Saturday, October 27, 2012

Artists

What was supposed to be a week of lions ended up being a week of lambs.  Our dinner plans for this evening cancelled, the host is sick and didn't feel up to making dinner for a dozen people (I don't blame him!)

We skipped dodgeball on Wednesday, I was sick on Tuesday, and missed my FROG meeting on Monday. So it's actually been pretty low-key.


Our friend A is visiting from NYC, so we had him over for dinner last night.  We had shrimp and grits with andouille sausage and okra.  It was KILLER.  We also had a hail-mary assist from a neighbour too.  I forgot to turn the slow cooker on before leaving the house and then sent out a frantic APB to all my neighbours to see who could come into our house and turn it on for us.  Love my neighbours, love my 'hood.

Anyway, through the course of conversation last night A was talking about how his recently released record is akin to his child (in reference to some friends who he'd given a copy to and hadn't given it a listen).  I gotta say, I really really really disagree with this statement.  Obviously, context is everything, A wasn't using it on a one-to-one level the way I've heard it employed elsewhere.  He was just using it as a shorthand to say that the album was really important to him and he wanted his friends to give it a listen.  I get that, I totally do.  But here's the thing: I kind of believe that as an artist, your painting/dance/theatre performance, etc. isn't your child, it's YOUR JOB.  People have children ON TOP of their jobs, not as a replacement for them (for the most part).

I always see all these things on Facebook and on my internet travels that feature pithy little statements about art and the value of art and how artists do it FOR THE LOVE OF IT, blah blah blah as if producing art is more pure or a more difficult path than other career trajectories.  I'm sorry, but I don't buy it.  I'm not saying it's NOT hard.  I'm sure it's very very very hard and challenging and I know there are a lot of jobs out there that aren't as difficult or trying.  BUT IT'S NOT THE ONLY ONE TRUE CHALLENGING JOB.  It just isn't.  Look at my littlest bro and his dentist aspirations.  Look at what the Dotytron does for crissakes.  Look at the expertise you need to do policy research or policy analysis and like, help the province run.  Everyone (for the most part, of people I know and consider peers) has a hard job.  It would be difficult for me to step into the shoes of a lot of people I know and do what they do, the same way it would be difficult for them to do what I do.

Which isn't to say that we don't all have days when we need a boost and need some support or just want to complain and b***h about our lot.  I'm just saying it's not like artists have the exclusive right to that line, ya know?

Also, talk to me when you work a full 40 hour work week, EVERY week.  So few artists I know do that.  Same with my grad student friends.  Talk to me when you put in a consistent 8:30-5:30pm EVERY DAY, and then we can talk.  I used to work consistent 60+ hour work weeks.  Then I got my current job and 40 hours felt like a dream, but my 40 hours is still MILES above what my grad student friends pull.  Grad student friends are like, wake up at 9, leisurely coffee drink, read Salon and Gawker, grocery shop...uh, NONE OF THAT COUNTS AS WORK TIME!

Anyway, this is all to say that I find likening your work product to a child is silly.  Not that children are such precious, special, all-consuming tasks, but more like, very often, people are doing their parenting ON TOP of working full time jobs, so the comparison isn't apt, from a time-investment perspective.  *Insert cringey FB meme about how "I work 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.  I AM A MOTHER"*  LOL!  Those memes make my insides contract with displaced embarrassment.


My not-so-new-but-has-to-be-reiterated obsession is with the Beckham family and specifically, any photos I see featuring Harper Seven.  I just want Posh and Becks to adopt me.  First of all, that baby is freakin' adorable.  Second of all, I love what good parents Posh and Becks seem to be.  Third of all, I love that despite VB's plussed up fashion sense, she always seems to dress Harper tastefully.  Like, Harper's not always jacked up to the nines the way J-Lo's kids are or like Suri Cruise or Mimi's kids are and a lot of the times Harper is wearing pants and a shirt that are totally normal and suitable for Upper East Side/probably will be sent to boarding school rich kid play.  Not like, the rough and tumble, communal snack play of regular people's kids, but still not approaching the levels of fancy froufrou that rich kids could go.  Fourthly, I want that cape that Harper is wearing up there.


For dinner tonight we had our favorite Afghani takeout from Bamiyan.  So. Good.  


The other night we had freezer tomato basil tart (which the Dotytron over-browned in the oven) alongside a salad of cornmeal-crusted fried green tomatoes, bacon, and greens with a buttermilk-chive dressing.  The salad was so good that I snapped up a bunch more green tomatoes from the CSA to futz around with.

I'm freaking out because we only have 4 more freezer meals left and I'm an emergency preparedness hoarder so only 4 meals seems dangerously low to me.  I'm a headcase.

I have also chosen to embark on the lunacy that is making cake balls.  I'm going to split it up over a few days and hope that this will make the process more bearable.  It was a snap decision that I made when I was trying to think of what I could bring to the kids Halloween party we're going to on Sunday, and to bring into the drop in centre for the annual Halloween potluck next Wednesday.  For some reason, CAKE BALLS seemed logical.  Which is INCREDIBLY stupid, in hindsight.  But, I had already bought the cake mix and the frosting.  As my friend G so sagely suggested - why couldn't I just turn the box cake and frosting into cupcakes?  BECAUSE I'M A PSYCHO, THAT'S WHY.  According to the immutable logic (?) of my me-ness, box cake mix is okay for the purposes of cake balls, but to bring in boxed cake cupcakes to a party as a representation of what I do (even though, at the drop in centre, that table of food is going to be a randomonium smorgasbord of the highest order), is unacceptable.  Because I'm a psycho.  

Here's a pic of the finished product:

Never Again.

We just did a little Big Yam Halloween costume dress rehearsal...and let me tell you - it's pretty awesome.  



Fin.








1 comment:

Nicole said...

I agree with you re the cake mix cupcakes. I made my cakepops once from a homemade cupcake recipe and that's probably why they didn't work. lol