An Apple A Day…

-apple-clipart-8An apple a day will keep anyone away if it is thrown at them hard enough. – unknown

There is a storage business that I pass everyday on the way home. It posts funny or clever sayings. Perhaps my humor has turned somewhat dark over the past couple years, but I find the above saying both funny and clever. It is obviously a turn on the American proverb, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.” I’ve always taken the proverb in its fullest sense to mean that making a habit of doing a simple healthy thing will pay dividends. It also reminds me that we are what we eat.

There is a TV commercial on these days for a beer.  When folks at the bar are deciding what to drink, they are knocked down by an apple.  This appeals to the love of slapstick comedy in each of us. But I think it also reaches back into folklore with Sir Isaac Newton making a great discovery after being hit on the head by an apple. The fancied Newton experience has come to mean a boink on the head can make a concept very clear to one.

I got hit by an apple the other day. The actions of a friend really hurt my feelings. I shared that with her, but she didn’t really “get it.” It then became abundantly clear to me that I cared a lot more about her and her success than she realized and more than she did about me. Of course, at first I told myself I was overreacting. But then I decided I’m not the overreacting type. I’ve since adjusted my reality and expectations of the relationship. Reality can present itself as clearly as a knock on the head and just as painfully.

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I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends

Last weekend I had one of the best times of my life! I was staying at the Chicago home of a best friend from college. She and another college buddy had planned a private book signing for me at our buddy’s home. My hostess and her husband are gracious and generous. Their home is decorated in authentic Asian wall art and sculpture from their time in Hong Kong. However, the best decoration is their mutual love and respect wafting up to the ceiling like the curl of smoke from the Tahitian Vanilla incense gently filling the foyer. Their relationship is the sweetest I’ve seen.

I had been a bit anxious about the event. However, once I arrived at O’Hare, my jitters settled. My hostess and I reached our buddy’s home to find a fancy and fun spread with everything from shrimp to Sprinkle’s cupcakes. We had time to catch up a bit before the event began. I greeted each guest with a hug and committed to remembering and using every guest’s name.

Ultimately we had about 20 attendees. I opened by talking a bit about myself to provide some background. Then I read an excerpt from Turning Blue to Blue. I opened  it up for questions and a wonderful exchange began. Everyone contributed to it. I sold about 21 books and made at least two new friends. Most significant, my confidence regarding speaking to strangers, increased dramatically and I was inspired to challenge myself to accomplish some other projects I had been avoiding.

MBiB cover

Thanks to my four Wellesley College sisters for their tremendous support. It was a wonderful evening.

By the way, I only muffed one name. Sorry Jeff.

COMING SOON: A Day at the Museum

Installation Day!

Well, it was the day I had been waiting for: to see my art hanging on someone’s wall.

Who’s wall? Sharon’s, a friend who has encouraged me since I first announced I was drawing.  Actually, I made the announcement at the perfect time. She has a beautiful home with several bare walls. She said she had looked for wall art, but hadn’t found anything that grabbed her. The busyness of life had prevented her from spending too much time on the hunt.  Things had settled down some for her this summer and she invited me over to see her spaces and learn about her likes. I showed her two pieces I had done, but she really didn’t like either.  I took all my measurements and her color preferences back home with me and set out to create something new, specifically for her.

When I completed her two pieces, I emailed them to her.  She loved them! What a thrill to be able to interpret someone’s personality and style into a piece of art that speaks to them. I’m not sure I can really describe it. I don’t think I’ve ever felt anything like it.

Since the original is pastel on paper, I had to have it digitally scanned at a resolution that could be reproduced at approximately 45″ x 30″. Then I searched for a manufacturer to take the high quality scan and turn it into a high quality triptych (art in three sections), canvas wrap.

It was nerve-wracking waiting for it to come back complete. I had to see it!  Did the original richness of color and delightful sense of texture reproduce well?  When it arrived, I tore open the box and squealed with joy. It was beautiful. Now of course, all mammas think their babies are beautiful…

So today was the day I got it up on her dinning room wall. Well, “I” meaning my husband, who was actually on the ladder measuring and hammering. We hugged and took pictures. I thought I would cry, I had tissue just in case.  But all I could do was grin ear to ear. I collected the balance and my tools and we were out in about 45 minutes.

Oh my goodness, that was sooo much fun! I want to do it again real soon!

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I love you

For years I’ve told my friends, usually females, that I love them. I say it for a few reasons: I actually do love them, I want them to know that, it feels good to say it.

So what do I mean by “love”?

love

love (Photo credit: Ju-x)

It’s kinda of a loaded word. We all want to be loved. But I suspect most people don’t really feel loved. Maybe we think too much of romantic love. Many of my friends are divorced and everyone has had their heart broken at some point. That reminds me that I actually know a women who was waiting at the altar for her groom and he never showed. He called later to apologize for his change of heart. But I digress.

I’m not sure we think much of brotherly love and how precious it is. So obviously I’m referring to brotherly love. And perhaps what I really mean is more like a warm fuzzy feeling plus appreciation. When I say it, it also implies that I’m here for that person. Then there is Godlike love, unconditional, an amazing concept that I’m not even gonna mess with here.

A member of my last team, a sensitive soul, started calling us his “work family”. After awhile he shortened it to “family.” Then he came up with the idea to say “I love you, man” as team-members on different shifts left. He noticed that some people weren’t comfortable with that (why?!), so he changed it to “love your show, man”. It caught on.

So what response do I most often get when I say “I love you”? Silence. Remember, I said this is what I say to friends. These are people I’ve known a minimum of 7 years. My longest friendship is 31 years. Over the years I think some have come to expect it. And many are able to respond in kind, although that was never what I was looking for.

Maybe it’s kinda like folks who can’t take a compliment graciously. Maybe folks struggle with feeling loveable? Well, I think that’s all the more reason to say it!

Dear readers, not sure if I did the subject justice, but it had been on my mind.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/ju-x/