Saturday, July 29, 2006

A Walk in Kimbrook ("Good Dog")

060729 Walk in Kimbrook

Saturday, July 29, 8:26 PM I am out walking. It's been raining and it briefly cooled off, but it warmed up again and is hot, steamy and humid, ugh, and getting dark already. A man I am passing gives me a disgusted look because his dog is barking and lunging at me as if I'm doing something wrong by walking here, but HE is on the wrong side of the street and has white hair, so he's old enough to know better. A car goes by and nearly sideswipes me and I'm walking in the ditch and the road is wide enough for three or for cars to pass and no one is coming. Aiee. And not because he can't see me, it's not that dark. He's got a stick up his butt or something.

I hear a "bell song" like the one we've been trying to determine, but different. It is clearly not the same bell song. I can see the bird at the top of a dead tree nearby, but it is too small and dark to make out what it is.

The cicadas are going nuts

After nearly being sideswiped, I run way up into the wet grass every time a car comes which is surprisingly and annoyingly often.

I wish I could walk somewhere else, but am trying to save time by not driving anywhere, since time seems of an essence.

I was recalling, in the grocery store, a funny and somewhat poignant discussion, or series of discussions with Graham that I thought might make a good piece and also good material to put in one of the stories I'm theoretically working on.

* * *

"Good Dog"

Last year, while my son, Graham and I were visiting my daughter, Erin, I made a big fuss over my grand-puppy, Mr. Rochester. Mr. Rochester was, in fact, not a puppy at all, but I like to refer to him as my grand-puppy, since he's my daughter's dog and it's fun to be silly with him.

"Oh, Mr. Rochester," I cried, in a high-pitched silly voice, "what a good dog you are!" Then I told him to sit. "Goooood Boy!" I squealed.

Graham was eleven at the time. He usually wanted to be taken seriously, to be treated with respect. So I was surprised when he asked me, "How come you never tell me I'm a good boy?"

"Well," I stuttered, temporarily at a loss for words, "I do. I always tell you when you do a good job, and when you make me happy."

"Not like that!" Graham insisted.

"Do you want me to talk to you like that?" I asked.

"Yes!" he said.

For a while, I tried to inject a little more enthusiasm and gaiety into my praising of him. I even talked to him just as if he were a beloved dog. He seemed to eat it up. But once we were away from Mr. Rochester, he soon forgot his jealousy and was aptly pleased with more appropriate praise.

A short time later, I was leaning against Keith and telling him in my silly romantic voice how much I loved him and how sweet and cute he was. Graham came into the room and said, "How come you never talk to me like that?"

"Because," I answered, "You're my son and the apple of my eye. You're my little sweetie and Dad is my big sweetie, and there's a difference between the two. I love you both, but I love you in different ways."

"I want you to tell me how cute I am," he said.

"You are very cute," I replied, truthfully, but it just didn't sound the same, even though I was sincere. Even though my voice was full of love.

"Yeah, right," Graham said, tuning in to the difference in the inflection in my voice.

This is the same boy who goes off to school without even saying goodbye most of the time. If I want a goodbye hug, I have to grab him and give it to him. At family gatherings, if there are no children, he wants to sit in my lap and be my baby, but if there are children, I may as well be a piece of furniture.

When he asks me to make him a milkshake and then gobbles it without a thank you, I want to say, "How come you don't tell me I'm a good girl?" but I don't. When he says he'll run off and live with Aunt Sandy if I'm mean to him, I want to say, "How come you don't love me the way you love her?" But I don't.

I know that love is enduring. That we love each person differently. That there are ups and down in our feelings, and that our attention is sometimes diverted elsewhere, but the love continues underneath.

I am blessed by the fact that Graham, now 12, is surprisingly affectionate still. He is warm and capable of acts of great kindness and love. I can usually remember this when he seems to be ignoring me or being rude.

If he thinks I'm ignoring him, I have to remember that he is still a child, and that it is hard for him to remember the enduring nature of love, how it runs like a river deep underneath everything. If he's feeling ignored, or second best, I have to tell him I love him. I have to show him my love him the best I can in the all the unique ways that I love him.

* * *

It's gotten very dark, and I did not bring a headlamp. Sharon and Frank rode by on their bikes and I was wishing to ride my bike, but BOTH of my bikes are in Michigan because I thought I was moving there.

It's hot and steamy and summery, but the earth has tipped away from the sun and seasons are changing. Tuesday is Midsummer Day, and it is easy to see that we're progressing rapidly toward the equinox. Dark dark dark, so soon, so early.

The air is full of bats and I hope they eat of some of these mosquitoes!

9:12 I am home, only walked 43minutes, but I took Mom for a walk and walked at Wegman's so I hope that's good enough. I need to get on-line with Keith, even though he may not be back from Gail's.

Considering I wrote the above in complete darkness, it is not as bad as it might have been.

9:15 PM, he's not there yet, but he almost always signs in a few minutes late according to my clock. So, he may be coming, or he may be in Jackson or somewhere in-between. He never said.

9:30 PM Keith did call to say he's still in Jackson. I guess I didn't need to cut my walk short, but I wasn't sure. I miss him (and the story too! LOL!) I love the way he reads to me every night and I love the book we are reading, The Amber Spyglass, by Philip Pullman. Excellent book! (So was Drop City, which I just finished, in a different way.)

BloodrootZ II Banner third attempt

 Posted by Picasa

Friday, July 28, 2006

Beating the heat

Beating the heat, by Mary Stebbins Taitt. Click image to view larger.

I have a show opening August 16 and I am working on it now--obsessed with images of hot and cold because it's been so very hot here, and humid, and I have no air-conditioning. Posted by Picasa

another set back for the Icons and Images Prep

Last night I had a terrible insomnia night and was up--I mean UP past 5 AM--so I was STILL up after my husband GOT up to go to work.

At the moment, I feel OK--I sent some bills off to Sandra K for Mom and did my sit up and some stuff around the house, made the bed laid out my clothes, all that, and then attacked my icons and images show with a vengeance.  Last night I printed a bunch of pictures and wasn't happy with them and I'd come up with some new ideas I thought would be better, but I decided all things taken into consideration I would use one of last night's pictures so I got a bag with a new frame and took out the picture and removed the stapled on corners and removed the staples--not that easy--and the plastic wrap and bent up the tabs and removed the back in the inside pieces and signed the pat and taped the picture on and couldn't figure out why it wouldn't align right, some of the white kept showing, no matter what I did--the hole was too big!!!  Thinking I might have bought the wrong thing, I looked again at the sheet inside with the info and it clearly said 8 x 10.  I measured the hole--8.5 x 11--it is MISLABELED.  it's not my error but theirs!  I wish I'd known that, I could have printed the picture that size!!  Aiee--I printed pictures for the state Fair, too, based on what the frames said.  Ironically, I would have preferred the larger size!!  But I printed them all 8 x 10.  I haven't yet checked the remaining frames--some of them may actually BE the right size because I had used some from this batch already and they WERE the right size.  Aiee.

Back to the drawing board--I have to open the picture in Photoshop, resize it and reprint it.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

earlier but less

I went to bed earlier but slept less--lay awake for hours thinking about how I could be getting something useful accomplished instead of just laying there.

no breakfast

It's 1:30 PM and I've eating nothing, not  a speck of food, as I forgot to take my meds when I got up for the third time this week and when my hour was up, I had to start all over and take the pill and wait and then got busy--I didn't forget to eat, just wanted to coplate the task(s) I'd started--AK, Hungry.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Days marked by garbage

Days marked by garbage, photo by Mary Stebbins. Every day, I am trying to see how much garbage I can pack up and haul out. that's my lfe.

It's hot here, no air conditioning. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

[No Polar Coordinates] Tears

well, I coudn't do it.  I was imagining posting favorites by date and creating an online journal in order.  Slowly, over a long perios of time.  Oh well.

I am always on the verge of tears. Now matter how calm, how gay, how joyous or happy I may feel, I always teeter at the brink of loneliness and sorrow. This sense of pain does not detract from my joy. I think it makes it all the more intense. Mary age 22

I was going to back post this to August 18, 1968, which was the date I wrote it, but they only allow backposts as far back as 1990. I was very disappointed.

Posted by taittems to No Polar Coordinates at 7/19/2006 12:58:00 PM

Plastic Pie/Coming Apart at the Seams

Plastic Pie/Coming Apart at the Seams, by Mary Stebbins Taitt. Click image to view larger.

This is an outtake from a photique assignmentPosted by Picasa

Another Bag of Garbage

I just filled another fairly large bag of garbage and carried it out to the curb.  This one was full of stuff from the bedroom--the stuff of my life from parts of the last 60 years!  Clothes, a favorite brown plaid wool shirt, for example, underwear and socks.  I'm hauling my life to the curb.  Garbage has become the measure of my days.  How many bags can I fill and carry to the garage or curb?  I get less filled on horribly hot days, less filled on days that follow insomniac nights (like last night), less filled on days I visit my mother or shop or take a break to do laundry.  I suppose I should feel lightened and exhilerated, but instead, I just feel depressed and sad.  It is nice though, when a new spot becomes empty.  It's just so slow.

Monday, July 17, 2006

progress report

I finally got the paperwork filled out--at 3:59 PM--and have to write the checks, address the envelopes and dash off to the PO!

Tentative decision #1

I have made a tentative decision as to which pieces I intend to enter based in large part on what I have available on Toby:  The Chicken Plate and Singing in Rounds 12, which hardly anyone has ever seen and has not been posted anywhere.  These I will enter both under nontraditional photography.  THEN, if I have time, I will enter two others in fine arts.  I think it will be one of the abstracts and "Into the Inferno."  They will have to be printed and framed.  This is still open to consideration at this point.  I am going to shower and dress, which I have not done yet, and comb and braid my hair, and depending on the time, print out the form for the art competition.  Fill them out, write the checks, go to the PO an then to the bank to make the transfers.

Continuing Saga

So I get Toby up and running after the blue screen ad attach the printer and lo and behold, no paper.  I'd taken all the printers and paper to Detroit--because I thought I was moving!!!  So I race around the hothouse looking for paper and finally manage to find a few wizened and yellowed pieces to print the entry form on.  So far, however, I've only located one possible entry where I have access to the full file.


I connected Hilda, the external hard drive and attempted a manual search for the River Snow Trees picture andfailed to find it so I was conducting a Picasa seach nd Toby Bluescreened and shut down.  Everything I was working on was gone.


It seems weird that the River Snow Trees picture wouldn't be on Toby, since it was taken at OLP.  I did a search using a search engine and then a manual one.  Now I am going to look on Hilda (the external hard drive.)  Aiee!  Mary


This is taking a lot longer than I imagined it would.  I made a list of possibilties for entering the fair and m looking on Toby for them, as I cn't count on being able to find them elsewhere.

So far I have ONLY found the Chicken Plate one.  I can't find the River Snow Trees one, and I went through just about every file on the computer looking--slow work.


Under Amateur, there are three categories for the photo contest, color, black and white, and non-traditional. I am considering entering one traditional and one nontraditional (since I do both). I am also tempted to enter some of my artwork under fine arts and/or arts and crafts.

Arts & Crafts Jul 17 Book | Form N/A
Culinary Jul 17 Book | Form N/A
Fine Arts Jul 17 Book | Form N/A
Photography Jul 17 Book | Form N/A
Senior Citizens Jul 17 Book | Form N/A

As far as traditional, my two top choices are the orange butterfly on the OLP snow scene, which, though color, could be entered as a BW. My top choice for nontraditional is the chicken plate. Feedback? I have still to check and see if I have those on Tiny Toby.

Night-blooming Cereus

Night-blooming Cereus, by Mary Stebbins. Click image to view larger.

Taken at Chapel House During our retreat, a real thrill to watch unfold--it only blooms at night and only lasts one night.

See another view.Posted by Picasa


I'm sure no one wants to hear this, but it's in the nineties here an humid and I find it is coolest to be naked.

Heat Advisory and Photo Deadline

The National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory for today from noon to 8 PM with temperatures in the mid nineties. 


Today is the deadline for the State Fair photo entry—not for the photos themselves, but for the money and paperwork.  What I need to do is:  choose which pictures to enter, fill out the forms and submit the money.  If I mail them, I have to set up the printer and print them.  Then fill them out and drive them to the post office before 4:30.  Otherwise, I have to do it on-line and figure out the money end of it, and the only computer I have has a screen the size of the palm of my hand with type I need a microscope to view.  And while I do want to do it, it will take time away from working on the house.


Choosing the pictures I will want to enter will be difficult—a year's worth of pictures to choose from.  But I probably only should choose ones that are available as full files on Tiny Toby in case I don't get back to Detroit before the picture deadline.  All very confusing with the driving back and forth.  And the fact that I am running out of meds.


Choosing pictures must be the first task, and perhaps I can do that be looking at my gallery at BP and studying IMAGIK.


Yes, it will take time away from working on the house, as did our retreat and as does every visit to my mother at Loretto and walking and doing my fibro exercises and preparing meals and washing dishes and doing laundry.  It's upsetting that it comes now, at this increasingly crucial time.  I have a recertification coming up and ideally, I'd like to pass the torch of the house before that, but I don't see that happening, so then, I will have to waste a lot of time doing the recertification papers rather than sorting, cleaning and packing.


Okay then, enough worrying, time to get to work.

I am certain of nothing but the Heart's affections and the truth of the Imagination- John Keats


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