I behave very inappropriately at work. Most of the time, I employ a general tenor of sarcasm during my interactions with customers, but recently it seems like I'm sinking into total opposite-speak. Basically, I'm just lying. To everyone.
It isn't that bad. When I worked at Shag (the aforementioned mid-century modern furniture store), I had a very disconcerting interaction with a customer. This woman, upon entering the store, was not aware of the fact that the shop she was about to patronize had not been inhabited by anyone aside from myself for over a week. I, the only other person in the room, had not spoken to anyone in seven hours and had resorted to seek amusement in the doldrums of business hours-imposed urine retention. After selecting an item to purchase, an egg beater, the woman approached my desk, on the surface of which my forehead had been pressed for the duration of her visit. She handed me her credit card. I bite my cuticles. That is to say, I tear pieces of flesh off of my fingers with my teeth and eat them. There's usually blood near my nails. This day had been a nail-biter; I was bored and hungry and naturally, as her card lay loosely in my hand, it became coated in finger blood. She didn't know what to say. I didn't apologize; I just made a sound and did a real shitty job wiping it off with the hem of my shirt, which was yellow and now also stained with blood. There was a small puddle on the counter. Her receipt was red. She looked sick. I am a disgusting person. I wonder what she made with that egg beater, if anything. Maybe she had plans to make something but decided against it because our encounter was so disgusting. I'll always wonder if she made chocolate mousse.
After stringing icicle lights across the windows and setting up two trees at work, and failing to stave off the urge to make linocut gift tags, I kind of feel like Christmas has already come and gone. In some ways, the holiday doesn't mean as much to me as it used to. That might have something to do with the fact that the past few years have been fairly crummy. I'm hoping that, in addition to this year's dramatic upswing, a return to conventional crocheting will make me feel like this month isn't quite so lean, in more ways than one. I mean, I don't want this month to make me fat, but a sense of fullness in all other manners of speaking would be pleasant. I've got some arm warmers to finish, a hat to start, and another mysterious thing to create. After spending day after day after day hunched over numerous tiny lace skeletons quivering in the eddy of my trepidatious breath, it's almost unnerving to complete a soft, wearable object in under three hours.
What I'm getting at is that it feels weird to use a crochet hook that isn't approximately the size of a cat's whisker.
I've been thinking about which animal skeletons I'd like to attempt to construct over the coming months; although I am knee deep in cat bone configuration, the idea of committing to a seahorse is pretty exciting. I already have a suitable display case for it.
Jason Chen was kind enough to take these incredibly flattering photos of my work. Our collaborative show, entitled As We Vanish, opened at Paradigm Gallery + Studio towards the end of October. It was an honor to be involved with this exhibit; developing the concept with Sara and Jason was a remarkable process, and watching it come to fruition was very gratifying. Here is a link to a photoset of Jason's amazing work for the same show.
Today would have been John Cage's 100th birthday. I tried to organize an event commemorating his Centennial at Little Berlin, but the few acts that I could draw in fell through. Oh well. We'll be screening One11 with 103, his only feature-length film, alongside what I hope to be the spoils of an amateur mycologists' potluck. Yes, I will try to make recompense for poor planning and insubstantial event-depth with mushroom pizzas.
It would be really awesome if I could somehow plan an event in the future dedicated to avant and experimental 20th century composers. Can you imagine facilitating a performance of Steve Reich's Pendulum Music? I guess that's not hard to imagine; I've seen videos of it done in high school gymnasiums. Still.
A general sense of impending failure is sucking on my toes. There are so many things that need to be completed, addressed, etc. I'll never be able to finish all of this stuff - specifically, the items that are to be displayed at Paradigm Gallery + Studio in a joint exhibition with Jason Chen. It doesn't help that most of the materials and subject matter involved with this work are relative
to entropy, death, and animal remains.
I sleep about three and a half feet away from a box of deer bones.
I am currently in the process of slathering white paint all over a garment that took
over a year and a half to sew.
Also, attempting to build a picture frame out of crown molding in my bedroom may have been the funniest thing I've ever attempted to do.
My hands have not been very obedient lately. They have become imbued with a kind of jerky awkwardness. Of course, this sensation is nowhere close to being novel. We've been through this before. It is not especially useful. I hope I snap out of it soon, along with the sense of hopelessness that generally accompanies the aimless mutiny of my hands.
Life is, at the moment, turning out to be a real nail biter. Some shows that I'm involved in and not completely prepared for are speedily approaching, including the Animal Show at Pterodactyl, Laughing In the Face of... at PhilaMOCA, a Sailor Jerry tribute show at Jinxed, a yet-to-be-titled members' show at Little Berlin in August, and possibly a two-person exhibit withJason Chen (towards the end of September) at Paradigm Gallery's new location in Queen's Village (for which I have to finish lots of things.). In addition, some fairly ambitious plans for the Little Berlin Fairgrounds* are in the process of being formulated. As a new member and a complete coward, I am hesitant to provide a lot of input regarding the matter. I basically don't know what to say about anything. My areas of expertise, which are few and far between, do not even remotely pertain to the facilitation of outdoor performance space construction or the logistics of fundraising and grants. To be sure, I am always willing to help, when my work schedule permits, but I really don't feel like I'm doing enough. I feel like a flake and a failure.
I've got some other issues to contend with, as well, on a more personal level. Not all of them are bad, though. It is more than obvious that I don't know what I'm doing, standing in the eye of all of this chaos.
*I don't think I've ever gone into the details of this subject: Little Berlin has custody of an abandoned lot near the Viking Mill in Fishtown; the organization has taken on the formidable task of transforming the space into a lovely community garden, sculpture park, and outdoor performance space. We acquired a Knight Arts Grant a few months ago, but we're required to match half of the money therein via fundraising in order to access the grant's contents. Fundraising is a bitch. There's a Kickstarter devoted to the cause. Raising money is a mystifying subject about which I know little more than what I gleaned from selling wrapping paper door-to-door as a kid, with the intent of benefitting some cause that was, and still is, a total enigma. I think multiple free personal pizzas from a chain restaurant consistently served as some sort of stimuli, but it was so long ago. So yeah. Money needs to be raised.