Yet who would have thought the old woman to have had so much snot in her?

When I really get going, I go so far beyond the Ugly Cry Face that it’s something truly fearful to behold. Tentacles of snot, geysers of hot tears so destructive to mere Kleenex that I end up with an old T-shirt to swab the swampy decks of my face. I have drowned myself time and time again in my own salt water and mucus, flailing on my bed as though I was pinned to it and wriggling helplessly. None of this made me feel any better, but if I learned anything at all from my father’s death last year, it’s that sometimes nothing will make you feel better and you just have to muddle through.

I’ve been doing a fuck-ton of muddling lately.

The harshest rawness of it all has softened and given way, at any rate, as it does, to a simpler sort of sadness. That gaping hole will always be there. Another lesson I learned from my dad. If you fill it with love, the empty ache will ease up a bit, so get to it.


I spent the past week or so making what amounts to a fort, a writing cave, a magical little dim and cozy cavern where I can hide with my computer and write, or stare at a wall and think about what I’m going to write. I was calling it The Office and then The Computer Nook, and then I took a step back and was like… this thing I’ve made is a single draped bedsheet away from the most glorious fort you could have dreamed up as a kid, and so I dub thee The Fort. And how great a word is fort, anyway? Pretty great.

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