Saturday, December 27, 2014
The rest of my day was basically spent on the phone.........long visits. I had awakened with a feeling of general sadness that hung over me long enough to write several pages of woeful musings in my journal. I was just finishing up when Carrie called. Immediately I recovered my good humor and have remained in splendid spirits since. I think I was unsettled by my decision not to go to a Christmas Eve party I had been invited to. Whenever I look at my own self imposed lack of social contact I begin to think there must be something wrong with me. I feel conflicted, and a little weird. I consider why I am the way I am (I don't know) and wonder if I should force myself to be more social. It takes a little time for me to get comfortable with myself again. It takes some time to remember that the friendships I have are just the ones I want......
Saturday, December 20, 2014
Wednesday, December 17, 2014
Yesterday I had the idea of doing origami using fabric, which is not original with me by any means. I got a piece of cloth that I imagined would hold a pressed pleat well. As soon as I began, I realized making a grid by pressing folds presents some significant problems. As you might imagine, once the horizontal pleats are pressed, ironing the vertical ones destroys them. I abandoned the project with uncharacteristic resignation.
How I love my dogs and my chickens. I think I could have been happy spending my life taking care of farm animals. In a way it's a selfish kind of happiness, because it comes from knowing that I provide everything for them, that I give them the happiest little lives they can have.....the other side of that being that they have no knowledge of any other way of life and therefore have no responsibility to feel gratitude. To them life is just what is. They take food and shelter and comfort for granted.
I wonder if this pleases me so much because I have never lived up to expectations, never achieved the goals set for me, never accomplished what I was supposed to. I am smart and talented, yet a failure at everything our society expects of such a person. I never really wanted to be that person except for my insatiable desire to please. Wanting to please is a terrible, crippling, degrading thing.
Tuesday, December 16, 2014
This painting is the result of three days of struggle. Usually I don't have to work so hard. It could be because I almost had to chain myself to my easel to keep from going back to my origami.
Sunday, December 14, 2014
When I was a lot younger I was in the habit of becoming an expert at everything I did. This doesn't seem to be the case now...........possibly because I don't have the time left on earth to work that hard at each thing I try. I have been patient with my paper folding in its different forms, giving up temporarily when I reach an impasse and going back later. In my wake there is origami insects, origami flowers, and free form paper folding. All of these keep coming and going as my mental energy warps and wanes. There comes a time when some time for integration of experience takes place better on auto pilot. Yet I'm not ready yet to say good enough for now. I have managed to succeed at quite a few of the tessellations in my book when I make just one repeat of the maneuver. These folds are meant for repetitions, though, and that's the beauty of them.
Before I can give this a rest, I am going to have to learn at least one well enough to repeat it successfully on a fairly large grid. Folding the grid is, as I've said, the obnoxious part of the process and I'm not going to invest the time in making a big one until I know I won't mess it up with mistakes. I'm trying to learn to see it as a Zen kind of activity, as I'm sure it can be. So far, though, I've made negligible progress on that.
Tuesday, December 09, 2014
The digital world is so immediate, and each moment seems to exist by itself, a pin prick of time. I first became aware of this when people stated wearing digital watches. It's a completely different way of seeing time. A clock sees the whole day at once with the hands moving through it. One can't help but see the big picture, looking at a clock. The present is seen in the context of a whole. It can be almost two o'clock instead of 1:48. It is clear on a clock that it was one thirty recently and that it will be two o'clock very soon. I still have to translate digital clocks in my mind to orient myself in the day. The idea of an hour, or a morning, seems difficult to conceive when every minute disappears almost as soon as one can grasp it, to be replaced by a new present, also in the process of fleeing as soon as it registers in the psyche. I know that people brought up in my children's generation have no trouble with any of this. They are able to hopscotch from one minute to the next and keep their balance. I think people think differently in this digital age. I have no opinion about whether one is better than the other. Things always evolve, and the world is in quite a mess doing things the way my generation is doing them.
Well, quite a departure from my original thought about the book. I adore this book without even opening its cover. I love how the whole text is available at once, how the weight of the book feels in my lap, how the pages turn, but, like the minute on a clock, can still be reviewed at will. The book is real in a way that the same text on my Kindle isn't. I possess it. It's mine, here, not floating invisibly in the air, indifferent. I am a slow reader, savoring every word. It's a big book. I have a lot to look forward to.
Friday, December 05, 2014
The bottom picture is proof that I forced myself away from my paper projects long enough to sew covers for two old pillows that were ravaged by time, dogs, spilled food, and feet. Thelma gave me the fabric years and years ago, and I have kept it in storage along with a lot of other cloth. Thelma was a real pack rat and never wanted to throw anything away. Instead she gave her surplus away when it became overwhelming. I was often the beneficiary. She liked to sew, and I have lots of remnants from her projects. I think of Thelma at least once a day and miss her still in a very present way. Now there is yet more evidence of her in my living room. The light color perks the room up quite a lot. It was an easy project with a concrete beginning, middle, and end. The product is predictably what it was meant to be. From setting up the sewing machine, winding the bobbin, threading the machine everything went smoothly. The scissors were sharp, the pins in the pin-cushion. the needle flew down the seams without hesitation. I turned the resulting squares right side out, poked the corners nice and sharp, slipped the pillows inside effortlessly. The fit was perfect.
What a pleasure it was to simply go from one step to the next, steadily moving confidently toward my goal. It was all so smooth. I almost felt sleepy as I worked, soothed by what was happening exactly as planned, with a specific end, the product of my effort floating into existence without so much as a murmur of either regret or surprise. Now there it is, right where it was supposed to be, right where I envisioned it, looking exactly as I knew it would.
The antithesis of what my recent obsession has been............
Wednesday, December 03, 2014
So, keep going.
(I ordered the book you reviewed, bookseller friend, but I still don't know how to communicate with you besides as a footnote to my own posts.)