Wednesday, March 31, 2010

At the Playground.

c. David Grim (taken 3/20/10)

I've been appreciating the nice weather again. E. lost his access to the great outdoors when his daycare moved to its present location, and whenever I show up to get him the first thing he says is "We go to playground first, Daddy!" This (of course) means that I may or may not get the caffeinated fuel I need to keep going through the evening, but I don't usually have the heart to stifle his excitement. So off we go to "the slides".

I'll admit it took me awhile to get into the head-space that allows me to enjoy hanging out with a very young child. I was convinced that I was going to be bored pretty much constantly. But now I look forward to spending time with my son as the highlight of my day.

At the playground we throw a little compressed plastic ball around. It is a brightly-colored thing, with Marvel Superheroes depicted on its surface. E. can identify them, and I like hearing him say "The Ting, Oolverine, Ion Men, and The Hauk". We crawl all over the Jungle Gyms, and I watch him slide over and over. We take turn blowing bubbles, and then look at the ducks. On our way home we listen to the Kinks and he demands to hear his favorites (which he calls "La-La" and "Hey Hey!" ) again and again.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Changing the Channel.

c. David Grim (taken 8/19/08)

I didn't necessarily intend to (ever) attribute the quotes I posted last week. If I had, I would have done so immediately. I was a bit ambivalent about the number of responses I got regarding that choice. But in appreciation of the fact that a few people actually cared enough to remark upon the lack of attribution...

I wrote them. Kind of.

I mean... I didn't read them anywhere else. I felt like I was channeling something, and wrote down what came into my head without conscious revision. I certainly wouldn't put text in quotes without noting the source if it had been otherwise. Yet I felt strange about spelling out what had happened, so putting quotes around it and not commenting further seemed like an imperfect, but acceptable, solution.

I realize how nutty this all sounds, but there is a tradition of automatic writing in Western Literature. Sure, some folks insist that angels visited them, or that God dictated their words... but I wasn't going to make supernatural claims.

I did find the interaction with actual readers stimulating, and the experience made me reflect on the nature of authorship.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Our Shining City on the Hill.

c. David Grim (taken 4/6/08)

Sometimes it's difficult to realize just how resistant the United States is to change. Many Americans believe that we have earned a world-leading status due to our progressive approach, and that we have evolved rapidly, thus naturally earning our position relative to the rest of the world. We flatter ourselves that everyone looks at us enviously in the hopes of catching up. No doubt our quick embrace of new technologies has flattered this perspective. When it comes to materialism, we do indeed tend to get ahead, even of ourselves.

But when it comes to real structural change... the kind that would actually change the way we live, we have a strong reactionary segment that invests an inordinate amount of energy and other resources in maintaining the status quo. Even in areas that everyone agrees there exists major problems, our society is ultimately loath to make alterations of any serious substance. Health care is a particularly appropriate and timely example of what I'm referring to.

Given the outpouring of rancor over access to medical treatment, can you imagine what would happen if Obama took a page out of Russian president Dmitriy Medvedev's playbook, and eliminated two entire time zones? I can't think of anything more damning to call the president than the "Anti-Christ", but I'm sure his opponents could. But how do the Russians respond? An online petition opposing the measure with 13,000 signatures. Could the proverbial Facebook "Head of Lettuce" or "Deranged Squirrel" get more fans than that?

And how exactly is this move by Medvedev going to affect people's lives? Ponder this quote from the petition's text: "[i]n the winter, darkness will come almost at lunchtime, which isn't convenient and is psychologically quite hard." Yikes.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

The Safety of Conformity.

c. David Grim (taken 4/12/09)

And on and on...

"The ironic thing is that these are often the same blunt minds that bemoan the fact that not enough people listen to them, yet the bulk of mainstream "culture" is directed at their demographic because theirs is the least nuanced, and thus the easiest to grasp. They prefer not to have their worldview challenged, and thus reach for the most mundane concepts to consume. If they don't have a convenient category within which to place the phenomenon, then they are anxious, even without the realization that their chosen paradigm has been threatened. The thing is however... that I suspect the concealed heterogeneity in the secret thoughts of all individuals would simultaneously fascinate me and evoke a surprising sensation of identification. Instead I'm exposed to the safety of conformity."

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

To Forget that Others Exist.

c. David Grim (taken 8/3/09)

And yet this too...

"I'm wondering why so many exurbanites display a bovine herd-like mentality with absolutely no awareness of the concept of personal space. I guess it's self-evident that human proximity encourages a sense of conscious orientation regarding our fellow creatures. Perhaps it's necessary to cull the herd, but if it's not the appropriate response in your context, and the truth is that we rarely talk of such a need, no matter how obvious it seems, then we must seek an alternative solution (no matter how temporary). You might think that people who live in a place with more acreage for each inhabitant would have an intuitive sense for how others might value breathing room. But yet so often we learn that these folks have only learned to take space for granted. They have developed the ability to forget that others exist. This is why they drive cars with size that appears completely gratuitous. This is why they wander in public spaces obliviously, as if their agenda alone mattered. Ultimately this is also why so many of them become progressively close-minded rather than gaining the useful perspective that there are alternative opinions, ideas, beliefs and ways to live that may be (and often are) just as much (and often more) valid then their own."

To be continued...

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Wait for the Punchline.

c. David Grim (taken 4/18/08)

And look...

"Oh how we understand process and means of delivery. Kids today can tell us a number of ways to get from here to there, but somehow the substance and import of the information is neglected. Attention spans have dwindled to virtually nothing. Everyone waits for the punchline, or the kernel that can be exploited for material gain. Perhaps we no longer have the time nor inclination to see the connective threads as conduits for significance, or rather the superstructure that makes everything interrelated. And it's not as if there is a "right" association , a proper relationship... but it's a function of consensus and mirroring. People look for recognition, which is generally simply projection. We've assimilated our pasts, which has no relation to our future aside from preceding it. Yet we shape every experience we have with what came before it. We can't get there from here, but we can reach an approximate point that resembles what we've imagined. If we are mentally "healthy" by conventional terms, we can even pretend that we've arrived at a place that we expected. How glorious it is to be that focused. Sure it's a delusion, but a useful one if we want to fully engage in society as it's organized. Still, what if we don't like the map we've inherited? Where does our will enter the superstructure? What small role can we have in shaping it, and how indelible will the mark we leave upon it be? Most nowadays are mere consumers. If people don't realize that they are just receptors."

Monday, March 22, 2010

Another Node in the Universe.

c. David Grim (taken 4/11/08)

More of this:

"Most of our triumph, and grief, and reputation, and personal meaning is simply the folly of self-importance. We think it matters that we are here because there is no other way to live, and even if we accept the reality of our transient nature, we still make our choices, whether informed or subconsciously, whether passive or active, whether deliberately or impulsively, we do act, and to us it will make a difference, but it is a credit to ego alone that we think we matter. I'm not suggesting that we not participate, but rather that we embrace the humility that can save us from ourselves. Why accept the proposition that isolation is possible? We all have the same name, and that is called "everyone", so when we look at others with disgust, or contempt, or affection, or bonhomie, or fellow-feeling, or jealousy, or respect, we are implicating ourselves as much as our targets. And we must remember that we are all moving targets endlessly shifting, and when we think we have met our marks, it is only the illusion of impact in memory. Sure, our aim was true, but this is no grand accomplishment because anything that emanates from us encounters another point in the grid, another node in the universe."

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Scenes from the Riverbed,

c. David Grim (taken 8/3/09)

Here's something I came across recently:

"We are disjointed, striated, selves deteriorating after coalescing. There is no team. It's everyone for himself. And sure there's a hierarchy, but everyone takes a turn when her time comes. The first shall become last as circumstances change, the environment shifts, and that which is evolutionarily preferable along with it. People will cling to their own gods. Thinking that something like truth exists, only to trip on the ever-widening cracks in their worldview. Soon they appear to bound over these chasms with crazed looks, but eventually and inevitably, they come up short. Because no one remains eternally young and adaptable. We become marks in time. From our own limited perspectives we seem to be etched indelibly into stone, but the truth is that we inscribe ourselves on a riverbed, with millions of tons of water passing over us without pause, and we are effaced in less than an instant."

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Pittsburgh Art Events 3/19-20/10

c. David Grim (taken 1/17/09)

Atypically for the middle of the month, there are some art-related events to enjoy this weekend. Unfortunately for those on tight budgets, a few of the best things happening cost money.


The Mattress Factory is unveiling work from a handful of artists who have completed residencies at the museum. Karl Burke, Rhona Byrne, Brian Griffiths, Bea McMahon and Dennis McNulty (all from either London or Britain) are all included. Mark Garry and Georgina Jackson are the curators. The reception for the show (7-9PM), entitled "Nothing is Impossible" costs $10 to attend.

Meanwhile Manchester Craftsmen's Guild is having their annual fund-raising event. There will be over 100 pieces of art in various mediums from 80 artists, as well as food and music. "Table of Elements 2010" runs from 5:30-8:30. It'll cost you $30 at the door.

CMU offers "wats:ON? Festival 2010: Adventures In Virtuality", an interdisciplinary festival featuring artist who work in both analog and digital media. You can read all the details about this multi-day extravaganza HERE. And if you do make your way over to the fancy college,stop by at the Miller Gallery for the Carnegie Mellon MFA Thesis Exhibition. The reception runs from 6-8PM. To my knowledge, these events should all be free.

Finally, Melwood Filmmakers highlights the work of Heather Joy Puskarich with an opening from 6-9PM. "My Deviant Muse: Photographic Imagery in Glass" sounds fairly self-explanatory. Let this Texan show you what "Kilnforming" is all about.


Come back over to Oakland for the Black Maria Film Festival at the aforementioned Melwood Filmmakers. Every year I have the best intentions of checking out the "most prestigious annual touring festival of independent film and video". Hell, it's even 'cutting edge'! It starts at 7:30 PM, and you'll even have the chance to meet the founder.

If you still have energy on Saturday night, stop by the Meter Room for the "Re-Model Gala" (7PM). It's a fashion show displaying belly-dancer apparel and accessories made from recycled materials. Of course you'll see these costumes in action, worn by the members of Tribe of Azhar. Featured designers include John Ross, Marcel Walker, Bella Bloom, Phillipe Velasquez, and Beth Steinberg. Suggested donation is $10.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Daily Routine.

c. David Grim (taken 4/8/08)

I'm starting to learn how to eliminate as many extraneous activities from my life as possible. It's becoming all about end results. I want to shed the pounds that I gained over the winter months. And since I don't enjoy "exercising" and therefore wouldn't be motivated to engage in it, I'm taking as many walks as my schedule (and the weather) allows. That's going pretty well, aside from the passive-aggressive behavior of some of the local youth (like throwing empty bottles and such).

I've stopped playing any online/computer games- no more facebook scrabble for awhile. And no aimless searching on the net. If I want "down time", I put my head in a book, thus advancing my progress toward my reading goal.

I've also drastically cut down on my DVD watching. I haven't started any new television series, and I rarely watch a feature-length movie. In fact, if I get any TV time at all, it is usually at the GF's house. I just spend a lot of time badgering her to change the channel*.

Of course my main priority is spending quality time with my son. We're frequenting the coffee shop or the park if we're not playing in my apartment. Add in work, the sporadic drawing session, and the occasional visit with friends...and that's my life. It seems strange that I can encapsulate my life in such a short post. Now if I could only find time to clean my apartment and do my laundry, I'd be set.

*As I write she's flipping between "America's Top Model" and "Scrubs", but when I'm done with this, I'm going to commandeer the remote.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Capgras Delusion.

c. David Grim (taken 7/4/09)

Last time I went to Half-Priced Books I took hours to go through their inventory. I even had time to do something I normally don't do when I go there- I combed through the fiction section looking through every shelf for authors I was familiar with, or interested in trying out for the first time. This process was almost tedious by the end, and I took several cigarette breaks outside in the interim. I hadn't eaten before going there, so by the time I had a stack picked out I was light-headed to the point of dizziness.

When I got home with my purchases I stacked them in two piles on my living room shelf, and decided to just read them in random order, without deliberating about which one I wanted to digest next. Now I'm half way through.

I've discovered just how dissatisfying reading novels can be. It's not that I haven't enjoyed the bulk of them, but rather that after consuming as many as I have over the last 15 years, my standards for excellence are quite high. That's why when I find myself engrossed (as I am now with Richard Powers' "The Echo Maker"), I feel fortunate. Without providing an in depth review like I used to do on my old blog, I'll simply mention that it is about a man who gets in a car accident and manifests a rare condition called Capgras Syndrome. Look it up.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Yeah. Bring it On.

c. David Grim (taken 6/14/09)

Daylight Saving Time took me completely by surprise this year. Perhaps that's due to the ridiculous winter we had. So far March seems like a lamb, and I hope it stays that way through April. God knows I don't want any more work cancellations.

It does seem like DST is earlier every year, but I know that's only an illusion. However, it does happen quicker than it did prior to 2007. Did you know that the change from the first weekend in April was due to the Energy Policy Act of 2005? Apparently Congress reserves the right to change it back too, pending an energy-consumption study. It seems like an altogether visceral effect in my life.

Driving to work this morning, I was struck by the darkness of the commute. I know it will only last a few weeks, but it is an extreme change. Of course the compensatory benefits involve more pleasant evening walks and the opportunity to take my son to the park after work. Good stuff.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

A trip down memory lane.

c. David Grim (taken 4/5/08)

Yesterday I took the opportunity to revisit my college years on a facebook group page. There were tons of photos of people that I haven't talked to, or even thought about, in years. There was also a discussion page and all the attendant comments of nostalgia that one would expect with such images. I got a kick out of it at first, enjoying a few of the memories that had slipped my mind over the ensuing decades (and boy, that's an odd term to use and reflect upon).

There was a long time after I attended Pitt when I liked reminiscing about friends and acquaintances from that period of my life. Now I get a vague cringing feeling. It was truly odd to read about the impression I left on people that really didn't know me all that well, but with whom I spent a fair amount of time.

I guess (ultimately) that it's a good thing I feel a bit embarrassed thinking about those days. If I was still sentimental for that particular phase of my life, I'd have some real cause for shame. If I hadn't learned and evolved past the perspectives and philosophies that I held during that time, then I'd have to consider my adulthood pathetic. Of course I wouldn't have the objectivity necessary to make that assessment, but that wouldn't redeem me. Anyway, I spent some time lying in bed last night thinking about it.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Enough Already!

c. David Grim (taken 8/19/08)

Who knew that by Spring of 2010 the dialog about national health care would seem so tiresome that I'd simply hope for Congress to do anything on the matter, if only to end the ceaseless back-and-forth? Truthfully, I've heard so many bad ideas on the subject that I'd almost wish for them to just give up so we can go back to talking about Iraq. I guess the strategy of the GOP is officially working.

But the problem with the costs of medical care is too important and is not going away. It's not just that there are over 30 million people without insurance. It's not even that many people that have plans are under-insured. What galls me is that everyone in society is paying too damn much for what they are getting.

When it comes down to it, the system is not sustainable as is. Perhaps what we ought to do is levy a flat tax on everyone and then put all of our social security numbers in a hat. Then we can draw out a certain percentage (maybe 50%) and give those people access to doctors and hospitals, and let the rest just hope they don't get sick. The pharmaceutical and medical supply industries will still get paid, and it will be more just than the system we have now. But could we get it through Congress?

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Hittin' the streets again.

c. David Grim (taken 3/17/09)

Wow. Finally I had the chance to take a walk again. It was the first proper one I've gotten this year, and it was truly refreshing. I have that low level high that comes with getting the blood moving, and the muscles working. At the same time, I know it's good for my sanity and connects me with external reality.

Truth be told, it was a full day and I'm a bit amazed that I got as much done as I did for myself. I'm starting to reestablish the structure in my life that's been missing for months. I'm well past my reading goals, I'm back to blogging regularly, going to work, drawing, and spending quality time with my son. And I realize how all these things are crucial to my well-being. Now if I could only cut way down on cigarettes and coffee I might actually be able to claim a healthy lifestyle.

Tonight I walked around Lawrenceville with my friend M. We talked about movies, work, and relationships. The 45 minutes we spent on the street went by quickly. It's amazing how time passes when you are engaged fully. Anyway, I hope I can do this (at least) several times a week.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010


c. David Grim (taken 4/6/08)

Recently I had a short online discussion about the diversity of perspectives on NPR. Someone had implied that there is a certain homogeneity of political attitudes on public radio and that whatever this consists of can be used as a characterization for an editorial approach to an anthology of essays. It was meant as a convenient way to implicate both the book itself and anyone who enjoyed it. But to me, it resonated as a particularly myopic approach to criticism. It was an implication of everything that didn't fit this commentator's definition of "Real America".

Obviously this person has discounted NPR without having fully exposed himself to its programming. A quick illustration of this is the choice of guests on Terry Gross' Fresh Air to kick off this week. Yesterday she interviewed a professional dominatrix named Melissa Febos who put herself through college working in a Manhattan dungeon. Perhaps in isolation, this selection would seem to reinforce the contention that NPR is obsessed with a perverse urbanity capable of alienating Middle America. Certainly there are many prudish citizens that would find cause to bemoan the use of taxpayer dollars to promote such activity, and they might even have a point if the federal government had not gutted its funding for NPR during the Bush Administration.

But as if to directly contradict such notions, today's guest was David Walker, a former government comptroller, and adviser to Ronald Reagan and George HW Bush, and current CEO of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation. Walker spoke about the growing crisis of debt the federal government faces, and the dangers it presents to the future of the United States.

You know, it's easy to find fault with a media phenomenon that covers such a wide range of material, ideas and orientations. It's easy to cherry pick and cite the few things that you find particularly objectionable. It's a lot more difficult to be open to the totality of the presentation.

Monday, March 8, 2010

A Peculiar Find.

c. David Grim (taken 3/5/10)

Last weekend's Unblurred (the monthly art walk along the Penn Avenue corridor) turned out to be a lot of fun. It's not that I was particularly blown away by any specific show (although a lot of it ended up being worth seeing), but rather that I was accompanied by several artist friends during the evening.

If you ever get a chance to go gallery hopping with a group of visual artists, I heartily recommend it. The collective cynicism and varied tastes lead to interesting discussions. I don't think that we all agreed on any single exhibition of work, and that made it all the more amusing. But by far the highlight of the evening happened at a boutique on the periphery.

I had heard that this specific place was having a clearance sale to make room for new stuff, so I made sure to drag our little group inside. We had a quick look around before deciding to move on, and we were on our way out when one of us stopped and stared at a little painting on a nondescript rack. He exclaimed, "Hey, I did that. That's one of my paintings!", and turned it around to show us his signature. We marveled at that for a minute before leaving.

On our way out, we noticed that our friend was lingering and speaking in hushed tones to the owner. They looked up at us awkwardly as we waited. Of course, our friend walked through the exit, painting in hand. In response to our inquiries he mentioned that he bought the aforementioned painting for $25. It had originally sold for $800. We all got a kick out of that.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Book Review: "State by State: A Panoramic Portrait of America" (2008)

c. David Grim (taken 3/7/09)

I haven't much felt like posting the lengthy book reviews on here that I used to write for my previous blog. I always thought that it would be nice to be able to look back on them and remember my experience with, and my thoughts about, the stuff I read. But I haven't revisited any of it yet, and I don't know if I ever will. For now, at least, it's not going anywhere.

This past week, though, I read something I'd like to recommend- "State by State: A Panoramic Portrait of America", edited by Matt Weiland and Sean Wilsey. It's a diverse mix of highly personal essays about our 50 states (and a bit about DC as a bonus). I can't imagine that anyone could pick it up without learning a lot that they didn't already know. Plus, many of the individual anecdotes about the experiences of the authors are entertaining, and occasionally moving.

The project was inspired by a WPA initiative that saw some of the greatest writers of Depression-era America comment on our national heritage, and write guides for both edification and travel. The combined output exceeded 5000 pages, and constituted an effort representing a scale that far outstrips what the contributors of "State by State" have tried to accomplish.

Still I was astonished by the rich detail and quality writing of many of the authors, some of which I was already well familiar. With an anthology like this, you are bound to find your favorites, and be offended now and again. But that shouldn't put you off from finding this, and reading it as soon as you can.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Pittsburgh Art Events 3/5-6/10

c. David Grim (taken 4/6/08)

There sure are a lot of fish fries and church socials this weekend in honor of Lent, but if your tastes run toward art, you have some additional options.


Yay. Once again we come to another Unblurred on Penn Avenue. Don't expect the maelstrom of snow that we experienced in February, but make sure that you wear a lot of warm clothing, because I hear it's going down to 15 degrees Fahrenheit.

A personal highlight for me will be "Focus Your Attention", the juried photography show at Fast>>Forward Gallery (3700 Penn Ave) from 6-10PM. I've got a couple of images in the show, but I haven't seen anything else to be included so I'm expecting some great surprises.

And Carolyn Wenning is unveiling her new work- not at her own SPACE (4823 Penn), but rather at Modern Formations (4919 Penn). She's making room at her gallery for Michael Benedetti, who is informed by his emplyoment in Pittsburgh factories.

We've also got local photographers Dan Thompson and Jamie Sauer at Most Wanted Fine Art (5015 Penn), a group show of environmentally-themed artwork at the Pittsburgh Glass Center (5472 Penn), Steven Miller at ImageBox (4933 Penn), and a special surprise at Bob Ziller's Awesome Books (5111 Penn, formerly the Clay Penn).

Down in Lawrenceville, Zombo Gallery brings back CZM for a display of fake vintage album covers. She's got a hard-on for 50's-60's abstract art, adverting, and science fiction imagery, so I'm sure it ought to be fairly "groovy" (if you're into that sort of thing). And up the street at Remedy Lounge you can check out the works of Ginger Green, which will be hanging in this alcohol-saturated environment starting at 8PM.

If you get a hankering to head downtown, drop by the 709 Penn Gallery for Jennifer Howison's "Nesting". You might have seen her small limbless hand-painted wooden dolls (reminiscent of the classic Fisher Price Little People), but this show consists of gouache paintings and original drawings. That runs from 6-9PM.


I guess the Irish are getting an early start on their annual orgy of bacchanalia this weekend, as evidenced by the number of ethnically-themed options for getting soused. But of course that's nothing especially new for the 'Burgh, where oftentimes little excuse is needed for getting drunk enough to puke in public.

Meanwhile the aforementioned Zombo is helping to turn the Arsenal Bowling Lanes into a semi-permanent art gallery, with revolving shows on its walls. Take in the music of the Surf Zombies and the advertised Go-G0 girls between lanes starting at 6PM.

Panza Gallery rolls out its reception for two painters named Bill (Pfahl and Vrscack) from 6-9PM. Stop by and see the competent craft of two artists who have been working in their medium for decades.

If you want to take in a great night of Rock-n-Roll, stop by the Brillobox for a show (10PM) headlined by Slim Cessna's Pittburgh outfit (which includes his son George Cessna, Rob Levkulich and Ian Green). George is heading off to college, so you'll want to make sure to see him before he splits town.

Saturday and Sunday

While I'm not in the habit of mentioning music in this blog, I feel compelled to drop a note on Fantastic Voyagers 3- a quirky mini-fest of "mellow mutant music madness" curated by Mike Tamburo that's happening this weekend at the charming Morning Glory Coffeehouse in Morningside. There are 20 acts playing and the full-schedule can be found here. A $5-15 donation is requested.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The King is Dead, Long Live the King!

c. David Grim (taken 8/4/09)

With these images I'm breaking a few informal guidelines that I've adhered to (so far) on this blog. For one thing, they are pretty straight documentary shots. Additionally I decided to upload more than one representative photo, because I feel they work better in concert. There's not a whole lot of artistry here. I was driving on a back road in Southeastern Ohio, and came across these trailers. The obsessive nature of whomever painted this screed astonished me.

And that's how I'm breaking another rule I meant to keep rather closely- I'm straying dangerously into the realm of politics with this post. I've deliberately not read too deeply into the messages, but I get the feeling that the culprit is one of those newfangled "tea-baggers" that I've been hearing so much about lately. While I respect the right of others to express themselves freely in this "land of opportunity", I have to admit that I find this kind of thing fairly obnoxious.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Finding a Ready Made.

c. David Grim (taken 6/23/09)

Once in awhile I spot a texture in my environment that simply appeals to my eye, and I have to search for my camera and capture a certain quality within it. It doesn't matter what I'm doing; I simply have to conclude the action I'm involved with and enter a different head-space. If I'm away from home, I'm always gracious that I have my equipment nearby. Otherwise, there's the chance that the vision will plague me for days, and I'll rue the lost opportunity.

In the case of this image, I was aided by the morning sunlight. I was relieving myself in the motel bathroom where my GF and I had over-nighted, and I noticed the old fashioned glass in the window. I don't know the proper name for this ridged pattern, but I recognize it intuitively from my childhood past. I'd guess it's no longer in fashion.

I think of this type of photo as a "ready made". The subject was there waiting for me (or anyone) to shoot it. I didn't necessarily have to do much to set it up. It was merely my attention to detail, and my habit of scanning my surroundings, that led me to make the image. While I feel a bit lazy to receive a piece whole like that, I'd be a bit of a crank not to accept it with an open heart. Regardless, I find it fun to look at.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Dark Night of the Soul.

c. David Grim (taken 7/4/09)

On Saturday I spent an inordinate amount of time making up for an unfortunate occurrence. Sometime on Friday evening I lost my external hard drive. For various reasons this was a truly disturbing interjection into my reality. It cost me well over a $100 to replace it, and although I was able to do so, I still felt the pain of having to spend the money on something I had the day before. Also, the bulk of everything I've created artistically over the last two years was on that drive. So were virtually all the photos I've taken of my son since he's been born.

At first I was troubled by the idea that someone could pick up my files, and claim them as his/her own. But upon reflection it struck me that despite the fact that the photography and poems included represent work that I'm quite proud of, I don't have to worry about anyone getting rich off them. Believe me, I've made some efforts in that direction already, and I stand fully behind my stuff. If a thief was able to break through with the material, then I could easily prove that they were my images originally. I'd benefit from the publicity of the affair.

On the other hand I found it a bit of a relief that I had everything on that drive on other storage devices. I had not gotten around to cleaning my memory cards and zip drives of my files. It's a good thing I haven't been very organized.

So despite the loss of time and money this entire situation comes down to simple inconvenience. i've dealt with a lot worse. And I've had another chance to review my recent work. Good times.