EMBRACE YOUR STUPIDITY
You know you are a hillbilly when the waitress at the diner takes a spider off your hat, gently releasing it out the door, before taking your order. "Ringworm summer" is nearing an end. Who knew one little kitten could wreck such havoc in our lives. Shewho got it. Cheeky got it. And for some reason I seem to be immune. All those years of less than stellar house keeping have finally paid off. My homegrown fungi stood steadfast, not letting the ringworm in. Soon the quarantine will be lifted, the kitchen will be done, and I'll be able to freeze to death in a treestand....without guilt.
I turned 83 on Friday. I never would've even known that, had not little bro Duke called with best wishes. For years I've forgotten other's birthdays. Now I forget my own. Seems only fitting. Then on Sat. we all gathered at Wolf Lake to bring it in in style. From two year old rug rats poking their fingers in my birthday cake, to 90 year old elders taking it all in with wise smiles, I am an extremely lucky man. Beautiful supermodels, kids screaming, kisses from Shewho and dog fights under the picnic table. Who could ask for more?
My life when viewed as a microcosm is perfection personified. 10 years in SF, 10 years in NYC and 20 years in the Catskills has refined my craft to the degree that my art work comes relatively easily. I don't so much "make it" as "discover it" in the shadows of my mind's recesses, hanging it on the wall, laying it on the floor, plopping it on the front lawn. There's no anguish involved in its creation. But then when the question is inevitably raised (and it always is) Do I sell? Do I show? I fall silent. Why not? I have no answer. I feel the pressure. Why have I not met the most basic of expectations? My stomach turns.
Do I need a show or a sale to make work? No. Obviously I am known as an artist because I took an outsider's approach, forgoing the gallery or museum system, out of necessity. Recently I did an interview with Chuck, for a little magazine. We sat in the same room, smoked up, emailing Q and A's back and forth. It was a fun exercise. I was afraid of whining about how fucked it all seemed. But to my surprise we both took it seriously enough to dig a little deeper. I realized one of the most important aspects of being an artist was not knowing what you are doing and embracing it. How I've made it this far in such ignorance is a victory of sorts. If I was even a little bit smarter I would've quit this shit years ago. Happy Birthday to me.