That is what Minky is doing here.
Not too long ago, I took out all my old notebooks and put them in chronological order.
At first, I was like, whoa, that's a lot! Good job, me. Then I was like, actually, for twenty years, that's not that much. Cancel the kudos.
There are some gaps in the chronology, times when I wasn't writing in my notebook much. 2000 was a hazy year for me; I didn't want to look at my life in my own handwriting; if I'd dared face myself on the page I would have had to change my life immediately instead of eventually. Then there's a notebook that ends halfway through with an entry on 9/10/01. The next one picks up about three weeks later.
The college years were light, too. I didn't "journal" back then, I just wrote down phrases, ideas, dialogue for the book I was diligently writing, called YUCKIE LOVE. "Yuckie" was an acronym for "Young Urban College Kid" (as opposed to all those old college kids); the book was half plot and half sociology, with bar charts and stand-alone essays on things like "The First 1000 Hours of a New Relationship." I was convinced that I had nailed the zeitgeist of my friends and my time, and every single day I could not wait to finish my book, have it published, and get famous like Tama Janowitz. Then Douglas Coupland published GENERATION X, and I dropped dead.
I'm grateful that YUCKIE LOVE was not published, not that it had any opportunity to be. At the time, recognizing that my book had been rendered useless, I thought that my whole world had collapsed; the thing I went to bed thinking about and woke up in the morning eager to greet again had collapsed into dust. I never imagined that one day I'd be happy it never saw the light of day. But I've skimmed pieces of it in the past five years, and it's...well, let's just call it "juvenile."
Anyway. I'm going to be mostly offline for the next two weeks, but I don't want to neglect the blog as badly as I have in the past, so I'm going to put up a few auto-posts that will go up in my absence. They're scans of old notebook entries from the above-pictured tub o' writin', with transcriptions underneath (you'll need them). Some of them are just thoughts, sketches for unwritten poems; others are parts of journal entries. I look forward to hearing your reactions, and to writing to you again, gentle reader, upon my return.