Warm nights and long naps

I went for a couple short walks tonight. It’s the time of year where there’s still light at eight o’clock, and you can wander through twilight at a balmy seventy-something degrees Fahrenheit. You only need a sweater if you want to keep the bugs off your arms. Nevada does sunsets like any desert state — think spectacular oranges and pinks striped against cozy midnight-blue — but we’re in a place that’s a touch more meadowlike than, say, much of Arizona.

One of my favorite things about warm days is how you get glimpses of others’ lives. People out teaching their wee ones how to golf on the playground, folks using the park for batting practice, rugs thrown over fences to dry off, garage doors open to rearrange things, kids wandering with friends as they delay heading home.

The birds sing pretty late at this time of year. There’s something roosting in my plum trees, low enough that I kept startling it walking underneath. I bet I won’t see many plums this year. The birds will eat them all, I’m sure. I’m all right with that.


I can’t resist napping a lot. I don’t know what it is. I’ve been sober-sober from weed for months now — I quit at the end of January, and we’re well into May — yet it’s possible my body & brain are still healing from years of endocannabinoid fuckery, I suppose. It’s not like I’m doing a lot of physical activity. I stand a lot and walk a bit, but I’m not lifting the way I used to. I don’t leave home to go to work. Some days it feels like most of my activity is getting up to eat and standing sleepily at my standing desk for a while before going back to lie down again.

Yesterday I managed to stay awake all day. I slept great the night thereafter. Then I napped for three freaking hours today! What’s up with that? I’ve had my thyroid and blood sugar tested and these things seem fine. Can I really still be recovering something like 110 days into sobriety? Maybe, maybe.

Still, I am getting writing done, a thousand words at a time. I’m not zipping along very fast but working on Insomniac Cafe is weird because it’s a weird book. Trying to figure out the dismount on a surreal horror novel is tough. It needs to feel right, and say what I intend, and it needs to be deeply unsettling.

While I don’t do a lot of active writing, I’m also working on my charcoal illustration, “make it make sense.” I’m kinda in the place where it looks ugly. All of my bigger pieces go through a long ugly stage (or two) where it’s blah and not very visually readable, and pushing through that is a pain. It’s hard to imagine I’ll ever get somewhere I like. I usually do. But I don’t know how.

I wish I’d chosen a composition with more face in it. I really love doing human skin in charcoal. I didn’t want to do a face-focused portrait because I used to do them too much, but…I just really like doing skin!


The quality time I’m getting with my kids right now is such a dream. My thirteen-year-old is more personlike than ever, but they’re also going through an especially indulgent stage where they just wanna do stuff with us. They don’t really care what. That means they’re watching more TV and movies with me than ever. All I ever wanna do is inflict my media on them. Show them the things that shaped me. Listen to their snark about Friends. That kind of thing.

My nine-year-old is still a little bit of a baby, in his way. He’s also getting quite grown — don’t get me wrong. But reading “Understanding Comics” by Scott McCloud together has shown me specifically where he’s yet to neurocognitively develop abstract thinking. And that makes him feel like he’s still a wee bit of a sweet baby. He’s so sharp, though. He gets a lot more than he doesn’t. He demonstrates his understanding of many concepts (like the different ways you can arrange panels to modify the readers’ perception of time) by pointing them out in later chapters, or in the kid-oriented comics he’s reading.

Thanks to my 9yo, I’ve also been reading more Dav Pilkey. The newest Dog Man book, “The Scarlet Shedder,” was an unexpectedly emotional and political read. It’s Dav Pilkey’s manifesto against AI, done in a clever and entertaining way for kids. It also tackles resilience through the hard parts of life. Considering the naive style, the extremely silly aesthetics, and general FUN of his books, I wasn’t expecting this one to slap me in the face. My 9yo got really emotional about reading it, too. Dav Pilkey is his favorite author. He has good taste!


My mental health is in the trash can. I feel great when I’m doing specific stuff (being with my kids, focusing hard on something), but the zero spaces in between are filled with anxious chaotic noise. I wish I felt better.

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