Instruments near the circle of people playing banjo and fiddles. Got
An almond croissant to share with orryn & braxton and a tomato plant,
Etc. orryn napping now after getting all dirty repotting our plants
And planting some sweet pea seeds in egg cartons. There are some
Other events in town today; wine festival, bird day at the state park,
a town wide yard sale in Trenton, nearby. Read a book From the library
This morning about a teddy bear at a garbage dump, very sweet, so I bought a
Used copy for 1 cent plus shipping.
I hope our tomatoes make it in their small-ish pots till we move--their is a wee
Garden patch at the new house I will stick them in, but we still have about
A month to go.
We have family visiting next weekend so I'm working on cleaning and packing up
Some excess stuff, too. Maybe I will make ice cream in anticipation; I haven't used
Our ice cream maker since the summer we got here.
Lots of honeysuckle around. It's like a weed he, it clogs the forests. The shrubs get quite high, too.
All the college students left, the town is suddenly quiet and empty. The cute restaurants on the Main Street all have lunch specials for locals in the summer. Yesterday I took orryn to get ice cream (just for me!) at udf and we walked around the community center gardens. Earlier he played on the splash pad with a bunch of other kids. When it isn't too hot, the summer is here sweet, idyllic.
Slowly gathering our things to be moved next month. Going back to my office for a bit to clean and send some books to authors. Wish we were headed to ca this summer--I guess we might be, for a wedding in August.
Do you ever spend your time trolling online, you see something, you tell yourself, “I can totally do that!” and then you chicken out? I’m looking at you fellow Pinterest junkies! Yeah. The art field can be challenging and frustrating as all hell. In fact, anything is… just cause you can make a quesadilla doesn’t make you a chef, right?
Anyway I finally grew a set and bought some printmaking supplies using linocut blocks. I am excited to give this a go because this medium really lends itself to what I do. In order to acquaint myself with the process I decided to do a trial run via the styrofoam method…. and hell, included the nugget in the process.
So this is what we did!
Here is what you need:
pencil, styrofoam cut to spec (take that leftover containers!), a rubber Speedball roller, tube of water soluble Speedball paint, wooden spoon and a little spatula (which I didn’t even end up using), piece of glass and the paper you plan on printing to.
I covered the table with paper to avoid a disaster even if the paint is water soluble. Tape down the glass, you will thank me.
Take a pencil to your styrofoam and draw out your design.
Run a small, horizontal strip of paint on the top portion of the glass, distribute with the roller. Then spread that goodness nice and evenly over your design.
Once you have the paint evenly spread over the design, take it and press it on to the desired surface.
Now this is where the spoon comes in! Carefully flip it over and you take the spoon to the paper. In firm, circular motion you run the spoon all over the paper so it adheres to the styrofoam. Do this for a few minutes.
Gently peel off your paper and there you go!
Set them aside to dry and immediately go wash your roller and glass for future use. Soap and warm water will do.
One thing I will say, the styrofoam method while faster and easier to create a master, you will not get many quality prints from it cause it degrades with every use. I think I got a good 3-4 out of the deal so if you want longevity, go wood or linocut blocks.
If you are in a position to be a hiring manager, or in a position of authority that involves your interviewing potential candidates I am going to give you a huge tip: PUT YOUR FUCKING PHONE AWAY and give your candidate the time and attention they deserve.
Where is this coming from? Let’s just say someone I know had this happen to them. They spend time prepping for an interview with a panel of people only to have one of those panelists not even making eye contact and playing with their phone the entire time they were being interviewed.
If you cannot put your e-leash away for thirty minutes to give a potential employee your time and respect, how can you expect them to:
A) Even WANT to work for you
B) Have any kind of respect for you as a peer should they even be selected. Cause guess what? They won’t.
You know, I am not on the job market but I know A LOT of people who are. Some more hard up than others, some who NEED the job cause they have families to feed and massive amounts of bills to pay, some who have been looking for 1 year or more, some who need the insurance so badly but cannot afford it on their own, some who just need that chance and are probably great at what they do but are blown off cause they don’t look the part. But check this out, just cause someone is looking for work doesn’t mean they are so hard up they’d be willing to tolerate this class of bullshit. Because that is what it is, a steaming pile of rude, disrespectful, BULL and SHIT.
The job market is terrible enough as it is. Breaking news people! It isn’t just the economy. It is also the people who are put in position to make decisions, a position where their choices affect the lives of others. The same people who cannot even send a properly written email even in a world with autocorrect and spell check, a response to say “thank you for your time”, the people who tell you they will get back to you and leave you waiting for weeks and even months on end with a decision only to be told no.
It’s sad that in a world where technology has made it easier for people to communicate, we are falling to the wayside of one liner e-mails or no response at all cause the bot does it for you. Of course these people don’t see it that way cause they’re sitting pretty at the end of a $5000 conference table, dicking around with their phone. I’m sure that game of Angry Birds is that important it couldn’t wait for you to finish your interview, an interview you were being paid to perform by your company.
We live in a world where common sense and the time of another person is treated with such little respect. I don’t know about you but there is something called “dignity” and I know a lot of people who value themselves enough to have it, enough to not tolerate this class of mistreatment and disregard.
Think about that the next time you pick up your phone while someone is talking to you, asshole.
You know that moment when you are looking for things like your keys and sunglasses, you wrack your brain over their whereabouts only to realize they’re in your hand or on your head? Then you feel like a maroon. Yeah. I have those too. Like today I rode my butt over to the post office only to realize the loot I was mailing was left on the kitchen counter. Doh.
Anyway, yesterday I found myself boiling over the edge and I took to the ole stomping grounds of my livejournal account to post a big ole explosion of words. It needed to happen and the reason it didn’t happen here was cause I was going off about stuff that cannot be public domain. I will sum it up: Josh got the “thanks but no thanks” by a potential employer and recruiter. What blew my top was just how grossly unprofessional the whole process was. So yeah, the Bay Area was becoming imminent and it didn’t happen. We are more than ok with this cause it would have been like getting on the Titanic knowing full well there was an iceberg in its future.
Back to this staring you in the face stuff…. I went to facebook and posted this whole cryptic whatnot about my mystery rant on livejournal and it piqued interest. All of a sudden people were saying, “man! why did I delete my account!”. I know you did.
If you read my livejournal back in the day, before I was posting on my own domain, you will know that my going off about shit was a thing of legend. I tend to be quite verbose when I am pissed off about something that is for sure and I am good at it. Thing is it brings out this nasty, sourpuss of a person which I am trying so hard not to be. But that is what kept people coming around cause they knew eventually I would cross the line of propriety and bitch about [insert subject here].
So I’ll make you a promise, I will do my best to bring it to the table. It isn’t all fluff, art and blooming Spring here. Trust. I just have to choose the words appropriately. The success of a properly dished rant is all contingent on timing and delivery.
Although, speaking of Spring, the other day I saw this tree and I pulled over to cam-ho it up underneath it. Nature makes the best backdrop and this shade of pink is about to disappear til next year. Pretty, no?
So what else is new?
Oh you want to see some bullshit? This right here is bullshit. That moment you open up an overpriced vessel of nature’s butter only to be met with a giant bone in the middle. My other hand would be flipping this off if it wasn’t taking this blurry ass picture instead. First world problems, I know. I take my avocados seriously.
The other day I was sitting at Walgreens waiting for an Rx to be filled. Across from me was an older couple, probably in their mid 70′s. I was entertained with my music but I could not help observing how these two, miserable fucks gawked and made comments to each other about every woman that passed them by. Out of the corner of my eye, I glance a lovely tattooed beauty heading our way and I could already tell where this was going to go. You got to keep in mind that around my hood, you do not see heavily tattooed ladies so she stood out even more. She passed and they gave her the ups, downs and then muttered crap to each other over her appearance, snickering. It honestly took everything in me to not tell them off. I wanted to but then I saw the pile of garbage they were buying: king size boxes of candy – 3 milk duds, 1 hot tamale, 2 mike and ikes, 2 large bags of Cracker Jacks, a large bag of Cool Ranch Doritos and a 12 pack of coke. Diet, for good measure. The woman with feet so red and bloated they muffin topped her mary janes but the tattooed girl was the one with issues. I guess my point of sharing this anecdote is sometimes it’s just best to keep your mouth shut and let fate have its way with people like that. Enjoy that Diet Coke, assholes.
And here are a couple of photos I liked from this week….
Top Left: New stationery! Out Of The Woods notecards are by Emily Martin/The Black Apple on etsy. The others are from Paper Source. Speaking of, need to send another batch of snail mail, especially to those of you who have sent or responded! Maybe one of these will be yours.
Other than that I am really working to get some comission work out from under me so I can focus on designing stuff for sale: aka fabric and gift wrap prints for Spoonflower and artwork for my Society6 shop. Girl wants to make some cheddar to invest in a printer.
Anything you would like to see?
When I lived in the housing co-operative (in the early to mid-nineties), there was a bookshop a few streets away. Painted bright yellow, it stood out from its surroundings. All down the narrow street to the seafront were metal back doors into hot and dirty restaurant kitchens, with giant-sized cooking oil cannisters piled up outside them. Then, near the bottom, you'd see this sunshine yellow facade, with a bench outside. The shop was named after the building's former life: The Public House. One of my flatmates worked there for a bit, subsidising her MA.
These were the days when, rather than seeking the book you wanted online, you browsed a bookshop to see what it had on offer. I didn't have much of an income at the time, so it wasn't somewhere I shopped frequently, but I suppose curiosity must have overcome penury at some point, because I certainly bought at least a couple of eye-opening/mind-expanding magazines there. And probably my book of Patti Smith lyrics, and a book or two about the Velvet Underground.
It was a bookshop born of the Seventies, and as such, I should have found it rather comforting: its stock touched on many of the same free love, free food and free minded topics that lined my parents' own bookshelves. Many of the books and magazines on offer here, though, pushed boundaries far further than my parents would have been comfortable with, and in retrospect I think that my horizons were widened a little more than I expected.
Yesterday, I went to a talk by the shop's founder, Richard Cupidi: I booked the ticket out of pure curiosity, remembering his name from when my flatmate would come home with tall tales of things he'd done or said that day. The Public House bookshop closed in 1999, one of several small independent bookshops that Brighton boasted when I first arrived here, but that have almost all gone to the wall.
The small room where the talk took place soon filled up, and, as well as a few younger folk, the audience seemed to comprise the hip elderly. There was a grandma in jeggings. A wheelchair user in leathers. An old lady with two very long plaits. Grey-haired men in flawlessly-tied statement scarves. The two older women in front of me were having a good catch-up talk about how Cupidi used to hand out hash brownies at the shop.
Unfortunately, I didn't catch the name of the guy who gave Cupidi's introduction, but it was very good. And then Cupidi spoke. He's a very compelling raconteur, and an hour passed very quickly, as we listened to his anecdotes - and only a few visuals, because, he said, when he came to look back through his keepsakes, he realised they'd been too busy *doing* to record much, and of course, these were long before the days that everyone had their own camera in a mobile phone, or was uploading videos to YouTube or blogging everything.
I was very struck by how these visuals echoed the norms of my childhood: that flyers were type-written and photocopied or mimeographed; posters were often hand-written; so much was black and white.
He came to the UK from the States, and was living in Clapham in London when someone offered him a job in Brighton. His UK geography being vague, he mistook it for Brixton and assumed he'd be able to walk there. But when he came down - by train - he fell for Brighton: "This place is absurd", he thought, "It shouldn't exist".
To hear him tell it, he got the four-storey building for free - times have certainly changed in Brighton. After its beginnings as a pub, it was briefly a corkscrew factory, and then lay dormant and boarded up for years. In 1973, Cupidi went to see the estate agent, who gave him the key to look round: he asked when he should bring it back and was told 'there's no hurry'. Now, whether or not he subsequently paid for it, or leased it, he didn't make clear, but they cleaned the place up (he says, when he thinks back to that first glimpse of it, he could swear there was an actual pond upstairs. With tadpoles living in it) and it became his family home as well as a community bookshop, learning space, creche, gallery, etc etc.
On the front of the shop was painted, "Read for power. The book should be a ball of light in your hands". Books were shelved, not in sections, but purely in alphabetical order, with the idea that customers would thus be more likely to stumble across something new. The shop was run as a co-operative (in all things, including stock) and, Cupidi agreed with the ex-members of his staff who were present, pay was low.
The more dramatic parts of his talk covered a visit from Allen Ginsberg, who said the shop was 'better than City Lights'; and attacks from fascist extremists, who threw a fire extinguisher at Cupidi and used to shatter its windows with marbles. In 1999, the end of the net book agreement (which allowed bookshops to set their on pricing) meant the end of the shop altogether.
They paid off their debts, in strict order: the smallest enterprises got paid first. The Public House is now a private home, and Cupidi is a hypnotherapist. There is a fantastic thread on the local history site, with memories so of their times, and the perfect revelation that the daughter of the other hippy bookshop in town (Unicorn Books, before my time) was named Circe.
The talk really impressed on me how much Brighton has changed, even in the couple of decades I've lived here. I suppose one doesn't notice that a zeitgeist is a transient thing, especially when it's the one in which you're becoming an adult. If I'd known that the Public House bookshop was a symbol of an era that was dying out, would I have regarded it differently? Probably. Fortunately, things simply are what they are, until hindsight kicks in.