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Why write? And lattes.

April 3, 2024
AJ Diaz

Clarify. Learn. Practice. Skills. Lattes. Fun. Struggle. Doubt. Belief. Love. Curiosity. Practice. Mystery. Magic.

Who really knows?

Not me.

The fun is in the mystery.

So why ruin it?

Why try to explain it?

Why not just do it?

Why do I like drinking lattes?

I don’t know. I like the taste of the drink on my tongue. I love how the caffeine clarifies my thoughts and actions. I love how it feels. I love holding the cup.

But, also, I don’t know why exactly I love lattes.

So why do I love writing?

I don’t know. But one thing I do know: when I’m writing, I love drinking lattes.

Furthermore, I don’t always love writing.

But it does give me something to do.

But I always love lattes.

And here my metaphor crumbles.

I always love lattes but I don’t always love writing. But lattes help me to begin to write on days I don’t feel like writing.

And all of a sudden I love writing again.

Follow your passion, they say.

Follow your curiosity, they say.

Learn a skill, they say.

Maybe, maybe, and maybe.

Regardless, I’m going to drink this latte, and I’m going to write.

Why? Why? And why?

Maybe I’m like Buck from Call of the Wild and it’s in my DNA. Maybe writers were in my ancestral line. They wouldn’t have had lattes.

So why did they write?

Maybe they had wine. Maybe they wrote on the oceanfront of the Mediterranean sea. Sipping wine. Enjoying the sunset.

Writing — making sense of life.

Is that what I’m doing right now?

I suppose.

But is that why I write?

Sometimes, surely.

What am I trying to do right now?

I’m drinking a latte. I’m typing on my rose-gold Apple laptop. Beautiful material. Feels like, as Steve Jobs would say, an extension of myself. I hear the sound of the keys. I watch the response on the screen. I’m listening to ambient music.

My laptop inspires me to write.

Like my latte.

Like writing itself.

Like the thought of my ancestors or of the writers who came before me.

There is a mystery in writing when the words come inexplicably together. When the storylines thread their way into our hearts. When we have revelations we would have never thought of.

There is a mystery here that must run deep and maybe even eternal.

Does God write?

And now I’m wondering who God is.

He creates.

He must not be a minimalist otherwise He would have kept things status quo — would have never created the world or the creatures in it.

Why does God create?

Why does God?

Does God know?

God only knows.

Or does He?

I don’t know.

I could never pretend to know.

I would never pretend to know.

And if anyone ever asks me why I write, I will not answer.

I’ll answer with a joke.

I might say something like, it’s better than bank robbery. Maybe. Of course, Leo made a good run of bank robbery in the Spielberg-directed film, huh?

I might say something like, what else would I be doing?

I might say, I hope you fall off this ski lift. (In this example I’m on a ski lift with someone). Also, ignore this example.

To take something implicit and make it explicit may not always be the right course of action. Some things are so deeply implicit that they might be sacred.

Like the latte I’m drinking.

Like God.

Like me.

Like writing.

Then again, who knows?

Sometimes my lattes are burnt.

Sometimes my writing is cheeks.

And sometimes my thoughts toward God are not friendly.

And sometimes my thoughts toward me are not friendly.

Of course if nothing were ever made explicit then we wouldn’t be alive, would we? If God never put His thought into reality through a Word-given, then we would not exist.

And neither would our stories.

Neither would our thoughts.

Perhaps we write because we can.

Perhaps we write because we will.

Perhaps it’s not in our DNA but it’s in our soul and spirit — the very thing we’re made of.

And perhaps making something explicit doesn’t ruin it entirely — or at all.

Like a ski lift. I’m frightened of ski lifts. What a crazy design idea. And yet they work.

And maybe writing works.

Maybe it has to work.

Maybe it’s working even now.

A latte is an idea until it isn’t.

Writing is an idea until it isn’t.

And maybe it’s a great idea.

And maybe that’s why we write.

If drinking the latte is better than thinking about the latte, then why think — when I can drink? (A question often asked by sorts of a different kind).


Why ask why?

And here, in this genre, I reach my limit’s end.

The question of why is answered, in regards to the latte, when I drink the latte. Drinking it answers my question.

Same with writing.

Doing the thing seems to answer the question in a way that I can’t answer the question with words.

At least not with this genre of writing.

If I told you a story, instead, you might understand.

If I told you my dreams, you might understand.

Fiction might capture the truth.

Imagination, not reality, might capture the truth.

So that’s crazy.

And I’m tapping out.

Because I’m in a spiral of depth that is too much for me to handle.

I’m seeing a ‘well without a handle’ in the words of Mr. Smith from his ‘goes to Washington’ days.

In that story, why name the girl? Why did he want to know the girl’s name so bad? She existed. He could see that plainly right before his eyes. And he thought she was beautiful. He was taken by her. But he still wanted to know her name.



Now I’m onto something.

But I don’t know what.

And, frankly, ‘I don’t give a damn.’

Because now I’m just stoked about writing a story. And I’m stoked about movies. And Rhett Butler and Clark Gable (two names for one man).

And I’m tired of writing this piece.

And my latte is out. Over. Empty.

So I’m going to buy a new one.

And then I’m going to write a mother*****’ story.



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