In a way the moniker "40yoVirginBlogger" is accurate: I've never blogged before. However, I did not know this would be my official handle. I thought it was the title of my first blog! Now I don't know how to change it. So there it is: I have no idea how to manage this stuff.
I used to write all the time and when I did it was on a word processor with a flip down keyboard that had a yellowed illustration of Hunter S. Thompson scotchtaped to it. I would sit in my room at my parents house and stare out the window at the birds in the pine trees and dump out my thoughts (I need a dump truck baby to unload my head). Then I met a girl named Courtney with whom I had a weird kind of kismet connection with. She got in my head. We shared intimacies beyond words or sex. Sometimes when I was entering her I felt like I was fucking the universe. I knew the meaning of life before I met her, and she only helped affirm it, but it was no help to me when she left me one bleak Sunday night in December. The next day I put on a UPS uniform and had one of the worst days of my life. My life had led to this. I was a twenty-eight year old man who had become part of the Beast, the System, the Required Uniform Masses and the best I could do was a UPS helper. I spent the next few months in the leftover remains of our apartment, teaching myself guitar, feeding the cat I bought her, and drinking late into the night. My need to write was reinvigorated. But it turned out to be the sugar high before the crash: she had broke me. I left behind the need to write. I became acutely self-conscious that I was sitting over a yellow legal pad with a pen in my hand.
I've always wanted to be a writer, always identified with myself as a writer, but I knew that I had no fiction in me. Or not much. A weak story about a girl I liked, another about a dinosaur, and a poem about what is in the valley behind my house were the highlights. I liked a story I wrote about a night when I talked six girls into coming over to my studio aparment. We sat on the floor Indian style and drank shots of Wild Turkey until the bottle was gone. That was a good night. Of course that was before Courtney. I bounced around for awhile after that, working in restaurants and hotels, until one day I took an IQ test online. The next day I signed up for classes at MCC (everyone knows that's a Community College right?) as an English Lit major. After a year there I went to a four-year school where I jumped right into 300 level Lit classes that I hated and one introductory level History class that I loved. From that point until now History and Education have been the focus of my life. Well, what little focus I have. Which it turns out is not all that much. I finished my four-year degree in History but more importantly I rediscovered my love for writing. Not as a writer of fiction (from the movie Sideways: "Fiction doesn't seem to be that hard to write - it's just made up stuff") but as a writer of History. Now I have a notebook of ideas that I work and rework and explore and revisit over and over.
So that is my history as a writer. Now if I can only figure out how to shed this stupid blog title.