It has been almost 7 full months since my last blog post. It would appear either I have nothing to talk about or I have been busy. Any takers on which it is?
This year, the year of Our Lord- 2013, has been a terrible mutherfucker if I have ever seen one. Wife lost her mom to cancer, I lost my oldest brother to (probably) a heart attack in his sleep. My health has been ok, except a recurring rash on my leg and my back and knee pain has hung around. The good news- no diabetes… so the silver lining on what has been a common ailment on my mother’s side of the family. Dad has cancer and heart attack history, so sometimes I just feel fooked. Not losing any more weight because I hardly exercise right now.. gotta get that figured out before I atrophy more.
Local tattooists who can’t cut the mustard have been doing everything they can otherwise to compete.. through badmouthing, rumormongering, and snake oil sales of the highest order I have ever seen in my profession. It either looks good or it doesn’t, I cannot believe these idiots can talk anyone into liking some of the crap they are slinging.
I am just trying desperately to turn some stuff around. The building is a bit of a money pit, the windows went in last Sunday and look great. Let’s see them ask me to spend anything else until they apply for new federal grants to help me with it and I will tell them to stick it. The shop has more coming costs- The rear roof still needs a new EPDM roll roof installed before winter. Lobby needs new carpeting in a serious way. Upstairs has repairs needed to be made before I can take in a tenant. I have a watercolor artist inquiring about the space now for a studio. Sounds great to me, but there is no water up there or heat. Not sure who would be willing to rent that AND it’s ugly to boot!
Other moves I have made toward trying to create some positivity is the time-honored tradition of buying things to make me feel better. Before you poo-poo my materialism, you should realize most of what I have bought is business expenditure and related, so not only is it tax deductible, but it buys me toys that help me do my job better and are fun.
All except the Fuzz Munchkin. Waiting on the one toothed purple monster to arrive. I am one of 300 lucky people worldwide who now owns one of these J. Mascis custom guitar pedals from Brisbane, Australia. It will, hopefully, require me to play more lead lines and less rhythm, but it sounds cool with rhythm, too. It’s where I want to go with my guitar playing, and I feel this will be the edge I need for the sound I want.
I am having my friend Chad do a large tattoo on my arm. It is from a painting he made and I got from him last year. It was titled “Impermanence” and after James died, it was a reminder to me that is what we all are. I can’t carry a painting with me wherever I go, but now I only need to look at my left arm to realize, well, we just don’t have a lot of time to get whatever we came here to do or say done. That’s what this tattoo means to me.. can you believe it? I actually got a tattoo that means something… I must be conforming.
I am painting a lot more again. I took a break after my January gallery opening.. but I have a show in October or maybe November depending… so the necessity has led me to the “toil” of painting again. It really is joyful, I just need to devote a corner to my supplies so I can leave them out and just break out the palette and go. I have one painting finished, and another almost done. I also have the mural project at the Gov’t building in town. There I will be painting a 6′ oak tree made of Styrofoam with nature scenes. Ah, the irony.
Truth be known, I live with a terrible amount of anxiety lately. Some of it I have earned, but some of it I have not.. and it seems like the amount is unreasonable. No matter what strides I try to make in my life, it feels like the rug gets pulled from under me every time I start making any headway and doing what I want.
I don’t want that to happen this time.
However, if Ohio does not put medical marijuana on the ballot in the next election, I will be turning my sights westward for a new home, methinks. My back and legs hurt to much nowadays to do without it, and yet most of the time I have to because of the law. It is not right that the one thing that loosens up back spasms and leg tension without bad side effects is illegal. The people who write and support these laws never walked a mile in my shoes.. and if they had, they would stop before the mile was up because of pain. It also helps with my daily anxiety and not blowing the little things out of proportion.
Big stuff will panic you no matter what.
My sister recently said that 2013 was a habitual fuckup and it needed to straighten its act up soon, or else. I agree with this sentiment.. aside from the Fuzz pedal, what else in the way of good can this year hope to offer to me or my family that could possibly salvage this latest ill-fated jaunt around the Sun? Wouldn’t mind the Packers making the Superbowl again.. but that would happen in ’14. Rats.
What can we do to salvage the year? It may sound corny, but re-invest yourself in the people who have invested in you. It’s easy to spot my friends nowadays.. not just because they are weird and/or ugly (and many, indeed most, of them are). No, they are easy to spot because they are the only ones who stuck around during some very turbulent times in my life, when I would not have blamed any of them for leaving me as some did.
For you who remain: I love you with all my heart… and as for the slight chance that a former friend who decided things got too hard being there for me might be reading this: You’re missing the best, which was to come. I don’t fault you, but I’m ‘The Heavy’ now you knew I was always going to be, and were scared of.