#Selfie 15: You get what you need

I once played a minor (non-musical) part on a Rolling Stones Tour – ‘Steel Wheels’ in the ’80s. I have a tour jacket, even, that boyfriends past have happily worn… and torn and stained. This comes up now because I wrote the blog title first.

It's true.
It’s true.

It’s still a good jacket, and I keep it to remind myself that I was there in my 20s, watching them play Sympathy for the Devil when Mick (atop a 20-storey stage tower) forgot the words…  I asked myself in that moment – Really? Really? How can you forget the words to THAT song?

There were many moments on the tour  (way more telling than that one) that turned me off the ‘Stones permanently.  For me it was like watching the end-play of 60’s dark side play out in industrial money-grabbing meanness – utterly devoid of relevance to the real world of human beings.  Hope you can forgive me all die-hard fans.  They’re a piece of history, granted, but I do not worship at that altar.

An almost-finished selfie painting of the waterfall I grew up with on the Niagara Escarpment.  I don't have words to describe for you how sacred this place is - not just to me, but ... just sacred.
An almost-finished selfie painting of the waterfall I grew up with on the Niagara Escarpment. I don’t have words to describe for you how sacred this place is – not just to me, but … just sacred.

Nothing worthwhile is accomplished without limitation, I believe.  This is not Protestant sensibility, but a law far older – we are not supposed to have every whim answered, every passing wish fulfilled.   There’s a muscle of ingenuity in the human brain that requires ‘lack of (……….)’ to work effectively.  Many folks default to complaint well before this happens, but if you can get beyond discomfort and engage ingenuity, you’re doing your job.

 

This is photo reference for "White", which is on the boards now
This is photo reference for “White”, which is on the boards now

#Selfie is a fine example of this.  I started the project as I was just entering the heavy spring concert season.  It was an impossible thing to commit to – fill the space at de Boer’s with art, write and hand-make a book, write and rehearse a performance art piece, and immerse my#self regularly in #Selfie online via social media.

…in 14 weeks, while working full time teaching, coaching, rehearsing and playing cello, planning 2 summer camps in art and music, and attending to those things not work-related, but oh so important…

I said yes because I knew I wanted to take a risk and do a show, and this was the only way to make that happen.  Ingenuity has had to kick in, big-time, especially in these past two weeks.

Photo reference for black canvas
Photo reference for black canvas

Here’s the thing, though –  throughout the 14 weeks, but especially in these last two, I have had great need for some things that could have stopped me in my tracks, were they not fulfilled.  No tripod, poor cashflow – a friend chips in half as a gift.  Low on essential materials only available in Toronto, no time to get there – Tim at the Colour Jar finds what I need in days.  Dangerously low on basic confidence and faith in myself some days, spinning my tires – someone says just the right thing (so grateful for this, every time) to kick my butt in a better direction.  I need pro help to sign on for the Performance piece, since we have next-to-no rehearsal time available – david sereda, Coco Love Alcorn, Kristan Anderson, Larry Jensen, Sandra Swannell and a few other incredibles say ‘Sure!’ with no hesitation.  I need social media ‘response’ material for the Book and the opening – eight people agree to put pen to paper and pitch in.  I’ve never even met some of them.

Here’s Brad Morely’s haiku, just in:

Narcissi beckon
in the light blue facebook pool
cam’ra bugs fly off

 

…you get what you need.

photo reference for Totem 1
photo reference for Totem 1

Paintings are due in three days.  They’ll get done.  Book and show have only next week – they’ll be fine.

See you there.

To troll

First of all, a description of the day out there:

the weather news from 4:47am today
the weather news from 4:47am today.  I am under the blue streamer, in Owen Sound.
From Environment Canada at 11am-ish....
From Environment Canada at 11am-ish….

Phoned my Collingwood rehearsal before 8am and said it looked iffy, then went back to sleep.

Everything is white again.
Everything is white again.

All of this adds up to Permission.

To sleep, which I’ve done.  To stretch the day into a different shape, which I’m doing.  A shape that can contain a sense of the eternal.  A shape that defies distance and time and brings all the resonant things I love here, into this pulsing place.

FarmLaneTreesJan2014_Up

To decide, then, what to do with all of this wealth.  The art show is up, and we raised the roof well last night, in celebration of all of us.

I will write music now, and sing.

Have I said this before?  Snow days are SUCH a gift.

 

Storm-Stayed, 2014

The Blizzard’s Promise:  to bring us all closer.

BlizzardWindowEastNorth

We look out of snow-packed windows at white white nothing but white and wind and remember how wonder feels.  What warm is, what nourishment tastes like.

It tastes like time.  Like open, endless time.

BlizzardWindowNE

Time tastes a little like fever.

Now finally I can… and then I can… and then…

BlizzardWindowNW

Still the wind blows and blows and we peer out and still see Wonder.  The taste of nourishment is different, now.  More like Memory.  Like something you loved a long long time ago and just remembered….

Without even realizing you’ve moved your body to the table where your hands are now occupied with making something that reminds you of what that felt like and hours pass by ….

BlizzardWindowMidEast

We’re all alive, right now, with all the other people who are alive.

Thank God for that.  More, please.