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Showing posts from April, 2010

Painting sunflowers

I got this pieces from a young poet and artist and I wanted to share my thoughts after reading it.
This is what I wrote him back:
I like it!
I like how you hide meaning behind random thoughts and allow the reader's mind to associate and drift.
It is effective - at least for me it is

While allowing my mind to "drift", I reflected on how
years ago when I just started painting, I painted sunflowers. I did them in thick paints- it gave me comfort.

They all sold.
I was so surprised by how much people liked them, that I kept on painting them.
People kept on asking for more and commissioning me to paint them.

Eventually I was reluctant, but I wanted the money, so I imagined that I infuse each sunflower with healing energy and send light to the people that will live with them.

I know it may sound silly- but I needed the money and needed reason to continue.

Eventually I've stopped.
Refused to work in this style.
Told people I don't do sunflowers.

I did break the rule once after that.
His…

spam emails

How to “Read” spam emails
Most of us get them daily in our Inbox:“congratulations! you have just inherited 20 million dollars.To claim your inheritance, please contact Mr. Jameen Potusoola Smith - Attorney At Large- UK”
And, Most of us by now don’t go beyond the “Congratulations!” before we click DELETE
But this is how I “read” them:
“Yo! you! Yes, you!The comfortable peopleliving in your lovely homesin wealthy countries,
We are DYING here in Nigeria!!!
Yo! you who complain about John Key or Sara Palin or Dick Cheney’s dickyou do not know we’re dying in the streets.
We have corruption, pain and violencethat is beyond belief.We have no food to feed our babiesand our wounds won’t heal.
Yo! you who lives in pretty cities,You who don’t even begin to know the meaning of lack,can you cut an aching brother a slack?

Is it possible to make money from your art?

Anybody that reads my posts, know that I draw inspiration from other artists, writers, poets in my FB friend list and of course I am a self renown converter to the GT Wellington Church of creative thought; run by an inspiring creative thinker and a Documentary film maker. (from now on his name shall remain anonymous as he is NOT seem to be interested in converting anyone.)
So god posted: “My place in society is to act as a conduit for money to pass through as it travels from one government department to another”- Sigh.
As a disciple, I reflected that as an artist, I too am just a conduit for shuffling money between government agencies.
Even when I made money in my art career- I didn’t really made any money.It was always coming in and going out for expenses and taxes.
Since nobody talks about money and art in the same sentence- I will do exactly that.
A long time ago in a far away land that is full with antibiotic laced milk and honey, I was a successful artist.My yearly intake was $100,000…

I will not drink tonight- this is NOT a documentary and I MAY change my mind.

I will not drink tonight

Thank you dear,
But I think that I will pass.
It is awfully nice of you to offer,
But I will not drink tonight.

Tonight I wish to sit
With open eyes
and look around me,
At the human parody I see.

Yes, I know it is a party, and alcohol abound
But I cannot see a single happy soul around.

You see the lady in the corner?
She hadn’t gotten laid in many years
Still mourns the roads she hadn’t taken
When she was young and blondish naturally
She could have been a ballerina practically.

No my dear,
It’s awfully nice of you to offer,
But I think that I will pass.
I do not wish to drink tonight.
Tonight I wish to sit with open eyes.

My dear, since we are on the subject,
look upon this man,
He may be wearing rolex and he talks a great big deal,
But I hear he needs blue pills to get it real.

There on the patio,
‘neath the vine of blooming roses,
Sits a mother that just gave birth.

A healthy seven pound baby,
I hear them say the birth was tough
She may be smiling
But I can hear the panic in her laugh.

She…

I was online first

Please don’t read this note as arrogance.It was meant to be read in the spirit of the song “I was born about ten thousands years ago” which I am adding in the bottom:
I was online firstWhen E-Bay was just a baby,barely able to suck mother America’s breasts,I was online first
When everybody was afraid to key in credit card numbersAs if website shopping carts,were cavernous cavesfilled with scammerswaiting to get a holdof credit card numbersso they can send their mothersto vacation in Tenerifeand their daughters to Ibiza.I was online first.
I sold artnegotiated with collectorsfound old and new friendsbought houses before and afterthe bubble burstI was online first.

Now to the "real Version":

I WAS BORNED ABOUT FOUR THOUSAND YEARS AGO
I was born about ten thousand years ago,
And there's nothing in the world that I don't know;
I saw Peter, Paul and Moses,
Playing ring-around-the-roses
And I'm here to kick the guy what says it ain't so.

I saw Satan when he looked the garden…

A woman talking rubbish about trash

Today is Sunday in New Zealand and in the Hokianga this means - garbage day!
Those of you who live in rural NZ may sympathize.
Those of you who belong to the Facebook group: “I’m pretty sure that NZ is the best country in the world to live in” - you may want to move on now, to avoid listening to me fulminate.

Because we live on islands floating in the middle of the sea, and we do not have a large budget to bribe an impoverished, smaller island in the pacific to take shiploads of our refuse, (like other countries do), dumping ANYTHING in NZ is a major ordeal.

(I can’t speak about dumping boyfriends, as I never had the opportunity to do so, but I hear that it is even more complicated, and that if he lived with you for more than 2 years, he is entitled to half of your house - but this will have to be another, future rant.)

Tourists that come to NZ, are amazed that there are no trash bins along rural Northland roads. Most simply leave their rubbish bags on the side of the roads or in parks and…

A can of worms

Man, you are a blast from the past....Wait, Wait, don’t tell me...Let me see if I can remember correctly;
I remember a young talented DJ, rocking the city with massive street parties,A newly divorced woman,Her restaurant crumbling under her feet.
I remember people running out of the city at nightwearing gas masks.
Man, could this really have been my life?From the safety of the green hills,it all seems like a surrealistic dream.
I remember a long hot shower,A steaming bath,Both of us hardly fit in it,your legs are too long.
I remember a man and a womandoing things that are still illegal in some southern statesbetween consenting adults.
Are you still a DJ?When did you join Facebook?

Disclosure:For most of my life I have been ashamed of my frivolous past,Sweeping under the carpet what I did not want to look at.
Inspired by my newly appointed Wellington god (Graeme Tuckett)who posted:“Anything that is too big to sweep under the carpet, will have to be accepted as furniture”- I am finally opening …

Laundry

Inspired by a FB friend, Lyn Hurring, who collected a dozen funny comments about doing the laundry, I thought to share this with others who may wonder how to get out of EVER doing the laundry:
It is actually a complicated plan that took me years to complete.

I am notorious for not liking to read instruction booklets and manuals.
Jules is the opposite of me.
He LOVES instructions.
He scrutinize manuals as if they were modern day bibles.
(You can’t imagine his delight when his favorite restaurant in Auckland came up with an instruction sheet on how to eat their nori rolls and onigiri- no kidding, I only tell the truth).

So… after establishing myself as an impatient person for manuals, our washing machine finally broke beyond repair.
I suggested that we buy a new washer & dryer of the highest quality (part of the plan, please read on..)

When they’ve arrived, Jules who LOVES toys and gear of any kind, acted like a kid in a candy store.
He got annoyed with me for refusing to read (and memorize?…

Spelling

Let me start my day by saying how truly touched I am by the kind words I've been getting from some of you about my writing. This is Because: 1) English is not my first language. 2) I can't spell shit... .. (or is it shite? sheet?) Any way,
The spelling thing does not REALLY bother me.

I once attended a creativity/writing workshop in Taos NM with one of my favorite American writer who was married to one of Hollywood's greatest movie producer and she described an evening in their living room:

She yells: "Hey, how do you spell....."
He: "How the uck should I know? - look it up"

A long, boring and incoherent rant about how playing computer games ended up saving my life. (almost)

Last winter, when ski conditions were not very favorable and I’ve experienced a bit of a lull in my art career, I got addicted to playing computer video games for awhile.
Yes, I know that I am a 46 years old woman and that video games are for kids, but as a life long spiritual seeker of growth and truth, I found them very similar.
Let me explain; In order to excel in video games, you need to put aside self doubts, stop second guessing yourself, trust your intuition and go with it.
You have to be quick and sharp and not look back with regrets.You cannot stop to berate yourself for taking the wrong turn, nor do you have the time for remorse or regrets. You have to coordinate your brain with your body (hands).You have to strike when the opportunity arises, and to learn to suspend your emotions AND - you have to do it all in under 3 minutes.
So, when the snow finally started to melt, I felt an itch to go rafting on the river.
After 11 years of marriage, Jules gave up his ambitions of trying to…

Airlines

This for the benefit of those who do not live in the USA and may not have had the chance to fly with South West Airline. This is a REAL announcement:

"Welcome aboard Southwest Flight xy2
South West Airlines is pleased to have some of the best flight attendants in the industry.
Unfortunately, none of them are on this flight!"

To operate your seat belt, insert the metal tab into the buckle, and pull tight.
It works just like every other seat belt; and, if you don't know how to operate one, you probably shouldn't be out in public unsupervised."

"There may be 50 ways to leave your lover, but there are only 4 ways out of this airplane"

"In the event of a sudden loss of cabin pressure, masks will descend from the ceiling.
Stop screaming, grab the mask, and pull it over your face.
If you have a small child traveling with you, secure your mask before assisting with theirs.

Ladies please put your own mask on before assisting your husbands.
If you are trave…

Diversity

Inspired by Lindsay Evans, a great sculptor who lives in my town and writes daily three observations, I'll write my observations from my weekend in Auckland:
1) On Friday night on Queen street, there were plenty of preachers and evangelists but not enough transvestite for my taste.
2) There were plenty of musicians setting stage in the doorways of closed banks, but not enough transvestites for my taste.
3) There were plenty of cute Asian girls sipping bubble tea, but not enough transvestites for my taste.
You see, what is wrong with the world is that people wants conformation that they walk the right path. They want other people to be like them, to think like them, to believe like them, to feel like them.
Heck, I don't want people to be like me. I want diversity!!!
All I'm saying is: "bring me your musicians and your artists, your poets and your whores. What makes a city great is its diversity. The way the colours and the flavours change as you move from one neighborhood to anoth…

Travel Advisory for Auckland

For those of you who love great Mexican food, be warned - don't bother looking for it in Auckland.
You can scan the whole city, from the harbours of the North Shore to the bays of Manukau, but you will not be able to find a single great Mexican restaurant.

That is because we do not have many Mexican people living in Auckland.
Back in 1952, two Mexicans were spotted in the area, but due to their hard working nature and ambitions, they moved to Wellington where they became fabulously wealthy and cannot be bothered with running a restaurant.

Ah-ha, the Mexicans...
The hard working men and women who carry and lay the foundation of America.

The hard working willing and able,
that without them not one pool will be cleaned,
not one house will be painted,
not one garden be attended to,
not one child will be taken back from school and made lunch for.

You see, Hillary Clinton was right when she said: "It takes a village to raise a child"
She just did not disclose that this village is located …

NZ wine war

Most people know that New Zealand fought alongside OZ and the US against the German empire in WW2,
but almost nobody knows that in 2009 Germany struck back.

Thousands of cartons containing NZ made white wine, were denied entry into Germany because they contained dangerously high levels of copper. (used in white wine for clarification)

NZ wine makers shrugged their shoulders, saying that the Germans are too strict, and set the sails of their ships to the shores of the US of A, where overfed baby boomers are still sipping chilled, NZ made white wine in tall fluted glasses, laced with dangerously high levels of copper...

Disclosure: This poem, although based on a real news story I have read, is filled with inaccuracies like:
I did not verify if the white wine went only to the USA, we may have shipped some to the land of OZ, where we usually ship our young and brightest.

Adventure cycling

When Jules suggested a cycling trip to Tajikistan, I put my foot down.
It has all the attractiveness of being gay in Alabama.
What is it with him wanting to explore far away lands on bikes?
I say: "bugger all the New Age slogans."
The path less traveled ould be less traveled for a reason.
There could be landmines and sun scorched mountains filled with men in pyjamas and bad dentistry,
drooling on my tight Lycra cycling outfit.
There could be bed bugs and undrinkable water and nothing to eat but the dust from the gravel road we will be cycling on.(and I'm a vegan)

Skin colors and how we don't really see them

I chose the colors of my skin when I was in the womb.
I looked at my father’s pale complexions, and chose my mother’s persian brown tones.
I thought that it will weather better the hot Mediterranean sun, I was about to be born into.

All my life, I thought of myself as a brown skinned woman.
Especially when I laid my naked body next to European boyfriends of the past.

On a recent trip to India, at a remote village in a forgotten part of the world, an old Indian woman in a colorful sari, run her wrinkly hands across my face and forearm, while speaking softly in incomprehensible hindi.

I raised a questioning eye to my driver; “She said you are so beautiful and white. As white as the sweet milk of a water buffalo.”

She did not see my skin, nor its colors- she saw a privileged woman who never toiled the fields under the hot sun.

She saw a privileged woman who did not have to carry water from a well in a clay pot on her head, and when she saw privilege- she saw white.



Comments:

Alina Bolano: "be…

Global warming and the human condition- my version

Everyone wants to be inspired nobody wants to know.Make us happy, glad, desired,nobody wants to grow.
Tell us we are pretty,tell us all is well.Take this trash- its dirtyand put it in your cell.
If we don’t smell it now,it’s probably not real.If you don’t tell us how,then how are we to heal?
We do not want our eyes to open,It feels so good to sleep.Yes, it feels hot like an oven,did someone increased the heat?
What da’ya mean there’s still much to invent?Jesus walk on water, multiplied the fish without a net,We too made modern miracles,didn’t we invented the internet?
Don’t we all love music?it sooth our sleep in bed.Wait, let me crack up my ipod,I think I hear a preacher, messing with my head.
Everything that happens,has a purpose, a reason, a thread.If something is extinct today,something else starts to spread.
Why da’ya talk of doom?I don’t like to be scared.Wait, let me crack up my ipodI think I hear a preachermessing with my head.

Weekend at home

My husband Jules makes a fabulous cup of cappuccino. He always jokes proudly that if after his retirement from Wall Street, we fall upon financial bad times, he can always get a job as a barista. Meanwhile I love his coffee in bed on weekends, love to leave the bed unmade and sink into the sofa with a book.
On Friday I attended Phil Evans' art opening at Village Arts Kohukohu. It was great strolling through the very well thought and well made installations, read the wise and humorous quotes and enjoy its whimsical twist. For all artists and art lovers, if you plans take you to the Far North of NZ, make sure to stop and see it.

Mom, I ain't gonna grieve for you no more.

Pain you’ve been my company as I’ve walked along your shore
Mom, I ain’t gonna grieve for you no more.
I’ve shed so many tears when you were sore
When you were ill or wrong or weak and hurting to the core.
Mom, I ain’t gonna grieve for you no more.

Everyone fears death and pain and lack
but I am sick of hunching and pretending I’m a duck
Pretending that I need the fish, the food the muck
When I know I am a soaring eagle, wanting nothing from the pack.

I could live atop a snowy mountain range
Where rivers runs amok, it ain’t that strange
I select the memories I choose to live with, at my age
Mom, I ain’t gonna grieve for you no more- I‘ve open up the cage.

Saying "Mom" brings fuzzy memories to most
But I am still fighting all your ghosts
One day I'll be too tired to remember all the worst
I'll look upon my pain and tell it to get lost!

This is my version of advertisement for NZ Ministry of Tourism.

Come to New Zealand,
These islands will seduce you
with their beautiful women,
in tribal tattoos running down their lower backs
or up their shapely legs.

Come to New Zealand,
Where the men are so handsome
in their muscles and their smiles,
you can barely take your eyes of them.
And you tell yourself you are an artist,
and you are just observing the human anatomy
of how the muscle connects to the bone,
but you will be lying.

Come to New Zealand,
these islands will surprise you.
Where the wine aplenty and the cheese is good.
Where the soil is rich with music,
and adults still wear no shoes.
In the countryside, most leave their doors unlocked
and the fields are filled with herds
and funny looking birds.


Here are some of the comments I got for this poem on Facebook:
Suneal Varma: I like this....The tourism industry will be proud...it's better than mine.

Tali Landsman: Thank you Suneal. I have to admit that it is full of generalizations, but so what - this is poetic license...

Theona Turner: come to NZ ... th…

Why I live on the shores of an empty harbor.

I live on the shores of a vast empty harbor,
where an occasional boat cuts the silvery lines of the water,
or a long carved waka (canoe) rowed by a dozen men with strong brown arms.
Men with wide chests and beautiful tattoos.

I can imagine being a child, running into the arms of a strong brown dad
with bare feet and the smell of the sea dripping from his shorts.
My dad was not a strong Samoan or a handsome Maori man.

He was a white skinned Russian with pale green eyes and a weak body,
made weaker by a hand grenade that exploded into his stomach and legs.
He spent the years of my childhood recovering from that war.
But we had some good times too.

My first husband used to cry and yelp in his sleep.
He was a paratrooper like my dad.
He was taken to war when he was nineteen and did not see home for almost ten months.
I don’t remember what war he fought in and what for.
There were too many to count.
I do remember loving the blue in his eyes.

So now I reside by a vast empty harbor,
on a western forgotten coa…