Day 73:

This new writing tool in wordpress is very annoying. Anyway I was thinking of this poem with the repettive line of for the loss of this, the that was something or other. I remembered a horse.

I searched around and finally found this poem by Benjamin Franklin. I know little about him as I forgot all that I learned in high school but random stuff. I was excited to finally find this rime I kept hearing in my head with no words.

For the want of a nail the shoe was lost,

For the want of a shoe, the horse was lost,

For the want of a horse, the rider was lost,

For the want of a rider, the kingdom was lost,

and all for the loss of a horse shoe nail.

Here’s my attempt to describe my day and earlier hardships of quarantine:

For the want of catching a mouse, holes were found,

For the want of filling holes, the sink was removed.

For the want of the sink moved, the washing machine was moved.

For the want of putting back the washing machine with much labor,

A leak was found,

For the want of fixing the leak of the water on/off switch to everything,

A part was ordered and a bucket used,

And all for the want of a dead mouse, which magically appeared under the stove.

End of my attempt at the poem

So the triad of terribles in quarantine were: still having mouse/mice after months of work at getting rid of them, the dryer wasn’t working already, then the washer stopped working.

I wrote a bunch of stuff and erased the wrong stuff. Oh well. Things keep happening that continue to mean the kitchen is filled with stuff that goes in the laundry room. One thing gets fixed, then another suddenly stops working.

I’m going to say that there was a day in quarantine when I was in a terrible mood and really also angry as hell. I was dying to kill the mouse. I wished I could hit it over the head with something.

You have to understand that these mice started to appear in mid November. I won’t get into too much detail, but if you hire an exterminator they just put poison around and do not fill holes, at least the ones the Management Company was going to hire.

Anyway the get rid of the mice problem campaign began in erneast. It was good in that we stored all food out of the fridge in plastic containers and eating popcorn on the couch had a whole new risk to it.

If you had someone who for half a year came into your house, ate your food, ran around hiding from you and pooping everywhere and worst of all, darting out to run across some area of your house with no announcement or calling card, after that long a time, you’d be happy to have that person dead.

So it’s been an anoying day but a dead mouse was found, only the second one since the big mouse issue began. I’m hoping we patched up the holes well and will not see one again, but I’m not stupid. A battle has been won, important holes have been filled, but these creatures are relentless and are happy to quarantine with you after they’ve overstayed their welcome for four months of battle.

Anyway as much as I’m constantly imagining moving and living in a great house with a big garage work room and all sorts of other lovely specific office type rooms, I am still aware of being grateful for the small things.


Day 72: Glitter and Satan

I first wrote this whole post starting with the word glitter. Since then, I just realized maybe I haven’t written about it, but I’ve reached the part of day where you’re waiting to go to bed, not because you are tired or want to sleep but because the day has been wrung dry and there’s nothing left of it.

This is the familiar feeling of quarantine. I don’t want to watch a movie. Amazon took away Six Feet Under so I can’t watch it. I started reading an audiobook. Maybe I’ll listen to it or do word searches to “pass the time”. Having lived through life up til now, I know that passing the time is an insidious form of depression or maybe not that strong. It’s being half asleep in your life, waiting for something but waiting for nothing. Waiting to go to bed sounds like how it feels to be on a psych ward after visiting hours. Just waiting to take your night meds and go to bed. Is my home now like a hospital? Going outside feels like I’ve waited for a day pass and have a certain amount of minutes.

I had good things today, an art time with a friend talking of many things, making this drawing I posted here, playing Phase 10 with my family and winning, feeling calm and not too much indulgence into vague sadness. All good things. I ate an apple and even some broccoli. I didn’t do any cleaning. I feel relaxed and mostly not bad. My writer friend even told me about finding a huge black snake in his house and I read one of his short stories, a good one about a monster in a town. A pretty good day for not going outside even at 7pm to make noise. And I wrote basically two posts in this one.

Glitter turns out to be symbolic of joy during hardest of times, among other things. So being drawn to put glitter in my paintings lately when I usually don’t use it, may make sense. A burial mound may be filled with layers of dead bodies but also other things. Glitter is sometimes associated with magic although it turns out to be terrible for the planet. Something magical that seems made by fairies at the same time choking the earth.

In the show my kid is watching about vampires and witches and sirens, the devil character is named Cade. Maybe a reference to Cain and Abel. This Cade wants helpers and traps a vampire into a contract. (The devil loves contracts. How interesting that the God character doesn’t make contracts, just despotic pronouncements and hidden tests. I think if I was in an Old Testament myth I’d probably trust the devil who at least makes things clear from the beginning: “give me your soul and you get these things.” I’m not even sure the devil appears much. Well it looks like the devil is complicated but more like a lawyer than “God” who simply judges people and tells them what to do and punishes them.

Anyway Cade says he wants this guy to find the most potent of souls/people, those who are good by nature and do some evil trusted things. The good gone bad. Supposedly in another episode things get simplified. I guess quantity over quality.

Glitter would be the kind of thing Cade would want in a person. Someone who spreads joy and appears magical but is actually poisonous. it kind of describes most people who do their best to be good. They’re unaware of all the bad effects of their actions.

Now is the perfect time for testing lazy ethics. Oh I won’t put on a mask over here. I don’t see any people. The people over there aren’t 6 feet apart… on 5/18 32 people in nyc died from Covid. I was looking at this chart and mixed up cases with deaths. Then there’s the whole state vs just the city.

I don’t know what I’m saying except this drawing I did has messed up numbers unless I figure out which high numbers I was looking at but I still want to make a painting out of it

Probably number of Covid cases reported…

Day 71: 5/22: Metaphors of Burial Mounds; Glitter or no Glitter?

I’m still working on Burial Mounds; they may seem abstract. I also buried house shapes in the mounds.

I made this drawing in the dark a few nights ago watching Six Feet Under. I was excited that a black flair pen actually kept working when they usually run out quickly.

If the mounds are time, the bottom layer is the beginning of the pandemic and the top layers continue. Am I emerging from the mound? I could envision a painting of it, of coming out of it, climbing out. So far I have been stuck in it.

This mound I cut out of the old altered book. I’m still not done writing the NYC death numbers in April, day by day.
This is the piece from last Friday in session.
This is the same painting I’m covering with ripped up pages from Cobain’s journal and threw gold glitter on it.

I do keep making things on top of other things. I covered a painting I made in a session last week or started to cover it with ripped up pieces of this altered book I’m making now.

Art has a different feeling than before. Making stuff. One person said there was too much glitter in the painting of the mound. Another liked it for the glitter.

The glitter started as a kind of texture as I did not sand. Then I got coffee grinds and soil. The glitter is an interesting thing that could symbolize burying people with food and objects from life.

I’m still considering using my dogs ashes in a painting, and not the typical one where I paint my dog. I would put it in a mound painting. I still haven’t opened the box and admit I’m a bit creeped out as well as super intrigued…

I thought I’d end up with a pretty complete altered book by the end of this. I’ve worked on them for 71 days now but because I destroyed the two volumes ofthe first book, I’m not that far into the second book.

All this to say I’m thinking of starting to go back to my office/art studio. I will continue remote sessions for a while, as I don’t want to worry about the variables of people coming in and out and the germs and wearing masks and gloves. But I did pay for all of April and for May and in April I didn’t work there and most of May too. I even got rid of my internet there and changed my address.

It will be weird going back. I’m not going to go from working here to going back. I will not work late in the night because I dont’ want to walk back alone. I’ll probably do it a few days part of the day next week and slowly change over.

It will be weird being back and not seeing anyone all dayas opposed to workign at home and living with people at the same time.

I saw on the news in Berlin people acting like nothing happened. Gathering places, sitting in coffee shops, no masks on. So odd and disconcerting. Are Germans special that they won’t get another wave?

We will be wearing masks and putting mail in boxes and having inside shoes and washing hands a lot for a long time, maybe for a year or more.

When do I end this day count? When I’m fully back in my office? When I no longer wear a mask? When someone says the pandemic is indeed over?

Day 70: Heavy Wings

My 12 year old is doing creative writing after school on Thursdays. Today she read her poem to me. It was really good. I would print it here but it’s hers. It was nice to hear her read it to her friends. She picked the first line “If I had wings” from a bunch of choices for starting her poem. She’s on a fourway call now talking to kids she’s known a while from Rochester, New Jersey and Oklahoma. It’s Rochester’s birthday tomorrow so they will stay up talking until midnight when it becomes tomorrow.

Her poem rimed in that way where it’s not perfect so it sounds cool. I don’t know what I would write. I know I just took another 5 long paragraphs and saved them because they shouln’t be part of today’s blog. I started out just writing whatever and then posting. But it’s day 70 and I have evolved or changed.

If I had wings, they would be translucent, radiating and large on my back. They would look like they were glued to my spine. Each wing would have a wide span and thick feathers; I’d want feathers so light I couln’t feel them, but I’ve got heavy wings. Maleficint kind, not fairy wings. It would take a lot to get in the sky as my wings are too heavy. At first I thought they were so strong they could keep me aloft for long distances, but they were too heavy to go far. I’d jump and get airborne six to ten feet off the ground but quickly grow weary and come back down to sit in the sand, covering my body with my thick wings.

Why have wings if you can’t fly? I could small distances, and it felt marvelous despite the short spurts. All tlhe other winged creatures saw that I was slow and clumsy. The only one among them. I would sit under a tree and whatch them fly. I could stay warm hiding under my wings or let a small creature under them like a tent. They made a loud noise when I moved which can startle many, like a very loud flutter andflutters are supposed to be light. My wings were bigger than my body.

I actually worked on a story in college called “Heavy Wings”. The title was better than the story.

I just dug up some poems about 9/11 from the early 2000s that I will post here soon.

Day 69: Susan Rothenberg and whip cream

I like the whip cream you get at the store and push the magic sprayer and it comes out all fluffy. Growing up, we never had stuff like that. The only whip cream I knew was watching my mom make big peaks of egg whites with beaters to fold into something to make lemon pie or whatever. I’m not even sure if that was whip cream. She probably made it but we never put it on anything. There’s a great scene in Schit’z Creek where David is trying to make burritos or something and his mom tells him ” fold in the blah blah” and neither of them can figure out how you fold something that isn’t a fancy designer shirt.

This quarantine I have canned whip cream every day. I usually have coffee with half and half in my special black Zojirushi thermos, but now I spray some whip cream into it. Sometimes I just spray it into my mouth. Nobody else in the house eats it. For years I avoided whip cream in anything or with anything. It was gross to put on pie; you were supposed to put ice cream on pie. I thought it was really bad and fat filled. Now I know to live life fuller and if spraying whip cream into your mouth is fun, do it. It’s more like a condiment and unless you have a whole can it is like licking the bowl after making cookies.

As usual, I have cut out three boring/negative paragraphs about my eating habits during Covid 19 going down the drain. Today I told a client to do something she hadn’t thought of because she’s alive and can still do it. It is a good way to look at life. David in Six Feet Under has a sobering conversation with his dead dad where his dad shakes him out of his PTSD by telling him he’s lucky he can still do stuff as he isn’t dead. “You can do whatever you want.” Easy for a dead person to say.

What the fuck does this have to do with Susan Rothenberg? Whip cream I don’t know. But she did die yesterday, and I just started writing this after reading about her. She is one of my top three favorite painters. Painters are different from the broader category “artists”. Like I love Lee Bontecou and Eva Hesse but they are not painters, they are sculptors which means they made a lot of drawings but few paintings. To be a real painter you have to have a big relationship with painting all your life that could be quite a struggle but a very close intertwined with your very self-thing.

Susan Rothenberg was a painter’s painter. From the moment I saw her stuff, I just got excited about the paint on the canvas. Looking at her stuff makes me want to grab the oils specifically and make a big messy painting. Her paintings aren’t very messy but they are painterly and kind of delicious.

I guess the other painter I discovered more recently like ten years ago was Joan Snyder. The other painter on my top 3 might be Robert Ryman, but he was an early favorite. Plus he has other stuff in his art besides the actual painting but that stuff is kind of a red herring to distract people from his real activity of putting paint on whatever.

When I started painting back in college and mostly after for the first ten years or so, the painters I was drawn to most and most excite by were Philip Guston, Robert Ryman and Susan Rothenberg. Guston was especially an “artist’s ” painter because of just the way he put the paint on the canvas. And he wanted to be and was buried with his tube of cadmium red paint. It’s hard to explain how a painter can have artist fans and then art collector type fans and the general public but the artist fans have a more intense almost violent interest in the painter. It’s like you want to reach into the painting and get a piece of its mojo for your own painting.

Susan Rothenberg was known for her horse paintings, which were great, but she painted heads and all kinds of things. The way she could put a line in a painting and it would still be a painting and not partly a drawing was awesome. Her paintings are like layer cakes you want to just scoop up a piece and smoosh in your mouth.

I haven’t seen anyone’s paintings in the physical real life space in a really long time (besides my own and my clients’). Last I went on a research mission like trip to a gallery was when I got obsessed with the painter William Scott. I copied one of his pear paintings and got back into oil painting through him. He’s a new favorite. I’d say I got a bit sick of my obsession with Philip Guston and moved on to people like Eva Hesse and Hannalore Baron. Eva Hesse has a great story in terms of her background but she also basically caused her own death from the resins she used in her work that gave her cancer. But she is not a painter. Hanalore Baron feels like a painter even though she is more of a collage person. William Scott is delightful because he just stayed with painting and mostly still lives.

There’s another scene in Six Feet Under when Claire’s aunt sees her open a letter and get rejected from an artist residency. She says well maybe you’re not really an artist, a weird thing to say as getting into a residency has nothing to do with it and probably lots of “artists” get residencies but aren’t really artists. Plus she told Claire she was an artist a few years before that. Claire reacts in a weird way. I can’t remember what she says but her aunt isn’t convinced. I know I saw the whole thing back when it came out, but I forgot most of it and had believed Claire was an artist until she started getting too into having a show and not being honest about her idea origins. I suddenly realized I was projecting. Maybe Claire isn’t an artist. I would have told the aunt that she was wrong that of course I was an artist and that artists make art to live and live to make art, not meaning to make a living out of it, but that it keeps you living in the bad times and in the good times it’s one of the big reasons to live. I’m in a closet most of my day but making more art than before the quarantine.

Anyway I maybe have made peace that my art will never be as good as or recognized like Susan Rothenberg, but I will still die an artist. It’s who you are, not whom you decide to be or even who you become. It may have taken me my first 20 years to stumble on the fact that I’m an artist/painter/draw-er, but nothing stopped me from doing it and I haven’t stopped doing it. I see Rothenberg as a fallen comrade, even though she’s famous.


Day 68: Everyday is not the same

I could have written and probably have and forgotten a post called, “Every day is the same.” One of my clients said it last week at the beginning of the session and someone else talked about it and about a podcast he listened to that was talking about trying to do different things everyday so the day has some I guess, “flavor” is the word I would use.

Make each day have a different flavor.

I just erased 4 paragraphs going on about depression and the day being the same and clinical unipolar depression versus bipolar depression. Yay it’s gone.

Does everyone wake up thinking about existential quandaries, why am I alive, etc.? It isn’t until later in the day that I start wishing I had started the day sweetly and gently. As I’ve said, I wouln’t want to be my own patient. On a bad day in quarantine, I don’t like myself by the end of the day and wish I was someone else. not a self hatred that’s violent, a regret and wish to have not said stuff and been very quiet.

Today I started the day polishing a silver rattle with silver polish. It’s usually more like a pink cream that you put on the rag and then rub and polish. Mine was unused for a long time nda had dried up. Just put some water and shake it up and then use it on the rag and start polishing. I had two things to polish right away. This silver rattle I got from somenoe as a baby. I’m pretty sure it’s from Tiffany’s. The there’s a pill box which isn’t really for using, because if you put pills in there they get dirty and scuffed from being in a silver box.

It was very satisfying to get these two very tarnished things shiny again. It’s like polishing time down to the point where you could be a baby again holding the rattle. I’ve seen a photo of me with the rattle. It has a good sound. The pill box is cool in the way that a pocket watch is. It’s beautiful but you just have it and don’t use it for what it’s supposed to be used for. The rattle is supposed to be for a baby but I think I will used it next time I go on the fire escape at 7 to make noise.

Ok it’s that time where I erase the first two paragraphs htat were probably really negative

I’m keeping my silver rattle on my “desk”. It makes me feel happy about it. That made no sense but it’s late.

I made some very colorful burial mounds in my new altered book today. I think I make more art during this quarantine. It does’t matter if it’s good. It has no words and is so much a medication for me. It really has the power to change things, in a way writing does not.

Page from my new book.

Day 67: New Project Burial Mounds

These pieces are from my new Covid altered book, Kurt Cobain’s journals. I know it’s ridiculous but it seems right for all kinds of reasons. Anyway I started putting these burial mound drawings in it:

The above has a list of numbers dead each day of my Quarantine count; of course people we’re dying of it before then, but this was the point where staying home could save lives and was not safe to go out.

I can’t remember if I’ve written about this new art project. Probably at some point last week. I thought about Burial Mounds after looking at the mounds created in my altered book, layers of buts of paper built up with Mod Podge .

Then I got excited to make a bigger 3D looking one which I haven’t destroyed. That led to drawing them and starting a collage painting of one. They just look like round small hills, but I’m trying to add layers both building out and up. In the case of the 3D one made of ripped up pieces of the book, it was also the burial/death of the book, even though I had no plan to completely destroy it.

Anyway, I did get excited to stumble on this concept and have it be so relevant in many metaphorical ways. Living in the metaphor is part of working as an art therapist that most people don’t understand or need to understand.

There is a correlation between 9/11 and the dead and Coronavirus and the dead. In 9/11, they were down here looking for any living people buried under the rubble and also finding dead people and parts of dead people. The big funeral trauma besides everything else can be and was having a mangled body, having some body parts, or objects or having no body whatsovever. Even if you want to cremate, you obviously don’t want the event to cremate your loved one burning them up before you can properly mourn them and have their ashes.

I know this is macabre, but I am definitely one who dwells in that space. I love watching “Ask a Mortician” on Youtube and have read all her books. I loved Six Feet Under when it came out and am watching it again during this quarantine.

When I noticed that I was unwittingly building towards building burial mounds, I got excited to make more of them and learn more about them. I associated them with ancient civiliazations but not the Egyptians, though many cultures who make burial mounds do leave objects with their loved ones. I thought of Native Americans and hit a blank as I really know nothing about Burial Mounds and their origin, or how many different cultures have/had them as cemetaires, but it does answer my big question from childhood which was about how and what are we going to do with the dead bodies one day when all the cemetaries are filled and there are no places to put them. It would have been great to have had Caitlin Doughty’s book “Will My Cat Eat My Eyeballs” back then, where she answers kids’ interesing questions about death.

The other correlation between Covid 19 and 9/11, though the “numbers” of people killed may be vastly different, is the environment of death and loss, this fog hanging over the city that is more invisible than 9/11, there’s a disjointed feeling in the air and nobody’s life is as it was. Besides being able to smell the burning/the lingering smells that started on 9/1, no matter where you were within a bunch of miles of Ground Zero. The smell lingered, and in this case it’s different.

The pile up of numbers feels like a burial mound, but I picture a futuristic mound, where the dead are piled up and each have numbers or something that makes them all the same.

The tributes to the dead are everywhere and don’t connect. You don’t get to see your loved one dying or see them die, or see them as a dead body.

I think one reason cultures need a lot of ritual and cycle of life rituals (bury the dead in the earth, then go to the house to eat) is to convince themselves this person really doesn’t exist any more and you can never see or interact with them again, and like a burial mound, the bottom of this mound is the knowledge that one day it will be you who is dead.

Maybe humans had to remind themselves they would die and could  at any time far back into many cultures. Even those with elaborate stories of after life, seeing the dead of course reminds us of our own precarious lives, but also in the case of maybe the cave person, it may have reminded them to put as few people in danger as possible. I think a lot about the guarding of the cave and the changing of the guard.

This may not have been true. We make up all kids of stories, but I see the one person waking up at 4pm, probably the cave people all slept in times of 4 hours. This is why during the witching hour really is true; hospital personel report that there are more deaths of heart attacks around 3am. That would be the last hour of the watch and the guard might be getting sleepy and more vulnerable to a predator. Perhaps the stress involved caused heart attack.

Anyway, memento mori, remember you shall die, is true always with humans and maybe other beings like elephants, seems to be a thing we have lived with since there have been humans.

Sitting in your house right now, not seeing any dead bodies, maybe hearing sirens or not hearing any, it may be hard to really believe that in this moment, there are an extreme amount of ill people dying today, more than usual and caused by Covid. What does it mean when most of the deaths are caused by one thing?

The extra death going on and the slowing down of things being in your house because you were asked to, and you know you’re protecting people from you getting sick and “killing” someone wtih it. Turn on the news. Does the talk of how many died make it “real”. The removal of the connection between people who are alive and their recently dead loved or hated one, that is not natural.

It’s a very weird kind of separation and abandonment. I don’t know if any of the OBject Relations people have written about it. It’s not the feeling that your parent abandoned you by dying. It’s the idea that since you cannot see the dead body, something you should have is not being given to you. You are abandoned to your own grief with no coffin, body or coming king of loss and feasting. Maybe getting ashes does something, maybe it’s the gathering of live people to talk about the dead and then celebrate life by eating and being close to each other, the opposite of physical/social distancing.

The jury is still out about how far distant you’d need to be from a Covid dead person if you might catch it or if you can touch the body. according to Caitlin Doughty. She made a video about it, as she talks a lot about how being close to a dead body will not make you sick.

Day 66: Did Stuff. Vacuum Cleaners are Great

I wrote another long post complaining about how pathetic I was yesterday. It was a lot of paragraphs about not being a doer, being someone who wastes time feeling extra emotions and getting delusional and self involved and worked up. It’s kind of emotional psychosis. All psychosis is delusions and hallucinations. Hallucinations can be scarier but they torture you differently from delusional depressive obsessively negative thinking.

Anyway today I did things. I cleaned and rearranged my closet office. I cleaned part of the kitchen. I vacuumed some areas. I had a nice Zoom call with 2 very close friends. I went across the street to Starbucks for the first time in the new era and picked up an order at the door. I made avocado toast for my kid and me for our 3pm lunch. I watched her show with her and then all of us watched an episode of Six Feet Under where I’m at, the fifth season. I should see what we’re doing for dinner to get with the regular parenting program, don’t forget to feed your kid and make them do their math high school prep work after someone has managed to find the book they used when they went there in person.

Done. No more torture. I left that writing in drafts.

The fun fact is that I got a lot of sleep last night and woke up better. The night before yesterday I was up until 4am and hardly slept.

Not very complicated. Sleep a good amount and even a mess of a person can be somewhat ok and not a total torture to be around or most of all to be that person, meaning me.

 Home Office reorganized:

Day 65: Cities and Beaches

Really negative and depressing post. I don’t care. I’m in a bad mood that’s lasted over days and I can’t avoid it by sleepign because I’m fucking insomniac. I just wrote a long negative complaining post because I hate NYC and want to be somewhere in the countryside forever until I die. I’m so done with NYC. There has been nothing that I was doing besides working and coming home and now I”m just working and being home.

I’ve got insomnia from not having any morning to afternoon to evening cues. Everything I do here I could do somewhere else, beautiful near nature where I could go outside everyday. I didn’t even go out today on the fire escape at 7. I heard it was nice out. I didn’t look out a window.

I hate seeing shows and movies when people are like, you can do anything if you’re not dead, don’t live a life you don’t want to live. It’s not true. I want out of this situation. I’m stuck in thick mud for five more years at least.

I don’t miss being physcially around people. I want grass, woods, trees, beaches, whatever, with very few people, and a dog. And I don’t want to wait 6 years for it. And a real house with stairs and floors and a basement and I don’t even care anymore how big it is or if there’s a swimming pool and hot tub. Just anything away from the city.

I’m stuck here now. And maybe for the next 5 years until my kid goes to college. I don’t want her to go to high school here. I want her to have the experience of living in a nice house with us and having friends over for outdoor parties and fun. I don’t want to have only lived with her in this house apartment in this grey depresseing nieighborhood. I’ve never lived in a house, alway apartments. I want a dog and a tree and a yard.

Get me out of here. I can’t stand it. The only thing I can do for long period is draw. I can’t read anything. Most movies don’t seem worth watching. And I want my dog back. I hate my life and I hate being here. None of my plans have matched my life. Some time long ago I got stuck to my private practice and I think that’s what kept me here.

I want out. I regret not moving 6-8 years ago. Now it’s too late. Every day is the same. There is nothing to look forward to or get excited about. I hate everything.

I’m just supposed to be grateful I’m alive and just survive. In DBT you’re supposed to eventually evolve to not just surviving but thriving and “living a life worth living.” There is no worth in living this life. I’ve made the wrong choices about one of the most important things in life, where you live. Where you live is how you live and moving is the olnly way to change my life. All that stuff about manifesting is bullshit. I tried to manifest a totally awesome 2020, where I could make alot more money to fixour apartment so we could rent or sell it.

Maybe life isn’t that better in a house with grass and the outdoors. Maybe it would be the same as I’d be the same. My life is shrunken. It’s a crumpled up piece of paper I want to throw in the garbage.

Day 64: destruction and distress

” Will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I’m 64?”

No to the book. It is on Day 64, and I completely destroyed both volumes of the Covid 19 altered book I’ve been going on about for the last 64 days.

I woke up this morning and did not feel good. On those days anything can happen; luckily I have art and my own things to attack so anything I destroy is contained. And being in this 6 foot square box allows for the whole tiny space to be the wreckage place.

I looked at the book and was just not even disgusted. I can’t describe the feeling. I was annoyed at it, extremely judgmental that I don’t like the art I did in it, and just fed up and done and bored with working on it every day. Suddenly it was ego dystonic and did not seem to reflect my experience at all, or it just felt like garbage, irrelevant, overworked, beyond salvaging.

And most of all, I need to destroy something because I was angry and had that need. There is something extremely satisfying about destroying something like that. It’s not like ripping a drawing up. It’s like attacking a carcass. It feels more murderous and requires a million times more effert and energy and exertion. It did take a while to do. Meanwhile I was throwing parts of it one the floor.

I should have timed it but I was in the moment. At least I was present in the moment to the need for murderous carnage. It felt especially satsifying that I have worked on the god damn thing pretty much daily for all of this fucking Covid 19. I didn’t rip every page to smithereens so I have a lot of bones and meat left that could still be used to feed the next book.

Yes of course I’m starting another book. As angry and indifferent and depressed about everything from Covid 19 to things in my life I wouldn’t even write about, and could have just thrown in the towel with the book and decided, Fuck altered books. They”re stupid. I’m sick and tired of making them, thinking about them, writing about them, not writing a book about making them. It might be nice to just never deal with it again. I’m sure some other art therapist is already writing the book about the process, but if they are, I bet they don’t have a vulture chapter like this one.

So waiting in the wings was a book of Kurt Cobain’s journals that I had already ripped stuff out of to put in the other altered book, so I decided to start all over and use it as the new one and try to do things differently, so I started gluing in drawings, simple, black ink on paper. The idea is to not have so much stuff and color and paint and stuff and stuff and duck tape and materials and keep it simple and let it be dark and not hopeful.

We will see how that goes.

Photos of the wreckage:

Beginning anew: