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Saturday, July 30, 2005

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today was a lovely day. i haven't had what feels like summer vacation until now.

first, michaelmas & i went to saturday market to celebrate 7 years of seeing each other (though we've known each other since rob bowman introduced us during the ice storm & flood of 1996), where he bought arwen lots of catnip-stuffed kitty toys. and i almost bought a couple of nice handmade books but had forgotten to bulk up on cash before arriving. after a whisky dog & an oregon smokey at good dog/bad dog, we headed to fup's prime birthday party, where, after eating cupcakes and coloring fup raffle drawings and picking up one of the free kitty-toy packages from fup, they took michaelmas & i to the back where she was resting on a file cabinet to personally wish her a happy birthday and pet her. we stopped at old town gelato on the way back to the car and then michaelmas came with me to take advantage of the pix offer of free chocolates w/ a stub from charlie & the chocolate factory (which may very well end up being the best part of this movie...).

a cheerful bouquetwhen i finally got home, sven & i watched angel (the arrival of alyria!) on the couch while eating pizza and when he returned to the studio, i looked through the garden to determine what could be salvaged and managed to get a cheerful bouquet out of it. (yep, those are them in the photo.)

so my cat is purring, my inbox is mangeable, my todo list is looser than it's been in months. i am full and relaxed with a mild sunburn, looking forward to a shower. the biggest thing on my agenda at this point is figuring out my birthday thursday (32!). while i have individual plans w/ michaelmas & sven, and a trip to bend to watch the perseids planned for the week after, i don't have an idea for a big group singalong. i was thinking of inviting people to the "stars of the pacific northwest" show at the omsi planetarium, but its last show is 4:30 p.m., whereupon it segues into the "laser ac/dc" and "laser floyd" shows, which i have very little interest in. my other idea is a starwatching party, but that would mean not starting till 10 p.m. perhaps cosmic bowling would be a good compromise? watch this space....

Friday, July 29, 2005

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jalex passed her midwifery oral exams today! yeeee! next is the written exam in august and then the graduation in october!

completely unrelated, but puzzling: a google search for "gretchin lair" no longer brings up blogspot as its first hit. instead, it shows my redirect on packetwarp, and only lists a few blogspot archive pages as second hits. what's up with that?

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

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still recovering from two parental visits in a row last week.

first sven's parents came thursday & left sunday. on the docket: powell butte, pho van, calligraphy exhibit, hawthorne powell's & bead store, bread&ink w/ jalex, pix w/ jalex, lewis & clark explorer train to astoria, saturday market, powell's w/ michaelmas, assagio's. random notes:
*did anyone else see the wildfire sunset and the surreal twilight rainbow?

* the lewis & clark explorer is a neat little train that's on its last year of grant funds. it follows the route lewis & clark took for four hours, all the way to astoria. sven recognized one of the staff from reed. on our meal tickets, they referred to sven & i as "the young couple in the back," rather than our seat numbers, and during the last couple of miles of the trip, i was charmed and delighted when they broke out a fiddle and sang woodie guthrie's "roll on columbia" w/ a sweetly meandering melody.

* the train gave me a chance to make some headway on "pedalling to hawaii," stevie's account of expedition360's journey. if i didn't actually know them, i'd think they were exaggerating!

* astoria: two surprising gallery discoveries here. first, a new art muse in the form of juli adams (whose web site conveys some of the whimsy but hardly any of the texture and grace of the pieces). second, lunar boy gallery, which i desperately wish had a branch in portland, as it carries artists obviously influence by edward gorey, tim burton, ruby gloom and william joyce. an entire gallery devoted to my favorite genre: cute and horrible!

* also in astoria: i broke off from the group to explore a little on my own, and while in an interesting wooden structure the seattle-to-bangor peace march drifted by. i waved and smiled, and a woman briefly ran over to give me an origami crane.

* at saturday market i found a new bag from someone interested in savvy plus. it's nice to have a bag i can just throw things into, though i wish it had at least one pocket to keep my keys in.

* of course, a trip to powell's is mandatory: we met michaelmas there and i searched for books on the creative job club recommended book list, took the stack to the cafe, and all three of us casually evaluated them till i walked out w/ just two.

on sunday my stepmother vickie was in woodburn and so michaelmas, sven & i took her to multnomah falls. fortunately for me she wanted to stop frequently because that hill is one where i have to stop every 10 feet. it's worth mentioning, much to our dismay, that the lodge only offers an overpriced brunch on sundays rather than their nice lunches. the boys fell asleep in the car afterward so i dropped them off at their homes and took vicki to the rose gardens in washington park. she could be in florida as i type this, or she may have managed to get herself home after some difficult upgrades to the carquest computers.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

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so i've just finished printing artist's way flyers: 30 full-size w/ tags (pdf) and 60 half-size flyers (also pdf). they probably look very similar to the spring flyers, but a lot of input has been taken into account from the job club people, former artist's way students, and the call a while back for feedback about my marketing plan -- some of the language and focus is different, and text has been cut, which i can't pretend doesn't give me hives.

if you would like to help distribute flyers, my goal is to reach 50 establishments in the next month. even just one flyer on a bulletin board at your work, lunchtime eating establishment, coffeeshop, library, bookstore, yoga class, or wherever you find yourself from week-to-week would really help me extend my reach. download and print the flyers on your own, if you wish, or i'd be more than happy to drop off as many as you want on nifty sandstone-colored paper with gold sparkles.

for the linkophiles among us, i have cobbled together a portland artist's way page you can point to -- it's not much, but for now, it's enough. :) i plan on hitting the electronic distribution channels next month.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

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3 things because i don't want to have to deal with transitions:

1. war of the worlds: surprisingly happy with this! it was hopeless and horrible and very entertaining. the adaptations they made, by & large, i had no argument with. and we had the mildest hero scenario i've seen in a recent american movie, one where the guy -does- rescue his family but it doesn't magically change him into a better person. i have trouble now separating tom cruise's personality from his characters, but in this case it didn't matter much.

2. apple store: michaelmas waited in line at the grand opening of the new apple store in pioneer place this morning and scored himself a free tshirt; i arrived as he was walking out and didn't want to wait in a line that stretched around the corner as they let in one person at a time to manage equilibrium, so came back after lunch and the pen show. i think apple stores are an odd combination of sterile and yummy. it's also the only place where a $99 item is placed as an impulse purchase. i saw the cybershot and almost fell in love, though it would introduce a sony product into our canon household. (it was also $100 cheaper at the apple store.)

3. pen show: michaelmas is the only person i know who is a fellow computer geek and pen enthusiast, so we attended the second annual portland pen show today -- and though i didn't expect to buy one because i have several i'm not currently using, i was smitten by an old 20s fountain pen inlaid with stars and moons and after circling the dealer tables a couple of times, finally bought it.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

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is anyone reading simon of space? well, you should be, and i don't say this because i just discovered cheeseburger brown has me linked on his blogroll and the discovery actually made me squeal and run upstairs to bounce about it in front of sven. no, i tell you because the author of the darth side (the only thing that made me look even remotely forward to seeing star wars ep 3) and countless amazing essays i am anxiously devouring as time allows, has created another compelling blognovel i'm hopeful will become a physical object i can buy someday since it doesn't infringe upon a litigious enterprise. and though i've been reading it daily, i suspect fans of the darth side may have let it fall off their radar since the protagonist isn't temporally tied to a current theatrical event nor maintains a black and gasping body suit. so go! and tip!

rob also reminded me the other day that you may not be current on the happenings at scarlet star studios, notably sven's progress with let sleeping gods lie and my artist's way travails.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

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sven & i went on a walk on powell butte today to see the explosion of daisies after the fire a few years ago, and came back with 6 small bags of trash from an apparent smoking & drinking party. my arm got scratched up on a blackberry bush while reaching for a heinekin bottle. grrr.

speaking of fire, chas is finally back home after being evacuated during a massive colorado wildfire. welcome back, chas!

Thursday, July 07, 2005

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sven & i saw a matinee of "batman begins," and while it was a wildly adequate film less appalling than many others, the most surprisingly great thing about it was the actual theatre experience itself: it was cheaper, quieter, cleaner, friendlier and with more considerate people than any other movie i've seen in the last several years. and we played air hockey & dance dance revolution, too. :) i had almost forgotten why one goes to movie theatres anymore, but with "war of the worlds" next on the agenda, it seems like it might be a pleasant summer diversion again.

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fireworks? right. the neighborhood crackled and sparkled and boomed for the whole fourth of july weekend, which freaked amelia out a little, especially when the people right across the street would shoot mortars and it would sound like a tree fell right above us. then on the holiday proper, we picked up jalex, michaelmas & seeger (believe it or not, the first time jalex & michaelmas have met), and went to the river to watch the blues fest fireworks. good thing we brought ear plugs! i've enjoyed the fireworks show from michaelmas's 25-story roof before with great delight, but it was also great to hear them explode and hiss right above us and we were close enough to actually see each of them launch from the barge. unfortunately, michaelmas & seeger chose to walk home, and they were in bed before jalex, sven & i were even out of the parking lot.

coming out of the studio the other night i found some boys trying to take down a stop sign by removing it whole, shaking the pole until it wobbled precariously. "what are you doing?" i asked, hoping to make them slink away under an observant neighborly eye, but it barely made them blink. "trying to take down the stop sign," they said, thick with an unspoken "duh." i stood on the sidewalk across the street and they eventually got the hint, but instead of leaving they decided to just wait me out and sat on the curb by the stop sign. i made a few more trips back & forth to the studio and they continued to sit at the foot of the sign, each of us careful to not look too much like we were watching the other. finally on a trip out of the studio they were gone, and in the morning i was relieved to find we still had a stop sign.

been doing a fair amount of fall artist's way promotional prep this week (in portland, google, in portland! portland artist's way!). i've gotten some useful feedback from the creative job club folks and went for an individual session yesterday, which helped clarify some goals. only 8 weeks before the fall artist's way classes begin...!

Friday, July 01, 2005

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i dropped my four pieces off at the show today & got a handful of postcards featuring two of my works verso! ee! i've never had that before. i am painfully aware that the "a grace it had, devouring" picture is the wrong resolution, but "born" sure looks good. :D

* the show's mistaken official title is "onwards & artwards."

* the real title is "on words & art words." 'cuz it's a calligraphy show, get it? apparently someone on the gresham arts advisory committee didn't.

* the exhibit runs july 5-august 18 at the gresham city hall visual arts gallery (fair warning: the page looks, um, awkward in safari).

* open monday-friday 8 a.m.-5 p.m. and the first and third tuesdays of the month from 8 a.m.-7 p.m.

* the reception is july 19 (i'll be there! come visit!): 5-6:30 p.m.

after lunch at typhoon (michaelmas! it's -good-!) and a brief stop at fred meyer, i finally wrapped up my psu project: when maggie reviewed my final report she said it was "clear & straightforward" and that i didn't have to come in for a meeting, after all, but i had to drop off my key, anyway (and give her one of the art show postcards), so i made the trip downtown.

and now i'm home, wondering what i'm going to do with an extra 20 hours/week! (and $2000 less a month.)