Yesterday, Kate’s soccer practice was cancelled and I don’t teach English on Mondays so we had family day. Went to the library and the coffeeshop. I checked out Haruki Murakami’s first book called Hear The Wind Sing. Kate got some non-fiction books about revitalizing the education system, the value of a liberal arts education, and how to get people to start talking about the personal lives. After ten minutes, the Library closed because the A/C wasn’t working. The said the temperature was 88 degrees inside.
People ask me why I cut my hair and I say existential crisis or new dad new chapter or too hot and all are true.
I teach English at Georgia College on Tuesdays and Thursdays. An existential crisis for a teacher is when they doubt whether they can teach anything that fundamentally matters. I can teach grammar, essay, voice, structure, punctuation, audience, style. But when the students catch themselves staring into the mirror, their own watery irises staring back at them, will my class matter? Will it be forgotten academic blah or a life vest?
After lunch and nap and banjo, we took the dog and baby to the woods. The baby loves the trees. Wide mouthed, eyes track the falling foliage. Leaves like flames falling in slow motion. The dog runs a hundred feet ahead, then turns. In the woods, he’s a good dog. Leashed up on city sidewalks, he thinks he’s a sled dog. The stroller his sleigh. And our walk the Iditarod.
Last night I talked to cousin Eric about the PC push to dismantle civil war statutes in public spaces. Eric thinks the historical record shouldn’t be erased. Balanced, perhaps, with counter-speech. Or contextualized with more monuments. But erasure threatens the the fullness with which we understand of history. I flesh this out in Podcast 12.
Dark comes sooner. Dinner is minced radish, purple carrot, turmeric. A bed of micro greens, wild lettuce. Sautéed onions and celery. Liquid aminos, garlic chili sauce, and nutritional yeast. A fried egg on top.
I’m designing community t-shirts that say LOCAL across the front, except the O is an outline of the state of Georgia. The back of the shirts will have the logos of Milledgeville’s dopest businesses. We got into a fight because Kate said it wasn’t creative. But that’s not what Kate said. It’s just what I heard. She told me I saw the LOCAL idea somewhere else, and am merely capitalizing on it.
I realize a fair percentage of fights occur when I hear words and rearrange the order in my head because I’ve repressed my anger or distaste for previous situations and let it foment, then explode. Kate said she feels like she can never express herself around me, because I’m so sensitive. I said I feel like she could be more supportive. She said she feel’s like she’s been nothing but supportive. Push. Pull. Walk away. Walk back. Hand on hip. Hand in the air. The Civil War in miniature.
Genuine apologies seem to bring truce the most expeditiously. No matter what, don’t go to bed angry. I’m sorry for getting hyper-defensive and misconstruing your words, I said. I’m sorry for offering a critical opinion without being asked for it, she said. Two years ago, when we went to the couples counseling, this issue came up. The burden is on me, the therapist said, to be deliberate and specify when and what kind of feedback I want. Otherwise, she said, it’s an unfair burden on Kate. When is she to speak truthfully? When is she to maintain absolute support and positivity? Aye. Still working.