Sunday, January 31

Ok, I'm back...

The Spaniards defended themselves from this castle in the 1600's. In the background a floating city, largest boat I have ever seen in the 21st century
pristine beach
the food is delicious, and so is the surrounding, people are friendly

... reluctantly back! This was my first visit to the Caribbean, and I was impressed. The glossy brochure images you always see actually became reality. The sea water, azure-blue, crystal clear, in the upper 70's Fahrenheit. The air upper 80's. I believe one reason why the water looks so alluring, is that the sand below is almost white, making it a perfect situation to reflect and assimilate the blue sky above.
$577 later, a tip for the chambermaid and a few dollars for food, I am scratching my head: Why didn't I stay longer? Oh well, it was a teaser -  they got me hooked! 
Now I am back to 12F (-10C) again, or something thereabouts and will attempt to endure more cabin-fever. 
The job situation in the US is still in dire straits - and I am hurting. I have to reinvent myself to blast away the blues, go back to my roots. I used to to teach violin, rather successfully I must say, but that was years ago. Now I am tempted to pick up the thread, because even during this recession parents still want their kids to play an instrument, at least in my vicinity (the Hobbit shire). And then in March, I will find out if I get this craft-teacher job in September. Cross your fingers.
I apologize, this must be a lot of personal ramblings. But sometimes I need to vent that as well!
Be healthy, do good, and be back... greetings, Lukas.


Friday, January 15

Anger doesn't help much

Seneca addresses the question of mastering anger in three parts: 1. how to avoid becoming angry in the first place 2. how to cease being angry and 3. how to deal with anger in others. Seneca suggests, in order to avoid becoming angry in the first place, that the many faults of anger should be repeatedly remembered. One should avoid being too busy or deal with anger-provoking people.

Personally, I am not angry at anyone, but I am unsatisfied. The catastrophe in Haiti made my head spin. It shows how fragile we all are.
Don't quote me on this, because I lost track after the first billion dollars. I believe the US is spending somewhere in the vicinity of three billion a month in the Middle East. Unbelievable - and this for what, eight years now?!
Well, maybe I am a "little bit angry".
All these resources could have found a constructive place, a betterment for civil society. But no, they just got squandered, blown away, literally! We, the United States could be energy independent, right now. But no politician dares to open the proper page in the cookbook, the recipe there shall remain a secret as long as Exxon, Mobile and all the others rule.
It's sad, and yes - I am "a little bit angry".

Post Scriptum: I hope we will run out of fossil fuels soon, in particular oil.  Then we can reinvent our approach to a more healthier way to live, and all the armies in Sudan, Nigeria and the Middle East have nothing more to fight for.

Wednesday, January 13

What can we do, for real?

I am flying out to the Caribbean next week for a few days, was hoping to gain some sun-rays, relax and recuperate.  Now this!
Haiti is one of the most impoverished nations in the western hemisphere to start off with, now they are in shambles.
The earth-quake destroyed the infrastructure of an already nimble and fragile nation. How can we help?
I feel stupid now to fly to this area just to gain regeneration for my own egoistic reasons.    

Sunday, January 10

a new decade of fear?

I am really sick of it, I had it, I quit, opt out, or whatever. The fear-mongering tactics of the government grind down my nerves. OK, so there was this incident lately of a fellow who boarded a plane on Xmas from Amsterdam, fire-bomb explosives in his underwear. Just think about it, it is almost funny, a guy with "loaded diapers".
But that's not the point. The issue is more volatile than that. Soon (they already started) each passenger on an airplane will be strip-searched, either by a machine, or by incompetent humans. Wonder when they let you, or force you to fly naked.
Even then, there is no guaranty. I bet you, that people can swallow enough explosives into their stomach to create a major hazard, in plastic liners, ready to explode on command.
Whatever, thousands of people either die or get severely crippled in car accidents every day in the USA. Nobody talks about them. It is an un-proportional move to call this an emergency, a threat to the nation, a terrorist attack. Even if that guy had succeeded, blown up the plane, killed 290 something people, it would have been a tragedy, but compared to the statistics of every day's death toll, a minuscule droplet into the bucket.
I am urging you all, to disconnect from the theorem of fear. It creates bad blood and clouds our vision. 
Instead, courage is on demand and asked for. We have to stop this paralyzing witch hunt, Osama Bin Laden is dead. That's a fact. All right, it might be Fatamorgana, spelled without the "ph" , so I substitute the "f" now ...



Thursday, January 7

the cut...update, I turned blue

Legend has it, that there was a mighty strong man, some called him a giant. His name was Ophorus.  He observed the angst and need of poor people to cross a large river. They could not afford the ferryman. So by his good heart he choose to live in a simple hut just by the riverbed, and whenever someone called for him, he escorted them over to the other side for free.
One evening he heard the voice of a child: Can you carry me over? Of course, he said. And as he was wading through the waters his load got heavier and heavier. It was almost a miracle that he made it to the other side. The last steps before he went ashore he said to the child: I have carried and helped hundreds of woman and man much bigger than you, but none were as heavy as you. I felt right now that I was carrying the whole world on my shoulders. The child nodded and said: Yes indeed you did, you just carried the whole load and burden of the world. He looked at the child's face in astonishment and at that point realized that he had carried the Christ child over the river. From thereon his name was known as Christophorus.  

Wednesday, January 6

Purple Hands and White Snow

Ok, so I promised

I promised Sera that I would finish my woodcut within 48 hours, of course a silly venture. But I took it at heart and opened up an oil paint tube to do some test prints. The tube had a hole and mushed the paint all over me. Nevertheless, test prints are done and they look oh kay.

The winter is upon us and so is the snow. Therefore the picture on the right just to give you an idea.
Oh yes, the woodprint will depict somehow Christophorus carrying a child across a river, might it be the river Jordan, I don't know?! The image will be posted tomorrow or so, got to keep the Sera-deadline.

Friday, January 1

HAPPY 2010

A new decade, new yearnings, new dreams, new options. Maybe delightful surprises. May this new decade, starting with twenty-ten, will  turn out to be good for you all. The last one kind of sucked in my book, except for a few brilliant moments.