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Saturday, July 29, 2006

Lost Frames

One of the few frames I shot with the old camera after the floors were redone in our old house.

July 2006 has set records on a number of levels. Yes, its been the hottest month on record and been one of the most intense summers on record... in my life anyway. More teaching committments than usual plus the odd opportunity to work in the Pyrameens during the month of August. I've been running through this intense heat on an empty tank and I am afraid it shows.

Ugh. One of the worst days was this past Sunday when I couldn't find my digital camera. I looked and I looked and I looked and I needed it - like immediately! Plus I knew my departure yesterday was imminent and there was no time to take the house apart any more than I already had. I began the search for a replacement. I learned that the digital flash card I have been heavily invested in since 1998 has been phased out and that Sony is using another kind of card. This was not good news. No reason to buy Sony if I can't use my accessories. Web research made me more depressed. Oh, the pain of media that is obsolete! I finally called Circuit City and spoke to someone in their digital camera department to see if they had anything that accepted the old memory card - preferrably an open box model. THEY DID. I basically purchaced my old model in a different color for 1/s the price I paid for the original. SUPER.
Everything was compatible. I began utilizing my replacement tool documenting work I was leaving for a September show, our newly renovated house that is being rented, etc, etc , etc.

Thursday I was late for class having stopped for petro at an out of the way place (everything in the tidewater area seems out of the way...) and I had no choice - the warning light was blinking!
I rushed to class and began to download my photos so I could prepare some files for the gallery. Whaaaaaa? Files are gone. They were there - now they aren't. There are NOWHERE.
Oh, I am sick. I start thinking of the lost frames and so many of them I need or worse, are irreplaceable.

The artwork I am showing was inventoried. MY memory sure doesn't serve this function well.
Our house in its somewhat pristine splendor - now the new tennants will have had a chance to
leave their mark.

The photos of DC in his studio... of his new work.... of his long tall frame sitting on top of a ladder in his studio.... (his old new studio since he has now returned to the same space in which our friendship began in 1986) the frames of him just being himself like he used to be when we would sit and yack about art and its magic so long ago.

Then there are the images of our black venus, Jarene, who drove up while I was trying to leave... intensely distracted by the many things waiting for me at home... this car pulls up with my former friend now nemisis in the passenger seat - I pretend not to notice - and continue my yacking with CD - and I look over and there she is with her arms out... back from Miami with a an 11 month old in tow. Who woulda thunk it? When I met her back in the 80's she as the carrot on all our sticks as far an a mentor for all things that involved merry making and tribal dance.... the ambisexual goddess and mother of us all - (we miss her. we need her. Now she is a wife and mother and we are all grown up) The frames of her and her beautiful son who looks two years old are gone.... sigh.

I know there are others... but the finale was at the out of the way petro station. The cashier was a large elegantly dressed black woman. She had it all... and on top of that she must have had at least 5 gold rings on each of her ten fingers. Each finger featured a long, pink polished nail that just shimmered as she clacked through the cash register and all that cash. It was mesermizing - the green bucks, the pink nails and the gold rings. I had to take her photograph. I went out to my car and got my camera and came back in and asked her if I could photograph her hands. (I was a cashier in my youth back in the day when one really had to know how to count change and use a cash register...) She was thrilled to oblige and gave me the greatest shots - counting change, grasping the end of the register with all those rings on each finger... it was so AMERICAN - so southern - so gothic - so something. Very symbolic of our obsession with consumption if nothing else.

All gone. Sigh. I wanted to somehow record these images in this form before I lose them. I've been at Newark for the past 6 hours and will soon depart for France with intermittent web access and new experiences that will fill my random access memory. If only I could upgrade before I go! There is this - and that is good. If I could count on my memory and access to its data I wouldn't have as much incentive to write.

Oh, and as I was packing the night prior to my planned Friday departure (which was cancelled due to weather conditions in NYC) I was organizing papers and there was the friggin camera in a plastic bag with some other digital media!!! Oh, the irony. Plus, a student I have this term practices ESP. She told me should would think about my camera on her way home (an hour drive east) as I drove an hour west.) She emailed me that night and told me should thought my camera was either in my car or house under something thin... maybe cloth. Well I had been hauling that damn camera back and forth with me all week in a very thin plastic bag. It was surely under cloth whenever I put my towel or blouse in the big straw bag I was using to schlep things back and forth. I am happy to have the back up camera and probably wouldn't have been able to get one if I had waited until I would normally upgrade. C est la vie.
Too many things and not enough clock. The story of our life.

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Thursday, July 20, 2006

String Theory

How could it be - (but then how could it not be) that Mr. DD and I were slow dancing to some sort of Cajun Blues in the salt water pool on Tuesday night with a lovely floating sprinkler spraying cool water all over our salty bodies... and then 8 hours later eveything turns sour.

I received an email from a young woman I've gone out of my way to accomodate regarding housing. She is a Katrina ex-patriot who is trying to start a new life here - for awhile anyway. I am sorry to say she took advantage of me and as much as I was looking forward to getting to know her as a neighbor I am glad she isn't moving in. Better to know someone's true colors now before I've invested even MORE time than I can afford to spend. Daylights burning and all that...

For the past week I've been speeding up and down the interstate, an hour each way, to commute to a class I am teaching for the next two weeks. Anyone who has been reading this blog for awhile probably knows that the automobile is my least favorite mode of transport, never mind that its an unairconditioned automobile... If one enjoys commandeering a speeding furnace at 75 mph or more - well - they must be NASCAR fans... which I am not. It could be worse. At least its not I95.

This is not the week for friends, family or strangers to waste my time. Other weeks I look for distractions... not this one. Every day I watch the roads like a hired gun in search of a radar detector. I try to avoid patrolmen and stay behind someone traveling slightly faster than me. It is as close to unbearable as I can imagine spending two hours a day - the return trip each afternoon being the worst.

Yesterday I finally remembered to pack my swim suit and goggles and stopped by the salt water pool on the way into town. Ahhhhhhh. It made such a difference having a cool place to dive into rather than walking into my hot house and annoyed cats. Finally, I thought, as I drove home, this is the way to do it. I can get through this two week run if I drive directly here when I pull into town. I was relaxed! I was cool! I was in heaven! I came down the hill past
the Diamond like a cool breeze - until I saw the white patrol car sitting at the bottom of the hill. It was too late. I don't even know how fast I was driving. He turned on his lights. I pulled over. I was still in my swim suit and hadn't even had time to put on my seat belt. He was a giant arse about the hows or the whys and gave me two tickets. Its amazing how one can feel so good one minute and the next minute feel like they are having a heart attack it hurts so
bad. Of course its not the money. Its the (**&*@ insurance and driving record that I hate to think about. I haven't told Mr. DD since he pays the insurance premiums in our house.He has his own history with the DMV. Soon enough.

After my fall from relaxation I drove home, belted into the blastingly hot seat and waited for a contractor to show up. We had a 7pm appointment. I started drinking at 7:30 to ease my distress and impatience with the world and called him at 8pm after waiting for an hour. Don't tread on me this week, world. I've had enough! I realized this morning that I left town without my DL, Am EX, VISA and Debit card. It had better be at home or I am super screwed since I am leaving for France on the 28th. Triple sigh....

Please, please, please, lets snip this string of bad luck before it tangles up the rest of my time this month. Any prayers, good spells, candles or wishbones you can send my way would be appreciated.

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