jersey shoe

half way

driving has become routine. shout out to spotify, bill bryson & george orwell audiobooks (1984, animal farm, a walk in the woods, a short history of nearly everything) and anyone who has cared enough to call me on these crazy long drives. every day i wake up cheated of sleep. i’ve slept on couches, futons, spare beds, and in my car. i’ve driven 4,000 miles, i saw two great lakes. i had poutine. real poutine. i hiked. i saw the splendor of niagara falls. i met someone who dared me to be myself more than i think anyone ever has. i’ve made countless new friends. i had great beer, i tried ecstasy. i left a shirt in new jersey. i lost a shoe in toronto. (the shoe was found) there are moments in life that are very important. there’s no other way to describe them. sometimes there’s no way to unpack that instant while it’s happening. sometimes there’s no one to tell what you just saw or how you’d even explain it if you did. i think the most beautiful stretch of road on the east coast has to be rt 8 in connecticut as it winds along the farmington river. although there are many special people in my life i can only think of one person who i want to make that drive with again. the shows. the shows have been a roller coaster ride of emotion. april snow caused me to be 3 hours late to one of the shows. the anxiety created from it caused me to be 6 hours early to the show the next day. i’ve sold 92 books, and 15 shirts. the things people have said after the shows or during breaks have made all the difference. people approaching me to say they’ve never had a poem move them to tears before, or how my work has helped them in some way. the friends made. the memories. (a small crunching of numbers for people outside of the normal turnout at the events [people from twitter to be exact] toronto ontario 52, (new jersey 2x madison/toms river 20) long island new york 15, philadelphia pennsylvania 3, northhampton massechusetts 4, collinsville connecticut 12, erie pennsylvania 9, baltimore maryland 4, colby sawyer college new hampshire 6. (these numbers are from people who approached after the show, or bought a ticket to the event. the numbers are probably more generous than i am giving credit, but- at half way in, and 8 shows down, less than 100 of 55,000 people from Twitter who have actually come out to a show. these shows are offset by other numbers, because most of the shows come with an audience of regularly attending people. so far the total number of people i have done poems in front of is probably in the generous neighborhood of 250. you have to start somewhere. and this is my start. i’m excited for the remaining string of shows on tour, and to be able to pet my dog kentucky again next week

3

30,000 miles, 5 countries, 3 teams, 7 crashes, and 100 races quantify my experience, my love affair with this sport. The dozens of shoes, jerseys, helmets, sunglasses, and the 9 bikes I’ve owned are the tools.

As tools, they began as well designed mass produced objects of function. And like the best tools they become better through work. By the end of the first season, they are uniquely mine. The indents and folds hold my hands and feet perfectly. The scuffs and scratches tell a story that has been earned. 

White leather, gleaming paint, bright tape, out of the box and off the rack–the new tools. These are the blank pads where we write our experience out. We use them and they become treasures, one in a few thousand miles.

Dylan