It wasn’t as bad, maybe because it wasn’t as cold.
Got to campus early after dinner with the wife and daughter — mmmm burrito! Since I had time I decided to check out the library. I hadn’t been in it years. When I first went to Macomb, I worked in the library. It was as pretty cool job. The library has since been remodeled — a new front desk and now there is a cafe inside. Bookshelves have been slight rearranged. I found myself wandering down the American Literature isle. It was funny how some of the book spine were still familiar. I used to spend a lot of time in the library, studying, sure, but also just discovering new stuff to read.
I searched the collection of Best American Short Stories volumes for the one with a story by my former teacher at Western, Jaimie Gordon. Found it. It was my favorite bit of writing by her. I started reading it but knew I’d never be able to finish. Perusing to the end of the fiction section I pulled down a small book of John Updike stories. The cover had been rebound but pages practically fell out when I opened it. I wondered when was the last time anyone had picked it up. Not that many people attend Macomb with literary ambitions, or so it always seemed to me. Community college is a practical place — people want to be trained for jobs, or educated to go on to a four-year university to be educated for a slightly better job. I wondered if I’d ever picked up this collection before. It was all stories about the Maples, a married couple who end up getting a divorce. Of course, it is an Upike story. What else would the do? The most famous of these stories is Separating, which I still adore.
Anyhoo… standing there among those books I knew that even if I do manage to muster enough enthusiasm to get another degree English, books and writing will always be where my heart, always what I felt I was meant to do. Just haven’t been able to make money at it yet, not enough anyway.