my touch just makes you draw farther and farther and farther away

go away go away

a behind-the-scenes exponential:

the exponent publishes a literary edition at the end of each semester. among all the other foolishness of last week, i found time to dig up some bad poetry, rework a november blog entry into a short story, and submit them for consideration.

once it was away, i went into hysterics over the idea of the short story actually being published. i wasn’t too happy with the dearth of conflict, plus i found a capitalization error, etc. i let a few select people read it; nathan’s sentiments were fairly similar to my own, and the security adviser said that other than the complete lack of pop-culture jargon and inside references, ‘it sounded like me,’ whatever that meant.

the literary edition was scheduled to publish monday, and i almost stayed on campus last night so i could grab a copy there, but then decided against it. why do that when copies would be delivered to the bookstore right across the street?
so i went home, did some laundry, and waited.

around 6.30, it started to snow, and not just a little bit … it went from no snow to BAM! skies opening up and white stuff raining down. i put on my coat and went downstairs on my quest for a paper anyway. freezing precipitation wasn’t going to stop me.

there was no bundle in front of the bookstore. i peeked in the side alcove and sure enough, it was sitting on top of a stack of monday’s edition of the indianapolis star. i tried the door — locked. and me with no key. what to do, what to do …

since i am the queen of useless arcana, i knew that there were two other exponent drop-offs downtown: the oldest drugstore in indiana and the murky, both a mere block or so away. off i went.

the snowfall had picked up, but it wasn’t really sticking. it made a weird clicking sound when it hit the leaves on the trees. the spotlight on the chamber of commerce roof which illuminates the courthouse at night gave me a good idea of how hard it was coming down.

there was actual traffic on the streets, so i restrained myself from jaywalking across third, waited for the light to change, rolled up on the drugstore first … and there was a bundle sitting in their entryway. i grabbed two copies and
headed back for home, skimming the paper as i walked.

it didn’t take long for me to find the first one. they ran the haiku about former ABCNEWS law correspondent tim o’brien’s awful choices in anchorwear that i speedwrote on IRC ages ago, below the fold, on the front page. i didn’t even title it. what for? i know what it’s about; everyone else can come up with their own interpretations. i flipped to page two … and stopped walking.

they published ‘the trigger explained.’

sure, they fucked up the formatting, but there it was, in black and white, just over a line drawing of ross-ade stadium. that poem has a target audience of two people … and the other one has probably long forgotten. for a moment, i felt like i’d tossed a tightly-worded firebomb on yet another below-average situation …

i thought maybe everyone will think it’s just bad poetry.

the rest of the paper yielded no further works with my name attached. i folded the papers into my coat and walked back down main street towards home, snow slowly melting in my hair.