Define Crazy

To do something the same way every time and expect different results is the definition of crazy; unless you’re working on a computer.

Sometimes I spit right down the middle with half calmly still sitting in my chair because I have a job to do, half bouncing off the walls of my brain.

Two Faces

Two Faces

Cake Necklace

The cake necklace picture below reminds me of coming home from grade school. My Mom and I often made a cake to serve to our family after dinner, which also consisted of my brother and Dad. I add a qualification to the above sentence because my Mom often also said, “Let’s invent a cake.”

We tried all kinds of crazy things like spice cake with walnuts, fresh cherries, coconut, and sweet pickle chunks, all frosted in chocolate icing. We tested our concoctions even before they were cool enough to frost, after all if the experiment went bad the result wouldn’t be worth chocolate icing. Then of course, we each had a nice big second wedge of cake soon after to test the frosting cake mixture. After a short while we’d wonder, “Were we right? Was that cake really so good?” and we’d test it again.

I don’t remember a time went we weren’t proud of our creations so we’d celebrate with two nice BIG pieces of cake.

By this time the remaining slab on the cake platter looked a little wobbly with fork holes denting each side. Nibbling is never considered eating and doesn’t at all count except that the remaining piece of cake looked bad as well as being too small to cut into four pieces for dinner. So we ate it.

Often we’d make a second more conventional cake, one not needing so much testing, to share after dinner. My Mom and I were abused by the same guy but Mom made good memories and if I look a little wobbly myself in the painting called Cake Necklace just remember I’d eaten half a cake in less than an hour.

 Cake Necklace

Cake Necklace

Dieing Hurts But It Can Be Funny Too

My husband John can make even dieing of cancer funny. He’s almost run out of medications to extend his life and the last one had stunning side affects. He’s been giving himself injections in the stomach twice a day and now each sight is a big bruise and they’ve all run together, and because of his swollen spleen he looks like he’s about to ready to give birth. He’s big and he’s solid neon from his breast down past his belt line.

He has large bruises elsewhere but to see his right arm is like looking at a confused color changing lizard, from his large finger nail up to his shoulder, front to back, he’s red, black, yellow, and blue.

John took his bruises to his doctor and the nurse walks in, “What’s going on?” she said. John pulls up his shirt. The nurse stares a long time, bug eyed, at his chest. “Hey,” John says, “eyes up here!”

Number 029

Number 029

Ferguson Heroes In Action

I saw neighbors in Ferguson Missouri walk up to, kindly talk with, and sometimes sternly confront the militant trouble makers who’d come into their community to destroy people, property and steal. I saw several good people surround a law breaker making it impossible for him to cause damage. I heard that many neighbors broke into a local car dealership and took the keys to the new cars and all the spare tires home for the evening in order that these things not be stolen. That’s a lot of trouble they went to for someone else. Then the people brought these items back the next morning. The neighborhood did not prevent all breaking up and stealing but they put their lives in danger to protect their community and I believe they prevented much.

I attended George Washington High School in Watts, California in the sixties. The summer of the riots my friends spent ten days under their beds. Their Mom’s shoved meals under their beds to them. I attended a drawing club and two of our members, professional artists for an aircraft company, didn’t come and they stayed home from work for two weeks because their community was completely run but looters.

Law breakers travel immediately to natural disasters and areas of protest to create a riot, to break, destroy, and steal but the intrepid neighbors in Ferguson Missouri put themselves  to great inconvenience and great danger to prevent anarchy. My heroes.

The Place I Belong

As an artist I’ve assigned myself the job of reflecting what it is to be human. Then for years I’ve quizzed acquaintances as to why they enjoyed certain television programs and movies. I needed to know what it was in those shows that “feeds” the people. At the time I asked, the programs most loved were The Godfather movies, very well made, Cheers and Starsky and Hutch, both mediocre.

People recognized the two television programs were not well made but they didn’t care a bit. They loved the shows and envied the fictional characters for having a place where they belonged, a place where they were known and a place where they were valued.

“Yea,” I’d say, “but in the case of the Godfather most peoples’ “place” was that of being a servant, and that the place they filled got them horribly killed. “Every single person said,”Oh yes, I know but it was worth it; they had their place in the family.”

Here’s a thought, and not mine, a strong family. Make one yourself, one heading in a good direction. I hope to show this in the books write and illustration. I like to offer readers ideas like; such as invented holidays every month; weekly family nights, prayer if your so inclined, dealing with problems together, and sharing insights and treasures together, traditions, play, work, and spending a lot of time together. My books are laugh out loud funny unlike the unfortunate person below who is desperately searching for something she can’t name.


Theres Death In Me Still

Chemo- Brain Bird

I’m blaming John’s inability to communicate on his chemo therapy. He came in from outside saying,”Can you come out here and see this?”  But while he talked he had a tiny bird in his hand that stretched out his neck, looking like Waldo with a beak and bit John. The little guy occasionally reaching out one or other wing like he was offering a hand to shake.

I had so many things I needed to know,”Where did you get the bird?”  John’s answer: “I picked him up; come out and see this.” His answer was exactly and always the same as I asked, “Where did you pick him up?” “He just landed in you hand?” “Were you outside when you picked him up?” “Was he on the ground?” “Was he sitting beside you so you just picked him up?” “You told me not to pick up feathers because I’d get lice. Then you pick up a hole bird?”

I asked variations but I never got a variance in answers as we walked outside and all the while we watched an unblinking light in the sky AGAIN. We’d watched the light on previous nights. In the house and after a time I learned that John opened the front door in order to get me and the bird flew in. The bird landed on a table and was stunned for a moment which thrilled our cats.

I think a baby opossum I saw skulking through our large kiwi bush knocked the sleeping bird from his branch and that’s where we put the little fellow after his photo shoot. For a similar strange story about John searching the sky for read my book,’Eagles and Banana Peels’  found as an Ebook or paper back and sold by Amazon and others.

Bird 1

Bird 1

Bird 2

Bird 2




Bad As Well As Good Reminds Me

This picture is like repentance. Several years ago I decided to save a few poorly drawn pictures as well as good ones to remind me of what I’ve learned.

At about the same time I wondered why after I repented the great guilt was lifted, the sting was gone, but I still had the memories. Then I realized they also reminded me of what I’d already learned so I was less likely to repeat my problems.

 Deep Fried Chicken Feet

All These years I Thought I Was Cheating

I learned early from stories, movies, and the news that certain people are born with remarkable skills. My interests were in art, dancing, and music and I quickly learned I was traveling in a remarkable direction but a remarkably negative direction from normal in all three.

Dancing; I was swayback, my belly hung out, and I had a great case of pigeon toes instead of turn out.

Music; I joined a Baptist children’s chior and the preacher’s wife said, “The choir is suddenly very off tune,” she couldn’t get us back on and she couldn’t understand why. I explained it to her afterwards. She didn’t disagree but when I said, “It’s okay, I won’t come back,” she knew my musical offerings to God were more important than her ego in front of the congregation. I got to keep singing.

Art; my Mom taught art skills to my Girl Scout troop for years.  I could tell I wasn’t catching on and I could see by my mother’s demeanor she agreed. Later I was even fired as a florist. The shop couldn’t sell my creations with their “awful” color combinations and you should have heard the art students laugh in college. I laughed too because again and again after being taught a new concept it was obvious my work was a perfect example of what not to do in all facets of the new art principle.

I thought if I wasn’t born with math or spelling skills I was doomed to dumbness. When my teachers insisted I practice I thought they were asking me to CHEAT! After all if an employer asked and could I correctly spell, ‘disappoint’ he would then expect me to spell ‘abject failure’. Those were two words I had not ‘practiced’ 450 times in forth grade.

I’m used to failure and excitably surprised when I like my art and finally I learned I hadn’t been cheating. Perhaps children born with great skills are remarkable but more movies could be made about those who just won’t give up. And by the way I still had to readjust the word, ‘disappoint’ twice for this article. Ha.


Self Portrait

Self Portrait