Category: Memoir

  • The Mission District, Google, and My Pissed-Off Salvadoran Blood

    The Mission District, Google, and My Pissed-Off Salvadoran Blood

    Sometimes I visit the Mission District of San Francisco, where I was born. It’s not the same, and it’s getting worse. Google moved into the neighborhood. On the east side of Valencia Street, it’s still Latino. I walk by and smell the tacos and pupusas, and hear Spanish conversations in the lilts of Mexico, El […]

  • Writing Against the Taboos

    Writing Against the Taboos

    I’m supposed to stay away from the taboos. This is both what my doctor and Michelle recommend. This is a time of rest, they say. They remind me that the tender weeks after a mental collapse need to be calm, with near-zero stress. I don’t disagree. Asylum means sanctuary, refuge, protection. True asylum is a […]

  • My Demons Scream For Nutella

    My Demons Scream For Nutella

    I got a little too close to the core yesterday, when I wrote here on The Writing Bull. The image of the little nude boy in a tight cage did it. I know I got too close, because I went on a mini-binge. Suddenly, my body craved, not carrots or apples, but peanut butter, which […]

  • Professor Dick Head

    Professor Dick Head

    Professor Dick Head (his friends called him Richard) taught a literature class in my undergraduate college. He was a really smart guy. He had the air of New England about him, though I think he was from Illinois. He wore a tweed coat and vest, dark ties, horn rimmed glasses, a goatee and self-righteousness. He […]

  • Careful, who you read your journal to…

    Careful, who you read your journal to…

    In the middle of writing the first notes for the novel The Holy Spirit of My Uncle’s Cojones, I recorded the above dream. My son Ben had been born two months previous. He was our last of four children, and my mind had focused on that—the youngest. There was a brittle feeling about it, though […]