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An Artist’s Notebook of Sorts

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Weak XXXIII

nothing

13 August 2014

gratuitous image

No. 8,408 (cartoon)

I’m going to torture you.

Tell me something I don’t know.

14 August 2014

Robin Williams

For the past three days, every “news” site on the Internet has reported daily that Robin Williams killed himself on Monday. His bouts with severe depression exacerbated by drug and alcohol abuse (or was it the other way around?) have been the source of much editorializing, sermonizing, demonizing, proselytizing, and other forms of izings.

Today his wife, er, widow revealed he was also suffering from Parkinson’s disease. I literally can’t imagine what it’s like to be consumed by depression and/or addictions, but it’s easy to see how horrific it would be to have my central nervous system atrophy.

A lot of my friends and I mostly agree that suicide is a logical alternative to hopelessly degenerating into terminal decrapitude. We also generally concur that we’d never figuratively or literally pull the trigger because of the sorrow it would bring to our loved ones who’d prefer to see us die slowly. Plus, when it is time to finally check out, we probably won’t be physically able to load a gun or tie a noose.

I’m sorry to see Williams dead at sixty-three, but that was his decision. For me, the real tragedy of his life was that he wasted so much of his time and talent making mawkishly saccharine films.

15 August 2014

Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band

I have all the commercial recordings the Beatles ever made. I never listen to them, but I don’t know why. The first reason that comes to mind is that I know exactly what every song sounds like, but that doesn’t really make any sense since I often listen to recordings that I’ve more or less memorized.

Tonight, I listened to the thirteen songs on the Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album from top to bottom, and dang if they didn’t sound minty fresh almost half a century after they were recorded. I think that the only reason I have an aversion to Beatles’ recordings is that I find Paul McCartney’s smarmy, bloated ego so pathetically annoying. I wish he’d just fade into oblivion rather than popping up in headlines when least expected, just like a herpes sore. I can see why he wasn’t Mark David Chapman’s favorite Beatle, alas.

16 August 2014

Missouri Dog Lover

I don’t know why I continue to decry the sorry state of what passes for journalism these days, but, since I don’t have anything better to do at the moment, I will.

Police recently arrested a church official at the Windermere Baptist Conference Center in Roach, Missouri, after an attempted sexual liaison went all higgledy-piggledy. The Columbia Tribune reports that Jerald Hill was charged with attempted animal abuse and attempted unlawful sex with an animal after investigators spotted the advertisement he placed looking for sex with a dog “and another species.”

What other species? And why didn’t he just walk around with bacon in his pocket, the aphrodisiac of the dogs? And what if he wanted to marry the dog and start a family, is that legal in Missouri? I bet it is, but I don’t know because the “reporters” again failed to report.

Feh.

17 August 2014

gratuitous image

Forty-Nine India Ink Drops (and Myriad Incidental Splatters) in Seven Arrays of Seven Drops

Over fifteen years ago I bought some expensive Arches Aquarelle watercolor paper for an art project that didn’t make it through gestation. Even for a conceptual hombre, I was somewhat enamored of the 300 g/m2 cold-pressed paper’s tactile qualities: in a word, thick and stiff. (That’s actually three words, oops!)

On 8 October 2006, I dreamt that I asked Pablo Picasso to drop nine milliliters of ink nine times from a height of nine centimeters onto a square sheet of paper. I don’t remember if he did, and I never did have any idea what the old coot was doing in my dreams.

That idea festered in my head for years, and eventually transmogrified into forty-nine ink drops dropped from a great height. I tested the idea inside The Really, Really Great Room, but imperceptible air currents made it impossible to consistently hit a twenty-three by thirty-one centimeter sheet of paper ten meters below me.

I ended up making Forty-Nine India Ink Drops (and Myriad Incidental Splatters) in Seven Arrays of Seven Drops by dropping the ink from a height of three and a half meters. That proved to be the right distance to hit the paper every time, but with enough inaccuracy to introduce chance into the seven sets. Picasso couldn’t have done it better, and didn’t.

18 August 2014

Imagining Not Imagining

Clarissa told me that I couldn’t imagine how busy she was raising three children while working long hours at her agency. I agreed that it was easy to imagine that I couldn’t imagine, since I’m self-unemployed with no freeloaders to house and feed.

This proved to be one of those rare occasions, alas, where agreement was perceived as disagreeable. Clarissa argued that since I could imagine what I couldn’t imagine, then I was contradicting her assertion that I couldn’t imagine how swamped she was. I replied that I was simply acknowledging my failure of imagination, and things went downhill from there.

Clarissa and I can—and do—argue about the stupidest things; that’s one of the many reasons we love each other.

19 August 2014

Not a Great Artist

I shuddered when Charlie told me that I was a great artist. First, I like to manage expectations, and I would prefer to be thought of as an artist who doesn’t disappoint very often as opposed to a great one. Most importantly, though, one of the prerequisites to being a great artist is being dead. And I’m not expired, at least not quite yet.

Dead artists are certainly your best investment. Their inventory is finite, and they’ll never embarrass you by doing something embarrassing like I’m about to do.

Mañana.

Stare.

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©2014 David Glenn Rinehart

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