Friday, May 20, 2011

{this moment}

{this moment} - A Soule Mama ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

If you're inspired to do the same, leave a link to your 'moment' in the comments for all to find and see.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

My Eleventh Hour Revelation

Last night a light turned on, thunder rolled, waves crashed, and I was struck by a mind blowing revelation: I am not popular, I am not a booster, I am not a motivator!


And please, dear friends, this is not a plea for sympathy, or for denials. I am looking at... wait, how old am I? Uh. Minus. Plus. Carry the one. Divide by a millennium ah, right... I am looking at forty-four years of hard evidence, and it is good see the truth, to accept my weaknesses, my reality. It may free me to move on to other things, or to at least stop wondering.

Not popular, or remotely comfortable, in grade school.✓
Not significantly productive or effective in middle school.✓
Resigned to absolute anonymity in high school.✓
Wore a tiger suit on Halloween, first quarter at UCSD, remainder of that period also spent in anonymity.✓ Although, I think this is sadder commentary on the lameness of that student body than my overly enthusiastic spazness.

I am an enthusiastic spaz. I get very excited, then I want to share my spazness, and spread whatever holiday-robotic-STEAM-Maker Faire-party-celebratory theme is pulsing through my system, and the results of my efforts, my cheering, my whole-hearted hoopla is ______________________________________________.

Yes, more or less blank.
Blank stares.
Deafening silence.
Well, not completely... I do have some dear friends who cheer, who hang in there, who smile kindly on the crazy loosed hen that I am. Thank you dear friends.

But mostly, in comparison with how much I expend, how many I cheer, how sincerely I devote myself to sharing my interests, and supporting other people's careers, interests, causes... I seem to create a response vacuum. Here. In my everyday. On FB. No matter how frequently, how earnestly I seek to move family and friends, strangers too, to reply, to speak, to join, to say, hey! I find I am not. good. at. it.

Fascinating. Well, not really, except to me.


In some areas I have learned to cut-back, to chill. In fact, I should monitor this, as it can have less than merited results: The Easter Bunny gave some very good children one basket with treats, including underwear for two of the very good children, three days ago. A tad late. I am possibly far too enthusiastically spaztic to ever become truly curmudgeonly, but I don't think holiday baskets delivered three weeks after the fact is a balanced direction to head.

Have you followed Chickenblog for nine years, five years, six months? Then you know. I get this way... reflective and doubtful. It's a phase, but I think this time is different. In the past, I have been asking myself: What am I doing wrong? What's missing? How much more can I do? Now, I see it: I am not destined for greatness in the realm of motivational speaking, club boosting, published authoring, blogadocious mommy bloggering... I am mediocre, yet sincere. Spaztic, yet rambling and random.

This may prove to be liberating. I may drop out, go to medical school, join a yoga studio.

Or I may wake up tomorrow, oblivious to this long time coming revelation, and re-commence with my over the top fascination with chickens, and wingnuts, with more deep thoughts and other musings.

Where is my honey-badger shirt?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

One Thousand Eight Hundred and One

This is how my desktop looks, thanks to Geninnes's Art Blog.

May. Pretty, pretty Mayo. Artfully depicted on her wall. The bird's shadow alone makes me awestruck. Can you tell which parts are in her room, which flew out of her imagination and onto the screen? Personally, I don't really want to take it apart, unravel the magic. I like the soft palette, the gentle light. I love the natural elements, some wrapped in crochet, some real, some fanciful. Geninne's May wallpaper is available for your desktop too. Gracias Geninne!

Pretty, pretty Mayo.
May Day, and May poles.
Cinco de Mayo.
Mothers Day.
Yes, one more year of deep thoughts and other musings. Another year of me saying too much, about not much. And this post makes it one-thousand eight-hundred and one posts about robots, quilts, chickens, baboon posteriors, mangoes, pumpkins, gardens, low tides, islands, LEGO, rabbits, cats, other people's dogs, and stuff.

And speaking of other people's dogs... would you please pop in and say hello to Turbo? Gracious, what a dear pup.

I love, love, love other people's dogs. I don't want to play favorites, but hardly a day goes by when I don't think of Clover Meadow. I want to be her friend. And thank goodness for Homer, our frequent and dear companion.

Crazy random woman, where is this post going?

I am pointless. Ha-ha! Just kidding. I do have a point, and this post is going there. I want to mention that I have been blogging for nine years. I want to say that I still wonder why I do it, if it matters, when it will be a good idea to retire, and if I will ever be more than a crazy random woman carrying on about stuff. (Was that a question?)

Have you read about the Surfing Madonna? She is luminous. We may not have the pleasure of seeing her for long, because she was put in place without permits. On Mothers Day, Geoff took us all to get a good, close look at this mosaic masterpiece. She is stained glass, and affixed to a wall, between two pillars of the train bridge. Someone already popped out a piece from her robe. The six panels were attached by a crew in coveralls, that did the job in broad daylight. They say they were trying to look legit, and no one stopped them from installing the art. Let's hope everyone will have the good sense to protect it, and keep it up.

Is the artist enjoying the attention, the happy reaction people have expressed? I hope so.

Besides anticipating the joy that is the Chickenblogiversary, I wanted to celebrate art, and inspiration, and beauty, and all the people and ideas that make me pause. Make me want to be an artist, and geek too.

"Suki. Suki. Suki!" We say this when we go by her house, because we hope to find her home, we hope to be invited in for tea. We want to see the lemur painting up close.

Alex and Suki had an exclusive art gallery show back in February. Two artists, one gallery. It was very special. No. No, I am not biased. I am smitten, charmed, and worldly wise.

Alex's first painting class is over. He began with acrylics, then worked with oil. His highly engineered, design and blueprint-style illustrations made for intriguing, imaginative works. His latest venture... set aside the methodical, detailed sketches, and paint with abandon, passionately, willfully. The results were visceral and raw, and a huge departure from earlier works. I like his daring.

His last appearance was in January. We first met this expressive frog when he appeared in school binders, on note paper, four years ago. Two years ago Alex started a painting of Gilbert. He is a familiar fellow, who shows up here, and there, and it makes me happy to see his portrait completed.

Suki. Suki. Suki! Suki, I want this painting. It speaks to me. It touches the funny place in my mind, where I want to live someday. Call me. Let's talk.

Alex said something about this on FB. He is working on a mask to replace his welding goggles. Reminds me of an article I read this morning: "Why geeks make better adults than the in-crowd." I think geeks, at any age, are better than a lot of people, young or old. And I am not saying just "tech geeks," or "calculator nerds." I am thinking of anyone who thinks for themselves, critically, who acts in accordance with their passion and creativity, who respects life and ideas. Geeks are true to their voices, to learning, to art, play, expression... whether with pen and paper, a calculator, an ocarina, or a fez. Oh marvelous geeks, I love you. You inspire me and give me hope.

When I grow up... I want to be like You.

I want to absorb knowledge, like William. Fill my head with facts, and details, and know the names of planets, philosophers, and details about the Large Hadron Collider.

I want to draw like Alex, and be strong in my convictions. Cover my walls in the fanciful visions that, for now, are imprisoned in my head.

I want to sing and dance, like Maria... like no one is watching is the expression these days, but she wants everyone to watch, to join her in the dance because she is in love with the world.

I want my thoughts to follow rational, logical paths, and draw neat conclusions, while still managing to imagine improbable worlds, with wondrous possibilities... like Max does.

When I grow up, I want to cut paper, and create the illustrations for the stories I have yet to tell. I want to be like Elsa Mora. Elisita, bella mujer, I like your style.

When I grow up, I want to make spaces that are bright, and clear, yet full... full of the colors, and designs, and ideas that are my own expressions. I want to be like Anna Maria. Her palette, her charm, her ribbons, voiles, and dresses, even the familiar scatter of her day-to-day life are an inspiration to me.

When I grow up, I want to be like Miriam and Kim, who keep moving forward, making their Mucky Boots Farm a lovely place, a better place, a flowery, chickeny, gardeny, homey place. Such industry! Such fortitude! In every post I see they are destined to become jacks of many trades.

When I grow up... dear God, please help me with this one... when I grow up, I must be more like the Roomies at Nikkipolani's, because there is something calming and good, balanced and gracious going on over there. I am not so naive as to believe that it has nothing to do with hard work, care, resolve... I am just hoping I can incorporate more of those admirable traits in my own living. In the meantime, I am thankful to share in the happy, inspiring peeks of their life.

Kara, you and your blog: wow! I want to be like Kara, when I grow up! What isn't she doing? She can tell you what her blog is all about, and I will tell you that she is an industrious, determined, admirable, and inspiring woman.

One more... when I grow up I want to be a daring, adventurous explorer, like my amiga Annie. She is Moving on, and sharing her journey in a blog about leaving England, and embracing Spain, about children, new paths, new ventures, and making the daily bits balance with the big bits... you know: life! Annie, you delight and amaze me.

Oh gosh.

I think I rambled. Did I have a point?

No matter. I enjoyed this ramble, this reflection on my muses, the people and places that stop me in my tracks, and make me sigh. My very first pointless blog ramble was May 24, 2002, and twelve days from now, I hope to be doing more of the same. And if anyone would care to join me in the celebration, I will be delighted. Perhaps there will be cake, or a prize. I've been known to giveaway prizes.

I was going to say more, but now I see the time.
Dear me. I type slow. Or think slow.
Or type so slowly, my thoughts are slow to...

Rambling me. Lalalalala lalalala la la

Marked By His Humor or Disposition

Joseph Banks, the naturalist aboard The Endeavor, 1769, made the earliest written reference to Samoan Tatau: "I shall now mention the way they mark themselves indelibly, each of them is so marked by their humor or disposition".

I am afraid I made Alex late for standardized testing (after watching Soledad O'Brien's report: Don't Fail Me, and learning what a mess those tests can be, I am not sure this was such a big failure on my part.) I just had to snap a few pictures of his art, because in this instance, that tattoo is not indelible. Alex, sorry about the "late" part.

It's beautiful. Thinking of it, in consideration of it saying something about his humor or disposition, makes it an even more intriguing work of art. I can venture to say that his passion for art, design, robotics, engineering, and imagination are more than skin deep.

And does he wear his passion on his sleeve? Yes. Yes, he does.