Thursday, June 22, 2006

I want you to imagine that you’re wearing a delightful off-white flirty skirt (okay if you’re a guy that’s a bit of a stretch so just imagine your favorite pair of khakis or something) and you’re feeling pretty good about yourself as you stroll down the supermarket isle. You grab an IZZE…the more nutritious and delectable choice over the common soda to go with your lunch (70% fruit juice, 30% sparkling water, no sugars added, cute glass bottle…). You head to the ten items or less lane to purchase your 99 cent beverage, and as you approach, happy and unaware of any possible dangers, your foot begins to slip ever so slightly out from beneath you. (My guess is the ice cream cooler beside the checkout stand is leaking a bit and a small puddle of water has formed which ever so small is more than a match for your traction-less flip-flop.) As you begin to slip you reach out with your left hand to grab the counter at which time you loose control of your drink of choice, which in an almost slow motion effect, slips from your finger tips and goes crashing to the floor. I think your first thought (after the initial shock, of course) would be one of remorse, embarrassment, and “oops…did I do that”.

Now at this point, I imagine a store clerk would run over to offer assistance…another would probably just stare in disbelief and then ask you if you ‘slipped?’ (Thank you Captain Obvious!) The preliminary shock beginning to wear off, you would then look down to see a puddle of brazing purple red pomegranate juice encircling your feet. You would begin to feel the sticky mess dripping down your knees. Gripping the edge of the counter you would (still not thinking terribly clear) step back to move out of the way of the huge mop heading your direction. In doing so you suddenly notice with some apprehension all the glass about your feet, and then with more alarm you feel the crunch of glass and the tiny sliver pricks in the sole of your foot. Your flip-flop is filled with minute bits of glass, and you are backing up right on top of them! Stop! You pull your sticky dripping glass covered flip-flop off of you foot and dangle it over a paper bag that a store clerk is carefully shoving shards of broken bottle into and shake the glass ever so forcefully from your shoe.

Now thinking more clearly (probably because of the pain of glass in your foot), you take this moment to exam the situation. You are standing on one foot, holding a flip-flop in your right hand and the counter top in your left. A store clerk is at your feet with a paper bag filled now with glass. Another clerk is trying to tear open a paper towel roll as the first clerk assures her that the store will pay for the paper towels if she opens them. Farther away a bagger is still filling bags of groceries while yelling out, “Did you slip?” “Are you okay?” “Did you cut your foot?” “Is that blood?” “We have tweezers if you want to pull the glass out of your foot!” “I don’t understand…did she slip?” “Did she cut her foot?” “Do you want another drink?”

Will she ever be silent, you wonder. Now the whole store is watching. What a fiasco. You decline the tweezers or another drink. You tell them that you just want to pay for what you have and go home. I would imagine, at that point, you would pay your bill, hobble out of the store, and try and decide what has upset you more…the sticky blood and juice mixture drying to your legs and feet or the fact that your favorite flouncy flirty skirt is now tie-dyed! I mean…that’s what I think you would be thinking. It’s not like I’m speaking from experience or anything. I mean I’m just hypothesizing, right. Just a little ol’ funny – made up story…haha…right…ha… umm … ha.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

This morning I did something that I haven’t done in quite sometime…
I watched the sun rise.

I’m not really sure why I did it. I don’t really know if I even expected it. And I’m still not sure why I was awake. But at approximately 7:25am Mountain Standard Time, I took a class of “homestyle” orange juice, my fuzzy blue slippers, and an oversized BYU hoodie, and I stood outside on my three-step stone stoop in front of my apartment. I just stood there. I don’t know why. I wasn’t looking at anything in particular. I just sipped my orange juice and I stood there watching nothing and everything at the same time.

Then it happened…
the sun peeped over Y Mountain just a little.

The seemingly sudden moment of light caught my attention and for a full three minutes between 7:35 and 7:38 I watched. I watched as the sliver of light turned gradually into a shining ball of glorious radiance. I saw it actually move up from behind the mountain or the mountain moved down to expose the light, which way I’m not sure, but I saw and felt the movement. And as the glory of the sun revealed itself, or was revealed, I found myself beginning to grin. It happened as slowly and as progressively as the sun appeared…bigger and wider and broader until I felt the pinch in my cheeks; I continued to stare. By 7:40 the sun was so bright that I could no longer stare directly at it, and the cool morning air was beginning to dissipate as I felt the warmth seeping through my pajama pants. My orange juice nearly gone, my body warmed in the glow of the morning light, and a strange sense of happiness and wellbeing having filled my mind, I turned and walked back into my apartment.

Five minutes…it only took five minutes…
and life looked happy again.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Small, Medium, or Large

So…I got turned down for another job today. I’m trying to be optimistic about everything but rejection in any form hurts. The rejection wasn’t unfamiliar to me either. It pretty much was the same, right down to the wording and phrasing, of my last couple rejections. Boy, it’s all getting old very quick.

This time it was, “You're a great artist, but we’re looking for someone with a little more graphic design experience." I’ve heard this many times before…quite a few times in the last year. It always begins with, ‘Your artistry is incredible BUT…’ And ends with the basic, ‘We want someone in this or that field…sorry, not yours.’

What it comes down to is that I am a ceramics major. I chose this direction not out of longing to make money but out of a compelling desire to create. Have I chosen wrong? Now I’m faced with that evil and tiresome word…money. I have none, I need some, and I must find someone willing to exchange some form of labor for some crusty wrinkled greenbacks that will inexorably increase the design of my life.

But what can be done? It does not seem to matter how qualified I am for a position, how hard I will work, or what I can show to ascertain and prove my ability to do one heck of a job…because when it comes down to it, there will always be someone else applying for the position that has picked that right major. There are no random job openings for ceramicists so I must look elsewhere, yet, every time I apply for any other art position I get turned down because it's not my field of expertise.

. . .

Maybe I shall join my roommate, sooner rather than later, in scooping ice cream. I mean, that would be fulfilling, right? Shoveling multi-flavored creations into sugar cones and paper bowls just to watch giggly teenagers on first dates and tired mothers appeasing their young ones in exchange for those tired craggy pieces of paper with faces of dead presidents on them that will inevitably increase the subsistence of my life. It would be worth it...right.

For some reason, I just don't think so.

But lets face fact, at some point I may have to stop making decisions about glaze colors: will that be copper magnesium, gerstley borate, or nepheline syenite and think, rather, in terms of, “Yes sir, will that be a small, medium, or large?”