Friday, January 31, 2014

WHAT’S FOR DINNER TO NIGHT?

 
I ask myself this when I can’t decide, or don’t know what to do.  Sometimes I get lazy and simply don’t feel like cooking.  Other times, like tonight, I don’t mind cooking but can’t settle on a menu.
I have a refrigerator full of fresh veggies, and roasted vegetables over pasta or rice sound really good. But that requires just a little more work than I’m willing to do.  Maybe tomorrow night.

There is also a butternut squash on the bottom shelf; this is great weather for some thick creamy soup (cold and wet outside).  But peeling BN squash is a real pain in the ass and I’m not up to task tonight.

We can always send out for something, but we already did that once this week, and I don’t want to abuse that option.

Leftover” Nope ate them all this afternoon.  Maybe a “fix your own”?  No, P has had a rough week and she should not have to come home from work and fix her own dinner.

What other options do I have?  Let me think…I know.  How about PASTA?  I just happen to have a nice bunch of Broccoli Rabe in the fridge.  It will be simple to prepare, taste wonderful, and make us both very happy.  I am so glad I thought of that.




What would I do without pasta

BARN OF THE DAY 24

Red Block Barn
Pastel
Image 14x18 plus mat and frame
$350

Thursday, January 30, 2014

TOMATOES - A LOVE AFFAIR

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I love tomatoes.  I love them as much as I love pasta, so obviously I wait with intense anticipation for the late summer months when this most wonderful of the locally grown fruits is available.  How do I survive the rest of the year when fresh tomatoes are not available?  The truth is, I am such a tomatoholic that a harsh winter tomato is better than no tomato, much to the dismay of my dear wife.

Thinking about it, I would have to say that the tomato has been the most prominent food in my life, even more than my beloved pasta.   The lovely Jersey tomato dominates the gastronomic history of my childhood.  There has never been one that matches the flavor and richness of a tomato freshly picked from my father’s garden.

By the time I started school my father had converted the farm from crops to poultry, but always, out of love and necessity, managed a large, abundant vegetable garden.   He cultivated lettuce, asparagus, arugula, corn, and a variety of peppers, but the queen of the garden was the tomato.  This was before the age of the hybrids, and those seeds are no longer readily available; sadly the tomatoes of my childhood are no more.  The plants were not staked or contained in the cages used today.  The vines, laden with their fruit lay on the sandy soil, a mass of green dotted with red.  The tomatoes were generally the size of a tennis ball, maybe a little larger, and sometimes smaller.  It is easy for me to remember the pure delight of slices of fresh tomato and mayonnaise between two slices of bread on any summer day.

Competing with the tomato sandwich for “the best way to enjoy a tomato” title was the tomato salad, so simple, yet absolutely heavenly.  Several tomatoes are cut into bite sized pieces and placed in a bowl with a bit of water and drizzled with olive oil.  Salt, oregano, basil, and chopped garlic are added and mixed in with the tomatoes.  Accompanying the salad should be several thick slices of good Italian bread to sop up all the wonderful juices.


My dad, years later, in his beloved garden when he and my mom lived on our farm in Maryland.

BARN OF THE DAY 23

Abandoned Hillside Barn
Pastel on commercial insulation board
approximately 16x24'


Wednesday, January 29, 2014

SOME NOTES ON WRITING


WHAT TO WRITE

I’m sitting here in my study wanting to write…something - anything…but there is nothing I can find to hold my interest.  The writing gurus say one should be disciplined and write every day, even when the spirit is not there.  That is easy to say, but much harder to do.  Perhaps I’m spoiled, used to impromptu writing, where the subject grabs me and the words come tumbling out with little forethought; this has happened repeatedly, and I love it.  The only real work I have to do is the re-write. It is much more fun than sitting at the keyboard, wracking my brain for something of interest.  Besides, I write for my pleasure and enjoyment, so why should I burden myself with the rigid discipline of a professional writer?

On the other hand, even though I’m writing for personal pleasure, I want to write well, and that requires commitment and effort..  Looking at it that way, the discipline to daily writing takes on a different meaning.

Well I’ll be…I’ve just written 170 words about not having anything to write about.  

WRITING BLUES   Four months later

I seem to be tied to the same chair I was four months ago…unable to write.  Well, not exactly unable to write, but unable to get inspired to write.  I can’t settle on a topic or subject, and nothing is presenting itself to me; there have been no gifts from that place called the unconscious.  So I am resorting to writing about not being able to write, hoping that this will enable me to write about something by shaking loose the muses from wherever they may be

Perhaps a short retreat somewhere will help, but where?   I know...Tuscany!

 

Barn of the Day 22

W. KY Barn #3
watercolor
8x13 pluse 2.5" mat
$300

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

RESTLESS


I simply cannot stay still.  There is nothing in me that is willing to remain in one place for any stretch of time, my feet and legs, my mind, my attention span, everything wants to get up and go.  Go where?  It doesn’t matter, anywhere but here.

If I’m sitting if front of the TV, my fingers are constantly strumming on the arm of the chair; at out kitchen counter my feet and legs are bouncing on the footrest, each of these activities create just enough noise to drive my dear wife crazy.  I’m at my very best when on the cell phone.  In the kitchen I walk around the center island, continuously, without stopping for the entire call.  In the studio I will walk the length of the studio-gallery, back and forth, sometimes actually interfering with the call’s signal.  I don’t know why I do this; it is entirely unconscious.  I’m inclined to believe it is related to some pre-natal event in my mother’s life.

I like to read.  There are piles of books of all kinds all around my study, studio, and beside table.  There has to be, because I rarely read more than 5 or 6 pages at any one time.  If I’m reading a mystery/thriller as soon as something critical or dangerous is about to happen I close the book and pick up another one.  Later I will return to the first book and continue reading, only to repeat the cycle again and again.


                       
It’s the same with my art.  I almost never complete a painting from start to finish in one sitting.  Small 5x7 watercolors or drawings are the exception.  I will work on a painting one small stage at a time, taking frequent, totally unnecessary breaks, usually to spend another brief period of time on a book or two that I’m reading.  This is why I like to have more than one piece of work in progress at the same time, frequently in different mediums.  Then when I move from one to another I can feel productive and ambitious and not neurotic and spastic.

              


 Of course this makes for a rather schizophrenic studio, with work stations  constantly evolving and moving; to counter this I’ve turned to the rolling cart.  I now have four of them, each holding a different medium, and easily moved about to accommodate my own moving about.

I would love to finish this post but I gotta go…really.

BARN OF THE DAY 21

It's back to the minis today with Pastel Barn #4

Pastel Barn #4
pastel on toned paper
5x7" plus mat
$45.00  includes S&H

Monday, January 27, 2014

MEMORIES


It seems to be universal, the older we get the more we want to remember out past, and the events and circumstances that helped create who we are.  Memories become increasingly important, and we cherish them, albeit selectively.  Psychologists are quick to remind us that our memories have been filtered by time, and cannot be taken as literal historic truths.  My feeling about this is “so what”.  Filtered, selective, or whatever, their importance to my understanding of who I am cannot be denied, and they will always remain a vital part of my journey.


I recently joined two facebook groups that are devoted to sharing memories of growing up in Wilmington Delaware.  It is obvious from the comments and photos posted that the memories are cherished stories, and like dominoes, each story elicits another, as old memories are shaken loose. I was 30 years old when we moved to Wilmington in 1969 and lived in the city for 17 years. But some of the most intense and life changing years of my life occurred in that city when I recognized that I wanted to pursue a life in art as much as I did in medicine.

I don’t have memories of buying candy as a child at Govatos, or shopping with my mother at Wilmington Dry; but I have memories of how I walked the streets downtown with my camera and sketchbook, fascinated by Govatos, Wilmington Dry, and the architecture of local shops and businesses.  I remember the delight in painting these places and the response of people who saw them.  My memories of Wilmington are in my artwork.  Each painting reminds me of a place, a time, and often someone long forgotten, and when I share them on these groups, they often evoke similar memories in others.  And that pleases me.


BARN OF THE DAY 20

acrylic  20x0"
Sold

Sunday, January 26, 2014

BROCCOLI RABE SUPREME


I simply have to share this pasta dish…I would be over run with guilt if I didn’t.

 

INGREDIENTS:

Broccoli Rabe, coarsely chopped, stems discarded
Penne pasta
White mushrooms, sliced
Garlic
Olive oil
Red pepper flakes

PROCESS:

Cook the mushrooms in olive oil over high heat with a sprinkling of red pepper flakest until all the liquid they release is cooked off and they begin to brown.  Remove from heat and set aside.

Bring a large pot of water to boil, add salt, and blanch the Broccoli Rabef for about 3-4 minutes, while heating the garlic in olive oil over med-low heat.   Add the Broccoli Rabe and cook over low heat while the pasta is cooking in the water used for the Broccoli Rabe.

Add the pasta and the mushrooms to the Broccoli Rabe and mix well.  Serve with grade Gran Padana cheese.

COMMENTS:

This was over the top.  One of the best pasta dishes I’ve served in a long time, simple to prepare, and it’s good for you.

BARN OF THE DAY 19

I have several weaknesses - actually I have many, but this is not the place for them - besides big skies and broad horizons, and one of them is the abandoned building, in this case, a barn.

Abandoned
Pastel...20x30
Sold

Saturday, January 25, 2014

SUMMER NIGHTS



1955, and the summer dress code was dungarees (they weren’t called jeans then) with the cuffs folded to create a pegged pants look, and a white tee shirt with rolled up sleeves and a pack of cigarettes folded into one of them.  If you were not wearing machine boots you had on penny loafers –with socks.  The look of the fifties has been well documented. albeit exaggerated, on TV and in the movies.

For a teenager without a drivers license there was not much too do on summer evenings in a rural town of 3000 people except hang out, and we had a great place to do just that…Bob White’s custard and pizza stand.  The building was small, you ordered from the outside, but attached to its right side was a covered patio with tables, chairs, and a jukebox, everything a group of teenagers needed to entertain themselves for an hour or two.  Our gatherings varied from as few as 3 or 4 of us to as many as 8-10.  We were not rowdy and the worst thing we did was dance, which wasn’t allowed (something to do with the stand’s business license).

Landisville’s “downtown” stretched for about ¾ mile along US Highway 40 (Harding Highway in our township) and included a drugstore, several restaurants and taverns, a movie theater, several gas stations, and a few other assorted local business, including BW’s custard and pizza stand on the eastern part of town.  US 40, one of early coast-to-coast highways, was about ¼ mile from our farm.  If I drove from our house to the highway and turned right I could be in Philadelphia in an hour; if I turned left, one hour would find me in Atlantic City.  In 1955 this was the most direct route from Philadelphia to the popular Jersey shore - Atlantic City, Wildwood, Ocean City, and Cape May.  This meant slow, bumper-to- bumper traffic through our town on summer weekends, especially Friday and Sunday evenings.  The traffic was our entertainment as well as our audience.  Looking back on those summer evenings, sitting outside and listening to the music, just a stones throw from the cars slowly making their way through town, I can see how we played to the people looking at us through open windows.   I don’t think it had anything to do with trying to impress these strangers or to prove anything to ourselves.  We were teenagers who simply wanted to be what we thought we were...cool.  Not for anyone’s sake but our own.  And we did this while we ate our subs and/or pizza, drank soda, smoked cigarettes, and listened to the music.  There was no beer, no fighting, and no loud cars racing around town, just a group of friends who shared the same classrooms since age 5 looking for a way to have fun.

BARN OF THE DAY 18

I rarely throw anything away, and as a result have accumulated a drawer filled with scraps of clay prints that never "made it" out of "failed work" bin.  But, with a little ieffort they can sometimes be turned into interesting backgrounds for imaginative landscapes.  I place in evidence Purple Green.


   


Purple and Green
pastel on clay mono type
7x5"
$50  S&H included

Friday, January 24, 2014

BARN OF THE DAY 17

Let there be sun, with temperatures in the 60s.

Sun Lit Barn
Acrylic   24x30"
$950 includes S&H

Thursday, January 23, 2014

BARN OF THE DAY 16

A few years ago I did a series of small drawings for a Barn & Farm show in the gallery.  This is one of those pieces.

Pastel Barn #3
Pastel    5x7
$45.00  includes S&H

With this many barns it is difficult coming up with a creative title for every piece.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

A SHOWER MOMENT

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Downtown Lowes KY   pastel


How could something so obvious have escaped my awareness for so long, especially in view of all the introspective navel gazing ruminating I do?   I was struggling with an old familiar problem, comparing my work to that of other contemporary artists and coming up short.  While they’re in major galleries with exquisite landscapes or bold contemporary non-objective art, I’m in my studio drawing and painting buildings, and barns, all very pretty and often rather graphic.

I was standing there, letting the water wash away the soap from my hard lean body (Hey, I can dream a little can’t I?  After all, it’s my narrative.) When it came to me…what I want to BE, and what I want to DO are not always the same.   Until then I had never thought of it in such direct terms.

I would like to be the artist with work in fine galleries, sought after by collectors and museums, and receiving national and international acclaim.  But even if I possessed the necessary skills to pursue such a path, that is not what I want to do.  I like painting my landscapes and barns, and I enjoy the urban architecture and the built environment.  Something within me reacts to the elegant lines of the architecture or the gritty texture of an abandoned building.  When I see a cluster of buildings behind a stand of protective trees – an island of a farm  - surrounded by empty fields under a large sky, I imagine the lives of the farmer and his family and their hopes and dreams past or present.  Although unseen, that is what creates the beauty of the landscape and gives it meaning.  I imagine the same in the abandoned buildings and empty storefronts, thinking how they once sheltered the people that passed through their doors. The places I paint are so much more than the stuff of which they’re made; I see them as an extension of the people they served, or continue to serve.  They deserve to have their portraits painted.

From my earliest days as an artist I thought of myself as a storyteller.

King of Ice Cream  watercolor

BARN OF THE DAY 15

The Last Stand
acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas
24x48"
$2500

Monday, January 20, 2014

The value of remaining positive



I am convinced that people who are positive, seeing the glass half full, have more fun, and enjoy life better than their negative counterparts.  The positive individual can usually find something good to see in others while accepting their flaws and imperfections, remaining open to a relationship that would otherwise not be possible.

A positive outlook can turn gloom and doom into hope and promise, and transform failure to growth and opportunity.  A negative attitude is more likely to view failure as pre-ordained and decide any further efforts would be futile.

Optimism shines a light on others, pessimism a shadow.  Optimism attracts friends and pessimism repels them.  An important note here – it is the ACT of optimism or pessimism that has these effects, There are people whose private lives are in opposition to their public life.

I recognize that these are broad generalities, and that there are many variations and exceptions to all of the above.  But overall I think my assessment is a reasonable one.

photo by Harvey Tilker

BARN OF THE DAY 13

Pumpkin Barn (named after the color-not the function).  This is one of several mixed media barns I've created.

Pumpkin Barn
Mixed media construction
25x25? framed
$800.00 plus shipping

Sunday, January 19, 2014

BARN OF THE DAY 12

Today's barn is just a bit larger than yesterday's 5x7"


Wire Down
Acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas
48x60"
$4000.00

Saturday, January 18, 2014

MAMA PAJAMA


Mama Pajama about 2 years earlier
Mama P is, in the words of my wife, a very old dog, about 6 months away from her 17th birthday.  Her hearing is atrocious; her sight questionable, and her default mental state seems to be confusion.  But her spirit is undaunted in spite of the restraints imposed by age and chronic disease, the same spirit that made her the number one lure-coursing whippet in the country in her younger days.  As part of our shared routine, I leave the studio every day about 3 o’clock and make my way to our bedroom upstairs where Mama P will be sleeping in her crate.  I clap my hands several times to wake her up.  If she is really into a heavy sleep she opens her eyes to look at me, and goes back to sleep.  When this happens I find something to do for 10-15 minutes, return and clap again.  This time she will wake up and accompany me down the stairs and out the front door for her mid-afternoon duty. I have learned to wait patiently for her ever so slow return to the house.  I swear she travels about one foot/minute as she wanders aimlessly toward the porch steps, constantly distracted by absolutely nothing.

Eventually we make it back to her crate where she waits for me to lift her into it. 
Now comes my reward for taking part in this daily dance.  I get on my knees and lean into the crate, and as I gently stroke her head and neck her legs slowly fold and she collapses into the pillow of blankets.  I get my head down so we are face-to-face and nose-to-nose, and she stares at me with her unseeing eyes and tells me she enjoys this as much as I do.  I sense that she know so much, that she is old and feeble, and that is OK, because that is the way it’s supposed to be; she has no complaints about this. And she knows she is loved, which is also the way it should be.

Am I projecting all of this onto our dog?  I don’t think so.  But if I were, it is only because Mama P has both inspired me and allowed me to do so.  I feel she is teaching me so much about growing old.

BARN OF THE DAY 11

Today's barn comes from the "mini" files.



A Cecil Co. Barn
pen -ink-markers
5x7 plus mat
$45.00  includes S&H

Friday, January 17, 2014

LOSING FOCUS

by design.  January has become the month to let go and allow my interests to wander...all over the place.  That has been easy to do this month after a year of the Paducah Portfolio.  I go into the studio every day with no preconceived plan of activity because I am, for now, a liberated man, no longer consumed by a major project.  At least that is how I prefer to see things.

But what really happens is this.  I allow my head to wander a bit and it soon settles on pastels, and the next thing I know I’m focusing on creating a new series of pastel paintings.  But my mind is still wandering, and before I know it I have completed 4 drawings of Nashville architecture, all waiting for watercolor.  As I continue to mentally wander – after all, it is January and I am committed to this – I have discovered a renewed interest in my blog, and writing in general.  So every morning I try to spend at least one hour writing, determined to improve my craft.  Naturally this has led to more reading, because it is necessary to read good writers to learn about good writing.  So, as I wander from study to kitchen to studio and back again I carry my laptop as well as 2 or 3 of the books I’m currently reading.

Now this may seem like a lot of work I am not focusing on, but for a tiger like me it’s nothing.  In fact there is more.  Having discovered 2 Facebook groups devoted to remembering Wilmington Delaware as it was back in “the good ole days” I have begun sharing my old Wilmington artwork with them.  Because of the interest it has generated I am now working on assembling a new Wilmington book.

I love relaxing in January.   But on the remote chance…….




















BARN OF THE DAY 10 ORANGE SKY

Orange Sky
Pastel  12x16 plus mat
$250.00  incl S&H

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

YOU LITTLE BASTARD

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(A repeat of a 2011 post with a photo added)

That was me…I was the little bastard.  Let me explain…

From kindergarten through high school my best friend was Richie Genoni.  We were Richie and Billy, Rich or Richard, and Bill came much later.  Richie and his family lived on his grandfather’s farm about a quarter mile up the road from ours, and directly on the way to school, so we shared part of the daily walk to and from school until middle school (Junior High in those days), and a bus ride for the next 3 years.  Our educational careers diverged in high school when he went to the area’s catholic school, but our friendship persisted.

Richie was an athlete, and was active in baseball and basketball in high school and in the local Babe Ruth league.  For those of you who know me, this may be hard to believe, but I was not an athlete, and my participation in scholastic sports consisted of 2 years of basketball in Jr. High.  Richie was a varsity starter while I was JV or second/third team varsity.  Although I did win a varsity game once with a tremendous basket as the buzzer sounded, but that’s another story.  Like most athletes, Richie was very competitive, while I was not.  When he played, it was to win, when I played it was to have fun.  And we played…especially basketball, since we both had a basket set up in our yards…usually 0-U-T or H-O-R-S-E.  Now on an even playing field I was no match for Richie…he was taller, more athletic, and had a better jump shot than me…but I had one thing in my favor…laughter.  I could make him laugh whenever I wanted to, and of course I wanted to when he was ready to take his shot.  And hence the name calling. Between fits of laughter as he missed his shot he managed to yell…”you little bastard”.  There were occasions when my victories where the result of pure skill, or more likely, pure luck, when I made some incredibly difficult shot that he could not duplicate.  When that happened “you little bastard” lost much of its affection.




He was a good friend.

BARN OF THE DAY 8 Barn #3

Barn 3
pastel 20x30
matted and framed
$450.00 includes S$H

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

CHANGE...the one constant in our lives

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Fifty-five years ago I decided I wanted to be a physician, and spent the next 16 years pursuing that goal.

Thirty-five years ago everything changed, and after five years of turmoil I knew I wanted to be an artist as much as I did a physician.  Without reservation I followed the path I cleared for myself with un-wavering commitment and enthusiasm.

So, at age 70, I was caught off guard when once more things began to change, and clouds of doubt and uncertainty rolled in to obscure a path that was once so clearly defined.  It was the beginning of a transition that, four years later, is still in progress as I enter into my most senior years.  The question is not what do the years ahead hold for me, but what do I want from the remaining years?  

In the almost five months since writing the above note I have developed a much clearer sense of what I want for myself, and what I would like to accomplish.  This recent excerpt from my journal describes still another change, this one related more to my attitude to my work and my age than anything else.

“2013 is the year that dispelled all the self-imposed age related restraints I had been laboring under in recent years.  The key word here is “self-imposed”, because by body has its own set of restraints that cannot be denied.  But they have no place in this narrative.

I had foolishly convinced myself that my best work was behind me, and that there was no longer a place in my life for grand, sweeping aspirations and goals, and that my work would now be slow, deliberate, and a lot less ambitious.  (Picture a tired old fart sitting in his studio ever so slowly working at an easel.)  I was that close to putting myself out to pasture.

Then came the Paducah Portfolio, After working for months on large canvases in 2012 for a gallery show in which nothing sold, I reacted by focusing all my efforts on smaller drawings and paintings, and the Paducah Portfolio was conceived.  With few exceptions, I devoted the entire year to the project, and in the process wiped out all of my nonsensical notions about age and work.  It is impossible to overstate how significant this has been for me.

I am facing 2014 with a head filled with ideas of things I want to do, which I am approaching with the attitude that I will liver forever.”



Me getting old?  Piss on that idea.


BARN OF THE DAY 7 West KY barn #2

West Kentucky Barn #2  watercolor   8x13 plus 2.5" mat



$300.00 S&H included

Sunday, January 12, 2014

I GOTTA GET OUT OF MY HEAD or something like that

What a great idea: Wilmington Then & Now.  I’ll go back to where my art began and photograph all the places I painted and paint them as they are now.  How much fun will that be?

Or, I can stay closer to home and focus on the interesting architecture in Nashville.  That would be more convenient and just as much fun.

But hey, I live in Kentucky, and Lexington and Louisville are two really neat cities, and I would love to get to know them better.  Maybe I could do Portfolios of all the larger cities and towns in the state.

Wait…I’ve already committed to Oak Park and possibly something on the river industry here in Paducah.  Can’t forget those.

On the other hand I really should be devoting more time and energy to writing, I want to leave a personal history for my children and grandchildren, and I have all my essays to review and edit.

While I’m deciding I’ll go in the studio and work on the pastel painting I started yesterday…or maybe the two Nashville drawings that are waiting for the watercolors. 

That’s what I’ll do; but first I have the 3 new books that just came in the mail.  I’m anxious to read MFK Fisher and see how she wrote about food.  It might help me with the pasta journal I’m planning to revise.

And so I wonder, how in the hell do I get anything done? 


BARN OF THE DAY 5 White Barn on Black

White Barn on Black
Pastel 20x30 plus mat and fram
$500 includes S&H

Saturday, January 11, 2014

NIGHT & DAY





For years my life was marked/measured by the days, their events and circumstances, by work or by play, and by the emotional and mental conditions of the day.  But recently a strange transition seems to be occurring; the days are taking on an increasing sameness, while the nights are becoming unique.  How many times will I wake up because my shoulders hurt or I have to pee?  Will one of the dogs have to go out?   Will Patience poke me and tell me to roll over because I’m snoring?  Sometimes I wake up on my own and find that I am wide-awake at 3 A.M.  I may eventually fall back to sleep, or get up and go into my study and read or listen to music.  Or it might be a dream, one of the occasional profound dreams from which I awake, and then return to that intermediate state between awakeness and sleep, not knowing if I am consciously continuing the dream or not.

While the days are becoming predictable and, for the most part, under my control, the nights are just the opposite, and I approach them wondering what they have in store for me.

BARN OF THE DAY 4 Someones memory

SOMEONES MEMORY



Pastel  20x30
Sold

Friday, January 10, 2014

WHY I LOVE MY WIFE




There are far too many reasons to enumerate in this short post, her intelligence, her caring for others, her honesty and integrity, and the way she tells a story, making me laugh, cry, or both, to name just a few.  But there is one reason I wish to share with everyone today – I can serve pasta every night of the week and she will not complain…ever.  I have apologized or asked rather weakly if she would mind a 2n or 3rd night of pasta and she always said no, she doesn’t mind how often I serve it.  In fact the last few times she was obviously annoyed that I was still asking.  I am convinced that if I were to bring that up one more time she would hurt me.

Being the sensitive soul that I am, I am careful not to take advantage of her generous nature and am limiting the pasta to only 3 nights a week, plus leftovers for lunch.  Of course there are circumstances that arise necessitating an additional night of pasta – sometimes even two or three.  But that can’t be helped.  If Mid Town Market has a fresh batch ob Broccoli Rabe I have no choice but to get some because you never know if it will be the last opportunity to do for a long time.  And once you have the BR you can’t let it sit around very long, so we might have Penne with BR 2 times a week, in addition to the regular past nights.  Then there are the nights we have dinner guests.  It is understood that they will be served pasta.

So you see my problem…it is GUILT.  It does not matter that we ate pasta EVERY NIGHT FOR A YEAR 3 years ago, that was then, this is now.  I have to find a way to ease the guilt without the risk of bodily harm.  Although it is not my nature to be devious, sometimes circumstances require us to act outside our norm, and in this regard, I have my solution.  Borrowing from Patience’s playbook (She easily acquired whippets 2, 3. 4, and more naming them Maria, Caruso, Giacomino, and Luciano.) tonight we will have pasta with peas and artichoke hearts - her absolute favorites.  I might even toss in a Kalamata olive or two, her newest passion.

Linguine wirh pureed peas  2011



BARN OF THE DAY 3


Along Interstate 24
Pastel  15x20 plus 2.5" mat
$200  S&H included

Thursday, January 9, 2014

LETTING GO


This from some musings about change:

I have come to realize that a critical element of change is learning to let go of that which is familiar and comfortable.

Sometimes change cannot occur without this letting.  While all of my focus recently has been on getting rid of the accumulated “stuff” in my life, which occasionally borders on the excessive, the real work is recognizing the shifting needs, dreams, and aspirations that create the fabric of my interior life and define who I am, or at least who I want to be.

I wanted to be a physician…and became one

I wanted to be an artist…and became one

I want to be a writer...?

It has occurred to me that letting go of the “stuff” that has accumulated in my studio over these many years, will be more difficult than letting go of how I see and define myself.



Something's gotta give

BARN OF THE DAY #2 Red Barn Standing Tall


Standing Tall
oil pastel on clay mono type
9x6"
available - un-matted un-framed
$75.00  S&H included


Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Jersy Barn

You can blame my daughter Amy for this.  Starting today I plan on posting one barn painting every day, covering all sizes and mediums, going as far back as 15 years.  I will start with one of my personal favorites, Jersey Barn.  Pastel - 30x40"

This barn was not far from my hometown in NJ.  It had been falling down for years, and was finally demolished about 10 years ago.  If it looks familiar to some of you, I just added it to my fb page this morning.