Tuesday, April 17, 2012

She's got the look!

I have to share this story from my friend Sarah. If you have ever been a school teacher, you know that “the look” is an art-form unto itself. When combined with “the voice”, adults can be reduced to jello or suffer flashbacks…or both. Wouldn’t it be nice if all politicians had to earn a degree in education (K-12) as opposed to majoring in law or poly-sci? That degree comes with a semester of time spent working in a real classroom, with real children, who have real issues. The other adults who work there have issues too but most of those are discussed in “the teachers’ lounge”, that mysterious place behind a closed door that no students dare enter. 

Do our adult lives ever really progress beyond elementary school? Most of the time, I think not. We remain in a stunted level of social development even though we consider ourselves “grownups”. Consider the following and see if you agree…
Snacks and naptime….we all still crave one in the mid afternoon (even if we don’t admit it out loud). Why else advertise those mini energy shots on TV?

Passing notes and reading illicit comic books during class is no different than today’s FB surfing or under the meeting table texting.

Clothing – This area has so deteriorated over the years that many people look like they come to work on a “childhood sick day” in jammies and flip flops. Just today I saw a newspaper photo of people on a picket line, in their flip flops. Really? Try dressing a bit more professionally and perhaps you will be taken a bit more seriously. Do you ever see lawyers, real estate agents or nurses coming to work in flip flops? Best to stop this rant right now, the subject of your knarly toes before breakfast is not a good idea. 

Math….most of us probably do not use “number problems” anymore, but those pesky “story problems” show up all the time. For example, dividing Halloween candy between siblings…..

The lunch table…is alive and well and thriving unfortunately. Cliques, social labels, bullying etc….. never goes away no matter how old we get. Such things only get new names, or diagnoses or a sitcom, but won’t ever be resolved. I think it is because we don’t really want to solve such things, what is life without some drama? Too many people make a living off of this issue. Not many people would admit to wanting to read and view only those stories about sunshine, roses, and lollipops, not to mention unicorns that eat rainbows and poop butterflies (inside joke….). Sorry, another rant to table for now. 

Okay, on to Sarah’s story which I am posting without permission but since it was on FB, that is good enough for me. 

“Steve and I joke about giving people the "teacher death look." I just returned from the BV area post office where I not only gave the look, but also the lecture. After scraping months of glue off of tables, and getting cut off in traffic on the way to the post office, this lady walked right up past all the people in line and stepped in front of me (I was up next). I normally would be like "Whatever. You must have issues." But this time, I stepped forward, turned my head, gave her the look and said "Do you see me standing here?" "DID you see me standing here?" After she said yes to both, I asked "Do you see all these people in line behind me? They were here before you as well. If you would like to get to this point in the line, you need to go BACK to the end of the line and GET in line." She did.”

Seeing that her posting got 34 comments and 59 thumbs up as of my posting, I can only say that it sounds like a movement may be begging to begin….”Occupy the Eye”  shall we say. If you have ever raised kids, especially boys, the “look” comes in quite handy. Girls on the other hand tend to figure out how to give it right back so it must be a genetic thing. Since I have to swing by the post office today, I am now going to go upstairs and practice my “teacher’s eye” in the mirror as mine might be a bit rusty since this is year 22 of maternity leave.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

What business is it of yours?

Perhaps it is time to come out from under my rock and see if anything has calmed down enough to allow for a moment in the sun. Alas, such is not the case and my little underground shelter may be the best (or should I say safest) place for now. If you believe in astrology then us Sags are given to having a big mouth with a little filter. Sags and social media do not mix well, hence my self-imposed isolation inside a hidey hole. 

 A few years ago, I did a painting for my “Closer to the Edge” show subsequently renamed the “One Night Stand” show (Akron 2009). It became the postcard and has been out and about a few times on exhibit but for the most part many people do not understand it. At this point in time (is it 1968 all over again?) it seems like a relevant image to post with a bit of editing to the statement for broader application of intent.

There Is No Business, Like Your Business, And It Is My Business To Know!
24 x 30
Acrylic on Canvas 
                Her name (has been changed to protect the innocent so you pick one). Her sin is being who she is. This painting is about not being able to talk about anything that makes you who you are (or me who I am). Society has topics that are “hot button” issues. Today, these issues are posted allover social media, detailed to death on the radio, and even reprinted with edits in newspapers.  Someone gets mad or offended or opinionated and the next thing you know, the internet or airwaves go nutso! (I was going to say “bat shit” but that would not be very nice).
                The taped paper says “You’re Invited” but with the international symbol for “do not” included as well. You may be invited to the forum, but you don’t dare say anything, hence the duct tape across her mouth.  The three body areas represent the “see no evil” (caution tape over the pelvic area), “hear no evil” (The Scream), and “speak no evil”, but she is evil for even existing as far as some members of society are concerned. Alcohol and a cigarette are sinful to many people; we even have laws against them in one form or another.  The hair is reminiscent of Medusa’s snakes.  How come bad girls always seem to have hair issues?
                So what are the topics that are taboo; the parts of us that we cannot share though they are who we are, entwined within our being?  Start by my signature and go clockwise up and over the central figure.

Gun = hobbies, guns, shooting, violence, war
The male and female symbols = family and family relationships and children
Mortar board = graduations and the successes of one’s children, colleges chosen and degrees pursued, levels of education, opportunities to pursue one….
Paw print = pets and animals, vegetarians, animal testing
Star = one’s dreams
DNA spiral = families, race, racism, siblings, gender related issues, birth control, abortion, rights thereof
Chanel logo = shopping and clothing, consumer materialism
XXX = sex and related issues,
Eye glasses = reading, books, current events
Ice cream cone = food and diets, what we eat and what others eat
Dollar sign = money
Gift box = giving of gifts, giving in general, donations, contributions and so on
Question mark….(see below)
Fat cross = health related things (think red cross but I have to deal with copyrights), squeezing out every last drop, access to health care, treatment 
G Clef = music likes and dislikes, when, where and how loud
Big Cross = religion and beliefs
Pencil = what you write or how you write, when you write and are you right?
The caution tape = watch out, be careful, you are warned, don’t cross that line…
Vote button = politics
Big bow  = fashion choices
Underwear showing = I had a painting pulled from a show once due to a square inch of white underwear showing on one of my figures.
                Her earrings are the only safe topic!! Weather….oh wait, the sun has been cancelled due to global warming….add that to the list too; can’t even talk about the weather anymore. Shall we discuss color? The background is predominately green because the underlying issue is usually envy in one form or another. Now, would you like to join me over here by the edge of sanity? Oh wait again…..the asking of questions is not allowed either. The motivation behind my asking could be misinterpreted.