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An Artist’s Notebook of Sorts

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Weak I


1 January 2017

No. 9,463 (cartoon)

You’re seven sheets to the wind.

Smooth sailing!

2 January 2017

My Twenty-Second Year

This is my twenty-second year of making these daily notebook entries, and there’s no end in sight. I started this just before my fortieth birthday to prove to myself I wasn’t washed up and out of ideas. I wonder if I’ve accomplished that, I wonder if that’s even possible, and, most importantly, why I should care since no one else does?

I suppose I should have thought of an exit strategy seven thousand six hundred and seventy-three days ago, but I didn’t. I also suppose that I shouldn’t be concerned with that, either, since everyone has an exit, strategic or not.

3 January 2017

My Two Cents Worth

I knew something was wrong this afternoon when the cashier said the cost of four bottles of wine was ten dollars and eighty-one cents. Either she undercharged me by two cents, or I’d been paying two cents more than I should have for years.

I investigated the discrepancy and found that there wasn’t one. The local sales tax decreased by one-quarter of one percent a couple of days ago, and I failed to notice the news stories—if there were any.

I made some calculations and concluded that I’ll save a dollar in sales tax if a buy thirteen cases and five bottles of wine. I made a few more computations and discovered a formula so elegant that I double-checked my figures. When I buy four hundred bottles of wine, I’ll have saved two dollars and forty-nine cents, the exact cost of the next bottle!

Oops, never mind, I just remembered that I’d still probably have to pay sales tax on the “free” bottle.

4 January 2017

A Most Improbable and Pleasing Loss

I’ve played tens of thousand games of Monopoly on my computer in the last quarter of a century or so. (The copyright on the game is 1991; I’ve probably been using it since then.) I don’t like the game so much as all the probability and chance involved. And, as was the case today, improbability.

For the first time ever, my three computer opponents bought every piece of property available before I had the opportunity. I was left with literally nothing and no possible chance of winning. I’m unlikely to see such a most improbable game again, so I savored the nominal loss.

5 January 2017

Appallingly Filthy

Molly is livid; she just discovered that one of her short stories was included in A Flexible Woman’s Anthology of Erotic Prose.

“That’s it!” she declared, “I’m firing my worthless agent!”

“I’m confused,” I replied. “I thought all authors were happy to get published, especially when there’s money involved.”

“I don’t want to get pigeonholed as one of those pathetic ‘erotic’ writers,” she explained. “There was nothing erotic about my story, it was appallingly filthy!”

Alas, another sensitive, misunderstood artist. It happens all the time.

6 January 2017

Envying the Dead

Another day, another massacre. Some idiot with a pistol killed passengers waiting for their baggage at the airport in Fort Lauderdale. As if we needed another reason to not travel with more crap than we can carry.

“It’s a bloodbath,” opined Broward County Sheriff Scott Promiland, “where the living envy the dead.”


“I just talked with a woman who’s never going to walk again after a bullet shattered her spine,” he continued, “and do you know why she’s so distraught? She still has to endure the flight to Tupelo.”

Oh, the horror.

7 January 2017

Happy Birthday Ulysses Kay

Ulysses Kay was born a century ago today. I have no idea who he was; the only thing I know about him is that we share the same birthday. I’m glad that I was born forty-nine years later than he was, otherwise I’d probably also be dead.

8 January 2017

Big Round Numbers

Polly manifests her narcissism with data. She claims to have statistics for every aspect of her life. I was tempted to ask her if she compared the weight of food going in to food coming out, then thought the better of it.

She concluded her average cycling speed for 2016 was around twenty clicks an hour.

“I bet you could tell me the exact number if you wanted,” I taunted.

“Call it 19.4 kilometers in big round numbers,” she confirmed with a self-satisfied smile.

I love numbers geeks, who wouldn’t?


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©2017 David Glenn Rinehart