since the last time.
i have gone through more of the things that came from my family. and i have acquired even more. between the two of us, The Gift Horse and i carried off most of whatever was remotely potentially useful that was left in my mother’s house. so i am still with the Gift Horse.** and i’ve been having dinner with my grandparents mostly-weekly, and generally talking to my grandmother a lot, and so i am getting a plenty of good rich lore and sometimes a box of ephemera.
there is now the archival burden. but that’s a pleasant one. especially for a ravenously methodical details-fiend refugee-from-academia like me. (with, and i always forget this, some actual experience and training in archives!) it’s wonderful getting to know your people. i’m having a ball with my ancestors. especially my grandmother’s “line.” i imagine writing a book called Family Death Trip (à la Wisconsin Death Trip) full of glossy glorious haunting detail about all my wild downright saloon-keeping* forebears. (and, eventually, about everyone! grandiose steinian impulse.) and their fallings-off of streetcars, D.T.s, incredible mustaches, misfortunes with glass eyes, etc.
but at the moment, at least, it seems like i am going to write a book, somehow in collaboration with someone i am not related to, and somehow-certainly his memoirs—and somehow i am being paid to do this—and somehow certainly i have no idea how to go about it, but i suppose i really ought to just go about it and figure it out as i go along because the person really is interesting and money is involved. i mean i could have writing as a profession. at least for a while! and—this is something i learned in grad school—if i learned nothing else—writing requires writing.
* thank you census.
** oh! and all the botox is out of my system by now. that’s cool to think about.