Archive for May, 2010

The Upward Mulberry…

May 31, 2010

Every now and then I find myself discovering ancient yoga poses that I guess have been discarded or simply forgotten over the ages. Since they are virtually unknown I feel they should be named so that they can easily be referred to by other yoga enthusiasts… like “downward facing dog” or “posture to the infinite”. I’ve settled on “upward mulberry” for this new one and since the ancient names all have a “sana” on the end, it may have been referred to in ancient times as “mulberrysana”. So yesterday, which thankfully was not a holiday, was a dad and bug day and like the day before that, which was also not a holiday, on our morning walk with the dog, we came upon a mulberry tree that was so jam-packed with berries it was really hard to believe. Well, Sofia being the fruit bat that she is saw nature’s bounty in the form of a large, wet, sticky, purple berry slick under a crazily loaded tree and she wanted some berries to eat. So here’s the pose… try it some time if you get a hankerin’. First you’ll need a severe case of plantar fasciitis, a 40 lb. dog that is 100% muscle and doesn’t behave well and a retractable leash… now before you can object, I realize that they didn’t have retractable leashes in ancient times (probably no PF either) but they also didn’t have space age styrofoam mats and “yoga blocks” either. So here goes… stand under a mulberry tree (preferably in about 1/4 inch of slippery rotten mulberries) and extend up on your tiptoes, with the leash in your left hand reach that left hand straight above your head and grasp a low hanging branch. The tricky part here is while you’re pulling down on the branch, the dog is pulling sideways with all her might which can knock you off balance if you’re new to the pose. Now with the right hand, extend it even higher than the left by pivoting your shoulders and gently harvest all the ripe mulberries on the branch… hold for 9 breaths. The difficulty lies in maintaining your balance (remember to breathe) and the beginner will inevitably be very close to a successful harvesting when a slight dog pull will shake the branch and very ripe mulberries will drop all at once bouncing off of your forehead and chest, leaving big purple blotches. Your reward might be something like this…

Here’s some holiday eye candy from my good friend Ig…

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Mortarboards And Greenware…

May 29, 2010

I didn’t attend the “graduation” mostly because I’m 52 and I didn’t have my first graduation until 8th grade and I thought that was bogus. Graduating from preschool is akin to graduating out of diapers or graduating out of training wheels or graduating to having a washing machine in your home instead of going to the laundromat. All these things are great but the curmudge in me thinks maybe we ought to resist our urge to celebrate with a ceremony. But as with everything else the world moves on without me and with no regard for what I think. I joked when Mom got home by saying something like… “now you’re gonna tell me they wore mortarboards”. And as is apropos, she replied… “yes, they did and it’s right there in that bag”. Here’s a pic Mom took at the “graduation” and I’m thinking maybe the mortarboard was just a ineffectual attempt to draw attention away from those PINK SHOES…

I couldn’t resist donning the mortarboard myself, not so much to see if it fit but because I had coincidentally just graduated myself, from “before lunch” to “lunch”. The ceremony was brief but I felt special…

Sofia came in the studio yesterday and brought me this lovely bouquet that she had put together…

I was listening to an old Led Zeppelin disc and Robert Plant was wailing. Sofia asked me if it was a boy or a girl that was singing and seemed disappointed when I told her it was a boy. Anyway, here’s a morning shot of the beer glasses from yesterday…

Butterflies Are Free…

May 27, 2010

Well, they’re not free yet but we’re gonna let them go this afternoon after Sofia’s pre-school graduation. Sounds a bit ridiculous to me… I wonder who the valedictorian is and will the salutatorian feel slighted in any way. Will they move their tassels from side to side and toss them straight up in the air in unison? Anyway the metamorphosis of the callapidders is complete and as of this morning we have 4 brand spanking new “painted ladies”. They’re currently feasting on some carnations sprinkled with sugar water and in the afternoon we will release them from bondage to forage on the natural urban flora. Here’s the bug with her bugs…

Thanks aunt Cathy for the great gift. Speaking of urban flora, when we got back from Iowa, the hydrangea were in full bloom, the squash thrice their size and the astilbe was abloom also…

Here’s a strange flower that we got at the nursery when my sister was visiting, I have no idea what it is…

I still have ceramic pictures from Ig’s house and today it’s sculptures not pots (in this first grouping, the figures are a good 30″ tall)…

He’s Touchin’ His Butt!…

May 26, 2010

Well, after our first lunch at A-Dong, we headed over to the Pappajohn Sculpture Garden because Mom and Sofia hadn’t been there before. When we arrived they were installing a new Keith Haring sculpture with a big work crew and an even bigger crane. I didn’t think ahead of time that Sofia would enjoy the park as much as she did but while we all watched the installation, she ran up and down the hills and rolled down the hills and didn’t want to leave when it was time to go. We visited each piece and she stood for a picture in front of each one. So first the Haring piece, here’s the pieces lying on pallets…

This next picture shows the crew trying to decide the best way to attach the straps so the crane can lift the piece they’re bolting to the base first. We stood here for quite some time as I’m always interested in the political interaction of groups like this… it beats “survivor, wherever” every time. Before long it became clear that the crew was sharply divided into two groups… sculpture people who knew sculpture and crane people who know how to lift things. Although everyone was well-behaved, I could tell that one guy on the crane crew thought that the sculpture crew was being too pedantic and circumspect about moving the piece into place and especially about keeping it wrapped with felt to avoid scratching the surface. The sculpture guys were extremely careful…

Anyway, it took quite some time to get the first segment into place and we had already traveled the whole park and taken pictures of all the pieces when we got back to the Haring, they had it suspended above it platform trying to nudge it into place. As we walked by with Sofia, I was seconds away from shouting… he’s touchin’ his butt, he’s touchin’ his butt, but decided that maybe it wouldn’t go over so well with the crew although I knew it would go over really well with Sofia. I opted for self-control and merely pointed this out to our group so the crew couldn’t hear but as you can see from this picture, he’s touchin’ his butt, he’s touchin’ his butt…

We came back a couple days later to get the pictures of the finished installation…

Ig had brought his new camera and took lots and lots of pictures which I have copies of and I’m trying not to post too many of them but he took hundreds of them and his camera has one of those rapid fire features that takes several in a row which always promises to get un-posed shots that can be very good. Here’s the bug wandering…

As we went from piece to piece I must say that some of the sculptures were a bit vicious on this particular day and I became the victim of some rare outdoor sculpture bites, notice that the bug is so used to her dad that she’s relatively unfazed by my actions even though they are for her benefit. I’ve been trying to make her laugh for 5 years and I’ve already used up all my material, pretty soon I will be met with only “oh dad” because what had one time made her laugh will soon only make her embarrassed, well c’est la vie…

Damn that rabbit…

And finally I got bit by a bug, Mom is pixelated because she doesn’t want me posting pictures of her on the blog without a senate hearing…

Much of the time that we spent on the hill overlooking the installation, Sofia rolled down the hill and I really do have about 100 picture of this that Ig took. Anyway, I had to include a couple because it’s amazing to me to watch her unlimited energy and how much fun she was having…

And after a long day’s work, she headed home…

And of course no Iowa post would be complete without some more eye candy for the potter…

14C, Sleep Deprivation, Wine and Gluttony…

May 25, 2010

No… these aren’t the four horsemen of the apocalypse, it is a vacation of debauchery. But before I get to the vacation itself, I have to mention that we were going to take Dingus to the animal hospital where they board animals. I mentioned this to my neighbor Margo, who has a dog and a cat and she said… “oh, I’ll watch her, she can stay at my house”. I warned her that she didn’t know Dingus. So the day before she left, she took Dingus over to her house and took both the dogs for a walk around the block and decided that it wouldn’t be a problem. We were thrilled to not have to leave (and pay for) the dog at the animal hospital. So most of our consternation about leaving her with Margo was about the potential of her tearing apart her furniture or ruining something else. We were remembering this sort of thing…

Anyway, yesterday we drove all day and immediately upon arrival went to Margo’s to get Dingus and I walked into her house, dogs barking and jumping around, and asked… how’d it go? Margo lifts her bangs up to reveal a banged forehead and dropped her eyeglasses down to reveal the beginnings of two shiners. Horrified, I asked what happened and she said that she had gone to get the dog after work the day we had left and she had her dog with her. Her cat was also on the porch and when the door was opened, both dogs took off for the cat. The cat ran up a tree and Margo fetched the dogs by their collars (without leashes) and attempted to drag them back to her house. When she got to her front sidewalk, the dogs got tangled and Dingus darted between her legs going from front to back and dragged her down and she hit her head on the concrete sidewalk. We had gotten Margo a gift for watching the dog but it seems woefully inadequate considering her injuries and of course she says that it’s all her fault and that the dog was a total sweetheart the whole time. Of course, I already know that the dog is a sweetheart but… that doesn’t seem to prevent these types of things from happening. Anyway onto the trip… I was talking to my friend Ig in Des Moines a week or so ago about his upcoming summer of travel which includes a trip to Kathmandu and on the spur of the moment decided to take a little trip with Sofia and Mom to see him. Sofia and Mom hadn’t been to Ig’s house since Sofia was about 11 months old. On that trip she had gotten sick, the weather was miserable and Ig’s house hadn’t been remodeled. Since school is out for Ig and he’s leaving for a while, it is his chance to entertain. We drove all day Wednesday and arrived just in time for a dinner party. I knew one guest, Mark, who I’m always thrilled to see and there were others that I hadn’t met before who were a lot of fun. As always, the conversation was sterling and Ig’s such a great cook, the food was dreamy too. So of the 5 evenings we were there, we had dinner guests 3 nights. We got to meet lots of great people and of course these dinners account for 3 out of the 4 horsemen… wine, gluttony and sleep deprivation. In the old days, I used to visit Ig (usually in October) and we’d eat salami, olives, bread and cheese all day and then finish off a pound of carbonara at dinner without even blinking… three bottles of wine between us and call it a night at 3 in the morning after staying up and solving all the world’s problems. Now, I couldn’t stay up til 3 if I wanted… ironically I also couldn’t get to sleep once I’d committed to it. This didn’t stop me and us from drinking tons of wine and eating way too much. Of course 14 C refers to the dish that I ordered every day for 4 consecutive days having lunch at A-Dong, my favorite Vietnamese place in Des Moines and now Sofia’s favorite too. Around 10 every morning she would start chanting… A-Dong, A-Dong, A-Dong. The first day we were there we went to the sculpture park again and they were installing a new Keith Haring piece… I will do a whole post about this tomorrow or the next day as Ig took about 5000 pictures of our visit and I took a ton too. Here’s the handsome devil himself…

We also visited Mark, who was at dinner the first night, to see his garden. I wished I had gotten a picture because it was beautiful but it was raining and we were talking and sometimes I’m a dunce when it comes to taking pictures. Anyway, Mark is an expert with all things horticultural and takes wonderful macro photography of plants too. The project he is currently involved with is a website called “Your Garden Show” which went live the day we arrived. This promises to be a wonderful site and if anybody reading this is big into their gardens they might like to go visit the website as it allows gardeners from everywhere to post their gardens online in the media of their choice (video, pictures, words). This is a virtual garden community where you can get ideas from other gardeners and trade info on plants and cultivation of said plants across the spectrum of climates… so if you get a hankerin’, check it out. All in all, we had a wonderful time and ate al fresco almost every night. Sofia loves Ig and during the last couple days she spent a lot of time helping him in the kitchen, setting the place settings on the deck and asking him all kinds of questions while he was cooking. It warms my heart to see her connect with someone that I’ve been friends with for so many years. Of course, for a 5 year old (or really any age), Ig’s house isn’t short on visual stimulation

and at first I was shadowing her so she wouldn’t knock over a Ming Dynasty piece of pottery but she did very well except for her insistence that she climb inside this pot…

And of course no visit to Ig’s would be complete without some commensurate eye candy for the potter…

Nunc Est Bibendum…

May 17, 2010

This latin phrase, nunc est bibendum, is translated as “now, we must drink”. When I mentioned on the blog a while back that I was gonna make some beer glasses, I received a message from my new overseas friend Gianluca. Gianluca is Italian and living in Belgium (many would say the beer capital of the world) which as far as his love of beer goes, is a good place to be located. Anyway, I was planning to send my beer glasses to the show in Chicago and Gianluca seemed so excited about the work that I gave him first dibs before I packed up for the show. I guess we must have an aesthetic bond or maybe even a genetic (Italian) bond because the one he chose was the one I liked the best too. So he recently did a lengthy and flattering review of his latest beer glass acquisition on his blog, The Enamoured Penguin… check it out if you’ve got a hankerin’. The title of the post on his blog is Latin also… “In cervogia veritas” which I assume translates to “in beer is truth”. I can certainly attest to the accuracy of that. Before the beer glass had arrived in Belgium during communication with Gianluca, he had mentioned that certain vessels were shaped in a way as to make the beer’s foam get out of control and end up with a huge head which was a kind of deal breaker with certain kinds of beer and that when he got mine he was going to give it the test drive. This was a bit intimidating because it had never occurred to me that there were potential pouring issues and since this was the first batch I had ever made, I certainly hadn’t given the beer’s foaminess or pouring dynamics any thought. Luckily the glass is similar to a classic pilsner glass shape. So Gianluca was gracious enough to send me some pictures that he didn’t include on his post about his new glass. They actually provide a sequence which starts with merely looking upon the glass, pouring, noticing the full glass, toasting and finally drinking…

Salute Gianluca!

Road Trip…

May 15, 2010

My good friend Vern and I hit the road yesterday for a wee road trip to Berea, Kentucky. The link on Vern’s name goes to posts that I’ve posted with his digital collages, here’s Vern driving…

Berea has a college and is know as kind of the craft center of Kentucky. Less than a decade ago, the Kentucky Artisan Center was built right off the interstate there. I’m sure that these exist in other states as well. Apparently the Artisan Center represents over 600 Kentucky craft people (or so I’ve been told). It sure looks like there’s that many people represented… there are items ranging the gamut of crafts on display in this relatively large building. Here’s a couple shots of the center…

One of the best things about being represented by the Artisan Center is that the work is not on consignment. They purchase the work outright based on their expertise about what they believe they can sell. Here’s a piece by Joe Molinaro, a well-known KY potter that teaches ceramics at Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond and who just happens to have gone to SIU-Carbondale where I had also gone…

Here’s some pieces by Setian Leksirawat, a fellow Murray State University alumnus that I believe was in the program a year or so after I graduated…

In other news, the bug thought it would be funny to make signs and blockade the door to the bathroom. Joking about clogged plumbing isn’t exactly an area that I enjoy kidding about but she was very happy about her barricade…

Slainte…

May 13, 2010

For the uninitiated, slàinte is essentially Irish for “health” as in a toast like “cheers”. It’s pronounced slon cha… of course there are several variations and I’m not an expert so you can take my pronunciation with a grain of salt.

I don’t get too many of these so I wanted to post another “Sofia’s Dad’s Pot Action Shot”. This is from Connie Norman’s blog and if you get a hankering head on over, she has lots of beautiful work and she interviews potters regularly which makes for some good reading. Connie got an ergonomic beer glass from me (thank you Connie) for a Father’s Day gift and couldn’t wait til then to give it so the whole family is toasting with their vessel of choice. Meanwhile, I tried to get back on the horse yesterday and did what I always do when I’ve not thrown in a while (over 2 months this time)… the first pot goes off without a hitch and I start thinking, no problem. Then the next one’s a disaster and gets squashed, and then the next one too… and eventually I get to adequate. Here’s some fresh wet pots that won’t dry because it’s so humid here…

Apparently I wasn’t the only one that’s been jonesing to get back in the studio. The bug came in early and wanted to “make stuff” so I cut her a bunch of tile blanks and she went to town. She was in high production mode for most of the afternoon and wouldn’t have stopped if it wasn’t for dinner. It was the kind of studio day dad enjoys… music turned up, throwing on the wheel, the bug contentedly working away and Dingus on squirrel patrol looking out the back window. Her tiles are clearly (at least to an admiring dad) evolving and still retaining that 5 year old certainty and directness…

She seemed very pleased with her output and was happy about the wee breakthrough of attaching things with slip. I showed her this before more than once but as kids do… they’re not interested until they’re interested. She even let me take pictures of her holding them up and with clay all over her face…

The Callapidders Are Here, The Callapidders Are Here…

May 12, 2010

My sister Cathy gave Sofia a “raise a butterfly” kit at xmas and what you do is send away in the mail and the company sends you a wee container of live callapidders. They spin themselves into cocoons and hopefully we all witness the metamorphosis into a butterfly. Sofia doesn’t transpose letters in words as much as she used to when she was younger and I thought the funny talk was all but over but callapidders it is and it cracks me up every time she says it. Here’s the bug with her callapidders…

At the opening in Chicago I neglected to take a camera to the opening but other people did. I met a very nice couple from Des Moines named Jennifer and Jeff. Jeff is a woodworker and Jennifer is a potter and she was attending Jeff’s workshop. We had a good time talking about power tool accidents amongst other things and Jennifer was gracious enough to take a couple shots of Jeff and me and then email them to me. Here’s one of the shots…

I get a bit antsy when people point cameras at me and I think I looked off right as Jennifer snapped this one. And as long as I’m posting pictures of myself, here’s one with the bug. When I was a kid no matter what the occasion whenever anyone took pictures of me, I would make a face. I was the one that ruined all the family photos. Well, apparently Sofia is a chip off the ol’ block in this regard as she started to make this face whenever I take her picture…

Of course the beauty of the whole thing when I was a kid was that nobody was certain that the photo was “ruined” until after it was developed days later but now you can just keep shooting until you get one. I tore down the photo setup yesterday, put all my glazing stuff away, started slaking reclaim, cleaned the floor and the wheel, taped the plastic that was over the bedroom window onto the floor so that more of the exposed wood is covered and wedged up some of Matt and Dave’s clay that’s been sitting there for months.

That Toddlin’/Tottlin’ Town…

May 10, 2010

We’re back home. My good friend Jeff, who is a member of Club 52, and last year Club 51, and the year before Club 50, was nice enough to make the trip to Chicago with me and attend the closing. It was great to travel with him as there is never a lack of good conversation and because we don’t get together as frequently as we would like, we always have a lot to catch up on. We covered the gamut of topics on our 5 hour drive up and 5 hour drive back. Among those topics was this whole thing about what the lyrics of that song meant when it referred to Chicago as “that toddlin’ town”. Neither of us really knew and after a short online search, the only thing that seems to make any sense is that “toddlin'” was an allusion to teetotaling (meaning consuming non-alcoholic beverages), which would have been a purposely ironic phrase that was directed at the fact that Chicago was anything but teetotaling during prohibition because of the abundance of speakeasies there run by none other than Al Capone. Not sure if that’s correct but toddling is what toddlers do when they’re learning to walk and Chicago was definitely not learning to walk although toddle has a subordinate meaning that means walking unsteadily after drinking so maybe it’s similarly an allusion to the whole town consuming alcohol during prohibition. Anyway, here’s a pic of Jeff from a previous post to put a face with the name…

So I thought that if I could get the bug to the grandparents house by 8:30 that we could make the drive while stopping for a quick lunch and still get there in time to catch the end of Jeff’s workshop. We were making good time until we unwittingly stumbled onto I-290 in Chicago and sat in bumper to bumper for the next hour or so. Needless to say we arrived at the gallery only about 10 minutes before the closing was gonna start. We parked the car and as I was walking up to the gallery, I looked through the front windows and was shocked and elated to see my good friends Thad and Natasha from Southern Illinois who had driven up for a concert. Thad teaches sculpture at SIU-Edwardsville and we had gone to graduate school together back in the day. I hadn’t seen them in a couple years and wished we could’ve gotten there as soon as we intended because they didn’t get to stay long because they had a concert to get to that was downtown and the gallery was over in Oak Park which I guess was about a half hour away. Anyway, it was a great surprise and so good to see them. I also met David, the owner of Terra Incognito, and he was very nice and gracious. The closing was fine and although it was far from a sellout, there were some sales and I was pleased that it wasn’t a bust. I met a few very nice people from Jeff’s workshop and chatted away with them for quite some time. I was dreading the 3 hour affair from a plantar fasciitis point of view because I was not sure that standing for that long was gonna hurt so much that I would be too distracted to hang. After about 2 hours I was really needing to sit down because my feet hurt so much. Then after it was over me, Jeff, Jeff Campana and Jeff C.’s parents, Chuck and Barbara, went out to a nearby Thai restaurant and had dinner. Jeff’s dad reminded me of a movie star but I couldn’t place who it was. Afterward, the other Jeff and I went back to the hotel and tried to meet up with Natasha and Thad again but I guess the concert ran late and our phones weren’t working for some reasons. It was getting late so we made our way to a local pub/restaurant and had some good beer. I ended up getting a couple Lagunitas Hop Stoopid Ales and they were very good. The next morning we stopped by the gallery early to load up some pots and make our way out of town early but there was no one there. While we waited for a while, we wandered over to one of the tourist attractions in the neighborhood, the home of Frank Lloyd Wright. It was a beautiful house with a regal ginkgo biloba in the yard. Here’s a shot from the street…

I guess Wright’s Robie House is in Chicago also but in a different neighborhood. Anyway, we decided to drop in on Jeff’s cousin instead of waiting and drove out to Naperville and got lost. Her name was Lenore and she was very nice and prepared a big breakfast for us. We visited for an hour or so and made our way back to the gallery, packed up some pots and headed home. Here’s a shot of the gallery that afternoon, it’s a little picked over but you can kinda get a feel for the size and how Jeff and my pots were arranged…

Overall it was a great trip, I’m glad I went and I hope that both Jeffs had a good time. It was fun to meet the people I met and establish another gallery to sell my work through. Of course, I really missed the bug. After thinking about all the arrangements to make it so I could travel while Mom was working, I half decided that Sofia’s gotten old enough that maybe she should be my traveling companion on future trips. Aside from the 3 hour event at the gallery, I think she would’ve had a great time in that toddlin’ town.

Destination: The Windy City

May 7, 2010

Well, tomorrow is the closing in Chicago and aside from some last minute snafus, I guess I will be attending. So as a reminder to anyone that might actually be in the Chicago area tomorrow night, May 8th from 4PM – 7PM…

I’ve been struggling with photography again for the last day or so… I decided to get it all over with before I cleared out the setup so I could get started throwing. It looks like next week will have to be when I start the new cycle. Here’s some pictures of the a couple bigger bowls that I still have. Although I’m pleased with the color of the bowls, in order to get the background to be less blue on the golden yellow pieces, the color of the yellow is inaccurate. Maybe this doesn’t bother anyone besides me but I can’t figure out what adjustment I might make to have my cake and eat it to. Anyway here’s some pots and hopefully I can get some shots of the gallery this weekend…

My Mom Has A N1ntend0…

May 4, 2010

(Numbers are an attempt at spamproofing.) Well, it’s May 4th and April’s come and gone in a blur of relatives with small gaps of illness and general non-productivity. It was great to see everyone that has visited (two different sisters and beaus at separate times and my Mom). My Mom arrived last wednesday and left this morning. She just happened to be here during the Kentucky Derby but we’ve all done the derby and are relatively uninterested. In fact, I have no idea who ran or who won and the only eventful “derby” thing that occurred was that Sofia’s preschool class made derby hats and here’s hers…

I’ve always thought it odd that schools take part in local events of this kind. Jefferson county (Louisville’s county) schools all have the day off on Oaks. For the uninitiated, Oaks is like a mini-derby that is held on the day before the KY derby and was originally intended as a kind of local’s derby (or so I’ve heard). And apparently now Oaks is a big draw so the locals have started going the day before Oaks although they have officially named it anything yet. I must be out of practice writing because I can’t seem to come up with a name off the top of my head… perhaps, Oats instead of Oaks but I can see the confusion already or maybe “Don’t You Wish The Weather on Derby Day Would Turn Out This Nice” Day, or how about Thirsty Thursday ’cause the locals are the only ones that like those mint juleps anyway. Anyway, my Mom’s a big fan of this blog because she gets to keep up with the growth of her granddaughter. So the gift for Sofia that she came with was a customized t-shirt. Here’s the bug posing front and back…

In the last post Sofia and I were coming to an end of our stomach virus (flu) and Mom was still not quite better. We’re all better now and my sister Sue, who was here when I got sick, fortunately didn’t catch it before she left and Mom didn’t catch it either so there’s two bullets dodged. My Mom’s foot hurt and my feet both hurt so we were very limited as far as what we could do during her visit and considering how little we did do, I’m at a loss as to why I’m so exhausted. Apparently, being a host for extended periods of time is not my forte. It turns out that my Mom is a gadget hound… who’d a’ thunk it? She didn’t pack any shorts in her suitcase (a carry-on) because all the recharging cords were taking up so much space. Really, she only brought her N1ntend0 (my Mom’s got a N1ntend0!) which I made the mistake of “checking out” for hours, her cel phone and her brand new N00k. In case you’re not up on it, as I wasn’t, a N00k is the Barne5 & Nobl3 version of Ama2on’s Kindl (for reading books electronically). It ended up being a great source of consternation to my Mom because it “locked up” for the second time while she was here and she is unable to read (electrically) on the plane to her next destination. In an effort to be supportive I said several times that “the book I’m reading is working just fine”… I know, what a luddite. That color TV thing is never going to catch on! Here’s a picture of my Mom at the Thai restaurant, sorry Mom but the rest of the family has to keep up with your growth too…

She was concerned that it wasn’t a good picture of her (although it is a fine picture of her). Of course her concern about the picture kinda made me a bit concerned because I thought that by time I got to my Mom’s age (29) or should I say, if I get to my Mom’s age that all vestiges of vanity about my appearance will have vanished and maybe that’s not true. I’m so looking forward to having those pants that come up to my armpits and are cinched tight with a white patent leather belt and complementary flesh colored sneakers… tres bien ensemble! People may snicker but I won’t care because I’m here to tell you that a belt under your armpits is infinitely more comfortable than trying to ride the razor’s edge (well, maybe not exactly a razor’s edge) of an ever expanding midsection… and they don’t make Spanx for men. Well, maybe they do but without my vanity, I wouldn’t even consider them. But I digress. So it’s back to work and I have to say that the clay has been calling my name for a couple weeks now and it’s a strange feeling not being able to get to it. In other news, I finally finally finally received my rejection letter from Lark Books “500 Vases”. It was so long ago when I sent in the pictures that I couldn’t remember what I entered and then I thought of how much has been made since then. Oh well, que sera, sera… I have heard, however, that if you don’t get rejected, they do send you a complimentary copy of the book unlike other ceramic books. So it’s Tuesday and the closing of the show in Chicago is on Saturday. A friend and I are driving up on Saturday morning and will attend the opening and hopefully we’ll get there in time to catch the end of Jeff Campana’s workshop (assuming there is no problem with us sticking our heads in). Here’s another piece that’s in the Chicago show…

I found out yesterday also that I was featured on Charan Sachar blog’s “Color Feature Of The Week” feature…

If you get a hankerin’, click on the pic and check out Charan’s blog… in addition to this weekly feature, Charan has plenty of beautiful work and recently has had posts about a recent trip to India. Last but not least, here’s another beer glass that I posted to Etsy the last week…