The end of the academic year quickly approaches and I, for one, am most grateful for this swift passage of time. It has not been an easy one as far as things go; students were unusually abrasive and combative with regards to doing work of any sort. One student told me it was a supreme difficulty to watch a movie I was showing. That should speak - to any student, former or current - for itself.
A month ago I was on a sheep farm in Wisconsin: a state I never before visited and a type of farm I never before saw beside a cursory passing. It was telling, that place, not only because of the mind-numbing sheep but because of the company and the overall setting, something that exists in a kind of perpetual sunset, blood-soaked red submerging beneath the horizon: that moment when you know things are fading and you don't know, for sure, what it means.
The experience reminded me of the relationships in my life: family, friends, students, colleagues, tax collectors, etc. The point is that none are simple, none are transparent. I'm often asked by a drunken slag who I am and what I'm about. There's an insistent tone in their questioning: they figure I'm gay if I don't want to experiment with them, if I don't want to hurry to some dark corner with their tired, liver-failed selves. They are, in the end, utterly perplexed by my simple and un-emotional refusal. I've grown to the point that none of this matters. None of it.