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Monday, April 10, 2017

A reader writes from San Francisco:

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Ur best lines:

"We have all become career improvisers [...] At someone else's mercy, we can fit in momentarily, but from their careful, cost-cutting calculation or sudden, inexplicable whim, we become misfits again, for that is what we are. Try as we might, we cannot adjust ourselves dexterously enough to our rapidly shifting surroundings, which we have no role in shaping."

It's very cathartic reading these lines. For I am a displaced tech worker who have been struggling to find my place again. It's been 3 years now and I have not been able to bounce back.

Luckily for me, I still have old fashioned Viet relatives who give me shelter and support me while I try to regain my footing.

Make me think of the law of UNCERTAINTY that new age gurus keep selling as a launching point toward a better life. The idea that uncertain is a natural law and one should embrace it.

It is a natural law that one can embrace if one had a brain and IQ of 300. It could work to a smart person's advantage. For a dummy like me and many others, it means I'm one bad decision away from unemployment and going broke.

I read ur book when I'm in the sauna, helps keep my mind off the heat and opens my eyes to all the neighborhoods around me. And if I look hard enough, I see the poverty too.





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1 comment:

bhikshuni said...

I too am lost in space of pseudo economy of scheister employment. Impermance of uncertainty is only a relief of change. Owning land i think is foundational (w potable water or at least access )

Linh Dinh ji, I saw this piece on Mark Twain and the story of him becomminq a journalist described you perfectly!

i think it is at the 20m mark or so

https://youtu.be/EwURjEIvPZ8

Followers

About Me

Born in Vietnam in 1963, I came to the US in 1975, and have also lived in Italy, England and Germany. I'm the author of a non-fiction book, Postcards from the End of America (2017), two books of stories, Fake House (2000) and Blood and Soap (2004), six of poems, All Around What Empties Out (2003), American Tatts (2005), Borderless Bodies (2006), Jam Alerts (2007), Some Kind of Cheese Orgy (2009) and A Mere Rica (2017), and a novel, Love Like Hate (2010). I've been anthologized in Best American Poetry 2000, 2004, 2007, Great American Prose Poems from Poe to the Present, Postmodern American Poetry: a Norton Anthology (vol. 2) and Flash Fiction International: Very Short Stories From Around the World, etc. I'm also editor of Night, Again: Contemporary Fiction from Vietnam (1996) and The Deluge: New Vietnamese Poetry (2013). My writing has been translated into Italian, Spanish, French, Dutch, German, Portuguese, Japanese, Korean, Arabic, Icelandic and Finnish, and I've been invited to read in London, Cambridge, Brighton, Paris, Berlin, Leipzig, Halle, Reykjavik, Toronto, Singapore and all over the US. I've also published widely in Vietnamese.