I keep a notebook with me much of the time. The notebook is for writing down ideas or words or sentences or kernels or situations or conversations – anything that has sparked a moment of creativity or answered some question regarding an ongoing work. The notebook is both literal and metaphorical in that I do have a bound collection of dried pulp-ish, lined paper upon which I write with a Pilot Precise V5 pen but I might also peck out notes on my phone or speak notes into my phone’s voice recorder or send myself emails or scribble things down on recycled napkins or the backs of business cards or grocery store receipts. Sometimes when I look back on these notes I find them interesting but barely decipherable. This is one example:
The sidewalks were so busy with professional foot-traffic that I was almost glad when a man stole my heavy suitcase. He didn’t even bother to run. He slowed, gently took it from my hand as if he was helping me with my luggage, and regained his stride which quickly outpaced me. I could see him, bobbing through the crowd for a while; one blonde pigtail plaited down the center of his back. He was gone before I reached the corner. I stood there for a long time, wondering if I should call the police, wondering what would happen in the next few days now that my medicine had disappeared with his ponytailed highness.
I stood at the corner, tumbling my last three quarters in my right pocket and waiting to cross the street. Traffic was heavy.
When the signal finally changed and the other pedestrians began to move, I moved too.