the leap
to that one friend who was over the moon
and i couldn’t get there
i just couldn’t.

(written 12.06.06--1:33 p.m.)

it was another disaster movie,
airport 2006
picking my sister up from jfk
jet blue blew
and her daughter wouldn’t shut up.

(written 12.06.06--1:36 p.m.)

christina was right,
i discovered today,
my computer connects to my folks’ ethernet cable,
(with no oonfiguring either)
and what a joy to know that
after four years of sending files around
not that i would have powerbooked to long island all the time
but now i can and do things i may not have.

(written 12.06.06--1:39 p.m.)

tuesday pizza with mom,
it’s our day together at last
youngest niece with her mom
and dad back to work
i just want mom time
got it, at last.

(written 12.06.06--1:42 p.m.)

today’s not the greatest
day of my life
it’s so high
where is mister kite
yr hair and beard so white
peed in yr gown
missed yr brown cowboy boots
stop staring at the cops
they don’t like it

(written 12.06.06--1:50 p.m.)

it’s friendship
just a
just an i guess some sort a friendship
when other friendships have been forgot
ours will too