Saturday, June 24, 2006

Neighborhood Invasion

Remember before computer games and Columbine, this seemed normal seeing boys walking around carrying guns? I just looked out of my front window and was startled to see them. I rarely see children dressed up in fatiques playing army anymore.

Or. At least, I hope they are playing.
I'm still gonna drop and roll past my living room window, though. Just in case.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

The Midnight Sun

Do you remember that old Twilight Zone episode called THE MIDNIGHT SUN? I feel like I've been trapped inside that tv show.

If I remember it correctly, there was some sort of catastrophic event that happened and knocked the earth off its orbit, sending it closer to the sun. It became grossly hot. Everyone left New York City looking for colder climates, except two women who decided to live out the rest of their short, hot, sweaty lives in their old apartment building. The sun never set. I remember one haunting scene of an oil painting that was melting with the heat and a thermometer that burst.

It is nearly midnight.

I keep looking at my paintings. Are they melting? It is 90 degrees. Inside my house.

I've lived in this house for nearly three years and I don't remember it ever being this hot in here before. I have fans going throughout the house. But the fans just stir up hot air and blow it all around.. like the hot desert wind I felt last week while in Las Vegas. It doesn't cool you. It just makes you lethargic.

My paintings are fine, though. Nothing has melted down. My thermostat is still in place.

A friend of mine who lives in muggy Tennessee was shocked to hear I don't have air conditioning. He told me yesterday that he'd rather live in a single-wide trailer with air conditioning than in a palace without.

I'm thinkin' if I lived in a single-wide trailer and the air conditioning went out, I'd just be a gal living in a very hot single-wide trailer. So I would take the palace any day.

I know it won't stay this hot for long. The fog will roll in from the coast in about a day or two and it will cool down.

The evenings will even begin to feel a bit chilly.

As I recall watching the ending to The Twilight Zone ... I remember the older woman died of a heat stroke and the younger woman also eventually collapses, but when she awakes, it is dark and snowing. She was just dreaming. The earth was actually heading away from the sun!

I just felt a chill!

No. It's not snowing. The fans are finally doing their job. I went to look at the thermometer and it's now a cool 88 inside my house.

I think I'm gonna be okay.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Floors and flying

I spent a great deal of this afternoon pulling up more carpet.

It's the final room of the house. This extra middle bedroom stores my cds, my old videotapes and cassettes and books. So it's just a room filled with ... stuff. Lots of it.

There was a brief moment of insanity when I thought I could pull up a strip of carpet and use the heavy large bookshelf as a straight cutting edge for me. So I kneeled down and pulled up the carpet and my large heavy bookshelf, decided to tip over backwards instead of standing firm.

I watched in horror, as it crashed loudly down to the floor, splintering framed glass pictures in a zillion pieces, breaking the leg off an end table and breaking endless CD cases.

I tried to grab it in midair but it only took me quickly with it to the floor.

It reminded me of when Ann wanted to fly.

We were teenagers. She asked Brook if she could hang on to the back of his truck while he drove away. She imagined her legs lifting up parallel to her head as if she was flying.

It sounded like a great idea at first. But, being smarter than dumb kids, we decided her legs wouldn't probably lift like that and would just drag along the street.

Her life was probably saved that night.

I miss Ann. I wonder if she still dreams of flying. (And I hope she hasn't tried)

Friday, June 16, 2006

A drinking cup for "people on the go"

"Begin with another's to end with your own"
~Baltasar Gracian, Philosopher

In the 1950s, fast-food restaurants added drive-thru lanes so people on the go, no longer had to park their cars and walk into the restaurants to order their food. Later banks borrowed that idea. And today, there's all sorts of Drive-Thrus. While in Las Vegas, I noticed a couple can get married in the Drive-Thru at The Little White Wedding Chapel.

There are tons of ideas out there.

Maybe you'll spot it by seeing a bad idea and turning it into good.
Do you like the small envelope as a drinking glass or can you improve it?

All it takes is just one innovative thought and you can change the world. That's all it takes. You can do it. I believe in you.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Viva Las Vegas!

I am in Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay enjoying a small part of the How Conference. I am really happy I am here. I feel more inspired and more creative by coming here. I bought a ton of design/creative books and have enjoyed their fabulous pools and I feel refreshed.

The Ebay conference is also going on here. I've noticed that both groups of people have distinctive looks and I can spot one from the other in an instant.

I also noticed I've had absolutely no desire to hit the casinos this time around. Okay, granted, I am not usually a gambler -- except for taking risks with my dreams.

But in the past, I discovered that all it takes is walking through the casinos, and the allure and excitement of hearing that endless stream of coins tumbling out of the machine and seeing the lights flashing and the clanging bells going off, that it creates such a buzz of fun and magic that and I am drawn into the gamble.

This trip, however, I noticed it is especially quiet. No hype; no excitement. It's because the casinos no longer have coin-operated machines, and instead, use a bar-coded ticket which replaces nickels, dimes and quarters with paper tickets. I have no idea who is winning or losing. What was once a sensory-overload, has now turned into a rather quiet and dull (though still smokey) walk through the casino.

Despite this quiet hush on the casino floor, apparently people are putting more money into the machines than ever before, because it's coinless, they don't have a sense they're playing with real money as they would, by scooping up the coins from the tray and shoving them back into the slot.

But, for me, the allure and the excitement has dramatically lessened and my guess in regaining that experience might be harder to come by than even the jackpots.

Friday, June 9, 2006

My past is paving my future

I was reading through my 1988 journal when I came across this bank deposit slip of mine tucked in between the pages. This was ALL the money I had on February 26, 1988.

And, as poor as I was, I remember feeling okay about my life. I felt rich in my poor state.

Well. Okay. Not rich. But, I figured I had enough.

On one side of the page was a list I had written:

Goals for 1988:

Make $17,000 a year.
Design greeting cards.
Buy an Artograph Projector.
Buy a Video Editing Deck.
Videotape weddings.

On the other side of the page was the lyrics to "The Future's So Bright, I Gotta Wear Shades" by Timbuk3.

I was an optimist.

. . . . . .

The only thing I accomplished on my list that year, was buying the Artograph Projector, but eventually, I DID make $17,000 a year and designed hundreds of greeting cards and bought a video editing deck and even videotaped weddings among a slew of other projects.

But. It all came about because I believed in myself and I didn't let a lack of funds stop me from dreaming.

Today, I am not rich by any stretch of the word. But I am a self-employed artist who is finding her way in this world.

I believe at this very moment, I am exactly where I am supposed to be.

And I believe my past, though checkered by some struggles and seemingly failures, has made my present life much more appreciative and productive.

Monday, June 5, 2006

An Unwanted House Guest

I’ve had all I can stand and I can’t stand no more
Get out of this house

~Shawn Colvin

Okay. If there's one thing I hate more than Oprah's 1998 movie, BELOVED, it's finding a rat in my house. But if there's one thing I hate more than a rat in the house is finding a large alligator-salamander-lizard in my living room.

My adorable little sweet Mollie brought this lovely gift to me just now from the backyard. (Or maybe she stole it from the zoo).

I have no idea what it is, but the moment I let out a blood curdling scream, it slithered quickly behind the large and heavy armoire where my TV sits in my living room.

Can someone come over and save my life?