Friday, December 29, 2006

Hold On Nelly, We're Headed For The Watermellon Patch!

Oh my god!!!

I was just tidying up my template and linking some "greatest hits" when look what I found under the David Moos interview!

Anonymous said...
I own a private gallery- ACA Gallery, art can change the world website.
I took on the financial responsibility to make art accessible plus an incubator for art and social change. Okay- heres the challenge- I have the place available to help out- my mandate no funding so whoever is interested in setting up or volunteering drop me a line through my website.
Talk is cheap- lets get out and do something.

Carol Mark
art can change the world

Here is her website...Her gallery is located at Jarvis and Queen which is a rocking location...I'm going to phone Carol Mark right now, but I have NO IDEA when she posted this comment...I feel terrible...but doesn't she have super feisty attitude, I think I like her already.

As far as a drop-in visual literacy or art program goes, I've had some fantastic responses within churh organizations. How strange is that folks? I mean, a gallery like the AGO you would have thought if only for the media attention would have hugged and kissed me and thanked me for such a good outreach program. But in amongst the homeless, downtrodden, beat dejected, fucked up, lost, struggling and most of all...compassionate has shown a willingness to get somethign GOING! The Outreach program where I work has shown complete interest in setting up an arts program. I have appontments with art supply stores to donate paints, good paints! And canvas. So what a great storm of inspiration to find this comment today from a gallery in Toronto.

Okay...I'm going to go contact Carol Mark right now, I'll let you know how it goes...

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Random Ramblings

Having no idea what to write a list about today...I am just going to start typing.

1. I watched a very different movie last night called The Family Stone. The premise seemed light and entertaining but within minutes, the personalities of the characters started to grab hold of me and play out like a mystery story. It is a comedy, and a family drama and was surprisingly good. Awesome ensemble cast including the very hot Dermot Mulrooney, Sarah Jessica Parker, Clare Danes, Diane Keaton, Craig Nelson and Luke Wilson.

2. I also watched the movie Domino, starring Keira Knightley. A couple years ago, Keira Knightley just rubbed me the wrong way. I loved Pirates of the Carribean movie, but she bothered me. This past summer, with the sequel to the Pirate movie, I utterly got into her acting and comedy and persona. I am now a fan of the Keira! In fact, I didn't want to watch the latest version of Pride and Prejudice, because I am a huge fan, like so many others, of the BBC six hour mini-series from the 80's. But I watched it after seeing and enjoying the Pirates sequel...and really really loved it. Flicking through the movie networks I noticed a Keira Knightley movie called Domino...and it is directed by Tony Scott, whose movies I always enjoy and learn something from his camera work, action and hardboiled tone. Stagg and I were riveted to the movie the entire time. It also stars Mickey Rourke, who I love, and Christopher Walken. It is a fast choppy compelling movie and based on a true story. Of course as soon as the movie ended I had to find out...WHO WAS this DOMINO!!!?? She was the daughter of Lawrence Harvey, yes, the actor in The Manchurian Candidate! (The film Domino even had a character watching this movie ) She was a priviledged Hollywood child who modeled and then became, a BOUNTY HUNTER! Who could make that up? The real Domino Harvey died last year and I was sorry to read about her death due to "artistic differences" and I am glad to have seen this movie and see such a different kind of person in a movie. Complex. And Tony Scott ROCKS!

3. I'd like to say something really wise and deep because it's almost New Years Eve. I kinda hate New Years Eve. The evening can go either go out, dance, meet superfreaks, get bored or luck into a fun time with a good band or a good party. I've spent many different kinds of New Years Eve...often going to a friends band, sometimes warehouse parties, sometimes asleep by 10 p.m. Although I am a massively "goal-oriented A-Type personality" I almost never make New Years resolutions. I simply can't think of anything profound or deep about New Years Eve...I could take it or leave it. I make resolutions throughout the year.

4. Okay, here is a resolution. THIS year I WILL read Bleak House by Dickens. When I started this blog, I had no idea of what I might post about...and I started by going to write about books I read. I hardly EVER post about books...but I thought I would post about Bleak House...never even read it last year.

5. Um, last some early point in the year, Stagg and I wrote a list of what we wanted to do in the coming months. We did everything on that list. So, I think we should up the ante this year if we make another list! We both seem to be people who like a list and accomplishing it...which suddenly seems to make the list have a lot more potential and responsibility...doesn't it?

6. Some of my favourite artists who have inspired me over the years, especially when I was very young, include Van Gogh, Andy Warhol,Francis Bacon, Turner(the opening image of this post), um Philip Guston(the last image posted in here at the end of the post). I think I should stop listing artists it would take all day. Perhaps I'll save these thoughts for a future week?

7.Have I "learned anything" this year. In some ways it doesn't feel like I have, but I must dig deep...I must have learned something? I learned that having a difference of opinion with ones Love isn't the end of the world...heh's okay to have different opinions. It makes for some great conversations. I have also re-learned somethings. Like about compassion, love and forgiveness. Compassion and forgiveness are personal can aplogize and forgive and it only makes a difference inside your own heart. Say, the person you "forgive" is really an act of an illusion...they might not even notice or understand, but your own heart knows. Same with looks like an act set out for others, in altruism...but the benefits are really mostly felt inside your self. Atonement works the same some ways, it is our ego that wants redemption and atonement( remember I am a Buddhist and desire is always an act of the ego according to a strict dogma...which of course, being a good Buddhist I rejected long ago ha ha)...but we want peace too with others. Yet, making such peace is private ultimately. I'm sure someone else could articulate what I'm scratching to describe right now, I don't seem to have the words.

8. Being in love and acting on it this past year has been a mirror for how much peace of mind I have...and I feel very lucky to have such a sense of peace in my life. Being in love makes it stand out strong and obvious. I felt peace of mind and happiness before...but it is all so practically played out when in love. And...there are lots of slapstick ironic feelings too...

9. What else am I thinking about today? I got to see a lot more about Stagg's family this past week. Very interesting and insightful stuff. He is the most unique his life choices seem so extreme and brave...that he chose to be an artist yet his family isn't really an artsy family. He and I have this in common, that we made a strange choice to be artists when we were both very young, little children. Most families aren't exactly thrilled when their kids want to grow up to be artists. I have found it quite fantastic to get a whole insight into his past and history as an artist this past year, in a new way. I think of Stagg and I as fairly average folks who love their world of imaginations...but it is hilarious when we look at our pasts and environment to see and did we get so "edgy or extreme" ? I've got a whole new respect for the power and magic of the imagination.

10. I think William Burroughs is the greatest American writer whose only close peers are Melville, Faulkner and Hemingway. I've always loved Burroughs, but this year I have found myself thinking about him, how he wrote and compiled such intense stories and characters and reached such a large audience whie writing about dark and dirty things yet making the novels full of great action and beauty...mixed with a sort of spiritual squalor. Even Cormac McCarthy doesn't even come close Burroughs acheivement, after all, Burroughs wrote all his life and published so many more works.

11. I love this web site

12. I love this song and video! It speaks so beautifully about love. I find it is brilliant because there are many kinds of love it can mean. Of course casting Robert Dwoney Jr. is incredible because it alludes to a self love the kind that gives us stength to take care of ourselves. Also, the love being "a different kind" can mean a gay love, a fobidden love...a Romeo and Juliet kind of love. The lyrics are so simple and brilliant and they make a huge leap and connection between sexual adventurism and bravery and the spirtual: a connection that a lot of people don't immediately see. The desire for extreme passion or feeling is "a rougher stuff" and actually a craving for a deeper and alternative love, outside our materialistic definitions of romance and love. And...most valuable, at least for me, it has always meant a spiritual love, in this song. Romantic love is easy...a spiritual love is much more work and "rougher" indeed. We are taught barely enough how to find or cultivate and share, the kind of love that pens us up to compassion and to contest the societies and environments that may or may not, frighteningly allow us to feel love or loved...but with a "different kind of love" we can learn and reject all the negative forces challenging us every day. I almost always cry or at least, get onion-eyed listening to this magnificent song.

13. This is post 404. I have been blogging for 10 months. My technorati rank is 6,141. I still have a long ways to go to beat Guy Kawasaki to Technorati Top # 10...but I started at over 2 million I'm not giving up yet. I have had 15,000 visitors so far. This is Week # 21 of my participation in Thursday Thirteen. Time flies when you're having fun!!!!

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Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Chicago: City On The Make by Nelsen Algren, 1951

From the chapter, "Love Is For Barflies"....

"Before you earn the right to rap any sort of joint, you
have to love it a little while. You have to belong to
Chicago like a crosstown transfer out of the Armitage
Avenue barns first; and you can't rap it then just because
you've been crosstown.

Yet if you've tried New York for size and put in a stint in
Paris, lived long enough in New Orleans to get the feel of
the docks and belonged to old Marselle awhile, if the
streets of Naples have warmed you and those of London
have chilled you, if you've seen the terrible green-grey
African light moving low over the Sahara or even passed
hurriedly through Cincinnati-then Chicago is your boy at
last and you can say it and make it stick:

That it's a backstreet, backslum loudmouth whose
challenges go ringing 'round the world like any green
punk's around any neighborhood bar where the mellower
barflies make the allowances of older men: "The punk is
just quackin' 'cause his knees is shakin' again."

"What's the percentage?" the punk demands like he really
has a right to know. "Who's the fix on this corner?"

A town with many ways of fixing its corners as well as its
boulevards, some secret and some wide open. A town of
many angry sayings, some loud and some soft; some out
of the corner of the mouth and some straight off the

"You make rifles," the Hoosier fireman told ten thousand
workingmen massed at a Socialist picnic here, "and are
always at the wrong end of them."

"Show me an honest man and I'll show you a damned fool"
the president of the Junior Steamfitters' League told the
visiting president of the Epworth League.

"I don't believe in Democracy." the clown from the
National Association of Real Estate Boards reassured his
fellow clowns. "I think it stinks."

"I'll take all I can get," the blind panhandler added, quietly
yet distinctly, in the Madison Street half-way house.

"You can get arrested in Chicago for walking down the
street with another man's wife," the cops forewarn the
out-of-town hustler smugly.

"I despise your order, your law, your force-propped
authority," the twenty-two-year-old defied the
remaindered judge. "Hang me for it."

And the strange question inscribed for posterity on every
dark, drawn shade of the many-roomed brothel that once
stood on Wells and Monroe, asked simply:


Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Xmas Eve

Christmas Eve was a mild crisp afternoon and we spent it at our friends Jason and Mike's party. Isn't this view incredible?

Jason and Mike, the hosts extrodinaire. They cooked everything, perogies in bacon and onions, southern baked cabbage, ham, caviar and eggs, meatballs, just entre after entre. Really beautiful. They had composed a drink menu and I chose brandied cherries in champagne. Lovely!
The view from the master bedroom. It's beautiful at night.
Look, Santa had little stocking for everyone lined up on the shelf!
Mike and Rick...and eggnog made from scratch!
Izzo, allen, Stagg and Rick enjoying the feast.
Izzo and Alelen. Izzo is an urban monster, artist and art promoter, and a very good dance partner. Allen is a performance artist and very funny person.
This was the best ham I've eaten in years. All the food was spectacular!
Mauro, who made the most delicious Chicken Parmesean. He and I had a super fun conversation about cooking, Top Chef (he is also a believer, we love the Top Chef!) and ingredients. Mauro is a foodie, and had so many tips and experiences of where to find fabulous food around Chicago. I look forward to tracking down his suggestions of places to get butter, meat and perfect produce. I was so pleased to meet him, he is absolutely charming.

Izzo and Stagg!
Rick and Mike and the ever needed Christmas camera instructions. Of course immediately my batteries konked out, but Mike set me up with some more, a perfect host.

Allen and Joey!
Candy loves Stagg!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Down Time on the Down Low

Remember those cute babies I went to babysit a couple weeks ago? Here they are! Aren't they the luckiest brothers to be adopted in the world!!! Oh my god, they are adorable and gorgeous personalities. These are their Command Modules. Come in Jupiter.

As soon as their parents left...time to PAR-TAY!!!! Bring on the Victoria Secret Special!!!!

I just took this piccie because I like all the stripes. No reason, I just love these two, and apparently stripes are trendy right now.
This is how I land up watching tv. I just start making a nest. It's not pretty but it's comfortable. I set up pillows and my crack pipes ("remotes" to civilians). We intend on taking in a lot of movies over the next week. If I'm not blogging next few days...this is where I am. You're right, I have no pride.I watch some of the craziest tv shows. This is the Janice Dickinson Modeling Agency MARATHON. It's as addictive as The Surreal Life. But, it has gorgeous models so Stagg lands up surprisingly accommodating and watches it with me. I just took his picture and said, "This is bloggable" his sudden horror... I think he's trying to hide under the covers. Too late!
Happy Holidays! I love you guys so much...and hope you have lots of time to relax and watch cool movies and visit and have fun...and all next year too! Barbara Walters asked the Dalai Lama..."What is the purpose of life?" He said, "To be happy" She asked, "How do you be happy?" He said , "By being compassionate."

Eve of the Eve

We came upon this Christmas casualty nearby our place. I wonder what happened?
I'm listening to their cd we bought right there, at that moment in Wicker Park, and it's very good, mellow hip hop so far. Great voices!
Stagg and Joe. Yep, Stagg came to work with me today.
Pam and Tom.
Pam and I after work. She also runs an art program at the Outreach. (yes, my fly is undone, ...I'm tired okay. I'm just that kind of stunned. Um, Stagg, babe, when you're taking my picture please check to make sure my fly is up...well in all fairness, I guess this makes up for me snapping you watching my girlie fashion shows)

I'm sure this has some term, but I don't know what it is. It's a gable on a house held by this pole that is out front of a front door stoop. How cool is that?

This is for Mister Anchovy. We stopped for a drink on the way home, and took this as a sign. While I took the photo the Clash's Radio Clash was playing...nope not some acordion tunes.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Holiday Tag

Red just tagged me with a book quest. She got the tag from Pickled Olives who was reading Amy Tan novel. This is a book tag. Red (whose book was a travel guide to Yucatan)tagged me, Karen and Tanya

1. Grab the book closest to you.
2. Open to page 123, go down to the fifth sentence
3. Post the text of next 3 sentences on your blog
4. Name of the book and the author
5. Tag three people

For one of my online book clubs Constant Reader we are just about to read Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger for the month of January. I just pulled it off the shelf yesterday and had it here beside me on the computer by coincidence. So here is what is on page 123....

Franny now lay sleeping on her left side, facing into the back of the couch and the wall, her chin just grazing one of the several toss pillows all around her. Her mouth was closed, but only just. Her right hand, however, on the coverlet, was not merely closed but shut tight; the fingers were clenched, the thumb tucked in- it was as though at twenty, she had checked back into the mute, fisty defenses of the nursery. And here at the couch, it should be mentioned, the sun, for all its ungraciousness to the rest of the room, was behaving beautifully.

I tag The Healing Room, Wandering Coyote and Mister Anchovy

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Pagan Roots of Yule

The following traditions are from Tink, a Wicca blogger pal.

Yule is celebrated on the 21st of december: today!

Yule is a turning point in nature: the shortest day and the longest night. After Yule the days become longer again.

At Yule we celebrate the return of the light. The God (the sun) is reborn. Fires and candles are lit to encourage the light to become stronger and stronger.

Yule means "wheel", which refers to the Wheel of the Year: the cycle of the 8 witches' sabbaths. The wheel starts at Yule.
Other names are: Midwinter, Winter Solstice, Winter Equinox, Alban Arthan, Finn’s Day, Joel.

The colours of Yule are: red (fire), green (nature), white (light), gold (God, sun), silver (Goddess).

The Yule tree is decorated with all natural material: fir cones, berries, straw figures, etc. In earlier times the tree was burnt as an offering to the Sun, the God. Now we put lights in the tree instead.

The Yule log is a large log of freshly cut wood (oak). Originally, the Yule Log was burned in honour of the gods and to bring good luck in the coming year. To help kindle the fire, holly was placed under the log. Guests would toss a sprig of holly into the fire to burn up the troubles of the past year and to keep their houses safe from burning down in the New Year. The ashes were scattered over the land to give them fertility for a good harvest. Each year a piece of the Yule Log was saved and used to start the fire for the next year's log. Pagans today use the Yule Log in a symbolic way to do the same.

Yule was a time to eat and drink all the remains of the harvest that were liable to decay. This feast was shared with the whole family. The rich often shared with the poor because there was enough for everyone.

The explanation of kissing under the mistletoe extends back into Norse mythology. The Norse god Balder was the best loved of all the gods. His mother was Frigga, goddess of love and beauty. She loved her son so much that she wanted to make sure no harm would come to him. So she went through the world, securing promises from everything that sprang from the four elements (fire, water, air, and earth) that they would not harm her beloved Balder. Leave it to Loki, a sly, evil spirit, to find the loophole. The loophole was mistletoe. He made an arrow from its wood. To make the prank even nastier, he took the arrow to Hoder, Balder's brother, who was blind. Guiding Holder's hand, Loki directed the arrow at Balder's heart, and he fell dead. Frigga's tears became the mistletoe's white berries. Balder is restored to life, and Frigga is so grateful that she reverses the reputation of the offending plant, making it a symbol of love and promising to bestow a kiss upon anyone who passes under it.

Yule is also a festival, not just a single holiday. The Yule season or Yuletide begins on the solstice, which is the Mother Night of Yule, and ends 12 nights later with Twelfth Night/New Years.

The Horned God is represented by a stag. That's where our present reindeers come from.
Drinking Wassail at Yule is an English custom from heathen times. 'Wassail' comes from the Anglo-Saxon Wes Hal, meaning "to your health". The beverage is made from ale, wine, and/or cider with fruits and spices added. Traditionally it was used in part as an offering to apple trees in thanks and for their continued fruitfulness. Bits of toast were floated in the wassail bowl, then placed in the branches of the tree, and libations poured over the roots. (This is the origin of our term "to toast" someone.)

Thanks Tink for such a cool list of things about some traditions that were passed on and blended and transformed but somehow they are a link to our older peoples.

p.s. I will add to Tinks excellent list that the fireplace has magic history as an icon of the winter festival in the home as a gate between heaven and the underworld. The yule log is from the earth, the hearth and ashes are connected and return to the ground, the underworld, and the flames and wood evaporates into the air, the heavens. As for the holiday tree...isn't it ironic that people always say they are afraid of the tree catching on fire from the lights, yet, in the past we lit the tree on fire on purpose!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Search Word Entries That brought People to This Blog:Edition Week #20.

13. bringing intelligent life ultimately
12. stand down margeret lyrics
11. mithras disciples
10. gwar underwear
9. adrenochrome from fetuses
8. candy making paint brushes
7. strong woman art
6. watch ghetto people fight
5.lifestories nakshatras
4. plato's perfect number
3. red orange bludgeon
2. cormac mccarthy futility western history
1. philosophy cafe

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Beautiful - Christina Aguilara

Okay, well, I think I have finally figured out how to post a video here. This video is dedicated to the folks who posted about how beautiful the volunteers are that I work with at the Outreach soup kitchen.

Red said, "Beautiful people doing something truly remarkable."

Pickled Olives said, "Volunteers are beautiful!

The Underground Baker said, "Great post Candy - the pic of kids doing their 30 hours is pretty funny. Everyone has that beautific look about them."

Felix said "Just such an effort began some years ago in my town, Chattanooga, TN, with a coalition of churches working out of the parish hall of one church. Staffed by volunteers from the participating churches.

That effort morphed into a non-profit with professional staff providing not only food, but health services and coordinating shelter locations around the city. Wonderful stuff, but the zeal and energy in your pictures, Candy, are hard to sustain in the grind of daily coping. Good for those kids, and their mentors."

I love this song by Christina Aguilara, and I think the video is one of the best videos in the whole world!

Night Lights

These pictures may not look like much, but if you click on them to make them larger, there are a few details captured in the dark. This is the same bridge, with a wreath on it, where I took photos last week of the guys playing buckets. Gardenia, Red and * that is the Chicago Tribune again in the background. Is that guy in the car waving at me?
Weaving through these tree light sculptures are two train sets and little villages. I loved this circus setting. There were booths with hundreds and hundreds of ornaments, plus hot drinks and snacks and tons of people were sitting outside visiting. I was so impressed, I couldn't believe the downtown was so alive with people on a week night.

A woman was walking next to us talking on her cell phone. She was trying to hook up with someone and was describing where she was in the area. She says" Well, there's a Harris Bank across the street". I'm like, to Stagg, how about the HUGE fricking Christmas tree? (30 feet high) That might be a landmark? Meanwhile, Stagg is telling me, that's not one tree, they use several dozen trees to make it look like one huge one. I give him a look. What are you gonna tell me next, there is no Santa?
Um, there is a Picasso sculpture in there, oops. Too dark in this photo, but it looked great in amongst all the holiday decorations and lights. Right between the tree and the Oriental Theatre sign. (where Wicked is playing).
Stagg is sending some of his mail art out. No it's not a Christmas gift, it's mail art. How funny are we mailing anything this time of year? I didn't manage to get a picture of all three I was like, move in Stagg move in! But there is his funky package.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Soup Kitchen

David and Anita. They both applied to a work volunteer co-op program with the Franciscan Outreach Association. David is from Seattle and Anita is from Germany.I have been bugging David to apply for reality tv show Top Chef. He'd be perfect. "Soup Kitchen Chef"!!!
Junior, studying to be a pastor. One evening I went and got a cup of tea. He came running up and asked "Who said you could have that?" I was like, "oh I'm sorry, I thought I could get a tea". He was "I'm just messing with ya". He's a bit of a shit disturber, funny and very dedicated. I told him, I'm putting your pic on my blog with your nasty tricks.
David, pretending to be a taskmaster and delegating.

Casey, a high school teacher, Vincent and Martin.
Some high school students fulfilling a 30 hour volunteer aspect of their curriculum.

Christina and Junior.
Tom standing below a poster that says "Love is our business".
A long banner is rolled up, but the last point is peeking out and says "Anonymity is the spiritual foundation of all our traditions, ever reminding us to place principles before personalities." I love that.
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