Sunday, July 23, 2006


Today I saw my favorite client. I know I shouldn't have favorite clients, but I defy anyone to resist favoritism, with a client like Susan O. When she first called me, about a year and a half ago, she asked if I was 'taking on new clients.' At the end of each session, she re-books the next session, overtips, and urges me to let her know if I've raised my prices, yet. At Christmas she gave me a BAM gift certificate, with which I obtained a ticket to hear Ute Lemper with the Brooklyn Philharmonic. In my own mind I call her 'sweetie Sue.'

Sue is pregnant with her firstborn, due in two weeks; I consider it a rare privilege to have escorted her through the pregnancy. It gives me a warm fuzzy feeling, to think that people like Sue are populating the planet.

Anyway, while I was working on Sue, and meditating upon Sue having an easy delivery, and a healthy baby, I suddenly found myself watching my own hands while I worked. Usually I take my hands for granted, unless I have a cut or a hangnail; then I fret, and realize just how fragile is my livelihood. One moment of carelessness, one wrong move, and I could be out of a job, indefinitely to permanently. If I decide to learn glassworking, I may very well have to get a grant for it; one cannot be a massage therapist with cuts and burns covering one's hands.

I realized that I do a huge amount of thinking with my hands--as well as magic. Magic is as good a word as any, for what happens when I touch someone. I discovered it almost as soon as I started massage school. I'd lay my hands on someone's shoulders, and they'd exclaim, "oh, what are you DOING?" "Nothing, what?" "There's heat. Coming from your hands."

There's really no adequate scientific explanation for why this happens. What I noticed was that, after years of practicing meditation, if I lay my hands on someone and empty my mind, my palms heat up. When I receive bodywork from people, sometimes their hands heat up, sometimes they don't. Everybody's touch is different. There was one girl in my class, Jessica F., who put her hand on my lower back during one of the very first sessions. She put it exactly in the sore place, in the lightest, gentlest way, and said, "oh, it's swollen." There was something sort of silvery and magical about it. Intellectually, Jessica F. was not a giant, and was so lacking in self-confidence that she almost dropped out of massage school after a couple of months. I made it my business to make sure she didn't quit. We swapped bodywork a lot, and I came to trust her implicitly. If there was ever a person who should be touching people for a living, it was Jessica F. She was one of the proudest people I've ever seen, at graduation. I hope she's still massaging.

When I got my Reiki attunements, I asked my Reiki master about the heat thing. She said, "Every person is tuned into their own frequency of healing energy. The Reiki attunement is in addition to that." Her own hands were like a furnace. She was a blast--a little gnome-like woman, living in a semi-commercial one-room space in a converted Berkeley warehouse, with a hot plate, a clothes rack, some cushions, and spiritual books and paraphernalia strewn everywhere. Her conversation was a stream of consciousness anecdotes, punctuated with aphorisms from Gopi Krishna or the Course in Miracles, and the occasional blissed-out sigh. In any other century she would definitely have been burned as a witch. She embodied an archetype.

I have always sensed that the energy of the gesture in my hands is a large part of what I'm doing in my artwork. I will put down the paint with a brush or a palette knife, but most of the time I go over it directly with my hand, so that the entire surface of the canvas has been caressed, coaxed, smoothed, sometimes several times over, with the human touch, as though it arrived there directly from me, with no intermediary tools. My contemporary, Margaret Kilgallen, used to say that the touch of human hand was a huge part of her passion for making art; I found it odd that she would have to say so; it would seem so obvious. But it seems that we have gone, conceptually, a long way from valuing the manual touch of the artist, in most modern art. And I feel that this is a serious loss.

As I write this I'm listening to Rachels' Music for Egon Shiele-- the last track, "Second Family Portrait," with the insistently repetitive, almost pleading pathos of the violin, over the ponderous syncopation of the piano's rhythm. The touch of the violinist, the tiny shifts of emphasis within each note, are what create the music. The essence of the art is in the tiny, scruffy, inarticulable detail. Not the Concept, not the overarching Idea, but the gritty individual manifestation in time. A painting is like that; a massage is like that.

When I give a massage, it lasts at least seventy minutes. Not the idea of the massage, which might take ten minutes to explain, or to perform in the most perfunctory way. The actual manifestation of a massage is unique, personal, rhythmic, intuitive, tailored for the particular person in the particular moment, just like a conversation. For me it's a dance, with a passive audience of one, who is not watching but feeling the movement. The moment I make a false move, the audience knows it. But usually I don't falter.

A painting, for me, is a static object which encapsulates a piece of time, a set of gestures, like a frozen symphony. Oftentimes while I'm working I'll put a certain piece of music on a repeat loop, until the painting has arrived at the corresponding vibration, in my perceptions. Thus the painting is something completely different from a 'picture.' It may 'depict' something, but it is something far more than the sum of its parts. This one of the little thistle in the crater, for example--it's about sharpness and lightness and rosiness and deepness and bleakness and dryness and openness and explosions of clarity--and a picture of the painting contains little to none of that. So much is contained in the history of the actual object.

This touch is something we all feel, both when looking at art and in going through our normal lives, but we so seldom acknowledge that it exists, that it is perhaps the most important thing there is. There's almost no way to describe it. It's as though the thoughts of God are seeping through our palms.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

I knew it!

An article in Wired magazine puts its finger squarely on the thing I have been skwawking about since 3-D design class; some artists work by conceptual innovation, producing their best work while young (because that's when their brains are most agile). Others, LIKE ME, work through a process of long-term experimentation, maturation, coming to understand their medium, and produce their best work much later in life. Link to this wondrous article courtesy of The Intrepid Art Collector blog.
What [Galenson] has found is that genius – whether in art or architecture or even business – is not the sole province of 17-year-old Picassos and 22-year-old Andreessens. Instead, it comes in two very different forms, embodied by two very different types of people. “Conceptual innovators,” as Galenson calls them, make bold, dramatic leaps in their disciplines. They do their breakthrough work when they are young. Think Edvard Munch, Herman Melville, and Orson Welles. They make the rest of us feel like also-rans. Then there’s a second character type, someone who’s just as significant but trudging by comparison. Galenson calls this group “experimental innovators.” Geniuses like Auguste Rodin, Mark Twain, and Alfred Hitchcock proceed by a lifetime of trial and error and thus do their important work much later in their careers. Galenson maintains that this duality – conceptualists are from Mars, experimentalists are from Venus – is the core of the creative process. And it applies to virtually every field of intellectual endeavor, from painters and poets to economists.
I think one of the main reasons I'm so sensitized to this issue, aside from the fact that my work process puts me squarely in the second category, is that, having been pegged as 'the smart girl' pretty much since preschool, it was assumed by everyone around me (parents, teachers, classmates, and even myself) that if I were going to be an artist at all, I MUST be one of the 'conceptual innovator' types. Being so 'smart' and articulate and clever and all. (Whatever that means, anyway.) And if I wasn't, if I mucked around and experimented and produced a pile of god-awful crap during school and beyond, I must be delusional. And thus was being pig-headed by sticking to this art thing, instead of decently trundling off to medical or law school like I was supposed to do.

This does not mean that I am announcing myself to the world as a 'genius.' But it confirms a feeling I've always had, deep in my core, that I was on a valid path, even if it didn't look that way to anyone else, or even to me, on my bad days.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Hey. Are we paying attention?

Rarely do I discuss politics. I think I stopped believing in the power of politics to solve problems my freshman year in college, when I engaged in a heated hour-long debate with Marc Salomon on the West Mall. (He was a militant gay anarchic Marxist, or something like that, and I was a Young Republican, if you can believe it.) I thoroughly enjoyed the conversation, and the next week when I ran into him, I smiled and said hello. He acted like I didn't exist. It suddenly occurred to me that he was taking our political differences personally, and that he actually thought I was a sub-human for disagreeing with him. The fun stopped there, for me.

So I keep a weather ear cocked for the political situation, and I vote, and think about things, and listen. But I don't blog about politics, I don't get into political arguments, and I try not to get pessimistic and despairing.

But people, it's looking to me like WWIII is about to happen. I don't want to get into excrutiating detail, because I'm not a Middle East scholar, but look--Hezbollah is shooting Syrian missiles from Lebanon into Israel. Israel is hitting back. Hezbollah and Hamas are virtually the same--terrorists, that is--and Hamas is now the freakin' Palestinian Government. Iran is building nuclear weapons, and making long flowery speeches about how the U.S.'s support of Israel is bad, bad, bad. Our president is a fascist who has embroiled us in a sinkhole of an unwinnable war in Iraq, alienated most of our allies, plunged the country into abysmal debt and eroded our civil liberties.

To put it bluntly: the U.S. is in a weak position, with a belligerent, self-righteous and narrow-minded leader, who has a habit of making very bad tactical decisions. We've pissed a lot of people off; those people have pissed our allies off. Peace Through Strength is becoming less viable by the second.

When I defend myself, I am attacked.
--Course in Miracles, Lesson 135

A problem cannot be solved on the same level which it was created.
--Albert Einstein

When I read 'liberal' blogs, they're generally full of a lot of hand-wringing about how War Is Bad and our president is a fascist lunatic and people are suffering and dying and gay people can't get married and oh, oh, oh. When I read 'conservative' blogs, they're generally full of ex-Marines discussing weaponry and tactics, and making prayer requests for their sons who are shipping out on Tuesday, intermingled with anti-Islamic diatribes and anti-gay-marriage diatribes and oh, our president is a fascist lunatic.

Did I mention that our president is a fascist lunatic? And if everyone can agree on this one issue, why is he still our president?

But anyway, that's not my point. My point is that maybe we artists and literati need to be paying more attention, not because we can do much about it at this point, but just because we need to pay attention. Because maybe we're living in Interesting Times. Maybe 'political art' isn't going to be about making obvious statements about War being Bad in some slick gallery, but about actually binding up people's bleeding wounds in Central Park, or seriously stepping in front of a Syrian missile and getting blown to smithereens.

And my deeper point is that for me, making a gargantuan effort to regard the world from a transcendent perspective is very serious business. Because I genuinely don't believe that what's happening now, what will happen, and what's happened in the past can be 'solved' or 'fixed' at a political level. I don't have any delusions that anti-war protests, elections, or charging into the Middle East and saying "Why can't we all just get along?" is going to do any good. Neither do I think that weaponry and tactics are any of my business--I'll leave that in the capable hands of those who know about such things, and care.

Because, people, this is going to keep happening forever and ever Amen, until each and every one of us understands the notion that our neighbor IS ourself, that what goes around comes around, that Love may not be the Answer, but Hatred IS the Problem. I have no control over what my neighbor thinks; I have no control over what he does. I only have control over myself.

So my task is to eliminate hatred, in myself. That's it. That's all.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Now I understand

those big-name artists who don't fabricate their own work. I could never relate to it at all. What's the point? It's no fun if you don't get your hands dirty.

But if I could hand this

to a technician and say, "Reproduce this in glass, taking out those messy, superfluous curlicues, streamlining the lines a little bit, and rendering it in deep blues and purples,

I would. The design isn't nearly as much fun to draw the second time around, much less building it in lead and glass.

Also, color is hard when you can't put down six layers of oil and wax medium with a palette knife, scrubbing and carving back into it until you get the hue and texture and luminosity exactly right. I understand, now, why stained glass windows are so primary and diffuse in their color designs; you have to do it that way to generate contrast, when you only have about six shades to work with.

But I don't want to do it that way. I want to have, say, some that are almost all blue, and some which are salmon pink with a few green details, and some that are gold and ochre, and some which are almost all white and beige.

Invention fails me on this one. Tune in tomorrow when I've slept on it.

Puppet show

Some images from Dan's recent puppet show collaboration at Tabla Rasa:

Friday, July 14, 2006

Bits & Pieces

Yesterday was a good day. I had two outcalls, one to a regular client whom I like a lot, one to a new one whom I liked a lot. In fact, I'd be hard put to dislike any of my clients. Once you've had your hands on someone's body, and directly sensed the struggles, the pain, the stories, the constant overcoming, you tend to respect them. The new client was a young woman who had had rods implanted along her spine to correct her scoliosis, then removed ten years later; there was a scar the length of her entire spine, and she had no thoracic spinal curve to speak of. I mean, wow.

Then I went out to Coney island and indulged in a really disgustingly greasy Italian sausage with sauerkraut, and a Pepsi, and wandered along the beach, and watched the big distorted orange moon break free of the clouds, and soaked in the tacky flashing lights and the noise. For me, these days, this is High Life.

I like this new one best in the context of how it contrasts with the others around it:

In fact, when you get a whole lot of these together, they do something very different from what one does alone. The radical differences in the way each one is designed, coupled with the uniformity of structure, starts to be interesting.

It's very clear to me that whatever-this-is is still in its early stages, though. Danny said to do 100-200 for starters, and I think that's reasonable. I plan to break out the watercolors next, and start experimenting with stained-glass color schematas.

I have officially advertised to sublet my apartment for the month of August, and have someone officially interested. That working vacation may actually happen. I'm trying not to fetishize the notion too much; I'm still me, wherever I am. But rural Maine will be an awfully nice change of pace.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Lights in the floor

Last night I dreamed I was learning how to make stained glass. I would render all my mandalas in glass, then embed them in the floor with lights underneath them. In fact I was making stained-glass light-boxes, for installing everywhere. I woke up with "We Two" by the Little River Band, circa 1983, running through my head.

Embedding stained-glass light boxes in a floor would be a difficult task, but not impossible.

This weekend, Danny told me very seriously that 'if you make art the center of your life, doors will open.' I took mild umbrage at this, since theoretically art HAS been the center of my life for the last eighteen years or so--and doors, such as they are, remain largely closed.

But upon taking a trip out to Red Hook to watch the boats, and thinking about it, I realized that committing to art, for me, has largely been about committing to the struggle of being an artist. I pick the hard tasks; I pick three impossibly hard tasks before breakfast. I pick impossible men. I pick impossible financial situations, albatross friendships, quixotic enterprises. I have not yet committed so deeply to the joy of making art.

Upon thinking farther, I realized that, wise as Danny is, he has it backwards. I cannot make art the center of my life; art as an end in itself is too flimsy, too temporal, too potentially trivial and ego-ridden. My center of narrative gravity must be spirituality. The art flows from that, not the other way around.

Do you remember that song, "We Two?" Sappy, sappy. The chorus:
Carousels and wishing wells were the things we loved
To fly away in a big balloon was what she talked of
Upon waking I wondered, 'why is that running through my head?' The stained glass idea is neat, a real gift, but "We Two?" Where did that come from? Actually I'm not missing my lost love; the persistent memories of all the times my ex-boyfriend screamed at me for bagging the groceries wrong, criticized everything about me, tried to manipulate, control and force me into a dysfunctional, stunted little box, have completely overridden the happy memories of 'wandering the streets' holding hands. There is no "We Two" in my head, anymore. It's just me.

More than that, "We Two" propounds a ridiculously childish notion of romance. Love is not about "carousels and wishing wells and big balloons," or unicorns and fields of daisies, either. It's about a force that motivates you to work through the hard stuff; it is the will toward growth and change.

All at once it came to me. If spirituality is not a person's center of narrative gravity, growing up is too terrifying to contemplate. Assuming personal responsibility in a world that you can't control is impossible, when you're not relying on anything besides yourself. Attaining maturity takes faith. This is why I stop working and become cranky, moody, and despairing when I stop meditating for a few days--I've stepped out of the flow. I'm disconnecting from the force that guides me, and connects me to the whole.

That's why my atheistic ex-boyfriend, and the emotionally damaged womanizer before that, and the assorted oddballs, perverts and narcissists before that, were all so controlling, compartmentalizing, and commitment-phobic. They were desperately trying to 'preserve the romance' by remaining children. They didn't want to risk tainting the wishing wells with a dose of sordid reality, so they shoved me in the happy-happy cupboard and commenced screwing around outside of it. They regarded any attempt of mine to integrate, to mature in the light of truth and intimacy, as a personal attack. We were operating from different paradigms of happiness.

Notice, here, that I'm not equating 'spirituality' with religion. That's the whip-hand that all the aggressive atheists and what-not hold over your head--that 'religion' equals rigidity, superstition, bigotry, and evangelism. Evangelism is particularly annoying because it's the equivalent of attempted thought control; the evangelist, with the most altruistic of motives, thinks he has a perfect right to get into your head and dictate what you think. A lot of my exes regarded my spiritual practice as though I were in a cult, no matter how much I quietly went about it without involving them; they seemed to think that I would spring out at them one day, pound them unconscious with an Old Testament and drag them off to Utah.

The irony of it is that true mystical spirituality is about coming to see that things are perfect, exactly as they are; it's about not trying to change or control anyone. Control is not a loving action; it's 'I love you BUT.' I love you BUT was what I heard from all those atheists, come to think.

This spiritual center of gravity hasn't made things any easier for me in the 'art world,' which is, in large part, ego-driven. At best, the notion of 'spirituality' is seen either as a Ghetto of Kitsch, or as a quirky, historical-context flavor-of-the-month, as in 'Serena's work references Buddhist mandala-making, within a contemporary, urban context.' Blah.

I think, though, that nearly all great artists are mystics in some sense of the word, even if only intuitively so. The sheer transformative energy of a great work of art cannot come about from mere ego motivation; it has to have the influence of the universe to bear upon it. It harnesses the force which moves mountains.

So anyway, 'lights in the floor' is a good metaphor for how I'm moving to structure my life, now. The light has to underlie and support every action I take, instead of being merely something high up on the wall that I'm looking at. I'm not sure I'll ever marshall the necessary resources to install a lighted glass floor in, say, the Whitney, but it's something to meditate on.

Dan's new project in Coney Island

...Went to Coney Island to add some fish. I love night shots. They are so horrible and inaccurate and beautiful and more accurate than the real anyway. Was hoping to photograph in the full moon but it came up much later than I was willing to stay there for. Oh well. Another night when I stay up late, I will swing by.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

A Write-up! It's a write-up!

Chris Rywalt has written a much more interesting version of my salon/party on Sunday; he makes it sound all sort of elite and special. Please go read it.

Also, for lots of photos of Danny's work, check out most of my March archive.

Monday, July 10, 2006


Thanks to all who showed up last night and made the evening such a lovely one. Thanks to all who RSVP'd, whether or not you showed up. Shame on those who think that RSVPs are old-fashioned and unnecessary in these modern days; you will not be invited again. I have Standards.

Topics of conversation: Discipline and Commitment, Drawing, Process, Maker-Thinkers, Art Blogs, Anonymity, Cheese, Marinara Sauce, Good Wine. Among other things.

Cheers! The next one is tentatively scheduled for mid-September.

P.S. My phone is back on. Commence calling at (718)768-3236, since my cell phone is nearly out of minutes.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

A finer Borges moment

You will be safe
You will be asleep

Someone will have their hand
running through your hair

The world is full of images
Some of them will be transparent
that only catch on video frames

You will be cared for
You won't freeze

Too many casualties to keep track of
Someone will keep track of them
You will be safe in the dark
You will be warm at night
with the windows open

You will be loved

You are remembered

--from Rachel's 'Selenography'

I think the top 'mandala' may be a picture of one of my chakras, just after the breakup. The fact that I can draw it indicates to me that it's over and done with.

The bottom mandala looks kind of like a cross-section of an RNA mitochondrion, but it's been half my life or more since high-school physiology, so maybe not.

The two photos are the views out my front and back windows, about twenty minutes ago. I had one of those Moments where I was playing 'Selenography,' and it all sort of congealed, and I took notice.

All of life can be like that, if we just remember to pay attention.

Update on !*(@#*&( phone service

Okay, so what happened was that Earthlink transferred my phone service to themselves as of July 1, and mailed the equipment needed to access said phone service to an address in Oakland, CA that I haven't inhabited since the year 2000. After they'd used up over an hour of my remaining cell phone minutes, putting me on hold, they earnestly declared that they'd have my calls forwarded to the cell phone in oh, twenty-four hours. They're overnighting me the equipment, probably by tomorrow, which means that it should be here by Saturday.

Which means that my client base has had a full week to call me, get a message saying that I'm 'unavailable,' decide that I'm out of town or dead, and find another massage therapist. Hoo-whee.

So if anybody is needing to call me, please dial (718)384-6773. I promise that I won't whine at you for very long, since I haven't got many cell phone minutes left.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Don't Fade Away (Featuring Sophie Jodoin)

I've figured out why I've been in such a foul mood for the last few days.

Four years ago, in June, I moved to New York. When I arrived at my new apartment, at 9 PM on a Friday night, it had been trashed. The power, phone and TV cables were cut, the intercom was smashed, it was about 104 degrees indoors and smelled like cat pee and moth balls. The movers, meanwhile, failed to deliver my personal effects until two months after I arrived. My only friend in New York suddenly turned into a paranoid, passive-aggressive freak and stopped returning my phone calls. I spent the Fourth of July wandering the streets of Manhattan at random, watching the first post 9-11 fireworks among a crowd of strangers. I don't think I spoke to another human being the entire day.

Three years ago, on the Fourth, I was opening my new gallery. I was stressed, anxious and proud; there was a big party in the building, largely consisting of strangers with whom I had little in common.

Two years ago, on the Fourth, I was getting dumped. I was the biggest wreck I've ever been in my entire life.

One year ago, on the Fourth, I was in a period of prolonged, self-imposed isolation, re-examining every single habitual way I relate to other people. I spent the evening on my roof, watching the fireworks, and talking with my next-door neighbor.

Basically, the Fourth of July in New York City does not hold too many positive associations for me. It's not only hot but muggy; it feels simultaneously oppressive and isolating. Plus, once you've gotten into the habit of self-isolation, it's a difficult one to break, like most habits. I start assuming that something bad will happen if I, like, call someone.

Perhaps the fact that both my phone lines went inexplicably dead over the weekend has to do with physical reality manifesting out of my state of mind. Or maybe that's narcissistic.

Anyway, this has nothing at all to do with the work of Sophie Jodoin, which Painterdog has so generously encouraged us to look at. The images posted here are all from her series, "Don't Fade Away," 2000, which are not necessarily representative, but which touched me deeply, for perhaps obvious reasons.

Sophie's work is proof positive that you can still say something modern and individual with classical painting technique. Sophie does whole series of portraits where the figure is a tiny, isolated speck in the middle of a large canvas; she does other series which look like ancient masterpieces which have been through a shipwreck. The luminosity, the marrying of nail-on-the-head realism with textural abstraction and gestural freedom are unparalleled in anything else I've seen, and that includes Odd Nerdrum. (What's with those weird rants about Kitsch on the main page? Odd Nerdrum is not Kitsch in any sense of the word. He's way too strange.)

Her work is a perfect example of how technique at its best is merely a tool for fluidity of self-expression. These paintings are obviously modern; the moods, the subjects, the compositions only make sense in the context, both of a long history of painting, and of our uncertain and socially isolated era. They're not about saying "look at me; I can paint like Rembrandt!" as much as they're about taking what's transcendent about Rembrandt's technique and bringing it to apply on deeply personal subjects.

This is far, far different from what negative, snotty brats like John Currin are doing. After reading Peter Schjeldahl's review of the Currin retrospective at the Whitney, I expected to like it better than I did. But the aggregate effect of perusing a decade and a half of Currin's work in one fell swoop was, simply, icky. You got the feeling that this artist is a soulless, cynical creep who just applies his technique in the service of thumbing his nose at everybody--artists and regular people, past, present and future. He's all references and no center.

Sophie's work may be much subtler than Currin's, as well as much more sincere; sincerity may indeed be out of fashion. But the depth that comes of mining a simple subject with patience and commitment holds up, for me, much better than Currin's snarky pot-shots. It bespeaks both humility and maturity.

Monday, July 03, 2006


Excuse me, folks. I am in a Mood. Just received a call from an alleged potential client. "Do you do Tantra?"


"What do you do?"

I went into my schpiel about integrated Swedish, Shiatsu, Deep Tissue, Reflexology and energy work. Not wanting to waste my breath, really, because a client who is clueless enough to ask about Tantra before identifying himself is not a client I want.

"Do you do Reiki?" he persisted.

"Yes, that's energy work," I replied.

"Do you do Reiki and Tantra?"

"NO. Tantra is erotic. I am a THERAPEUTIC massage therapist. I do not do sex work. Do you UNDERSTAND that?"

"Well, sometimes people do Reiki and Tantra together."

You are an idiot. Please go away.

"Well, I've never heard of that, and anyway I don't do Tantra. I have to be defensive with new clients, because some people do not understand the difference between massage therapy and sex work."

"I'll call you tomorrow around eight o'clock."

Yeah, right, dude, I will be available for a pervert who calls me last-minute on a holiday.

"Okay, call me when you're ready to MAKE AN APPOINTMENT. Bye."


This weekend, both my cell phone and my land line decided to simultaneously, inexplicably stop working. Which meant that I couldn't call either phone company and say, "What the hell?" but had to email them, which never works.

This afternoon the cell phone just as inexplicably started working again. I called the land line company and they said they'd do a line test and call me back. I'm still waiting.

Of course, I will be switching phone companies as soon as the correct cable box comes, anyway.

I DO NOT WANT TO BE HERE. I do not want to be in town for another Fourth of July. I want to be at a lake, with people, with a barbeque. Town is hot and oppressive and isolated and I DO NOT WANT TO BE HERE.


I DID have a new client call me the day after his session last week, just to tell me that his foot stopped hurting. He said it had been hurting for months, and the session healed it. This was nice. Now if only he tells 50 people so that I can pay my bills.

I have decided that I don't like working in a series where the pieces are intended to be grouped together. It works much better for me to do a series of individual pieces and then group them if I so choose. This column was loosely based on the chakra system, and frankly I don't like it much. I was so concerned with how each piece would 'relate' to the one next to it while I was working that I didn't push them far enough; thus I don't like either how they stand alone or how they stand in a group.

I did discover a number of ideas that I'd like to work with, however. Having the 'center point' pushed all the way to the edge is fun. Organic spirals are fun. Straight lines are fun. Twisted lines are fun. Having the pieces in a group is fun, as long as I don't plan it that way beforehand.

And I don't like doing borders, either. Feels like I'm drawing a picture frame.