Saturday, September 29, 2007
In other news...well...you all know about all the art shows I have scheduled. I've actually had to turn away some offers. I'm hoping they will plug me in after all my scheduled shows are over. I need to keep the momentum going. In a moment of ego crushing, one gallery turned me down (2nd time) but then offered up an explanation saying that they loved my stuff but that similar stuff in their shop doesn't sell. They are open to looking at future works if I start painting again which I would like to do.
Rehearsals for the church Christmas musical are going well. I still don't feel like my voice is up to snuff and I worry about that. That's part of the reason I want an answer and cure to this gas/bloating problem. It seriously affects my singing ability. The timing sucks. Just when I get an opportunity to do music again and WHAMMO, this crap rears it's ugly head. It makes rehearsals frustrating for me when they should be fun.
So, that's about it for now. Since I heard a podcast the other day about dumpster divers in Australia, I've been wanting to write about my own experiences with dumpster diving but I haven't had the time or energy to devote to it. Perhaps soon.
I've whet your appetite, haven't I?
Monday, September 24, 2007
Just so I can keep it straight, here is a list of my upcoming shows. I'll share more specific dates as they become available.
Oct. 6th - Candles Cafe and Catering in Wallingford
Oct. 9th - North Seattle Community College
Oct. 13th - Ballard Art Walk at the Forum Center
Nov. - On The House in Capitol Hill
Nov. 15 - Edmonds Art Walk
Jan. - Hotwire Online Coffeehouse w/ West Seattle Art Walk
Feb. - Green Bean Coffeehouse in Greenwood
TBA - Trabant Coffee and Chai
That's a pretty good list but I will continue to work to fill every month I can.
When we arrived, we ate brats, burgers and curly fries. It was expensive but pretty good. We then made our way to the Beer Garden where our tickets afforded each of us a small mug and four tastes. We gave all our beer tokens to A & H but took a couple back when we saw that we could sample some hard cider. (we don't drink beer) Sarah loved the pear cider. I had some raspberry and it was only okay in my opinion. I'm pretty lightweight when it comes to drinking.
As we walked among the booths, I spotted Justin Hillgrove who shows art at one of the same venues I do. I introduced myself and we chatted a bit. asked him about selling art at festivals and such and he gave me some good starter advice.
After that, it was time to go to the dogs...show, that is. We found our spots and ran those puppies through like an assembly line. We had to get through 145 dogs in 45 minutes and we did it. The winners were a couple of weimeraner puppies who will end up on the cover of City Dog Magazine. Eventually, they will post pics of all the contestants from yesterday on their site. If you like cute doggies, go check it out. All I can say is that it was an easy and fun event and we got paid to do it. Sweet! I hope they throw some more stuff like that our way.
To end our Fremont trip, we shopped a bit. I found some vintage clothes patterns and cards(I use them in my art) and a few cheap DVD's. We then grabbed the bus to make our way back home. On the bus we ran into Lisa and Hayden who run the Green Bean. It's a non-profit coffeehouse that's next to the theatre. They had been at Pike Place Market all day. We got to talking about our days and then we talked about my art a bit since I've got a bit at the Market. Looks like I'm going to have a show at the Green Bean next spring. They're stacking up!
Once home, we crashed. This is tech week for Sarah. They are opening The Importance of Being Earnest on Friday. She did a kick-butt job on the costumes for this show. They look great! We watched a little TV and I massaged her feet before we hit the hay. We walked a lot that day and as a result...wait for it...
...our dogs were barkin'!
Saturday, September 22, 2007
Friday, September 21, 2007
Proof positive that my art is hanging in Pensacola. It's cool that a little part of me is hanging out at home right now.
Along with this picture there was an article about the show. You can read it here. When they talk about the first people coming through the door being parents of one of the alumni, I believe that's my parents. They went pretty much as soon as it opened.
Photo Credit: http://www.pensacolanewsjournal.com/
Thursday, September 20, 2007
This could be a great seed of an idea to make a sci-fi film. It's definitely similar to The Andromeda Strain by Michael Crichton but it would be fun to play around with it and come up with some new invasion tale.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
She also told me some things that make me more hopeful for my gastroesophageal future. It seems the antibiotics are to rid me of the bacteria and to heal me of the GERD. Man, it would be so great to live a relatively heartburn free life. I hope it all works out the way she hopes.
I do have to go back for a follow-up x-ray in a month because I didn't take a deep enough breath when they shot the picture. I thought that might be cause for alarm but she said if they had seen anything that looked even remotely suspicious they would have signed me up for a lot more tests.
She did tell me to work on getting my cholesterol in line. It's not terrible but it's not where it should be. Eating less and exercising should do it.
Having this little scare has really made me appreciate the life I have. Sure, it's not ideal but, all in all, it's a great little life. Plus, I've only had 1.5 years of married life with Sarah and I want a lot more. I just need to get a bit more healthy so I can be a better husband for her. She deserves it.
Thank you very much to everyone who prayed for me during this scary time. Thanks especially to our friends at NW Church. Them's good people.
Monday, September 17, 2007
I've already updated you on the H. Pylori and GERD situation. On Saturday I got an email from my doc (actually she's a physician's assistant) saying that my EKG was a little odd. She suspects an arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat). I have to get a chest x-ray and follow up with her this week. I will make those appointments today.
Meanwhile, on the gastrointestinal side of things, I am taking the antibiotics which have adverse effects on my body's waste disposal abilities. The doc warned about this but it's still a pain in the tuckus. I just hope it's all working to get those critters out of my system. I'm ready to start feeling better.
This past weekend was the start of rehearsals for our church's Christmas musical. I have a pretty substantial part this year with singing solos. Because of the health issues I'm having added to the fact that I haven't sung in 3 years, I wasn't happy with what was coming out my mouth musically. At Sunday's rehearsal, I was standing there trying to sing, very uncomfortable due to some gas and bloating and trying not to think about how scary it is to have anything wrong with your heart even if it does turn out to be minor. All of this combined into a heady mix of emotion and I had a meltdown. Several folks from the group sensed my distress (even before I started crying) and came over to pray for me. By this time, Sarah had sensed my distress and come over to see what was up. We left the room for a bit so that I could compose myself and then we eventually rejoined the rehearsal. I actually felt better after the meltdown. I think it helped to get it all out. I'm not much of a cryer but Sunday's tearfest actually felt good in retrospect.
I'll be glad when this week is over because maybe that will mean I will know what's up with the heart thing and I will be that much closer to being rid of Mr. Pylori and his ilk.
Friday, September 14, 2007
Here's the kicker. I switched doctors because I just didn't feel good about the care I was (not) receiving from the previous doctor. Turns out I was right to do so. I tested positive for H. Pylori back in March and he did nothing about it. Jerk! I could have been better by now.
Hopefully in ten days time I'll be a new and less gassy man. Yee-BURP-Haw!
Thursday, September 13, 2007
This takes me way back. I used to do this when I was in high school and college. Friends would ask me to draw something and I'd say, "What?" They would reply, "I don't know?" so I would then tell them to put a scribble on a page and I would make something of it.
I wonder if I could still do that now?
Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Tuesday, September 11, 2007
Best of all, it's a paying gig and the money is going toward plane tickets to Iowa for Christmas with the in-laws. I've never celebrated Christmas in a cornfield before. Actually, it sounds like Sarah's family pulls out all the stops for Christmas. At some point they have a big family bingo game. I don't think I've ever played bingo in my life.
Dog shows and bingo. I wouldn't trade my life with anybody.
I applaud these folks and their sense of adventure. These types of adventure have often crossed my mind. In some weird way I wish I could do something like that. It's probably why I was addicted to Survivor for so many years. I always watched and wondered if I could do that. When we were in Alaska I thought about it some...you know, buying some junker houseboat and living in the wilderness amongst the moose and the bears.
Of course, I don't think I could. I love my cozy bed and the fact that the fridge is only a few feet away at any given time. But deep down inside of me is a spirit of adventure that wants to experience something different. I love the outdoors and have always wanted to get into camping but I don't know the first thing about camping.
So, I suppose I'll live vicariously through these folks who are sharing via the internet. As I sit comfortably at home I will dream of being with them on some grand adventure. Then I'll get up, walk to the fridge and have a snack.
Monday, September 10, 2007
"Lyra finds herself in a shimmering, haunted underworld — Cittàgazze, where soul-eating Specters stalk the streets and wingbeats of distant angels sound against the sky. But she is not without allies: 12-year-old Will Parry, fleeing for his life after taking another's, has also stumbled into this strange new realm.
On a perilous journey from world to world, Lyra and Will discover an object of devastating power. And with every step, they move closer to an even greater threat — and the shattering truth of their own destiny."*
Transitioning from The Golden Compass to The Subtle Knife, for me, was difficult. I found that I didn't enjoy this story as much as the previous. I understand what is happening to a certain extent but I didn't feel as though the second book stayed on track. I suppose this will have to be measured against the third book which I will read next. For those who have never read the books, skip the rest of this review because spoilers will be present.
The main problem I have with the second book is that it seems to stray off track. I understand that Lord Asriel is preparing to go to war with the Authority and that Lyra and Will have some part to play. Lord Asriel isn't present in this book at all. He is referenced but we are never shown what he is up to. Lyra finds Will and then they hopscotch around finding this and doing that. I could go on and on. I guess it just felt like a middle book. I really hope Pullman ties up all the loose ends in the last book. I sincerely hope to read The Amber Spyglass and finally be able to say, "Aha!"
As for the controversial anti-Christian stuff...it still doesn't bother me. Perhaps it might after the third book but I rather doubt it. I know Pullman has a beef with Christianity and the church but he's also said that this story can be applied to all religions. Even if it was totally aimed at Christianity I wouldn't have a problem with it. There are alot of things about Christianity and the church that don't make sense to me right now. There are some days when I think there is hope for the church and then there are others when I think it should be put down and never heard from again. I think I know where Pullman is headed in the third book but I'm not sure. I'll reserve my final opinion for when I'm finished with the trilogy.
Right now, I have definite shows lined up for December and January. I have other tentative shows lining up as we speak. I just hope I can hear from everyone in a timely manner so we can get this stuff on the books. I don't know how to deal with all the requests other than to give it to the first person to confirm.
I'm also putting my art up on any free site that accepts art as I can. I have sites all over the web and I doubt I could remember them all. My goal is to eventually get them to my main website and then keep them coming back to see the new stuff.
Stuff is happening. Small moves, Marty. Small moves.
Friday, September 07, 2007
I talked to my mom. They didn't have much to say about the art. I'm not surprised. I knew they wouldn't like any of them but it's cool that they went out of their way to go see them. She asked me to explain them and I told her that only one of them had any real meaning and that it was about Mormons. The only other thing she said was that the girl working at the gallery told her that they all really loved my art. Good deal! Hey UWF...how about a one-man show?
If you're curious about the pieces I sent you can scoot over to my gallery and look for Queen Bee, Respite on the Island of Sexy Angels, The Big Ending, and Big Love.
If you're in the Pensacola area, run on out to UWF and check 'em out. They'll be up thru the month of September.
I'm glad my stuff is up in Florida because things have slowed down a bit here. It's been difficult lining up more shows here in Seattle. Tentatively I have shows lined up for October, December and January with the Edmonds ArtWalk thrown in somewhere in the mix. (they emailed to say I was accepted but haven't said which month yet)
I scour the internet daily for opportunities and send out enquiries when I see a possibility. The frustrating thing about all this is that people are really bad about getting back with you. It seems in the beginning that they are dying to find artists to show in their space but then once the initial contact is past, things get slower than mole's asses in January. My goal is to keep my work out there in front of people. Every month would be nice but I'll accept every other month. I still have stuff up at Twilight and Insurrection Vintage but nothing is selling. I'm working on some new stuff that I can sell cheaper in the hopes that I can generate some cash to complete some ideas I have for art related product that I can sell.
The art train is still rollin' but it's a chuggin' uphill right now.
Thursday, September 06, 2007
A bolt from the blue
Has struck you
And no one else.
A light from the sky
Hits your eye
But you can't tell.
There are no words that can prove.
You can't deny your heart is moved.
No one believes but that can't sooth
The dawning faith that's come to you.
It's a message from above.
It's believing in the love
That has gripped you.
The force that has tripped you
Into taking that path
You've never seen before.
It's a joy you can't explain
Falling down on you like rain
That will soon dry.
They can't see with their eye
The life-changing flood
That you're diving into
After something much bigger than you makes
It seems like everytime I watch that film I bring something new away from it. It was interesting to watch it this time from the point of view of a person in the midst of a crisis of faith. In the past, I've always felt more like the Matthew McConaughey character. This time, I related more with the Jodie Foster character. The only difference is I haven't experienced a revelation. I'm still in the midst of the crisis. But I am learning that being in the midst of doubt may not be a bad thing.
You see, most Christians would have you believe that doubt is a sin. I feel that way alot. But I'm beginning to learn that perhaps it's not a sin at all. From recent news we have discovered that Mother Teresa herself lived in dark doubt for most of her ministry. If she had had her way the letters she wrote confessing her doubts would have been burned but instead we mere mortals have been given a glimpse into the life of a saint and found that she too was mortal after all. This gives me hope and makes me realize that I'm not the only one who suffers from faith crippling doubt. I know it's not what Mama T had in mind but I thank her for it nonetheless.
I recently blogged about some of my spiritual issues and a friend of mine commented that "Gut-wrenching doubts are always a good place for new faith to begin."
Small moves, Marty. Small moves.
*Contact by Marty Gordon © 2002
Everyone on this planet has some goal in mind, some end we are trying to arrive at. We are all so eager, so impatient to get there that it's frightening at times. The other day I heard a story about a man who "made it." He had everything he ever wanted...and it ruined him. Now he lives a simple lifestyle on purpose and is happier for it. It's an old story and we've all heard it before but it still rings true. I can relate in a different way. I used to have a job that put more money in my pocket than the one I have now but that job was my life. It was the beginning and end of me. When I lost that job, I lost myself for a while. In my present job, that's not the case. I make less money but I'm able to leave that job, come home and make art, a rediscovered essential part of myself that I thought was lost forever. I am able to spend quality time with my wife, something I see far too few couples doing these days. So, when I get too eager I will try to remember those words and personalize it for myself. Small moves, Marty. Small moves.
Wednesday, September 05, 2007
While in Everett we lunched with our friend Joan. It was a great lunch. We laughed. We cried. It became a part of us. I kid but it was alot of fun. We also had a pretty serious talk that I wasn't expecting. Here's the gist.
The worship leader at our church announced that he is leaving at the end of October to continue his education. Since Joan is on the worship team I wanted to get her take on the whole thing. She's been at the church longer than we have and she knows the ins and outs a little more than we do. I must admit that having been a minister at one time makes me curious about what's going on behind the scenes in any given church. It's not my place to know anymore but that bone still exists in my body. My basic question was did she think they would hire someone else and did she think the worship team (w/ instruments) would remain a feature. (this church comes from a Church of Christ background) When churches go through a transition it's a great time for potential forward growth but my experience tells me that backwards is the way it will go. Anyway, we chatted about that for a bit and then Joan questioned me on where I was in my decision to possibly join the worship team especially now that there would be a need for more leadership. I told her that I was pretty much in the same place I had been. I still have issues with God and have no desire to worship Him. With that in mind, I don't think it would be right for me to be in front of a church leading worship. If I did so, it would be because I like to sing and it would be for me...not for God. Of course, Sarah and Joan both disagreed with that and gave me their reasons. They feel that serving in that capacity could help me to rebuild my relationship with God. I told them I had mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, when I was a worship leader it was important for me to know that the folks that were leading by my side were leading from a position of worshipping God for themselves. On the other hand, I know of one church that had a bass player who was an atheist. He was hired to play in the beginning but as time went on he began to refuse pay and said he would continue to play because he enjoyed it. It was helpful to banter things back and forth a bit with Joan and Sarah because it made me think of things I hadn't thought of before. I still, however, have no answers.
What do you think? Drop me a comment and give me some more to chew on. I may not agree but I'll listen.
Garrison Keillor from the News from Lake Wobegon podcast
Source: A Prairie Home Companion from American Public Media