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  • Distribution, I do so enjoy passing out Budget Press, throwing them down on some café shelf for unexpecting readers looking for something to occupy their brains. The first Saturday after I had picked up copies of my latest publication from the printer, I spent the day driving around to various cafes and book stores in San Diego. First thing to do I find where the free stuff is, and then of course find a way to display the Press prominently without messing up everyone else’s free shit. At times, when things are crowded, I take it upon myself to do a little weeding out, to get rid of flyers for example for events which already took place. I figure I’m not screwing anybody that way, right?

    My ADD/ADHD/Manic/choose your diagnosis raddled brain seldom allows me to sit still for very long, which makes it hard when most of your life is spent reading and grading dozens of college essays at a time. Fortunately, in grad school I came up a way for me to get all my work done. I go to one café and start whatever I’m doing, and force myself to get X amount of work down, or at least get as close as I can to that goal before my brain shuts down. Then I walk or ride my bike or drive to another café, and repeat the process, and then another. Sometimes I end up visiting three or four cafes in one day. It may take a whole day, but by the end I’ll have actually got some stuff done. Now this doesn’t really have much to do with today’s story, except for maybe the fact that I’m writing this after grading 10 papers and my brain needs a break, or that when I sat down at Lestat’s on Park to grade papers on Sunday, it was the third café I’d been to that day.

    Because of my constant café travels, I have been able to check in on my Budget Press distribution network. And I can report good news, after one week all the copies that were placed in the places I checked were gone! So I reach into my backpack and throw down some more! But as gratifying as that is, actually handing people free Budget Press is much more fun.

    So I’m sitting in Lestat’s grading papers comparing Gandhi, Nehru, and Mao, and a group of four very attractive artist/hipster/alterno women in their mid-20s come in and sit down at a table. I try to keep grading, but I can’t help but be a lecherous middle-aged man and drool. Another distraction from work. After a while I do the “gotta use the bathroom” move to walk by them and glance at what there were doing. They were studying a book together, a creative writing textbook. I thought I was going to die, a bunch of cute writer girls. If only they weren’t the same age as my daughter!

    I went back to my work, and when it was time for me to go I took out four copies of the Press, walked up and placed them on their table. “Want some free zines? One for each of you.” They were all ooohhh cool! as they picked up their copy. The one that seemed to be the leader of the group with her Cleopatra eye make-up looked at me and smiled. I just wanted to blurt out, “Hey girl, you want a Bukowski experience?” but I didn’t, I turned and went on my way. When they take their Budget Press home, they’ll be taking me with them.
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