GJ Willis' Art Notes
The Adventures and Misadventures of a Neer Do Well Artist Living in Baltimore.
I am a visual artist and writer living in Baltimore. I don't have any artist friends. Frankly, artists scare me, there so darn flaky. The above picture is either of me or proof that I'm a pretty decent artist. My goal is to be a self sufficient artist, whereas I wouldn't have to do something else in the day in order to eke out an existence. I also like to attend various cultural events around town. I go to plays, the symphony, etc. Also, I have Asperger's Syndrome. I found this out recently and it has explained a heck of a lot as to why I am as I am.
Free counters provided by Honesty.com.
Wednesday, May 26, 2004
Today, I was almost late for work. My bus arrived five minutes late. I also just nearly made it to the light rail train on time. It was ready to pull up to my stop as I ran to catch it. I suppose that on rainy days or from now on I should just walk down to the light rail station. I don’t like a lot of drama in the morning. I used to walk to the light rail station last year when the weather was warmer. It’s a 15 to 20 minute walk for me depending on how fast I walk.
In work news, I made incentive again. I don’t quiet know what to make of it. I still feel as though I could loose my job at any minute. I hate this uneasy feeling I have. I’m not sure if it’s because of the economy or the constant terrorist warnings I hear about in the news.
Also I have not heard from my nephew, Little David in quiet a while. Monday was his fourteenth birthday. Usually, he calls me up and tells me what he wants for his birthday. I haven’t heard a peep from him. I have to get him something because he remembered my birthday when no else did. I found this really great birthday card for him at the Gallery. It’s a card that lists everything that was going on in the year he was born, 1990.
In art news I’m still working on my vessels. I still haven’t decided what I’m going to make out of the polymer clay I have. I also haven’t decided what design I’m going to paint on the box. I think I might go for a metallic gold color over the bright blue.
Tuesday, May 25, 2004
I don’t usually watch TV much. In fact the only time I turn on the television is to watch DVD’s on Sunday. So just for the heck of it I turned on the TV last night and I watched the most funniest show I’d ever seen. I believe it’s called American Superstar or Superstar USA. What ever it’s called it was on the WB. It was like the reverse of American Idol. I admit I’ve never watched American Idol. I hear a lot of morning shows talking about it but I’ve never seen it. They never seem to announce what time it comes on, thus I’ve never seen it.
Anyway, back to the WB’s talent show. It was simply hilarious because they picked all the worst singers to go on to the finals. The judges included, Tone Loc, Vitamin C and this guy I have never seen before. My favorite line of the night was when the unknown guy said in response to one of the horrible performers, “Call 911, cause you just stole the show!” The performers were so bad it was good.
Last night I also watched a bit of The Swan. This was my first time ever watching it. It was kind of like a beauty contest. However, I didn’t watch long enough to see who won. To me all the contestants looked normal. They didn’t look as extreme looking as they say they do on morning talk radio. It just looked like a normal beauty contest.
Also, I worked a little on my vessels for the upcoming, ebsq show. I bought a small wooden box from Michael’s. I’m going to paint a design on it. So far I painted the box a bright blue color. I hopefully will be adding a design on it tomorrow. I’m also working on sculpting another vessel in polymer clay.
My future ultimate artistic goal for 2004 is to be a part of the Art Exposure Shows that are run by Ann Wiker. I tried to do it a couple of years ago. The main reason I couldn’t participate was that the forms that Ann sent me were sent to me in .doc format. My Macintosh can not read .doc formats. Recently, I went back to her web site and found that the forms were no longer in doc format but in easily down loadable pdf format. So I think I’ll give it another try.
Monday, May 24, 2004
Today at work Brian called a meeting in Dave’s office. Dave is Brian’s supervisor. It was a very eerie other worldly Twilight Zone experience for me.
I was immediately shocked and horrified by the office decor. I found it eerie because as I looked around his office I saw a number of things that I own and in the same exact color and design!
I saw a Currier and Ives mug. I own that same exact mug. Same design everything! I saw a candle warmer on his desk. I own that same exact candle warmer it’s called the Cozy-Up Warmer. I bought it at Michael’s. However, I imagine that he probably uses his Cozy-Up Warmer to keep his coffee warm and not to warm up scented candles. Also there was a small purple fan in the corner. I own a small purple fan just like it!
However, eeriest of all was that on a file cabinet sat a bright blue embroidered box that I knew contained Chinese Meditation balls. I know this because I own the same exact box in the same bright blue color! I know that if you opened the lid the interior of the box would be a bright red color and two meditation balls would sit inside.
I have never been inside anyone’s office where I had so many inanimate items in common. It was like being in an episode of the Twilight Zone!
Sunday, May 23, 2004
The above picture is yet another painting that I dropped off at the Carriage House, yesterday for the Sowebo festival. Yesterday when I got there I was surprised to see that Scotty was there. I was even more surprised that he recognized me. He said he loved the poster I dropped off a couple of weeks ago. He even described it in vivid detail! Wow, he has a really good memory.
Like a blast from the past there was a black dog there that followed me around. I’m starting to think it’s some kind of a tradition there to have a black dog around the place. There was lively music playing people talking. There was this woman who I assumed dropped off art. She was with this British guy they wanted to know how Scotty made the photos of the posters. They were simply amazed about how he could get a picture up on the internet. I believe Scotty said that he took a picture then fixed it up in Photoshop. Which is the standard procedure for putting photo’s up on the web. It’s what I do even thought the photo’s I take with my digital camera are horrible.
I have to admit that while there I felt frightened and wanted to flee. There was so much noise and action going on. I wanted to run for my life but somehow I made it through. I could barely make out what people were saying to me. I just wanted to get out of there. I also hope that the frames on my paintings do not fall apart. I bought them at Walmart, real cheap. Walmart, provides the frames for every piece of artwork I have. The single mat that usually accompanies my work comes from Michael’s.
While at the Carriage House a woman there told me to put my artwork alongside the wall. I think she told me to leave it in the bag so that it can be protected. I’m not sure. Like I said I felt overwhelmed and wanted to flee. I went a little to the back and placed the paintings alongside the wall.
There were quiet a few paintings there. They all face the wall like misbehaved children. The only thing you could see of the other artwork was the back where all the wires and hooks were. Were most of the artists embarrassed by their work? It was like they sent their artwork off to be punished.
Even though I submitted work I do not expect for it to sell. No one goes to Sowebo to buy art. You go there to party. This year I will make an effort to actually spend a few minutes there. Maybe, I’ll kind of hang out at the Carriage House. I guess I would sort of have to go there because on the form that I filled out it said I had to promise to spend a little time guarding the artwork. I feel this is silly. No one steals artwork by Baltimore artists. If you’re going to steal something it’s usually a big ticket item not local artwork. No one in Baltimore I feel really cares about art or artists. Were kind of like circus freaks.
Saturday, May 22, 2004
The above a painting is one of the two that I will be submitting either today or tomorrow for the Sowebo gallery.
Today or either tomorrow I will be dropping off my artwork for the Sowebo festival. I’ve chosen two pieces of artwork. One is of a woman with two Elvis impersonators. The other is of a woman with a big hat smiling on a rail. I don’t know if I have to attach prices to theses pieces or not. Allegedly because I participated by submitting a poster I get to exhibit for free. I believe that if you did not donate a poster you have to pay either 3 or 5 dollars per painting. The maximum amount of paintings you can submit to the show is three.
Several years ago when I was working at Maryland General Hospital I submitted artwork for the festival. The only way I knew about it was that there was an ad in the City Paper. Back then the paper used to have a listing in it called art opportunities. It was were artists could submit there work. That column has long since been eliminated.
Back then I had to go to this place called Gallery M to drop off my artwork for Sowebo. I recall there was a very long line the day I came to drop off my painting. I had no idea there were that many artists in Baltimore. I remember a guy name Gabriel was in charge of it. He had a big black dog. When I finally got in the gallery, Gabriel’s dog kept sniffing my butt. It was very unnerving. I remember I had to pay either three or five dollars for the painting I submitted. I recall that when I finally got in the gallery, Gabe looked admiring at it and said he liked it. At the time it had no name. I told him it was called, The Searcher. Right there on the spot the painting had a name.
I remember when I came to pick up the painting I felt proud. The painting was on the gallery wall and it looked like it belonged there. I felt like I was a real artist. I believe the gallery that I went to is no longer around. I recall it was somewhere on Hollins Street. That day was my first time ever in that section of town. All I knew about that part of town was that a lot of artists lived there. When I got there I found it scary and desolate looking. I’d never seen so much abject poverty. Little did I know that I would end up living there many years later....
Friday, May 21, 2004
Once again the poster I did for the Sowebo Arts Festival will be on display in an art gallery instead of at the Charles . I’m not sure how I should take this. This is the second year in a row my artwork will be on display in the Angelfall Studios in Remington. It will be there up until May 29th. I’m not sure what the selection process is. I don’t know if someone from the gallery shows up at Scotty Stevenson’s studio and selects the posters they want or if Scotty picks them out. I know I should feel honored that my poster will be in an art gallery but let’s face it more people visit the movie theater than go to an art gallery.
There were a lot of great posters submitted this year by extremely talented artists. Hopefully, the poster I made will sell. If it doesn’t sell that’s OK with me. However, I’m very hopeful that it will sell. The poster will be auctioned off on June 20th. I don’t think I’ll be making it over to the auction. If there I imagine my stomach would be doing flip flops wondering if the poster will sell or not. Also I don’t want to know how much it sells for. For all I know my poster last year could have been a hard sell or sold for only twenty six cents. If either of these were the case I simply do not want to know.
Wednesday, May 19, 2004
Yesterday, I learned of the death of Tony Randall. I liked him most when he appeared on talk shows. He was kind of a TV talk show whore. If you had a TV talk show and couldn’t get Tony Randall as a last minute guest then in my opinion your show was doomed. Most of all I loved his appearances on >Late Night With David Letterman. Last night Dave did a small memorial to Randall. He showed montages of Randall’s various appearances on his show. It was a very small gesture. I wish Dave had done more to memorialize Tony Randall. The guy was on his show a zillion times!!!
I myself, have an actual real life Tony Randall memory. When I was in the third grade at Eutaw Marshburn Elementary School circa 1978 we went on a school trip to the Baltimore City Fair. My teacher at the time was Ms. Turnblazer. I remember this trip vividly because on the bus Ms. Turnblazer revealed that her first name was Sharon. The class was shocked because we also had a classmate named Sharon. What I remember about Sharon, my classmate, was that she was skinny felt she was fat and was obsessed with dieting. I suppose that if she felt this way at eight she’s probably anorexic today. Anyway back to Sharon , my 3rd grade teacher. I was shocked I had no idea that teachers had first names. I thought they were all born with the first name of Ms.
I have to say Sharon Turnblazer was and is among my all time favorite teachers. She was very vibrant, wild, and out there. I don’t think a day went by when she didn’t do or say something shocking. I would say at the time she was probably in her early to mid twenties. I also found it shocking and ground breaking that when she would take our candy she would munch on it all day. We couldn’t get it back because we weren’t supposed to bring it to school in the first place. I said to myself if I were a teacher I would eat candy all day just like Ms. Turnblazer! Teaching is a perfect racket if you're a sugar junkie. Another interesting thing about her was that she had pet hamsters in the back of the classroom. I remember one of them was named Sabrina. Oddly, enough we also had a classmate who was named Zabrina Williams. Zabrina pronounced her named Sabrina. I don’t remember if the hamster was named after her or if it was already named Sabrina. At the time I had never seen hamsters before. I thought they were rats. Gradually, I got used to them and wanted hamsters of my very own. This wish would not be fulfilled until years later when I moved out of my parents house.
I often wonder, what ever happened to Ms. Turnblazer? I guess she probably got married, changed her last name, and got out of teaching. Who knows maybe she’s locked away in a mental hospital or had a sex change operation, or maybe even abducted by aliens. I have to tell you I can’t think of a celebrity she most resembled. It’s been ages since I’ve seen her. What I remember of her is in bits and pieces. I remember she was full figured had curly brown or was it red hair and maybe wore glasses?
Back to my Tony Randall real life memory....When we arrived at the City Fair we all kind of explored around checking out exhibits. As I recall all the rides were not operational just yet. We’d arrived early in the morning I’d say about 9-10am. So we all kind of wandered aimlessly around seeing all that we could see of the inner harbor. Then we all found ourselves at the inner harbor amphitheater. Outside, was Tony Randall performing live. It was kind of sad because the majority of his audience were senior citizens and elementary school students who were kind of aimlessly milling about. I’d say that the majority of the elementary students probably had no idea what the hell he was talking, but who like me I’m sure were thinking, “Hey, that’s Felix Unger! What’s he doing down here?” As I vaguely recall his comedy routine wasn’t funny to me, a very sophisticated eight year. I’m sure that I probably still would not have found it funny. I was the type of third grader who stayed up late to watch >Johnny Carson and Saturday Night Live. My favorite stand up comedians at the time were Richard Pryor and David Brenner. So I’d say I wasn’t the average eight year old. I remember I lingered a bit then walked on feeling bad that Tony Randall had sunk so low. He was performing before third graders. And that, ladies and gentlemen is my Tony Randall memory.
Tuesday, May 18, 2004
Yesterday , I took the How Gay Are You Test as featured on the Out To Lunch Show. It turns out I'm just 26% gay.
I'm not upset or anything. I'm just a little surprised that I'm extremely straight. I mean I know I'm straight. I just didn't know that I was on the extreme end of straight. Well, then again I shouldn't be too surpised my favorite hobby is objectifying men. There nice to look at I can't help it.
Also in radio news I found some new radio themed message boards. The dcrtv now has a brand >new message board. Other message boards I like to visit include the
Monday, May 17, 2004
This morning I got antsy waiting for the bus in the, so instead I took a cab. Why is it that the vast majority of the men who talk to me are almost always foreigners? It’s odd just when I feel like I’m invisible someone notices me, usually an African or a Caribbean. Maybe along with Australia I should consider moving over to the islands. After all, I have people somewhere in the West Indies. I’m not to keen on moving to Africa. There seems to be a lot of strife and upheavals over there.
This morning a cab driver maybe African or Caribbean chatted me up. It was interesting. He thought I was on my way to school. I do carry a back pack with me when I go to work. Inside my backpack is my umbrella, Alphasmart 3000, the current book I’m reading ( Ella Enchanted), crossword puzzle book, sketch book, markers, pens, makeup, digital camera, a 2004 date book illustrated by Shag, and my asthma inhaler. The cabby was surprised when I told him I was 34. He said I looked so young. I knew he was probably lying or something. However, I’m not sure how old I look to other people. So maybe it’s possible I look younger than 34. He however, seemed much older maybe in his mid 40’s to 50’s. I gave him my phone number but at the last minute I realized that I gave him the wrong number. I gave him instead my old number by mistake not the new one. Oh, well....
The only thing I remembered about the Iliad prior to seeing the movie was that it had something to do with the Trojan War. The War as I recall was started because Paris who was a Prince of Troy ran off with Helen who was the Queen of Sparta (now popularly known as Helen of Troy). The King of Sparta didn’t take to kindly to this thus a war was started over Helen of Troy. I don’t recall Achilles being mentioned in the story. All I recall about Achilles was that his mother was some kind of a Goddess. She dipped him as a baby in some river to make in invulnerable. However, his mother missed his ankles in the dipping thus his only weak spot were his ankles. At the end of the movie, Paris the ace archer boy played by Orlando Bloom aimed an arrow at Achilles ankles aka Achilles tendon and he was rendered powerless. I don’t know if I’ve said this before but Orlando really knows how to work a bow! He was an ace archer in Lord of the Rings as Legalos and now he got to reprieve his archery skills as Paris. There’s something about Orlando with that bow and arrow that makes me want to say, “Aim it baby! Aim it!!!”
On a funny side note I found my self laughing out loud on the light rail at a phony movie ad on 98 Rock’s morning show for Troy. Basically, the main message of the ad was that the only reason to see the movie was that you get to see >Brad Pitt half naked in a loin cloth! I guess I found it funny because, well that was the main reason I went to the movie!! I went to see the eye candy that is >Brad Pitt along with the current it boy, Orlando Bloom. However, as I said just yesterday,> Eric Bana stole the whole damned show! I have to say he looked absolutely scrumptious stealing it!
In work news I was on time today. Also it turns out I made incentive again. I’m not quiet sure what to make of it. I’m sure they’ll find an error or something and it will all be taken away. Anyway, hopefully, I will still have a job by the end of the week. I’m still surprised I didn’t get fired last week for being late.
Also, today, I’ll be mailing out my mail art for the Middle School Memories Project. I get all my leads for places to send mail art to from Kiyote’s web site. She or he has regular updates and add ons. I usually check there a couple of times a year usually in the spring and fall.
I still have to get frames for the artwork I’m submitting to the Sowebo Art’s Festival. I guess I’ll have to take my painting with me to the store to get a better idea of which frames and mats better suit the painting. This is what I did for my painting that’s currently on display at the Creative Alliance. Which by the way I have no idea when I have to collect it for when the show is over. Oh, well I guess I’ll have to wait for a phone call or letter to tell when I can take my painting home. I don’t want to appear to anxious by calling them up. Besides, who knows maybe odds against odds the painting actually sold?
Sunday, May 16, 2004
As I’ve written before I don’t have air conditioning because there are bars on all the windows of my apartment. So yesterday, I decided to go to the movies. The movie I saw was >Troy. The main reason I went to the movies was to avoid the heat inside my apartment. Also how could I not see a movie with such a handsome hot cast? The movie stars Brad Pitt, Orlando Bloom, and >Eric Bana. I have to say the movie was very enjoyable. I have never seen a movie with Eric Bana in it. Last year I avoided the Hulk movie because the CGI effects looked too cartoon like. However, I got to say he gave the standout performance in Troy. His portrayal of Hector the brother of Paris who runs off with Helen was the heart and soul of the picture. Orlando Bloom portrayal of Paris aka archerboy was ok in the picture, nothing to write home about. Don't get me wrong Orlando is cute as hell but it seems he has little to do in this movie. The main action seems to be between Achilles and Hector. However, it was kind of neat to see him pick up a bow and arrow like he did in the Lord of the Rings of movies. It was also nice to to see Sean Bean in the movie as well. He gave an excellent performance as usual. He is also a fellow alumni of the LOTR movies. I have to say Brad Pitt’s performance as Achilles was outstanding and I’m not just writing that because there were numerous shots of his well toned abs, muscular arms, and a near bare butt shot. He was really outstanding with his portrayal as the arrogant and yet self loathing, Achilles. Pitt’s performance was outstanding but Bana stole the show.
An odd little side note I think I should add is that in this movie to me Eric Bana looked a little like the late country singer Eddie Rabbit. I swear I almost expected him to whip out a guitar and start singing, "I love a rainy night". Thankfully ,it never happened.
Also yesterday I went to the library to pay up my overdue library fines. The total I had to shell out was $18 in fines. While there I took out four books and a book on tape. The books I took out were; Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine,
I took out the Emperor of Ocean Park tape because as I understand it will be turned into a tv series next year. That’s right a tv series not a tv movie. I got B-More Careful because a couple of years back it seemed like everyone on the bus and light rail was reading that book. I’m curious about what it’s about. I got High Five because I’m a fan of the Stephanie Plum detective series and well I’m up to the fifth book. I got Agatha Raisin because I enjoy M.C. Beaton’s cozy mystery novels. I got Ella Enchanted because I wanted to see the movie and I feel reading the book is the next best thing until it comes out on DVD. I hope that I will be able to finish them all by June 5, 2004.
Friday, May 14, 2004
Today, I unintentionally got up an hour earlier. I didn’t realize anything was kind of wrong until I stepped out my door and walked a few blocks. I just had a vibe that something was off. It seemed darker than usual. Then I saw this man I used to get on the bus with. He smiled at me and said, “Hi, I haven’t seen you in a while!” I looked at my watch stunned to realize that I was on the bus stop at 4:45 in the morning! Just then the #20 pulled up I had a choice get on it and be extra early for work or go home. I decided to head home. I did this mainly because I was afraid that my alarm clock would go off and wake up everyone in the apartment building. Like the majority of people with alarm clocks I usually get up before it goes off and disarm it. I wasn’t quiet sure if I had disarmed it or not. I had about 15 minutes to go before it goes off at 5:00 am. When I got home I was surprised to find that I did not disarm the alarm clock. How could this happen you ask? You see none of the clocks I own have the correct time they are all set an hour ahead of time. I suppose in the fog of waking from sleep I looked up at the clock and forgot about my set up.
All was not lost I decided that it would be an excellent time to start exercising again. It has been weeks since I’ve done anything. So I popped in my
Thursday, May 13, 2004
The above is a picture of, Jose Rodriguez, who stands hooded cloaked and wired in front of the home of Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in an imitation of the infamous photographs depicting Iraqi prisoner abuse. He was amongst the protestors gathered to demonstrate against the treatment of prisoners in Iraq and to demand Rumsfeld's resignation.
I seem to have caught a head cold, at least I hope it’s a head cold. I hope it wasn’t something I caught from visiting my father the other day. All in all, it’s most likely a head cold. I’m mostly just sneezing.
Lately,I’ve been sleeping with my fan on. I always have it pointed at me feet. I point it there because my father always told us that you should never point a fan in the direction of your face while sleeping because you might end up with a head cold. Well, looks like I now have a head cold.
The first thing I did when I got home was take eight Echinacea tablets and some cold tablets. I then fell asleep. I didn’t wake up until it was time to get to work. Thus, I didn’t publish yesterday’s blog post until today.
Today Donald Rumsfeld is in Baghdad to allegedly boost the morale of the troops. I say he’s there to save his ass. Why is this guy still Secretary of Defense? If this were another administration he would have long been gone.
This last week has made me embarrased to be an American. I’m actually thinking about applying for Australian citzenship. To the best of my knowledge no country has a grudge against them.
Wednesday, May 12, 2004
Yesterday, Don Geronimo of the syndicated, Don and Mike Show, raved out when newsman Buzz Burbank told of the beheading of an American by a group of Iraqi’s. I have to say that I agree with him. Why the hell are we still over there?
We originally went over there to find weapons of mass destruction. No weapons were found and yet were still there. Next we were told that we would remain there until things stabilized. If anything nothing has stabilized. Instead, violence has increased in it’s intensity. I say we should get the hell out of Iraq.
Everyday you hear of nameless Americans being killed over there. Sinclair Broadcasting a Baltimore based group of television stations headquarted in Hunt Valley, Marylad,refused to air an episode of Nightline where they named the names of our servicemen who were killed in the war. They saw it as being somehow unpatriotic and against the war effort. Since when is naming those who died defending our country unpatriotic?
Today there were more Iraqi prison photos released today. However, they were only on view for Washington senators. From what I hear they are worse than the ones previously released. They also involve the same prison guards seen in previous photos.
I’m sick of this bizarro age I’m living in!
Tuesday, May 11, 2004
The above is a picture of a totem pole that is in my father's neighborhood. I'm not sure but I think the property owner might be an artist or an art collector. All around his property are these large full scale avant garde sculptures. I love walking by his house because you'll never know what you'll find.
Yesterday, after work I visited my dad. He’s been ill with a chest cold. He’s well now. However, he is still coughing a lot. When he had the chest cold he was coughing up phlegm. Now he is coughing up nothing. I think all he needs now are cough drops to make him stop coughing needlessly. I know what it is like. You get so used to coughing to get rid of the phlegm that it becomes like a reflex. You cough hoping to pick up phlegm but know that you won’t because the cold is gone. But you can’t stop. Thus, it becomes a vicious cycle.
One thing I learned is that Alexis is dating a guy who has two small kids, a girl and a boy. He had them over the house when I came over. I’d say they are about 4 and 6 years old. Shay was very sad when they left. She had the most saddest look on her face. She also looked sad and tearful when I left. I had no idea I had that effect on her. I’m not exactly Miss Personality. I kind of feel sorry for her. The poor kid has no one to play with. Hopefully, this will all change when she enters Kindergarten or Prekindergarten this fall.
Walking down the hill towards my dad’s house wasn’t too bad on my right leg. Walking up the hill was an entirely different matter. Half way up the hill I wanted to stop and call a cab.
In work news I was on time for work today despite the presence on the light rail of the fish faced man. I’ve noticed that if I get on the bus with him it signals curtains for my timeliness. If I see him on the light rail it means he must be running early this morning. I think he’s due at work at a later time than I am. I know it sounds silly that I base my timeliness on the presence of one person on a bus. As Walter Cronkite once said, “...and that’s the way it is.”
Monday, May 10, 2004
The above photo is of a church on Eastern Avenue. I took the photo with my digital camera because I liked the unique Arabic look of the building. Also my mother was really into things like The Arabian Nights and Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves. Ali Baba was her favorite fairy tale and movie. Therefore I felt it was fitting to attach it to today's post.
Yesterday, was Mother’s Day. A holiday I no longer have to celebrate since my mother’s death a few years back. I feel sad about this of course because my mother is gone. Mother’s day has become for me a solemn day of remembrance of my mother, Mazzelle Willis, may she rest in peace.
On the art front I think I may be entering a piece in ebsq’s monthly art show. This month they are doing a show on vessels. You know stuff like vases, boxes, things you put stuff into. The catch is that it can not be a painting it has to be the creation of a three dimensional functional vessel. Since I’ve done a few things with polymer clay I would like to give it a go.
Also another interesting thing that happened was that I got a mail art chain letter. When I’m not writing, painting, or crocheting I do mail art. I’ve participated in a few shows. I guess sooner or later I would get a mail art chain letter. It seems to have been started by some artist in Italy. I’m supposed to photocopy it, add something on to it and then mail it back to him. The whole thing was very odd. Inside the photocopied letter were clippings and stickers. I’m not sure if I’m supposed to send them back to him or send it out to someone else who then sends something back to him? Anyway, the letter I got was sent out to me from someone in California. Who knows maybe this works like a regular chain letter only you put a piece of art on it and send it on then the next person adds art to it and sends it on. I’m not 100% sure. I suppose I’ll have to search around mail art sites to see how this is supposed to work.
In work news my day started out bad. When ever I get on the bus with this fish faced man that works in the warehouse I know I’m going to be late. I don’t know his name. He’s tall. He has gray 1970’s style hair and buck teeth. Li Jie seems to know him well. However, I’ve never heard her say his name. He’s always patting her on the back or giving her sales advertisements on Fridays. Maybe he’s one of her in laws. I don’t know. Well, when I see him it’s usually the harbinger of lateness for me. Fish faced man on bus equals Gail will be late today.
Also I think that the buses are on a new schedule. I say this because for the past few weeks I haven’t seen Gary or Arthur on the bus in the morning. Arthur and Gary are these two old guys who have been catching the bus with me in the morning ever since I started working where I am now. Who knows maybe they finally decided to throw in the towel and retire. I know that Arthur has a daughter my age. I’m not quite sure what Gary’s story is. I only know he’s in his 70’s and works at the airport. It could also possibly be that they are taking an earlier bus because I’ve noticed that the #20 has been arriving later than usual. I hate when they switch drivers. Now I’ll have to get used to a new drivers routine. Either way my goal is to be on time every single day at least until October...
It turns out I’ve been late a total of 10 times since January. I found this out when Brian called me to his desk this morning. I thought I had made an error on something. If anything I thought he called me because I’m not up to standard. However, later in the day I was surprised to find out that I made incentive for going over the standard. All in all I’m not quiet sure what my numbers are like. Every time I go up to check my stats I get depressed because they weren’t as high as I thought they would be. For sanity’s sake I’ve since nixed checking my stats. I have no idea from day to day if I’m working above or below standard. I just work as hard as I possibly can and hope for the best.
In a larger perspective 10 days late isn’t all that bad if you consider that when I was in school I was late every single day. 10 days comes out to roughly 2 days late a month. Which isn’t half bad if you consider my previous track record. I don’t know maybe 10 days late since January is an unusually high number. Maybe I’m on the verge of being fired....
Friday, May 7, 2004
I had no intention what so ever of watching the series finale of Friends which came on last tonight. Rachel, Ross, Joey, Chandler, Phoebe, and Monica, are Not My Friends!
However, sadly, I watched anyway. I hadn’t watched the show since the early nineties. As far as the series finale goes it wasn’t all that great. The ending was very predictable. Rachel finally ended up with Ross. The only unpredictable thing that happened was that Monica and Chandler’s surrogate mother had twins.
I still can’t believe all the un called for hoopla around the series ending. The show was lame when it started and SURPRISE, it’s still lame.
Today on Oprah she will be having a Friends cast reunion. A REUNION ALREADY!!! The series ended just yesterday! You’re supposed to hold reunions several years after the fact not the very next day! That’s not a reunion it’s hanging out together.
The one prediction I will make for the up coming Fall TV season is that the Joey show will fail. The network suit that felt compelled to build a series around Joey should be horse whipped. It must have been the same person who gave Kramer his own show right after Seinfeld. And we all know how well that show went. The Matt Le Blanc aka the guy that plays Joey must have great blackmail material on who ever is in charge of scheduling at NBC because that’s the only reason I could think of of why he would be the only Friend’s cast member getting his own show.
Thursday, May 6, 2004
I got up an hour earlier than usual this morning. I couldn't fall back to sleep. When this happens I usually go through my e-mail and browse around web sites. So when I surfed the web this morning I was surprised to see that the poster I made is now up on the Sowebo Arts web page. In case you’ve forgotten mine would be the one listed under Gail Willis It’s the very girly pink and blue one.
The only other major goal I have is to buy a new pair of glasses I used to have two pairs. The ones I’m wearing now are my auxiliary pair. I hate them. The frames are red and the paint on them is pealing. The glass in my primary pair came out last summer so now I’m stuck wearing the ratty pair. Maybe, if all works out well I could get another set by the end of summer. I like to buy my glasses in sets just like I buy earphones in sets. If one breaks down I’ll have a spare to immediately replace it with.
I am really disgusted about the prison abuse in Iraq. I am shocked that President Bush has not apologized for the abuses. It’s as though he condones the actions that the military has taken in their treatment of prisoners. This in my opinion is yet another reason why Bush must be voted out of office.
Wednesday, May 05, 2004
Happy Cinco De Mayo!
My leg is still stiff. I’m still a cripple. I’m starting to get these sharp pains shooting along the side of my leg. I took two separate doses of aspirin at work yesterday to get rid of it. I wouldn’t be surprised if my numbers were down yesterday. I know, I know, I should stop complaining and go to the hospital...
I’m really angered about the situation that is going on with the prisoners in Iraq. I find it hard to believe that the President and Vice President are only just recently being made aware of the torture of the prisoners at the hands of our service people. I wouldn’t be surprised if they saw it months ago and laughed about it. In my opinion George Bush is a very cold hearted and cruel man. Once while on Letterman when he was running for President he leaned over and cleaned his glasses on the skirt of a woman he was sitting next to. This I feel is evidence of the blatant arrogance of our so called leader.
In radio news I’m happy to hear that the Out To Lunch Show is continuing on with their annual bet with listeners about how much individual movies will make over the summer. The person coming closest to the actual dollar amount would receive pizza from the OTL Show. Losers would have to buy a pizza for Steve “the Thrill” Hill.
Last year a listener who was talking major smack about about how much he was going to beat Steve on the bet ended up loosing thus he had to buy Steve a pizza. This guy practically called up daily talking about how he was going to beat Steve.
I have to say I love hearing all the talk about why a movie would do great or not. It’s movie prognosticating for fan girls and fan boys. So far all the big bids this year have been on The Day After Tomorrow. It’s a movie about global warming written by the same guy who bought us the 1996 Will Smith blockbuster, Independence Day.
Tuesday, May 04, 2004
My right leg still feels stiff. Yes, I know I've been complaining about it for close to three weeks. Maybe, one day I'll see some one about it. Then again, maybe I'm just holding out to get a handicapped designate on my license plates.
Basically, I'm just afraid how much it would cost to get it fixed. I imagine it would cost thousands of dollars in x-rays and physical therapy costs alone. If this would have happened before April 15th I would not have hesitated in getting help. I owe what feels to me a gargantuan tax bill. I'm sure to most folks reading this owing $300 in taxes is practically nothing but to me that's nearly my entire paycheck!!!!
In other news: The painting I submitted to Maryland Art Place's, Out of Order Show actually sold! So now I'm just waiting around to get my half of the check. MAP gets the other half of the check. It's a 50-50 split.
I found out it sold on Friday when I went down the gallery assuming the painting did'nt sell to pick it up. Then to my amazement the woman in the gallery told me that it sold and I just had to wait to receive payment for it. I don't know how much it sold for. One things for sure I'm plenty happy it sold. I'm so close to being a legitimate artist.
I finished my poster for the Sowebo Festival on Sunday and brought it into the Creative Alliance on Sunday. It's not black. It's primarily a girly pink and blue. It's based on an earlier painting I did called Water Woman. It's a picture of these two chubby women in pink bathing suits in the water. There are these two beach balls in the air at opposite ends of the painting. I started working on it 3am Saturday night or 3am Sunday morning depending on your point view.
The original painting is sitting on my bathroom wall. I sold another copy of it on eBay a couple of years ago. I did'nt like the copy that I sold on eBay as much as the one I have. Now I have to say that I like the new version of Water Woman even better than the original.
I finally saw my painting hanging up in the gallery at The Creative Alliance. I have to say it looks great! Looks like it was done by an actual artist!
My next goal is to get frames for some paintings to exhibit at the Sowebo Festival. The Sowebo paintings are due between May 21-23 between 12 and 6pm.
Friday, April 30, 2004
Radio One is a group of black radio stations that are owned by Cathy Hughes. Ms. Hughes who used to work for NPR and then bridged out and started her own radio station which grew and grew. I’m not sure how many stations Ms.. Hughes owns around the country but it must be a lot if she could get together enough money to start a cable station to rival BET.
If Ms. Hughes can afford to buy a cable TV station why doesn’t she increase the area that Magic 95.9 emits to?
The rest of the morning I continued on with my usual radio routine of switching between Howard Stern and the 98 Rock's, KML show.
I have to admit I am really jealous of the people at 98 Rock. For the second year in a row the entire on air staff went away on vacation. This year they spent a week in the Dominican Republic. Last year I believe they went to the Bahamas. How do I get a gig like that? They get to go to cool places not candy assed places like Disney World which I believe every single soccer mom morning show visits once a year.
I wanna work at 98 Rock!!! I wanna go away to an exotic locale on the bosses dime!!!
Thursday, April 29, 2004
My right leg is still stiff. I’m still walking with a slight limp. I wonder if my leg will ever feel right again.
Maybe I should look into getting physical therapy. I imagine it would cost a bundle if I did it the normal way through a hospital. The only alternative I can think of is to go to a gym.
Every gym that I know of let’s you use there facilities for free for about a week. The idea being of course that after a week if you like the experience then you sign up for membership. I know of about four gyms that are accessible by bus and light rail. I imagine I can get about four weeks free physical therapy out of them. First off I will have to go to the library and see if they have any books about physical therapy methodology. I would need to find something for the type of strain that is plaguing the muscle in my leg.
Wednesday, April 28, 2004
Friday, April 23, 2004
Thursday, April 22, 2004
I’m still a cripple. I don’t think I have a sprained ankle but there is something wrong with my right leg. It hurts to bend it. I had to get on the opposite side of the bed last night because it hurt to get on my usual side. If this does not clear up by Saturday evening I think I may have to go to the hospital. I planned on attending the big pro-choice rally this Sunday in Washington. I paid my money for the bus and everything.
My poster for the Sowebo Arts Festival is due next week. Thankfully, Scotty decided to pull the due date back for the posters. They were originally due this Friday which is the same day as the Creative Alliance’s gala or were they due on Saturday which is the day of Maryland Art Place’s gala?
Wednesday, April 21, 2004
Today, I got up early to catch my usual bus but forgot to put in account that because of the accident I am walking slower than usual so I missed my light rail train and had to take a later one. So tomorrow I will have to get up even earlier and take a much earlier bus so that I can have time enough to take my usual light rail train and be on time for work.
I didn’t go into work yesterday my leg and ankles hurt like hell. So I spent my time yesterday recuperating from the bus accident. I did this by walking back and forth slowly around my apartment. I did this by grimacing as I clutched onto furniture. I also remembered to raise my leg while I slept.
The only thing I remembered many years ago from gym class was the acronym RICE, which stands for Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. So I did a lot of that yesterday.
Monday, April 19, 2004
Right now I fear how my ankles and legs will feel in the morning. I hope that I made the right decision. The bus driver had offered to call the ambulance for me. But if he had done that I’m sure I would have been faced with one hell of a bill. I have insurance but they don’t like for us to go to the emergency room. Also they are going through some type of a dispute with laboratory test payments. We received a memo about it at work. So thus, I decided to take my chances and board the bus. When I got home I rubbed my legs and ankles down with alcohol and called work to let them know there was a possibility I would not be in tomorrow. I hope that my legs and ankles do not hurt in the morning.
Saturday, April 17, 2004
I hear it got up to 80 degrees today. I didn’t notice. I mainly stayed indoors and watched two movies I rented on Netflix, Fire and The Closet. I returned Chuck and Buck on Thursday. Yes, I’m doing themes! This week it’s queer cinema.
Fire, is a lesbian movie set in India. It’s about these two neglected in-laws who are both stuck in loveless marriages who eventually find love in each others arms. It’s neither racy or salacious it was written and directed by a woman.
The Closet is a French film about a straight man who is about to be fired so to prevent being fired he pretends to be gay. I’m not sure if I should feel offended by the premise of the movie or not. I will say that I did enjoy it greatly.
I have to say that I found Chuck and Buck very disturbing on first viewing. After I watch a dvd I like to watch it again with the director’s commentary to get a better insight about the movie. Chuck and Buck had not one but two separate commentaries! In addition to the director’s commentary you also have the film crew’s commentary. After three subsequent viewings I have gained a deeper appreciation of the film. I practically have a PhD in Chuck and Buck. There’s nothing I can do with it. But I know more about Chuck and Buck than you do!
I believe the next three groups of movies I have in my queue all have an interracial theme to them.
Friday, April 16, 2004
Today I have the day off. So I will be heading over to my father’s house to help him figure out his insurance. To be absolutely honest I am not looking forward to going over there. I usually end up crashing and feeling deeply depressed after visiting. My father’s in his mid seventies arthritic and loves telling you about it. My sister’s a drug addict. Which is a crying shame. She had so much potential when she was young. She used to model and do stuff like that. I think her downfall came when she met her ex David during her freshman year in college. She dropped out of school to help support him through college. He got a kick ass high paying job at NASA then promptly dumped her ass. I couldn't believe the way he treated after she had helped him and had three of his children.
Anyway, also at the house is Shay my four year old grand-niece. My father said that Arlesia, my niece 24 year old, had not come over there in over a week to pick up her daughter. I hope she hasn’t abandoned that sweet little kid. I don’t think she would do that, Arlesia is a very responsible person. She went to nursing school and works as a nurse somewhere in Maryland. I don’t think she would purposely abandon her kid to be raised by an arthritic old man and her drug addicted mother. I think that it’s possible that my father got his wires crossed. He was the one who told me the Shay situation over the phone a couple of days ago.
My father later told me that she paid an interior decorator to come over and do the place. I had no idea that she had the money to pay someone to decorate the place. Anyway the place looks great. My father told me that ever since she had the two room professionally decorated no one goes in there because it looks too nice. I have to agree with him it does looks too nice for humans to inhabit.
It kind of reminded me of an episode of Newhart when George the handyman had his apartment redecorated and he rarely touched anything in it afterwards.
As I waited for the number 91 bus on Garrison Boulevard to take me downtown towards home I sang along to songs on the radio. I was singing along rather badly to REM’s Man on the Moon which was being played on my favorite radio station, WTMD when some guy walked up to me and said, “Didn’t you used to go to City?” I said, “Yes.” He smiled and said, “I thought you looked familiar!” then he walked off before I could say, “DEREK KELLY!” It was nice that he couldn’t remember my name but I could remember his. We were both lousy at math so we were usually the only two from City who had to take math over again in summer school. The celebrity Derek most resemble is Philip Michael Thomas. It was nice to see that he didn’t look like a senior citizen. I’m still shocked at how a former schoolmate of mine, Starlinda Babb looked. The woman is in her early thirties and has large streaks of gray hair! Yikes! Derek looked age appropriate. He left before I could ask him what he was up to. Maybe he thought I was insane as I was singing rather badly to music when he saw me. I just wanted to have the opportunity to yell back, “Why it’s Derek Kelly as I live and breathe!” Well it is nice that he did not remember my name. It’s always eerie when someone I went to school with remembers my name but I can’t recall there’s. The face is familiar but I can’t pin a name to it.
Thursday, April 15, 2004
Today income taxes are due. I absolutely hate tax day. Almost every year without fail I owe taxes. This year is just the same. I owe a combined total of $300 on my taxes. I filed as usual through the tele-tax service. I have a feeling that if I itemized my deductions I would probably save more money. I think I could probably take off for my school loan payments, medical expenses, and if I ever decide if I am a professional writer/artist then I could probably get a deduction for supplies like this AlphaSmart I’m using. I owe therefore I am depressed.........
Wednesday, April 14, 2004 PM
My Alphasmart arrived today. I’m very excited about it’s arrival. I can now have regular updates to my blog.
I have been listening a lot to internet radio. The only place I know of is Radio 360. My favorite station is Music From The Blue Light. They mainly play music from the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s. I like to listen to it in the evening after work while I’m working on my latest afghan.
I also find myself listening to Old Time Radio a lot. My favorite internet radio station to listen to at night is WRVO in New York.
I first got into listening to old time radio as a kid when a radio show called, When Radio Was used to come on AM radio at night. It was kind of like my bedtime ritual. When Radio Was would come on at 11:00pm and go off at midnight it used to come on WITH in Baltimore. They would always air two shows.
From listening to this I became a fan of The Great Gildersleeves. I believe Gildersleeve was the first ever spin off. He was a spin off character from the Fibber McGee and Molly Show. I have to say that I prefer Gildersleeve to Fibber McGee because the pacing seems a bit more modern on his show. Also there isn’t a band on it to pad out the show. Sometimes I feel annoyed by hearing an inane song sang by some candy assed singer like you have on some old time radio shows.
I should say right about here that I own tons of MP3’s of old time radio shows. I have MP3’s of The Great Gildersleeve, Fibber McGee and Molly, Suspense, Sherlock Holmes, Boston Blackie, Jack Benny, Duffy’s Tavern, The Life of Riley, and Richard Diamond (great pacing written by comedy writing legendary Blake Edwards), Lights Out, written by Arch Obler.
When a saw a picture of Obler from the late 40’s in a Radio Spirits catalog I found it eerie. He didn't look dated he looked like he could exist today. It didn't look like a picture of a man from the 40’s. It was like whoa what year was this really taken in? I found myself wondering, “How come I can’t find much info about Obler on the web?” “Do time machines exist?” It was just creepy I can’t explain. Yea, I know the odds are against a sci-fi horror writer inventing a time machine but still that picture was awfully weird. It made me think of a series of what if’s.
Wednesday, April 14, 2004 AM
Tuesday April 13, 2004
I listened yet again to the Blue Light Lounge. I’m addicted to that schmaltzy music they play. I just signed up for a year’s membership on Live 365. This is probably stupid but I don’t care it’s my money and I’ll do what I want with it.
Right now I’m waiting on receiving my Alphasmart in the mail. I broke down and bid on one on eBay and actually won it. Real Cheap Too!!!
Monday, April 12, 2004
Former CBS morning weatherman Mark McKuen joined his little brother Kirk (whose real first name is Chris) McKuen on air this morning on 98 Rock. My how the mighty have fallen! Maybe Mark lost a bet to his brother or something. I can not see how someone of his wealth and stature would come back to Baltimore to appear live on air with his brother. He does go on the air via telephone from time to air when the morning show need an instant celebrity guest. This is in my memory the only time I can recall him actually being live in studio.
Also after a long absence Lopez is back on the air. I guess his chemo must be going well.
Friday, April 9, 2004
I hope that I will have the opportunity to do it again so I do not become rusty and become more of a liability than an asset to having been trained in that area. What’s the use of learning how to do something if you’re only going to do it once. I don’t know maybe I was lousy at it and no one has the guts to tell me. Either way I hate this being left hanging feeling.... Do I do the work for now on or was this just a one shot deal?
Thursday, April 8, 2004
Wednesday, April 7, 2004
Monday, April 5, 2004
Today Lisa trained me on how to do the type of work she does. It went better than expected. I admit I was kind of late this morning. It was raining outside and I had to hunt around my apartment to find an umbrella. Lisa was nice enough to make me a cheat sheet on the requirements for each state. However, the only thing she would let me do was sign off on each state.
Thursday April, 1, 2004
So I guess Brian wasn’t kidding I actually started training on the new work today with Li Jie. It wasn’t as difficult as I thought it would be. She let me do work for California. She told me that she would teach me the procedures for other states later. But I have this feeling that she has no intention whatsoever of showing me anything else nor photocopying her version of the procedure manual for various states that she promised she would do. I wonder if this whole thing is just a one shot deal? Will I now be doing the same work as Lisa and Li Jie for now on?
I’m saddened to report that today of all day’s, April Fool’s Day CBS, decided to cancel the Ioan Gruffudd Show, aka Century City. I’m not surprised but couldn't they have canceled it in any other day but today. Oh, well here’s hopping that CBS decides to run the remaining episodes over the summer. Anyway, I’ll be looking forward to seeing Ioan on the big screen this summer in King Arthur.
Tuesday, March 23, 2004
The review wasn?t as I had feared. I have to admit that I couldn't get to sleep the night before. Then again I rarely have a sound sleep the night before an annual review. This is mainly because nightmare scenario after scenario raced through my brain. Not once did Brian bellow, ?You?re Fired!?, ala Donald Trump, on NBC?s The Apprentice. Nor did he shout, ?You?re Worthless and Weak!? like on Twisted Sister?s 80?s video for Were Not Gonna Take It.
I did get a raise and a promise to be trained on how to do the work that Li Jie and Lisa does. I don?t know if this will really happen or if he?s just placating me. I guess I?ll just have to wait and see if it really will happen.
Also I found out the earth shattering news that Little Lisa called out sick a couple of weeks ago and this lead him to the realization that not many people were trained on how to do her or Li Jie?s work.
As I believe I said before Lisa looks a heck of a lot like Melisa Gilbert when she was on Little House on the Prairie.
Lisa once gave me a very curious Christmas card one year. It was of a Santa clad in purple and he held a crystal ball. It was like pagan Santa. It kind of made me wonder of all the Christmas cards she had why?d I?d get the one holding a crystal ball and wearing purple of all colors? I guess I got the purple wearing Santa because my stapler is purple, so?s my mouse pad and the desktop on my computer. It?s very obvious that purple is my favorite color. But the crystal ball? Nah? She couldn?t have Googled me. It was most likely a randomly picked card. It had to be.....
Well, if anyone from work is reading this all I have to say is the immortal words of Sally Fields ,?You like me! You really like me!?
In other work news, Arnold kept playing musical chairs. He took the chair next to me and moved it to his desk sat in it for a while then switched it back. He did this about three or four times this morning. Is the guy mildly retarded or does he just have Asperger?s Syndrome like I do? It?s hard to say. If he is mildly retarded then that would be depressing. He does the same work as everyone else. I have a college degree the woman that sits next to me has a masters degree.
If he were truly retarded it would make me wonder why haven't we all been fired and replaced by people from the Chimes Organization. You could probably get away with paying them less and they wouldn?t complain as much. They?d be happy just to work.
I suppose the fact that we have not all been replaced by people from the Chimes is proof that he might have Asperger?s Syndrome. Then again what do I know I?m not a doctor I only play one on the internet......